Now that you have seen a demonstration of it, lets look at the meaning of the rapture.  First, the English word "rapture" is not found anywhere in the text of the Bible.  However, when the New Testament was translated into the Latin language, the Greek word for "caught up" was translated "rapiemur" from this the church has taken the English rendering to make the event "the rapture".

    Although there are many scriptures concerning Jesus' return to get his bride (the church) in the rapture, I will list some of the major ones.

1.  "And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.   And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;    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 1:9-11).  Jesus is to come in the clouds.

2. "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" (I Corinthians 15:51-52). The rapture is to take place suddenly and somewhat unexpectedly for the world.

3. "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.    For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.    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" (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).  These are to be words of comfort for Believers.

4. "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 shew thee things which must be hereafter" (Revelation 4:1).  Believers are taken up into heaven.

5. "And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely" (Revelation 22:17).  Believers are to look forward to the rapture.


    I will not take the time to explore the various views of men of the coming of Christ in this article.  Many books have been written on the topic, some good and some bad.  My goal is to state the conclusions that I have come to in a clear and concise way.  One major point of confusion is concerning two events: the "rapture" and the "second coming" of Christ proper.  Here is a brief comparison.
 

The Rapture
The Second Coming
At the sounding of the shophar
I Thessalonians 4:16-18
Signs and tribulation indications of coming
Matthew 24:1ff
At the beginning of 7 years of tribulation
Revelation 4:1
At the end of 7 years of tribulation
Revelation 20:11-16
As a thief in the night
I Thessalonians 4:17, II Thessalonians 2:1-7, 
Expected by the Jews
Romans 11:26
In the clouds only
I Thessalonians 4:16-18, Acts 1:9-11
He touches ground at Mt. of Olives
Zechariah 14:4
In normal times
I Thessalonians 5:3
In midst of the battle of Armageddon
Revelation 19:11-21
Visible, but in the twinkling of an eye
I Peter 1:7, I Corinthians 15:52
Every eye shall see Jesus
Revelation 1:7
To receive his bride the church
II Thessalonians 2:1
Bringing all the saints with him.
Jude 1:14, Zechariah 14:5
Before the wrath of God
Revelation 3:10
Following the fury of Satan
Revelation 12:12
The Holy Spirit in Believers is removed
II Thessalonians 2:7
Jesus sets up his 1,000 reign upon the earth 
Revelation 20:6
Satan is given full power to deceive the earth
II Thessalonians 2:9-10
 Satan is bound for about 1,000 years
Revelation 20:2

Time and Eternity before and after time.

    Where do we stand in time in 2001?  At the very end of the Church Age, just prior to the coming of Jesus to get is Bride.  See: 21st Century & Prophecy.    I personally believe that Jesus will return by about 2021, if not before.
 
 

    The knowledge of the RAPTURE is to be a COMFORT for Believers because they will escape the great tribulation and get to be with God in heaven (Revelation 3:10)!  However, for an unbeliever the knowledge of the rapture should be a strong warning!  Why? First, following the rapture there is to be a great tribulation upon the earth as never seen before (Matthew 24:21, Revelation 6:17).   Second, although, there will be people saved during the tribulation (Revelation 7:14), the Scripture seems to indicate that if one has heard the Gospel prior to the Rapture and rejected it, that person will be so deceived during the tribulation that he will not accept it (II Thessalonians 2:9-12).  Furthermore, even if one is saved during the tribulation, he will be executed by beheading (Revelation 20:3).
 
 

    What you might experience!

    So you are not a Believer.  Just imagine:  You awaken at the sound of sirens and the sound of air raid warning.  You run to turn on the television news.  The announcer on the emergency channel announces that the world is in a state of chaos.  At first, you hear that there has been a number of passenger plane crashes, train derailments, auto, and bus crashes.  Many people all over the world have lost their lives.  The hospitals are being filled with and running over with the injured.

    The strange thing about it all is that there are reports coming in about many people missing.  There are rumors that people just vanished into the air.  Others say that thought that they saw something like a U.F.O. fly overhead just about the time it all began to happen.

    You think of your child that has been sleeping in another room.  You rush to his room ... but he is gone!  His clothes are there, but he is gone!  He was only  two years old.  What could have happened?  Later in the day as news reports continue to come in, an official government announcement is made that military radar had for a moment picked up a U.F.O. that had swiped across the sky.  Then on the evening news the announcement is made that the Untied Security Counsel, in emergency session, has concluded that the earth had indeed been invaded by or visited by a craft from another planet and had taken many people.

    Strange enough also, it seems that the country of Russian, backed by the countries of Iran, Ethiopia, and Germany, and Turkey has begun to take advantage of the situation of chaos and is storming a march toward the nation of Israel.  There are also rumors about Israel provoking the attack upon the earth.

    Everything is happening so fast, it makes your mind swim.  Jewish people from all over the world are packing up and heading for their homeland.   However, about the time you hear of the war between Russia and Israel, again something strange happens.  The sky turns red, especially in the Middle East.  The reports begin to come in:  Some massive storms have move in upon the Russian armies which were approaching Israel.  Huge hail stones have fallen upon the Russian troops.  Then there is another news flash:  Fire form the sky came down upon the Russian army.   Was it some sort of nuclear blast?  No one is sure.

    Then a really uncanny report comes in.  It is not a common view, but the report is that God must have intervened to protect Israel and brought judgment upon the Russian army and other countries which were supporting the invasion.  Five sixths of the Russian army is destroyed, and the word is that God had done it.  Wow! It is unbelievable!   Why would God intervene to protect a small spot upon the earth called Israel?

    Peace seems to come at last.  The European confederation has surfaced to power and the head of it signs a treaty of Alliance with Israel.  People are celebrating, "Peace, Peace!"

    However, the war has taken its toll.  Many were killed, but many more suffer with noisome and grievous sores.  The water of the sea and rivers are contaminated by nuclear fallout.  The report is that one third of the trees and grass upon the earth is being burned up.

    There is a promise from the new One-world government that things will get better, but everything gets worse and worse.  The environment is now destroyed.  Fresh uncontaminated fruit and vegetables are almost impossible to get.  The report comes that world wide famine is coming.  You must pay an enormous price for the that which you can buy through the black market operations.  There is a scarcity of everything.  Prices have skyrocketed!  You put in eight to ten hours just to buy a loaf of bread.  Soon people are starving the world over ... death is everywhere.  Your stomach aches just to have a decent meal.

    There is so much smoke, smog, and refuge into the air that you are afraid to get outside much anymore.  The sun now shines for only about one third of a regular day.

    Then the news comes that your money that you have saved is "worthless".  The American dollar is no longer of value.  There is a new system established ... a electronic credit system and EVERYONE must register for it.  The government says that it has created the system to stabilize the world economy.  Even noted church and religions leaders are encouraging people to register.  It sounds good.  Your paycheck is put into an electronic computer bank account, and you go to the store and purchase what you want, and it is simply taken out of your account.  It is the direct deposit and direct withdrawal system.  There is no hassle of coins, no bills, and no checks.

    In the mean time, you have a friend that is Jewish.  He has seen all these things that have happened as signs from God and has become a Christian.  He tries to convince you, but there seems to be a stronger voice saying that the new government has the answer to all your problems.  You have heard about Christianity before, and you just can't buy it.  You refuse your friend's offer.

    Three and one half years pass.  Then the announcement comes that the New World Leader has gone to the temple which as been rebuilt in Jerusalem on the temple mound.  The eyes of the world are upon this charismatic New World Leader.  He enters into the Most Holy Place and sits upon the throne meant for God.  However, he announces that he, himself, is God and from this day forward will demand absolute worship.  Everyone must receive his mark upon their hand or forehand.  The mark is very important, for it is connected with your banking number.  If you don't receive the mark, your bank account will be abolished and the amount will become the possession of the government.  Without the mark you will not be able to buy or sell anything.  The law is that if you don't receive the mark, then you become a criminal and are an enemy of the government.  Those who are caught without the mark will be executed by beheading.

    In the meantime, some giant mutated insects begin to cover the earth.  Nothing seems to be able to stop them.  Some say that they are demonic in nature.  One night during your sleep, one bites you.  You have had insect bits before, even stinging scorpions that really hurt, but this bit is different.  The pain is so intense that you cry out that if there be a God that He would in His mercy kill you.  You don't die, but the pain continues for an eternity of five whole months.

    It is strange, but almost every day, you run into people who seem to be controlled by some demonic power.  They rage uncontrollably and simply go insane.  Others exhibit the most hideous side of evil.  Even you find yourself thinking and doing things that you would not do before all this began.

    Then you begin to hear about another war in the making.  It seems that all the countries upon the earth are joining together to battle against that little country of Israel. Some say that it will be Armageddon.  China and Russia seem to be the main characters, but other counties are following suit.  The World Church is now destroy, the religious leaders no longer have a say in what happens.  Even the church of Rome, itself, has fallen to the New World power.  War is inevitable.

    It is strange ... it began almost without notice, but moment by moment the sun is getting brighter and brighter.  As time passes, the sun becomes twice as bright and hot as normal.  People everywhere are getting sunburned from just being out in sun light for a few minutes.   Then the sun become three times ... four times .... five times ... six times ... seven times as bright as normal.  The heat and light is unbearable.  The moon shines just a bright as the normal sun.  Oh, the number of people that are dying!  It seems that everything that is on the earth is gone mad!

    Then without warning comes the greatest earthquake the history of the world has recorded. Cities all over the earth are leveled to rubbish.  The mountains are leveled, and the islands disappear beneath the surface of the ocean.  Destruction is too great to put into words.

    Then it happens!  The sun nova's and goes out.  It simply does not shine.  The moon turns blood red and it also fade out.   Oh, the earth becomes so dark and so cold!  But if that is not enough, the stars begin to fall out of the heavens.   The sky is rolled up like a scroll! There is no natural light, only a little bit of artificial light.  The darkness is so thick that you can cut it.

    The news comes that the nations of the world have begun their frantic attack upon that little country of Israel, again somehow blaming it for all the calamity upon the earth.

    Then all your fears are turned to pure horror.  Jesus appears in the clouds in all his glory and speaks the word as a sword of death coming out of his mouth upon the unbelievers upon the earth.  It is all over ... until one thousand years later when you stand before the great white throne of God's Judgment and be judged according to your futile works.  There He will say, "I never knew you. Be cast into the lake of fire along with Satan and his demons to be tormented for eternity."

Don't Wait! "(For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)" (II Corinthians 6:2).

Please pray the following PRAYER to God:

Dear God,

(1) I confess (agree with you) that I have sinned (disobeyed God).
(2) I realize that the penalty for sin is spiritual death.
(3) However, I believe that Jesus died for all my sins and arose from the dead.
(4) Therefore, I give my life to you, Jesus, as my Lord and Savior. Amen.


If you would like for someone to pray this prayer with you please call (325) 651-9516.  For a honest inquiry you may email me at .

Also see: Searching For Truth & Find Life, Purpose, and Joy.


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