Why is that? I really believe that the heresy of the pre-Tribulation Rapture, while 'easy' to grasp by the new Christian, so muddies up the truth that it hinders a deeper understanding of the Bible.
Let's take a look at what the Bible says.
When Does the Day of the Lord Begin?
That’s pretty simple. This great two-part celestial sign comes BEFORE the day of the Lord.
Putting these two verses together, we logically arrive at:
The celestial sign that comes BEFORE the day of the Lord comes AFTER the Tribulation. Therefore, the day of the Lord is AFTER the Tribulation.
Let me say it again. If the celestial sign is after the Tribulation, AND the day of the Lord is after the celestial sign, THEN the day of the Lord is AFTER the Tribulation.
The day of the Lord does NOT include the Tribulation. It is NOT part of the Tribulation. The Tribulation is NOT part of it.
It comes AFTER the Tribulation.
The Sixth Seal
Let's narrow this down even more! In the Revelation, the sun is darkened after the sixth seal is opened.
Note a few verses later in Rev. 6:16-7,
“And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?”
The great day of the wrath of the Lamb is AFTER the Tribulation of those days, and AFTER the celestial sign which comes AFTER the sixth seal. This is the day of the Lord.
It is a single DAY.
The Day of the Lord is AFTER the Tribulation
This may seem redundant, but since the day of the Lord is after the Tribulation, then it is also after the Antichrist is revealed. (See Matt. 24: 15 and II Thess. 2:3)
And it comes after the great falling away. (II Thess. 2:3)
“Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision. The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining.” (Joel 3:14-5)
The valley of decision is also known as the valley of Jehoshaphat (Joel 3:2, 12) and the valley of Megiddon (Zech. 12:11).
When the nations are gathered to Armageddon, THEN the day of the Lord will be near. Not yet, but near!
Notice that when the nations are gathered to Armageddon, the darkening of the sun and moon is still future! They "shall" be darkened. Why? Because the day of the Lord is not yet, but soon, and it won't come until after the celestial sign.
The Sixth Vial
The battle of Armageddon mentioned in Revelation 16 occurs AFTER “the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates.” (Rev. 16:12)
Therefore the day of the Lord is not 'near' until AFTER the sixth angel pours out his vial and dries up the river Euphrates.
Summary Thus Far
The day of the Lord is AFTER:
- The Antichrist has been revealed
- The apostasy of II Thess. 2
- The Tribulation of those days
- The sixth seal is opened
- The sun and moon darkened
- The sixth vial is poured out
- The river Euphrates has dried up
- The nations have been gathered to Armageddon
The Rapture is AT the Revelation.
Which is at the Day of the Lord.
(To be continued.)