(Isaiah 34:1-17; Matthew 24:28-31, 40-41; Revelation 16:15)
Paul warned us that Jesus would come like a thief in the night.11Th 4:16 In the Gospels, Jesus said, “If the owner of the house had known what day the thief is coming, he would have kept watch—[on that day] there will be two men in a field; one will be taken and one will be left behind.”2Matt 24:28-31 In Revelation 16, before the battle of Armageddon begins, Jesus says, “Behold, I am coming like a thief.”3Rev 16:15
Isaiah set the stage for this great battle. He described the angels that would fall to the earth. Then he prophesied the wrath of the Almighty God, saying, “My sword shall be bathed in heaven4Isaiah 34:5 … there shall the falcons be gathered.”5Isaiah 34:15 The Greek word aetoi describes the falcon family of birds. Most English Bibles translate aetoi in Matthew’s Gospel as “vulture,” but they translate the same word as “eagle” in the Book of Revelation.
In Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus quoted from the Book of Isaiah, saying, “Where the corpse is, there the eagles shall gather.”6Matt 24:28 The eagles are the end-time saints. Jesus told us that the elect of God would be spared from the battle of Armageddon.
Zechariah described the deliverance of the saints, saying, “The Mount of Olives shall be split in two—then you shall flee through my mountain valley.”7Zech 12:4-5
Jesus promised that “He will send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet8Matt 24:31 … the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.”9John 5:25 Paul explained this, saying, “The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.”101Th 4:16