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The Rapture
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Issue 16 - 2010
STEVE MAGILL

E V E N  T H O U G H  T H E R E are only three verses in the Bible that speak directly of what is known as the rapture, it is clear that there will be Christians alive on the earth who will not die and, like Elijah and Enoch, will be taken into heaven without dying to be with the Lord.  These verses are:

1 Corinthians 15:51, 52 -- "Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed."

1 Thessalonians 4:16,17 -- "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord."

Matthew 24:40,41 --  Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.   41Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

Notice that in the first two verses the Apostle Paul is clear when the rapture will take place.  1 Corinthians is clear that the rapture will take place "at the last trumpet...."  1 Thessalonians adds that this is the day when "the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God."  Both of these verses are also clear concerning the order of the rapture:  1) those who are dead in Christ will rise to Christ first; 2) those who remain alive on earth will be raptured to Christ after the dead are raised.  The third verse does not give us insight into the order of the rapture, but relates the fact that a rapture will happen when people are taken out of the earth as they go about their day to day activity.  How the rapture takes place is revealed when Jesus tells us that "he will 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 24:31)

In 1 Corinthians, 1 Thessalonians, and Matthew 24:31 it is related that a trumpet, specifically the last trumpet, will immediately precede the rapture of God's people.  This is a major revelation into when the rapture will take place!  The trumpets refer to the seven trumpets of Revelation 8-11.  These trumpets are the last judgments to be poured out upon the earth before the hour of God's judgment takes place. (Revelation 14:7)  The last trumpet is the seventh trumpet.  When it is blown, the kingdoms of this world are given to Christ. (Revelation 11:15)  This event does not happen until after the Antichrist is revealed and God's people have gone through the great tribulation as revealed in Revelation 6.  The book of Revelation is written chronologically with one set of judgments not appearing until the previous set of judgments have completed.  This is revealed in the seven trumpets coming out of  the seventh seal (Revelation 8:1,2,6); and the seven vials coming out of the seventh trumpet. (Revelation 11:15; 15:1;16:1)

The conclusion of the matter: the rapture of God's people is a fact and will take place when Christ returns after the antichrist is revealed, the great tribulation has killed most of God's people, and Christ's judgments have been poured out.  This event will take place right before God releases His one hour of judgment upon all those who do not place their trust in Him.  God's people will be spared from this hour of judgment, but will go through the great tribulation of the Antichrist and the trumpet judgments of Christ.

Great troubles will soon be upon every one who belongs to God.  Prayer and the searching of God's word should consume each of us in these last of the last days.

Until next time…

Be so much the more, as ye see the day approaching

Related Article:  The Rapture: Who Are the "Left Behind?"
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Published by ReturnAmerica.com
Copyright March 2010