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  • So shalom from the top of the Mount of Olives.

  • The city of Jerusalem is right behind me,

  • and we are on top of one of the most

  • important mountains on planet Earth.

  • This is the place

  • were so many things happened.

  • This is the place where Jewish people from

  • Galilee used to encamp right here

  • every festival, as they made it to Jerusalem

  • from the east, making their way up

  • from the eastern part from Jericho as their

  • last major stop and right here for the first time,

  • they would be able to see right

  • where the dome of the rock is standing today

  • was the temple, the great temple.

  • Whether it's the first temple built

  • by Solomon, roughly 1,000 B.C.

  • and destroyed in 586 B.C., or it's

  • the second temple that was rebuilt

  • by those who returned back

  • from Babylon, but it had to go through

  • three different phases. One

  • when they built it, another one when the

  • Hasmoneans restored it in the second

  • Century B.C., and, of course, the time

  • that Herod the Great gave a great

  • facelift to this mountain and created

  • something adorned with marble and gold.

  • And they say that he who did not see

  • Jerusalem in those days knows not what

  • beauty is. And some others said that if

  • ten cubits of beauty were given to the world

  • in those days, nine were taken by Jerusalem

  • at the time. Jerusalem was amazing.

  • Jerusalem was definitely the center

  • of the world's attention even then, not

  • to mention now. But the message

  • that we want to talk about from

  • the top of the Mount of Olives right

  • here as we look at the Temple Mount,

  • as we know that the City of David

  • is right down below,

  • this is a contested place today.

  • This is a place where UNESCO

  • is actually saying it's not even having

  • any Jewish heritage, where we know

  • that not only that it has, if there is any

  • heritage to this place, it is Jewish.

  • We know that we found remains that's

  • going back to more than 3,000 years ago.

  • And just recently we found a 2,700-year-old

  • piece of scroll that is sort of like an invoice

  • for someone who was shipping wine

  • to Jerusalem. And so all I'm trying to say,

  • there is no doubt we're standing and looking

  • at a place that God himself said in Second

  • Chronicles 6:6, this is where I am going

  • to put my name

  • upon this place.

  • Not only that, he said also, I'm going to give

  • it to David to rule over my people Israel.

  • So, God says I will be here, and God says

  • it is meant to be for David to rule over

  • my people Israel. And we all know

  • that somebody has to come from

  • the house of David.

  • Somebody has to be from the line of Judah

  • or from the line of Judah, from the tribe

  • of Judah, and he will restore once again

  • the fallen tabernacle of David right here.

  • Now the topic of the rapture of the church

  • is often something that either is being

  • controversial, which means people don't

  • exactly know how to take it and they have

  • so many different opinions about it, or often

  • being completely neglected by thousands

  • of thousands of churches all around the world.

  • It's something that I believe is the

  • work of the enemy. To neglect most likely

  • the most important thing that can be promised

  • to the believers in Jesus is definitely to steal

  • from them their only hope, their blessed hope.

  • The main hope for every believer. And the title

  • of the message is the mystery of the rapture.

  • And it's not for nothing. It is a mystery.

  • In fact, I want you to know that mystery

  • is not secret. Secret is secret, and mystery

  • is a mystery. And when the Bible wants

  • to talk about mystery, the Bible talks

  • about mystery. When the Bible wants

  • to say secret, the Bible says secret.

  • Mystery and secret are two different

  • things. Mystery is something that is not

  • hidden but transformed from shadow

  • to substance, something that at a certain

  • point we saw it, but we didn't understand

  • and then in light of new revelations, now

  • we understand what it was all about.

  • Yet secret is something that is hidden

  • and that we cannot see nor feel.

  • So, when God reveals secrets,

  • it's something we never heard of.

  • When God reveals a mystery,

  • we are going to say, “Aha!”

  • "Now I understand it." And it's interesting

  • because for the entire Bible we find

  • thirty-three times the word mystery, and we find

  • it once in the Old Testament in the Book

  • of Daniel. The mystery that we're talking

  • about that dream that Nebuchadnezzar

  • had and that mystery eventually was solved

  • by God, the God of Israel, who revealed

  • the true meaning of that dream to Daniel,

  • for him to share with the king.

  • And that mystery was all about things

  • that existed and will come to pass

  • and then Daniel just interpreted it.

  • He received an understanding

  • of something that existed.

  • Thus, it's a mystery.

  • Yet we find that word mystery also

  • in Romans and Corinthians and Ephesians

  • and Colossians and Second Thessalonians

  • and First Timothy and in the Book of Revelation.

  • And in the Book of Daniel, the mystery

  • was all about the true God.

  • The mystery revealed who the real God is.

  • When all the other people tried to give

  • their own interpretation, it is the Lord God

  • of Israel that gave the true one.

  • But then as we move in Romans 11,

  • there is the mystery

  • about Israel and God's

  • plan for Israel,

  • plan for Israel, which means Israel

  • which means Israel

  • has been there. They are going through things,

  • but there is a mystery about their role

  • even in the future, that God in Romans 11,

  • in light of Jesus and in light of New Testament,

  • is indeed revealing to all people.

  • So, that's Romans 11.

  • So, that's Romans 11. In Colossians chapter 2,

  • In Colossians chapter 2,

  • the mystery of

  •   the true Messiah.

  • Colossians 2:2 talks about behold I tell you

  • a mystery about Christ, and if that's not enough

  • in Ephesians 5 verses 31 and 32, the mystery

  • of the relationship the between the church

  • and Christ. It is a mystery. It's a mystery

  • just like a husband and a wife.

  • It's a mystery because we've heard about

  • it before when God described his relationship

  • with Israel while in the desert.

  • Remember we read about it in Jeremiah

  • chapter 2, and now we see that that same

  • mystery is also between the church and Christ.

  • A husband and a wife. It is a mystery.

  • I think it's even a mystery to married

  • couples still. And then in First Corinthians

  • 15:51, the mystery of the soon rapture.

  • The Bible says behold I tell you a mystery

  • about how we are going to change.

  • In Ephesians 3 verse 6 and Colossians 1:26,

  • the mystery of the Gentile heirs

  • of the kingdom, how a Gentile can be an heir

  • of the kingdom. It's a mystery, which none

  • could understand before, but now in light

  • of the New Testament, in light of Christ,

  • we understand. God never meant only Israel

  • to be the heirs. He had also kept a remnant

  • that did not worship the Baal even from among

  • the heathens.

  • And then Second Thessalonians 2:7,

  • the mystery of lawlessness, which is already at work.

  • This is something different and that's

  • when we teach about the antichrist and the spirit

  • of the antichrist. So, we see that there

  • are several mysteries, even in mystery Babylon

  • in Revelation. But I would like to dwell

  • with all of you this morning from the top

  • of the Mount of Olives on First Corinthians 15

  • verses 51 and 52. "Behold I tell you a mystery.

  • We shall not all sleep," which is the Bible way

  • to say not all of us will die. And this

  • is the way to tell the believer

  • because nonbelievers will die.

  • Believers just fall asleep. We fall asleep,

  • and then we wake up and we are

  • somewhere else. Almost as if we fell asleep

  • in the living room, and the father takes us

  • and puts us in bed, and we wake up and we're

  • in bed where we need to be in our room.

  • A room that belongs to us, and we wake up

  • and here we are. We just fall asleep, that's all.

  • So not all of us will sleep, but we shall

  • all be changed.

  • Just like Paul says in First

  • Thessalonians 4, that "Behold, the dead in Christ

  • will rise first, and we that are alive will be caught

  • up in the air." We can clearly see that Paul

  • talks to the Corinthians and tells them

  • the same exact thing.

  • And he says, "In a moment,

  • in a twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet,

  • for the trumpet will sound and the dead

  • will be raised incorruptible, and we shall

  • be changed." Isn't that interesting that

  • on one hand, he speaks of a sudden event.

  • On the other hand, he speaks of a process.

  • The sudden event that takes less than a second,

  • twinkling of an eye. It's our bodies changing

  • and leaving this place. Within a twinkling

  • of an eye, we're going to be gone.

  • It's not something that the world is going

  • to sit and watch and look at all of us like

  • Mary Poppins going all the way up there.

  • No. The world will just understand

  • that we're gone. We will be gone instantly.

  • However, he said at the last trumpet,

  • which means that there has been a process

  • that had begun already, yet nobody pays

  • attention if it's not the believers.

  • We need to pay attention.

  • We need to look for that which I believe

  • God is trying to get the attention

  • of the world with, the trumpets.

  • And I've always said that Israel

  • and the church are the two trumpets

  • that God has been using ever since 1948.

  • This is the first time in history of Israel

  • is a nation back in the land and the church

  • coexisting. All before that, Israel was dispersed

  • all around the world. They were not a nation

  • back in their land, or when they were

  • in the land before the church did not exist.

  • So, you see in the Book of Isaiah, God

  • says about Israel you're my witnesses.

  • In the Book of Acts, you talk about the church,

  • you are my witnesses. These are the two

  • witnesses. These are the two silver trumpets,

  • I believe, that Moses was commanded to make

  • to direct the movement of the camp and to direct

  • the attention of the people. And God, ever since

  • 1948, is trying to get the attention of the whole

  • world that he's about to do something big.