The Bible teaches a pre-tibulation rapture of the Church of Jesus Christ
Debate Rounds (4)
Please accept this debate only if you are a Bible-believing Christian.
Round 1 - Acceptance
Round 2 - Opening Arguments/Rebuttal of Pro
Round 3 - Rebuttals
Round 4 - Closing Statement (No New Arguments)
The 1st (FIRST) HARVEST (Rapture) was at Christ's resurrection. Christ being the first fruits of the Barley. Lev. 23:10-15. Christ being the first fruits of them that slept. I Cor 15:20-23. But Christ was not the only one that was the first fruits of the Barley. A group of God's people were resurrected with Him. Matt 27:52, 53. This is the LITERAL fulfillment of the first fruits of Barley in the PROPHECY of Lev. 23:10-15. I believe these were taken to heaven at Christ ascension. There is evidence in the Scriptures that this is the case. In Rev. 5:5-14, Rev. 11:16. The 24 elders were redeemed from every nation vs9, and they appear to be at the throne BEFORE the book of 7 seals were opened.
The 2nd (SECOND) HARVEST (Rapture) is found in Rev. 11:1-13 of the two witness. This is the resurrection of the first fruits of the WHEAT HARVEST on the Day of PENTECOST (feast of weeks). The 144,000 at this time are the ONLY FIRST FRUITS in the Scriptures that have not been HARVESTED. Rev. 14:4 REDEEMED and FIRST FRUITS. This resurrection, harvest, (Rapture) comes at the end of their ministry (Rev. 11:2,3) just BEFORE the END of the GREAT TRIBULATION, Rev. 11:15, 7th angel. We know this will happened, because in Rev. 15 it tell us that this group of God's people are on MT. ZION BEFORE, BEFORE, BEFORE, the 7 LAST PLAGUES. Read it for your self. This will be a LITERAL fulfillment of the prophecy in Lev. 23:20, 21 first fruits of the wheat harvest.
The 3rd (Third) HARVEST (Rapture) is I Thes. 4:14-18, this is the harvest of God's people BOTH living and dead (Feast of TABERNACLES). This was the harvest at the end of their agriculture year, on the Lev. 23 calendar. Rev. 14:14-16, is the harvest of the rest of grain and the grapes at Christ's coming. This Feast was a Feast of Great Joy. Notice in I Cor 15:51, 52 that it says, "LAST TRUMP," This happens at the end of the 7th and LAST TRUMPET. The Feast of TRUMPETS (this could also be the LAST TRUMP) was sounded just before the Great Feast of TABERNACLES (John 7:37 last day) in the 7th month of Tishri. The Feast of TABERNACLES will be the LITERAL fulfillment of the prophecy in Lev. 23: 34-44. If we want to know about the harvests (Raptures) of God's people, we should study the Feasts of harvest in Lev. 23. The Scriptures were written for our admonition. I Cor. 10:11. HAPPY RAPTURE
Your point on the three harvests of Leviticus 23 is interesting, but I see a few problems with your delineation. Is the first harvest, as you related it to Christ and the group of resurrected saints, fulfilled because of their resurrection or ascension to heaven? We know Lazarus was raised from the dead before Christ's resurrection (John 11:41-45), the Apostle Peter raised a woman from the dead (Acts 9:36-42), and even in the Old Testament Elijah raises a boy from the dead (1 Kings 17:17-24). Your evidence that these "first fruits" were taken to heaven based on Revelation 5 and 11 is not very strong as there is no way to show that these must be those which were resurrected with Christ. In fact I believe that the identity of the 24 elders are the 24 representatives of the Church which was raptured because Revelation 4:4 tells us that they were "clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold" which relates to 2 Timothy 4:8, et al. And Revelation 5:9-10 proclaims the song these elders sang saying, "[Thou] hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; And hast made us unto our God kings and priests. . ." How can these elders be saints of Israel if they claim that they were redeemed out of every nation? Also they claim that they were made kings and priests which things John says the Church were given to be (Revelation 1:6). In either case, Revelation 5 and 11 are not a strong proof text for your case.
Your delineation concerning the second harvest has just one problem: how can you say that the 144,000 were raptured along with the two prophets/witnesses? There is not any verse which tells us that they were resurrected, only the prophets/witnesses were raptured in Revelation 11:11-12. There is no need to say they were raptured as to be absent from the body (as a saint in Christ) is to be present with the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:8).
Based on Revelation 14, I do not think we can say that this is a harvest of God's people "both living and dead." There is also no mention of "the last trumpet." Isn't the seventh angel (or trumpet) in Revelation 11? People who hold to a mid-tribulation rapture generally point to Revelation 11 as the time when the Church is raptured based simply on the sounding of the seventh angel or "last trump." You are also leaving out the resurrection of Revelation 20, where does this come into play in your feast-day delineation? I do not think you have made a very strong case based on the feast days.
I do not think we should look to the feast days for an event concerned with the Church of the dispensation of Grace. We must understand that the dispensation of Grace, concerning the Church, was a mystery given to the apostle Paul and not to the other disciples. This mystery is not to be found in the Old Testament and non of the other apostles knew of it until Paul; it was a mystery hid in God from the foundation of the world (Romans 16:25, 1 Corinthians 2:7, Ephesians 3). This entails that anything concerning the Church of this dispensation of Grace is a mystery not to be found in the prophets of the Old Testament. The mystery of the rapture of the Church is also one of these events which, concerning the Church, is unknown to the saints. Notice in 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, Paul speaks of this event as a mystery, but the idea of a future resurrection, if this is what He was merely referring to, was well known even before the resurrection of Christ (Matthew 22:31, John 11:24). Paul is referring to an event which is exclusively for the Church of this dispensation and which is before the events of Revelation 19 and 20. 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18, the parallel verses to 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, tells us that this event involves the dead in Christ being raised before those which are still alive, the Lord descending from heaven with a shout (a call?) from the voice of the archangel (Michael), a trumpet call (last trump), and a meeting of the raptured saints with Christ in the clouds. I would challenge anyone to find a passage in the book of Revelation which describes this event in light of every detail. Many people propose raptures in different parts of Revelation based only on one event such as the trumpet call (Revelation 11) or even the similarity of Christ coming out of heaven (Revelation 19), but can cite no passage which includes all the details of the event to which Paul is referring.
Now having established that this event cannot possibly be in Revelation 11, 19 etc., and having previously stated that this event cannot conclusively be in Revelation 14, let me now state why I believe this rapture event must take place before the tribulation, that is, before Revelation 6. Notice in Revelation 3:21-22 Jesus says, "To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches." In the very next chapter we find John caught up in the spirit and given the vision of a future time where he sees Jesus upon the throne and 24 elders seated around the throne. The 24 elders are no doubt representatives of the Church based on Revelation 3:21-22 and based on there apparel. 1 John 5:4-5, written by John, the same author of Revelation, wrote that our faith in Jesus Christ makes us overcomers, and Revelation 3:21-22 refers to those who overcome as being the ones granted to sit with Christ at His throne. This must be the Church.
I believe 1 Thessalonians 1:10 and 1 Thessalonians 5:9 teach that the Church shall not be subject unto the wrath to come. The wrath spoken of in these verses is no doubt the great tribulation period (Isaiah 13:9-13, Jeremiah 10:10, Ezekiel 7:19, Nahum 1:2, Zephaniah 1:15-18, Matthew 3:7, Luke 21:23, Romans 2:5, Romans 12:19, Ephesians 5:6, Colossians 3:6, Revelation 6:16-17, Revelation 14:19, Revelation 19:15).
I believe 2Thessalonians 2:7 is referring to the Holy Spirit in the Church, the Body of Christ, who withholds (lets - KJV) the Antichrist from establishing Himself as God in the temple (the abomination of desolation). It is not until the Holy Spirit I removed with the Church that Antichrist shall be revealed.
My final point is that we are to be looking for the coming of our Savior in the clouds and not for the signs of the great tribulation and the Day of the Lord (1 Corinthians 1:7, 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18, Titus 2:13). Our hope, as Church age believers in this dispensation of Grace, is the imminent return of our Lord to receive us up into glory whether our bodies be in the grave or on alive on the Earth at His appearing. ". . .there is no mention of any signs or events that precede the Rapture of the church in any of the Rapture passages. The point seems to be that the believer prior to this event is to look, not for some sign, but the Lord from heaven" (Feinberg, "Case, in Three Views on the Rapture," p. 80). What a blessed hope we have to be looking forward to that day when this corruptible shall put on incorruption and this mortal shall put on immortality; a day when we shall appear with Him in glory and see the face of our Lord (1 Corinthians 13:10-12, 1 Corinthians 15:51-53, Colossians 3:4).
Baruch Hashem Adonai (Blessed be the name of the Lord!)
I believe the resurrected saints ascended with Christ, and are the 24 Elders in Revelation 5, the ones in Matthew 27:52, 53. The only ONES, who fit the fulfillment of the prophecy of first fruits of the Barley wave sheaf's in Leviticus 23:10-15. They were redeemed from the earth. If the Leviticus 23 prophecy is true, they should be in heaven at the time of Christ's ascension. Those individuals, mentioned, who were raised, would not fulfill the prophecy, because they were not raised with Christ, or on the Feast date, the 16th of Nisan. Christ being the first fruits, 1 Corinthians 15:20-23. This is the first harvest of God's people. The Revelation 5 group were the prophecy of the first fruits of the Barley at Christ's resurrection.
The 2nd harvest of Revelation 11 group, are the ONLY group of first fruits NOT harvested yet. This harvest of Revelation 14:1-5, which are the 144,000, are first fruits, comes at the end of the Tribulation. The next harvest prophecy of Leviticus 23:20, 21 are the first fruits of the Wheat at Pentecost to be resurrected in Revelation 11, at the end of the 6th Trumpet. The two Witnesses are the 144,000. They are seen on Mt. Zion, BEFORE the 7 last plagues in Revelation 15. When do you say the 24 Elders of Revelation 5 are raptured? You seem to say that the Elders are saints of Israel. How do you define Israel?
The 144,000 are the two Witnesses in Revelation 11. The 144,000 have the two Witnesses of God. God has ALWAYS had two Witnesses from the beginning. James 1:17. The Holy Spirit and God were witnesses at creation. The SAME two witnesses were present at Christ's baptism. God's two witnesses are fulfilled in the 144,000 (Sealed). Zechariah 4:1-14 tells us the two olive branches are His two witnesses (the two anointed ones, verse 14). The Holy Spirit and God are the two witnesses dwelling in the 144,000. Revelation has symbolic prophecy, NOT every thing is LITEREL even in Revelation 11.
The seventh angel (trumpet) is not in Revelation 11. Revelation 11 is at the end of the 6th trumpet, when the 2nd harvest of Pentecost takes place. At the end of the 7th trumpet is the 3rd harvest at the Feast of Tabernacles (the living and the dead) 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:51, 52. The prophecy of Leviticus 23:39 is fulfilled at the 3rd harvest at the end of the Fall agricultural season. Revelation 14:14-16 is the last great harvest which is ripe, these are NOT first fruits.
In the context of Revelation 20, the first resurrection of the righteous has taken place. The 2nd resurrection will take place at the end of the 1,000 years, which is the "SECOND DEATH," verse 14.
The mystery of Grace began as soon as Adam and Eve sinned Genesis 3:15. Grace is mentioned 38 times in the Old Testament. The prophecies of the Messiah are all over in the Old Testament. God is "the same yesterday, today, and forever," the first and the last. Much of Revelation has its origin in the Torah. The whole sanctuary system in the Old Testament was based on GRACE, (the LAMB of God, His death and resurrection for humanity). Christ (Y'shua) was the living TORAH, made flesh and dwelt among us. John 1:14. Why would you want to discount GRACE in the Old Testament? 1 Corinthians 10:11 and 2 Timothy 3:16, 17.
In Ecclesiastes1, Solomon said in verse 9, "....and there is no new thing under the sun." The whole chapter is about "no new thing." Do you have any Scripture of the rapture before Solomon's time? The reason the "rapture is a mystery," is because it is a counterfeit of Satan to deceive people. For every Real and True doctrine in the Scriptures, there is a counterfeit and false doctrine of Satan. People are carried about by every wind of doctrine, such as the rapture, Ephesians 4:14-16. The Rapture makes them feel good and safe, because they won't have to go through the Great Tribulation. What are the 3 and one half years in Revelation 12:6, 14 mean?
I agree that the Revelation 11 event is not the same event in Revelation 14:14-16. If the rapture takes place before Revelation 6, what is the resurrection harvest in Revelation 11, and the harvest in Revelation 14:14-16? What do you mean by "Church?"
I'm not sure you understand what the "wrath to come" is, and when it begins. The "wrath to come" in Revelation 6:12-17 is at Christ's coming, same language as Joel 2:30, 31, Matthew 24:29-31, Mark 13:24-27, Luke 21:25-27, Acts 2:19, 20, and Revelation 11:15-19. The "wrath to come" spoken in Revelation 15 is just before the 7 last plagues, and Revelation 16 is the "wrath to come" in the 7 last plagues after the Great Tribulation. All the "wrath to come," comes after the Great Tribulation. So why would God's people be raptured out of the Great Tribulation, if the "wrath to come," is after the Tribulation? I agree the Church is not subject to the "wrath to come," BUT the Church will go through the 7 CYCLE verses of the Great tribulation, Daniel 7:25, Daniel 12:1, Revelation 11: 2,3, Revelation 12:6, 14, Revelation 13:5. Repeated 7 times for the wise who understand. No wrath to come, but persecution and death will come to the Church. What do you do with Revelation 6:9-11, Revelation 11:7, Revelation 14:13, and Revelation 13:15? Where do you place these time periods?
What is the point you are making about 2 Thessalonians 2:7? When are you saying the Antichrist is revealed? What does this have to do with the rapture time?
Why have signs in the Great Tribulation, if we will not have to go through it? Why have 1 Corinthians 10:11? What happens if we see signs in the Great Tribulation, then what? Signs were given to God's people, so we know what to expect. Prophecy is for the edification of the saints. We have Moses and the prophets, the signs are contained in the Scriptures for the wise. Luke 16:29-31. Truth is not based on the popularity of a doctrine such as the rapture. Why have Job in the Scriptures, if bad things happen to righteous people? Job went through tribulation along with many of God's people.
In Revelation 17:10 there are 7 kingdoms (HEADS) Revelation 17:3. The Scriptures rotate in CYCLES of "7."
1. Israel was persecuted and in captivity by the 1st head (Egypt).
2. Israel was persecuted and in captivity by the 2nd head (Assyria).
3. Judah was persecuted and in captivity by the Chaldeans (called Babylon by many).
4. Judah was persecuted and in captivity by Medo-Persia.
5. Judah was persecuted and in captivity by Greece, Daniel 8 and Daniel 11.
6. Judah was persecuted and in captivity by Rome in Christ's time, and the early Church was persecuted by Rome.
7. Why would Christians believe what happened to the "FIRST" 6 HEADS, will NOT happen in the time of the 7th HEAD (our time)? We will be persecuted again. It is predicted in many chapters in Revelation. The Scriptures point out, that what goes around comes around. We have CYCLES of 7 from God for a reason. 7 Seals, 7 Trumpets, 7 Plagues, 7 Spirits. There are 7's all over in Revelation. There are 7 saying of Christ at the Cross. There are 7 verses of Scripture for the Great Tribulation. Was 1 Corinthians 10:11 an accident? Be a Noble Berean. Acts 17:10, 11.
You say, "I believe the resurrected saints ascended with Christ, and are the 24 Elders in Revelation 5, the ones in Matthew 27:52, 53. The only ONES, who fit the fulfillment of the prophecy of first fruits of the Barley wave sheaf's in Leviticus 23:10-15." Again, your delineation here is completely model-dependent, that is, without this constructed interpolation of the three feasts, you would have no scriptural evidence that these 24 elders are the resurrected saints of Matthew 27:52-53. In fact, as I stated before, there is scriptural evidence to show that these saints could not be those of Matthew 27:52-52, they were redeemed out of every nation and were made kings and priests which things John says the Church were given to be (Revelation 1:6).
You say, "The 2nd harvest of Revelation 11 group, are the ONLY group of first fruits NOT harvested yet." Again your claims are model-dependent.
You say, "The two Witnesses are the 144,000." The context tells us only that the two prophets were raptured not the 144,000, you must make an inference based on your model to make Revelation 11 speak about the 144,000.
You say, "When do you say the 24 Elders of Revelation 5 are raptured? You seem to say that the Elders are saints of Israel. How do you define Israel?" Since I believe that these elders represent the Church, I believe they are raptured sometime before the tribulation (as I have been arguing for in this debate). I never said that the 24 were saints of Israel, I said they represented the Church (of the dispensation of Grace). I define Israel as the people/nation God has chosen as His elect Bride to glorify His name. From Jacob ben Abraham to Jesus ben Elohim Israel is found to be God's chosen people. Israel rejected their Messiah/King (Jesus Christ) and were cut off as God's people (though only for a time). These people of God will once again be reestablished along with the temple, their feasts, their Sabbaths and their relationship with Abba Elohim. Israel is not the Church and the Church is not Israel (replacement theology).
You say, "The 144,000 are the two Witnesses in Revelation 11. The 144,000 have the two Witnesses of God. God has ALWAYS had two Witnesses from the beginning." Your delineation here is arbitrary. God has not always had two witnesses, He's had three. "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one" (1 John 5:7). How can one coherently reject the doctrine of the Trinity when this verse is so very clear? We know the Word is Jesus from John 1, who created all things and who is God. Notice in Matthew 28:18 the disciples were commissioned to baptize in the name of the FATHER, SON, & HOLY GHOST! In Genesis 1:26, God says "let us make man in OUR image." The possessive plural pronoun "our" necessitates the multiplicity of the one making the proclamation. Genesis 1:1 tells us God was there along with the preponderance of passages which refer to the Father God (Abba Elohim) as Creator (i.e. Isaiah 64:8). Genesis 1:2 tells us that the Holy Spirit was there along with Genesis 2:7 ("naphach," the Hebrew word which denotes "breathe" in Genesis 2:7 and Ezekiel 37:9; compare also to "ruach" the Hebrew word which denotes "Spirit" in Genesis 1:2 and Psalm 33:6). And John 1:1-3, Colossians 1:16-17, Ephesians 3:9, and Hebrews 1:1-3 tells us that Jesus was there. From these verses we can make a solid argument that the "our" in Genesis 1:26 refers to the Trinity. Your argument based on the two-witnesses is therefore moot. The two witnesses of Revelation 11 are clearly Elijah (Malachi 4:5) and the other prophet (Moses? Enoch?).
You say, "The seventh angel (trumpet) is not in Revelation 11." Revelation 11:15 says that "the seventh angel sounded." This is the seventh trumpet (the longest one which proclaims the coming judgment).
You say, "The mystery of Grace began as soon as Adam and Eve sinned Genesis 3:15." You misunderstand what I mean by the mystery of the dispensation of Grace. Obviously grace is found throughout the Bible for God is a graceful God. But the dispensation of Grace was a time period (which we are in now) which was kept hid in God from the foundation of the world (Ephesians 3:9, 1 Corinthians 2:7, Romans 16:25). This is Paul's gospel, the gospel of Grace (Ephesians 1).
You say, "The Rapture makes them feel good and safe, because they won't have to go through the Great Tribulation. What are the 3 and one half years in Revelation 12:6, 14 mean?" Our hope is in seeing Christ coming in the clouds, so of course this makes us feel safe and comforted (1 Thessalonians 4:18). I am not ignorant of the persecution of times past and unto this day, and even the future. War and persecution (tribulation) may take place in times to come but this does not mean we will be in the great tribulation. I am prepared to die for Christ now so believing in the rapture, for me, has nothing to do with a fear of death or persecution. Revelation 12:6, 14 is referring to Israel.
You say, "If the rapture takes place before Revelation 6, what is the resurrection harvest in Revelation 11, and the harvest in Revelation 14:14-16? What do you mean by "Church?" Revelation 11 is simply the resurrection of the two prophets as a sign from God. and Revelation 14 does not necessitate a rapture having taken place as to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord, these 144,000 died and are with the Lord in chapter 14. When I say Church I mean the one established by Jesus Christ after Pentecost.
I am out of time, but I will answer some of your other claims and arguments in the next round.
The 3 resurrections or raptures are not arbitrary. They are established by the Scriptures in Leviticus, in the form of actual fixed holy feasts with fixed times, which God said to keep. They are prophecies which show God's plan of redemption symbolically and literally for His people in each feast. All of the feasts in Leviticus 23 are prophetic feasts, which are REHEARSALS of actual events that were to happen, three of which were required, Deuteronomy 16:16. God uses agricultural harvests (resurrections or raptures) symbolically and literally. These are harvest events which Israel, both now and then were to be kept. Many believe that the feasts of Leviticus 23 were done away at the cross, which is false. There are some believers that believe Paul LIED to us about the prophetic feasts (holy days, new moons, and Sabbath days) in Colossians 2:16, 17. Clearly verse 17 tells us, "Which are a SHADOW of things to come;" This gives us evidence that some of the feasts are still to be REHEARSED, and still to be fulfilled literally. Namely Pentecost, Trumpets, and Tabernacles are still to be fulfilled. Pentecost and Tabernacles are literal harvests of God's people, gospel events still to be fulfilled.
The 24 Elders in Revelation 5:5-10 are evidence that a Barley harvest of firstfruits took place in Matthew 27:52, 53. Clearly it mentions kings and priests in Revelation 1:6 and Revelation 5:10. Just because one dies , and is resurrected in one locality, does not mean they were not from "nations, tribes, tongues, and people." There is no other event of the wave sheaf, the day after the Sabbath, 7676 Strong's, that FITS the evidence of the firstfruits of the Barley on the resurrection day of Christ and those in Matthew 27:52, 53. If they were not the firstfruits of the Barley harvest in Leviticus 23:10-15, a prophecy to be fulfilled, who were they? What group is represented in the Scriptures? If you will notice Revelation 1:5 refers to Christ the firstfruits of 1 Corinthians 15:20-23 and Colossians 1:18. Why would Christ be the firstfruits of the Barley wave sheafs, (the day after Sabbath) in Leviticus 23:10-15, and NOT those who were resurrected with Him? Leviticus 23:10 does say firstfruit(s). This sounds like firstfruits is plural not singular. If the firstfruits of the Barley harvest are NOT the 24 Elders in heaven, who were the firstfruits at the resurrection of Christ during the Unleavened Bread?
Can you give evidence that the 144,000 are NOT the firstfruits of the wheat harvested in Revelation 11? Revelation has many symbolic passages. NOT all passages in Revelation are literal. John, the forerunner, was symbolic of Elijah and his message at Christ's 1st coming. Matthew 17:10-13. The 144,000 are the forerunners with the Elijah message at Christ's last coming. Many people who study and read Revelation 11, believe one of the prophets in Revelation 11 is Elijah. Revelation 11:6 has an implication of Elijah and no rain. Revelation 14:4 ".....they follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth and are firstfruits..." In the parable of the 10 virgins in Matthew 25:1-13, show that Christ comes to pick up His bride, the Lambs wife. The Groom was coming from His home (in heaven) to pick up His wife (on earth) at her home, and take His wife back to His home for the marriage supper. The prophecy of Revelation 11:11-13 is this time (2nd harvest of the firstfruits of the wheat at Pentecost. The Lamb and His wife (the saints) come back in Revelation 19 after the marriage supper. We know this is true, because Paul mentions this in 1 Thessalonians 3:13, Enoch prophesied in Jude 14, and the 144,000 are on Mt Zion in Revelation 15. The great harvest, is the rest of the wheat, (Christ's last coming with His saints) at Tabernacles in Revelation 1414-16.
1 John 5:7 in context says "in heaven" Father, Word, and Holy Spirit. In context 1 John 5:8 says, "the spirit and the water, and the blood:" ARE WITNESSES "on earth." In Revelation 11:3 the passage in it's context, refers to two witnesses NOT 3 witnesses. This statement is about on earth NOT in heaven. Unfortunately Matthew 28:19, referring to the (Father , Son and Holy Ghost), "Holy Ghost" is left out in most of the ancient manuscripts, and that verse has translation problems. Are you saying that the two prophets are absolutely literal? What do you do with other symbolic language in Revelation? WHEN and HOW are the 144,000 harvested, if not in Revelation 11? In Revelation 15 it shows the firstfruits, the 144,000, are on Mt Zion, BEFORE the 7 last plagues.
Unfortunately, I apologize. I should have made the "seventh angel sounding," more clearly. AFTER the resurrection or rapture in Revelation 11:11-13, the 6th angel ended (2nd Woe). In Revelation 8:13 (the last 3 trumpets are 3 Woes). (1) So the 1st woe is the 5th trumpet, (2) the 2nd woe, is the 6th angel, and (3) the 3rd Woe is the 7th angel. In Revelation 11:14 shows that the 2nd woe ENDED (6th trumpet), and Revelation 11:15 is the beginning of the 3rd Woe, the 7th and last trumpet. So the resurrection or rapture was at the end of the 2nd woe, and the 7th angel starts (the 3rd woe) in Revelation 11:15.
What MODEL are you using to show WHEN the rapture(s) take place? You have Scriptures of events (raptures) that describe an event. You have the HOW, but NOT the WHEN. WHY? Believers have 3 different views of the rapture: Pre-Trib, Mid-Trib, and Post-Trib. If everyone knew WHEN, you wouldn't have three different beliefs. The Feasts prophesied in Leviticus 23 give us the WHEN for all the resurrections or raptures. If the three harvest feasts, which are prophesied in the Torah (1st 5 books) were required of the males, Deuteronomy 16:16, and there are still feasts that will be fulfilled, why should we quite keeping them? Should we disregard half the short story of the Gospel Redemption in the harvest feasts? I highly suspect any new doctrine that does not begin in the 1st 5 books of the Bible. God is the 1st and the last, the Alpha and Omega. The Scriptures repeat from the beginning to the end, and Scriptures generally move in cycles of 7. All true doctrine and beliefs should originate in the 1st 5 books of the Scriptures. You have not given me any passages from the Old Testament YET? If the Old Testament is not valid, why do we have 1 Corinthians 10:11 and 2 Timothy 3:16, 17? You accuse me of being arbitrary , when you EXCLUSIVELY use the New Testament. We can agree to disagree, and live by the FRUITS of the Spirit. Blessing from God (YHVH)
You say, "Three of the feasts prophesied in Leviticus 23 came on a SPECIFIC feast day, the feasts were kept. Why wouldn't we believe the other three feasts that were prophesied, will come on the SPECIFIC days of the holy feasts?" I'm sure they will, but this does not vindicate your delineation. I do believe Leviticus 23 has significance in the grand scheme of things according to God's times and seasons, but this does not play, I believe into your connection with the three rapture events. Pesach (Passover) was fulfilled at the shedding of the blood of Messiah, Chag HaMotzi (Unleavened Bread) was fulfilled at the burial of the striped/bruised body of Messiah (Isaiah 53:5), Reshit Katzir (First Fruits) was fulfilled at the resurrection of Messiah, Shavu'ot (Pentecost) was fulfilled at the coming of the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) to indwell the believers who are now made one in Christ, whether Jew or Gentile, Yom Teru'ah (Day of Trumpets) will be fulfilled at the rapture of the Church, Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) will be fulfilled at the Second Advent of Messiah, and Sukkot (Tabernacles) will be fulfilled during the millennial reign of Messiah (Ezekiel 37:26) when He will establish His tabernacle in Jerusalem (http://www.hebrew4christians.com...). Notice that I only related Yom Teru'ah with the rapture event of the Church and not Pesach, Reshit Katzir, and Shavu'ot because these were already fulfilled. This is why I said your model was arbitrary.
You say, "Many believe that the feasts of Leviticus 23 were done away at the cross, which is false. There are some believers that believe Paul LIED to us about the prophetic feasts (holy days, new moons, and Sabbath days) in Colossians 2:16, 17. Clearly verse 17 tells us, 'Which are a SHADOW of things to come;' This gives us evidence that some of the feasts are still to be REHEARSED, and still to be fulfilled literally. Namely Pentecost, Trumpets, and Tabernacles are still to be fulfilled. Pentecost and Tabernacles are literal harvests of God's people, gospel events still to be fulfilled." They were not done away with, but the Church is never commanded to keep these feasts days as they were feasts unto Israel (Leviticus 23:2). This includes the Sabbath days, the Levitical priesthood, the abstinence from certain foods, and any other ordinance given to Israel as a sign between them and the LORD. Paul did not lie. The context of Colossians 2 is that we are complete in Jesus Christ (v. 10) and the old-vs-new is exemplified when Paul says we are now circumcised with the circumcision made without hands (v. 11); the circumcision of the heart done by the Spirit of God (Romans 2:28-29). This was part of the Abrahamic covenant which was apart of the Mosaic Law. He says they are "a shadow of things to come" because that's exactly what they were, as I already pointed out how three of the feasts were fulfilled; and so is the Sabbath rest fulfilled (Hebrews 4). Notice in the same verse Paul says that "the body is of Christ." Therefore those shadows are shadows of Him, some of which have been fulfilled and some which have yet to be fulfilled. Hebrews 8:13 is very clear, the Old Covenant has been replaced by the New. There are many differences between the two which signify that the Old is not to be observed anymore as binding, the most important of which is the method of salvation: in the Old you must keep the Law, remain faithful to God, and live righteously to the end, in the New you must trust in the finished work of Christ WHO HAS kept the Law, remained faithful and lived righteously to the end! Romans, Hebrews and Galatians is very clear on this matter, the New Covenant is better in that Messiah is now the testator (Hebrews 9) who has provided us the ultimate, eternally effectual sacrifice once and for all, for the sins of the world. (http://www.hebrew4christians.com...).
You say, concerning the 24 elders of Revelation 5, "If they were not the firstfruits of the Barley harvest in Leviticus 23:10-15, a prophecy to be fulfilled, who were they?" I have already given evidence that they represent the Church, which you have not addressed. The resurrected saints of Matthew 27 could not say to the Lord, ". . .thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth" (Revelation 5:9-10). Most importantly, the promise of reigning with Messiah as kings and priests was given to the Church (Revelation 1:5-6). Also the elders were sitting on seats around the throne which was promised to the Church (Revelation 3:21>>>1 John 5:4-5). It never says that anyone else is the firstfruits aside from the Lord Jesus Christ. You can infer that the saints of Matthew 27 are part of that firstfruits but either way it still does not prove your case. Reshit Katzir was already fulfilled, this in no way supports the hypothesis that the 24 elders are the saints of Matthew 27 for the aforementioned reasons.
You say, "Can you give evidence that the 144,000 are NOT the firstfruits of the wheat harvested in Revelation 11?" Yes, Revelation 11 describes the witnesses as TWO olive trees and candlesticks which most likely are Elijah and either Enoch or Moses (or possibly Elisha). John the Baptist was described as coming IN THE SPIRIT of Elijah but it was made clear that he was not that prophet whereas Revelation 11 does not say that there were 144,000 who came in the spirit of anyone. Notice that these TWO prophets come on the scene after the 144,000 (Revelation 7). Your argument is unsubstantiated.
Your arguments about 1 John 5:7 are moot. There are three witnesses in heaven and three in Earth. There has always been three witnesses, namely the Father, the Word and the Holy Ghost. The two prophets of Revelation 11 are irrelevant here.
You say, "Unfortunately Matthew 28:19, referring to the (Father, Son and Holy Ghost), 'Holy Ghost' is left out in most of the ancient manuscripts, and that verse has translation problems." So when a text does not favor your argument you just relinquish it to obscurity? I can assure you that the reading of Matthew 28:19 in the KJV is authentic. The most ancient manuscripts (Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, P-66, etc.) are corrupt more often then not. I trust that God has preserved His words and we have them in-tact in the King James Bible.
You say, "So the resurrection or rapture was at the end of the 2nd woe, and the 7th angel starts (the 3rd woe) in Revelation 11:15." There is no justification to say that the rapture of the Church is at the end of the 2nd woe. The "trump" in the rapture passages has no relation to the seven trumpets of the angels. None of them match the events of the rapture of the Church.
You say, "What MODEL are you using to show WHEN the rapture(s) take place?" The model of the rapture passages along with the book of Revelation. These tell us that the rapture must take place before the tribulation for the aforementioned reasons.
You say, ". . .you EXCLUSIVELY use the New Testament." Yes because the rapture of the CHURCH (which is a mystery) is not found in the Old Testament. More specifically it is only found in Paul's letters because to him was given to know the mysteries of the dispensation of Grace (Ephesians 3). Notice also 1 Corinthians 15 is in the context of the mystery of Paul's Gospel (Romans 11:24-26, Romans 16:25, 1 Corinthians 2:7, Ephesians 1:9, Ephesians 6:19, Colossians 1:26-27). Paul was given exclusive wisdom concerning the dispensation of Grace.
You say, "the Church is never commanded to keep these feast days...." Where does it say NOT to keep the feasts in the New Testament? What are the ordinances Paul delivered? 1 Corinthians 11:1, 2. Christ kept them in his ministry, and the Apostles kept Pentecost in Acts 2 after the cross. Unleavened Bread, which you say was already fulfilled, appears to be kept by Paul in Acts 20:6. If it didn't matter, why did Paul not leave during Unleavened Bread? If the feasts were done away, why 1 Corinthians 5:7,8 and 1 Corinthians 16:8? All that are Christ's are of Abraham's seed and true Israel. Otherwise why have Romans 9:1-8 and All of Galatians 3. The feasts were never done away. Man wants to put them away. Some keep the feasts because they think it will save them by works, but those who love Him keep his commandments. John 14:15. Three feasts were required of males. Deuteronomy 16:16. Why were these three required?
Are you saying, since the feasts were fulfilled, you don't need to keep any of the feasts, or the other feasts that have not been fulfilled, or do not matter? What do you do with James 1:1? Is James only for the 12 tribes of Israel? Should believes rip out the book of James from their Bible? Did the new covenant replace the 3 feasts that have not been fulfilled or have a second application? You say, "the most important which is the method of salvation:..." The feasts are the condensed Story of Redemption. All of the feasts contain aspects of salvation, including the three resurrections or raptures. Why are we discarding "WHEN" these resurrections or raptures take place? The Bible was written "....for our admonition upon whom the ends of the world are come." 1 Corinthians 10:11
You say, "Christ is the only first fruit of the Barley." Leviticus 23:10 says, "firstfruit(S)." Christ is ONE, why does it say firstfruit(S) plural, if it is singular? What about the 144,000 in Revelation 14:4? It says they are firstfruit(S). Christ is not the only "FIRSTFRUIT," SINGULAR. If the 144,000 are firstfruits in Revelation 14:4, what firstfruits of the grain harvest are they? Is this the group, you think is the Pre-Trib rapture? When are they harvested? Do you have a specific time for the Pre-Trib rapture?
Sure the 144,000 will come in the SPIRIT. They are representing the two olive trees, same as in Zachariah 4. They come in the (1) Spirit of God's Word and with the (2) Holy Spirit, God's two witnesses. God has always had two witnesses. Did God have to wait for "man" witnesses to show up before He had two witnesses? These two witnesses are symbolically used in the 144,000. Otherwise they could not do the miracles in Revelation 11:3-6, unless they did have Christ and the Holy Spirit in their life.
This is for the noble Bereans. Acts 17:10, 11. When the tribulation begins, the question will be. What went wrong? Book mark this for future reference. Here are some SIGNS, so you know where you are.
(1) The wounding of the Beast in Revelation 13 will be a wounding by the Patriot's and militia. Revelation13: 3, 12, and 14. This is SOON to come. Believers take note of Revelation 13:9, 10. Our commission is the Gospel.
(2) The 144,000 will be sealed on the day of Pentecost on the Torah calendar. Revelation 7:1-4. Just like on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2.
(3) A world wide earthquake. Revelation 8:5.
(4) After the earthquake the 144,000 will prophecy that the Trumpets will start shortly with the burning grass and trees. Revelation 7:3 and Revelation 8:7.
(5) When the grass and trees are burning, Pre-Trib people will be asking, what went wrong? When this happens you may want to read this debate, if it is still on the web.
(6) Ask one of the 144,000, what will be happening.
(7) The 144,000 will be receiving Manna about one month into the Great Tribulation, same as Israel did, 1 month after leaving Egypt. Exodus 16. No Manna on the Sabbath day, still on the Torah calendar. Revelation 12:6, 14. Fed and nourished "....two wings of a great eagle..." Same as happened to Israel at the Exodus. Exodus 19:4-6. A repeat of eagles wings, kingdom of priests. What goes around comes around. Cycles of 7 in the Bible are common. Egypt is the 1st head and the 1st Beast in Revelation 13 is the 7th head. Revelation 17. God's people will go through hard times, check out what happened to God's people during the 7 heads (kingdoms). There will be no Pre-Trib rapture. 1 Corinthians 10:11 "Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come."
All the SAME Bible references are used by Pre-Trib, Mid-Trib, and Post-Trib believers to nullify the Leviticus 23 feast times of the resurrections or raptures. Almost all ignore evidences in the Old Testament. If you're not going to use the Old Testament, tear it out of your Bible. If the Old Testament is invalid, why have it. 2 Timothy 3:16, 17. "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: verse 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." Rapturest ignore the feasts, which are the short version of the STORY of Redemption. The feasts are the Gospel Story, but not very will understood. Rapturest have ANOTHER Gospel story that is ONLY in the NEW Testament. Galatians 1:1-12.
So why should we call it the EVERLASTING GOSPEL, WHEN it begins in the New Testament? Is the EVERLASTING GOSPEL now a partial Gospel, a limited Gospel, a changed Gospel from the Leviticus 23 feasts of Redemption?
The story of the Gospel feasts is a very short version of the plan of Redemption (salvation) for believers. Three feasts tell us SPIRITUALLY HOW Christ the Messiah saves us. Three Gospel feasts tell us PHYSICALLY WHEN Christ the Messiah saves us.
These feasts show us WHEN the time of the physical resurrections or raptures come. WHEN specific feast dates are near, gives us hope, faith. and what to expect. We don't have to guess. Matthew 24:32, 33 "Now learn a parable of the fig tree: WHEN his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is neigh: So likewise ye, WHEN ye shall see all these THINGS, know that it is near, even at the doors."
Matthew 17:10-13 and Acts 3:18-21 mention the restoration of ALL things. What are the THINGS that will be restored? John 16:12,13 "I have many THINGS to say unto you, but ye can not bear them now...and he will shew you THINGS to come."
Blessed be the person, who studies the Scriptures and understands.
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