In the midst of going through the written transcripts of parts 1 & 2 of this series, the Holy Spirit quickened to me that I was in error on a few things. We are never too old to learn saints and I do not want to lead any one into error.
Let ask you when does the NEW HEAVEN and the NEW EARTH come into being, before the Thousand year reign or after? So what are these following scriptures actually referring to? Christ's return before the Thousand year reign, or after?
It is written
But THE DAY OF THE LORD will come as a *THIEF in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a GREAT NOISE, and the elements shall MELT with FREVENT HEAT, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be BURNED UP.
Seeing then that all these things shall be DISSOLVED, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
LOOKING FOR and hasting unto the coming of THE DAY OF GOD, wherein the heavens being on FIRE shall be DISSOLVED, and the elements shall MELT with FERVENT HEAT?
Nevertheless we, according to his PROMISE, look for NEW HEAVENS and a NEW EARTH, wherein dwelleth righteousness. 2 Peter 3:10-13
I now believe that "THE DAY OF GOD" here, is referring to the time of the GREAT WHITE THRONE JUDGMENT.
As it is written: (Revelation 20:11-12)
And I saw a GREAT WHITE THRONE, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before GOD; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
Let me ask you if "The Day of the Lord" is to come like a *THIEF in the night (a favorite pre-trib rapture scripture) and the earth and the works there in are going to be burned up, who is going to be "left behind" to go through the Great Tribulation?
This scripture is still quoted to back the pre-trib "rapture" theory, that Jesus is coming like a "THIEF in the night" and take only his "church" out. It is going to be a "secret" coming they say and only the church will even know it is occurring.
However that is false assertion, and a false assumption and a gross twisting of scripture, because the event written of here takes place after the thousand year reign, as written of in the following scripture.
As it is written:
And I saw a NEW HEAVEN and a NEW EARTH: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
It was that little scripture that the Holy Spirit used to make me start doing some RE-thinking...
These and other scriptures were what got me questioning the pre-trib rapture theory when I was first saved.
One can not split the scriptures in half, and say, well the fist part is talking about the pre-trib rapture, and the other half is talking about when Jesus comes back a 2nd time, at the end of the tribulation on Judgment day! Well you just can't do that to this piece of scripture, that is not rightly dividing the Word of God.
What were these saints being told to "look for" ?
They were told to be looking for "The Day of God", and the New Heaven and the New Earth, not an escape from the Great Tribulation, that is to come upon all the earth.
Now this would have been a good place for the writer to say, "We according to His promise look for an escape from tribulation", but that is not what is written. These saints were awaiting the time of the promised, return of Christ, and their promised Resurrection, and the promised New Heaven and the New Earth.
Now here is another set of scriptures that refer to the Lord's return as a THIEF in the night....
1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
For yourselves know perfectly that “THE DAY of the LORD” so cometh as a “THIEF” in the night.
For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then SUDDEN DESTRUCTION cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a THIEF.
Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.
But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, THE HOPE OF SALVATION.
For God hath not appointed us to WRATH, but to obtain SALVATION by our Lord Jesus Christ.
Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep (live or die), we should live together with him.
Wherefore COMFORT YOURSELVES together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.
So our HOPE is in our SALVATION and CHRIST'S RETURN, not a pre-trib rapture, not an ESCAPE. We are not appointed to God's WRATH as it is written, that is what we escape, not the Great Tribulation.
What is our BLESSED HOPE? Is it a pre-trib "Rapture" or is it the return of Christ and our Resurrection?
What are we to be LOOKING for?
It is written:
For the grace of God that bringeth SALVATION hath appeared to all men,
Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
LOOKING for that BLESSED HOPE, and the GLORIOUS APPEARING of the great GOD and our SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST.
What is our HOPE?
It is written;
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
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.
The words...*SHOUT and the *TRUMP of GOD! .. just didn't sound like a quiet, "secret" second coming, or "rapture", or "appearing", to me when I read these scriptures!
Is this speaking of a pre-tribulation "Rapture" or is this speaking of the end time RESURRECTION?
Is this Resurrection for the whole “Church” from its beginning to its end, at the RETURN OF CHRIST? Or is it just to be applied to the present day church?
Those who have died for their faith up until this present day, did not escape death. How much worse will the Great Tribulation be, than having to die for the gospel and the word of our testimony?
What of those who it is said, are too luke warm to go in the rapture?
Are they having to suffer unto death during the Great Tribulation in order to make them worthy to enter into the Glory of the Lord?
So far we not have not read one word of escaping tribulation. Not one word of an escape from "Great Tribulation" being our BLESSED HOPE. Because it's not. Our blessed Hope is Christ's return and that we be as He now is, at the time of the RESURRECTION.
If I haven't as yet, touched on your favorite Pre-Trib Rapture scripture, be patient with me, I will no doubt get to it, in Parts 2 or 3.
This blog is designed to make you "think". Also to encourage,exhort,edify and "Warn" the saints of God as we see the day of The Lord on the horrizon.