What Can We Know About The “Glorious Rapture” & Great Tribulation Period?
“Rapture” is the word used to designate the time of Jesus’ return in the air to take His followers to heaven. In 1 Thessalonians 4:17, Apostle Paul said that living believers will be “caught up” with the dead in Christ to meet the Lord in the air. The Greek word Paul used here is “harpazo”, which means “to snatch away”. When the Bible was translated into Latin, the scholars rendered “harpazo” as “rapturo”. It is just a short step then from “rapturo” to the English word “rapture”. Although the word “rapture” does not appear in the English translation of Scripture, the sense of the word is surely there. Therefore, Christians will be “snatched away” when the Lord Jesus descends with a shout. Jesus Christ will appear suddenly one day, reaches out His arms and makes millions of people, both living and dead, disappear from earth. Here is how Paul described the disappearance of millions of people from the earth into the heavenly kingdom:
“Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep (die), but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed (1 Corinthians 15: 51-52)”.
“For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord (1 Thessalonians 4: 16-17).”
The “dead in Christ” would rise first before the living believers in Jesus Christ. This indicates that all people who trusted in Jesus Christ from the Day of Pentecost (over 2000 years ago) until the moment of “rapture”, both the living and the dead, would join Jesus Christ in the air on rapture day. This is an event solely for those who have genuinely accepted the great salvation offer of Jesus Christ and perpetually ready for His glorious appearance. You will be left behind on that day if you are an unbeliever, unrepentant sinner or complacent Christian.
As a true believer in Jesus Christ, the “rapture” will facilitate for you a quick trip to heaven. You will enjoy this marvelous experience on that day. In John 14, after Jesus had made the Upper Room announcement that He was departing, He reassured His disciples by telling them that His departure was related to what He was doing for His true believers, preparing an eternal dwelling place (Heavenly Mansions) for them. Then He told them He would be coming back to take them to that place. Therefore, Jesus Christ will take us to be with Him at the “rapture” due to His promise of a wonderful place for us in His heavenly kingdom. The moment living believers are ushered into Christ’s presence, they will receive their new glorious bodies. “…but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in a twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet…For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality (1 Corinthians 15: 51-53)”.
Imagine the thrill of hearing the shout of the Lord Jesus Christ, the voice of the archangel (probably Angel Michael), and the trumpet of God. Imagine looking up and seeing the glorious Jesus Christ with His Open arms, ready to hold you for an eternity. Imagine these things, only if you are a genuinely born-again Christian. If you are an unbeliever, unrepentant sinner or complacent Christian, you will not hear the shouts and trumpet blasts. You will be left behind!
If you are left behind on “rapture” day, you will hear news reports worldwide that whole congregations of people disappeared suddenly, employees or employers suddenly vanished and vital public services are disrupted due to mass absenteeism. Therefore, you will notice with great fear that “rapture” indeed occurred. No matter how blinded the unbelieving world may be to the events in the sky on that day, they will soon know that something extraordinary has occurred. Imagine reading the news report below in a newspaper after the “rapture”.
Breaking News: Millions Reported Missing!
News reports arriving from cities around the globe tell of a mysterious disappearance of thousands and thousands of people. In some instances, entire families have vanished without a trace….
Could this headline and lead paragraph appear in your newspaper tomorrow? Is it possible that Jesus Christ could return today and suddenly remove His true followers from this earth, leaving an unbelieving world to wonder where all the Christians have gone?
This is an extremely practical issue. If Jesus Christ could return today, we need to be ready. We cannot afford to take the future for granted. Those who live in the perpetual expectation that Jesus Christ could return at any moment have reason to live a different and better life than unbelievers. It gives everyone who knows the way to heaven urgent reason to introduce others to Jesus Christ, before it is too late. Everyone who looks for Christ’s return has reason to live the kind of life that will please the Lord at His coming (“Glorious Rapture”). The Apostle John recognized this when he wrote,”…when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure” (1 John 3: 2-3).
Prior to the “Rapture” day, Anti-Christ spirit (Satan) will continue to instigate rebellious unbelievers to take up arms against and be killing faithful Christians who will not yield to Satanic overtures to compromise their faith in Jesus Christ. Only genuine Christians whose faith in Jesus Christ remain unshaken will be gathered to meet the Lord Jesus Christ in the air on the great “Rapture” day (1 Cor.15:51-53; 1 Thess.4:15-18). Ensure that you sustain your faith with fervent prayers on a daily basis in order to remain steadfast with our Lord Jesus Christ.
No one really knows when the “glorious rapture” will occur. Scoffers have been scoffing for over 2,000 years. However, Jesus Christ can be trusted to keep His promise to return for His true followers (John 14:2-3). As a redeemed believer, you should maintain an attitude and condition of perpetual readiness for the rapture (Matthew 24:44). You cannot know the day Jesus will return. It will be suddenly and unexpectedly when Jesus Christ will descend toward earth one day. As He does, the mighty sound of a heavenly trumpet and a cry of triumph will pierce the air. Then the resurrection and the “glorious rapture” will occur (1 Thess.4:15-18; 1 Cor.15:51-53). You should maintain constant readiness. “Rapture” can occur at any moment. Whether you believe it or not, it will take place one day. Be perpetually ready!
After the rapture, Antichrist will rise to power. He will gather a huge following through satanic deception and also cause untold suffering in the world, especially for the unraptured Christians.
Antichrist will receive his power, throne and authority from Satan (Rev.13:2). He will be a ruler, conqueror, guilty of terrible blasphemy against God, put himself above everything and everyone and also proclaim himself to be “God” (Rev. 6:2, 13:5; Daniel 11:37; 2 Thess.2:4).
Antichrist will attack unraptured Christians; kill millions of them for refusing to accept his “666” mark and worship his image; have authority over the nations; demand that his image be worshipped by everybody and his number will be “666” (Rev.6:9-11; 7:9-17; 13:7-18). If you are not raptured, you may end up receiving Antichrist satanic mark and worship him (Rev.13:16-18). Accept Jesus Christ today!
Antichrist will be sent by Satan after the rapture. He will be the “king of fierce countenance”, the “willful king”, the “Man of Sin”, the “Son of Perdition”and the “Beast” (Daniel 8:23-25, 9:26-27, 11:16, 36-38; 2 Thess.2:3-4; Rev.13:1-10). When the Antichrist is revealed, the terrible events of the great tribulation and the devastation of the War of Armageddon will occur (2 Thess.2:3; Rev. 6:9-11, 11:18, 13:1-18, 16:9, 19:19-21).
After rising to world prominence, Antichrist will conduct a reign of terror, bringing death to millions of people worldwide. The suffering and death that will fall on the nations during the great tribulation will be horrible. Satan, Antichrist and his numerous followers will end up in the eternal Lake of Fire and Sulfur eventually (Rev.14:9-12, 19:17-21, 20:10-15).
Accept Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Saviour today! Stop your unbelieving disposition now!