Hope and Rapture – Part 2
One thing to note, the Bible has 320 plus references to the second coming, and one has to read carefully to discern whether a passage Refers to the Rapture, or the Glorious Appearing (2nd. Coming). In no way can I reference all these verses, however I believe I have selected ones that are most relevant for this message.
(Please note, the word Rapture is not in the Bible, but neither is Trinity, Bible or even Atheist, though all are described thoroughly).
You will find as that I am a believer in a PRETRIB appearance of our Lord and savior to take His Church Home. This includes ALL believers regardless of their religious affiliation. Jesus did not want to set up a “religion” because all He wants is for us to believe in Him and accept the perfect sacrifice He offered. In fact, most of His opponents were the religious leaders of that time. I will give my reasons and, just as Jesus does for us, allow you to form your own conclusion.
First, we need to talk about the “WRATH”. Some verses in the Bible speak about Christians having tribulations, however this does not refer to “THE TRIBULATION”, or “THE WRATH” which will be the final 7 years of this existing earth.
Tribulation defined is: suffering, distress, trouble, misery, unhappiness, sadness, heartache, etc. This is definitely here today. Wrath is defined: Anger, Rage, Fury, Outrage, etc. God finally giving total discipline to the world.
Jesus said we would experience tribulations just because we are His followers. This is evident today with groups trying to remove Jesus’ name from just about everything. Prayer in school has all but become forbidden, and even traditional holidays to celebrate Jesus are under attack. As mentioned earlier, business owners are being attacked in a manner that challenges their faith. Worshipers of Islam try to say Jesus was just a prophet, and will serve Mohammed at His return. By the way, you will notice there’s no push to remove Islam or any other anti-christian group. It’s evident, satan is on a roll here.
Let me give you what 1 Corinthians 2:14-15,16 says: The natural person (unbeliever) does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are Spiritually discerned. The spiritual person (believer) judges all things but in himself is judged by no one. End of verse 16 says: we have the mind of Christ. (emphasis mine)
First, the Bible is explicit as to who Jesus is. John 14:6 clearly says He is “The Way, The Truth and The Life, and no one goes to the Father except by Him. ” Jesus said in John 14: 3, “and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to Myself that where I am you may be also.” This is definitely considered a Rapture verse.
Christians today, in some parts of the world, are being persecuted even up to being martyred because of Jesus. This is what Jesus meant by suffering tribulation. This has been happening for over 2000 years since He was here. Our liberal press just chooses to not cover this.
To speak of WRATH increases the level of intensity of tribulation and will be applied by God to unbelievers. One of the best verses for this is Ephesians 5:6 – Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things, the WRATH OF GOD comes upon the sons of disobedience.
Nowhere in the Bible does God put His followers through His wrath. He punishes the unrighteous, but the Faithful He protects.
Some have said the wrath of God starts at the 6th Trumpet Judgment. I believe a verse used by some for this is 1 Corinthians 15:51-53 which speaks of a “Last Trumpet”
The trumpet mentioned in 1 Corinthians 15:51-53 has nothing to do with the Trumpet Judgments in Revelation. This trumpet is an Announcing Trumpet which Jewish people have recognized through their history. Shofar’s (trumpets) have been used to announce holidays, special events, or to call to assembly, and many other events. To say this particular trumpet is part of the judgment is a misinterpretation. This one goes along with 1 Thessalonians 4:15 that Announces Jesus is Calling His Church Home (all believers). The dead in Christ shall rise first and then all who are alive will…This Is Important…rise up to meet Him in the clouds. Definitely a Rapture verse. Jesus doesn’t step on earth, at this time.
To say the wrath of God does not start until the 6th Trumpet, or at ANY other point During The Tribulation does not hold true.
Revelation 6 starts the 7-seal judgments which are the FIRST series of wrath. The first 4 seals are releasing the 4 horses that bring different miseries on the earth. Who opens the seals to release this WRATH? Jesus, not satan! So if Jesus is setting wrath loose on the earth, and if His Church is not with Him, then He is causing His followers to go through wrath. All Judgment seals, Trumpet judgments and Bowl judgments are part of God’s Wrath. They increase in intensity. The 6th Trumpet judgment is over halfway through the Tribulation. If Believers are here until then, God would have not kept His word to Keep us From the wrath, and the whole Bible would be a lie.
Consider these references: Hebrews 9:28: So Christ having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin, but to save those who are eagerly awaiting Him.
1 Thessalonians 1:10 ..to wait for His son from Heaven whom He raised from the dead, Jesus, who delivers us from the WRATH TO COME.
Romans 5:9 since therefore we have now been justified by His Blood, much more shall we be saved by Him from THE WRATH OF GOD.
Finally, Revelation 3:10 Because you have kept My word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the Hour Of Trial that is coming to the whole world to try those who dwell on the earth.
Some Bible verses deal with the actual 2nd coming of the Lord when He will physically stand on the earth. This will be at the end of the Great Tribulation/wrath and at the battle of Armageddon. (See Daniel 12:1-3; Zechariah 12:10; Matthew 13:41; Matthew 24:15-31.)
1st Thessalonians 3:12-13. -and may the Lord make you increase and abound in Love for one another and for all, as we do for you so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before Our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with ALL HIS SAINTS.
Who are His saints? All that were Raptured earlier. So this would be the actual “touch earth return” of Jesus along with those of us who were taken up in the Rapture.
2nd Thessalonians 1:6-10 is another set of verses that magnify this.
Therefore, the Rapture and Second coming are two separate events. I believe for God not to lie (Hebrews 6:18) believers from EVERY walk of life will be taken from this planet to meet Jesus in the clouds prior to the start of the period known as The Tribulation/wrath.
When Jesus actually returns and sets foot on earth, it is to close out the Great Tribulation/wrath, and start His Millennial Kingdom. Those coming back with Him are those of us who accepted Him before the Rapture took place. There’s plenty of room for more, but one day the door will close, just as when God closed Noah’s ark, and the wrath will start. Make sure you are where you want to be when it does.
Please note, I am not predicting any day or hour, but you should know all prophecy leading up to the Rapture has already been fulfilled. The next event on the prophetic calendar is “Harpitzo” or taking up – Rapture of all believers. Remember 2 Peter where people are saying where is His coming? one day, a bunch of people on this earth will leave instantly, and then their question will have been answered.
Sad part is current studies show only about 10% or the total world population is truly Christian – those who not only believe Jesus exists, but that He is our Holy Savior who shed His life blood for our sins.
Even worse, of His chosen – the Jewish people – world-wide only about 1% are messianic or believe Jesus (Yeshua) is Messiah. At the end of the tribulation this will change. All His chosen will believe Jesus is Messiah.
When the time comes, will you be one who is spared from the wrath? It is your choice, and God will allow you free-will to decide. By the way, God doesn’t send anyone to hell. If a person ends up there, it was because that person decided to accept earth rather than the Father. As a Loving God, He will not force you to love Him. Remember though, it’s worth repeating that ALL who call on the name of the Lord will be saved.