Why I am not post-trib
Why I am NOT post-trib!
There's a lot of talk today about pre-trib, mid-trib, and post-trib. I am 95% pre-trib, and 5% mid-trib. I am NOT post-trib, and I'll share with you some reasons why.
First of all, when debating with anybody on this subject, let me make it clear that I'm not interested in your opinion or what you think God told you. I'm really not interested in logic or reasoning, but rather the what the Bible really has to say. What I want to do here is stay very Biblical on the matter. I personally would love to see pre-trib take place, but if I had to endure the tribulation then so be it. I want to walk out God's plan for my life, even if it causes me to endure tribulation. Got it? Now let's get down to business.
I am not going to get into every aspect of the end times, or try to tell you who the anti-Christ is, but I do want to give you some really strong evidence of a pre-tribulation rapture.
The purpose of the rapture and tribulation
Before you can really understand the timing of the rapture in relation to the tribulation, you really need to have a good understanding of why the rapture takes place and why the tribulation takes place. If you know the reasons why each of those take place, you'll have a much better idea of when each will take place. I won't go deep into scriptures on this but let me at least give you something to chew on.
The purpose of the tribulation is to punish the inhabitants of the world for their sins:
Isaiah 26:21, “For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.”
What God does to the whole world during the tribulation does not apply to those who have been washed in the Blood and made righteous with all their sins forgiven. Why would God punish those whom He has forgiven?
Since the saints have already had their sins atoned for, the purpose of the tribulation does not apply to the saints. As a matter of fact, the Bible tells us that we have not been appointed to the wrath that will come:
1 Thessalonians 1:10, “And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.”
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.”
It's quite annoying when those who are post-trib point at those of us who are pre-trib and say, “Those pre-tribbers are just trying to escape!” You know something? Many post-tribbers believe that we ought to go through the hardships of the tribulation. Guess who is more Biblical? Let's see...
Luke 21:36, “Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.”
That's why I say, I don't want to hear your theories and ideas... I want to hear your Biblical case as to why you believe in pre-trib, mid-trib or post-trib. Theories are a waste of time in my opinion.
At a time of peace and safety
The condition of the world when the rapture takes place is not where the world will be after the tribulation. If you read the Biblical picture of the great tribulation, it is beyond anything we've ever heard of happening. I think if you add up the numbers, over half of the population will be slaughtered. As a matter of fact, Jesus told us that if those days were not cut short, nobody would survive (see Matthew 24:21-22). Guess what else will happen? The great wine press of God will slaughter so many that the blood left will be as deep as the horses bridal and will be 200 miles long (Revelation 14:20). I'm sorry, but there won't be a soul on earth saying peace and safety, or buying homes or getting married and acting like business as usual. But what does God clearly tell us about the timing of His meeting us in the sky (the rapture)? Let's see..
1 Thessalonians 5:2-3, “For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. While they are saying, "Peace and safety!" then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape.”
Luke 17:26-30, “And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.”
This is one of the hard passages that speak so clearly of a pre-tribulation rapture. Why? Because if it's the blood bath that the Bible tells us that the tribulation will be, there is no way that anybody will be saying peace and safety, building homes, buying, selling, etc. Those things speak of a time of prosperity. You get deeper into the tribulation, and there's absolutely no way that this will be the condition of the world. The fact is that Christ will be revealed at a time when the world is saying peace and safety, where life is as usual, etc.
Also, pre-tribulation rapture theory ONLY fits the types and shadows that Jesus pointed us to in the passage above. Post-trib makes no sense considering the above passage.
The order of the Jewish feasts
Another major component in a scriptural understanding of the timing of the rapture and tribulation is the 7 major Jewish feasts. There are 7 feasts which are known as Jewish feasts, but God's Word tells us that they are God's feasts. These feast days are very important types and shadows of things that were and are being fulfilled by Jesus. The first 4 feasts (Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits and Pentecost) were fulfilled to the day and hour. At the same time on Passover that the lambs were being slaughtered, Christ was being crucified for our sins. That is how careful that God was to fulfill these feasts to the tee. Guess what? There are 3 more feasts that are going to be fulfilled; Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles. The first 4 feasts took place in the spring and these last 3 feasts take place in the fall.
Feast of Trumpets is a shadow of the rapture of the church. There will be a great trumpet sound, as the dead in Christ rise and we meet them in the air (1 Thessalonians 4:16). This feast is what they call Rosh Hashanah on today's calendars, and is known as the day of concealment. That day of concealment has to do with Isaiah 26, where God tells us to hide ourselves while His indignation passes during the great tribulation.
After the Feast of Trumpets, then comes the Feast of Atonement (the tribulation), and then the Feast of Tabernacles which is the 1,000 year reign.
What does all this mean? That the next Biblical feast to be fulfilled is Trumpets, and in post-trib theology, the feast of Atonement will happen next. The idea of a post-trib rapture messes up the Biblical order of God's feasts!
The dead will raise BEFORE the tribulation
One of my favorite passages which clearly outlines the timing of the events is found in Isiah 26:
Isaiah 26:17-21, “Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in thy sight, O LORD. We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth; neither have the inhabitants of the world fallen. Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead. Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.”
So what that passage is basically saying is that there will be birthing pains, which is what we are experiencing right now (the strange events such as rivers turning blood red, etc.), then there's going to be a raising of the dead in Christ, and at that time, we will be caught up in the air with them, and then go into our chambers (this is a Jewish wedding term for a place which the bridegroom has prepared for his bride in his father's home). While we are hidden in these chambers, the indignation and wrath of God will come upon the whole earth. Are you ready to see this same prophecy, but in the New Testament? Here you go!
1 Thessalonians 4:15-18, “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. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”
And this is one of the popular scriptures used to speak of the rapture, but because it doesn't go on to talk about the tribulation following this rapture, simply quoting the NT passage is not enough. That is why I love the Isaiah 26 passage, because it brings the tribulation into the picture and makes the timing of these events very clear. Isaiah makes it absolutely clear that following this rapture is the tribulation, NOT the other way around!!
The Jewish wedding picture
If you really want to get a super clear picture of the rapture and tribulation, you absolutely have to have an understanding of the ancient Jewish wedding traditions. If you understand the traditions of the Jewish wedding feast, it becomes a crystal clear type and shadow of the rapture of the church. ONLY pre-trib theology is compatible with the Jewish wedding feast; both mid-trib and post-trib will jack up the type and shadow, which gives us incredible insight into understanding the rapture.
While I'm not going far into this subject, but if you do your homework, it will answer a lot of questions that you have. Let me give you an example... do you know why Jesus isn't here physically on earth with us right now? Stop and think about that before reading the answer! I'll tell you why, it's because we are in the betrothal period. In the ancient Jewish wedding, this was a period of often a year that the bride and groom spent apart before the wedding.
I want to point out the following points about the ancient Jewish wedding and how it is a type and shadow of the rapture of the bride and these last days. These are just some of the traditions:
The more I learn about the ancient Jewish wedding, the more I realize that these end days are not about the tribulation, so much as the wedding feast that God has prepared for us while the tribulation is taking place here on earth.
If you really want to gain a solid understanding of all this, I strongly recommend doing your homework on the ancient Jewish wedding, and how it relates to the rapture of the church in these last days. Below are some links and videos that have blessed me.