1 Corinthians 15:50-53 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherits in-corruption. Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: For the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on in corruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
Currently, there is a debate dividing the governors of Christ in the earth, and the debate is over the rapture of the Church we believe Paul was addressing when he wrote to the Church in Thessalonica. And for many years, it has been circulating there will be a rapture of the Church. But as we draw closer to the end of the age, there is a growing movement and teaching spreading in, around, and within the Christian community. And the growing message is there won’t be a rapture of the Church.
However, there is still a strong and undetermined group standing on the teaching there will one day be a rapture, but even among believers in the rapture, there is an internal debate on when it will be. Some believe it will be a pre-tribulation rapture, and on the other side of the debate, there is a belief among believers in a post-tribulation rapture.
But with that said, there is another group among the believers whose belief is that there will be a mid-tribulation rapture. And while we are having these debates among ourselves; the world is moving in another direction, and their belief is that aliens or unidentified beings will one day dominate the world.
Now, although we are not debating or dealing with the world and its beliefs, I will jokingly state, that among the nonbelievers there is also an internal debate that computers will one day take over the world.
But if we are going to deal with the issue of the rapture and whether we are going to have a pre-tribulation, mid-tribulation, or post-tribulation rapture. We must first try and understand the message and theme of the bible and what the prophets of the bible have been saying to us all these thousands of years.
And as we approach this subject on the tribulation, and the return of Jesus Christ, what we need to know about the word tribulation is that it is a word meaning trouble. So, when we speak about the tribulation, we are to understand we are dealing with a time or period of great distress.
And with that understanding, the questions we should be drawing from this understanding concerning the word tribulation is this, “Will we as a Church escape the period of great distress coming upon the world, or will we be rescued in the midst of the time of great distress, and or will we as a Church go through a time period of great distress or trouble with the world?
1 Thessalonians 5:9-10 “For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, Who died for us, so that, whether we be awake or asleep, we should live together with him.”
But as we come to this understanding based on what we believe concerning the rapture and the return of Jesus Christ, who among the people of the world should be worried about the coming period of trouble or tribulation? 2 Thessalonians 1:6-9 ” It is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you.
Therefore, to you who are troubled, rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obeyed not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.”
But as Christians and according to what we believe today about the rapture, we are to live without worry because we will be raptured off the earth into heaven and away from the destruction? No one is sure about this, and that is if we will be raptured off the earth. Because if there is anything we need to understand, it is that the scriptures speak of the saints being a witness to the event of God’s wrath against the world.
Psalms 91:7-8, “A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.” And speaking regarding the coming great distress, the prophets told us, “Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.” And yet when we read this Psalm and verse, we somehow find an opening for debate to say this scripture is only in reference to Jesus Christ.
But although it was in reference to our Messiah, we are to also remember he was nailed to a cross where he died, and after three days rose again. And with that said, the question we have before us is this, “When and how will this prophecy be fulfilled if it was not fulfilled in Jesus our Messiah on the day he died on the cross?
Psalms 58:10-11 “The righteous shall rejoice when he beholds the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked. So that a man shall say, truly there is a reward for the righteous: truly he is a God that judges in the earth.”