Rapture...truth or lie?

It is doubtful that there are any Christians who will deny that we gather together unto Him in the end time.  However, there is strong disagreement as to when this will happen.  People who advocate the "any moment" doctrine are referred to as "rapture" believers because they believe that  the Lord may return at any moment and spare them from going through the tribulation spoken of in Revelations.  To all rapture believers, I offer you the following challenge.  Can you make all the verses contained in the Bible pertaining to the subject support your position that there will be a rapture?   For it is evident from all of the following relevant verses that Christians will go through the tribulation and will not "fly away" because certain prophesied events must occur prior to the return of Christ making the "any moment" doctrine false.  Before you read this study, pray and ask our Father to give you understanding in His word and then seek out the truth about our Father's word.  I do not present much rhetoric but primarily provide scripture.

1.    The word "rapture" is not in the Bible, not in the Manuscripts, not in the Massorah, and simply       not in the word of God in any language.

The rapture theory was born in 1830 by Margaret McDonald.  McDonald had a lot of visions and dreams and people would gather at her home out of curiosity to witness these visions and dreams.  When she had her vision about the rapture, she initially said that "it felt very evil at first".  The reason it felt evil to her is because it was not born out of God's word but out of visions and dreams, or sorcery.  Prior to the written word, God gave His prophets visions and dreams for mankind but after His word was written, God no longer needed to give us visions and dreams because we had His word to rely upon instead.  I'm not saying God does not give us individual messages for ourselves or our families.  I'm saying that God does not now give us visions and dreams for mankind's salvation independent of the word of God.

2.  The Bible does speak about those who teach the rapture doctrine.  Specifically, God is against it.

Ezekiel 13:20 Wherefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against your pillows, wherewith ye there hunt the souls to make them fly, and I will tear them from your arms, and will let the souls go, even the souls that ye hunt to make them fly.

Pillows is referring to that that makes us comfortable, such as those who say "don't worry, you won't be here for the tribulation, Christ is going to fly us away."  This doctrine is like a pillow to Christians who don't want to go through the tribulation because they are afraid of suffering.  The reason it is a pillow for them is because they do not truly understand God's word for if they understood it, they would see that God protects believers during this time and gives them the strength to endure whatever trials come their way.  He that endures to the end, He will give to them a crown of life.  Only the non-belielvers have reason to fear and since they don't believe the word of God, it is doubtful that they are afraid.

In view of the foregoing scripture, a warning is in order:  Woe be unto the pastors that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! saith the LORD.  Jer.23:1   It is spiritual death to teach a false doctrine that causes people to die spiritually such as teaching that they will not have to go through the tribulation.

3. The Bible informs us that believers will go through the tribulation.

Matthew 10:22 And ye shall be hated of all [men] for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.

Matthew 24:13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

Mark 13:13 And ye shall be hated of all [men] for my name's sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

Revelation 2:10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast [some] of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.

Revelation 2:26 And he that over cometh, and keepeth My works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:

Matthew 24:22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened. [Even the elect go through the tribulation for why would it be shortened for their sake if they are not going to be there.]

Hebrews 3:14 For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end;

4.   The Bible informs us that Satan comes first, not Christ.

2Th 2:9 Even him [Christ], whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, [Christ returns after the working of Satan]

2Th 2:1 Now we beseech you [listen carefully], brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
2Th 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. [Don't believe people that say Christ can come at any time because certain events must occur first.]
2Th 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except [1] there come a falling away [apostasy] first, and [2] that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition [to perish];

The subject in 2 Thes. 2 is:  where the dead are or those who are asleep in the Lord.  It is not talking about a rapture. A "falling away" is not speaking of people being taken from the earth but about apostasy, a condition on this earth where people do not seek the Lord nor are interested in understanding His word.  God's word tells us that the son of perdition, the Antichrist, comes first.  Because they are ignorant of God's word, they will believe that the Son of Perdition is Christ coming to fly them away.  "That day shall not come except .... that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition."   The Antichrist will be revealed before the true Christ returns.  Satan is the Antichrist.  He is revealed for what and who he is when he sits in the temple of God in Jerusalem claiming to be God, which is the abomination of desolations spoken of by the prophet Daniel and again by Christ Himself.  The instead of Christ comes first commencing the tribulation.

Mat 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Mat 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)  We shall see the the abomination of desolation.

Dan 11:31 And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.

The daily sacrifice is taken away because everyone believes that Christ has returned and that it is no longer necessary to partake in the Holy sacraments.  But, it is not Christ, it is Satan is the desolator

Dan 11:36 And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done.
Dan 11:37 Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.

Isa 14:12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
Isa 14:13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
Isa 14:14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
Isa 14:15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

The "sides of the north" is where the throne of God is.  Satan, Lucifer, the devil, that Old Serpent, the dragon (Rev. 12.9, 20.2) wants to be God and comes to earth claiming to be God. Satan is the Antichrist.  His deception will be so strong that it would deceive the very elect, if possible.  The Antichrist is the devil as revealed in Rev. 2.10.  Now, back to the rapture.

Mat 24:16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
Mat 24:17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
Mat 24:18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.

We are not to stop our labor and run to meet the Antichrist to "fly away".

Mat 24:19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
Mat 24:20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:

Why should we pray that our flight not be in winter?  Because the harvest season is not in winter meaning that we should not be harvested out of season by running off with the Antichrist.  Those who are "with Child" are those who are pregnant with the lies of Satan.  And, yes, woe to them for they failed to seek the word of the Lord on their own but instead took someone else's word for what the Bible says.

Mat 24:21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
Mat 24:22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.

The deception will be so strong that's its possible that even the elect might be deceived.  Therefore, God shortened the great tribulation period to five months as found in Rev. 9.5 and 9.10 for the sake of the elect.

Mat 24:23 Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.

When the Antichrist comes he precedes the coming of Christ.  Therefore, don't believe anyone who tells you that Christ has come for if you are still in your flesh body, it is not Christ for when Christ returns we shall all be changed into our spiritual bodies.

Mat 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

When Satan is booted out of heaven in Rev. 12.9, his angels are booted out with him unto earth.  They are coming to earth and they are supernatural beings that can perform great signs and wonders.  Be not deceived.

Mat 24:25 Behold, I have told you before.
Mat 24:26 Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.

We are not to believe anyone who tells us that Christ is here IF we are still in our flesh bodies.

Mat 24:27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.  Christ will return from the east whereas Satan appears from the north.

Satan is kicked out of heaven in the Fifth Trump.

The Fifth Angel and the Fifth Trump

Rev 9:1 And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.
Rev 9:2 And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.
Rev 9:3 And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power.

Satan arrives upon earth along with his fallen angels at the sixth trump.

The Sixth Angel and the Sixth Trump

Rev 9:14 Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates....
Rev 9:18 By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.
Rev 9:19 For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails: for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt.

Christ returns at the seventh trump

The Seventh Angel at the Seventh Trump

Rev 10:1 And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: ...
Rev 10:7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.

Christ's Return

1Th 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
1Th 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 dead in Christ rise first because they are already with our Father.  When our flesh bodies die, our soul returns to God from whence it first came.  The "clouds" is a colloquial Greek term that is used to describe a swarm like a swarm of locusts would look much like a cloud.  It also means a mass of persons such as used in Heb. 12.1 "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses..."  It does not mean we are going up in the sky to meet Christ for He is returning to earth to set up his throne here on earth.  We are not flying away to some place in heaven to be spared from the tribulation.  The term "air" is "aer"{ah-ayr'} in Greek (Strong's 109) and comes from the root word "aemi" (to breathe unconsciously, i.e. respire; by analogy, to blow); it is the breath of our Father, the breath of life.  We will meet the Lord in a cloud and be changed into our spiritual bodies.

1Co 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
1Co 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

When Christ returns, all are changed not just some.  There is no one left in this world that is not changed into spiritual bodies, including unbelievers.  This change occurs at the last trumpet, the seventh and the final trump.  As was shown above, Satan comes in the sixth.

5. The "any moment" or "fly away" or "rapture" doctrine is of Satan and not of God.

The following verses inform us that those who seek to save their soul will lose their soul.  How do they seek to save their soul?  By leaving their work and running after the one who has come to fly them away rather than waiting for the Lord to save them.

Luk 17:33 Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.
Luk 17:34 I tell you, in that night there shall be two men in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left.
Luk 17:35 Two women shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
Luk 17:36 Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
Luk 17:37 And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together.

In v. 37, the disciples asked Christ where the men and women would be taken and Christ answered where the eagles [vultures] are gathered.  Vultures gather around dead bodies.  Those who leave their work and run to fly away to save their life will die.  Those not seeking to save their life will remain in the field working, laboring and waiting for the Lord to save them, not running off to fly away.

2Th 2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
2Th 2:6 And now ye know what [Michael] withholdeth [restrained] that he [Satan] might be revealed in his time [when he is kicked out of heaven]
2Th 2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he [Michael] who now letteth [a transitive verb transferring the subject (Satan) and verb (withholdeth) from the previous sentence] will let [restrain], until he [Satan] be taken out of the way. [Satan is physically cast out of heaven unto earth (the 6th trump) although he is here now spiritually.]
2Th 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:
2Th 2:9 Even him [Christ], whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, [Christ clearly comes after Satan]
2Th 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. [They didn't study God's word for themselves but relied upon somebody else's word for what the word says]
2Th 2:11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
2Th 2:12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

Let him who has ears to hear hear and eyes to see see what the spirit and the word of the Lord is saying.

Note:  this is as far as I've gotten so far with this study.  I will be adding and supplementing to this work.

copyright December 1999
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