“But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark.” Matt. 24:37-38
Notice how our Lord emphasised the ordinary things of life. But isn’t this exactly what has always been found, and is found today? By and large, people are attending to their meals, and young people are looking out for their future spouse, or actually getting married. News media are not warning people of an asteroid approach, as in the film Contact, or cataclysmic weather events as depicted in The Day After Tomorrow. Isn’t this the whole point? The Lord was saying that for the vast majority there would be no dramatic sign to warn people of the day of His return. On one occasion He said, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.” Matt. 12:39.
If the resurrection of Jesus took people by surprise, would it not equally be a surprise if suddenly members of the body of Christ were found on earth in their resurrected bodies? I remember Arthur Wallis receiving a prophetic word to this effect in December 1967. But it is not commonly understood by the theology of Churches today.
Our Lord went on to say, “until the day that Noah entered the ark.” Here again we find that word UNTIL, which was the focus of the previous series. Suddenly something happens, something that was not expected. There was no rain before the Flood. People were not expecting it. It was completely unknown. The covenant of the rainbow after the Flood proves the point. There would have been no force in the Lord’s words if mankind had seen a rainbow before the Flood.
But the “coming of the Son of Man” will be accompanied by the readiness of His people, just as Noah and his family were ready for the day “when they entered the ark”. Noah had no idea when God’s prophetic word to him would begin. Likewise the Lord said “No man knows the day or the hour,” of His return. But Noah had made himself ready, and as soon as he and his family entered the ark, “the Lord shut him in.” Within seven days the drama began to unfold.
The coming of the Lord is an event that will change everything in the world, just as the Flood changed everything in Noah’s day. In this first number of the series we have been directed towards six things –
- The ordinariness of everyday life, right up to the day of Christ’s return,
- The lack of any demonstrative sign to indicate a sudden change is about to occur,
- The fact that members of the Body of Christ, like Noah, will be ready for that day,
- When the day comes it will be a sudden event,
- No one, not even the Church, can know the actual time,
- When it happens it will cause surprise, concern, and begin a world-wide change.