My good friend ZMalfoy raised the very interesting question, “Why a Rapture?” She said she doesn’t buy the idea that it is just to spare God’s people from suffering through the Great Tribulation. She’s got a point.
From the Book of Job (alleged to be one of the oldest books of the Bible) straight through to the Crucifixion of God’s own Son and the subsequent persecution of the first century Christians, the Bible records the worst suffering often being inflicted on God’s most faithful servants.
So, again … why a Rapture?
When Jesus taught the Rapture during the Olivet Discourse, He specifically mentioned Noah and Lot. These families were spared destruction, but they most certainly did not escape suffering!
It seems to me that the key point was not that they escaped destruction, but that they escaped destruction so they could fulfill God’s plan. Noah’s family and the animals repopulated the Earth and Lot fathered Moab, among whose descendants was Ruth, who appears in the genealogy of Jesus. See See Luke 17, Genesis 6-9, Genesis 19, Ruth 1, Matthew 1.
What if the point of the Rapture is similar – i.e., that God has work for us to do during the End Times that will require us to have glorified bodies like Jesus got when He rose from the dead?
I think this is how the Bible says it’s going to go down:
At the Rapture, everyone will see Jesus in the sky, riding on the clouds. He will send out his angels with a trumpet blast to gather his elect. The dead in Christ will rise first, then those who are alive will be caught up together to meet Him in the clouds and receive immortal, physical bodies like Jesus had after He rose. “Then those who lead the many to justice will be like the angels.” See Acts 1:9-11; Matthew 24:30-31; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; I Corinthians 15:51-54; Daniel 12:1-3.
I think that last line – “Lead the many to justice” (Daniel 12:3) – is an important clue to at least some of the work Jesus will have for the raptured to do during the last seven years. Preaching. Teaching. Demonstrating what eternal life is going to look like for those who choose Jesus.
It’s a lot like what Jesus did between the Resurrection and the Ascension, isn’t it? Popping in and out of locked rooms, walking along the road to Emmaus, appearing to crowds?
I found another clue in John’s vision of the final war at Armageddon, where Jesus rides in on a white horse, leading “the armies of heaven” who are also “mounted on white horses.” Revelation 19:11-14.
In the past, I’ve paid a lot of mind to Jesus on the horse, particularly as contrasted with Jesus on the donkey riding into Jerusalem before He died. But ZMalfoy pointed out something I hadn’t paid any mind to, which is the army behind Him. Who is on the horses?
I guess if I’d been asked, I’d have said, “Probably angels,” but now that I look at it closely, I realize the text says the armies of heaven are “wearing clean white linen” which, just a few verses before is used to describe Jesus’ bride, the church. In other words, the army is made up of righteous humans, not angels. And they’re riding on horses like Jesus is, so we can presume they all have glorified bodies as well. See Rev 19.
It looks to me like the “armies of heaven” will be made up of raptured humans.
Dearest had another thought about how the Lord might use the raptured, which is to assist the underground church during the Great Tribulation. Those who refuse the Mark of the Beast won’t be allowed to buy or sell ANYTHING. So food, water, shelter, Bibles … you name it, they’ll need it. Maybe the raptured could help with that, you know? I haven’t found a Bible passage (yet?) but it makes sense and I know Dearest would really enjoy that kind of work.
I had such a blessing today by Chrissy the Hyphenated (blog AND comments)
A Reply for Chrissy by ZMalfoy
Two more significant events coming in April 2014 by CtH (blog AND comments)
Vladimir Lenin and Our Lady of Fátima by CtH
12 responses to “Why a Rapture?”
The rapture happening now is because the Christian Church Age has come to an end, and the New Millennium Church Age is about to begin.
This can’t happen without intense conflict in both the spiritual and natural realms at the same time.
Billions will die as a result of this.
The glorified saints will do battle in the spiritual realm with the Devil’s fallen angels, as the New Millenium Church grows out of intense persecution on earth.
This Church will then consist of millions of new saints in 1,260 Days, starting from Wednesday the 16th of April 2014.
By October 2017 all conflicts in the heavens and on earth will be all over.
I would also like to point out the following fact, which is so obvious it seems that many overlook it: There are horses coming out of heaven.
If horses are coming out of heaven, bearing riders (Jesus and His Armed Forces), then that means there are horses in heaven. Horses being in heaven means at least some animals in heaven. People say that scripture is silent about animals in next world, but it seems while scripture says little, it has horses coming from heaven twice (the first time to fetch Elijah with the chariot in 2 Kings 2:11), both times in the roles as human helpers– pulling chariots, or as cavalry steeds.
While it is true that animals don’t have human souls (they have animal souls), and that human souls bear a special dignity that animal souls lack, animals are still His Creation, and are often an integral and beloved part of human life. I would posit that, if horses “make the cut”, then it stands to reason that perhaps some other human-companions may also make the cut.
Like dogs. Or the occasional cat. At the very least.
“Or the occasional cat.” ROFLLL
One of my former spiritual directors did a pamphlet about where it says in the Bible that animals go to Heaven. I think I still have it, if anyone wants me to look.
I have said many prayers for the poos to get Raptured with us. I don’t want them left her alone, hungry and frightened. I haven’t had any visions or dreams or “stop nagging me about the dogs” messages. But if my love is enough to bring them along, ya’ll can meet them. We’ve got plans to set up some kind of PoliNation garden place where we can get together.
For many years, I had a thriving, healthy, multi-generational 90-gallon tank of Yellow Lab cichlids. About a year ago, they simply stopped having babies. When I began to suspect the Rapture might be very near, I let them die out and left the tank set up and running, but fish-less. Every time I pray about “should I tear it down and clean it out or restock it?”, the answer is “no.” Maybe somebody’s gonna need a big, healthy tank with a functioning filter. Or the water might be useful in an emergency. I dunno.
Well, are they yellow labs or are they cichlids? You gave me a start there when I first assumed you had a bunch of puppies in a 90 gallon tank! 😯
I know what you mean about the expectations. We had a huge gap in baby-making in our extended family for years. When babies started coming along again, I was surprised. I honestly expect to have a period of time where people stop having babies at all, so close we are to the end, it seems.
Lol, Grunt–wiki it!
I sometimes expect a stop to babies just prior to the last days. But I’m not quite sure. While one can say that it stands to reason . . . I don’t know that there is actually anything anywhere that says such a thing will be a sign. There has clearly, through human methods, been a decrease in births. Perhaps that’s part of the “timing” of it all . . .
I’m actually almost as fond of cats as I am of dogs, to be honest. But their general disposition is a bit. . . different, lol.
I would love to be pointed in the direction of said pamphlet. It always grates when people say that heaven is only for humans (and, presumably, angels). Because. . . it would be a rather sorry Heaven that doesn’t include Huan, Butterscotch, Bandit, Symber, Cambric or, in time, Malcom Reynolds, Jr (aka, The Pup of St. John) (pic of Malcom is here: http://zophiel777.deviantart.com/art/Malcolm-Reynolds-Jr-156739723).
Is not part of the point of Heaven that it is where Love is complete and re-united?
I admit I had to Wiki Cichilids, lol. Yanno, your story about your fish is funny, because for years, I’ve had recurring dreams (1-2 times a year) about a Doberman Pincher named Anubis. In the dreams, we are sitting next to each other on a grassy hill under a blue sunny sky– he’s my buddy, just like every other dig I’ve had. In the dream, I know that his name is due to his profile, looking very much like the ancient Egyptian images of said god. That’s all the dream has.
For years since the dream started (9, 10 years ago?), I’ve wanted to find and adopt my Anubis. But, my house is crappily set up for having a dog– I have a fenced back yard, but the door to said yard is such that if I were to let a dog out to run and play, I’d have to stand by the door until he wanted to come in, otherwise I wouldn’t know he was by the door until he started barking his head off (thus bothering the neighbors). Funny thing is, I know that God wanted me in this house. Despite it’s quirks and oddities, I know without a doubt that this is exactly where He wanted me. I was struck by that again today, when re-organizing some shelves in my “library/ guest room”. When I considered the strange assortment of books, a wee voice said “You’re not keeping all these just for yourself.”
To which I replied, “Hn,”
So, maybe Anubis is something in the way of a promise. Come to think of it . . . I’ve had one other dream with a grassy hill. And it was definitely Revelations-related. . . I’ll have to write that one up on my blog. . .
Ooh, please do (write it up)!
My animals in Heaven daydream is to rehabilitate sored Tennessee Walkers.
Yellow Labs are wonderful fish … gorgeous colors, fun behaviors, good breeders in captivity. Plus, it’s amusing to watch folks eyes pop when you tell them you have 15 Yellow Labs at home. Tee hee.
The yellow color is very rare in the wilds of Lake Malawi. In fact, I believe all the Yellow Labs in the U.S. pet industry may be descended from the first few wild caughts. The common Lab in the wild is dishwater bluish-gray … much better camouflage.
Mama Buzz and I have had long talks about the Rapture and wee humans. I haven’t found any evidence but we’re both hoping the little ones get raptured regardless of what their parents do. When we were speculating about our Tribulation Army MOSs, she said, “I was born to be a mom. What would I do?” Take care of the orphans, of course! Maybe escort them to visit (and witness to) their folks? Maybe take aborted babes to see their moms who will need to repent before they can ve saved?
2 dreams : http://americanslytherin.wordpress.com/2014/03/19/2-dreams-from-the-past/
LOVE. IT. Angels, dreams, frogs, giggles. :)))
and adorable, klutzy humans! lol!
Oh … and I was inspired to clean out the DVDs this week. A whole bunch of them had this “These aren’t for you any more” feel to them, so they went to the library donation box.
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