The gospel of Luke takes a slightly different approach than the gospels of
Matthew and Mark.
1) It does not mention the preaching of the gospel at the end-time,
but rather focuses upon the preaching of the gospel in the time
of the apostles and then introduces the Great Tribulation.
2) It places the thoughts,
"nation will rise against nation ..." and
"earthquakes ... famines and pestilences"
after the persecution of the apostles but prior to the Great
Tribulation. (Note 'before' in verse 12.)
3) It introduces the idea of
"fearful sights and great signs from heaven"
prior to the Great Tribulation.
This apparently is a reference to the disruption in the religious
hierarchy created by the preaching of the end-time gospel.
ONE TAKEN, THE OTHER LEFT
The following verses are often quoted in support of some form of
Matt 24:40 Then two men will be in the field: one will
be taken and the other left.
:41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one
will be taken and the other left.
Luke chapter 17 adds,
Luke 17:34 I tell you, in that night there will be two
men (or 'people') in one bed: the one will be
taken and the other will be left.
Symbolically those who work in the field or grind the grain are
involved in the work of God. However, the 'in one bed' aspect
indicates that they have spiritually fallen asleep.
The gospel of Luke documents the questioning of what this means,
Luke 17:37 And they answered and said to Him, "Where,
Lord?" So He said to them, Wherever the body is,
there the eagles will be gathered together.
In the Old Testament there is a verse which alludes to both,
a) removal and b) the 'one out of two' ratio.
Zach 14:1 Behold the day of the Lord is coming,
And your spoil will be divided in your midst.
:2 For I will gather all the nations to battle
The city shall be taken, the houses rifled,
And the women ravished.
Half of the city shall go into captivity,
But the remnant of the people shall not be
cut off from the city.
This verse indicates judgment on Jerusalem is being discussed and
that those 'taken' are those which go into captivity!
RETURN OF CHRIST
In discussing this subject it is important to realize Christ returns in
several ways in the end-time.
- He returns in Spirit
- He returns as a Bridegroom.
- He returns in Glory.
The spirit of Christ is present in the end-time preaching of the gospel.
This end-time gospel message incorporates a superior understanding of
the New Covenant and a full understanding of the previously 'sealed'
It is this end-time gospel which 'seals' God's chosen ones and provides
for them the wisdom necessary to rise above (and for some to merely
endure) the prophesied Great Tribulation.
AS A BRIDEGROOM
This is the time Christ returns for the virgins. The parable is recorded
in Matthew 25:1-13. The time of the start of the wedding ceremony. The
event is stated as occurring at 'midnight', refer Matt 25:6.
Those who fail to enter into the wedding ceremony have to endure the
'days of vengeance' (Luke 21:20). At this time the Great Tribulation,
the predicted 'wrath of the Lamb', the event which is the future
equivalent of the Flood, will occur. It is a time which will catch
This is the form of return which most people envisage. It the time when
Christ returns from the wedding (Luke 12:36). It is the time of the
sounding of the last trump (Matt 24:31 and 1Cor 15:52). A time when He
returns in power and great glory (Matt 24:30). The time of judgement
upon the nations which trampled Jerusalem (compare Luke 21:24 with