THE POST-TRIBULATION RAPTURE
'More Than Dreams'.
A devotional/exhortational study on the end-time drama.
By Gavin Finley MD - endtimepilgrim.org
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WHAT IS THE RAPTURE?
IS IT IN THE BIBLE?
Does the Bible speak of this Rapture? Well, not using that specific word. The word "Rapture" is not in any of our English Bibles. It is, in fact, a word from the Latin, the language of Rome. The word "rapture" appears in an early Latin translation, the Latin Vulgate. The Greek word from the original Greek text is 'harpazo' and this word is found in 1Thes. 4:17.
16b ".... the dead in Christ will rise first,
17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up/harpazo
together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:
and so shall we ever be with the Lord." - 1Thes. 4:16-17
The word Harpazo means “to raise up from the ground or snatch away eagerly for oneself.”
This is precisely what our Messiah will be doing at the end of the age.
So our passage in 1Thes. 4:16b-17 could be rendered,
16b ".... the dead in Christ will rise first,
17 "Then we who are alive and remain shall be snatched up from the ground
together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:
and so shall we ever be with the Lord." - 1Thes. 4:17
BEHOLD, . . . PAY ATTENTION!
I SHOW YOU A MYSTERY!
Our Apostle Paul addresses the glorification of the saints in a second key passage.
He brings us some valuable further details it in that inspiring Resurrection chapter, 1Corinthians 15.
He speaks of our being "changed, ... in the twinkling of an eye, ... at the last trumpet"1 Corinthians 15:51-52 (KJV)
51Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
52In 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.
He also speaks of our mortal bodies "putting on immortality". (See 1Cor.15:53)
All this is a great and wonderful mystery not yet seen.
But it will surely come to pass at the Second Coming of Christ in the latter days.
So at His return the Lord will be eagerly claiming His Elect for Himself. This "harpazo" - snatching away with great eagerness by Messiah involves both the living and the dead. So while the Latin word "Rapture" doesn’t appear in our Bibles, the event it describes certainly does. Our Pre-Millennialist Bible prophecy teachers have elected to use the Latin word "Rapture" for this which is fine as far as it goes. It is a very good word to describe a mystery not yet seen but an epic event that will most surely unfold at a future certain time.
ZAC POONEN is a faithful Bible teacher diligent in the Holy Scriptures.
He is well known throughout the British Commonwealth countries.
ROB CARTLEDGE brings a clear and Biblically correct case for the post-tribulation
Resurrection-Rapture along with an interesting historical perspective on the pre-trib
rapture doctrine, its origins, and how it is not in keeping with the character of our God.
WHEN IS THE RAPTURE?
IS IT A PRE-TRIBULATION RAPTURE?
OR IS IT A POST-TRIBULATION RAPTURE?
Among evangelicals in the West the question comes up.
"When is the Rapture?"
"Will it be a Pre-Tribulation Rapture?
Or will it be a Post-Tribulation Rapture?"
For an excellent overview on the historic
Post-Tribulation Resurrection-Rapture view
see THIS ARTICLE at ANSWERS.COM
For the vast majority of Bible believing evangelicals the Pre-Tribulation Rapture is the doctrine that is their belief at this time. Only about 5% of Bible believing Christians believe that there will be a Post-Tribulation Rapture. There is no surprise as to why this is so. Throughout North America the Pre-Tribulation Rapture is what the Christians in the pews and watching Christian television are exposed to. This is what they being entrained in and taught. It is the one they have heard repeatedly. It is also the one that most nominal, or middle of the road, evangelical Christians like. And so for most it is the one they choose to believe.
This fact is sad, but true. Few who call themselves Bible believing Christians actually read and study the Bible for themselves and for their family. Indeed, most Christians believe what others around them believe and what they are told to believe by their churchmen. This ecclesiastical collective is not necessarily bad in itself. The Gr. "koinonia", the "fellowship of believers", is a wonderful God-given treasure shining brightly inside the Congregation of Messiah. But the fellowship can be infiltrated. It can be hijacked by the powers of darkness. The fellowship of believers can be mislead by cultic doctrine in place of God's Holy Word. It can be corrupted by strange fire in place of God's Holy Spirit. And it can be lorded over by Nicolaitan church leaders who stand like trolls in the Way and enthrone themselves in the place of the indwelling Christ. Jesus warned us about this great Nicolaitan Church evil in His letters to the seven churches. See Revelation 2:15&16.
We need to be given a "heads up" here. Every Christian believer will stand before Christ on That Day. See 2Corinthians 5:10. We shall all be asked to stand before the Ancient of Days and give an account of what we did with the Biblical information that was available to us during our lifetime. We shall stand before Him alone. No churchman will be by our side to cover us on That Day. We have only One Advocate and one Mediator with the Father. His name is Jesus Christ. May God help all of us to take personal responsibility here. By God's grace we shall bring the true and faithful witness. We shall testify for God's glory, for ourselves, for our family, and for all the ones to whom we are destined to bring our witness and testimony.
So let us get right down to it. Does the Bible tell us specifically when this "Rapture", this "catching away" of the living saints will occur? No it does not. But the Rapture does happen to be time linked to a major accompanying end-time event. That critically important accompanying event happens to be the Resurrection of the righteous dead. And the timing of that event is very well known. It is well pegged in Holy Scripture in the time-line of the latter days.
NOT JUST A RAPTURE. . . .
BUT A COMBINED RESURRECTION-RAPTURE.
So when we look into the prophetic Word of God and those scriptures we laid out above in 1Thes. 4:15-17 and 1Cor. 15:51-52 we see that the Rapture is tightly bundled up with the Resurrection. This combined "end of age" event is the Resurrection-Rapture, and this is what it should be called. The two are part of a single whole, namely, the end-of-age harvest. This involves the glorification of the entire company of faith, the single Elect from both sides of Calvary. In one single awesome day, in the twinkling of an eye, this great (harpazo/snatch) will occur. At that moment the dead are Resurrected and the living are Raptured All of the chosen enter into the glory together at the same time. Our Apostle Paul gives us the sequence in very clear and unmistakeable terms. He tells us that the Resurrection of the righteous dead immediately precedes the Rapture of the living.
So here is something that is almost never spoken about in evangelical circles. The Second Coming will see the single Elect gathered as a combined Resurrection-Rapture. Our Apostle Paul states very clearly and unmistakably that these two companies of saints, the living and the dead in Christ, are glorified together! The Resurrection and the Rapture are cemented and padlocked together. Those scriptures are here in 1Thessalonians 4:15,16&17 and in 1Corinthians 15:51,52,&53.
As we have seen the Bible clearly shows us that the "harpazo/snatch" is a combined Resurrection-Rapture. And so once the timing of the Resurrection has been determined that time slot will also be the timing of the Rapture. The Rapture, which immediately follows the Resurrection, can be placed very accurately on our time-line of the final seven years of this age, (the future 70th Week of Daniel).
WHEN IS THE RESURRECTION OF THE RIGHTEOUS DEAD?
So when will the graves open? And when will the sea give up the righteous dead? Our Savior tells us quite clearly. He does not mince words on the matter. Nor does He play a shell game and shuffle off the Resurrection event into a theological no man's land. Man does that. Not God. The future Resurrection of the Body of Christ will be a discrete miraculous event. It will be a miracle of epic proportions and unfold on a single day and hour in the same way the past resurrection of Christ our sacred Head occurred. It will be an epic divine act of God that will occur in a moment and on a special future day in world history.
And when shall we see the Resurrection of the righteous dead? Four times in John 6 Jesus tells us when this First Resurrection will occur. Four times Jesus declares that this glorification of the righteous dead, this Resurrection of the Body of Christ, this raising up of "those who are in Christ", would come at the "last day".
JESUS HIMSELF TELLS US WHEN HE WILL RESURRECT HIS SAINTS.
THE RESURRECTION WILL OCCUR AFTER THE 70TH WEEK ENDS.
HE TELLS US FOUR TIMES IN JOHN CHAPTER 6 THAT HE WILL
"RAISE UP" OR RESURRECT HIS COVENANT PEOPLE AT THE 'LAST DAY'.
Jesus Himself tells us plainly when He will be raising up His precious saints from the grave.
Four times in John 6 Jesus states categorically that He will "raise" His people "up" at the "last day".
So this glorious Resurrection of those that are Christ's will occur at the "last day".
"This is the will of the Father who sent Me,
that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing,
but should raise it up at the last day."
John 6:40 "And this is the will of Him who sent Me,
that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life;
and I will raise him up at the last day.""
John 6:44 "No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him;
and I will raise him up at the last day."
John 6:54 "Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life,
and I will raise him up at the last day."
Is our Lord Jesus trying to get a message to us here? If He saw fit to tell us four times in the one message that He will raise His people up at the "last day" then His Word on the matter should be final. And who would dare tamper with the message the Holy Spirit has so clearly laid out for us in the Holy Scriptures? Jesus tells us that the Resurrection of the righteous dead will occur at the 'last day". Therefore it must come at the end of the 7 year period at the tail end of Daniel's 70th week. And therefore the Resurrection must be a Post-Tribulation event. It must come after the Great Tribulation.
MARTHA, SISTER OF LAZARUS, WAS A SAINT FROM A FORMER ERA.
SHE KNEW THE TIMING OF THE RESURRECTION.
Here is some further evidence of the Resurrection of the righteous dead coming at the very end of the age. Martha left her kitchen to come out and get in Jesus' face over the death of her brother Lazarus. At that time she made a strong confession of her faith. She spoke of the sure hope of the Resurrection. And in her statement Martha also spoke in very specific terms of the timing of the Resurrection.
Here is Martha's word on the matter and her magnificent confession of the blessed hope of the glorification of the saints at the resurrection. This account is recorded by the Apostle John. As we see here in this scripture below, Martha knew very well when this end-time Resurrection of the righteous dead would occur.
Martha said to Him,
"I know that he will rise again
in the Resurrection
at the last day."
This seems pretty plain and straightforward doesn't it?
All these scriptures and Revelation 20:4-6 are in total agreement.
The Resurrection will come at the last day of this age.
The Old Testament saints, unlike many of us evangelicals today, had a very good handle on the Resurrection of the righteous dead. The testimony of the patriarchs and Daniel bear witness to this. They knew when this Resurrection of the righteous would occur. Job, in the midst of his sufferings brought this magnificent testimony.
Job 19 (KJV-NKJV)
25 For I know that my Redeemer lives,
and that He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
26 And though after my skin worms destroy this body,
yet in my flesh shall I see God:
Job declared that his Redeemer was alive. And in the latter day He would come to stand upon this earth as Messiah and raise him up from death. He also declared that even after worms had burrowed down beneath his skin to destroy his mortal body one day he would rise from the grave to be Resurrected to life in his own new immortal body. Then he would see his God face to face.
THE RESURRECTION OF THE RIGHTEOUS DEAD IS THE KEY
BECAUSE THE RAPTURE WILL BE COMING IMMEDIATELY AFTERWARDS.
And now we know the "rest of the story".
The Resurrection of the righteous dead will be an epic singular future event.
The Resurrection of the dead in Christ will explode into Holy History.
Christ will raise His people up at His coming, on the "last day" of this present evil age.
. . . . . . . And so will the Rapture.
When the Bible speaks in 1Cor. 15 of the Resurrection of those who are Christ's at His coming we are talking here about a specific point in time, a certain future day, hour, minute, and split second. This will be a blockbuster event in the history of this world! The graves will open up! The sea will give up its righteous dead. Dear saints, this will be a real event! And it will happen on a real and specific future day in history. Oh yes, this will all come down "in a twinkling of an eye."
And where in the latter days might "that day" be placed on our timeline of the final seven years? As we have seen, Four times Jesus tells us precisely when He will "raise" His people "up". He says that He will raise His people up at the "last day".
There is nothing vague and imprecise here.
We are not talking of the "last days."
Jesus told us it would be the LAST DAY.
Beware of those Bible teachers who would obfuscate the truth and try to say that the "last day" is a general reference to "the last days". thereby denying this is a discrete blockbuster future 24 hour day in time. Do not let anyone stretch out the "last day" like a piece of soft gooey taffy and thereby twist and destroy the Message This is God's Holy Word! And God's covenant people need the true and correct information concerning this very important matter of the last day.
So we know from 1Thes. 4:15-17 and 1Cor. 15:51 that the Rapture of the living is Biblically welded to the Resurrection of the righteous dead under the saving blood of Christ.
So if the Resurrection comes at the last day of this age then we can say this with 100% assurance.
The Rapture is bundled in with the Resurrection as a single "harpazo" event that will flash into history "in a twinkling of an eye".. And the Rapture, tied in with the Resurrection of the righteous dead will come at the "last day" of this age.
THE OLIVET DISCOURSE AND JESUS SPEAKS VERY SPECIFICALLY
CONCERNING THE END-TIME REGATHERING OF ALL THE SAINTS AND
THE GLORIFICATION OF A SINGLE UNDIVIDED ELECT.
Are there other places in Holy Scripture that tell us plainly when Messiah will return to gather and to glorify His saints? Yes, there are many of them. For example, in Matthew 24:29,30,31 Jesus tells us when He will gather His Elect. He lays it out clearly for us in the Olivet Discourse. He said,
"Immediately after the tribulation of those days(Mat.24:31)
the sun will turn to darkness and the moon to blood."
And then He goes on to describe a time when the stars will fall from heaven. This awesome event involving major cosmic and atmospheric disturbances will herald the SIGN, (singular), of His coming. Remember, the disciples specifically asked Him about this SIGN (singular). And in the following verse, Mat. 24:30 He answered their question!
"And then shall appear THE SIGN of the Son of Man in heaven.(Mat.24:30)
and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn,
and they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven
with power and great glory. "
And Christ will gather His Elect from the four winds of space-time.
Oh yes, the tribulation comes first. Then "immediately after the tribulation of those days" or we might say, "immediately post-tribulation the sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood." So After the Great Tribulation is terminated by Messiah come the cosmic disturbances of the 6th seal with the sun turning black as sackcloth and the moon to blood. Then the "SIGN" of the Son of man will be seen in the heavens.
We have no idea what this SIGN will be. But it will be unmistakable to all those who are alive on earth at that time and witness this spellbinding event. This SIGN in the heavens, (singular), will herald the coming of Messiah. The cosmic signs of the 6th seal, when they occur and what will be happening is described in this YouTube video.
A KEY TIME MARKER IS THE EPIC COSMIC SIGN INVOLVING THE SUN, MOON, AND STARS. JESUS SAYS THESE COSMIC DISTURBANCES OF THE 6TH SEAL COME AFTER THE TRIBULATION. THEN JESUS SAYS THAT HIS SIGN WILL BE SEEN IN THE HEAVENS AND THERE WILL BE GREAT MOURNING. PEOPLE WILL MOURN AND LAMENT OVER HIS COMING AND THE GREAT SALVATION THAT THEY NEGLECTED. AFTER THIS HE WILL SEND FORTH THE HARVEST ANGELS TO GATHER HIS ELECT.
A key end-time marker for us is the the sun turning to darkness, the moon to blood, and the stars falling, the latter of which may be a meteor shower of spectacular proportions. Spiritually we know that this this time period, after having seen the Antichrist and the False Prophet thrown into the Lake of Fire will see the casting down of the angelic rulers who currently have dominion over the principalities and powers of this fallen cosmos. These stars will fall!
This epic climactic cosmic event involving the sun, moon, and stars is associated in Revelation 6:12,13 with the 6th seal. This epic latter day atmospheric or cosmic disturbance is spoken of in many places in Holy Scripture. Let us take a look at what Jesus tells us in the Olivet Discourse. Here below is Matthew's account from Matthew 24:29,30,31.
MATTHEW 24 - JESUS SAYS THAT AFTER THE TRIBULATION ENDS THE COSMIC SIGNS OF THE 6TH SEAL WILL BE SEEN.
29 Immediately AFTER THE TRIBULATION of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
6th SEAL COSMIC
30 And then shall appear THE SIGN of the Son of man in heaven:
and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn,
and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet,
and they shall gather together his (single undivided) Elect from the four winds,
from one end of heaven to the other.
THE PROPHET JOEL BRINGS FURTHER INFORMATION SAYING THAT THESE SAME
COSMIC DISTURBANCES OF THE SUN TURNING TO DARKNESS AND THE MOON TO BLOOD
COME BEFORE THE OPENING OF THE GREAT AND TERRIBLE DAY OF THE LORD.
Putting the jigsaw puzzle pieces together in careful Berean fashion we see the connection of the cosmic signs Jesus spoke about in Mat. 24:29 with the very same 6th seal cosmic signs spoken of by the prophet Joel in Joel 2:30,31,32. God speaks through Joel to tell us that the very same cosmic disturbances of the 6th seal precede and herald the rolling back of the heavens, the unzipping of space-time, and the opening of the Day of the Lord to execute the Judgment.
So with these cosmic disturbances of the 6th seal with the sun turning to darkness and the moon to blood we are looking at some awesome events that will occur as a prelude to the end-time harvest. Remember from what Jesus told us in the Parable of the Wheat and the Tares in Matthew 13:30 that the end-time harvest of the wicked and the harvest of the righteous are both involved here and the plucking up of the wicked comes first. Then, on a day and hour unknown, inside the Day of the Lord we can expect to see the glorification of the saints, the "blessed hope", that great yet to be seen mystery, the Resurrection-Rapture in which Jesus gathers His single undivided Elect.
JOEL 2 - AND AGAIN WE SEE THE LATE COSMIC SIGNS OF THE 6TH SEAL.
31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood,
BEFORE the great and terrible day of the LORD come.
6th SEAL COSMIC
THEN COMES THE
OPENING OF THE
DAY OF THE LORD
AND LOOK!! PEOPLE ARE BEING SAVED RIGHT UP TO THE VERY END OF THE AGE!
32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be saved/delivered:
for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.
DO OUR POPULAR BIBLE PROPHECY TEACHERS EVER SPEAK OF THIS?
HERE WE SEE THAT PEOPLE ARE BEING SAVED EVEN AFTER THE TRIBULATION!
Yes, there is no doubt about it. People are being saved right up to the very end of the age. And is this not when Our Commission as born again believers expires? Check the wording on the document. Consult a lawyer if necessary. Do our popular Bible prophecy teachers ever speak of this wondrous period of God's grace extending beyond the Great Tribulation? The Word of God is here in black and white, telling us the "rest of the story". The SIGN of the Son of Man is seen in the heavens. And then throughout the 6th seal Messiah is pleading with the nations and pleading with men to repent and be saved. As we shall see, this goes on for 30 days after He has terminated the Antichrist with the brightness of His coming and Messiah has ended the Great Tribulation.
FROM DANIEL 12:11 WE ARE TOLD THAT AFTER 1290 DAYS COMES "THE END".
SO WE CAN SURMISE THAT GOD IS PLEADING WITH THE NATIONS FROM DAY 1260
THROUGH TO DAY 1290, A THIRTY DAY GRACE PERIOD IF YOU WILL.
From Dan. 12:11 we hear mention of 1290 days. "Then comes the end". So we can say with good assurance that the days of the cosmic disturbances of the 6th seal roll on for thirty days with the sun black as sackcloth and the moon as blood. Spectacular meteor showers will probably occur in this time period as well with the stars and heavenly principalities being cast down in Judgment. What can we say about this? Surely this must be a thirty day Grace period for mankind to consider their options. The thirty days extend from day 1260 when the Great Tribulation ends to finish up on day 1290 and Judgment Day, Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. See the graphic below. Click on the image to go to the article on the Fall Feasts of Israel.
Yes, it seems that right up to "the end" of the age people are being saved. What a merciful God we serve! How patient He is with wayward mankind. Truly, He is "not willing that any should perish" and go to a lost eternity.
THE GREAT 'HARPAZO' SNATCH IS THE RESURRECTION-RAPTURE OF GOD'S ELECT, THE LIVING AND THE DEAD, FROM BOTH SIDES OF CALVARY. IT IS AN EXECUTION OF A PRECEDING LEGAL JUDGMENT THAT MUST HAVE OCCURRED BEFORE THIS. THAT FINAL JUDGMENT COMES ON THE ULTIMATE CLIMACTIC DAY OF ATONEMENT AT THE LAST DAY OF THIS AGE. THE EXECUTION OF GOD'S WRATH UPON THE WICKED AND THE GLORIFICATION OF THE SAINTS IN THE RESURRECTION-RAPTURE IS THE ENSUING EXECUTION THAT ENSUES FROM THAT JUDGMENT. SO THE RESURRECTION-RAPTURE CANNOT COME BEFORE JUDGMENT DAY, THE DAY OF ATONEMENT, DAY OF ACCOUNTING, DAY OF RECKONING, DAY OF COVERING, WHICH WE KNOW FROM OUR STUDY OF THE FALL FEASTS OF THE LORD COMES ON THE LAST DAY OF THIS AGE.
Here is another issue. The "harpazo" glorification of the living and the dead in Christ relates to the Seven Feasts of Israel. The Resurrection-Rapture will come on the heels of a special holy day in our future. It is a special high holy day Day of Atonement or Yom Kippur. The future glorification of the saints involves the completed Body of Christ, the entire Commonwealth of Israel. And even though the world and the present day Church does not want to hear about the final Day of Reckoning the return of Messiah in judgment and in deliverance and the glorification of the saints is an execution of the Final Judgment of Christ. So the Resurrection-Rapture, the harpazo snatch of the Elect simply cannot come before the gavel falls on this final Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur, at the "last day".
At sunset on that final wrap-up Day of Atonement at the "last day" the Day of the Lord will open up. The heavens, space-time, will be rolled back to take us into the Day of the Lord. The current principalities and powers fear and dread this day above all others. That is why they want to stop the end-time witness of the saints. They are pulling the strings of their human underlings and trying by every means they can to tell Christians that their final witness, the 5th seal witness of the saints, will not be necessary. They know that if this final witness of the saints goes on as planned it will be curtains for them. The 6th seal will follow and at the Second Coming of Christ the hierarchical angelic rulers will be cast down. When Messiah comes back the whole earthly creation and its ecosystems, will be revamped. The entire cosmos, in heaven and on earth, will come under new and better Ownership.
So the Resurrection-Rapture of 'those who are Christ's' will occur after the Day of Reckoning in the Day of the Lord which immediately follows it.
THE FIRST RESURRECTION OF REVELATION 20 MUST BE LATE.
BECAUSE IT CONTAINS MARTYRS OF THE GREAT TRIBULATION.
AND THIS HARPAZO HARVEST RESURRECTION-RAPTURE OF THE BODY OF CHRIST COMING AT THE END OF THE AGE IS THE ONLY RESURRECTION OF THE RIGHTEOUS THAT THIS AGE WILL SEE. AND BEING THE FIRST RESURRECTION IT WILL FOLLOW ON AS A LEGAL CONSEQUENCE FROM THE FORMER FIRSTFRUITS RESURRECTION OF CHRIST OUR HEAD WHICH OCCURRED 2,000 ODD YEARS AGO. WE MUST CONCLUDE THAT THERE WILL BE A SECOND RESURRECTION AT THE END OF THE MILLENNIAL AGE TO COME AT THE GREAT WHITE THRONE JUDGMENT WHICH WILL INCLUDE THE RESURRECTION OF ALL THE WICKED DEAD.
The raising of the dead by Christ at His coming is a very real future holy event. In Revelation 20, (which is clearly post-tribulational), the Apostle John sees and labels the "first Resurrection". This first Resurrection we see spoken about in Rev. 20:4-6 is certainly embarrassingly late in coming, since it contains tribulation martyrs. But that is no reason for the future glorious First Resurrection of "those who are Christ's" to be treated like a dob of relativistic theological taffy and stretched back to include the resurrection of Christ. The First Resurrection of the righteous dead is a discrete one day event! It should not be some theological thing we tease out and pull all the way back 2,000 years to include the resurrection of Christ as our popular Bible teachers have done. The Resurrection of Christ, our sacred Head, and the Resurrection of the Body of Christ are two separate events in holy history. This is laid out very clearly in 1Cor. 15:22-24. The Resurrection of Jesus, our sacred Head, came 2,000 years ago. Jesus in His resurrection fulfilled the third Hebrew feast, the Feast of Firstfruits. The other Resurrection, the general Harvest Resurrection of the Body of Christ, follows on as a legal consequence from the resurrection of Christ this is true. But this resurrection of the Body of Christ comes in an entirely different time, 2,000 odd years later than the former Firstfruits Resurrection of Christ our Head which came back in the summer of 32 A.D.. The Resurrection of those who are Christ's, the Body of Christ if you will, will come on the heels of the 6th feast, the second of the Fall Feasts of Israel. The "Last Day" of this age will be the ultimate climactic epic fulfillment of the Day of Atonement. This blockbuster future Yom Kippur will be the Day of Covering that will cover all the Yom Kippurs that have gone before it.
Dear saints. The first resurrection we see in Revelation 20 obviously comes at the end of the age. It should never have been spirited away from view and shuffled off into some theological category and filed away with the Resurrection of Jesus 2,000 years ago. But this is precisely how the end-time Resurrection has been mis-treated. The First Resurrection has been obfuscated by our dispensationalist theologians.
This is so sad to have to report. This blessed First Resurrection event which our Apostle Paul tells us will come '...in the twinkling of an eye', has been vaporized into a broad theological "resurrection category".
The Resurrection, that Day when the righteous dead come up out of their graves and the sea gives up its dead should not be a mystery to us. It is a critical part of the blessed hope.
The Resurrection of the righteous dead is yet to come. The End-time Harvest Resurrection of the Body of Christ follows that earlier Resurrection of Christ. Each resurrection is discrete. The resurrection of the Head and the Resurrection of the Body are separate. Each Resurrection comes in its own order. See 1Cor. 15:22-24. Our Apostle Paul explains all this very clearly.
Resurrection Day, the Resurrection of the Body of Christ will be a stupendous future event. If it opens up "in a twinkling of an eye", as we see in 1Cor. 15:51-53 then we must assume that this will unfold in a moment, in a very special "nick of time". This future blockbuster Resurrection of "those who are Christ's" will erupt into holy history at an instant, at a moment in time and during a single day.
We now know that this Resurrection-Rapture will be a late event. It will open up on the Day of the Lord. Heaven and earth will be shaken to its very foundations. On that Day the heavens will roll back as a scroll, space-time will be unzipped and the cosmos will roll back to reveal the coming King of kings. It will be a day like no other. The Resurrection-Rapture will happen on a day and hour that cannot be known. The Resurrection of those who are Christ's will be just as spectacular as the New Covenant fulfillment of the Feast of Firstfuits. This awesome past feast day saw the Resurrection of Christ. He is the Head of the Body of Christ. So His resurrection comes first. This Firstfuits Resurrection of Jesus, celebrated in the spring Feasts is the resurrection and the conquest over death effected buy Jesus our sacred Head. This awesome event occurred 2,000 years ago on the day after the regular seventh day Sabbath of Passover in 32 A.D..
THE RAPTURE IS PART OF THE HARPAZO/GLORIFICATION OF THE SAINTS.
THE END-TIME GATHERING OF THE ELECT INVOLVES THE DEAD AS WELL AS THE LIVING.
THE RIGHTEOUS DEAD ARE RESURRECTED INCLUDING THE TRIBULATION SAINTS.
IT INCORPORATES THE FULL RESTORATION OF ISRAEL AS A NATION AND AS A CONGREGATION/CHURCH.
ALL THIS WILL COME WITH THE RETURN OF MESSIAH.
The Rapture of the living saints at the close of this age is a well established Biblical truth. But this "harpazo" "snatching up from the ground" involves not only the living saints but the dead saints as well. So the Rapture of the living saints being the second part of this magnificent "harpazo" event includes and, (as we shall see), follows the raising of the righteous dead. Our scripture passage above tells us that the living saints will be caught up -"harpazo" along with the saints who have been dead but are now being raised to eternal life. So the Rapture and the Resurrection are both featured in this combined "harpazo" event. So they should be considered and spoken of together just as we see them spoken of together scripturally in 1Thes. 4:16,17. The "harpazo" or "catching away", or "snatching up" of the quick and the dead is the "blessed hope" for all the saints, those who are living at that time and those who have passed on before.
Is the Rapture important? Should Christians think about these things and study the apocalyptic Holy Scriptures? If we open our Bibles it is pretty hard not to. A quarter of the Bible is Bible prophecy. And it is certainly not "irrelevant" or "negative" or "none of our business" as one prominent purpose driven preacher has said. Titus encourages us to speak openly of these things, both exhorting believers in this blessed hope and rebuking the error being wrongly taught in these holy matters, doing so with all authority. See Titus 2:11,12,13,14,&15. So this blockbuster event, a consequence of the Apocalypse/unveiling of Messiah, is important. And as we are beginning to see, the Rapture should really be referred to in a Biblically correct way as the Resurrection-Rapture.
The Olivet Discourse bears witness to this combined Resurrection-Rapture as well. Jesus declared in no uncertain terms that He would return at the grand climax of this age to gather His (single) Elect from the four winds of heaven, from across the wide expanses of space-time. He will be gathering His saints from both sides of Calvary The returning Christ/Messiah will gather all those who are "in Him". A huge Congregation, Nation, and Company of nations will be saved under the blood of Israel's promised Sacrifice Lamb.
So the Rapture involves a much bigger story of regathering than we have been told. Our returning Messiah will be reaching across our theological dispensational barricades as well. He will be gathering the saints of the former times in the Old Testament story. And yes, contrary to what we have been told, He will also be gathering those faithful Tribulation Saints, many of them martyrs as we see in Revelation chapter 7. They cannot and will not be "left behind". See Rev. 7:9. Those blood bought Tribulation Saints have come out of the Great Tribulation and washed their robes white in the blood of the Lamb. See Rev. 7:13. They are also seen by John standing before the throne of God serving Him in His temple and being ministered to by God forever. See Rev. 7:14,15.16.&17.
This is a very strange affair. But many dispensationalist Christians are insistent that these saints do not belong to the church. Really? These dear people of future times have washed their robes white in the blood of the Lamb. Why wouldn't they qualify for Church membership? Is it just because they are not in the dispensationalist time slot assigned to them as belonging to the Church Age? Have these saints been illegally shut out of God's Grace or the Age of Grace by these same dispensationalists? What if these people could get on a time machine and turn up at our present day dispensationalist churches. What if they were presented for church membership at such a church? What would be the verdict? Surely any sane and reasonable Christian would agree that the Tribulation saints certainly qualify for Church membership.
THE AGE OF GRACE AND THE JUDGMENT AT THE LAST DAY.
Dispensationalist lore has placed the "Church Age" and the "Age of Grace" to run up to a point 7 years before the end of the age and come to a sceeching halt. But is this true to the Holy Scriptures? As we read Revelation 7 and Revelation 20:4-6 and Joel 2:28-32 we see that the witness of the saints in the latter days is certainly not wrapped up until we come to the 6th Appointed Time/moed/feast. This is the Judgment at the Last Day, the final wrap-up Day of Atonement, Day of Reconciliation, Day of Accounting, Day of Pardoning, Day of Sentencing, Day of Covering, Yom Kippur,. On this Day, at the end of the final seven years of this age, the gavel of the Ancient of Days will fall and the heavenly court will adjourn. Since the rapture is an execution of the final Judgment there can be no Rapture before this final Judgment Day has been brought to a conclusion. Only after this huge all encompassing legal matter for every person is concluded for this age can the EXECUTION of that Judgment proceed. This execution of Judgment involves the directing the wrath of God on the wicked and the glory of God upon the Elect to bring them up into the Resurrection-Rapture.
So here is a question for Pre-Trib Rapture folk. Can a judgment be executed seven years before the Judge has finished summing up and making a final judgment on the person in question? We are told that we must all appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ. There we shall give an account of ourselves and the things done in our body both good and evil. On that day, the last day of this age, we will either be covered by the blood of the Lamb or we will not be covered. Yom Kippur is the Day of Covering, covering by the atoning blood of Israel's Sacrifice Lamb. Everyone must go up before the Judge of the earth on this, the final Day of Reckoning. Here Christian believers will receive their ultimate pardoning and restoration and be set up with new spiritual bodies for all eternity. Can this Rapture, this glorification in Resurrection or Rapture, this release from earthly bondage and promotion to eternal glory, be carried out seven years before the last day of this age, the day when we are ALL due to appear before the Judge?
The Bible tells us that people will be saved right up until the last day of this present evil age. How do we know that? We know this because of what Jesus and the prophet Joel have told us. Jesus said that after the tribulation will come the late cosmic signs of the 6th seal involving the sun, moon, and stars. Then, after after these post-tribulational cosmic signs He will gather His Elect. The prophet Joel goes on to say that during these same end of age post-tribulation cosmic signs of the 6th seal "whosoever shall call upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved".
Oh yes, we serve a merciful God. The Good News of the Gospel will be preached right up until the very last day of this present evil age. And right up until that time people will be calling upon the Name of the Lord and being saved. Joel reports to us that this will be the very peak of the Holy Spirit outpouring, the same outpouring that began in earnest at Pentecost 2,000 years ago and our Apostle Peter commented on at the time will max out in a blaze of glory right at the end of the age. See Joel 2:28 and Joel 2:31.
THE ANGELIC PRINCIPALITIES AND POWERS SHUDDER AND ARE IN DREAD OF THE END-TIME WITNESS OF THE SAINTS. AT LEAST THEY KNOW THIS IS AN ESSENTIAL PART OF THE STORY! WOULD THAT OUR CHURCHMEN WOULD SEE THE LIGHT AND REALIZE THIS AS WELL. SO UNDERSTANDABLY THE POWERS OF DARKNESS, BOTH ANGELIC AND HUMAN, ARE DOING ALL THEY CAN TO DENY THE REALITY OF THIS END-TIME WITNESS OF THE SAINTS AND THE RESULTANT JUDGMENT THAT WILL ENSUE WITH MESSIAH RETURNING IN GREAT PASSION TO CAST THEM DOWN FROM THE LOWER HEAVEN AND INTO THE THE LAKE OF FIRE.
The reason this information is so contested and obfuscated by evil angels and deceived men is very easy to understand. The angels of darkness dread the final Judgment at the last day. They know that the "final witness" of the saints must come. And when that final witness is wrapped up in the 5th seal the cosmic disturbances of the 6th seal follow and after the SIGN of the Son of Man appears in the heavens Messiah will be loosing them for their final run, to gather up the wicked human beings that belong to them and then they will be dismissed. The evil angelic rulers over the regions of this world also know that when Messiah does come their rule over this fallen cosmos will be terminated. They will go off to the fires of Hell along with the wicked human underlings that they will be plucking up off the earth as tares for the fires. (See Mat. 13:30)
Oh yes, the angels of wrath know the score! They know the importance of the end-time witness of God's Chosen ones. But not our Western churchmen, it seems. The angelic principalities and powers know full well that when the tribulation ends and the final witness of the saints is concluded there will be the return of Messiah and the Judgment. Every single human soul who is alive and all the righteous dead who have ever lived will go up before the Ancient of Days at this final Judgment at the last day. For the wicked, the Day of Atonement will not be a Day of Covering, (Yom Kippur), a Day of Blood Covering for sin. For them, (and all those godless wicked human beings who continue to join them in their rebellion against God), it will be be a Day of Sentencing. And the sentence will be death. That Day will be "curtains" for the angelic principalities and powers. And they know it! That is why they are stirring up the heathen nations and there is all this raging of wicked men and nations as we approach the end of this age.
The 5th seal witness of the covenant people of God is the testimony of the saints to their Jesus. It is the testimony of a Bride to her Bridegroom. It is an essential part of the end-time proceedings under the gavel of the Ancient of Days. The Book of Revelation is in fact a divine court case. The Ancient of Days oversees the end-time events. We need not fear. He is sovereign over all of holy history! And, as Job declared in Job 38:11, He sets the limits on the tumultuous seas, the raging of godless men and nations. He says,
"This far, . . . .
and no further!!!"
THE CRUCIAL ISSUE OF BLOOD COVENANT DEVOTION.
IS THE WESTERN CHURCH A TRUE BRIDE, "SOLD OUT", AND FULLY COMMITTED TO HER BRIDEGROOM?
OR IS SHE AN UNINVOLVED PURCHASED CONCUBINE JUST PLAYING GAMES?
There is no running away from this truth. The Holy Scriptures declare that the testimony of Jesus is the very essence and spirit of prophecy. (See Rev. 19:10.) This is the true and faithful Bridal witness. This is the normal blood covenant commitment that any true and worthy bride knows, and understands implicitly.
So let us now ask this question. Is the Western Church a true Bride of Christ? Or is she an uninvolved concubine, sitting there chewing gum, making up her own face as it is mirrored by this cosmos and passively awaiting a limo to take her to her mansions? Concubines do not bother themselves with any deep relationship with their "significant other". Nor do they respond to the call for their attendance to blood covenant matters here below. This is the Church as a material girl. She is a woman under contract. John saw her in Revelation 17 and 18 and was astounded. He was absolutely flabbergasted at what he saw.
So where do we find the Church as the 'the woman under blood covenant' in the latter days?
We find her in Revelation chapter 12.
So God is in the process of wooing His Bride. He is "calling out" His Church again and again, away from the harlotry, causing church split after church split. He is drawing His Elect ever onward. Occasionally He calls on His covenant people to "Come out of her my people". "Come up higher". Come out of this world. Like our father Abraham we walk away from the city of idolatry and rebellion. We find ourselves drawn into the Tabernacle of God's Presence. Coming in through the Door we behold the brazen altar. There we find salvation as we behold the Sacrifice Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. Our service takes us onwards to the Brazen laver. Here at this much neglected place of washing we find the cleansing and sanctification we all need. At the brazen laver we wash our feet from the unclean places we have journeyed. We wash our hands dirtied from the unholy things we have done. Only then can we go on to worship. Leaving the noisy crowds in the the outer court we enter into the Sanctuary. There we find ourselves and in the holy place. The table with the bread of fellowship with God is there before us. The golden lamp-stand shines forth with the Light of God's Word and His Presence. And from the incense altar goes up the praises and the prayers of the saints. This is what Blood Covenant Christianity means. It is a journey into the heart of the Shepherd of Israel. The commitment we are drawn to in Him is total and absolute. There is no compromise with the ways of this world. This is the blood covenant implicit in our faith. And this is the faith that was first delivered to the saints.
Unfortunately our Church in the West is not "buying" into these deeper issues. The weightier matters in the faith of our fathers are not being addressed. Christian faith is not being presented as a "blood covenant" by our churchmen. Instead the eternal covenant is re-engineered and re-worked to be presented as a "seeker friendly" business style "church contract".
THE PARABLE OF THE TEN VIRGINS.
And what of the parable of the five wise and five foolish virgins?
The wise virgins knew that they would be going out to meet the returning Bridegroom in the midst of a coming night of deep darkness. They knew they couldn't make it alone. They would burn out, and they knew it. So they sought to ensure they had oil outside their own souls to fuel their lamps against the night. Is this haunting parable not a warning? Is it not a warning against those who have not considered it important to prepare themselves spiritually for the end-time drama. The wise will go out to find that eternal spiritual supply outside of themselves against a future coming night, a midnight hour of great darkness. Is this not a devotional matter of exceedingly great importance?
AN AGE OF GRACE WITHOUT TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS?
OR DOES GOD GIVE US GRACE FOR THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS?
The issues of God's grace are badly mishandled by dispensationalists. We are told that the "Age of Grace" began at Pentecost and will strangely come to an abrupt end seven years before the end of the age. God's grace is narrowly defined as "unmerited favor". Is grace just an exoneration? In a legal sense grace is certainly a covering of sin. But God's grace is far more than the provision of a legal covering in the atonement of sin. Christian believers today are bringing forth the Bridal witness to their Bridegroom. And they are doing this under persecution. This is also a major expression of God's grace. The testimony of the saints could not go forward at all without the ministry of God's grace. God's divine enabling empowering grace is showcased every day before men and angels. Grace for the trials is both a witness to Christ's sufferings and also a 'witness in the fellowship of Christ's sufferings'. This is "grace under fire". It is a sacred and precious thing in the eyes of God.
But time after time we hear that witnessing for Christ under fire is not done under grace but is "works" and something spurious and unnecessary that Christians with a martyr complex want to "add to the finished work of Christ". But is the end-time witness of the saints really just something we can write off as "works"? This, dear saints, is a grievous lie. Let us consider our own marriages. Christians can accept that marriage is a blood covenant relationship, "unto death". This is not a grievous thing as a bride declares her love for her betrothed. A bride will state this publicly in proclaiming her marriage vows before witnesses. Let us consider our own marriage. The true and genuine marital response between two lovers or two marriage partners has never has been, nor ever will be something we would consider as merely "works" or a "duty". So why are we lowering the heavenly bridal standard we have with Jesus Christ and placing it below the earthly bridal standard we have with our spouse? Is not our Bridegroom the Lord Jesus Christ Himself? Is He as the Beloved and our Bridegroom in the relationship not also worthy of our total commitment? Is this level of devotion too much to ask of Western Christians sitting comfortably in their padded pews? Is not Jesus/Yeshua our "Ishi/Beloved", the One who died for us, worthy of us giving our all? And will He not be with us to preserve and keep us "ek" "in through, and out of" our hour hour of trial?
God's true covenant people do in fact bring in the witness to their Bridegroom, sometimes under trial and tribulation. They have done it in times past without flinching. And many of our fellow Christians are bringing in their testimony before hostile princes and rulers right now. This is happening every day in many places around the world. A brother or a sister in Christ dies for the faith every three minutes. 500 every day. In spite of this and because of this we are in the greatest period of evangelism and Church expansion this world has ever seen. The Great Commission advances under fire, not by works, but by grace through faith in Christ. This grace comes in by God's election, by mans free will response to the God he loves, and in the mystery of Godliness.
It can be perplexing to realize that we may never get good solid Bible teaching on the End-Time from the present day religious denominations and church hierarchies. In fact it may not be politically possible. And the people we have currently have in churches are flatly intolerant of this information even when the Bible verses are laid out before them. In fact it may be actually detrimental to the cause of Christ to broadcast this information on the Post-Tribulation Resurrection-Rapture to the Christian crowds. They may act out in carnal politico-militant ways that could be quite harmful. Christian zealots are all around us, with their swords and guns. Remember that Jesus gave the Olivet Discourse to just Peter, James, and John. These were His closest disciples. He could trust them.
So yes, we are getting a lot of disinformation from the organized churches. And yes, the saints need good Biblically sound information as they approach the thresholds of the latter days. And yes, the saints need to be warned to make it a priority to prepare their hearts spiritually. But perhaps we need not be too concerned about this lack of clear direction from our church leaders. It may be for the best. The Shepherd of Israel will search for His sheep, even on a dark and cloudy day. He said that He was going to find every last one of His true Elect. Not one of them would be lost. 100 million saved Christians in Communist/Capitalist China testify to this encouraging fact. God can still bring His Message through to save and preserve His people without a single steeple to be seen on the horizon. Our Anabaptist and Baptist friends championed Christ as the one Mediator between God and man. He is able. Then we have the wonderful liberating doctrine of "the priesthood of all believers". This high calling of God's Elect to be a "royal priesthood and a holy nation" was written of by Moses in Exodus 19:6. This was echoed by the our Apostle Peter in 1 Peter 2:9. God was always concerned about His people down at the grassroots of the nation in the family unit and at the individual level.And He finds those people! 3,000 years ago King David heard God the Father declaring to God the Son that His covenant people are destined to emerge in a wonderful way as volunteers in the day of Christ's power. The prophet Joel prophesied a Great End-Time Revival right inside the Great Tribulation period. Why not let that great revival begin right now, . . . . . with us!
"9 For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth,
to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him."
So the Redeemed of the Lord are not just people under some sort of contract with God, be it personal or denominational. They are in a personal unconditional mutual blood covenant relationship. They do not serve their Bridegroom under compulsion. They walk with Him willingly and gladly, out of their own volition. As Servants of the Most High God they count it a privilege to be invited into this Kingdom/Priesthood and service. And so it is with great joy that they bring in this witness to Jesus/Yeshua. They do this for one main reason. Because they love Him!!!
As we saw in the case of Gideon and the Midianites, God just needs a few good men to perform this service. In times of trial and testing there will be those who press in to Christ the Breaker, and to the high calling. They will be the ones who finish the race.
The God of Israel will find His witnesses,
. . . even if He has to go to China and Indonesia and other places to get them.
There are many areas of the world where the Suffering Church faithfully brings in the witness. When we look at Revelation 7 we see that John saw a great multitude of Christian believers arrayed in white robes. Even as Joseph has a coat of many colors dipped in blood, these are people from every nation, race, and tribe. These are the faithful saints who will bring in the final witness of the Church. This commitment, this signing of the marriage document by the true Bride of Christ will be pivotal in holy history. The 5th seal witness will lead on to the 6th seal that will see the angelic powers of darkness falling as a fig tree casting her first-ripe figs and as stars falling from heaven. This is the awesome final epic cataclysmic Bridal witness. Our Western churchmen are not permitted to speak of these things and probably for good reasons. And when this final witness triggers the opening of the 6th seal the sign of the Son of Man will be seen in the heavens. Messiah's return in judgment and in deliverance will be imminent!
The angelic principalities and rulers of darkness know all this. And they tremble at the prospect. They know very well what this final end-time witness of the saints means for them. They know that this will be their ultimate undoing.
So their agenda is very understandable. The evil principalities and angelic powers do not want the saints to know about their vital role in the end-time witness. They want Christians continue in the entrained emotional response that they are used to receiving. For evangelicals it is "who cares? We are 'outta here'" before anything uncomfortable comes along. The older denominations give eschatology the "silent treatment" and this is especially true of Ecumenical churchmen. Those in the post modern church are often treated to either motivational speeches or raucous rabble rousing by 'Kingdom Now' crusader churchmen. Many sermons we hear today are a warmed over psychological dainties cooked up by money-making motivational speakers pretending to be men of God. Above all else the principalities and powers pulling the strings of Church leaders want Christians to respond to the end-time challenge with the spirit of fear and in the flesh. They do want to see any spiritual preparation for witness. Nor do they want to see Christian believers respond to this challenge by grace through faith and in the divine comfort-strength of the Holy Spirit. They want us to continue to react in the flesh with either the fear and hiding of pre-trib rapturism or in the crusading jingoism and anger of Dominion Theology. Anything, rather than responding to the clear call of God in faith believing.
Sadly, many Christians right now entertain and pursue this unfaithful line of thinking.
"The final seven years of this age and the great tribulation = the wrath of God.
As a Christian the Bible tells me I am not subject to God's wrath.
Therefore, since tribulation = wrath, I am not subject to tribulation and trials.
The reasoning would be quite sound if the presupposition, "tribulation = wrath of God" was not all wrong.
Then there is the emotional issue. Unfortunately it often seems to trump the Word of God.
We say, "My witness before kings and rulers is too terrible and too fearful a prospect to even consider.
Surely the Church, (and I), can't be there!"
Religious hirelings stand ready to sell these reassurances to the nominal Christian masses on this score.
Many Bible teachers stand ready to market their modern day indulgences to the increasingly worried Christian crowds.
They join Jeroboam of old who declared among God's rebelling people,
"We have no inheritance with David!"
To your tents, O Israel!"
Modern Churchmen are in effect announcing the very same thing.
They proclaim,"What has the Church got to do with the Jews and with Israel?
The trials and tribulations of the 70th Week of Daniel are not for us!
These afflictions are for Daniel's people, for the Jews!"
Then in our present unrefined state we as evangelicals are happy to say,"We are about to be raptured, . . . . imminently.Many Bible teachers are going even further by teaching this,
Any time now we'll be "outta here!"
"Church, You have no place in Israel!
You have a special separate deal!
This, dear saints, is unscriptural. It is a lie.
It is a blatant denial of God's Word.
It is the way of Jeroboam.
And the 'sin of Jeroboam' is "to lead God's covenant people astray".
But what saith the scriptures?
Quite the contrary.
We as Christian believers do belong to Israel.
This is clearly stated by our Apostle Paul in Ephesians 2:11-13.
Something we are not likely to be taught by Bible teachers is this. When we are saved we are no longer Gentiles. We cannot be Gentiles any longer. And why not? Because the word Gentile means "heathen".
Paul tells us that when we are born again we are no longer strangers, aliens, gentile heathen, or goyim. We are no longer strangers to the covenant of Israel. Through the blood of Christ we have been brought near. We as Christian believers are new creatures, even a new creation. Our Apostle Paul tells us straight out what happens. We now belong to the Commonwealth of Israel.
Yes, Christian believers, (if they can receive this), are a new creation, belonging to Christ. When we are saved we are named in the Anointed One, Christ, and thus we are identified in the Seed of Abraham.
See Galatians 3:29.
Some will ask, which tribe do we belong to? This is an excellent question. All who are saved have their inheritance in Joseph. All those born again in the Spirit of the God of Israel will bow down to Christ Jesus, even Messiah ben Joseph. Remember it was Joseph who fed the world the Bread of Life bringing salvation to all who will receive this.
And so we as Christians are in a spiritual war. But it is not the drum-beating crusade of carnal jingoistic religion, of religious Dominionism with all its empty hype and noise. Nor is the Christian called merely to a war of nationalism waged in politics and weapons of war. These aberrant Crusading behaviors of the Church were, (and still are), diversions from the real agenda. They are dalliances and delaying tactics fostered by an enemy who fears and dreads the coming of the faithful witness of committed Christian saints more than anything else. The powers of darkness loathe and dread the day the Christians begin to take their faith seriously and boldly take the stage for witness to their Messiah.
Of course these crusading preoccupations of the medieval style warrior monks still persist inside our Western Church. The cult of Dominionism still finds a home within the carnal elements of the Church. Dominion Theology still expects to rule the world and crusades towards its hopelessly flawed Utopian dream a worldly Christian dominion. If they have their way Dominionists will do incalculable damage to the Christian faith and witness. They will return Christendom to its shameful bloody crusading past. These are diversions, distractions from the real task at hand.
Dear saints, the spiritual war and the testimony of Jesus in the Word of God is the real war. This is the "good fight" to which we have been called. Like all wars it is an information war. This is why we must read our Bibles for ourselves and come to know our Redeemer personally in Word and Spirit. Like the five wise virgins, we too must make it our business to find the oil of the Holy Spirit for the lamps of our soul against the emptiness and darkness of the coming night. The real war focuses upon the Living Word of God as a Bride to her returning Bridegroom. A true Bride understands and accepts the essential end-time bridal witness of the saints. A small company of truly devoted saints will go up on the stage of history. And like Gideon's small band of devoted Light bearers who were willing to see the vessels of their Light broken as a witness for the God of Israel this small company, the few, the chosen, the saints, will bring in the final witness. And yes, the saints who finish the race will be the true Overcomers. This will be the epic "testimony of the saints". And at the conclusion of this end-time witness Messiah with fury poured out upon His enemies and with outstretched arm will return in a glorious victory.
THE FAILURE OF THE WESTERN CHURCH TO UNDERSTAND AND ACCEPT HER
VITAL ROLE OF WITNESS IN THE 70TH WEEK RIGHT THROUGH TO THE END
HAS RESULTED IN A TERRIBLE MORALE CRISIS IN THE WESTERN CHURCH.
THE SINKING OF THE TITANIC POINTS TO MANY SIMILAR SHORTCOMINGS.
The powers of darkness know all about the end-time witness of the saints. They know it very well. And they are terrified as they begin to see it come to pass. They want to keep Western Christians in the dark concerning this vital role of witness in the latter days. That is why they want to keep Christian believers locked up in their own Church-centered diversions man-centered thoughts and plans of dodging the end-time witness.
The Pre-Tribulation Rapture agenda is simply this. It is to abandon our brethren, (including our Jewish brethren), and to pull ourselves away from the spiritual needs of others and abandon those who need to hear our witness. The lessons of the Titanic come to mind here. Many of the lifeboats were lowered half full. Yet in fear they rowed away from those about to perish in the cold water. It seems many have been Christians have been talked into the idea of just getting into our own personal salvation lifeboat and just rowing away. We know that the multitudes who are in the water and crying out will perish without the salvation message of Christ which we have. But alas, we have been brainwashed into accepting that it is OK for us to just row our Church lifeboat away and leave these people, many of whom are precious in God's eyes, to die in the cold waters. If they don't have Christ well then it is just too bad. These people can be 'Left Behind'!
And so as the Western Church runs away from her responsibilities what do we see?
We have a Western Church with a deadly morale problem.
She has in effect become a runaway bride..
The Church in the West, unlike the Suffering Church abroad, is not moving forward in faith believing.
Instead we are going around in circles with the ying and the yang, wasting our time and money on material pleasures, consoling our egos with Psycho-babble, mulling over the minutia, and trying to pump up some godless Luciferian notion of "self esteem" instead of being esteemed in the witness of Christ Jesus. More and more western evangelical Christians are stewing over the loss of our children to the world, the flesh, and the devil even as we see downward moral spiral of our "nation under God". We gather for our Christian dialogues around our earthy round-tables and as we talk endlessly of politics and the insidious encroachment of a treacherous anti-Christian agenda we check our true Christian faith at the door. So what we bring to the round-table is of no lasting consequence. It is little more than "the sum of all our fears".
But why are we worrying? We have a big God who is the Sovereign God of the Universe. He is a God of great loving-kindness. And He does exploits. In the former times His covenant people were hemmed in by the way of the wilderness with no place to go. With their backs to the waters of death they stood helplessly, (or at least it seemed that way to them at the time), facing the chariots of Pharaoh. It seemed that they were about to be destroyed by the might and martial law of the world order of that time which was Egypt. But the God of Israel took them by the Hand and bore them on "wings of eagles" in a great Exodus, crossing the Red Sea on dry land. Our God has promised to do an even greater deliverance in the latter days!!! See Jeremiah 16:14,15
Dear saints, we serve a God who covers His holy people with His Abiding Presence. We can also take courage in this. This epic latter day spiritual conflict and the "final witness" of the saints will not last a minute more than God has ordained. And once the 70th Week opens with the 7 year covenant by "many" we shall know when the ensuing seven years will end at the Judgment at the last day and the Day of the Lord, (and a time unknown), will begin. We shall know about the 3.5 years/1260 days under the harlot of Revelation 17. And we shall know about the mid-week abomination of desolation wherein Antichrist will be revealed in His Beast role and attempt to institute 666 throughout the world, with some but limited success. The end-time witness will then go on during the final 3.5 years/1260 days. The testimony of the saints will be delivered before God, angels, and men right throughout the great Tribulation under the united sticks of Joseph and Judah. A great and glorious company, even a royal priesthood and a holy nation, will bring in the dual testimony of the two witnesses. The ministry of the two witnesses will last precisely 1260 days or 3.5 Biblical years. That is all.
So we can be encouraged here. The book of Revelation shows us that the Ancient of days will be presiding over the end-time from the courts of heaven. These trials will not last forever. Life here on earth is not an endless dualism of good vs. evil as we see in eastern mysticism. Nor do we have to live under the spell of the Dragon, being jerked around indefinitely and having to endure an everlasting bondage under the ying and the yang. God forbid that we become pawns of the empty eastern mysticism shipped in from the orient.
Here we see the final word from Western Christendom. And it will happen when a small company finishes the race for the glory of God and on behalf of all the saints who have run before them. Holy history is not cyclical. It is teleological. It does not just go around and around in circles forever like the rising and falling of the Nile or the annual monsoons and funerals at the Ganges River in India. There is a grand conclusion to it all. The true and faithful Judeo-Christian expectation sees life as a pilgrimage on a highway of holiness that ends up at the gates of glory. For the spiritual progeny of Abraham, the people of faith, it is walk of faith, a journey with God. The entire saga from Abraham to the last Tribulation saint will end up stretching out over 4,000 years. Seven waypoints have been logged in by our Sovereign God and showcased for us in the Seven Feasts of the Lord. But nevertheless, there is a single storyline, with a beginning and an ending. The climactic final seven years of this age will unfold precisely as prophesied. The story will wrap up with a grand climax. The entire saga will unfold precisely as prophesied. And the saga of the saints will end in a blaze of glory!
The history of this age is God-ordained. It is an orderly unfolding of a new and living Way. Through it all Our God is progressively drawing us to Himself in a stepwise linear teleological process towards the gates of the Holy City. The pilgrimage of saints of this evil age marches on across the centuries to end in a sure and glorious conclusion. The Seven Feasts of Israel map out the journey of the people of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The saints of the true Church are being gathered in the latter days just as they were at Pentecost. They have always been the Congregation of Israel's Messiah and this will become manifest in the end-time drama. They are the covenant people of God of Israel. God's covenant people began this journey in earnest when Abraham walked out of Ur 4,000 years ago. They will certainly finish the race. And precisely at the set time.
End-time world history is not as totally black and horrific and out of control as some Bible teachers have led us to believe. They painted it as a chamber of horrors for a reason. They wanted to sell their Pre-Trib rapture fable. Holy history is laid out for us by Someone who is greater than our fears. He in Himself is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. And by His Holy Spirit He guides, strengthens, and comforts His people. Yes, they will enter a valley. But there will be no death for them, only the shadow of death. A Biblical world view sees a sure passage and a glorious destiny for the single Elect of God as they pilgrim on through their histories on this planet. We saw the beginning laid out in the creation story back in Genesis. Then we saw the unfolding of a great drama where God's covenant people as protagonists met their antagonists, namely the world, the flesh, and the Devil. The heroes of the faith met the human agents of these three great evils on many occasions and defeated their foes by God's power. The epic drama really opens up in the national history of Abraham and the establishment of national Israel at Sinai. The saga goes on to see the unfolding of the New Covenant Jeremiah spoke about in Jeremiah 31:31-33. Then after the First Coming of Messiah the saga moves on into Church history at Pentecost. The Gospel and he Holy Spirit outpouring overflowed Israel and began to be preached towards the ends of thimpossibly heavy e earth. Eventually Messiah the testimony of the saints will become heavy and black as the end-time church enters into its ultimate crisis. The end-time witness will become black and heavy like a star going into a super-nova. It will seem like everything is lost and going down into a black hole. But then BAM!! Christ will return. and this present age will end in a blaze of glory.
Of course there will be many surprises in this final seven years. The initial 3.5 years of world rule under Harlot religion is laid out for us by John in Revelation 17. John saw an amazing sight. He saw a harlot church, a woman of compromise with a defiled cup actually riding the New World Order beast with ten horns. She was up there, taking dominion, and actually believing she could pull this off! John was absolutely flabbergasted at what he saw. And so will we.
Many will be the mysteries that will unfold before our eyes in times to come. The final 5th seal witness of the saints will come to a victorious climax. Then comes the magnificent 6th seal intervention by our returning Messiah. His Second Coming will break forth right at the end of this age. Christ, the expression and manifestation of God we see in this cosmos, will return. He will judge the wicked, deliver His saints, and glorify all His Elect at the Resurrection-Rapture. The woman will be delivered of the Manchild right as the Body of Christ is delivered and resurrected at the end of this age. Here is the broad sequence, just as we see it with the birth of a baby. The delivery and Resurrection-Rapture of the Body of Christ will come 2,000 years after the Head is delivered. Jesus was resurrected as the Firstfruits from the dead. And He as our sacred Head is the firstborn of many brethren, those many who come after being the Body of Christ, even a great Nation who will be born in One Day. See Isaiah 66:8.
So we need not fear. We have a God who covers His saints by His Holy Spirit. And we have a God who remembers His own. He will be returning to this earth. And He will come to His covenant people as a Deliverer.
The reign of the 666 Beast, (and his False Prophet), will not last longer than God has ordained. Both of them will be terminated right at the 1260 days. And we have this assurance as well from Micah 2:12-13. The saints will be delivered. The Breaker will come and spring them out from their exile at mystery Bozrah. And the Holy City of Jerusalem will be delivered from the armies mustering to the north at Megiddo. At the end of 1290 days the Day of the Lord will open for judgment. Messiah will return to terminate this evil age. The last day of this age will be that awesome final Day of Atonement or Day of Reckoning. On that day, the tenth day of the Tishri moon, the trumpets of Jubilee will sound to announce and to bring in the ultimate Year of Jubilee. of this we can be sure. See the video below.
THE SEVENTY WEEKS PROPHECY AND THE COMING EPIC YEAR OF JUBILEE.
The Day of the Lord will be an unzipping and a rolling back of the very space-time Nature worshipers always thought was eternal. The skies will be rolled back to reveal Messiah. This will be a terrible day of sheer horror for the rebels. The wicked who belong to Antichrist will see the evil angels above them. They will be plucked up first, even as tares for the fires. (Mat.13:30) Then the Elect will be gathered. Al the saints, the living and the dead, will be glorified together in the Resurrection-Rapture. The Prince of Peace will then judge the unsaved, the nations. He will separate the sheep from the goats in the Sheep-Goat Judgment. He will reach out to save the little ones and minister among to those who mourn. That long awaited Millennium of Messiah will be established at last. Messiah will restore this poor toxic sin-damaged creation to the beauty it once knew.
Never fear dear saints. Our God is alive and well. He is coming back again. And He means business. Life is not just an endless series of cycles of ying and yang carrying good and bad Karma from one generation to the next in a meaningless merry-go-round of sex and death, marriages and funerals. The God of Israel is calling out a Holy People, bringing them ever higher into His ekklesia, His Pilgrim Congregation, His Church/synagogue. He takes them through the wilderness, onwards through their histories in a sure direction. They are the People of the promise, the Pilgrim Company of Abraham. As such they walk on by faith towards a sure destination, even a City with foundations not made with hands.
And so the Redeemed of the Lord shall return.
And come with singing unto Zion. And everlasting joy, shall be upon their heads.
So the final outcome of this divine drama is assured."The Light shines in the darkness.
And the darkness has never overcome it." - John 1:5
The end-time scenario is a triumph for the returning Messiah. It is a glorious victory for His single undivided Elect. The Great Tribulation is traversed by the saints. They are on the Paradise Road. All this has been written in The Book. The God of Israel is the Sovereign Ruler in this cosmos. He is also the Breaker, the final Victor over the powers of wickedness that guard the present status quo.
In the Book of Revelation we see that God the Father is the Ancient of Days. He presides over the courts of heaven. And he judges righteously. He oversees all the covenant dealings of Israel upon this earth during the 70th Week of Daniel. He is in total control of events as the history of this present evil age comes to its appointed climax. And so we need to remember this. YHVH-God sets the limits on the raging of nations. The Holy Spirit will not be deserting us as we have been told. The God of Israel sends us His Holy Spirit to be our Comforter and our Guide. Even in the midst of a Great Apostasy there will in fact be an End-Time Revival among God's people. This will be a revival of epic, even Biblical, proportions. This spellbinding end-time drama will all come to a magnificent climax in a blow-out blaze of glory with the Arrival of Messiah.
So the Bible brings us much positive and encouraging information concerning the Apocalypse, or the unveiling of Messiah.
And if we ask him, our God will also give us the strength to receive what He is telling us here. Because the Presbyterians are correct. Without God's sovereign grace we cannot receive the Word of God. We are just never going to interest ourselves in God by ourselves. And the years are passing by.
Of course the Western Church, as Sleeping Beauty, is asleep right. For the most part she is oblivious to these things. But at some point we shall wake up and remember what we are all about. The medieval fog will lift and we shall remember who we really are. We are the saints of the Most High God. We are His witnesses!
Yes, we have been given a ticket to heaven, - if we can keep it. Pray God we abide in the Vine, remaining true to our Lord Jesus Christ. But at some point we must hear "the rest of the story". We are definitely in the loop here. Accordingly we should be as diligent in the Scriptures as the noble Bereans were. Let us dig a little deeper into the pages of our Bible. We need not fear. God is with us! So as we go forward in this study let us boldly go where we have never gone before. Let us take our investigation on faithfully to where the Biblical evidence is leading us.
So first and foremost we must understand this. This Rapture matter is not an intellectual or theological pursuit. Rather it is primarily an issue of devotion, a matter of the heart. So right up front it is important for us to know that God dearly loves His covenant people. He died for us and took away our sorrows. The suffering and misery that often attends pain comes from our separation from God. When we are saved all that changes.
God cares for His saints as a mother hen cares for her chicks. Through His Word He informs and guides His special agents as He speaks and operates in and through them. This is especially true as they approach the thresholds at the climax of the age. He informs us that some of us will go up before kings and rulers. And yes, many will suffer in the witness. But Jesus/Yeshua has promised to keep and preserve each member of His Congregation (Gr. "ek") 'in, through, and out of' the hour of their trial. Spiritually speaking, He tells them that not one hair of their head will be lost. And so in this devotion and with an open Bible and an open heart and mind our God makes it His business to "tell us of things to come". The prophecies will be unsealed. And Daniel's question will be answered. The Holy One of Israel will strengthen and guide His called, His chosen, and His faithful saints. It will be in that obedience that they will come into a clear understanding of their essential role of witness in the latter days.
Christians who do not understand the necessity and the seriousness of the testimony of Jesus are not interested in these matters. God has blinded their eyes. And this is just and righteous of God to do this. Such people have no business inquiring into Bible prophecy. Because the true Christian faith that was first delivered to the saints, is as private a matter as a marriage covenant and as secret as orders presented to a commissioned military officer going out on a mission. All this is part of the blood covenant relationship we ahve entered into in Christ. The one who signs and seals the agreement knows the full implications of what they are doing. They have just entered into a realm of total and absolute devotion and commitment.
This is absolutely vital information. Unless believers understand the necessity of the end-time blood covenant witness they will not be able to comprehend Bible prophecy. Nor do they deserve to know about it. Carnal Christians are in this category. They will turn away from the truth. They will be content to accept a mere approximation to the truth or a twisted version of the Biblical facts. They will prefer to listen to worldly wise men who are telling them, (and selling them), fables fashioned by figments of their own human fancies.
But the truth will eventually come out. And as the prophet Daniel declared in Dan. 12, the wise will know the truth), and will understand. The Lord of Hosts, (like any Army Commander), is sovereign in the spiritual war which engaged the faith of our fathers. And the Holy One of Israel gives out His confidential information only to those who are committed and vitally involved in the spiritual war. These people can be trusted with the truth. Information is given to the agents of God on a "need to know" basis. The called, the chosen, and the faithful, are in this category. They are prepared to go up to the witness. And so they most certainly deserve to be in the know.
And they will.
The others will not.
Meanwhile, even now,
the woman of wisdom is crying out in the street.
Shall we stop and listen to what she has to say?
The video below video contains a very important message to the Western Church.
This message is for Christians today.
And it comes to us from Corrie Ten Boom.
So this matter of the Rapture is more than good exegesis and a faithful interpretation of Holy Scripture.
Bible prophecy is more than sound doctrines and rightly dividing the Word of Truth.
Loving God is the key here, even the Key of David.
And it will be in this devotion that our God will "guide (us) into all truth.
. . . . . . . and tell (us) of things to come." (John 16:13)
The Bible does not explicitly give us the timing of "the Rapture" as such. So that is why is this big accompanying event to the Rapture needs to be looked into. Take a close look at the Scripture passages below and ask yourself these two questions.
Is there another very important event that accompanies the Rapture?
And if so, what is that other epic event?
So what is that awesome end-time event that erupts into holy history right alongside and immediately before the Rapture?
4:15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord,
that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord
will by no means precede those who are asleep.
4:16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout,
with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God.
And the dead in Christ will rise first. (in the Resurrection)
4:17 Then we who are alive and remain
shall be caught up together with them (in the Rapture)
in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.
And thus we shall always be with the Lord.
OK, lets stop and take stock of what we have just heard. The Rapture is Biblically cross-bolted, chained, and padlocked to another epic accompanying end-time glorification event. And what might that awesome epic climactic event be? It is the Resurrection of the righteous dead. And as we can see in verse 15, the Resurrection of the saints who have passed on before us must immediately precede the Rapture. Only then will the living saints, ("those who remain") be "caught up" (or Raptured) "with them to meet the Lord in the air" .
Here in this passage of scripture we can see that our apostle Paul is clearly showing
us a combined Resurrection-Rapture.
"The dead in Christ shall rise rise first." Then we who are alive at that time, (the living saints), will be "caught up" or Raptured.
Paul nails down the 1 -> 2 sequence in no uncertain terms.
He tells us that the Rapture will "by no means precede" the Resurrection.
Now pause for a moment and ask yourself this question.
Have you heard Bible prophecy teachers murmur one word about the timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead?
Of course the answer is "no", you haven't heard then speak of this.
Now, let us stop and ask ourselves this question.
Oh yes. We have only just begun our study.
And already we are beginning to see that the plot is thickening.
The Resurrection as seen by Ezekiel
in his vision of the valley of dry bones.
By 19th Century French artist Gustav Dore.
Click on the image to go to Ezekiel 37.
Since we have just stepped into a spiritual battleground let us stop right here and pray. Let us ask God to breathe on this subject and open the Holy Scriptures. Let us ask Him to open up the Way of the cross to our understanding. And let us bow our heads and our hearts in full blood covenant commitment to Him. Because without that "sold-out" commitment we may as well stop right here. Because, try as we might, we simply cannot receive this message in our own human strength. Unless we submit our will to the will of the Father we can go no further. The religious spirits at work here are just too powerful for us to resist in our own strength. Without our full surrender to Christ they will shut us down. They will quickly terminate our inquiry into these matters. This is what is happening in the Church right now.
The fact of the matter is, worldly wise Christians in the pampered West are spiritually weak.
They are not walking in the Spirit. Instead they are living on the carnal side of their nature.
Under the spell of materialism and laden with the cares of this world the Seed of God's Word is being choked out of Christian hearts.
Many Christians are turning away from full commitment to Christ. Not surprisingly they are
running away from the end-time witness as well. The red badge of courage notwithstanding,
untrained, unprepared, spiritually cold, sickly and unfed Western Christians are stealing away from the spiritual battlefield.
This is happening every day. They are led by religious leaders who are not true pastors and teachers.
Many prominent and leading churchmen have
deliberately chosen to neglect the vitally important realm of Bible prophecy.
They have found it easier and more "positive", (or is the real word "lucrative"), to become
social pragmatists, motivational speakers, and above all, "successful" religious businessmen.
God help us.
So what are the consequences to all this? The sheep of God's pasture are not being fed. They are not being nurtured in the faith that was first delivered to the saints. They are not being cared for. Instead, God's people are being exploited. Our modern evangelical Christian leaders are committing the sin of Jeroboam. They are spoiling God's covenant people and leading them into error. These leaders are drawing Christians away from their Biblical roots and leading down the garden path into ecumenism and a harlot Church. They are refusing to address the vital end-time blood covenant issues of the faith. See this YouTube video. All this is to our shame. And so this is why we as Christian believers need to open up the Holy Scriptures, seek the leading of the Holy Spirit, and do our own homework. Then we can teach our children to avoid these snares.
Back to our study.
As we can readily see, the Bible does teach a Rapture at the end of this age.
That Rapture is accompanied by another magnificent event.
The Rapture is time-linked to the Resurrection of the righteous dead.
Let us revisit our earlier question on the timing of the Rapture. We do not have Scripture specifically spelling out for us when the Rapture will occur. But we are given very direct and specific timing for the other big event that accompanies the Rapture. The Bible does show us the timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead. The timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead is the crux of the matter.
So why is this matter of the Resurrection of the righteous dead so important?
The answer is quite obvious.
The timing of the Resurrection will also give us the timing of the Rapture.
Dear saints, this matter of the timing of the Rapture is not difficult. A little child can understand this. And why? Because they have an open heart. And they are without guile. Jesus had something to say about this. He said,
“Assuredly, I say to you,- Matthew 18:3
unless you are converted and become as little children,
you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven."
Here is the other passage from 1Corinthians 15.
This scripture also proves the veracity of the combined Resurrection-Rapture.
51 Behold, I shew you a mystery;
We shall not all sleep, (or be in the grave when Christ returns),
but we (who are alive at His coming) shall all be changed, (in the Rapture)
52 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, (in the Resurrection)
and we shall be changed." (in the Rapture)
53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
So there we have it. Another Biblical proof of a Resurrection-Rapture. All the saints will be going up together, in one big happy party. And this happens, Paul says, "in a twinkling of an eye". All the saints, both the living and the dead, will be glorified into new spiritual bodies together as one single Elect. (See Jesus words on this in Mat. 24:29-31). The Resurrection and the Rapture will occur at the same time, at the last trumpet.
So there we have it, a Resurrection-Rapture at the last trumpet. And here is the major truth that under-girds this hush-hush untaught unspoken doctrine. The Elect of the God of Israel, the children of Abraham's Seed, are undivided. God's covenant people are not to be chopped up and put in boxes as evangelical dispensationalist Bible teachers have done. They had no Biblical authority to commit that travesty. No, not at all. The saints are "all one in Christ Jesus". (See Galatians 3:27-29)
So from both sides of Calvary we see the passing parade of the saints.
They are Jew and Greek, male and female, free and bond.
And even in death God's covenant people are undivided. God would never allow such a thing. They are His Bride.
"And what God has joined together,
let no man put asunder!"
OK, now here we come to a key question. To Biblically establish and confirm the Biblical truth of a Pre-Tribulation Rapture we must find Biblical proof of an accompanying special early Pre-Tribulation Resurrection. Such a Resurrection must be found and time pegged 7 years or 3.5 years before the end of the age depending on your definition of the Tribulation. This necessitates pegging the Resurrection to the time of the seven year covenant of Daniel 9:27 which fires the starting gun for the 70th Week of Daniel. Alternatively those trying to establish an early Rapture could attempt to peg the accompanying Resurrection to the midweek Abomination of Desolation. This initiates the Beast phase Antichrist, 666, the trampling of Jerusalem, and the exile of the saints at Bozrah.
Dear saints. We are looking here for Biblical evidence of a Resurrection of the righteous dead that will come some years before the end of the age. Does such an animal exist in Holy Scripture?
The answer is a loud resounding "No!"
We hear countless Bible messages on "The rapture!" "The rapture!" "The rapture!". But let us not forget, (or be hoodwinked by Bible teachers under a spell of religious spirits with an agenda), into not asking about this critically important intimately connected blood covenant matter of the Resurrection of the righteous dead.
It seems that the whole issue of the Resurrection-Rapture is heavily guarded by religious spirits. So as we undertake to look into this matter be warned that this will not be easy. So be prepared in God with the full armor of God. Our Apostle Paul spoke about this vital spiritual preparation here in Romans 6:10-18.
This preparation in the Holy Scriptures and in the Holy Spirit is essential. Because as we press forward in our inquiry our pilgrimage will be bringing us up against religious trolls. These are spirits operating in and around us and in the written and spoken words of others. Religious disinformation comes to us in sermons, in books, and in films. Religious spirits do not want the true information to be revealed. So let us remember, dear saints, that the subject we are discussing here is not just a cold objective theological inquiry. If we have been saved and born again then we are immediately thrust into spiritual warfare. This is normal for the true Christian. And we need to understand that information, true and false, is the key here. Because all wars are information wars.
Let us remember this as well. As Pilgrim Christians the war we are engaged in here below is not carnal but spiritual. The prophet Zechariah was told how the victory is finally achieved. It is
‘Not by might nor by power,Zech. 4:6
but by My Spirit,’
Says the LORD of hosts.'
Every day should begin and end with prayer to God, even as the sweet savor of the morning and evening sacrifices went up to God back in the Israel's earlier times. We part company with our Puritan friends here. Our battle is not with sword and gun. The battle is over the Word of God and the preparation of the saints for witness before men. And in this war we deal with information that is spiritually guarded, cloaked, and smoke-screened. This critically important Biblical information concerning the saints in the latter days is contested all the way by evil spirits. These religious spirits trying to limit the flow of God's Holy Word are trolls at the gate, denizens of disinformation, shysters of religious shlock. This comes as a bit of a shock to us. Because we had never even imagined that religious spirits even existed, let alone encountered them and dealt with them before.
We return now to our subject of the Resurrection-Rapture. We can call it that because that is what the Bible is showing us.
Yes, the second coming of Christ is a glorification of all of God's covenant people at the same time!
That is the way our God is. The Holy One of Israel is not going to wrap things up until the last lost sheep is found.
And when we come to that grand celebration at the end no-one will be
Everybody will be there!
We are 21st Century Christians. We live in the most sophisticated society this world has ever seen. We go to Church, we read our Bible, and we watch Bible prophecy teachers on TV. We imagine ourselves to be fully aware of what is going on and what will go on. But do we? Do we really have a good well founded Biblically correct handle on the Resurrection and the Rapture?
Even peasants in the middle ages knew about the Resurrection-Rapture. They knew from the Apostle's Creed that Christ would come for the quick (the living), and the dead. So this glorification into new spiritual bodies involves not only the Rapture but the Resurrection as well! At Christ's coming the righteous dead are going up as well. They are going up with us! They too will be "putting on immortality" in the very same end-time Second Coming of Messiah! In fact, as we look at our scriptures above we see that the righteous dead are glorified into new spiritual bodies right before the Rapture! All those who are Christ's, saved by His blood, all those who have passed on in the faith, from both sides of Calvary, are all raised up in the Resurrection. Then, immediately after this, in the very same process of putting on immortality comes the Rapture.
So there we have it.
The dead will go up first. And then the living.
All the Elect will be glorified as one big happy family.
All the saints, the quick and the dead, will be there.
We will ALL be boarding the glory train TOGETHER!
AND SO WE ASK THE FORBIDDEN QUESTION THAT FEW DARE TO ASK.
- - - - - - WHEN IS THIS RESURRECTION OF THE RIGHTEOUS DEAD?
As we have seen, the timing of the Rapture is time linked to the timing of the Resurrection. They are a combined event. So here in this article, (and I pray in our churches as well), let us dare to stand up and ask the question. Mysteriously, this is a question that we are apparently hypnotized or intimidated by religious spirits into not asking. But ask the question we must. And we must then proceed on to answer it faithfully and truthfully from the Holy Scriptures.
So here is our question again.
When is the Resurrection of the righteous dead?
Is it here?
Or is it here?
3.5 years (Rev.17)
3.5 years (Rev.13, Rev. 11)
This is not a difficult question. The Bible gives us the answer four times in in John 6, then in Matthew 24:31, Revelation 20:4-6 and many other places. It is like the game "pin the tail on the donkey". Only here we seek to "pin the Resurrection of the righteous dead, on the final seven years of this age."
Can we do it?
We look up the verses with the answers. Then we get the facts. It is easily done.
But we are having a hard time bringing ourselves around to pursuing this matter it seems.
And now we are beginning to understand the spiritual war and the foes that try to make us turn away.
OK, let's cut to the chase. Lets look up the Bible passages and see for ourselves.
When is the Resurrection of the righteous dead?
Does The Bible give us a specific timing for the Resurrection?
Yes, it certainly does!
But there is a problem.
The information is guarded and contested.
Yes, this is a very strange and mysterious business.
If you ask Christians who know the Bible well and can quote the well known passages
on the Resurrection and the Rapture to tell you when the Resurrection occurs a very strange and mysterious phenomenon occurs.
Their eyes glaze over. They most often cannot tell you.
As we shall show in the next section the answer is right in front of them.
It is right there on the pages of their Bible.
Has the Church been put under a spell, like black magic?
Now that is a very interesting question.
When a Biblical truth, such as the Resurrection of those who are Christ's, is set upon by religious blocking spirits we must assume that something very important is being "cloaked" by the powers of darkness. Something very significant is being hidden from us. And indeed when we succeed in answering this highly contested question of the timing of the Resurrection it is as if we break through a heavy wall of darkness. The spell is broken. Suddenly it is as if we are lifted up above the mists to see the true lay of the land. The religious fog begins to clear. Suddenly we begin to get a clear view of the end time. And we "see" the "last day" timing of the Resurrection-Rapture. Then we realize in a flash that this event comes at the end of the 70th Week of Daniel right at the end of this age.
So then, just when will this mysteriously hidden Resurrection of the righteous dead occur?
Is it to be a Pre-Tribulation Resurrection? Or will it be a Post-Tribulation Resurrection?
Well, let's stop and pray and ask God to rebuke the powers and open our eyes. The Bible is telling us very plainly and openly. Here below are the very words of Jesus Himself giving us the specific timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead.
Four times in John chapter 6 Jesus refers to the Resurrection of His Elect people.
Then, probably after hearing these words from Jesus herself we see in John 12 that Martha, has her say on this matter as well.
THAT RESURRECTION IS A CLIMACTIC ALL-INCLUSIVE RESURRECTION.
THERE CAN BE NO RAPTURE UNTIL THE FINAL RESURRECTION-RAPTURE AT THE "LAST DAY".
THIS HAPPENS IN A TWINKLING OF AN EYE AT THE 'LAST TRUMPET'
THIS WILL BE AFTER THAT FINAL DAY OF ACCOUNTING AT THE VERY END OF THIS AGE.
As we have seen, the timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead is well established in Holy Scripture as being at the very end of this present age. After the final Day of Accounting, Day of Reckoning, Day of Atonement Messiah will have all the information He needs on everyone and all will have been said and done. As we saw in the sequence of events in the parable of the wheat and the tares the tares, (the wicked), will be gathered first. (Mat.13:30) Then after Messiah has poured His wrath on the wicked He will then gather His Elect, glorifying both the living and the dead in one swoop. Here in 1Cor 15 Paul tells us that this will happen in a moment, in a twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. He tells us that this last trumpet will sound and the dead will be raised incorruptible and then we (those of us who are alive and remain) will be changed, (in the Rapture). Here in this passage our Apostle Paul is showing us once again the close relationship in time of the Resurrection and the "catching up" or Rapture.
Most Bible believing Christians are quite familiar with this passage here in 1Cor. 15:51-53. and the earlier passage from 1Thes. 4:15-17. They quite rightly rejoice in the fact that the living saints will be "caught up" in the Rapture. But they fail to see that their glorification in the Rapture will occur immediately after the Resurrection of the righteous dead.
51. "Behold, I tell you a mystery:
We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed--
52. in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.
For the trumpet will sound,
and the dead will be raised incorruptible,
and we shall be changed.
53. For this corruptible must put on incorruption,
and this mortal must put on immortality.
To illustrate this point see this little skit which we might call 'BIG AWAKENING ON THE GLORY TRAIN'.
This one time total all encompassing glorification of the saints will happen in a flash. In a moment, in a twinkling of an eye, we shall find ourselves changed, glorified, into new incorruptible spiritual bodies. Our new spiritual bodies will be like the one Jesus had after His resurrection that enable all who belong to the Body of Christ to walk through walls and travel through space and time. How glorious is that!
This future instant in time is a 'mystery', which means it is a future reality yet to be revealed and seen. We cannot yet fully grasp or comprehend it. Nevertheless the Holy Spirit tells us that this magnificent moment is an instant in time, a mere "twinkling of an eye". This future total body upgrade is out there in our future somewhere. We have good evidence that this will all come down during the Fall or Autumn Season of some future year.
REVELATION 20 SHOWS US THE FIRST RESURRECTION.
THE TRIBULATION SAINTS ARE COMING TO THEIR REWARD.
THESE ARE FAITHFUL CHRISTIAN/MESSIANIC BELIEVERS
WHO HAD DIED AS MARTYR/WITNESSES UNDER 666.
THEY HAD REFUSED TO TAKE THE MARK OF THE BEAST.
CLEARLY THEY ARE NOT RESURRECTED UNTIL AFTER
THEIR NUMBER IS COMPLETE AT THE END OF THE GREAT TRIBULATION.
HERE WE SEE THEM LEADING THE RESURRECTION PARADE OF THE SAINTS
WHICH JOHN CALLS THE FIRST RESURRECTION.
4 And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them.
Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus
and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image,
And they lived (were Resurrected)
and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
5 But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished.
This is the first resurrection.
6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the First Resurrection.
Over such the second death has no power,
but they shall be priests of God and of Christ,
and shall reign with Him a thousand years.
In Revelation 20 John saw the Resurrection of the Tribulation Saints. These saints are the overcomers who had rejected the "mark of the Beast" during the Great Tribulation. They had died for their faith in Christ during the 666 economic regime, the final 3.5 years of this age. The 666 economic identification system will be instituted by the Antichrist in his Beast role during the final 3.5. years of the age, the final half of the 70th Week of Daniel, or the final half of the final 7 years of this age. Now in Revelation 20 John sees the Tribulation saints. They have come through the trials of their faith victoriously. John sees the Tribulation martyrs being raised up after the Great Tribulation. John is clearly told that this end-time Resurrection of the righteous is the "First Resurrection". This will be the Resurrection of all the righteous dead who belong to Israel's Messiah, our Lord Jesus Christ. And the list of saints being gathered here is a full list with no dispensationalist divisions or compartnents or theological boxes. The parade of the saints coming up out of their graves here is a glorious company of saints that goes all the way back to righteous Abel and perhaps even to the Garden of Eden if Adam and Eve were saved by grace through faith under the blood covering God provided them.
But the end time Tribulation saints are there as well. In fact the Tribulation Saints get special mention here! They lead the procession into the glory! The Tribulation martyrs are special saints. From what we are reading here in Revelation 20 they are at the head of the whole First Resurrection party of all the saints!
Revelation 20 spotlights the Resurrection of the righteous dead. And let us make no mistake here. We are told by John that this is the 'First Resurrection'. Quite obviously there is not, nor can there be, an earlier Pre-Tribulation Resurrection. There is no evidence whatsoever for the existence of some other splinter group rapturing earlier than this and separate from this First Resurrection. John saw a Post Tribulation post 666 Resurrection which he called the First resurrection. There can be no "special separate "Church resurrection" coming seven years before this Post Tribulational "First Resurrection" John saw. No other resurrection can precede this First Resurrection we see here in Revelation 20.
So is there a Pre-Trib Resurrection?
No, there is not. It is not to be found anywhere in Holy Scripture.
Nor can there be without adding to what God has spoken or twisting Holy Scripture.
People who knowingly set out to do this are in great peril.
They are under the curse of God. See Revelation 22:18,19. Like Bigfoot and King Kong, the thing may be big in our imaginations. But the animal does not exist in reality. It is a figment of man's fertile fevered religious imagination. A "pre-tribulation resurrection", like the easter bunny and the tooth fairy, is a crafty piece of work sold in the religious bazaars of Mammon. It is an non-scriptural man made hoax, something "the Joker" would be proud of pulling off. The thing is the work of illusionists. It does not exist. A Pre-Tribulation special early Resurrection or Rapture for that matter, simply cannot be found anywhere in the Bible.
So Revelation 20 is describing the Resurrection of the righteous dead. And as we see these precious saints are certainly resurrected. But since the company prominently includes martyrs of the Great tribulation they are necessarily resurrected at the end of this age. Special mention is being given to a special group of overcomers within the Resurrection company. The same company is being primed and encouraged to finish the race in Hebrews 12:1. They are the end time heroes of the faith. And many of them are the tribulation martyrs.
The very existence of the Tribulation Saints as John sees them in Revelation 7 and Revelation 20 is a huge embarrassment to those who teach the Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine. These are the saints who bring in the climactic 'final witness' of the 5th seal. These faithful witnesses who died for the faith will usher in the 6th seal appearance of the sign of the Son of Man in the heavens. These are the faithful runners we who break the tape to finish the race on behalf of all the saints who have run before us. The Bible says that these Tribulation martyrs are given white robes washed in the blood of the Lamb. They are in the "First Resurrection", the glorified dead who are raised up at the end of this evil age. (Rev.20:5) In fact they head up the Resurrection of all the righteous who have died in the faith. They are in there amongst all the saints gathered from both sides of Calvary. They head up the procession of all the saints as the Elect, (a single company), ascend up into the mansions of glory. This "First Resurrection" event clearly comes at the very end of this age, not seven years before!
Then we recall this passage.
. . . . we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord
will by no means precede (in the Rapture) those who are asleep
(and coming up from the grave in the Resurrection).
So as we see from this passage above, the Rapture of the righteous living saints
is fixed, chained, and padlocked to the Resurrection of the righteous dead saints.
Our Apostle Paul tells us that there cannot and will not be a Rapture before the Resurrection.
The single Resurrection and the single Rapture are a combined event.
The Bible tells of one transport into glory, one 'Glory Train'.
When all the saints are here the Archangel Michael will get the Word and call out, "All aboard!"
Then Messiah's train will pull out right on schedule, at the very end of this age.
Not one minute before!
Quite clearly, the Rapture cannot and will not precede the Resurrection. Dear saints, we must face the Holy Scriptures honestly here. This First Resurrection John mentions includes the Tribulation martyrs. So this Resurrection must come at the end of the Great Tribulation.
AND THREE EASY STEPS PROVIDING ABSOLUTE BIBLICAL PROOF
OF A POST-TRIBULATION RAPTURE.
STEP 1 (foundational Biblical truth #1) We read Revelation 20:4-6 and see that martyrs of the Great Tribulation, overcomers of the 666 era, are given prominence as they come into the glory. They head up the parade of all the saints who belong to Christ who come up from their graves in the Resurrection, which John is clearly told is the First Resurrection. So the Resurrection of the righteous dead comes after the Great Tribulation.
STEP 2 (foundational Biblical truth #2) We read in 1Thes. 4:15-17 and in 1Cor. 15:51-53 that the Rapture will be immediately preceded by the Resurrection of the righteous dead. So there can be no Rapture without the accompanying Resurrection which immediately precedes it. So there is to be a Resurrection-Rapture of all the saints. And this is what our Bible teachers really should have been speaking of all along.
STEP 3 - CONCLUSION
The combined Resurrection-Rapture obviously includes the Resurrection which
as we have seen in STEP 1 above comes after the Great Tribulation.
So the Rapture comes after the Great Tribulation and is a Post Tribulation Rapture.
THE RESURRECTION-RAPTURE WILL SEE THE SAINTS GO TO THEIR REWARD.
SO THERE MUST BE AN EPIC SUMMING UP OF PEOPLE"S LIVES BY THE RETURNING MESSIAH
BEFORE WRATH FALLS ON THE WICKED AND BEFORE THE REDEEMED GO UP IN THE GLORY.
THIS FINAL DAY OF ACCOUNTING/ATONEMENT MUST ALSO BE THE " LAST DAY" OF THIS AGE.
SO THE RESURRECTION-RAPTURE CANNOT POSSIBLY PRECEDE THIS DAY OF RECKONING,
THIS FINAL WRAP-UP DAY, THIS DAY OF ATONEMENT AT THE LAST DAY OF THIS EVIL AGE.
Painting by Jewish artist Yossi Rosenstein
This is a magnificent prophetic picture of the
final Day of Reconciliation and the epic climactic
regathering of the Elect from both houses of Israel.
Click on the image to go to the website article
on the Day of Atonement.
Click HERE to purchase prints from
the Israeli Poster Center.
Here is another issue that relates to the Fall Feasts of Israel. If we think about this for a moment the glorification of the saints must of necessity follow the Day of Atonement. This final Day of Reckoning must come at the "last day" of this age. God cannot terminate this age until that final Day of Accounting is over and finished. And as we are beginning to see, the Day of Atonement, the sixth of the Seven holidays of Israel, actually marks the terminus of this evil age. See the article on the Fall Feasts of Israel. The very next day the Day of the Lord opens up with the wrath of God being poured out in judgment upon the heads of the wicked. From what Jesus tells us in the parable of the wheat and the tares our Resurrection-Rapture will follow that grim reaping when the wicked are plucked up by evil angels of wrath as tares for the fires. See Matthew 13:30.
If John the Beloved calls this Resurrection of the righteous dead the 'First Resurrection" then we can safely surmise that there will be a Second Resurrection. Just as the First Resurrection wrapped up this present evil age the Second Resurrection will follow the Great White Throne Judgment and wrap up the future glorious 1,000 year Millennial Age of Messiah.
So let us make no mistake about this. This "First Resurrection" in which the Tribulation Saints get special mention is a very important all encompassing event for this age and a very late event as well! It occurs "after the (Great) Tribulation". All saints are gathered at once. This "First Resurrection" wraps up this present evil age. And the Bible only speaks of one Resurrection at the end of our age, and only one!
The Resurrection of the righteous dead is the big all inclusive "First Resurrection" mentioned by John in Revelation 20:4-6.
John refers to it as the first Resurrection. So we must not dicker with the Holy Scriptures and presume to insert a separate earlier resurrection of the just just to suit our fancies. There can be no resurrection of the just before this First Resurrection of Revelation 20! The warnings against adding to the Bible are given at the end of the Book of Revelation. Bible teachers, myself included, we must beware! It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God.
No other resurrection of the saints can precede this Post Tribulation "First Resurrection" of Revelation 20:4-6.
So there cannot possibly be a Pre-Tribulation Resurrection!
From a Biblical perspective such a notion is absolutely and totally impossible.
Now let us look at some more solid Biblical evidence of a late Resurrection-Rapture.
We know from the Olivet Discourse that the Elect will be gathered to the returning Christ at the Second Coming. A Freemason directed church hierarchy has ordained and decreed that dispensationalist churchmen will speak of two elects and two Second Comings, - or lose their job. But one Elect. And the Bible only speaks of one Second Coming of Christ.
So when is this epic gathering of the Elect?
And yes, Jesus only spoke of
one single unified Elect, not two.
Will the gathering of the Elect come before the Great Tribulation?
Or will Christ our Messiah be gathering His Elect after the Tribulation?
Again, the Bible speaks.
And Jesus Himself gives us a plain and simple answer.
Here are Jesus' own words on this important matter.
In the passage below He is talking to His trusted disciples including Peter, James and John.
There on the Mount of Olives Jesus tells them plainly when He will come to gather His Elect.
29. "Immediately of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.
30. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
31. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
Jesus tell His disciples that he will be coming to gather a single Elect. Notice He makes no division of His covenant people into those dispensational theological boxes we hear about, namely a Church Elect and an Israel Elect. Nor does He divide His Elect into an "Old Testament Elect" and a "New Testament - Church Age" Elect". Nor does He speak of a Jewish Elect and a Gentile Elect or a Church Elect and a "Left behind Jewish Elect saved by martyrdom, works, and the keeping of the Law". This matter of "who is the Elect" as it is dealt with by the western Evangelical is a travesty against the Holy Scriptures. The poor inquiring believer has to try to make some sense of this confused mess. This matter of the Elect is the most muddled conflicted twisted bamboozling web of religious disinformation the Church has ever coughed up and sputtered on.
A plain reading of the Bible regarding the Elect is very straightforward, simple, and elegant.
Jesus tells us in the Olivet Discourse that He would send His angels to gather His one Elect, singular.
He also tells us in Matthew 24:29 above that this gathering of His Elect will occur after the Tribulation.
Our Apostle Paul tells us in Galatians 3:28 that His Elect are 'all one in Christ Jesus'.
See here in Galatian 3:28.
In this same passage Jesus also tells us about the SIGN of His coming and the timing of that SIGN which would herald His coming to gather the Elect in the Resurrection-Rapture. The SIGN of the Son of Man would be seen in the heavens. This was THE SIGN about which the inner circle of Jesus disciples, Peter, James, and John specifically inquired about when Jesus was at the Temple and later on the Mount of Olives. See the Olivet Discourse. The SIGN, (singular), will be the SIGN OF THE SON OF MAN IN THE HEAVENS seen in those epic future days that would unfold with those awesome cosmic disturbances of a darkened sun, a bloody moon, and stars falling, probably in an unprecedented meteor shower of Biblical proportions.
29. "Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.
30. Then the SIGN of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Then after the coming of these cosmic signs
we have the gathering of the Elect
31. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they
will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of
heaven to the other.
31. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
The darkened sun and bloody moon are the key signpost to the post-tribulation days. These are in fact the cosmic signs time linked to the sixth seal. They occur late in the 70th week, towards the very end. What will have happened?
Apparently our present day man-centered God rejecting human government will have come to its final day of infamy.
Nuclear weapons will have been detonated. And Messiah is coming back to His creation to put a stop to it,
lest all flesh is destroyed.
Jesus Himself spoke of this awesome time in future world history.
"And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved;- Mat 24:22
but for the Elect’s sake those days will be shortened."
Joel describes the awful scene in very descriptive poetic language. "Blood, fire, and pillars of smoke". Fire and pillars of smoke. Take a look at that well known image of a nuclear bomb up above. Isn't this an accurate picture of a mushroom cloud from a nuclear explosion with hot smoke going up to fill the upper atmosphere? And would not this be expected to cause bloodshed on a scale never seen before in all of human history? And wouldn't we expect Messiah to intervene sovereignly in human history to, "cut short, (amputate) the days? To put a stop to this infamy!
Thank goodness most of the saints, especially the women and children, will be safe in exile when this great international calamity happens. Because this prophecy will surely unfold to destroy the cities of the nations. See Revelation 16:17,18,19. These will be awful days for unregenerate mankind as human history rocks up towards the end of the 70th Week of Daniel and as we come towards the close of this present evil age.
These are the cosmic signs that mark the 6th Seal. The sun will be darkened. All that smoke will be going up into the stratosphere to be carried east with the jetstream. A bloody moon will be seen by people all around the earth. These are the epic cataclysmic 6th seal post-tribulational cosmic signs seen by the prophet Joel 2600 years ago. (Joel 2:31-32)
These cosmic disturbances are also associated with the Battle of Armageddon. This epic battle will be fought at the very end of the final 7 years of this age. These 6th seal cosmic signs indicate that 5th seal witness of the saints has ended. The Great Tribulation in the latter half of the 70th Week is now over. We are in the days between day 1260 and day 1290. From our studies of the Fall Feasts of the Lord it is now becoming clear that this day 1290 spoken of by the prophet Daniel and counted out from the mid 70th Week Abomination of Desolation is the very last day of this age. It is in fact Judgment Day, the Day of Reckoning, Day of Reconciliation of Accounts, Day of Sentencing, Day of Pardoning, the Judgment seat of Christ/Messiah, Day of Covering, Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, the final day of this age. And God is pleading with the nations for those final 30 days.
On this 10th day of Tishri the trumpets of Jubilee are sounded, announcing the Year of Jubilee, the first year of the Millennium of Messiah. See this YouTube video.
Yes, this will be a blockbuster day in holy history. Then what happens?
At sunset the Day of Atonement ends. All legal issues have been wrapped up. As the sun sets on that day the Day of the Lord will open up for execution of Messiah's Judgment. The heavens will roll back on this unknown time period, the Day of the Lord, to unveil Messiah at His Second Coming.
It is an axiom of law that there can be no execution before there has been a sentencing. Now that the legal affairs of the Day of Atonement have been concluded and the courts of heaven adjourned holy matters will move on to execution of the judgment. As we saw in the Parable of the Wheat and the Tares/Weeds the tares are gathered first. See Matthew 13:30. Jesus was very clear about this. He said that the angels of wrath will go first. These grim reapers will be loosed upon the wicked, plucking them up from the ground amidst much kicking and screaming, to terminate the existence of wicked men here on earth. Then at some unknown day and hour the holy angels of God's redemption and salvation will be sent to gather God's Elect from the four winds and across to the far corners of this planet.
Will there be people left alive here on earth at that time? Oh yes. See this article which addresses the question, "Who will populate the Millennium of Messiah?" People left alive at the end of the age who are not saved and not wicked rebels against God will then be subject to the Sheep-Goat Judgment. This is a judgment of mortals for entry into the Millennium of Messiah. Some, (the sheep), will be given passports into the Kingdom of God. And some, (the goats) will not. Remember too what Jesus said about the little children who came to Him? Remember His disciples wanted to exclude them? Remember too what Jesus said in the Beattitudes concerning those who mourn? Are these people to be damned for all eternity just because in this wicked world they never got a proper chance to hear God's Good News of the Gospel?
Further light is shed on this subject by the accepted Levitical sacrifice of the two turtledoves.
by Alfred Soord (1868-1915)
Ezekiel 34- Ezek. 34:12
12 'As a shepherd seeks out his flock on the day he is among his scattered sheep, so will I seek out My sheep and deliver them from all the places where they were scattered on a cloudy and dark day.'
This will be an awesome scene. The righteous dead will come out of their graves in the Resurrection. And then the living saints are gathered in the Rapture. Something will have happened to the atmosphere around the earth. And the world is about to be judged. And yet here at the climax of holy history we are told that there will be a magnificent rescue of God's covenant people. Weknow that Messiah will intervene on behalf of His Holy City Jerusalem in His action at Armageddon. But there is more. The prophet Isaiah saw Him return and make an appearance at a place of mystery known as Bozrah. The prophet Micah brings additional information. He speaks of the Bozrah Deliverance.
So at the climax of the age
we see a single triumphant party gathered together as one.
They are gathering together around
the returning Christ.
All of His Elect Congregation spanning 4,000 years plus
are gathered together as one.
They are one united 'called out' company,
the 'ekklesia'/congregation of God.
They are the remnant Church / remnant Israel coming into confluence together
as a 'royal priesthood and a holy nation'. (1Pet.2:9)
The returning Christ will be gathering all who are in Christ.
All who belong to the God of Israel will be there.
At the "great sound of the trumpet"
all the saints will be gathered as a
They are glorified into new bodies from among the living and from among the dead.
They come from all races, from among both the Jews and the Gentiles,
and from both sides of Calvary,
and from all around the world.
Jesus Himself said that He would return to gather His Elect from
"the four winds of heaven", from
across space and time. He gathers His own from across the
racial divides of Israel and out from the clutches of the
heathen gentile nations. He gathers His people
from beyond the gates of Sheol and brings them home.
He draws them out from across the very borders of life and death.
What a magnificent harvest this will be!
FINALLY THE DISPENSATIONALISTS WERE READY TO PULL OFF THEIR FINAL THEOLOGICAL CAPER.
THEY SPLIT OFF THE RESURRECTED SAINTS AND PULLED THEM AWAY FROM THE RAPTURED SAINTS.
THEN THEY PROCEEDED TO HIDE, "CLOAK", "SMOKESCREEN" THE RESURRECTION OF THE RIGHTEOUS DEAD.
ALL THIS WAS EXPEDIENT IN ORDER FOR THEM TO LAY OUT AN ISOLATED EARLY RAPTURE OF THE CHURCH.
. . / . . / . . / . . / . . ALL THIS CHOPPING AND CHANGING. . / . . / . . / . . / . .
AND THE PRE-TRIBULATION RAPTURE DOCTRINE EMERGES AT ABOUT THE SAME TIME.
Nelson Darby (1800 - 1882)
You see, the Bible makes no allowances for chopping and changing, dividing and conquering, or trying to dissect and analyze the covenant people of God. The Bible speaks of one single unified, undivided Chosen People. And God's Word shows them all coming to their ultimate glorification at the end of the age together. As we search the Holy Scriptures we discover that the covenant people of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are a single unified company. As God views them this company of people is an indivisible single Elect.
But rationalistic modern churchmen think otherwise. (And post-modern churchmen have decided not think about these matters much at all). And so in this study we shall notice a very very curious thing. We shall discover that certain key 19th century Anglo-American churchmen set up an eschatology which did not recognize the Biblically established unity of all the saints. Instead of going with the Bible they set to work to craft a new device to process the Holy Scriptures which they called dispensational theology. They then proceeded to chop the saints of the Bible up into seven different dispensations or theological boxes.
Well this is a strange business.
Are we therefore left to suppose that God lays out seven different covenants for the redemption and salvation of His people?
What saith the scripture? Are not all saved by grace through faith in the atoning blood of Israel's Sacrifice Lamb?
So these theologians, (if they actually were theologians), failed to recognize and respect God's covenant people as a single Elect. They refused to acknowledge that the Old Testament saints and New Testament saints were all part of one passing parade. All are saved by grace through faith in the atoning blood of Israel's Sacrifice Lamb, Jesus Christ, Yeshua Hamashiach. The Holy Scriptures set forth no such compartments to divide God's Elect, not even between the Church and Israel or Jews and Gentiles. Our Apostle Paul calls the children of Israel at Sinai the "Church in the wilderness" does he not? (See Acts 7:38) All the saints from both sides of Calvary were the Elect of the most High God, the Holy One of Israel. Each one was bringing their witness to the Eternal Covenant as one of the myriad company of Abraham. One day, at the close of this age we shall all be sitting at the same table at the same Marriage Supper of the Lamb. All these dear and precious saints of former times will be there with us. We see them showcased here in Hebrews 11. They were shining lights in their day, even as the stars in the vault of heaven. Their lives shone brightly as they made their passage through the dark centuries here on earth.
Cyrus I Scofield (1843 - 1921)
So what was going on here?
What were they up to?
Why did they do this?
This chopping up of holy history into seven ages is not all that dispensationalists have done. They have also used their Hellenizing, compartmentalizing, Alexandrian mindset to craft a dispensational approach to theology. And so when it became expedient to arbitrarily chop up the Resurrection-Rapture they went ahead and did it. This dispensational "chop and change" theology began over 150 years ago. The Pre-Tribulation Rapture popped up in the middle of it all, about the same time. This is interesting. Most evangelicals are in the dark and completely unaware of all this.
It is important for Christians in the West to know that dispensationalists have taken over the leadership of the American evangelical family. They have also re-engineered the eschatology to deliver up a Pre-Tribulation Rapture to please the merchants and the masses.
It is important for Christians to know that the evangelical theology we have today is not all bad. In most ways it is quite sound. One very faithful work they 19th Century evangelical churchmen did was lay out Daniel's 70 Weeks prophecy with a true and correct timeline. They went with Sir Robert Anderson's wonderful work on Daniel's prophecy of the Seventy Weeks. Quite correctly they have the first 69 weeks of years terminating on Palm Sunday of the passion year. Dispensationalists correctly teach a future 70th Week, and for this they should be given enormous credit. The older Reformed Churches are still in the Amillennialism of the Roman medieval Church. But unfortunately popular Dispensationalist teaching insists on placing a special early Rapture into the time line just as that final 70th Week of Daniel begins. This Pre-Trib Rapture doctrine, popular though it might be with the church-going masses, is hopelessly flawed. Many of the jig saw puzzle pieces of the end time picture are missing or twisted around. Other pieces of the puzzle are jammed into the wrong places.
This attempt to force a Pre-Tribulation rapture seven years before the last day at the end of this age is most unfortunate. It is throwing up a confusing mess of quasi-biblical disinformation. As we shall discover from the Holy Scriptures we have highlighted in this article, a separate early rapture coming seven years before the "last day" has been forced upon the Holy Scriptures. It is without any Biblical foundation whatsoever.
Dispensationalists began their dividing asunder of the holy people back in the 19th Century. This was happening just as the machine age was building up a lot of steam. During this time the German theology schools were being set up within the universities. Naturally they came under the influence of the secular thinking that was then extant in the universities, namely a secular humanistic rationalism. The popular culture was also imbibing this heady rationalistic potion as well. They were looking at the wondeful engineering progress that man was achieving and rejoicing in the triumph of human reason exhibited in literary characters like Sherlock Holms. The names Nelson Darby and C.I. Scofield are well known as movers and shakers of that era. Both of these men were instrumental in advancing an attempt to rationalize the Apocalyptic Scriptures using human reason.
These were the men who gave birth to dispensationalist theology in the American Church. The Scofield Reference Bible came out quite early in the 20th century, bundled as it was, and still is, with a heavy dispensationalist commentary in the footnotes and study guides. The Scofield Bible has been very popular with American and other English-speaking evangelicals ever since. Scofield's footnotes themselves were, (and still are), revered as "Gospel truth" by a large body of Christians in America. For many Bible readers those Scofield footnotes, (like the Jewish Mishna and Talmud commentaries on the Old Testament), have been considered to be virtually inspired.
Who were these men? And what was the agenda behind all this division and splitting up of the holy things of God? Why did they consider it necessary to compartmentalize God's covenant people of Grace into seven ages? Is God's house a vaticanized house with bricked in rooms? By whose authority and by what scriptural basis have these dispensationalists, (and not a few of them rough riding Texas cowboy preachers), herded up the saints into seven corals? Are not all of the saints redeemed by grace through faith in the same atoning blood, the blood of Israel's Sacrifice Lamb, even our Lord Jesus Christ? Will not all of us be sitting down together at one table the Marriage Supper of the Lamb?
Dear saints, we are not to judge people before the time. But we must be responsible and discern the spirits at work, even among ministers we trust. This, after all, is one of the gifts we are given in the Holy Spirit. Jesus called us to be "as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves".
The facts are plain. Deceiving religious spirits pulling the strings of compromised Christian churchmen, have craftily disconnected and unhitched the Rapture of the living saints from its proper place which is immediately following the Resurrection of the righteous dead. Then they have "submerged" the Resurrection of the righteous dead in a confused sea of theological discussions concerning the broad general topic of "resurrections".
There is no Biblical basis for this subterfuge. None whatsoever.
So we are left with one conclusion.
The reason it was done must have been for some hidden non-Biblical purpose.
So let us ask ourselves this question. Why was it necessary to separate off the Resurrection from the Rapture? Why was it expedient to hide the resurrection of the righteous dead away from Christians in their Bible study and away from Christian conversation? Apparently this "spiriting away" of the Resurrection from the Rapture had become a matter of some expedience.
Let us look at what happened again. The dividing asunder of the Resurrection-Rapture was job #1. Then this "vanishing act" performed upon the Resurrection of the righteous dead was job #2. This then completed the obfuscation of Biblical truth concerning the combined Resurrection-Rapture at the last day.
So why was this Resurrection hide-away such a big deal?
Why did all Evangelical conversation about the Resurrection of the righteous dead have to "go away"?
Why was the whole subject of the Resurrection made to vanish, like stardust under the wand of Tinker Bell?
Why was it necessary to hide the Resurrection of the righteous dead under a religious smokescreen?
Well this is where the plot thickens. It was necessary to do this "spiriting away" of the Resurrection in order to promote a new doctrine. The new doctrine being floated in the 19th Century was the notion of an isolated early Rapture, namely the Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine.
So, you see, these Anglo-American churchmen wanted desperately to launch this Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine. And they probably had some very good socio-political reasons for doing this. But there was a problem. Most sincere Bible believing saints would know from their Bible reading that the Resurrection comes at the "last day". So in order for the Rapture to be pulled forward seven years the Rapture had to be cut loose from its last day Resurrection moorings. The Rapture had to be avulsed. It had to be chopped off from the Resurrection. Then, to complete the illusion of this early Pre-Tribulation Rapture the Resurrection with its "last day" baggage had to be made to "go away".
Is this why the Resurrection of the righteous dead had to be shipped out into a theological no-man's land? Is this why, to this day, the subject of the Resurrection of the righteous dead has been "cloaked" in religious resurrection gobbledygook?
Oh yes, the Resurrection had to be religiously "cloaked" and never brought up into end-time Biblical discussions.
If it had not been hidden away then there would have been a lot of embarrassing questions.
Like this one.
When is the Resurrection of the righteous dead?
Will it come before the tribulation, (bundled up with a Rapture coming seven years early)?
Or will it come after the tribulation,
. . . . . . . . . . . . . like at the last day?
For a good Biblically accurate answer see this wonderful sermon by faithful 19th Century English preacher Charles Spurgeon.
See also this article on the Resurrection of the righteous dead by Paul Phelps.
Of course these questions concerning the timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead would have been very awkward questions for Pre-Tribulation Rapture Bible teachers to answer. So this separating off and spiriting away of the Resurrection of the righteous dead became quite necessary as the doctrine of an early Rapture was being re-engineered, crafted and prepared to go public. This is why the magnificent last day glorification of the saints, the Resurrection-Rapture, has been given the chop. Dispensationalist theologians have quietly split the glorification of the saints into two disconnected events. for a purpose.
As we shall see from the Scriptures we bring out in this article these men were not Holy Spirit led in their dividing of the end-time Elect. But the evidence indicates that they were truly "purpose driven". That is, they did on purpose and for a purpose.
You will notice that popular Bible prophecy teachers talk unendingly about "The Rapture". But they studiously omit any reference to the accompanying Resurrection, the raising up of "those who are Christ's". (See 1Cor. 15:20-23)
Please note, we are not sitting in judgment of people here. Only the Master of us all is authorized to do that. People are still in the process of learning about themselves and the hidden motives of the heart. It is only the Holy Scriptures and the guidance and direction of the Holy Spirit that brings home to us as Christian believers the reality of spiritual seductions and religious witchcraft. Most people are completely unaware of the way they are being brainwashed. But in the devotion and lovingkindness of God we enter into spiritual warfare as faithful agents and witnesses to the God of Israel. And so in Christ our Messiah we come to discern the spirits, spirits that inhabit and energize doctrines and direct human beings into certain modes of thinking. As Christian believers we are in a spiritual war and all wars are information wars. So our warfare is heavily involved with God's holy revealed Word. We can all bow to God in humility here. None of us has the whole picture. And all of us are being deceived to varying degrees and in different ways.
So with that said let us make one point very clear. There is every reason to believe that the vast majority of those who teach the Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine are quite sincere. Most of them are beloved Bible teachers to whom we owe much. And this is what make this matter so strange and surreal. Their Pre-Tribulation Rapture scenario for the latter days is unquestionably flawed. But in most cases the other doctrines they teach are Biblically well founded.
But we must square with the Bible here. Their Pre-Trib Rapture teaching, while it may be the accepted church tradition, is in direct conflict with the Holy Scriptures. So we are bound to conclude that these Bible teachers are under some sort of spiritual, social, or economic coercion to toe the party line. In many cases it appears that they are under a spell. They do not realize that they have been deceived. And when the Scriptures are laid out in 1Thes. 4:15-17 to show a combined Resurrection-Rapture and then Revelation 20:4-6 is opened to show the obviously late Resurrection of the Tribulation martyrs who died refusing 666 and then with the Holy Spirit telling them that this is the FIRST RESURRECTION they still don't "see" it.
And why don't they "see it". It appears they are under a spell woven by very cunning highly intelligent religious spirits. They do not realize that they have been deceived. They have been drawn into a complicated conflicted web of religious chicanery.
Pre-Trib Rapture teachers virtually always refer to the Rapture to the exclusion of the Resurrection.
Without even realizing it they give the timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead the "silent treatment".
And yet this magnificent epic Resurrection event accompanies and actually precedes the Rapture!
What is going on here?
A good indication that the religious spirits are trying to foist a "cover-up" is as follows. Whenever the truth is pointed out to a teacher under religious witchcraft they exhibit certain behaviors. Typically they jump off the point being discussed. They do not respond to the question at hand as the Bereans did and dig into the Scriptures to see if these things are so. Instead, people under a spell or guarding an uncomfortable hidden truth become uncomfortable, white knuckled, and defensive. Sometimes they withdraw from the conversation. Sometimes they become angry and strike out against the messenger.
This sort of response is well know to those who have debated on Bible prophecy forums. These visceral types of reaction to the unveiling of an uncomfortable truth is also something with which police investigators and psychiatrists are quite familiar.
But we are talking here of Christians, devoted to Christ! This is why it is so amazing. And it is so disconcerting to see Christians showing this evasiveness and this discomfiture with Biblical truth. But we saw it on the forums day in and day out. And you can test this for yourself. Bible teachers who promote the Pre-Tribulation Rapture scenario always become very uncomfortable when they are asked about the timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead.
"When will the saints who have passed on come up from their graves?
When will the sea give up its dead saints in the Resurrection of the righteous dead?
Will it be before the tribulation?
Or will it be after the tribulation?
My experience with asking this question was on a national call-in radio show. I was on the line with some beloved Bible teachers who are among the most devoted and Biblically sound Bible scholars on earth. My experience that evening was truly a revelation. I was polite but insistent on addressing this question of the timing of the Resurrection of the righteous dead. But they simply would not answer it. They carefully dodged the question and obfuscated it into a broad theological categorization and discussion of the concept and scope of "resurrection" beginning with the resurrection of Jesus and Lazarus and so on. Then they asked to speak with me off the air.
It was surreal. This was a simple straightforward question. But instead of an answer in the Light of God's Word I could feel a dark cloak of disinformation descending down upon the whole discussion. I was appalled. Dumbstruck would be a better word for it. It was as if I had stepped off the planet and stepped into the Twilight Zone. It was one of the spookiest experiences of my entire Christian life.
This experience, along with what we had earlier encountered on the Bible prophecy forums,
clearly indicated that in this matter of timing of the rapture we were not engaged in
merely an intellectual discussion of "the facts". The issue we were dealing with was highly charged from
an emotional perspective. So this was more than just a Biblical discussion and a rational search for truth.
It was very much a matter of the heart. It was then I began to realize that we needed to approach the subject from a devotional perspective.
Because this whole subject hinges around the issue of blood covenant witness under trial in the latter days.
BUT WILL THE HOLY SPIRIT REALLY "WALK OUT" ON HUMANITY DURING THE 70TH WEEK OF DANIEL? IS HE NOT PART OF THE GODHEAD AND THEREFORE OMNIPRESENT. AND WON'T THE SAINTS WILL BE NEEDING THE HOLY SPIRIT MORE THAN ANY OTHER TIME DURING THOSE LAST DAYS OF THIS EVIL AGE?
The Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine has chopped up things so much that it has left us with many points of disconnection. Here is an important blood covenant issue that calls for our attention. Who gave dispensationalist splitters the authority to begin their so called "Age of Grace" or "Age of the Church" at the cross or at Pentecost? How were the saints in Old Testament times drawn to YHVH-God, if not by the Ruach Hadesh, the Holy Spirit? And by what right do they then proceed to terminate their "Age of Grace" seven years before the end of this age? Will God really yank out His Holy Spirit from off the planet during that final seven year time period? He has never exited any part of His cosmos before. We know as a matter of basic Christian doctrine that our God is omnipresent. According to the Psalmist in Psalm 139 God's Presence is readily accessible throughout the entire universe, even in Hades itself. Here is what King David declared in his song.
7 Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
8 If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.
9 If I take the wings of the morning,
And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 Even there Your hand shall lead me,
And Your right hand shall hold me.
Does grace "fall short" and end seven years before the consummation? Will the work of the Holy Spirit terminate seven years before the runners finish the race? Will God by His Holy Spirit abandon us even as in Him we strain towards the prize of the high calling? Will God absent Himself from His creation and His people? Will He "go AWOL"? Will the Holy Spirit really desert God's yet to be saved end-time Jewish remnant? And what about the Tribulation saints we see in Revelation 7? Will the Holy Spirit absent Himself from His saints during their time of trial and witness?
God forbid that we even think of such a thing!
Dear saints, we need to be extremely careful of accepting this notion of a seven year "dead zone" or "no responsibility zone" for the Congregation of Messiah at the end of this age. When He was departing 2,000 years ago Jesus charged His disciples with a certain commission, even the Great Commission.
Is He not still commissioning His disciples today?
Let us take a careful look at this.
Here below are our Commissioning Papers!
And be sure of this:
even to the end of the age."
Have we taken a close look at our Commissioning Papers?
Have we taken Jesus's Holy Word to heart here?
Now, go ahead and take a deep breath.
And let us ask ourselves this question.
Just when does our Commission expire?
Right there in our commissioning papers does not Jesus Himself declare that He will be with His His covenant people, always, even right through to the very "end of the age"?
Is there any hint here that our Commission will be expiring earlier than the end of the age?
Is there one scaric of evidence that our Commission terminates seven years before the end of the age?
Many Christian investigators are now looking into this question of the sectioning of the Resurrection-Rapture.. Some have begun to piece together what probably happened here. Who was behind all this? Can we discern the spirits at work here?
Of course we must remember that we now live in a democracy. Some even speak of it now becoming a mobocracy. We also live in a merchant society. Whatever sells goes. Is this Pre-Tribulation Rapture, (with a smoke-screened ecclesiastically "cloaked" Resurrection), something that the "middle of the road" Christian crowds wanted. Are they buying into this just as they would purchase any other thing they fancied?
Thank goodness we no longer live in the 16th century and have to endure domination by the Church of Rome or the Church of King Henry. But what has replaced the state churches of Europe, the Churches that dominated Christendom in former times? Is Biblical Christian faith advancing as we have been led to believe that it is?
It seems that the American style religion of the merchants is now in the place of prominence.
But are we lifting up Biblical truth as we claim to be doing?
Let us consider this dissecting away of the Rapture from the Resurrection. Was it a necessary compromise? If so what for? Does the end justify the means? Was all this done just to present a Pre-Tribulation Rapture? Do we bend the Holy Scriptures just to tickle the ears of the church-going masses? Was this merely another ecclesiastical indulgence, a merchandising of popular eschatology for the religious masses? Was God's Holy Word being reprocessed, sugar coated, and repackaged as a sort of "Eschatology Lite"? And what are we to say about our Christian writers, Christian film-makers and Christian bookstores? Are they compromised too, and primarily interested in the "bottom line"? Have the holy things of God now been brought down low to become just money making entertainment for carnal Christians?
We might wonder about this when we see the huge "success" of the present day "Left Behind" religious lore. Do we realize that the doctrine does not exist in China? (See Corrie Ten Boom's message to the Western Church).
So who constructed this early escape Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine? And were these religious leaders just motivated by mammon? Or was there a political agenda important for the latter days that we are not being told about? Did these churchmen have Freemason connections? What was going on here?
When we stand back and have a close look at what dispensational Bible teachers have done here we cannot help but be impressed with the sheer brashness of these men. This dividing asunder of the last day glorification of all the saints was a highly presumptuous act before God. And why did these theologians find it expedient to divide God's saints into seven boxes? There was no solid Biblical basis or reason for doing this. Did God make seven different deals with His covenant people which changed abruptly as the centuries and time segments clicked by? Or did this division into seven ages make it theologically easier for churchmen to go on and put a cleaver between the Resurrection of the righteous dead at the Last Day and their specially crafted early Rapture coming seven years before God wrapped things up?
As we see, there is something happening here.
And what it is is not exactly clear.
But the facts are there for all to see. The Last Day glorification of the saints has been divided asunder. There is no good Biblical reason for doing this. But nevertheless, the deed was done, and very deliberately by dispensationalist theologians. Apparently they had a lot of money to popularize and present their views. How did this happen? And Why?
As we begin to look into this matter we can begin to see this. The last day glorification of the saints was split in two for a specific purpose. It was chopped up in order to unhitch the Rapture from the Resurrection and bring it forward seven years.
We know that the Christian crowds have wanted it this way. And they are buying it. There is a huge money trail here with billions of dollars per year going into the till. But is there more to the story? Was the Pre-Tribulation Rapture crafted for another specific "purpose". Could it be that this was done for political reasons?
Americans sing the Battle Hymn of the Republic. Deep in their collective psyche Biblical Christians know that their present day superpower, the Pax Americana, will probably abut into a New World Order and the last seven years of this age.
So let us pause here and ask this question. Has a certain quieting of evangelical concerns about the last days become important? Is it necessary for the sake of civil peace? Is this syrupy end-time theology part of some secret social engineering? Was it considered necessary to keep the crowds "quiet" and off the streets. The crafting of a "seeker friendly" eschatology could well have been a part of all this. Had this development of a soporific 'feel-good' doctrine of the latter days become a matter of politico-theological expedience?
This is not a matter to dismiss lightly. And we must not be too hasty to judge. Disturbed carnal Christians can be among the most dangerous, even deadly, people on earth. Just take a look at the new video, 'Luther'. Do we remember the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, the terrible Reformation wars? For those who know Church history this concern of the powers over Christian anger and Christian ultra-nationalism is quite understandable. The dangers of Christians with swords or Christians with guns is very real.
So we are left to answer this question. Did God, in His sovereign oversight, allow this Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine, false though it may be, to be established in the English speaking world? Was this the lesser of two evils?
Perhaps this was the way it had to be. Perhaps carnal Christians do not deserve to have the inside scoop. The carnal Christian crowds are clearly not preparing themselves for the end-time witness. They have voted with their feet and wallets. Apparently their pursuit of happiness and their desire to have a nice day is their agenda. Someone is knocking at the door. But they do not want to be disturbed. And like the Shulamite in her dream she did not want to get up from her comfortable bed of ease. It seems that most evangelical Christians in the west want the Pre-Tribulation Rapture teaching right now.
But as we are beginning to see, this doctrine of a special early Rapture is not Biblically correct.
So even if it is a popular belief it cannot be God's perfect will for His covenant people.
But here is the crux of the matter.
Could this teaching have been His permissive will for rank-and-file Christians?
Did God actually allow this deception to go out for the middle of the road Christian crowds?
This is an awesome possibility and we should approach it in the fear of God.
Remember what Jesus told His true disciples concerning the hidden information concerning the Kingdom of Heaven?
He said that He spoke in parables so that only His true followers would ponder His words and come to understand.
Click here to see the passage in Matthew 13.
And do we not remember what God told the prophet Isaiah in
Isaiah chapter 6?
Here is the mp3 for your iPod.
And here is the wma for your Windows Media Player.
Of course for committed devoted Christians, (as we have in Indonesia, China, and other places), the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth will do. These are the people who are right now suffering and dying for the faith. They make it their business to seek out Biblical truth. They deserve good information. They can also be trusted to make good their spiritual preparation against the coming night.
So as we have seen, this dividing asunder of the Biblically united Resurrection-Rapture was very strange. It was clearly a very deliberate ecclesiastical action. And as we are beginning to see it is quite contradictory to the Holy Scriptures. And there must have been a very important reason and a "purpose" behind all this. Devoted Biblical Christians deserve to know the truth. So we shall be looking further into these matters as we go on into this article.
Let us stop and consider what we have learned so far from the Holy Scriptures.
So far we have established from God's Holy Word that there is to be a combined Resurrection-Rapture.
Pray God that Biblical Christians come to speak of it and to think of it as the "Resurrection-Rapture"
. ...... instead of just talking glibly about "The Rapture".
In this article we shall also discover something else.
The Pre-Tribulation rapture doctrine is a "two timer".
The doctrine has Jesus coming back twice.
Pause and think about that for a moment.
Might this lead people into a conflicted confused end-time scenario?
For example, if there are two second comings as they maintain, let us ask ourselves this question.
Where do we place the Resurrection of the righteous dead?
As we have discovered, that is a very embarrassing question.
On the other hand we have the straight shooting Post-Tribulation Resurrection-Rapture.
The end-time scenario here is simple and elegant.
The doctrine arises simply and easily from the Holy Scriptures.
It has Him coming once, at the end of the age.
In this article we shall also see how Christians today have been slyly taught a very dangerous doctrine. Christians are being quietly and surreptitiously led to believe that Israel and the Church are two different Elects. They are being led to believe that there will be no resolution of this Church-Israel dichotomy now or at any time in the future. Not surprisingly Evangelical Christians believe that the schism will last for all eternity.
This is an ominous state of affairs. The logical consequences of this should be quite obvious. Whilst talking loudly about how wrong "Replacement Theology" is today's Biblical Christians are being led down the garden path to a very similar and very wrong conclusion. They are being led to believe that the God of Israel, the God who came to us in the flesh as Jesus Christ, will draw to Himself two separate Chosen peoples and that He as Messiah will never resolve the differences between the two and draw them together in Himself. This is selling our Messiah short. And why? Because He Himself is the bridge over these troubled waters and all the promises to restore both houses, and all 12 tribes of Israel are all through the Holy Scriptures including the beautiful prophetic poetry of the Old Testament.
Dear saints, this is a matter of great concern. The West is now entering into a serious economic decline. People of the flesh, (and many Christians among them), are beginning to rage in the manner of the heathen of Psalm 2 and rail against the future Messianic rule that is coming down from above. They are jealous of their Jewish brethren. Some are starting to say quite openly some harsh and untrue things concerning the bankers. Christians have been rambunctious Anti-Semitic crusaders during these past 1700 years. Those were some unfortunate and shameful histories. They could repeat themselves in our time if we are not careful. We must address this bad theology of "Replacement Theology", separate plans for Israel and the "Church" and an implied "apartheid of the Elect" and correct it, pronto!
So this is now a matter of some urgency. This dispensational separation and alienation of Israel from "The Church" presupposes two Elects. This in turn necessitates two Covenants, one being for "The Church" and one for "The Jews". This theology virtually guarantees misunderstanding and grief between the two parties during the difficult times to come. This is why the Post Tribulation Resurrection-Rapture needs to be taught.
We might say,
"Well, who cares? After all, isn't this just "religion" we are talking about here?"
Then someone might quickly answer,
"Yes. But so was the speech of Pope Urban at the Council of Clerment in France in 1095."
Of course we know what happened there.
The medieval Roman Pope preached a terrible sermon.
And the first Crusade reared its ugly head.
Are there similar concerns about our dominionist churchmen today?
Of course the carnal Christian message on that epic day had grave consequences for many people.
And the histories that ensued brought a series a huge international and Anti-Semitic tragedies .....
The Medieval Church was blighted by blood guiltiness on a massive scale.
She has not yet apologized for the outrageous behaviors of her crusading warrior monks.
So this matter of two Elects is not just a theological issue for religious nerds. This doctrine is right now espousing an "apartheid of the Elect". It makes no allowance for a reconciliation of the two estranged houses of Israel. But our Savior Messiah will regather and re-unite all His covenant people as we come to the climax of the age.
This is bad business. And as is amply demonstrated from Church history an incorrect or indifferent appreciation of the role of the royal Jewish House of Judah is a dangerous ideology. A bad or corrupted doctrine of Israel tends to give rise to a very deadly political impulse. In times to come this erroneous religious belief could work in Christendom to throw up another round of violent anti-Semitic history. Just like "Replacement Theology" has in the former Spanish, French, and German eras a flawed doctrine regarding the destiny of Israel could again produce some grievous consequences for our Jewish brethren. If this corrupted Israelology is not corrected soon, it may also prove to be very very unfortunate for us in the Church as well.
Let's look at the Biblical facts here. Our Lord Jesus is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. And Judah is the royal Jewish tribe. Yeshua/Jesus is our High Priest. He wears the breastplate of the High Priest with 12 jewels representing all of the 12 tribes of Israel. One of the 12 is the Jewish stone of Judah. Then there are the others, including ten tribes of the Northern Kingdom which were taken captive by the Assyrians in 722 B.C.. They never returned in sovereign numbers so they are now "lost". All of these lost ten tribes must be found. This mystery must be revealed if Israel is to be fully restored. This glorious end-time restoration of Israel is spoken of throughout the prophetic poetry of the Old Testament and in Romans 11 our Apostle Paul makes it abundantly clear that this will happen.
And so what is to become of our yet to be saved Jewish brethren? We are told in Zechariah 12 and Joel 2:28-32 they will indeed be saved in an epic spiritual salvation combined with a national deliverance that will be seen at Jezreel/Armageddon and out at the ends of the earth at Bozrah. If the God of Israel is going to be saving a huge new company of saints from out of the Jewish House of Judah and if He will be finding all 12 tribes then we must conclude that He will be healing the Breach of Jeroboam. Will He be re-uniting the Kingdom of Israel, divided and feuding now for over 2900 years? Will Israel be restored as a Nation and a Congregation, that glorious company of the righteous and the redeemed, even that mysteriously cross-linked royal priesthood and holy nation Moses and the Apostle Peter both spoke about? Are their two witnesses to Christ/Messiah in view here, a witness to His Law and a witness to His Grace? Is this the dual witness wherein our returning Messiah will be glorifying His single Elect, even the complete and fully restored Nation and Church, the Congregation and Commonwealth of Israel? Will the Holy One of Israel restore the Union and the Beauty to Israel at His return, and thereby bring the holy history of this age to its glorious conclusion?
Oh yes. Most assuredly He will.
In the latter days we shall see Him perform this wonder, and right before our very eyes.
When we stop to think about this for a minute we as evangelicals in the West today have been taught to be double dealers in the doctrine of Israelology. In fact Israelology, a critical part of Christian belief, is strangely missing from the curriculum of most Bible schools and seminaries. So we remain double dealers.
Is this true? Are today's evangelicals two-timers?
This becomes obvious when we try to answer that all important question,
"Who are God's Chosen people?"
Just how do we as evangelicals answer that question???
Or a better question might be, who dares to answer that question?
Evangelical Bible teachers, for the most part, have done a lot of things right. They correctly affirm a future 70th Week. And they also teach that the Church and Israel are both God's people or at least contain God's people and that He will be dealing with both camps in times to come. But when it comes to the future massive corporate salvation of Jewish Israel as we see it in Zechariah 12:7-> they are not impressed by this glorious end-time turn of events. Nor do they care to look into who the people are who make up the Commonwealth of Israel. Our Bible teachers today are silent on these matters and fuzzy with the details.
So here is the main problem that needs to be addressed by today's evangelical leaders. In their eschatology Bible prophecy teachers seem to say that there will be no reconciliation between the two feuding camps. This leads Christians to believe that Israel and "the Church" will remain separated from each other on into the last days and on into eternity. Yes, most evangelicals believe that Israel and "the Church" will go on separate end-time pathways into two separate destinies, never to find reconciliation, re-unification, and restoration in the Commonwealth or Congregation of Israel. Is this true? Or isn't it?
Of course Bible teachers do not actually spell out the eventual destiny of the Jewish House of Judah. Nor do they care to address the mysteries associated with the lost ten tribes of Israel. In their dispensational theology they have placed themselves inside "the Church" which, (as they see it), is forever separate from Israel. And before those final seven years open up they pen up the Church to a period of time they call the "Age of Grace". This Age of Grace, (as they lay it out), ends abruptly seven years before the end of the age.
So as these Bible teachers have it the Jewish camp had better get saved before the 70th Week of Daniel opens up and before the final seven years of this age begins. Because if they don't then they have missed the Age of Grace. They have missed the train to glory. Unsaved Jews and other unsaved people will be locked out and have no hope of being saved by grace. Because when their special Pre-Tribulation Rapture comes the Age of Grace, (as they see it), will come to a screeching halt. The Jews entering into the 70th Week will be cut off forever from God's grace. They will be locked out of this time period and forced to endure the Tribulation, (which they erroneously identify with God's wrath), for the full seven years before the end of the age.
No, I am not making all this up. Dispensationalists teach that the 70th Week is a wrath zone. As they see there will be no grace, no Holy Spirit, and no Church on earth during that time.
So what do they do with the Tribulation saints we see showcased in Revelation 7? Who brought them to salvation if it was not the work of the Holy Spirit? Just how on earth are Jews to be saved inside the 70th Week, the final seven years of this age? Has anyone ever been saved except by grace through faith in the atoning blood of Israel's promised Sacrifice Lamb?
Some Bible teachers when pressed upon this matter respond quite logically. They say the Jews will missed out on the "Age of Grace". So to be saved during the future 70th Week the Jews will "have to keep the law" to be saved. Other evangelicals say that the Jews will have to be martyred, (which they consider "works"), in order to be saved.
Let us pause for a moment and have a closer look at all this.
Since when has anybody ever been saved on the basis of "works"?
Please name just one person?
Is there one scaric of scriptural evidence to support such a wild notion?
This just goes to show our woeful inadequacy in handling the doctrine of Israelology in a way that is faithful to the Holy Scriptures and in a way that is faithful to our yet to be saved Jewish brethren from over in the royal house of Judah. Today's dispensationalist evangelicals see the Church remaining "the Church" and Israel remaining "Israel" forever! As they see it the present day ecclesiastically ordained status quo will last for eternity!
Of course there is a serious problem with all this. The Church and Israel, (as they see them), are two Chosen peoples. They are on parallel tracks toward the last days of this age. And according to their eschatology Israel and the Church will never come together as a single remnant Elect. Their end-time scenario brings no resolution of this terrible blood feud, this awful dichotomy. They see no latter day healing of the Breach of Jeroboam and no true restoration of the nation of Israel as a "royal Priesthood and a holy nation". (1Peter 2:9) Their Israelology is undeveloped and malformed. It displays no understanding of Ephesians 2:12-13. They are completely oblivious of the fact that they as born-again Christians belong to the Commonwealth of Israel. As such their witness in the latter days is being called for. But they are not responding.
So in spite of all the "we love Israel" hoopla the Pre-Tribulation Rapture eschatology is really no friend of Israel at all. It has the Church abandoning their Jewish brethren and being raptured out seven years early in a special Churchy Pre-Tribulation Rapture. This makes no room for the magnificent last chance latter day salvation of masses of gentiles including the Jews. This epic end time salvation of the Jewish nation is prophesied and a sure thing. See the prophecy here in Zechariah 12:7-13:1.
Dispensational theology has very little to say about the promised prophesied restoration of all 12 tribes of Israel and their restoration to a glorious future together. The mansions of glory are in the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, a city of 12 gates each representing the 12 tribes of Israel. In short dispensationalist theologians have exhibited very little commitment to Israel. And the specter of the Church deserting the harvest field seven years early is a very shameful and sad state of affairs. Like wayward Gomer she has decided to shirk her end-time role and her bridal witness. She is about to "walk out" on her true Bridegroom, to stand Him up, to "cut and run". The Church right now is resolved to 'go AWOL', (absent without leave), just before those important latter day covenant dealings the God of Israel open up during the final seven years of this age. Can we warn her and stop her?
From Zechariah Chapter 4
The Old Testament poetry is full of prophetic references to this promised end-time restoration of all of the covenant people of God. This would have to involve a reunion of both estranged houses of Israel. But unfortunately today's dispensationalist evangelicals in the rich nations of the west continue to teach that God has a two faced policy for his people. In their minds one policy is for "the Church" and God has another policy for Israel.
They also fail to understand the full scope of Abraham's Seed and how it extends to cover a huge company of people numbering in the hundreds of millions. This great multitude from every nation, race, and tribe are showcased in Revelation chapter 7. This company, myriads of myriads in number, from every nation, race, and tribe, clearly goes far beyond the 8 million population of Jews worldwide who belong to the royal Jewish House. Most Christians today continue to insist that Israel is made up primarily of Jews from the House of Judah. They refuse to even entertain the possibility that the saved people of the lost ten tribes of the scattered northern Kingdom and heathen gentiles coming into Christ have a part in the entity our Apostle Paul refers to as the Commonwealth of Israel.
Evangelical dispensationalists of today are saying that the Church/Israel division is permanent state of affairs. As they see it this schism is a forever thing. They say that there are two factions today and that these will always be two factions, in short, two Elects. So they are teaching a spurious doctrine without Biblical foundation. It teaches a heavenly ordained "Apartheid of the Elect". And here is the sad situation. In their minds these prophecy teachers see this disconnected state persisting on into the end-time and on into all eternity.
There is no Biblical basis whatsoever for this notion of separate destinies for the Church and Israel. Out of the end-time mysteries must come an epic resolution and a restoration of both houses of Israel. This includes the royal Jewish house in Judah which we can see and the other house which at present time we are not seeing.
The body of evidence from Holy Scripture is overwhelming. There is one Elect. God's covenant people will be restored before the final 70th Week of Daniel runs out.
"And so all Israel will be saved". (Romans 11)
So we must conclude that all of God's covenant people are destined to come into a glorious reunion at some point. From cover to cover the Holy Scriptures only attest to one single Elect. This can be proven very easily with a quick online word search of the words 'Elect' and 'Chosen'.
THE TWO STICKS BECOME ONE
From Ezekiel 37:15-28
Here are some of the twists and turns involved here. Dispensationalists affirm that we are now in the "Church Age". According to them the Church Age, (a time segment they label as the Age of Grace), began on the year of the crucifixion. They assert that the Age of Grace will close and slam shut with a nice early Rapture of the Church. They say this cutoff will occur a full seven years before the end of the age. So what happens to God's grace during the final seven years of this age? According to them the Church will be at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb celebrating.
An end-time victory that has not yet occurred?
They have written off the 70th Week of Daniel as little more than a "wrath of God" zone. And yet the Bible clearly shows us that this final seven year period of this age will showcase the final witness of the saints. But dispensationalist evangelicals teach that the Church will not be here to take part in this. Apparently the western Evangelical Church has decided to absent themselves from the family of Abraham, the family of faith. They have decided not to participate in the final leg of the relay race of the saints.
So what does that leave for our "Left Behind" Jewish brothers and sisters as they enter the final seven years of this age?
The answer is "precious little".
With no grace, no Church, no Holy Spirit, and a tribulation period defined by dispensationalists as "the wrath of God" what hope do they have?
So there we have it. In their dispensational theology today's western evangelicals are showing themselves to be a runaway bride. Clearly this end-time doctrine carries some bad theology concerning the destiny of the Jews. And this in turn could spawn another upwelling of Christian Anti-Semitism.
Is this the best that we can expect from the western people of the Gospel? Is this alienation and desertion of the Jewish house in the latter days truly "Christian"? And is this "apartheid of the Elect" really a part of the "Good News"? Is it a faithful message to our yet to be saved Jewish brethren? Is this the best we can expect from the people of Grace?
In times to come we, as western evangelicals, shall be weeping over this.
What we are looking at here is another doctrine laying out a replacement and a rejection of Israel. This is another round of Ecclesiastical alienation of the Jewish people. Oh no, it is not being perpetrated by skinheads or neo-Nazis. This end-time doctrine is more subtle than that. But nevertheless, the "separate destinies for the Church and Israel" doctrine amounts to a theological alienation by the Church of the Jewish nation. It is a repeat of the very same rejection of the royal House of Judah we saw 2900 years ago at the Breach of Jeroboam.. It is being set forth and agreed to by western Evangelicals, Christians of the Bible.
Dear saints, this is a very sad state of affairs.
We call ourselves Biblical Christians?
Truly, we should know better than this.
How about the future political and social repercussions of all this?
Is this Church/Israel dichotomy going to become a problem for Israel?
If we come into bad economic times it certainly could. It could cause a resurgence of Church tolerated Antisemitism. Western Church history is replete with examples of this. There have been many of these shameful outrages. We saw it happen during the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, the Polish pogroms, and more recently the Holocaust in Nazi Germany.
Could it happen again?
Pray God the answer is no.
This doctrine of a special early Church rapture is new. It was not taught by the early Church Fathers. But it has been a booming success since its beginnings just a bit over 170 years ago. Even though the doctrine is a relative newcomer it is taught to evangelicals in North America to the exclusion of practically all others. The early escape doctrine has been very well received by the "middle of the road" Christian crowds. Pre-Tribulation Rapturism has become a multi-billion dollar a year religi-business.
The Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine is very comforting to the flesh for those who can see that the end of this age might be near. Could this be a problem? Does the doctrine have a soporific effect on the Western Church? Oh yes. Not surprisingly the average church-goer believes that they can sit back and be content. No preparation of the Gospel of peace is necessary. Christians believe that they are fine just as they are. Their "ticket to heaven" is in their pocket. This coupled with a belief in an imminent Rapture has them believing that they have all but arrived at the end of the Pilgrim pathway. They have come to believe that the Church, as we see it today, is as good as it is going to get. But is this true?
Let us take a closer look here. Evangelicals have been told that imminently, (that is, at any time now), they could be raptured "outta here". Holy history, (they have been told), does not await any further significant Church history. Christian believers, for the most part, believe that an awesome future call to witness may well be coming. But it will not come to them.
And why not?
They are "the Church".
They have "arrived".
Any future covenant issues or tribulations are for the unsaved, ...... and for the Jews.
So we live in a babel of religious confusion. Church-goers are bamboozled by it all, and understandably so. The prophetic jigsaw puzzle has pieces missing, pieces jammed together incorrectly, and pieces separated off and put into the wrong places. And yet Christians in the pews continue to depend on "experts" to tell them what the sequence of end-time events will be.
But they forget one important thing. Churches and denominational franchises have become a lot like country clubs. Rich and influential church members and powerful deacon boards hire and fire and set salaries for their ministers. And as we know, "he who pays the piper gets to call the tune." So Christians are hearing from the pulpits and television studios what they, the people, want to hear. Of course they are told that trials, tribulations, end-time revivals, and apostasies will all occur. But these trials and tribulations will happen to the other people, (notably their yet to be saved Jewish brethren).
The Western Church knows from Zechariah 12 that the Jewish nation will be saved. But they also know that this will be late, toward the end of the age. So it seems that the Western Church is ready to board the train to glory right now, right this very minute. Collectively they have made their decision and their position is clear. They are not going to sit around and wait for the Great Tribulation when their Jewish brethren are going to be saved.
Western Christians, (at least as we see them today), are pretty self-centered in their religious outlook. They are clearly not prepared to assume any responsibility for Israel's total restoration. Nor are they inclined to remain around for any of these awesome latter day mysteries to unfold.
Here then is the key issue. The Church in Western Christendom is ready to be glorified NOW! They are not inclined to assume any bridal responsibilities in matters involving the Blood Covenant Witness of our Lord Jesus Christ as we come to the climax of this age.
"The Church" of today is showing her true colors here. The Church is a bit shifty, like we might expect Jacob to be. Jacob our patriarch was a crafty character before his wrestlings with God and before he is made willing at last to face up to his hustling godless brother Esau and accept the consequences, come what may. This is when his character and his name changes. So there is a happy ending to all this. The end of Jacob's pilgrimage will see him emerge as a much better person. The Jacob-Church just like the Jacob Jewish nation will ultimately come to the end of their trials and tribulations. In that day they will both come into the depths of Messiah to be restored and revealed as Israel. The word "Israel" is the key to our understanding of what happens to the saints during the end-time drama. It means "He who has struggled and become a prince with God".
So here we are, approaching the climax of the is age. We have Christian people who are the quite clearly key witnesses to the resolution of epic global pivotal end-time covenant issues. And yet they are "out to lunch". The Western Church is denying any responsibility in these crucial matters. Oh yes, they are quick to snap up the salvation and all the "blessings of the covenant" of Israel. But in the end-time covenant matters they are copping out and dumping all the "problems of the covenant" on "the Jews". Are we expecting them to finish the race on behalf of all the saints. Are we expecting our Jewish brothers and sisters to bring in the final end time witness all by themselves?
This is very strange thinking for the people of the Gospel.
But Jacob is a shady character before he is transformed in the New Covenant Jeremiah spoke about. (Jeremiah 31-31-33)
The Good News is that God takes care of His covenant people and gives them grace in the trials.
Why are evangelicals living in fear here?
Why are they planning to "cut and run" seven years before the climax of the age?
Why are they planning to desert the ship?
And why are evangelicals snubbing their brothers and sister over in the royal Jewish House of Judah? Have they done this before? And just when did it all this feuding start? We have an answer here
Today's western Church is clearly demonstrating here a departure from Christian grace. She is also showing her lack of patience in any anticipated trials and tribulations involving the Eternal Covenant. Apparently she favors her own happiness of the flesh over devotion to Messiah. She shows a distinct aversion to the end time witness and the true and genuine blood covenant Christianity we see in the suffering Church abroad.
So it seems that the Church in the West has a problem.
She is still embroiled in bitterness over past hurts.
She has an attitude problem, and with the Jewish house of all people.
Is this why the West joins the pagans in denying Judah his land rights in the land of Israel?
What is going on here?
Well this is where the plot thickens. It seems that it is not just our Jewish brethren who are in partial blindness. Both houses of Israel are in partial blindness. (See Romans 11)and more specifically Romans 11:25 ).
So where does the partial blindness of Israel come from? Well the answer is sitting there in the Old Testament. It is in some scripture precious few evangelicals are reading nowadays. There is an old family blood feud going on in what we will eventually come to appreciate is "Greater Israel". The split has existed for a very long time. What we are dealing with here, (or refusing to deal with), is nothing less than a great family divorce. The break-up occurred nearly three millennia ago. It happened after the death of King Solomon. Israel split into two kingdoms, two warring feuding factions.
Israel's Northern Kingdom went into captivity and were scattered by the Assyrians. Later they regathered in their family groups and drifted west. Many of people of European descent are descendants of the lost ten tribes. So that explains their involvement in this continuing blood feud with the Jewish people and their "problem" with the new nation of Israel emerging in the Middle East.
This matter of the lost ten tribes of Israel has has been researched by Jewish scholar and writer Yair Davidiy of Britam.org.
All this is well documented by Yair Davidiy. Western Christendom have many strong linguistic and historical connections to the lost ten tribes of Israel as they drifted west in their histories and settled in their geographical locations in the West. This explains the jealousy, the bad blood, the crusades, the ongoing persecutions of Jews, and the continuing specter of Church sponsored antiSemitism.
It seems clear that Western Christendom is heavily involved in this infighting with the Jewish House of Judah.
More specifically the venom is aimed at the Throne of David upon which Messiah will sit and judge the nations.
So what is the big drama all about? What is at issue here? It seems that Western Christendom is still in a huff over a very painful event that happened a full 2900+ years ago. Christians in the west are yet to realize this and to come to terms with it. They still harbor jealousy, anger, and bitterness against their Jewish brethren over in the other house, that being the house of David over in the royal House of Judah.
Why is this so? Well it seems that the Church in the West is still not secure in their Messiah. The Church still covenants with secular princes and rages with the heathen gentiles against the coming rule of Israel's Messiah. He is the One who enters human hearts and brings in with Him all the fullness of the Godhead. With His indwelling Presence come all the spiritual character flows of all 12 tribes of Israel. The Church has also still to address all the the blood covenant issues of Law and Righteousness championed by Judah as well as favoring and championing Messiah's issues of mercy and Grace Crucial issues of "Law and Grace" complement each other. They should not compete against each other. Both virtues surround an extremely important past pivotal watershed event in holy history, the Breach of Jeroboam. The ten Northern tribes went to the King, (King Rehoboam of the royal House of Judah asking for tax relief or Grace, if you will. The House of Judah responded by laying down the Law. So the ten tribes split, cursing the House of David as they went.
So with the Church's failure to appreciate this old blood feud and deal with these deeper blood covenant matters it is not surprising that we are in partial spiritual blindness concerning our roots in Israel. We live in a babel of religious confusion. Church-goers are perplexed and bewildered about Bible prophecy and where holy history is taking us. Christians depend on paid "experts" to tell them of the sequence of end-time events. And they pay them well to deliver broad assurances that Christian believers are just fine staying as they are and with the status quo. Christians have been told that there will be trials and tribulations at the end of the age along with end-time revivals and apostasies. But they are also told that all these unpleasant, (and sometimes glorious), events will not involve them! This future Holy History, the Apocalypse the unveiling of Messiah, and the revelation of the mysteries and great hidden secrets, (they are told), will not happen to them. It will happen to the other people, (notably their yet to be saved brethren, the Jews).
Evangelicals correctly believe that Israel will be involved in the end-time drama. But they do not understand that they as members of the true Church, the God of Israel's "ekklesia" or "called out Congregation", is grafted in to the olive tree. The true Church is part of what we might call the Elect or Greater Israel. We are not "outta here" until the end of the age. A true bride is not a disinterested concubine. She takes responsibility for covenant matters as all true brides do.
The upshot of all this is obvious.
We are in the loop!
The Congregation/Church in Israel? How can this be possible?
Well fortunately our Apostle Paul lays it all out quite clearly for us. Through the blood of Christ our Messiah all those who belong to Christ from any nation, race or tribe, male or female, bond or free, are saved and "born again" to become "new creatures" in Christ. Now, by the blood of Christ, they take on a new national identity, a new citizenship in Israel's Messiah.
Of course the secular kings and rulers and the merchants may not like it. And the principalities and powers of this world typically lean on their churchmen to keep these issues under wraps. But the fact remains. True Christian believers when they are born again take on a new identity. They now have dual citizenship. They have a second passport into the Kingdom of God. This Kingdom is at present invisible to natural eyes. True Christian believers actually belong to the Commonwealth of Israel.
This identity of the true Church in the Commonwealth of Israel, (or citizenship of Israel), was spoken of by our Apostle Paul. (See Ephesians.2:12-13) He also said that those who are in Christ find their ultimate blood kinship and identity in Christ, Israel's Messiah, who is the Seed of Abraham. See Galatians 3:26-29) It seems that Christ, the Seed of Heaven, overlies and supersedes the racial seed of men. Jews and heathen gentiles are both in need of this great salvation that comes in with the indwelling Messiah. And the Word of God in the human heart trumps the DNA lineage to set a new and glorious destiny for those who are "in Christ" among all the families of men.
Bible believing Christians are quite correct that epic events will unfold during the final seven years of this age. They know about that awesome future 70th Week of Daniel. But the modern or post-modern Christian has been led to believe that there is no end-time role of witness for him or her to play. They have been told that no significant events remain to unfold, or at least nothing requiring their presence or their witness. So in this false assurance the Church in the west sleeps. She does not seem to want anything or anyone to interrupt her spiritual slumber.
The result is easy to see, all around us. Christians are left to engage in their diversions, their television and video voyeurism, their money-making and shopping, and all that makes up the present day "pursuit of happiness". They have largely put aside the Great Commission, missions overseas, and the end-time call to witness. Many Christians are now concentrating all their efforts on "taking time out for me" and achieving their "best life now".
But is there more to the end time story?
Will the saints ever emerge from their soporific slumbers and be galvanized to action?
Where are the charts for the road ahead?
And does the Pilgrim pathway extend out beyond the present Pax Americana?
Is the battle Hymn of the Republic a prophecy hidden in American literature and lore? Are there perhaps some things that Christian believers should know about but have not been told?
So here we come to the key question.
Is the Pre-Tribulation Rapture doctrine sound?
Is it Biblically well founded?
It is critically important that every responsible Christian looks into this matter.
They must ask that question for themselves, not only Biblically, but honestly, before God Almighty.
Western Christians are indulged in the post-modern Church. They live and breathe and have their being in a merchant world and under the auspices of a rich merchant church. We are saved and born again very cheaply nowadays, perhaps too cheaply. Purchasing our salvation in the bargain basement many of us have been persuaded that "Jesus did it all". They are saved. They cannot add to Christ's work on the cross. So the comfortable mindset that grows out of this is that there is nothing further in the eternal covenant that needs to be addressed by the Church before Jesus returns. This Second Coming of Christ, (they have been led to believe), will happen twice. It will happen seven years before the end of this age and then again at the end of the seven years at the close of this age.
Oh yes, we are contented as we attend church on Sunday, pay our respects to God up in heaven, and then pursue our own personal happiness down here below the rest of the time. We have our ticket to heaven. It is right there in our pocket. Our bags are packed. And we have been told that the Glory Train could pick us up at "any time". Nothing further needs to be attended to. We believe what we have been told. And that is, our departure by rapture is 'imminent'. When the last trumpet sounds we are, (as the saying goes), "outta here!"
This sounds pretty good. But what if we have been called to attend to some further Kingdom business before we go? Is there an epic "final witness" of the saints in the 5th seal? Will the Ancient of Days be calling for His witnesses before the opening of the 6th seal when the son of Man appears in the heavens? And if so, then who told us that we would not be here? And where is their Scriptural authority for doing so?
The book of Revelation is an unveiling of future holy history as it breaks forth at the climax of this age. John was taken up into heaven and transported into a locus in eternity known as "the Day of the Lord". There before him he saw an astounding sight. He saw a heavenly court case with the Ancient of Days presiding. The Holy One of Israel is the Sovereign Ruler over our cosmos. John saw the four horsemen and four earthly political systems finish their run and wrap up their failing attempts to establish peaceful world rule. These were the first four seals. Then, at the 5th seal, the Ancient of Days was calling for His witnesses. This seems to be pretty important. So why has the Church ignored this? Why is this truth being smoke-screened? Just what is going on here?
Will saints belonging to the Church, (the wider Congregation of Israel), be called upon to bring some important testimony at this time? Or is all this to be done by 144,000 brand new Jewish Christians from just the tribe of Judah as our popular Bible teachers tell us?
Jesus Himself told His trusted disciples what to expect.
He laid it out for us in the Olivet Discourse.
Our Savior has given us good information and His personal charge as well.
Is the Olivet Discourse "just for the Jews" as we are often told by churchmen?
Here is another important matter.
Just when does our Commission in Christ's service actually expire?
Do we need to take the 'Great Commission' document to our lawyer?
Do we need to ask him to tell us when our Commission expires?
Then there is this matter.
What if there are some earlier trumps before the 'last trump'?
Do the trumpets begin to sound seven years before the last trump?
Should we open our Bibles and our minds and check this out personally?
So are we sure that the Bible teaches a special early rapture for the Church? Does the Bible teach that "the Church" gets a special separate deal? Is there a separate glorification of Church saints different from Israel's saints? Is the Church given a special early express rapture separate from God's 70th week covenant dealings with Israel? Does our God, the God of Israel, preside over two Elects or just one Elect. Are there two separate salvation deals under heaven? Does the Holy One of Israel have a down and dirty apartheid policy?
Our Apostle Paul gives us the answer here in Ephesians 2:12-13. When Christian believers are saved they come into intimate union with Christ who is the Seed of faithful Abraham. (See Gal:3:29) And so they become 'new creatures'. As new creatures in Christ the Seed of faithful Abraham resides inside them. In Christ they receive a new national identity to add to the national identity they already have. This is imparted to them by the Holy Spirit This is how Christian believers come into the Commonwealth of Israel.
So unknown to most Christians, they actually own two passports.
One of them is a mystery, still hidden in the Word of God.
It is a passport they have never seen or appreciated before.
It is their passport into the Kingdom of God.
Like the British Commonwealth this new citizenship is a sovereign or spiritual impartation. Citizenship in the Commonwealth of Israel is not directly linked with race or the flows of DNA through the generations. It is true that the promised Seed of the Woman spoken of in Genesis has historically tracked along through the bloodlines of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob/Israel. But that was just the beginning of the story.
Israel's Light the nations is shining. This is that wonder Isaiah spoke about. (See Isaiah 49:6) The wells of salvation have sprung up bringing streams in the desert. Truly, Israel is blessing the nations.
And the Jordan River overflows its banks,
All the days of the harvest.
Strange isn't it?
There is only one Eternal Covenant. And that treaty with God is only to be found by grace through faith in the atoning blood of Israel's Sacrifice Lamb. After we are saved we eventually come to realize that we are in an eternal covenant with our Jewish Messiah. But there is more. Now we learn that we belong in the Commonwealth or citizenship of Israel of all things! Most Christians are almost completely in the dark about all this.
Why is this so?
We understand that the angelic principalities and powers put their pressure on the kings, merchants, bankers, and Hollywood idols. They and the people of this world do not like Israel. And kings do not stand for this Israel identity for their subjects one bit. Naturally they do not want to see their subjects giving their loyalty to any other sovereign. For them this amounts to disloyalty, even treason. William Tyndale discovered this as did many other fine saints and martyrs.
But why are our church leaders so subject to these worldly influences? Surely these churchmen are more than hired religious power brokers. They cannot be just religious agents for kings, merchants, labor brokers and the greens. Why the secrecy? Why shouldn't Christians know about their vital blood covenant Calvary connection with Israel through Messiah? Is there an "ecclesiastical correctness"? And who is pulling the strings here? Are we seeing just another part of the wider worldly mosaic of "political correctness"? Is this "conspiracy of silence" in these vital covenant matters part of the conspiracy of the heathen nations King David wrote that song about? Or is it church sponsored anti-Semitism.
There is no doubt, the worldly powers, angelic and human, loathe and dread the coming of Messiah. And they rage against Him. When they cannot rage then they adopt Fabian's stategy. They quietly camp out against at the city gates of the kingdom they want to bring down. They conspire against Christ and seek to block out, dilute, and distort word of His Second Coming using disinformation. They angelic rulers are in stark terror of the Second Coming. Aand the heathen, the gentile nations, are under those dark angelic principalities and powers. (See Psalm 2)
The big worldly church and state conspiracy against Messiah would seem to be this.
The powers want to stop Christians from knowing their identity and responsibility in Israel.
They want to stop Christians from even thinking about testifying before the kings and rulers.
The powers know that the 5th seal witness of the saints will be their undoing.
The "final witness" of the saints will be followed by the 6th seal.
The sun will turn to darkness and the moon to blood.
The sign of the Son of Man will be seen in the heavens.
Judgment day will have arrived.
The Book of Revelation is the story of two women. These are two companies of people who claim to know God. John saw the harlot of Revelation 17. And he also saw the Woman of Revelation chapter 12 with the 12 stars of Israel upon her crown. One woman sits as a queen, saying, " I will see no sorrow". The woman with the diadem of 12 stars is in travail and yet she is clothed in the glory of her Father. These two are the main players we see on the stage of future holy history.
The Apocalypse is also a heavenly court case. And in the latter days the Ancient of Days will sit. He will be calling for His witnesses. Some will turn up. Others will be crusading, "fighting the system" or hiding in caves. The principalities and powers know all about thios crucial final witness of the saints. And they know that when this happens it will be their undoing. So that is why they want to hoodwink Christians. They want to keep them in the dark about their high calling in Christ.
The prophet Zechariah tells us that there will be a national repentance and late salvation of the whole Jewish nation at the end of the age. (See Zech. 12) As Evangelical Christians we often think of our Jewish brethren. We wonder about their "partial blindness" to the identity of their Messiah. (Rom.11)
But wait! If "blindness in part has happened to Israel" and if we, as Christian believers, are in the Commonwealth or citizenship of Israel (and don't know it) then what does that say about us? Why are we not "seeing" our vital connection to Israel? And why, in spite of all the Biblical evidence, are we as Christians so blind to our Hebrew roots. Our Hebrew roots are primarily a spiritual reality to be sure. But in the case of many westerners those roots may even go back to the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel. For some interesting evidence of this see the Yair Davidiy interview on YouTube.)
Yes, so what is our problem here?
Are we as Christians partially blind too?
What does our Christian identification in the Commonwealth of Israel really mean?
We say we are Christian Australians, Christian Americans, Christian Dutchmen, Christian Germans etc.?
We know that we are under our Jewish Messiah from the House of David, the "Lion of the Tribe of Judah".
But what about this identification in this "Commonwealth of Israel"?
It seems a bit "over the top" doesn't it.
Here then is the related big question.
In identifying ourselves as Christians with Israel are we being unpatriotic?
Here are the facts concerning western Christendom. Our western nations always fought and spilled their blood for "God and country". And for 1700 years the God of western Christendom has not been in question. He is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. So even under persecution and duress, our national allegiance as Christians to our country still stands. The allegiance of all the nations, heathen and otherwise, is due Him.
So in Christ, the Messiah of Israel, our national identity is not in question here. In the Church, (the Congregation of Israel), we come to know a greater Sovereign Power than any earthly ruler. And when we study history we discover that he is the One who lies behind the glory of our nation. So if our nation under a worldly power summons us to witness and causes us some grief over God's Word then it will be "good grief". Our witness to the God of Israel will not be in vain. Through His witnesses God is in fact calling our nation, (and all the nations), up to a higher level. And we ourselves, as Christian believers, are being "called out" to blood covenant commitment. This is true patriotism, even the higher patriotism to a greater glory. We are witnesses to a greater king, even the King of kings.
We are speaking here of the latter day "Gospel of the Kingdom" spoken of in the Book of Revelation.
Our Lord Jesus Christ/Yeshua Hamashiach is our supreme Sovereign, our Messiah.
And remember this. Whenever Handel's Messiah was performed in Europe there was a response.
All the kings and royals stood on their feet!
So as Christian believers we are involved with Israel.
We are certainly not being called to repeat the bloody shame of the earlier crusades.
Rather, we are being called to the witness of the indwelling Messiah.
This is the essence of the New Covenant of which Jeremiah spoke. (See Jer. 31:31-33)
Our witness by grace at the climax of this age will testify of His law within the heart.
And our witness in the latter days is the true and genuine blood covenant Christianity.
What if holy history rolls forward and in we see a significant world conflict involving the Middle East. Will the world powers who divide the spoils divide God's Holy Land? And will they attempt to divide His Holy City as well? If nuclear tipped missiles have flown the world will be in a state of panic. Will our national pride be lambasted as the politics of blood and shame? And in this atmosphere of fear and anger could the western nations be persuaded to give up their sovereignty? Are we going to hand our standards over to a New World Order and a global peacemaker promising "peace and safety"?
What if we come into the fall season of some future year to find ourselves waking up one morning to the sound of trumpets. How shall we react if we discover that we have gone on beyond the current protective umbrella of the Pax Americana? What if that seven year "covenant with many" brings us into a New World Order? We look around. We pinch ourselves and say "ouch". We have not been raptured.
Are we prepared for this? Do we have the oil for our lamps against the coming night? Have we prepared ourselves in the devotion and in the Holy Spirit for a late time Post-Tribulation Rapture if that should prove to be the case? Have we even been given a heads up on this other strong possibility? Have our ministers given us any inkling at all about these things? Have we been told that we might do well to prepare our hearts for witness under some duress at some future time?
Corrie Ten Boom was a woman of faith and commitment to her Jesus.
She knows of God's provision
during the inevitable trials of our faith.
This great woman of God is a lone voice speaking out for scriptural truth
in the present eschatological wilderness.
Corrie Ten Boom has sounded a warning
to American and western Christians.
She has spoken out very specifically about the popular
Pre-Tribulation Rapture teaching abroad today.
Corrie Ten Boom's warning to the American church.
Most evangelicals have been taught the Pre-Tribulation Rapture scenario as established fact. Few have ever had a chance to hear the Post-Tribulation Rapture position expounded. They have been programmed to believe that the Pre-Trib Rapture is the final and correct biblically correct truth concerning the closing dramas of this age.
But are they correct about this early special edition secret Rapture?
Is there any sound scriptural proof of this?
Do they have any solid Biblical evidence for it at all?
The short answer is "No. They do not".
The fact is there is not one single passage of scripture that gives sound and convincing proof of a Pre-Tribulation Rapture. Not one! The doctrine sounds nice and it goes down well with the middle of the road Christian crowds. And it sells well in the religious marketplaces. Indeed the Pre-Tribulation doctrine has become entertainment for the masses. It is a huge multi billion dollar a year religi-business.
But here is the question.
Can the idea of a Pre-Tribulation Rapture stand up to faithful Berean scrutiny?
Or is the doctrine emotionally driven by wishful thinking?
Quite obviously it is a soothing melodramatic eschatology.
Has it been crafted by men to keep the masses amused, - and "quiet".
The fact that this is now a popular amusement is reason for us to be concerned. Karl Marx was a very evil man, the father of humanistic state communism. And he once quite cynically said that "religion was the opiate of the people". If by "religion" he means an attenuated somewhat twisted Christianity founded on the traditions of men then was he right? Do our fancies, even as Christian believers, ride roughshod over a plain and faithful reading of the Holy Scriptures? Are we as submitted to the Bible as we suppose we are?
The scriptures on the end-time are not as complicated as we have been led to believe. Even a little child could lead us into the truth here. This author found it very easy to counter the arguments of one of the champions of Pre-Tribulationism when he made his challenge to the Post-Trib position. Grant Jeffrey came out strongly against Post-Tribulation Rapture position some years back. Here is my response to Grant Jeffrey's arguments.
Pre-trib is a really quite a mess. It is a complicated colossus of disharmony and confusion. Post-Trib, on the other hand, is simple, elegant, orderly and beautiful. As we proceed on into this Bible study we shall soon see just how easy it is to use the scriptures to put the jigsaw puzzle of the end-time together harmoniously.
WISE VIRGIN WITH HER OIL
Photo by the author. Click on
the image to go to the article.
The timing of the Rapture of the Church is an important matter to have nailed down. It must be made clear to the true saints of God. These essential truths of the revelation/apocalypse/unveiling of Jesus Christ are not going to remain a mystery forever. This information relates to the end-time drama. It is a history for which we need to be prepared. Epic events will erupt onto the world stage. They will do so very quickly and forcefully. It may well happen on some future Jewish new year on the Feast of Trumpets.
Here is the burden of this writer.
If the saints are not properly warned and adequately informed
and empowered by the Holy Spirit to give themselves to the Redeemer
in a time of peace then what will happen
when they find themselves suddenly thrust into the epic
events of the end-time?
They will be confused. They will be bewildered.
They will be fearful, and perhaps unpredictable in what they might do.
They could be caught unprepared and unready.
The scriptures warn us about this very thing.
The following scripture is time dated to the 'swelling of the Jordan'.
This is a biblical reference to the time of the harvest. - Josh.3:15
The harvest is that time of high intensity of events
as God prepares to reap the earth. - Rev.14:15
He will gather the wicked for destruction
and gather His elect for glorification at the end of the age.
It is a message to us, ...now, ...today.
God is asking us some questions.
"If you have run with the footmen, and they have wearied you,
then how can you contend with horses?
And if in the land of peace, in which you trusted, they wearied you,
then how will you do in the swelling of Jordan?"
Are we listening?
And how shall we answer?
Are we connecting the dots? Or do we just say.
"That message of warning and exhortation to preparation is for the Jews.
That is Old Testament stuff.
We are in a different dispensation.
We are the New Testamant Church!" Preparation in God is "works". We are people of "grace".
Dear saints, now is the time for us to take a long hard look at our attitude to Christian witness. God has given us time for peaceful reflection and preparation in the Holy Spirit. And that time is now!
True shepherds know that sheep will only drink from still waters. God has given us this time of peace for a purpose. This is a time to leave our pursuit of pleasure and material things. Now is the time to allow ourselves to be led in quietness deeper into the heart of the Shepherd. Let us get to know His voice. (John 10:3-4) A dark and cloudy day is coming. (Ezek.34:12) True believers will need to stay very close to the Shepherd of Israel.
Let us join our Apostle Paul and affirm our faith to the end.
"For the which cause I suffer these things,
Nevertheless I am not ashamed,
For I know whom I have believed,
And am persuaded, that He is able,
To keep that which I've committed
Unto Him against that Day". -1Tim.1:12
The highway of holiness leads onwards and upwards;
- towards the gates of splendor.
Grace and shalom to all the saints.
God refers to His covenant people as being like sheep and inclined to go astray. We are gregarious creatures. Christian people, (unless we are reading the Holy Scriptures for ourselves and are walking personally with God and being guided by His Holy Spirit), tend to go along with the crowd. We are inclined to believe what everyone else around us believes. This "sheep-like" behavior comes from something we call "peer pressure". Unfortunately our teenagers are picking it up from us, following our example.
Of course the Pre-Tribulation Rapture is a very popular doctrine with the quasi-Christian masses. And so it has become a lucrative line of preaching as well. The catch phrases go like this. "We're outta here!" and "Anytime now!" And as for Israel? Well they can, (or will), be 'left behind'! Is this a form of theological dispensational Antisemitism? Yes, the evangelical Church often lionizes our Jewish brethren and we wave the Israeli flags. But what about that 150 year old doctrine of the end-time? What religious leader in his right mind would dare to give the word for Christians to forget the end-time witness and incite them to "go AWOL", to "cut and run"? What about our people in the royal house of Israel? Are we really going to leave them behind? Is the Church alienating the royal house in Israel and "cutting off" the Jews yet again? God forbid that we allow such a thing!
As we go forward in this article we shall see just how this notion of a special "early express Rapture for the Church" is truly a flimsy house of cards. The doctrine is not founded on Holy Scripture itself. Instead, in the milieu of religious humanism of our day the Pre-Trib fable is has been cobbled together in a very loose way from a dubious body of scriptural commentary. This oft-repeated commentary is founded primarily on what other theologians and revered Bible teachers have said. As shall discover in this study, the eschatology we have ended up with in the Pre-Trib Rapture belief is based upon many false presuppositions. For example, we get the false identification of
"tribulation = the wrath of God".
We also get
"the Day of the Lord = the 70th Week of Daniel",
"the Day of the Lord = the the last 7 years of this age".
And so as they present the story "the Age of Grace stops abruptly 7 years short of the end of this age" to avoid entering into those final seven years. Then we hear that "the Jews that are 'left behind' will have to keep the law to be saved"! Has anyone ever been saved by keeping the Law?
These are just a few of the faulty pieces of masonry that make up this doctrine. It is a self-conflicted disharmonious morass of disconnected information. Pre-Trib lore is a web of chaos and confusion. And the powers of darkness have been very successful in making good use of this chaos. The average Christian is kept confused and in the dark about the end-time. This suits the angelic principalities and powers. And why? Because the thing they fear most is the end-time witness of the saints.
Sadly, our modern churchmen are caught up in this doctrine. In most cases they are not given any other option by their church but to teach the pre-trib party line. This is what the middle of the road Christians who dominate churchianity want to hear so deacon boards are compelled to go with the majority for the sake of "peace". Many sincere church-goers in the pew erroneously think that all this Bible Prophecy is beyond them. So unless they read and study the Bible for themselves they are kept beholden to these Bible prophecy teachers, people who they regard as "experts". Sincere Christian seekers line up to buy hundreds of dollars to purchase CD's and videos. Many are sincerely seeking an they try very hard to try to tie up all those loose ends and to make sense of the mess. Others just want to be titillated by the special early Rapture story with planes crashing and the righteous being plucked up first. They are not aware of how this is reverse of what Jesus taught in the parable of the wheat and the tares. See Mat. 13:30. Unfortunately most Christian believers are still in the medieval mode and beholden to "the clergy" do not read their Bibles and study for themselves. So they have no other choice but to sit and listen and try to make some sort of sense of what they are hearing. They trust their Bible Prophecy teachers to connect the dots. But they are trusting the blind to lead the blind. Because when any Pre-Trib Bible teacher allows himself to be questioned by any serious fully committed Berean Christian he is immediately shown to be presenting a doctrine that is in direct conflict with the Holy Scriptures..
As we shall see further on in this article, Pre-Trib Rapture lore is hopelessly and dangerously flawed. This is why the pre-trib forums have had to lock post-tribbers out of the forums. In some cases forum moderators forbid discussions about the timing of the Rapture altogether. The Pre-Trib Bible expert is king of the hill. But it is another case of "the emperor has no clothes". And no one is allowed to say anything about this.
What we have here is a false doctrine taught as Gospel truth. And everyone is supposed to believe it. Evangelical Bible colleges are as didactic as Jesuits. They tolerate no discussion of the scriptural texts. Bible students, rather than being helped to read and understand the Bible for themselves, are indoctrinated and commanded to believe what they are told to believe, or else. But under faithful Biblical scrutiny what do we find? The early escape eschatology is simply a religious construct all loosely cobbled together. And it does not have one iota of Biblical evidence to support it.
The disinformation carefully crafted and concealed within the Pre-Trib Rapture doctrine never brings all the related truths into clear focus. And yet our popular Bible teachers themselves are strangely OK with this. Confusion reigns. But it does not seem to matter. The scenario of an early escape pleases the masses in the pews. So who cares about the Biblical mayhem it causes in the minds of the saints? Everybody believes it, right? So Bible teachers find themselves teaching the Pre-Trib Rapture as "their ecclesiastically correct truth". Most of them appear to be quite smitten by the Pre-trib Rapture idea. No doubt some of them, in their better moments, have some misgivings about it. Nevertheless most dutifully go on to teach it. And why do they do this? Because it is their job. Pre-Trib is the end-time doctrine accepted by their denomination or their deacon board. They are not searching the scriptures, they are not "proving all things" or "holding fast to that which is good". Because that could lead them to change their mind. And that in turn could cause them to lose their job. We have to understand their predicament here. The average time a minister spends in a church is a mere two years.
This is scarcely credible, but true. Bible teachers wittingly or unwittingly are teaching error as truth. And what is scarcely credible and even spooky about all this is that these teachers seem to be operating in and under a hypnotic spell. Strangely they do not seem to be worried by all the messy loose and ragged ends thrown up by the doctrine and the conflicts they must try to deal with. Of course it helps that in their church presentations no one is allowed to stand up and ask questions. Such is the way and the peril to truth inherent in Nicolaitan religious pyramid systems. But there is a great danger here. It leads right on down into the sin of Jeroboam. Bible teachers who lead God's covenant people astray are committing the sin of Jeroboam..
This is an awful state of affairs.
Corrie Ten Boom warned us about this very thing. See this article.
There are many red flags in the Pre-Trib Rapture doctrine. Here is a big one. Jesus said that His followers would present their witness before kings and rulers. What does this Pre-Trib Rapture doctrine do to this great Biblical truth? Does it not negate the end-time witness of the saints? And what does it do to the race of the saints? Does it not cancel the glorious final leg of the relay race we see showcased in Hebrews 12:1?
How about the good news about the end-time? Why are we hearing only of horror and destruction and mayhem? Do we not have solid Biblical evidence for an great End-Time Revival as well as an end time apostasy or great falling away. See Joel 2:28,29.30,31,32. The testimony of Holy Scripture is clear. There will most certainly be an end-time glory. And this in turn will be capped off by the return of Messiah at the climax of the age. See this poem.
And what can we say of the specter of abandonment implicit in Pre-Trib lore? Embracing the spirit of desertion is an awful thing. Many voices being raised in the church want to have a testimony, . . . . but without a test. They have balked at what Jesus told us concerning the end-time witness of the saints. They have blocked their ears to the call. And yet this is true and faithful blood covenant Christianity.
Jesus told us that our pilgrimage was a strait and narrow Way. The Way of the cross is the Highway of Holiness. And it leads onwards and upwards towards the gates of glory. So why choose the low road? Why are many Christians making the wrong turn onto the broad way that leads downwards to destruction?
Jude, the brother of James and Jesus, had some solemn warnings for false teachers who for filthy lucre proceed to tickle the ears, teaching people what they want to hear. Jude tells of ministers making merchandise of Christians and all of them together choosing to live on the carnal side of their nature. God has given us solemn warnings about this sort of looseness in doctrine. True and faithful Bible teaching on the end-time involves the proper spiritual preparation of the saints. Bible teaching is a deadly serious business in God's eyes. For proof of this just take a quick scan through the little book of Jude in the New Testament.