I’m in a discussion on another board with what was about faith and works, but has sort of shifted into a discussion about the rapture. The person I’m discussing this with has outlined a sort of timeline or something (He’s hard to follow sometimes) and I don’t think I believe it. He keeps talking about two judgements for the unsaved and one for the saved, the saved being only judged by Christ but the unsaved being judged by God, the saved being judged before the Throne of Jesus and the unsaved judged before the White Throne. Here’s his last post, can anyone help me make sense of and refute this? (I’m Pascal, even though they keep calling me Paschal)
Paschal, context is very important, and equally important is TIME LINE. I have outlined the time line for you pertaining to the CATCHING UP of the Church (ALL CHRISTIANS) at the time of Christ returning to get them. But understand that when the Church is RAPTURED, that They (the Church) meet Christ IN THE AIR. He is not returning to earth just yet. When he does the The Church will come with Him as His Mighty Army.
1st Thessalonians Chapter 4 verse 16. For the Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and the trump of God: and DEAD IN CHRIST SHALL RISE FIRST: Verse 17. 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.
Note where this meeting takes place. Not on earth, but IN THE AIR. No mention of thel lost, being resurrected, they will be the last.
Once again here in Thessalonians we see THE CHURCH i.e. the Christians being RESURRECTED AND caught up BEFORE THE LOST are resurrected and judged. The Church is ALREADY saved, and will not be JUDGED FOR SIN, as Christ has ALREADY paid their sin debt. They will be judged for their GOOD WORKS. The saved are unless RAPTURED BEFORE DEATH are destined to die only once.
The lost are destined to DIE TWICE. Once on earth, and the FINAL JUDGEMENT when the lost are sentenced to Hell, which is the SECOND DEATH. Thus verse 14, in Revelation Chapter 20; And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the SECOND DEATH.
Right now I plan on saying, “To accept your timeline it would be necessary to believe that Revelation is literal, which I do not. Revelation is apocryphal literature which has historically been literature that discusses a current topic in an encoded or secret way in order to avoid death or torture at the hands of those in power (in this case Nero). I believe the numbers listed in Revelation are symbolic (like the 1000 year reign you mention refers to a complete and perfect kingdom of God). Finally, the rapture is too young a theory and not found in any of the writings I have read of the Early Church Fathers, so I don’t believe it either.”