Photography by Chris Michaud

Rise and shine, dear reader! Isn’t today’s picture beautiful? The photographer has captured exactly what is on my heart this morning. Seeing the rays of sun reminds me of what believers will see at the Rapture when we are caught up to be with the Lord forever! I see the fog, on the other hand, as hiding this blessed event from the rest of the world. Just as you can’t see beyond the fog, the world won’t be able to witness the Rapture; that event will be seen by the Church only. Who knows what leaders will say is responsible for this disappearance! But as my friend Bruce once said, the unbelieving world needs to be warned about what will happen so they can recognize what is happening.

So let’s dive into this topic so the Holy Spirit can teach us that there is a difference between the Rapture and Christ’s Second Coming. The Bible is clear on both points but it is up to you to study the matter out for yourself and not read after whomever agrees with your point of view. The Holy Spirit wrote the Bible so why not get it from the Source Himself? I don’t want you to form an opinion based on what I write here. I want you to dig into your Bible and let the Holy Spirit of God teach you.

2 Pe 1:21  For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

The Apostle James tells us that we CAN know and we CAN ask for wisdom from the One who provides it liberally!

Jas 1:5  If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

So let’s ask the Lord for wisdom as we read the Scriptures and allow His Holy Spirit to reveal truth to us. What do the Scriptures say about the differences between the Rapture and Christ’s Second Coming? This will go on for a couple of weeks or so. I will attempt to keep the posts under 5-15 minutes of reading time.

What does the Old Testament and New Testament say on the subject of the Rapture? The New Testament says that the Rapture is a “mystery.”

1 Cor 15:50-55  Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.  (51)  Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,  (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.  (53)  For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.  (54)  So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.  (55)  O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

If you do a search for the word “mystery” throughout the Bible (I use the King James Version), you will find that the word only appears in the New Testament. A mystery was not revealed in the Old Testament. At times, a mystery was referred to but not revealed; as we see in Old Testament prophecy. I read a quote that explains it more clearly:

The New Testament is in the Old concealed; the Old is in the New revealed.

Attributed to St. Augustine (early 400’s AD)

Christians today can see some truths in the Old Testament Scriptures hiding in plain sight because Christ’s birth, death and resurrection have already occurred. It seems obvious to believers, but not so to the Jews. Israel didn’t have these truths revealed to them – it was concealed from them because, to them, their Messiah has yet to come. They missed His first coming and are looking to His second comingI hope that makes sense to you.

The Apostle Paul tells us that he’s about to explain to us a “mystery.” Paul was a Jew from the sect called Pharisees. He knew the Old Testament inside and out. After Paul became a Christian, he discovered that the Christians were not trying to eliminate the Old Testament but instead, they were embracing it as the preface to Messiah’s coming. After Paul received the knowledge of the Scriptures according to Christ, he taught his followers how Jesus fulfilled the prophecies of His first coming. We must remember that the New Testament Scriptures were not yet in written form at that time. Jesus and the Apostles all quoted from the Old Testament. The Rapture was not taught in the Old Testament because Israel was not going to take part in it. They were disobedient and rebelled against God’s word and God paused Israel’s judgment to give the Gentiles a chance to be saved! Praise Him!! We have Israel to thank for the salvation that came to the Gentile world!

The following verses have blessed me as I read them with the Rapture in mind. At the time they were written, the reader had no idea that the verses would be speaking of the Rapture in the Old Testament. But as we believers look back at Christ’s first coming and look forward to the rapture of His Bride, the verses below have more meaning! Some may argue that they refer to the Rapture event, but that’s OK.

Song of Solomon 2:10-13  My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.  (11)  For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;  (12)  The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;  (13)  The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.
Zep 2:2-3  Before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the LORD come upon you, before the day of the LORD’S anger come upon you.  (3)  Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD’S anger.
Isa 26:19-21  Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.  (20)  Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.  (21)  For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.
Isa 64:4-5  For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him.  (5)  Thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, those that remember thee in thy ways: behold, thou art wroth; for we have sinned: in those is continuance, and we shall be saved.

If you are born-again and a believer in the Pre-Tribulation Rapture, don’t these verses excite you? This event is to occur at a time that no one knows, not even Christ Himself. If you are not certain whether or not you believe in the Pre-Tribulation Rapture, remember that it is all about timing. Jesus said that NO ONE knows the hour of His return. That means the Rapture is imminent – to occur at anytime. If the Rapture were to occur in the middle or end of the Tribulation, then man WOULD know the day because the Tribulation lasts seven years.

Mar 13:32  But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.

Friend, we know the exact date of the Messiah’s return to earth at the Second Coming! The first day of the seven year Tribulation begins when the antichrist signs a peace treaty with Israel. That starts the prophetic clock for the seven year Tribulation:

Dan 9:27  And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.

Daniel’s 70th week of God’s judgments on Israel for their rebellion against Him begins with a peace treaty with the antichrist. The 70th week is comprised of seven years of 360 days each. The Jewish calendar consists of 360 days per year, not 365 like the West’s. The Tribulation will last a total of 2,520 days from the signing of that peace treaty. Therefore, if you believe in the post Tribulation Rapture, you would have an exact date. If you believe in the mid Tribulation Rapture, that would be 1,260 days after the signing of the peace treaty. Again, you have a date. Jesus is God and if the Rapture were to occur in the middle or at the end of the Tribulation, He would know the date! But the pre-Tribulation Rapture belief fits perfectly.

Israel will be enthralled with the antichrist. They will be deceived by him and will be fooled to think that he is their Messiah.

For those of you who believe that Christians will go through the Tribulation or that we are currently in the Tribulation, you have set a date. That means that you must know more than the Lord because He does not know the hour He is coming for His Bride. Mark 13:32 says otherwise “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.”

Dan 7:13-14  I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.  (14)  And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.

The Second Coming of Jesus will be to reign as the King of Kings. He will come to Jerusalem and will stand on the Mount of Olives. He will be seen by the entire earth! His coming for the Church happens in the clouds, not on earth.

Zec 12:10  And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.
Zec 14:4  And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.

When the Lord returns at the end of the Tribulation, He will be coming with His church, the saints, who met Him in the air, in the clouds seven years earlier! The Church, Christ’s Bride, will return with Him because she is never more to be separated from Him.

Jude 1:14-15  And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,  (15)  To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.

The ten thousands of his saints cannot be angels. Angels do not need salvation and, therefore, cannot be saints. These saints refer to those who accepted Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Messiah.

Rev 19:6-8  And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.  (7)  Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.  (8)  And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

If you never learned about the Rapture and the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, I pray that these devotionals have been a blessing to you. Friend, it is no coincidence that God has placed you here for such a time as this so that you may be saved. Please click here and the link will open up in a separate tab to You Can Be Born Again and Know It!