“Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep (Rapture) thee from the hour of temptation (Tribulation), which shall come upon all the world, to try them that DWELL UPON THE EARTH (capitals mine).”
For believers and unbelievers alike, we have long been Promised by Jesus of two soon coming events which will impact every single, living human being forever at the time they occur. The first is the Rapture. This is Jesus’s Promise in the Scripture above that He will keep the Believers who have kept His Word from having to endure all the trials and Tribulation which will happen after the Rapture. Not to rehash the timing of the Rapture but this verse clearly says He will KEEP us from going through that time period known as the Tribulation. Of course, we first were told about the Rapture by Paul in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18:
“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds (not on earth) to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”
When you compare this Scripture to what happened to John on the Isle of Patmos when he was told to write the Book of Revelation, I believe you can see the reason the majority of Bible prophecy scholars strongly agree the Rapture MUST occur before the Tribulation begins. Right after John wrote the first three chapters of Revelation, which give us the history and stages of the Christian Church until THEIR time on earth is finished, he followed up in Revelation 4:1-2, giving us an example of actually experiencing the Rapture:
“AFTER THIS (meaning after the Church age) I looked, and behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said Come up hither; and I will shew thee things WHICH MUST BE HEREAFTER (capitals mine). And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.”
From this point until Christ’s Return in Revelation 19:11 the Church is not mentioned one time! Why? Because they are NOT on the earth while the unbelievers are going through the Tribulation! Jesus told John when he was “raptured” that He would then show him all the things which will happen AFTERWARDS, meaning AFTER the Rapture has snatched all the Believers in Jesus, both alive and dead, from the earth so God would then “…try” those remaining, those who “…dwell upon the earth.” While many denominations teach that since man is naturally sinful, he obviously must therefore be punished for his sins by going through the Tribulation. They go on to say because of their earned sinfulness, God will not Rapture them until either halfway through or at the end of the Tribulation period of seven years. BUT, this is not what the Bible clearly teaches us in many places.
Living today, we must all be acutely aware there are two very imminent events soon to occur. Of course these are the Rapture and the Tribulation. One is very good and one is very bad!
“For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.”
Simply put, you cannot escape either. If you believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior, you will be Raptured. If you don’t, you won’t and you will have to endure the worst time period in the history of the world when God’s Wrath is unleashed on this unrepentant world. Think about this. God destroyed everyone on the earth at the time of the Flood EXCEPT for Noah and his family. In just a few days the flood waters did their job eliminating all of mankind. During the Tribulation God will unleash His Wrath on this world for 7 years! It is estimated one half of all people on the earth will die. Now, with God’s Grace there will be people saved during the Tribulation. Many will be martyred for their newfound belief in Jesus and many believers will also survive this terrible time to live on earth after Jesus Returns at Armageddon. But, since none of us know when our time on earth is finished, I wouldn’t wait until then to make the most important decision of your life, of your very existence. It is solely your choice as to whether you go with the bad or the good. If you want to know what will happen to those who must endure the Tribulation, you may want to read my previous post Did Millions of People Just Disappear? You Better Read This NOW!.
I find it interesting if you do a Bible term search of the phrase in the opening Scripture above, “…DWELL UPON THE EARTH”, you will find something VERY enlightening. It is used a total of 4 times in the entire Bible (the one at the beginning of this post and the other 3 below). But, it always refers to those living (dwelling) on the earth during the Tribulation. Note, it DOES NOT refer to the Believers!
“Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, AND THEY THAT DWELL THEREIN SHALL DIE IN LIKE MANNER (capitals mine): but my salvation shall be for ever, and my righteousness shall not be abolished.”
Even in the Old Testament we are told those living on the earth during the time “…the earth shall wax old like a garment” will die but His Salvation shall be forever! From this verse the only other times the phrase “…dwell upon the earth” is used is in the Book of Revelation which clearly details the Tribulation and what will befall unbelieving man and the earth during the outpouring of God’s Wrath:
“And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, (the two prophets) and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.”
In God’s Mercy, He sends two prophets (Moses and Elijah?), along with 144,000 Jewish evangelicals, to the earth during the first half of the 7 year Tribulation to give those who were left behind at the Rapture one last chance to accept Jesus as their Savior. While these two prophets will have the incredible ability to withhold rain and to cause many miracles which will bring much discomfort to many to prove their power is God given, after the prophets are killed by the anti-christ, the people on earth are so happy they are finally gone they will go into a party mode! They will send gifts to each other to celebrate this “momentous” occasion. This tells me the only ones left to celebrate are those unbelievers left behind after the Rapture. For more info on these two you may want to read my previous post What happens when these 2 guys come knocking on your door?
“And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him (Satan), whose names ARE NOT (capitals mine) written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.”
It can’t be any clearer than this. If you are living of the earth during the Tribulation and are worshipping Satan, your name IS NOT written in the Book of Life. This means at the Great White Throne Judgement of God, you will be judged and will be thrown into the fire and brimstone of Hell forever. I cannot think of anything worse! This will be so BAD for all who did not accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. On the other hand, if you have accepted His Gift of salvation before the Tribulation, you will be Raptured. This is not only GOOD, it is great!
We are now seeing so many of the various signs foretold thousands of years ago to occur in the Last Days. We all have a choice TODAY! One is bad and one is good. I pray you will make the right decision. Again, that decision will be with you forever. However, you do have a choice and the difference between bad and good should actually be very easy. Acknowledge Jesus Christ as your Savior, repent of your sins and ask Him to forgive you. This should not scare you but only make you aware of what your choices are and the eternal differences they represent. Please help me to tell others what Jesus has asked us all to do and that is to “…therefore comfort one another with these words.”
May God Bless you as we await the Rapture!
Great piece. I would love to know your opinion of Vankampen’s book “The Sign”. Lee Selvage
Thanks Lee! I haven’t read it so I will put it on my list to get and read.
I submit that your assertion on the Rapture happening before the Great Tribulation is completely wrong and it will mislead so many Christians to be deceived, disappointed, confused and thus easily defeated and destroyed by the common enemy of God and man. Why do I say so? With what you’re teaching in error and spreading, Christians who read and believe your doctrine without verifying with the Lord and searching the scriptures like the Berean church will be largely if not totally be unprepared when the Great Tribulation sets in. Our Lord Jesus Christ symbolically warns in Mathew 24:4 that we should take heed so that no man (no one) will by any means deceive us. You need to repent sir and correct your errors quickly less the Lord requests for the blood of His saints from you due to your unfortunately erroneous teachings. See simple truths and facts below:
1. Our Lord Jesus Christ made it clear when the Rapture will happen. He stated categorically clear that the Rapture will happen immediately after the Tribulation of those coming days which is inevitable for everyone including yourself if you’re still alive then. These you will find in Mathew 24:29-31:
Matt.24.29 – 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:
Matt.24.30 – 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.
Matt.24.31 – And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
He even made it clear that the coming Tribulation is so greatly wicked non like has happened since the inception of the world and there will never be any like it again. He went further to say that if the time if the coming inevitable Great Tribulation was not reduced, no flesh would have made it but by His mercies, love, Lovingkindness and grace, He says the duration of the Tribulation will be reduced because of the elects.
Going further, the Holy Spirit clarified on the timing of the Rapture and what will precede it because obviously, these confusion from that abysmal failure who is known as the devil has since been on ground and unfortunately, you’re peddling the same error the Lord Himself carefully corrected so the elect will not deceived and that they will be better prepared and brace up for the inevitable Great Tribulation that will surely come before the Rapture. It is written in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5 with emphasis on verse 3 which gives a concise clarification of the order of events as stated below:
2Thess.2.1 – Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
2Thess.2.2 – That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
2Thess.2.3 – Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
2Thess.2.4 – Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
2Thess.2.5 – Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
Most unfortunately and I hope you take corrections and reach out to everyone stating clearly your errors, you are doing exactly what the Holy Spirit is warning us believers against. “Let no man deceive you”. Either by error or commission, that’s exactly what you’re doing by your teaching.
That day (day of Rapture) will not come until there’s a falling away (lawlessness) first, and the man of sin, the antichrist is first revealed. After the man of sin is revealed, then Mathew 24 kicks in. That is when the love of many wax cold due to iniquities, lawlessness commanded by the antichrist who already is reigning. This is when Christ with His winnowing fan, will purge His threashing floor thoroughly meaning the separation of the wheat from the chaff because many will deny Christ these period. Immediately After all these and many more ills that will befall everyone alive on earth then, will Jesus Christ appear to Rapture His saints.
The man of sin, the antichrist was revealed in Revelation chapter 13, the Rapture happened in Revelation chapter 14.
In love I beg you with the love of Christ, repent from these your errors and bring the truth as briefed above to your congregation that you have been Feeding the errors prior to now so that you will not be in danger of hell being guilty a number of scriptures like Hosea 4:6 and Luke 17:1 but to name a few.
I pray the Holy Spirit to enlighten your eyes of understanding and to give you the spirits of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of God and His word
Please be Raptureable especially with the correct order of events because failing to plan ahead and be prepared is actually planning to fail and woefully at that which Christ nor myself wants. I encourage you to seek the face of the Lord in this matter. Shalom
Thank you Emeka for your thoughtful response. I have debated this many, many times before and firmly believe the Bible clearly states the Rapture will be before the great Tribulation. What I also believe is all Believers will stand in front of God one day and will not be judged based on their view of the timing of the Rapture. In the same way God removed Noah and his family and Lot and his wife BEFORE He unleashed His Wrath, I believe He will remove those who believe in Jesus BEFORE the worst time period in human history. I have written numerous articles comparing what the Bible clearly says about when the Rapture will occur. Since the Bible makes it clear when Christ Returns at Armageddon (7 years after the Peace Covenant with Israel and 3 1/2 years after the abomination of desolation) those who know the Bible and are on earth in the Last Days WILL know when He returns. But, of the Rapture we don’t know. With that said, we know because of the two prophets and the 144,000 evangelical Jews during the first half of the Tribulation, there will be an enormous movement back to Jesus. While many of those will be martyred, many will still be alive when Christ Returns and will enter the Millennium still as humans. If the rapture were to occur when Jesus Returns, who would be alive on earth to live for 1,000 years? Sorry, but I guess we will have to agree to disagree. The most noted Biblical scholars of the past 100 years agree with the notion of a pre-Tribulation Rapture. God Bless you!
Where dose it say the rapture takes place immediately after ?
Jesus is describing the second coming. Not the rapture.
Here you go.
The pre trib view is the most viable view
My point is simple. When Jesus told the disciples to expect him at an hour you think not that’s in contrast to the second coming that has thousands of details to it that we call eschatology.
THEREAFTER the at an hour you think not is fulfilled by way of the rapture then the 70th week and the second coming that results in destroying the man of sin.
..if your in the 70th week you can count the day’s till the man of sin is destroyed.
Rev 13:5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to
***continue forty and two months***.
2 Thess 2: 8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
Thank you Mike. God Bless and encourage you.
Thank you Dave! Hope you are doing well.