Listen:  77 Question 2

Let’s look at that verse in the context of which it was written.  Let’s read Luke 17:30-37, “Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back. Remember Lot’s wife. Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it. I tell you, in that night there shall be two men in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left. Two women shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.  And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together.”  It’s important to realize that the Lord is not talking about the rapture of the church here.  The rapture was a mystery that was revealed to us through the writings of the Apostle Paul.  The Lord is speaking of the time that He would return to the earth which will occur at the end of the Tribulation period.  This time is the same as that spoken of in Matthew 25: 31-46.  I encourage you to read that.  Some will be taken away for judgment, while some will remain to go into the blessings of the Millennial reign of the Lord on the earth.  In one part of the world, it will be night when the Lord returns to the earth.  In another part of the world it will be daytime when the Lord returns.  While His coming is certain, the time is not given to us.  The Lord said in Matthew 25:13, “Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.”  When the Lord does return, He will judge those that have rejected Him as savior and Lord.

As the Lord tells His disciples of this coming day, they ask him where these great and terrible events will take place.  He responds that wherever the body is that is where the eagles are gathered.  It is where the dead bodies are that eagles, or more properly vultures, will gather to pick apart their flesh and devour them.  In the dispensational sense, the Lord’s words refer to the coming judgment of the nation of Israel that has rejected and disobeyed him.  Let’s look at the dire words of Hosea 8:1-4, “Set the trumpet to thy mouth. He shall come as an eagle against the house of the LORD, because they have transgressed my covenant, and trespassed against my law.  Israel shall cry unto me, My God, we know thee. Israel hath cast off the thing that is good: the enemy shall pursue him. They have set up kings, but not by me: they have made princes, and I knew it not: of their silver and their gold have they made them idols, that they may be cut off.”

There is also a great moral lesson for us in these words.  What a sobering warning to all those who have rejected the Lord Jesus Christ as their savior.  The bodies represent those who are spiritually dead.  Speaking to those who had put their faith in the Lord Jesus, the Apostle Paul wrote in Colossians 2:13, “And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses.”  The eagles, or vultures, represent the wrath of God coming to destroy those who are dead in their sins.  Concerning those that reject Christ, Paul wrote in Romans 2:5, “But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God.”  The Apostle James wrote these sobering words in James 2:13, “For he shall have judgment without mercy…”  Consider the harsh words of Isaiah 13:9, “Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.”

My dear friends are you yet, ‘dead in your sins’, or are you ‘dead to sin’ as we read in 1 Peter 2:24, (Christ) his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”  It is only by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ that we can become dead to sin, and escape the terrible wrath of God.  May we all be like those in Thessalonica who “turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come” as we read in 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10.