1Th 4:17 KJV 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
One of the most important events that will take place in the end-times is the rapture of the Church. The rapture is when Jesus comes into the clouds for His Church. Some argue against the doctrine of the rapture because the word ‘rapture’ is not in Scripture. While this is true, the concepts certainly are found in Scripture. The word ‘rapture’ is a Latin word that means ‘catching away’, and that’s exactly what will happen when Jesus stands in those clouds. Now let’s look at some of the verses and concepts that let us know that Jesus is coming back for His Church.
Jesus tells us that He will come back for us.
Joh 14:1-3 KJV Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
Many verses talk about the appearing of Jesus.
1Th 5:23 KJV And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1Pe 1:7 KJV That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
2Th 2:6 KJV And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
2Th 2:8 KJV And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
2Ti 4:8 KJV Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
Heb 9:28 KJV So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
1Pe 5:4 KJV And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
1Jo 2:28-2 KJV 28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.
29 If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.
KJV 1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
Paul gives us a description of the rapture.
1Co 15:23 KJV But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.
1Co 15:51-57 KJV 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?
56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.
57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1Th 4:13-18 KJV 13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
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:
17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
2Th 2:1-3 KJV Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
Phi 3:20-21 KJV 20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:
21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
Many argue when this will take place. Some believe it will take place before the Great Tribulation (pre-tribulation). Others see the rapture as taking place in the middle of the Great Tribulation (mid-tribulation). Still others see the rapture as taking place after the Great Tribulation (post tribulation). I believe in the pre-tribulation rapture. One reason I believe this is because we are with Jesus when He comes back at His second coming.
1Th 2:19 KJV For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?
1Th 3:13 KJV To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
Col 3:4 KJV When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
The Great Tribulation is a time of wrath. It is the wrath of God poured out on Israel and the whole world. The Scriptures tell us that He will keep us from wrath and that we are not appointed to the wrath that is to come.
Luk 21:34-36 KJV 34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.
35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.
36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
1Th 1:10 KJV And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.
1Th 5:9 KJV For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
Rev 3:10 KJV Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
It simply would not make sense for the Church to go through the Great Tribulation when Jesus told us that He would keep us from His wrath.
Throughout the book of Revelation we see descriptions of the rapture and of the saints in heaven.
Rev 4:1 KJV After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.
Rev 5:8-10 KJV 8 And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints.
9 And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;
10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
Rev 19:9 KJV And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.
Rev 19:11-16 KJV 11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.
14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.
15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
16 And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
Rev 20:6 KJV Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
The rapture can take place at any moment.
Rom 8:19 KJV For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.
1Co 1:7-8 KJV 7 So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ:
8 Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Phi 4:5 KJV Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.
1Ti 6:14 KJV That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:
Tit 2:13 KJV Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
Jam 5:7-9 KJV 7 Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.
8 Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
9 Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.
Rev 2:25 KJV But that which ye have already hold fast till I come.
If the rapture takes place after the events in Revelation start, we could know from the events when the rapture would take place. Jesus said that we could not know the day or the hour of His return.
Mat 25:13 KJV Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.
It can happen at any moment. Jesus will step into the clouds, and with a shout He will call His people to meet Him in the clouds. Those that are ready to go will meet Jesus in the air. This event will trigger the outpouring of God’s wrath on the world. Regardless of when you believe the rapture will take place, the rapture will take place. Be watching and be ready.