Post-Trib Responses to Pre-Trib Beliefs #2

I have begun to examine a number of Pre-Tribulational Rapture beliefs about the Rapture/ Resurrection in light of scriptural contexts and parallel passages; there will be many installments, all discussing directly the passages used to support this construct.

Pre-Trib Belief No. 2:  Jesus will come with His Church/Bride down from Heaven, after the Tribulation (Zech 14:5; Col 3:4; Rev 19:7-8,14, 21:9-10; Matt 24:29-31; Jud 1:14,15; 1Thess 3:13)

Responses

Zech 14:5,  You will flee by the valley of My mountains, for the valley of the mountains will reach to Azel; yes, you will flee just as you fled before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the LORD, my God, will come, and all the holy ones with Him!

This verse, and the context, certainly describe the return of Yeshua to fight against the nations gathered against Jerusalem (v1).  Verse 5 says “and all the holy ones with Him”.  This could mean either the heavenly hosts/angels, which are frequently called “holy ones” קדוש qadowshm,  H6918, meaning “holy” or “set apart”.  It could also mean the redeemed of God. Or it might be both.   Remember, the dead in Christ are raised first (1Thes 4:16), so those coming with Christ who have died over the ages and dwell with Him in their spirits will receive their bodies before those still alive, then we who are alive will receive our “resurrection” bodies. In any case, these verses do not prove a pre-trib rapture, nor do they work exclusively in support of such.

Col 3:4,  When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.

This verse does refer to the rapture/resurrection—John writes in 1 John 3:2  “We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.”  It in no way exclusively works just for a pre-trib rapture.  On the other hand we again (and again and again) have a reference to a single appearance of Christ, at His (one) return.

Rev 19:7-8,14,  7 Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” 8 It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints… 14 And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses.

The pre-trib presuppositions here are that 1) the saints are in Heaven (the who?), 2) they’ve attended the marriage of the lamb to the bride, 3) they must have been there for a long time for that to have happened, longer than is allowable in a post-trib rapture scenario, and 4) they follow Christ as he returns to earth to defeat those enemies assembled to make war against the lamb and his army (v19).

The rebuttal for this is to ask ‘how long is an hour, a day or a year in Heaven?’  While we live inside of time here, Heaven is outside of time.  Through the many other scripture passages that have been and will be addressed in this series it was/will be clearly demonstrated that the return of Christ is single event—it is unnecessary to require a large amount of time between the rapture and Christ riding to Jerusalem’s defense.  In fact the apantesis qualifies as “the marriage”—we are united to Christ when we put on our imperishable bodies.

Heaven is coming to earth.  The new Jerusalem, the people of God, will descend from Heaven and hover over physical Jerusalem.  The new Jerusalem will be Heaven, in the Millennium and beyond.  It is not necessary to put it a long way distant and require the saints to dwell there for years in order “to be married” to the lamb.

Now about the term “saints” in the Book of Revelation.   A common objection that pre-tribbers often throw up is that “the church isn’t mentioned once during the Tribulation in Rev. Chapters 4-21.”  But yet in 19:7&8 the term “bride”, unarguably meaning the church/ekklesia, and “saints” are interchangeable.  So at least in Chapter 19 of  Revelation “saints” means “church.”  Well unfortunately for pre-tribbers, the word “saints” ἅγιος hagios, meaning “holy ones”(same basic meaning as Zech 14:5, discussed above), appears throughout Revelation. So either the church does appear in Revelation, in the tribulation, or “saints” does NOT refer to the church in Rev 19.

Rev 21:9-10,  9 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and spoke with me, saying, “Come here, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God.

Pre-tribbers have Zech 14:5 and Rev 19 reporting on the second, Second Coming of Christ when he comes to do battle with the nations, so by referencing this scripture as a proof of “Jesus coming with His Church/Bride down from Heaven”, is this the third, Second Coming of Christ?  No, this is not an exclusive proof of the pre-trib rapture.  It is simply stating that in the Millennium, Heaven will dwell on earth as the New Jerusalem, which is both the Bride and its dwelling place on earth during that time.

Matt 24:29-31,   29 “But immediately after the tribulation of those days THE SUN WILL BE DARKENED, AND THE MOON WILL NOT GIVE ITS LIGHT, AND THE STARS WILL FALL from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 And then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the SON OF MAN COMING ON THE CLOUDS OF THE SKY with power and great glory. 31 And He will send forth His angels with A GREAT TRUMPET and THEY WILL GATHER TOGETHER His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.

How this passage could somehow be referenced as a proof of the pre-trib rapture is beyond me.  It clearly states that “after the tribulation” Jesus “will send forth His angels” to “gather together his elect”.  This IS the rapture.  The angels are gathering the elect FROM the earth (the four winds).  This is not a gathering from Heaven.  The parallel passage in Mark 13 says “He will send forth the angels, and will gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest end of the earth to the farthest end of heaven.”  If all the elect are already in Heaven because of a previously occurring pre-trib rapture it would not say “from the farthest end of the earth”.

Jude 1:14,15, 4 It was also about these men that Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with many thousands of His holy ones, 15 to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”

Holy ones or saints, hagios, could mean either angels or the ekklesia returning with Christ to earth after being raptured into the air to greet Christ and transformed into their immortal, eternal bodies during the resurrection/rapture.  The passage neither proves the pre-trib rapture nor disproves post-trib.  Christ WILL be coming with the saints already in Heaven to resurrect their bodies and transform those still alive.  Recall that the dead in Christ are raised first (1Thes 4:16), so those coming with Christ will receive their bodies before those still alive, then we who are alive will receive our “resurrection” bodies.

1 Thess 3:13  So that He may establish your hearts without blame in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all His saints.

When Christ comes with all His saints, those saints will be given their resurrection bodies, then we who are alive will be transformed. (1Thes 4:16, 1 Cor 15:51, 52) Paul is talking to someone when Jesus and the saints are coming; who is he talking to, if not the Church/saints still on earth when Christ returns?

Advertisements

6 Responses to Post-Trib Responses to Pre-Trib Beliefs #2

  1. Willard says:

    Not sure that you read my comment on Joels where there is a thread running on the pre-trib I think you may have commented on it there when you were answering the long list of items by Steve defending the pre-trib – what do see with the firey furnace scenero – the people where commanded to fall down and worship just like the A/C will – three were thrown into the furnace but saved by Christ in their midst – I see this as a post trib picture because they still had to through the furnace just like we will have to go through the wrath

    willard

    • Kurt J. says:

      Yes I saw your post and I absolutely agree, Willard. God goes through the fire with us; He gives us grace in the trial, then we receive a crown on the other side.

  2. Kurt J. says:

    Thanks Willard–you showed me that previously; its very interesting. I don’t agree with a couple of their conclusions, however. For instance the page says that the temple was aligned facing east (yes that’s true), but that it was aligned as follows: “Our calculations show that the sun rises at the temple mount, almost at the true magnetic east, at Passover (April 5)” and so “We believe that for this reason, magnetic east is in the correct compass setting that the temple of Solomon was aimed at.”

    First off, I think magnetic direction has varied over the centuries. Secondly, Passover varies by as much as 5-6 weeks, depending on the Lunar calendar. It only occasionally falls on April 5. Third, they state that the temple alignment would have been based on the rising of the sun on Pesach or Shavuot–this may or may not be true. I think a stronger case can be made for a solar east alignment on a specific day–Rosh Hashanah, the probable day of Yeshua’s return!

    And while it was generally facing east, I think they likely followed topography, which resulted in the 5 deg rotation North of East; this is how the temple (if it were to exist!!) would end up facing the rising sun on a day prior to the Autumnal equinox. Just my opinion.

  3. Willard says:

    I must be getting old – cannot remember sending this link to you earlier – I agree with you Rosh Hashanah is very likely the day to watch for I am particulary watching 2015 as there is a lot of stuff coming together – but time will tell

  4. Don says:

    [Hi, Prophe*site, Sharing what I ran into on the amazing net.]

    PRETRIB RAPTURE SCHOLAR WANNABES!

    by Dave MacPherson

    To become a PH.D (Pretrib History Distorter) or a D.D. (Doctrinal Deviant), do the following:

    (1) MISSPELL THE LAST NAMES OF MANUEL LACUNZA, MARGARET MACDONALD, C. I. SCOFIELD, HAL LINDSEY, GRANT JEFFREY, TIM LAHAYE ETC.

    (2) STATE THAT MARGARET MACDONALD WAS A PLYMOUTH BRETHREN MEMBER, OR THAT JOHN DARBY WAS HER PASTOR.
    Wrong and wrong.

    (3) OR GUESS THAT MARGARET WAS AN IRVINGITE, OR THAT EDWARD IRVING WAS HER PASTOR.
    Wrong and wrong again.

    (4) ASSUME THAT MARGARET MACDONALD ORIGINATED “DISPENSATIONALISM.”
    This “straw man” assumption by Jack Kinsella (“Is Dispensationalism a Recent Doctrine?,” 8/11/11) is totally missing from all genuine scholarship, and Jack can’t find her even mentioning that long word!

    (5) CLAIM THAT MARGARET’S PRIVATELY CIRCULATED 1830 RAPTURE “REVELATION” TAUGHT ONLY THE POSTTRIB VIEW.
    Longtime No. 1 pretrib rapture leader John Walvoord’s “Rapture Question” proves (p. 105f) that Margaret’s view (that only PART of the Church gets raptured) has long been a widely held form of the PREtrib view – and Charles Ryrie’s 1981 “rapture” book and other pretrib works have purposely ignored Walvoord!
    Margaret’s 1830 “revelation” saw “the one taken [before Antichrist’s revealing] and the other left.” The PART of the Church left on earth after the rapture was viewed by her collectively as “the Church” – the same wording used in the same way by later partial rapturists! (Google “X-Raying Margaret” and “Edward Irving is Unnerving.”)

    (6) REPEAT THE FALSEHOOD THAT JOHN DARBY WAS DISPENSATIONALISM’S “FATHER.”
    Darby wasn’t original on any crucial aspect of that system including the “church/Israel dichotomy,” the church being absent from a future “Jewish” tribulation, the “Jewish” book of Matthew, the “literal method,” the “Gentile parenthesis,” the “ruin of the church,” and especially the “pretribulation rapture.” Margaret was the first to “discover” pretrib in the Bible and she shared her novel interpretation only privately with others (spring of 1830). Rev. Edward Irving and his followers, who credited Margaret, were the first to publicly teach it (September of 1830) in the Irvingite journal “The Morning Watch.” Darby didn’t clearly express pretrib until 1839 – and when he did he plagiarized the exact same Rev. 12 “man child caught up” argument Irving had publicly used eight years earlier!

    (7) TRY NOT TO REPRODUCE MARGARET’S 117-LINE PRETRIB RAPTURE “REVELATION.”
    But if you do, copy it like Thomas Ice who in 1989 copied it so quickly he somehow omitted a total of 49 words from different sentences – the same 49 words that Tim LaHaye left behind in his 1992 book “No Fear of the Storm”! LaHaye (pp. 168, 207) also came up with two different titles for Lacunza’s famous old book – neither one correct! (Google “Thomas Ice (Bloopers),” “America’s Pretrib Rapture Traffickers” (which reveals that Ice’s “Ph.D” was issued by a school that was fined by the state of Texas for illegally issuing degrees!), “Pretrib Expert John Walvoord Melts Ice,” and “LaHaye’s Temperament.”

    (8) DON’T LET YOURSELF QUOTE ACTS 2:34-35, ACTS 3:21, OR I THESS. 1:7-8.
    Why? They prove that Christ can’t leave heaven ahead of time for a pretrib rapture!

    (9) READ PRETRIB INTO AS MANY PRE-1830 WRITERS AS POSSIBLE.
    Such writers used only double meaning or unclear phrases like “escape,” “taken away,” “before the general conflagration,” “before Armageddon” etc. – but many of your readers will believe you if you assert that the ancient writers were really teaching pretrib!
    Even Walvoord couldn’t find ANYONE before the time of Darby (whom Walvoord labeled as an “early pretribulationist”!) who taught pretrib, so Walvoord had to settle for only what seemed to be “imminence” (in three of the earliest church documents) which seemingly could fit into the pretrib scheme – and Walvoord even censored portions of the ancient statements which, when quoted completely, revealed the posttrib view! Is it possible that John Bray, Thomas Ice, Grant Jeffrey and some others can locate – or manufacture – evidence of pretrib before 1830 that even Walvoord couldn’t find?! (To see exposures of those claiming to find pretrib before 1830, Google my internet article entitled “Deceiving and Being Deceived.”)

    (10) IGNORE ARTICLES ON GOOGLE AND YAHOO LIKE “PRETRIB RAPTURE – HIDDEN FACTS,” “PRETRIB RAPTURE DIEHARDS,” AND “PRETRIB RAPTURE SECRECY.”
    If you ignore this advice, at least take some tranquilizers first!

    (11) PLAGIARIZING IS EASIER THAN RESEARCHING. BUT TRY TO DISGUISE YOUR THIEVERY!
    If you think that stealing isn’t a way of life for pretrib promoters (from Darby to LaHaye), you’ve never Googled “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty,” “Appendix F: Thou Shalt Not Steal,” or “Thieves’ Marketing.”

    (12) IF ALL ELSE FAILS, CLAIM THAT REV. 3:10 PROVES PRETRIB.
    Avoid Googling “Famous Rapture Watchers” which reveals how the greatest New Testament Greek scholars of all time interpreted it.

    Finally, I invite you to obtain my 300-page, highly endorsed online book “The Rapture Plot.” What you’ve read so far in this paper is less than one percent of the mountains of documentation on pretrib rapture history in this book of mine. Some of my web articles, such as the ones listed above, are on various blogs (owned by my good friend Joe Ortiz) including “The End Times Passover” and “Why Christians Will Suffer Great Tribulation.” Joe is the author of two excellent books that biblically refute the Rapture to Heaven mythology, namely, “The End Times Passover” and “Why Christians Will Suffer ‘Great Tribulation.’ “

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: