~ First Coming, Rapture, Second Coming: Comparisons and Contrasts ~


The Lord came to earth before His conception in Miriam's womb. He came as the Shekinah Glory in the form of a light, a fire or a cloud (e.g., Exodus 13:21-22). He also came as the Angel of the Lord on a number of different occasions, as with Abraham (Genesis 18:1-3). But the Lord's comings via the womb of Miriam, the Rapture and the Second Coming are comings in human form, and are of immense significance in the outworking of God's plan for ages. We will therefore do some comparisons and contrasts regarding the three.
 

FEATURES FIRST COMING RAPTURE SECOND COMING
WARNING STATUS
AS TO TIME
Before He was cut off 434 years after Cyrus' decree to permit the rebuilding of Jerusalem. Daniel 9:24-26. See The Rapture. None Almost 7 years after
Antichrist signs treaty with Israel
PROPHESIED PRECONDITION See above None Israel's belief in His Messiahship
PROXIMITY TO EARTH Touch down The air Touch down
THE NATURE OF
THE LORD'S BODY
A common, mortal human body A glorified, immortal human body A glorified, immortal human body
ASPECT OF THE LORD'S NATURE EMPHASIZED Humanity Divinity Divinity
HUMAN CHARACTERIZATION Suffering Servant Deliverer (1 Thessalonians 1:10) Conquering Warrior-King
CENTRAL PURPOSE Die for the sins of the world Deliverance of the church from the coming Great Tribulation
(1 Thessalonians 1:10)
Replace the kingdom of the world with the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ (Revelation 11:15)
PURPOSE CONCERNING
ISRAEL
Offer of national salvation and Kingdom Clear the way for judgment of Israel unto repentance and salvation of non-rebels Save non-rebels from annihilation
and for coming Kingdom
PURPOSE CONCERNING
THE UNSAVED AMONG THE NATIONS
Lay groundwork for offer of salvation Clear way for their judgment in the Great Tribulation and for final offers of salvation via repentance Utter defeat of all opposition
from among them
PURPOSE CONCERNING
THE CHURCH
Lay groundwork to
establish His church
Coming for His church Coming with His church