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Tape Seven part 1

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1 Tape Seven part 1 on Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:45 pm


More Than Just a Study of Revelation
By now I hope, instead of becoming frustrated and wanting to get on with the book, you’re understanding that God is doing much more than showing you something new about this book that you haven’t seen or heard before. I hope you can see God is purging out the old in preparation for the introduction to the new.

The things being purged are our traditional holds on certain subjects. The things that we thought we finally had a grip on understanding clearly, or at least a pretty decent understanding on the basics of the end time events that are yet to unfold. These are the things that we can let go of now. This is the transitioning from one vine to the next. You can not progress on to the next vine if you’ve taken a hold of the current one and not yet let go of the last one.

Out With the Old . . .So Important
Just as Jesus’ death on the cross fulfilled the law to the point where the old law was removed completely so a new High Priest could replace it, so the old way of our thinking must also be released so that God “can” bring us all to an even higher place with him through the revealing of His Son Jesus to our lives.

It isn’t the intention to turn this into a debate, nor an attack on the “escape” theory that those of us have had instilled into our beliefs over the years. There are actually, many in the church today that are also understanding that what has been taught as the “Rapture of the church” is not at all accurate with the real truth of what Scripture has to say on the issue.

The problem is to bring this truth to the body of Christ, while at the same time, trying to get the body of Christ to understand that we’ve simply been misinformed of what it’s all about. This is not to point blame on anyone, this is just to say, they came to their conclusions based on the manna available to them in their day. We’ve been interpreting from the perspective of law instead of life.

Not Taking Away, but Adding More
But now that we are in the 6th day, where there is a double amount of revelational truth available to us simply because this is the day of the Lord unfolding upon us as we speak. And as such, it’s important we are willing to spiritually see the entire picture and not just what men have taught us to see. It’s important to understand, no one is trying to take away what has been given to our understanding which got us to where we are. But the truth is, there is even more yet to be given because there is yet, a deeper understanding that we are to go.

It’s also important to understand that in no way is this kingdom message of understanding, trying to denounce the second coming of Christ for those that are becoming concerned about that. The Lord will return . .that’s a settled issue. But there are definitely some areas where there is confusion in the term of Rapture, and we are going to try to define the truth through the Word of God that we have all received in our hearts and minds as well as what’s been written in Scripture.

Not a Salvation Issue
There are certain things that are not under the category or heading of “Essential Christian Doctrine”. Which simply means this is not considered a Salvation issue, so it’s not a huge deal if everyone doesn’t agree. Just as it also isn’t necessary that we all agree on the gifts of the Spirit. The same goes for the understanding of the Lord’s table as well as water-baptism. There are a number of things that we believe and are in Scripture which we practice and accept, yet aren’t considered as essential Christian doctrine.

On the Other Hand, There Are Salvation Issues
On the other hand, there are, however, things that we as brothers and sisters in Christ that we can not disagree about. For instance, the infallible truth of Scripture. That Bible you hold in your hand does not contain the word of God, it “is” the Word of God. We must also agree upon the virgin-birth of Jesus Christ. We also must agree you “must” be born-again, and Jesus “is” the only Son of God. Things of this nature simply can not be altered or watered down. These are what I would call “Salvation issues”. They are issues that will affect your eternal end if you accept or reject them.

But on non-essential issues, it’s good to be “in agreement”, but it’s not essential that we agree on everything. For instance, it’s not absolutely necessary that we all agree on how everything is going to culminate in what we call “the end time”. Or “Eschatology” which simply means a study of end times or end events. We’ve heard frequently of the “millennial” topics floating around all over ever since we left the 90’s.

Revelation 4
1Then I looked, and, oh!-a door open into Heaven. The trumpet-voice, the first voice in my vision, called out, "Ascend and enter. I'll show you what happens next." 2I was caught up at once in deep worship and, oh!-a Throne set in Heaven with One Seated on the Throne,

The word “rapture” does not appear anywhere in the Bible. This passage here in chapter 4 however, is one of the foundational verses supposedly supporting the event of the Rapture. Where John is told to “Ascend and enter”. It is taught that this spiritually is saying that the church is being called up or “raptured” into heaven.

I’ve even taught this myself. Even though the word “rapture” is nowhere to be found in Scripture, we the church still have used this word more than any other to associate it with the Coming of the Lord. So much so that it’s even one of the doctrinal truths in what we call “The Great Hope”.

What We’ve been taught
When believers, especially charismatic Pentecostals, which is also what I’ve always considered myself to be as well, when we think of “rapture” we think of saints dressed in white robes floating up into the air and rising up into heaven for a 7 year celebration. These are images that we’ve grown up with. We are even conditioned to understand that the trumpet may sound before the Pastor’s sermon is over.

The cemeteries will open and the dead will rise and we’ll meet them in the clouds and all in a split-second’s notice, this will occur. Now, again, this is not to say the dead won’t rise, they definitely will, but we’ve coupled that event along with the rapturing of the saints and for all intents and purposes . . .we could be very wrong about that concept. Is it a sin to think along those lines? No, again, this isn’t a salvation issue.

Next, we’ve been taught the anti-Christ will appear and the great Tribulation will begin. “God is far too good,” we’ve been taught, “to let his people go through too much Tribulation.” The implication of all that is, we are far too weak to survive through such an on-slaught of demonic activity unleashed around us.

So, as a result, God will mercifully bring it all to an end before his remnant is completely wiped out all together. And all the while, when all of this destruction and death is happening on the earth, we who are “in Christ” will be oblivious to it all while we’ll be partying hard in the marriage supper of the lamb. Receiving rewards and rejoicing and singing.

Just A Little Incomplete
Now, we’re not saying this is all totally wrong, we’re just saying, that’s only the half-truth. It’s only partially correct. What we’re dealing with is simply incomplete information. Many denominations today have so many different opinions on this that vary from a violent escape/rapture, to those that just don’t know. Three major conditions in the rapture of the church (keeping in mind the word rapture is simply not used anywhere in Scripture.) They are pre-Tribulation, mid-tribulation, and post-tribulation.

Along with this is, it is also taught that from Revelation 4 to 22 has not happened yet. It’s all prophetic. One of the major problems with this theory begins in the very beginning of Revelation where John is writing to the seven churches which are actual churches in literal operation in Asia. And John tells them “if you read and keep what’s in this book, you’ll be blessed”. If the events from chapter 4 to chapter 22 have not yet even occurred yet, then how on earth could believers 2000 years ago make any sense of it, let alone be blessed by it. There’s a problem with that picture.

This is based on simple deduction.
No high-sounding with theological terms and charts, just basic reasoning. If we could put ourselves in the shoes of the recipients of the churches that John wrote to and understood the level of persecution that was targeting them. And then pick up this letter and read up to the 4th separation or to us, chapter, and once there, as I read from there on I see images and symbols that are way over my head of understanding and things I’ve never heard of before, instead of being “blessed” I’m going to begin wondering about the author’s sanity. Perhaps the island of Patmos finally got the best of ol’ John there and he’s simply flipped out on us.

Are we arrogant enough to assume that it was God’s intention to encourage those that were being tortured in ways no man should ever experience, but by way of lifting their spirits, God would send a message directly to them about events that wouldn’t take place for a generation that would come along literally thousands of years later?

We quickly jump on the band-wagon of a philosophy simply because it’s better than the one we came up with on our own and thus, doctrine is borne out of it. This is what has happened to the church for hundreds of years. We have sold ourselves to believe a conclusion built on carnal understanding in a spiritual arena.

The Traditional Point of View
Okay, again, from my own experience, I have taught on this very subject of the three points of view on the rapture. I know it well. Pre-tribulation believers are those that believe God is going to turn to Jesus and say “It’s time, go get your bride”.

And at the blast of a literal, heavenly trumpet, all those who are servants of the most High God are going to be going about their daily routines and suddenly, their bodies are going to “transcend” through their clothes, houses, cars, airplanes, graves, etc. and these earthly bodies are going to be transformed in mid-air into our heavenly bodies. Immediately following this unexplainable phenomena, a physical man who is the anti-christ, who up until now has been working in preparation to take over the world behind the scenes politically, will step out and claim his position and take control of the world.

In the process of his actions, the Great Tribulation will have begun. And for the next 7 years, it will literally be hell on earth because the spirit of God has been lifted. That in and of itself is also an argument within the denominations. Some believe that can’t happen because the Bible says only those who are called to God can be saved.

If God leaves the earth, he can’t “call” the unbelievers to him and bring conviction up on them to be saved. In ignorance, I even preached myself that it will return to the days of the Old Testament where there will be only certain chosen people that carry the anointing like an Old Testament Prophet. Not realizing the reason why the law and the prophets were done away with was because Jesus fulfilled them both when he came and resurrected from a carnal death. But the term “Pre-tribulation” simply means the rapture will take place prior to the beginning of the seven-year tribulation period.

Mid-tribulation believers feel that the tribulation period will actually begin peacefully so no one can really know specifically “when” it will actually begin. But once we get half-way into the Great Tribulation, again, a physical man whom we believe is the anti-Christ will be exposed for who he really is and it’s at that point that the church will be raptured because that’s when the anti-Christ releases all of his evilness on the earth.

Post-tribulation believers feel that the Great Tribulation is actually God’s way of purging the world before taking the survivors. If you survive, you’ve proven your allegiance to God and it’s then that you’ll be raptured up into heaven to be with him forever and ever. But the common theme here is, there is to be a literal seven-year period where there will be acts so evil no man could ever imagine the horror of it all. And God is going to remove his servants from the earth, be it in the beginning, middle, or end of this great evil time.

There Will Most Definitely be a Physical Returning of Jesus Christ
Now, there are churches out there that will immediately jump to conclusions on the kingdom direction that we are presenting in that they will claim that we’re saying the second coming of Jesus isn’t going to happen. That’s not at all what this is saying. I believe in the coming of the Lord and I believe in the catching up of the saints (just not “away) I just don’t believe in the rapture that we’ve always been taught. Many believe in the disappearing of the church, but I believe the Bible is instead, telling us not only are we not going, but Jesus is coming. We’re not going to disappear, he’s going to come and “appear”. It’s not “thy kingdom go” it’s “thy kingdom come.”

Editor’s Note
Just got an email this week from a Jewish movement called “Temple Mount Faithful” they are a predominant religious movement in Israel that are totally focused on the rebuilding of the Jewish temple so they can reinstitute animal sacrifices to God again. I’ve tried to unsubscribe several times but they seem to ignore my requests. But I found it interesting that they are so absorbed in the condition of the natural stated of the dome, they believe God is going to cause it to literally collapse and they’ll then be able to take it by force. Yet another picture that is a perverted pattern to God’s order. God forces himself on no one, he comes only by invitation, or is that just me?

End Note

Nagging Issue of Loving Those I Can’t Wait to Leave
Many people have pasted bumper-stickers on their cars “warning” others that when the rapture happens, the car will self-destruct”. In other words . .”You’re on your own, I’m outa here!!!

Isn’t that just a bit in the opposite of what we’ve preached all those days we spent here on earth? Jesus prayer for the disciples was not to remove them, but to give them the strength to remain. We are to “love our neighbors . .” that’s the second most important commandment. So, if we are living that commandment, why would we then accept the mind-set that our “Great hope” is to be removed from the neighbors we supposedly love, and live forever in eternal bliss? The disarming ingredient is that the goal is to be with Christ not leaving here, but staying here “in him”.

The fact that my plan to live eternally with Christ, over-rides the idea that everyone else I’ve been living around can go to hell. Essentially, that’s the attitude we’re giving off when we get caught up in an emotion of what we think heaven is like and we don’t seem to mind that when we go, there is a world that is going to hell after we’re gone. But that’s what we preach, just not quite in that kind of light. We choose not to focus too much on that particular part of the Great Hope. Because if we did, it wouldn’t be so great anymore. Jesus didn’t just die “for” and “as” me, he died “for” and “as” US. My Great Hope has turned into a shade of self-righteous thinking.

Revelation 4:1 . .again . .
1Then I looked, and, oh!-a door open into Heaven. The trumpet-voice, the first voice in my vision, called out, "Ascend and enter. I'll show you what happens next."

What about the Trumpets?
In 1st Thessalonians 4 there is mention of another trumpet, which is to be what triggers the Rapture of the church. It is preached that the trumpet mentioned there is the trumpet being acknowledged here. The only problem with that is . .first, as we saw here in verse one, this trumpet is referred to as the first in his vision . . that’s because from chapter 4 on through chapter 11 in Revelation, other trumpets are being blown as well. So . . .actually, this is the opposite again of what we’ve been taught. 1st Thessalonians says it’s going to be the last trumpet that blows which will bring about the coming of the Lord. Here we see this isn’t the last, it’s the first.

2 Thessalonians 4
15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 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: 17 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. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

Remaining, Not Leaving
Twice he emphasizes the fact that those who are alive here on earth, are remaining. Secondly, there’s no indication at all here that once we have been caught up (not away) that there is no time where we’re leaving and then returning. This is where the rapture word derives from, a catching away of the saints. But it’s not a catching away, it’s a catching up.

There’s a difference. You can get “caught up” in the revelation of Jesus and not be “caught away” from the earth. But we’ve inserted our mentality into a picture that was never intended to be carnal. In fact it says that this transformation or transition is eternal. We’ll “forever” be with the Lord. If the rapture were truly going to take place as the tradition has taught, wouldn’t it only be fitting for Paul to have included that here with the plan God has for us? But he mentions nothing about us leaving while our loved ones who do not know Christ are rightfully judged with fire and torture.

Keeping in mind again, when John hears the voice calling him to “come up here”, John never literally leaves the Island of Patmos. He is “caught up” in the “spirit”. The reason this is being stressed is because the church today teaches that John here is seen as a type of the church and when he hears the words “come up here” it’s implying the rapture. But these theories usually go one of two ways. Either they’ll leave you with more unanswered questions than you started out with, or if you think you do have a clear understanding, then to continue with that line of thinking means you’ll have to ignore the original patterns God started out with in the first place.

It’s All in the Pattern
If we understand that this Bible which we know without a doubt is truly God’s word, it’s also his established pattern. If you know God’s pattern, you can unlock the areas of the unknown such as the book of Revelation. It’s never been God’s pattern to take anyone out of a situation. But he did many divine interventions in giving them strength to live through them. For example? Joseph in Genesis was sold into slavery. God didn’t remove him from there, he blessed him where he was at. Noah, God didn’t remove him from the earth, he had him build an ark, which is again, a shadow of Christ, our real ark. And Noah rode out the storm. The children of Israel being chased by the Egyptians into the Red Sea. God didn’t remove the Egyptians until he first led them through the Sea personally. It goes on and on. So why would he break his pattern of removal now?

Editor’s Note
Revelation 3:10
10"Because you kept my Word in passionate patience, I'll keep you safe in the time of testing that will be here soon, and all over the earth, every man, woman, and child put to the test.

This is another passage of Scripture, I personally have used this when I taught a class on Revelation myself. Because it states that God will keep us safe in the time of testing over all the earth for every man, woman and child, we’ve taught that to mean that the rapture will happen before the great tribulation. But again, for one, it’s not his pattern to remove us from the problem or remove the problem from us. But secondly, this time of testing is linked to a specific period of 7 years which the church calls, the 7 year tribulation, or the Great Tribulation, or Jacob’s trouble.
End Note

No Rapture, No 7-year Tribulation
But just like I don’t believe the Rapture is going to happen as the church has taught over the years, I also don’t believe there will be a literal 7 years of tribulation. Jesus himself stated in John 16 that in this world we will have trials and tribulation, but he didn’t say, “don’t worry, I’m taking you out.” But what he did say was, “be of good cheer . .be happy, take heart .I have already overcome the world. Doesn’t sound like were fixin’ to leave there, it sounds like he’s fixin’ to stay. If he’s telling us he’s overcome the world, then why would he still want to take us out of it?

Defining Tribulation
You can go back to any place in history and ask any Christian if they’ve never experience tribulation. You can go all the way back to the 1st century church, and as they are being sown inside the hides of animals and then turn wild animals on them as they tear them apart, or those that have been boiled in oil, filleted alive with knives, burned at the stake, on and on, and tell them they have not experienced tribulation? We’ve allowed godly men with misguided zeal, plant ungodly traditions in places where they never should have been planted. And now the light of truth is calling us back to a place in time of our original birthing place in the spirit to rebuild a house that God can actually abide in.

Now, after having said all of that about patterns and God not breaking his own established structure of truths, there are a couple men in Scripture where churches have referenced to be examples of the church being raptured. One example is that of Enoch. Scripture tells us that God simply took him because Enoch walked closely with God. No further explanation given. In fact, that’s the only place where there’s any mention at all about Enoch’s life-style. There are two references to him in the New Testament, one in Hebrews and the other in Jude.

He lived for 365 years before he left, but as far as what he was like in those years we’ll not know until our lives are met up with Christ and even then, it won’t really matter. But the church uses that example of Enoch being taken up to that of the church overall with the Rapture before the tribulation. One problem with that is, this occurred before the time of judgement. He lived far before the flood. He didn’t even know Noah. Jesus didn’t say “So as it was in the days of Enoch, so shall it be in the coming of the Son of man. He said as it was in the days of Noah. And as mentioned before, Noah wasn’t taken out, he was taken through.

We the church aren’t to be taken out either, but we’re to be taken through. Scripture says I am now in my ark. My life is hid with Christ and God. When the flood waters had dissipated it was the wicked that were removed, not the righteous. When the righteous stepped off the ark they inherited the earth. Paul never preached a message of fear or that we were going to escape battle, in fact in Ephesians 6 he tells us to arm ourselves with the armor of warfare of God so that we can face whatever comes and I quote from that same passage . .”In the evil day”. And once you’ve done all you can to prepare to stand, stand, not leave.

As this study goes on, we will go deeper into what Scripture actually does say about tribulation and such, but we need to stop reading Scripture in the literal sense that it is all about us. It’s generational pride that’s gone to seed. Every generation before us thought that they were the generation. It is the fearful, faithless and the wicked that seek a geographical place of hiding from fear of something or someone.

A Geographical Heaven?
Everyone has assumed that whenever all this happens we will zoom off the earth and end up in another geographical location. In just a bit, I’m going to challenge all that. Pictures have been drawn of Jesus illuminated in a cloud while Christians are being lifted up in all the cities below. These concepts and pictures have been multiplied by the thousands and the church has accepted them as fact and included them into their doctrinal beliefs, yet these conclusions have all missed the mark. What is the history on the origination of this whole pattern of thought of rapture, seven year tribulation . .all of that. Where did that theory originate in the church?

Edward Irving and Margaret McDonald are names that more than likely mean nothing to 99% of the church today. Their names are found in the encyclopedia Britannica, oddly enough. Edward Irving, who was a part of the Apostolic Catholic church in the early 1800’s was excommunicated by the Presbytery there. In 1833 he was condemned and deposed from ministry in the church of Scotland because of his teaching concerning first of all, the sinfulness of Christ’ humanity. He also began to teach on a rapture of the church that had never been heard of in church history before that time. We need to be aware of what church history states.

He began preaching on this theology when a young Scottish girl named Margaret McDonald went into a trance and she described a vision in which she saw the saints of the Lord leaving the earth. Now, many are all ready geared up with questions about what other Scriptures say about the belief of the rapture besides Revelation and I promise, every one of them will be covered. Don’t let your mind run ahead of this. The carnality of the church has a habit of jumping to conclusions of the outcome because “we’ve heard it all before and we ‘know’ the truth” so they close down to what the truth really is because of being preconditioned to the theories of men.

Editor’s note
This is also where the church has problems because we have not learned and exercised our souls or minds to be subjected to our spirits so that we can be taught spiritual things from the Holy Spirit. We think we “have” to understand everything right now because Scripture says we are to “study to show ourselves approved” so we base all we know and believe on our own personal study time. But again, we’ve kind of done things backwards only because that’s the way we’ve been taught.

What really should be the focus on those in schooling for ministries is to learn how to submit to our spirits. That means, get your mind out of the way and let God’s spirit bear witness with your spirit. This is the hardest thing to understand. But what it simply is saying is, you do not have to, nor are you required to understand every word you read or hear preached about the things of God. How is that possible? Look at it this way. . .

Powerful Tree Analogy
Scripture often refers to humanity with the symbolism of a tree. There are so many parts to a tree that many don’t even realize it. But what you see above the earth is only the half of the tree. Under-ground there is a network of roots supporting the tree that there are literally as many roots covering as much space underground, as the trunk, limbs and leaves are covering above the ground.

When the rain comes, it does not benefit the tree nearly as much as it benefits the roots of the tree. The roots of the tree are like the spirit is to a man. The word of God is spiritual water to a man’s spirit. Like the limbs and leaves, the soul and body, the other two ingredients to a man, are not required to digest the food or water of the spirit and still flourish. But if the spirit does not have that spiritual nourishment, it will definitely wither away and die, yet the man will still live in the flesh, even though spiritually he’s dead. And to be physically alive but spiritually dead is no different than a tree that is dead, neither can produce any fruit.

Soul Linked to Carnal mindsets
This is why Jesus response to one of the disciples requesting to take time away from the ministry Christ was calling them to so he could bury his father who’d just passed away. Jesus responded by telling them to let the dead bury the dead. So when we read the word, it’s intended for our spirit and not our soul. Why? Because our soul lives in the carnal world bases it’s decisions on carnal understanding and information. But when dealing in the spiritual, it comes in seed form and begins to grow from the inside out. Which then the soul, if in submission to the spirit, responds to the information that the spirit relays to it.

Thus, the Holy spirit bearing witness with my spirit, then, my spirit influencing my soul or thought process which then relays orders to the body where the change on the inside is now being displayed on the outside. But the key is, in the beginning, the soul or the mind does not understand the reasoning for the Spirit’s direction but this is the most defining moment in the livelihood of the body. If the soul rejects the complexity of some of the deeper things of the spirit, the growth to both spirit and body stop.

The Arguing of the Soul
That’s why we say these things of the kingdom are a process. It takes time for the spirit to grow enough for the soul to piece the things together. So the bottom line is, don’t get upset or frustrated if you don’t understand things right away. Let them process in your spirit and in due time, full and complete understanding will come.

Even then, it will never end, there will always be spiritual growth, always. As long as the soul is mature enough to be silent when the spirit is being fed. Soulish noise and distraction stunts the growth of one’s spirit. In other words, your spirit can’t receive the deeper things from God if your mind is continually questioning and resisting what’s being said. We are not required to know and understand every spiritual concept and pattern immediately, it comes clearer to our soul or mind as our spirit grows stronger in the things of God. Submission is the key.
End of note.

Back to Margaret’s Vision
Okay, Margaret’s vision from her trance was a picture of the church literally elevating into the heaven’s. She said she saw them leave before the Tribulation and her entire vision was printed and published in 1861, thirty years later by R. N. Norton in London England. When we see Revelation being preached today, many of the teachers and preachers will pull out charts and maps and drawings of time lines and such, piecing all the events Revelation speaks of together and in the end, it truly does look like a complicated mess. I’ve seen some of the maps myself. I’ve even used the charts and passed them out as well.

They are the work of a man named Clarence Larkin. Clarence Larkin wrote a book called “Dispensational Truth.” It’s still on the bookshelves today and it’s been accepted by the general evangelical churches as truth and is also very closely connected to a man named “Scolfield”. Many carry Bibles that were published with this man’s backing. Most all of our Bible interpretation teachings are taught from the dispensational teaching that originated with Larkin who is also considered as a major architect, a frustrated architect that thought he’d take a shot at Bible interpretation.

Tongues Are Considered Demonic?
You can still buy his book today in any Christian bookstore. If you see it, thumb over to the passages concerning his take on the book of Revelation and you’ll read that it is his belief, as well as many non-pentecostals, that the reference to the unclean spirits that came out of the mouth of the dragon that were like frogs. He’ll tell you that one of those unclean spirits that came out of the dragon is the gift of tongues. Now, if I’m going to trust this guy to interpret all of the book of revelation to me and he teaches that tongues is a spirit from the devil, then we’re in serious trouble. If he’s wrong on that, then you can be sure there are other areas where he’s missed it as well.

Editor’s note
As I write this all out, I’m hearing it for the first time from the tape series myself. The last interjection I put in here was all before I heard this last bit on tongues being from the devil. The reason I’m jumping in again is to further revelate a bit. If we understand the pattern of the Holy Spirit bearing witness with my spirit, not just on my own salvation, but on communication as well as communion with God on any level, the idea of the tongues being of the devil is extremely unsettling to me.

People will quickly respond to these differences by simply stating that it’s okay to have a different opinion as long as it’s not a Salvation issue, as I discussed earlier. This is true, yet this man, Larkin, is not just having a difference of opinion, he has published his opinion and the church has swallowed it hook, line and sinker. The reason this is so unsettling is the fact that as Scripture states, we are all of the same body with the same Spirit giving us power and direction. But when a man steps up, supposedly being of the same Spirit, and openly rejects the Spirit and the church overlooks the differences and establishes the rest of his doctrine as truth, I sense an extremely dangerous cancer has been released “within” the body of the church

Addressing the Red Flags
How can the Holy Spirit bear witness to this man’s Spirit if he rejects the Holy Spirit from the beginning? Not only is God rebuilding his house the to the original pattern He started out with, but he’s also purging out the cancer that infiltrated in the body in the first place. The bottom line is, we've based our eschatological theology on a man’s opinion that is becoming painfully apparent that he wasn’t even basing his theories and opinions on spiritual concepts. He transformed spiritual symbolism over to carnality and we bought it.
End of note

Misguided Devotion
I know that the three unclean spirits like frogs Revelation is talking about is not the gift of tongues. It’s from the Holy Spirit and he is not an unclean spirit, he is the Spirit of the Almighty God. Why is it we have been willing to receive the hand-me-downs of the teaching of the fundamentalist’s . .many of us were born again through the invitation of the fundamentalist’s and we found our redemption in the blood of the lamb as well as the baptism of the Holy Ghost. These things are wonderful and we can not survive without them. But since then, we’ve gone beyond that because we realize there’s so much more to this experience with the Lord Jesus than just knowing Him and his atoning death.

And now we’re learning that all the things we were told to stay away from we’ve been lied to about. Intentional or not intentional, the truth of it all is, we were misled into believing many things Scriptures said is not actually what was said. Many churches still tell their members to stay away from “tongue talker’s” until it got on you and once it did, you realized they were lying to you because they were afraid. How many people have heard of the warnings of those against becoming radically out of control to the point you talk gibberish that neither you nor those hearing you have any idea of what you’re saying. That in and of itself tells me to use extreme caution with these types of people when they begin speaking about the things of God because there is no “spirit-to-spirit” communication happening within them. No judgement, no condemnation, but extreme caution, or in other words, wisdom.

One With Experience is No Match For Anyone With An Argument
Once you’ve experienced the baptism of the Spirit, it’s almost impossible to have anyone even try to convince you that the experience then and forever more in my spiritual life is not of God. There is too much “spirit-to-spirit” confirmation within you happening for you to reject it’s authenticity. Yet we’ve accepted their hand-me-down traditional teaching while they rejected the gift of tongues or the Apostolic restoration of today and we’ve simply accepted everything they’ve said.

Denominational Birthing Injected With Existing Theory
The denomination that Randall Worley was born and raised it, originated in 1886 when a group of Baptists got together with some of their Methodist friends in North Carolina and experienced the baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. They started a new denomination because of the baptism, yet the teachings of the rapture and such, originating from those against the Spirit were still brought with them. Larkin’s book is predominantly accepted by the Baptist denomination, however all evangelicals, including Pentecostals, have accepted the majority of his teachings to be accurate. The truth is, the man was nothing more than a wandering star.

No Sign of Rapture Before 1800’s
Apostles had always preached that the church would go victoriously through the tribulation. There’s no record of an escape/rapture theory being preached before 1830. It was from this supposed revelation that the modern doctrine lingo and phraseology that we here so often originated. Edward Irving accepted this teaching and taught this at prophetic meetings in Ireland.

People like John Darby, C. H. Macintosh and C. I. Scolfield, previously mentioned, all took this theory and established it as doctrine. But it was a young Scottish girl that originally had this idea and even then, it’s historically known that they were not certain that she was even born again, let alone filled with the Spirit. But because she was having visions concerning the Bible, they accepted it.

Proverbs 2:21, 22
For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall REMAIN in it, but THE WICKED shall be cut off (taken/destroyed) from the earth and the transgressors shall be rooted OUT of it.

Proverbs 10:30

The righteous shall NEVER be REMOVED but the wicked shall not inhabit the earth.

Job 38:13
(Speaking to God) ...take hold of the ends of the earth that THE WICKED might be shaken OUT of it.

Psalm 37:29
The righteous shall inherit the land (earth) and dwell therein FOREVER.

Psalm 37:9-11
For evildoers (WICKED) shall be cut off (destroyed); but those that wait upon the Lord shall inherit the earth.

Isaiah 13:9
Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger...and He shall destroy the sinners thereof OUT of it (the earth).

Psalm 104:35
Let the sinners be consumed OUT OF THE EARTH (world), and let the wicked be no more.

So, Scolfield along with Clarence Larkin used these charts and maps to establish this rapture theory and 7 year tribulation. It was in the early 1900’s the Lord emphasized the nearness of the coming of the Lord and the church blended that in with this rapture theory and that’s how it became what it is today. The truth is, and it’s extremely important we understand this clearly, Christ is coming back. He is truly returning to this earth.

2 Tape Seven part 2 on Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:46 pm



The Wicked are Taken
So, what about the teaching of Matthew 24 concerning one being taken and another left? Again, it was the wicked that were taken in Noah’s day, and the righteous were left to inherit the earth.

Matt. 24:36
36 "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of *heaven, but My Father only. 37 But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 38 For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left.

In verse 38, it’s important to understand who it is that’s doing the eating and the drinking, marrying and giving in marriage. It’s not the church. It’s the ungodly. Right? Because he then goes on to say this went on until Noah entered the ark. In reading this entire story in Genesis, you’ll learn Noah was not eating and drinking, he was building an ark.

So it’s clear that it’s speaking of the unrighteous. Now, notice what happens in verse 39. The flood did not take Noah away, it took the ungodly away. That, without a doubt, “is” God’s pattern. It’s the ungodly that are leaving this earth, not the godly. We are being spared in the ark, not being raptured away, but being spared “in” the ark. Didn’t Jesus himself leave us with the command that anything we ask “in his name” that is in the will of the Father, will be done? Why? Because we are “in” Christ. He is our ark. There is only one door.

Jhn 10:9
I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.

But when that door is closed, like the ark of Noah, there is no entering in

Luke 13:25
When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are

Jesus is the Door
So we understand clearly, Jesus not only is the ark, he is the door. Those who enter into him will be protected, again, just like they were in the days of Noah. But also, the wicked will be taken, just like in the days of Noah, not the righteous. The righteous will inherit all the land after the wicked are removed, just like in the days of Noah. So, we then ask, if it’s like it was in the days of Noah, every living creature was destroyed by the flood or judgement of God, is this to say then that will also happen again? I think that’s why Jesus immediately went on to further explain but the church has reversed what Jesus was saying.

One Taken The Other Left
When Jesus said one shall be taken and the other left, the church has taught that it means the believer will go and the unbeliever will remain. But it’s going to be the other way around. Lets now read that whole context in the Message Version. This is also connected with the year of Jubilee, the one leaving is the one in debt returning home, the one staying is the one who owns the land.

Matthew 24 (Message Translation)
30"Then, the Arrival of the Son of Man! It will fill the skies--no one will miss it. Unready people all over the world, outsiders to the splendor and power, will raise a huge lament as they watch the Son of Man blazing out of heaven. 31At that same moment, he'll dispatch his angels with a trumpet-blast summons, pulling in God's chosen from the four winds, from pole to pole 32"Take a lesson from the fig tree. From the moment you notice its buds form, the merest hint of green, you know summer's just around the corner. 33So it is with you: When you see all these things, you'll know he's at the door. 34Don't take this lightly. I'm not just saying this for some future generation, but for all of you. This age continues until all these things take place. 35Sky and earth will wear out; my words won't wear out.36"But the exact day and hour? No one knows that, not even heaven's angels, not even the Son. Only the Father knows. 37"The Arrival of the Son of Man will take place in times like Noah's. 38Before the great flood everyone was carrying on as usual, having a good time right up to the day Noah boarded the ark. 39They knew nothing--until the flood hit and swept everything away. "The Son of Man's Arrival will be like that: 40Two men will be working in the field--one will be taken, one left behind; 41two women will be grinding at the mill--one will be taken, one left behind. 42So stay awake, alert. You have no idea what day your Master will show up. 43But you do know this: You know that if the homeowner had known what time of night the burglar would arrive, he would have been there with his dogs to prevent the break-in. 44Be vigilant just like that. You have no idea when the Son of Man is going to show up. 45"Who here qualifies for the job of overseeing the kitchen? A person the Master can depend on to feed the workers on time each day. 46Someone the Master can drop in on unannounced and always find him doing his job. A God-blessed man or woman, I tell you. 47It won't be long before the Master will put this person in charge of the whole operation.
48"But if that person only looks out for himself, and the minute the Master is away does what he pleases-- 49abusing the help and throwing drunken parties for his friends-- 50the Master is going to show up when he least expects it 51and make hash of him. He'll end up in the dump with the hypocrites, out in the cold shivering, teeth chattering

Editor’s note
There’s so much here that I see now that I’ve never noticed before. First off, in verse 30 it states that no one is going to miss this. All the world is going to see the coming of the Lord. It is preached that the Rapture is going to happen in a split second. The blinking of an eye. It’s to happen so fast that no one is going to see anything. One minute you’re there, the next you’re gone. So already it doesn’t fit. Then in verse 31 it says all God’s chosen are going to be “pulled in”. Not lifted out. No one is leaving the earth, but there is going to be a uniting of the church.

Spiritual Gathering
On this same point, those being gathered together may not even be those that are alive on the earth. I believe it may mean the cloud of witnesses that are currently surrounding the saints all over the earth as we speak, as Hebrews 12:1 speaks about. They will be gathered together in preparation to return here with Christ, but not as a rapture, but to live here with us as then we’ll all be transformed into our spiritual bodies and the curse on the earth will also be lifted. It will no longer be life as we know it, but it will also not be a rapturing of any church either.

To “This” Generation
Verse 34 in this translation makes it very plain that Jesus is not speaking about something 2000 years later that’s to happen. But that’s exactly what we’ve preached. We’ve preached that what he’s saying is, the generation that sees all of those signs happening will be the generation that sees the Rapture of the church. Wow, how wrong I have been. This isn’t even the first time he said this, he’d just said this to those in the temple in chapter 23:36

Quickly, the warning he’s giving to that generation was the destruction of the entire religious system of that day. It was at the end of that generation he spoke to, about 40 years later in 70 A.D. when the Romans completely slaughtered Israel, including the temple and everything it stood for. Never again has there been one day or one priest that has burned a sacrifice on an altar unto the Lord. Jesus is the substance for which all of those laws stood for and when he came, he fulfilled everyone of them.

Seeing it Through Eyes of Life
Verse 39 again we see it’s not the sweeping away of the saints, but it’s the sweeping away of the ungodly. This is so exciting to see for the first time we’ve looked at this through the eyes of law instead of life and now, it’s becoming clearer and clearer that there is so much we thought we knew that we don’t have a clue on! But that’s all changing! Okay, in verse 42 Jesus uses an analogy of a homeowner guarding against the thief. Who is the homeowner? I think it’s safe to conclude that it is the believer. The things he is protecting are the things God has given to him. Now, because this is in the context of the rest of what used to be rapture doctrine, it’s been a bit twisted as well.

A “Home-owner’s” Perspective
I think we had the owner/believer figured out, but no one ever thought to raise the question, why was Jesus using this analogy of a homeowner? Why couldn’t he have said a “traveler”? Or a “visitor”? See, by using the rapture theory, those ideas would work because we’ve also taught that this world is not my home, that I’m just passing through. And if that’s the case, then why would Jesus use a homeowner in his parable?

A homeowner has permanent residence. And if there is a rapture coming to take him away from his home, why then would he be instructed to defend it from the thief? Bottom line, Jesus is indicating that the church is not going anywhere. He is definitely coming here, but when he comes, he’s coming to removed the wickedness, not the righteous.

This is also as I touched on earlier, connected to the fact that Jesus is the Jubilee! He “is” the all time, once and for all, liberator. In the year of Jubilee, any who were working as slaves to pay off a debt were released and sent to their homes, debt free. Any loans that they had against them, or others, were all considered to be wiped out and the entire nation of Israel was to start with a clean slate. This occurred every 50 years . . .we’ll get into this much more in the breaking of the seals.

And lastly, for me, in verse 49 he again ties this parable in with the days of Noah again illustrating the ungodly abusing others and throwing drunken parties. That is the same as eating and drinking in the days of Noah. One big irreverent party of ungodly people totally oblivious to the intimacy God so badly longs to have with us. But in verse 51, he again illustrates it’s the wicked that are going to be removed to the place where there is “gnashing of teeth”. No reference at all to the rapture of a church.

Incidentally, there is a passage of Scripture in Luke that correlates what we’ve just read in Matthew 24. But even in Luke, there is another extremely telling verse that so many ignore when trying to declare the timelines of the rapturing of the church are connected with the state of the world is in today.

Luke 17
20 And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: 21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you

Instead of trying to predicted when and where the kingdom of God is coming, perhaps we should just let all of that jargon go and get our minds to shut up so our spirits can hear and then see, the kingdom of God is in the most unlikely place, the last place you’d ever think of, it’s not just already here, it’s “in” you! Talk about having a sense of humor. It’s so funny it’s sad. End of Note

Luke 17, the parallel passage to this same teaching from Christ says much of the same thing, but it adds yet another example of Lot in Sodom and Gomorrah. Lot was never lifted up and disappeared to anywhere. He was led out of the city and it was the city that was destroyed, taken out of the picture, not Lot. Lot continued on afterwards and even fathered other children.

1st Thessalonians 4:13-
13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 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: 17 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. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words

This is another major reference used to support the rapture theory. But again, if that’s not God’s pattern, to remove the righteous in order to deal with the unrighteous, then lets look at this again and see what we did wrong. First off, verse thirteen gives us the subject matter. Paul is not attempting to explain the rapturing of the saints. He’s explaining what happens to those saints who have died..

Bringing the Dead Back With Him
Verse 14 begins to form or connect to the true pattern of God through his statement at the end of that verse. Those godly people who are dead, God is going to bring them back with him. If there is to be a rapture, as we’ve been led to believe, then already it’s not fitting because our belief was, the dead were going to raise up from the ground and go to heaven with us. But here he clearly says he’s bringing the dead . .not the raptured church, just the dead, he’s bringing them back with him. The question that begs to be answered here is . .back from where?

Quite the Web of Leaving and Returning . . .Traditionally.
(2 Corinthians 5 when you die your body goes to one place and your spirit goes to another.)But at the coming of the Lord the order is reversed. We will see our loved ones again, but as we saw in verse 14, we’re not leaving to go see them, they’ll be returning to come see us. Is there a heaven? Of course. Will we go to heaven?

Absolutely, but it’s not what we’ve been taught in the past. We’ve been taught that the dead in Christ will return from heaven, reconnect with their bodies in the physical graves, then return to heaven with us for a seven year celebration, then return to earth for a millennium, then the old earth and old heaven well be destroyed as a new earth and a new heaven will then be created for which we’ll all then live eternally.

Caught Up or Caught Away
The Scripture here does say we’ll be caught up, but it doesn’t say we’ll be caught “away”. There’s a big difference here and we need to be careful making jumps that aren’t there. Nor does it say anything about us coming down after we’ve been caught up. In fact it’s just the opposite! Once we’re “caught up”, it states that we’ll be with him “eternally” there, no mention of returning for 1,000 years! Once I get caught up in that realm of glory that he’s speaking about here, where Jesus is, don’t ever let anyone convince you you’re coming back down. But that’s what we’ve been taught.

But once we get caught up in that realm where Jesus lives now, everyday, all the time, in that place where there’s no sickness or pain, no aging or death, once we get into that realm, once we’re “caught up” into that dimension of life, there is no coming back to mortality. And there’s no place in Scripture that will tell you there’s a coming down after a going up. Man has taught that, not Scripture.

The Bride Isn’t Leaving, the Groom is Coming
Song writers has implied that Jesus is coming to take his bride away. But the Bible has never indicated that Jesus is going to remove his bride from the planet. When it speaks of being caught up, it’s not speaking in terms of being light-years away. Heaven isn’t that far away from here. We think in terms of time and space because we are a finite being. Our understanding is greatly limited. God has put us in a universe of planetary systems. When astronomers look out they see black holes they can’t describe. But God has put us in a time/space dimension because he knows in our finite minds that’s how we caculate and comprehend.

The Cloud of Hebrews 12
The third dimension we talk about is the dimension of heaven. Whenever the apostle talks about in the 12th chapter of Hebrews verse one that we are encompassed about by great clouds of witnesses is he talking about a physical cloud? No, he’s talking about saints being encompassed by others who’ve already passed on.

This is much like you being at a football game and you’re in the stadium and the players are on the field. You are in an amphitheater encompassing them. If the author of Hebrews saw that same set up . . .actually, he did, and he used the clouds as an analogy or illustration of the mass of people encompassing about. There is a distance between you and the players on the field, but you are at a different dimension or level than they are. You’re still alive and in the game, they “were” in the game but have passed on and are now encompassing you from the seated throne of God. But the cloud he’s referring to is not a literal cloud, but it’s symbolism.

The author goes on to talk about the great patriarchs of the Old Testament and he says those guys are in an amphitheater around us. They are encompassing us. Whenever Jesus is on the mount of transfiguration, Moses and Elijah immediately appear there with him. Did they leave heaven to join him? Did they just cross thousands of lightyears of miles to be with him? No, they were already there, they just changed their appearance so they could be seen by Peter James and John. But they were always there, we just can’t see them with our naked eye, but that don’t mean they’re not there in the spirit!

If we are encompassed about by witnesses it’s not a matter of distance, but a matter of dimensions.

Remember Elisha when he was encompassed by the enemy and his servant was completely shaken by the image, Elisha’s response was “There are more on our side that are here than there are of them.” But the servant couldn’t see and it wasn’t until Elisha prayed over his servant for his eyes to be opened that he could actually see himself the army of angels encompassed about. Spiritually we too need to pray that our eyes of understanding will be opened so that we too can see the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Here’s the question, were those angels there before the servants eyes were opened? Absolutely!! It’s a matter of seeing the dimension of heaven. The song book theology that we’ve been conditioned to takes us away from the truth to the point that there’s no way we can reach it. Scripture says we’re to be caught up in the air, not into space. You realize there’s no air in space? The men before us have conditioned our minds to practically cower in fear from their sermons on the fire and brimstone of hell.

Or they’ve got us actually praying that God will remove us from our uncomfortable situation and rapture us away into cozy land with our powder puff white garments and our beautiful singing voices that we can’t wait to leave the neighbor we’re supposed to be loving as much as ourselves. And neither of those extremes are even close to being accurate. Yet we’ve not only swallowed it, we’re defending it and rebuking those who are actually bold enough to stand and say we’ve missed the boat of truth!

Instilling Fear to Cling to Life
Think about this. Those of us who were godly when we were children, was there ever a situation in your home when you happened to be alone and the first thing that occurs to your mind is that you’ve been left behind ? The church will automatically take a position of saying to that “good” maybe that fear will keep them after God. The question is, at what point does Scripture use fear tactics as an introduction to salvation? See how the flesh works? We reverse the freedom and turn it into fearful bondage and call it salvation!

Up? OR Away?
The way to introduce people to Christ is not through fear, but through relationship. We’re not to focus on the coming of the Lord, but the Lord of the coming. So, what does it mean to be caught up? Again when the Bible speaks of being caught up, it’s not to be interpreted that it’s lightyears away.

2 Corinthians 12
1 It is not expedient for me doubtless to glory. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord.
2 I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.
3 And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;)
4 How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.

Paul calls this place paradise and the 3rd heaven. Ephesians 1:3, God “hath” blessed us in heavenly places in Christ. Eph. 2:6 he hath (past tense) raised us up together

Ephesians 1:3
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

Ephesians 2:4-6
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) 6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

Paul’s Heavenly Experiences
Paul had already experienced the first two heavens being salvation and the baptism of the Holy Spirit, now God caught him up in the third dimension. One of the times this could have very well happened was when he was left for dead when he was stoned. God raised him up from the dead. Don’t get carried away with this however, it’s nothing more than an opinion. Scripture doesn’t verify that this was when one of the times that Paul was caught up had happened. It does say that he was stoned and left for dead but then if you continue reading on, you’ll find that Paul went back into the city on his own accord and continued doing the very thing he was just stoned for.

Which Way is Up?
Another common sense question is “Which way is up?” We’ll all point toward the sky, but if you think about it, if those on the North Pole are pointing sky-ward which is presumably up, which way are those pointing who are on the South Pole when asked to point up? Granted, this question alone would be flimsy at best if that’s the only reasoning one had as a defense toward convincing others the rapture isn’t going to happen like we think. But as we hopefully can see by now, it’s more of a precept that’s built off of others. And the idea of a church literally “going up” really is a bit confusing once you think all of the concepts through.

A few facts
Stratocumulus clouds range from the ground level to 6,500 feet. A little over a mile.
Altocumulus clouds go from 6,500 feet up to 23,000 feet. 4 miles out.
The cirrocumulus clouds, the highest order of clouds range from 16,500 to 45,000 feet high. Just less than 9 miles. That’s still not outer-space. In fact, in our modern age today, we have high speed jets that travel in that higher altitude all the time. So, if the Rapture were to happen while the saints were in those planes, they’d have to be “caught-down” instead of caught up. A little levity

The Clouds
The Bible never says Jesus returns to the clouds or on the clouds. It’s very careful to tell us he comes “in” the clouds or “with” the clouds of heaven. Revelation 1:7 speaks of him coming “with” the clouds, Matthew 24:30, 26:64, Mark 13:26, 14:62 1 Thessalonians 4:17, they all say “in” the clouds

Matthew 24:30
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.

Matthew 26:64
64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven

Mark 13:26
26 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory

Mark 14:62
62 And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

1 Thessalonians 4:17
17 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

I remember growing up as a child, it was taught that he’d come in clouds, which means as long as there was sunshine, you didn’t have to worry about missing the rapture, which was the result of the teaching, it wasn’t focused on experiencing it as much as it was on missing it. But even as I was growing up, I still remember thinking . . .how can it be cloudy all over the world at the same time?

The Clouds of Hebrews
We’ve touched a bit on this earlier, but for better understanding, try reading the eleventh chapter of the book of Hebrews and count all the names that the author mentions. In verse 4, there’s Cain and Able. Verse 5, Enoch. Noah, in verse seven. Abraham in verse 8. Sarah in verse 11. Isaac in seventeen and Jacob and Esau in verse twenty, Joseph in verse 22 and Moses in verse 23. Rahaab, the converted harlot in verse 31. Then we hit the mother-load in verse 32 where he mentions the names of Gedeon, Samson, David, and Samuel, and [of] the prophets: He then broadens it all out by referring to all believers that were spiritually raised from the dead by their conversion (Need to touch on that in a minute) and the martyrs for Christ. After he mentions all of these people, he opens the next chapter with something again, we have so often missed.

Hebrews 12:1
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset [us], and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

Who is the Cloud?
That first sentence really jumps out at me now. He’s actually saying that all of these people or as he calls them, witnesses, they are all compassed about, or all around us. But the point I’m actually trying to go for is his terminology. These witnesses are not “in” a cloud, they “are” the cloud.

Then we see in Hebrews 11:35 something also very telling.
Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection:

Even in the Message Version it says the same thing:
35Women received their loved ones back from the dead. There were those who, under torture, refused to give in and go free, preferring something better: resurrection.

Dead coming back to life? Why, isn’t that supposed to be what happens at the rapture? All the dead in Christ shall rise and those of us who are “alive” and remain shall rise up and join them “in” a cloud to meet the Lord in the air? Yet we see here in Hebrews where that has already happened. How can that be? Easy, heaven is a dimension, not a geographical area. Read what the Bible says and you’ll see in the Spirit what the Spirit is trying to say. We are encompassed by not only the angelic, but also demonic, as well as what we see here, our own ancestral families.

Your Mind Having a Hard Time Grasping This?
Now immediately people grab this and try to imagine these other beings are in the same room right now with us, but they’re not in the room, they’re in a dimension that we can’t grasp with our carnal understanding. But we can grasp it with our spiritual. Is this to say that there is such a thing as ghosts?

Paul says that we are either in our body, or with Christ. The question is, “where” is Christ? It’s difficult to get our carnal mind to grasp the concept of heaven being a dimension rather than a geographic place. Take your time and let the Holy Spirit speak to your spirit, not your mind or soul. When you learn how this works, you will begin to see the angelic beings that were around Elisha are around you also. But the main focus is to always be on Christ.

Hebrews 12:1,2
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset [us], and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

So according to verse one, the Old Testament saints that have gone on to be with the Lord are the witnesses that make up the cloud which encompasses us. But there are other types of cloud references that are connected to just the opposite.

2 Peter 2:17
These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever
17There's nothing to these people--they're dried-up fountains, storm-scattered clouds, headed for a black hole in hell.

Jude 1:12
These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds [they are] without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;

Both tell us that false ministries are clouds without water. They appear to be a witness but they have no life to offer. Scripture often addresses there is a cloud of glory that often is visible when Jesus approaches. Does this mean when we get to heaven (geographically) we’re going to see a literal mist or atmospheric cloud or fog containing the presence of Jesus that we can barely make him out?

Acts 1:7
And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.

Because this is such an important event taking place and the church of our father’s have often used this as a basis for the rapture, let’s look at this in the context of which it was written.

Acts 1:9
And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. Act 1:10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Act 1:11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven

Twinkling of an Eye?
This is where the church will say that when He returns, it’s going to be in the same manner that he left and that means he’s coming in tangible clouds and when he steps out of the cloud, we’ll see him and the dead will come up out of their graves and we’ll all rise up with the dead and meet him in the air and then we’ll be transported into heaven. Something just occurred to me. Our belief is that this will all happen in a split second of time. In the blink of an eye. It will take you longer to sneeze that it will to be raptured. But yet in the same breath, we use this passage to back up that theology.

What’s wrong with that picture? Well, “if” Jesus is coming back the same way he left, it’s not going to happen in a twinkling of an eye. He didn’t just vanish, he simply floated gradually out of their sight. Had he vanished in a split second, they wouldn’t have known to continue staring into space. See how things don’t seem to fit as well as we thought they did once you slow down and let the Scriptures say what is written as opposed to the Scriptures saying what someone interprets?

Psalm 34:7 says the angel of the Lord encamps round about those that fear him.

Message translation
7GOD's angel sets up a circle of protection around us while we pray.

The Angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him [who revere and worship Him with awe] and each of them He delivers. (Notice it says nothing about “removing” but instead, “delivering ‘through’”)

They’re Round About “Constantly”
That word “encamps” is not a temporary implication. It’s stating they are embedded around the godly. They are there . . .all the time. The concept we need to begin to realize that when an angel appears, it’s not traveling light-years to reach us, it’s simply stepping out of one dimension into the next.

Heaven is a dimensional place, but it’s also a place where we too can go without even leaving our body, but it can only happen by the permission of God and it only happens, for now, in the spirit. Because heaven is not a physical place, it’s a spiritual one. This is why it’s so hard to comprehend with our mind, it’s not to be physically seen yet, the time is coming when that will change with the coming of the Lord, but for now, it’s still a spiritual dimension. Is this getting any clearer?

What really happens to meet the Lord in the air? Not in outerspace, or the sky, but the air?

1 Thessalonians 4:
15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep 16 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: 17 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.
18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words

This is the “Air” I Breathe . . .
What is it that we breathe? Air, right? Is there air in outer space? Does this passage say we’re going to meet him in the air or outer space? Even when airplanes fly at their high altitudes, they have to take air with them. There is no air that high. Oh, there’s space, but it’s not air because you can’t breathe. For those who want to take this passage literally, lets see what the original meaning for air was in the Greek.

1) the air, particularly the lower and denser air as distinguished from the higher and rarer air
2) the atmospheric region
from aemi (to breathe unconsciously, i.e. respire; by analogy, to blow

None of this is pointing toward us being taken up into outer space. But if anything, it’s pointing toward a dimensional understanding rather than a literal one because the air it’s referring to is air that is life-giving. The words “caught up” are actually words used for the Greek word harpazo

Editor’s Note
I’ve pulled up a quick word study on “caught up” to show that in each occasion, no one left the earth physically. Yet as soon as we come to this passage in 1 Thessalonians, we trip all over it because we’ve been taught so much that this is dealing with the rapture. To me, what it’s dealing with is not the rapture, but the coming of the Lord and the “catching up” is simply saying that in Paul’s day, there were only a handful of people who were caught up into the spiritual dimension, but when Jesus returns, all of life will be “in” the third dimension. We’ll ALL be in that realm, not just one or two individuals along the way.

That’s what happened to Paul, he wasn’t caught “away” he was caught “up”. The bride isn’t going to be caught away, she’s going to be caught up. When Jesus physically returns just as they saw him go, there is going to be a restoration that we’ve never considered in that all of the earth will be released from it’s curse since Adam had fallen. Remember where Adam was before he fell? He was in a spiritual state. Remember the proper order of God’s alignment? Our “spirit” is to be leading our soul with our bodies following in last. That’s the original order of all things. But when Adam chose to eat of the tree of knowledge, which is the core of your mind, the original order was then changed to soulish leading the spiritual.

Because the earth was under Adam’s dominion, it too was cursed with the same order. Animals that were vegetarians became flesh-eating machines. It’s all part of the curse, but more importantly, that which is spiritual went into the back and that which is in the natural came to the front. But when Jesus returns, he’s restoring EVERYTHING back to it’s rightful order. Spiritual will once again be dominant over natural.

2Cr 12:2
I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.
2Cr 12:4 How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
1Th 4:17 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.
Rev 12:5 And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and [to] his throne.

1) to seize, carry off by force
2) to seize on, claim for one's self eagerly
3) to snatch out or away

Incidentally, there “is” a passage that does deal with being caught away. It’s in Acts where Phillip was “caught away” and God basically moved him to another location 20 miles away both spirit and body. But that’s not leaving the earth either, it’s simply crossing over into the spiritual dimension and reappearing again. The idea of the rapturing of the church just isn’t God’s pattern. Even though this is something the majority of the mainline churches have embraced, we seem to have the mindset that there’s no way that the church could be wrong. . .well, we’re saying it now.

Another issue with that passage in 1 Thessalonians 4, people are so adamant that it’s referring to the rapture, perhaps they can explain why, in that same passage, there’s no indication of the church coming back 7 years later . .all it says is, we’ll “forever be” with him in the air. If that truly was referring to a temporary escape, wouldn’t there be some indication of that? Keep in mind, the whole purpose Paul brought it up in the first place was so that they wouldn’t be ignorant of such things.
End of Note

So if it’s not taking us out, what is Paul actually saying? This coming of the Lord is not the rapture, it is the coming of the Lord. The “seize by force” is the result of what happens when the realization comes to our spirit that He has returned. It is the transformation of our physical body to our heavenly body. When we are “caught up” in him, we’re going to be transcending from this limited physical dimension, to an eternal one without curse or end.

As you read this, if you’re accepting it, you’ll get “caught up” in what’s being said, you’ll lose track of time and routines and daily schedules. You’ll find yourself beginning to see spiritual applications of what’s being said in areas you’ve never given much thought before. That is the spirit of life at work in you. The Holy Spirit communicating with your spirit about the truths that the Word of God is illuminating, all that is required of you is acceptance. Receive God’s truth over you. Be willing to let go of your minds control of what you thought you understood as truth. Let God’s seed be planted in your spirit by opening the gate of your mind, leading to the field of your heart.

Our mind is actually what stops things from entering in. We have control over what comes and goes. If we open the door just a crack to the enemy, he forces himself in. Use that analogy to this very teaching. How many churches become offensive toward anyone who questions their theology? How many Christians become forceful in their attempts to prove their ideals are right? How many of them carry critical and judgmental attitudes along with their teachings? All these things are indicators as to whether we’re being led by the Spirit of God, or the imaginations of our own minds.

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