The Rapture Question Answered, Part 1

I received an email newsletter on April 28, 2014 which contained an excellent article by John Little about the Rapture. As I understand his article, he does not believe in the Pre-tribulation Rapture position.

As usual, I cannot figure out how to make a link “live” in my main Post or article: The link is

I will post this link below in the comment section where it will be a live link for anyone to follow.

It is my goal to hear what John Little has presented, to consider what he presents, and to provide a better exposition of Scripture whenever I find his explanation to be incorrect, and to receive his explanation whenever he is correct.

Readers of this site know well that I will change my own position whenever my position is proven to be mistaken, based on a better explanation of the evidence given in the Bible.

From the newsletter:

I’ve been trying to avoid this topic for a long time. I don’t like controversy, and this site is really about only one thing – helping you survive what is coming. Unfortunately, I’ve painted myself into a corner, so we need to talk about this subject.

The problem is that if you believe that the rapture will happen before anything bad comes… well, you won’t prepare. And, history is full of what happens to people who believe that nothing bad can happen to them. Please remember that it doesn’t matter what YOU think about what God is saying. It truly only matters what GOD thinks about what He is saying.

I think John Little’s motive is clear, and it is a good motive. We surely do need to be prepared (Proverbs 22:3).

Since this article threatens to be pretty long, I’m going to discuss the undeniable evidence first. And no, you CANNOT argue with these verses.

John may be correct that we cannot argue with the verses he is about to present, but sometimes we need to discuss whether the offered interpretation of any verses given to support a position is correct. I have posted in the October 2010 Archives available immediately to the right on this page a list of 23 rules of Bible interpretation. As long as the rules are not broken, the offered interpretation is likely correct.

Absolute Proof First

Paul reached out to the church in Thessalonica because they were thrown into turmoil over the idea of the Rapture. It appears that someone was telling them that they had missed it. Here is what Paul says in 2 Thessalonians 2:

Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. – 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4

The Antichrist MUST come before the Rapture. There is no other way that you can interpret this verse. None.

This is a very good choice of Bible text with which to begin a discussion of the Rapture. However, the rules of interpretation require that we carefully consider the context of any verse we are attempting to interpret. And in this case, the preceding context is crucial, and may well settle the issue at square one:

2Th 2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,

2Th 2:2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.

I believe that a careful reading of 2 Thessalonians 2:1 will show that Paul’s subject in that verse is the Rapture. Paul’s expression, “by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” is a reference to the coming of Jesus Christ at the Rapture. This is made clear as Paul immediately specifies which coming he has reference to when he writes “and by our gathering together unto him.” This is a direct reference to what Paul taught the Thessalonian believers in his first letter, and no doubt when he was personally present with them conducting his teaching ministry to them.

“Our gathering together unto him” is a reference to 1 Thessalonians 4:17.

1Th 4:17 Then we which 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.

For those who wish to study this subject further, consult the cross references for 2 Thessalonians 2:1 as I have assembled them below:

2 Thessalonians 2:1. we beseech. See on +*Ro 12:1. 1 Cor 1:10. *He 10:25. by the coming. Gr. parousia, +Mt 24:3. This is the coming at the Pretribulation Rapture. There are no Resurrection/Rapture passages which speak of the Great Tribulation (in terms of the Rapture occurring during the Great Tribulation period), and no Great Tribulation passages which speak of a COMBINED resurrection of the dead in Christ AND rapture and translation of living believers. ver. 2 Th 2:8 Jn 14:3. See on +1 Th 2:19. +**1 Th 4:14-16n. 1 Tim 6:14. +*2 Tim 4:1n. He 9:28n. and by. +*Ge 49:10. Mt 24:31. 25:32. Mk 13:27. +*Ep 1:10. +*1 Th 3:13. +**1 Th 4:17n. +*2 Tim 4:1n. our gathering. +*Ps 50:5. **Ps 102:21, 22. Is 58:8mg. +*Ezk 17:23. Ac 20:7n. +**1 Th 4:17n. together. Paul makes reference to the “gathering” taught in 1 Th 4:17 (“caught up together with them”) which takes place at the Pre-tribulation Rapture. This gathering does not follow the apostasy and the coming of the Antichrist. Rather, those two events must follow the Pretribulation Rapture, the “gathering” Paul speaks of here. 1 Th 4:17. He 10:25g. unto him. +*Ge 49:10. Ps 50:5. **Ps 102:22. Is 11:10. Mt 18:20. Jn 12:32. 14:3. 2 Cor 5:15. Ep 3:21. He 13:13.

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2 Responses to The Rapture Question Answered, Part 1

  1. Jerry says:

    Here is the live link to John Little’s original article:

  2. ken sagely says:

    good points jerry! ken

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