Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Resurrection at the Rapture

The apostle Paul plainly states that at the Rapture there will be a resurrection - "the dead in Christ shall rise" (I Thess. 4:16).

But when is this resurrection? Perhaps the apostle John can help clear things up. He plainly states that the first resurrection will be after the Antichrist appears, but before the thousand year reign of Christ begins:

"And I saw thrones, ... 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 upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection."

So, if the FIRST resurrection is after the beast, and after his mark, and after his image, then the FIRST resurrection is a POST-Tribulation one!

And since the FIRST resurrection is a POST-Tribulation one, and the Rapture involves a resurrection, then the Rapture also must be AFTER the Tribulation.

Now, remember what Martha said to Jesus about her brother Lazarus? "I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day." She was exactly right!

At the last day of this age, which is just after the Great Tribulation, Christ will return. And at his coming, he will call up his earthly saints to meet him in the air. Since some of those saints will be dead, they will be RESURRECTED. This is the first resurrection. They will then live and reign with Christ for his thousand year reign on earth known as the Millennium.

Isn't that easy?

Living in God's righteous, earthly kingdom was the expectation of ALL of the Old Testament prophets. But that would necessitate a resurrection before the kingdom began! And that is what Martha was referring to.

et's look briefly at Ezekiel 37. Ezekiel saw the resurrection of the 'dry bones' of Israel just before the reign of Christ began. "I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel" (v. 12), and "David my servant shall be king over them:..." (v. 24).

Ezekiel saw the reign of Christ from the throne of David. He also saw that the dead believers of the nation of Israel would resurrected just prior to Christ's kingdom so that they could be included in it.

More Simple Logic
IF the first resurrection of the saints is ‘at the last day,’
AND the first resurrection is after the Tribulation (Rev. 20:4),
BUT the first resurrection is before the Millennial reign (Rev. 20:4),
THEN the ‘last day’ is sandwiched between the Tribulation and the Millennium.

And that means that the Rapture must be AT the Revelation. And on the LAST DAY, just after the Tribulation and just before the Millennial reign of Christ, the saints will rise/be resurrected at the first resurrection.

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