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The Rapture

Discussion in 'Christian Theology Forum' started by th1b.taylor, May 7, 2011.

  1. th1b.taylor

    th1b.taylor Active Member

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    For some time since my salvation I have been presented with a variety of ideas as to just what a Christian is and it has become very popular to lower the standard to allow greater numbers to come into the fold and to disregard what the Bible, the revelation of God and f His will for His people. Before I became a follower of my LORD, Jesus, the Christ, I thought the idea of any of the scripture being the truth. Since my conversion in 1990 my entire out look and my complete life has been regenerated and it is my firm position that every word of the scriptures, contained in the Christian Bible, is the God inspired truth.

    Now you have my statement of faith and we'll move on to the subject matter. The variety of beliefs today that attempt to be labeled 'Christian' run a very wide range from my position to 'the Bible is not the Word of God but the Word of God can be found there.' After the past 21 years of study, the one thing that I know for certain is that a saved man, woman or child are indwelt with the Holy Spirit of God! Now, on that basis and God's knowledge of what each of His Children needs I understand that the applied meaning of any scripture or group of scriptures will vary from Child of God to Child of God.

    As I have studied and as I have matured in my faith over the past two decades I have read and reread the scriptures. On each reading God has revealed new truths and all of them from the same scriptures. Not one lesson learned disagrees with any other lesson from a certain point in scripture but rather each lesson clarifies and magnifies the other. As the years have passed I have learned some great points I had not discovered yet and at the same time I have been used of God to teach some points others had missed until God revealed them through me.

    From all of this we have, what I am instructed to understand as twelve points of Christianity. I submit to you;

    Twelve Points That Show Christianity is True
    Truth about reality is knowable.
    The opposite of true is false.
    It is true that the theistic God exists.
    If God exists, then miracles are possible.
    Miracles can be used to confirm a message from God
    (i.e., as an act of God to confirm a word from God).
    The New Testament is historically reliable.
    The New Testament says Jesus claimed to be God.
    Jesus' claim to be God was miraculously confirmed by:
    a. His fulfillment of many prophecies about Himself;
    b. His sinless and miraculous life;
    c. His prediction and accomplishment of His resurrection.
    Therefore, Jesus is God.
    Whatever Jesus (who is God) teaches is true.
    Jesus taught that the Bible is the Word of God.
    Therefore, it is true that the Bible is the Word of God
    (and anything opposed to it is false)
    Copied from theologyweb.com
    Now we are at my point concerning the Rapture! The term rapture is not found in the English translations I have read, rather the term is used to codify the teaching of Paul in 1Thes. 4;13-18. In a recent post, in response to one of mine a slippery accusation was leveled at me that fell just short of accusing the person of not being saved. While in my post I had not even alluded to such I am guilty of believing every word of the scriptures and I have serious doubt of anyone that does not hold that position.

    So we have arrived at the point where I usually recommend self examination because I am not God and I can condemn no one, that is God's providence. As per Matt. 7, all of it, it is my place to judge/discern the truth and the criteria I am to use is to inspect their fruit. If a person tells me they do not believe anything the Bible teaches, their fruit is suspect! It all comes down to one point, if the Bible, the Holy Scriptures, teach it we must believe it by faith or we need to nourish our faith a bit more, one or the other.
     
  2. Thankful 1

    Thankful 1 New Member

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    I have no disagreement with your post. I would like to know what God has reviled to you about the following verses.





    (1 John 3:9) “No one, who has been begotten by God sins; because God’s seed remains inside him, he cannot sin when he has been begotten by God.”



    (1 John 3:8) “He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work”





    (1 John 2:27) “But you have not lost the anointing that he gave you, and you do not need anyone to teach you, the anointing he gave teaches you everything; you are anointed with truth, not a lie, and as it has taught you, so you must stay in him.”



    (John 10:1-5)"I tell you the truth, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. The man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep. The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger's voice."
     
  3. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    Amen! Every word in the Bible is God breathed and profitable for learning, growing and teaching! It is not for us to pick and chose which we take on board and that which we disregard. All of it is precious!


    This is great! I don't know that I've ever seen it so concisely put!

    In terms of the Rapture...well, it cannot be doubted as fact. Paul clearly says that and Jesus' second coming, those still alive will be gathered into the air to meet Him. By definition, that is the Rapture...however you want to label it. I think the big issue here is timing, and I must confess that this has stumped me greatly over the years. I would be very interested in what you think on this...if you don't mind!?
     
  4. tomwebster

    tomwebster New Member

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    th1b.taylor,

    Your poll is flawed. You are assuming that the one statement equals the other and they are not equal. The first part is true but the second is false. Scripture is the Word of God, true. The "rapture" is not in Scripture.


     
  5. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    What do you call the gathering together in the air of Christians then?


    1 Thessalonians 4:17 (English Standard Version)
    [sup]17[/sup]Then we who are alive, who are left, will be[sup][/sup] caught up together with them[sup][/sup] in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.


    It very much sounds like the Bible is saying that when Jesus comes back, there will be Christians alive and they will be caught up in the air to meet Jesus. That very much sounds like the definition of the Rapture, the harpazo, which means "to carry off" or "snatch up".

    Despite the many and vast differences in eschatological timing, I think we can be sure...because the Bible tells us, that when Christ returns, we will be "caught up".
     
  6. tomwebster

    tomwebster New Member

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    I call it an inaccurate description of what happens when Christ returns when the trumpet sounds. “harpazō” does not mean we are flying anywhere. It is talking about that moment when Christ’s feet touch the ground, the moment when He returns with that great “cloud of witnesses” (Heb 12:1), our flesh bodies drop off and we are changed back into our Spiritual bodies, our “incorruption” bodies (1Co 15:50-54), our (“aēr”) breath bodies, and we will again join Christ and those that have gone on before. This is in the morning of the Day of the Lord and at the conclusion of the Night of the Lord.


     
  7. St Columcille

    St Columcille New Member

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    The passage in 1 Thess. for "caught up" is in the Latin "rapture." Hence, it is found in Scripture. What you have confused here is the doctrine of second advent's timing of events. I was taught and raised to believe in the pretribulation rapture, but after listening to Dr. Walter Martin, I changed to the post-tribulation rapture. Now I am more indifferent and just say "second advent" and on a personal level believe in amillinialism and I do believe there will be a rapture at the end of the age of the Church. Regardless of the various views of the rapture's placement in terms of the great tribulation, I haven't seen any Christian deny 1 Thess.. Hence, I answered yes in the vote.
     
  8. tomwebster

    tomwebster New Member

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    You are you one that is confused not me. Believe anything you want. You will find out soon enough. Scripture was written in Hebrew and Koine Greek not Latin. The Latin is a translation.


     
  9. lawrance

    lawrance New Member

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    The bit about the -caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air ?
    A mate believes that he will be raptured up. as in he could be driving along and then he will in a blink of an eye not be in the car and the car will crash out of control is that what you people believe ?

    I see it as the CLOUDS as like as when Jesus was talking to moses story and AIR is as in the Spirit. and it is good for us to be their and we can pitch tents.
    You do know what clouds represent in them times ?
     
  10. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    The passage doesn't actually mention Jesus feet touching the ground...that is spoken of elsewhere. Here, this passage talks of us meeting Him, in the air, as He returns. You seem to imply that 'flying' somewhere is impossible and stupid, but quite clearly the Bible doesn't regard it as such. Enoch and Elijah are both taken into heaven in bodily forms, whether they flew or were just 'beamed up' doesn't really matter, they were taken up. In fact all who die believers are taken up, only in spirit now, but the Bible tells us in this passage that when Jesus returns others will be bodily taken up. The wording is quite clear.


    [16] For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. [17] Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.
    (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 ESV)


    Some commentary on this passage, just so you don't think I'm basing my view on my own supposition:
    Dead Christians rise from their graves to the realm of the living, and then the living and the dead together are caught up from the earth into the air to meet Christ. The Greek for “caught up” (harpazō, “to grab or seize suddenly, to snatch, take away”) gives a sense of being forcibly and suddenly lifted upward (see John 6:15; Acts 8:39). together with. The dead Christians would suffer no disadvantage (cf. “we who are alive … will not precede,” 1 Thess. 4:15). clouds. Probably not earthly rain clouds but the clouds of glory that surround the presence of God (cf. Ex. 13:21; 33:9–10; 40:38; Num. 12:5; 1 Kings 8:10–11; Ps. 97:2; Dan. 7:13; Matt. 17:5; Mark 13:26; Acts 1:9; Rev. 14:14). to meet. The Greek term apantēsis is often used of an important dignitary's reception by the inhabitants of a city, who come out to greet and welcome their honored guest with fanfare and celebration, then accompany him into the city (cf. Matt. 25:6; Acts 28:15; a related term hypantēsis is used in Matt. 25:1; John 12:13). It may indicate that the subsequent movement of the saints after meeting Christ “in the air” conforms to Christ's direction, thus in a downward motion toward the earth. in the air. The sky.

    Now I grant you that the "clouds" are more likely to mean something other than rain clouds, but the usage of the words "caught up" and also "in the air", simply and clearly implies that we will meet Jesus as He returns to earth in the same fashion that He left. And quite frankly, Jesus "flew away". He rose up in the air until the 'clouds' covered Him from the disciples view. Now obviously, if we meet Him on His way to earth, it is before His feet touch down on the Mount of Olives.

    1 Cor 15:50 does not state that we are given our new imperishable bodies only after Jesus has returned to the Mt of Olives, it only says that we who are alive will recieve them after the dead are raised and given theirs. Which is what 1 Thess 4:16-17 says, only it says that this will happen after we have been caught up.

    So while you are able to have your own opinions of this event, I just can't find Biblical references to back them up, I can only see that you are perhaps extrapolating from these passages.
     
  11. Rach1370

    Rach1370 New Member

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    Ah, we're talking about timing here...your mate is probably pre-trib. I honestly don't know what to think on specific timing, but I don't believe that the Bible teaches that Jesus' second coming will be a two part spectacular! I think that when Christ breaks into human history the second time, to end it, that it will be once and for all, just as his first coming was. His first time was with humility to save us, to introduce His kingdom, and the second time He will return as King, triumphant and His Kingdom will be ushered in. So maybe you could call me post-trib. But then I couldn't tell you if I think the tribulation is going to be an actual event or metaphorical....just as the millennium....actual or metaphorical...I just don't know.

    As far as the "clouds" I do believe that refers to, well, heavenly glory surrounding Him But the passage also talks of being "caught up" and "in the air"....to me that says pretty clearly that we will be taken up, in the air with Jesus as He returns to earth the second time. We know that He will return this way to us (Acts 1:11), so it's not so much of a stretch to think this is exactly what the passage is talking about.
     
  12. jiggyfly

    jiggyfly New Member

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    Where do you find that Jesus taught that the "bible" is the Word of God? Is there any mention of the "bible" in the scriptures?
     
  13. th1b.taylor

    th1b.taylor Active Member

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    This issue is so constantly brought up by the legalists but here goes... one more time. (John 1:1-3) Jesus is the God of the Bible! There is nothing in this world that He did not create, including the Bible. Every "writer" of any portion of the Bible was used, in much the same fashion as a CEO uses his or her secretary, to record their words. (2Tim 3:16)

    The writers put nothing forward except that God/Jesus speaks it to them.
     
    Rach1370 likes this.
  14. jiggyfly

    jiggyfly New Member

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    There is no bible mentioned in John 1:1-3 and actually I can not find "bible" anywhere in the scriptures. Can you?

    Now, I do see in John 1 where the scriptures say that Jesus is the Word of God but the "bible" is not Jesus. The bible is a compilation of "canonized" scripture that has been translated into many different languages.

    I believe that scripture is inspired by God but the translations of these scriptures are not perfect.

    Can you give some scriptures to support your claim of the "bible" and clarify if it is inclusive of all bibles?
     
  15. Joshua David

    Joshua David New Member

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    Do you doubt God's ability to perserve his Word in saying what he meant? The 'bible' is the most tested, the most debated, the most criticized work in all of literacy history, and yet it has stood the test of time. It is also held to the highest standard that no other work of literacy is held to. I would say that is a strong argument that God is in control, and he has preserved his word. When you deny the legitimacy of the bible's correctness, then you turn the bible into nothing short of a buffet line, where people get to pick and choose what they want to follow in the bible, and I don't think that is what God had in mind at all? Do you?

    Joshua David


     
  16. veteran

    veteran New Member

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    I agree with Tom on the wording of the question, since how many understand the word 'rapture' today involves a huge dividing line between pre-trib and post-trib. Using "caught up" would have been sufficient to exclude that huge gap.

    The event Apostle Paul spoke of in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 is not a stand-alone Scripture. The events to occur at Christ's second coming are given throughout God's Word. And everyone of them must be equally weighed along with what Paul was teaching there.

    Also, much of what Paul preached in his Epistles was first written in the Old Testament prophets. If folks would quit treating those Books of God's prophets as if they were dead history, they might find quit a bit about this event Paul was preaching in 1 Thess.4. There's more written about it than just simple comparisons to Elijah being taken up.

    Acts 1 states that Christ will come "in like manner" as He ascended into Heaven. A cloud took Him up from the Mount of Olives, and that's the same Greek word that's in 1 Thess.4:17 about a cloud. In Luke 21:27 our Lord also testified of that cloud of His coming.

    But like someone said when Jesus met Moses and Elias (Elijah) in Luke 9:29-36 a cloud overshadowed Christ, AND Peter and those with him which scared them. So what was that?

    When the spirit of Moses and Elijah appeared to Christ and spoke with Him, Christ was transfigured, and Peter saw them. That was the Heavenly dimension opened up on that spot. That was no ordinary cloud up in the sky. It may have appeared like a normal cloud, but it didn't operate like one.

    We're given that same kind of witness about that type of 'cloud' in the Old Testament prophets. God led Israel by day through the wilderness in the pillar of a cloud. When The LORD spoke to Moses upon Sinai, a cloud covered the mount. That cloud was upon the tent of the congregation covering it. That cloud also appeared upon the Mercy Seat of the Ark of The Covenant.

    Paul used the Greek word 'harpazo' that's rendered "caught up" in the KJV Bible. Greek harpazo means to be seized, but it does not define direction. The KJV translators added the idea of up, no doubt because of how Christ ascended in a cloud.

    Yet that word for "caught up" is used in 2 Corinthians 12 about the one Paul mentioned that was caught up to the third heaven, to Paradise. That one caught up didn't die, otherwise he wouldn't have lived to tell about it. So HOW does that event of being caught up link to 1 Thess.4:17 being caught up, especially since they are both the same Greek word?

    In 1 Cor.15 Paul mentioned about those alive on earth being changed at the twinkling of an eye when Christ comes. In Isaiah 25 is mentioned about a vail that's over all nations being removed in association with that event. In Rev.1, we're told that every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Christ will see His coming with clouds.

    That's why I see the 1 Thess.4:17 verse pointing to the time when the Heavenly dimension is revealed all of sudden, to everybody. And with Christ bringing the asleep saints with Him to earth. At that same moment we are gathered to Him and those saints that were asleep. But to where?

    Zechariah 14 does declare Christ's coming, His return, and His feet standing upon the Mount of Olives. As His feet set down there, I believe that's also the same time we will be gathered there, seized (harpazo) if you will. Very quickly, we are all changed and see Him, and immediately seized to Him in the holy lands of promise. It's clearly an event involving the revealing of the Heavenly dimension to all people.

    God's Word is definite that the Heavenly is going to be revealed upon this earth, the vail hiding it right now taken away at that moment.
     
  17. aspen

    aspen “"The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few

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    The development of doctrine involved in rapture theology is the Protestant version of the Catholic doctrine of Purgatory.
     
  18. TWC

    TWC New Member

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    I don't chime in here much anymore, but I thought I'd share this.

    John 11:24-25
    Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live,

    John 6:39
    And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day.

    John 6:40
    For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.

    John 6:44
    No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.

    Now this...

    1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
    Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.

    Those who are alive and remain can't go before the dead in Christ. Those are Paul's words, not mine. The dead in Christ are being raised up on the last day. Those are Christ's words, not mine. Put them both together, and you'll find that the pretrib teaching simply doesn't work.

    If you still don't believe what I'm saying, that's your decision, but the best way to be prepared to go is to be prepared to stay.
     
  19. Foreigner

    Foreigner New Member

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    -- Except that, unlike Purgatory, there is at least some scripture to support the idea.
     
  20. rockytopva

    rockytopva Well-Known Member Encounter Team

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    I don't understand the much ado. The bible says that the Lord will come as a thief in the night (1 Thessalonians 5:2, 2 Peter 3:10, Matthew 24:43, 44, 45, 1 Corinthians 15:52, 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17) and for us to be ready for it. We are suppose to be ready for it to come at any hour and on any day! Simply be ready for at any time for these are the days...

    [sup]37[/sup]But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

    [sup]38[/sup]For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,

    [sup]39[/sup]And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

    [sup]40[/sup]Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

    [sup]41[/sup]Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

    [sup]42[/sup]Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

    [sup]43[/sup]But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.

    [sup]44[/sup]Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.

    [sup]45[/sup]Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?

    [sup]46[/sup]Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.

    [sup]47[/sup]Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.

    [sup]48[/sup]But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;

    [sup]49[/sup]And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;

    [sup]50[/sup]The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,

    [sup]51[/sup]And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. - Matthew 24: 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45,46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51
     
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