How can I be ready to be caught up in the Rapture?



Question: "How can I be ready to be caught up in the Rapture?"

Answer:
It is much simpler than you may think. The short answer is that you must receive Jesus Christ as your Savior, to save you from being punished for your sin. Now for the long answer. When you ask this question, we assume that you have heard or been told that not all Christians will be taken when the Rapture occurs. You probably have been told that only "super Christians" who are living a holy life will be raptured, and all the other Christians will have to suffer through the Tribulation. This is not true, and we will show you why this is not true from Scripture.

The first thing that you must understand is the purpose for the Tribulation. The purpose of the Tribulation is judgment upon the earth and punishment for Israel. Please note that Israel and the Church are not the same group of people. The Church is a spiritual organism. People in the Church are related because of their spiritual birth (by being born again - John 3:3). The people of Israel (Jews) are related by blood. This is a race of people to whom God made special promises in the Old Testament. Again, Israel and the Church are not the same. Now, getting to the purpose for the Tribulation. God declared a time of judgment upon Israel for their unfaithfulness. This time of judgment is clearly declared to be only for Israel. A look at Daniel 9:24-27 demonstrates that the Tribulation is a time of judgment from God specifically toward Israel.

Note that Gabriel has brought a message from God to Daniel (9:20-21). Daniel 9:24 says, "Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most holy place." In this message Gabriel clearly says to Daniel that it is "for your people." Daniel's people were Jews, the nation of Israel. God declared 70 weeks against the nation of Israel. This 70 weeks is literally from the Hebrew of the Old Testament, 70 sevens. In other words, 70 times 7 years, or 490 years. 69 times 7 (483) of those years were fulfilled from the end of the Israel's captivity in Babylon to the cutting off of Messiah (crucifixion of Christ), leaving 7 years of judgment left to be fulfilled. Those 7 years are the years of the Tribulation. The point is that these years are to be fulfilled against Israel primarily, and the purpose is found in Daniel 9:24. The purpose is "to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most holy place."

Now, we can also demonstrate from Scripture that Christians will not be in the Tribulation. A study of 1 Thessalonians 4:13 through 5:9 shows this. In 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Paul writes about the Rapture. In 1 Thessalonians 5:2, Paul writes of the Day of the Lord, a term that sometimes refers to only the Tribulation and sometimes refers to the whole period of the end times, Tribulation and Millennial Kingdom. In 1 Thessalonians 5:9, Paul writes to the Christians in Thessalonica, "For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ." Pay close attention to this verse. Paul says God has not destined us for wrath, specifically the wrath of the Day of the Lord (5:2). Further prove that Christians will not go through the Tribulation is that when Paul writes 1 Corinthians, he sharply rebukes them for their being carnal Christians. In chapter 15, Paul also writes about the Rapture, yet he never once indicates that any true believers would have to endure the Tribulation.

If a Christian does not live a holy life, he will not be left behind. What will happen is that he will lose rewards from the Lord that he would have received if he had been obedient (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Romans 14:10-12). We hope that this has helped you to understand that the only way you will be left behind is if you have not received Christ as your Savior.


Recommended Resource: The Rapture: Who Will Face the Tribulation by Tim LaHaye.


Related Topics:

When is the Rapture going to occur in relation to the Tribulation?

What is going to happen according to end times prophecy?

What is the Rapture of the church?

What is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ?

What are the signs of the end times?



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How can I be ready to be caught up in the Rapture?