Should We Trust The Pre-trib Rapture Theory?
Take heed that no man deceive you... - Jesus
Welcome To Our Page On The Rapture!
We will be posting articles, facts, links, and research helps that approach this matter in a truthful fashion.
The Rapture Theory Is Not An Early Doctrine
Trouble With Numbers?
The fact that the 'Second Coming' of Christ is referred to as such is in itself evidence that the rapture myth is truly a modern creation. If the early church had believed in one coming of Christ to 'rapture' them, and then another coming when he returns to rule and reign years later, they would have by nature called his 'rapture' coming the Second Coming. And his later coming to rule would of course been named the Third Coming.
The Second Is Not The Third!
Christ's return to this world will be his Second Coming and not his third! When the rapture theory came to popularity some decades ago there was no good way to deal with this pesky numbering issue because the concept of his Second Coming was so ingrained in the vernacular of the believers it could not be undone or altered. So they have to shy away from this sore spot, and act like this is a non-issue, even though it's clearly a major rebuke to their myth and causes many to question the correctness of their rapture theory, and rightly so!
A Bogus Claim
There are many who point to a handful of references in the writings of early Church fathers as proof of the rapture theory. There are three major problems with this notion:
SEE ALSO: Post-Trib Quotes Down Through The Ages
SEE ALSO: The Rapture Is Not 'The Mystery' God Revealed To Paul!
The 'Known Day' Versus The 'Unknown Day' Myth
The following is an excerpt from the new book 'The Pre-Trib Rapture: A Bucket Full of Holes! ' by Paul Benson.
'of that day and hour knoweth no man,'
How many times have you heard the words 'of that day and hour knows no man' spoken in connection with the rapture theory? Unless you are living under a rock or on a remote deserted island your answer would be, “More times than I can remember.” It is one of the most common phrases used to promote that doctrine. But just what day was Jesus actually referring to?
Open And Shut Case?
Frequently cited as 'absolute proof'' the rapture and the Second Coming are two separate events is a portrayal of two days called the 'known day' and the 'unknown day'. Their story usually sounds something like this: There is a day which is absolutely known and a day which cannot be known; two separate days that cannot be the same day. The first is the day of the rapture, of which (they claim) Jesus said 'no man knows the day or hour'; this is the 'unknown day'. The second is the day of the Second Coming which (they claim) the Bible says will be 1260 days after the Antichrist begins to rule; therefor if we can figure the day of Christ's Coming by the 1260 day countdown it is a 'known day'.
Conclusion: since an unknown day and a known day cannot be the same day; and the day of the Second Coming is known whereas the day of the rapture is unknown they cannot be the same day. End of story. Case closed! Or is it really?
The Jury Deliberates
For many this sounds like a solid open and shut case. But is it, or has some deception taken place here? Having had for many years a deep interest in Bible prophesy the time-spans of 3 ½ years, forty two months, 1260 days, 1290 days, and 1335 days found through out the Scriptures have always caught my attention. There is no doubt they are given to us as a framework in which end-time events are to transpire. But as to this 'known day' and 'unknown day' theory there is a serious flaw in the reasoning of those touting this supposed 'proof' of two separate comings of Christ. Let's look at the context this snippet was pulled out of.
Evidence Of Deception
But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of Heaven, but my Father only. 37 But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. Matthew 24:36-37
The problem with this 'absolute proof' they're asking us to ingest is that the phrase 'of that day and hour knoweth no man' is a snippet stolen from a passage we have already proven earlier in this chapter is definitely referring to the Second Coming. Again I urge you to read the passage in your Bible and see the context. Jesus clearly labeled the day of his Return as an 'unknown day'! And that makes all the wrangling and fussing over counting 1260 (or is it 1290? or 1335?) days a moot point. I've seen some pretty *'fancy footwork' dancing around this problem with their theory, but nothing that stays on its feet after close scrutiny. Once again the context of the verse rebukes their usage of that verse.
Also who knows when the 1260 days start for sure. Is it the day Antichrist takes control, the day he announces his control, the day the abomination is set up, or maybe the day it's revealed to the world? Or maybe the day people are required to begin worship of him? A claim to know an exact day is quite presumptuous.
The Verdict Is In!
I don't care how rock solid any assumptions seem about reckoning the days from Antichrist's arrival to Jesus' Coming; we see Jesus was absolutely not referring to a prior event, but to his Return in Matthew 24:36. The day of Christ's Return is an unknown day; and this makes their 'proof'' go 'poof'! Calling the day of his Return a 'known day', and saying Jesus was speaking of the rapture theory when he said 'of that day and hour knoweth no man' are both a lie. The context in which this phrase belongs clearly makes that accusation. The portrayal of a known day versus an unknown day proving two separate comings of Jesus is a bucket full of holes.
* (I am referring here to a notion some put forth of a systematic 'dual reference' in Matthew 24 pointing to two comings of Christ in the end-times. I have read page after page of theological ramblings on this subject but nothing that is anything more than supposition forced by the rapture theory position. What amazes me is they ignore the fact that even if Matthew 24:36 was a dual reference (and it's not) it would be referring to two unknown days! It would still be declaring the Second Coming as an unknown day! What kind of 'proof' is that? More of their 'proof' that proves nothing at all!)
The Antichrist Must Come Before The Rapture!
by John Little from Omegashock .com
(The following is an excerpt from Section One of Ezekiel's Fire by John Little. Sign up to receive his weekly newsletter. Very informative!)
Paul reached out to the church in Thessalonica because they were thrown into turmoil over the idea of the Rapture. It appears that someone was telling them that they had missed it. Here is what Paul says in 2 Thessalonians 2:
Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, 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.
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; 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.
– 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4
The Antichrist MUST come before the Rapture. There is no other way that you can interpret this verse. None.
Unfortunately, pre-tribbers seek to twist this verse by saying that ‘falling away’ is The Rapture.
Really? Apostasy is the RAPTURE?
Here’s the Greek word that Paul used for ‘falling away’:
ἀποστασία – apostasia
That is NOT – and cannot be – the word for the Rapture. In another verse, apostasia was translated as forsake in Acts 21:21, when Paul was being accused of teaching apostasy, it was because they thought that he was telling people to forsake the Law of Moses.
Apostasia is NEVER used in ANY place in the Bible in reference to the Rapture. In fact, Paul already had a word that he uses for the rapture. It’s used in this phrase:
by our gathering together unto him
The Greek word used for gathering together is:
ἐπισυναγωγῆς – episynagōgēs
It really does just mean ‘gather together’.
The word that pre-tribbers like to use – rapture – comes from the Latin – rapturo. It’s a *good word, and I use it because that’s what people understand. The Greek version of this word is:
ἁρπάζω – harpazó
It means to snatch away, or to take by force. And THAT is exactly what the Lord is going to do. He’s going to snatch us away. In fact, Paul uses much the same word in 1 Thessalonians 4:
Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
– 1 Thessalonians 4:17
The word for shall be caught up is:
ἁρπαγησόμεθα – harpagēsometha
And, the root is – you guessed it – harpazo.
So, when a pretribber comes to you and tries to tell you that The Great Apostasy in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 is actually the rapture, tell him that he’s passing on a lie. And then, tell him this:
The Antichrist Must Come Before The Rapture
To believe otherwise is to believe a lie. And, there is only one person who is the father of lies.
READ THE ENTIRE SECTION HERE:
Section One of Ezekiel's Fire by John Little
* (I disagree the name rapture is a good word. Please see my two explanations below. P.B.)
Why We Should NOT Use The Name 'Rapture' To describe the 'Catching Away'
by Paul Benson
Guilty by Association?
I am trying to condition myself to use biblical terms instead of man-made ones. I try not to use the word 'rapture' unless I'm speaking about the pre-trib rapture theory and its components. The reason being I have developed a conviction that doing so unwittingly promotes that deception. We should refer to our hope the way the Bible does; and say we are looking forward to the Resurrection of the Just, or the Resurrection at the Last Day. Our casual usage of the word 'rapture' leaves the impression we endorse that erroneous concept. We become just another person 'waiting for the rapture'. This helps foster the 'it's only a matter of timing' falsehood and makes us a part of the problem and not the solution.
The Rapture and the Resurrection of the Just at the Return of Christ to earth are not the same thing! There are many differences between the two concepts (most notably one is Bible truth and one is a fable). And further if you believe in the rapture you must also acknowledge the reality of the Resurrection which takes place at the Second Coming. There is no way around it, it has to happen. But rapture teachers rarely mention it because it causes their theory to lose traction when they start teaching two resurrections of the dead believers when the Bible clearly states all believers are resurrected in one event at his Coming (1 Corinthians 15:21-24)
Again it's not about the timing of ONE event, it's about the deceptive introduction of a second event (a false hope of escaping the coming great persecution) into peoples belief system. Do we want to be a part of that? Let's help others realize there is a conflict going on here between truth and error, and we've chosen not to buy into the lie. If all who reject the rapture theory would boycott the use of the word 'rapture' many would become curious why, and might be stirred to critically re-examine what they believe and where these beliefs came from. Let's call it the Resurrection at the Last Day, its proper Bible name; not some catchy thing a deceived man made up to promote his falsehood.
Why The Need For A New Name - The Rapture?
by Paul Benson
For nearly two thousand years the Scriptures, the body of Christ, and even scoffers, have referred to the event that brings us the fullness of our salvation, and the redemption of our body, as the Resurrection at the Last Day. Why was there a necessity to invent a completely NEW name: The 'Rapture'? Have you ever thought about that?
Did anyone really need to rename our promise of the Resurrection? Do we need a new name for salvation? For healing? For the Cross? No! How about for Heaven? No, but how about if I came up with a new doctrine of a paradise that is a little different that what has been commonly believed for all this time, and what if I said getting there is a little easier than what we've been taught. I couldn't call it Heaven. Folks might look into what the Bible really teaches on Heaven and call me on it. I'd need a way to get them to turn loose of some long held beliefs; maybe I could use some subtle distractions.
First I would have to invent a new name for this new revelation. CONTINUE READING
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