The Poor, Misguided PreTrib Rapturist…(Sigh)

November 12, 2009 at 10:41 AM 4 comments

timing of rapture2

Know the Day or the Hour

You know, when I sit back and consider the fact that out of ALL the Eschatological positions out there, the one that is roundly attacked and soundly ridiculed is by far, the PreTrib Rapture position. But let’s think for a moment…WHY is it so maligned?

We’ve gone over this before, but to summarize, it is largely due to the fact that Dave MacPherson has shined the light of contempt on the PreTrib Rapture position and people have bought his lies, historical revisions and questionable summaries lock, stock and barrel.  It is because MacPherson and his frenzied followers have stopped to say “What else needs to be said?!  Mac has proven the point!”  Uh, no, he has not proven anything, except that he can exaggerate like the best of them because he has an axe to grind.

So, most people who disagree with the PreTrib Rapture position rest on the fact that they believe Mac has said what has needed to be said.  He has given the Posttribber more bang for his buck; more ammunition to use against the PreTrib Rapturist.

There are really few places that a PreTrib Rapturist can go today without hearing or reading words like “apostasy,” “heresy,” “deception,” “delusion” and many others, all connected to the PreTrib Rapture.  Because people believe it to be THE (or at least, ONE of the) reason for the End Times apostasy, they feel no need to look further.  For them, the question is answered, the problem is solved.  Those who do not see eye to eye with Mac and his buds, are spiritually deluded, making it impossible for them to see with spiritual clarity.

Let’s be clear here for a moment though, all right?  Many people believe that the Pre Trib Rapture is so heinous that it cannot be anything BUT a lie.  I mean, consider what it does.  It obviously creates Christians who are carnal at best, and evil at worst.  The belief that I am on my way to hell, for instance, is something that I’ve heard too many times to count.  Yet, what IS the real problem here?  The problem seems to be not in the PreTrib Rapture position, but in the believed OUTCOME of espousing such a position.

In effect, it is assumed and believed that because I am a PreTrib Rapturist, I have simply STOPPED actively being a Christian.  Oh sure, I might go through the motions, you know, open my Bible when someone is looking, or pray when I’m in church.  I will probably make a big show of going to church, so that people SEE me and note that I am present.  But really, all of these things – praying, reading the Bible, serving Him and more – all of this is simply window dressing.  Let’s face it, because I believe that I will escape the Tribulation via the Rapture, I have no real reason to live a godly life at all.  It’s there for show and for show only.  In fact, when no one is looking, I imbibe the world’s pleasures.  ALL of my Christian friends and the members of the church I attend are all phonies.  Everything we do – serving the homeless, the shut-ins, the elderly, the widowed, the sick, and others in need – is done for man’s accolades.  The reason I spend hours in prayer and preparation for teaching Bible classes at church is to earn brownie points with people.  The reason I write and give away a ton of the books I write is because I want people to like me.  I do NONE of that because I love the Lord, because I long to see Him one day.  I do ALL of this because I want to pat myself on the back and feel good that I am contributing to something bigger than myself.  Who cares that the Lord knows I really do not care about Him or His Word?  If I can pull the wool over man’s eyes, that’s really what it all boils down to, doesn’t it?

The idea that I am going to be rescued by the Rapture before things get bad is such a cool concept, I wish I had thought of it!  Think about it.  I can do virtually nothing and STILL be saved from the evil of the Tribulation!  Isn’t that cool?  Plus, it does NOT matter at all that when I’m “rescued,” I will immediately be in His presence and of course, I would have nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of, having lived my life in expectant escapism prior to the Rapture.

But wait, I’m actually getting ahead of myself, because according to many, I’m doomed to hell.  I’m self-deluded and deceived and on the fast track to the Lake of Fire.  Wow, thank God for the humble Posttribulationist who really understands what it means to be a Christian!  Phew, for a moment there, I thought that God was left without a voice in this world, but never fear, the dear, humble, spiritually mature Posttribber is standing by, ready to do battle with the Antichrist himself!


Does Jesus Actually Return to Earth Twice? ©2009 F. DeRuvo

But I have to wonder, what of the Amillennialist or anyone who does not believe that there is going to be a 7-year (or 3 1/2 year) Tribulation?  Some of these folks believe that the world is going to get better and better until the situation and time is right for Jesus to simply return.  There is NO Tribulation because it already HAPPENED.  Of course, these individuals are not deluded, nor are they deceived.  There is no question as to their love for the Lord.  They will NOT be taken by surprise when the Tribulation hits.  Nothing like that at all.  The kind of remonstrance I’m referring to is only reserved for the poor, misguided and deceived PreTrib Rapturist and no one else. 

Let’s get a few things straight, all right?  The doctrine of the Rapture is NOT part of the apostasy of the End Times.  The apostasy of the End Times is such that it will create a falling away.  A falling away from WHAT?  A falling away from the gospel of Jesus Christ.  What is the gospel of Jesus Christ?  It is believing that He is God in the flesh and that He came and offered Himself as a propitiation for MY sin.  Believing in Him means believing that He is God and that His sacrificial atonement cancels my sin.  Because I fully believe that, I am given NEW life; salvation.  This is the same salvation that Jesus spoke to Nicodemus about in John 3.  It is the same salvation that the thief on the cross received.

Salvation is not praying the sinner’s prayer, or asking Jesus “into my heart.”  Salvation is BELIEVING in Christ’s atonement and the fact that because of what Christ did, I am justified; fully declared righteous before God.  Believing here is not simply intellectual assent.  It is living, breathing KNOWLEDGE that allows me to see and understand that Christ IS who He says He is and that He did what He is said to have done.  Because of this, believing in Him means that through my faith in Him, I am united with Him in His Body.  That is FOREVER and it cannot be undone, in spite of what some would like us to believe (but that’s for another day and another blog).

So if I have salvation and I have salvation BECAUSE of what Christ did for me and because He opened my eyes so that I could see the truth, and because of that salvation, I am SEALED by the Holy Spirit as a guarantee of the eternal nature of my salvation, and if I have that eternal salvation because Jesus is the AUTHOR and FINISHER of my faith, how is it possible for Him to ignore me, or otherwise allow me to become so unspiritual that I am not only no good to myself, but no good to others?  I do not see how that can happen in the long run.  While it CAN happen for short periods of time, it seems clear enough that a situation which continues like this is grounds to be taken home early, according to Paul in his letters to the Corinthians.

Here is something that many within Christendom do not say much…I could be wrong about the PreTrib Rapture.  I could ALSO be wrong about the doctrine of election, or at least my understanding of it.  I could also be wrong about Dispensationalism, or the fact that I believe that God is not done with Israel yet.  There are many things that I could be wrong about, but at this point in my life, I do not believe I am wrong about them.  This does not mean that at some future date, I may have enough information which will persuade me that this view or that view that I’ve held dearly for years is not correct.  I am completely open to that possibility because I know me well enough to know that I am NOT perfect, nor do I hear the Lord perfectly (though no fault of His, of course).  Sometimes, when I read parts of His Word, it seems too complex to grasp, so I pray and leave it to Him.

Here’s an interesting thing about many people today with respect to doctrine and specifically, the PreTrib Rapture doctrine.  I have come across many people who make statements like “I USED to believe the PreTrib Rapture until the Lord got hold of me, baptized me and revealed the truth to me.”  The problem with a statement like that is that it only APPEARS to be self-deprecating, when in point of fact, it’s actually very arrogant.  People who make these statements and others like them, also now believe that it is merely them and the Lord.  They stop listening to other “men” and just go by what the Lord says to them directly.  Well then, they should probably toss their Bibles and allow God to write them a new one.  I mean, after all, why bother listening to any of the prophets or apostles?  They’re just men, who were used by God to jot His Words down.  But cannot the Holy Spirit do that again for each person?  Of course He can, and why shouldn’t he?  Cult leaders have special things written for them or through them, so why can’t God do that for everyone?

Sorry, I digress.  The reality is that there are MANY people who believe me to be deluded, and deceived.  Because of that, I will obviously be completely unprepared for the coming Tribulation.  Howwever, this errant belief completely disregards God’s sovereignty, His love, and especially His mercy. 

I can say this with absolute clarity that since I became a Christian, by receiving His salvation, the road for me has been difficult, but He has NEVER left me, or forsaken me.  The “tribulations” that I have experience thus far in life have not been easy.  Some have been of my own making, while others were sent directly from Him, for my growth and His glory.

I look back on my life as a Christian, and I can see how far I have come, only by His grace and indwelling presence.  Looking down the corridor of my past to the present is proof of His involvement in my life.  I can see the more I have relied on Him, the more He has blessed me with growth and maturity.  I can see that love for other individuals and especially those of the household of faith has grown.  I see that I have developed more of a love for His Word, and a greater degree of patience for myself and others.  However, when I compare myself with the picture that Scripture paints of Christ, I see that I continue to fall woefully short.  But if my past is anything to bank on, I know with confidence that He IS with me now, and He WILL be with me today and will CONTINUE to be with me tomorrow.

I received salvation at the age of 13.  Almost forty years later, at 52, I can truthfully say that I love Him more, I serve Him more and I seek to glorify Him more, than I did in times past.  However, I am not done yet and the reason I know I am not done yet is because I am not where my sister is now; she is with Him.  I am still here, living my life on a daily basis, going through the struggles that come with this life and leaning at times very heavily on his arms.  He has NEVER failed to carry me through a situation; never once.

If I am wrong about the PreTrib Rapture, I am fine with that.  In fact, there is a side of me that WANTS to see some of those future events taking place.  I want to see the Antichrist gain power and become the One World Leader.  I WANT to see the enemies of Israel attempt to invade that land only to be fully thwarted by God Himself.  I want to see what this “mark of the beast” is going to be and I WANT to be out there preaching to the lost during the Tribulation, just as I do NOW.

I have NO idea what the future of my life holds, except that one day, I will die.  I do not know when, but I know that is His guarantee to me is that one day in the future, I will be immediately brought into His presence through death.  He has NOT guaranteed that I will live to see and be taken in the Rapture.  There is no guarantee that the Rapture or the Tribulation will even occur in my lifetime.  The guarantee that I have is that one day I will die and see Him immediately.  When I see Him, I will be like Him.

This type of understanding does not come from someone who is deluded and spiritually deceived.  People who are only living to escape the Tribulation are probably living with their eyes on this world and this world only.  They are not really concerned about BEING a Christian, and LIVING the Christian life.  They are more concerned about satisfying their own souls.  Because of this, there is an excellent chance they are not truly saved at all.

Unfortunately for those who are so dead set against the PreTrib Rapturist, that description of what people like myself DO as Christians, is unfamiliar to me concerning ANY PreTrib Rapturists that I know of, or know personally.  The people that I know who also espouse a PreTrib Rapture position LOVE the Lord and we love Him by SERVING Him, praying to Him, praising Him and taking what He provides us in this life with the understanding that whatever He sends our way may appear to be evil, but ultimately is meant for our good.

I would greatly appreciate if all those opposed to the PreTrib Rapture would do the Lord a favor, and start focusing on the real problems that face our society and the visible Church.  It is not the PreTrib Rapture that is drawing people away from the Church and Christ.  Interestingly enough, I do not see the PreTrib Rapture (or nearly any portion of Eschatology) as qualifying for the Last Days apostasy.  What I DO see occuring today, which fully qualifies as apostasy is:

  • Seeker Sensitive movement
  • the Mystical Movement
  • Churches Going Green
  • A move from Literal to Allegorical Bible Interpretation
  • Ecumenism
  • Church Growth Movement
  • Spiritual Formation
  • Contemplative Prayer
  • Emergent Church
  • Kingdom Now
  • Dominion Theology

Those things listed above have been occuring within, and taking over, the visible Church for decades and have grown in measure since their inception and introduction.  What they are doing is introducing “another” gospel, which Paul would say is not a gospel at all.  IF the PreTrib Rapture position is incorrect and I am alive when the Tribulation begins, WONDERFUL!  I will be privileged to see more prophecy unfold right before my eyes.  I will also continue to do what I do – pray, serve, study, seek His face – and I will do it with the same indwelling Presence then in the future, that I have now – the Holy Spirit. 

Unfortunately, some people are so myopic they cannot see the forest for the trees, believing that the PreTrib Rapture is the problem, when in point of fact, the items listed above have nothing to do with the PreTrib Rapture and are far more dangerous. 

Many of you have bought into the lie that says I’m unprepared for the coming persecution.  What about the “tribulation” of daily living?  How do you think I’m handling that?  Do you also not believe that God will provide to those who are His, the ability to withstand ANY attack from the Antichrist, should the PreTrib Rapture be a wrong notion?  And by the way, do you honestly believe that the Lord is going to provide the amount of strength and grace needed to live during those days, now?  Why would He do that, when we do not need that type of grace, strength and understanding as we live now?

The individuals who live in this world now as missionaries, and who daily face the threat of physical harm and even death, are given tremendous amounts of strength, grace and wisdom because of the amount of tribulation that they face on a daily basis.  I do not, at this point in my life, need that type of strength, or wisdom from above.  In fact, Christ said that when specific tribulation comes, we should not be at all concerned about what we will say.  I assume that He also means we should not be concerned about the tribulation itself, for He and He alone will guide us through it, just as He guides us through life now.

The idea that I am somehow banking on the PreTrib Rapture to whisk me away prior to the Tribulation is nonsense.  It is time for Christians to focus on the enemy and it is NOT the PreTrib Rapture.  The enemy is busy doing two things:

  • getting Christians to castigate one another, and
  • introducing movements (like those in the list above), into the visible Church which draw people away from the true gospel of Jesus Christ

Meanwhile, the mighty Posttribber and others are focused on intently fighting against what they consider to be the deception of the PreTrib Rapture.  Good luck with that, because while you are wasting your time telling me that I am deceived, deluded and even not a true Christian, the Emergent Church, Spiritual Formation, Church Growth Movement, Seeker-Sensitive Movement, the Mystical Movement, the Churches Going Green parade, Contemplative Prayer, Ecumenism, Unity in Diversity, Kingdom Now and many other “isms” have literally invaded and are taking over much of evangelicalism.  You are doing NOTHING to fight against that though, because you have broken your arm patting yourself on your back saying things like “I started a similar group called “The Pre-Trib Rapture is NOT in the Bible”. Lets get the word out there, people need to prepare themselves.”

You do that, folks.  Get the word out about how ruinous the PreTrib Rapture is in all its wayward deception, and do not for a moment, consider your own arrogance.  Keep telling yourself that your heart is breaking for the poor, deluded PreTrib Rapturist.  Tsk, tsk, you think.  Such a shame.  Sigh.

In the meantime, do NOTHING to combat the actual deception that has invaded the visible Church, leaving apostasy in its wake.  Good move.  Actual lost souls will continue enter into eternity completely lost and you can go on combating the End Times apostasy of the PreTrib Rapture.  Get a clue, people.  Too many people remain lost because too many Christians are fighting the wrong fight!  It is time to wake up, pick up our swords and fight the real enemy, not the PERCEIVED enemy.

Those who would like to join me in my fight against the hypocrisy, judgment and arrogance of those who have deemed it necessary to make it their life’s mission to fight the PreTrib Rapture may do so by going here (you will need a Facebook account):

The PreTrib Rapture IS in the Bible

You’re welcome to join in, but you will not be welcome to castigate, attack, or arrogantly express your “loving” opinion about how wrong, and deceived PreTrib Rapture people are in their own minds.

And now, back to your regularly scheduled anti-PreTrib Rapture rant…

Entry filed under: dispensationalism, Posttribulational Rapture, Pretribulational Rapture, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

The Pre-Wrath What? The Happy PreTrib Rapturist and More!


  • 1. modres  |  November 15, 2009 at 9:08 PM

    Hey Steve,

    Thanks for dropping by and leaving a note. You make some great points. I have found it truly frustrating that too many people are fighting the wrong war. It is almost as if they think the Lord has somehow rescinded the Great Commission. Some people are so intent about debating aspects of Eschatology, that you have to wonder how they have time to witness to the lost at all.


  • 2. Steve  |  November 14, 2009 at 7:51 PM

    I stumbled upon this blog by accident while searching for the differences between Dispensationalism and Covenant/Reformed Theology. Although this article didn’t really have much to do with my search… the title totally intrigued me. So… I clicked and read it.

    All I can say is “WOW!” What a great blog! I haven’t yet read any of your other stuff but based on this article alone I find you to be extremely articulate and obviously passionate.

    I too currently hold a PreTrib position but firmly know that my belief would not be shaken one iota if that position turned out to be wrong. I would view it as a (continuing) lesson that my thoughts are not God’s thoughts and my ways are not God’s ways. I can live with that (especially sustained by His hand). Sadly, I also agree that churches are being infiltrated with such a plethora of deceptions. Satan and humans alike seem to be working overtime to repaint God into an image that more palatable (can you say “ear tickling”?). And I agree that that is where one of our main focuses should be. I fear too many will say “Lord, Lord…” but will hear “Get away from me, I never knew you.”… Not because of an eschatological difference but because of core foundational salvation issues that the Church has either ignored or actually embraced. THAT is what grieves my heart.

    I look forward to reading more of your site. Thank you for this article.


  • 3. modres  |  November 13, 2009 at 10:44 PM

    What do you think? Seriously, I found this comment by you on another site: “The article “Edward Irving is Unnerving” is on Google and it can cripple, if not destroy, dispensationalism!”

    You are no more interested in what I think about the Edward Irving is Unnerving article, than I am interested in trying to walk to the moon. The reality is that you are convinced in your opinion regarding Dispensationalism, so how could you possibly even be slightly interested in my opinion? The article to which I borrowed your comment – “Dispensationalism and the Jews” – is filled with erroneous thinking where Dispensationalism is concerned.

    I find it fascinating how people are constantly pointing to Galatians 3:28-29 as proof of the “fact” that in Christ there is neither Jew nor Greek, etc., yet they conveniently pass over the fact that this obviously refers to salvation and will only find its ultimate fulfillment in eternity.

    Consider that in that pasage of Scripture, Paul also refers to the fact that there is no difference between MEN and WOMEN as well. If that is the case, then why is it not fine for homosexuals to marry? Beyond this, why does Paul DEFINE roles for men and women in epistles and letters he wrote LATER?

    The reality is SALVATION is available to ALL, regardless of GENDER or ETHNICITY. That Jews who become believers are somehow part of the “New Israel” (an errant position) means that the Church has replaced Israel, which is not a viable position according to Scripture. But folks like yourself would say (I’m assuming), that all the blessings that were originally intended for the Jews have now been transferred to the Church. Unfortunately, that line of conviction makes a liar out of God. It also says that ALL of the curses meant for Israel were REAL, and actually applied TO Israel, however all the blessings were only meant figuratively? Wrong.

    I am not at all interested in debating you and I doubt that you are interested in debating with me either. That said, it might be a good idea for you to find out what Dispensationalism actually presents, as opposed to reading books/articles by people who have no clue.


  • 4. Bruce  |  November 13, 2009 at 10:08 PM

    You might or might not be happy with an article I found on Google with the title of EDWARD IRVING IS UNNERVING but it would be fun to see what you think of it. It pretty much goes in depth and you probably have some good answers to the points brought up. God bless. Bruce


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