Thursday, May 20, 2010

Is There a Secret Rapture?

There is a popular, widespread belief about a certain kind of rapture. I personally believed it for years, but only because I was taught that way all of my life, because I heard it being taught from the pulpit and I read it in all the popular books. I read all fourteen books of the Left Behind Series. I would find myself wondering when the moment would be when we suddenly vanish into thin air. Do we really leave our clothes behind? What if I was driving? Who would be left behind in amazement at all the disappearances and how would they explain it?

These were some of my thoughts until one day I asked God for truth. In exchange, I knew I had to open myself up to Him to show me truth even if it meant accepting that I was wrong. That is not easy for many of us. We might be bold and zealous about defending our beliefs, but for us to realize that we were wrong is not an easy thing. It took me three months of seeking God and struggling with myself to finally understand AND accept what He was showing me.

Truth is in His Word alone. Be careful of popular belief. Be careful of man's doctrine. Be careful of traditions. We need to break away from all of these to be a clean slate, and open to whatever God may show us. It is a privilege and very humbling when He does, and it is very worth it.

Also, we encourage you to confirm everything that we are showing you in this article, and all articles with an open Bible. Double check everything, look into His Word, Seek HIM, not other men and their opinions. God offers us the Spirit of Truth (John 16:13)  and He gives us the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:16) so that He may teach us.

Now, back to the focus of this article.. is there a secret rapture?

We all know that the word "rapture" is never in the Bible, but it does explain us being caught up in the air to be with the Lord. We can find that in 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18.

"For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.

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.

Wherefore comfort one another with these words."

We see that we shall be "caught up" together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Note the word "them." The living shall be caught up with the dead in Christ who were asleep in their graves, then all together are we caught up in the air to be with the Lord.. forever.

"And so shall we ever be with the Lord." 

At that point, we are all together and we shall be with the Lord always, never to be separated again.

Also note that: Jesus will descend down from Heaven, with a SHOUT! 

Here is another verse that parallels to this one as well,

"Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" 1 Corinthians 15:51-55

Now, these both are descriptions of this same event. We see in verse 15 that "we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed".. only those who are dead IN Christ may rise, while those without Him will not be raised out of their sleep until the second resurrection (note: Rev 20:5,6, John 5:29). So the dead shall be raised up, the living shall be changed, and then together we are caught up together in the clouds.

When does this take place? We see it says "at the last trump."

We are changed from corruption into incorruption. We are changed from mortal to immortal. Death is swallowed up in victory and the grave is defeated.

Okay so.. why do we assume this is a secret rapture that occurs before the this 'seven year tribulation' .. that we go back to the grave just to be brought up again? We go back to our dead bodies and be raised up again? Wouldn't that be saying there two raptures?

I thought we were gonna be with the Lord forever? Now we have to be separated from Him again?

And I thought death was swallowed up in victory and the graves were defeated?

So let's say the secret rapture belief is right. We are raptured, then we go to be with Jesus for seven years during the tribulation, then Jesus sends us back to the grave and back to our corpses, to raise us up in another kind of spiritual body, then we are raptured again to meet him in the air, then he descends down again to the Mount of Olives. That's pretty confusing isn't it?

...God isn't the author of confusion. There are no two raptures. There is not a second coming, and then a third coming.

I've heard of others explaining that the first one isn't official because Jesus' feet never literally touch the ground. But where is that in the Bible? I have never found it. What I have found was:

"And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south" Zechariah 14:4

Wait, so His feet actually Do touch the ground after all?

When Jesus ascended to the skies after He rose from the dead, there were two angels and they said:

"Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven." Acts 1:11

And Jesus ascended from the Mount of Olives. Prophecy tells us He shall descend upon the Mount of Olives, the same way and at the same place.

Here's another one:

"Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen." Revelation 1:7

So.. every eye WILL see him? Yeah!

The Bible tells us that the wicked SHALL see it!

"The wicked shall see it, and be grieved; he shall gnash with his teeth, and melt away: the desire of the wicked shall perish." Psalm 112:10

We are caught up to be with the Lord during this great, terrible and awesome day. The wicked are left on earth to suffer the Lord's vengeance. It will be a day of battle against the wicked and kings of this earth. This is a big, fiery showdown. We definitely do not want to be below while all this is occurring! (check Isaiah 13:6, Joel 2:1-11, Rev 16:14, Zech 14:1-3, Joel 3:12-16, Isaiah 29:6, Isaiah 66:15,16, Malachi 4:1)

When we are caught up to be with the Lord, we shall descend down with Him to the Mount of Olives as well. (check Zechariah 14:5, Deuteronomy 32:2, Jude 1:14)

Let us look into more rapture verses and see if it all aligns up, stay with us!

"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.

For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.

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:

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.

And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." Matthew 24:27-31

We see this verse is describing the coming of the Son of Man. As lightning shines in one place, it shines in the other as well, and we will all see Him. This passage describes awesome things to behold! Does this sound like a secret rapture to you? Surely when Jesus comes, every eye shall see Him and they shall wail, or gnash their teeth at Him. They will all see us have our victory with the Lord Jesus.

What is so cool is that when you read the last verse there, it says that He shall send his angels to gather his elect from the four winds. That is how we are "caught up." It never says we vanish. It never says we fly but that we are "caught" UP in the air.. by the angels. (read Rev 7:1 speaking of angels standing on the four corners of the earth). Also,

"The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels." Matthew 13:39

There is a harvest on this Earth. The reapers are the ones who gather the harvest and place them in a basket of some sort and brings them to the barn house. The reapers for this harvest are the angels as they reap God's people.

Also notice how it says "the harvest is at the end of the world?" All this will take place at the same time, at the end of the world. We recommend our readers to read the Wheat and Tares parable in Matthew 13.

There is one second coming. There is one rapture. What about the tribulation? Don't you know that the last days already began when Christ left the Earth? We have already been living in the last days. Believers are being martyred and persecuted for their faith every single day. During the Dark Ages, 50 million Christians were tortured and killed. China is hiding underground right now in fear of a massacre. We ARE in the last days!

Paul wasn't wrong when he said we were in the last days. He was telling the truth. Some pastors teach that Paul mistakenly thought they were in the last days. There are no mistakes in the Bible, and the last days did begin then.

Here is another:

"But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up." 2 Peter 3:10 

The Lord's coming shall come as a shock to many people. The heavens will pass away with a great noise, the elements shall melt with a fervent heat, and the earth and it's wicked works shall be burned up. This is definitely no secret rapture. How can anyone miss that?

Paul comments on this further:

"For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.

But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief." 1 Thess 5:2-4

It will only be a thief in the night for those without Christ, not for us. We should be like the faithful servant that is always watching. We will not be caught off guard. We will be ready.

Also note how it says "sudden destruction"...

Only man's doctrine teaches us that Jesus comes but doesn't "arrive" so it is not technically the Second Coming. There is no scripture basis for this. The Bible also never describes us leaving our bodies to be with the Lord, then be separated from Him again, return unto our corpses and graves, to be brought up again, then rise again, and then descend. Where does it say all of this? It doesn't.

Think about it, but don't just take my word for it either. Search these scriptures diligently. Ask God for truth. Open your eyes and keep them wide open. Question everything. Ask for scripture proving whatever people tell you.

A Voice in the Wilderness

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