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Blessed hope or bunch of dopes?

Usually when coming against the pre-Trib view of Rapture, detractors say something like: “The word ‘rapture’ isn’t mentioned anywhere in the Bible.”

We usually retort with something like: “Neither are words such as ‘trinity’ or even ‘Bible.’ But they are clearly there when considering contexts and study of the body of scriptural evidence.”

“Besides,” we say, “the Greek word harpazo is found as the word rapturo in the Latin Vulgate.”

Anyone paying much attention to prophetic trends concerning eschatological viewpoints (whether premillennial, postmillennial, amillenial, or whatever) will have noticed by now a turning away from the pre-Trib position.

Even more strongly stated, we see an adamant, even scathingly antagonistic, movement away from this view.

My own thinking about the reason for this is that it is short-sightedness and experiential paralysis. Those who have abdicated–call it “defected from”—the pre-Trib Rapture position can’t conflate an imminent Rapture with the prophetic stage-setting we’re experiencing.

Our headlines create in the minds of these defectors an inability to any longer believe that Titus 2:13 really means what it says.

Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. (Titus 2: 13)  

These defectors and/or detractors are experiencing the crush of the stage being set for the Tribulation (Daniel 9 and the book of Revelation) every hour of every day. Those who have always come against any idea of a pre-Trib Rapture are appearing to be increasingly validated through the things taking place in America and across the world.

They see the ethnic upheavals prophesied by Jesus (Luke 21 and Mark 13). They see the principalities and powers of wickedness in high places literally taking over this nation and the world. They see apostasy abounding everywhere they look—with the Roman Catholic pope leading the way in championing the murders of millions upon millions of babies in their mothers’ wombs, all the while denying that Jesus Christ is the only Way to reconciliation with God the Father and salvation.

Those angry against the view of the pre-Trib Rapture give Paul the apostle, who was given the mystery of that great Rapture event by the Lord Himself, little to no credence. Yet they point to how the “perilous times” (2 Timothy 3) prove their point that the Tribulation might already be in its beginning stage of fulfillment. “We are,” I heard one of these Rapture detractors say, “right in the middle of perilous times, and this proves there will be no Rapture before the Tribulation era becomes full blown.”

I listened to one pastor, who was said to have dropped out of the “Church of God,” say that he used to be a believer in the pre-Trib view, but he now sees it as a false and dangerous teaching. He, in effect, went on to lay out his case that all who believe in a pre-Trib Rapture, seeing all the things unfolding in the world today, are dopes. We are fools for such foolishness after living through such, at the very least, a time of just entering Tribulation.

The pastor went on to say that no place in the Bible states there will be a seven-year Tribulation period. He said it only speaks of the “Great Tribulation” mentioned by Jesus in the Olivet Discourse, and that what Jesus said proves that era will be only three and a half years.

Again, he and his anti-PreTrib Rapture sort point to the lack of a single verse in order to prove the pre-Trib view is false. (Our view—which is the Bible’s presentation—holds to a seven-year Tribulation). They can’t, or won’t, see that the wide body of text, in context, proves that the horrendous time leading up to the Second Advent of the Lord Jesus encompasses seven years. All we have to do is to look at Daniel’s prophecy of seven weeks of years (Daniel chapter 9) to understand the time span that will wrap up God’s plan that leads to the millennial reign of Christ.

The pastor then said we who are of the pre-Trib belief refuse to debate him and others on the matter. He is right about that. I and others have long ago refused to debate whether there is a pre-Trib Rapture. It serves no purpose, as all the issues have been long-ago debated and with only harsh rhetoric emerging when the final analyses concluded.

We point people who want truth to the “mystery” given Paul as he expounded upon in 1 Corinthians 15:51–55 and 1 Thessalonians 4:13–18. No need to debate the pre-Trib Rapture. It is there for anyone to clearly understand with the Holy Spirit’s guidance.

I’m convinced that anyone and everyone who genuinely seeks truth by studying these Scriptures will find that the pre-Trib view and the “blessed hope” of Titus 2:13 isn’t held by a bunch of “dopes,” as charged by the detractors/defectors.


12 Comments

  1. Wendy Saddler says:

    I absolutely and totally agree with what you’ve just said on here. I have been encountering people who not only do not believe in the rapture of the church, but have been encountering people who firmly believe that getting the COVID-19 vaccines is getting the mark of the beast, and that anybody that gets it is doomed. Aside from the valid issues of side effects, injuries, and deaths that have occurred from these vaccines, there are just as many people who are fine from it, but they Don’t want to admit this. Apparently, they base this on a very cherrypicked and distorted view of Revelation 13:16-18, and they need to be corrected on it. I don’t know what your view on the COVID-19 vaccines is, but whatever it is I respect it. My husband and I got the vaccine and we’re fine, and it is definitely not the mark of the beast.

  2. jpscanga says:

    I tend to think that debate is not necessarily a waste of time as long as it is done correctly. I have often criticized proponents of Darwin’s theory of Evolution for refusing to debate Creationists on the same grounds: “It’s a waste of time!”, “The science is settled!”, “Evolution is a fact!”.
    My criticism is largely on the grounds that if those statements are true then they should mop the floor with us in a debate. Instead, they hide behind those facades as an excuse to not debate creationists – because we will mop the floor with THEM.

    Anyway, personally, I would welcome debate with anyone on the pre-trib issue. I feel that scripture is very heavily one-sided on that and although I have heard some very good arguments, I don’t think they hold as much weight as the plain teaching of scripture.

  3. Cindy Appel says:

    In believe in the pre-trib rapture also. There is way too much evidence pointing to just that. Jesus also said there would be “birth pangs” before he returns for His church, meaning all those things we are seeing today are leading up to the rapture. These things happening today are nothing compared to what it will be like in the last years to come. Thank you James for always being right on point.

  4. Carol Cole says:

    Hello Terry,

    Very interesting article you wrote today. Would you mind telling me this former Church of God pastor’s name, Terry ? I won’t contact him, for I certainly am not equipped to go up against him. However, I am very interested in finding out a little of this man’s background in the Church of God. Personally, I know of nooooooo other denomination in Christianity that gives their pastoral students as rigorous a teaching on Eschatology as the Church of God. Ins and outs, ups and downs, the pastors Know Eschatology. Assemblies of God, I cannot speak for, but Church of God Tennessee ( world headquarters ), I usually can speak about. So, my request is purely out of curiosity of the “ man who slipped through their cracks “, so to speak !

    Thank you, Terry ! By the way, a man commented on something I had said on YouTube last night, telling me that Jesus had Already come……in 2016, but he was rejected and now is in exile. And on and on and on. I tell you, Terry……there are truly some REAL NUTS out there !

    Your sister in Jesus, Carol Cole Atlanta

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    • Terry James says:

      I have forgotten the pastor’s name and would have to spend time I don’t have at the moment researching to find it. But you can probably find who I heard in the interview by finding an interview Steve Quayle had with him.

  5. Ruth L says:

    I would like to know why all the post-tribbers (one who is constantly stating this on her web site and on Twitter) believe that the pre-Trib view is dangerous. She goes on and on about how all the pre-Tribbers are going to deny Christ during the Tribulation because He won’t come when they thought He would. They pretend to be so concerned about us while at the same time denigrating us as opposed to treating us as brothers and sisters in the Lord. The only people who will deny Christ are people who said they were believers, but never were in the first place. Even if I were wrong in my pre-Trib view (which I certainly do not believe I am) I would simply admit I was wrong and be glad that Jesus’ return is just around the corner.
    As for those who say the Tribulation isn’t 7 years long, they seem to forget that Daniel’s 70 sevens were all shemitah cycles of 7-year periods, and that history will culminate with the last Shemitah cycle called the Tribulation. It is the middle of the “week” that the A/C commits the Abomination of Desolation, so that week has to start 3 1/2 years earlier. And the first half is not just some humdrum period where nothing much happens. In fact something very notable will kick off the week–the A/C will sign the covenant that begins his rise to supreme power. And the four horsemen ride. Come Lord Jesus!

  6. Deborah says:

    I always look up scriptures referenced in articles in my own bible. For that reason, I noticed the scriptures referred to in the second last paragraph are not correct. Can Terry James please correct these references? Thank you.

    • Terry James says:

      Dear Deborah, Thank you so much for your keen eye and Berean spirit. I have made the corrections! God bless, Dana (Terry’s daughter and the one who does these things : ))

  7. Ed Wood says:

    Over the years, Terry and many other contributors to this site have put out just how many facts that support a Pre-Trib Rapture point of view and how it answers all the Bible evidence better than any competing argument. I sure can’t cover them all here but the biggest bit of evidence comes from two totally different views of Jesus’ appearance at the end of this age:

    First, it will be unexpected by the world at large, the date of it unknown. Jesus said in Revelation {16:15} Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed [is] he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.

    Paul told us:
    1 Thessalonians {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.

    Sound like this applies to a Pre-Trib Rapture to me where believers are taken off of the Earth.

    Then we have the entire world will being well aware of Jesus’ return which will happen at the end of the seven-year tribulation:

    Matthew {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. {24:28} For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.
    {24:29} Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: {24:30} And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the
    tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

    The people who experience this are obviously still Earth-bound and there is no mistake about what is going on.

    Now based on the assumption that the Bible is totally reliable, the only way both characterizations can be true is if they are two different events from two different times.

  8. Emily Reneker says:

    Terry James, I agree with your view. It describes our son who has been a ‘never Trump-er’ since the 2016 election. He believes Trump is the anti-Christ and anyone who supports Trump has an up-side-down view of ‘all that pre-trib nonsense. Also Christian believers had been duped into voting for Trump. Therefore, I wonder if you intended for your headline to use the word ‘dupes’ rather than dopes.’ Thank you for all you do. Emily Reneker, Douds, IA

  9. Harvey Rosieur says:

    I am a pre-trib believer, but I too, like jpscanga, agree that there is always room for debate as long as there is reason for genuine debate because God’s Word is silent on a point .We have all had it with the bullying by the New World Order, through our Governments, news media, etc. I recognised the tactic when Global warming was first being pushed. The ‘science is settled’ they said and everyone who opposed their views were bullied or discredited on some pretext. The tactic of a poor sportsman “If you can’t get the ball, get the man”
    Terry , you seem to be ignoring the fact that many who do believe in the rapture simply do not believe that it will occur before the start of the Tribulation period. God’s Word says (1 Thess. 5:9 ) ‘For God did not appoint us to wrath , but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” The wrath begins mid-way through the Tribulation period.(Rev.6:17) I am not aware of anything more specific than that, but would be glad to hear. I love the truth but it is not always found in weight of opinion. I would not want to have to await the opening of the first 6 seals. (I am glad I did not have to point out the error in your penultimate pargraph. ) I appreciate your writing and the opportunity it affords us to learn and grow.

    • Ruth L says:

      I have heard some say that the tense of “His wrath IS COME” in Rev 6 is such that it means it has been happening continually up to that point, but the ones (unbelievers) who cry out are finally beginning to realize that it is the wrath of the Lamb all along that they have been experiencing.

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