P & C 890

Pro and Con 890

Posted 4-9-02

My reply to a post on 5 Doves site

http://www.fivedoves.com/letters/apr2002/jacqued45.htm Jacque Driskell (5 Apr) "2 points on rapture around Pentecoste"

> > I 'm not sure we have seen the 7 seals yet and they must precede Revelation 7. The seals could occur in one day's time...the 6th seal will be unmistakably a worldwide and catastrophic event. I believe it will be God's supernatural intervention for Jerusalem

I feel sure that we haven't seen any of the seals yet. I don't think the Bride of Christ will see any of the seals broken while she is on Earth. The Bride of Christ is seen in Heaven in Rev. 5:9. She is "OUT OF (EK) every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation" before the first seal is broken in Rev. 6.

The same word, "ek," is found in Rev. 3:10. It says, "Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee FROM (EK, OUT OF) the hour of temptation (the Tribulation), which shall come upon ALL THE WORLD, to try them that dwell upon the earth."

Both the Pre-Trib Rapture and the Pre-Wrath Rapture must take place before the breaking of the 7th seal lets the 7 trumpet judgments hit Earth. The Pre-Wrath Rapture takes place between the breaking of the 6th and 7th seals. We see this group in Rev. 7:9,14.

Since the shortening of the Great Tribulation takes place between the 6th and 7th seals, and the last verse of Rev. 6 says, "the great day of his wrath is come," I think the 6th seal is opened on the Eve of Trumpets. That is when the 7th seal is broken. The small rocks that fall like figs in Rev. 6:13 are the forerunners of the 2 asteroid pieces that fall the next day at noon (Rev. 8:8,10; Zeph. 2:4,5).

The first four seals are broken during the first 1260 days of the Tribulation. By the 4th one, the Satan possessed False Prophet of Rev. 13:11-18 takes office. That is Mid-Trib.

You are right about "God's supernatural intervention for Jerusalem." God will cause the mountain-sized asteroid to impact the Mediterranean Sea (Zeph. 2:4,5). This kills all but 1/6th of Gog's army (Eze. 39:2).

> > The church age would end on the same day it began and the last 'week' of Israel's reign begin. The rest of Joel 2:28 must be fulfilled perhaps on the same day Peter quoted it.

I agree that Pentecost seems likely for the Pre-Trib Rapture. I think the Pre-Wrath Rapture will be on the Feast of Trumpets. It follows Pentecost too. Agape

Incoming email from Joe Hoyle, who posted on 5 Doves site

I stand by what I said in my post on this subject. Someone wrote and told me that you must have been thinking backwards when you read that post of mine. I say that because the same thing crossed my mind as well. You made blatant misrepresentations to what I wrote. What you attribute to what I said, I did not say.

You wrote concerning what you think I said: "Re: None of the 7 churches represent Islam, Hinduism or Buddhism."

I never said any such thing along that line.

I said that there were doctrines and religious systems within the Seven Churches that the Lord Jesus says that He hates, and warns people to come out of. I said that these same spirits still exist today, and they do.

What He hated so much within the Gentile church in the early days, is still there in these latter days. Only the names and forms are different. The basis of them all are still in place; and I named the major systems they are still found within, and in fact you ticked a couple or three off yourself.

Anybody who thinks any different is just deluding themselves. Nothing changes; the Word is still the same yesterday, today, and forever.

I never said that any one Revelation church represents, one of these major religions. I do not believe that, and I certainly did not say that. Then you said.......
"don't see where you said in your post either that Jesus said for the people to come out of any the seven churches named in the book of Revelation in chapters 2-3. "

I don't see that either; where is that?

I have time and again that the Philadelphia church types seem to be the closest types to the five virgin types. They are the only ones that He "comes quickly" to, and hands out Crowns to.

So the five foolish virgin types has got to be in those churches somewhere themselves, and it is not that tough to figure out where they probably are. They are the ones holding to the doctrines that they are told to let go of, and are still in systems that they are told to come out of.

The Muslim's, Buddhist's, Hindu's, that you refer to as well, and all the rest are still Gentiles, and they are still counted to be within the Seven Churches of Revelation. They are part of the ones still holding to false doctrines and religious systems.

The Lord Jesus says that Blessed are the ones who reads and hears the Words of the Book of Revelation; it is not confined to only alleged called out Christian's.

It is an open ended statement to all Gentiles; whoever they may be. The Seven of Churches of Revelation are not just confined to Bible thumping Christians, of the Catholic or Protestant persuasion. Not a chance, and not even close.

And as far as the "pre wrath" Rapture doctrine. I don't believe in two Raptures; just the one. It is the coming Rapture that matters. It can be called pre-wrath, pre-trib, pre-whatever. Anyone who misses the coming Rapture is not going to really care whether there is a second one or not; and I among others thinks there's not a second one. There's not even a reason to debate this; no ones mind will be changed.

Luke 21:35.......For as a Snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole Earth."
Luke 21:36.......Watch ye therefore, and Pray always, that ye may be counted Worthy to Escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man."

> > What you attribute to what I said, I did not say.

> > You wrote concerning what you think I said:

> > "Re: None of the 7 churches represent Islam, Hinduism or Buddhism."
I never said any such thing along that line.

Of course you didn't. I had no idea you might take it that way. Sorry. The subject of my e-mail was "None of the 7 churches represent Islam, Hinduism or Buddhism." I said that, not you. No wonder it sounded backward to you. Here is what you said, "The spirits of those doctrines and religious systems in the Revelation churches are still in the World today; they are called Protestantism, Romanism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism; all the ism's.

I think each one of the 7 churches are ekklesia, called out ones, true believers, part of the Body of Christ. To me, not one of the 7 church groups can represent unbelievers in Islam, Hinduism, or Buddhism.

> > I said that there were doctrines and religious systems within the Seven Churches that the Lord Jesus says that He hates, and warns people to come out of.

I reread Rev. 2 and 3 and didn't find any place that Jesus told them to come out of that particular church. Where he said for them to come out is in Rev. 18:4. I think those coming out in Rev. 18 are the Tribulation saints being Raptured just before the 7 trumpet judgments hit Earth. That applies to a different time than the 7 churches of Rev. 2 and 3.

> > Then you said...
> > "don't see where you said in your post either that Jesus said for the people to come out of any the seven churches named in the book of Revelation in chapters 2-3."
> > I don't see that either; where is that?

I just reread that post twice and can't find where I said that. I wonder if someone else said it.

This time, you said, "doctrines and religious systems within the Seven Churches that the Lord Jesus says that He hates, and warns people to come out of."

Before, you said, "There are 52 verses given to the Seven Churches in the Book of Revelation. "Up to 20% of those verses are of the Lord Jesus condemning those different doctrines and religious systems, and warning the people, (including us) to come out of them; to separate and disassociate ourselves from them. To preach or teach any different is pure apostasy."

> > The Muslim's, Buddhist's, Hindu's, that you refer to as well, and all the rest are still Gentiles, and they are still counted to be within the Seven Churches of Revelation. They are part of the ones still holding to false doctrines and religious systems.

I just don't see Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus anywhere in Jesus' messages to the seven churches in Asia, which we call Asia Minor. Rev. 1:4,5 says, "John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is (at the Rapture), and which was (at the 1st Advent), and which is to come (at the 2nd Advent); and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne; And from Jesus Christ."

> > as far as the "pre wrath" Rapture doctrine. I don't believe in two Raptures; just the one.

There are 2 groups mentioned. In Rev. 5:9, we see one group "out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation." They are in Heaven before the first seal is broken in Rev. 6.

We see the 2nd group in Rev. 7:9,14, between the breaking of the 6th and 7th seals. It says, "After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;...he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God."

> > Anyone who misses the coming Rapture is not going to really care whether there is a second one or not

Among foolish believers left behind, there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth when they are cut off and spewed out of Christ's mouth. Rev. 3:16 says, "So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth."

Lu. 12:46 says, "The lord of that servant (the foolish one) will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder (lit., cut him off), and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers." That is in the Tribulation. Mt. 24:51 adds, "And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

However, all believers are in the Body of Christ. The last Rapture will take place on the first day of Christ's millennial kingdom. All saints in Heaven and on Earth will be called to "the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God" (Heb. 12:23). Mt. 24:31 shows that the Bride saints that were taken to Heaven are gathered to the general assembly. It says, "he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." Mark 13:27 shows that he also calls the Tribulation saints from the Earth. This is the 2nd Rapture. It says, "then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven." Agape

My reply

Joe Hoyle (6 Apr) "Followup To Marilyn Post" on 5 Doves site
http://www.fivedoves.com/letters/apr2002/jhoyle46-1.htm

> > the Seven Churches as types of various cities in Asia Minor, seem to be aimed squarely at the Gentiles, both believers and unbelievers alike.
> > The Book of Revelation is not just about "called out" Christians. The Lord Jesus loves everyone, whether they are 'called out' or not; and whether they are 'believers' or not.
> > The Laodicean types are not "called out" people.
> > the Jezebel religious system, of which all indications seem to point to the Roman Catholic religion, and probably the Protestants to a lesser degree as well. They are all warned to come out; and if they do not, they are cast into great tribulation, where they are "killed with death" by the Lord Jesus Himself. This is not pretty, nor is it a picture of "called out," much less "chosen" people.
> > The Pergamos types are also warned to "repent" and come out of some type of religious system(s).
The ones who do not heed His Word, He says that He will come and fight against them with the "Sword of His Mouth." It might also be noted that at His second coming, He will also fight His enemies with the "Sword of His Mouth." So these people here can also not be considered to be "called out" or "chosen."
> > I can very much see where such false religious systems such as Islam and Buddhism, Shintoism, and others can exist within the seven churches.
> > The case very easily can be made that the unrepentant ones holding to the two strange doctrines of religious systems in the Pergamos church whom the Lord Jesus says that He will come and fight against, "with the sword of my mouth"; are the same ones that He will come to fight against with the sharp sword out of His mouth at the end.

Joe, in my opinion, you are too careful a Bible student to hang on to thinking that the messages to the 7 churches are not just addressed to the called out ones, but to unbelievers and pagans as well.

Let's examine Rev. 1-3 again. The whole book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ is written to the church, the ekklesia, called out ones. They are the ones that will hear Jesus say, "Come up hither" (4:1). Jesus will be revealed to us at the Rapture. The Rapture is "at hand" in both the first and last chapters (1:3 and 22:10). Jesus signs off with "Surely I COME QUICKLY" (22:20). He comes quickly at the Rapture (2:5; 3:11). Rev. 3:11 says, "Behold, I COME QUICKLY: hold that fast which thou HAST, that no man take thy crown."

In Rev 1:4,5 the salutation is given "TO THE SEVEN CHURCHES (EKKLESIA, CALLED OUT ONES) which are in Asia (meaning muddy, i.e., the Earth): Grace be unto you, and peace, from him (Christ) which is (at the Rapture), and which was (at the First Advent), and which is to come (at the Second Advent); and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne; And from Jesus Christ."

As the Preview of the Rapture takes place, John becomes in the spirit and is caught up to Heaven. He hears Christ's voice like a trumpet say, "I am Alpha and Omega, the first (LORD of the Old Testament) and the last (Lord of the New Testament): and, What thou seest, WRITE IN A BOOK, AND SEND IT UNTO THE SEVEN CHURCHES (THE EKKLESIA FOR WHOM IT IS WRITTEN) which are in Asia (Earth); unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, AND UNTO LAODICEA."

In Heaven, John turns to see Christ that spoke to him in his trumpet voice. John said, "being turned, I saw SEVEN GOLDEN CANDLESTICKS. And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man (Christ)...And he had in his right hand seven stars (i.e., the top achievers still in his hand for he just caught them up): and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword" (to cut off the Laodicean types that are to be left behind) (1:12-16). Some of the Laodiceans have been forewarned and become overcomers. The rest are cut off and will have to wait until the 2nd Rapture. By then they will have "washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb" (7:14).

Jesus interprets the candlesticks and stars for us. Verse 20 says, "The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches (ekklesia): and THE SEVEN CANDLESTICKS which thou sawest ARE THE SEVEN CHURCHES (ekklesia)."

All 7 candlesticks (churches) and all 7 stars (top achievers) are in Heaven in the Preview. Therefore, they are believers. But notice that the twoedged sword cuts off all that are not wearing white robes. Jesus told the Laodiceans, "I counsel thee to buy of me gold (deity, i.e., the Holy Spirit) tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and WHITE RAIMENT, that thou mayest be clothed...be zealous therefore, and repent (i.e., confess sins, I John 1:9).

Luke 12:46 speaks of those cut off. It says, "The lord of that servant (i.e., the foolish Laodicean virgin) will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder (lit., CUT HIM OFF), and will APPOINT HIM (A BELIEVER) HIS PORTION (the shortened Tribulation) WITH THE UNBELIEVERS." Mt. 24:51 adds, "And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites (pretenders): there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

Mt. 22:10-14 says, "gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. And when the king came...he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment (white raiment)...Cast him into outer darkness (outside the Rapture door, Rev. 3:8); there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, BUT FEW ARE CHOSEN." In Rev. 17:15, right after the Rapture and before the 10 kings get their kingdom (v. 12), those with Christ are "called, AND chosen, AND faithful."

In Rev. 2 and 3, the overcomers are the Bride of Christ, dressed in white and caught up when Christ says in his trumpet voice, "Come up hither" in Rev. 4:1. Those ekklesia that are not overcomers will be left behind to be caught up (Rev. 7:9-14) out of the Great Tribulation just before the wrath of God first strikes Earth in Rev. 8. These are caught up after the Day of God's Wrath (6:17) has begun, but before the asteroids of Rev. 8:8,10 impact Earth at noon (Zeph. 2:4,5). Agape

Incoming email

Fwd: REPORT: PASSOVER CONFERENCE What do you think of this conference and are we (Christians), Pagans? Is that why the Lord has not yet come?

My reply

One who believes in Jesus Christ as their own personal Saviour is Christian, not pagan. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ was on the Feast of Firstfruits. It happened to be on Sunday in 30 AD. Therefore, we celebrate Easter on Sunday. The name Easter is of pagan origin, but it is used in the KJV Bible to translate "pascha," Passover. Acts 12:4 says, "when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter (pascha, Passover) to bring him forth to the people." I think Passover would have been a better translation.

In 30 AD, the Jews called the entire time from Nisan 14 through 21 Passover. Actually, Nisan 14 is Passover, Nisan 15 the Feast of Unleavened Bread and Nisan 16 the Feast of Firstfruits. Unleavened Bread was kept for 7 days, the 15th through 21st.

Satan counterfeits all kinds of things that are true to confuse mankind. We can't throw out everything just because he counterfeited it. There was a madonna and child in the Mystery Religion of Babylon. Tammuz was even supposed to have died and come back to life. When Constantine issued his Edict of Toleration and made Christianity the state religion in 313 AD, he brought pagans into the Christian congregations. For convenience's sake, some things were celebrated at the time that the pagans had been celebrating. Some holidays got mixed up. Christ was born in the fall, but the pagan Tammuz was born on our Dec. 25th. Therefore the pagans kept Tammuz (the Sun God's) birthday and the Christians kept Jesus (the Son of God's) birthday on Dec. 25. Easter got mixed up too. The Passover started being called Easter.

We can't do much about the name now, conference or no conference. Satan would be tickled if he kept us from celebrating Jesus' resurrection because he was successful in getting it called by a pagan name.

It is a good thing that Christ judges by the thoughts and intents of the heart. Heb 4:12 says, "the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a DISCERNER OF THE THOUGHTS AND INTENTS OF THE HEART. "Therefore, if we intend to celebrate Jesus' resurrection, chances are good that he will honor our intent. The resurrection is the proof that Jesus was who he claimed to be, the Son of God. Easter reminds us of the importance of the empty tomb. Christians don't place any religious significance to eggs or rabbits. If they did, it would be a different story.

The Lord will come at his predetermined time. Agape

Incoming email

Also the Trumpets were blown on the Feast of Trumpets. Some Scholars believe that will be the time of Rapture. I thought the Feast of Trumpets was the time of the Second Rapture. Were the Trumpets Blown for all of Gods Feasts? Not including Atonement.

My reply

I think the 2nd Rapture will be on the Feast of Trumpets. Rev 6:17 says, "For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?" This is the Feast of Trumpets. The trumpets start sounding in Rev. 8. Between the opening of the 6th seal in 6:12 and the 7th seal in 8:1, the things in chapter 7 take place. The Tribulation saints are caught up to Heaven (7:9f). Zeph. 2:4,5 shows that the asteroid of Rev. 8:8 impacts the Mediterranean Sea at noon. Therefore, the Pre-Wrath Rapture has to take place before noon.

The trumpets were to be sounded for all the feasts, plus on the first day of each month. Nu. 10:10 says, "in the day of your gladness, and in your solemn days, and in the beginnings of your months, ye shall blow with the trumpets."

Mark 13:27 says, "then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the EARTH to the uttermost part of heaven." Those gathered from all parts of Heaven are those who were caught up in the Pre-Trib Rapture. Those gathered from the Earth are the Tribulation saints. Rev. 18:4 says, "I heard another VOICE FROM HEAVEN, SAYING, COME OUT OF HER, MY PEOPLE, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues."

This has to be the Pre-Wrath Rapture, for the ones caught up in the Pre-Trib Rapture are the "called, and chosen, and faithful" ones that are already with the Lord in Rev. 17:15.

Jer 51:6,8 fits in with Rev. 18:4f. It says, "FLEE (nuwc, vanish away, put to flight, i.e., the Pre-Wrath Rapture) out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul: be not cut off in her iniquity; for THIS IS THE TIME OF THE LORD'S VENGEANCE; he will render unto her a recompence."

The 2nd Rapture is as the days of Lot. Luke 17:29-31 says, "the SAME DAY that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed (the Sign of the Son of Man, Mt. 24:30). In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back." They are to be raptured, so won't need any worldly goods. Afterward, the asteroid of Rev. 8:10 will destroy Babylon. Agape

My reply with my comments interspersed and marked ***

Re: Food for Thought
> > If Christ is to return before the end-time Antichrist appears, why does the "first resurrection" (i.e., raising of the righteous dead at Christ's coming) include those martyred for refusing the reign and mark of the Antichrist (Rev. 20:4,5)?

***Christ comes in the air to catch up his Bride before the Tribulation starts. The Beast will begin his 3.5 year rule at the beginning of the Tribulation.

***The first resurrection is in ranks. They may be something like this. I Cor. 15:23 (LITV) says, "But each in his own order (tagmati, rank): Christ (1st rank, includes Christ, the seed, and the rest of the sheaf, those that came out of their graves after Christ's resurrection, Mt. 27:52,53), the firstfruit (2nd rank, Pre-Trib Rapture); afterward those of Christ at His coming" (3rd rank, Pre-Wrath Rapture). This is when the Sign of the Son of Man is seen, not the Second Advent, which is 7 months after the Day of God's Wrath (Eze. 39:12,13). ***The events of Mt. 24:26-31 take place on this day. It says, "Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he (the False Prophet) is in the desert (Babylon); go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not (it is the Great Tribulation). For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the COMING OF THE SON OF MAN BE (this is his coming in the air at the Pre-Wrath Rapture). For wheresoever the carcase (body, i.e., the Body of Christ) is (in Heaven), there will the eagles (high flying Tribulation saints, see Isa. 40:31 below) be gathered together. Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken (the 6th seal is broken, Rev. 6:12): And THEN SHALL APPEAR THE SIGN OF THE SON OF MAN IN HEAVEN (in the sky, not on Earth): and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall SEE THE SON OF MAN COMING IN THE CLOUDS OF HEAVEN with power and great glory (his feet don't touch the Mt. of Olives; it is 7 months before the Second Advent). And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet (the 'last trump,' I Cor. 15:51,52), and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." These are those that were taken to Heaven in the 1st Rapture before the Tribulation.

***Isa 40:31 says of that day, "THEY THAT WAIT UPON THE LORD SHALL RENEW THEIR STRENGTH; THEY SHALL MOUNT UP WITH WINGS AS EAGLES; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."

***Mark 13:26,27 adds a necessary detail so we can understand that this is the time of the 2nd Rapture. It says, "then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. And then shall he send his angels, and shall GATHER TOGETHER HIS ELECT FROM THE FOUR WINDS, from the uttermost part of the EARTH to the uttermost part of heaven."

***Those gathered from the Earth are the Tribulation saints spoken of in Rev. 7:9-14. It says, "After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, OF ALL NATIONS, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands...And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, THESE ARE THEY WHICH CAME OUT OF GREAT TRIBULATION, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God."

> > If The Church is to be Raptured before the Antichrist appears, what did Paul mean in stating that "the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and our gathering together unto him" will not occur until after "that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition" (II Thess. 2:3)?

***The Greek word apostasia means departure (Liddell-Scott- Jones Lexicon of Classical Greek). Early Bibles translated it departure--The Geneva Bible, Tyndales's translation, Cranmer's version, The Great Bible, Breecher's Bible, Beza's translation and the Coverdale Bible. II Thess. 2:3 in the World English Bible says, "Let no one deceive you in any way. For it (the Day of the Lord, as in the RSV, i.e., the Millennium) will not be, unless THE DEPARTURE (the Pre-Trib Rapture) COMES FIRST, and the man of sin (the False Prophet) is revealed (SECOND), the son of destruction."

***In II Thess. 2:7,8, we can see that the Holy Spirit in us, the salt of the Earth, must be removed FIRST, then the Holy Spirit will stop restraining him, and the Wicked One will be revealed in the Tribulation. Let's read the whole passage.

***2Th 2:3-8 (WEB) says, "Let no one deceive you in any way. For it will not be, unless THE DEPARTURE COMES FIRST, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of destruction, he who opposes and exalts himself against all that is called God or that is worshiped; so that he sits as God in the temple of God, setting himself up as God (Mid-Trib). Don't you remember that, when I was still with you, I told you these things? Now you know what (the Holy Spirit who is in us, the salt of the Earth) is RESTRAINING HIM (salt retards the growth of leaven), to the end THAT HE MAY BE REVEALED IN HIS OWN SEASON (the Tribulation). For the mystery of lawlessness already works. Only there is ONE WHO RESTRAINS NOW, UNTIL HE IS TAKEN OUT OF THE WAY (at the Rapture). THEN THE LAWLESS ONE WILL BE REVEALED, whom the Lord will kill with the breath of his mouth, and bring to nothing by the brightness of his coming."

> > If the apostles and early believers were to anticipate an imminent Rapture to heaven (in effect terminating the Church age at its inception), how might it be explained that just prior to his departure Christ had prayed that they not be taken out of the world (John 17:15)?

***To me, the Rapture wasn't and isn't imminent. The word doesn't appear anywhere in the KJV or the WEB. I think that is a man-made doctrine. The Rapture will come at its set time, when the Pre-incarnate Christ planned for it to come before the world began. The apostles had the gospel to spread to the world before they died. They were not going to be taken out right away, because of the training they got as they traveled with Jesus. Their messages were all the more believable, because they had been with Him throughout his ministry. They knew what they were talking about. After Pentecost, they preached with the power given them by the Holy Spirit.

> > Thank you.

***Agape

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