Saturday, June 20, 2020

Is the Rapture (Catching Away) in the Bible?

VIDEO: Is the Rapture in the Bible?

Whether you have heard it referred to as the “Rapture” or the “catching away of the saints,” there is a belief among many Christians that some or all of the children of God will escape the terrible calamities prophesied in the Book of Revelation. We must look to scripture to see the truth of this matter.

It is important to remember that we do not have to agree with what is said about this topic. We are saved by our relationship with Jesus as Lord, not by what we believe concerning an impending Rapture. Consider this food for thought. May the Holy Spirit bring you wisdom about this topic.

As I meditated and sought the Lord before speaking about the Rapture for the first time, Jesus appeared to me in a vision:

Instead of dancing with the Lord in the gazebo, as I have so often done in visions of the Lord, Jesus approached me wit6 His hair standing out widely like a lion’s mane with His eyes ablaze. As that comparison entered my mind, I saw a mountain-sized Lion marching across the world giving a tremendous and mighty roar. People began vibrating and black forms shook off of them.

Some shook until a bright light shone forth from them, while others shook and melted into either a spiritual death or a physical one. The Lord’s voice echoed in my head, “The Lion of Judah is marching across the land; He is roaring and shaking the Earth. Those who cling to Me will shine forth with My light; those who do not will fall away.”

In one of the churches addressed in Revelation, we see that they have a particular reward:

Because you have guarded and kept My word of patient endurance [have held fast the lesson of My patience with the expectant endurance that I give you], I also will keep you [safe] from the hour of trial (testing) which is coming on the whole world to try those who dwell upon the Earth. (Revelation 3:10 AMPC)

This church has guarded the Word of the Lord with patience, steadfastness, constancy, endurance. The Greek word ek is translated “from”, but the Apostle John uses it to mean “out of” 12 times in his writings. This means that God will keep them out of a time (hour) which is coming upon the world.

The word peirasmos is translated as trial. A fuller meaning is “a rebellion against God, by which His power and justice are, as it were, put to the proof and challenged to show themselves.” We know that during the Tribulation, the world refused to “repent” or turn from their sin. They are in rebellion against God’s ways as they align with the AntiChrist. The addition of “upon the Earth” makes it clear that this group will not be among those on the Earth or it would come upon them as well.

What part of the coming trouble will God deliver this type of church from? We must look at other scriptures to help define this great escape.

Catching Away of the Saints

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. (1 Corinthians 15:51-52 AKJV)

Paul is imparting a new message to God’s people, a “mystery.” Something is going to happen so suddenly that it will occur in the blink of an eye. The last trumpet call, we know from prior study, refers to a certain feast where judgment will be sealed. “Not all shall sleep” refers to a physical death. Not all will die, some will be transformed and leave this Earth suddenly. The Lord also mentioned this sudden removal of people from the Earth:

Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left. (Matthew 24:40-41 AKJV)

This is not metaphorical; it is literally what will happen. Two will be standing side by side; one will disappear, and one will be left behind. Paul describes this event in another letter:

Then we, the living ones who remain [on the Earth], shall simultaneously be caught up along with [the resurrected dead] in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so always (through the eternity of the eternities) we shall be with the Lord! (1 Thessalonians 4:17 AMPC)

This is the “catching away” of the saints. The English word “Rapture” is derived from the Latin verb rapere, meaning “to carry off,” or “to catch up.” This is why the event of the sudden departure is referred to as both the “Rapture” and the “catching away of the saints.”

Eligibility for the Rapture

But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, “My lord delays his coming;” And shall begin to smite his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunken; The Lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looks not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, and shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (Matthew 24:48-51 AKJV)

This is what the Lord says after “one will go and one will be left.” It has been a long time since the Lord left. Many are not concerned with staying clear of sin and many more have begun conducting God’s business according to the ways of the world (eat and drink with the drunkard). What some are doing is “smiting” fellow servants:

  • Ministries look like a “marketplace” as they conduct their church in the ways of the world. Those who cannot afford to pay for books and even prayer (with required “donation”), are being harmed.
  • Teachings take scriptures out of context to say what we long to hear, making the leaders popular but bringing hardship upon the Christians following them.
  • Some ministries place leaders in a high place, requiring those in the church body to “serve” them. This can be a hardship that isn’t necessary. According to the Lord, the greatest among His disciples will be the servant to others (Matthew 23:11).

All of these types of leaders are “servants” meaning they are Christians doing God’s work. The burden they place on God’s people is “smiting.” Despite leading the body of Christ, they will not be going in the Rapture.

This is clearly seen in the descriptions of the churches in Revelation, which we will discuss later in greater detail. The Lord commands five out of seven churches to repent and turn from these sins so that they may be admitted into Heaven. He says nothing about sparing them from what is coming, only a promise to help them through it.

Only one out of the seven types of bodies of believers are promised to be removed from the coming situation. Which means the majority of those who refer to themselves as Christians will not go in the Rapture. Right after the Lord tells us about one who is suddenly taken and one left, He then recounts the parable of the ten virgins.

The Ten Virgins

Matthew 25:1-12 AKJV
Verse 1-2:

Then the kingdom of Heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish.

Virgins are often used to refer to those solely devoted to God. This makes us the waiting Brides of Christ: all Christians upon this Earth. The Greek word, mōros (mo-ra's) translated “foolish,” means without learning or enlightenment and not caring about the consequences. These are members of the Bride who are not learning God’s ways or thinking about the consequences of their actions.

Verse 3-4:

Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.

The word used for “oil” is the same word used for the oil to anoint and to heal the sick. This is the anointing of God through the Holy Spirit. Some of God’s anointed are acting foolishly; they are not heeding His word as they should.

Verse 5:

But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept.

Notice that all the Brides have the oil, which is the anointing of God or the Holy Spirit, and they all got sleepy. The body of Christ, which is the Bride of Christ, has long been asleep.

Verse 6:

And at midnight a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’

The “cry” is something that is loud and sudden. The Feast of Trumpets is about blasts of a horn, sounding a warning to get ready. The body of Christ has been shaken and knows that the time is close!

Verse 7:

Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps.

All the body of Christ will know that the time is at hand. They will begin preparing for His return. Before the oil was placed in the lamps, they had to prepare the vessel. We see this elsewhere in scripture. God wants us to prepare a place for Him:

Let them make Me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them. (Exodus 25:8 AKJV)

To hold the appropriate flame, the wick had to be trimmed. We are prepared to receive the anointing by the sharp sword of the Spirit, the Word of God. We cut sin from our life to make room for God to flow through us.

Verse 8 & 9:

And the foolish said to the wise, “Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.” But the wise answered, saying, “No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.”

When the shout comes, the Bride needs to get ready for the return of Jesus. We should examine what we know about God and our walk with Him. Some will find that the anointing is fading instead of increasing. If we are approached by someone who feels the connection to the Holy Spirit is lessening, we cannot pray and declare that it will be restored to those who are losing it.

The Greek word agorazō (ä-go-rä'-zo) means “buy” or “to purchase; specially, to redeem.” Jesus is the Redeemer. When we take Him as Lord, He becomes our Master, Owner and we are technically “buying” our salvation as we become bondservants to Him.

James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ… (James 1:1 AKJV)

Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ… (2 Peter 1:1 AKJV)

The Greek word doulos (doo'-los) means a slave, bondman, man of servile condition. A bondservant was someone who had an outstanding debt they could not pay and traded themselves into slavery to pay that debt. When we take Jesus as Lord that is what we are doing.

We cannot restore the anointing once it has been removed from someone. They are servants of the Lord and He is the one who must restore them. We must point them back to the Lord. It will take effort for those who have lost the anointing to return to Him wherever they have departed from His ways.

WAIT and listen, everyone who is thirsty! Come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Yes, come, buy [priceless, spiritual] wine and milk without money and without price [simply for the self-surrender that accepts the blessing]. (Isaiah 55:1 AMPC)

This is what God means when He says we must go and “buy” the oil. It is not with money. We must go to where there is godly wisdom coming forth for free - Isaiah says it is without price. Then we must surrender our will to God. Those who have foolishly been leading the body of Christ in a wrong way must not only correct their path, but fully surrender where they have erred.

Our experience has been that most Christians completing the Academy and turning back to God’s ways will need to pursue Him and walk in those new ways for one month for each year they have gone in the wrong direction. After that time, then they find the Spirit moving more strongly.

  • One year of walking wrong = one month of turning back to God and walking rightly before Him
  • 15 years of walking wrong = one year and three months of turning and doing it God’s way

The correction began in 2020 and is fully revealed in the final Court classes in the free Courts of Heaven Academy. Up until this point, all had oil. But now, only the wise would have oil, those who have learned and been corrected by Him.

A well-known prophet, who appeared on a TV show about supernatural miracles from God confirmed this. He said that the fathers of our faith in huge ministries will be removed and may well retire or move on to Heaven while new prophets appear. He also said that if these older, established ministers would take correction from these new ones they could be spared.

Verse 10:

And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut.

If those who are not operating in God’s ways don’t quickly turn, the anointing will stop flowing and they will miss the Lord when He returns. There is only one Bride and she will be taken in a moment to her Groom. Those who are not wise in following God’s ways will be very surprised when they don’t get to go in. This is clearly stated in the Book of Revelation’s description of the churches.

Verse 11-12:

Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, “Lord, Lord, open the door to us!” But He answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.”

When it is too late, a cry will go up from many, wondering why they have been left out. The Lord spoke of this earlier in Matthew:

Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name? and in Your name have cast out demons? and in Your name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, you that work iniquity. (Matthew 7:22 KJ20)

This applies to leaders who have prophesied, had healing and deliverance ministries, and they have performed miracles in the name of Jesus. In Jesus’s day, “you that work iniquity” is a phrase which means, “You who are unschooled in the Torah (first five books of the Bible).” These principles of God’s ways are taught in the CoH Academy. According to this scripture, if we are unlearned in the ways of God, we are in danger of being cast out of the presence of the Lord, despite the good works we have done.

Verse 13:

Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.

He concluded by wrapping both conversations together, showing that the parable was related to His return and the Rapture which He was speaking about! It is clear that not all who call upon Jesus as Lord will be removed in the catching away of the saints. I hope you will take a close look at the churches in Revelation to make sure you are with the group that gets to go!

Those Who Miss the Rapture

What will become of us or our loved ones who miss the Rapture? Do not fear, there is a second chance! After the trumpets, we are warned not to take the Mark and worship the Beast. Then:

And I heard a voice from Heaven saying to me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from now on: Yes, said the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; and their works do follow them. (Revelation 14:13 AKJV)

This is right before the vials of wrath are poured out. There seems to be a connection between giving our lives (die in the Lord) because we are Christians and the Mark of the Beast. After the wrath of God, we see more of what happened:

...And I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the Beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark on their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. (Revelation 20:4 AKJV)

People will be beheaded for:

  • Confessing Jesus
  • Refusing to take the Mark of the Beast and worship the Beast

There is a special reward for this! You will live and reign with Christ during the 1,000-year reign! If you or your loved one miss the Rapture, the following is what will get you a place with Christ:

  • Tell them you are a Christian
  • Refuse to take the Mark and worship the Beast
  • Be beheaded

That is a quick easy death with a BIG reward!

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