(For better understanding first study the post titled, “THE TWO RETURNS OF JESUS AND THE TWO HARVESTS OF THE EARTH”)
This theory assumes that Christians will go through a big portion of the days of tribulation, with the timing of Jesus’ return to rescue us being before God’s wrath is poured out on the earth. This could be a week, a month, a year, or even the same day of the seven last plagues containing the wrath of our Heavenly Father. Listed below are some thoughts and scriptures that support this theory.
1. 1 Thessalonians 1:10 and 1 Thessalonians 5:9: Both of these verses state clearly that we will not suffer the wrath of God. His wrath is dispensed when the bowls (or vials in some versions) are going to be poured out. Several scriptures verify this, but the one that is the clearest in all versions can be found in Revelation 11:18. Go back a few verses to verse 15 to see that this is at the time that the seventh trumpet is being blown that sets in motions the bowls being poured out. No, we are not going to suffer God’s wrath but does this mean that Christians will not suffer? Of course not! Many times saints in the Bible were chained, beaten and kept in jail for the sake of Christ. Jesus Himself suffered everything that we ever could but more to a deeper degree: stripped, spat upon, made fun of, mocked, beaten and hung on a cross. There are many scriptures that tell us to be prepared to suffer.
- Philippians 1:29: “For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him but also to suffer for his sake;”
- 2 Timothy 3:12: “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.”
- John 15:20(this is Jesus speaking): “Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.”
Even if it comes to the point of having to suffer for Christ, the Holy Spirit will strengthen us that are God’s children just like He strengthened Paul and the apostles who, after they were beaten for preaching the word, rejoiced “because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name.” (Acts 5:41 KJV).
2. In Luke 21:35-37, we are told to always be on the watch so that we will be able to escape what is about to happen. There will be a way to escape, just as he provided for Noah who was rescued from the destruction that occurred by obeying God’s unprecedented command to build a boat. Then there was Lot and his family who were spared annihilation by going into the wilderness. There will definitely be a way to escape the devastation if we just watch as the Luke passage instructs us to. Revelation 2:17 mentions “hidden manna” which is in reference to the manna that the Israelites were given as they wandered in the wilderness. Do you think that the ones left wandering in the wilderness will get to see it fall from heaven as the Israelites did?
3. If we are left here on the earth, it may be comforting to learn that during the times the plagues are being issued, they will be selective.
- Revelation 9:4: Locust are told not to harm ones with seals of God on their foreheads.
- Who will have the seals?
- Revelation 7:3-4: 144,000 Jews
- Ephesians 1:13; 2 Corinthians 1:21-22: Christians
- Revelation 16:2: Painful sores only on people who have the mark of the beast.
- Revelation 16:10: The fifth bowl of God’s wrath is only poured out on the throne of the beast and his kingdom.
- Who will have the seals?
The most compelling thought concerning this theory for me is the comparison of 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 and Revelation 10:6b-71.
- 1 Corinthians 15:51-52:
- Paul wrote the church of Corinth that he will tell them a mystery (church of Corinth was made up of Gentiles and Jews). He goes on to say that everyone will not sleep (referring to death) but will be changed in a twinkling of an eye at the last trumpet, and the dead in Christ will be raised imperishable. Take note that this happens at the last trumpet.
- Revelation 10:4,6b-7:
- Verse 4: John is told not to write down what is about to be accomplished.
- Verse 6b: There will no more delay, the seventh (and last in the series) trumpet is about to be blown.
- Verse 7: The mystery of God that He announced to His servants is about to be accomplished and it’s a mystery that has been previously announced to the prophets. If it was announced to the prophets then it should be somewhere in the Bible, right? If you believe that the mystery that is about to happen is not the same as the Corinthians passage, please post below the mystery that you found that this could be talking about. I am not so set in my opinion that I do not take what others say and consider them. The only criteria I have for making a determination is that it be clearly written in the Bible, remembering that Jesus does not want us to be deceived. After comparing these 2, look at Revelation 11:15-18:
The seventh trumpet is blown, and the twenty-four elders fall on their faces and worship God and say that the time has come for rewarding of His servant and the saints.
Also, the elders reveal that God’s wrath has come.
5. There are two times in Revelation where a voice is heard saying “Come up here”. In these instances, humans are actually taken to be with Jesus
John is called up to heaven to be shown all that will be taking place in Revelation 4:1.
Revelation 11:12-A loud voice from heaven tells the two witnesses to “Come up here”. This happens in the midst of the tribulation. The two witnesses will be on earth 1260 days prophesying (Revelation 11:3) before they are killed by the beast and lay in the street dead for three days. The Bible does not clarify when they will begin the 1260 days. The only thing we can be sure of is that when they are revived from being dead in the streets three days, and they ascend into heaven, that it will be somewhere after the 1260 days of the tribulation beginning which could very well be the same time as the seventh trumpet.
6. God’s word expounds on two times that Jesus will return to the earth, and a harvest of the earth will take place, one at the end of the tribulation and one sometimes during it. After discovering this and studying it in detail, I was astounded that I had NEVER heard about the harvest in Revelation. I have an old Bible in which I took notes during a sermon series while in my 20’s. When I looked back to see what I wrote down when we got to chapter 14 that decisively tells of a harvest of the earth, the note beside it said that it was the harvest that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 13:24-30 and Matthew 13:36-43, the Parable of the Wheat and Tares. After a detailed comparison of the two, I found that they were definitely talking about two different events. (Again, please see the post “THE TWO RETURNS OF JESUS AND THE TWO HARVESTS OF THE EARTH” for more detailed information concerning the two returns of Jesus and the two harvests of the earth.)
If I say I hold to any theory, this would be it because it can actually happen at any time during the tribulation period. We ARE definitely promised not to suffer God’s wrath, so anytime we are taken out of here will be pre-wrath. Personally, I do believe it will be near the end of the days of trials.
What do you think?