Bible Prophecy: The Rapture

April 21, 2017 0 Comments

One of the great themes of Bible prophecy is the "RAPTURE" of the Church, as taught in I Thes. 4:13-18. The theological term "rapture" is taken from this text because the latin translation of the phrase "caught up" is rapturo. Listen to what Paul says to the saints in Thessalonica:
I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep (Christian family members who had died already), that you 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 who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not precede them who 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 who 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.

Now, we don't know when this event is going to occur, and all attempts by radio preachers to set dates for it, and sensationalize Bible prophecy, should be avoided. But we do know, according to the teaching of our text, that is WILL OCCUR, and when it does, it will cause quite a panic on the earth.
I have always believed that the "LIE" of the Anti-Christ, as described in II Thessalonians 2:11, is 3-fold:
First, the Anti-Christ will certainly "lie" about who he is--the promised "Messiah"! But he is the false Messiah, the false Christ. Our world is ripe right now for a man to come on the scene as a great world "Messiah", a global peacemaker.
Second, the Anti-Christ will "lie" about his loyalty and commitment to the nation of Israel. We know from the book of Daniel that he will come to power by signing a peace treaty with Israel, but half way through the Tribulation, will break that covenant and become a traitor to Israel. That's why Jesus said the Jews will have to run for their lives, and flee from the wrath of this cruel dictator (see Matt. 24:15-24).
Third, the Anti-Christ will "lie" about the millions of people who are missing from the earth--the Christians who were "caught up" to heaven in the Rapture. After all, SOME kind of explanation will need to be given to account for their sudden disappearance. He might even suggest that a world-wide alien invasion has occurred.
By placing these two teachings (the Rapture of the Church and the "Lie" of the Anti-Christ) side by side, we are able to gain a pretty clear picture of how this age of grace will end, and how these important prophetic events will play out.
Hopefully, you have placed your faith in the TRUE MESSIAH of Israel, Jesus Christ. Those who refuse to accept Jesus as Savior will end up believing the lies of the Anti-Christ during the Tribulation. Yes, they will follow the "Messiah" all right--but the wrong one!

Richard Seefried
Harrisonburg, VA
Richard Seefried has a Master’s Degree in Christian Ministry, and is licensed & certified by the NCCA as a clinical pastoral counselor.