The Vanishing Explained
I need to lay a foundation. The four Gospels, Jesus Christ presents himself to the Jews as their Messiah. The Jews rejected Jesus as their long awaited Messiah. After the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ – the Holy Spirit is sent to believers / the church. So the Holy Spirit and the church are connected as one.
Other than the early church witnessing the physical resurrection of Jesus Christ – the church has no physical relationship with Jesus in the flesh. Everything the church has is because of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus promised to send us the Comforter, the Holy Spirit who would lead us, guide us, work in and through us, comfort us, strengthen us. And God chose Paul the apostle to be the apostle to the church – in times of the Holy Spirit working.
Paul’s letters give direction and understanding about the things of God, salvation through Jesus Christ and how the Holy Spirit works in and through the church. Denominations pick and choose the points or areas they want to focus on from Paul’s letters. I am not saying all denominations, I am saying true believers, those truly saved have their denominations too. When it comes to the Holy Spirit, there has been strife, arguing, church splits and dissention among believers. Do you really think God is behind all that dissention?
Just like God breathed into Adam (flesh made from dirt) the breath of life ( a spirit / life) and Adam became a living soul (now had a mind, will and emotions ) so the Holy Spirit revives mankind to God. See Genesis 2:7. (Man lost the relationship with God through sin.)
As the breath of life from God gave life to Adam so the Holy Spirit revives the spirit of mankind of those who get saved, born again, those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ unto salvation. The Holy Spirit could not live in believers until after the resurrection because Jesus had to send him. In the Old Testament the Holy Spirit would come upon people but as Jesus said in John 14:15-27 he would be (future) in us.
It is not surprising then, that Paul, the apostle to the church, teaches the church about the Holy Spirit. We can debate what the Holy Spirit does in this age of the church but the bottom line is, it is the Holy Spirit that is the power of God working in and through true believers. Believers can choose to limit the Holy Spirit in their life by their faith, what they believe.
So when we look at Paul’s teaching of the catching up, the vanishing, the rapture of believers, we see that doctrine is nothing new as some today claim. The doctrine of the catching up is in the New Testament but also pictured in the Old Testament examples of Enoch and Elijah. [ I believe it will be Enoch and Elijah who will be the two witnesses mentioned in Revelation because they are the only two who did not die on earth in the Old Testament. Some think Moses and Elijah but Moses died and he was buried in the land of Moab, see Deuteronomy 34:4-6. ]
Enoch and Elijah were taken up by God, to heaven. So when Paul explains the Holy Spirit working in and through believers, the church, Paul addresses there is a time coming when the Holy Spirit is going to be removed from the earth. If the Holy Spirit is living in us, as scripture clearly teaches, true believers, then if the Holy Spirit is taken up or removed from the earth, guess what is going to happen to the believers? The believers will be removed from earth too. Taken up. How? By the power of the Holy Spirit. Paul addresses this in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-17, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:50-58.
Are you ready for the vanishing?
Until next time.