The Tragic Divorce of Our “Blessed Hope” from the Gospel By Jonathan C. Brentner Somewhere…
After the Rapture…
By Mike Mullin
Increasingly, within the last few years, I have had an uncomfortably subtle and creeping feeling take an apprehensive root. Though I cannot pinpoint when, I try to remind myself of Jesus’ instruction – “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God, believe also in me.” John 14:1. Yet, I am feeling troubled. Over the course of my days under the sun, like most, I encounter the full spectrum of a typical social network: spanning close family members, friends, coworkers, and neighbors, all the way to the friendly lady serving my coffee each morning, or the familiar grocery clerk.
What has made me so uncomfortable is the fact that the looming, history-changing event of the Rapture of the Church will see most of their earthly lives end by means almost too terrifying to write down. I think to myself, assuming the Rapture is as close as some think it is, what are their eyes going to behold after the Rapture? These are, for the most part, very decent people. That is what troubles me. I often try to piece together what the world, particularly America, will be like in the days and weeks following the Rapture.
My position is that immediately after the Rapture, an indeterminable timeframe known, as the ‘Gap period’ will commence. It will preclude the final seven-year Tribulation that begins upon the Treaty signing of Daniel 9:27, also known as Daniels’ 70th Week. At some point after the Rapture – whether immediate or sometime later, the Seal judgments will occur mentioned in Revelation 6, bringing with them the Four Horsemen. It is unknown exactly when or how this will play out after the Rapture in the Gap period. What is known, is that hell on earth will break out immediately. The below commentary speaks to a few likely scenarios the everyday decent people spoken about above in paragraph one will experience. This will occur in the immediate aftermath of history’s most peculiar moment.
The Rapture is imminent. No one knows when it will happen. As astute Christians, we will know the season of the end times as they approach and manifest. I believe, that season is now, which means the Rapture is looming ever closer. On that day or night when it happens, the world will collectively shudder in confusion and fear, and suffer the baffling loss of vanished loved ones. It will be a moment in time when the supernatural will breach our firmament, and the old order of things will immediately cease. America has the largest concentration of Christians in the world, and she will be the hardest hit when it happens.
I have figured a rate of 20% of Americans will be Raptured-Christians – likely a generous number. Americans everywhere will witness believers vanish into thin air – possibly while at work, watching TV on a couch beside you, standing in line at a grocery store, on a treadmill at the gym, in a restaurant, an empty baby crib, or at an intersection. Those left behind will likely have encountered someone being Raptured first-hand – this in and of itself will be traumatic. The realization that all children have been taken will push the panic levels to unimagined levels! Americans more than any other people will feel the most direct impact. It will not be hearsay, or some distant delusional rumor – left behind Americans will directly see and experience the event more so than any other people.
News reports will flood in of an unprecedented event happening. In the immediate aftermath, I would imagine, at least in America, the word ‘Rapture’ will be used. The Devil will be caught off guard at the precise timing of the event, and for a brief short-lived period, spreading news of the truth of what happened may escape him. Pop Culture and those left behind have certainly heard or read of the Biblical Rapture. However, the Devil will dispatch every fallen angel at his disposal to begin the campaign he has planned for thousands of years since the writings of the Biblical prophets. The Rapture explanation – quickly snuffed out – will be replaced by messages of the undesirables being taken away as they hindered a global oneness or evolution to the next stage of ‘humankind’. The globally united ‘Mystery Babylon’ explanations for what happened will immediately take root.
Immediate Changes to Daily Life
As the first-hand shock of witnessing the vanishing of so many abates to a very small degree – the next wave will be the realization of thirst, hunger, heat, power outages, massive amounts of people injured in the streets, looting, and general pandemonium. Grocery stores and markets will be raided…and very quickly! Replenishments would not occur in any quick manner as the roads and highways would be a maze of accidents and eerily empty cars. Imagine for a second if the Rapture were to occur during the daytime in America? Perhaps during morning or evening rush hour? Every Single Highway in America would stop dead from empty vehicles going in every direction. So many cars and trucks carrying valuables – from packaged food and produce, to every type of consumer good imaginable, would just pilotlessly careen where its momentum would dictate.
Local food terminals could become a secondary focal point after the grocery stores and markets run bare. Looting and riots would blanket every street corner. Airports would likely shut down with the reality of multiple, simultaneous numbers of planes having crashed as both pilots and air traffic control team members vanished. How would the police forces respond? Already far outnumbered by criminals, how would or could law enforcement respond? Similarly, what of the paramedics and the fire services? While almost too macabre to think about, what about surgeons vanishing during procedures? Recently I had a painful root canal treatment. An unnerving thought came to me during the procedure of what if the power goes out with my tooth open. What if the endodontist couldn’t finish the job? ….even worse….imagine someone in the same chair while the endodontist was raptured! Ok enough of that.
I would estimate America to be a place categorically divided into 2 types of regions – Mad Max zones – where the strong rule with weapons, numbers, and control all access to assets, fuel, and any land of value. The second would be federal and perhaps state security zones, where a martial law would be in effect – it has to be assumed that some form of order in America would return.
The US Economy
Six days after 9/11, with much in the way of fear and incredible uneasiness in the air, the Dow Jones fell 684 points. By the end of that week, the Dow was down an incredible 1,370 points (14%), erasing $1.4 Trillion in value from panic selling investors.
Not to make any light of the 9/11 tragedy, but the Rapture event will be exponentially larger, even to levels of incomparability. As of this writing, the Dow Jones is hovering in the 26,000 range with a valuation near $25+ Trillion. Imagine the impact of having not just 20% of the American population vanishing (65M people), and not the fact that the stock markets would be closed for who-knows-how-long after the Rapture, but… the number of deaths occurring because of the vanishing of so many. On 9/11, 2,977 people lost their lives to the tragedy. In the coming Rapture, one can expect a much higher number and that is just at the outset of the event.
In the immediate days and weeks after the Rapture, there will be a run on the banks for cash – assuming the power remains operational to run the banks in America. Physical cash, due to its tangible immediate use for buying and selling will be highly sought after. Cash will be king – but not for long. Precious metals – gold and silver – will soar to heights never seen in history. While the United States Treasury technically owns the gold bullion at Fort Knox, West Point, and Denver, it is under the United States Army control. With a crumbling infrastructure around these bases, it would very likely become the target of targets – both to internal military men, and outsiders.
I believe the Magog war occurs during this period – likely not long after the Rapture. It is interesting to note that one of the questions the Western leaders pose to Gog about his motivations for the invasion he leads are described in Ezekiel 38:13-
Sheba and Dedan and the merchants of Tarshish with all its villages will say to you, ‘Have you come to capture spoil? Have you assembled your company to seize plunder, to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to capture great spoil?’
If Bible-scholar Bill Salus is correct in his Psalm 83 War theory (a potential precursor to the Magog War), in that Israel conquers its neighboring Arab countries and expands its borders outward, it is possible Israel becomes a major global power through controlling the flow of oil. From this control, could come payments in the form of precious metals. I’m tempted to call it a barter-type transaction – tangible gold for tangible oil – but gold technically is money (as JP Morgan himself declared before Congress in 1912). Currently the central bank of Israel has no gold in its possession; however, the nation may rapidly gain gold should they control oil. India and the heavily sanctioned Iran have done this in the past. Paper currencies at this point could be very inflated and worthless, while gold and silver would maintain a stable valuation as they have for thousands of years.
In 1944, the world leaders assembled in New Hampshire, to herald in a new economic order under the Bretton Woods Agreement. This system catapulted America and the gold-backed dollar system to the forefront of international trade and commerce as the British Empire’s influence faded. On August 15, 1971, President Nixon took the US off the gold standard and ended the Bretton Woods arrangement. The US dollar would no longer be convertible with gold, leaving it open to spikes in speculation, and inflationary pressures. A deal was formulated between America and the members of OPEC to begin selling oil for US dollars in return for protection and weapon sales. It effectively meant the demand for US Dollars would incredibly expand, and it would grant some stability against oil embargos and more severe inflationary spikes. It also paved the way for the last 4 decades of unprecedented US debt expansion, which is now reaching levels in the tens of trillions. President Reagan for example, in his 8 years of office added about $1.7 Trillion of debt to the inherited amount of about $750 Billion. Presidents since 2008 have with regularity, added $1T plus per annum …. the trend under Trump is now pushing $1.2 – $1.3T per annum – spectacular numbers!
In the chaos after the Rapture, OPEC would for the first time since the 1970s begin selling oil outside the US Petrodollar system. It is likely they will sell oil for regional currencies, barter, gold, and possibly if functional – cryptocurrencies – a prototype/precursor to the coming Beast system. As the news spreads of how hard America, more than any other nation, has been impacted – the dollar will lose much of its current value. With a massive decline on federal collected income and corporate taxation, with OPEC selling outside the dollar system, general faith in the currency falling globally, and the ever-expanding interest alone owing on the government debt, the picture painted for the greenback is not a nice one. Costs of imports – if the sea and airports are functioning – would cost the average American exponentially more than in our current state. All those exported dollars to OPEC and the world at large would finally come home. Either hyperinflation will occur, or a complete default on all federal debts and liabilities owing.
In the past, I have wondered, what if the stock markets recover to some degree after the Rapture, every shareholder meeting and annual report will reference the need for renewed focus, strategies, and goals post the ‘Event’ as they will call it. If the Dow Jones can currently swing 500-800 points on just talks and Presidential tweets in the US/China trade war, how will it react to the disappearance of millions? Could the Rapture cause the collapse of the USD? Could it cause severe tangible damage to American infrastructure, assets, and workplaces? Although the damage to the USD may likely be irreparable, Biblically speaking, buying and selling continue deep into the final seven-years. Nevertheless, it seems it will be far less organized and structured in America after the Rapture. As the light dims on America, it is likely that advanced technologies and assets will migrate to Europe for exploitation by the coming Beast control system(s).
The US Military
America held down its enemies for nearly a century. As Bible scholar Don Koenig’s great article rightfully indicates (God Using America as a Restrainer of Empires), America has been the restrainer of Empires and expansionist-minded countries. After being held down for so long, a unique opportunity like no other will present itself to her enemies (most should be largely unscathed by the Rapture event). If 20% of the general population is raptured in America, imagine an even higher percentage of the general American armed forces population being raptured – 30%? I may be wrong, but I have long thought that the men and women in the military may have a much higher percentage of Christian beliefs. Imagine supply lines, logistics, and having critical positions emptied of key personnel. US Bases overseas and in remote areas could become sitting ducks.
The long-time Cold War stabilizer of the American strategic nuclear triad (personnel in the Minuteman III ICBM silos, B-52, B1, & B2 bomber crews, and nuclear submarines) that could all be dangerously impacted. When the dust settles, and the realization that America has been hardest hit by the ‘event’ sinks in…..the enemies may very well pounce. Currently, Chinese, Russian, & Iranian military planners and terrorist groups worldwide, spend 24/7 with one focus – America. For this one unique period, America will be knocked down, and increasingly I think this event will lure attacks from all fronts on America to keep her down. None of the mentioned countries wants America – their longtime nemesis – regrouping, rebuilding or re-establishing her global lead.
It does not necessarily have to come in the form of an all-out nuclear war. Massive destabilizing cyber-attacks directed at both the military command and control systems, and civilian assets – nuclear power plants, air traffic controls, banking, and stock exchanges. EMP type weapons in the arsenals of Russia and China (and lesser degree N.Korea) could be used to send America into the dark ages. Laser batteries and other types of exotic weapons may wipe out America’s vast array of military and commercial satellites. In the confusion and chaos, the war would be won asymmetrically and without any formal declaration.
If there is any reason America’s enemies forebear themselves from attacking America, it is very conceivable that the once mightiest military may simply not be able to afford any more. It currently consumes 4.2B gallons of fuel each year. In picturing the arena of world affairs post-Rapture, it is difficult to envision just how the armed forces would afford anything close to the present-day consumption levels – especially factoring in the unfavorable economic problems affecting the dollar’s value, and the difficulty in immediate access to fuels, easily sourced in the current global conditions.
Returning to the Ezekiel 38:13 quote. In the tepid response given by Tarshish and her young lions (presumable Britain and the western commonwealth democracies including the USA), it appears NATO or any real functioning semblance of what was NATO is at the moment far too weak to mobilize against the Magog alliance. In today’s world and for the foreseeable future, the West and any sitting US President would meet any such Russian challenge head-on. The US Navy’s Fifth Fleet in the Middle East and the Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean, along with all other nearby bases and assets would immediately mobilize to repel the threat. I have always found it interesting that the prophet Ezekiel ordered the names of the opposition whereby the young lions were mentioned last. Usually the most significant would be mentioned first, for example, if America (presumably a young lion) were the superpower it is today in the Magog timeframe, the prophet may have written – ‘the Young lion of Tarshish’ directly and singular, and then mention the other siblings in the brood of Tarshish. The fact it is written as it signifies a world where America is not in a leadership position, and not in any way the powerhouse it is today – not even remotely. This indicates to me that the Rapture has decimated America away from the global stage.
These are just a few examples of a world that all those familiar, decent people I pass by each day will awaken too. A terrible ending in great contrast to the normal lives they lead now. I have taken the approach that America will limp towards the Rapture, largely intact, and that the global order we see today will remain largely undisturbed, but with increasing moral erosion.
Luke 17 26:30 “Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. 27People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all. 28″It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. 29But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. 30″It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed.”
The passage indicates a very sudden and immediate history-altering event.
One counter perspective I do also entertain to a lesser degree is the possibility of America being judged and destroyed prior to the Rapture. It is naïve to think us western Christians should be escape-worthy of bad things and catastrophes. Christians have suffered tremendously over the centuries – from the Roman persecution to the Black Death in 14th Century Europe, to the 250+ global wars in the 20th/21st Centuries. However, when studying America, it is obvious that is has been used by God like no other nation in history. It has spread the Gospel globally, maintained global stability and peace, and through incredible innovations has raised the worlds’ living standards. I do expect that with the current trend of all things anti-Christian, America’s high level of God’s favor, protection, and blessing will decline and open her up to some major problems – civil unrest, natural disasters, cyber-attacks, etc.
To conclude then, I cannot wait for the Rapture! I believe it is soon and very likely to occur in the next two decades. I am as mystified and excited about it as much as anyone could be. However, I increasingly feel troubled with deep pity for all those good, decent folks I pass by and encounter each day. It is a terrible feeling knowing something bad is going to happen to someone and in this case so many! Even more reason in this late hour to speak the Good News to others and pray for others, while we still have time.