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Rapture: Prophecy or Heresy?

By H. Speed Wilson
1989


From: Rapture, prophecy or heresy: Will biblical Christians be removed from the earth to heaven?

Introduction:

[The person who forwarded me this material added his own notes at the bottom of the article.  Wilson gave his permission to distribute this booklet over the Internet with them.]

1 Chapter 1 Rapture a very important question 3

2 Chapter 2 The Prophetic Words of Jesus 3

2.1 Examples of Jesus telling about the wicked being taken and the righteous left: 3
2.2 Examples of Jesus saying that the taken ones are devoured 4
2.3 Four Examples of wicked taken 'out' of the earth and destroyed and righteous 'remain' 4
2.4 The Elect (believers) are in the Tribulation because the days must be shortened for them. 4
2.5 No MidTrib Rapture (how else believers see these things after the tribulation) 5

3 Chapter 3 The Law the Prophets and the Psalms 5

3.1 Psalms teach the wicked are removed and the righteous stay (opposite of the Rapture): 5
3.2 Proverbs teach the wicked are removed and the righteous stay (opposite of the Rapture): 6
3.3 Chaff removed and righteous remain in Job and Malachi and Isaiah 6
3.4 The wrath of God comes on the wicked while the righteous are on the earth not after they have been raptured 7

4 Chapter 4 Bible Examples 8

4.1 Examples where believers were not raptured out of trial/testing but learned to be overcomers 8

5 Chapter 5: 1 Thessalonians 4:17 9

5.1 This is the only scripture that even suggests the believers will be caught up from the earth. 9
5.2 We should not establish doctrine on one single scripture (this is a violation of a Biblical Principle) 9
5.3 What does "Caught up" Mean ? 9
5.3.1 Hapazo = Caught up 9
5.4 What does meet the Lord "in the air" mean? 10
5.5 What does "with them(the resurrected saints) in the clouds" mean ? 12
5.6 Review 1 Thess 4:13-18 as a whole: 12
5.7 A Spiritual Interpretation of 1 Thess 4:16,17 from Dave Curtis+Donald Hochner's web sites 13
5.8 A Spiritual Interpretation of "the gathering together" from Don Preston's Web site 14
5.9 Thessalonians themselves did not interpret the rapture passage to be a rapture passage (Summary of Notes from Don Preston's Web site) 16

6 Chapter 6 (Refutation of) Rapture Support Arguments 17

6.1 Rapturist say "the Church" is not mentioned past Rev 4 17
6.2 Rapturists say the saints mentioned in Rev 4 are 144K Jewish Evangelists 17
6.3 Rapturists saw we not under God's wrath 1Thes 5:9 For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 17
6.4 John 14:2,3 Says Jesus takes us to his mansions 17
6.5 Luke 21:36 says if we are worthy we will escape 18
6.6
Enoch and Elijah were raptured 18
6.7 1 Thess2:5-8 Says Church is taken away in rapture before man of sin is revealed 19
6.8 If we are not going to be caught up why are there so many heavenly scenes in the Book of Revelation 19

7 Chapter 7 The Origin of the Rapture 19

8 Chapter 8: What did Happen (Preterist) /What May Happen (Futurist) 20

9 Chapter 9: What we must do 21

10 Chapter 10: Blinding Doctrines of Today 22

11 Chapter 11: Consequences Of the Rapture Doctrine 22

12 Other Non Rapture Comments (not from Wilson's Book) 23

12.1 Notes after discussions w/ Todd Dennis on what the Transformation is in 1 Corinthians 15:51 which is the same as the gathering in Thess 4:16,17 23
12.2 Notes on 1 Thess 4:16,17 from the Book "The Rapture A Question of Timing" by William Kimball 23
12.3 Non Rapture comment from "He shall Have Dominion" by Kenneth Gentry p 312 25
12.4 Comments on two body Resurrection scriptures (from a discussions w/ Todd Dennis and Ward Fenly) 25
12.5 A few scriptures indicating a spiritual resurrection 25
12.6 Table from Internet that shows Matt 24 and 1 Thess 4:16,17 are about the same event (not 2 different events separated by thousands of years). 27
12.7 A few Questions to answer if there was a rapture 28

13 Some Websites on the Rapture: 28

 

1 Chapter 1 Rapture a very important question

1)"The Rapture question is far too important even critical and urgent, to be ignored by responsible " apostles, prophets, evangelisits, pastors and teachers"(Eph 4:11). God holds them responsible for the doctrines they proclaim. Jesus said " Anyone who ;shall offend (deceive or cause to stumbel one of thes who believe in Me, it were better for him to have a millsotone hung about his neck and cast into the sea to drown."

b)If the Rapture were a real thing there would be many scriptures on it. (Instead there is only one ( 1 Thess 4:16) and it is very vague due to similarity to Matth24:30.)

 

2 Chapter 2 The Prophetic Words of Jesus

1)"A sudden removal of all true Biblical believers in a rapture would certainly be a most sepctacular event (sign) to both those departing and those who remain on the earth. Therefore, we would expect Jesus to include such an event (sign) in his prophetic answeres to the questions about the "end of this age" and "His coming." There would certainly be no point in His disguising or hiding such and important thing, after all, why would Christians have to know much about the end of time and the "great tribulation" if we are not going to be here?

2)Jesus chose specifically to not pray for a rapture

John 17:15 "I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.

 

2.1 Examples of Jesus telling about the wicked being taken and the righteous left:

a)Matt 24:37-40"But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.38 "For as in the days before the flood, they(the wicked) were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark(Noah and family entered the ark 7 days before the flood),39 "and (they – the wicked) did not know until the flood came and took them ( the wicked) all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.40"Then two men will be in the field: one(wicked) will be taken and the other left. 41 "Two women will be grinding at the mill: one(wicked) will be taken and the other left.42"Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.(NKJ)

b)Luke 17:26-27"And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man:

27"They(the wicked) ate, they(the wicked) drank, they (the wicked) married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them(the wicked) all. Luke 17:34-37 "I tell you, in that night there will be two men in one bed: the one will be taken and the other will be left.35 "Two women will be grinding together: the one(the wicked) will be taken(destroyed) and the other left.36"Two men will be in the field: the one will be taken (destroyed ) and the other left."37 And they answered and said to Him, "Where, Lord?" So He said to them, "Wherever the body is, there the eagles will be gathered together."(NKJ)

c)2 Pet 2:4-9For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly;6and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly;7and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked8 (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)--9 then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment,(NKJ)

2.2 Examples of Jesus saying that the taken ones are devoured

a)Luke 17:37 And they answered and said to Him, "Where, Lord?" So He said to them, "Wherever the body is, there the eagles will be gathered together."(NKJ) (eagles = vultures = large bird that lives chiefly on decaying flesh of a dead body)

b)Rev 19:17-1817 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in the midst of heaven, "Come and gather together for the supper of the great God,18 "that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great."(NKJ)

c)The taken ones cannot be Christians because they are to be "alive and remain" 1 Thess 4:15-17

 

2.3 Four Examples of wicked taken 'out' of the earth and destroyed and righteous 'remain'

 

1) Matth 13:24- 30 Parable of wheat and tares (Matth 13:37-43 Interpretation)

Matt 13:37-43 He answered and said to them: "He who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 "The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one. 39 "The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. 40 "Therefore as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age. 41 "The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, 42"and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. 43"Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!(NKJ)

1)Luke 17:28-30"Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; 29 "but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. 30 "Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed.(NKJ)

 

3) Matt 13:47-50 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea("multitudes of people" Rev 17:15) and gathered some of every kind,48 "which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away.49 "So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just,50 "and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth."(NKJ)

 

4) 1Thes 5:2-4 For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night.

3 For when they(the wicked) say, "Peace and safety!" then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. 4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief.(NKJ)

.

2.4 The Elect (believers) are in the Tribulation because the days must be shortened for them.

 

1) Mark 13:19-20"For in those days there will be tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of creation which God created until this time, nor ever shall be. 20"And unless the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake, whom He chose, He shortened the days. (also Matth 24:21)(NKJ)

a)Luke 18:7 "And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them?(NKJ)

b)Rom 8:33 Who shall bring a charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies.(NKJ)

c)Col 3:12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;(NKJ)

d)Titus 1:1Paul, a bondservant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect and the acknowledgment of the truth which accords with godliness,(NKJ)

e)The elect are not Jewish evangelists but all believers

2) (Why shorten the Tribulation days for the 'elect' if the believers are raptured away from it. The believers are in the tribulation, that is why it must be shortened for them.)

 

2.5 No MidTrib Rapture (how else believers see these things after the tribulation)

 

1) Matt 24:29-34 "Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 "Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31"And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

32 "Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near.33 "So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near-- at the doors!34 "Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place.

(NKJ)

a)how could believers see all these things if they were raptured in the middle of the tribulation

2) John 17:15 "I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.(NKJ)

3) Matt 24:13 "But he who endures to the end shall be saved.(NKJ) ( so believers in tribulation till the end)

 

 3 Chapter 3 The Law the Prophets and the Psalms

1)We can learn about the Rapture from the Old Testament

b)John 10:35"If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken),

c)2 Tim 3:16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine,

d)Matt 22:29Jesus answered and said to them, "You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures (the OT)

e)Rom 15:4 For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.(NKJ)

f)1 Cor 10:11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, on whom the ends of the ages have come.(NKJ)

g)Acts 3:24"Yes, and all the prophets, from Samuel and those who follow, as many as have spoken, have also foretold these days.(NKJ)

h)Acts 26:22 "Therefore, having obtained help from God, to this day I stand, witnessing both to small and great, saying no other things than those which the prophets and Moses said would come--(NKJ)

i)Luke 24:44 Then He said to them, "These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me."(NKJ)

j)Acts 20:27 "For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God. (not just 1 vrs in NT)

 

3.1 Psalms teach the wicked are removed and the righteous stay (opposite of the Rapture):

a)Ps 125:1Those who trust in the LORD are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever.

b)Ps 145:20 The LORD preserves all who love Him, but all the wicked He will destroy.

c)Ps 101:8 Early(first) I will destroy all the wicked of the land, that I may cut off all the evildoers from the city of the LORD. (similar to tares destroyed 1st in Matth 13:30)

d) Ps 119:119 You put away all the wicked of the earth like dross; therefore I love Your testimonies.

e)Ps 23:4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. (John17:15 Jesus pray to not remove them)

f)Ps 37:29 The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell in it forever.

g)Ps 37:9-11 For evildoers shall be cut off; but those who wait on the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.For yet a little while and the wicked shall be no more; indeed, you will look carefully for his place, but it shall be no more.11 But the meek shall inherit the earth, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. (no rapture for the meek !)

h)Ps 37:34-40 Wait on the LORD, and keep His way, and He shall exalt you to inherit the land; when the wicked(tares) are cut off(destroyed), you shall see it. I have seen the wicked in great power(like the beast of Rev 13), and spreading himself like a native green tree.Yet he passed away, and behold, he was no more; indeed I sought him, but he could not be found. Mark the blameless man, and observe the upright; for the future of that man is peace.38 But the transgressors shall be destroyed together; the future of the wicked shall be cut off. 39 But the salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their strength in the time of trouble. 40And the LORD shall help them and deliver them; he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save(protect) them, because they trust in Him.(NKJ)

9)The righteous and those who trust in the Lord are not raptured out of the world but are kept safe and sound on the earth.

j)Ps 91:7-16 A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you.8 Only with your eyes shall you look, and see the reward of the wicked. 9Because you have made the LORD, who is my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place, 10No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;11 For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.12 In their hands they (his angels)shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone.13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.14 "Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name.15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him.16 With long life I will satisfy him, and show him My salvation." (God see's the righteous through tribulation he does not rapture them out of it)

k) Ps 104:35 May sinners be consumed from the earth, and the wicked be no more. Bless the LORD, O my soul! Praise the LORD! (coming is as days of Noah when the flood took the wicked away)

l) Ps 52:5 God shall likewise destroy you forever; he shall take you away, and pluck you out of your dwelling place, and uproot you from the land of the living. Selah (wicked taken + righteous left)

3.2 Proverbs teach the wicked are removed and the righteous stay (opposite of the Rapture):

a)Prov 2:21-22 For the upright will dwell in the land, and the blameless will remain in it; But the wicked will be cut off from the earth, and the unfaithful will be uprooted from it.

b)Prov 10:30 The righteous will never be removed, but the wicked will not inhabit the earth.

c)Prov 11:31 If the righteous will be recompensed(rewarded) on the earth, how much more the ungodly and the sinner.

d)Prov 24:4 By knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.

e)Prov 25:4-5 Take away the dross from silver, and it will go to the silversmith for jewelry. Take away the wicked from before the king, and his throne will be established in righteousness. (this happened when Jesus kingdom was established)

3.3 Chaff removed and righteous remain in Job and Malachi and Isaiah

a)Isa 29:5 "Moreover the multitude of your foes shall be like fine dust, and the multitude of the terrible ones like chaff that passes away; yes, it shall be in an instant, suddenly.

b)Job 21:18 They (the wicked) are like straw before the wind, and like chaff that a storm carries away.

c)Job 38:13 (speaking to God)That it might take hold of the ends of the earth, and the wicked be shaken out of it? This agrees with

- Heb 12:27 Now this, "Yet once more," indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain.(NKJ)

d)Mal 4:1 "For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, and all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble. And the day which is coming shall burn them up," says the LORD of hosts, "That will leave them neither root nor branch.

e)Isa 1:28 The destruction of transgressors and of sinners shall be together, and those who forsake the LORD shall be consumed.

f)Isa 13:9 Behold, the day of the LORD comes, cruel, with both wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate; and He will destroy its sinners from it. (like Col 3: 6 wrath of God is coming on the sons of disobedience)

g)Isa 43:2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you.

(the righteous kept safe in the world not removed from it)

 

Question: Above is more than two dozen scriptures that state clearly that the righteous remain and the wicked are destroyed out of the world. Can you find two dozen scriptures that state as clearly that the righteous will be removed from the world in rapture? (clearly is a key word here)

a)can you find 3 Old Testament scriptures where God says the righteous will be removed from the world.

b)Can you find 5 scriptures where Jesus says the righteous will be removed from the wicked

 

3.4 The wrath of God comes on the wicked while the righteous are on the earth not after they have been raptured

 

a) Ezek 9:4-10 and the LORD said to him, "Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it."5To the others He said in my hearing, "Go after him through the city and kill; do not let your eye spare, nor have any pity. 6 "Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary." So they began with the elders who were before the temple. 7 Then He said to them, "Defile the temple, and fill the courts with the slain. Go out!" And they went out and killed in the city.8 So it was, that while they were killing them, I was left alone; and I fell on my face and cried out, and said, "Ah, Lord GOD! Will You destroy all the remnant of Israel in pouring out Your fury on Jerusalem?"9 Then He said to me, "The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great, and the land is full of bloodshed, and the city full of perversity; for they say, 'The LORD has forsaken the land, and the LORD does not see!'10 "And as for Me also, My eye will neither spare, nor will I have pity, but I will recompense their deeds on their own head."

b) Rev 9:3-4 Then out of the smoke locusts came upon the earth. And to them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power.4 They were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads.

c) those who do not have the mark of God on their foreheads are destroyed while they are still among those who do have God's mark.

 

4 Chapter 4 Bible Examples

4.1 Examples where believers were not raptured out of trial/testing but learned to be overcomers

 

1 Cor 10:11 Now all these things(testings) happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, on whom the ends of the ages have come.

1)Job was not raptured out of his testing

2)Joseph not raptured out of Pit or Prison (Gen 37-46)

3)Daniel not raptured out of Lions Den (Dan 6:7-28)

4)King David overcame much tribulation and was rewarded in the world

5)Israelites were kept safe during 10 pagues and were examples to the Egyptians

6)Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego went through the furnace and were overcomers and examples

g)God saved them from the furnace He did not rapture them out of it. They were a witness to Babylon.

7) Jesus and the Apostles were overcomes and examples not raptured out. (Paul 2 Cor 11:23-27 Trials)

Rev 12:11 "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. (not rapured out)

Summary:

a)No rapture for believers at the end of the age out of the plagues of God's wrath; rather power to witness at the risk of their lives! For God to remove his people during time of trouble at the end of the world (tribulation) would be completely against every example He gave us.

b)If believers were raptured out there would be no such witness on the earth to draw multitudes to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

c)There are no examples of God's elect being raptured out of their times of testing/tribulation

a)Enoch and Elisha were not taken out ot tribulation – they just went to be w/ the Lord

b)God's men were not removed from the battlefield – they were victorious

d)Mal 3:6 "For I am the LORD, I do not change; (so why should he change in 70AD)

e)Heb 3:10-11Therefore I was angry with that generation, and said, 'They always go astray in their heart, and they have not known My ways.' So I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest.' "

 

5 Chapter 5: 1 Thessalonians 4:17

 

1Thes 4:16-17 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.

17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.

5.1 This is the only scripture that even suggests the believers will be caught up from the earth.

a)the common interpretation of 'being caught up' is in direct contradiction to some 50 scriptures

b)John 10: 35 The scriptures cannot be broken + 1 Cor 14:33 God is not the author of confusion

c)Therefore there must be something wrong with the common interpretation of 1 Thess 4:17

d)The word rapture does not appear in any Bible

5.2 We should not establish doctrine on one single scripture (this is a violation of a Biblical Principle)

a) Gen 41:32 "And the dream was repeated to Pharaoh twice because the thing is established by God, and God will shortly bring it to pass.

a)Deut 17:6"Whoever is deserving of death shall be put to death on the testimony of two or three witnesses; he shall not be put to death on the testimony of one witness.

b)2 Cor 13:1 This will be the third time I am coming to you. "By the mouth of two or three witnesses every word shall be established."

 

5.3 What does "Caught up" Mean ?

 

a) caught = harpazo = to take for oneself to prefer or choose

a)Strongs: 726 harpazo (har-pad'-zo); from a derivative of 138; to sieze (in various applications):

KJV-- catch (away, up), pluck, pull, take (by force).

b)Thayers: 726 harpazo

1) to seize, to carry off by force

2) to seize on, to claim for oneself eagerly

3) to snatch out or to snatch away

 

b)None of the below 12 scriptures containing "harpazo" have anything to do with the physical removal of living people from the earth/world to heaven

Harpazo = Catch

1) John 10:12 "But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches(Harpazo) the sheep and scatters them.

 

 

Harpazo = Catch away

2)Matt 13:19 "When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches(Haprazo) away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside.

3)Acts 8:39 Now when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught (Haprazo) Philip away, so that the eunuch saw him no more; and he went on his way rejoicing.

5.3.1 Hapazo = Caught up

4 ) 2 Cor 12:2-4 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago-- whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows-- such a one was caught up(harpazo) to the third heaven.3 And I know such a man-- whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows--4 how he was caught up (harpazo) into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.

a)The questions of whether Paul was in the body or out of the body (i.e., in the spirit) is resolved by John in

1)Revelations 1:10 where he says, "I was in the spirit on the Lord's day"

2) Rev 4:1-2 After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, "Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this."2 Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne.

3)Rev 12:5 She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up(harpazo) to God and His throne.

d)In context starting at Rev 11:14,15 this occurs during "the third woe" and after " the seventh angel sounded" ( the seventh trumpet), and is clearly taking place in heaven. So, her child was not caught up from the earth to heaven, but was, as the Scriptures says, "up to God and to His throne." Up to a higher level in Heaven.

e)2 Cor 12:2I know a man(John) in Christ who fourteen years ago-- whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows-- such a one was caught up to the third heaven.

Harpazo = Pluck

1)John 10:28-29 "And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch (Harpazo) them out of My hand. "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch (Harpazo) them out of My Father's hand.

Harpazo = Pull

7) Jude 1:22-23 And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling (Harpazo) them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.

Harpazo = Take by Force

8)Matt 11:12 "And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force (Harpazo).

9)John 6:15 Therefore when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and take Him by force (Harpazo) to make Him king, He departed again to the mountain by Himself alone. (Jesus knew the people wanted to force and earthly kingdom on Him.)

10)Acts 23:10 Now when there arose a great dissension, the commander, fearing lest Paul might be pulled to pieces by them, commanded the soldiers to go down and take him by force(Harpazo) from among them, and bring him into the barracks. (The captain used force to save Paul from the Sanhedrin.)

 

5.4 What does meet the Lord "in the air" mean?

 

a) air = aer

1)Thayers 109 aer-

a) the air, particularly the lower and denser air as distinguished from the higher and rarer air

b) the atmospheric region

2) Strongs 109 aer (ah-ayr');

from aemi (to breathe unconsciously, i.e. respire; by analogy, to blow); "air" (as naturally

circumambient):

KJV-- air. Compare 5594. ***. atha. See 3134.

 

b) The following scriptures show we are "in the air" right now

1)Acts 22:23 Then, as they cried out and tore off their clothes and threw dust into the air(aer),

2)1 Cor 9:26 Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air(aer).

3)1 Cor 14:9 So likewise you, unless you utter by the tongue words easy to understand, how will it be known what is spoken? For you will be speaking into the air(aer).

 

c)There is another Greek word which is translated, air. It is 'ouranos' and it means:

air = ouranas

1)Strongs: 3772 ouranos (oo-ran-os');

perhaps from the same as 3735 (through the idea of elevation); the sky; by extension, heaven (as the abode of God); by implication, happiness, power, eternity; specifically, the Gospel (Christianity):

KJV-- air, heaven ([-ly]), sky.

2) Thayers 3772 ouranos-

1) the vaulted expanse of the sky with all things visible in it

a) the universe, the world

b) the aerial heavens or sky, the region where the clouds and the tempests gather, and where

thunder and lightning are produced

c c) the sidereal (starry) heavens

2)the region above the sidereal heavens, the seat of order of things eternal and consummately perfect

d where God dwells and other heavenly beings

 

d) 'ouranos' appears in the following scriptures where 'air' is in bold type:

1) Matt 6:26 "Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father

2) Matt 8:20 And Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head."

3)Matt 13:32 "which indeed is the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches."

4)Mark 4:4"And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and devoured it.

5)Mark 4:32 "but when it is sown, it grows up and becomes greater than all herbs, and shoots out large branches, so that the birds of the air may nest under its shade."

6) Luke 8:5 "A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it.

7) Luke 9:58 And Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head."

8) Luke 13:19"It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and put in his garden; and it grew and became a large tree, and the birds of the air nested in its branches."

9) Acts 10:12In it were all kinds of four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air. 13 And a voice came to him, "Rise, Peter; kill and eat."

10) Acts 11:6"When I observed it intently and considered, I saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air.

 e)Conclusion:

1)If 1 Thess 4: 17 is talking about a rapture peoples heads would go no higher than about 10 feet above the ground – no higher than you can throw dust into the air (aer).

2)So we are " in the air (aer)" now with our feet on the ground (earth) and so shall we remain (1 Thess 4: 15,17)

Note: Some rapture promoters make much of Noah being lifted up above the earth by the flood waters as a type of rapture. Notice Noah was not lifted up to heaven, but did remain in the air(aer).

 

 

5.5 What does "with them(the resurrected saints) in the clouds" mean ?

 

In the following scriptures the divine cloud came down to earth

1)Matt 17:5While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!" (also Mark 9:7, Luke 9:344)

2) 1 Cor 10:1-3Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, all were baptized into Moses in the cloud (must have come down)and in the sea, all ate the same spiritual food,

3) Heb 11:36-12:2 Still others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented 38 of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. 39 And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, 40 God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us. CHAPTER 12 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses(the spirits of departed saints), let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

 

 

5.6 Review 1 Thess 4:13-18 as a whole:

1Thes 4:13-18 But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep(this scripture is primarily about the departed/dead saints in Christ), lest you sorrow as others who have no hope(the Sadducees did not believe in a resurrection). 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so (in like manner) God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus. 15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain(on earth) until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven( Acts 1:11 Jesus went directly from earth to heaven and shall return "in like manner" directly from heaven to earth. No rapture back to heaven for a later third coming) with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise(Greek word, anistemi: to set up or be resurrected) first. 17 Then we who are alive( 1 Cor 15:51 "We shall not all die, but shall be changed/transformed/transfigured" ) and remain ( on the earth in the aer)shall be caught up (made one –harpazo) together (at the same time) with them (the dead in Christ) in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air (on the surface of the earth). And thus we shall always be with the Lord ( in the air(aer) here on earth ).18 Therefore comfort(reassure) one another with these words. (Notice, the Lord "descended form heaven" before we are caught up to him; just as the "New Jerusalem" came down to dwell with us – Rev 21:2).

Another look at Harpazo:

1) to translate harpazo to the English phrase "made one" is as accurate an option as any of the 6 other ways it is translated in the King James bible. "Made one" removes 1 Thess 4:17 as a contradiction to and in conflict with the many other scriptures and biblical examples. This would make 1 Thess 4:17 the answer to the prayer of Jesus in

John 17:21-23 "that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 "And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 23 "I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

2) Martin Luthers German translation of 1 Thess 4:17 translated into agerman word which could mean, " the lesser was included into the greater ". We christians are the lesser and Jesus is the greater.. John 10:12 the worf 'harpazo' the sheep = the wolf ate the sheep and they were "made one" or the lesser was included into the greater".

The same is true in Matthew 13:4 and 19 in parable of the sowing of the 'seed':

a)Matt 13:4 "And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them.

1)devoured =2719 katesthio (kat-es-thee'-o)= to eat down, i.e. devour (literally or figuratively):

b)Matt 13:19 "When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches ( harpazo) away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside.

a)the wicked one 'harpazo' that which is sown" the fowls devoured/ate/consumed the seed/word. They were 'made one' or "The lesser was included in the greater". It seems Martin Luther did not see harpazo as being caught up.

1)We are transfigured/Changed right here on earth (No promised about being removed from the earth):

b)1 Cor 15:51-53 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. (we – the living are not resurrected: we are changed – made one fully redeemed – imprecebtible because it is spirit not fleshly thing) 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory." 55 "O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?"

c)Isa 25:8 He will swallow up death forever, and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from all faces; the rebuke of His people he will take away from all the earth; for the LORD has spoken. (rebuke of his people taken away but Gods people remain when death is swallowed up.)

d)I Jn 3:2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.

e)He comes to Us we don't go to Him:

6)John 14:23 Jesus answered and said to him, "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him(not bring us to him) and make Our home with him.(here on earth)

7)Rev 21:1-4 Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. 2 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them,(down w/ us on earth) and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. 4"And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away."

8) It is interesting to note the resurrected saints were not seen streaking through the sky : Matt 27:52-53 "and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 53 and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many."

9)John 14:2,3 ?

1 Thess 4: 17, 18 We will meet the Lord in the air (here on the surface of the earth): and so (in that exact manner; in the air and on the earth – not in heaven) shall we forever be with the Lord. (in the New Jerusalem where God will dwell with us). Notice it is "forever" that we shall be with the Lord in the air on the surface of the earth and not in heaven for seven or three and one-half years to return with Jesus in a third coming.

 

5.7 A Spiritual Interpretation of 1 Thess 4:16,17 from Dave Curtis+Donald Hochner's web sites

1)What does "we shall be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air" mean?

a) "in the air"

1)Eph 2:1-21 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, 2in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air<109>, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,

2) air = aer = same Greek word in 1 Thess 4:17

3) air = heavenly or sprititual realm. Jesus has taken over that sphere and rules in the "air" with the saints since the destruction of Jerusalem (Rom16:20). If that is the same air where the saints were to meet and be gathered, then there is no necessity for us to believe that the rapture gathering and meeting was to be physical. It was accomplished when the faithful remnant of Jewish believers with the ingrafted Gentiles was transformed into Christ's new spiritual Israel when the old covenant was taken away. The "gathering together" is the heavenly places in Christ – the spiritual kingdom of God. Being caught up together in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air is simply accommodative language denoting the end of the age gathering together of God's elect.

a)Eph 1:10 that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth-- in Him.

b) "meet the Lord"

a)meet =<529> apantesis (ap-an'-tay-sis); a (friendly) encounter: , to meet one.

b) Apantesis (meet) is used 3x in the bible, each time signifying the sending of an advance party to meet a dignitary, and then escort him back to where they came from.

3)Acts 28:15 And from there, when the brethren heard about us, they came to meet us as far as Appii Forum and Three Inns. When Paul saw them, he thanked God and took courage.

d)The Christians in Rome went out to meet Paul Paul at Appii forum , and then they escorted him back to their homes.

5)Matth 25 parable of ten virgins , the kingdom of heaven is likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. The word used to 'meet' the bridegroom is 'apanteas', which means to meet to escort back, as is evidenced by the fact that they met the bridegroom, and then went in to the house from which they came.

f)Matt 25:10"And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut.

2) When Christ came in the clouds , he literally, yet spiritually, gathered those that were alive to be caught up in the kingdom with Jesus Christ and Jesus Christ spiritually returned with the believers to the earth, to ever be with them. This was a spiritual event that was visibly manifest in the destruction of Jerusalem.

 

5.8 A Spiritual Interpretation of "the gathering together" from Don Preston's Web site

The gathering together: (This is discussed in Matth 24:29-31, 1 Thess 4:16,17 (being caught up together), 2 Thess 2:1-4)

2 Th 2:1-14 Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, 2 not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. 3 Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God. 5 Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? 6And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. 7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 13 But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, 14 to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1)Paul was appealing to "our gathering together to him" as something well-known to the Thessalonicans. Paul had taught them about eschatology while he was in the city, not to mention in his first epistle (2 Thess 2:5). Where did Paul get the idea of the gathering of the saints at the coming of Jesus ?

b)Matt 24:30-31"Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31"And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather (episunago) together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

1) This is apocalyptic language and is to be interpreted as apocalyptic language is intended. Therefore, if 1 Thess 4:16,17 and 2 Thess 2:1 is talking about the same thing then they should also be interpreted the same way that Matth 24 is interpreted(i.e., in a literal spiritual sense not in a literal physical sense).

2) Matth 24:29-31 is the source of the language in 1 Thess 4:16,17 and 2 Thess 2:1. How can the coming on the clouds, angles, fire and trumpet not be interpreted as a literal physical thing and then say 'the gathering' is a literal physical thing(i.e., to one geographical place). Jesus NEVER use episunago to refer to any other eschatologyical gathering than His coming in judgment at the end of the Jewish Age. Why would Paul change the use of the word(in 2 Thess 2:1) to refer to some other coming. How many comings of the Lord, with his angels, in fire, in power and glory, to gather the saints, are there in the New Testament ?

1)Jesus used a very distinctive word to predict the gathering of the saints(Matth 24:31). Paul used that identical word to speak of the gathering( 2 Thess 2:1) to speak of the gathering. Jesus predicted that false teachers would come saying Christ had returned. Paul was writing to the Thessalonicans to thwart false teachers who were saying Christ had returned. Jesus said there was to be an apostasy before he returned to destroy Jerusalem. Paul said the apostasy had to happen before Christ returned. Jesus predicted the coming of lying wonders and signs before the fall of Jerusalem; Paul said the the Son of Perdition who would work all sorts of false miracles and lying wonders was on the scene but being restrained. (The point here is that Matth 24 and Thessalonians are talking about the same event and therefore Thessalonians ought to be interpreted nonphysically because Matth 24 is interpreted nonphysically)

2) 1996 episunago-

1) to gather together beside, to bring together to others who are already assembled

2) to gather together against

3) to gather together in one place

3) 1997 episunagoge (ep-ee-soon-ag-o-gay'); from 1996; a complete collection; especially a Christian meeting (for worship): assembling (gathering) together.

4) episunago is used in all its forms a total of nine times in the New Testament and mostly in eschatological contexts. The other places it is used are:

1.Matthew 23:37Jesus laments over Jerusalem: "How often would I have gathered thy children"

2.Luke 13:34 "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing!

3. Mark 1:33 And the whole city was gathered together at the door. (Non Eschatological)

4.Luke 12:1 In the meantime, when an innumerable multitude of people had gathered together, so that they trampled one another, He began to say to His disciples first of all, "Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. (Non Eschatological)

5.Matt 24:31 "And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

6. Mark 13:27"And then He will send His angels, and gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest part of earth to the farthest part of heaven.

7.Heb 10:25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

a) Heb 9:19, Heb 10:37 indicate the context for this is an eschatological gathering where they enter the Holy of Holies

8.2 Th 2:1-14 Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him

 

5.9 Thessalonians themselves did not interpret the rapture passage to be a rapture passage (Summary of Notes from Don Preston's Web site)

II Th 2:1-2 Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, 2 not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come.

a)How could they have thought the event being in past if they had an idea of everyone being raptured. All they would have to do is look around and see the mature believers were not raputured and so they would know the day had not come. However, if they viewed 1 Thess 4:16,17 as not being a physical rapture then they could have thought it had already come(i.e., it is more difficult to discern the fullfillment of spiritual events than physical events).

b)Paul in the latter part of 2 Thess 2 did not correct their understanding of the concept of the gathering together to him (i.e., he left them with their same understanding that it would be a spiritual thing not a physical thing). He only corrected their timing of it. Paul does not correct their understanding of the nature of the gathering he only corrected their understanding of the timing of the gathering. (Don Preston has a good website on this titled "How is this Possible")

c

6 Chapter 6 (Refutation of) Rapture Support Arguments

6.1 Rapturist say "the Church" is not mentioned past Rev 4

 

The Saints stay on the earth

a)Eph 4:11,12, + Eph 5:27 …equipping of the saints That He might present it to himself a glorious church

1) point is Church = saints

b)Rev 13:7 "the beast makes war against the saints". So saints not rapture out of the beasts war.

c)All through Revelation the word "saints" appears and they are on the earth in the context.

d)Matt 25:6 "And at midnight a cry was heard: 'Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!(not go up to meet him)'

6.2 Rapturists say the saints mentioned in Rev 4 are 144K Jewish Evangelists

a)How could this be if all true believers are raptured out before hand

b)How can they hear w/out a preacher (Rom 10:13,14) if

6.3 Rapturists saw we not under God's wrath 1Thes 5:9 For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ,

a)obtain = get possesion of by trying, to prevail , to be victorious

b)Heathen get God's wrath, the saints went through Man's wrath (or evil ones wrath) not the wrath of God

c)Examples of God Mark His people so they would protected when He brought judgement

4.Exodus 12:21-29 Moses instruct the Israelites to take a hyssop branch and dip it in the blood of a sacrificed Lamb and 'Mark' their doorposts with theis blood, so that the destroying angel of the Lord will not harm them.

5.Ezek 9:4 "and the LORD said to him, "Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it." Ezek 9:6"Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary."

6.Rev 7:3 saying, "Do not harm the earth, the sea, or the trees till we have sealed(Marked) the servants of our God on their foreheads."

6.4 John 14:2,3 Says Jesus takes us to his mansions

 

John 14:2-3 "In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

a) Jesus said he will come to us not we will go to him

c b) House (Gk = oika )

d1)used 111 times and is translated 5 different ways: home(5), house(102), household or family (3), temple (1)

e2) Strongs: 3614 oikia (oy-kee'-ah);

ffrom 3624; properly, residence (abstractly), but usually (concretely) an abode (literally or figuratively); by implication a family (especially domestics):

g

hc) Manisions (Gk = mone )

1)used 119 times and is translated 14 different ways. It is translated mansion only 1 time. By far the most consistent translation is abide/abode(60x), (Mone appears 5 x in this chapter and is translated manison invers 2, dwelling 2x nf verses 10 and 17 and abode in verse 23.

2) from Thayers: 3438 mone-

a staying, an abiding, a dwelling, an abode

to make one's abode

metaphorically, used of God (the Holy Spirit) who indwells believers

d) The phrase "that where I am, there you may be also"

1)The word 'there' is not in the original Greek (i.e., the there is not there)

e) A more accurate , consistent and understandable translation might read as follows:

"In my Father's abode there are many enduring (permanent) abodes: if it were not so, I would have told ;you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you into Myself; that where I am you may be also."

f) In the context of this chapter and other scriptures what we are being told is: (John 14:1,2,23)

"In my Father's dwelling place there are many dwelling places (vrs 1,2); I fit were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a (dwelling) place for you (among My Father's many dwelling places). (After I have prepared a place for you) I will come again,"(vrs 23), "We (My Father and I) will come unto him and make our abode with him(dwelling place)"

1)Notice,They come to us. We do not go to them.

2)Also, Jesus prays, John 17:21-24 "that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.22 "And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 23 "I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me. 24 "Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.

c)Physically Jesus was standing on the earth, spiritually he and his Father were just as Jesus prayed we shall also be one, here on earth

d)Col 1:27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

e)II Th 1:10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed. .. II Th 1:12that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

f)1 Pet 5:4 and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.

g)Ward Fenly has an article called "Rapture, Light, and Glory" that has more detail on this issue.

g) Summary: Jesus comes to us and lives in us , we do not go to him( John 14:3,18,23)

6.5 Luke 21:36 says if we are worthy we will escape

Luke 21:36 "Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

a)worthy (Gk = axios means deserving or merit)

b)Rev 3:4-5"You have a few names even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy. 5"He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.

c) worthy ones must overcome - overcomers go through not fly away

d)Rev 12: 11 overcome by blood of lamb+ testimony ,Rev 5:2-9 No one but Jesus is worthy to open the book,

6.6 Enoch and Elijah were raptured

a)Jesus said Matt 24:37 "But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be."

2)Jesus said it would be as the days of Noah not as the days of Enoch and Elijah

3)In the days of Noah the wicked were removed and the righteous taken

d) Enoch (Gen 5:24) and Elijah(2 Kings 2:11) were not removed because some tribulation was upon them, rather, God chose to end their lives on earth in this manner. Enoch was an example that he pleased God (Heb 11:5) he was not an example for the Church to be raptured.

6.7 1 Thess2:5-8 Says Church is taken away in rapture before man of sin is revealed

 

II Th 2:5-8 Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? 6 And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. 7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.

a)For people to be saved after the tribulation the Holy Spirit and believers must still be around:

2)John 16:8 "And when He(the Holy Spirit) has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

3) Rom 10:14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?

d) The He who now restrains was:

5)Claudious Caesar preventing Nero(the man of sin) from coming to the throne

6)The man of sin himself(Nero) restraining the church and was himself taken out of the way

a)2 Thess 2:1-3 the day of Christ's coming and our gathering together to him could not take place until after the man of sin would be revealed. Therefore the church could not be taken away before he is revealed (because Christ's coming and our gathering is after the man of sin is revealed)

b)Paul was careful not to mention the restraint by name when writing to the Thessalonians ( so not name Rome Caeser which would prevent the circulation of the letter). If the Holy Spirit was doing the restraining he would have no reason to not mention this.

c)How could the church

 

6.8 If we are not going to be caught up why are there so many heavenly scenes in the Book of Revelation

a)Luke 11:2 So He said to them, "When you pray, say: our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

b)There is a new heaven and new earth wherein dwells righteousness

c)Rev 21:1,5 The new Jerusalem is coming down (to earth) not us going up.

d)Rev 5:9-10And they sang a new song, saying: "You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, And have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth."

e)The rapture was not the blessed hope rather Titus 2:13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,

f)God is more interested in getting heaven into us than getting us into heaven

g)Look for the appearing of Christ not the disappearing of the saints

 

7 Chapter 7 The Origin of the Rapture

1)Margaret Macdonald of Port Glasgow Scotland in 1830. Through visits to Margaret Macdonald, John Darby, organizer and promoter of the Plymouth Brethren movement, received this new revelation of a Pre-Tribulation Rapture. (This was not taught in Church History until 1800's)

2)Next the doctrine was accepted by C.I. Scofield who included it in his very popular Bible

3)Finus Dake also promoted it in his annotated Bible and commentaries.

4)With these references the fundamentalist churches included it in their doctrines and taught it in their seminaries and Bible Schools

5)Cautions on Erroneous interpretation of Prophecy:

f)2 Pet 3:15-16 and account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation-- as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you, 16 as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures.

g)Rev 22:18-19 prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

h)Matt 15:6 'then he need not honor his father or mother.' Thus you have made the commandment of God of no effect by your tradition. (see also Mark 7:8,9)

i) Col 2:8Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.

j)Examples: Movie "The Day After", 88 Reasons the Rapture will be 1988

 

8 Chapter 8: What did Happen (Preterist) /What May Happen (Futurist)

1)Matt 6:9-10"In this manner, therefore, pray: our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. 10Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

2)The fullfilment is : Rev 21:2-3 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.

c)note: God comes to us we do not go to him going up in a rapture would cause the church to miss this

d)The new Jerusalem is symbolic

5)John 17:21 "that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.

6)Heb 8:11 "None of them shall teach his neighbor, and none his brother, saying, 'Know the Lord,' for all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them.

7)I Jn 3:2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.

8) 1 Pet 5:4 and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.

9)Col 3:4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.

10)II Th 1:7-10 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.

11)1 Pet 1:7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire(not raptured), may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, This testing was during the falling away (2 Thes 2:3)

12)Dan 12:1-2 "At that time Michael shall stand up, the great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation, even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, every one who is found written in the book. 2 And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, some to shame and everlasting contempt.

a) time of trouble, deliverance of God's people, and resurrection of the dead are all happening at the same time.

13)Ps 37:32-40 The wicked watches the righteous, and seeks to slay him. 33 The LORD will not leave him in his hand, nor condemn him when he is judged. 34 Wait on the LORD, and keep His way, and He shall exalt you to inherit the land(not be raptured); when the wicked are cut off( destroyed), you shall see it. 35 I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a native green tree. 36 Yet he passed away, and behold, he was no more; indeed I sought him, but he could not be found. 37 Mark the blameless man, and observe the upright; for the future of that man is peace. 38 But the transgressors shall be destroyed together; the future of the wicked shall be cut off. 39 But the salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their strength in the time of trouble.40And the LORD shall help them and deliver them; he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him.

14)John 17:15 "I do not pray that You should take them(the believers) out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. (This prayer was answered and the believers were not taken out of the world)

15)1 Cor 15:51-54 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."

p)1 Cor 15:51-54 and 1 Thess 4:13-18 are both talking about the resurrection of the dead in Christ and the transformation of the living Christians. The transformation right on earth. "we shall always be with the Lord"(1 Thess 4:17) right here on earth, "in the air".

q)The shout and the voice of the archangel with the trumpet of God(1 Thess 4:16) are saying Rev 11:15Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!", (There is only one forever and ever and only one always be with the Lord)

18)The saints must overcome not fly away:

s)Rev 2:7, Rev 2:11,Rev 2:17,Rev 2:26,27, Rev 3:5, Rev 3:12, Rev 3:21, Rev 21:7,

t)Overcome = to get the better of in competition, to master, surmount, overwhelm, to pour down, to bury beneath, to crush, overpower

21)Rev 7:2, Rev 9:4 (like Ezek 9:4-6) The believers are marked so that they are not hurt in the tribulation (

22)Luke 21:28 "Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near." (not your rapture)

17) I left out some of the author's idea's here. The author is a partial preterist and believes this is still a future event. He thinks the changing and transformation is what happened to Jesus at the transformation (Mark 9:2-12).

 

 

 

9 Chapter 9: What we must do

1)Much of this chapter is about working together and the baptism in the Holy Spirit and is not relevant to "The Rapture" question

2)Hebrew Feasts and Holy Days were prophetic types and shadows of things that were to come

Three Feasts of Israel's annual cycle of religious ceremonies were:

1)The Feast of the Passover (in the first Hebrew month)

2)The Feast of Pentecost (in the third Hebrew month)

3)The Feast of Tabernacles or Booths ( in the seventh Hebrew month)

3) The Feast of Passover (or Feast of Uleavened Bread). The following are 3 events in the Feast:

1)The Passover (Ex 12:1-23, Leviticus 23:4,5, Deuteronomy 16:1-8)

2)The Unleavened Bread (Ex 12:18, 23:15, Leviticus23:6-8, Deuteronomy 16:3,4)

c)removal of sin from our lives

4)The Sheaf of Firstfruits (Leviticus 23:10-14) We are now the new fruit-presentable to God !

5)Note: Exod 12:2-7 "This month shall be your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you. 3 "Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying: 'On the tenth day of this month every man shall take for himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household. 4 'And if the household is too small for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next to his house take it according to the number of the persons; according to each man's need you shall make your count for the lamb. 5 'Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats. 6 'Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at twilight. 7 'And they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses where they eat it.

4) The Feast of Pentecost (or Feast of Weeks or Harvest of Firstfruits)

1)Exodus 23:16, Leviticus 23:15-21, Deuteronomy 16:9-12, Acts 2:1

2)We now have power to live victorously

5) The Feast of Tabernacles (or Feast of Booths of Feast of Ingatherings)The following are 3 events in the Feast:

1)The blowing of Trumpets (Leviticus 23:24,25)

a)Anouncing the 2nd coming

2)The day of Atonement or Yom Kippur (Leviticus 16:29-34, 23:27-32)

a) All men are judged at the 2nd coming

3)Feast of Tabernacles (Ex 23:16, Leviticus 23:34-44), Deuteronomy 16:13-15)

d)Believers can paise and worship God forever

4)Note: Lev 23:41-44 You shall keep it as a feast to the LORD for seven days in the year. It shall be a statute forever in your generations. You shall celebrate it in the seventh month. 42 'You shall dwell in booths for seven days. All who are native Israelites shall dwell in booths,43 'that your generations may know that I made the children of Israel dwell in booths when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.' " 44 So Moses declared to the children of Israel the feasts of the LORD.

1)Look where the Feasts were instituted:

2)Passover in Egypt as slaves

3)Pentecost in the wilderness but free

4)Tabernacles in the promised land and at the time of harvest

a) Matth 13:39 The harvest is the end of the age

 

10 Chapter 10: Blinding Doctrines of Today

1)This chapter refutes the following doctrines

a)When the Messiah comes he will re-establish the geographical political nation of Israel

b) The so called gap in Daniel's 70 weeks

c) The temple must be rebuilt in Jerusalem before Jesus returns

11 Chapter 11: Consequences Of the Rapture Doctrine

 

1) The main point being that the consistent theme of scriptures is for Christians to be overcomers and not be raptured out of tribulation. I left this out because it does not refute the rapture idea with scripture.

 

12 Other Non Rapture Comments (not from Wilson's Book)

12.1 Notes after discussions w/ Todd Dennis on what the Transformation is in 1 Corinthians 15:51 which is the same as the gathering in Thess 4:16,17

 

1) This is not a physical Rapture because our physical bodies do not go to heaven only our spiritual body

ca) 1 Cor 15:44 It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

db) 1 Cor 15:50Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption.

ec) The Transformation = Redemption = salvation (not just a positional change). When we were born again it was more than just a positional change. When people in this generation confess to Jesus Christ and are initially born again they are transformed the same way as the early church was when they were born again for the first time.

6)Rom 13:11And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.

7)et 1:4-5 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

8)Heb 9:28 so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.

9) Luke 21:28 "Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near."

 

12.2 Notes on 1 Thess 4:16,17 from the Book "The Rapture A Question of Timing" by William Kimball

(note: William Kimball is a partial preterist)

 

a) Descend

P 132 " a final note on the word "descend" (katabaino) employed in 1 Thess 4:16 is also helpful at this point. The word is consistently employed to characterize an uninterrupted descent. This is substantiated in those passages mentioning the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Christ at His baptism (Matt. 3:16, Mark 1:10, Luke 3:22, John 1:32,33). It is also borne out in passages which refer to Christ's first advent (John 3:13, 6:38, 41,42,50,51,58). It is also employed numerous times in the New Testament in which its context clearly states or suggests an uninterrupted descent. When a change of direction in the descent is stated, a specific statement is included to qualify it."

 

 

b)Meet the Lord in the air

P128-130 "Pretribulationsts claim that since the saints will be caught up to "meet" the Lord in the air that this heavenward ascent lends support to their defense of a two-stage coming. They naturally assume that our translation skyward is a clear indication of our heavenward destination immediately following our redezvous in the air.

However, opponents of the two-stage concept argue just the opposite. They maintain that Christ's descent to the earth will be uninterrupted at the rapture. They claim that the scriptures say nothing about a change of direction in the Lord's descent after the saints have joined Him in the air. Though pretribulationists like Walvoord maintain that, "First Thessalonians 4 says nothing about continuing the journey to the earth," it should be pointed out that this verse says nothing about a return trip to heaven either. On the basis of direct statements, neither posttribulationsists or pretribulationists can conclusively prove their position. However, the internal evidence associated with the distinctive usage of the word "meet" lends strong support to the argument against the two-stag theory.

Interpreting this "meeting" of the Lord in the air by both the resurrected, dead saints and the translated, living saints to mean that Christ will then book them on His return flight to heaven to wait seven years before coming back to earth again violates the precise meaning of the word "met." The word translated "meet" is derived from the Greek word apantesis. It is a unique word used in reference to the coming of a king or magistrate to visit a city. As Bruce noted:

When a dignitary paid an official visit or parousia to a city in Hellenistic times, the action of the

leading citizens in going out to meet him and escorting him on the final stage of his journey was called the apantesis (F.F. Bruce New Bible commentary)

A careful correlation of the manner in which this distinctive term is employed in other New Testament passages demonstrates that it contains essentially the same meaning. When King Jesus descends, believers will rise o meet Him in the clouds and then promptly proceed to escort Him and His angelic host back to the earth.

The noun apantesis is found only three times in the New Testament. Besides 1 Thess 4:17, it is used in Matthew 25:6(in some manuscripts it is also found in verse 1), and Acts 28:15:

 

Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to MEET [apantesis] him (Matt 25:1,6)

And so we went toward Rome. And form thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to MEET[apantesis] us as far as Appii forum, and the three taverns (Acts 28:14b-15).

In the parable of the ten virgins, which is clearly eschatological in nature, a direct parallel is made between an Oriental wedding and the Lord's return for his church. When the announcement of the bridegroom's arrival was sounded, the virgins arose and hurried out to meet the approaching bridegroom to escort him back to where they had been waiting. According to Eastern wedding custom, the attendants to the bride (the virgins in the parable) went out form the bride's home to join the bridegroom's procession and accompany him back to his waiting bride. It would be ridiculous to imagine the virgins going out to greet the approaching bridegroom only to turn around and retreat to where he had come form. This would amount to an abrogation of the wedding ceremony. In this parable, the word "meet" (apantesis) does not imply a reversal of direction.

The Acts account employing the apantesis describes and incident in the final leg of Paul's journey to Rome. The word "meet" is used in reference to a delegation of Roman Christians who rendezvoused with the Apostle Paul at Appii forum and then immediately proceeded to escort him to his intended destination of Rome. It does not suggest that Paul got as far as Appii forum, met the delegation of brethren, and then promptly returned with these brethren back to Caesarea from where the journey originated.

An honest examination of the distinctive usage of the word conclusively demonstrates that it meant that as one party was making a journey (the Lord, the bridegroom, and the Apostle Paul), others came out to meet them, and then accompanied them to the end of their original destination without changing direction. Nowhere else in the scriptures is this word so used. It is consistently used to suggest the concept of an unimpeded advance in the same direction. In the case of 1 Thessalonians 4:17, that direction would be a descent of the Lord from heaven to earth.

In commenting upon the application of this unique word, Arthur Katterjohn added,

Another pretribulation distinctive is associated with the word "meet." It teaches that when we have met the Lord in the air, He will reverse direction, lead us back to heaven, and there we will pass the seven year period in which tribulation racks the earth. Does the word "meet" mean to change direction and return along the path just traveled? It is used only three times in Scripture: Matthew 25:6, Acts 28:15, and here (1 Thess 4:17) … If the word "meet" in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 has essentially the same meaning as in the other two occurrences, then we get a picture of Christ descending to the earth, being met by His people in the air, and continuing down to set right the heresies of the tribulation. The saints, and not Christ, reverse direction. The Captain of the hosts does not retreat on His way to victory. He continues on." (Arthur D. Katterjohn, The Tribulation People)

 

 

12.3 Non Rapture comment from "He shall Have Dominion" by Kenneth Gentry p 312

 

"Peter urges the perseverance of his readers(1Pet1:6) and warns against shortsightedness(1:9). It is only through long-term perseverance that we may expect access to the eternal kingdom of Jesus Christ(1:11)

Peter expects to die soon (1:13-14; as did Paul, 2 Tim4:6-8). Consequently, he urges his readers to recall these things after he is gone(1:15), apparently not expecting a rapture of the Church in A.D. 70.

 

12.4 Comments on two body Resurrection scriptures (from a discussions w/ Todd Dennis and Ward Fenly)

1) Phil 3:20-21 For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself.

a)'our' is plural, 'body' is singular. If this was talking about our physical bodies it should say "transform our lowly bodies".

b)This could be talking about transforming the corporate body of death under the old covenant which was being transformed with the new covenant. The Church is the body of Christ that was transformed. (Eph 1:22-23 And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.)

c)2 Cor 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

d)Col 1:27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

e)Philip 3:20 Is Jesus transforming our lowly body(the old covenant corporate body of death) into his Glorious Body (the New Covenant corporate body =his church). Changing believers by Christ in us the hope of glory =the consumation of the marriage. Heb 9:8 the Holy Spirit indicating this, that the way into the Holiest of All was not yet made manifest while the first tabernacle was(Gk.present tense = is) still standing.

1) The way into the holiest of all was made manifest at the destruction of the first tabernacle and was realized by Jesus dwelling in believers not Jesus rapturing mature believers and leaving the less mature still around.

2) Rom 8:23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.

a)'our' is plural, 'body' is singular. If this was talking about our physical bodies it should say "transform our lowly bodies".

b)Same comments as for Philip 3:20

 

12.5 A few scriptures indicating a spiritual resurrection

1)1 Cor 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption.

 

2)1 Cor 15:44 It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

c)this could also be talking about the natural body being the old covenant body of believers and the spiritual body being the new covenant body of believers that were gathered.

1)John 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here."

 

4) Luke 17:20-24Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, "The kingdom of God does not come with observation; 21 "nor will they say, 'See here!' or 'See there!' For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you." 22Then He said to the disciples, "The days will come when you will desire to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it. 23"And they will say to you, 'Look here!' or 'Look there!' Do not go after them or follow them. 24 "For as the lightning that flashes out of one part under heaven shines to the other part under heaven, so also the Son of Man will be in His day.

 

2)Jesus pre-incarnate (before his first coming) existance was spirit not flesh. He then returned to that after leaving earth (maybe?).

c)John 1:14And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

d)Rom 1:3 concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh,

e)1 Tim 3:16And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up in glory<1391>.

f)Luke 9:30-31 And behold, two men talked with Him, who were Moses and Elijah,31 who appeared in glory<1391> and spoke of His decease which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.

1)1391 doxa- (Thayers)

1) an opinion, a judgment, aview

c 2) an opinion, an estimate, whether good or bad concerning someone in the New Testament always a

dgood opinion concerning one, resulting in praise, honor, and glory

e3) splendor, brightness

fa) used of the moon, sun, stars

gb) magnificence, excellence, preeminence, dignity, grace

hc) majesty

i1) a thing belonging to God; the kingly majesty which belongs to Him as supreme ruler, majesty in the sense of the absolute perfection of the deity

j2) a thing belonging to Christ

ka) the kingly majesty of the Messiah

lb) the absolutely perfect inward or personal excellency of Christ; the majesty

m3) used of the angels; as apparent in their exterior brightness

n4) a most glorious condition, most exalted state

oa) used of that condition with God the Father in heaven to which Christ was raised after He had achieved his work on earth

pb) the glorious condition of blessedness into which is appointed and promised that true Christians shall enter after their Savior's return from heaven

 

12.6 Table from Internet that shows Matt 24 and 1 Thess 4:16,17 are about the same event (not 2 different events separated by thousands of years).

The purpose of this section is to show more clearly that Matth 24 and 1 Thess 4:16,17 are talking about the same event at the same point in History. (Therefore if Matth 24 is to be interpreted spiritually then so should 1 Thess 4:16,17.)

Matt 24:30-31 "Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31"And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

1Thes 4:16-17For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.

 

1) Christ Himself Returns Matt 24:30 1 Thess 4:16

2)From Heaven Matt 24:30 1 Thess 4:16

3)With a shout Matt 24:30 (in power) 1 Thess 4:16

4)Accompanied by Angels Matt 24:31 1 Thess 4:16

5)With Trumpet of God Matt 24:31 1 Thess 4:16

6)Believers Gathered Matt 24:31 1 Thess 4:17

7)In Clouds Matt 24:30 1 Thess 4:17

8)Time Unknown Matt 24:36 1 Thess 5:1-2

9)Will Come as a Thief Matt 24:43 1 Thess 5:2,4

10)Unbelievers Unaware of Impending Judgment Matt 24:37-39 1 Thess 5:3

11) Judgment Comes as Travail upon Expectant Mother Matt 24:8 1 Thess 5:3

12) Believers to Watch Matt 24:42 1 Thess 5:4

13)Warning against drunkenness Matt 24:49 1 Thess 5:7

(note: This table was seen and taken from both David Curtis and Donald Hochner's Web Sites )

1Thes 5:1-7 But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. 2 For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. 3 For when they say, "Peace and safety!" then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape. 4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief. 5 You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. 6 Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober. 7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night.

a) Note that the destruction is to come upon the unbelievers. This is consistent with the wicked being removed and the righteous inheriting the earth (they have to be on the earth to inherit it).

 

12.7 A few Questions to answer if there was a rapture

1)Jesus was building his church to kick in the gates of hell. Why would he take our the watchful saints (i.e., all useful church leadership) and leave the immature (who are going to most likely have a real attitude and be disillusioned that they did not get to go) to disciple the nations ? (Matth 25 it seems to indicate that those who were left were not Christians(i.e., they missed out on the marriage feast) rather than just foolish Christians)

2)Why tell people to flee the city and then rapture them ?

3)Why be watchful if you were just going to get yanked up ?

4)Why is such a significant event only talked about in one scripture (and that one scripture is not at all clear).

5)Why are there so many other scriptures that teach just the opposite (i.e., saints inherit the earth, Jesus specifically not praying to take the church out of the world, tares pulled from the wheat, bad fish pulled from good fish, etc…)

6)Why are there no Old Testament shadows of this extremely significant event.

7)If he was talking about a positional change in the spirit (not born again to born again) why is that not significant. What could be more important to promise. Why do you think that it is not a significant thing that would be a let down to the Thessalonians.

8)Why is there a consistent theme in scripture of the wicked being removed from the righteous rather than the righteous being removed from the wicked.( Matth 13 parable of wheat and Tares, parable of Dragnet, Matthew 24 like days of Noah wicked taken and righteous left.

I read somewhere on the Rapture:

1)God is more interested in getting heaven into us than in getting us into heaven

2)The early church was to look for the approaching Christ not the disappearing Saints.

What do YOU think ?

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Date:
11 May 2004
Time:
01:10:30

Comments

I wonder if the 95% of christians that believe in the rapture will come to their senses or they will be so busy waiting for the rapture to happen that they won't even recognize the antichrist. Kinda reminds me of how the jews were so busy waiting for their Savior to come deliver them from Roman oppression that they didn't even recognize their own Messiah.


Date:
12 Dec 2004
Time:
13:36:25

Comments

Given the level of detail one can extract from a single word or phrase, and the huge import or significance you can attach to it (e.g. "our body/bodies", above), doesn't it worry you at all that scripture has been mistranslated in the past? Should you be doing this analysis in Aramaic, Hebrew, or Greek?


Date: 30 Mar 2005
Time: 15:06:15

Comments0:

Peace in Christ Jesus,


I am starting to discount the pre-tribulation rapture and dispensationalist theology. However, the Lord does seem to have a plan of salvation for the Jewish people. If one is familiar with all the events pertaining to the Six-Day war, there were key miracles that prevented the United Arab Republic from defeating and destroying Israel. Militarily, there is no logical way that Israel should have won that war.


I believe that God has a plan for Israel without believing in dispensationalist theology of pre-tribulation.


In Christ Jesus,
Mike Boyco


Date: 31 Oct 2005
Time: 19:29:22

Comments:

There is one thing I know for sure. Those Christians who are very averse to bowing their knees before God in prayer will not be raptured or taken into heaven in any other way! This is because everyone in heaven will gladly and habitually bow down before the living God of heaven and earth. The proud will not be raptured. Only the truly regenerated and humble children of God will be raptured. It is written that God will resist the proud.


Date: 03 Feb 2010
Time: 13:30:01

Your Comments:

Never have I believed in the "Church" being taken out. Christ said that when he returned the dead in him will rise on THE LAST DAY. Jn 6;39,40,54 Jn:11;24. And both the wicked and the just are raised at the same time. Judgement Day is the LAST DAY. And the judgement starts with the "Church". My prayer is You Lord Christ the only true teacher who had Matthew write it in Mt 23:10, order your Holy Spirit to mute all those that teaches the rapture which paralyse the "Church" for the last 200 years. Lord you had Matt write down that you said that the "gates of hell shall note prevail againts the church" Mt 16;18. You oh Lord Christ who is the wisdom and the power from above dont train us to be overcomers and more than conquerors so that when the greatest challenges come to be taken out but to go right threw it with a smile because You bring us from victory to victory. Oh Lord Christ you said to ask you anything in your name and you will do it. That you are the Truth so thank you in advance that you will mute those who teaches the rapture once and for all. Love you Lord
saint.raymond@hotmail.com

 

 

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