The Rapture--Grand Truth or Great Hoax?

Jesus Kills Gandhi: News at Eleven

This is a bit of a long one so get comfy and dive right in…

Within some of my hubs, comments about heaven and hell show up—not too often, but occasionally. I personally don't believe in either one. If you read my hubs, you will understand why.

One of my favorite religious subjects is the Apocalypse, or The End Times. The biblical books of Daniel and Revelation* are where you’ll find most of the references that End Time believers use to prove the so-called Rapture is just around the corner. As a former fundamentalist Christian, I have been hearing about this state of affairs for several decades. At one time, I was convinced it was true. But in restudying scripture and allowing myself to listen to some who were much wiser or more learned on the subject, I gradually allowed the End Time mindset to dissolve.

I share with you (by permission) a wonderful segment of a piece entitled “Debunking the Rapture.” It won’t matter much to those of you who are non-Christian or at least non-Rapture, but you End Time Christians might want to reconsider your Armageddon fervor.

“Jesus is Coming. Look Busy.”

(Excerpt taken from Living the Questions 2.0, Session 13: Debunking the Rapture, featuring Barbara Rossing. Session Guide excerpt reprint authorized by livingthequestions.com, LLC.)

There are many strands in the fabric of scripture, and apocalypticism [End Time belief and pronouncement] is certainly one of them. But it's not the only one. Simply put, the apocalyptic image of Jesus returning in power on a majestic white horse with sword in hand to slaughter the evil masses absolutely contradicts the Jesus who taught us to love our enemies, the humble Jesus who rode into Jerusalem on a donkey and would later tell his disciples that "those who live by the sword will die by the sword." How could one who practiced non-violence and compassion denounce his core values and embrace brute force, violence and vengeance? It is simply inconceivable that the God revealed to us in Jesus Christ would resort to retribution. It is more than inconceivable; it is unbelievable…

In her book, The Rapture Exposed: The Message of Hope in the Book of Revelation, Barbara Rossing asserts that Revelation’s true message is a “vision of hope for God’s healing of the world.” A divine plan to dramatically and violently enter into history and remake the world is a lie. The literal “second coming” will never happen—and yet we are called to participate in the coming of the Kingdom here and now. Slow it may be, but the will and principles of a just and gracious God are being worked out in human life and institutions—in us! We are the second coming, called to manifest a message of hope to a world in fear…

Insofar as one perceives the mystery of the Divine as the benevolent ground of
all being and that Mystery to have been revealed in Jesus, then there is certainly
nothing to fear from the ravings of apocalyptic preachers and authors. Our call
continues to be one of offering an alternative to the fear and violence embraced
by so much of the Church. The message of Revelation is but one facet of the
disciples’ overall responsibility of bearing hope and reconciliation to a troubled
world—doing our part to bring healing to the nations, one person at a time.
_______________

Well, what do you think? Any ideas as to how Rossing might be wrong? Or does it make sense to you? I’m looking forward to the coming discussion.

In the mean time, each of us is free to believe as we choose. I would only recommend that we follow the path of compassion, that is, do the least harm and the most good. Any religion or spiritual path worth its salt will have compassion as its root principle. If not, don’t bother with it.

Rapture or not, we still have to live with each other. Might as well make it as good a life as possible. I know you agree.

*Not every church scholar and authority was pleased with the idea of adding The Book of Revelation to the biblical canon. It found its place in history by a very narrow margin.



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Comments 9 comments

issues veritas 7 years ago

Richard

If you take a look at instances of history AD, there numerous times that we could apply its Rapture Time. The whole idea is a little childish. For the billions of people that have already died, it means nothing, and for those alive they would have little time to have regrets.

The Rapture is a threat and not a promise.

Are we judged on pass/fail or a letter system or some other method. I just had a thought, Catholics believe that up to the last moment you can at least get to Purgatory by confessing your sins and asking for forgiveness. I don't believe that Adam and Eve were given that opportunity.

 


Don White 7 years ago

The second coming of our Savior Jesus Christ is greatly anticipated by Christians, including myself. There will be no real peace in the world until all accept Jesus Christ as the creator and savior of the world. Good article. Don White


RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 7 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

Don White: During the 13th century, all of Europe was Christian. And there was no peace. In the 15th century, the Reformation began and ultimately, some European countries converted to Protestantism. Still no peace.

First coming or second coming, unless Jesus controls us like robots, there will never be complete peace in this world. If God had wanted it any other way, he would not have created us as we are. And to blame original sin for the fact is simply a cop-out. We are as we are supposed to be. Any creature given free will can choose war. Only if free will is removed can there be anything resembling peace, and then, only the peace that animals share, which is instinct, which is not peace.

Sorry, Don. No matter what the Book of Revelation says, peace is not the way of the Human. Unless...

We consciously choose it. And we can. And we will. And we will save the world.


Tom Cornett profile image

Tom Cornett 7 years ago from Ohio

Rapture already happened....they sent me back...oops! Good hub! :)


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Hi RichardSpeaks. I too looked into this, or rather the "Pre-trib Rapture" some months ago now. I came to the conclusion is was very unlikely to be true, and I wrote a hub about it that you may find interesting if you wish to read it. The link is : http://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/The-Raptur...

(Please feel free to delete this post if you feel it is self promotional on my part)


RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 7 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

mistyhorizon2003: I left a comment for you at the above mentioned hub. I ended it with "Hmmmm..." You will have to guess why. But I think you may be able to figure it out. You might open it to discussion among those who enjoy that hub. Keep me posted as to what happens.


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

LOL Richard, will let you know if I get the appropriate interest from the readers :) Thanks for commenting on it.


TicksProfessional profile image

TicksProfessional 7 years ago from Lucknow India

Thanks for pointing out that it is we, the human beings who can ever bring a change to the wretched conditions we have created here on earth. No miracle, no rapture, or a single event is going to change the condition, but we would secure a better future with the help of reason and reason alone. It is therefore essential not to take the words of the scriptures literally and to wait for our destiny but to understand that human would create that destiny. It is up to us to create hell or heaven.Changes will take place but the process would be very gradual.And it will take considerable time and effort.


RichardSpeaks profile image

RichardSpeaks 7 years ago from Portland, OR Metro Area Author

And it helps to remember that even reason is a part of creation. We can use it wisely or destructively. Tis always up to us. Even though we have the ability and the capacity to blow up the planet, still, free will is the greatest gift. I wouldn't give it up for a thousand so-called Raptures.

Thanks for the comments.

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