The Rapture, a popular protestant defense


#1

“For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” The Book of Revelation, which deals primarily with the time period of the Tribulation, is a prophetic message of how God will pour out His wrath upon the earth during the Tribulation. It would seem inconsistent for God to promise believers that they will not suffer wrath and then leave them on the earth during the Tribulation.


#2

[quote=Valtiel]“For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” The Book of Revelation, which deals primarily with the time period of the Tribulation, is a prophetic message of how God will pour out His wrath upon the earth during the Tribulation. It would seem inconsistent for God to promise believers that they will not suffer wrath and then leave them on the earth during the Tribulation.
[/quote]

Another crucial passage on the timing of the Rapture is Revelation 3:10. There, Christ promises to deliver believers from the “hour of trial” that is going to come upon the earth. This could mean two things: (1) Christ will protect believers in the midst of the trials, or (2) Christ will deliver believers out of the trials. Both are valid meanings of the Greek word translated “from.” However, it is important to recognize what believers are promised to be kept “from.” It is not just the trial, but the “hour” of trial. Christ is promising to keep believers from the very time period that contains the trials, namely the Tribulation. The purpose of the Tribulation, the purpose of the Rapture, the meaning of 1 Thessalonians 5:9, and the interpretation of Revelation 3:10 all give clear support to the Pretribulational position. If the Bible is interpreted literally and consistently, the Pretribulational position is the most Biblically consistent interpretation.


#3

I think that wrath is talking about Hell. The slavation of Jesus is from salvation from Hell.


#4

If it’s so Biblically consistant (most Biblically consistant), why don’t ALL Protestants believe it. This is not true.

ALSO, to say that God will rapture out his church (and how come nobody knew this before the mid 1800s), is VERY insulting to the Christians now. What about those suffering in China? Do you have any idea how MUCH torture they go through?!! AND GOD DOESN’T TAKE THEM AWAY!!

ALSO!! Look at the Book of Revelation – :smiley: it tells how much works matter!!! “Church One - Church 7…You done good, but, now, you’re not doing good no more…if you don’t get back to doing good works, you will not be with Me.”

Incidentally, as you may have already conjured, that is NOT what 1 Thess was talking about!!! That means that Jesus Christ would come back…3 times…VERY unBibilical!!


#5

I always thought it was funny how people who believe in the Rapture think Jesus will wisk them away when persecutions come, yet they can’t imagine Jesus’ own mother being Assumed during a period of horrible persecutions by Rome.


#6

First of all, for a pre-tribulationist to believe that interpretation of this verse, he has to assume a “once saved always saved” position, which is in itself un-biblical. In actuality, this verse applies to all men, whether they are un-saved or Christians, who still have the free-will to fall.

Notice that the New Testament which is addressed to Christians warns the readers that to disobey God invites his wrath upon them.

Look up the following verses in context:

Ro 1:18 -
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth.

Ro 2:5 -
But by your hard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed.

Ro 2:8 -
but for those who are factious and do not obey the truth, but obey wickedness, there will be wrath and fury.

Ro 3:5 -
But if our wickedness serves to show the justice of God, what shall we say? That God is unjust to inflict wrath on us?

Ro 9:22 -
What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience the vessels of wrath made for destruction,

Ro 13:4 -
for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain; he is the servant of God to execute his wrath on the wrongdoer.

Ro 13:5 -
Therefore one must be subject, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience.

Eph 2:3 -
Among these we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of body and mind, and so we were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

Eph 5:6 -
Let no one deceive you with empty words, for it is because of these things that the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.

Col 3:6 -
On account of these the wrath of God is coming.

Col 3:8 -
But now put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and foul talk from your mouth.

Another dispensationalist error is the notion that the Book of Revelation “deals primarily with the time period of the Tribulation, is a prophetic message of how God will pour out His wrath upon the earth during the Tribulation.” In reality, only the last two chapters deal explicitly with the Second Coming. The rest of the book, most scholars say, deals with events in the first century.

For more information on the proper Catholic understanding of the Book of Revelation and the “End Times,” go here:

carl-olson.com/rapture_articles.html


#7

Valtiel,

Let’s look at the points you posted here. I assume you are repeating something you read somewhere.

The person who posted about “wrath” meaning Hell (it is contrasted with “salvation,” after all) is absolutely correct. The verse about “God did not appoint us to suffer wrath” does not deal with earthly tribulations at all. In fact, Jesus in Matthew 24:22 says that if the tribulation–and he is definitely talking about the end times there–were not shortened, nobody would be saved, but for the sake of the elect these days would be shortened. This most definitely does not point to a pre-Tribulational Rapture. (I realize that the pre-Tribulationists interpret “the elect” here as being a new set of converts who missed the Rapture, but if Jesus were talking about this I think He would have said so. As it is, He was talking to people about what they were going to have to look for.)

The interpretations you give about Revelation here assume, as your post said, that the Book of Revelation is dealing primarily with the “Great Tribulation.” This is not so; much of it is an interpretation of first-century history. For example, 666 is a code number for Nero Caesar based on the letters in his name in Greek. Certainly, Revelation does deal in part with “end times” (at the end, for example, John has the vision of the new Jerusalem) but the end times are said to have started already (I John 2:18, for example). So the clear support suddenly gets murky.

Another person posting a reply to you has noted that in history, God’s record in delivering Christians from tribulations has been abysmal. I would echo that assertion. The tsunami last December, for example, swept away Christian and non-Christian alike. Such deliverances as come, I think (and this is STRICTLY an “I think”), would take more the form of the Israelites at the first Passover when they huddled in their houses as the Angel of Death passed over them. Another example is Jeremiah 39:15-18. It’s a lot more like your interpretation (1), that God will protect believers in the midst of trials, but again I will say that His record of doing this in history is not at all good. “The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.”

Your post mentions “the purpose of the Rapture” and “the purpose of the Tribulation” as also giving support to the pre-Tribulation Rapture position. What these purposes are your source does not say, and I don’t know where the Bible talks about them either, so I can’t say whether or not they support pre-Tribulationism. But I would be skeptical.

  • Liberian

#8

Me thinks this could be Satan at work. If those who proclaim Christianity that belief in the pre-trib rapture are disappointed, they may be those who “lose faith” during the final persecution. No easy route out, like all of their teachings, so they give up because they never understood that the true Christian faith is one based upon hardships and suffering. It takes work to worship God and I think that some who realize that there is no easy route to salvation might be suprised and lose faith in their Church. Hopefully most will see the errors and return to the Catholic Church.


#9

I grew up in churches that taught about the pre-trib rapture. Of course, at the time I believed it. I didn’t know any better. But I did wonder about it. I had a fair amount of “suffering” in my life. I was in an abusive family and had major depression from the age of 7. In looking at this teaching, I always wondered, “If God doesn’t want us to suffer, why am I suffering?”

But Jesus never promised us that we wouldn’t suffer. In fact, He guaranteed that we would!! :yup: He said that the servent is no greater than his master. Jesus is the master here, and we are his servents. Look at his suffering. Do we honestly expect to escape suffering? :hmmm: :ehh:


#10

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