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 "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:   Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." I Thess. 4:16-17 (KJV)

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10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.

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+The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet event?

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Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet event?


I. The Rapture — When?

Ralph Woodrow



Those who hold what is called the “dispensational” interpretation of prophecy, teach that the Second Coming of Christ will be in two stages: first, the RAPTURE (his coming for the saints), and then later the REVELATION (his coming with the saints). The interval between these two events is generally regarded as seven years (Daniel’s 70th week). During this time, according to this view, the Antichrist will make a seven-year covenant with the Jews in which he will allow them to offer sacrifices in a rebuilt temple at Jerusalem. But then after three and a half years, he will break his covenant and place an idol (the abomination of desolation) in the holy of holies of the temple. The Jews will refuse to bow and a great persecution will result — the time of Jacob’s trouble. Finally, at the close of the tribulation period (the end of the age), Christ will return in power and great glory.

In the chapters that follow, we shall have occasion to examine all of these things in the light of the Scriptures — the tribulation, the abomination of desolation, the 70th week, Jacob’s trouble, the Antichrist, etc. But for now, we shall look at the first point in the dispensational outline: the rapture. Those who hold that the Second Coming of Christ will be in two stages, believe that verses such as Revelation 1:7, “Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him”, refer to the REVELATION — his coming in open power and glory. The RAPTURE, on the other hand, is presented as a quiet, invisible, and secret coming of Christ for his church. The following quotations from dispensational writers are representative of this interpretation:


“Quickly and INVISIBLY, unperceived by the world, the Lord will come as a thief in the night and catch away His waiting saints.”1

“His appearance in the clouds will be veiled to the human eye and NO ONE WILL SEE HIM. He will slip in, slip out; move in to get His jewels and slip out as under the cover of night.”2

“[The rapture] will be a SECRET appearing, and only the believers will know about it.”3

“It will be a SECRET rapture — QUIET, NOISELESS, sudden as the step of the thief in the night. All that the world will know will be that multitudes at once have gone.”4

But do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet event? Let us look at the main verse on the rapture and see.

“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a SHOUT, with the VOICE of the archangel, and with the TRUMP of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air” (1 Thess. 4:16, 17).

To us, this verse indicates anything but a quiet, secret rapture. Whether we take the “shout”, the “voice”, and the “trump” in a literal sense or as having a figurative meaning, either way, this passage does not convey the idea of a secret and quiet event! If anything, it would indicate that the coming of the Lord will be a loud, noisy, open, and wonderous event. Amid the sound of the Lord himself descending from heaven with a shout, the voice of the archangel, and the trumpet of God, there will be the sounds of praise and rejoicing from vast multitudes of saints as they are caught up to meet the Lord! Where is any secrecy here? This is not the description of a hidden and quiet event. Nevertheless, in spite of every indication to the contrary, this verse is constantly used as a text for sermons which describe the rapture as a secret, hidden, and quiet coming of Christ!


The scriptures do teach, of course, that Christ will return “as a thief in the night.” This means that the TIME of his coming is unknown. It will come as a complete surprise to those who are not watching for his return. But the use of this term never indicates in any way that the EVENT ITSELF will be secret and quiet. The “thief” passages are found in the words of Jesus, Peter, and Paul, which we will now consider.

First, let us look at the words of Jesus himself: “But know this, that if the good man of the house had known in what watch the THIEF would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (Mt. 24:43, 44; also Lk. 12:39, 40). The return of Christ will be like the coming of a thief in the sense that we know not WHEN it will be. We must watch at all times. But there is nothing here to indicate that the event itself will be secret.

Instead of teaching that he would return in a secret coming, Jesus actually warned against this concept: “If any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not . . . If they shall say unto you . . . behold, he is in the SECRET chambers; believe it not. FOR as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth unto the west, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Mt. 24:23,26,27). Whatever else may be included in these statements, one thing is certain: such wording is surely contrary to the idea of “secrecy” in connection with the coming of Christ.

Also in the context of Matthew 24, Jesus stressed that men do not know the day nor the hour of the Second Coming (Mt. 24:36). It will be “as it was in the days of Noah” when people were eating, drinking, and getting married — not expecting destruction to fall. They “knew not UNTIL the flood came, and took them all away, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (verses 38, 39). The wicked knew not until the flood came — but, obviously, when it came they knew it. It was no secret event. It was observed by believers and unbelievers.

“If therefore thou shalt not watch”, Jesus said, “I will come on thee as a THIEF, and thou shalt not know what hour I shall come upon thee” (Rev. 3:3). “Behold, I come as a THIEF. Blessed is he that watcheth” (Rev. 16:15). Here again is the warning to “watch”, for we know not the time of his coming. He will come as a thief. But there is nothing here to indicate a secret and quiet coming of Christ in which he will mysteriously take believers out of this world so that no one will know what happened to them or who took them. We should not think that the Lord will prowl around like a thief, working in the dark, afraid of being discovered. The meaning is that he will COME “as a thief”, not that he will ACT like a thief!


Next, we look at the words of Peter. Though scoffers will say: “Where is the promise of his coming?”, Peter assures us that the day of the Lord will come. We do not know WHEN, however, for “the day of the Lord will come AS A THIEF IN THE NIGHT” (2 Peter 3:10 ).

But it is evident that Peter did not mean that the event itself will be quiet, for he goes on to say that it will be accompanied with a great NOISE! “The day of the Lord will come AS A THIEF IN THE NIGHT; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a GREAT NOISE”! This is just the opposite of what many teach.

The final New Testament “thief” passage is found in the words of Paul. Turning again to the noted rapture passage (1 Thess. 4 ), we find that after speaking of the Lord’s coming with a shout, the voice of the archangel, and the trump of God, Paul goes on to explain that we do not know WHEN this will be, for that day will come as a thief in the night. “But of the times and seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh AS A THIEF IN THE NIGHT” (1 Thess. 5:1,2). What is unknown and hidden? It cannot be that the coming of Christ will be a secret event, for the context speaks of this as being glorious, open, noisy! Again, we see that it is the TIME that is hidden. We know not the times and seasons.

Paul continues with these words: “For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then SUDDEN DESTRUCTION cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape . . . But ye, brethren, are NOT IN DARKNESS, that that day should overtake you as a thief” (verses 3 ,4), for those who truly follow Christ will “watch” at all times and seasons.

Having now examined the rapture passage (1 Thess. 4) and all of the “thief” passages, we fail to find any scriptural basis for the teaching that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, quiet event. If anything, the evidence is to the contrary. Where, then, do the scriptures place the rapture? Will it be before a seven year tribulation period? Or will it be at the end of the age?

Shortly before his death, Jesus spoke these words to his disciples: “In the world ye shall have tribulation . . .” (John 16:33). The verses that follow record the prayer in which Jesus prayed for his disciples. As he prayed to the heavenly Father, he said: “I pray NOT that thou shouldest TAKE THEM OUT OF THE WORLD, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil” (John 17:15).

Though it would be no easy task to take a stand for Christ; though they would be persecuted; though in the world they would have tribulation; yet, Jesus did not pray that the church would be taken out of the world! The church was to remain in the world, but it would not be of the world.

Some might object, however, that Jesus was praying only for his immediate disciples of that time. But not so! “Neither pray I for these alone”, he said, “but for them also which shall believe on me through their word” (verse 20). Does this not include us today? Have not we believed on Christ as a result of the message that was handed down to us from those original disciples of Christ? Indeed we have. So Jesus was praying for us too! He said so. He prayed we would be kept from the evil of the world, but he did not pray that we would be taken out of the world — even though in the world we would have tribulation!

Let us suppose for a moment that Jesus had told believers: “In the world there shall be tribulation . . . but I will pray that you will be taken out of the world.” If Jesus said this, those who teach a pre-tribulation rapture would have a basis for their position — and this statement would no doubt be quoted often as a proof text. But since this is NOT what the verse says — but just the OPPOSITE — surely this should be regarded as evidence against the idea of a special, “secret” coming of Christ to take the church out of this world.

Instead of the church being taken out of the world, Jesus taught that it would remain in the world to accomplish a definite purpose: to preach the gospel. Jesus commissioned his disciples to “go . . . and teach all nations” and in connection with this commission he promised: “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the END of the world [aion - age]” (Mt. 28:19,20).

According to this, how long will the church be in the world fulfilling this divine commission? The answer is that the church will remain in the world until the END of the age. Surely his promise to be with the church until the END of the age would be strange if it is his plan to remove the church seven years before that time! If, when the end of the age comes, the church would no longer be on earth, a promise such as this would be meaningless.

Earlier in the book of Matthew, Jesus made it very clear that the righteous would not be separated from the wicked until the end of the age.

Jesus spoke a parable about “a man which sowed good seed in his field” and while men slept “his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat.” When the crop had grown, the servants discovered what had happened. “So the servants of the householder came and said . . . Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn” (Mt. 13:24-30).

We are not left to speculate as to the proper meaning of this parable, for Jesus himself gave the interpretation. The “good seed”, the wheat, is sown by “the Son of man” — Jesus Christ. The tares, “the children of the wicked one”, are sown by the enemy — “the devil.” They are sown in the same field — “the world” where both grow together until the harvest. And when will this be? “The harvest is the END OF THE WORLD” (Verses 37-39).

“As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in THE END OF THIS WORLD. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; and shall cast them into a furnace of fire . . . THEN shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father” (verses 40-43). Plainly, the time of separation between those which do iniquity and the righteous is at the END of this age!

Jesus said that “BOTH” would grow “TOGETHER” until the “END OF THE WORLD” — and THEN the harvest would occur, producing the great separation. This is the Bible teaching. But the pre-tribulation rapture position, to be consistent, would have to say that BOTH will NOT grow together in the field until the end of the world, for they teach that the wheat portion will be harvested sooner, being separated from the wicked seven years BEFORE the end of the world!!

In other words, instead of teaching that the separation of the wheat and the tares will be “at the end of the world”, those who hold the secret rapture position say that the wheat will be gathered FIRST, and then seven years later the tares will be rooted out. This is the point that C. I. Scofield attempts to make in his footnote on page 1016 of the Scofield Reference Bible: “At the end of this age (v. 40) the tares are set apart for burning, but FIRST the wheat is gathered into the barn.” But if anything might be implied as coming “first”, it would be the judgment upon the wicked, for in the parable portion it said: “Gather ye together FIRST the tares” for destruction, “but gather the wheat into my barn” (Mt. 13:30).

What? The scripture says: “First the tares.” Scofield says just the opposite! He says: “First the wheat is gathered.” Such direct contradiction to what the Bible itself says, ought to be enough to made any Christian suspicious of the system of prophetic interpretation that had been incorporated into the notes of the Scofield Bible! And such twisting of terms to uphold a theory ought to immediately make us to see how weak the teaching of a rapture seven years before the end of the age really is!

We repeat: according to Jesus, the righteous and the wicked will both be in the world until the harvest — the end of the world! And if the great separation is not until the end of the world, the idea of the church being removed from the earth seven years before that time is an impossibility.

Looking further in Matthew 13, we find another parable and its interpretation which stresses the end of the world as the time of great separation. Jesus likened the kingdom to a net which was cast into the sea. It gathered fish of every kind — some good, and some bad. Finally, the good were placed into vessels and the bad were cast away. And when, according to the interpretation that Jesus gave, will this great separation occur? “So shall it be at the END of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, and shall cast them into the furnace of fire” (Mt. 13:47-50).

We see, then, that the parable of the wheat and tares (as well as the parable of the good and bad fish), both clearly pinpoint the time of separation as the end of the world. It should also be noted that the time of this event is based on the words that Jesus gave in explaining these parables. This is important, for doctrine must always be based upon the clear statements, not upon symbolical or parabolic expressions which might be capable of several meanings. According to Jesus, at the end of the world, those that belong to him will be spared, while destruction shall fall upon the wicked.

Jesus further likened this time to the days of Lot. “As it was In the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded” — those common, routine things that people have been doing all along, not expecting any catastrophe — “But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed” (Luke 17:28-30).

Even as Lot, the believer, was spared and all the unbelievers of Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed, so when Christ returns, believers will be spared (caught up to meet the Lord in the air!) while that “same day” fiery destruction shall fall upon the unbelieving. Needless to say, this passage does NOT say that Lot went out of Sodom and then seven years later the fiery destruction fell upon them! No, it says these things happened the same day.

Jesus also likened his Second Coming to the destruction of the flood in the days of Noah. “But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage . . . and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away [or, as Luke’s account says, “destroyed them all” — Lk. 17:27]. SO shall also the coming of the Son of man be. Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Watch therefore, for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come” (Mt. 24:37-42).

When the flood came, Noah was spared and the unbelievers were destroyed. That destruction produced a great separation. So shall it be at the Second Coming of Christ. Christians will be caught up to meet Christ; unbelievers will be destroyed.

Though the “world” was formerly destroyed by water, Peter points out that the destruction the world now faces will be by fire. “The world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: but the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire” (2 Peter 3:6, 7).

Peter had personally heard Jesus give the promise: “I will come again, and receive you unto myself” (John 14:3). Years passed and apparently some began to scoff at this promise, saying: “Where is the PROMISE of his coming?” To this Peter replied: “The Lord is not slack concerning his PROMISE . . . the day of the Lord will come . . .” (2 Peter 3:4-10). Let us now notice the way in which Peter said this promise will be fulfilled: “The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; IN THE WHICH the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up . . . all the se things shall be dissolved.” (2 Peter 3:10, 11).5 Peter believed the coming of the Lord would be at the very end, when the present “heavens and earth shall pass away”, the end of the age.

“Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved”, Peter continues, “what manner of persons ought YE to be in all holy conversation and godliness. LOOKING FOR and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?” (verses 11, 12). This day will bring destruction upon the unbelieving world and deliverance for those who believe. But if believers were to be taken out of the world seven years before the end, why would Peter exhort them to be “looking for” the coming of the day of God in which the heavens shall pass away? Surely he would not attempt to encourage them by something that will happen at the END of the age, if their real hope was an event to take place seven years earlier!

According to Peter, “the day of the Lord” which will come “as a thief in the night” is the time when the heavens shall pass away and the earth shall melt with fervent heat. And according to Paul, “the day of the Lord” which “cometh as a thief in the night” (the same expression) is the time of the RAPTURE:

“The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up . . . in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words. But of the times and seasons [when this shall happen], brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape” (1 Thess. 4:16-5:3). The passage is all connected together.

A study of 2 Peter 3 with 1 Thessalonians 4-5 plainly reveals that the “day of the Lord that cometh as a thief in the night” is the time when Christ will descend from heaven with a shout, believers will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air, destruction will fall upon the unbelieving world and the present heavens and earth shall pass away with a great noise.

Jesus also linked his Second Coming with the time when heaven and earth shall pass away. “Heaven and earth shall pass away . . . But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only . . . Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.” This passage clearly refers to the time when Christ will return and gather believers — the time of which “knoweth no man”, and for which we must “watch.” Did Jesus say this would happen before a seven year tribulation period? No. Instead, this passage points to the end of the age — when heaven and earth shall pass away — as the time when Christ will return.

Even the ancient Job implied that the resurrection would not take place until the heavens shall pass away — the end of the age. “Man dieth, and wasteth away: yea, man giveth up the ghost, and where is he? . . . Man lieth down, and riseth not: TILL THE HEAVENS BE NO MORE, they shall not awake, nor be raised out of their sleep” (Job 14:10-12; 19:26,27).

Expressions such as “till the heavens be no more”, “the heavens shall pass away with a great noise”, “heaven and earth shall pass away”, and similar expressions all seem to indicate the very end of things as we know them now — the end of the age! Until that time, the dead shall not be resurrected. This conclusion is also seen in the scriptures which say the resurrection will occur at the LAST DAY.

Martha, for example, believed her brother Lazarus would “rise again in the resurrection AT THE LAST DAY” (John 11:24). And this belief was not mere speculation on her part, for Jesus repeatedly taught this truth. Jesus said that those who believe on him will be raised up “AT THE LAST DAY” (John 6:39).

“And this is the will of him that sent me”, Jesus said, “that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up AT THE LAST DAY . . . No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up AT THE LAST DAY” (John 6: 40, 44). And again he repeated the words in verse 54: “I will raise him up AT THE LAST DAY.”

Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve



With this evidence in mind, certain conclusions are apparent. Since the catching up or rapture occurs at the same time as the resurrection of the dead in Christ (1 Thess. 4:16, 17), it is plain to see that the rapture will take place AT THE LAST DAY and not seven years before the last day!

Not only do the scriptures about the resurrection “at the last day” point to the end of the age as the time of Christ’s return, but the same evidence can be seen from a study of the scriptural expression “the last trump.”

Turning again to 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17, we read: “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the TRUMP of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air.” Notice three things that are mentioned here: (1) the TRUMPET sounds, (2) the RESURRECTION of the dead in Christ, and (3) the CATCHING UP of believers to meet the Lord in the air.

Basically, these three things are also included in 1 Corinthians 15:51, 52: “Behold, I shew you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last TRUMP: for the TRUMPET shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” Again we have the following: (1) the TRUMPET sounds, (2) the RESURRECTION of the dead in Christ, and (3) the living saints are CHANGED (which all agree is when this mortal puts on immortality and believers rise to meet the Lord in the air).

Both of these passages mention the sounding of the trumpet, but the latter passage specifies that this trumpet is the LAST trumpet! Bearing this in mind, we turn to Revelation 8:2 in which we read: “And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets.” As each trumpet sounds, certain events take place. There are seven of these trumpets, so the LAST trumpet (in linking this passage with the others) would be the seventh.

Let us now notice what events are connected with the sounding of this LAST trumpet: “And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever . . . And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and THE TIME OF THE DEAD, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give REWARD unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth” (Rev. 11:15-18).

Again, we notice the same three things that were included in the other passages: (1) the TRUMPET sounds, the seventh, the last trumpet, (2) the time of the dead to be raised — the RESURRECTION, and (3) the saints REWARDED, which would include their being changed from mortal to immortality, caught up to meet the Lord, etc.

These things indicate that the rapture will be at the end of the age, at the last day, at the last trump! But according to the pre-tribulation rapture teaching, the rapture would have to take place at the time of the FIRST trumpet or before, since — according to this interpretation — the church will be gone when the trumpets of Revelation are sounded! Revelation 11:18 says that the sounding of the seventh trumpet — the last trumpet — will be “the tithe of the dead” to be resurrected. God will then “give REWARD unto . . . the saints.” Where, then, is there any room for the idea that before any of these trumpets sound the saints will have already been raptured to heaven to be rewarded?

In Matthew 16:27, Jesus explained when men will be rewarded. “The Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and THEN he shall reward every man according to his works:” But some imply that it is not when Jesus comes with his angels that every man is rewarded, for they say that before this — at an earlier, quiet, and secret coming — believers will be raptured and rewarded!

Jesus made it clear that there will be no “secret” coming before his coming in glory with the holy angels. “Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation”, he said, “of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels” (Mk. 8:38). In that day, Christ will be ashamed of some; of others, he will not be ashamed. Some will be accepted; some will be rejected. WHEN? “When he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels”! It is agreed that the coming of Christ in glory with the holy angels is at the end of the age, and this verse actually shows that there will be no secret coming prior to this. Why? Because if there had been a secret coming of Christ seven years before his coming in glory with the angels, whether Christ would be ashamed of people or not would have already taken place!

According to the Bible, no man knows the day or hour of the end of the age (Mt. 24). But if the rapture is an event to take place seven years before the end, thousands of people would be able to determine the exact date! All they would have to do is count seven years from the time that all babies and Christians suddenly came up “missing.” If any questions remained, a trip to the cemetery would provide absolute proof that the rapture had occurred. By digging down into the graves of known Christians, it could quickly be determined that the resurrection had taken place. It would not take long for thousands to know what had happened — and to figure the exact date for the end of the age. But since the scriptures teach that no man will know the day or hour when the end of the age will come, it is evident that the rapture will not take place seven years before the end.

The Christians at Thessalonica were enduring “persecutions and tribulations” and were being “troubled” by unbelievers” (2 Thess. 1:4, 7). But Paul encouraged them with the truth that they would be given “rest” from their troubles “when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God”, for “he shall come to be glorified in his saints” (See 2 Thess. 1:7-10).

In this passage we notice — as in the others — that the reward of the righteous and the destruction that shall befall the wicked are interwoven with each other as to time, both occurring at the coming of the Lord. We notice also that when Jesus comes for the deliverance of his troubled saints, he comes in “flaming fire.” No “secret” rapture here

When will the Lord render vengeance to the wicked on one hand and comfort to the saints on the other? The answer is clear: “WHEN the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them which know not God.” The time of his being glorified in his saints is also the time when destruction will fall on the wicked. There is no interval of seven years between the two. It does not say that Christ will come to be glorified in the saints and then come again a number of years later to bring destruction upon their oppressors.


Notes

1. Silver, The Lord’s Return, p. 260.
2. Roberts, How to be Personally Prepared for the Second Coming of Christ, p. 34.
3.Ford, Seven Simple Sermons on the Second Coming, p. 51.
4. Bishop, The Doctrine of Grace, p. 341.
5.Some believe this passage refers to a literal destruction and end of this planet. Others believe the expressions used here indicate the end of the age, but not necessarily the end of the planet. In Noah’s thy, it is pointed out, “the world that then was . . . perished” — but the planet remained; so likewise, “the heavens and the earth which are now” — this age — will come to its end, while the planet itself will remain. But it is not our purpose here to set one of these arguments against the other. For now we will simply point out that either way we take this passage, it is evident that it could not be talking about a time seven years before the end.



++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Zechariah 12:3,9:
And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people; And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Disclaimer: Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum, ( http://www.rapturebibleprophecyforum.com ) does not necessarily endorse or agree with every opinion expressed in every article posted on this site. We do however, encourage a healthy and friendly debate on the issues of our day. Whether you agree or disagree, we encourage you to post your feedback by using the reply button.

If you are new to this site and would like to post articles, opinions, youtube videos that are appropriate for this site just e mail me at

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I will send you a PASSWORD

Ybic
Steven


Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve

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Will the Return of Christ be in Two Stages?


When Jesus ascended into heaven and his disciples stood watching, two angels said: “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come IN LIKE MANNER as ye have SEEN him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11). According to this verse, the same Jesus that those disciples knew and loved will return “in like manner” as they saw him go into heaven. They did not see him go into heaven in two separate ascensions; and so it is definitely implied that his return will not be in two separate comings.

“Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many” — at his FIRST coming — “and unto them that look for him shall he appear the SECOND time without sin unto salvation” (Heb. 9:28 ). Here we read of the SECOND coming of Christ. Those who hold that Christ will return for his church, and then return again seven years later, are actually teaching a doctrine not only of the SECOND coming of Christ, but a THIRD coming as well. However, the idea of a THIRD coming of Christ is nowhere mentioned in the Bible. Such terminology is completely foreign to the scriptures!


Some explain that they believe in one Second Coming of Christ, but that it will be in “two stages.” However, this does not solve the problem. If the rapture is a separate “stage” from the coming of Christ in power and glory, how could each “stage” be the SECOND coming? If they are separate and distinct events, each could not be the second coming, for the coming that would follow the second, would be the third!

Some teach there will be two second comings. But the scriptures speak of the Lord’s second “coming” (singular), never of the second “comingS” (plural). Besides, the term “two second comings” is in itself contradictory.

In attempting to explain this difficulty which the dispensational interpretation must face, we have actually heard it argued that the “rapture” is not the COMING of the Lord! One writer puts it this way: “Strictly speaking the rapture is NOT THE SECOND COMING AT ALL. The second coming is the visible, local, bodily appearing of Christ in the clouds of heaven as he returns to this earth . . . in power and great glory.”1

Another says: “The thrilling event which will both mark the end of the day of Grace and open the door for the Great Tribulation is the rapture . . . Specifically speaking, THIS IS NOT THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST. Rather this is the rapture, or the catching up, of the true church.”2

Another emphatically states that the rapture is NOT the Second Coming and that “the scriptures referring to the rapture could not refer to the second coming.” 3

According to these dispensational writers, the rapture will take place first, and the COMING of Christ will take place seven years later. But attempting to make the rapture a separate and earlier event from the coming of Christ is a teaching that is contrary to the united testimony of the Bible!

For example, Jesus said: “Be ye therefore also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man COMETH” (Mt. 24:44). Why would Jesus warn about being ready for the COMING of the Son of man, if really what we are to be ready for is a secret rapture to take place seven years before his coming?

The same point can be seen in Revelation 16:15: “Behold, I COME as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth.” Why would such a warning be given about his COMING, if seven years before his COMING believers would already be taken to heaven?

Or notice Hebrews 10:36, 37: “For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and he that shall COME will COME, and will not tarry.” Believers are thus exhorted to be patient until the coming of Christ. But why point them to the coming of Christ if their real hope was something to occur seven years earlier?

“Be patient then, brethren, unto the COMING of the Lord” (James 5:7). Again, why exhort the brethren to be patient unto the COMING of the Lord, if a secret rapture before his coming was when they would be gathered unto him?

Jesus said: “Occupy till I COME” (Lk. 19:13). But how could the church occupy until he COMES, if the church will be taken away seven years before his coming?

Paul speaks of Christians as “waiting for the COMING of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 1:7). If Paul believed Christians would be caught up to heaven in a secret rapture seven years before the Lord’s COMING, why didn’t he speak of Christians as waiting for that? Why would he tell them to wait for something that would take place seven years after they had already been raptured? Obviously, to Paul, the coming of the Lord and the rapture were considered as one and the same event.

Paul prayed that the Christians at Thessalonica would be “preserved blameless unto the COMING of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thess. 5:23). Again, the event for which they were watching was the “coming” of Christ. Why pray for them to be preserved blameless unto the “coming” of Christ, if the “rapture” is an event that will take place seven years before the Lord’s coming?

And finally, Jesus said: “I will COME again, and receive you unto myself” (John 14:3). Plainly, it is when Jesus COMES that he receives his people unto himself. It does not say he receives them and then seven years later he comes. The receiving is not seven years before his coming.

Such expressions as these we have given — be ready for the coming of the Lord, watch for his coming, be patient for his coming, waiting for his coming, preserved unto his coming, occupy until he comes, etc. — all show that it is when Christ COMES that believers are gathered to meet the Lord. In view of this, the concept that the rapture is a separate event from the COMING of the Lord is simply not true. The rapture of believers to meet the Lord in the air and the coming of the Lord are one and the same event.

But what about the meaning of the Greek words that are used to describe the Second Coming? Those who believe that Christ will return in two separate phases, commonly teach that a study of the original Greek makes this distinction clear. One writer, for example, says: “The TWO phases of Christ’s second coming are clearly distinguished in the Greek. The ‘parousia ’ . . . is His coming for his saints . . . The ‘apokalupsis’ (the revealing, unveiling, making manifest) is his coming with his saints.”4

But instead of the Greek terms used in describing the Second Coming indicating two separate events, we find that these terms are used interchangeably in such a way that they show there is but ONE Second Coming of Christ — not two!

The following is a list of six words that are used to describe the Second Coming of Christ and the shades of meaning they present:


1.PAROUSIA. This word stresses the actual personal presence of one who comes and arrives. It is used in James 5:7: “Be patient . . . unto the coming of the Lord”, etc.
2.APOKALUPSIS. This word stresses appearing, revelation. It is used in 2 Thess. 1:7: “The Lord shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels”, etc.
3.EPIPHANEIA. This word means manifestation and speaks of the glory that will attend Christ when he comes. It is used in 1 Tim. 6:14: “The appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ”, etc.
4. PHANEROO. This word means to render apparent. It is used in 1 John 3:2: “When he shall appear, we shall be like him.”
5.ERCHOMAI. This word indicates the act of coming, to come from one place to another. It is used in Luke 19:13: “Occupy till I come,” etc.
6. HEKO. This word stresses the point of arrival, as I am come and am here. It is used in Rev. 2:25: “Hold fast till I come.”

The first word on our list, parousia, is the one most commonly used in reference to the Lord’s coming. The word stresses the actual personal presence of one that has come and arrived. There is nothing in this word to convey the idea of secrecy. Paul, for example, was comforted by the “coming [parousia] of Titus” who brought word to him from the Corinthian Christians (2 Cor. 7:6). Likewise, he spoke of the “coming [parousia] of Stephanas and Fortunatus and Achaicus” (1 Cor. 16:17). In writing to the Philippians, Paul said he would be “coming [parousia]” to see them again (Phil. 1:26).

Paul used this word in the noted “rapture” chapter which speaks of “the coming [parousia] of the Lord” when the dead in Christ will be raised and believers will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air (1 Thess. 4:15-17). But was the parousia to be a pre-tribulation coming? No! Turning to Paul’s second letter to the Thessalonian believers, Paul again wrote about “the coming [parousia] of our Lord” and “our gathering together unto him” (2 Thess. 2:1). Here he explained that the “parousia” will not take place until AFTER the man of sin is revealed and has carried out his evil work: “The Lord shall destroy [the man of sin] with the brightness of his coming [parousia]” (2 Thess. 2: .

According to this, the coming (parousia) of the Lord, the resurrection, and the rapture will come AFTER the reign of the man of sin! — not before.

In 2 Peter 3, we find more proof that the “parousia” is not a secret coming that will take place BEFORE our Lord’s coming in flaming fire and glory. According to Peter, “the promise of his coming [parousia]” will be fulfilled when “the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat” (2 Peter 3:4-10). And in view of this, Christians are exhorted to be “looking for . . . the coming [parousia] of the thy of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat” (verses 11, 12). The word “parousia” in these places obviously cannot refer to a secret rapture seven years before the end.

Instead of the RAPTURE being a secret and invisible coming to be followed later by the REVELATION, an open and visible coming, the scriptures show that the rapture and the revelation are one and the same event — not two.

The word that is translated “revelation” in connection with Christ’s return is apokalupsis which stresses appearing, revelation. Notice its use in 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10: “The Lord Jesus shall be REVEALED [apokalupsis] from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God . . . when he shall come to be glorified in his saints.” According to this, the time when Christ is REVEALED in flaming fire is also the time when he comes to be glorified in his saints. If the rapture had taken place seven years before this, the saints would have already been glorified!

Peter also spoke of the revelation of Christ in 1 Peter 1:13: “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the REVELATION [apokalupsis] of Jesus Christ.” Again, it is evident that the rapture is not an earlier event to take place seven years before the “revelation.” If this had been the case, these instructions about being sober and hoping until the REVELATION of Christ would be meaningless. It would not be necessary for believers to hope to the end for the grace to be brought to them at the REVELATION of Christ, if — in reality — this grace was to be brought to them at a separate rapture seven years before!

Likewise in verse 7, Peter spoke of Christians as being “found unto praise and honour and glory at the APPEARING [the revelation, same word, apokalupsis] of Jesus Christ.” But according to the secret rapture position, Christians will have already been taken to heaven and judged before the REVELATION! This is not what the Bible says. Christians are pointed to the appearing or REVELATION of Christ, a fact which clearly indicates that the rapture is the revelation!

The same word that is translated “revelation” and “appearing” (apokalupsis) in the texts we have noticed, is used in 1 Cor. 1:7 which speaks of Christians as “waiting for the coming [apokalupsis] of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Again it is apparent that the gathering of believers (the rapture) is not something that precedes the revelation of Christ. Why would Christians be waiting for the “revelation” if the “rapture” comes seven years sooner?

We learn from these verses that the apokalupsis — the REVELATION — is when Christians will be gathered; this is when they meet the Lord; this is the day for which they are waiting. The rapture is NOT one event and the revelation a different event. Instead of two phases being “clearly distinguished in the Greek” by the terms parousia and apokalupsis, a study of these words and the context in which they are used reveals no such distinction whatsoever. To the contrary, both are used in a way that points us to ONE event, the Second Coming of Christ at the end of the age!

Another word used in describing the return of Christ is EPIPHANEIA, meaning “manifestation” and the glory that will attend our Lord when he comes. This word is not applied to a “secret”, pre-tribulation coming, for Christ will slay the man of sin “with the BRIGHTNESS [epiphaneia] of his coming” (2 Thess.2 : .

Bearing this in mind, let us look at 1 Timothy 6:14, 15 in which this same word appears: “. . . keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until THE APPEARING (epiphaneia) of our Lord Jesus Christ: which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords.”

Now we ask: why would Christians be exhorted to keep the commandment until the “epiphaneia” — the glorious appearing — if seven years before this there was to be a hidden, secret coming to take the church out of the world? The epiphaneia is when the man of sin is slain, it is when Christ comes in open glory and power, and it is until this time that Christians are exhorted to remain faithful. Such instructions would be completely out of place if Christians were to be raptured several years before the epiphaneia.

The fourth word on our list is PHANEROO, meaning “to render apparent”, which also refers to Christ’s coming in open power and glory. “When the chief Shepherd shall APPEAR [phaneroo], ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away” (1 Peter 5:4). This verse does not say that when the chief shepherd shall appear — be rendered apparent — that Christians will have already been raptured and crowned! No, the rewarding is when Christ shall APPEAR, and not at a supposed invisible coming seven years before!

John, like Peter, makes the same point: “We know that, when he shall APPEAR (phaneroo), we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” (1 John 3:2). As Christians it is when Christ shall come and appear — be rendered apparent — that we shall be like him, not at a supposed invisible coming.

Instead of the Greek terms indicating two second comings, just the opposite is the case. This should be carefully noted. We know that the “parousia” is the same event as the “apokalupsis” (revelation), not only by the actual context in which these words are used (as we have seen), but by the way they are used interchangeably.

In Matthew 24:37, for example, we read: “But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the COMING [parousia] of the son of man be.” Luke’s account of the same passage says: “As it was in the days of Noah . . . even thus shall it be in the day when the son of man is REVEALED (apokalupsis)” (Lk. 17:26,30). This shows us that the coming (parousia) of Christ and the revelation (apokalupsis) of Christ are the same event!

Looking to Matthew 24 again, we find that “parousia” is used to describe the same event as “erchomai.” “But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the COMING (parousia) of the son of man be . . . Therefore be ye also ready; for in such an hour as ye think not the son of man COMETH (erchomai)” (Mt.24:37, 44).

“Erchomai”, in turn, is used to describe the same event as “heko”, for in Hebrews 10:37, we read: “For yet a little while, and he that shall COME [erchomai] will COME [heko], and will not tarry.”

“Heko” and “parousia” are used together by Peter. In answer to the question: “Where is the promise of his COMING (parousia]?”, Peter answers: “The day of the Lord will COME [heko] as a thief in the night” (2 Peter 3:10).

The word “parousia” and “epiphaneia” are linked together in 2 Thess. 2:8 in which we read that the man of sin will be destroyed by the “BRIGHTNESS” (epiphaneia) of Christ’s “COMING” (parousia).

And finally, we notice that the “parousia” is also the “phaneroo”, for both expressions are used in the same verse, referring to the same event: “And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall APPEAR [phaneroo], we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his COMING [parousia].”

Thus we see that all of these Greek words are used interchangeably. As in English, the different words present varied shades of meaning. But trying to split the Second Coming of Christ into two “stages” or “comings” on a supposed distinction in these Greek terms is completely artificial.


Notes

1. Boyd, Ages and Dispensations, p. 60.
2.Orr, Antichrist, Armageddon, and the End of the World, p.9.
3.Hall, Prophecy Marches On!, Vol.2, pp. 36, 39.
4.Sabiers, Where are the Dead?, pp. 123, 124.




++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Zechariah 12:3,9:
And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people; And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Disclaimer: Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum, ( http://www.rapturebibleprophecyforum.com ) does not necessarily endorse or agree with every opinion expressed in every article posted on this site. We do however, encourage a healthy and friendly debate on the issues of our day. Whether you agree or disagree, we encourage you to post your feedback by using the reply button.

If you are new to this site and would like to post articles, opinions, youtube videos that are appropriate for this site just e mail me at

stevensandiego@ymail.com
I will send you a PASSWORD

Ybic
Steven


Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve

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Coming “For” and Coming “With” the Saints


According to the dispensational interpretation, Christ will come in a secret rapture “FOR his saints”, take them to heaven for seven years, and then come “WITH the saints.” The argument is, of course, that since he will come with his saints, he will have to come at an earlier time for the saints. But let us take a closer look at this argument. First of all, does the Bible anywhere use the expression “coming FOR the saints”?

Repeatedly we have heard statements like this: “Jesus is coming back FOR a church without spot and wrinkle”, or “Soon Jesus will return FOR his church to take it out of this world”, or “The Lord comes in the rapture FOR his church; after the Tribulation period, he comes with his church”, etc. But the fact is: the Bible never uses the expression, “coming FOR the saints.” Never. Surely then, an interpretation that continually uses an expression that the Bible never uses should be subjected to close examination.

Once a person has the concept in mind that there will be a special coming of Christ “for” the church, he then reads about believers being “caught up” and immediately concludes that they will be caught up to heaven. This is not what the passage says at all!


The rapture passage, 1 Thess. 4:16, 17, says that believers will be “caught up . . . in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air.” This verse explains WHERE believers will meet the Lord. The place of meeting will be just above the earth — in the clouds, in the air. There is nothing in this verse to indicate that Christ will then turn around and take the church to heaven.

Notice that believers will rise to “MEET” the Lord. The word that is here translated “meet” is a word that was used in reference to the coming of a king or governor to visit a city. As he approached, the citizens would go out to meet him and then escort him on the last part of his journey into the city. We believe it has precisely that same meaning here. As the Lord descends from heaven, believers will rise “to meet the Lord in the air”, in order to come with him as he continues to earth.1

The word “meet” in this verse is apantesis. It is used in two other passages which we will now consider to see exactly how this word was used in the scriptures:


First: Matthew 25:1,6: “Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to MEET the bridegroom . . . And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to MEET him.” In this parable, the five wise and the five foolish virgins were to take their lamps and go out to meet the bridegroom. What for? To have him turn around and take them to where he had come from? No! If this had been the case, he would have been coming to meet them, instead of them going out to meet him.

The plain and simp1e truth is that when the bridegroom approached, they went out to meet him so as to escort him back to where they had been waiting — to the place where the marriage would be held. They went out to “meet” him and after meeting him returned “with him.” Notice how the word “meet” was used.

Second: Acts 28:14-16: “And so we went toward Rome. And from thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to MEET us as far as Appii forum, and The three taverns. . . And when we came to Rome . . .” Here the same point is seen. As Paul journeyed to Rome, certain brethren came to meet him and then accompanied him as he entered the city. It does not say that Paul got almost to Rome and then took these brethren back to where he had been. Again, if this had been the case, he would have been coming to meet them, instead of them going out to meet him!

Let us suppose these men that met Paul had explained to the others where they were going. They might have said: “We have heard that the apostle Paul is coming to our city. We are going to meet him and will come with him.” Would any have understood this to mean that they would “meet” Paul; go back to where he had been, spend some time there, so as to finally come “with” him to Rome? No, none would ever get such a meaning from a statement as this. Yet this is exactly the kind of “proof” that is offered for the idea of two second comings of Christ. We are told that since the saints will come “with” Christ, that in going out to “meet” him they must be taken back to where he was, wait there for a period of time, so as to come “with” him!

In the scriptural examples, people went out to “meet” someone and then escorted that person to the place where he was Coming. In no case are two stages, or two comings, implied by this word. There is no room for a period of seven years between the going out to “meet” the one that is coming and the coming “with” that person.

Seeing, then, how the word “meet” is used in the scriptures, we understand that when Christ comes, believers will be “caught up . . . to meet the Lord in the air” and from there they will descend “with him.” So the fact that the Lord will come with his saints (after they rise to “meet” him) does not in any way require two separate second comings of Christ. “That theory must be deliberately read into the passage”, writes Oswald Smith, “We might go through all the writers of the New Testament, and we would fail to discover any indication of the so-called ‘two-stages’ of our Lord’s coming.”2

We turn now to Jude 14, the key verse which speaks of the Lord as coming WITH his saints. There are good reasons for believing that those who are here mentioned as coming with the Lord are ANGELS, not men! If this is true, then the argument that there must be a separate coming for the saints (since Christ will come with the saints) is left without any foundation whatsoever. Let us then take a closer look at this verse.

“Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints” (Jude 14). The word that is translated saints is “hagios” which means simply “holy”, or in this case, “holy [ones].” (The word “holy” that appears many times in the New Testament, with only a few exceptions, is always translated from this word.) There is absolutely nothing in this word itself to indicate who these holy ones are. The term could refer to either men or angels, depending on the context. In this case, we believe the reference is to angels. The Pulpit Commentary says: “The ‘ten thousands of his saints’ is better rendered ‘ten thousands of his holy ones’ . . . For the ‘holy ones’ here intended are the angels.”3

Jesus himself taught that he would come with the holy angels. The word “holy” that he used in connection with the angels is “hagios”, the same word that is used in Jude 14. “The Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy [hagios] angels with him . . .” (Mt. 25:31). Jesus also said: “Whosoever shall be ashamed of me . . . of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh . . . with the holy [hagios] angels” (Mk. 8:38; Lk. 9:26). According to these words of Jesus, the “holy ones” (hagios) that will come with him are the angels.

The expression “ten thousands of saints” (used in Jude 14) also appears in Deuteronomy 33:2 in a passage which is generally regarded as referring to angels: “The Lord came from Sinai, and rose up from Seir unto them; he shined forth from mount Paran, and he came with ten thousands of saints.” Concerning this passage, the Pulpit Commentary points out that a better translation would be “ten thousands of holy ones”, for the reference is to “myriads of angels” and that the Lord came forth from among them to manifest himself to the people.4

The Matthew Henry Commentary says: “His appearance was glorious: he shone forth like the sun when he goes forth in his Strength. Even Seir and Paran, two mountains at some distance, were illuminated by the divine glory which appeared on Mount Sinai . . . He came with his holy myriads . . . the angels . . . Hence the law is said to be given by the disposition of angels, Acts 7:53; Heb. 2:2.”5

If the expression “ten thousands of saints” referred to angelic beings in Deuteronomy, it is surely not inconsistent to believe that the same expression could refer to angelic beings in Jude 14.


Looking again at the passage in Jude, would the context suggest that the “holy ones” that accompany the Lord at his Second Coming could be angels? We believe this is implied, for these “holy ones” are associated with Christ in executing judgment upon the ungodly. “Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his hagios [holy ones], to execute judgment upon . . . all that are ungodly” (Jude 14, 15). We believe this will be the job of angelic beings that will come with Christ, not that of the Christians. Other scriptures make this plain.

Jesus, for example, likened the ungodly to “tares” that are gathered and burned in the fire. So, likewise, in the end of the age, “the Son of man shall send forth his ANGELS” who will cast the ungodly into the fire (Mt. 13:40-42 ). This is also pointed out in verses 49, 50 of this same chapter: “At the end of the world . . . the ANGELS shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, and shall cast them into the furnace of fire.” And Paul says: “The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty ANGELS, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God” (2 Thess. 1:7 ).

To sum it up then, Jude 14 speaks of the Lord’s coming with his holy ones. That the reference is to angels in this instance (and not men) is indicated by the words of Jesus when he used the same term in connection with the angels that will accompany him at his coming. The expression “ten thousands of saints” when used in Deuteronomy had reference to angels. And the context in Jude shows that these beings are associated with the Lord in executing flaming judgment upon the ungodly. These things all Imply that the reference is to angels that will come with Christ when he returns. However, as we mentioned earlier, our general argument — that there is one Second Coming of Christ (not two) — is not dependent upon this point.

One final New Testament reference remains to be considered in which we read of Christ’s coming with the saints. Paul exhorted the Thessalonians: “Increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men . . . [so that the Lord] may stablish your heart unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints” (1 Thess. 3:12, 13 ).

We need only to notice this passage briefly, for it is doubtful if any would attempt to use this verse as a proof text for the idea of a coming for the saints as contrasted to a coming with the saints at a later date. There are several reasons for this. The word translated “coming” in this verse is parousia — a word which dispensationalists commonly say refers to a “secret” rapture — a coming for the saints — whereas in this verse, we read of his “coming [parousia] with all the saints.” Instead of teaching two second comings of Christ, if anything, this verse would indicate that the parousia is the coming of Christ with his saints.

Paul is obviously not speaking of a coming of Christ “WITH all the saints” as contrasted to an earlier coming FOR the saints, for if there was to be an earlier coming, why would he put stress on their being established in holiness at the coming of Christ with all his saints? Surely he would have mentioned the earlier coming if such existed.

In all probability, the meaning intended in this passage is simply that Paul desired the Thessalonians to be established in the faith and be found unblameable at the Second Coming — along with all the other saints — those at Corinth, Colossea, Ephesus, and all believers everywhere.

In any event, there is no basis in this passage (or in the others we have noticed) for the idea of two second comings of Christ; if anything, just the opposite is implied all the way through.


Notes

1.When Jesus was on earth, he said: “I will come again.” Plainly, Christ will return to earth. Whether the earth as we know it now (as some teach), or the earth made new (as others teach) is not the point at present. The fact is, he will come to earth. The saints will not remain forever floating around in space.
2.Smith, Tribulation or Rapture — Which? p.10.
3.Volume 22, p. 12.
4.Volume 3, p.534.
5.Volume 1, p.874. cf. Job 15:15; Ps. 89:5, 7; Dan. 8:13; 4:13.




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Zechariah 12:3,9:
And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people; And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

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Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve

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An Examimation of Dispensational Proof Texts


We shall now examine the verses that are commonly used in support of the pre-tribulation rapture position.

First, Revelation 4:1: “After this I [John] looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.”

Those who hold the “secret” rapture teaching, generally believe that the seven churches mentioned in Revelation, chapters two and three, represent seven ages of the church — beginning with the church of the first century and continuing until the rapture. Since chapters 4 through 18 do not mention the word “church”, this is taken as proof that the church will be absent from the earth during this time. The verse that follows the third chapter (Rev. 4:1) tells how John in vision was taken up to heaven and saw certain things. John is used as a type of the church and this verse is then taken to mean that the church will be raptured at this same point — before the events of the chapters that follow! And since John was told he would see things that would be “hereafter”, this is taken to mean that the chapters that follow describe things which will take place “after” the church is gone!

But trying to apply Revelation 4:1 to the rapture is based only on assumptions, not plain statements. First, it is assumed that the seven churches of Revelation 2 and 3 represent seven ages of the church — from the first century to the rapture. Second, it is assumed — since the word “church” does not appear in the chapters that follow chapter three — that the church at this point is taken out of the world in a secret rapture. Third, it is assumed that not only the seven churches of Asia represent the church, but that John himself is also a type of the church, for it is taught that his being caught up to heaven pictures the rapture of the church. And finally, it is assumed that since John saw things which would be “hereafter” that this means after the church is gone. But now, step by step, we will take a closer look at these points.

1. Do the seven churches of Asia represent seven church ages — from apostolic days to the rapture? Since these seven churches with their varied spiritual conditions existed together in Asia during the first century, we see no special reason to believe that seven contemporary churches should represent seven successive ages of the church. We believe the lessons contained in the letters to the seven churches could apply to churches in similar situations in any century.

2. Next, it is claimed that since the word “church” does not appear in Revelation, chapters 4-18, we are to understand that the church is absent from the earth during this time, not coming into the picture again until chapter 19 in which we read of the marriage supper and the coming of Christ as King of kings.

But if the mere absence of the word “church” can prove that the church is absent in chapters 4-18, we would have to conclude that the church is also absent in chapter 19, for the word “church” appears nowhere in the entire chapter! Nor does the word “church” appear in chapter 20! It is not found in chapter 21! Would any contend that the church is absent in these chapters? It is not until the last chapter of Revelation that we find the term again, and that only in a closing remark: “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches” (Rev. 22:16).

The church is not mentioned in chapters 4-18, we are told, and this is taken as proof that the church is in heaven during this time. What? If the church is not mentioned, how could this prove it is in heaven? Since the church is clearly on earth in chapters two and three, and since it is not expressly referred to as being in heaven during the chapters that follow, the more natural inference would be that it is still on earth during these chapters. One thing is for sure: if the church is not mentioned in these chapters, there is no proof it is in heaven during this time!

We are told that the church is not mentioned in the chapters after Revelation 3:22. But technically, the church (as a whole) is not mentioned in the chapters before Revelation 3:22! Instead, all of the references are to local assemblies, local churches in Asia, each being but a part of that great universal church of God. Here are the facts: the words “church” (singular) and “churches” (plural) occur 19 times in Revelation 1-3. The four references in chapter one are about “the seven churches in Asia.” The word “church” is used in each of the addresses to the seven churches: “To the angel of the church in Ephesus”, etc. and at the conclusion of each of the letters: “Hear . . . what the Spirit saith to the churches.” In Revelation 2:22, “To all the churches”, refers to all seven of the churches mentioned. Thus the word is never used in these chapters as referring to the church in its totality. This is significant.

While it is true the word “church” does not appear after chapter three until the last part of Revelation, we believe the church is definitely referred to by other terms that are used in these chapters. Take Revelation 13:7, for example. “And it was given unto him [the beast] to make war with the SAINTS.” Is not this a clear reference to the church? Revelation 13:10 mentions the “patience and faith of the SAINTS” — patience and faith in the midst of persecution! The “SAINTS” are again mentioned in chapter 16:6. In chapter 17, we read about the Babylonian woman “drunken with the blood of the SAINTS” (verse 6) and that “In her was found the blood of the SAINTS” (18:24). Here, then, are several references to the saints; that is, those who make up the church.

But those who believe the rapture is pictured in Revelation 4:1, commonly teach that the “saints” in these chapters are not church saints, but tribulation saints — people that are no part of the church whatsoever! Yet when we find the word “saints” in connection with the marriage supper of the Lamb in chapter 19, then we are told this refers to the church! Notice the passage:

“The marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed In fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of SAINTS.” The Scofield footnote says: “The ‘Lamb’s wife’ here is the ‘bride’, the Church.”1 So it is agreed the saints here referred to are church saints. But to be consistent, if the “saints” In Revelation 19 are church saints, how can some rightly argue that the “saints” mentioned in the chapter before (chapter 1 , the chapter before that (chapter 17), the chapter before that (chapter 16), and chapter 13 are some different kind of saints? By such arbitrary methods of interpretation, anything could be proved from the Bible!

3. Assuming that the churches of Revelation 2 and 3 represent seven church ages, coupled with the idea that the word “church” does not appear in certain chapters that follow, Revelation 4:1 is then taken as a reference to the rapture — assuming that John is a type of the church! Let us look at the verse again: “After this I [John] looked, and behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.” Though this verse was plainly a message to John, many dispensational writers feel this verse clearly refers to the rapture!

Scofield, for example, says: “This call seems clearly to indicate the fulfillment of 1 Thess. 4:14-17 [the rapture].2 The word ‘church’ does not again occur in the Revelation till all is fulfilled.” And De Haan says: “This brief passage from Revelation is one of the shortest yet one of the clearest pictures in Scripture of the rapture of the church.”3

But this verse is not talking about the rapture, it is not talking about the church, it is talking about JOHN! It was John who was — in spirit — taken into the heavenly realm and saw various things which would come to pass. John being thus taken up does not prove we should look for the church in heaven any more than his being taken in the spirit into the wilderness to “Babylon”, would prove the church was there! (Rev. 17:3-5).

Those who claim to “clearly” see a pre-tribulation rapture of the church in this verse must assume (among other things) that John is a type of the church. But John could not be a consistent type of the church in heaven during the period covered by chapters 4-18, for sometimes during those chapters he is represented as being back on EARTH! In Revelation 10:1 and also 18:1, for example, he sees an angel “come [not go] down from heaven” — wording which would place him below heaven in these scenes. In Revelation 11:1, in vision, he measures the “temple”, which apparently does not symbolize something in heaven, for it is pictured as having a court which is given to the “Gentiles” to tread down. Then in Revelation 13:1, John is standing upon the sand of the sea, and a beast rising up out of the water appears, etc. John is sometimes pictured as being in heaven and sometimes on earth. He cannot, therefore, be a consistent representation of the church in heaven during these chapters.

4. Adding to the foregoing dispensational teachings (that the seven churches represent seven ages of the church until the rapture, that the word “church” does not appear after chapter three, and that John is representative of the church in being taken up to heaven at Revelation 4:1), a final point is made in the attempt to establish a pre-tribulation rapture from the verse under consideration. We are told that when the voice spoke to John and said: “Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be HEREAFTER”, that the expression “hereafter” means AFTER the church has been raptured to heaven!

But the fact is, the same words in the Greek — “meta tauta” — that are translated “hereafter” at the end of this verse, are exactly the same words that are rendered “after this” at the beginning of the verse. The verse begins and ends with the same identical phrase in the original. Is it not inconsistent, then, to attempt to make it mean “after the church” in one instance and not in the other? And to make it mean “after the church” in both instances would be contradictory.

The normal reading of the passage is simply that John had received specific messages to the seven churches in Asia; after this he heard a voice saying he would be shown things which would be hereafter — that is, he would be shown events that were then future. It is inexcusable to try to make it mean anything more than this, for this same expression was commonly used by John. “Meta tauta”, though translated in various ways into English, appears in the following verses in John’s writings: “hereafter” (John 13:7; Rev. 1:19; 4:1; 9:12); “after these things” (John 3:22; 6:1; 7:1; Rev. 7:1; 18:1; 19:1); “afterward” (John 5:14); “after that” (Rev. 15:5; 20:3); “after this” (John 5:1; Rev. 4:1). To try to force a meaning upon the expression in one instance that is completely unheard of and unrelated to the use of the word in other parts of John’s writings is, we feel, very unsound.

Another dispensational “proof text” is found in the words of Jesus to the church at Philadelphia: “Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth” (Rev. 3:10).

Those who use this verse in defense of the secret rapture position, assume that it is talking about a great tribulation period at the end of this age. There is no scriptural proof for this. Then it is assumed that since these are to be kept from the hour of temptation, that this means they will be raptured clear out of the world in order for this to be fulfilled. But, again, the text does not say this.

1. Let us consider this verse in its primary application — as it pertained to the church of Philadelphia, located in Asia Minor, In the first century. Was this church kept from a world wide time of temptation? As sure as the promise is true, they were. How were they kept? By being raptured to heaven? There is nothing to infer this. We believe they were kept by the power and grace of God.

If God fulfilled his promise to them, then the “hour of temptation” — what ever might be meant by the expression — must have occurred in their day. If so, it is evident that this verse offers no proof for a secret rapture to escape a great tribulation period 2,000 years later.

2. Let us consider Revelation 3:10 as it would apply with the teaching that the seven churches of Asia represent seven church ages. In this case, the passage again falls short of proving there will be an escape rapture from a tribulation during the last years this age. Had this been the case, Revelation 3:10 should have been given to the last church of the seven. But the promise of being “kept from the hour of temptation” was addressed to the sixth church.

Here, again, we see inconsistency in the secret rapture teaching. When it is being stressed that Revelation 4:1 teaches the secret rapture, we are told that the seven churches represent seven successive ages of the church, and that the last church age, the seventh, will end with the rapture. Then later, when commenting on Revelation 3:10, this is contradicted by saying that the message to the sixth church refers to an escape for the church at the end of the church age — as though the sixth church was the last church! In other words, when commenting on Revelation 4:1, the church ages are 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. Then later, in order to apply Revelation 3:10 to a pre-tribulation rapture, the ages would have to be twisted around like this: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ,7, 6, or, at least, the last two very arbitrarily merged together (as in the note on page 1332 of the Scofield Reference Bible).

Since the church in any century can benefit from the letters to the seven churches, let us view Revelation 3:10 as setting forth truth that could apply to the church in any century in which the same conditions exist. This will be a more general application.

3. It is a recognized method of Biblical interpretation to consider other verses that might shed light on a subject. We will apply this rule here and compare a verse that also contains the words of Jesus and one that was recorded by the same disciple. In both verses we will find basically the same wording and the same type of promise. But in the one — and this is significant! — it is plainly shown that believers can be kept from the temptation or evil of this world without being taken out of the world! We ask the reader to carefully compare the following passages:

“Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth” (Rev. 3:10).

“They have kept thy word . . . I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil” (John 17:6, 15).

In both passages, the people referred to have kept the word. And because they have kept the word, God will “keep them.” In the one passage, they are kept from the hour of temptation; in the other, they are kept from evil. The fact that they are kept from temptation in the one verse and kept from evil in the other, does not materially change the meaning involved, for evil and temptation are very closely related words. Jesus, for example, taught the disciples to pray: “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil “(Mt. 6:13). If we are kept from temptation, then surely we are kept from evil. The two go hand in hand.

Both of the passages we are comparing use the expression “keep from” in English, and in the Greek both use the same basic words. In both passages, believers are “kept from” evil or temptation, the one expressly explaining that this would be accomplished without them being taken out of the world — the exact opposite of the secret rapture teaching!

If it is possible to be in the world and yet be “kept from” the evil of the world, is it not also possible to be “kept from” the hour of temptation without being taken out of the world?

The fact that Revelation 3:10 mentions God’s keeping power at the “hour of temptation” is no reason to insist that by “hour” a seven year period of time is meant. In another passage, Jesus spoke about those which have no root “which, for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away” (Lk. 8:13). Whether we use the term “time of temptation” or “hour of temptation”, it is the time when temptation becomes great, it is that hour when people are especially tested. Applying it in the general sense, it might be in any century, any year, any day — not just the last seven years of this age.

It was such an hour of stress and test when Jesus was about to be betrayed and the disciples slept. Jesus said, “What, could ye not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation” (Mt. 26:40-45). In that hour of temptation, they needed to pray. In prayer they could have received the necessary power to be “kept from” the temptation of that crisis hour.

Revelation 3:10 speaks about being kept from the hour of temptation “which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.” Paul also spoke of temptation as being common to all men — but with special promise to the believer! “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man, but God . . . will not suffer you [the believer] to be TEMPTED above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way of escape that ye may be able to bear it” (1 Cor. 10:12, 13).

Here, then, is another reference about mankind being tempted, but that through Christ we can be kept from falling into temptation — because he makes a way of ESCAPE! Believers — here and now — escape from temptation without being raptured out of this world! “The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of TEMPTATIONS” (2 Peter 2:9). He has been doing it for centuries.

We believe that Revelation 3:10 stresses God’s KEEPING power. “I will keep thee from the hour of temptation”, he promises. Other verses also speak of God’s keeping power, but none Imply a rapture out of this world. Jabez prayed: “KEEP me from evil . . . and God granted him that which he requested” (1 Chron. 4:10). And we, today, can also be “KEPT by the power of God through faith unto salvation” (1 Peter 1:5), for God “is able to KEEP you from falling” (Jude 24), etc.

Thus by a study of the key words in the text under consideration, we find that believers can be “kept from” the world’s evil or temptation, can be “delivered out of temptation”, can find “a way of escape”, without being taken out of this world.

Some attempt to teach that the church will be taken out of the world because Revelation 3:10 mentions temptation that will “try them that DWELL upon the earth.” It is taught that those who “dwell” upon the earth are those who choose earth as a permanent abode, as compared to the Christians who have spiritual objectives. But this conclusion will not stand up, for in the original, the same word is used in describing our Lord DWELLING in Capernaum! (Mt. 4:13). None suppose that Jesus felt Capernaum was his permanent dwelling!

The three applications we have made of Revelation 3:10, summed up, are as follows:

1.Applied SPECIFICALLY to the Philadelphian church in Asia of the first century, it would have had its fulfillment while those people were still living.
2.Applied to the seven church AGES teaching, it falls short of reaching the last church age, which would be the seventh, for the Philadelphian church was the sixth in the succession.
3.Applied as a GENERAL truth for the church in any century, it could not be limited to people living just prior to the last seven years of the age, but would be a promise of God’s “keeping” power in any hour of temptation.

While a verse like Revelation 3:10 might — if taken alone — provide a possible inference, all will admit that true doctrine must be based on plain statements, not inferences.

One more text should be noticed here: “Watch ye therefore and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to ESCAPE all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man” (Luke 21:36).

It is true that this verse speaks of “escape”, but it says nothing about the church being taken to heaven in a secret rapture in order for this escape to be accomplished! This should be especially noted, for this is the very thing that some have attempted to read into this passage.

In this verse, Jesus said to his disciples: “PRAY always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape . . .” How? By a secret rapture to take them to heaven seven years before the end of the age? Apparently not, for in the prayer that Jesus himself prayed, we read: “I PRAY NOT that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil” (John 17:15). Would Jesus pray one way and then tell his disciples to pray another way? Surely this would be contradictory.

With what is this word “escape” to be connected? Is it a reference to escaping a period of time — a dispensational great tribulation during the last seven years of this age? It does not say so. A look at the context shows that the reference is to “THAT DAY”, the time believers shall be gathered to meet Christ in the air and destruction shall fall upon the world — the end of the age.

“Heaven and earth shall pass away [the end of this age] . . . take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be over-charged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so THAT DAY come upon you unawares.” [Obviously it could not come upon them unawares if they were to be raptured out seven years before the end of the age!]. “For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man” (Lk. 21:33-36).

We notice the reference is to THAT DAY. Escape is promised to those who are prayerfully watching and not overcharged with eating and drinking. Let us notice now that these same things were mentioned by Paul. “THE DAY of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then SUDDEN DESTRUCTION cometh upon them as travail upon woman with child; and they shall NOT ESCAPE. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness that THAT DAY should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of the light . . . we are not the night. . . Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us WATCH and be SOBER. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night” (l Thess. 5:1-7).

Notice that this passage also mentions THAT DAY. It will bring “sudden destruction” upon unbelievers “and they shall not escape.” However, there will be those who will “escape” that sudden destruction — those who are sober, spiritually awake, and watching for the return of Christ.

Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve

Notice that this passage also mentions THAT DAY. It will bring “sudden destruction” upon unbelievers “and they shall not escape.” However, there will be those who will “escape” that sudden destruction — those who are sober, spiritually awake, and watching for the return of Christ.

Matthew’s account (a parallel of Luke 21) also mentions THAT DAY and that we must WATCH, for the time of this event is unrevealed. “For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage... and knew not until the flood came and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Mt. 24:36-44).

When God’s destruction fell upon the world in Noah’s day, those who heeded God’s message ESCAPED — they were not destroyed with the unbelieving world. According to the scriptures, destruction shall again fall on the earth — this time by fire — and again those who have heeded God’s message shall ESCAPE and not be destroyed with the unbelieving world. Whether we think of the end that came in Noah’s day or the end that shall come upon this world at Christ’s return, in neither event is it a case of the righteous escaping from a seven year tribulation period, but from the very destruction that brings the end.

We have, then, the words recorded in Luke, in Matthew, and by the apostle Paul regarding THAT DAY. All speak of the uncertainty of the time. Luke records that it will come “as a snare.” Matthew likens it to the days of Noah when “they knew not until the flood came” and destruction fell upon the world. And Paul says it will come “as a thief in the night”, a time when men will be saying “peace and safety” — not expecting sudden destruction to fall upon them.

All three of these passages give warnings against the eating and drinking which would result in a condition of unconcern and spiritual neglect. Luke speaks of “surfeiting and drunkenness”, Matthew speaks of “eating and drinking”, and Paul’s words exhort us to be “sober” and not “drunken.”

All three of the passages show that the time referred to by the term THAT DAY is the end of the age. Matthew and Luke both use the expression “heaven and earth shall pass away” in this connection, while Paul speaks of it as the time when “sudden destruction” shall fall upon the wicked. Each passage indicates that those who believe will escape this destruction. Luke’s account speaks of praying to “escape” these things, Matthew’s account likens it to the days when Noah escaped the destruction of the flood, and Paul says the wicked “shall not escape”, which implies that there will be an escape for those who are not wicked.

So looking at Luke 21:36 again, we find that an escape is taught — but the reference is to “THAT DAY” when “SUDDEN DESTRUCTION” shall fall upon the world. There is nothing in this text about escaping from a seven year tribulation period by means of a secret rapture before that period.

Those who are truly devoted to Christ shall escape all these things — the neglect, the over indulgence in eating and drinking — and “having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2 Peter 1:4 ), here and now, they shall also escape that fiery sudden destruction which shall bring an end to this age.




++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Zechariah 12:3,9:
And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people; And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Disclaimer: Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum, ( http://www.rapturebibleprophecyforum.com ) does not necessarily endorse or agree with every opinion expressed in every article posted on this site. We do however, encourage a healthy and friendly debate on the issues of our day. Whether you agree or disagree, we encourage you to post your feedback by using the reply button.

If you are new to this site and would like to post articles, opinions, youtube videos that are appropriate for this site just e mail me at

stevensandiego@ymail.com
I will send you a PASSWORD

Ybic
Steven


Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve

For Fair Use Discussion and Educational Purposes
Link: http://www.the-highway.com/rapture_Woodrow5.html
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Will Christ Return “At Any Moment”?


Did the early Christians believe that the rapture could occur at any moment? Or did they believe that there were certain things that would be fulfilled first?

We believe there is conclusive proof in the New Testament that the early church did NOT hold the “any moment” teaching. Jesus pointed out that no man knows the time of his return and that we should live a life of watchfulness and obedience at all times (Mt. 24:36, 42-51, etc.). However, Jesus himself taught that certain definite things would happen first.

When Jesus told his disciples of the Second Coming, he was still with them in person. It is evident that the ascension had to precede the return. And before his ascension, of course, Calvary had to have its fulfillment. Jesus likened his Second Coming to lightning and said: “But first must he suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation” (Lk. 17:2 5 ).

Jesus told his disciples that after his ascension, he would send the Holy Spirit. They would be endued with spiritual power to be witnesses unto him (Acts 1:8 ) . These things were to take place before Christ would come again. Thus, prior to Pentecost, we see the disciples awaiting, not the coming of Christ (in his Second Advent), but the coming of the Holy Spirit — even as Jesus had promised.

Then being filled with the power of the Holy Spirit, the disciples were to go into all the world and teach all nations (Mt. 28:19, 20; Mk. 16:15; Acts 1:8 ). Time had to be allowed for travel, preaching, baptizing, instructing converts, etc. Surely Christ was not going to return before they would even have time to get properly started on what he had commissioned them to do!

Jesus predicted the destruction of Jerusalem and told his disciples: “When ye see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. Then let them which are in Judea flee to the mountains” (Lk. 20:21). At the Second Coming, there will be no need for Christians to flee into the mountains, for they shall be caught up to meet the Lord in the air The destruction of Jerusalem, then, was to be an event which would take place before the Second Coming of Christ. Living on this side of the fulfillment, we know that Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 A. D.

Jesus also explained that Peter would grow old and die — BEFORE the Second Coming! In speaking to Peter, Jesus said: “When thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not. This spake he, signifying by what death he would glorify God” (John 21:18,19; see also 2 Peter 1:14 ). According to this, though the time of the Second Coming was unknown, it was definitely implied that it would not take place before Peter’s death.

Then Peter asked a question about John. He wondered if John would live to see the day of Christ’s return. Jesus replied: “If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me. Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple [John] should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?” (John 21:20-23 ).

Concerning John, Jesus simply did not reveal whether he would or would not live until the Second Coming — though a rumor spread that he would live to see that day. But concerning Peter, it was definitely stated that he would grow old and die — and that he would not live to see the Second Coming of Christ.

We believe the early Christians lived in an expectation and hope of the Second Coming; for, whether alive at that time, or because of the resurrection, they knew they would all ultimately share in the glory of that day! But they did not believe in the any moment theory; they knew certain things would happen first.

Even more positive evidence of this fact is found in Paul’s writing to the Thessalonians. In his first epistle he had explained to them about the resurrection and the catching up of believers to meet the Lord in the air (1 Thess. 4:16, 17 ). Later, some confusion had apparently developed in the minds of the people concerning this glorious event, so Paul wrote his second epistle to them in which he clarified the matter. In his remarks, he clearly rejected the any-moment theory.

“Now we beseech you, brethren, by [concerning] the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by [concerning] our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition” (2 Thess. 2:1-3).

Here, then, is the mention of two things Christians would witness BEFORE the day of Christ’s coming to gather believers unto himself. There would be a falling away and the man of sin would be revealed. Concerning these very things, the inspired apostle said: “Let no man deceive you”! Let us beware, then, of a teaching which says the church will be raptured to heaven BEFORE the man of sin is revealed, for such is the EXACT OPPOSITE of what Paul taught!

According to Paul, the order of events would be 1 ) a falling away, (2 ) the man of sin would be revealed, and (3 ) the coming of Christ and our gathering together unto him. It is plain. But according to the any moment theory, instead of these events being in this order, they would have to be 3, then 1, and then 2! That is, (3 ) the coming of Christ and our gathering together unto him, (1 ) a falling away, and (2) the man of sin revealed: 3,1,2, or perhaps 3, 2, 1, instead of 1, 2, 3!

Bible students generally link the “man of sin” in one way or another with the beast of Revelation 13. Dispensationalists claim that when the “beast” takes over, the church will have already been raptured. But this is not what the Bible says. According to the scriptures, the beast would make war with the saints: “And it was given unto him to make war with the SAINTS, and to overcome them . . .” (Rev. 13:7 ). The beast could not make war with the saints and overcome them if they had all been taken to heaven before the beast comes to power!

Paul knew that the man of sin would be destroyed by the brightness of Christ’s coming (2 Thess. 1:7,8; 2:8 ) ; therefore he knew that the man of sin would have to come to power BEFORE the Second Coming of Christ.

Being “troubled” with “persecutions and tribulations”, the Thessalonian believers wondered if the day of Christ was not right “at hand” (2 Thess. 1-2). If Paul had believed in the any moment theory, here was his perfect opportunity to encourage them with the teaching that the day of Christ was possibly right at hand! He might have said something like this: “Now we beseech you, brethren, concerning the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together unto him, that ye be not soon shaken in mind, for nothing needs to happen first. That day shall come before the falling away and before the man of sin is revealed. Yes, our gathering together unto him could happen at any moment!”

But to the contrary, this was NOT his answer. Instead, he explained that the day of the Lord’s coming, the day of Christ, when they would be “gathered” unto him, would NOT take place until there would be a falling away first, and the man of sin would be revealed! This is just the opposite of the any-moment theory.

There can be no mistake that the day of Christ refers to the rapture, for it is used in reference to “our gathering together unto him” (2 Thess. 2). Christians are “waiting” for the “day of the Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 1:8,9). It is “in the day of the Lord Jesus” that they will be gathered and “rejoice” at seeing each other (2 Cor. 1:14). The “good work” begun in Christians must continue “until the day of the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:6). Paul exhorted the Philippian believers to be “sincere and without offence” until “the day of Christ” (verse 10) and mentioned that when he would see them “in the day of Christ”, he would “rejoice”, knowing that his labour had not been in vain (2:16). All of these verses plainly show that the “day of Christ” is the time when believers are gathered to meet Christ. And the same inspired apostle that wrote these things tells us that “the day of Christ” will not come except first the “man of sin be revealed” (2 Thess. 2:1-3).

This conclusion is so obvious that those who hold the any moment teaching try to make the “day of Christ” (in 2 Thess. 2:2) refer to something else! Scofield, for example, says that the authorised version “has ‘day of Christ’, 2 Thess. 2:2, incorrectly, for ‘day of the Lord’.”1 Another dispensational writer says that the day of Christ according to the Greek is really “the day of the Lord” in this passage.2 But a look at Strong’s Concordance reveals that the word translated “Christ” in this verse is “Christos” (number 5547 in Strong’s). This word is used over 500 times in the New Testament and is translated CHRIST! (The Greek word that is translated “Lord” in the New Testament is a different word altogether, number 2962 in Strong’s.) “Day of Christ”, then, is a correct translation

But what if it did say “the day of the Lord”? What difference would this make? We use the expression “the coming of the Lord” when referring to “the coming of Christ.” Why, then, should some try to make the New Testament expression “the day of the Lord” mean something different than “the day of Christ”?

The following terms are all used interchangeably in the New Testament in reference to the Lord’s coming to gather believers:

“The day of Christ” (Phil. 1:10 ).

“The day of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:6 ).

“The day of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 1:8 ).

“The day of the Lord Jesus” (2 Cor. 1:14 ).

“The day of the Lord” (1 Thess. 5:2 ).

We think it is very inconsistent to try to make the last expression mean a different “Lord” or a different time than the other terms describe. The day of the Lord is the day of Christ. And according to Paul, the “day of Christ” — when believers will be gathered unto him — will not come until AFTER the man of sin has been revealed!




++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Zechariah 12:3,9:
And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people; And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Disclaimer: Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum, ( http://www.rapturebibleprophecyforum.com ) does not necessarily endorse or agree with every opinion expressed in every article posted on this site. We do however, encourage a healthy and friendly debate on the issues of our day. Whether you agree or disagree, we encourage you to post your feedback by using the reply button.

If you are new to this site and would like to post articles, opinions, youtube videos that are appropriate for this site just e mail me at

stevensandiego@ymail.com
I will send you a PASSWORD

Ybic
Steven


Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve

For Fair Use Discussion and Educational Purposes
Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vh1HoapWl5w
Note: Before commenting on any posts please make sure you either watch or read each post in it’s entirety.

Thank you for visiting Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum!

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Please remember:

I post a lot of different articles, videos and commentaries in order to encourage, edify and exhort you to read your own bible and pray for the Holy Spirit to teach you all things.

Pray that you are not deceived in these last days as many will follow false doctrines in the last days.

Remember:
The bible is the inerrant WORD of God.
Yahusha is God's Son (Yahusha is God )
The Holy Spirit will teach you all things
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

I am a follower of Jesus Christ / Yahusha ONLY

I do not belong to any denomination

=======================================================

This site is having technical issues ( developer problems and working on correcting these issues ) showing videos on this site so until the problems are resolved please click on the url link to view the videos.


The Rapture and the Deception Part 1
Youtube video link
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vh1HoapWl5w


The Rapture and the Deception Part 2

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szrB2WMTa0k





++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Zechariah 12:3,9:
And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people; And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Disclaimer: Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum, ( http://www.rapturebibleprophecyforum.com ) does not necessarily endorse or agree with every opinion expressed in every article posted on this site. We do however, encourage a healthy and friendly debate on the issues of our day. Whether you agree or disagree, we encourage you to post your feedback by using the reply button.

If you are new to this site and would like to post articles, opinions, youtube videos that are appropriate for this site just e mail me at

stevensandiego@ymail.com
I will send you a PASSWORD

Ybic
Steven



Re: +The Rapture:Do the scriptures teach that the rapture will be a secret, invisible, and quiet eve

For Fair Use Discussion and Educational Purposes
Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_jym5RGFXog&t=3304s
Note: Before commenting on any posts please make sure you either watch or read each post in it’s entirety.

Thank you for visiting Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum!

Please add us to your favorites!
http://www.rapturebibleprophecyforum.com
Our Facebook page is :
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rapture-Bible-Prophecy-Forum/362856490414697
Please LIKE our Facebook page! Facebook is growing daily!




Please remember:

I post a lot of different articles, videos and commentaries in order to encourage, edify and exhort you to read your own bible and pray for the Holy Spirit to teach you all things.

Pray that you are not deceived in these last days as many will follow false doctrines.
Remember:
The bible is the inerrant WORD of God.
Yahusha is God's Son (Yahusha is God )
The Holy Spirit will teach you all things
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

I am a follower of Jesus Christ / Yahusha ONLY

I do not belong to any denomination

=======================================================



SAN DIEGO PASTOR EXPOSES THE VATICAN CHURCH AND THE PRE TRIBULATION RAPURE LIES

CLASSIC COMPARET SHOW 57 THE RAPTURE OF THE CHURCH

PLEASE CLICK ON THE LINK TO THE URL IF THE VIDEO DOES NOT PLAY

Youtube video link
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_jym5RGFXog&t=3304s





++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Zechariah 12:3,9:
And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people; And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Disclaimer: Rapture Bible Prophecy Forum, ( http://www.rapturebibleprophecyforum.com ) does not necessarily endorse or agree with every opinion expressed in every article posted on this site. We do however, encourage a healthy and friendly debate on the issues of our day. Whether you agree or disagree, we encourage you to post your feedback by using the reply button.

If you are new to this site and would like to post articles, opinions, youtube videos that are appropriate for this site just e mail me at

stevensandiego@ymail.com
I will send you a PASSWORD

Ybic
Steven