Monday, May 4, 2009

Rapture of Believer's

Partial Rapture Theories

Q. I love the insight you have into Revelation you make it so clear.

I have been interested in End Times since I was first saved 33 years ago and I feel that I have a good understanding of it all BUT willing to learn more.

Now…..I have a question which has troubled me since I read it and because you may know the person who wrote it I won’t mention his name although you may be able to guess. He says that not all the Christians will be going in the rapture but only the Bride of Christ. The rest will have to face the consequences and go through the tribulation and could be martyred or lost.

Now I find this extremely worrying as my belief is that all those that are born again will go in the rapture even if they are what you would call luke warm Christians. The Bible says…’believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved’. I see that as saved from the wrath to come.

My personal interest in this is that my eldest daughter and granddaughter have given their lives to Jesus and have been water baptized but unfortunately both are married to husbands that are unsaved so they don’t go to church and after reading the article they won’t be in the rapture either but will have to face the wrath to come and I can’t see them being able to do that.

Please give me your answer to this problem I value it and would appreciate if very much.

A. There are a couple of different sources for the notion of a partial rapture. One was developed by church leaders who believe that there needs to be some kind of behavioral qualification to receive such a blessing. It’s a combination of grace plus works that has no biblical basis and denies the sufficiency of our Lord’s death on the cross.

The other one comes from a major denomination that teaches that only its members are the Bride of Christ. All other Christians are “Friends of the Bridegroom” and are not privy to the blessings of the Bride. This is an equally un-scriptural view. There is but one church and all who accept the Lord’s death as payment in full for all their sins belong.

I don’t know which of these two applies in your family’s case, but the fact is that we are saved by what we believe, not by how we behave, and certainly not by what denomination we’ve joined. It’s true that our behavior as believers can earn heavenly rewards for us, but the Rapture is not such a reward. It’s a basic promise to everyone who believes that Jesus died for all of our sins.

More On Partial Rapture Theories

Q. I have a question about a comment you left to a person that was asking you a question about partial rapture theories. You stated:

“Now I find this extremely worrying as my belief is that all those that are born again will go in the rapture even if they are what you would call luke warm Christians.”

I was wondering why you did not point him to Rev 3:16. “So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.”

I was just wondering what your reason was. I am not perfect by any means we have all fallen short so I am no one to judge. Just wondering why it was never pointed out?

A. You’re referring to the letter to the church in Laodicea. If you read it carefully you’ll see that this is not a church in the sense of being a body of born again believers. It’s only a church in the sense that many liberal denominations are today. They meet on Sunday and they talk about Jesus, but they don’t teach the need to be born again, they don’t take the Bible literally, and they don’t believe in the validity of prophecy. They’re not just Christians whose faith is only lukewarm, they’re Christians in name only and are not born again. When the Rapture comes they’ll be left behind.

The proof of this is in Rev. 3:20 which shows the Lord standing outside the church knocking on the door asking to come in. The Lord should be inside His Church.

The partial rapture theory holds that only those born again believers who are deemed worthy of escaping judgment will be taken in the rapture. They think that even some believers who have trusted Jesus for their salvation will be left behind because their lives didn’t measure up. There’s no Biblical basis for this belief.

Laodicea And Me

Q. I believe that because I am saved that there is nothing that can separate me from the Lord and He will never forsake me. I have read that our sins are cast as far as the east is from the west but does that mean they are forgiven, Past, Present and Future as some term it?

If that’s so then why when the Lord speaks to the Church at Laodicea, does he warn them to not be lukewarm for He will spew them from His mouth? How can I begin to judge if I’m lukewarm?? If He spews me from His mouth, doesn’t that mean I can no longer be His? I know there is a great debate about “once saved always saved” within the Church - but I just believe that not only by the Word but by the nature of God as we come to know Him personally would assure us that once truly saved is forever and eternal. Can you explain this?

A. If you’ve accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior then all the sins of your life, past present and future are forgiven, and you’re saved forever. The big difference between you and the Church in Laodicea is the Lord’s position and that changes everything. You’ve let Him into your heart, but Rev. 3:20 says in Laodicea He’s standing at the door knocking, trying to come in. That means He’s on the outside and they’re not saved. They’re a church in name only, the ones left behind after the Rapture. They think they’re rich and don’t need a thing, even Him. They don’t even realize how poor they are.

You don’t have to worry about being lukewarm but the fact that you do worry actually confirms that you’re His. The Laodiceans should be worried about it but aren’t and that confirms that they’re not His.

Who Are The Luke Warm Christians?

Q. I hear all the time that Lukewarm Christians will miss out on the Rapture, being left behind. Can you tell us who are the Lukewarm Christians? On a scale of 1-10, where is the cut-off? Do I need to be a 10, and never sin to go? I hear people say that Lukewarm Christians will miss out on the Rapture. Does scripture paint this picture in your opinion?

A. The so-called partial rapture view always gets my dander up. Just who are the like warm Christians, you ask? Well let’s look at what current polls say. 93% of those who claim to be born again Christians live secular lives and have a secular world view. About 50% don’t believe in the Holy Spirit or that Satan is real. Nearly 40% have never given the first penny to Kingdom work. The divorce rate among Christians is the same as among non-believers and so is the abortion rate. A much better question to ask is who are the Christians who aren’t luke warm?

The partial rapture theory is promoted by “holier than thou” Christians who want to scare everybody into behaving the way they think we should. Of course they all believe they are going. It’s just the rest of us who have a problem.

There’s not one word in the Bible that supports a partial rapture. According to the Bible, there is just one condition for being included in the Church. “Believe in the One He has sent.” (John 6:28-29) Everything else you hear is some form of Pharisaical legalism invented by man in an effort to impose behavioral standards on others. This is a control issue not a theology issue.


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