The Rapture Debate: Missing the Point
This video is an attempt to show what all the major Rapture theories have in agreement, and that the debate should focus not on when Jesus returns but when the Wrath of God begins. Please stick to this specific point if you comment. Any comments aimed at what must be wrong with people who disagree with you will be deleted. This applies to Christians and non-Christians alike.
What is the Rapture? See 1 Cor. 15:42-52, 1 Thes. 4:13-5:11, 2 Thes. 2:1-12.
1. Jesus descends from heaven to the sky (not to the earth)
2. Shout of the archangel
3. Trumpet call of God
4. Dead in Christ raised in immortal bodies
5. Living in Christ instantly transformed from mortal to immortal
6. Both groups snatched away up into the clouds to meet Jesus
7. Jesus takes us to his Father's house (John 14:2-3)
NONE of the Rapture theories teach that being taken in the Rapture is due to any factor except belonging to Jesus; it does not hinge on how mature our faith may be or how well we may have lived, such that some Christians are taken while other Christians are left behind. Also, the words typically translated 'saints' are used for the righteous even before the church began, and the same holds true after the church is completed (Rom. 11:25, Acts 15:16). So when we see 'saints' in Revelation we should not assume they're part of the church. Also contrast Mat. 16:18 ("the gates of hell will not prevail against my church") with Rev. 13:7 (the Beast wages war against saints and conquers them).
NONE of the Rapture theories teach that we escape the normal trials and suffering of life, since this has been part of Christianity throughout its existence.
ALL Rapture theories presume that there is a 7-year Tribulation distinct from the general tribulation (means "trouble, hardship, persecution") of life.
ALL major Rapture theories (pre-trib, mid-trib, post-trib, pre-wrath) believe the church escapes the Wrath of God (1 Thes. 1:10, 5:9, Rev. 3:10):
* not all wrath or tribulation is from God
* not all references to "the wrath of God" refer to the end times (Rom. 1:18, 1 Thes. 2:16)
* but some do (Rom. 2:5, Col. 3:6)
* Wrath of God and Lamb: Rev. 6:16, 14:10,19, 15:7, 16:1,19, 19:15
ALL Rapture theory dispute hinges on when the Wrath of God begins:
* earliest is 1st Seal since the Lamb causes the events and the Lamb is God
* latest is the 6th Seal ("wrath of Lamb and the One sitting on the throne"; Rev. 6:12-17)
-- Daniel's 70th Week (Dan. 9:24-27) matches Revelation; midpoint = A of D (Dan. 9:27)
-- this happens at the 7th trumpet (Rev. 11:15, 13:5-8)
-- mark of beast also at this point; Rev. 13:11-18
-- note references to 3.5 prophetic years (360 days each) in Rev. 11:2-3, 12:6,14, 13:5
Given all that the various Rapture theories have in common, why is it that only one of them is attacked by all the others, that being the pre-trib view? There is nothing more dangerous or heretical about that one than the others, since they all have the church escaping the Wrath of God. Should one Christian condemn another over their opinions on when that Wrath begins?
The Rapture is a unique teaching concerning the church; it is NOT taught in the Old Testament because the church is not revealed in the Old Testament; see 1 Cor. 2:7, Eph. 3:6,9, Col. 1:26. And everything Jesus said in the Gospels was said before the church existed, and he specified that he came to Israel first (Mat. 15:24). Like Daniel's prophecy which Jesus cited, his teachings were primarily and almost exclusively to the Hebrew people, so Mat. 24 is all about Israel, not the church, and thus not the Rapture. (If there is any reference to the Rapture in the OT, besides the individual "snatchings" of Enoch and Elijah, it is in Isaiah 26:19-21.)
Ask yourself why there's any debate about the Rapture at all, and why so many people hate the very idea of Jesus suddenly coming to snatch his people out of the world before the Wrath of God comes upon the world. Why is this teaching so offensive, and why do even atheists take sides on this Christian dispute? Jesus said he'd return when he's not expected, after a long delay. Why would anyone hate this idea?
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1 month, 2 weeks ago