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Page history last edited by PBworks 18 years ago

The Rapture is Relatively Recent

The pre-tribulational rapture teaching started with Margaret McDonald in 1830. John Nelson Darby and the Scofield Reference Bible popularized the teaching. Today most Evangelical Televangelists are pre-trib rapture proponents. Calvary Chapel fits into this same theological camp - Dispensationalism. Wikipedia has a good article on Dispensationalism.


Is the rapture Scriptural?

Here are the typical proof texts most often used so support the pre-tribulational rapture teaching.


1Co 15:52 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.


This one happens at the last trump. If this "last trump" is the last trumpet from the book of Revelation that places this at the end of the Tribulation period.


1Th 4:16-17 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.


The problem here is the timing of the resurrection. Those who are changed are changed after the dead in Christ are raised. If this is at the start of the tribulation period then when are the dead who die in the tribulation raised? At the end? How many resurrections are there if there is also one at the end of the 1000 years? Three resurrections?


1Th 5:9a For God hath not appointed us to wrath...


First lesson is to watch out for the elipses dots... Chuck Smith is famous in his writings for using them to ignore parts of verses which refute his teachings. The rest of this passage sets the context. We are not appointed to wrath, but to obtain salvation. This passage is about our eternal destiny, not the rapture.


Mat 24:21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.


There is nothing in this passage about timing. In fact, the context shows believers present throughout this period, albeit protected by God.


Rev 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter.


This one assumes that Revelation follows a time sequence. A close examination shows that the first three chapters are set in the form of letters to the seven churches of Asia Minor. The switch at chapter four is not a translation of the church into Heaven, but a shift of focus of the writer of Revelation to the Heavenly scene.

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