How are you? I’m well.
Today, I would like to share more on my thoughts on the Rapture and the Bride of Christ, following my previous blogs, The Spirit of Fear and Preppers.
I shared some backgrounds earlier as to how my view on the timing of the Rapture changed from the post-Trib to pre-Trib. I know it’s a controversial subject and many faithful servants of the Lord all have had the different opinions. When we meet the Lord in person on that day, we would know what view was right. But by that time, we would even care less, as the joy of being with Him would be so great. Yet I’m sharing my view, as I think listening to the Holy Spirit and what He is speaking to each one of us in person is more important than listening to what others preach or prophesy.
In the autumn last year, I was reading the Scriptures that I had written down on my notebook earlier that year. One of them was
“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. (Matthew 5:13)”
While I was meditating this popular and well-known verse, I was reminded of what David Pawson taught. I recall that he mentioned the salt is used for seasoning, but it’s also used for preservative. So, Christians should live as preservative in the world that is full of sins. And the verse kept lingering in my mind after I read it from my notebook. Soon enough, I happened to listen to Pastor John Fenn and Sister Margaret Seaward mention that we are the salt of the earth, when they taught the anti-Christ and the Rapture with the verses, 2 Thessalonians 2:6~10:
“And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.”
And I got to learn that after the Spirit-filled believers, the salt, the preservative are raptured, then, the anti-Christ will be revealed, and the lawlessness will abound.
When I repeatedly heard the same message on these verses, after meditating the verse that we are the salt of the earth, I felt with no doubt that the Holy Spirit spoke to me. Like I shared in my previous blogs, I had the fear when I thought of the post-Trib rapture. And it actually distracted me, as I thought what I should prepare for the perilous days, in the physical or material perspective rather than the spiritual. I believe the Lord didn’t want me to live in fear nor waste my resources, but to be comforted and to prepare in a right way. There have been many good teachers and preachers who believe in the post-Trib Rapture, but I felt the Holy Spirit was talking to me through the repeated messages at the right time.
Then, I also found out another controversy among the so-called pre-Trib Rapture believers as to who would be raptured. Some say all believers, i.e. the Body of Christ will, but others say the believers who long for His return and who live holy, i.e. the Bride of Christ.
Pastor John Fenn talked about the context when Paul wrote I Corinthians to a very carnal group of believers with envy, strife, division, sexual immorality and so on in His YouTube channel. Paul said they would all ‘make it’ one the rapture, dead or alive – for after trying to correct all their carnality, all their strife, all their sinfulness in chapters 1-14, he teaches in chapter 15 all those dead in Christ, and all those alive at that time, will all go ‘up’. Yet, Pastor John also mentioned the Scriptures:
“so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.” (Hebrew 9:28), saying his heart is that we eagerly look for Him;
“Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”?” (James 4:4~5)
I believe that Jesus is coming for His Bride who longs for Him, just like in Hebrews 9:28. When I talked about Christ’s return to some Christians, I found they had a long face or even got angry. Yes, they are Christians, but ironically, they don’t want to see our Lord, our Bridegroom soon. They might like the image of spirituality, as a religious person or they might need some protection and blessing from Him in this world. But they don’t want to meet Him face to face anytime soon, as they love the world and the things the world gives to them so much, just like James warned. Imagine that you are a bridegroom, and you find out your fiancée doesn’t wait for the wedding, but her heart is still on her ex-boyfriend or someone new. Would you like to marry her? I rather imagine that if these Christians are raptured, they wouldn’t appreciate it, but want to go back to the earth, to enjoy the world. Remember Lot’s wife.
I read the book, Resurrection Glory by William F. Beirnes that Sister Margaret Seaward shared in her class, The Last Days. From that book, I made sense that 24 elders in Revelation chapters 4 & 5 symbolize the Bride who are raptured before the Tribulation:
And they sang a new song, saying:
“You are worthy to take the scroll,
And to open its seals;
For You were slain,
And have redeemed us to God by Your blood
Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
And have made us kings and priests to our God;
And we shall reign on the earth.” (Revelation 5:9~10)
The 24 elders have crowns of gold on their heads. (Rev. 4:4) Then, from chapter 6, the Great Tribulation starts. In the middle of it, there are still believers on the earth. Chapter 7 describes a multitude of all nations, tribes, peoples and tongues who come out of the Great Tribulation. Sister Margaret pointed out that they have palm branches in their hands, but not crowns of gold on their heads like 24 elders. It makes sense to me that they are either martyred or raptured or just died in the disasters and so forth, after they miss the first rapture. I think that some Christians who miss the first rapture, in addition to some of unbelievers, would repent, after they realize they are left behind. And they would start to experience the early part of the Great Tribulation and they would be changed to live holy and be eager to meet the Lord. They would have the heart of the Bride by then.
After the pre-Trib Rapture of the Bride makes more sense to me, I was reminded of the dreams I had last year. I shared them in my blogs, Double Portion, Will You Marry Me? and Gold last year, if you are interested. And now I could interpret the dreams as some revelation on the Bride and the Rapture. Especially at my dream in Double Portion, I got so amazed to read that I saw 24 people, and the notes “white” and “salt” in the dream.
In addition to the dreams and the interpretation in my heart, I believe Jesus’ warning that He will vomit out the lukewarm, the Laodicean church in Revelation 3 suggests that we should long for our Bridegroom and live here on earth as His pure Bride. And He also said to His disciples:
“But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly. For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:34~36)
You may or may not agree with me. I’m sharing my thought and might share more on this later, hoping I could encourage you to long for our Bridegroom and live holy daily, as He is holy. And I’d like you to be comforted, not to live in fear, when we see foreshadowing of things to come.
Have a bliss!
Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. (Revelation 3:10~12)