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Last Days Prophecy

HIS SERVANTS' MINISTRY, Inc.

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SOME DOCTRINES OF THE RAPTURE

1 Thes. 4:16-17 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: 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. (KJV)
1 Cor. 15:52-54 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. 53  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54  So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. (KJV)
John 14:1-4 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2  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. 3  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 4  And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. (KJV)   

The Rapture is not a necessary doctrine of salvation, but anyone who is a TRUE Christian has some very serious thoughts about it. As with all end times events, there are many interpretations of it. I think that most evangelical Christians believe that the resurrection from the dead and the rapture of the church mentioned in the above Scriptures, will happen BEFORE the Tribulation period.
It is the opinion of this lowly servant of Christ that the majority of ‘professing’ Christians did not arrive at that opinion from their own personal Bible study, sad to say. They gather most of what they believe from what other people have told them. This is a mistake, for there are many different interpretations, and some of those interpretations do NOT agree with the Bible. BEWARE!!! You should be very doubtful of popular opinion, and SEE what God has to say in His Holy Word. When you do your own intense Bible study on ANY subject where you have any doubts, you shall be blessed with the Truth. 

There are not very many Passages that speak of the Rapture. Before you start ANY Bible study, ALWAYS ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand! The devil will grin ear to ear when you accept false doctrines! BEWARE!!! Consider the following three different interpretations.

(1.) The Partial Rapture Belief
These people believe that a Rapture happens Pre-Trib, but only an exclusive group of believers are raptured while the rest suffer through the tribulation to be raptured at the Lord's "third" coming. Personally, I do believe that Jesus’ Second Coming can be seen as in TWO parts. The first part of His Second Coming is at the Rapture, in the clouds, BEFORE the Tribulation, and His Second Coming, after the Tribulation to the Earth (Zec.14:1-5; Rev. 19:11-21).

1 Thes. 4:16-17 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: 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. (KJV)

(a.) the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God,
(b.) the dead in Christ will rise first.
(c.) then, 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. (The Rapture)

Here Paul was talking to all the Thessalonian Christians about all those Christians (dead in Christ) who had died. Paul speaks of absolutely NO exceptions here, even including himself ("we"). The Truth in these verses therefore applies to all TRUE Christians without exception. So even IF there were multiple raptures, THIS Rapture was the one which Paul himself was expecting for himself and for the entire church . . . NO exceptions. This then eliminates the partial rapture theory  . . . IF we believe what Paul tells us in God’s Holy Word! (2 Tim.3:16).

(2.) The Pre-Trib Rapture Belief
These people believe that the entire TRUE church gets raptured Pre-Trib at the first part of the Lord's Second Coming, but believe that some unbelievers will be saved during the Tribulation and shall be:
(a.) raptured at the second part of the Lord's Second Coming (His third Coming).
(b.) may not be raptured at the Lord's "third" Coming, but will die sometime during the 1000 year Millennial reign, and then be raised AFTER the 1000 years.
(c.) martyred in the Tribulation and are resurrected at the Lord's "third" Coming and reign with Christ 1000 years.

(3.) The Post-Trib Rapture Belief
These people believe that the entire church is raptured at the Lord's Second Coming which happens AFTER the Great Tribulation.
This idea goes completely against some Scriptures that clearly state that God’s TRUE children shall NOT have to endure the Great Tribulation Period.

Great Tribulation, all TRUE believers kept from:
1 Thes. 1:10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. (KJV)  
1 Thes. 5:9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, (KJV)  
Phil. 3:20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: (KJV)  
Rev. 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. (KJV)  

(4.) “Split Rapture”?

Pastor J. Vernon McGee believed in a “split rapture.” This man was a godly minister for many decades, and he faithfully served the Lord. He believed in a “split rapture,” believing that only New Testament saints would be raptured BEFORE the Tribulation began, and that the Old Testament saints would be raptured after the Tribulation. 

The idea of a split Rapture is that only TRUE believers in Christ will be taken out of the world at the Rapture BEFORE the Great Tribulation of the Antichrist's reign of terror. We are taught in 1 Thes. 4:13-18 that the “dead in Christ” would be raised first, 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. Yes, Old Testament saints are all dead, all except Enoch and Elijah who apparently never died a physical death (Gen. 5:24; 2 Kings 2:11). BUT . . . Old Testament saints were NEVER said to be dead in Christ. The ‘Church’ was not mentioned in the Old Testament either. It was a mystery. And many pre-trib commentators state that the ‘Church’ would be raptured. Christ Jesus did not appear on Earth until the New Testament, and neither did the Church. Mystery: . . . http://www.godcannotlie.org/eph_special_comments.htm

So, will Old Testament saints be caught up at the Rapture when Jesus returns for the dead in Christ? Or will there be a Rapture after the Tribulation? I cannot give a 100 % certain answer to this. I do say that McGee does have some things to consider. You must decide for yourself. One thing is for certain: IF you are now a TRUE child of God by believing Him (1 John 5:10-13), and trusting His only begotten Son to save you (John 3:15-18, 36; 8:24); when the Rapture does take place and you are still alive . . . you shall be caught up with Jesus in the clouds (1 Thes. 4:16-17)! You will NOT go through the Tribulation (1 Thes.1:10; 5:9; Rev.3:10).

Some say that the first resurrection is for all believers (Rev. 20:5-6). The second resurrection is only for the unsaved, the wicked (Rev. 20:11-15). Some say that McGee is wrong and the split Rapture is not Biblical. So many teachings. I still say that McGee has some things to consider! You decide, after you study the Bible!

Topics on the Coming Rapture

Pre-trib Rapture

Beware of False Doctrines

Church Replaces Israel?

Conditions Before Rapture

Confusion Over Doctrines

Consider This

Day of the Lord

Day of the Lord 2

Focuses on Jesus

God's Enemies

God Deals with Church and Israel Differently

Last Trumpet

Left Behind

Mark of the Beast

Mystery Lawlessness

No One Knows When!

Opening Seventh Seal

Rapture Prophesied

Rapture Scriptures

Reason for the Day of the Lord

Receiving New Bodies

Split Rapture

Timing of the Day of the Lord

What Is the Day of the Lord?

Why I Believe in the Pre-trib Rapture

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