(For better understanding, first read the post titled, “THE TWO RETURNS OF JESUS AND THE TWO HARVESTS OF THE EARTH”)
This theory says that the rapture will not happen until the end of the age and that Jesus will only return one time, when He comes back to do battle. The supporting scriptures are as follows:
- Mathew 24:27-31:
27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.28 For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
In the above passage, Jesus is describing in His own words His return. He definitely attributes the timing as being “immediately after the tribulation of those days”. He also makes mention that eagles will be gathered together, which coincides with what happens at the battle of Armageddon (Revelation 19:17). The darkness referred to can be related to the pouring out of the fifth bowl (Revelation 16:10), which is at the end of the “tribulation of those days” and at the same time of the great battle. The verses go on to say that He then sends His angels to gather His elect with the great sound of a trumpet. So far, all the verses seem to point to Jesus coming one time when it’s time to do battle and THEN gathering His elect, but notice that He sends His angels out with a great sound of a trumpet. Could this be the seventh trumpet blowing at the same time the bowls are being poured out? In a future post, I will detail the progression of the plagues and it will show just how devasting the pouring of the bowls will be to mankind. It seems that they will be accomplished in a dramatically short time, so I can very well see that that the seventh trumpet could be blown simultaneously to the dispensing of the bowl. Who are the “elect” mentioned that will be gathered? Some say it’s the 144,000 Jews who were given the mark at the sixth seal. We see in Revelation 14:1 that they will be with Jesus when He returns to Mt. Zion, in the same time span as the seventh trumpet when there also is a harvest of the earth, which will be expounded on in a later post. It definitely would have to be the case that the seventh trumpet is blown at the same time that the bowls are being poured out to conclude that the 144,000 would be the “elect” mentioned, but if the seventh trumpet is blown as a separate entity from the bowls being poured, then there is no way that the “elect” could be the 144,000 since they were redeemed prior, or at the time of, Jesus standing on Mt. Zion (Revelation 14:3). 1 Peter 1:1-2 identifies the “elect” as being those that are sprinkled with the blood of Jesus. Jesus definitely gathers a group of people to Him “after the tribulation of those days” and at the time He comes back to do battle, and it will NOT be a “secret rapture” by no means! (as seen in the 30th verse of the printed scripture).
- John 6:39-40,44:
Jesus emphasizes three times that He will rise up all who believe in Him on the last day.
- Revelation 2:26-27:
The Church of Thyatira is told that if they do His will until the end, they will have authority over all nations.
- Revelation 20:4-5:
These verses are referencing the start of the 1000 year reign. The ones beheaded have come to life to reign with Christ during the 1000 years. The rest of the dead do not come alive until after the 1000 years (verse 5). This is considered the 1st resurrection. Because of this, the post-tribulationists believe that Jesus will appear only once AFTER everything is over and that this is when Jesus will shout and the dead in Christ will rise. (1Thessalonians 4:16-17)
The only post-tribulation theory drawback for me is that they claim Jesus only returns once when He actually comes two times (see the post concerning the two returns).
What do you think? Please comment below.