On July 25th, 2016 was the passing on of Tim LaHaye, who was the founder and president of Tim LaHaye Ministries and founder of the Pre-Trib Research Center. The books that he wrote with Mr. Jenkins the “Left Behind” series had sold approximately 62 million copies. There were also 3 movies made on the Left Behind Secret Rapture.
For nearly 1,800 years practically every Christian believed Jesus would come back after the period He refers to as “Great Tribulation.” (Matthew 24:21 ,29-31)
It’s only in the last couple of hundred years that people like C.I. Scofield (1843-1921) came along with the secret rapture doctrine that Jesus would come before the Great Tribulation. “Don’t worry, Jesus is going to come and take you out of this world before the trouble comes, so you won’t have to suffer.” Naturally that became a very popular doctrine because it was just what everybody had been waiting to hear.
Years ago when I first studied Bible Prophecy the pre-tribulation Rapture was explained in this way. The antichrist would confirm the 7 year Covenant & Christians would be here for the first 3-1/2 years, but when the Antichrist breaks the Holy Covenant (Daniel 11:28, 30, 31) in the middle of it, then the Great Tribulation starts, but Christians would be secretly raptured just before the 3-1/2 years of Great Tribulation.
But since the very popular “Left Behind” Book Series came out the secret rapture was moved before the 7 year covenant & now the whole 7 year period is considered the tribulation?
But I personally could never rap my head around a secret rapture as there’s so many Bible prophecy verses & examples that prove otherwise & that Christian’s will be here during the last 3-1/2 years of Great Tribulation or if you will the whole 7 year covenant period.
What makes the endtime Christians so special that we would avoid persecution? And that we would be secretly raptured & be spared from it? Before we look at the many Bible Prophecy verses that prove otherwise, let’s just take a look at history & let’s start with Jesus & His ministry.
Did Jesus suffer persecution? And did he let his disciples know & the Early Church know that there would be persecution for them too?
What did Jesus say?
JOHN 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.
JOHN 15:19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.
JOHN 15:20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.
JOHN 15:21 But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.
Are we greater than Jesus that we should not experience persecution during the endtime?
But Jesus did comfort all Christians when He said this,” JOHN 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
If we wanted to take a closer look at modern times, look at what happened under communism. How many Christians died for their faith in Russia, Eastern Europe, & China etc. Millions of Christians suffered persecution.
If we look at current events now, how many Christians are being persecuted in the Middle East & other areas of the world? Pretty much on a daily basis we’re hearing Christian’s getting beheaded & burned alive for their faith or hung up on crosses to die. I read a testimony where a 7 year old boy in the Middle East was told that if denied his Faith in Jesus, that he could live & his answer was, “I love Jesus”, & he died for his faith.
Although we’re NOT currently living in the Great Tribulation period, but we’re seeing the early stages of beheadings as a form of Christian persecution in the endtime! Jesus gave this endtime picture through John in Revelation 20:4
And I (John) saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: 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 (antichrist), neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands (666); and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
But the Lord does encourage us with power for the hour.
DANIEL 11:32 And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.
DANIEL 11:33 And they that understand among the people shall instruct many: yet they shall fall by the sword, and by flame, by captivity, and by spoil, many days.
And the Lord will also have places of protection during the 3-1/2 years of great tribulation.
REVELATION 12:6 And the woman (Christians) fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. (1260 days is referring to the 3-1/2 years of Great Tribulation. (The Ancient Lunar Calendar is 360 days in a year, where our modern calendar is 365-1/4 days in a year)
Now let’s get back to the Secret Rapture or Post-Tribulation Rapture.
To recap the timing! The Antichrist will confirm the covenant with many for 7 years. (Daniel 9:27). In Daniel 11:28 & 30 the covenant is also described as a “Holy Covenant”. So not only will the covenant be a temporary political solution it will also involve religion. Many Bible Prophecy Students believe that under the covenant Jerusalem will be shared by the Jews, Muslims, & Christians & become the religious capital of the world. The Jews will finally be able to rebuild their Jewish temple & resume their animal sacrifices. If you go to https://www.templeinstitute.org/ you’ll read all about the preparations for the new Jewish Temple that will eventually be rebuilt as the last temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 A.D.
Daniel 11:31 is a key scripture: And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.
It tells us that at this point, three and a half years after confirming the seven-year covenant, the Antichrist will break the covenant & forcibly enter the Jewish Temple (the “sanctuary of strength”). He will put an end to the daily sacrifice and the False Prophet, the Antichrist’s chief aide, will place in the Temple area something called the “abomination of desolation.” Over 500 years after Daniel gave this prophecy, Jesus referred to it in His dissertation on the signs of His second coming and of the end of the world as we know it:
When you see the “abomination of desolation,” spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place [the rebuilt Jewish Temple in Jerusalem] … then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. (Matthew 24:15,21).
This time period is known as the 3-1/2 years of Great Tribulation. It says 42 months in Revelation 13:5 & 1,260 days in Revelation 11:3 & 12:6, which is 3-1/2 years.
There are 6 trumpets of Tribulation that sound in Revelation Chapters 8 & 9, where God is going to let loose pestilences & plagues & even strange monsters which will attack the people who worship the “Abomination of the Desolation” and receive the Mark of the Beast (Antichrist) 666 to buy & sell.
The last trumpet the seventh trumpet is found in Revelation 10:7 that is announcing Jesus’ 2nd Coming & the Resurrection & Rapture.
Revelation 10:7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
What is the mystery of God that we read about in Revelation 10:7? To find this out we must turn to 1 Corinthians 15:51-52
1st Corinthians 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
1st Corinthians 15:52 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.
This is Jesus’ 2nd Coming & the Resurrection & Rapture, where we get our eternal new bodies. The mystery is that we receive our eternal new bodies at Jesus 2nd coming. (Philippians 3:21) Notice this event it says at the last trump, the 7th trump, so the 6 Tribulation Trumpets come first before the 7th Trump!
1st Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
The Trump of God shall sound, there’s your Last Trump, the seventh trumpet!
1st Thessalonians 4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
Matthew 24:29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
Matthew 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Matthew 24:31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
Christians who know His Word & have “discerned the signs of the times” (Matthew 16:3) are not going to be surprised! You don’t have to have that day surprise you! You’re going to be so aware of what’s going on that you’re going to know that His coming is very near. You may not know the precise day or hour, but knowing the Great Tribulation lasts 3-1/2 years, 42 Months, & 1260 days, you may not be very far off.– And you’ll be looking for & anxiously awaiting Jesus’ return!
Matthew 24:29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days….
The pre rapture doctrine that is used in Matthew Chapter 24 is this.
Matthew 24:40 Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
Matthew 24:41 Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
Matthew 24:42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
Obviously after the Great Tribulation (Matthew 24:29-31) only the saved people will be raptured & verse 42 is warning us to watch & to be ready for Jesus 2nd coming after the Great Tribulation as Jesus goes on to say,
MATTHEW 24:43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
MATTHEW 24:44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.
MATTHEW 24:45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
MATTHEW 24:46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
MATTHEW 24:47 Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.
Jesus is saying be ready for the Great Tribulation as we’re going through it & be ready for His second coming & in verse 45 it says, …“to give them meat in due season?” A wise servant is ready & giving the meat of God’s word to the people during the endtime & more specifically during the Great Tribulation. The wise servants are feeding the people the word of God & will be blessed for doing that & being a faithful servant.
Hebrews 5:12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.
Hebrews 5:13 For every one that useth milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.
Hebrews 5:14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
2nd Timothy 2:15 Highlites the importance of Studying God’s Word. Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
But if you believe in a secret rapture before the 7 year covenant are you studying & preparing for the last 7 years. Do you know & understand the meat of God’s word in the Prophetic Chapters in the Book of Daniel, the Book of Revelation, Matthew Chapter 24, to name a few?
Also in 2nd Thessalonians Paul when talking about Jesus 2nd Coming & rapture here’s what he says.
Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, (2 Thessalonians 2:1)
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; (2 Thessalonians 2:3)
Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. (2 Thessalonians 2:4)
Paul is saying 2 things that have to happen before Jesus’ Second Coming & the Rapture!
1. There’s a falling away from the faith and
2. The Man of Sin, the Antichrist must come first before the Resurrection & Rapture.
Another of their most often-quoted passages which they use to try to substantiate this secret Rapture doctrine, is 1st Thessalonians, Chapter 5: 1-5
1 Thessalonians 5:1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
1 Thessalonians 5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
1 Thessalonians 5:3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
Paul is saying that “… the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.”
But then he goes on to say
1 Thessalonians 5:4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
1 Thessalonians 5:5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
In other words we’re not in darkness, “that that day should overtake you as a thief”. So when you read the whole context of the verses, Jesus 2nd Coming & the Rapture, won’t catch us as a thief in the night! Remember Matthew 24:29-31?
Also another popular secret rapture verse is Revelation 4:1
REVELATION 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.
Some Bible Students believe that this is describing the secret rapture, & since it’s in Revelation Chapter 4:1 it means they won’t be on the earth during the Great Tribulation & the events as described in Revelation Chapters 8 through 14. They miss it because they are secretly raptured in Revelation 4:1, but verse 2 makes it very clear that John is only being taking up into the spiritual realm to receive revelations of the future.
REVELATION 4:2 And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.
This is not describing a secret Rapture!
Another “thief” passage that is sometimes added to the mix isn’t referring to the Rapture at all, but rather the destruction and re-creation of Earth’s surface and its atmospheric heavens about 1,000 years later, at the end of the Millennium:
“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up” (2 Peter 3:10).
Another popular Secret Rapture verse is
LUKE 21:36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
From all the sound of the whole description of the things that are going on during the Great Tribulation, although the church is being persecuted by the Antichrist Government, the Antichrist Government is suffering horrible plagues & curses & all kinds of horrors which God’s Word definitely says will not touch the people who have the Seal of God in their forehead! (Revelation 7:3) So that’s what the escape means, that you’ll be counted worthy to escape all these things that befall them, like the Children of Israel in Egypt, they suffered persecution under Pharaoh, but all the plagues that the Lord sent did not affect or harm the children of Israel, but only the Egyptians.
Read Revelation Chapters 7, 8 & 9 or go to
Where I go into more details regarding Revelation Chapters 8 & 9.
I don’t think any of those 6 Trumpets are going to affect us, none of those plagues, none of those horrors described in the Great Tribulation, none of them! The only thing that we have to suffer is the persecution of the Antichrist & his Mark of the Beast people.
Are you preparing for endtime events? Are you studying the meat of God’s word in Bible Prophecy? Are you Studying to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2nd Timothy 2:15.
Will you live happily forever after? Will you enjoy the happy ending of the beautiful Rapture, the Wedding Party, the Millennial Heaven-on-Earth & God’s great, eternal Heavenly City? Are you one of the saved who will be allowed to live in that great Heavenly City? All you have to do is ask Jesus to come into your heart & receive the free gift of eternal life! (Ephesians 2:8-9 & Romans 6:23)