A lot of questions are milling about these days over whether or not the Rapture is real or just wishful thinking on the part of some believers. I find it interesting that in researching this subject there seems to be more objections to this event in print than there is support. I will join those in support of the Rapture based on my own study of the Word that spans over 30 years. I will add that the study of the Word for many years, or having a degree in theology is no big deal. Some of the most educated scholars disagree over the reality of this event. This leads me to realize that the understanding of the Word must come from the Holy Spirit and prayer time spent in the Word. Each person must row his own boat and decide for himself who or what teaching he will follow.
On November 10, 1982, at a home Bible study, I received what I now know was the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. I had a renewed hunger to pour over the Word and found that I had a profound capacity to “see” things unto understanding and insight. I was so young in the experience that it took a number of years before I could trust and believe what was happening. I kept notes in a journal so I could refer back to times when the Lord had quickened His Word to my heart. I found myself wanting to line myself up with His words and my life began to dramatically change.
God quickens His Word to your heart
When a person reads the Word and the words seem to jump away from the pages into your own heart, God has just quickened something to you for understanding. This happening is much more complex and varied than explained here but I am only giving what pertains explicitly to the subject of the Rapture. It is to help others who want to know how I came to believe in this event. I would receive a word that was quickened to me like this, write it down, and then the Lord would confirm and or teach me more about it. Over time the word that was given would become more deeply embedded into my thoughts and belief through continued confirmation throughout the entire counsel of God. God’s truths are woven throughout His Word not just in one scripture. This kind of revelation comes from a relationship with the Lord. He gave revelation here and some there as I continued to pursue and to listen and receive.
John 1:1-5 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life and that life was the light of all mankind. The light that shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
These words are among my most favorite in the Word. They were the first words that the Lord quickened to my heart. I immediately knew many things because of them. I knew that this passage spoke of Jesus Christ. I knew that He was the second person of the Trinity and that He had always been in existence even before He came to Earth. I knew that He spoke all things into existence. Being brought up as a Catholic, I knew that this passage also meant that the Word of God (knowing it) was the only way to really know God; not just in Holy Communion in church.
After I read through the gospels, I began in Genesis to read through the Bible. I spent many hours a day reading, taking notes, and doing external research on original language and how things were translated from the Bible culture to our language today. God would show me or reveal something to me one concept or precept at a time. Then He would show me the same truth in other places in the Word. I began to see a pattern running through the Word and how God uses it to show Himself to us. This is how to really know Him, to know His profound love for us, and to be able to spot the counterfeit teaching when you hear it. There were no computers or Internet during those years (18). I had just the Word, Bible resources, and Bible dictionaries and Webster’s dictionary along with local Bible Studies.
Genesis and the Ark: My first view of the Rapture
Sometime during that first year (1982) of my new journey with God, I was reading in Genesis. Noah and his family had entered the Ark and the rain began to pour. Genesis 7:17 For forty days the flood kept coming on the earth, and as the waters increased they lifted the ark high above the earth. This scripture was the first time the Lord spoke to my heart over the Rapture. As I saw the image in my mind of the Ark being lifted up above the chaos of death and destruction of the earth, I knew in my heart that the Lord was telling me something. I saw that just as one family was spared from destruction of the earth, so too would the family of God, the Church, be lifted up at the end in the same way. I asked Him at that time if I had heard right. It seemed so bizarre. I think that we as people think like that from our carnal mind. I also believe that the disbelief in the Rapture can come from a sense of guilt and shame from within our being. We know that we don’t deserve it. None of us will ever have a clue as to how much God really treasures those who follow Him. I remind myself and am amazed of His love all the time.
Enoch walked with God and was no more
I spent a number of years not being completely sure about the Rapture or if I was going or not or if I really did hear His voice over it. The next time I had a move from God over this subject was over Enoch. Hebrews 11:5-6 By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death: “He could not be found, because God had taken him away.” For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Enoch walked so closely with God that God swooshed through his heart to prophecy about those times of the judgment of Noah’s day as well as at the end of times.
During the early years of this part of my journey with God, I went to numerous spiritual retreats and gatherings where some of the guest speakers would prophecy over those who came forward. One of those times, a particular woman prophesied over me by asking the Lord to show me the end at the beginning. This person also said that the Lord had given me eternal life and that if the Lord should tarry I would have longevity of life. I didn’t always get the fullness of these things inside me right away but they ended up being “seeds” that the Lord gave to encourage me through many trials throughout the years of my walk. I came to realize that those words meant that if the Lord came before I was really old I would go with Him, in the Rapture.
Revelation 3:10 Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come on the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth. This word was given at still a later time. The Lord was building upon other words given. It was like layer upon layer to strengthen the foundation of what I believe is the truth of His Word. This for His purposes always but it is also because He wants us to know Him. It caused me to have more faith, trust, understanding and rest in His love for me. I was also able to give these things to others with a deep abiding conviction of their truth. I give what I have been given.
The Bride of Christ
Many people are familiar with the term, the Bride of Christ. This term refers to the Church made up of all believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. When anyone pays attention to all the things spoken of about Her in the Word, it just makes common sense that God is not going to pour out His wrath upon Her in any way. There is and always has been a lot of evil being leveled against the Bride of Christ and many Christians are being murdered in the World today. This is being done by man’s inhumanity to man. God will take His beautiful Bride out of harms way before He pours out His final wrath upon the wicked at the End. I heard a statement by a prominent pastor that said that God is not going to beat the hell out of His Bride and then take her to dinner! That really summed it up so perfectly for me!
Lot’s sons-in-law thought he was joking and turned away
There are many scriptures that speak directly to the “catching away” or the “gathering together” of God’s Holy People but this article is more about personal revelation to me from times spent in the Word through many years. The last one I will mention is over Lot and his family in Sodom and Gomorrah. A few years ago I was reading about this event as I had many times before. Lot was visited by two angels and was told by them to take his family out of the city because God was going to destroy it and everyone in it in order to keep their sinfulness from spreading. Lot had a wife and two daughters and their husbands. The sons-in-law thought he was joking and turned away. As the time for the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah came closer the angels urged Lot to hurry. As Lot hesitated, the angels grabbed hold of the hands of Lot and his family and pulled them to safety. I immediately saw the Rapture again as Lot was told to go up the mountain to be safe from the wrath of God.
There are many literal scriptures that lend to the truth of the Rapture of the Church. Much of the truth of God’s Word is linked to the culture of the Jews of Israel. We could not fully see and understand the New Testament without the rich depth of the Old Testament. There is nothing there by accident and every word of it is rich with meaningful insights and prophesies for our times. What a visual road map it is for us. I encourage anyone to search out the scriptures for themselves to find these answers for their own heart. The Word is beautiful and full for anyone who wishes to partake of it.
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