This is a short review of this blog article here with the title above.
“This version is known as a ‘pre-tribulational rapture’ where God removes all Christians from earth, takes them to heaven, all the while a 7-year period of great tribulation takes place on earth. This is, then, followed by a millennial (1000-year) reign of Christ. I don’t believe this version holds much water under the scrutiny of Scripture’s teaching…”
This is a poor article in my opinion. I think the writer confuses human interpretation of possible events that happen (books and movies) and the concept of the Pre-Tribulation Rapture. The Bible does teach a Pre-Tribulation Rapture much to the chagrin of its opponents. See my article here and other related articles here.
The author does agree there is a Rapture, so that is good. The word rapture does appear in the Bible as the author points out in the Latin translation of the Greek.
“Oddly enough, in this little excerpt [1 Thess 4:13-18], Paul ends by stating: ‘Therefore encourage one another with these words.’ Unfortunately, for many, their “end-times” theology fails to offer even a hint of encouragement. Rather, scare tactics are brought forth. This is the exact opposite to Paul’s emphasis.”
This statement makes absolutely no sense to me. Paul is writing to believers and the concept of the Lord coming and taking us to be with Him is a huge hope and source of encouragement to believers. Believers gain huge encouragement from this concept knowing the Lord is coming for us (I do… and look at all the hopeful Christians watching for Him).
The coming wrath for those who reject Christ isn’t encouraging, but that is a completely different concept from the Rapture.
“Well, for many, the rapture is projected as a secret event.”
No one I know (that believes in the pre-trib Rapture) thinks the Rapture will be a “secret” event. Everyone will know the Christians are gone because they are simply gone. It will be known. The better way to say it is that it will be a “sudden” event for those who are left behind because they were caught by surprise. And as they were not informed or watching, they will not know the source of this sudden disappearance (except for those who may have gained that knowledge from Christians in their life).
” c) we will escort him to earth (the place he was coming towards already). For lack of a better way to say it, this event is a mega cosmic U-turn.”
I completely disagree as the Bible is clear it is not a u-turn. Some of the same terms may be used in the author’s illustration of going out to meet a dignitary etc, but that doesn’t prove that we will immediately come back to Earth. In this section I get a hint that the author doesn’t believe in a 1000 year millennial reign either (stating the Marriage Supper and the New Heaven New Earth happen immediately).
The context of Matthew 24:37-43 is plainly stating that the coming of the Lord will be a sudden and unexpected event like in the Days of Noah. For those who are living their lives, not watching, have no interest, and have no motivation to look for the signs they will be caught completely unaware.
“Now, if we read this passage carefully, we’ll see that it isn’t teaching that God’s people will be taken out of the earth.”
How can the author justify that it is not teaching that God’s people will not be taken off the Earth? The passage clearly says one will be left and one will be taken. Of course, the text doesn’t say where they will be taken, but I think it isn’t right to say as a factual statement they will not be taken off the Earth. Because they very well may be removed from the Earth and there isn’t anything in the context that says one way or the other.
I could easily argue it was Noah’s family (righteous) that was taken away into a safe place and it was the unrighteous who were left on the earth to be destroyed by the Flood (God’s wrath). The ark floated on top of the water and the righteous were lifted up away from the Earth to be preserved from God’s cataclysm to destroy all that lived and were left on the ground.
There will be a millennial reign of Christ on the Earth before the New Heavens and New Earth are put into place. Revelation teaches that clearly.