5. THE RAPTURE HELPS US MAINTAIN A HEALTHY PERSPECTIVE
“Although not a verse we typically associate with the Rapture, Colossians 3:4 speaks of a time when we will suddenly find ourselves in glory, ‘When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.’”
I’m not at all certain why we would not associate this passage with the rapture. It speaks of Christs appearance or revelation.
When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
Colossians 3:4 NASB.
The verse speaks of Second Coming, resurrection and Rapture. The assumption made here by Brentner is that our being revealed with Him in Glory takes us to a heavenly scene. Listen to how he describes this revelation:
“Imagine walking down a sidewalk one day and your next step is in heaven, in the presence of your Savior! I believe this verse speaks of a sudden transition from this life to eternity!”
What Brentner believes of course is meant to align itself with the pre-Trib doctrine. He ignores that the Second Coming which is the revelation of Christ occurs after the Tribulation. he continues:
“Earlier in Colossians 3, Paul encourages us to ‘seek the things that are above’. and to focus ‘on things that are above, not on things that are on the earth’ where our lives are ‘hidden with Christ in God’ (Col. 3:1-3).”
Brentner wants us to believej here that our future is heavenly, that this is where our home is and that that scenario best fits pre-Trib Doctrine. Certainly we are told that this earth is not our home, we are strangers and sojourners here, but even Brentner should believe that we will reign with Christ and that He as Messiah is the King of Israel and will tabernacle with His people in Jerusalem fulfilling the last of the fall feast of Israel. We will be with Him.
Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.
John 17:20-21,24 KJV
Jesus had prayed earlier “don’t take them out of the world”, but He wants with Him when He comes into His glory. That will take place at His Coming.
I don’t know what Brentner believes, but we will be there ruling with Him at that time, not in heaven. And once the millennial reign is over, then we will see the New Jerusalem come down to earth, and it will be the home of the Bride. It is a Jewish Bride, that we are adopted into. It’s 12 gates and it’s 12 foundation stones are all Jewish.
So what is Paul getting at, when he tells us to focus on things that are above? Is that not what we are doing when we study the word, and pray and worship Him and in so doing avoid the things of this earth? Brentner asks:
“How do we retain such a perspective? We remember that someday Jesus will return for us and we will immediately be walking at His side with our new immortal bodies!”
Although true, and a statement that almost every true believer can identity with; this is not the only focus that strengthens us as believers. We are told to study to show ourselves approved Workman who needeth not be ashamed. The word itself The Lord Jesus told the disciples had made them clean. Brentner continues:
“Paul also wrote about this healthy outlook on life in 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 where he said that ‘the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.’ I like to call this a two-world perspective where we value eternal realities over the temporal things of this life…”
No true believer trusting in God would disagree with this statement but it by no means limits our focus to the Rapture, which is the subject of Brentner’s discourse here. He continues:
“We laugh and enjoy the many good things He sends our way with the perspective that they are temporary and not our ultimate hope. Our lasting joy resides in our expectation of a better day that will exceed all our earthbound dreams and blessings.”
This is all good stuff, but again has nothing to do with the Imminence he teaches in his post, concerning Satan’s hatred of the timing of the Rapture as he believes it. And now we will consider his work-up to his conclusion.
“In addition, our anticipation of Jesus’ appearing also gives us courage to persevere through trials and times of sorrow knowing this life is but a vapor compared with the joy we will experience in eternity.”
Here again his statement is unrelated to the Imminence of the Rapture, but nonetheless it is true. It was true for the Apostles who gave their lives for the gospel. It was true for Christians burned at the stake during the dark ages. It was true for those of faith who died under the old covenant as listed in Hebrews 11, and it has been true concerning the deaths and suffering of our day under communism, and Islam, and fascism. It will also be true for the people of the Tribulation. He continues:
“With all the many benefits of eagerly anticipating the Rapture, is it any wonder that our enemy hates it and does all he possibly can to take our eyes off of it? He surely does not want us to anticipate anything that increases our focus and dependence on Jesus.”
Did you catch that? Satan is represented in all opposition to the Rapture. Brentner here does not mean the Mid-Trib or Post -Trib Rapture, because neither are yet imminent and therefore the teachers behind these teachings are teaching on behalf of Satan himself. There are of course other teachers within the church body who don’t think that there will be a Rapture, and quite frankly I don’t know where they derive that from scripture, but neither do I know where a pre-Trib Rapture originated based on scripture?
The Second Coming is our blessed hope, and yes the Rapture is attached to that, but it if pre-Trib would actually detach it from the blessed hope which is Jesus and His coming. Brentner continues with a final comment:
“Lately, I have felt a little depressed at all the teachings that not only deny the Rapture, but also Jesus’ glorious return to setup His kingdom on the earth. My solace for these thoughts is that this false teaching is yet another sign of the departure from faith Paul said would happen in the last days (1 Tim. 4:1-5).
Certainly we cannot dispute that there will be a falling away of believers from faith in Jesus and the Gospel message, nor can we argue with the fact that there will be false teachers and false teaching associated with Jesus’ return. The question before us is who are the false teachers and what are the false teachings? Brentner wants us to think based on his statements throughout his article that it is those who disagree with him on the Raptures timing and teach against his understanding that it is an any moment pre-Trib Rapture, which is his emphasis. Then as an aside — a second thought — he adds the Glorious appearing accompanied with the millennial reign. Both of these are cardinal doctrine for any Dispensationalist. And although I, as an Historic premillennialist definitely, believe in a future millennial reign, still I recognize that true believers differ on the Second Coming teaching. Of course only one can be truth. We all know that, but God is responsible for leading us into that truth through scripture. The scripture is the source of His teaching, and there is no statement anywhere in scripture telling us that we will see the rapture before the glorious appearing. Their reasons for believing as they do about the Rapture’s timing are based on various statements within scripture which must be carefully examined in light of all related teachings. I will list some of those statements here and just tell you that each is examined within various articles on this site:
— We will be kept from the hour
— we are not appointed to Wrath
— the meaning of Apostasy.
— does the day of the Lord include the Tribulation?
— The Ancient Jewish Wedding
— the fall Feasts and their timing
— the separation of The Church from Israel
— what is the Ekklesia what is its age
— the Church not mentioned in Revelation after chapter 4 through 19
— Revelation literal and sequential or allegorical and historic, or some combination thereof.
There are others which are also examined here. Knowing scriptures teaching on these things makes the timing of the Rapture understandable.