Saturday, April 25, 2009

Apologies to my Pre-Trib brethren for this post

Often you hear Christians gasp with amazement when they hear about the peculiar doctrines of cults like the Mormons and JWs. They often exclaim "How can anybody believe that?"

Typically, they have not read enough of the cults material too understand the reasoning behind some of these false doctrines. Hence, when they actually meet real live cult followers, they are confounded and have no idea how to answer them.

These false doctrines have not been plucked from the air. They are supported by twisted readings of scriptural passages. They are invariably based on wrong methods of eisegesis. Yet the reasoning behind them makes sense. When they present their arguments, you can see where they are going.

Yet despite the smart arguments, you are still left with the thought in your head "How can anybody come to that conclusion?"

For all the great theology that has come from Dispensationalist theologians, my thoughts on the Pre-Trib rapture are still exactly the same as my reaction to the odd doctrines of the cults- "How can anybody come to that conclusion?"

I have read book after book by Pre-Trib theologians. Yet I am still baffled as to how people come to think that there is a pre-trib rapture. The more arguments that Pre-Tribbers raise, the more implausible there proposition seems to me.

10 comments:

Rocky2 said...

Famous Rapture Watchers - Addendum

by Dave MacPherson


(The statements in my "Famous Rapture Watchers" web article appeared in my 1983 book "The Great Rapture Hoax" and quoted only past leaders. Here are the other leaders who were quoted in that original printing.)

Oswald J. Smith: "...I am absolutely convinced that there will be no rapture before the Tribulation, but that the Church will undoubtedly be called upon to face the Antichrist..." (Tribulation or Rapture - Which?, p. 2).

Paul B. Smith: "You are perfectly free to quote me as believing rather emphatically in the post-tribulation teaching of the Bible" (letter dated June 9, 1976).

S. I. McMillen: "...Christians will suffer in the Great Tribulation" (Discern These Times, p. 55).

Norman F. Douty: "...all of the evidence of history runs one way - in favor of Post-tribulationism" (Has Christ's Return Two Stages?, p. 113).

Leonard Ravenhill: "There is a cowardly Christianity which...still comforts its fainting heart with the hope that there will be a rapture - perhaps today - to catch us away from coming tribulation" (Sodom Had No Bible, p. 94).

William Hendriksen: "...the one and only second coming of Christ to judgment" (Israel in Prophecy, p. 29).

Loraine Boettner: "Hence we conclude that nowhere in Scripture does it teach a secret or pre-tribulation Rapture" (The Millennium, p. 168).

J. Sidlow Baxter: "...believers of the last days (there is only one small part of the total Church on earth at any given moment) will be on earth during the so-called 'Great Tribulation' " (Explore the Book, Vol. 6, p. 345).

Merrill C. Tenney: "There is no convincing reason why the seer's being 'in the Spirit' and being called into heaven [Revelation 4:1-2] typifies the rapture of the church..." (Interpreting Revelation, p. 141).

James R. Graham: "...there is not a line of the N.T. that declares a pre-tribulation rapture, so its advocates are compelled to read it into certain indeterminate texts..." (Watchman, What of the Night?, p. 79).

Ralph Earle: "The teaching of a pre-tribulation rapture seems first to have been emphasized widely about 100 years ago by John Darby of the Plymouth Brethren" (Behold, I Come, p. 74).

Clarence B. Bass: "...I most strongly believe dispensationalism to be a departure from the historic faith..." (Backgrounds to Dispensationalism, p. 155).

William C. Thomas: "The return of Jesus Christ, described by parousia, revelation, and epiphany, is one single, glorious, triumphant event for which we all wait with great eagerness!" (The Blessed Hope in the Thessalonian Epistles of Paul, p. 42).

Harold J. Ockenga: "No exegetical justification exists for the arbitrary separation of the 'coming of Christ' and the 'day of the Lord.' It is one 'day of the Lord Jesus Christ' " (Christian Life, February, 1955).

Duane Edward Spencer: "Paul makes it very clear that the Church will pass through the Great Tribulation" ("Rapture-Tribulation" cassette).

J. C. Maris: "Nowhere the Bible teaches that the Church of Jesus Christ is heading for world dominion. On the contrary - there will be no place for her, save in 'the wilderness,' where God will take care of her (Rev. 12:13-17)" (I.C.C.C. leaflet "The Danger of the Ecumenical Movement," p. 2).

F. F. Bruce: "To meet the Lord [I Thessalonians 4:17]...on the final stage of...[Christ's] journey...to the earth..." (New Bible Commentary: Revised, p. 1159).

G. Christian Weiss: "Some people say that this ['gospel of the kingdom' in Matthew 24:14] is not the gospel of grace but is a special aspect of the gospel to be preached some time in the future. But there is nothing in the context to indicate this" ("Back to the Bible" broadcast, February 9, 1976).

Pat Brooks: "Soon we, in the Body of Christ, will be confronted by millions of people disillusioned by such false teaching [Pre-Tribism]" (Hear, O Israel, p. 186).

Herman Hoeksema: "...the time of Antichrist, when days so terrible are still to arrive for the church..." (Behold, He Cometh!, p. 131).

Ray Summers: "Because they [Philadelphia] have been faithful, he promises his sustaining grace in the tribulation..." (Worthy Is the Lamb, p. 123).

George E. Ladd: "[Pretribulationism] may be guilty of the positive danger of leaving the Church unprepared for tribulation when Antichrist appears..." (The Blessed Hope, p. 164).

Peter Beyerhaus: "The Christian Church on earth [will face] the final, almost superhuman test of being confronted with the apocalyptical temptation by Antichrist" (Christianity Today, April 13, 1973).

Leon Morris: "The early Christians...looked for the Christ to come as Judge" (Apocalyptic, p. 84).

Dale Moody: "There is not a passage in the New Testament to support Scofield. The call to John to 'come up hither' has reference to mystical ecstasy, not to a pretribulation rapture" (Spirit of the Living God, p. 203).

John R. W. Stott: "He would not spare them from the suffering [Revelation 3:10]; but He would uphold them in it" (What Christ Thinks of the Church, p. 104).

G. R. Beasley-Murray: "...the woman, i.e., the Church...flees for refuge into the wilderness [Revelation 12:14]..." (The New Bible Commentary, p. 1184).

Bernard L. Ramm: "...as the Church moves to meet her Lord at the parousia world history is also moving to meet its Judge at the same parousia" (Leo Eddleman's Last Things, p. 41).

J. Barton Payne: "...the twentieth century has indeed witnessed a progressively rising revolt against pre-tribulationism" (The Imminent Appearing of Christ, p. 38).

Robert H. Gundry: "Divine wrath does not blanket the entire seventieth week...but concentrates at the close" (The Church and the Tribulation, p. 63).

C. S. Lovett: "Frankly I favor a post-trib rapture...I no longer teach Christians that they will NOT have to go through the tribulation" (PC, January, 1974).

Walter R. Martin: "Walter Martin finally said...'Yes, I'm a post-trib' " (Lovett's PC, December, 1976).

Jay Adams: "Today's trend is...from pre- to posttribulationism" (The Time Is at Hand, p. 2).

Jim McKeever: "Nowhere do the Scriptures say that the Rapture will precede the Tribulation" (Christians Will Go Through the Tribulation, p. 55).

Arthur Katz: "I think it fair to tell you that I do not subscribe to the happy and convenient theology which says that God's people are going to be raptured and lifted up when a time of tribulation and trial comes" (Reality, p. 8).

Billy Graham: "Perhaps the Holy Spirit is getting His Church ready for a trial and tribulation such as the world has never known" (Sam Shoemaker's Under New Management, p. 72).

W. J. Grier: "The Scofield Bible makes a rather desperate effort...it tries to get in the 'rapture' of the saints before the appearing of Antichrist" (The Momentous Event, p. 58).

Pat Robertson: "Jesus Christ is going to come back to earth again to deliver Israel and at the same time to rapture His Church; it's going to be one moment, but it's going to be a glorious time" ("700 Club" telecast, May 14, 1975).

Ben Kinchlow: "Any wrath [during the Tribulation] that comes upon us - any difficulty - will not be induced by God, but it'll be like the people are saying, 'The cause of our problems are those Christians in our midst; we need to get rid of them' " ("700 Club" telecast, August 28, 1979).

Daniel P. Fuller: "It is thus concluded that Dispensationalism fails to pass the test of an adequate system of Biblical Interpretation" (The Hermeneutics of Dispensationalism, p. 369).

Corrie ten Boom: "The Bible prophesies that the time will come when we cannot buy or sell, unless we bear the sign of the Antichrist..." (Tramp for the Lord, p. 187).

[Great blog that you have and I agree with you! Saw the above on the web. And "Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty" on the "Powered by Christ Ministries" site is a real shock! Rocky2]

A Gracious Home said...

I believe in the pre trib rapture but I'm ok if it doesn't happen that way. Most of my beliefs come from the book of Daniel. God bless, Doylene

Celestial Fundy said...

But presumably not the pre-trib rapture? Pre-tribulationalists hold (rightly in my view) that rapture is a doctrine fundamentally connected with the church and therefore not revealed in the Old Testament.

Truth Teacher said...

I agree that Jesus will not return until after the tribulations are ended, in fact His return will end them. The rapture everyone speaks about is when Jesus returns for His Church. I would like to add some verses showing Christians will never be removed from the earth:
John 17:15 (JESUS praying to The Father) "I pray NOT that thou shouldest TAKE THEM OUT OF THE WORLD, but that thou should keep them from evil."
Verse 20 - Neither pray I for these alone but for them also which shall believe on me through their word. (True Christians.)
Proverbs 2:21, 22 For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect (Christians) shall REMAIN in it, but THE WICKED shall be cut off (taken/destroyed) from the earth and the transgressors shall be rooted OUT of it.
Proverbs 10:30 The righteous (Christians) shall NEVER be REMOVED; but the wicked shall not inhabit the earth.
Psalm 37:29 The righteous shall inherit the land (earth) and dwell therein FOREVER.
Psalm 37:9 For evildoers (WICKED) shall be cut off (destroyed); but those that wait upon the Lord shall inherit the earth.
It is our destiny, our honor and our duty to stand against the false Christ and stand for the glory of the true Christ Jesus who gave His life so that we could have everlasting life.

Marylee said...

[Speaking of MacPherson, I recently ran into the following on the web. Here's first part of it.]

PRETRIB RAPTURE SECRECY

by Dave MacPherson


The word "secrecy" when applied to Christ's return can refer to two different things: time and visibility. Before 1830 the only coming Christians looked for was the "every eye shall see him" second advent to earth - secret only in point of time.
Enter Margaret Macdonald in 1830. She saw "the one taken and the other left" before "THE WICKED" [Antichrist] will "be revealed" - and added that her pretrib rapture would not be "seen by the natural eye" but only by "those who have the light of God within." Her rapture was doubly secret: at an unknown day and hour and also invisible to "outsiders."
Desperate to eliminate Margaret as the pretrib originator and the Irvingites as the first public teachers of pretrib, Darby defender Thomas Ice foolishly claims that they taught a secret POSTTRIB coming even though he knows that when Hal Lindsey teaches "one taken" etc. before the Antichrist "is revealed" Lindsey is expressing the kernel of the pretrib view - what MM and the Irvingites clearly taught before Darby did! Google "X-Raying Margaret" and "Edward Irving is Unnerving" to see why they are properly labeled "pretrib.")
As early as June 1832, Irving's journal taught that only "to those who are watching and praying...will Christ be manifested...as the morning star. To the rest of the church, and to the world, this first appearance will be...unintelligible." ("Present State of Prophetic Knowledge" etc., p. 374)
Always trailing and "borrowing" quietly from the Irvingites who in turn had "borrowed" from Margaret, Darby in 1845 finally sounded like them when he wrote that "the bright and morning Star...is the sweet and blessed sign to them that watch...And such is Christ before He appears [at the final advent to earth]. The Sun will arise on the world....The star is before the [Sun], the joy of those who watch. The unwakeful world, who sleep in the night, see it not." ("Thoughts on the Apocalypse," p. 167)
And Lindsey's "Late Great Planet Earth," p. 143, says that "the second coming is said to be visible to the whole earth (Revelation 1:7). However, in the Rapture. only the Christians see Him - it's a mystery, a secret."
My bestselling book "The Rapture Plot" (available at online stores including Armageddon Books) has 300 pages of such documentation and proves that Margaret was the first to "see" a secret, pretrib rapture, that the Irvingites soon echoed her in their journal (which Darby admitted he avidly read), and that Darby was last on all of the crucial aspects of dispensationalism.
Shockingly, all of the earliest pretrib development rested solely on unclear OT and NT types and symbols and NOT on clear Biblical statements. Margaret's rapture was inspired by Rev. 11's "two witnesses." And her "secret visibility" rested on the "types" of Stephen, Paul, and John - all of whom saw or heard what others couldn't see or hear.
For 30 years Darby's pretrib basis was the rapture of Rev. 12's "man child" - actually his plagiarism of Irving's usage of this "pretrib" symbol eight years earlier!

Darla said...

I have know for years there was going to be no "so called Rapture" of the Church. God really must have some people in a deep slumber for their own protection to keep them from committing the unforgivable sin in not allowing the Holy Spirit to speak through them when people are brought before the antichrist to witness against him. I guess watchman plant the see of truth and it is up to GOD to open up their eyes and ears to the truth. We have to keep sounding the alarm and gather as many sheep that have gone astray back into the sheepfold.

Irv said...

The Partial Rapture View

"church" RAPTURE "church"
(present age) (tribulation)

Hal Lindsey's "The Rapture" (1983, p. 26) says partial rapturists see only "spiritual" church members in the rapture and only "carnal" members of the church in the tribulation. John Walvoord's "The Rapture Question" (1979, p. 97) refers to partial rapturists as "pretribulationists." Leading partial rapturists including Pember and Govett see all of the "church" on earth before a pretrib rapture and only part of the "church" left behind to be tried by the Antichrist - truly the "church-splitting" view as shown in the above chart!
In the spring of 1830 Scottish lassie Margaret Macdonald was first to teach a pretrib rapture. It was actually an early version of partial rapturism because she said that after the rapture of "church" members "filled with the Spirit," the "church" members "who had not the Spirit" would be left behind to be tried by "THE WICKED" one (Antichrist). In Sep.1830 Edward Irving's journal "The Morning Watch" (hereafter: TMW) was the first to publicly echo her novel view when it stated that "Philadelphia" (the "spiritual" part of the universal church) is raptured before "the great tribulation" while "Laodicea" (the "carnal" part of that universal group) is left on earth.
John Darby, the so-called "father of dispensationalism," was still defending the historical posttrib rapture ("Christian Herald," Dec. 1830) which he described as Christ's coming for "His judging of the nations."
Pretrib didn't spring from a "church/Israel" dichotomy, as many have assumed, but from a "church/church" one, as we've seen, and was based only on symbols!
But innate anti-Jewishness soon appeared. (As noted, TMW (Sep. 1830) saw less worthy "church" members left behind.) Two years later (Sep. 1832) TMW said that "Jews" and less worthy Christians would miss the rapture. But by Mar. 1833 TMW was sure that only "Jews" would face the Antichrist!
As late as 1837 the non-dichotomous Darby saw the church "going in with Him to the marriage, to wit, with Jerusalem and the Jews." And he didn't clearly teach pretrib until 1839. His basis then was the Rev. 12:5 "man child...caught up" symbol he'd "borrowed" (without giving credit) from Irving who had been the first to use it for the same purpose in 1831!
For related articles Google "X-Raying Margaret," "Edward Irving is Unnerving," "Pretrib Rapture's Missing Lines," "The Unoriginal John Darby," "Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty" and "Scholars Weigh My Research." The most detailed and accurate book on pretrib rapture history is "The Rapture Plot" (see Armageddon Books online) - a 300-pager that has hundreds of disarming facts (like the ones above) not found in any other source.

[Above discovered on the net.]

Irv said...

The Partial Rapture View

"church" RAPTURE "church"
(present age) (tribulation)

Hal Lindsey's "The Rapture" (1983, p. 26) says partial rapturists see only "spiritual" church members in the rapture and only "carnal" members of the church in the tribulation. John Walvoord's "The Rapture Question" (1979, p. 97) refers to partial rapturists as "pretribulationists." Leading partial rapturists including Pember and Govett see all of the "church" on earth before a pretrib rapture and only part of the "church" left behind to be tried by the Antichrist - truly the "church-splitting" view as shown in the above chart!
In the spring of 1830 Scottish lassie Margaret Macdonald was first to teach a pretrib rapture. It was actually an early version of partial rapturism because she said that after the rapture of "church" members "filled with the Spirit," the "church" members "who had not the Spirit" would be left behind to be tried by "THE WICKED" one (Antichrist). In Sep.1830 Edward Irving's journal "The Morning Watch" (hereafter: TMW) was the first to publicly echo her novel view when it stated that "Philadelphia" (the "spiritual" part of the universal church) is raptured before "the great tribulation" while "Laodicea" (the "carnal" part of that universal group) is left on earth.
John Darby, the so-called "father of dispensationalism," was still defending the historical posttrib rapture ("Christian Herald," Dec. 1830) which he described as Christ's coming for "His judging of the nations."
Pretrib didn't spring from a "church/Israel" dichotomy, as many have assumed, but from a "church/church" one, as we've seen, and was based only on symbols!
But innate anti-Jewishness soon appeared. (As noted, TMW (Sep. 1830) saw less worthy "church" members left behind.) Two years later (Sep. 1832) TMW said that "Jews" and less worthy Christians would miss the rapture. But by Mar. 1833 TMW was sure that only "Jews" would face the Antichrist!
As late as 1837 the non-dichotomous Darby saw the church "going in with Him to the marriage, to wit, with Jerusalem and the Jews." And he didn't clearly teach pretrib until 1839. His basis then was the Rev. 12:5 "man child...caught up" symbol he'd "borrowed" (without giving credit) from Irving who had been the first to use it for the same purpose in 1831!
For related articles Google "X-Raying Margaret," "Edward Irving is Unnerving," "Pretrib Rapture's Missing Lines," "The Unoriginal John Darby," "Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty" and "Scholars Weigh My Research." The most detailed and accurate book on pretrib rapture history is "The Rapture Plot" (see Armageddon Books online) - a 300-pager that has hundreds of disarming facts (like the ones above) not found in any other source.

[Above discovered on the net.]

Vicki Lynn said...

My question is why would the church, which is Christ's body, put Himself through His own wrath during any part of the seven year tribulation; from the opening of the first seal to the last bowl? "Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him." Roman 5:9

RS said...

RE VICKY LYNN:-
tribulation is not God's wrath but the experience of anyone living on earth, especially christian believers who are subject to the wrath of mystery babylon. If you have not experienced the wrath of the whore then you are either a babe in Christ or illegitimate. It is part and parcel of the present pilgrimage to the heavenly kingdom. It is the suffering to be presently endured until the revelation is unleashed by the Lord Himself and the kingdoms of this world become the kindgoms of Christ.

rEV1:9, I, John, your brother and partner in the tribulation and the kingdom and the patient endurance that are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos on account of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.

The great tribulation is coming. You cannot get out of it by fairy tale rapture scenarios, only faith will deliver. Many christians have been martyed these 2000 years, maNY MORE WILL BE. iF YOU CANT ACCEPT THATYOU MAY BE KILLED IN THE FUTURE FOR YOUR FAITH, THEN GET OUT NOW.