Skip to comments.Jesus Christ To Call His Beloved Ones To Meet Him in the Clouds Very Soon - Perhaps This Year - 2010
Posted on 03/29/2010 4:05:06 AM PDT by Freedom'sWorthIt
(This is NEWS - Please Keep This in Breaking News, Admin Moderators. It is not about "religion". It is about Current Events!)
1 Thessalonians 4: 13 - 18:
But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.
For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep.
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 together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.
Therefore comfort one another with these words.
Although I would NEVER presume to put a date on The LORD’S Return, I keep hoping it’s Tomorrow.
On The Other hand, I think He wants a LOT MORE People in His Kingdom...So He May yet tarry (sigh).
Everything ELSE is in place, so that is the only thing left.
I know, me too. I keep hoping and praying for the harvest to get FULL!!! :o)
And I say unto you, there will come a time when those who are certain will proclaim a day of reckoning where their narcissism and ignorance will be exposed ... Well, I guess they can always change the date after re-reading the tea leaves.
Dr. Thomas Ice
Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,
- 2 Thessalonians 2:3
I believe that there is a strong possibility that 2 Thessalonians 2:3 is speaking of the rapture. What do I mean? Some pretribulationists, like myself, think that the Greek noun apostasia, usually translated "apostasy," is a reference to the rapture and should be translated "departure." Thus, this passage would be saying that the day of the Lord will not come until the rapture comes before it. If apostasia is a reference to a physical departure, then 2 Thessalonians 2:3 is strong evidence for pretribulationism.
The Meaning of Apostasia
The Greek noun apostasia is only used twice in the New Testament. In addition to 2 Thessalonians 2:3, it occurs in Acts 21:21 where, speaking of Paul, it is said, "that you are teaching all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake (apostasia) Moses." The word is a Greek compound of apo "from" and istemi "stand." Thus, it has the core meaning of "away from" or "departure." The Liddell and Scott Greek Lexicon defines apostasia first as "defection, revolt;" then secondly as "departure, disappearance."1 Gordon Lewis explains how the verb from which the noun apostasia is derived supports the basic meaning of departure in the following:
The verb may mean to remove spatially. There is little reason then to deny that the noun can mean such a spatial removal or departure. Since the noun is used only one other time in the New Testament of apostasy from Moses (Acts 21:21), we can hardly conclude that its Biblical meaning is necessarily determined. The verb is used fifteen times in the New Testament. Of these fifteen, only three have anything to do with a departure from the faith (Luke 8;13; 1 Tim. 4:1; Heb 3:12). The word is used for departing from iniquity (2 Tim. 2:19), from ungodly men (1 Tim. 6:5), from the temple (Luke 2:27), from the body (2Cor. 12:8), and from persons (Acts 12:10; Luke 4:13).2
"It is with full assurance of proper exegetical study and with complete confidence in the original languages, "concludes Daniel Davey, "that the word meaning of apostasia is defined as departure."3 Paul Lee Tan adds the following:
What precisely does Paul mean when he says that "the falling away" (2:3) must come before the tribulation? The definite article "the" denotes that this will be a definite event, an event distinct from the appearance of the Man of Sin. The Greek word for "falling away", taken by itself, does not mean religious apostasy or defection. Neither does the word mean "to fall," as the Greeks have another word for that. [pipto, I fall; TDI] The best translation of the word is "to depart." The apostle Paul refers here to a definite event which he calls "the departure," and which will occur just before the start of the tribulation. This is the rapture of the church.4
So the word has the core meaning of departure and it depends upon the context to determine whether it is used to mean physical departure or an abstract departure such as departure from the faith.
The first seven English translations of apostasia all rendered the noun as either "departure" or "departing." They are as follows: Wycliffe Bible (1384); Tyndale Bible (1526); Coverdale Bible (1535); Cranmer Bible (1539); Breeches Bible (1576); Beza Bible (1583); Geneva Bible (1608).5 This supports the notion that the word truly means "departure." In fact, Jerome's Latin translation known as the Vulgate from around the time of A.A. 400 renders apostasia with the "word discessio, meaning 'departure.'"6 Why was the King James Version the first to depart from the established translation of "departure"?
Theodore Beza, the Swiss reformer was the first to transliterate apostasia and create a new word, rather than translate it as others had done. The translators of the King James Version were the first to introduce the new rendering of apostasia as "falling away." Most English translators have followed the KJV and Beza in departing from translating apostasia as "departure." No good reason was ever given.
The Use of the Article
It is important to note that Paul uses a definite article with the noun apostasia. What does this mean? Davey notes the following:
Since the Greek language does not need an article to make the noun definite, it becomes clear that with the usage of the article reference is being made to something in particular. In II Thessalonians 2:3 the word apostasia is prefaced by the definite article which means that Paul is pointing to a particular type of departure clearly known to the Thessalonian church.7
Dr. Lewis provides a likely answer when he notes that the definite article serves to make a word distinct and draw attention to it. In this instance he believes that its purpose is "to denote a previous reference." "The departure Paul previously referred to was 'our being gathered to him' (v. 1) and our being 'caught up' with the Lord and the raptured dead in the clouds (1 Thess. 4:17)," notes Dr. Lewis.8 The "departure" was something that Paul and his readers clearly had a mutual understanding about. Paul says in verse 5, "Do you not remember that while I was still with you, I was telling you these things?" The use of the definite article would also support the notion that Paul spoke of a clear, discernable event. A physical departure, like the rapture would fit just such a notion. However, the New Testament teaches that apostasy had already arrived in the first century (cf. Acts 20:27-32; 1 Tim. 4:1-5; 2 Tim. 3:1-9; 2 Pet. 2:1-3; Jude 3-4, 17-21) and thus, such a process would not denote a clear event as demanded by the language of this passage. Understanding departure as the rapture would satisfy the nuance of this text. E. Schuyler English explains as follows:
Again, how would the Thessalonians, or Christians in any century since, be qualified to recognize the apostasy when it should come, assuming, simply for the sake of this inquiry, that the Church might be on earth when it does come? There has been apostasy from God, rebellion against Him, since time began.9
Whatever Paul is referring to in his reference to "the departure," was something that both the Thessalonian believers and he had discussed in-depth previously. When we examine Paul's first letter to the Thessalonians, he never mentions the doctrine of apostasy, however, virtually every chapter in that epistle speaks of the rapture (cf. 1:9-10; 2:19; probably 3:13; 4:13-17; 5:1-11). In these passages, Paul has used a variety of Greek terms to describe the rapture. It should not be surprising that he uses another term to reference the rapture in 2 Thessalonians 2:3. Dr. House tells us:
Remember, the Thessalonians had been led astray by the false teaching (2:2-3) that the Day of the Lord had already come. This was confusing because Paul offered great hope, in the first letter, of a departure to be with Christ and a rescue from god's wrath. Now a letter purporting to be from Paul seems to say that they would first have to go through the Day of the Lord. Paul then clarified his prior teachingby emphasizing that they had no need to worry. They could again be comforted because the departure he had discussed in his first letter, and in his teaching while with them, was still the truth. The departure of Christians to be with Christ, and the subsequent revelation of the lawless one, Paul argues, is proof that the Day of the Lord had not begun as they had thought. This understanding of apostasia makes much more sense than the view that they are to be comforted (v. 2) because a defection from the faith must precede the Day of the Lord. The entire second chapter (as well as 1 Thessalonians 4:18; 5:11) serves to comfort (see vv. 2, 3, 17), supplied by a reassurance of Christ's coming as taught in his first letter.10
Departure and The Restrainer
Since pretribulationists believe that the restrainer mentioned in verses 6 and 7 is the Holy Spirit and teaches a pre-trib rapture, then it should not be surprising to see that there is a similar progression of thought in the progression of verse 3. Allan MacRae, president of Faith Theological Seminary in a letter to Schuyler English has said the following concerning this matter:
I wonder if you have noticed the striking parallel between this verse and verses 7-8, a little further down. According to your suggestion verse 3 mentions the departure of the church as coming first, and then tells of the revealing of the man of sin. In verses 7 and 8 we find the identical sequence. Verse 7 tells of the removal of the Church; verse 8 says: "And then shall that Wicked be revealed." Thus close examination of the passage shows an inner unity and coherence, if we take the word apostasia in its general sense of "departure," while a superficial examination would easily lead to an erroneous interpretation as "falling away" because of the proximity of the mention of the man of sin.11
Kenneth Wuest, a Greek scholar from Moody Bible Institute added the following contextual support to taking apostasia as a physical departure:
But then hee apostasia of which Paul is speaking, precedes the revelation of Antichrist in his true identity, and is to katechon that which holds back his revelation (2:6). The hee apostasia, therefore, cannot be either a general apostasy in Christendom which does precede the coming of Antichrist, nor can it be the particular apostasy which is the result of his activities in making himself the alone object of worship. Furthermore, that which holds back his revelation (vs. 3) is vitally connected with hookatechoon (vs. 7), He who holds back the same event. The latter is, in my opinion, the Holy Spirit and His activities in the Church. All of which means that I am driven to the inescapable conclusion that the hee apostasia (vs. 3) refers to the Rapture of the Church which precedes the Day of the Lord, and holds back the revelation of the Man of Sin who ushers in the world-aspect of that period.12
The fact that apostasia most likely has the meaning of physical departure is a clear support for pretribulationism. If this is true, (Dr. Tim LaHaye and I believe that it is), then it means that a clear prophetic sequence is laid out by Paul early in his Apostolic ministry. Paul teaches in 2 Thessalonians 2 that the rapture will occur first, before the Day of the Lord commences. It is not until after the beginning of the Day of the Lord that the Antichrist is released, resulting in the events described by him in chapter 2 of 2 Thessalonians. This is the only interpretation that provides hope for a discomforted people. Maranatha!
 Henry George Liddell and Henry Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, Revised with a Supplement  by Sir Henry Stuart Jones and Roderick McKenzie (Oxford, Eng.: Oxford University Press, 1940), p. 218.
 Gordon R. Lewis, "Biblical Evidence for Pretribulationism," Bibliotheca Sacra (vol. 125, no. 499; July 1968), p. 218.
 Daniel K. Davey, "The 'Apostesia' of II Thessalonians 2:3," Th.M. thesis, Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary, May 1982, p. 27.
 Paul Lee Tan, The Interpretation of Prophecy (Winona Lake, IN: Assurance Publishers, 1974), p. 341.
 H. Wayne House, "Apostasia in 2 Thessalonians 2:3: Apostasy or Rapture?" in Thomas Ice and Timothy Demy, eds., When the Trumpet Sounds: Today's Foremost Authorities Speak Out on End-Time Controversies (Eugene, OR: Harvest House, 1995), p. 270.
 House, "Apostesia", p. 270.
 Davey, "Apostesia", p. 47.
 Gordon R. Lewis & Bruce A. Demarest, Integrative Theology 3 vols in 1 (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996), vol. 3,p. 420.
 E. Schuyler English, Re-Thinking the Rapture (Neptune, NJ: Loizeaux Brothers, 1954), p. 70.
 House, "Apostesia", pp. 275-76.
 Allan A. MacRae, Letter to E. Schuyler English, published in "Let the Prophets Speak," Our Hope, (vol. LVI, num. 12; June 1950), p. 725.
 Kenneth S. Wuest, Letter to E. Schuyler English, published in "Let the Prophets Speak," Our Hope, (vol. LVI, num. 12; June 1950), p. 731.
On The Other hand, I think He wants a LOT MORE People in His Kingdom...
I don't know if you've contemplated this, but the people that go from the Tribulation time, straight into the Kingdom, here on earth -- having survived all that (which will be at least about 25-33% of the world's population surviving) -- they will have 1,000 years of populating the earth again, at high birth rates (you gotta know there's no abortion at that time...).
And there will be significant numbers who will get saved at that time, as the new people are born on the earth during the Kingdom. So, I'm venturing an educated guess that there will be more Christians produced during the 1,000 year reign of the Messiah of Israel on this earth -- than there has during all the period of time since the beginning of mankind.
I dont know that theres much historical precedent for signing peace treaties when things are quiet and nobody is fighting.
Actually, the indications in the Bible are that the 7-year Tribulation time begins with Antichrist enforcing a treaty (which is the thing that "kicks off" the Tribulation, technically) -- with Israel being already at peace with its neighbors.
In fact, there's some prophecy teachers that point to Psalm 83 as prophetic as something that will bring Israel to peace with its immediate (i.e., adjacent surrounding neighbor countries) and set up the conditions for Israel being at peace and rest in unwalled villages.
I'll get the information on that and post it here.
While nobody knows the day or the hour, we can read the signs that Jesus Himself gave us to be aware that His coming is near. Jesus Himself told us that.
It seems that the people of that time (when Jesus was around) would understand that phrase as an idiom pointing to one of the Seven Festivals of the Messiah (as I pointed out in another post, Post #202) -- The Feast of Trumpets. It was the one in which no one knew the day or hour of its coming... you see... :-)
But We’ll never know! LOL
So unless we'd ALL use UTM (which we don't) it is scientifically IMPOSSIBLE to know the day or hour.
As I was saying in my previous post -- it seems that the people of that time (when Jesus was around) would understand that phrase as an idiom pointing to one of the Seven Festivals of the Messiah (as I pointed out in another post, Post #202) -- The Feast of Trumpets. It was the one in which no one knew the day or hour of its coming... you see... :-)
Jesus is fulfilling the Seven Festivals, and has progressed through the first few (the Spring Festivals) and He has the later Festivals to fulfill in His ministry, the Fall Festivals.
The Feast of Trumpets points to the Rapture and it's the next one on the list for Jesus to fulfill in His ministry... the one in which "no one knows the day or hour" ... you see ... :-)
The Left Behind series gives a good overview of what is the commonly accepted sequence of events for the whole thing. Here's a simplified chart that someone posted in the Rapture Caucus (at Post #416)
We have more information today than EVER about Christiainity and very few are saved.
I guess it WOULD get folks attention after a bunch disappear though...
It doesnt go to follow that those who survive are believers.
No doubt theres a chance some could if they went into hiding, but nothing in Scripture indicates that those who survive the Tribulation, except the Jews, are necessarily believers.
Just to speak to the issue of the ones who survive (i.e., still alive and in their earthly bodies) the Tribulation, I'll point out the following.
In terms of percentages, it's about 25-33% of the world's population that survives the Tribulation (it slightly varies according to some different prophecy teachers).
And you're right in that not all of them are believers who survive. I'm not sure what percentage of each (believers/non-believers) there are, but it's clear that there is each group who survive.
HOWEVER, only one group will go "into the Kingdom" on this earth, that Jesus, the Messiah of Israel rules over for 1,000 years. That one group is composed of believers only, or more technically speaking -- the ones who pass the judgment of the nations that Christ engages in, at that time.
You see what happens there, according to what we are told of the Sheep and Goat judgment in Matthew, chapter 25. It's there that Jesus gathers up the nations and enters into judgment. Those who pass judgment, go into the Kingdom on earth. Those that don't are cast into outer darkness, to await their final judgment at the Great White Throne judgment (Revelation 20).
So, everyone who goes into the Kingdom, from having survived in their original bodies (not resurrected, not translated, and not glorified bodies) -- they go on to repopulate the earth, during that 1,000 year reign of the Messiah of Israel.
But Well never know! LOL
We won't know at this present time, how many are born and saved during the Millennial Reign of Christ, but we will know at that future time, how many there are.
Right now, it's a very safe guess to say that there are more that are saved during the 1,000 year Millennial reign of Christ than have been saved all the way up to now -- because right now, we've got in this present generation more Christians alive now than have ever lived in centuries past. That's something that is easy to figure.
And just from that, it's also easy to see that our present numbers will be very easily surpassed in the Millennial reign of Christ, because of the tremendous growth in population that will occur in 1,000 years, with perfect government, perfect living environment, only "one faith" being taught all over the world (and no cults and/or competing false religions) and with Satan bound and with the Word of God "covering the earth". Families will grow big and large, people will have abundant lives, the population will literally explode, and there will be no shortages and no limits on growth, because God will have lifted the curse from the earth and its bounties for mankind, during that time.
We could probably exceed 50 billion people on the earth, very easily -- which would far surpass the numbers of saved people that we have ever had, since the creation of mankind.
And so... we won't know those numbers right now -- but we will know those numbers when we get there.
And all the promises that God gave to Israel will be fulfilled during that time and all nations will be blessed in Abraham.
Good point. Those left behind will have a very tough time of things but can certainly be saved. I have plenty of videos and books laying around for them to read about what just happened!!
Yes, there will be people saved during the Tribulation period -- but I wasn't actually talking about that particular time.
The time period that I was talking about in which there will be absolutely huge numbers of people saved -- is during the Millennial reign of Christ, that 1,000 year period of time that comes after the Tribulation.
I would say that there could be so many born and saved during the 1,000 year kingdom of the Messiah of Israel, after the Tribulation -- that the numbers of saved from Creation to the end of the Tribulation will actually be a very small fraction of the total number who are born and then saved -- during the 1,000 year period of time.
One could conceivably find that all the ones saved from the beginning of mankind to the end of the Tribulation could amount to a mere 1/20 of the numbers born and saved during the 1,000 year reign of the Messiah of Israel, in His Kingdom on earth.
That's what I was talking about... :-)
Don’t hope netmom, believe!! Jesus is coming soon for HIS bride. Those of us who belong to HIM must be spotless, pure and without wrinkle. That doesn’t mean perfect, it means, to be really in tune with God or trying to do the best you can. God is merciful and knows your heart. He understands where and what you want to be. We all fail in areas. He understands that. Don’t despair, TRUST Him!! CO
whoops, sorry, you are metmom, not netmom. *grin* CO
I know He’s coming.
What I’m hoping for is the soon part.