Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Nail #15

Evidence and proof of the Pre-wrath Rapture

I’ve written more than a dozen posts describing why the Bible does not support either the “Pre-tribulation rapture” or why the Bible does not support all 7 years of Daniel’s 70th week being the wrath of God. Well how about a little “comparing Scripture with Scripture” to not only prove the Pre-trib rapture is a myth, but also to support the idea of the “Pre-Wrath Rapture,” or that the church WILL go into and through the Beginning of Sorrows and the Great Tribulation but be removed before God’s wrath begins?

Let us start with a passage which every Christian who believes the church will be raptured agrees is the rapture:

For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 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.
~1 Thessalonians 4:15-17

In this beautiful and well-known rapture passage I want to point out four truths about this event that are indisputable. The first is the Greek word for “coming” in verse 15 is parousia (Strong's G3952) and it is clearly referring to the 2nd coming of our Lord, the future visible return from Heaven of Jesus. As I’ve written in earlier “Nails,” parousia is a noun and it is referring to an event. An event at which our Lord will come and go more than once - but there is ONLY one event, only one parousia, only one second coming.

Second, His coming (parousia) will be announced “with a trumpet of God” (v16). Third, this passage teaches that at the coming (parousia) of Christ, the Lord will come “in the clouds” (v17). Please remember two angels told the men of Galilee at His ascension into Heaven His return will be “in like manner” as they just saw when a cloud received Him out of their sight (Acts 1:9-11). The fourth truth is implied by Paul’s passive phrase “shall be caught up together.” Because believers will be “caught up … to meet the Lord in the air” it is implied that someone or someones will “catch us up” and carry us to Him. Obviously we aren’t going to be gathering ourselves.

Certainly if the rapture is spoken of anywhere else in Scripture similar truths would also be mentioned. Well, they are mentioned, and in fact they are clearly stated by the Lord Himself in the Olivet Discourse where He is teaching the apostles about His return:

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. 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.
~Matthew 24:30-31

First, the context of these two verses is clearly Christ’s coming, His parousia (see vv 3, 27). Please notice in His reply to the apostles’ questions that He has not yet come. Specifically in verse 6 He says “but the end is not yet” plainly implying that when He comes it will be the end. Then in verse 13 Jesus says those who endure to the end will be saved - again the implication is His return and the end have not yet come.

Second, His coming (parousia) will be associated with “the clouds” (see v30).

Third, His coming will be associated with “a great sound of a trumpet” (see v31).

Fourth, His coming will involve “His angels” who will gather “His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (see v31). 2 Thessalonians 2:1 also speaks of our being “gathered together” unto Him at the coming (parousia) of our Lord Jesus and not before.

So you see, the rapture of the Church IS taught by Christ Himself in the Olivet discourse, both in Matthew 24 above and Mark 13:26-27.

Jesus also touches upon it in Luke 21:27-28 where He actually tells us to “look up, lift up your heads; for your redemption [apolytrosis, or deliverance, Strong's G629] draweth nigh.” The context of the passage is the same as it is in Matthew 24 and Mark 13 so it begs the question, deliverance from what? The answer is deliverance from the Great Tribulation!

This is why most believers who yearn for the Pre-trib rapture theory to be correct ignore this passage in the Olivet Discourse. They ignore it because it is AFTER the Beginning of Sorrows and AFTER the Great Tribulation. But not to worry, Jesus tells us He will cut the days of the Great Tribulation short for His Elect (Matthew 24:22, Mark 13:20) and how will He do it? Answer - He will cut the days short by THE RAPTURE! We are taken off this planet before God’s wrath begins, also known as the Day of the Lord. Jesus taught similarly about His return being like the days of Noah and Lot (Luke 17:26-30). The day they were delivered, the same day God’s wrath came.

Remember, there are five compromising churches whom the Lord Jesus told John to write - Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Laodicea - and only one faithful church, Philadelphia. This should tell you that most believers will be a part of one of the compromising churches and a relative few will be a part of the faithful church which is protected during the Great Tribulation (Revelation 3:10), see Nail #11.

So please, have the courage to accept the truth established by Scripture and no longer be a part of the compromising church believing in unsubstantiated theories and incorrect conclusions. Join the church at Philadelphia and obtain Providential protection.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Nail #14


Proof the entirety of Daniel’s 70th week is not God’s Wrath

Revelation 14:9-12
9  And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,
10  The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
11  And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.
12  Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
13  And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.

Here we have the third angel warning all the inhabitants of the earth about the Antichrist forcing everyone to worship him and to take his mark in their forehead or their hand.  This occurs right around the middle of Daniel’s 70th week.  We are all warned that if we worship the beast, or if we take his mark, that we will “…drink of the wine of the wrath of God…

Does this not tell us that the wrath of God has not yet started?

YES! That is correct! The wrath of God has not yet started!  So far, the world has witnessed the events surrounding the opening of the first 4 seals.  The 5th seal has not yet been opened.  Because of the warning of the third angel, there will be many people who refuse to worship the Antichrist or his image - including Christians. They will immediately be executed for their “insolence.”  And because of the warning of the third angel, there will be many people who refuse to take the mark in their forehead or their hand.  Either through execution or starvation when they will not be able to buy or sell, many will perish at the hand of the Antichrist.

But the point is, the Trumpet and Bowl judgments of the wrath of God have not started. The people who worship the Antichrist, and those who take his mark in their forehead or in their hand will “…drink of the wine of the wrath of God…

The wrath of God has not yet started.  The church is still here - look once more at verses 12 & 13:
Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. … Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth:

This is the characteristic of the Christians who are suffering through the Great Tribulation: we patiently endure, we keep the commandments, and maintain our faith in the face of persecution and death.  In order to tell us that God knows our suffering John is told to write, to tell us: Blessed are those who die in the Lord from henceforth: !!! And under whose hand will those in the Lord die?  It isn’t God’s hand, but at Satan’s hand, under his wrath. (Revelation 12:12)

God’s wrath has not yet started and the church is still present on the earth.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Nail #13


Rebuttal to Pre-tribulation Rapture proof points

Revelation 4:1
After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.

A lot of Christians who believe in the Pre-Trib Rapture theory have said, “Remember the first 3 chapters deal with the CHURCH AGE and its condition.  Then beginning with the 4th chapter a door is opened in Heaven and the Church is GONE and you do not see it mentioned again untill the 19th chapter.  John represents the church being raptured into Heaven.”

Sorry friends, that does not add up for the following reasons:
1 - Nowhere in the Bible does John ever represent the church as a whole.  If John represented the church and its rapture when he was called up to Heaven, you would find it supported elsewhere in the Bible - it isn’t.

2 - Please notice when John was called up to heaven it was a voice.  The voice of our Lord Jesus Christ.  But in all the classic rapture passages, it is the sound of a trumpet, the voice of the archangel that signals the rapture (Matthew 24:31, 1 Corinthians 15:52, 1 Thessalonians 4:16), never the Lord’s voice.

3 - The church is not mentioned again?  Maybe the word “church” is not used but the church is made up of believers in Jesus Christ, correct?  There are several passages that discuss Christians enduring persecution during the Great Tribulation:
   -  Revelation 12:17 clearly says that Satan (through the Antichrist) went after those that hold to the testimony of Jesus, i.e. Christians in the church.
   -  Revelation 13:7 - The antichrist was given power to make war with saints, i.e. the church. AND overcome them
   -  Revelation 13:10 - Saints, i.e. Christians in the church, are told to have patience even if it means we go to jail, or worse, if we are killed
   -  Revelation 14:12 - Saints, i.e. Christians in the church, are again demonstrating patience.  This is right after the 3 angels proclaim TO THE WHOLE WORLD - (1) the Gospel, (2) the News of “Babylon”, and (3) a warning not to worship the Antichrist or to take his mark.  In the sequence of events, this is about the same time the Antichrist is being revealed - between the points in time when the third and fourth seals are broken.
   -  Revelation 18:4 - John hears a voice from Heaven crying out to my people, i.e. Christians, to come out of the false church. Some may argue that “my people” refers to Jews. Sorry, there will be no Jews in the false “Christian” church.

So please do not rely on the theory that because the word “church” is not used between Chapter 4 and Chapter 19 of Revelation proves the Pre-trib Rapture.  I’m sure you will agree that when God refers to people “having the testimony of Jesus,” as “saints,” “those that have the faith of Jesus,” or “my people,”  the people spoken of are Christians - and Christians are the people who make up the church.

Before you claim, “But those are people who got saved after the rapture,” certainly you will concur there are not two raptures.  If there is a Pre-Trib rapture, and then people get saved during the “Beginning of Sorrows” or “Great Tribulation” (and they will), that means that there will be Christians on the earth DURING the Trumpet and Bowl Judgments (God’s wrath).  And the promise given us in 1 Thessalonians 1:10 and 5:9  that we would not suffer God’s wrath is a promise for EVERY Christian or God’s Word is a lie, correct?  I don’t read anywhere in the Bible that we will be delivered from the wrath to come, unless you get saved after the rapture.

Some will even say, “You’re looking for the Antichrist, I’m looking for Jesus Christ.” And? Just what is that supposed to mean? There are many signs that must be present before Christ returns in the clouds for His Bride. The rise of the Antichrist and his “revealing” MUST occur first as God’s Word clearly states in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4 (Nail #1). The revealing of the Antichrist is just one of the reasons Paul tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:4-6 (Nail #2) that we will not be surprised when Christ returns. Let me say that again - Paul writes that we will not be surprised at His return. Sorry, things don’t add up.

Actually, nothing about the Pre-trib Rapture theory adds up.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Nail #12

Proof the entirety of Daniel's 70th week is not God's Wrath

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:
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?
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 fellow servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.

This is simply more proof that the entire seven years of Daniel’s 70th week is not the wrath or Judgment of God.

When Jesus opens the fifth seal and reveals to John the souls under the altar, the souls of those who have been slain as the result of the Great Tribulation having started, they ask a very important question. Read verse 10 again:

How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?

They ask how much longer they will have to wait before God judges those who murdered them. Obviously they ask this question because God has not yet started judging the earth and them that dwell on it.

There is no question that Daniel’s 70th week commences with the opening of the first seal and the emergence of the rider on the white horse. Now here we are up to the fifth seal!

If the entire seven years of Daniel’s 70th Week is the wrath of God, it cannot have started yet, given the question of the martyrs. Their question states that God has refrained and is refraining from judging and taking vengeance on the wicked. Notice the Lord's answer, “they were told that they should rest for a little while longer, until their fellow servants and brethren who were to be killed would be completed also.”  

The wrath of God against the wicked who are alive on the earth and who were responsible for the deaths of these martyrs has not yet started. Plain and simple.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Nail #11


Rebuttal to Pre-Tribulation Rapture proof points

Revelation 3:10
Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

Every Pre-trib rapture teacher I know uses Revelation 3:10 as proof that the church will be kept from the “Tribulation Period” by the rapture. This is wrong on several counts. The first and simplest is that he was speaking to the church of Philadelphia. Are not the other Churches in Chapters 2 & 3 of Revelation also going to be raptured? The answer is of course, yes. There is only one rapture and it affects every Christian. A couple of churches are questionable (Sardis, Laodicea) but regardless, at the very least there are Christians in the other churches who will also be raptured. The point is ALL Christians will be raptured, the carnal Christians as well as the strong believers. So this promise for protection for the church in Philadelphia (and denied the other 6 churches) is not the rapture.

Second, the Greek Phrase “tereo ek” that is translated as “keep thee from” in Revelation 3:10 is the same Greek phrase the same author (John) uses in John 17:15 where Christ actually says the exact opposite in His high priestly prayer to the Father! My prayer is NOT that you take them out of the world but that you “protect them from” [tereo ek] the evil one. So the Pre-trib rapturists believe “keep thee from” in Revelation 3:10 means “to be taken out of the world” and when Jesus uses the same phrase it is in the context of asking the Father NOT to take them out of the world! Sorry, that is illogical.

I don’t want to belabor my point but in John 17:15 Jesus asks His Father NOT to take them out of the world but to protect (guard) them while still IN the world from Satan. Why would God need to guard or protect us if we WERE taken off the world? We need protection because we are still here...

The meaning of “protect them from” [tereo ek] in John 17:15 means the same thing as “keep thee from” in Revelation 3:10. Because you have been faithful to me, I will keep you from, protect you from, the hour of testing. With no Scriptural support Pre-trib rapturists simply assume that He will protect us from, or keep us from, the hour of testing by taking us off the planet. I don’t see how “guard” or “protect” can be used in John 17:15 (which is the clear context of the passage) and NOT be used in the same context in Revelation 3:10.

And as I wrote earlier, there ARE Christians in the other Churches who do not get this promise. They are NOT promised protection because they are carnal, or weak in faith, or that it is simply God’s purpose that they suffer - there’s nothing new there (Philippians 1:29), just as belief was given to us, so is suffering. When the rapture DOES occur, will they not also be raptured? YES, of course. But while going through the Great Tribulation BEFORE the rapture, they are NOT afforded Divine protection as the Church in Philadelphia is. There IS a difference between these Philadelphian Christians and their protection versus the Christians in the other churches, but the rapture will affect us ALL.

Bottom Line - Revelation 3:10 is NOT referring to the rapture as the method of “keeping us from” the hour of testing, it is assumed by some without any Biblical support whatsoever.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Nail #10


Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

Matthew 28:20
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Most Christians stop at the end of “teach them to obey everything I have commanded you.” But what does Jesus say then? He said that He will be with us always, even until the “end of the world.” Well, if we’re raptured off the planet before the Beginning of Sorrows and the Great Tribulation, we won’t even be here until the end of the world, right? Why would He say that He’ll be with us until the “end of the world” if He was going to gather us together to Him several years BEFORE the “end of the world?”

Answer - because we’ll still be here until that day, the day God’s wrath starts. God’s wrath, the events that will bring the world to an end, immediately follows the rapture. Jesus said His return (parousia) will be like it was in the days of Noah and Lot - the DAY they were “rescued” was the same DAY God poured out His wrath - the day the church is rescued (raptured) will be the same day God will pour out His wrath.

Don’t forget that the “end of the world” doesn’t occur until His coming (Greek - parousia). It doesn’t occur with or during the Beginning of Sorrows, and it doesn’t occur with or during the Great Tribulation.  The end of the world occurs at His coming (the event, noun) - remember this is what the apostles asked in Matthew 24:3 - And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

Bottom Line - He will be with us EVEN UNTIL THE END OF THE WORLD.  So we will be here until then.

THUS SAITH THE LORD!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Nail #9

Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

Another proof text I have for Daniel’s 70th week NOT being 7 years of God’s wrath, Isaiah 2:11 and 2:17 (below) both say that the Lord alone will be exalted in that day (Day of the Lord). This means that the antichrist can not come to power, raise himself up, set himself up in the temple as God and stop the sacrifice DURING the Day of the Lord.

Please consider this! During the Day of the Lord, i.e. the time in History when the wrath of God will be poured out on the earth, God alone will be exalted.  Now if the entire 7 years was the wrath of God (Day of the Lord), then the Antichrist could not come into power, and exalt himself, and cause all men to worship him.

Again, Christ said in Matthew 24, that there will be: 1) a Beginning of Sorrows, 2) a Great Tribulation, and then He doesn’t even mention the Wrath of God.  AFTER the Great Tribulation you see the SIGN of His appearing (Matthew 24:29-30).  But Christ tells John in Revelation that there will be the 7 seals (the first 3 seals are the Beginning of Sorrows; the 4th and 5th seals are the Great Tribulation; and Matthew 24:29-30 speaks of the 6th seal), 7 Trumpets, and 7 Vials - which the Trumpets and Vials are God’s wrath.  Revelation 15:1 says with the Vials, God’s wrath is completed, filled up, finished (depending on what version you have.  Looking at the KJV, in today’s English, it’s hard to understand that “filled up” means completed or finished).

Isaiah 2:6-22
6  Therefore thou hast forsaken thy people the house of Jacob, because they be replenished from the east, and are soothsayers like the Philistines, and they please themselves in the children of strangers.
7  Their land also is full of silver and gold, neither is there any end of their treasures; their land is also full of horses, neither is there any end of their chariots:
8  Their land also is full of idols; they worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made:
9  And the mean man boweth down, and the great man humbleth himself: therefore forgive them not.
10  Enter into the rock, and hide thee in the dust, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty.
11  The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day. (What Day?  The Day of the Lord)
12  For the day of the LORD of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up; and he shall be brought low:
13  And upon all the cedars of Lebanon, that are high and lifted up, and upon all the oaks of Bashan,
14  And upon all the high mountains, and upon all the hills that are lifted up,
15  And upon every high tower, and upon every fenced wall,
16  And upon all the ships of Tarshish, and upon all pleasant pictures.
17  And the loftiness of man shall be bowed down, and the haughtiness of men shall be made low: and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day. (What Day?  The Day of the Lord)
18  And the idols he shall utterly abolish.
19  And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth.
20  In that day a man shall cast his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which they made each one for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats;
21  To go into the clefts of the rocks, and into the tops of the ragged rocks, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth.
22  Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of ?

Please notice something else - verses 19 and 21... it actually looks like Isaiah and John discussed with each other a few things, look at Revelation 6:12, specifically the great earthquake compared with Isaiah 2:19 & 21 above

12  And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;

And with the same two verses above (19 & 21), please compare with Revelation 6:15, specifically the part about hiding:

15  And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;

Bottom Line for Nail #9 -  Since God alone will be exalted during the Day of the Lord, the Antichrist can NOT come into power and set himself up as God in the temple, and stop the sacrifice. Daniel’s 70th week is NOT 7 years of God’s wrath.  God’s wrath is comprised of a time period only at the end of the 7 years.

And to reinforce Nail #6, Jesus said His return (parousia) will be like it was in the days of Noah and Lot - the DAY they were “rescued” was the same DAY God poured out His wrath - the day the church is rescued (raptured) will be the same day God will pour out His wrath.  It sure doesn’t sound like the Pre-trib rapture theory, does it?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Nail #8

Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’ve heard Christians tell me, “No one knows the day or the hour” but no one has ever been able to tell me the verse, or the chapter that it was said - a few have guessed the correct Gospel (Matthew 24:36; Mark 13:32). While that is true, they all believe that statement generally, not literally. Jesus spoke those words in context of the Olivet Discourse and He intended that to be understood literally, the day or the hour. We CAN know when His return (and the rapture) is near.  How can I say that with confidence?  Back up a few verses and look at 32 and 33

Matthew 24:32-33
32  Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:
33  So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.

Jesus said we would KNOW that it is near. The word know is ginosko, the same word used many other times in the context of learning to know, acquiring knowledge, to understand. We will KNOW when His return is near - and He is not referring to hinting, suggesting, or guessing. We will KNOW when His return is near based on facts, not feelings. We will KNOW when His return is near based on biblical events that we will witness, not speculative synopses of biblical scholars.

Now remember, Jesus is talking to the apostles, the church fathers. He is teaching them, and later he said to teach the believers everything that He commanded them. So in effect, Jesus’s Words are recorded here for our, you and me, OUR instruction and edification. So when Jesus said “when ye shall see all these things,” what are “all these things” to which He was referring? EVERYTHING that He spoke of in Matthew 24:4-31! So, when WE Christians see “all these things” (all the events in the preceding verses) WE Christians are to KNOW (ginosko) that IT is near, even at the doors.

Now, what is the “IT” to which Jesus is referring?

Well, Jesus just spoke ALL of the preceding after being asked three questions by the apostles. Look at Matthew 24:3 -
And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

The apostles asked, “When shall these things be...” - which Jesus ignored in Matthew's Gospel, “...what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” First you have to realize that the apostles knew that His coming and the end of the world would happen at the same “event” - at His return (parousia - noun). The IT in verse 33 is the sign of His coming (v 30) and what is one of the first things He does at the sign of His coming (parousia)? Answer - The rapture of the church (v 31)!!!

Matthew 24:30-31
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.
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.

Bottom Line - Even though we don’t know, nor will we ever know, the day or the hour, we will see “all these things” and in doing so, we will know His return is near, even at the doors as Jesus said in verse 33.


Saturday, February 2, 2013

Nail #7


Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

Does the Bible ever describe the Church’s arrival in Heaven at the Rapture?

Look at Revelation 7:9 - After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands.

The Pre-tribulation rapturist will ask, “How do you get the idea that this great multitude is the raptured church?”

To that I say keep reading. To be more specific, read Revelation 7:13-14 - (13) Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes - who are they, and where did they come from?” (14) I answered, “Sir, you know.” And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

THESE ARE THEY WHO HAVE COME OUT OF THE GREAT TRIBULATION!!! These were not martyred saints, those believers are under the altar when the 5th seal is opened in Revelation 6:9 and they were even told to wait a little longer until more are added to their number. But this great multitude, which has not been arriving one at a time or in groups. This great multitude all of a sudden materializes; this great multitude which no man could number... No man can number??? Huh? Just a couple of chapters earlier John looked at a group of angels and said there were 100,000,000 of them (Revelation 5:11). ONE HUNDRED MILLION. But this great multitude John was looking at was clearly many, MANY, more than even that. My friend, THAT’S the raptured church - which came OUT of the Great Tribulation.

SO, if that great multitude is NOT the raptured church, who do YOU say it is, and by what means did they arrive in Heaven??

Another thing you’ll see from me is that the 7-year period a lot of people refer as the “Tribulation” period is not in Scripture. About the only thing in the Bible that refers to that entire period is Daniel’s 70th Week. A prophetic week has been determined to be a 7-year period. This is derived from the prophesy in Daniel 9:24-27 where it shows 69 weeks have already taken place and one week remains.  And this final week, or 7-year period starts with the Antichrist making a treaty (covenant) with Israel for 7 years. (Daniel 9:27)

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Nail #6

Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

To set up this “nail” I’ve got to mention some basics.  I hope you agree with the Bible that Daniel’s 70th week is not 7 years of God’s Wrath, but that it’s divided into three time periods:
   1)  The “Beginning of Sorrows” (Matthew 24:3-8) which will be 3.5 years (42 months);
   2) The “Great Tribulation” (Matthew 24:9-29) which is Satan’s wrath (Revelation 6:8-15, Revelation 12:12); followed by
   3) The “Wrath of God” (Revelation 6:16-17) which is the Day of the Lord.

I want to bring to light a comparison that Jesus Himself made regarding His return (parousia).

37  But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming [parousia] of the Son of man be.
38  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,
39  And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
40  Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
41  Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

There are similar Words from Christ in Luke WITH the addition of the example of Lot

26  And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.
27  They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
28  Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;
29  But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.
30  Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.

One of the things that is common with both Noah and Lot is that the day they were placed into safety, that same day God’s wrath came.  You can’t deny Jesus was saying that the way it was in the days of Noah and Lot, so shall it be at my return (parousia).  The day the church is delivered, raptured, placed into safety; that same day the wrath of God will start.  God’s wrath is the Trumpet and Bowl Judgments, NOT the Seals that were broken by the Lamb of God in Revelation 6 and the 7th Seal in Revelation 8:1.

Now - here is one of the ways those that believe the rapture occurs prior to Daniel’s 70th Week base their errant hypothesis: they misread the verses of Genesis and say that Noah entered the ark and then 7 days later, the flood started (Genesis 7) - hence the idea of the rapture happening 7 YEARS before the end... This is WRONG...  Read it again: 

6  Noah was six hundred years old when the floodwaters came on the earth.
7  And Noah and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives entered the ark to escape the waters of the flood.
8  Pairs of clean and unclean animals, of birds and of all creatures that move along the ground,
9  male and female, came to Noah and entered the ark, as God had commanded Noah.
10  And after the seven days the floodwaters came on the earth.

11  In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, on the seventeenth day of the second month -- on that day all the springs of the great deep burst forth, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened.
12  And rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights.
13  On that very day Noah and his sons, Shem, Ham and Japheth, together with his wife and the wives of his three sons, entered the ark.

Verses 6 and 7 are “generally speaking,” then verses 8-10, all the animals came to Noah and he loaded them up, then 7 days later God sent the flood.  Noah had 7 days to do the final preparations, because starting with verse 11 it is VERY specific to the DAY when the flood started, verse 12 tells how long it rained, then verse 13 is also very specific - that same DAY they entered the ark.  What day?  It is referring back to verse 11.  And of course this is the same thing Jesus said in Matthew 24:38-39, Luke 17:27, and in context, the same with Lot in Luke 17:29.  The Great Noahic Flood began on the 17th DAY of the second month (v11) which was the same DAY Noah and his family entered the Ark (v13).

Bottom Line for Nail #6 and I’ve said it before - The “Beginning of Sorrows” is not God’s Wrath; the “Great Tribulation” is not God’s wrath; God’s wrath commences with the 7 trumpets in Revelation 8 and concludes with the 7 vials in Revelation 16.  Even the lost men on the earth recognized it for they too have seen the signs.  They went through the Beginning of Sorrows, they were going through the Great Tribulation, but then they knew something much worse was about to begin, the wrath of the Lamb (Revelation 6:15-17).  

God’s Elect will be “raptured” the same DAY that the wrath of God commences, which will be at some point AFTER the mid-point of Daniel’s 70th Week (the mid-point is when the “Great Tribulation” started).  The RAPTURE is how God will cut short the Great Tribulation for the Elect (Matthew 24:22, Mark 13:20).

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Nail #5

Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture
(building on Nail #4)

Compared to the average Christian, I’m well-studied on the subject of Eschatology and if Jesus returned for His church as you’re reading this (or as I’m writing) I would be stunned because Paul wrote we are NOT to be surprised. WHY won’t His return surprise us? Because we will have seen all the signs of His soon return. What Signs? When Jesus returns we will have lived through the “Beginning of Sorrows” (Matthew 24:1-8), (i.e., the horsemen of the first 3 seals in Revelation 6).

We will have also seen the “Revealing” of the “Man of Lawlessness” (2 Thessalonians 2:3), and those Christians still alive will have survived the Great Tribulation (i.e., what takes place after the 4th seal is opened - Revelation 6:8). Then look at the 6th seal (Revelation 6:12)!! There is no way you can mistake the events associated with the 6th seal with anything that has ever happened on earth.

All that was the introduction for this Nail... NOW, the important part:

Please consider how closely Matthew 24:29-30 correlates with the 6th seal (Revelation 6:12-17):

Matthew 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:
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.

Revelation 6
12  And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;
13  And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.
14  And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.
15  And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;
16  And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:
17  For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?

Let me compare them for you, I’ll keep the colors as they are above so it will be easier to differentiate between Jesus’ words in Matthew 24 and John’s writing in Revelation 6:

shall the sun be darkened - the sun became black as sackcloth of hair

the moon shall not give her light - the moon became as blood;

the powers of the heavens shall be shaken - the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.  And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together;

then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; (16) And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: (17) For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?

These are all reasons why we will not be surprised! We will experience the great earthquake, we will see the sun stop shining, we will see the moon turn blood red, we will see (and probably hear as well) the powers of the heavens shaken. There was only one other time in human history where it is recorded in the Bible that the sun became black. Do you remember when that was? Probably the most educated of the Gospel writers, the Physician, Luke recorded when Christ gave up His Spirit while on the cross, the sun was darkened for three hours (Luke 23:44-45), literally, the sun stopped shining.  I believe one of the reasons the sun will stop shining and the stars in heaven will fall is so that the ONLY light in the skies will be the glorious appearing of our Savior.

Then what is the very next thing that Jesus says in Matthew 24? Look at verse 31.
Wait for it, ...
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.

Gather together His Elect? Who are His Elect? Everyplace I’ve read in the Bible, His Elect is the Church! That, combined with the great sound of a trumpet? Then the angels “gathering” His Elect... sounds like “gathered” in 2 Thessalonians 2:1. And not only does it sound like it, it IS the same Greek word in verb form.   :)

My Friend, that is the rapture! If that is NOT the rapture, please tell me what it is.

I’ve heard scholars and theologians like John Phillips say that the Gospel of Matthew is written to the Jews and not the church. Oh Really? So we’re not to pay attention to Matthew 28:19-20 which is, as you know, the Great Commission? The passage where Jesus tells us to go and teach all those whom God saves. Well my friend, that is weird because Matthew is the only Gospel writer who EVER uses the word “church” in the Gospels. Three times to be more precise. I just thought I’d mention that since I’ve heard that explanation “Matthew was written to the Jews” before.  :)

And if you’re adamant on the fact that we can’t use Matthew, well, we don’t have to go to Matthew do we? How about Luke 21:25-28?

25  And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;
26  Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
27  And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
28  And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

Well, Matthew says the Lord will send his angels to gather His Elect, here in Luke all He says is when these things begin to come to pass, then [you] look up, and [you] lift up your heads, because your redemption draws nigh.  Well since the Elect are already redeemed, He is obviously not referring to spiritual deliverance, but physical deliverance. [pssst, the rapture]

And please consider one more, how about Mark 13:19-20?
19  For in those days shall be affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the creation which God created unto this time, neither shall be. [Great Tribulation]
20  And except that the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh should be saved: but for the elect’s sake, whom he hath chosen, he hath shortened the days.

...but for who’s sake?  The Elect’s sake!  Well how are the days shortened?  The days are shortened by the rapture!  But because of the Elect whom HE has chosen (chosen? that’s another subject for another time), He has shortened those days.  And in this context, shortened is not referring to the number of hours in the day but the quantity of days for the saints in the Great Tribulation.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Nail #4

Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

The single word I want to show you now without the other 10 nails would mean almost nothing to someone who hasn’t studied this - or who has studied it and has done more twisting and spinning than a Chinese acrobat to TRY to make God’s Word say “Pre-Trib.” But based on everything else I’ve written thus far, I hope the reader will understand why it is easy to believe what I’m about to point out.

1 Thessalonians 4:15-18
15  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
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.
18  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

I would first like to point out that the word “coming” in verse 15 is the Greek word parousia, which is a noun and means “event” - the event of the Lord’s return which will encompass more than one day.

Now for the point of this post. Have you ever wondered about the seemingly double emphasis in the English version in verse 15 - “alive and remain”?  And then again in verse 17??

Based on what the Bible says (which I’ve shown you - so far) about the conditions of what’s taking place on earth immediately preceding the rapture, “remain” is a poor translation of the Greek word perileipo. It is Strong’s #4035 and it is better translated in this context as survive. You can even look at the word and guess what English word we take from it - peril. In context of the Lord’s parousia (the event of the Lord’s return), the word perileipo connotes the idea of withstanding great hardship or persecution (in this case), surviving. This word is used only twice in the New Testament - both times in this passage.

If you’re a passenger on an airliner that crashes, then you climb out of the wreckage with a few others, you don’t call your family and say that you’re alive and remain after the crash, you say you’ve survived it. You WERE at great peril.

As my pastor would say, the Bible we use is a transliteration of the Greek, meaning the structure of the sentence is changed so that it can be easily read in English. The Greek Bible I possess has the actual English translation of v17 as follows - then we the [ones] living - surviving, together with them shall be seized in clouds to a meeting of the Lord in air; ...

Like I said, this nail by itself is almost meaningless to someone who was raised a certain way and refuses to see the Truth. But in context of all eschatological passages the preponderance of the Truth should overwhelm all Christians, even those with a traditional belief based on a lie, amen?

Monday, January 7, 2013

Nail #3

Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

I understand how some can, and will, contest some of my “Nails” but regardless of whether they contest it or not, there’s a “chance” they’re wrong, and with the added evidence of the other nails, the likelihood increases.

Nail #3 - Matthew 24:5-8 is reconciled with the first 3 seals Christ, the Lamb, opened in Revelation 6, Christ calls it the Beginning of Sorrows, which IS the first 3.5 years, or 42 months, of the 7 year period we call Daniel's 70th Week.

Matthew 24:5-8
5  For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
6  And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7  For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8  All these are the beginning of sorrows.

Revelation 6:1-6
1  And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see.
2  And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.
3  And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see.
4  And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword.
5  And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand.
6  And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.

Is there any doubt that Daniel's 70th week has started?

Then...
Matthew 24:9-12
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. [Emphases added]
10  And then shall many be offended [leave the faith], and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
11  And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
12  And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

Revelation 6:7-8
7  And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see.
8  And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.

What event seems to start here?

You (Jesus was speaking to the fathers of the Church)
YOU will be afflicted,
YOU will be killed,
YOU will be hated.
Notice how Matthew 24:9 lines up with the events associated with the 4th seal in Revelation 6?

The church is still here when these seals are opened and will suffer persecution.  Jesus said in Matthew 24:10 that we will betray one another.  I don’t believe for one second that means Christians will betray one another.  I believe these are the tares (i.e., professed Christians) betraying the wheat (i.e., true Christians) when they leave the faith during the Great Tribulation.

Matthew 24:11, the ones deceived are the tares and maybe some true Christians who thought that they would be raptured before all this starts.

Matthew 24:12, the love of many waxing (growing) cold?  Again, the tares IN the church and possibly weak or “baby” Christians.

Do you see anywhere in the first 12 verses of Matthew 24 anything resembling a rapture?  Do you see anything resembling a rapture in Revelation 6?  Do you see anything anywhere that resembles the rapture as compared to Matthew 24:31?

Is there any doubt that the Great Tribulation has started?

A Spirit-led study of God’s Word WILL show over and over that the Church will be put through the “Beginning of Sorrows” and the “Great Tribulation,” one of the purposes of which is to SEPARATE the wheat from the tares.

My question still is, what qualifies someone (or maybe some church) to be counted among those who will be Divinely protected (Revelation 3:10) while in the midst of the “the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.” ? Will it be those who believe God’s Word completely regarding this subject (and maybe also other controversial subjects)?  If so, that would mean brothers and sisters in Christ within even the SAME denomination and within the same church; some being protected and others going through horrible persecution and martyrdom.  That shows me whatever you believe, you better have God’s Word backing you up in EVERY way.

A random verse here, and a contradictory verse there, is not Truth. God said in Psalm 119:160 - (NASB) that the SUM of His Word is Truth.  This means there is no contradiction whatsoever anywhere. As an example: Jesus said in John 3:16 that God so loved the world... How does that reconcile with Psalm 5:5, Psalm 11:5, and Proverbs 6:16-19? In those verses it is clear that there are those people in the world God hates. So how can John 3:16 mean God loves every human on the planet? It is clear that He doesn’t. This seeming contradiction is reconciled when John uses “world” in a number of places where the only way it can be understood in light of other Scripture is if he means the Jew AND the Gentile, not just the Jew. e.g., For God so loved the Jew AND the Gentile [world], not just the Jew, that He gave His only Begotten Son... (but that’s another subject.)

My point is that if there are ANY contradictions in what you believe about His return (parousia [noun] - the event, not erchomai [verb] - come), then dig deeper until all contradictions are worked out and only the Truth emerges.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Nail #2

Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

1 Thessalonians 5:1-5
1  But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
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.

I don’t know how many times I’ve heard Christians say (and it saddens me) that the Lord’s return will be like a thief in the night. And they clearly mean it will surprise everybody, including themselves, i.e. Christians.

But Paul said the exact opposite. He was explicitly clear that, while The Lord’s return will be like a thief in the night to a lost and dying world (1 Thessalonians 5:1-3), that day will NOT surprise Christians (1 Thessalonians 5:4-5)! Look at verses 1-3 above again. Paul is implying that he had previously told them about the end times and how it will happen. Look at the pronouns in verse 3 (i.e. they, them). Verse 3 clearly refers to people who are not saved, the lost, “those people.”

Now look at verses 4 and 5 where Paul introduces a contrasting thought by using the conjunction “but.” In verse 4 he changes the subject from “them and they” to “YOU and WE,” clearly a different group of people. But what is he writing? That day will NOT overtake us or surprise us like a thief... what day? The “Day of the Lord” (verse 2). Wait a minute! The Day of the Lord is God’s wrath and that doesn’t start until well AFTER the mid-point of Daniel’s 70th Week, perhaps as late as the 7th year, and we’re still here to be “NOT SURPRISED” !?!?! Can you see the clarity of verse 4 that clearly says that day (day of the Lord) will NOT surprise us?

That is why I say if the Lord returned right now it would surprise EVERYBODY, which includes me. But Paul writes above that His return will NOT surprise us. Now WHY will it not surprise us? I’ll let you think on that until you read Nail #3.

Bottom Line - The Lord’s return and the rapture of the Church will NOT surprise the Elect, the Bride of Christ, the Church. If the Pre-trib rapture theory is correct, the rapture WOULD surprise everyone. Sorry, not to be.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Nail #1

The sadness of tradition involved with the Pre-trib rapture

I have some points I use in debates with “pre-tribulation rapturists” that prove my belief about the church going into the Great Tribulation and/or the non-existence of the pre-tribulation rapture.  I have invited them to offer me proof of their position as well and they are unable to adequately prove their position with Scripture, nor disprove mine.

Each blog post listed to the right, or "Nail," covers biblical evidence the Church WILL go into the final 7 years (i.e. Daniel’s 70th week) OR proof against the Pre-tribulation rapture.

One of the first things I’d like to point out is that nowhere in the Bible is this 7-year period called the Tribulation.  The 7 years is divided into three time periods, of which Jesus refers to two of them in Matthew 24:
1. The “Beginning of Sorrows” which is the first 3.5 years (Matthew 24:8); and
2. The “Great Tribulation” (Matthew 24:21) which starts at the mid-point of the 7-year period, or Daniel’s 70th Week (Daniel 9:27).

We do not know how long the Great Tribulation will be but God ends it with the Rapture which occurs immediately before the beginning of the “Day of the Lord,” also known as the wrath of God, which is the third segment or time period within the 7 years.  Regarding the length of time of God’s wrath, the only thing we know is that the 5th trumpet judgment is 5 months long (Revelation 9:1-11).  Other than that it’s possible that God could drop every other trumpet and bowl (vial) judgment on the earth very quickly.

Bottom Line - I believe the Bible clearly teaches the Church will go into and through “The Beginning of Sorrows” AND “The Great Tribulation” and those Christians who are alive and have survived (1 Thessalonians 5:15,17) will be taken off the earth before God’s wrath begins.

By the way - The reason I will be using the term “nails” in the subject line is because I’m putting nails in the coffin of the Pre-Trib Rapture theory that got its start in the 1830s.

Nail #1 - Evidence and proof negating the Pre-tribulation Rapture

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

Some otherwise excellent and strong preachers have said that there is no more prophesy that must be fulfilled before the Lord returns.  This is not what Scripture says! Paul himself wrote in the verses above, BEFORE the Lord’s return and “our being gathered to Him” the man of lawlessness must be revealed.  Our “being gathered together to Him” is the rapture and the man of lawlessness is the Antichrist.

So, read that Scripture again with the meaning the same but different word phrases - “Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and the rapture of the church, ... it will not happen until the Antichrist has been revealed, exposed, for who he is.”  Now Christians have different opinions as to what revealed or exposed means but according to verse 4 above and Daniel 9:27 (which supports verse 4), I believe he will be revealed to the whole world for who he really is when he stops the sacrifice in the middle of the 7 years (Daniel’s 70th week) and sets himself up as God in the rebuilt temple.  This is one of the signs Jesus told His apostles to look for: the abomination of desolation - (Matthew 24:15).  If someone doesn’t consider that being revealed, I don’t know what would.  But the Antichrist will be revealed BEFORE the Rapture.

Now some good strong Christians who misunderstand this passage will say that the word “apostasy” in v3 is referring to the rapture of the church.  That position in fact is impossible because it involves circular reasoning.  Let’s reword the Passage to take their understanding as fact: “Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the rapture of the Church, ... that won't happen until the church is first raptured and the Antichrist is revealed.”  The rapture of the church won't occur until we are first raptured?  That is circular reasoning.

Second, the Greek word for apostasy is apostasia and it is NEVER used in any of the classic rapture passages for what will happen to the church when Christ returns.  It is used only one other time in the New Testament and it is in Acts 21:21 regarding FORSAKING Moses.  Please consider that context: the Church being forsaken?  No, God said that He would never forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:6,8; Matthew 28:20; Hebrews 13:5).

One other thing to pay attention to is that Paul ties three events together, they happen on the SAME day. (Matthew 24:38-39, Luke 17:26-30)
1 - The coming of our Lord. (Verse 1)  The Greek word translated as “coming” is parousia and it is a noun, meaning it is an event, not a verb indicating come or go, enter or exit.
2 - Our gathering together to Him, the rapture. (verse 1)  The usage of the word indicates an upward gathering (episynagoge).  You can see the prefix and word where that idea comes from. Epi meaning above - (like epidermis being the top level of skin), and synagogue - in the most common use it is where Jews would gather to worship on the sabbath.  Epi - above or upward; synagoge - gathering.  Here are some Rapture passages where the word or its root is used - Matthew 24:31; Mark 13:272 Thessalonians 2:1.  The use of the word in Matthew and Mark are verbs because the angels are doing the gathering but in 2 Thessalonians 2:1 it is a noun referring to the gathering itself, or the body of believers.
3 - The Day of the Lord. (verse 2)  The Day of the Lord is not a single 24-hour day but a period of time when God’s Wrath will be poured out upon the Earth.

These three things happening together is important and I will show why in a future “Nail.”

Bottom Line of Nail #1: The next prophetic event that may occur regarding the sequence of the end-times is the rise of the Antichrist, not as an evil fiend killing millions but as the world's savior bringing peace and safety.  He will be loved by billions.  According to 2 Thessalonians 2:3 the rapture will NOT take place until AFTER this man is revealed as the Antichrist - whenever you believe that is.