Most Bible scholars agree the tribulation period will last seven years -- the final seven years of this age until Christ returns to set up His earthly kingdom during the Millennium. Three main timeframes encase the theory of the Rapture. Those who accept this theory believe the Rapture will happen just before the tribulation period, at the beginning of the seventieth week of Daniel. True followers of Jesus Christ will be transformed into their spiritual bodies in the Rapture and taken from the Earth to be in Heaven with God. Non-believers will be left behind to face severe tribulation as the antichrist prepares to take his place as the Beast halfway through the seven-year period.
According to this view, non-believers will still come to accept Christ in spite of the Church's absence during this time. However, these new Christians will endure extreme persecution , to the point of death by beheading. Those who accept this theory believe Christians will remain on Earth as witnesses during the seven-year tribulation period until the very end of this age.
According to this view, believers will be removed or protected from the terrible wrath of God predicted toward the end of the seven years in the book of Revelation. Those who accept this perspective believe Christians will be taken from the Earth to be in Heaven with God at some point during the middle of the seven-year period of tribulation.
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The term 'Rapture' first became popular in the United States toward the end of the 19th century through teachings on premillennialism and dispensationalism by John Nelson Darby, an Irish evangelist. The rapture theory continued to grow in popularity among evangelicals largely due to a preacher named William Eugene Blackstone His book, Jesus is Coming , sold more than one million copies.
In the late 's and 's, during the Jesus Movement , the Rapture theory made its way into many popular secular songs such as Are You Ready? The Rapture theory gained even greater interest during this time due to the books of Hal Lindsey. In Russell S. Doughten produced a four-part movie series beginning with A Thief in the Night.
What is the Rapture? See What the Bible Says.
The film recorded the events surrounding the Rapture in a terrifying way, creating widespread public interest in the theory. In the film The Rapture , with Mimi Rogers was released. It recorded one woman's experience through the Rapture. Roman Catholics do not accept a Rapture theory. They believe the concept is a confused understanding of the Second Coming of Christ.
The Eastern Orthodox faith also rejects the Rapture theory. Other mainline Protestant faiths and ministers have challenged the idea of the Rapture, citing inconsistencies and disparate interpretations of Scripture.
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Those who believe in a future Rapture regard it to be a sudden and cataclysmic event unlike any other phenomenon in history in which millions of people will disappear without warning. As a result, tragic and unexplained accidents will occur on a wide scale basis, ushering in the tribulation period. Many speculate that non-believers left behind will come to believe in Jesus Christ as a result of the Rapture.
What is the rapture?
Others left behind will remain in disbelief, finding theories to rationalize the bizarre event. Believers cite several verses in the Bible to support a sudden disappearance from Earth, without warning and "in the twinkling of an eye:". Share Flipboard Email. Table of Contents Expand. Pre-Tribulation Rapture.
The 16th-century movement called Futurism , expounded by the Jesuit Francisco Ribera, stressed the future fulfillment of the prophecy of the End as mentioned in scripture with both the rise of the Antichrist and the return of Christ.
Rapture and the Bible
The most famous of such thinkers was William Miller , whose prediction that the Second Coming would occur in inspired the subsequent formation of Adventist churches. The idea of the Rapture persisted through the remainder of the 19th century and throughout the 20th century, gaining popularity among some evangelical and fundamentalist Christians as well as among some other Christian and even non-Christian new religious movements. During the Cold War , between the United States and the Soviet Union , particularly as the threat of nuclear war grew, prophecies about the Rapture gained currency.
In the late 20th and early 21st centuries the idea was prominent in popular culture , in part because of the millennialist fervour that arose as the year approached.
What Is the Rapture? (1 Thessalonians 4)
Meanwhile, Endtime prophecies promoting a specific date for the Rapture—most notably the two dates in predicted by the American evangelist Harold Camping—proliferated. You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience and security. The Rapture. Info Print Cite. Submit Feedback. Thank you for your feedback.
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