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Rapture or Rupture

Twenty something years ago, Pat Robertson was on his network, Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN). I remember him saying in an almost amused, mocking tone that there would be no Rapture of the church. He declared that if that were to happen, it would completely disrupt all of the human condition across the world.

Planes would be crashing, cars would be wrecking, trains would run wild, and destruction of every sort would take place in such a moment. That’s not going to happen, he said. There will be no Rapture. He implied rather that there will be a “rupture” of all culture and society across the world. The Tribulation would be the implosion that wrecks everything, rather than the explosion a so-called Rapture would cause.

I remember distinctly Pat talking with his then co-host Sheila Walsh, the Scottish Christian broadcaster. As a side note, I presume Sheila has since moved on from agreeing with Mr. Robertson and his dismissing the pre-Trib Rapture “theory,” as he called it. I’ve heard her just within the past year on air with Dr. David Jeremiah, who teaches solidly on the pre-Trib Rapture of the church. She seemed to agree totally with all he said on the prophetic topic.

Over the years, there has been banter coming from those who adamantly hold that the pre-Trib Rapture is a myth. These sometimes use the word “rupture” to sneer at the idea of a Rapture, which we believe is Bible truth as taught by the Apostle Paul—and, by the way, by the Lord Jesus as well. He said the following as recorded by the Apostle John.

Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 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. 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. (John 14:1–3)  

In these words of the Lord we are told, I’m convinced, the same as the Apostle Paul foretells.

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: 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. (1 Thessalonians 4:16–17)

For all the fun-making against pre-Trib Rapture and those of us who believe it to be the next catastrophic intervention by Christ into human affairs, they can’t erase these powerful promises. That is, they can’t without spiritualizing and allegorizing as they make their case. They have to conclude that neither Jesus nor Paul meant what they said in a literal sense.

There is, however, a biblically prophetic passage that speaks, I believe, of a rupture. It is a key prophecy that will take place immediately after the Rapture of the Church. As a matter of fact, we’ve seen this rupture beginning for some time. It will be the tear in the fabric of this world system that will rip civilization the way Mr. Robertson once feared.

The prophet Zechariah forewarned of this coming rupture.

And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. (Zechariah 12:3)  

The prophet is saying here that when the world takes on Jerusalem and Israel–God’s chosen city and nation—it will be a load too heavy to lift. They will be injured severely, or ruptured, in their attempt to remove the city and nation from being in the place where God put them.

We’ve seen almost daily leaders from countries surrounding modern Israel declaring they will destroy the tiny Jewish state. Those such as Nasser and Sadat have tried to do so. Israel not only remains, but is now in a stronger position than ever, even though constantly threatened.

Antichrist and his juggernaut will finally manage to invade Israel, following all of Israel’s surrounding enemies being destroyed in the Gog-Magog attack of Ezekiel 38 and 39.  But the man of sin will, too, be severely injured and ultimately bound in chains and removed to eternal punishment. Israel will become the chief nation of the entire world during the Millennium—Christ’s thousand-year reign on planet earth.

Thankfully, all who accept Christ now, this side of the Rapture, will not endure the rupture the whole world will suffer when God again begins dealing with His chosen people, the Jews.

Here again is how to avoid being part of that future injury—that rupture—that will condemn the soul to eternity apart from God.

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Romans 10:9–10)


20 Comments

  1. Ted Bates says:

    As you say, the rapture is scriptural. It may sound preposterous but it isn’t. I am hoping it happens soon.

  2. Ed Wood says:

    Amos {3:7} Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets. {3:8} The lion hath roared, who will not fear? the Lord GOD hath spoken, who can but prophesy?

    I have often referred to this passage from Amos to support my premise that the Rapture will not come as a total surprise for believers. For most of the world, it will be, including nominal Christians who don’t take the Bible seriously, either.

    It may be that some of these lukewarm Christians, but not many, will become the foundation of the persecuted church that will arise during the Tribulation. The others will roll over for the global government, religion, and antichrist world leader that is coming just the way they already have today for the kinds of lying “doctrines of devils” now being pushed that deny that Jesus is the only path to salvation, along with all the other errors being used to scratch their “itchy ears” and make them feel good about themselves.

    The way things are setting up for this new year, I’d say we’d be wise to keep on “Watch,” because the time for the last pixels of prophetic picture are rapidly coming into existence.

  3. Carol Cole says:

    Terry, I wrote my comment, but when asked for a URL, I had nooooo idea what a URL is, so I suppose that my comment was deleted. What a shame !

    Carol Cole Atlanta

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  4. Sharon Wilkens says:

    Very well said Terry.

  5. Harvey says:

    I have told people about some of the miracles God has done in my life, but although they do not know me as a liar, they clearly must think think I am a little weak in my understanding because such things’ cannot happen’. My own reasoning and faith allows for God’s miraculous power to happen. He has proven it to me over and again. I can tell the difference between fact and fiction . My ‘ Blessed Hope ‘.is in God and will surely happen. Ed is right. The prophets have said but even some who call themselves Christians do not believe because of their mental conditioning. We should watch. That is, remain alert to God and all He is doing , but we will still not know the day or the hour. That does not mean we will miss the rapture, like being distracted and looking the other way when the bus comes .God knows who are His and will not pass us by. But what a hope! It gives us renewed strength and confidence. We are not shaking with fear in a fox-hole like one who is about to over-run by the enemy. army.

    • Ed Wood says:

      I think you are exactly right, Harvey.

      We probably will not know the exact time the Rapture is to occur until right before it happens, based on Biblical information.

      Noah was told to build his ship, perhaps decades, before the flood was to occur. After all, it would have taken quite a while to build something like it without modern tools, not to mention collecting the animals and provisions, right? He only got the final word to get on board immediately before the flood began.

      Lot didn’t get the notice about the destruction of his neighborhood until the very night before the event. In his case, the Bible doesn’t tell us if he got the kind of advanced warning that Noah did.

      Still, I think the common denominator with them and us is that God will let us know in exactly the right way and at exactly the right time so we’ll be ready to go.

      Jesus told us to “Watch!” (Mark 13:35-37) and that necessarily implies that he will provide something important for us to be watching for. Since he told us to “Look up,” in Luke’s account (Luke 21:28), plus this reference: Acts 1:9-11, it seems to me our “alert” might be seen in the sky. However, we should keep in mind it may not be limited to that region alone.

  6. A Clark says:

    I’ve seen the scoffing at the rapture already begin this year. People have problems with believing this can happen because of the rejection of a supernatural God. And yet the bible is the most supernatural book in existence. How can God change so many people in an instant and have us all meet the lord in the air? Well, does not the spirit of God not dwell within us already? All of us who believe? Why then is it hard to accept that he who dwells within us by faith cannot make that change instantly within each believer and get us up there? Nothing is too hard for the Lord.

    • Costas says:

      C’mon A Clark. Dispy is not the only prophetic fruit. We who oppose you do not deny the supernatural in the second advent and its concomitants. We simply deny that you can divorce the rapture from the general resurrection, of which it is quite clearly but a small part.

      • A Clark says:

        Understood. That’s a different understanding of the timing of the rapture. My point was more an observation that many people cannot accept the rapture at all because its a supernatural event. Even many Christians cannot accept it because there has been a tendency to naturalize many aspects of prophecy. The rapture is certainly outside the box of human understanding – and yet there it is in scripture.

    • Costas says:

      Then I would question whether anybody who denies the future resurrection can be described as Christian in any meaningful sense of the term. To deny that is to deny [or at least cast doubt on] Jesus’ own resurrection, which lies at the heart of our faith. Your general attitude seems to be very binary in nature. You either accept a pre-trib. rapture, or else you are an atheist. You don’t seem to allow any room for the historic alternative – a general resurrection and judgment that immediately follows the second advent.

      That looks suspiciously like some form of obfuscation, non-sequitur, or straw man argument to me. Of what relevance are total cynics to this debate? Surely the real field of controversy here is between those who defend the Darby/Scofield scheme, and those who defend the eschatology of the historic creeds of the faith. Personally, I would not take too much notice of what a cynic believes about the second advent, etc., anymore than I would trust him on other matters of the faith.

      • A Clark says:

        You are reading a lot into my comments that isn’t there. Sorry, it’s hard to be clear in this kind of forum. Was just making an observation, not trying to get baited into a debate I don’t want. Cheers!

    • Costas says:

      I hear ya bro. Except that was my point. I thought your ‘observation’ was a bit odd. The cynic will scoff with equal alacrity at any eschatology, whether pre, mid, post, non or pan. In that sense, pre-trib. is hardly exceptional. By definition, all eschatology is ‘supernatural’.

    • Ed Wood says:

      You are right, A. Clark.

      With the “looking into the glass darkly” (1 Corinthians 13:12) limitations of our intellects and vision, we are in no way qualified to say God can’t do something just because we can’t figure out how he can. When he does do something beyond explanation, we call it a “miracle.”

      After all, the very core of Christian belief depends on Jesus’ resurrection and to discount this miraculous event would be for us just as Paul said below:

      1 Corinthians {15:14} And if Christ be not risen, then [is] our preaching vain, and your faith [is] also vain.

      Speaking for myself, I’m convinced that my faith, tenuous as it often is, is certainly NOT in vain.

  7. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a [m]shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who remain, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore, [n]comfort one another with these words.

    It is the only thing that makes sense

    Happy LORD’s Day

    Maranatha!

    In Christ

    Mellany

  8. Harvey says:

    Costas, I have read your comments a few times but your meaning is still not clear to me. ‘The dead in Christ rise first’ They have already gone to be with Him .At the Rapture the remaining, living, Christians will be caught up to be with Him in the air’ and so they will be with the Lord forever. The rest of the dead , that is those who died without Christ will not be resurrected for another 1000 years. Then they will be judged according to their deeds.
    We who die in Christ have already passed from death to life. A careful reading of Revelation explains all this.

    • Costas says:

      Don’t know if you’ll be able to see this Harvey, because my last reply was blocked by the admins. Just to let you know that I did reply. Maybe you can PM me somehow? Any ideas?

  9. Harvey says:

    I have your response Costa, and also see your previous message of 3 January which ends with ‘all eschatology is supernatural.’. Is there another in between which is missing? Just restate what ever you have to say , as long as it is not a personal attack on anyone-you know the rules- and I am sure it will reach me.

    • Costas says:

      No, I wasn’t mean to anyone, and don’t really want to invest time in a reply if there’s a good chance it will be blocked. If you still want a reply, how about we continue on a different platform? I have an idea that might work.

  10. KAB says:

    Oh I can’t wait to see my Lord and Savior.

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