As a Thief In the Night - Days of Noah
by Pastor James McCutchan
Many there are in Christendom today who teach that Christians can't know when Jesus is coming because He's coming like a thief in the night. Yes indeed, Jesus is coming as a thief in the night. But, to whom is He coming as a thief? The Bible says:
"But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night" (I Thessalonians 5:1 & 2).
There you have it, beloved. The day of the Lord is coming as a thief in the night. Many stop right there to prove their point that no one can know the time. The day of the Lord in this text is speaking about the time immediately preceding the Second Coming of the Lord. How do we know that? Let's go on to the next verse. Often we don't read far enough. The next verse says:
"For when THEY shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon THEM, as travail upon a woman with child: and THEY shall not escape" (I Thessalonians 5:3).
Who are THEY and THEM in the verse above? THEY and THEM are the unbelievers in the tribulation before the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus. Always, in both the Old and New Testaments, the day of the Lord refers to the Second Coming of the Lord in judgment. Always, in the New Testament, the day of Jesus Christ, or Christ Jesus, refers to the Rapture of the Church. Check it out. So then, in the verses above, Paul is saying that the day of the Lord and its judgment will come as a thief in the night upon THEM, and THEY shall not escape. Now, let's go on to the next verse where Paul speaks to US about US:
"But YE, BRETHREN are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief" (I Thessalonians 5:4).
Will the day of the Lord come upon the brethren (believers) as a thief in the night? Not a chance! Why not? We, the brethren, have spiritual eyes to see. They don't. The next verse says:
"Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore, let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober" (I Thessalonians 5:5 & 6).
Let us watch and be sober! Let us watch especially the Road Map to Israeli-Palestinian peace; the covenant to be confirmed (guaranteed) by the Gentile antichrist. Jesus also told the Church to watch and know the hour of His coming:
"If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee" (Revelation 3:3).
Jesus said that from the negative side. If we read it from the positive side, He said, If you watch, I will not come upon you as a thief, and YOU SHALL KNOW what hour I will come upon you. WATCH AND KNOW THE HOUR OF HIS COMING! THUS SAITH THE LORD!
Jesus told the Church if we watch we won't be overtaken as a thief in the night and we will know what hour He will come. Is this a contradiction to what Jesus said to Israel? No, it is not. Jesus said to Israel before His death and resurrection:
"But of that day and hour KNOW E TH no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only" (Matthew 24:36).
Notice please, the verb KNOWETH is in the present tense, relative to the time Jesus said it. Remember, when Jesus said this, it was 32 A.D. and at that time only God the Father knew. But, did He say that no one would ever know? No! He did not. In the very next verses He goes on to explain:
As In the Days of Noah
"But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be" (Matthew 24:37).
Let us now go to the book of Genesis and learn more about the days of Noah.
God Foretold the Number of Years Until the Coming Judgment
God revealed to Noah that man's days would be another 120 years until the judgment would come:
"And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years" (Genesis 6:3).
God Revealed the Way of Salvation for the Believers
"Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch" (Genesis 6:14).
God always keeps the believers from His wrath and judgment. Later, after the ark was finished and as the hour of judgment was nigh, God then revealed to Noah the exact day it would come.
God Foretold the Exact Day
"FOR YET SEVEN DAYS, and I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights; and every living substance that I have made will I destroy from off the face of the earth" (Genesis 7:4).
God Kept His Word
"And it came to pass after seven days, that the waters of the flood were upon the earth" (Genesis 7:10).
Now let's go back to Matthew 24 and further examine what Jesus was saying about the days of Noah:
"But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood THEY were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took THEM all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be" (Matt. 24:37-39).
THEY were eating and drinking. THEY were marrying and giving in marriage. THEY knew not until the flood came and took THEM all away. Who were THEY? THEY were the unbelievers. The unbelievers knew not until the flood came and took THEM all away. But, as the time drew nigh, THE BELIEVERS KNEW the exact day before the fact! AMEN!
"BUT AS THE DAYS OF NOE WERE, SO SHALL ALSO THE COMING OF THE S ON OF MAN BE."