Rapture, Second Coming
   

Rapture - Second Coming

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A Light For The Coming NightThe Seven Letters Expounded! 

 

And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that NO MAN deceive you.  For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many” (Matt. 24:4-5).

 

Does the above verse exempt saved Christians? Or can saved Christians from various denominations mislead countless others, although that is not their intention ("NO MAN")? Especially when it comes to eschatology (the study and doctrine of the end-times)? You bet, they can and do mislead others from the truth when it comes to “End-time Teachings”! That said, just because someone is a saved brother or sister doesn't mean they teach the truth of this very important matter. So as Jesus said, as do I, "take heed"!

 

Initially, the Lord returns  as a thief in the night (Rev. 16:15), not at pre-trib or pre-night, nor at the traditional Second Coming dawn (the sign of the Son of man, being Jesus as the first light after the Tribulation Night—the Bright and Morning Star with all His saints)!

 

Introducing The Night-trib Position

 

For the record, the seven-year Tribulation and the Day of the Lord both begin with birth pangs; both are one in the same. No where in the New Testament is it taught that they are not the same. When Jesus described the beginning of the Tribulation, He referred to it as "the beginning of sorrows," or literally birth pangs in the Greek (Matt. 24:8), as Paul's description of the Day of the Lord is the same (1 Thess. 5:2-3). Moreover, according to Bible prophecy, the Bride and Bridegroom only come forth within the Day of the Lord (Joel 2:16), not before the Day of the Lord in a pre-trib Rapture, or before the Night! Speaking of which, in strict biblical exegesis, the Tribulation or Jacob's Trouble with birth pangs (Jer. 30:6-7; Matt. 24:21, 29, 40; Luke 17:34; John 9:4), like the Day of Redemption, also equates to a period of night (Mark 13:33-37; Luke 17:34; 1 Thess. 5:2-3) prior to the dawning of the Lord's Day (Amos 5:20; Joel 2:2; 2 Pet. 1:19).

So what the New Testament teaches is that there is a night period before the Day of the Lord dawns, just like every day that we live. Only this night isn't part of a 24 hour period; conversely it is seven years of spiritual darkness called the Tribulation. Now the Tribulation, just like the Day of the Lord, begins in somewhat normal times and slowly gets worse, just like the beginning labor of a woman having a child—the pains get closer and closer—so do the happenings of the Tribulation, or Day of the Lord. 

The "midnight cry" of the Ten Virgin Parable symbolizes a new day, which is the Day of the Lord in That Night, or it’s night segment before it dawns (1 Thess. 5:2; 2 Pet. 1:19).  In this vein, it is that future Day when Christ actually returns for the Church. Indeed, it is the Day of Redemption (Eph. 4:30), being the Day that Christians are to look for and provoke one another to agape love (using Christ's inner love), and all the more so as it approaches (Heb. 10:24-25). Indeed, the Day of the Lord is That Day Christians are to "hasten," meaning in the Greek––"to earnestly expect" (2 Pet. 3:12)––the Day of Redemption (Eph. 4:30)..

Again, the Lord’s initial coming for the wise of the parable is symbolized by the Day of Redemption (Eph. 4:30)—which is the Day of Jesus Christ (Philip. 1:6, 10)—which is the Day of Christ (2 Cor. 2:16; 2 Thess. 2:2-3)—which is the Day of the Lord Jesus (1 Cor. 5:5; 2 Cor. 1:14)— which is the Day of the Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 1:7-8)—which is the Lord’s Day (Rev. 1:10)—which is the Day of the Lord which comes as a thief in the night (1 Thess. 5:2; 2 Pet. 3:10)—which again is the Day that Christians are to see approaching (Heb. 10:25), lest the Day come upon Christians unawares (Luke 21:34).

Now the Lord comes in the night as a Jewish bridegroom with two male witnesses, and this as a surprise—at midnight there was a cry made—a new Day, namely the Lord’s Day! Watch therefore, in That Night (Mark 13:33-37; Rev. 3:3), and keep your garments (Rev. 16:15). In addition, the Day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night (1 Thess. 5:4, 2 Pet. 3:10)––just like Christ Himself will return (Rev. 16:15), not just on the world, but also on many in the Body of Christ. Simply, not only do the major denominations fail to teach the looking for and the earnestly expecting of That Day, so do most smaller denominations in the Church, the living Body of Christ.

According to Paul, Christ will perform a good work in us "til the Day of Jesus Christ." Until then, no man is to know the hour, but is to live in expectancy of the hour within That Day. Thus, we are to “approve things that are excellent; that you may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ” (Phil. 1:10). Until when? Until the Day of Christ. As it is written in speaking of the Day of Christ, “let no man deceive you by any means” (2 Thess. 2:3)!

Thus, the possibility of Christ's initial coming is ongoing, beginning at early-trib, which premise is taught by accurate Bible prophecy. In context, the seven-year Tribulation is the beginning of the Day of the Lord, again, a seven-year period of night before the Day dawns (2 Pet. 1:19). Out of sync, multitudes of Christians incorrectly believe that they are redeemed before the Day of Redemption, or before the Night of the Tribulation (at-once pre-trib Rapture). No wonder, then, that the Day of the Lord will overtake many Christians as a snare (Luke 21: 34), but wise Christians knowing that there is no such thing as an at-once redemption, will have the experience of expecting and seeing the Lord's Day (Philip. 1:6, 10; Heb. 10:24-25), and watch in the seven-year Tribulation Night (Mark 13:33-37; Rev. 3:3, 16:15).

Now if the chapter division is removed between 1st Thessalonians 4 and 5, we don’t see an at-once pre-trib or pre-night Rapture, but a return of Christ in the night segment of the Day of the Lord, which in that passage Paul describes as beginning with birth pangs. Additionally, we immediately behold the "times and seasons," or more than one coming of Christ and the various harvests. Indeed, long before the Fall Harvest there is a partial Spring-Summer Harvest (Jer. 8:20; Matt. 24:32-33).

Unmistakably, then, the coming of the Lord with all His saints is not a pre-night or pre-trib return. But a Second Coming Return at the end of the seven-year Tribulation, the Resurrection of the Last Day (John 6:40); or the dawn of That Day (2 Pet. 1:19). Indeed, the Lord will fetch His saints for the Wedding Feast upon His earlier night returns. Thus, we are to watch in the Tribulation Night, and this is why watching is strictly a nighttime activity, especially since Jesus quoted the four Roman Guard summer night watches (Mark 13:33-37). Indeed, this is the Night-trib position of accurate Bible prophecy.

The pre-trib Rapture Passage? By situational analysis of Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians, we can further PINPOINT the time of their literal restoration. Here is that timing: “To the end he may establish your hearts unblamable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints” (1 Thess. 3:13). Paul informed the Thessalonians in the first letter to them, that Christ would establish their hearts as un-blamable upon the Lord’s coming with all His saints. As a result, the Resurrection and catching-up of 1 Thessalonians 4:17 (the supposed pre-trib at-once Rapture Passage), singularly illustrates the Lord returning with ALL HIS SAINTS at the traditional Second Coming—or “the clouds” (Matt. 24:30; Rev. 1:7); including those who "sleep in Jesus" (1 Thess. 4:14).

 

Second Coming Only Theology

 

Second Coming Theology denies the night; the many commands to watch in the night; the saints in Heaven at the Wedding Feast—and the fact that the Bride that has made Herself ready. Now it is said of those who deny the resurrection that they are denying the faith. In this day and age, is our faith just to be centered on the resurrection? The Second Coming? Or is our faith to be centered on the promise of Christ returning as a Jewish Bridegroom in John 14:1-3?

In clearer terms, is our faith centered on the promise of the Blessed Hope—Christ actually redeeming us and taking us to Heaven in That Night, wherein we are COMMANDED to watch? Or is it to be centered on martyrdom, waiting for the dawn of the Lord’s Day at the end of a seven-year Tribulation Night? Clearly if the Church were here on Earth for the duration of the seven-year Tribulation, She would suffer greatly and mostly die off.

Actually, there is a huge difference in the traditional Second Coming compared to the instantaneous Lord's Quick Coming. The Second Coming will be marked by the world only seeing His sign at first (slow coming), compared to believers who will see Him instantaneously as He is upon the initial Quick Coming of the Lord (1 John 3:2; Rev. 22:12). 

Of course, the saints of God are with Christ at the Second Coming as clearly taught in Scripture (Duet. 33:2; Zach. 14:5; 1 Thess. 3:13, 4:14; Jude vs. 14). Moreover, the angels don't wear the righteousness of the saints, for the exegetical context dictates it is the Bride who has made herself ready, not the angels who are holy already (Rev. 19:7-8)!

So when Christ is the Bright and Morning Star, or the first light after the night at the Second Coming (the dawn of that Day), is He really saying it's okay to be disobedient to the commands of the earlier watches of the night (Mark 13:33-37; Rev. 3:3, 16:15)? For He won't return until the dawn of That Day? Until the traditional Second Coming? Hardly!

By the way, Second Coming Only Theology wars against the truth—likewise, so is it to teach and believe in the at-once pre-trib or pre-night Rapture. For both teachings negate the night and the Day of the Lord, which comes just as Christ does, as a thief in the night (1 Thess. 5:3).

Now Second Coming Theology denies the rightful beginning of the Lord’s Day prior night, when the antichrist and the Great Apostasy is revealed to the Church (2 Thess. 2:2-3). Actually, some in Second Coming Only Theology even place the beginning of the Lord’s Day deep into the Tribulation Night at the appearance of cosmic signs. This is a great error (the opening of the sixth seal), because the Day of the Lord begins in somewhat normal times long before the "great and notable" part of That Day—conspicuous cosmic signs. Furthermore, as already stated, the Day initiates with birth pangs (1 Thess. 5:3), not wondrous cosmic signs deep in the seven-year Tribulation Night.

Most assuredly, Second Coming Theology is a false theology that nullifies the Blessed Hope; it denies the Woman clothed with the sun, or Bride which is in Heaven (Rev. 12:1). It denies the Open Door to Philadelphia (Rev. 3:10); it denies that the faithful of Thyatira will escape the Great Tribulation, whereas the unfaithful of Thyatira won’t (Rev. 2:22-24). It denies the fact that Ephesus is in danger of having her candlestick removed in Revelation 2:5 (which is to have her rightful place of salvation put on hold); it denies the fact that Smyrna represents Tribulation converts after the Church is redeemed (In ancient times, a king would leave myrrh on the doorstep of His unresponsive but prospective bride, reminding her that He had called during the night—myrrh is the meaning of Smyrna’s name.)

Second Coming Only Theology denies the fact that Laodicea must open her door upon Christ standing in judgment and knocking on her closed door (Note: Christ is prophesied in both Testaments to sit by His Father until all enemies are made his footstool—when He stands and walks in Revelation 2:1, this can only be the readiness judgment of the Church.). If she doesn't repent, Laodicea will be spit out of the mouth of Christ and lose her salvation; She will no longer be in the Lord’s mouth to confess to the Father.

In sync, Second Coming Only Theology denies the fact that Sardis is to watch in That Night, or have Christ come upon her as a thief—and if Sardis still doesn’t repent, or refuses to watch, her name will eventually be removed from the Book of Life. Moreover, Second Coming Only Theology denies the fact that Pergamos is to repent or be left behind and face a two edged sword protruding from the mouth of Christ at the traditional Second Coming.

Surely Second Coming Only Theology denies the Manna—the Bread of Life, who is Christ Himself appearing in the night before the Morning, or the dawning of the Lord’s Day. So this author asks as did our Lord, "When the Son of man cometh, will He find faith on the Earth?"

What's more, can the “hour you think not” (Matt. 24:44) be a surprise at the end of a horrendous seven-year Tribulation?  Are there those who teach “the Lord delayeth His coming,” just as the Bible foretells? Consider then, two shall be grinding at the mill, the one shall be taken, and the other left. . . . If the good saints are the ones left behind (This is a Second Coming Only Teaching mistakenly based on Matthew 13:30.), are they working for a living right before the Second Advent at the end of the Tribulation? Will good saints receive the mark of the Beast in a world wherein the economy is devastated, and this even more so at the end of a seven-year Tribulation (Rev. 6:5, 13:17)?

Here are a few more questions: In the Great Tribulation, why does an angel preach the everlasting gospel (Rev. 14:6)? Where is the Church? Second Coming Only Theology? Behold, I come quickly”; almost twenty centuries later, surely the Lord will. But how can Christ’s Quick Coming possibly fit Second Coming Only Theology wherein only the sign of the Son of man is beheld at first (Matt. 24:30)?

"The first shall be last, and the last first." Since this verse is always given in the strict context of literally reaping eternal life (Matt. 19:30; Mark 10:31; Luke 13:30), how can it possibly fit the At-Once Rapture Teaching? Or Second Coming Only Theology?

But go you rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves” (Matt. 25:9)? After the so-called at-once Rapture, who will be left behind to go to them that sell? To go to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit? After the traditional Second Coming, who will be left behind to go to them that sell? Now if the foolish were lost, why would the wise intentionally lie to them, imparting hope? Is that a Christian thing to do?

Despite the widespread Rapture and Second Coming Only Teachings, we as Christians are to "hasten" The Day (Greek: earnestly expect). For it is the only Day of God (2 Pet. 3:12), which will, in context, come as a thief in the night (1 Thess. 5:2; 2 Pet. 3:10). Fittingly again, it is the Day of Redemption (Eph. 4:30) that we are to earnestly expect! In other words, Christians are still here on Earth when the Day begins, and this, as a total surprise ("a thief in the Night" to many).

Moreover, will the angels accompany Christ when He knocks on a closed door; that is, when He returns from the Wedding Feast (Luke 12:36; James 5:9; Rev. 3:20)? Hardly! In this vein, who can deny the fact that no other group of people can go to Heaven other than the Church? Case in point, it is the foolish of the Church who come out of the Great Tribulation and wash their dirty robes in the blood of the Lamb, not the wise who are instantly changed to be like the Lord upon His initial appearing (1 John 3:2). Thus it is only the foolish at this point who will hunger and thirst no more; who have a need to wash their dirty robes of fleshy acts and false doctrines because they didn't keep their garments (Rev. 7:9-17; 16:15)—who also must open their closed door immediately upon Christ's return from the Wedding Feast (Luke 12:36).

In sum, only a few in Sardis will walk with Christ in white. Can only a few be descriptive of an at-once pre-trib Rapture of the entire Church? Descriptive of Second Coming Only Theology? In all of this, the Night-trib position is correct—watch therefore in the night segment of the Day of the Lord before it dawns—the Tribulation Night, just as we are commanded (Mark 13:33:37; Rev. 3:3, 16:15)!

 

 

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“Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering, forbearing one another and forgiving one another; if any man have a quarrel against any, even as Christ forgave you, so also do you. And above all these things put on charity (the use of Christ's inner love as a lifestyle), which is the bond perfectness” (Col. 3:12-14).

 

The seven messages to the churches match the Night-trib position of Bible prophecy!

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