|This ministry has a distinct kingdom, Messianic vision, identifying with God’s call and plan for the Jewish people and the church. My position is pre-trib! Personally: I was saved in 1976 while working as a war correspondent, journalist, photographer, artist and environmentalist. My calling is to share these great end-time dramas, to stand as a watchman and above all, to glorify my God.|
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Edition 276. September 9th 2015
Major proofs of a pre-tribulation rapture:
Major proofs of a pre-tribulation rapture:
This is a huge, liberating, wonderful subject, but in this edition I want to deal with some of the big-ticket items. When you put all the evidence together you end up with an undeniable, irrefutable picture and conclusion.
The rapture of the church may occur very soon. If it’s not within weeks it will be within a year or two.
I’m not date setting; I’m date watching and season watching as commanded by my Lord. Please note that all of our community of watchmen and eschatology teachers are saying much the same thing now, but they’re also warning about not allowing for error.
Warning: Be very careful of the sceptics and scoffers of the watchmen, watchers and everything to do with the end-time scenario. We are commanded of the Lord to watch and pray and to know the signs of the time. Scoffers, what do you think we are to watch for – the ice-cream van?
The real problem with the critics and scoffers is they want to control you. They want you to be like them. They want you to believe what they believe. They want to exalt their own voices.
I have no problem with those with different beliefs, it is the scoffers with the bad attitudes that I reject and distance myself from.
Oh and before I forget...You sceptics and scoffers, - you may think you’re right when we are wrong, You’re not – you are always wrong because your attitude stinks, but there IS coming a day very soon when we will be right and you will still be forever wrong. You will still be sitting in your bad attitude scoffing and barking at the moon and those who are heaven. And will we feel sorry for you? – Of course we will!
Major arguments against a pre-tribulation rapture:
There are essentially three views. Firstly there are those who say there will be no rapture at all. Secondly there are those who claim the rapture will take place at the end of the tribulation and thirdly there are those who say that there will be a pre-tribulation rapture. The mid-trib view does not carry much weight.
If you take all of the regular pre-tribulation verses and try to insert them into a post-tribulation rapture scenario. You will quickly see that they simply don’t fit and don’t make logical sense.
They say the word “rapture” is not in the Bible:
These people, without exception are implying that there will be no rapture at all.
This is perhaps the most short-sighted and uneducated argument. It is absolutely ridiculous!
Firstly, the word rapture was in Latin Bibles before the KJV. It was the word “raeptius”. It also appeared as “rapio”, in the Vulgate Bible, meaning rapture.
The original Greek word is “Harpazo” meaning to “snatch away”, “seize by force” or “tear away from.” This is also the definition of the Latin word “rapio”.
Because the word “harpazo” means “seize or snatch away by force”, it goes without saying it is not and can’t ever be the word used for the Second Coming. This word perfectly sums up what the pre-tribulation rapture is. We are seized forcibly form this world and the grip of its evil principalities and powers.
Besides this, you rapture deniers, we have numerous raptures in the Bible: Enoch, Elijah, Yeshua, Philip, Paul, the church and the two witnesses, are clear examples of rapture as fact!!
The word rapture was in the Bible, and the concept has always been in the Bible and there are many examples of raptures in the Bible. By the way, the word “trinity” is not in the Bible!
Excuse my cynicism, but I really have a problem dealing with such intense ignorance.
They say the rapture is escapism:
There are many people, believers and unbelievers alike who claim the pre-tribulation rapture is pure escapism. How right they are.
There are dozens of verses relating to the rapture being an escape. Here are just a few:
Luke 21:36 “Watch therefore and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass.” (Previous verses are a description of the tribulation.)
Romans 5:9 “Having been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.”
Nahum 1:2 “He reserves His wrath for His enemies.”
“If God wants you to escape, great tribulation, wrath, hell on earth, mass torture and murder, untold suffering, being burnt by the elements, being repeatedly bombed by asteroids, being tormented by huge manifesting demons and much, much more - why do you complain about those escaping? Is it because you will not?
This has nothing to do with enduring the normal daily tribulations and trials we face.
They claim we will be protected through the tribulation:
This argument is logical but wrong. The exact opposite is the truth. People who are saved in the tribulation period (the tribulation saints) will be murdered on mass, by beheading and other forms. It does appear that the two witnesses and the 144,000 will be protected until their jobs are complete, but there is no general protection on those getting saved in the tribulation.
Those saved in the tribulation will be the specific focus of the wrath of Satan and the wrath of nature (Revelation 12:12)
The “last day” and the “last trumpet” arguments:
There are many who teach that we will go through the tribulation because, they say, the rapture occurs right at the end of the tribulation, at the “last trumpet” on “the last day”. These are logical and strong arguments when taken at face value. But we must look a bit deeper.
Those who equate the rapture trumpet of 1 Corinthians 15:52 with the tribulation’s seventh trumpet of Revelation 11:15-18 fail to take into account the fact that Paul could not have been referring to the seventh trumpet, because the book of Revelation had not yet been written. John wrote the Revelation 40 years after Paul wrote to the Corinthians.
Paul must have been referring to the silver trumpets. He was not referring to tribulation trumpets.
The silver trumpets of Numbers 10 are sounded for a very specific reason and purpose. This is to gather the “entire community together.”
Numbers 10:1 “Make two trumpets of hammered silver to summon the community. When both are sounded with long blasts, the entire community is to be gathered...”
Numbers 10:7 “When the congregation is to be gathered together, you shall blow the trumpets, but without blowing the advance sound.”
There are many trumpet blast and usages in the Bible. You can’t lump them all together. There is a last trumpet for the church age and a last trumpet for the tribulation. They are not the same. They can’t be!
The “Mystery of God” argument:
Revelation 10:7 “In the days of the trumpet sounding of the seventh angel, when he is about to sound, the mystery of God would be finished, as He declared to His servants the prophets.”
The Bible uses the term “mystery” to describe various things. We must look at the context of each and the usage and application, before we can say which one is being used in Revelation 10:7.
One of the uses of the word “mystery” in the Bible is to identify the church.
The “mystery of God” may be the church. It may also be the biblical mystery of sin and evil in the world, or the mystery of Satan having power in the world, or the mystery of the kingdom of God hidden in believers, or the mystery of the Gentiles becoming the children of God (In Him) with the Jews.
In Ephesians 3:1-6 Paul explains that the “mystery of God” is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs with the Jews of the promises of God. Then in Ephesians 3:9-10 Paul explains that the mystery includes the manifold wisdom of God being hidden in the church, which is now revealed and manifest to the demon principalities and powers.
This is the correct application of the “mystery of God in Revelation 10:7.
The “finishing of the mystery of God” at the seventh trumpet in Revelation 10:7 is not the rapture of the church at the end of the tribulation as claimed by so many. Even if it is the rapture, this is a mid-tribulation event if you read on.
Now let’s look at another verse also claimed to be proof of a post-tribulation rapture:
Matthew 24:29-31 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heavens and the powers of the heavens shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with great glory. And He will send His angels with the great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
The question is who is “the elect”, being referred to?
The “elect” here would have to be tribulation saints. It is all those saved during the tribulation, who are gathered to go into the Millennium to re-populate the earth as all unbelievers will be cast into hell at the Second Coming.
So, we see that there is and must be a last trumpet for the church age and a last day for the church age, as there is a last trumpet and last day for the close of the Old Covenant – Daniel’s seventieth week, the tribulation.
In the verse below we see a “last day” for the unbeliever as well.
John 12:48 “He who rejects Me and does not receive My words, has that which judges him – the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.”
The departure and the restrainer:
I’ve dealt with this in numerous previous editions, but it is so very important.
There is one word that was very poorly translated by the KJV, which has been handed down and has caused an incorrect view on the rapture. It is the word “falling away” or “apostasy” as rendered in some translations.
As we read this verse below, bear in mind that it is referring to the “Day of Messiah” which is a term for the whole seven-year tribulation period. (Most analysts agree on that).
2 Thessalonians 2:3 “...That day (The day of Messiah) will not come unless the falling away (apostasy) comes first and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition (antichrist), who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
2 Thessalonians 2:7-8 “The mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way, revealing the lawless one.”
This “falling away” or “apostasy” is then said to relate to the falling away or backsliding of the church.
Yes, there is a falling away of the church but that is better described in many other verses, like the lukewarm church of Laodicea.
Now let’s do a simply study of the original word used for “falling away” in this verse above. Please be aware that in all translations prior to the KJV the “falling away” or “apostasy” was translated “the departure.”
In Strong’s Concordance we see the word Apostasia, made up of two words –“apo” meaning “from” and “istemi” meaning “to stand”. In other words it means, “away from your standing”. The Liddell and Scott Greek Lexicons define this apostasy as departure or disappearance. The word means “to remove spatially”. Most importantly the word has “the” as the definite article combined with it. This means that it is a very specific event. It is not some general falling away, but a very specific, sudden departure in space and time. The correct translation is the pre-KJV translations – The departure. It is the rapture of the church.
A number of commentaries on the word “apostasia” in Strong’s Concordance put it this way: “Leaving from a previous standing,” “defection”, “departure.” The meaning is also listed as a “defection from truth,” but in the proper context of the verse that is not the right application.
If we say that the falling away is the departure or disappearance of the church, there is a clear relationship with the church being the restrainer, which is then responsible for the antichrist being released and the tribulation beginning.
Now let’s read the verse again: 2 Thessalonians 2:3 “That day, (the tribulation) will not come unless the departure of the church comes first and the man of sin is revealed...”
Do you see the huge difference it makes? In fact this is a great proof of the pre-tribulation rapture.
Now let’s have a look at a similar word used in the two verses below:
2 Thessalonians 2:7-8 “The mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way and then the lawless one will be revealed...”
Revelation 3:10 “Because you have kept My word to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world to test those who dwell on the earth.”
The words in bold, above have the same original root word.
The terms “keep you from” and “taken out of the way” use the word “Ek” (Strong’s G 1537.) This word means “clean out away from.” It implies a spatial removal. The plain logic of this word means a complete removal in space and time and not being protected through the tribulation.
These two verses tie in perfectly with “the departure” of 2 Thessalonians 2:3 above. They also tie in with “harpazo”.
Now let’s have a look at a few types of the rapture:
The days of Noah:
As in the days of Noah, God destroyed the world leaving one righteous family to re-populate the world after the flood. All others were destroyed in the flood. So will be the situation at the end of the soon coming great judgement and wrath of God in the tribulation period. Only the righteous, those saved during the tribulation, also called the tribulation saints, will go into the Millennium to re-populate it. They will be in natural bodies, but with longevity restored.
If there is no pre-tribulation rapture, we would become one with the tribulation saints, and we will then go, in natural bodies, with longevity restored into the Millennium. That simply does not add up with numerous versus of scripture.
Noah was sealed in the Ark and preserved above the wrath of God – a type of the rapture.
The proof of Enoch and Elijah:
Enoch was raptured alive to God before the flood. (Genesis 5:24, Hebrews 11:5) Enoch was born on the day that became Pentecost, giving him an association with the church.
The rapture of Elijah is dealt with in 2 Kings 2:9-15.
The proof of Lot:
Lot was removed from Sodom before the judgement of fire fell on and destroyed the entire city. This is a clear type of a pre-tribulation rapture. (Genesis 19)
The proof of Rahab and Jericho:
Rahab is well accepted as being a type of the mostly Gentile church, friendly towards Israel. She was removed from Jericho before it fell. (Joshua 6:22-23)
The proof of rewards and wedding garments:
Wedding guests, who are the true believers, or church are seen in heaven being rewarded while the tribulation is playing out on the earth.
In the very early days of the tribulation we see the 24 elders in heaven already rewarded with crowns and in fine raiment. (Revelation 4:4)
Luke 12:36 “And you, be like men who wait for their master, when he will return from the wedding, that when he comes and knocks, they may open to him immediately.”
If the wedding occurred before this return then the rapture had to have taken place before this return as well.
Rosh Hashanah: (Sunset September 13th – sunset September 15th.)
Perhaps one of the most amazing “prophecies” is found in the well- known verse saying, “No one knows the day or hour.” (Matthew 24:36).
But what about this verse:
Zechariah 14:7 “It shall be a day which is known to the Lord, neither day nor night but at evening time it shall happen. Verse 4 speaks of this day when our Lord returns and stands on the Mount of Olives. The entire context of the chapter is the Second Coming.
So is our Lord saying that no one knows the day or hour, or is He giving us a hint as to when it will be? Actually, He is giving us a hint. The Feats of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah) is also known as the feast of which no one knows the day or hour, because it begins when the new moon is seen. In those days they may have been out by a small amount of time. This was the reason it was made a two-day feast.
For your benefit: Here are the various names and titles for the two-day Feast of Rosh Hashanah.
This is the next of the seven Feasts of the Lord to find its fulfilment. This is a large subject, which we won’t get into now. If you look at the names and their meanings they paint a dramatic picture.
●Rosh Hashanah = head of year, and birthday of the world. ●Harah Olam= pregnant with eternity. ●Teshuvah = repentance. ●Yom Teruah = awakening blast, resurrection. ●Yom Hadim = day of judgement. ● Ha Melech = coronation of the King. ●Chevlai shel Mashiach = Jacobs troube.●Kiddushin =wedding ceremony. ●Natzal = resusrrection. ●Shofar Ha Gadol = last trump. ●Yom Hakeseh = Hidden day. ●The opening of Gates. ●The Feast of which no on one knows the day or hour.
As you look at these name-meanings above, you will see the association with the tribulation period and the rapture of the church. Rosh Hashanah simply has to be the Feast marking the beginning of the tribulation.
There is so much more on this wonderful and terrifying subject. I’ll share some more as we go further on. (If we get much further on!)
Revelation 3:1-3 “If you do not wake up I will come upon you as a thief
Don’t try to make the rapture dates fit, don’t even try to make the rapture fit. Just relax. Know all these things – know them well and just relax. Yes prepare your heart, but do that always. This way you will be ready. If we go – great, if we have to wait a year so – great!
I took this picture from a chopper early one freezing morning of the Amphitheatre range in the Drakensberg Mountains.
Shalom and grow in grace!