BIBLICAL FULFILLMENT
Rapture
I am Jessie Mills, Ph.D.
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RAPTURE

Introduction to the reader, I have no party interest to promote. My only desire is to conform to the Bible, for no other book comes with such claims of divine origin with such claims on the obedience of man.No other with such holy admonitions and purity of precept, none other so rich in promise, consolation and reward to the virtuous; or terrible in threats and penalties to the vicious and disobedient.It carries account out into another state of existence summoning delinquents before a tribunal beyond the limits of human vision.A tribunal which can never err from which there is no appeal.

Some questions to ponder:

Can a man mistake the way to heaven or fall short of endless life practicing the precepts of the gospel?Can a man read without gaining knowledge or practice its precepts without renewing his strength?Who can read the Bible without loving its precepts?Who can love without obeying?Who can obey without becoming more like the divine author?Is it true that he who converses most with his Bible, converses most with his God assimilates most to His image?

If precepts are mild, pure in heart, simple its rewards are immortality.Revelation first inspired in man the hope of resurrection.It alone has shed a divine luster on the gloomy mansions of the grave.It is impossible that Philosophy could have conceived an idea of a resurrection unaided by revelation.Human kind have shed many a tear of despair with a desire to have their own will done rather than that of God.Man is unwilling to read 2 Pet. 1:20,21 believe it and teach it.“Know this first of all, that no prophet of the scripture is of any private interpretation.” KJV 1816 edition.

I will now pass to Matt. 25:31-46 regarding a prediction nonetheless misapplied in most usages.When the Son of Man shall come in His Glory, and all the Holy Ones with Him, then shall He sit on the throne of His glory:And before shall be gathered all nations: And He shall separate them one from another as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats on and on, and yet not one word in the passages about resurrection or a dissolution of nature.Yes, there is a calling to the nations, the living, not the dead to a reckoning.

From the pulpit comes the fountain head of error from it has flowed more error on the subjects of the judgment and the resurrection than any other except that of world burning:And the three are closely allied, the judgment before us in Matt 25:31ff, is evidently to be under the super intendance of the Son of Man: “And He shall sit on the throne of His glory.”†† This cannot have an allusion to the same judgment spoken of in 1 Thess 4:14, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him”.It has been mentioned before that, Matt 25:31-46 had in so many times and ways been misapplied.That is still true and yet the same error of misapplication has been used on 1 Thess. 4:13ff.The first sign of error to notice is the word “rapture” for some reason God left it out of the scriptures.No doubt but that the judgment before was to take place at the close of the Jewish dispensation.This really can make the difference between error and truth.

I.††††† Rapture?

A.††I use the word rapture with a question?I have a reason for this especially since I fully intend to investigate 1 Thess. 4:13-17, with tenacity the reason being, when the Apostle John says that “sin is the transgression of the law”, 1 John 3:4.He supplies us with a statement in 1 John 5:17, which is at once concise and full, clear and philosophical.He introduces to our notice law as necessarily antecedent; and therefore in an investigation of this subject this demands attention.Law is a rule of action established by rightful authority.It prescribes the proper boundaries and imposes necessary restraints as is shown in 1 Cor. 4:6, 2 Pet. 1:20,21.Hence when any thing oversteps the line by which law has circumscribed his nature and when divine law is disregarded it constitutes sin.

B.††First we must do some subtraction. We have the word commonly used for this event “Rapture”, which is the root cause for the “Second coming of Christ”, in some cases the golden age period in some cases the general judgment, in other cases world burning, however we must erase this word from our study especially since the word itself is not found in 1 Thess. 4:13-17.In short no place in the scriptures since we erase this one word we clean up this event to the point that without error we can discuss the old and new resurrection.This being done by the guidelines of law, remembering that law is a rule of action established by divine authority and it is law, which imposes restraints.

C.††1 Thess. 4:13, “I would not have you to be ignorant brethren.”Then He makes it very clear as to what event He has reference to.“Them, which are asleep.”The Greek word for “asleep”, “Koimaomai” is used in the text of believers in Christ since the ascension. 1 Thess. 4:13, Acts 7:60, 1 Cor. 7:39, 1 Cor. 15:6, 1 Cor. 15:18,51.Being asleep in Jesus and being resurrected standing up becoming a new creature, having a spiritual body awaiting the arrival of the spirit, 2 Cor. 5:1-6 is quite different from the world use of Rapture. “Rapture”, “the act of transferring a person from one place to another.”Britannica world language. Vol. 2, p. 1085.

In v. 13, these were asleep in Christ; they were simply awaiting their turn to be resurrected as Paul the apostle explains so clearly In 1 Cor. 15:23, “But every man in his own order: Christ the first fruit; afterwards they that are Christ; at His coming.”

1.††Neither 1 Thess. 4:13-17 or 1 Cor. 15:23, are allied with the 144,000 who were purchased from the earth as firstfruits to God and the Lamb, Rev. 14:1-5.Hosea foretells this occasion in Hosea 6:1,2 so Matt. 27:50-53 gives the fulfillment.

2.††Now we have the 144,000 separated from our study in 1 Thess. 4:13-17.

3.††Acts 24:15, as the apostle reason with Felix he states in defense of his case that.“And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection to the dead both of the just and unjust.”I call your attention to the word here used “shall be” in the Greek text the word is not shall be, rather “Mello” about to be.Paul at this point was near the close of his life as was Peter.Paul mentions nothing in regards to the 144,000 at the ascension.Rather he has assured the faithful that they do have a part in the resurrection of those who belong to Christ.Whether it is before or during His coming; they will not be left behind.

II.†††† 1 Thess. 4:14, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him”.

A.††“Even so them”, it follows that “them” who sleeps, also die in Him, Jesus in the faith of the gospel will God, “theos” Greek bring with Him.“Theos” will raise them up as Jesus was raised from the dead, in the same manner and by His own eternal power and energy.He will bring them with Him when He brings Christ to present to Him, His dominion His kingdom, His bride when He “theos” will put all things in subjection under His, Christ’s feet, 1 Cor. 15:27, 1 Peter 3:22.“These angels and authorities and powers had been subjected to Him, Christ” 1 Cor. 15:28.God alone is not under the subjection of Christ that He; God might remain all in all.

B.††1 Thess. 4:15, the apostle makes it very clear that his statement made here was first made by the Lord Jesus Christ so the Holy Spirit in this case is reminding Paul what and how to remind the church of things in which He had promised.John 14:26, “The Holy Spirit will bring to your remembrance all that I said to you”.

C.††John 16:13, “The Holy Spirit will disclose what is to come”.Since Christ is the head of the church which is His body, it is impossible for me to conceive an idea that God did not raise the dead, those who were asleep in Jesus and bring them along with Jesus to the great wedding that God had made ready, the bride.This is made clear in 1 Thess. 4:14.Therefore verses 13, 14 shows beyond reasonable doubt that god is at work here and that verse 15 shows the apostle reminding the church that those which are “alive”, alive spiritually will not go ahead of those who has already taken their sleep in Christ, each must wait and be called in order at the coming of Christ.If this is not true then we can remove all of Romans chapter six especially since baptism in Romans chapter six results in death to the sinner where the sinner is resurrected to life.This life is the life spoken of in verse 15 as “alive”.In Matt. 25:31, Christ the King of Kings is at work here in 1 Thess 4:13-17 it is God†† at work.

D.††1 Thess. 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”.Not those who are alive in Christ rather those whose spirits has left the physical body.Notice again 1 Cor. 15:23, “But every man in his own order”, all those who belongs to God, those who are under His power. 1 Thess. 4:13,14.Christ the firstfruits; Afterwards,” after what? Zechariah informs us Zech. 14:1-5, that Jerusalem, Judah the temple is being destroyed and the Lord my God shall come and all the saints with Thee.”After this “They that are Christ’s at His coming, 1 Cor. 15:23.” So we see a coming of God to raise those who are His and bring them with Him.Then afterwards we have another coming this coming is Christ to resurrect those who are His those who have obeyed the gospel and have suffered biological death under His covenant, 2 Co. 5:1-6.

E.† †1 Thess. 4:17, “Then we which are alive”, “ZoŽ”, Greek “life as God has it”. “Life which the Father gave to the Son,” life, living.Vine Bible Dictionary P 336.

John 6:53, “I am the bread of life”.Truly, truly I say to you unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and His blood you have no life in yourselves”.2 Tim. 1:10, “But has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.”Thayer’s Greek English Lexicon p. 274, on alive, life and living. “To bring forth alive. To preserve alive. What does Romans chapter six describe?

1.††Again it is necessary to take a second look, a reminder if you please of 1 Thess. 4:15,16.It is as if Paul is saying this I have by express revelation what he now delivers he gives as coming immediately from the Holy Spirit of God.In no other place does any of the apostles speak more confidently and positively of his inspiration than here and Acts 2:1-46.

2.††We which are alive and remain, 1 Thess. 4:17, here Paul uses the pronoun “we” the apostle does not intend that himself and the church to be taken away and this is proven by 2 Thess. 1:1-7.So where is the second coming?Where is universal annihilation?Strip away all the false babbling and what you have left is simply resurrection.2 Thess. 1:1-7, so where is the future second coming?

3.††1 Thess. 4:16, again is a joyful occasion for God, for Christ, for the angels and all the prophets.Gen. 49:10, the prophet Jacob foretells the doom of Judah his son and that nation.Indeed God divorced and put out of His house the ten northern tribes, Jer. 3:1-17.But He could not divorce Judah.Jacob said the scepter shall not depart from between your feet until Shiloh comes, Christ.Shiloh would remove the scepter from Judah.The covenant between God and Judah has now expired Heb. 8:13.Now the kingdom can be taken from Judah and given to a nation who will bear fruit of it, Matt. 21:43.

4.††Now there is the trump of God and there are trumpets. In this case the Lord would descend from heaven with a shout and with the voice of the archangel and with the trump of God.According to the O. T. and Heb. 12:19, the trump of God was the supernatural accompaniment of divine nature.In Matt. 24:31, we see divine acts of the angel in the period of divine judgment, which Christ foretold.Rev. 8:1-13, 9:14 offers a great and truthful meaning to the fulfillment of v. 16.Another concrete piece of evidence regarding the truth of v. 16, 1 Cor. 15:52, “in a moment in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet for the trumpet shall sound and the dead shall be raised incorruptible and we shall be changed”.Notice, “The dead shall be raised”.No mention of rapture!Remove the dooms day preacher strip 1 Thess. 4:13-17, of scare tactics and world burning and you simply have what you have in 1 Cor. 15:52.

5.††All the prophets looked for this great day.The prophet Daniel spells out the same event and even has the time when such would occur, Dan. 12:1-7.“When the power of the Holy People are shattered all these events will be finished”.2 Pet. 3:15,16 Peter notes that there are some things in brother Paul’s epistles some things hard to understand.

We are compelled to associate, Rev. 16:1-21 and Rev. 17:1-18 with 1 Thess. 4:13-17.In this way we can know without doubt of the personal intervention of the Holy Spirit in the writing of Acts chapter 2, 1 Thess. 4:13-17 and 2 Thess. 2:1-17.It is very near reading John’s revelation.Well it should be they all fit together.Daniel, Revelation and 2 Peter three all looked forward to this day when the gospel would come full circle.When God’s covenant with Judah would expire and Christ would ratify the New Covenant and take His bride, His assembly.

6.††This brings forth a stern warning to all readers, from the author, to those who are critics and those who will accept no truth after, 1 Thess. 4:13-17 has been striped of its dooms day preaching and shown for what it really is.Matt. 12:32, “And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of Man it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world neither in the world to come.”

F.††1 Thess. 4:17, first these explanations of Paul are evidently intended to meet a state of things which had begun to manifest itself among early Christians at Thessalonica and which had been reported to him by Timothy.They were eagerly looking for the coming of Christ and the resurrection.They deplored the death of their fellow Christians as being excluded from the glorious day of the Lord, when Judah would no longer have a covenant which meant that no longer would departed spirits be held in bondage, separated from God Heb 2:14,15.Where in the righteous spirit would go at once to heaven where it would be given a spiritual body which awaited them.2 Cor. 5:1-10, confirms all that the apostle as the instrument of the Holy Spirit has said.For surely God through the Holy Spirit could reveal such divine mystery.Thanks be to this mystery which has revealed God’s plan of redemption and salvation to man.May we finally arrive where God wanted us and what He wanted His creation to be and that is found in 1 Cor. 1:10.

Observation:

††††† Just to review the facts again in quite a different way.First would you deny that Rome and its armies destroyed Jerusalem between the period of Feb. 10, and Sep. 10 70 A.D.?I don’t think such denial would be defended.Yet so many people hangs on the “second coming as if their life depended upon it knowing that it was first a teaching of the Roman Catholic church in centuries gone by.Now allow me so humbly and with sincerity to ask you to consider another biblical fact.Look at Gen 49:10, Jacob told his son Judah, that the scepter would not depart from between his feet until Shiloh comes, this was Christ.So when Shiloh comes He removes the scepter from Judah, the kingdom and power and gives it to another nation Matt 21:43.The covenant between God and Judah had expired Heb. 8:13.Since many teachers and preachers use the “second coming” as scare tactics, would you now agree that the prophet Jacob said that when Judah’s covenant expired Shiloh would come, earlier we agreed when Jerusalem was destroyed.Now we have said that Shiloh would come, the scepter was to remain with Judah until Shiloh came.Shiloh came as foretold Judah destroyed the kingdom given to another nation.To say the least such belief when exposed by facts is not consistent with the word of God.Zech. 14:1-5, has God coming bringing with Him all the Holy Ones, Christ comes to receive His that are asleep in Jesus. 1 Cor. 15:23 confirms Dan. 12:1-7, so yes the rapture demands some answers.††

Jessie Mills


 

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© Copyright 2015 by Jessie Mills. All Rights Reserved by the author, Jessie E. Mills, Jr. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or otherwise, without the prior express written permission of the publisher, except for brief quotations in critical reviews or other publications. Such quotations must be used with proper reference to their context and give appropriate credit to their authorship.