Response to a PreTrib rapture antagonist


Prophecy-Mystery-ENHANCEDDr. Mike Johnston

Response to a PreTrib rapture antagonist …

This isn’t the first time I have read this anti-PreTrib rapture analysis. It appears in books and blogs all over the internet posted by various people who are obviously in league with you. Unfortunately, it is still just as chaotic and confusing as ever. It would be very helpful if you would rethink your presentation and perhaps provide a chronological order to it with a chart depicting what you are trying to say. That said, what I could decipher reiterates the past 40 years of eschatology study “discussions” with prophecy teachers who claim an epiphany as converts from the historic PreTrib position and are now waging a vendetta to shoehorn the unknown heavenly mystery Body of Christ (Rom. 16:25) into God’s well known earthly prophecy program given to Israel (Luke 1:70; Acts 3:21), which includes “the time of Jacob’s trouble” aka Israel’s (great) Tribulation (Deut. 4:30-31; Dan. 9:24-27; 12:1; Zeph. 1:15; Matt. 24:21, 29; Rev. 11-19; etc), where we can’t be seen, are never mentioned, and frankly don’t belong.

The confusion in all anti-PreTrib arguments originates from wrongly dividing the Bible. To begin with, the NT didn’t begin until AFTER the crucifixion (Heb. 9:16-17) which means the Lord Jesus’ teaching was under a Jewish Old Covenant setting. This includes Matthew 24 verse 29 which every attack against the PreTrib rapture presents as their premier “gotcha” moment.

Right division of the Bible begins by understanding God is overseeing two overarching programs: one for heaven, the other for earth (Gen. 1:1). God’s program for heaven was unknown. It involves the mystery Body of Christ and our inheritance there in heaven with Christ (Eph. 1:3, 20; 2:6) “kept secret since the world began” (Rom. 16:25). His program for earth, however, was well known. It involves prophecy for Israel concerning the Davidic Covenant Kingdom (2 Sam. 7:16), aka the Millennial Reign of Christ, prepared “from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 25:34) that has progressively unfolded “by the mouth of the prophets since the world began” (Luke 1:70; see Acts 3:21). The prophets exposed and explained five Jewish Covenants God made with Israel to guard her and guide her earthly pilgrimage beginning with the calling of Abraham through the inauguration of the Kingdom. Moses, who first prophesied of a coming Tribulation for Israel also linked it to renewed obedience to the Covenant (Deut. 4:30-31; see Exod. 2:24; 19:5; Lev. 26:41-46) which he warned was the key to continued blessing and possessing the Covenant Land required for the Kingdom (Lev. 26; Deut. 28). However, timing for this Covenant Kingdom was unknown until Daniel codified the final 490-years into a prophecy calendar of seventy weeks of seven years with two stipulations: it MUST be fulfilled by “thy people” (Israel), and it MUST involve “thy holy city” (Jerusalem). (Dan. 9:24-27).

When the Lord Jesus came to earth 2000 years ago, it was precisely as Daniel – and the prophets – had predicted (Dan. 9:24-27; see Matt. 26:56; see Acts 3:18-26). His mission was to inaugurate the Davidic Covenant Kingdom (Luke 1), so He preached the gospel of the kingdom to the lost sheep of the house of Israel (Matt. 4:17, 23; 15:24). However, Kingdom prophecy was put on hold when the King was “cut off” (Dan. 9:26) precisely at Daniel’s 70th week. This left one final seven-year period still to be fulfilled by Israel before the Kingdom can begin. Christ clarified the 70th week in the Olivet Discourse (Matt. 24:21, 29) where He called it “great tribulation.” This same phrase was later used by John in the Book of Revelation (Rev. 7:14) which describes it from commencement (Rev. 6) through to its conclusion (Rev. 19) and the return of the Lord of Glory – Israel’s Messiah –  to earth to establish His Kingdom “immediately after (Israel’s) Tribulation” (Matt. 24:29; 25:31-34; Rev. 19:11).

Now herein lies the crux of our thesis: Prophecy assigns the Tribulation to Israel (Deut. 4:30) as purification and punishment before the Kingdom (Isa. 24; Jer. 30-31; Joel; Zephaniah; Matt. 24; Rev. 6-19). If the church Body is on earth during Israel’s Tribulation, the Holy Spirit went to great lengths to keep us from knowing it. The Body of Christ – which is positionally seated “in heavenly places in Christ” (Eph. 1:3; 2:6) was unknown to the prophets and hidden from their prophesies. The Body of Christ has no place or purpose for being here and, to wit, there isn’t a verse anywhere in the Bible clearly identifying us on earth for a single moment of “Jacob’s trouble” (Jer. 30:7; Dan. 12:1; Zeph. 1:15) without redefining words like “saints” and “elect” which in the Tribulation Trilogy (Daniel, the Olivet Discourse, and Revelation) studied in its Jewish Setting specifically refer to Israel.

Books promoting right division available at:

  1. March 17, 2018 at 2:29 pm

    excellent astute insight; promoting right division of God’s word; the only way to avoid confusion and error

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