Q. I just have a quick question. What did Jesus mean when He said He’d come at a time when we least expect it, when because of the signs all around us we expect Him at any moment, don’t we?
A. Of the four times The Lord said something like that (Matt. 24:36, Matt. 24:42-44, Matt. 24:50, and Matt. 25:13), I think the clearest one is in Matt. 24:50. “The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect Him and at an hour he is not aware of.” These all refer to the second coming, at least 7 years after the church has disappeared in the rapture, so they don’t apply to us.
Therefore we have to use the left behind world’s perspective, not the Church’s. Most of them will be unbelievers, not familiar with prophecy. They will have been deceived into believing that the anti-Christ is the good guy, and will be convinced that no matter how bad things get, they will prevail and things will be great again. The few believers left alive at the end of the Great Tribulation will be in no position to persuade them otherwise.
That’s why Jesus said when they see the sign of the Son of Man appear in the sky all the nations of the Earth will mourn (Matt. 24:30). They’ll taken by surprise and will finally be forced to admit they were wrong, and it will be too late for them.