Skip to comments.PRE- OR POST-TRIB RAPTURE? (ORIGINAL)
Posted on 05/14/2019 12:13:01 PM PDT by fwdude
The Rapture of the church involves all believers being caught up to heaventhose just resurrected, together with those alive at the time (1 Thes:4:13-18 ). If it occurs at the beginning of the tribulation period, then clearly Christs Second Coming at the end of the Tribulation to rescue Israel in the midst of Armageddon is a separate event. According to Zechariah:14:3-5 , all the saints must accompany Christ back to earth. But if the Rapture occurs at the end of the Tribulation, it must be simultaneous with the Second Coming, making them one event. Which is it: two events separated by seven years, or one event with two diverse purposes?
This question, though it has nothing to do with the gospel of salvation, divides much of the evangelical church. Happily, it can be settled rather easily. The descriptions in Scripture of the Rapture and Second Coming respectively are so different in so many details that they could not possibly be describing the same occurrence. We cant cover all of these distinctions, but here are a few:
1) At the Rapture, Christ does not return to earth but catches believers up to meet Him above the earth, taking them directly to heaven: I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also (Jn:14:3 ); caught up...to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord (1 Thes:4:17 ).
In contrast, at the Second Coming Christ returns to this earth to rule Israel and the world from Davids throne in Jerusalem: his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem (Zec:14:4 ); the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end (Lk 1:32, 33); And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him....The armies which are in heaven followed him....Out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and shall rule them with a rod of iron (Rev:19:11-15 ).
2) At the Rapture there is a resurrection of all believers who have died up to that time: the dead shall be raised incorruptible (1 Cor:15:52 , 53); the dead in Christ shall rise first... (1 Thes:4:16 ).
In contrast, at the Second Coming there is no resurrection until Antichrist is defeated, he and the false prophet have been cast alive into a lake of fire (Rev:19:20 ) and Satan has been bound in the bottomless pit [for] a thousand years (20:1-3) none of which is even remotely related to the rapture of believers to heaven. Then, to the first resurrection which occurred at the Rapture are added a unique group: them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshiped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands...they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years (4, 5).
3) At the Rapture, the bodies of living believers (like those who are resurrected) will be changed to become immortal: We shall not all sleep [i.e., die], but we shall all be changed...the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we [who are living] shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality (1 Cor:15:51-53 ); we which are alive...shall be caught up together with them [the resurrected saints]...to meet the Lord in the air [clearly requiring immortal bodies] (1 Thes:4:17 ).
In contrast, at the Second Coming all of the saints return with Christ from heaven and will therefore already have been changed into immortality: the Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with thee (Zec:14:5 ); I saw heaven opened [and one] clothed with a vesture dipped in blood...and the armies which were in heaven followed him [to] smite the nations (Rev:19:11-15 ).
4) The Rapture occurs during relative peace and prosperity, when the world does not expect judgment from God: And as it was in the days of Noah [the last thing they expected was Gods judgment]...they did eat, they drank...married wives...were given in marriage [and as in] the days of Lot...they bought, they sold...planted...builded....Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. (Lk 17:26-30).
Again in complete contrast, the Second Coming occurs in the midst of the worst war the world has ever seen and following the greatest devastation this planet has ever suffered or ever will: then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world...nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved (Mat:24:21 , 22); behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed...power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger....There was a great earthquake...every mountain and island were moved out of their places...[men] hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks...for the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? (Rev:6:8-17 ); and the four angels were loosed...to slay the third part of men (9:15); and the...sea...became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea. And...the rivers and fountains of waters...became blood...the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and...men were scorched with great heat...and...there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth....And every island fled away and the mountains were not found. And there fell upon men a great hail [of large stones]...every stone about the weight of a talent (16:3-21); And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True....And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen....And I saw the beast [Antichrist], and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat upon the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and...the false prophet [and they] were cast alive into a lake of fire... (19:11-21).
5) The Rapture occurs when conditions in the world seem to indicate that all is well, when very few expect Christ to return and He catches even the church by surprise: of that day and hour knoweth no man...in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh (Mat:24:36 , 44).
In contrast, when the Second Coming occurs, not even Antichrist is caught by surprisethe many visible signs alert everyone that Christ is right at the door: when ye shall see all these things, know that it [Christs coming] is near, even at the doors (Mat:24:33 ); the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse (Rev:19:19 ).
6) The Rapture occurs when the church is sleeping, with little expectation of the Lords return: While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept (Mat:25:5 ); Watch ye therefore...lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping (Mk 13:35, 36).
In contrast, the Second Coming occurs at the end of the Tribulation in the midst of worldwide devastation and hopeless distress; the Antichrist and his armies are attacking Israel, much of Jerusalem is already captured (Zec:14:1 , 2), and Israel is on the verge of annihilation. It is inconceivable that the church, if it were still here, would be slumbering in complacency and under the delusion that surely Christ wouldnt come now!
7) Since the Rapture instantly takes us, without dying, out of this world of sin, pain and sorrow to be forever with Christ and like Him, never more to grieve Him, it is called the blessed hope: Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ (Titus:2:13 ); every man that hath this hope (1 Jn:3:3 ).
In contrast, the Second Coming (or a post-trib rapture at that time) could hardly be called a blessed hope, inasmuch as very few Christians (if the church were still here) would survive to enjoy it. Having refused to receive the 666 mark of the beast in their right hand, or in their forehead and therefore being unable to buy or sell, and refusing to worship the image of the beast [they would] be killed (Rev:13:15-17 ). It makes no sense to suggest that if you can secretly eat out of enough garbage pails to avoid starvation and still keep one step ahead of Antichrists world police death squads, Blessed hope! Youll be raptured at Armageddon!
8) As for the Rapture, unquestionably, the early church was taught to expect it at any moment and to eagerly watch, wait and look for Christs return, when He will catch all believers up into His Fathers house to be with Him eternally: Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning; And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord... (Lk 12:35, 36); For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body (Philippians:3:20 ); ...ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; And to wait for his Son from heaven...even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come (1 Thes:1:9 , 10); looking for that blessed hope (Titus:2:13 ); unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation (Heb:9:28 ). One does not watch, wait and look each day for something that cannot happen until Antichrists advent or the end of a seven-year tribulation. Thus, there must be a coming of Christ that could happen at any moment.
In contrast, the Second Coming, by very definition as described in Scripture, cannot be expected momentarily. Therefore, none of the scriptures just quoted concerning watching and waiting and looking for the Lord could refer to the Second Coming or to a post-trib rapture of the church. These scriptures could therefore refer only to a pre-trib rapture.
9) The pre-trib Rapture has a powerful, purifying effect upon those who have this hope in Him. The fact that it is to be expected at any moment can only mean that it must come before Antichrist is revealed and before the Tribulation. If Christ could come at any moment, there is no time to waste, no time to delay witnessing, no time to indulge in sin with the idea of repenting and changing ones ways later: And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming (1 Jn:2:28 ); And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure (3:3).
In contrast, anticipation of the Second Coming (or a post-trib rapture at that time) could hardly have a purifying effect, because it cant take place for at least seven yearsplenty of time to delay witnessing, getting right with the Lord and holy living until later. In fact, the Lord said that believing he couldnt come at any moment would have the opposite effect from purifying believers: If that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants...and to eat and drink and to be drunken; the lord of that servant will come at an hour when he is not aware (Mat:24:48-49 ; Lk 12:45, 46).
10) The Rapture is not only an event that we are to expect momentarily and to eagerly anticipate, but we are to ask our Lord to come immediately. Here is how the Bible ends: And the Spirit and the bride say, Come....Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus (Rev:22:17 , 20).
In contrast, the Second Coming is not of such a nature and timing that we could ask Christ to effect it right now. Since Christ obviously cannot return to the earth in judgment to rescue Israel, stop the destruction at Armageddon and destroy the Antichrist along with his kingdom and his armies until the end of the Tribulation, for us to cry out to Christ, Come, Lord Jesus! would be like demanding payment on a debt that isnt due for seven years. Yet, the Spirit and the bride do cry out, Come, Lord Jesus. We can only conclude that there must be a coming of Christ that could occur at any moment. It cannot be the Second Coming or a post-trib rapture. It can only be a pre-trib rapture.
11) There are at least two events which occur in heaven for which the church must be present and which, therefore, cannot take place until the Rapture occurs: the judgment seat of Christ, and the marriage of the Lamb to His bride: for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ (Rom:14:10 ); For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad (2 Cor:5:10 ); the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted [to] be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white [as a result of her cleansing at the judgment seat of Christ] (Rev:19:7-8 ). Both these events occur prior to Christs return to earth and thus demand a prior rapture.
It is clear that the Second Coming cannot occur until these two vital events, which demand the presence of the church in heaven, have taken place. It is only after the Lamb has been married to His bride that she accompanies Him back to earth to rescue Israel and to destroy Antichrist and his armies: And the armies which were in heaven followed him...clothed in fine linen, white and clean (Rev:19:14 ).
We know not why the Bridegroom tarries, but exactly as He foretold, the church is asleep. In that context, our Lord added: And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him (Mat:25:6 ). May each of us be listening eagerly for that cry of the Holy Spirit in our hearts. Indeed, we ought to be sounding it aloud, for the Lord could come at any moment to take us to Himself. So let us watch and wait and look for Him in eager anticipationand encourage others to do the same. It will have a purifying and motivating effect in our lives. TBC
Absolutely false ...
The scroll that contains the seal judgments is opened by the Lamb, and each seal is broken by the Lamb an it institutes that judgment. They are absolutely the wrath of God.
As an example ...
The fifth seal judgment no doubt draws on the exact imagery of Ezekiel 14 ... (judgment by sword, famine, wild beasts, plague) which explicitly states that it is the Sovereign Lord who sends these judgments.
The sixth seal is recognized by unbelievers as Gods wrath ... 6:16 "Fall on us and hide us from the face of the One seated on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb, because the great day of Their wrath has come!" ... Even unbelievers will recognize that what they are experiencing is the wrath of God.
All these factors indicate ALL of the judgments of the tribulation are the wrath of God.
Don't forget those seven infinitives at the beginning of that 70 weeks prophecy ... it lays out the purpose ... and you cannot say any of them have been fulfilled yet for Israel or Jerusalem.
The work of the Lord Jesus has laid the foundation for their fulfillment, but they are certainly not fulfilled yet.
So what happened to the 1000 years? Its been more than 1000 years since 70 AD.
If this is the kingdom ... I must say ... I am very disappointed.
Yes Jesus said this gospel shall be preached to all the world and
then comes the end, Jesus did not say that it would take place at
that time, we just assume that.
Jesus also could have been referring to the end of the age and that
did happen, Jesus said before some of you standing here now taste of
death you will see the kingdom of God come with power, that happened
on the day of Pentecost.
Jesus also said you must be born of the spirit to see the kigdom of God.
If Jesus said it would happen at that time it did happen, if what we think
should have happened and didn’t we are just trying to decider it wrong.
Let God be true and every man a liar, yes what Jesus said would happen did happen.
Christ was right the temple was destroyed before 70 ad and rome did cause tribulation during that time but that was not the only time frame he was speaking of because heaven and earth are still here as in the next sentence. Revelation also speaks of new heaven with 12 pearl gates abd being 1500 miles cubed, made of precious stones and no sun as GOD will tabernacle with us.
Whatever happens in the agreement, the abomination of desolation is set up and the sacrifices are ended. All of that happened in 135 AD. Sorry it doesn’t fit what you have been taught, but that is the reality of history.
“The holy place is the inner sanctuary ... the holy of holies ... so yes ... it is in the temple.” good grief... don’t you understand the temple was destroyed, the abomination was set up in the holy place which was once in the temple, but when the temple was destroyed, it was no longer “in the temple”. It’s not that hard to understand. It was a building, the building was no longer there.
History is on my side. Daniel says the city and sanctuary would be destroyed and the sacrifices ended. The city and sanctuary were destroyed in 70AD and the sacrifices were ended for good in 135AD. Why deny history?
“Jesus did not say that it would take place at
that time, we just assume that”
Well, the whole of Matthew 24 is one single chronological narrative, so there isn’t much to assume. There are 3 sections where Christ talks about events that will be coming before the end, and at the end of the first 2 sections, he makes a statement clarifying that these events precede the end of the world (verse 6: “...but the end is not yet”, verse 8: “...these are the beginning of sorrows”), but at the end of the third section, he makes a statement asserting that this is the point where the end begins (verse 14: “... and then shall the end come”). If we are not meant to read this chronologically then I can’t imagine any other way we can sensibly read it.
“Jesus also could have been referring to the end of the age...”
No, he is answering a specific question from his disciples, which is posed to him in verse 3:
“Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?”
I don't deny history ... I merely claim 135 - 70 is substantially larger than 3.5 ...
Like I said ... the math of preterism never adds up.
The entire eschatological system of preterism interprets both the Bible and history through the lens of one verse ... Matthew 24:34. And all the errors that compound upon that one error get more egregious as you try to explain the objections ... like requiring the date of Revelation to be prior to 70 AD, equating a thunderstorm that Josephus mentions as the fulfillment of the cosmic signs, and totally ignoring the writings of church fathers through the first several centuries, whom did not refer to the fall of Jerusalem as a comprehensive fulfillment of the words of Jesus in Matt. 24 ... nor did they believe that most or all of the second coming was past but rather looked to the future for that fulfillment.
I'm sure I'll see you in the next thread ...
“Jesus is our deliverer from the coming wrath.”
Just not for those silly jews that get converted during the tribulation, I guess. They get to suffer the wrath because the promises don’t apply to ALL the church, just those of us who get in before a certain deadline.
If that were true, then it would be a second AND a third coming, not two second comings. For the life of me, I’ve never been able to find any apostle or early christian ever talking about a third coming.
Thats what the ancient Jews thought and thats why they missed their messiah. They thought He was coming only once. They did not understand He was coming as the suffering servant before His return as the conquering King.
It is almost impossible to break out of the frame of reference that Satan has so neatly encapsulated us today. What did those of old hear when Jesus said in Mat 24:
34Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have happened. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away. 36No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.
Did they believe that the Earth would be destroyed and all upon it. Did they believe that Heaven would also be destroyed.
Well apparently not. Let Scripture speak...
DID HEAVEN AND EARTH PASS AWAY?
This is just one of hundreds of studies on this same topic. It is no different than the 3 days and 3 nights. Look it up and learn that there were two Sabbath’s. It’s is the only way that the events fit regarding Mary. History proves this but Satan would rather “we” believe that Jesus did not mean that he would be “three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12:40) Even though he said it.
But this might help: To understand that Jesus was crucified on the day of Passover (Wednesday of that year), solves what some people consider to be a conflict in scriptural records. Luke 23:55, 56 say that the women (Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James) went and prepared anointing spices and oils BEFORE the Sabbath. In Mark 16:1 it says that they bought the spices AFTER the Sabbath. The answer to what seems to be differing accounts is in the fact that there are two different Sabbaths being spoken of in these verses. The women both bought and prepared the spices on the same day (Friday), which just so happened to fall between the two Sabbaths on Thursday and Saturday. When Mark says they bought the spices AFTER the Sabbath, it was the special annual Sabbath on Thursday, the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. When Luke says they prepared the spices and then rested on the Sabbath, this particular Sabbath was the usual weekly Sabbath that always occurred on the seventh day of the week, which was Saturday.
There is also proof that there were two Sabbaths in Matthew 28:1. Since the word “Sabbath” is mentioned in the singular form in most modern language Bible translations, this could be taken to mean that the traditional Friday crucifixion scenario would be referenced. However, Greek manuscripts render the word “Sabbaths” in the plural form. This fact of the use of plural Sabbaths can be verified using a Greek interlinear translation of the Bible. Therefore, for all of the scriptural records to add up, it has to be concluded that Jesus was crucified on the day that we know now as Wednesday.
Question Everything, but never God’s word.
I try not out guess just where to put every thing in it’s place but he did come spiritually.
The end of the world has not come yet so I am convinced he did not say that it would come at
that time, personally I believe we are living in the time of the eighth beast and at the tlme of
Mother of harlots which is the Catholic Church and her daughters the Protestants ( the world religious systems).
I also believe you are right we still have some persecution to go through and the only thing
I disagree with is the seventieth week being broke in two I believe
that all happened back then.
There's no need for sarcasm.
God says He is no respecter of persons. Why should unbelieving Jews be spared the "Time of Jacob's Trouble" and not go into the Tribulation the same as Gentile unbelievers? However, there WILL be deliverance for the converted Jews:
I agree completely that this is not a salvation issue and it is wrong for Christians to rupture fellowship, split churches or bully and mock those who disagree with their specific views. Paul says there will be such things as "disputable matters" and we shouldn't argue over them (Romans 14:1). There's nothing wrong with discussing them, though, and the end times is a topic that we ought to be aware of as we joyfully await Christ's return.
As for TWO second comings, I don't see the Rapture being counted as that for many of the reasons noted in this thread article. Jesus doesn't actually come and set foot upon the earth. We go to MEET Him in the air, I Thessalonians teaches us. The literal Second Coming has Jesus set foot upon the Mount of Olives and it splits from the east to the west (I've read there already is a fault line that runs through it). I love Psalm 91 and call upon its promises often. Nothing that happens to us happens without God's approval and according to His will, but it doesn't mean nothing bad ever happens to us. I believe Scripture clearly lays out that the Tribulation will be God's just wrath upon the ungodly world system. As the Bride of Christ, we are not going to be dragged through this wrath and it is why we are caught up to be with Him before it really gets rolling.
I respect your right to draw your own conclusions about this. God bless you!
During the Tribulation all those things will be hundreds of times worse than it has ever been AND it will be coming from God's poured out wrath rather than man's inhumanity to man or so-called natural disasters. Can you name a time in all of human history when a fourth of the earth is killed by sword, by famine, by plague and by the beasts of the earth (that's 2 BILLION people now)? What about all peace from the earth being taken and men are made to slay one another?
We think we know all about terror, but not this kind"
3. Jesus didn't say the generation of people he was speaking to at that moment but the generation of people living when Israel became a nation again (the Lesson of the Fig Tree, Matthew 24) would still be alive at the end times Tribulation when Jesus returned.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.