| "Jesus is Coming" (Making the Rapture)|
This is a portion of a sermon by B.H. Clendennon
Only the spiritual. There is a lot of religion, but there is not much Spirit. We have learned how to sell religion, promote it, make it exciting. Try to sell Jesus like you sell soap. Weve took up the worlds habits, we run the church like a supermarket. There is so little thats really spiritual in the world we live in. But there is nothing going to Heaven that didnt come from Heaven. Flesh and blood will not inherit that world. The rapture is going to take place, it is going to happen suddenly, and only a few are going to be a part of it. The greatest controversy is when is the rapture going to take place. There are those that are pushing us through the tribulation. There are others who have us half way through the tribulation. The Bible has to be the answer. Everybody claims to have an answer, but when we try to find answers in the Bible by trying to make the Bible fit what you believe, then youre wrong. I have to change my belief if my belief doesnt fit what the Bible says. Number one, God says, "As it was in the days of Noah..." and "As it was in the days of Lot..." Before any fire ever fell on Sodom, Lot was out. Before any rain fell on earth, Noah and his crew were in that ark. I used to believe that nobody listened to Noah. I have since changed my mind. He had thousands of people in that church. They went home every Sunday thinking "That old man might be right." They shouted and praised the Lord, just like they do now. They talked about the judgment coming, just like we come to church and say, "Oh, I Want To See Him," but if you thought He was going to be here in the next five minutes, Id never get to preach the sermon. Youd be down here in this altar, crying out to God, repenting, getting things right. But since you dont believe He is going to come in the next five minutes, you are going to tell yourself you are alright.
Noah had a crowd, he was a great preacher. They listened to him. If the rapture takes place on a Sunday morning, you wont hardly miss those out of Sunday School that left. Theyll get a letter from the absentee department. When is it going to take place? When you talk about the Great Tribulation you are talking about a time when God pours out His wrath. God hath no appointed me to wrath but to obtain salvation. God isnt mad at me, Ive been born again. Im His child. He chastens me. He hasnt appointed me to wrath, but to obtain salvation. Revelation 3:10, "Because youve kept the word of my patience, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation that is going to try every person on this earth." The hour of temptation is the tribulation. If He is going to keep me from it, Hes going to have to take me off of the earth. Again, I want you to notice here, in Revelation 2:20-22, some very conclusive evidence about the church and what point in time the church is going to be raptured. "Notwithstanding (talking to the church at Thyatira) I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols. And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds." Jezebel isnt what we try to make it, somebody that combs her hair a little different, that isnt what hes talking about at all. Jezebel incorporates more than that. Youre dealing with a mixture. There was a woman in the Old Testament named Jezebel, and the spirit of that woman, pops up in Thyatira thousands of years later, and what is said, "...who has caused my servants to commit fornication..." Not talking about somebody getting in bed with somebody else. Hes talking about spiritual fornication. The mixture of the true and the false. Because of this, God said, "And I gave her a space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not..." Its over with for her. But listen, "Behold, (this is God talking) I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her (those who tolerated this) into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds." Except they repent I am going to cast them into tribulation. Into great tribulation. He is talking about the tribulation. God says, Except they repent, I am going to do it, that means, if they repent they are not going to have to go through the tribulation. So there is some who are not going through it. That is the people who are going to be raptured. The rapture is going to take place before the tribulation.
In the world you have tribulation. Sixty-eight million people were slaughtered by religion because they believed in Christ, between the years 1200 and 1800. In 600 years, sixty-eight million people. They are being killed today. I preached every year in Communist Eastern Europe, to a people who have been tormented, persecuted, and jailed. In the world you have tribulation. If Jesus tarries His coming a little while, you and I are going to face the wrath of hell for what we believe in a way we never dreamed possible. But that is not the tribulation. The tribulation is when the viles of Gods wrath are poured out on a world that has rejected God. When that happens, we that know God and walk with God are going to be out of here. The question is, Who? Everybody believes theyre going to be raptured if they believe in the rapture. Then youve got this crowd of folks that believe they are the only ones that are going to be raptured. There are these organizations, The Church of Christ, The United Pentecostal, who believe nobody is saved but them. There are all kinds that pop up everywhere. I was in Saint Louis in the Keel Auditorium, this fellow met me on the outside, said he was from the Sons of the Prophets, I asked, Who are they? They are the man child group that is going to be in the rapture. I said, How many of you folks are there? He said, about ten or twelve. There has to always be these kinds of folks. In spite of the false there are just specific people that are going to make it. There is no specific organization. You can belong to the Assemblies of God or any other, that wont put you in the rapture.
A preacher who listened to me on TV out of Chattanooga, Tennessee, took me to dinner. During the meal he said, "I listen to you every Sunday, you are too great a preacher to miss the rapture." I said, "You think I am not going to make it?" "Well," he said, "Youve got to join up with us." I dont buy that. But I do agree with one thing, there are a particular people who are going to be in the rapture and nobody else is going to be there. That particular people are called in the Bible by one word, Overcomer. Seven times that term is used in the 21st chapter of the Book of Revelation. Seven times it says, "To him that overcometh..." And every time it gives a specific promise. One promise, "To him that overcometh will I give to sit with me in my throne." Throne in the Bible denotes authority, government. The government shall be upon His shoulders. When he said to him that overcometh I will give to sit with me in my throne, He was saying, It is those that overcome who are going to make up that glorified raptured church. The overcomer is going to be in that rapture. Somebody said, Well, what have we got to overcome? There is only one thing you have to overcome. If you are a born again Christian and have any hope of making the rapture, then there is only one thing youve got to overcome, SELF. When you come to Christ, when you are born again, repent of your sins, those sins are forgiven. It is as if you never sinned. The Bible calls justified, that means you stand before God as if you never sinned. That happens the day you are born again. But, the rest of your life has to be spent in walking in the Spirit, overcoming what you are, being conformed to the image of Christ. The whole course of your life is overcoming self. The enemy of mankind is in us. The anti-christ is spelled S-E-L-F. To the degree that we are full of self we are full of the devil. If you give him any ground, hes going to take a hold of it. It is said of Jesus, "The devil came and found nothing in Him." He had no carnal nature. he had a natural man, but He had no carnal man. He wasnt born of Adam. His father was God. He was conceived of the Holy Ghost, so the devil couldnt get a hold of Him.
To the degree that you and I have overcome that self life, weve overcome. The rewards of Heaven are going to be on this ground. Not how many times I preach, not how much money Ive given, but how much like Jesus have I become while I lived on this earth. How much have I allowed the Holy Spirit to work in me spiritually, to conform me to the nature of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible said hell is going to be worse for some folks than it is for others. Also Heaven is going to be a bigger place for some people that it is for others. Some are going to be saved as of by fire, others are going to have an abundant entrance into the things of God. And its all going to be on the grounds of how much we have given our life to the things of the Spirit while were on this earth. To most Christians, things are the blessings of God. That thinking has cost us a generation of kids. Instead of loving our kids, we give them another television set, or buy them a second car. The things that we have sought have not been a blessing, theyve been a curse. People have spent their lives in quest for them, if they are saved at all, they are going to discover Heaven is going to be a limited space for them. Years ago in the church, we had a boy we called Junior. He wasnt a boy, he was as old as I was. I was 24 hours older than he was. But the difference was he was mongoloid. He was a little boy in a great big body. You couldnt let him out on that parking lot, he would get run over. His older brother kept him, his mother and dad were dead. He called me My My. He hugged every woman when he came in the church. He was just a little boy. And one day when I was praying about this thought of rewards, God brought Junior to my mind. He showed me, Junior has lived on this earth as long as you have. He was born 24 hours after you got here, but life has not been one millionth part to Junior as it has been to you. He never knew what it was to have a lovely wife, beautiful children, and to be able to travel around the country. He all of his life has been a little boy. There is nothing more beautiful than children, but nothing sadder than a child that never grows up. Wouldnt it be sad if you knew your child was always going to be a child. The thought continued, he never knew anything that you know, he never knew what it was to get on an airplane. His life was a very limited life. And God said, Thats the best I can show you but that is an example of what its going to be like with people who have spent their life in quest for things, and just barely get into the kingdom of God. Dont seek after things, all will be yours tomorrow if you serve God. It is the overcoming of self, walking in the Spirit. It is the overcomer that will make it, but that requires diligence. Nobody is accidentally going to be raptured. If you are a part of that raptured church, it will be because you want to be. If there is anything on this earth more important to you, you will not be there.
The Bible says in Hebrews 9:27, "And it appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:" To them that look for Him shall he appear a second time without sin unto salvation. Notice its to them that look for Him. I know we have people that preach us through the tribulation. That means that the anti-christ is going to have to come, take charge of the earth, rule it for those seven years, then Jesus is going to come. Those people are not looking for Christ. He is coming for them that look for Him, if you are looking for the anti-christ, youre not looking for the Christ. If you believe we have to go through the tribulation before He comes, then you believe that its got to be at least seven years before He comes. Youre not looking for the Lord Jesus Christ, and He is not coming for you. It is the diligent. The key word is to watch. Watch and pray. Watch always. How we need to hear that. The most frightening thing is the carelessness of the part of Gods people. In the 25th chapter of Matthew, Jesus gives a parable of the ten virgins, five wise, and five foolish. Five had oil, five didnt have any oil. Five went in and five didnt get in. The other five that didnt get in, didnt fail because they were unclean, they were virgins. They were people that t lived for God, they went to church on Sunday mornings, what cost them their place in that rapture? Neglect, carelessness, not being diligent to the things of God. They were without any oil. You dont have to backslide. All you have to do is burn the oil up. If you dont take time to be refilled, then all you are operating on is the flesh.
| 2008/10/17 20:32||Profile|
| Re: "Jesus is Coming" (Making the Rapture)|
Thanks for posting this.
I've been blessed of God to have some of Brother Clendenen's dvd's and cd's.
I can truthfully say that I haven't heard anyone preach the Word of God, like Brother Clendenen.
He preaches the Cross, and always lifts up Jesus Christ.
I have listened to his Sermons on SI.
Every Christian would benifit Spiritually by listening to this man of God.
God Bless you
| 2008/10/17 22:40||Profile|
| Re: "Jesus is Coming" (Making the Rapture)|
He made some good points in this sermon but there is one thing I would like to highlight
I know we have people that preach us through the tribulation. That means that the anti-christ is going to have to come, take charge of the earth, rule it for those seven years, then Jesus is going to come. Those people are not looking for Christ. He is coming for them that look for Him, if you are looking for the anti-christ, youre not looking for the Christ.
How does he come to this conclusion that the people who believe what the scriptures say a bit differently and expect the anti christ to appear first before the rapture occurs are not looking to Jesus. What he is operating in there is control he is trying to control the people that are listening to him to believe his understanding of scripture. If your looking for the anti-christ then your are not looking for Jesus that is complete and utter nonsense.
Rev 15:2 And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire; and them that come off victorious from the beast, and from his image, and from the number of his name, standing by the sea of glass, having harps of God.
This scripture tells us that there are a overcoming people who are victorious over the anti-christ, his image and from the number of his name.
| 2008/10/17 22:41||Profile|
Such is a silly and illogical point. During the Olivet Discourse, Jesus did not rebuke the disciples for wanting to know what would happen before His coming. Had Jesus thought any of the things happening in the future were not worth knowing, He wouldn't have taught those things. So, if people are looking for the anti-Christ to come first, that doesn't mean they are taking their eyes off Jesus in order to do such.
Indeed, to me it seems those who hold to a post-tribulation view aren't looking "to" the anti-Christ, but "through" the anti-Christ-- "past" him even-- and the glories that are to follow with the second coming of Christ.
I preached a message posted here on SI "Everything That Can Be Shaken." in the forums. I'm very much post-trib. But I'd challenge you to listen to that sermon and tell me that my anticipation of the anti-Christ is distracting me from keeping my eyes on Jesus. Indeed, I think you'll conclude that Jesus is the central thrust of what I preached.
| 2008/10/17 23:22||Profile|
Not trying to take anything away from the truth that brother Art and others have preached but I believe their will be a rapture for those who are faithful to His Word. I believe we are to watch and pray. I have heard others on here say that to believe in a pretrib rapture will cause us not to be prepared for the coming persecution and it seems like some are saying that because others are persecuted then the church as a whole should go through the great tribulation.
Let me also say that I do not believe that the people in the church is going to automatically go in the rapture. I believe we must be faithful and be watching in prayer like Jesus said. I believe their will be a remnant that will be raptured before the great tribulation.
I believe the scriptures bring this out and I also believe that is what Brother Clendennon was saying in his message. Just because people do not make the rapture does not mean God will abandon them during the tribulation if only they cry out to Him and overcome the antichrist through a stedfast faith in Christ.
Re 3:10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
Lu 21:36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
Lu 12:40 Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.
Mt 24:42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
Mt 25:13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.
Mt 26:41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
2Th 2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
2Th 2:2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
2Th 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
Brethren persecution has been here since the beginning days of the church and we that live in an area with freedom to worship without persecution should be so thankful and pray for and ask God how we can help our persecuted brethren. We should also be living filled with the Spirit and ready for the rapture. I pray and hope to be a part of that remnant that will be raptured out of this world before the great tribulation. The scriptures seem to speak about watching and praying for an immediate catching away. If we know that it will only be after the tribulation and after the Antichrist then why the many scriptures that seem to imply the readiness in an hour we think not.
| 2008/10/17 23:44||Profile|
It is NOT a silly and illogical point. You can walk in Bible book stores and watch Christian TV and you see so many books about the end times, the anti christ, the mark of the beast, the movies, the tapes preachers make "what to do if you miss the rapture" and NONE of this is Christ-centered. Indeed, most of it is theologically wrong. To those who do not believe in pre-trib, that is your right. But ask yourself this: If you can't live close enough to the Lord to make the rapture, with the power of the Holy Spirit available and the support and fellowship of believers, HOW can you live for God with all that gone? You can't. Without the Spirit of Truth to show man right from wrong, man will believe the lie. It will be very convincing-the signs and wonders will deceive the whole world, according to the Word. I don't want to debate pre or post trib beliefs here because that is not profitable. What is profitable is being ready to go, period, regardless of what you believe. One belief lends itself to diligence, the other to lukewarmness. Which is better? Diligence.
If you, rather, spend your time seeking HIS face, getting to know the REAL ONE you will be able to spot a fake immediately. Ask yourself how your time would best be spent-reading a book or studying Scriptures on the anti christ, and the tribulation in an effort to prepare yourself or feeding on the Lord Jesus Christ who is our Strength, our Source, and trusting the Holy Spirit to get you through whatever comes? Now, you tell me how Bro Clendennen's point was silly. That is the crux of what he was trying to say and it seems to have been missed here. There are only two roads-narrow (Christ) and broad (everything else). If you are studying or debating the Anti Christ, or reading about the imitation, then you will not be communing with the Christ. You fall for the same lie Eve fell for..."you need to know knowledge of good and evil" when in fact you only need the Tree of Life-Christ. The Bride is making herself ready for her Bridegroom-not studying and and preparing to face the devil's imitation. The Holy Spirit will prepare the Bride to meet the Bridegroom not His imitation. The anti christ spirit is alive and well now in the world. You need look no further than your own heart to find it. How many times does the Lord convict us of things in our lives and draw us to prayer and we make excuses and do not listen or hang on to what He has said must go? That is self exalting itself in the Temple of God (as its own god) over all that is God.
2Th 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
That is the root of the anti christ spirit. Self first. We are the temple of God if we are born again. Yet do we always yield to the Spirit or to flesh? Again, I ask how is the point that if you are looking for(studying and expecting) the anti christ, then your attention is not solely focused on Christ, is it? And focusing on anything but Christ can cause luke warmness or carelessness. That was the central point to what Bro Clendennen said. When Christ is not enough to satisfy the Christian and their heart wanders to other things, even religious things, like Israel's did in the wilderness, they have stepped on dangerous ground. You can call it or defend it however you want. It's in the Book because He wants us to know how the Story ends. But it's not to become our focus. He is to have the pre-eminence in all things. Folks in America seem to think God is going to have to allow tribulation to come to the church here to shake us awake...and I have thought that myself..but the rest of His Body in many places are already going through great tribulation and persecution. Perhaps America herself is symbolized by the five foolish virgins whose oil ran out because her time was not spent plugged into the Source of her life. American Christianity is having a love affair with the gospel of prosperity, and self, even in devoutly religious denominations, whether it's being at ease and peace, peace when there is no peace coming to this nation, regardless of who is elected president, or whether it's religious rules and regulations, the church is stuck in a routine and largely is at ease in Zion or ignorant of the danger of NOT being in close communion with the Lord regularly.
| 2008/10/18 13:56||Profile|
Thank you Kathleen1 for your very seriuos reply and most accurate understanding.
To those of you who don't know brother Clendennon, he is the most humble, dedicated, spirit-filled man I have ever met. He is at this time 86 years of age and is teaching the school of Christ himself a few times a year. He at his age is still teaching several lessons a day for 19 days in sucession. For over 50 years he has been getting up to go to a five oclock prayer meeting. He started a school in Russia in 1992 and is now in over 140 countries. There is over 5000 schools going on at this time using his teachings the Lord has given Him over the years.
He has been in areas few people would go. He only lives for Christ to have all the glory. At 86 years of age he takes no medicine and Jesus is his only doctor. He was healed of a heart atack and also a broken neck from a car running into him with out the aid of any doctor besides Jesus.
He does not recommend others to not go to a doctor but he said he learn very early in his ministry to totally depend on the Lord and he has not backed up from his commitment. He is very humble as I have stated earlier and he has seen many miracles but he only tells about them as the Lord leads him. He wants Christ to recieve all the glory.
The school of Christ is very annointed and is all about Christ being all in all in a vessel filled with the Holy Spirit. I could go on and on but I will stop for now.
| 2008/10/18 15:43||Profile|
I too have met Bro Clendennen and I concur with everything said above. It is always human pride that jumps out and wants to justify its position and belief rather than question self and examine self. Consider what I say and may the Lord give understanding.
If you would like to read the School of Christ text files they are posted on his web site. I have uploaded them for storage and safe keeping and encourage everyone to download and read them for yourself. It's a safe and free download. They are in pdf and organized by subject in separate folders. This is a zip file.
[url=http://www.fileden.com/files/2007/2/2/727206/My%20Documents/Do%20Not%20Delete/clendennenschoolofchrist.zip]School of Christ[/url]
| 2008/10/18 16:11||Profile|
It is NOT a silly and illogical point.
Actually, it is.
Simply by holding to a certain theological view-point in regarding to the timing of the rapture (no matter what your view) doesn't mean you are taking your eyes off Jesus. It's simply part of studying the whole counsel of God's word. If all Scripture is profitable for study and building up one in righteousness (as Paul said it was), then studying things about the anti-Christ from the Scriptures in no way takes away from Jesus. It no more takes away from Jesus than studying about any other doctrine of the Scripture. If the Bible says something about it, no matter what "it" is, then studying "it" in as much detail as possible is beneficial.
What's with this sudden cult-like following on and defense of this one brother everybody is speaking about? It's almost like a critical reflection upon the man or his doctrine brings about a horrible outcry.
| 2008/10/18 18:34||Profile|
Evidently brother Jimmy you have never met him or really listen to his messages. He would never call himself an apostle but many who love and appreciate his ministry do see the apostolic anointing.
I dont want to step on your pride but if you could make room for some more humility and go to his website and read or listen to some of his messages, with the gifts that God has already given you, I have no doubt that you would be tremendously blessed in the Lord. He is true to God and does not promote self only Jesus Christ.
His website is www.schoolofchristinternational.com .
| 2008/10/18 19:12||Profile|