In 2008, the storm Hurricane Hanna blew past the coast of Maine on its way to Canadian Maritime. It was a large storm and was the eighth tropical cyclone and fourth hurricane of the ’08 Atlantic hurricane season. Maine didn’t get hit as hard as some of the other states on the eastern seaboard, but we received a lot of rain, which caused the waves in the ocean to go crazy! I remember the day after Hanna passed by our area; the sky and clouds were absolutely gorgeous over the ocean. One of my friends came to visit and we decided to go into Acadia National Park and watch the huge waves crashing against the rocky coastline. When I shot this photo of her, I told her that it looked just like she was going to keep on walking right off the rocks and go straight up into heaven like Enoch!
What a great scripture this is in the first book of the Bible. Genesis literally means “beginnings,” or “origins.” I remember the first time I read the Bible from beginning to end, when I read those words, “Enoch walked faithfully with God, and then was no more, for God took him away,” I knew that it was a foreshadow, or picture- type of rapture that Enoch had experienced. He just vanished from the face of the earth!
Enoch had lived his life in a way that was so pleasing to God, that He called him up to heaven without having to experience a physical death. This is the hope that is called the rapture of the church, and it is the hope of many Christian believers throughout the world today. The Latin translators of the Bible used the word rapere, which is the root of the English word rapture, and the Greek translators use the verb harpazo, which means to “seize with force” or “snatch up.”
Can you imagine what it will be like to be taken off this planet so rapidly that we won’t even realize what happened until we see the Lord? We will be translated and transported through the air, with an arrival time that is less than the time it takes to blink an eye! The apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 “Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep (die), but we will all be changed – in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and WE WILL BE CHANGED.” Again, in 1 Thessalonians, Chapter 4:17, Paul writes “We who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them (those who have died in Christ) in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.” When Jesus was speaking with His disciples, He told them, “I will come back and take you to be with me, that you also may be where I am.” (John 14:3).
There is a lot of debate concerning the timing of this event for the body of Christ, but all the evidence I read in the Bible, the prophecy that is being fulfilled rapidly, and the witness of the Holy Spirit inside of my heart tells me that the church (or the body of Christ/true followers) are not going to be left behind when God pours out His wrath on the world during the tribulation period. Why would God appoint His church to wrath and leave it behind to go through the tribulation period that will occur on this earth? God’s church is the very reason He has held back His wrath from this evil world for so long because He loves all people and desires that no one should perish.
Enoch walked with God for 365 years, and I have walked with Him for 25 years, but no matter how long the walk we need to stay close to God and be in harmony with His heart. There has never been a time in history when the return of the Lord has been so near, so it is important to live as though we will not have another chance to get our hearts right with God. He is going to keep His promise, because it is impossible for Him to do otherwise. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life that we all long for, and want to come sooner, rather than later. Maranatha Lord, come soon while we wait, and help us to be about your business until we are rescued!