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.