I will begin where I left off in my last post, you should read it if you have not already. We are in 2 Thessalonians 2:1&2. Much debate surrounds these verses. These brothers (from Tribulation Rising) in Christ — are so concerned over what they must make this passage say, that they miss that it altogether refutes what they believe. The clouds of their own confusion blind them to the conflict in their own dogmatic thought. You see if one begins with error one cannot end with truth.
Think of it this way. We know that Jesus is the Truth. So Truth is what we seek. Jesus said: if you abide in Me and My words abide in you…. This is where the Jewish religious hierarchy missed the boat in Jesus’ day. Had they just recognized His plain word in Isaiah 53, they could have walked in and been lead into the truth. All one need do is to stop believing Gods Word and they will miss Truth, and their walk goes off the straight and narrow. Jews were cut off from the Olive Tree because of not believing God. Does that mean that we can’t find our way back? No, but if the truth no longer matters will we? If we are refusing to believe and listen to the written word because it does not support what we have been taught by man about it, are we any different than the Jews of Jesus’ day? We have Jesus words, we believe that God has preserved the Bible the Word of God, Truth, so that we can know Him better. So, please try to understand my concern based on what you have just read. Tribulation Rising says speaking on the same verses we observed in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-2 in our last post:
“If the rapture does not come until after the Day of the Lord, then why would the Thessalonians be troubled? They would still have hope that the rapture was at the door – as the tribulation had already begun!” (All of their quotes here are Taken from their article on “Scriptural Evidence of a pre-Trib Rapture”, My emphasis is added)
Sorry, but your “If” is off script. Paul teaches that The Rapture comes on the Day of the Lord, not after it, because what Paul says here is not that this false letter which apparently was reported to be from him, stated that the Tribulation has already come — No what it stated was that the Day of the Lord has already come. Big difference, So yes they would be upset because the Resurrection and Rapture was to come on the Day of the Lord (1 Thessalonians 5:1-), this is what we saw Paul teach in our last post. And therefore in the mind of the Thessalonians something was terribly wrong. For The Day of the Lord, had already come if this false thought to be Paulinian letter was correct, but it wasn’t correct was it? Paul then told us why this, the day of the Lord had not yet come. His purpose for this letter was, it is believed, to refute this false letter. This day has not come, because there is — No Apostasy yet, and no Antichrist yet. And I might add one very significant sign had not yet come — the Jews must be disbursed throughout the nations and regathered before it can possibly come. A regathering that since the days of Jesus has only happened in our day. Tribulation Rising continues their thought:
“If you thought that the rapture came after the tribulation, and you received a letter from Paul saying that the Day of the Lord had started – would you not be excited beyond words?”
Not if Paul had taught that the Rapture was to occur on the Day of the Lord, which he did, and this false letter taught that the Day of the Lord had already come. That would mean that they had missed the Rapture which will begin at the beginning of that day. How excited would you be over that? True it was to be after the Tribulation, but if they had missed it, then this made Paul a false teacher. Because Paul had taught in 1 Thessalonians 5 that the Rapture was to occur on the Day of the Lord. They continue with their thought:
“Would not thoughts of the soon return of the Lord fill your every waking minute?”
This happens to be the only thing that I can come close to agreeing with that Tribulation Rising says here. Yes, when in the midst of the tribulation we will lift up our heads for our redemption draweth neigh. Remember these Thessalonians thought that they were in Tribulation. See the first Chapter of 2 Thessalonians. They did not think that the day of the Lord had already come, not before and until this false letter came, stating and attempting its deception.
Then there is another problem for the Thessalonians contained in the statement that Jesus made — that these days will be cut short for the elect’s sake. If the day of the Lord had already come — the days had already then been cut short and they had missed the Rapture. How could that be? They are elect chosen in Christ Jesus.
There has been an ongoing dialog and debate within the church for decades over who these elect really are. I’m sure that Tribulation Rising’s accountability group would say that these elect are a specific group — the chosen Jews of Israel who are here during Tribulation.
But I’m not really interested in what they would say at this point, because they make themselves known to us through their inaccurate handling of this clear passage and others of scripture. This inaccuracy is clear with just these two verses of scripture.
So what does the Bible say to us that would help us understand who are God’s elect? First we know that Israel is called the elect (Isa. 45:4). But as you read further into this passage of Isaiah there is clarification as to who God’s elect people actually are (His elect Isa. 65:9&22). But in order to get God’s message here you must read more than just these two verses. I am quoting from the pertinent verses, but you should read the entire chapter.
I am sought of them that asked not for me; I am found of them that sought me not: (Who are these who have not asked for nor sought for Him? We are told by Paul in the New Testament that this is us.) I said, Behold me, behold me, unto a nation that was not called by my name (these are the same ones). Thus saith the Lord, As the new wine is found in the cluster (Interesting did not Jesus who is this Word, speak again of the new wine later during His earthly ministry? New wine and new wine skins), and one saith, Destroy it not; for a blessing is in it (in the Cluster): so will I do for my servants’ sakes, that I may not destroy them all (Who are the “them all” that He will not destroy? They are those who will not be destroyed from the cluster). And I will bring forth a seed out of Jacob (is this seed not Jesus, who will be this inheritor?), and out of Judah (Jesus is of the tribe of Judah) an inheritor of my mountains: and mine elect shall inherit it, and my servants shall dwell there. But ye are they that forsake the Lord, that forget my holy mountain, that prepare a table for that troop, and that furnish the drink offering unto that number. Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, my servants shall eat (Who are His servants? Revelation was written to His servants. We are called His servents), but ye shall be hungry: behold, my servants shall drink, but ye (Who are these “ye”?) shall be thirsty: behold, my servants shall rejoice, but ye shall be ashamed: And ye shall leave your name for a curse unto my chosen: (Who are the chosen, if the “ye” who are cut off from the cluster are not?) for the Lord God shall slay thee, and call his servants by another name (we are given a new name): That he who blesseth himself in the earth shall bless himself in the God of truth; and he that sweareth in the earth shall swear by the God of truth; because the former troubles are forgotten, and because they are hid from mine eyes.Isaiah 65:1,8-9,11,13,15-16 KJV(My emphasis within these verses are my own comments)
As you read through these verses you begin to see that, what Paul taught concerning the true Jew in Romans, is what God had taught him here through Isaiah. Remember he was an O.T. Scholar. The true Jew is the one who has had his heart circumcised (ROM. 9:6-8) But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.Romans 2:29 KJV
So, why is it that we who did not seek Him are now positioned in this elect group?
Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; Ephesians 2:11-13,15 KJV
Paul makes clear to us that we are now in the commonwealth of Israel and in chapter 1 of Ephesians Paul tells us that in Him Israel’s Messiah we are now chosen. In vs. 4, he tells that He chose US IN HIM. Do you hear what Paul is saying US includes Paul himself one of the original cluster (A Pharisee of Pharisees) as himself being one of Israel’s remnant that he speaks of in the above Isaiah passage and in Romans 11.
I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel saying, Lord, they have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have reserved to myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal. Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. Romans 11:1-5 KJV
These Jews have continued on because of God’s election. Having remained chosen in Him. We are as servants added to them in the Olive Tree. Us together making one new man. The Olive Tree obviously constitutes All the elect of God. Just as the verses above tell us — not all Israel is cut off from the cluster or the tree, that we have been added into. The elect Jews remain in the tree, we elect Gentiles are added to the tree. All remain only because of their belief.
Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear: For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee. Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off. Romans 11:20-22 KJV
Our being elect with the remnant of Israel, just makes Scriptural sense. I keep saying this in my posts, and in as many different ways as I can, because it is God’s truth. We are one new man with Israel in Israel’s covenants. We are now recipients of their (Israel’s) covenants and promises. What does that mean? We have not replaced her in these covenants we have joined her. We are not a separate religious entity from Israel’s elect, we are one with her elect.
The two sides of this argument are both wrong. One says Israel is no more. They say that what we see going on in the Mid-East has nothing to do with the Bible. They say the church has replaced Israel. They are wrong. The other side (The pre-Trib side) says we are two peoples separate in God’s plan. They are scripturally wrong. We are one with Israel’s saints, one body, we will be one bride, we will as part of her covenants and promises be one with Messiah to rule over the nations from Israel during the Millennium. This is only part of our blessed hope.
Our oneness alone is the reason why we will be here travailing and overcoming with them, during our mutual Tribulation in order that they by coming to Christ their Messiah and ours will complete the prophetic word of God. One elect body, one bride, one new man, one Holy priesthood unto our God. And we will miss God’s wrath. Also, read my articles:
If Wrath Was Paid for by Jesus for ALL Believers; THEN WHY ARE BELIEVERS PRESENT IN THE GREAT TRIBULATION If The Tribulation Is THAT WRATH? (Feb. 8/2018)
Is The Great Tribulation Really God’s Wrath — is it really the wrath that we will not see? (Aug. 11/2017)
And if you missed my last article it is background for this post. Posted within the last two days.