Summary: If you are "Left Behind" you will be lost. Don’t believe the lie.
Some Days There’s No Second Chance
With the popularity of the “Left Behind” series, there is a prevalent doctrine that after the Rapture folks who were nominal believers or heard the Gospel but either rejected it or just put off being saved will get another chance. This is a very desirable doctrine and seems very much like the grace and mercy of the Lord but is it Biblical? Would the God of second, third and more chances ever have a time when there would be no second chance? Let’s search the Scriptures and see.
Gen 3:22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:
Gen 3:23 Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.
Gen 3:24 So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.
Here in the first book of the Bible we find that God had a one-strike rule rather than a three strike one like in California. God did not give them a second chance. Eat and die was the rule and indeed in the meaning of the Hebrew dying they died. One strike and they were out of the Garden, under the curse and sentenced to death. Each breath was a stay of execution but eventually that stay was vacated and they vacated this life.
Was He a God of mercy and grace then? Yes, He didn’t strike them dead immediately and provided a covering for their nakedness that was now apparent because of their sin. In that act, He showed them the way of salvation that would be fully revealed in His Son. Abel understood and accepted it but Cain did not and hence we have the first battle between faith alone in what God provides or seeking to please Him with our works. It ended in death of the innocent and banishment of the guilty. Even that is a foreshadowing of the Gospel in that the innocent one died that sin and death might be banished. Glory!!!
Gen 7:15 And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life.
Gen 7:16 And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the LORD shut him in.
We are not told how long it actually took Noah to build the ark. We first meet Noah when he was 500 years old and he entered into the ark at the age of 600. If his youngest son was 20 when they started working on the ark then it was probably less than 70 years unless Ham, Shem and Japheth were triplets then maybe 80 years.
We do know that they were all old enough to have wives. So the youngest was at least whatever the youngest age that people married in those days. In history where life expectancy was 40 to 50 years old and infant mortality was high most people married shortly after puberty to ensure plenty of opportunity to have a child that would reach adulthood and still be able to have the parents be alive to raise them. However, in a time when people lived to be several hundred years old normal marriage age but have been 50-60 so maybe they only worked on it 40 years. The number 40 is used often in Scripture so maybe they worked on it one year for every day it rained. They were much stronger then and there was no Sabbath law or unions so they might have spent 12-14 hours a day, seven days a week thus completing it far more quickly then we would have in this age.
Noah may have only supervised while the boys worked so that Noah could take care of the animal situation and preach to the others. However that all worked out, we know one thing when the door closed there were no second chances. Those people had heard the Gospel of their salvation and rejected it. They may have laughed when the door shut and even when it first started raining though some may have started having second thoughts. Once the water started getting about their ankles and their dwellings flooded and stuff started floating away the mood changed. Many started banging on the ark pleading to be let in and as the waters rose the numbers of people and the cries magnified but the door did not open. They believed now but there was no second chance.