Why I Believe in a Pre-Tribulation Rapture

Rapture Expectation

11 reasons why Jesus will come back before the Tribulation
by Nathan E. Jones
Lamb & Lion Ministries
Rapture Expectation

Frequently I am asked to explain or defend the end-time view of the Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church. For that topic, lots of Bible verses, readings and references rattle around in my skull. I can extract each like a Powerball out of an air machine and present it to the inquiring mind, but never in a linear, comprehensive manner in which I particularly appreciate. And so, this article is my attempt to organize my brain on the Pre-Tribulation Rapture view. You’re welcome to come along on the journey!
Taking It to the Bedrock

My belief that there will be a Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church stands on the bedrock of the following foundational tenets:

A) The Bible is the Word of God
The 66-book canon called the Bible is God’s inerrant, infallible message to mankind, explaining His purposes and plans for the ages (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21). No other document can be reliably trusted, nor remotely reach the bar for the requirements of authentication that the Bible attains to so easily.

B) The Bible is to be Interpreted Literally
God means what He says and says what He means. God wants His creations to know His will plainly. While God does indulge in picturesque descriptions and parables, an explanation almost always follows or context is provided for explanation. Spiritualization of text, therefore, has no proper place in interpreting Scriptures. Any eschatological viewpoint must then be thrown out if it is based on the reader’s desire to spiritualize the Bible into whatever ethereal meaning they desire. Take the Bible for its plain sense meaning.

C) The Church and Israel Are Separate Entities
Israel is not the Church and the Church is not Israel. A believer in Christ becomes a member of the Church, whether Jew or Gentile (Rom. 1:16), but a member of the Church does not become a form of spiritual Israel. God’s promises to Israel as a people and nation (see next tenet) are not the same as for the Bride of Christ, the Church.

D) A Literal 1000-Year Millennium
The Bible describes a future, literal 1000-year time period. The Greek word “chilias” for “one thousand” appears six times in Revelation 20, clearly marking the time period as having 1000 literal years. The purpose of this time period is for Jesus Christ to have an earthly kingdom from which to base His rule and to fulfill His promises (Gen. 13:14-17; 15:5,18-21; 2 Sam. 7:16-19; Isa. 10:21-22; 11:1-2; Jer. 23:5-8; 30:22; 31:31-34; Ezek. 11:18-20; 34:24; 36:24-28; Mic. 7:19-20; Hos. 3:5; Rom. 11:26-29).

E) A Literal 7-Year Tribulation
An upcoming time period has been set aside for God to pour out His wrath upon the evil of the world, to regather Israel back into its land, to force Israel to acknowledge Jesus as their Messiah, and for the Messiah to return and fight for His believing remnant (Deut. 4:26-31; Isa. 13:6-13; 17:4-11; Jer. 30:4-11; Ezek. 20:33-38; Dan. 9:27; 12:1; Zech. 14:1-4; Matt. 24:9-31). This time period begins with a covenant between Israel and the Antichrist (Dan. 9:27). The length of the Tribulation is seven years long, described in a variety of ways as “one seven” year block (Dan. 9:27), consisting of two “times, time and half a time” (two years + 1 year + half a year; Rev. 12:14), or two “1260 days” periods (Rev. 11:3), or two “42 month” periods (Rev. 11:2; 13:5).

F) Jesus Will Return Again to Earth
The Bible says Jesus will physically return again to earth (Zech. 14:1-21; Matt. 24:29-31; Mk. 13:24-27; Lk. 21:25-27; Rev. 19). Jesus returns is to defeat His enemies, set up His throne, restore Israel, rule with “a rod of iron” and share His authority with those who overcame in Him (Mat. 19:28; 25:31; Acts 1:3-6; Rev. 2:26-27; 3:21).

G) The Bible Teaches About a Rapture
1 Thessalonians 4:17 speaks of an event called “the Rapture”, Latin “rapio,” Greek “harpazo,” which means “to catch up, to snatch away, or to take out.” “After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.” Paul states that the concept of the Rapture is meant to encourage believers during this Age (1 Thes. 4:18). Other references on the Rapture are Jn. 14:1-14; I Cor. 15:51-58; and 1 Thes. 4:13-18.

These bedrock statements about the Bible and its interpretation provide the foundation in which to analyze the followig reasons for why I believe the Bible teaches a Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church.
1) The Bible describes the Rapture and Second Coming as different events.

The Bible must see the Rapture (Jn. 14:1-4; I Cor. 15:51-58; 1 Thes. 4:13-18) and the Second Coming (Zech. 14:1-21; Matt. 24:29-31; Mk. 13:24-27; Lk. 21:25-27; Rev. 19) as separate events, because when the verses are compared they describe two very different scenarios:

Rapture — believers meet Christ in the air
Second Coming — Christ returns to the Mount of Olives to meet the believers on earth

Rapture — Mount of Olives is unchanged
Second Coming — Mount of Olives is divided, forming a valley east of Jerusalem

Rapture — living believers obtain glorified bodies
Second Coming — living believers remain in same bodies

Rapture — believers go to heaven
Second Coming — glorified believers come from heaven, earthly believers stay on earth

Rapture — world left unjudged and living in sin
Second Coming — world is judged and righteousness is established

Rapture — depicts deliverance of the Church from wrath
Second Coming — depicts deliverance of believers who endured wrath

Rapture — no signs precede it
Second Coming — many signs precede it

Rapture — revealed only in New Testament
Second Coming — revealed in both Old and New Testaments

Rapture — deals with only the saved
Second Coming — deals with both the saved and unsaved

Rapture — Satan remains free
Second Coming — Satan is bound and thrown into the Abyss

Since the Rapture and Second Coming clearly are different events that do not occur at the same time, this would rule out a Post-Tribulation Rapture scenario.
2) The Rapture is described as occurring at any time without warning.

Jesus stated in Matthew 24:42,44 to “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come… So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.” Not only do believers in Christ not know when to expect Him, but the Father Himself seems to have left Jesus out on the exact time His Son is to return. As Jesus stated in Matthew 24:36, “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” These and other verses (Mat. 24:36,42,44,50; 25:13; 1 Thes. 4:18; Tit. 2:13; 1 Jn. 2:28; 3:2-3) indicate that Jesus’ arrival will come when nobody expects it.

The Second Coming, on the other hand, is preceded by many events, such as the rise of the Antichrist (Rev. 12:13-17; Zech; 13:7-9), a treaty with Israel (Dan. 9:27), the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple (Mat. 24:15; 2 Thess. 2:3-4; Rev. 11:1-2), as well as plagues and judgments and persecutions destroying most of the world’s population (Rev. 6-18). The Book of Revelation reports these events as occurring during the 7-year Tribulation, which Revelation reveals precede the Second Coming.

Because the Rapture could happen at any moment and without warning and the Second Coming is preceded by so many signs, then the Rapture and Second Coming must be different events. The Rapture has to occur before the seven years’ worth of signs, because Christians are called to look for the Lord’s return rather than signs such as the Antichrist’s arrival. Once the signs begin, then the seven year countdown begins towards its end with Christ’s return at the Second Coming.

Jesus’ imminent return dismisses any of the other viewpoints related to a rapture that occur within or at the end of the Tribulation.
3) The Rapture and the removal of the “Restrainer” occur at the same time.

In 2 Thessalonians, the church at Thessalonica was afraid due to a false report that they had entered the Day of the Lord (Tribulation) and had somehow missed the Rapture. The Apostle Paul assured them that the Antichrist would not be revealed until a restraining force would be taken away so that the Man of Lawlessness could be revealed.

Because the revealing of the Antichrist coincides with the beginning of the 7-year Tribulation starting with his peace treaty with Israel (Dan. 9:27), then the Restrainer has to be removed before the Tribulation. As the Holy Spirit also works in salvation (Jn. 16:8-11; 1 Jn. 5:7) during the Tribulation, then it is the Church that must be the Restrainer that is removed. Therefore, the Rapture and the removal of the Church must coincide, and at the beginning of the seven years.
4) The Tribulation is for Israel’s redemption.

Jeremiah 30:7 describes the Tribulation as the “time of Jacob’s trouble” — “How awful that day will be! None will be like it. It will be a time of trouble for Jacob, but he will be saved out of it.”

In the Book of Matthew, whose primary audience is the Jews, Jesus explains to his Jewish followers what life will be like during the Tribulation. Also, Revelation 12 describes picturesquely a woman who gives birth and has to flee due to persecution during the Tribulation. The context shows the woman is Israel. And again, the Battle of Armageddon is the world against Israel. Two-thirds of the Jewish people will be killed from these battles. These texts and others show that the Tribulation is meant for the redemption of the Jewish people.

Why are the Jews the object of persecution during the Tribulation? For one, Satan hates the Jewish people for giving the world the Scriptures and the Messiah, as well as he wishes to thwart God’s promises to the Jews (see Bedrock #4). Secondly, the Jews have to be so desperately brought low that they finally call out to their Messiah “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord” (Mat. 23:39; Lk. 13:35). The Tribulation, then, is used for Israel’s redemption which also results in the punishment of the wicked. The Church does not fit into this scenario, and are left out of the purposes of the Tribulation. They would need to be removed — caught up — before the Tribulation begins.
5) The Tribulation is not for the Church.

The Tribulation is God’s wrath upon the unbelieving world, and not for those who are saved from Christ’s resurrection to the Rapture — called the Church. Yes believers have suffered all throughout human history, but there is a special time (just like the Flood) set apart called the Day of the Lord for God’s wrath. Christians suffering and the Tribulation/Day of the Lord are different.

True believers in Christ during the Church Age, represented by the Church of Philadelphia, are promised in Revelation 3:10, “Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth.” Paul states in 1 Thessalonians 1:10, “and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.” He also states in 1 Thessalonians 5:9, “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:9 states, “Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!” Ephesians 5:6 states, “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient.” Colossians 3:4 states, “When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” Again and again, Scripture states the Church is not meant to endure God’s wrath.
6) God’s wrath involves the whole 7-Year Tribulation.

The view that the Rapture will occur at the mid-point of the Tribulation is based upon 1 Corinthians 15:52 which states that the Rapture will occur at the blowing of “the last trumpet.” This Mid-Tribulation Rapture view then declares this trumpet to be the last of the seven trumpets in Revelation 11 that is blown at the mid-point of the Tribulation. Why of the 114 references to trumpets in the Bible these two are identified as one and the same only defies sound Bible study. The context clearly shows the last trumpet of 1 Corinthians 15 is blown for believers whereas the seven trumpets of Revelation 8, 9 and 11 are sounded for unbelievers. The Revelation trumpets therefore can have no relevance for the Church.

The Pre-Wrath Rapture view has the Church raptured just before the bowl judgments (Revelation 16) that occur during the last quarter of the Tribulation. The bowl judgments are the only judgments this view considers to be the wrath of God, leaving the Seal and Trumpet judgments as wrath from man and Satan. But, isn’t it Jesus Himself who breaks the seals that launch each of the Revelation 6 seal judgments which occur at the beginning of the Tribulation? Also, the seven angels who blow the trumpets that initiate each of the trumpet judgments are given their trumpets at the throne of God (Revelation 8:2). And, Revelation 15:1 states that the bowl judgments at the end of the Tribulation finish the wrath of God, not begin His wrath.

Because these judgments are initiated by Jesus Himself at the beginning of the Tribulation, the whole Tribulation must be God’s wrath, which the Church is exempt from.
7) The Old Testament and Revelation leave the Church out of the Tribulation.

The focus of the Tribulation — to pour out God’s wrath on the earth just like the Flood (Isa. 24:22; Zeph. 3:8; 1 Thes. 5:3; 2 Thes. 2:12) and to bring the Jewish people to accept Jesus as Messiah (Mat. 23:39; Lk. 13:35) — is addressed by the Old Testament and the Book of Revelation to the unbelievers and the Jewish people. In any biblical content concerning the Tribulation/Day of the Lord, the Church cannot be found.

The whole concept of the Church was a mystery to the Old Testament prophets. They focused on the nation of Israel. The Book of Matthew is written to the Jewish people, whom Jesus is addressing in Matthew 24. In the Book of Revelation, chapters 2 and 3 cover the Church Age, but then there is no mention of the Church until after the Tribulation/Day of the Lord chapters 6-18. In Chapter 19, the Church returns to the texts and can be found, not suffering, but celebrating with Christ at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb and preparing to return with Jesus to earth.
8) The Church is busy elsewhere during the Tribulation.

While the 7-year Tribulation is occurring, the Bible records the Church will be busy with three events. None of the three have to do with suffering on a world being destroyed.

The first event the raptured Church will participate in is a judgment by God — the Judgment of the Just. This judgment on works is not to determine eternal destiny, but to determine degrees of reward (2 Cor. 5:10; Rev. 19:6-9).

The second event is the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. This feast celebrates the spiritual marriage of Christ’s Bride — the Church — to her Savior. Revelation 19:7-9 shares this wonderful celebration, “Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear. (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of the saints.) Then the angel said to me, ‘Write: ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!’ And he added, ‘These are the true words of God.'”

The third event follows the Marriage Supper of the Lamb and is the Church’s preparation to follow the King of Kings into the Battle of Armageddon at the conclusion of the Tribulation. This event is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ (Zech. 14:1-21; Matt. 24:29-31; Mk. 13:24-27; Lk. 21:25-27; Rev. 19:11-21). Revelation 19:14 identifies the Church in their “fine linen, white and clean,” which was given to them during the first event — the Judgment of the Just. The Church and angelic forces follow the King of Kings into His Second Coming to the earth, but only Jesus Himself will engage in battle and with mere words defeats the nations in siege against Jerusalem.
9) There needs to be sheep to separate from the goats.

If the Church is raptured at the end of the Tribulation, receives their glorified bodies, and then immediately u-turns back with Christ for the Second Coming as the Post-Tribulation Rapture view holds, then what believer in Christ will be available for the Sheep and Goats Judgment of Matthew 25? The only people left on earth would be unbelievers, called goats. No believer — sheep — would be available for God to put into the sheep category.

Since those who are in glorified bodies will be like the angels in that they aren’t given in marriage or reproduce (Matt. 22:30; Mk. 12:25), then a believing, unglorified, human remnant must make it into the sheep category and go on to produce the nations during the Millennial reign of Christ (Ezek. 43:13-27; Isa. 19:21; Isa. 65:20-22; Rev. 20:7-10). This would mean that people would need to come to Christ during the Tribulation yet after the Rapture to produce this Millennial population.
10) The Bible shows God rescues the righteous from His wrath.

Being a Christian means having to endure suffering and trials at the hand of man (Jn. 16:33; Phil. 1:27; 1 Thes. 3:3; 1 Pet. 4:12-13). But, the Bible has many examples of those who put their faith in God are exempt from God’s wrath. Noah and his family were removed from the Flood waters that in God’s wrath were used to judge and cleanse the earth. Lot and his wife and two daughters were made to leave Sodom and Gomorrah before God burned the towns up with fire and sulfur. Rahab’s family was set apart when Joshua’s army invaded Jericho.

Could believers be miraculously protected during the Tribulation, like the Israelites were during the plagues on Egypt? Yes, the 144,000 Jewish evangelists from Revelation 7 and 14, for instance, will be divinely protected. But, the slaughter of believers during the Tribulation will be so massive that they are certainly not under any special protection (Rev. 7:9-17; 20:4).
11) The Pre-Tribulation Rapture view is not too new to discount.

Some will argue that the Pre-Tribulation Rapture view is just “too new” to be considered viable. Critics will point to the origin of the modern Pre-Tribulation view and credit John Nelson Darby (1800-1882) with its founding. But, is that assessment historically accurate? Indeed, it is not.

The Early Church fathers’ such as Barnabas (ca.100-105), Papias (ca. 60-130), Justin Martyr (110-195), Irenaeus (120-202), Tertullian (145-220), Hippolytus (ca. 185-236), Cyprian (200-250), and Lactantius (260-330) wrote on the imminent return of Jesus Christ, the central argument for the Pre-Tribulation Rapture view.

Biblical truth is determined by Scripture, and not how that teaching has been perceived at different times during history. When Augustine began spiritualizing the Bible, his view of a non-literal interpretation took hold of the church until the Renaissance, obliterating the Premillennial and Pre-Tribulation Rapture views in favor of Amillennialism. But, some Medieval writers such as Ephraem of Nisibis (306-373), Abbot Ceolfrid’s Latin Codex Amiatinus (ca. 690-716), and Brother Dolcino wrote statements that distinguish the Rapture from the Second Coming.

When the chains of allegorical interpretation began to fall off beginning with the Reformation in the 1400 and 1500s, writers such as Joseph Mede (1586-1638), Increase Mather (1639-1723), Peter Jurieu (1687), Philip Doddridge (1738), John Gill (1748), James Macknight (1763), Thomas Scott (1792) and Morgan Edwards (1722-1795) all wrote concerning the Rapture occurring separate from the Second Coming. Even in the more modern church, those like William Witherby (1818) were precursors to John Darby in support of the view. The Pre-Tribulation Rapture view is indeed then not only biblical, but supported throughout Church history.
Closing Thoughts

I thank you for coming down this mental journey with me concerning why I believe in the Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church. Hopefully it has confirmed or challenged some of your eschatological ideas. Bear in mind, though, that one’s end-time views have no bearing on the doctrine of salvation. What is to be celebrated is that our salvation will one day lead us upwards to be with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ forever and ever.


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11 thoughts on “Why I Believe in a Pre-Tribulation Rapture

  1. This is Not Goin To Happen Rapture is after the tribulation…

    Matthew 13:21 / 24:21 / 24:29
    Mark 13:24
    John 16:33
    Acts 14:22
    Romans 2:9 / 5:3 / 8:35 / 12:12
    2 Corin 1:4 / 7:4
    Ephesians 3:13
    1 Thessa 3:4
    2 Thessa 1:4 / 1:6
    Revelation 1:9 / 2:9-10 / 2:22 / 7:14

    • The Church & Separated Brothers in Christ will not go through the Tribulation. There is a distinct difference between the Rapture and the Second Coming. Some may disagree with me, and that is perfectly okay. Whether you and I, do or do not agree about the Rapture, it will have no effect on our salvation in Jesus Christ. However, for those who disagree, I strongly believe that rather than my being sorely disappointed, you Fr. Hampsch will be pleasantly surprised!!!
      There are many differences in these two events as shown here:
      Rapture: Jesus comes FOR His Church.
      2nd Coming: Jesus comes back WITH His Church.
      Rapture: Jesus waits in the air for His Church.
      2nd Coming: Jesus comes to the earth.
      Rapture: Church removed and unbelievers left behind.
      2nd Coming: Unbelievers removed but Tribulation saints left behind.
      Rapture: He comes to present His bride to the Father.
      2nd Coming: He comes to judge and set up His kingdom.
      Rapture: The marriage of the Lamb in Heaven follows the Rapture.
      2nd Coming: The marriage is followed by war on earth.
      Rapture: It happens in the twinkling of an eye.
      2nd Coming: Will be a steady view of His return.
      Rapture: Only the Church will see Him.
      2nd Coming: Every eye will see Him.
      Rapture: Jesus descends with a shout.
      2nd Coming: No shout is mentioned.
      Rapture: A resurrection takes place.
      2nd Coming: No resurrection is mentioned.
      Rapture: It can happen at any time.
      2nd Coming: Can only happen at the end of the Tribulation.
      Rapture: Angels are not sent. Jesus comes Himself.
      2nd Coming: Angels are sent to gather people for judgment.
      Rapture: Earthly bodies are changed to Heavenly bodies.
      2nd Coming: The Church returns with Heavenly bodies.
      Rapture: Jesus does not return on a white horse.
      2nd Coming: Jesus does return on a white horse.
      Rapture: Jesus return is for His Church (His bride).
      2nd Coming: Jesus returns for redeemed Israel and Tribulation saints.
      Rapture: It is a message of hope and comfort.
      2nd Coming: It is a message of judgment.
      I’m sure this is not an exhaustive listing, but with it we can see that the Rapture and the Second Coming are not one and the same.
      The seven year period of Tribulation on earth will be a time of Gods wrath on earth like never before. He will judge the nations and through this self-same judgment bring Israel back in faith believing. For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? (Revelation 6:17) But concerning His bride, the Church, He says, And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. (1 Thessalonians 1:10) He promised again in Revelation 3:10, Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. (Revelation 3:10)
      Also, some see Revelation chapter four verse one as a clear reference to the Church & separated Brothers being raptured. On the other hand, some do not, even though they believe in the Rapture. Personally, it is very clear to me that this passage is most definitely referring to the Church being taken up to Heaven via the Rapture.
      After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven, and the first voice which I had heard, like the sound of a trumpet speaking with me, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after these things.”
      Note that verse one begins with the word after and ends the same. In chapter one of Revelation we see Jesus revealed (revelation) in His glory. In chapters two and three Jesus is speaking to the church. He then transfers the Apostle John to Heaven in chapter four verse one to continue the prophecy. In chapter one, we see the eternal I Am. In chapters two and three, we see the present day and age of the church period. Then beginning at chapter four, verse one He immediately takes us past the church age to the future.
      If I go to see a play and there are three acts to the play, I will see one act after the other, not all three at once. Neither do they overlap in any way. If I attend a concert, I will listen to one song after the other, not all at one time. Neither do they overlap in any way. Neither do the church age and the Tribulation period co-exist or overlap in any way. One follows the other. As in a play, Act 1 comes BEFORE Act 2. Act 2 comes AFTER Act 1 and BEFORE Act 3. Act 3 comes AFTER Act 2. The Apostle John is shown the church age, and then he is raptured up to Heaven to see what follows the end of the church age. To me, you just cant get any clearer than that. After means after.
      Some say that the word Rapture is not in the Bible. That is true, and neither are the words Bible or Trinity found in the Bible, but they are just as true as the Rapture.
      The word Rapture is derived from the Latin translation of caught up in
      1 Thessalonians 4:17, Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. The Latin translation uses the word rapturo, and this is where the word rapture is derived. The Greek word is harpazo, and it means:
      1. To seize, carry off by force
      2. To seize on, claim for ones self eagerly
      3. To snatch out or away
      A few other verses where harpazo is used are:
      Acts 8:39, And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.
      Acts 23:10, And when there arose a great dissension, the chief captain, fearing lest Paul should have been pulled in pieces of them, commanded the soldiers to go down, and to take him by force from among them, and to bring him into the castle.
      2 Corinthians 12:2-4, I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.
      So there is no doubt that Jesus will come in the clouds and eagerly claim His bride the Church for Himself, by seizing her and snatching her away by force to Heaven at the end of the church age. The next act will be the Tribulation, AFTER the Rapture.
      The Tribulation period is a time of intense judgment by God. What groom would beat the living daylights out of his bride and then say, Okay, now lets go get married. It ain’t going to happen.
      Some say that the Church has suffered persecution down through the years, so why would she not suffer during the Tribulation? The reason is quite simple. Persecution has come from evil men who carry out the deeds of their father, the Devil. Judgment comes from God. The Tribulation, as I have already stated, is not persecution. It is judgment. God is not going to judge those who He has already promised will be protected from His wrath to come. (See verses above.) Conclusion; the Church will not go through any part whatsoever of the Tribulation. She will be raptured (LT-rapturo), snatched up (GK-harpazo), BEFORE the Tribulation, and the Tribulation will commence AFTER the Rapture.


      2 Thessalonians 2:1-4

      1 And, brothers, we entreat you, by
      the coming of our Master Yahshua
      Messiah, and of our gathering together
      to Him,

      2 that you not let your mind be
      hastily excited or troubled, neither by
      word, nor by spirit, nor by prophecy of
      the spirit, nor by an epistle,
      supposedly coming from us, stating
      that the day of our Master is at hand.

      3 Do not let anyone deceive you in
      any way, because that Day will not
      come unless first there comes a great rebellion, and the man of sin is
      revealed, the son of perdition,

      4 the one opposing and exalting
      himself over everything being called
      Elohim, or object of reverence, so as
      for him “To sit in the sanctuary of
      Elohim” as an El, and sets himself
      forth, as if he is an Elohim. (Dan.
      11:36; Eze. 28:2)
      Before RAPTURE these events will take place first:
      1. there comes a Great Falling Away (falling away or REBELLION)
      2. the Man of Sin is revealed, the Son of Perdition
      3. he opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God
      4. he, as God, sits in the THIRD TEMPLE, showing himself that he is God.

      What do we learn from these statements?

      1. The Rapture will NOT take place until there is a Great Falling Away.
      2. The Rapture will NOT take place until the Man of Sin (Antichrist) is revealed.
      3. The Rapture will NOT take place until the Antichrist sits in the Third Temple.
      4. The Church WILL SEE the Antichrist.
      5. The Church WILL SEE the Third Temple built.
      6. The Church WILL SEE the Abomination of Desolation (see Daniel 9:27).

      And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.
      The FALLING AWAY from other Bible Versions actually means REBELLION.

      REBELLION will happen, not by unbelievers (for they are already in rebellion by not having Jesus Christ in their hearts), but sad to say, by BELIEVERS who will grow cold in their beliefs. One possible scenario is, Christians are made to believe that RAPTURE will happen BEFORE the Tribulation Period, when in fact it is very clear in verse 3 that RAPTURE will only happen after the SON of PERDITION is REVEALED.
      The teaching of PRE-TRIBULATION RAPTURE will bring confusion and discouragement to all Christians who stand by it believing that they will not experience part of the first 3-1/2 years after the said PEACE AGREEMENT and/or S. The Great Rebellion also means an unprecedented numbers of Christians will turn their back in their Christian faith or fall under the Tribulation threats, pressures and hardships they will experience, not expecting and not prepared to face these events.(j.o.b.)

      • Twist not the Holy Scriptures least ye be like Satan!
        Scriptures showing that the Rapture is “PRE-Tribulation”
        [2Thess 2:1] Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
        (The coming of our Lord Jesus, and our gathering together unto him is the rapture.)
        [2Thess 2:2] That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
        (“The day of Christ is at hand” refers not to the rapture, but to the day of wrath, the seven years of tribulation. {Amos 5:18 below}The church of Thessalonia must have gotten a letter that said they were living in the tribulation–which is shaking and troubling news. They could not have thought that they were living in the rapture, or that it was “at hand” or “now” because the rapture happens suddenly, instantaneously. And if the report was that the rapture was “soon to come”, that would not be shaking or troubling, but glorious and wonderful. The only option, for the verse to make sense, is that they thought that the rapture had passed, and that they were in the tribulation.)
        They were fearing this: [Dan 7:21] I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them;
        What IS the “day of Christ” anyway, is it the rapture?
        [Amos 5:18] Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.
        (This “day of the Lord” cannot be the rapture, because we look forward to the rapture. There are many other scriptures that say the same thing. The day of the Lord is tribulation, also known as the time of Jacob’s trouble, Isreal’s trouble, the days of Awe.)
        [2Thess 2:3] Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day [tribulation–the day of Christ] shall not come, except there come a falling away [apostacy–or departure (some assume this means departure from the faith, but it can also mean departure from the earth, as in rapture)] first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
        (Now, if they were troubled that the rapture had passed, Paul is assuring the Church that they didn’t miss anything, saying that that the tribulation that they feared is preceeded by several important key events: First, the rapture, which reveals the antichrist…)
        [2Thess 2:4] Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
        (who doesn’t even sit in the temple until 3.5 years into the tribulation… See Rev (which they didn’t know at the time)– But this is why this point, of the AntiChrist being revealed after the rapture–who goes on to sit in the temple, is proof that they hadn’t missed the rapture. There is no antichrist revealed yet.)
        [2Thess 2:5] Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
        [2Thess 2:6] And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
        (In other words, the Christians in Thessalonia couldn’t have missed the rapture, because there is no AntiChrist sitting in the temple, claiming to be God, who has yet to be revealed. And that the AntiChrist is still being held back by their presence in the world–since the rapture reveals the antichrist as in verse 3.)
        [2Thess 2:7] For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
        (Christians are the “He” who letteth will let and will be taken out of the way. That is, whatsoever we bound on earth will be bound in heaven. And once we are removed/raptured, then the AntiChrist will have the freedom to fulfill his plans. After all, the gates of hell cannot prevail against the Church; (Mat 16:18), and the Church is not destined for wrath (verse))
        [2Thess 2:8] And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
        [2Thess 2:9] Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
        [2Thess 2:10] And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
        [2Thess 2:11] And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
        [2Thess 2:12] That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
        [2Thess 2:13] But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
        [2Thess 2:14] Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
        [2Thess 2:15] Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.
        [2Thess 2:16] Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,
        [2Thess 2:17] Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work.
        Finally, yes, the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine is accused of being a “comfort doctrine”… Well, it IS, the scripures even say so. It’s consolation, hope, comforting for believers.
        To recap, and summarize by clarifying the verses with modern terminology:
        1 I beg you, by the Pre-Tribulation Rapture promise of Christ,
        2 That you don’t worry if you “hear by letter” that you are in the 7 year Great Tribulation of God’s wrath
        3 Don’t be decieved. The Tribulation doesn’t come until after the world wide events of the Great resurrection and rapture, which removes the righteous and leaves only those in rebellion and apostacy, which allows for the revealing of the AntiChrist,
        4 Who says he is God, and who will sit in the temple and declare claim to be God.
        5 Don’t you remember this doctrine I told you already?
        6 And now you know why the AntiChrist is not yet revealed to the world
        7 Yes, the AntiChrist is working, but not fully, because you are still here, preventing his works by your prayers, until the rapture, when you will be taken out of the way.
        8 And then the AntiChrist will come out of hiding, and the Lord will destroy him.
        I can hear Paul thinking to himself… how could my diciples have been so easily misled, decived and troubled that they missed the rapture? And by a mere letter? It’s a world-wide gospel-promoting supernatural event that no person could miss who was looking forward to it! They know it includes people rising from the dead, the last trump, and all the rest. I told them that in my first letter to them in Chapter 4, in fact, it was the only doctrinal teaching in my entire letter! Sheesh! I’d better make another journey back to Thessalonia to set these guys straight and reassure them, just in case my letter doesn’t do it!

        Now, I’m not ignorant of the fact that post trib rapture believers interpret 2 Thess 2 in the opposite way,
        and use it to prove a post trib rapture… here’s how they do it.
        [2Thess 2:1] Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
        (they say this is the rapture, correctly, but then say the next verse “day of Christ” refers to the rapture as well.)
        [2Thess 2:2] That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
        (Obviously, the Post Tribulationists are afraid of the Rapture, because this is the only way that that verse makes any sense. Yes, fear of the Lord is a good thing, but you should not let it affect your theology to the point where you are praying for the Lord to not come until after 7 years of tribulation!…. Also, being a post tribulationist, if you disbelieve Christ’s ability to cleanse you of sin, and believe you need further cleansing through tribulation, being a post trib believer, there is plenty of extra time to repent, 7 years, and/or simply stand up for Christ and accept a beheading to achieve “trib saint status”, which may give one a full licence to sin all they want until that time, since the imminency of the rapture, which comes first, is removed. Perhaps the post tribulationists feel they deserve punishment for their sins, because they have a hard time accepting the free gift of salvation through Christ. I’m speculating that IF the post tribulationists really want to go through the tribulation, Christ may let them. After all, one may be able to disobey when the trumpet call goes out to “Come up here!”)
        [2Thess 2:3] Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day [rapture–which they fear] shall not come, except there come a falling away [they assume means “from the faith”–which, they say, includes false doctrine, such as pre-trib rapture teaching, which somehow leads one to worship Satan through complacency and laziness, but I’ve never seen how that is possible if one is truly focused on Christ and knows the Bible, since the Antichist cannot deceive the elect–so their fears of the AntiChrist’s deception are also baseless, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
        [2Thess 2:4] Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
        [2Thess 2:5] Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
        [2Thess 2:6] And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
        [2Thess 2:7] For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
        (Since this further explanation of Christians being removed disproves what they are saying, they say the “he” is undefined, and may mean “Michael, the chief/arch angel, whose removal allows for the rising of the Antichrist, although there is no other scripture anywhere in the Bible to support this teaching, other than the fact that Michael is a strong and powerful Angel, able to aid the delivering of a message to Daniel.)
        [2Thess 2:8] And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

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