This world is not my home anymore.
| Re: The Pretrib Rapture???|
I am so sorry for the length of this post but in the OP, bearmaster for asked if pre-trib was taught in the N.T. I came across this today and they honestly believe it is, so read away and feel free to post any rebuttals!!!
from rapture ready website:
Scriptural Evidence for the Pretribulation Rapture
The Unknown Hour
When we search the Scriptures and read the passages describing the Lord Jesus' return, we find verses that tell us we won't know the day and hour of that event. Matthew 25:13 says Jesus will return at an unknown time, while Revelation 12:6 indicates that the Jews will have to wait on the Lord 1,260 days, starting when the Antichrist stands in the Temple of God and declares himself to be God (2 Thes 2:4). This event will take place at the mid-point of the seven-year tribulation (Dan 9:27). Note that some people only see a three-and-a-half-year tribulation. In a way, they are correct because the first half of the tribulation will be relatively peaceful compared to the second half. Nonetheless, peaceful or not, there still remains a seven-year period called the tribulation. When the Jews flee into the wilderness, they know that all they have to do is wait out those 1,260 days (Mat 24:16). There is no way to apply the phrase "neither the day nor the hour" to this situation. The only way for these two viewpoints to be true is to separate the two distinct events transpiring here: 1) the rapture of the Church, which comes before the tribulation; and 2) the return of Jesus to the earth, which takes place roughly seven years later.
The Marriage Supper of the Lamb
In Luke 12:36, the Word states that when Christ returns, He will be returning from a wedding. In Revelation 19:7-8, we read about the marriage itself. The marriage supper takes place before the marriage. According to Jewish custom, the marriage contract, which often includes a dowry, is drawn up first. The contract parallels the act of faith we use when we trust Jesus to be our Savior. The dowry is His life, which was used to purchase us. When it's time for the wedding, the groom goes to the bride's house unannounced. She comes out to meet him, and then he takes her to his father's house. This precisely correlates with the events according to the pre-trib scenario. Jesus, the Groom, comes down from heaven and calls up the Church, His Bride. After meeting in the air, He and His Bride return to His Father's house, heaven. The marriage supper itself will take place there, while down here on earth the final events of the tribulation will be playing out. After the marriage supper of Jewish tradition, the bride and groom are presented to the world as man and wife. This corresponds to the time when Jesus returns to earth accompanied by an army "clothed in fine linen, white and clean" (Rev 19:14).
What They Didn't Teach You in History Class
Many groups try to discredit the pre-trib rapture by saying most of the end-time events in the Bible have already taken place. A group of people called preterists claims that the Book of Revelation was mostly fulfilled by 70 AD. If the events described in the Book of Revelation took place in the past, I'm at a loss to explain some of the current situations I see around us: the rebirth of Israel, the reunification of Europe, the number of global wars that have occurred, and the development of nuclear weapons. During history class, I must have slept through the part where the teacher talked about the time when a third of the trees were burned up, 100-pound hailstones fell from the sky, and the sea turned into blood (Rev 8:7-8, 16:21). I think several people would have to question their opposition to the pre-trib rapture doctrine if they knew that the evidence provided to them was based on the understanding that most tribulation prophecies have already occurred.
The People of the Millennium
If Christ were to come back after the tribulation, rapture all the saints, and slay all the ungodly, who would be left to populate the earth during the millennium? Only the pre-trib viewpoint can account for this post-trib problem. The Church is raptured before the tribulation, a vast number of souls are saved during this seven-year time frame, and those who make it through the tribulation go into the millennium while the unsaved are cast into hell.
The Saint U-Turn
In the pre-trib scenario, after we rise to meet the Lord in the air, we will go to heaven and abide there seven years. At the end of that period, Christ will come down to earth, defeat the Antichrist, and cleanse the temple. In a post-trib rapture, we would rise in the air to meet the Lord, then do a 180-degree U-turn and come back down to earth. Revelation 1:7 states that Christ will appear out of the clouds and come down to earth. Zechariah 14:4 says that His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives. If He's already headed our way, why would we need to be caught up to meet Him?
"Come Up Hither"
Many pre-trib writers cite Revelation 4:1, which says, "come up hither," as a prophetic reference to the rapture of the Church, leaving Revelation chapters 1 through 3 as a description of the Church Age. After the shout to "come up hither," the Church is not mentioned in Scripture at all. The attention of Scripture switches from the Church to the Jews living in Israel.
Armies in Fine Linen
When Jesus returns (Rev. 19:18), an army follows Him. The army's members are riding on white horses, and they are clothed in fine linen that is white and clean. In Revelation 19:8, we are told that the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints. If the saints of God are returning with Christ to wage war on the Antichrist, then it is not possible to have a post-trib rapture without us running into ourselves as we are coming and going.
The Time of Jacob's Trouble
In several passages, the Bible refers to the tribulation as a time of trouble for the Jews. The phrase "Jacob's trouble" pertains to the descendants of Jacob. Jeremiah 30:7 says that this time of trouble will come just before the Lord returns to save His people. The final week of Daniel's 70th week is yet to take place. An angel told Daniel that, "70 weeks are determined unto thy people" (Dan 9:24). Scripture never mentions that the tribulation is meant to be a time of testing for Christians. However, some post-tribbers try to claim that they are the ones being tested during the tribulation. To make this so, they need to spiritualize the 144,000 Jewish believers in Revelation 7:2-8 who receive God's protective seal. Placing the Church dispensation into the same time frame as the seven-year Jewish dispensation, as the post-tribbers do, raises one good question: Can two dispensations transpire at the same time? In the past, God has only dealt with one at a time. Having both present during the tribulation would have to be an exception.
"He" That is Taken Out of the Way
Before the Antichrist can be revealed, Paul said a certain "He" must be taken out of the way. According to 2 Thessalonians 2:7, the "He" that must be removed is widely thought to be the Holy Spirit. It has been promised that the Holy Spirit would never leave the Church, and without the working of the Holy Spirit remaining on earth, no one could be saved during the tribulation. The removal of the Church, which is indwelt by the Holy Ghost, would seem the best explanation for this dilemma. The working of the Holy Spirit could go on during the tribulation, but His influence would be diminished because of the missing Church.
War or Rapture
(Rev 19:19-21) When Jesus returns at the end of the tribulation, He will be coming for battle. For those who believe in a post-trib rapture, it would be strange to meet your Lord and Savior just as He's rushing into battle. The idea that war and rapture could occur together is difficult to imagine, especially since they transpire at the same moment.
The Five Foolish Virgins
The wedding story that Jesus gave in Matthew 25:2-13, I believe, is a parable of the rapture of the Church. It explains how some will not be ready. Jesus clearly states that a group of people will miss out on an event, and will cry out to God to let them into the place where He resides, heaven. Although some try to put this parable in a post-trib context, it doesn't fit very well. The ones left behind in a post-trib rapture will not need to seek the Lord because they'll immediately be confronted by Him and His army of angels.
God Hath Not Appointed Us to Wrath
In 1 Thessalonians 5:9, Paul assures us that God has not appointed His people to wrath. This wrath is plainly God's anger that will be poured out during the tribulation. Pre-trib believers interpret this as meaning that Christians will be removed from the earth. Post-trib believers tell a different story. They describe this as meaning that God will protect Christians during the tribulation and pour this wrath out on the unbelievers only. This idea runs against the statement made in Revelation 13:7, in which the Antichrist is given power to make war with the saints and to overcome them. A post-trib view would make God's promise of protection from wrath into a lie. In years past, it was possible to think of being protected from the guns and swords of that day. Today, when any major war would involve nuclear and chemical weapons, it's impossible to expect that same kind of protection. When Nagasaki, Japan was bombed during World War II, the bomb exploded over a Catholic church. Everyone who was in the center of the explosion died--both Christians and non-Christians. The only way to validly interpret God's promise of protection from wrath is by viewing 1 Thessalonians 5:9 as the bodily removal of the Church from this world.
The Salt of the Earth
Jesus said, "Ye are the salt of the earth" (Matthew 5:13). When the believers are supenly removed, the earth will be plunged into spiritual darkness. When this happens, the Antichrist will then be free to control the world.
God Takes an Inventory
In Revelation 7:3, an angel descends to earth and seals the servants of God. Two bits of information about this sealing highly disclaim a post-trib viewpoint. The first item is the number of people sealed: 144,000. The second one is that all those who are sealed are from the 12 tribes of Israel. For the events in Revelation 7:3-8 to be true in a post-trib interpretation, either the Church has turned against God or God has turned against the Church. A post-tribber could write a thousand-word commentary about why the Church doesn't need to be sealed. Instead of trying to argue about why the Church is not mentioned or sealed, a pre-trib proponent could just say, "We're already in heaven."
Noah and Lot as Examples
The tribulation period is compared to the times of Noah and Lot by Jesus in Luke 17:28. Most people argue over whether the time frame Jesus was talking about in that passage was pre-trib or post-trib. In doing so, they miss an important point. The two circumstances that the Noah and Lot situations have in common are the removal of the righteous and the judgment of the unbelievers. From these two accounts, we see that God prefers to remove His own when danger is involved.
Common-Sense Reasons for Believing in the Pretribulation Rapture
The World Test
One way to check the soundness of a doctrine is to see how the world reacts to it. One company put out a questionnaire that was used to screen prospective employees. One of the questions was, "Do you believe in the rapture?" If you answered "yes," your chances of getting hired would not be good. Some internet sites do not allow the topics of Rapture or Second Coming. They do allow topics such as sex, gays, and drugs. The only time the news media mentions the rapture is when someone sets a date and is proven to be wrong.
That Old-Time Religion
It used to be a rule of thumb that when one was visiting a church or listening to a preacher, one could assume the preacher believed in repentance, prayer, and the baptism of the Holy Ghost if he taught the rapture doctrine. It was also true that the churches on fire for God worshipped out of storefronts. Today, many of those storefront churches have moved into marble palaces and have strayed from their principal doctrines.
Birds of a Feather Flock Together
Whenever I look at all the groups that teach false doctrine and are highly focused on end-time events, I cannot find any that support the rapture theory. Some organizations, the Jehovah's Witnesses, for example, teach a false gospel and are heavily into Bible prophecy. Why, then, don't Jehovah's Witnesses teach a false doctrine that would be right up their alley? Could it be that the demonic forces that influence these groups know something that Christians opposed to the rapture don't know? The list of prophetically minded cults that reject the idea of a rapture goes on and on. Here are some more: the Mormons, the Worldwide Church of God and the Moonies, as well as leaders like Jim Jones and David Koresh.
The Church Would Rebuke the Antichrist
If the Antichrist came to power with the Church still here, I do not see how he could operate. When Hitler was fighting to take over England, a number of Christians were praying for victory. Hitler made mistake after mistake, and England outperformed its enemy at every stage of the conflict. It is difficult to measure the impact of intercessory prayer in physical warfare. Little is known of how great a role praying saints played in the defeat of Nazi Germany. If the Church were to reside on earth during the tribulation, I am sure she would give the Antichrist fits. In Revelation 11:3, the two witnesses alone give the Antichrist enough headaches. Millions of Christians who know their Bibles well would recognize the man of sin and pray fire down on his head. The post-trib view would have to plan on the Church just rolling over and playing dead the whole seven years.
| 2016/8/31 21:17||Profile|
| Re: |
quote: What is the motivation behind the doctrine of the Eminent Return of Christ? Why would those who believe in a pre-trib rapture say that the teaching of this doctrine is essential and important?
The term is actually "imminence" or imminent- just a technical point.
This entails the belief that nothing else has to happen before Jesus can return. All prior conditions have been met so literally He could return at any time.
But you don't have to be a pre-tribber to believe that. I am not a pre-tribber but I believe that Jesus could return at any time. I equate the rapture with the 2nd coming. I do not believe scripture teaches two separate rapture events.
The post Lysa quoted says that is a "U-turn" approach to the rapture; i.e. that Jesus returns for his 2nd coming, the dead in Christ and those living are raptured and meet him in the air, then return to the earth. I view it not as a U-turn per se but rather liken it to a bride running to meet her groom. It's a welcoming committee!
In my view when we are raptured at the 2nd coming, the new heavens and earth are created and we return to the recreated earth, which is synonymous with "heaven." Cant wait.
| 2016/8/31 21:32||Profile|
| Re: |
Todd: Sorry for the misspelling. Duly noted that we are talking about all prerequisites being met and the event being the next thing on the horizon. But my question is to the motivation for believing the doctrine an essential one. Why do we see it as absolutely essential to believe the rapture could happen at any moment rather than, lets say, at a season down the road a few years after certain events take place.
I might note, the scripture stated earlier that no man knows the day or the hour is further clarified by 1 Thess 5: 5 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
We do not know the day or hour, but we should be aware of the season. If our motivation for believing in the imminent return is that we think we see in scripture that all prerequisites are met, cool! Then we would have reason to believe imminent return. But what is the motivation for calling it an essential doctrine rather than simply the next step in the parade? Do you get the distinction I am trying to make? In other words, why is it important for a pre-tribber that people believe in imminent return rather than simply, He is coming down the road a piece?
| 2016/9/1 11:40||Profile|
Tennessee, but my home's in Alabama
| Re: |
Bro. Travis, can I jump in and say something to your last post directed to Todd? And, Todd, can I poke in long enough to say this?
I share your view that this is not an issue we ought to make a test of fellowship with each other. We are ALL grabbing in a measure of darkness. I'm thrilled that we all know we are touching on the things of God with earnest hearts to Him even if we ARE doing it without knowing exactly what we've got our hands on. I might be holding onto the hem of His garment and calling it His sleeve, and you may be telling me I'm grabbing His sleeve while you're sitting on His shoulders and think you're sitting in His lap!! :)
(I hope nobody is offended at that.)
I am deeply disappointed at the rhetoric that gets used online by pre-tribbers about post-tribbers (like, "Post-tribbers are lying heretics and are calling God a wife-beater.", and that's a nicer one). And by post-tribbers calling pre-tribbers a bunch of deceivers and agents of the Anti-Christ. And, I do wonder why pre-tribbers think so little of post-tribbers when the concerns we have about the practical impact of pre-trib belief (if pre-trib is wrong) are out of love and concern.
We need to discuss this. It doesn't need to be taboo among us. We ought to be able to point out where the problems are with other views without making those who hold the views straight-up opposed to Christ. If that kind of conclusion becomes unavoidable, it can be dealt with in due course but why can't we assume the best about each other in this circle of believers now?
So, that's my .02. And, please pardon my interruption.
| 2016/9/1 12:01||Profile|
| Re: |
No problemo Tim. I agree.
But Travis, I have no idea why it should be considered "essential." Pretty silly thing to do since it certainly isn't 100% clear.
Perhaps they think that if other prophecies need to be fulfilled then we can "time" the rapture and as you pointed out scripture says we can't time it, and even the Son doesn't know (my only explanation for this is that Jesus did not know when he made the statement- he certainly knows now).
| 2016/9/1 12:57||Profile|
| Re: |
Tim: Totally agreed. And, that should be the attitude of anyone who is studying and discussing scripture. There are absolutes that I will not back off of, like the virgin birth and the death and resurrection. There are other areas where, if we are honest, none of us have it figured out yet, like eschatology. It grieves me as well when brethren cannot discuss scripture without that kind of rhetoric.
Todd: I guess I need to tip my hand so to speak and bring out the reason for asking the question. I had a discussion with a man about eschatology recently. He was a believer and he found out I was a believer and began to ask me about my views on various topics. Did I believe in the present day operation of the Holy Spirit in the life of a believer, etc. Finally, he very pointedly asked me if I believed in a pre-tribulation rapture. I told him that I had not made up my mind yet. I had studied it from both angles and to be honest, had not been able to come to a conclusion in my own mind that was iron clad enough to say, "this is how I see it." He became visibly upset and said that I could not have that view and that there was only one way to see it. I told him I actually leaned toward there not being a pretrib rapture as I could find no clear teaching in scripture to support it. He really did not like that statement. Then he brought up the imminent return. This was his motivation.
He said that if we did not preach the imminent return that it would result in Christians living carnally and living in sin.
It took a few seconds for it to really soak in. His primary motive for believing in a pretrib rapture was so that people could live in fear of the Lord's return and thus have a reason to refrain from sin. I was floored. He was wanting to present a doctrine as essential in order to "put the fear of God" into people to motivate them by fear to refrain from sin. This motive violated clearly taught scripture in so many ways.
For me, if a doctrine is taught clearly in scripture, I believe it. If scripture represents it as essential, such as salvation by grace through faith rather than through keeping the law, then I call it essential and will defend it as such. But to take an eschatological doctrine that cannot clearly be taught scripturally and elevate it to the status of essential in order to motivate or I even believe manipulate people?
Now this man was sincere. I know the motive of his heart was that he did not want to see people go to Hell. He truly wanted them to be saved. He did not even realize the implications of what he was saying. I tried by best to tell him that the fact that his eschatological view was different than mine was not such a big deal. He would have none of it and tried for half an hour to convince me that I was wrong for not being convinced that he was right. It was a bit bizarre.
That is why I asked the motive question. Our motive for believing a doctrine is probably as revealing important as our presentation of proof texts.
| 2016/9/1 15:57||Profile|
| Re: |
His argument sort of breaks down because we should not be avoiding sin to save our own skins. We should do so because our King commands us to do so. Your friends motives are noble but twisted.
| 2016/9/1 16:01||Profile|
Tennessee, but my home's in Alabama
| Re: |
The folds of eschatology are dense. When we arrive closer to the events, they become less so. From even Daniel's perspective, there were far less details than when Jesus spoke on Mt. Olive. He spread out the folds to a degree. Paul then did. Then John.
Post trib belief has the opposite effect on me. It causes me grave concern for marginal, half-hearted or nominal Christians that they will not be prepared to endure to the end. I firmly believe the apostasy that is underway is only at the top of the roller coaster and that the 70th Week will speed it as the bottom drops out of men's view of the truth. The 70th Week is so full of deceitfulness -- and I am not even talking about wrath or tribulation -- that less than serious believers will turn away from true faith. People will turn to the false belief system and lies in general.
Telling men they will be snatched away from this deception seems to me to set up a false hope, actually exacerbating the problem of disappointed, deceived Christians who really believed God loved them too much to let them suffer so. When the time comes they will deny and reject the truth in favor of an explanation that keeps them blind or in bitterness that they could be allowed to remains wrong.
Love God, call on Him while He is near. Pray in the Spirit. Keep your most holy faith.
| 2016/9/1 16:15||Profile|
| Re: |
Certain views I have on the subject have remained the same.
Funnily I think these two views would remain the same even if I changed my Trib view.
1.Their are god loving Christians on both sides of the debate
2.The debate is tied to your view on Salvation.In general if you believe in Post Trib will beleive that you can loose ur Salvation and if you are Pre Trib you are more free to believe in either but mostly will believe that u cant loose ur salvation.
My view is that the rapture will be after 3 1/2 yrs but before the 3 1/2 years of the great tribulation which in effect is a pre tribulation position.
From that position these observations are important:
1.That pre trib Christians can be less of a Christian than a post tribulation Christian in the view of Post Trib believer.
2.The red herring debate that pre trib is a recent event which I have seen rebutted before.
3.The Post trib believer looks at the prosperity preachers and make the point that they are pre tribbers which is correct but use this as a teaching to show that thus pre tribulation view must be wrong.Either Teaching can only be rebutted by scripture only.
4:The Post tribulation side of the debate sometimes blur the line or definition of "Tribulation".In the sense of the clear difference between regular tribulation for the want of a better word and a period of time called "The Great Tribulaion".This is important because all the pre tribulation Christian I know believe that we suffer tribulaion in this life and will continue to do so until the end.The point that their is tribulation in the normal course of a Christians life doesnt point to "Us" going through the period of time called "The Great Tribulaion"
5:Having said that their are times when you have the likes of Corrie Ten Boom where she suffers and their are times of Billy Graham where he wasnt imprisoned for his beliefs.
Just because Corrie Ten Boom has seen and experienced tribulaion doesnt mean we go through the period of time called "The Great Tribulaion" and Just because Billy Graham didnt suffer Tribulaion doesnt mean that we wont go through the period of time called "The Great Tribulaion"
I say these things because the majority of posters on SI in my experience are Post Trib believers and I want you to know that their are Pre Trib believers who have concerns about how they are continually betrayed during these end times debates.We have considered both sides,we arent half hearted,we love God has much as you.We understand clearly the subject of "Tribulaion" and experience it just like you
but still look and study the subject and come to the belief that we will leave before the "The Great Tribulation".
| 2016/9/1 18:04||Profile|
| Re: |
Staff- you can be a mid tribber- it's fine by me!
I am curious about something in that view- would you be able to tell when the midpoint of the tribulation is? Perhaps even to the day?
| 2016/9/1 18:46||Profile|