I have in the past written parts 1-5 as evidence for the Raptures timing to be post-Trib. Those parts constituted the trial. This final part is the summation of scriptures proof of that timing. In any court of law when one is on trial, there will be a final summation. The jury must also consider all the arguments. Read parts 1-5, should you seek more facts. Post your questions should you need clarification.
The Lords coming to Rapture us as a thief in the night is on the day of the Lord and is announced by Jesus to occur following Tribulation just as Paul has told us. So the following is a look into the scriptures to give you understanding of their teaching. This is a look at what both Paul and Jesus have told us. And it will include A prophesy given by Peter leaving us with no doubt about what is to come.
Now as to the times and the epochs, brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you. For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night.
1 Thessalonians 5:1-2
Paul goes on to tell us that we will not be surprised by this coming. His teachings are confirmed by Jesus’ teaching.
(“Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame.”) And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon.
Revelation 16:15-16 NASB
Here where Jesus announced His coming He does not mention the darkness like Paul does, but we know that there is darkness at this time. Listen to what Jesus had made clear before Paul penned his words:
24 “But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light, 25 and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers that are in the heavens will be shaken. 26 Then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. 27 And then He will send forth the angels, and will gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest end of the earth to the farthest end of heaven.
We know that this darkness comes from the heavens being dark because of Joel’s Prophecy telling us that these things are to occur before the Day of the Lord. So in the first verse above Paul tells us that we will be Raptured when Jesus comes as a thief in the night on the day of the Lord. It is dark, yet every man will see Him. He is the light of the world. Then Jesus tells us in the Revelation verse just when His thief coming will take place. It is upon us when Armageddon is hear. But before either of these announcements Jesus had told His disciples that He was returning after Tribulation to gather us, and it has to be dark, because the sun and moon will not be shining, and the stars would be falling. But even with this evidence still there are those who don’t believe that we will be here to experience any of this. So the Holy Spirit saw to it that there would be placed in scripture a very clear statement. He used a false letter to bring this to light.
Now we request you, brethren, with regard to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, that you not be quickly shaken from your composure or be disturbed either by a spirit or a message or a letter as if from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,
2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 NASB
So let’s recap. Jesus says His Coming is during a time of darkness — the Sun and moon are not shining and the stars are falling. Paul states this in such a way that we cannot miss it. Paul says that His Coming is as a thief in the night on the day of the Lord. Think about that. His coming for us is in total darkness. The only time that it can be dark or night all over this world is when the sun, moon and stars are not shining. That will be following the Tribulation and during the Battle of Armageddon as Jesus states it. It will be when He pours out His Orge Wrath that we His people are promised to escape.
We also know that there is a set time by the Father for the Rapture. THE Resurrection precedes the Rapture. This is Paul’s teaching in 1 Thessalonians 4. There can be no Rapture before all who are in Christ are raised. “For the dead in Christ are raised first”. This is also Paul’s teaching concerning resurrection and Rapture in 1 Cor. 15. So, In order to establish the Rapture to be any other time than this Resurrection that is attached to the second coming; then one must prove that no one who comes out of The Tribulation is in Christ. Yet, the Tribulation Saints are Resurrected in the first Resurrection to reign with Christ for 1000 years just as we are. Are they then in Christ or not?
For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming,
1 Corinthians 15:22-23 NASB
15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive, and remain until the coming of the Lord, shall not precede those who have fallen asleep.
16b …and the dead in Christ shall rise first.
So if the Tribulation saints are to be resurrected at all; they must be in Christ. So what about Israel. The argument is that Israel and the Jews are somehow not a part of this body that we call the church. It is even argued that they somehow are saved by a separate kingdom gospel and the Tribulation is a separate time of God’s special dealing with Israel after the church (those who are in Christ) are gone. So let’s listen to the Apostle Peter as he addresses Israel and let’s see what is true and what is not.
It was in Peters Second sermon that he confronted Israel with a prophetic word:
But when Peter saw this, he replied to the people, “Men of Israel, why are you amazed at this,…The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified His servant Jesus, the one whom you delivered and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release Him. But the things which God announced before hand by the mouth of all the prophets, that His Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled. Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you, whom heaven must receive until the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient time. It is you who are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant which God made with your fathers, saying to Abraham, ‘ And in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.’ And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”
Acts 3:12-13,18-21,25,4:12 NASB
The Holy Spirit made clear through Peter who Jesus was, the giver of the Covenant whereby all the world would be blessed, and through whom one must be saved. He also made clear that Israel’s act of repentance as the rightful sons of this covenant would bring back this Same Jesus whom Heaven has received until all things are restored which were spoken by the prophets. The prophets had told of Israel’s restoration before Jesus would return.
I will go away and return to My place Until they acknowledge their guilt and seek My face; In their affliction they will earnestly seek Me.
Peter was not the only one to recognize this truth. Paul had also stated much the same in Romans 11:15, when he said, that Israel’s acceptance of this same Jesus would mean for the world (US Gentile believers), who had received this salvation, life or Resurrection from the dead.
So Paul had taught us that no one can be made alive in the resurrection without being in Christ. Then it is reasonable to believe that the Tribulation Saints and Israel who in order to be saved, must come through Christ, and if they were killed by the Antichrist; then they must be resurrected before there can be a Rapture.
Put another way, there are dead people in Christ who come out of the Tribulation. Yet Paul says: the dead in Christ will rise first, and then we who are alive when these dead in Christ are caught up will be caught up and so we shall always be with the Lord. This means that the Rapture must follow the Tribulation and this agrees with what Jesus tells us is the first resurrection. Both He and Paul had only taught one order for Resurrection and Rapture.
But one will say, where is the actual proof by means of a direct statement that the church will see great Tribulation. So have you read the letter that Jesus sent through John to Thyatira? Jesus said:
20 But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. (You need to remember that the Revelation is written to you and I, Jesus’ bond-servants. Read chapter 1 of Revelation.)
22 Behold, I will throw her on a bed of sickness, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, (remember this is Jesus talking, the adultery is the consideration of false teaching, and it is bond-servants who are being led astray.) unless they repent of her deeds. 23 And I will kill her children with pestilence, and all the churches will know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts; and I will give to each one of you according to your deeds.
Revelation 2:20,22-23 NASB
Jesus had prayed for unity among believers in John 17. Today and even later in the very midst of this Tribulation we still look for this unity. The Tribulation as it progresses does seem to bring this unity to those in Christ, the one new man. For in the end we are told “and the bride has made herself ready; and then comes the promised resurrection followed by the Rapture.
And the following words are spoken just before Jesus returns to finish treading the wine press of God’s wrath: Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.”
12 “Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done.
Revelation 22:12 NASB
Why is this important for you to know? First of all Jesus was unhappy with Israel for not recognizing their times, secondly He is Truth. Knowing the truth of His word — is and should be the goal of every believer. He is worshiped in Spirit and in truth. Think about that. We can either be made clean by His word or, you be the judge. What does a lack of understanding of His word lead to? God bless you as you seek Him.
Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him— a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all.
Colossians 3:9-11 NASB
Without Christ there is no resurrection. Without resurrection there is no Rapture. It is not the Rapture that is man’s blessed hope. It is the first Resurrection and life eternal with Jesus. Are you in Christ? Without Him, once you have refused Him you will not see life eternal in the kingdom age to come.