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The Pretrib Rapture: An Entitlement for the Privileged Few?

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17 hours ago, n2thelight said:

Are we not to watch for the signs as given in Mark 13?

We don't know the day or hour but we are supposed to know the season. 

Of course we can know the signs, but by watching, it means to watch how we live.  Jesus said no man knows the day or hour of his return.  Only God the Father knows, and we are to live our lives like he could return at any moment.

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3 minutes ago, Butero said:

Of course we can know the signs, but by watching, it means to watch how we live.  Jesus said no man knows the day or hour of his return.  Only God the Father knows, and we are to live our lives like he could return at any moment.

This is probably one of the very few times I have seen anyone here reference that phrase with the common sense of actually knowing what it means.  Thank you.

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On ‎7‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 7:03 AM, Diaste said:

And here is that idea of the privileged group. Some believers in Jesus get to escape wrath reliant on the scriptural truth of 'we are not appointed to wrath', but other believers in Jesus must endure wrath simply because they are not members of the 'church'.

Under this idea of segregation of the body the church has special privilege based solely on when it exists. This is no different than being born into temporal royalty or wealth where the progeny operates under social norms others do not enjoy. The rules don't apply to the elite, only to those not born within a particular time/space circumstance.

Again, if 'we are not appointed to wrath' applies to every believer, then no believer is to endure God's wrath; not just a select group of believers that had the good fortune to be born into privilege.

Do you really take seriously the notion that some believers in Jesus endure wrath when you, as a believer in Jesus, stake your hope on the promise you will not endure wrath?

What does someone being privileged matter?  Where in the Bible does it say some people aren't privileged over others?  I do not really understand why this matters to some people.  So what if some people are privileged above others.  Weren't the hand chosen Apostles privileged over those Jesus didn't choose?  Weren't the Kings of Israel privileged over those God didn't pick?  Who will be on the right and left hand of Jesus in his Kingdom?  I don't know, but aren't they privileged over those who are not?  What is the point of this?  

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On 7/6/2018 at 9:56 PM, Marilyn C said:

Hi Distaste,

We need to realise that all who die to self and follow the Lord will be caught up to be with the Lord to the third heaven. There they will judge the world system and fallen angels.

Now the people who are left on the earth are the `rebellious` against God. However as things get difficult untold millions will turn to the Lord. (the great multitude that no one can count). These all die of - heat, hunger or thirst! Yet they turn from their selfish ways and turn to God.

And all through the judgments people can turn to God but we see that many do not repent.

`...and they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.` (Rev. 9: 21)

Everyone, yes everyone who goes into the time of God`s judgment, have not humbled themselves under God`s mighty hand. yet still God gives mercy as long as people have breath. However they will not be included in the Body of Christ purpose, but will go onto the new earth, as they hold palm branches in their hand. palm branches signify the time of `tabernacles` and that means God tabernacling/dwelling with His people on earth.

All areas of God`s great kingdom will have people who humble themselves under Him, the difference is that God, yes God Himself declares when each of His purposes have been completed.

Marilyn. 

Greetings in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ,

Marilyn, I'm sorry, but nothing that Jesus, John, or Paul says gives any indication that there will be many turning to Christ during the period of unprecedented persecution that Jesus called great tribulation. In fact, all that they say makes it very clear that the opposite will be happening. Many shall be departing from the faith. There are at least four reasons that many will not be coming to Christ in the great tribulation.

Please note that the great tribulation begins in the middle of the last seven years of this age, a time we call Daniel's seventieth week. This time will be characterized by the domination and persecution of the saints of God by the Beast, the False Prophet and those that follow the Beast. In His Olivet Discourse, Jesus spoke much about this future period of unprecedented persecution. Matthew records Christ's details of the unparalleled "trouble" (Dan 12:1) beginning in Matt 24 verse 9. Christ continues speaking in the context of that period until verse 29.

1) Violent persecution will cause many to fall away

Jesus says that after the beginning of sorrows violent persecution would come upon His followers (my name's sake) and that we would be hated by all nations

Mat 24:9  Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.

The "therefore" in verse 15 connects it back to verses 9-14. Beginning in verse 15, Jesus provides more detail concerning the unprecedented nature of this future persecution of the elect. He references Dan 9:27 for its starting point. He says that the persecution will be unprecedented (vs 21). He says that the period of unprecedented persecution will threaten to extinguish the elect from the earth (vs 22). He says that the days of this unparalleled persecution will be shortened to save some of the elect alive upon the earth (vs 22). Note that this persecution will not only be focused upon Christians, those who call upon the name of Jesus Christ, but also upon the inhabitants of Judaea (Israel) (Matt 24:16, 20).

Mat 24:15  When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Mat 24:16  Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
Mat 24:17  Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
Mat 24:18  Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
Mat 24:19  And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
Mat 24:20  But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:
Mat 24:21  For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
Mat 24:22  And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.

The result of this persecution and hatred would cause many to be offended, that is, fall away from the faith. Those who apostatize will hate and betray the saints.

Mat 24:10  And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.

It should be noted that Jesus said in the parable of the soils (Matt 13), that those who received the Word with Joy into the stony ground were offended when persecution came. The meaning of offended in this context is to depart from the faith. They gladly embraced the Gospel until there was a cost associated with their identification with Christ, at which point they fell away.

Mat 13:20  But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;

Mat 13:21  Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.

2) Rather than many coming to Christ many will fall away due to the great deception of the false prophets and the false Christ's. That deception will be so great that if it were possible even the truly elect would be deceived.

Mat 24:11  And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

Mat 24:23  Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
Mat 24:24  For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
Mat 24:25  Behold, I have told you before.
Mat 24:26  Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.
Mat 24:27  For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
Mat 24:28  For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.

Paul reiterated Christ's teaching concerning an apostasia (a departure from the faith), at least, in part, caused by signs and lying wonders

2Th 2:3  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;
2Th 2:4  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.
2Th 2:5  Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
2Th 2:6  And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
2Th 2:7  For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
2Th 2:8  And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
2Th 2:9  Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
2Th 2:10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 

Jesus says that His arrival at His coming will be unmistakable. So don't believe men's false reports.

He says that the unprecedented persecution would be over when the cosmic sign is witnessed, for that heralds His appearing in the clouds with the holy angels to gather His elect to Himself.

Mat 24:29  Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
Mat 24:30  And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Mat 24:31  And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. 

Please take notice that "the tribulation of those days" in context is the unprecedented persecution that Jesus calls great tribulation in verse 21.

3) It is implied by Christ that when He comes there will be few if any believers left upon the earth.

Luk 18:7  And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?
Luk 18:8  I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?

John describes that he sees the martyred saints crying out for vengeance at the opening of the fifth seal.

Rev 6:9  And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
Rev 6:10  And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?
Rev 6:11  And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.

They are told that they would have to wait a little season for vengeance to come. 

Paul describes the vengeance coming at Christ's revelation, the very day that the church rests from persecution.

2Th 1:6  Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you;
2Th 1:7  And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,
2Th 1:8  In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:
2Th 1:9  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;
2Th 1:10  When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day. 

4) Paul said that God would be sending strong delusion to those who believed not the truth, the context being the period of time around Christ's arrival.

2Th 2:9  Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
2Th 2:10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
2Th 2:11  And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
2Th 2:12  That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 

There are only a few references that lend to any being saved during the great tribulation. These being saved are the remaining Gentiles added to the body of Christ (the fulness of the gentiles), and all Israel (the third remaining who will be brought through the fire and refined).

Rom 11:25  For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
Rom 11:26  And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 

The fact that the Gospel continues to be preached until the end of the age provides an indication that some will be saved.

Mat 24:14  And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. 

Hallelujah

 

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1 hour ago, Butero said:

What does someone being privileged matter?  Where in the Bible does it say some people aren't privileged over others?  I do not really understand why this matters to some people.  So what if some people are privileged above others.  Weren't the hand chosen Apostles privileged over those Jesus didn't choose?  Weren't the Kings of Israel privileged over those God didn't pick?  Who will be on the right and left hand of Jesus in his Kingdom?  I don't know, but aren't they privileged over those who are not?  What is the point of this?  

The problem is not privilege per se, but rather that there is no basis for a pretrib rapture privilege.  Jesus said that in the world we would have tribulation, and that we are not greater than our Master.  They persecuted Him, they'll persecute us.  That has held true down through the centuries, from one degree to another, since the beginning of the new covenant and there's no scriptural basis for a privileged few who are exempt.

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1 hour ago, Butero said:

Of course we can know the signs, but by watching, it means to watch how we live.  Jesus said no man knows the day or hour of his return.  Only God the Father knows, and we are to live our lives like he could return at any moment.

No..

Jesus gave the signs that we should be looking out for.. And told us when we saw those signs to raise up our heads

Luke 21: KJV

28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh."

I would encourage everyone to read the chapter up to this verse and read about the signs that Christians will be seeing..

 

So the scriptures are true, no one will know the day or the hour but true followers of the LORD Jesus Christ will know the times.. They will not be caught like a thief in the night..

 

1 Thessalonians 5:KJV

"2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. {3} For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. {4} But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. {5} Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. {6} Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober."

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2 hours ago, Butero said:

What does someone being privileged matter?  Where in the Bible does it say some people aren't privileged over others?  I do not really understand why this matters to some people.  So what if some people are privileged above others.  Weren't the hand chosen Apostles privileged over those Jesus didn't choose?  Weren't the Kings of Israel privileged over those God didn't pick?  Who will be on the right and left hand of Jesus in his Kingdom?  I don't know, but aren't they privileged over those who are not?  What is the point of this?  

That isn't the argument. It's the thesis. We are trying to explore the validity of a pretrib rapture and if it's an actual event or if it exists as only an idea, an idea that perhaps has become the first class section of the Dreamliner to eternity.

So it's not a conclusion that pretrib doctrine exists because of privilege, but whether the doctrine has become the table of the elite, and if that is justified or not.

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2 hours ago, Diaste said:

That isn't the argument. It's the thesis. We are trying to explore the validity of a pretrib rapture and if it's an actual event or if it exists as only an idea, an idea that perhaps has become the first class section of the Dreamliner to eternity.

So it's not a conclusion that pretrib doctrine exists because of privilege, but whether the doctrine has become the table of the elite, and if that is justified or not.

 1 Thessalonians 5:9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,

How about if I phrase the question like this; Is 1Thess 4:9 only for the Church or does this verse apply to all believers regardless of the dispensation (i.e. age of law, age of grace, tribulation period, or millennium) that they were born in?

 

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On ‎7‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 1:07 PM, Butero said:

Let me start out by saying that I disagree with the privilege argument in the OP.  I can make a case for privilege on any number of issues, from the family we were born to, to the nation of birth, to our time in history, to any number of other things.  It is just not a valid argument.  In addition to that, people aren't believing in a pre-tribulation rapture because they sat around and determined that they like the idea because it makes them privileged.  

Are there examples of God's people being removed before danger came, rather than having to go through it?  Of course there are.  First of all, there is Noah and his family.  They weren't required to stay on the earth and while God helped them float on the water and survive that way.  They went into the ark of safety while the earth was under water.  Then there is Lot and his family.  They weren't required to remain in Sodom while the fire and brimstone rained down.  They were removed by the angels first.  The idea of God removing someone from danger is nothing new, and if you want to call Noah and his family privileged or Lot and his family privileged, so be it.  Where does the Bible say God doesn't give certain privileges to his children?  

For as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.  For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.  Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.  Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.  Watch therefore:  for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.  But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.  Therefore be ye also ready:  for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.  Matthew 2:37-44

I am not posting this to prove it is speaking of the rapture, though I believe it is.  I am posting this to show God taking Noah into the ark of safety before the flood, and God removing people from the earth and leaving others.  To some that might be considered privilege.  So what?  I want to be among the privileged.  You can be too by being watchful.  

There is an argument that was made about where the Christians come from that are seen killed during the tribulation period and who kills them.  I do not subscribe to Hal Lindsey and people like him that believe every Christian goes in the rapture.  Only those who are watching and waiting on the Lord and keeping their life in order will go in the rapture.  Many Christians will be left behind to go through the tribulation.  Jesus warned us the lukewarm will be spewed out, so if they don't take the warning serious, that is not on God but on them.  Anyway, back to who is killing them.  The wicked anti-Christ followers are the ones killing them, not God, but God is pouring out his wrath upon the earth through judgements.  The martyrs are not upset with God for his judgements, but they are wanting vengeance upon the anti-Christ followers that killed them.  There will be some saved during the tribulation period, but the reason they didn't escape the tribulation is because they failed to watch for the Lord's return and didn't believe the warnings.  That is on them, not God.  As was the case with Noah before the flood, there is a way of escape for some.

And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.  For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.  Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.  Luke 21:34-36

 

In this post, I gave examples of people escaping judgement, and there will be judgement poured out during the tribulation period, and I gave scriptures to show why I believe in a pre-tribulation rapture.  

I do believe Jesus gave us things to look for and I believe we are living in what scripture calls the beginning of sorrows.  

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On 7/9/2018 at 2:31 PM, Butero said:

Let me start out by saying that I disagree with the privilege argument in the OP.  I can make a case for privilege on any number of issues, from the family we were born to, to the nation of birth, to our time in history, to any number of other things.  It is just not a valid argument.  In addition to that, people aren't believing in a pre-tribulation rapture because they sat around and determined that they like the idea because it makes them privileged.  

It is valid as a thesis. It looks like the pretrib group has taken this privilege for themselves as we do not see a pretrib rapture in scripture. We do see many details surrounding a gathering, just not a pretrib gathering. One would think great detail should accompany a gathering of a billion righteous people, so perfect in their heart and their walk with the Father that this ginormous group is taken off the earth ALIVE, without dying. That should merit some mention as to timing since only two people in history could claim the same. Maybe like, "A billion people were not because God took them." Or maybe the dramatic scene of Elijah ascending to heaven. 

On 7/9/2018 at 2:31 PM, Butero said:

I am not posting this to prove it is speaking of the rapture, though I believe it is.  I am posting this to show God taking Noah into the ark of safety before the flood, and God removing people from the earth and leaving others.  To some that might be considered privilege.  So what?  I want to be among the privileged.  You can be too by being watchful.  

I know you explained what you meant by being watchful. But that's it? Keep your life in order? Watch and pay your bills?

 

On 7/9/2018 at 2:31 PM, Butero said:

Many Christians will be left behind to go through the tribulation. 

Is that so? Isn't that inconsistent with PreTrib doctrine? As Christians the Pretrib folk stake their hope on 1 Thess 5:9, "For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ." I don't see where Paul said, "Only the Pretrib believers are not appointed to wrath." And he did not say, "God did not appoint us to suffer wrath, unless you are not watching and your life is a shambles." Paul begins, "...brothers and sisters..." That's all believers. Paul said, "...did not appoint US..." That's all believers again.

Even if you don't agree with that why does PreTrib condemn any believer to wrath when God himself did not appoint any to wrath?

On 7/9/2018 at 2:31 PM, Butero said:

The wicked anti-Christ followers are the ones killing them, not God, but God is pouring out his wrath upon the earth through judgements.

This is also a problem. You said God is pouring out His wrath. No believer is appointed to wrath whether that wrath is wrapped in semantics or not. So if the judgments are the wrath of God, then the Lamb administered wrath through 'judgments' is what is killing the martyrs. It would not matter if those judgments were fire, water, earth, air or meteors, it's wrath, to which no believer is appointed. If this concept is the great escape for some, why not all?

On 7/9/2018 at 2:31 PM, Butero said:

There will be some saved during the tribulation period,

During the wrath of the Lamb some are saved? So immediately upon becoming born again in the Spirit, sins remitted by the Blood of the Lamb, Saved through Jesus Christ, these babes in Christ are going to face wrath from their Savior? The entire tribulation is wrath according to PreTrib, it's a bedrock tenet that allows Pretrib adherents to escape tribulation as "God did not appoint US to wrath. How can some of US then be appointed to wrath?

The problem is equating wrath with tribulation. Pretrib exiles context in favor of text and magically unrelated concepts are now synonymous, and that from thin air.  

The three statement from above lead me to conclude there exists a vast group that walks the earth in perfection of the Spirit, holy and righteous before God, that will be taken off the earth alive; while this same group dooms some it's own members to the gauntlet of horror of the wrath of the Lamb based only on the premise they were watching properly and their lives were more in order than those 'others'. 

This epistemology born of the PreTrib doctrine is prejudiced, privileged, elitism.

But you can renounce it and start fresh. You don't have to continue in this. The truth is out there.

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