Chapter 13
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Here is Wisdom. / Rob Conrad / Copyright 1984, 2006 / Lib. of Congress / Distrib. worldwide
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The  Rapture  of  the  End  Times
*More:    'Rapture, when?'
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The    2   most  popular   verses  amongst   believers  concerning  the   rapture  of   the  church   are   found   in     I  Thessalonians  4   &    I  Corinthians 15.     Although   the  term    “rapture”   is   not   found   in   scripture,   believers  over   the   years  use   this  term   to   identify   this   miraculous   moment   where   believers   are    instantly    translated   from    earth   into   the    presence  of   the   Lord.      This   is   a    real   event   which     is  not  far  away  from  occur- ring,    prophetically.

I Thessalonians 4: 16-18:
“For   the  Lord   Himself   will   descend  from  heaven  with   a   shout,    with  the  voice of  the  archangel,   &   with   the   trumpet  of  God;   &   the  dead  in  Christ   shall   rise   first.    Then,    we  who  are   alive  &   remain  shall   be   caught  up   together  with  them  in   the  clouds  to   meet   the  Lord   in   the   air,    &    thus   we  shall  always  be  with   the   Lord.    Therefore,   comfort   one   another   with   these   words.”

I Corinthians  15: 51-52:         
“Behold,   I   tell  you  a  mystery;     we   shall  not  all  sleep   (die),    but   we  shall  all   be  changed,    in   a   moment,    in   a   twinkling  of  an  eye,    at  the  last  trumpet,    for   the  trumpet   will   sound,   &    the   dead   in   Christ   shall   be   raised   imperishable,    &   we  shall   be   changed.”

Paul   uses  the   words   “caught  up”   (I Thess.4:17)   which  are  defined   in   Greek   as:    “to  catch  up;     to   pluck;     to    be   taken   by   force”.      This   indicates   the   idea   of   suddenly   snatching   believers     “who   are  alive   &   remain”     out   of    the   way.            

In    I   Corinthians  15‘s    account   of    the   rapture,     Paul   uses   the   word    “raised”    which   has   the   Greek  definition   of:       “to   awaken;     to  take  up     &     to   rise  up”.     Paul’s   opening   words    in    this    verse   (above)   clearly   frame   the   rapture   concept:     “We   shall   not   all   sleep   (die)….” .       In    fact,    the   concept    of    someone     “not   dying”    is    the   very    “mystery”    which   Paul   introduces  this   whole   passage   with:     “Behold,     I    tell   you   a   mystery…..” .  

In    Paul’s     3rd     writing    in     2  Thessalonians  2:1,     he   calls   the   rapture    event      “our   gathering   together   to   Him”.       His   term   “gathering”   is   defined   in   (Greek)    as:      “to   assemble;   to  gather  together;    a   complete  collection   &    a    meeting   for   worship”.

A     few   verses   later   (2 Thess.2:7),    Paul   again   refers   to   believers    being    “taken  out  of   the  way” .       The   word    he   used    for     “taken”   is   defined   as:      “to   be   assembled;    to  arise;    to  be  fulfilled;    to  be  ordained;     to  be  married;     to   partake    &    to    be   taken”.         These    verses   are   powerful   descriptions   of     a       “fulfilling,     marriage   assembly,      ordained    by   God”       of     the    bride    of  Christ      (the   body   of   Christ)    being   united   with  Christ   (the   bridegroom)   “in  the  air”.    (I Thess.4:17).        
“In  the  twinkle  of  an  eye”   (1 Cor.15:52)    a     “complete  collection  &   assembly”   of      all    of    God’s    people      “who   are   alive   &   remain”     will     “arise”   into   the   awe- some   physical   presence  of    the   Lord   Jesus  Himself.      The   Lord  then   will   escort     His   bride   (believers)   back   to    the    3rd     high    heaven   for    the    marriage    supper   of   the   Lamb.           (Rev.19:7).

Jesus’   words   about   the   rapture…

In    Jesus’   own   prophetical   statements   regarding   End  Time   events    He  also  spoke specifically  of   the   rapture.   (Math.24:3- 25:46).       In    reading   His   elaborate   teaching,   it’s   clear    that   the   Apostle   Paul’s   own  descriptions  of   the   rapture   mirrors   Jesus’    words.

Jesus   said,      “Then   there  shall   be    2   men   in   the   field;    one   will   be   taken   &   one   will   be   left.      Two  women   will   be   grinding  at   the   mill;    one   will  be   taken,   &   one   will   be   left.      Therefore,   be   on   the   alert,     for   you   do   not  know   which   day    your    Lord   is    coming.”         (Math.24:40-32).

His    word    “taken”   is    defined   as:     “to   receive   near;     to   assume   an   office   &    to    come    together   as    an    intimate   act”.          Clearly,   Jesus   Himself   paints   the   picture   of    an     “intimate,   coming  together”     of    a    bride   &   a   bridegroom. 

His   next   parable   (Math.25:1-13)    is   even   more   specific  of   the   bride   uniting   with    the   bridegroom.       He    said,   “…..But   at   midnight   there   was   a    shout,     ‘Behold,    the   bridegroom!’      Come  out   to  meet   him.’   “.         (Math.25:6).

To   remove   any   doubt   that    He   is   referring   to    that    moment  of    the   End  Time   rapture,     He   states   numerous   times   through   His   teaching   that   “no  one  knows   the  day  or  hour”.          (Math.24: 36,  42, 44, 50   &   Math.25:13).

This    was   important   for   Him   to   differentiate   between   the   rapture  event   compared  to    His    prophecies   about    His  physical  return    to   earth.      Scriptures   actually   do    point   to    the    “day”    of   Christ’s   physical    return  to   the   earth.     Revelation  shows   that    the     last    3 ½   years     of    the    great   tribulation    will   last   for  exactly   1260 days    (Rev.12:6)    from   the   mid-7   year   point.       So,    Christ’s   physical  return   to    earth     shown   in   Rev.19:11    can    be    timed   to    the   day. 

This   lines  up    perfectly   with   the   Lord’s   own   chronology  of    His    physical   return.     Jesus   said,      “Immediately   after   the  tribulation……they   will   see   the   Son  of   Man     coming    on    the    clouds    of     the    sky    with     power    &    great   glory.”      (Math.24:30).            

Rapture,   when?

Although     “know   one   knows   the   day  or  hour”    (Mark 13:32)    of   the  rapture  event,     the    Lord   did   exhort    believers    to    recognize   the   nearness     of   it.        He   said,     “Even   so,    you   too,     when   you   see   all   these   happening    (End  Time  prophecies   occurring   collectively),     recognize  that   He  is  near,   right   at   the  door.”                (Mark 13:29;   Math.24:33).

The   Apostle  Paul’s   writings  of   the   rapture  provide   powerful   insight   which   identifies   the   timing   &   “nearness    of   the   rapture.        He   states  a   fact   in     I  Thess. 4:16  that     right   before     the    rapture,      the    Lord   Himself    will    descend   from    heaven     “with    a   shout,     with   the    voice  of   the   archangel…”.       The   second   fact   Paul    pinpoints   is    that    the    rapture   will    occur     “at   the   last   trumpet”.     (I Cor.15:52).

Knowing   these   2   facts   are   key     when   examining   the  book  of   Revelation’s   chron-   ology    of    the    7   year   Tribulation   period.       Both   of    Paul’s   specifics   are   clearly   found    in    Revelation    within  the   1st    3 ½   years    of    the   Tribulation  period.     Also, knowing   that    Chapters  6    through    Chapter  12      of    Revelation   represent   the    1st    3 ½   years,      then    locating    Paul’s    2    specific   keys   is    a    quick   study.          

The      “shout,   &   the  voice  of   the  archangel”      noted    by   Paul   are    located    in   Revelation 10:1-3,    which   are   clearly    inside  the   1st   3 ½   years    of   the    Tribulation.   

“And   I   saw   another   strong  angel    coming   down   out   of   heaven…&   he  cried  out   with   a   loud  voice…”.         (Rev.10:1-3).            

This   powerful    picture   shows   Michael    the   archangel    descending    (Rev.10:1)    from   heaven   before    the   King,     to    announce    that    the    Lord   Himself   is    also    about    to      “descend    from   heaven   with   a   shout”     as    Paul    stated.      (I Thess.4:16).  Once   the   Lord   Himself   actually   descends,    He   humbly   waits   “in   the  air”    until   the     “last   trumpet”     sounds   moments   later    in     Rev.11: 15.         

The    “last   trumpet”…..           (I Cor.15: 52    &    Revelation 11:15)

This   “last  trumpet”   (I Cor.15:52)   which   literally  triggers   the  moment  of   the   rapture    is   also   found   in    Revelation    just    a    few    verses    after    the    “voice  of   the   arch- angel”.     (Rev.10:1-3).         Revelation 11:15    denotes    this     “last   trumpet”     (as   Paul  named   it)      as      the   “7th   trumpet”.         Again,    this    “last”     &     7th   trumpet    clearly    pinpoints    the    rapture    as    occurring     inside   the   1st    3 ½   years.                [ *See GRAPH below ].

And    the   7th  angel  sounded    (the  “last  trumpet”)   &    there   arose   loud   voices  in   heaven,  saying,    'The   kingdom  of   the  world   has  become  the   kingdom  of   our   Lord,    &   of    His   Christ;    &    He   will   reign   forever  &   ever.' "   (Rev.11:15).     This   is   the rapture   moment.     Indeed,  this  is  the   "last trumpet"   to  be  sounded  in  the  Bible.

Significantly,    Revelation   shows    the   first   6   trumpet    blasts     occurring    in   heaven    causing    earthly    things    to    take    place.         However,     this    7th  trumpet      (“last  trumpet”)     is     blown   from    earth    (Rev.10:5),      causing   incredible   things   to    take    place   in    heaven.      At   this  7th  blast,     the    24   elders  are   seen   falling   on   their    faces   in   worship   of   God.   (Rev.11:16, 17).      The   awesome   opening  of   the   temple   of   God    &    the    appearance   of   the   ark   of    the   covenant   also   occur   in   heaven    at    this   time.         (Rev.11:19).      

For   God’s    people   to   be    “taken”    in  the  rapture    before    the   great  tribulation    begins    (Rev.13: 1)    lines   up    with    Paul’s    words:     “For   God   has     not    destined    us    for    wrath   but    for   obtaining   salvation   through   our   Lord   Jesus   Christ.”              (I Thess.5:9).     [ The   great tribulation   period   is   also   called   the   "wrath  of  God"   in Revelation  16:1. ]   

How   far   into   the    7   year    Tribulation ?           [ 5th  trumpet  is  key…]

Revelation   also   provides   powerful   insight   as   to   just   how   far   into   the    1st     3 ½    years    believers   might    remain   on   earth   until   raptured.        During    the    first     3 ½    years,     7   seals   &    7   trumpets    are   what   activate    the   chronological   things   that   occur.        In   fact,    the    Tribulation   period     “starts”    officially   at    the    first    of    the   7    seals     being    broken.         (Rev.6: 1). 

Conceivably,    all     7   seals     together  with     the     7    trumpets   could    begin   occur- ring     in    rapid   succession    starting     at   the   opening   moment     of    the   Tribulation.   Revelation    leaves    this    possibility    open.      

If   so,     then   the    body   of   Christ     would   remain  on   earth  for   at   least   5   months into   the   Tribulation.      This   is   because  of    the   fact    that   when   the    5th   trumpet   sounds    (Rev. 9:1)     there    comes   upon   unrepentant   men    a    physical   torment    for   “5   months”.          (Rev. 9: 5, 10).    

This   is    key   information   since     Rev. 9:12     specifically   clarifies   that    only    “after”   these      “5   months”      of     torment     are     fully  completed    &     “past”,       can    the    6th    &    7th    trumpet   blasts   occur,      the    7th    trumpet    itself    being   the   rapture.  (Rev.11:15).     

Rev. 9:12:

“The   first   woe    (the   “5  months”   of   torment  caused   by   the   5th   trumpet;    Rev. 9:1)      is  past;     behold,    two   more   woes      (the    6th   &    7th    trumpet   blasts)        are   still   coming   AFTER   these   things.”   

On   the   other  hand,    if   the    7   seals   &   trumpets    are  activated   over   the   length- iest    span   possible,     then    believers   could   remain   on   earth    through  most  of   the first    3 ½   years.       This   means   that    the     5th  trumpet    would    have    to    sound    (Rev. 9:1)      no   later   than      at    about    the    3    year    point.       This    would    allow    the    next     “5    months”    of    torment     (caused  by   the   5th   trumpet)     to   fully   run    its    course    &     to    become     “past”      as      Rev. 9:12     shows   they    must.      As    a    result,      the    6th    &    7th   trumpets     (which    “are   still   coming    AFTER    these   things”)      would    have    to    take    place   within    the    small    window    of    time     left    just   before     the   mid-7   year   point


*Other  significant   keys:    

*Note:     Significantly,     the    5th,    6th   &    7th    trumpets      are    also    named    as       “3   woes”     in     Rev. 8:13    since     earthly     “woes”     result    from    each    trumpet.      While    the     7th   trumpet   itself    is    the    rapture    event    (Rev.11:15),      it    also    represents   the    “3rd   woe“    upon  earth   for   those   left   behind   during   the   ensuing     3 ½    years   of    great   tribulation.

*Note:     the   occurrence  of    the    rapture    inside   the    first     3½     years   lines   up    with   the     Lord’s    own   rapture   chronology.       He   said,    “At   midnight   there   was     a    shout,     ‘Behold,    the   bridegroom!     Come   out    to   meet   him!’  “.      (Math.25:6).     This    mirrors    Revelation’s    account     of     this    “shout”     &     the    rapture    both    taking    place    close    to    the   darkest    period     (“midnight”)     in    world    history.

*Note:    Revelation   shows   that    just  before     the    7th   trumpet   is    blown   to    rap-  ture      the    church,       then     the      “mystery   of   God   is   finished”.       (Rev.10:7).
This     “mystery”     is     the     exact    same     “mystery”     which    Paul    stated    about    raptured   believers    of    whom    he    said,        “Behold,    I     tell    you    a    mystery;   we    shall    not    all   sleep   (die)…”.                (I Cor.15: 51-52).        

So,    once   the   very   last   person   on   earth   who   is   to   accept   Christ    (before  the    rapture  trumpet   sounds)    has   done   so,      then     at   that  moment     this   mystery     will    be     “finished“ .    (Rev.10:7).          As   shown,    this   clearly   occurs    within    the     first      3 ½    years    of    the    7   year   Tribulation. 

*Note:    The   mystery  is   specifically    “finished”    “in   the   days  of  the voice   of   the    7th   angel,      when    he    is     about     to   sound.”         (Rev.10:7).      

This    clearly    shows    that     the     7th    angel’s    voice     (Rev.10: 3)     is    heard   for    “days”.       (Revelation   leaves  open   the   possibility  of   an   audible  voice).       So,   for    at   least   2   days   or   more,      this     7th    angel    announces    that      “….there   shall    be    delay    no    longer…”.    (Rev.10:6).       Then,    right    after    those    “days“,       this    same     7th    angel     blows    his    rapture  trumpet     in     Rev.11:15.  


A   prophetic  word  of  wisdom  to  God's  people...

Today     in    the    body   of    Christ   &   amongst    Bible   teachers   there    exists    the   belief     that     believers    will    be     “taken”      before   the   start      of     the   7    year   tribulation.       So,    handling   the   scriptures   accurately    (2 Tim.2:15)   on    this    topic    of   the   rapture   of    the   church   is    highly   important   for    a    number   of    reasons:     

1)       It’s   God’s  Word,     the    provider   of   wisdom   &    insight.     

2)       The    topic   itself     is    of    utmost    importance   to   the   Lord  Himself,    the
          bridegroom.       It    should    also    be    to    the    “bride”,     believers.

3)       For    believers   who   hold    to    the   “pre”    7   year    rapture   concept,     then 
          once    the   7   year   tribulation   actually   begins,    &    the   body   of   Christ   is
          still    here,     then   great    fear   &   confusion    could   result    within   the   body
          of    Christ,    unnecessarily.

4)       Knowing   this   insight     on   the   timing   of    the   rapture   should   bring    great
          strength,   wisdom   &   readiness    to   the   body   of    Christ,     in   the   face   of
          what’s    coming,   and   in   recogizing   that     "He is  near".     (Matthew 24:33).                   
Bible's  "Silence in Heaven" ID's  Rapture  in  1st  Half  of Tribulation      EXCLUSIVE