Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Old Hymns Testify to a Rapture AT the Revelation

I thought this might be a good time for a 'just for fun' post. Then, we'll jump right back into our studies.

Many of the old hymns that are sung every Sunday contain references to a Rapture that occurs AT the Revelation. Let's start off with a VERY clear hymn written by Charles Wesley.

Lo, He Comes With Clouds Descending, Charles Wesley, 1758.

Note that Christ comes with clouds as the Bible says in 1 Thess. 4, and with thousands of departed saints. But, also note that He is coming to reign on earth! The phrase "Every eye shall now behold Him" is straight out of Revelation 1: 7, and speaks of the visible Second Coming of Christ. The third stanza is also in regard to the Second Coming (see Rev. 16:20). And, yet, in stanza four, the saints are rising to meet Christ in the air! There is even a reference to the Day of the Lord at the end of the fourth stanza. "Come quickly" is the cry of the bride and the Spirit!

This is exactly as expected when we understand that the Rapture is AT the Revelation!!

"Lo! He comes with clouds descending,
Once for favored sinners slain;
Thousand thousand saints attending,
Swell the triumph of His train:
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
God appears on earth to reign.

Every eye shall now behold Him
Robed in dreadful majesty;
Those who set at naught and sold Him,
Pierced and nailed Him to the tree,
Deeply wailing, deeply wailing, deeply wailing,
Shall the true Messiah see.

Every island, sea, and mountain,
Heav’n and earth, shall flee away;
All who hate Him must, confounded,
Hear the trump proclaim the day:
Come to judgment! Come to judgment! Come to judgment!
Come to judgment! Come away!

Now redemption, long expected,
See in solemn pomp appear;
All His saints, by man rejected,
Now shall meet Him in the air:
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
See the day of God appear!

Answer Thine own bride and Spirit,
Hasten, Lord, the general doom!
The new Heav’n and earth t’inherit,
Take Thy pining exiles home:
All creation, all creation, all creation,
Travails! groans! and bids Thee come!

The dear tokens of His passion
Still His dazzling body bears;
Cause of endless exultation
To His ransomed worshippers;
With what rapture, with what rapture, with what rapture
Gaze we on those glorious scars!

Yea, Amen! let all adore Thee,
High on Thine eternal throne;
Savior, take the power and glory,
Claim the kingdom for Thine own;
O come quickly! O come quickly! O come quickly!
Everlasting God, come down!"

One Day, by J. Wilbur Chapman, 1908.

In the fifth stanza, Chapman combines the Rapture of 1 Thessalonians 4 with the glorious appearing of Christ:

"One day the trumpet will sound for His coming,
One day the skies with His glories will shine;
Wonderful day, my belovèd ones bringing;

Glorious Savior, this Jesus is mine!

It is Well with My Soul
, by Horatio Spafford, 1873.

In the third stanza (which is not very well known), Spafford states that he is waiting for Christ to come back. He states that this coming will be with the trump of the angel (see Matt. 24:31) and the voice of the Lord (see 1 Thess. 4:16).

In fourth stanza, Spafford says that his faith will be sight when the 'clouds are rolled back as a scroll.' By comparing Revelation 1:7 and Revelation 6:14, we see that Spafford believed that he would finally see Christ with his own eyes at the glorious, visible Second Coming of Christ. Note the second mention of the trump of God.

"But, Lord, ‘tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh trump of the angel! Oh voice of the Lord!
Blessèd hope, blessèd rest of my soul!


And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul."

When the Roll is Called Up Yonder, by James M. Black, 1893.

In the first stanza, Black writes that 'the trumpet of the Lord shall sound and time shall be no more.' Compare this to Revelation 10:6-7, "And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer: 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."

Within the time frame of the Rapture AT the Revelation, this is exactly how it happens. At the visible coming of the Lord, the Lord Jesus himself shouts/roars, and then there is the voice of the archangel, and finally the trump of God is sounded.

"When the trumpet of the Lord shall sound,
and time shall be no more,

And the morning breaks, eternal, bright and fair;

When the saved of earth shall gather over on the other shore,

And the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there."

When He Shall Come
, by Almeda J. Pearce.

At Christ's resplendent coming, not his secret coming, he will gather his own. The reference to the earth's remotest corners is from Matthew 24:31.

When He shall come resplendent in His Glory,
To take His own
from out this vale of night,
O may I know the joy at His appearing,
Only at morn to walk with Him in white.

When He shall call from earth's remotest corners

All who have stood triumphant in His might,

O to be worthy then to stand beside them

And in that morn to walk with Him in white.

When I shall stand within the court of Heaven
Where white robed pilgrims pass before my sight,

Earth's martyred saints and bloodwashed overcomers

These then are they who walk with Him in white.

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