- Religion and Philosophy
Will the Rapture Happen Before the Seven Year Tribulation?
The rapture is an event that many Christians have been waiting for. It is when Jesus will come in the clouds and gather up His followers to take them to heaven. Even back in the late 1800's and early 1900's, people thought that Jesus would have returned then. However, so much needed to take place and those things are now happening. The greatest and most important sign is that Israel became a nation in 1948. Since then, the clock has been ticking and now we are seeing the birth pangs just like Jesus described in Matthew 24.
For many years Christians have disagreed on the timing of the rapture. Many believe in a pre-tribulation rapture which means that Jesus will come for us before the seven year tribulation starts. The seven year tribulation is when God will pour out His wrath upon the earth.
Some believe in a mid-tribulation rapture which means that Jesus will return during the tribulation. Many think that the tribulation has already begun because of everything that is going on in the world and all the beheadings that are taking place by ISIS. The beheadings that the Bible is referring to is the 5th seal of judgment. This is for people who do not take the mark of the beast and bow down to the anti-Christ. They will be martyrs for Jesus and their heads will be chopped off for not taking the mark.
Those who believe in a post-tribulation view believe that Jesus will return for us after the seven year tribulation period. This view does not make too much sense because the Bible states that after the tribulation, we will come back to earth with Jesus to rule and reign in the 1000 year Millennium. This is when Jesus sets up His Kingdom on earth. So, it does not make sense for Jesus to rapture us, then we come down immediately back to earth for the Millennium period.
I have always believed in a pre-tribulation rapture. Over the years, I have heard excellent teachings on this view. I've yet to hear a good, solid foundation teaching for a mid or post tribulation view. There are many verses in the Bible that point to a pre-tribulation rapture, but I will just mention a few.
First of all, First Thessalonians 5:9 states “For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ.” I believe that the entire seven year tribulation period is God’s wrath. Others will disagree and say that only the last three and a half years is considered God’s wrath. That is why some believe in a mid-tribulation view. The Bible states that during the first half of the tribulation, there will be a worldwide war and famine. I believe that this indicates God’s wrath. Like one Pastor recently said, “The Groom does not beat up the bride before the wedding.”
Luke 21:36 states “Therefore be watchful all the time, praying that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will happen, and to stand before the Son of Man." This is referring to the tribulation period.
Revelation 3:10 states “Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come on the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth.” This verse doesn’t say He will keep us through the hour of trial. It clearly says from.
Titus 2: 13 states "Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Saint Paul wrote this verse and he would not have called the rapture "our blessed hope" if we were going to endure some or all of God's wrath.
What some don’t realize is that Jesus died on the cross so we wouldn’t have to suffer God’s wrath. What we are facing now is persecution and Jesus said that we would be persecuted for His name sake.People get confused between wrath and persecution which explains why there are different views of the rapture.
Whatever your view may be, the important thing is to just be ready and make sure that you know Jesus as your Savior. There are some people that do not even believe in a rapture because the word "rapture" is not in the Bible. The Bible uses the word "harpazo" which means rapture. First Thessalonians 4:17, 18 states that "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. Therefore encourage one another with these words."
Here is a great video to watch on the pre-tribulation rapture. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VO1tc-2g-0E
This is a video for anyone who is left behind. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_leLPsL0Wo