Circumstances involving an email arose the other day, revolving around a request that I address a question in Bible prophecy. A dear ministry friend had just received the email asking what I meant by something I wrote in a commentary that my friend posted on her website. The question was about Jesus’ prophecy in Matthew 24 regarding the days of Noah and days of Lot–Matthew 24:36-44.
This prophecy is one I consider most relevant to this very moment in which we find ourselves. I believe the Lord was talking specifically to the present generation. We have covered the prophecy a number of times in recent weeks. I am convicted in my spirit that we stand upon the very precipice of its fulfillment.
Here is that prophecy:
But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.” (Matthew 24:37-42)
Jesus followed up the exhortation to be watchful with a second exhortation reinforcing the first: “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (Matthew 24:44).
After responding to the emails from my friend and her website follower, I began to think back on one of the great prophecy teachers I’ve been privileged to call friend and Christian brother. It is Dave Hunt to whom I refer, as the title of this commentary suggests. I’m sure that most all who read this article know about this superb speaker, writer, and teacher of God’s Word.
Dave went to his heavenly home a few years ago. His ministry is The Berean Call, which continues today.
The question of whether the Rapture of the Church is in Jesus’ Matthew 24 Olivet Discourse has long been a somewhat contentious matter among students of Bible prophecy. Most often, the seminary line has it that there is no reference whatsoever to the Rapture in that account, although some within that high realm of Bible academia believe the Rapture is within the prophecy Jesus gave.
I, of course, don’t belong to that high realm, but do believe with all that is within my spirit that Jesus was foretelling not only the Rapture, but a pre-Trib Rapture, meaning that the Rapture will happen prior to the Tribulation era, that great time of worldwide judgment and wrath prophesied by Jesus in the Olivet Discourse, Paul in 2 Thessalonians chapter 2, the prophet Daniel in 9:26-27, and John in the Book of Revelation.
The preachers and teachers of this present day continue to neglect Bible prophecy, and almost never express any thoughts whatsoever on the Rapture of the Church. These spend even less time presenting their parishioners with any teaching on the pre-Trib view of the Rapture.
It is with this lament weighing heavily that–upon dealing with the above-mentioned email–Dave Hunt came to mind.
Dave conducted a session at the Pre-Trib Study Group in Dallas on the Matthew 24 prophecy in 1998. I sat in on that early-morning session and was validated in my spirit by Dave’s facing the study group head-on with his lecture.
Many there that morning were of the higher academic sort–good brothers, sisters in Christ all. But, many–probably most–believed the Olivet Discourse held no mention of the Rapture. That prophetic utterance by the Lord, most held, was and is for Israel only.
I looked into my computer and found my files on that session. I have both a transcript of the session and the audio file. I’ve had fun going over both since entertaining the email interaction mentioned above.
Dave Hunt gave a masterful rendering of Matthew 24 that morning in 1998. He began with his terrific sense of humor in full force, although most of us were still trying to come to our senses as we sipped on black, caffeine-soaked coffee.
Well, if the truth were to be known, which is not easy, Tommy [Dr. Thomas Ice, Pre-Trib study group director] scheduled me at this early hour, hoping nobody would show up to here my heresies, and I was hoping the Greek scholars wouldn’t be here, to bombard me with errorist indicatives and that kind of stuff. Furthermore, I knew Tommy was throwing me to the lions this morning, and my name isn’t Daniel, so I got cold feet and decided to change the topic. He said the topic is “Is the rapture in the Olivet Discourse?” Well, I’d like to talk on the topic “The pre-trib rapture in the Olivet Discourse.” I couldn’t quite handle that question. I couldn’t justify why there ought to be any question at all. Why the pre-trib rapture, or the rapture, or the church, or anything else was in the Olivet Discourse.
Dave defended his–and my- belief that Jesus was indeed speaking of the Rapture and even more so to the pre-Trib Rapture in the days of Noah, days of Lot portion of His Olivet Discourse.
We are at a time in human history that Jesus described perfectly, as only the God of all creation could. Again, I believe that Donald J. Trump was put in the presidency of the United States for just this hour. We are, I believe, entering a time of building, buying, planting, socially intensive activity like marrying and giving in marriage, unprecedented in the annals of mankind. It will be just at such a time–“a time you think not”- that the “Son of man is revealed.”
Jesus Christ’s “revelation” to this rebellious world will come in the form of the Rapture of all born-again believers, both sleeping in death and those alive, when He calls, “Come up here!” (Revelation 4:1).