Rapture of The Church Part 4
Scripture points to three raptures:
Rapture Number 1.) Matthew 27:52,53 – ” And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, and came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.” This rapture (catching up) already happened as recorded.
Rapture Number 2.) 1 Corinthians 15:51,52 – “Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”
1 Thessalonians 4:16,17 – “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”
This is future and has not yet happened. How do we know this is future and has not happened yet? In 1 Corinthians Paul says “we” which includes himself and who he is writing to, the church, those “in Christ”. In 1 Thessalonians Paul is speaking to saints, those “in Christ” and while Jesus walked on this planet, people were not “in Christ”.
Rapture Number 3.) Revelation 4:1 – “After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was at it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.” Hereafter is defined as things coming in the future.
How to make sense of all this? When Jesus was crucified and arose, there was a rapture of Old Testament saints. The church, the bride of Christ is going to be raptured very soon and we have the prophecies of the Old Testament and signs of the times from the New Testament that show us we are getting close. Then there will be a rapture of Tribulation saints, those who were saved during the great Tribulation.