Dr. Brown invites all listeners who hold to a pre-trib rapture to call in and present their strongest scriptural arguments for a pre-trib rapture, and Dr. Brown will explain why he has not held to this view for more than 35 years. But this will be a show for edification, not division! Listen live here 2-4 pm EST, and call into the show at (866) 348 7884 with your questions and comments.
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Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: The New Testament talks a lot about the return of Jesus. Are we looking forward to His return with expectation, faith, and anticipation?
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We would both agree that Zion and Jerusalem do not have peace and her righteousness has not yet shined forth as brightness; hence G-d will not rest until she is restored to the fullness of blessing and glory, and we know that this will not happen until the blessed return of the Messiah and the beginning of the Millennial reign.
Verse 6 mentions two peoples that have been called to make continual intercession until G-d establishes and makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth. One is the watchmen on her walls, and the second is “you who make mention of the Lord.” They will stand in the gap, crying out day and night until this is accomplished – those physically in Jerusalem, and those of the body of Christ around the world. This coincides with the universal call of Psalm 122:
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: “May they prosper who love you. Peace be within your walls, prosperity within your palaces.” For the sake of my brethren and companions, I will now say, “Peace be within you.” Because of the house of the LORD our God I will seek your good. (vs.6-9)
Hence, in my view, the only reasonable answer to who these watchmen and persons are who make mention of the LORD until the Jerusalem is made a praise of the earth is – the Church.
I will look into this and get back to you next week, I am heading out of town for a week or so and will check back in when I return.
1 Corinthians 15:51-52 “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the LAST TRUMPET. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”
Matthew 24:19-31 ““IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE TRIBULATION of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a TRUMPET, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the TRUMPET of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.”
Matthew tells us that immediately after the tribulation the church will be gathered with the sound of a trumpet. 1 Thessalonians 4 also tells us that there will be a trumpet while 1 Corinthians 15 tells us that the church will be gathered at the final trumpet. If the church is gathered at the final trumpet (1 Cor 15) and there is also a trumpet at the gathering in Matthew 24 it would mean Matthew 24 is the same event as 1 Corinthians 15 which means that the gathering in 1 Corinthians 15 would be after the tribulation.
[Read the following – and weep – while you still have freedom to do so.]
PRETRIB RAPTURE DISHONESTY
When I began my research in 1970 into the exact beginnings of the pretribulation rapture belief still held by many evangelicals, I assumed that the rapture debate involved only “godly scholars with honest differences.” The paper you are now reading reveals why I gave up that assumption many years ago. With this introduction-of-sorts in mind, let’s take a long look at the pervasive dishonesty throughout the history of the 183-year-old pretrib rapture theory:
German scholar Max Weremchuk’s work “John Nelson Darby” (1992) included what Benjamin Newton revealed about John Darby in the mid-1820’s during his pre-Brethren days as an Anglican clergyman:
“J. N. Darby was a very subtle man. He had been a lawyer, or at least educated for the law. Once he wanted his Archbishop to pursue a certain course, when he (J.N.D.) was a curate in his diocese. He wrote a letter, therefore, saying he had been educated for the law, knew what the legal course would properly be; and then having written that clearly, he mystified the remainder of the letter both in word and in handwriting, and ended up by saying: You see, my Lord, such being the legal aspect of the case it would unquestionably be the best course for you to pursue, etc. And the Archbishop couldn’t make out the legal part, but rested on Darby’s word and did as he advised. Darby afterwards laughed over it, and indeed he showed a copy of the letter to Tregelles. This is not mentioned in the Archbishop’s biography, but in it is the fact that he spoke of Darby as ‘the most subtle man in my diocese.'”
This reminds me of an 1834 letter by Darby which spoke of the “Lord’s coming.” Darby added, concerning this coming, that “the thoughts are new” and that during any teaching of it “it would not be well to have it so clear.” Darby’s deviousness here was his usage of a centuries-old term – “Lord’s coming” – to cover up his desire to sneak the new pretrib idea into existing posttrib groups in very low-profile ways!
In the spring of 1830 a young Scottish lassie, Margaret Macdonald, came up with the novel notion of a catching up [rapture] of Spirit-filled “church” members before Antichrist’s “trial” [tribulation] of non-Spirit-filled “church” members – the first instance I’ve found of clear “pretrib” teaching (which was part of a partial rapture scheme). In Sep. 1830 “The Morning Watch” (a journal produced by London preacher Edward Irving and his “Irvingite” followers, some of whom had visited Margaret a few weeks earlier) began repeating her original thoughts and even her wording but gave her no credit – the first plagiarism I’ve found in pretrib history. Darby was still defending posttrib in Dec. 1830.
Pretrib promoters have long known the significance of her main point: a rapture of “church” members BEFORE the revealing of Antichrist. Which is why John Walvoord quoted nothing in her revelation, why Thomas Ice habitually skips over her main point but quotes lines BEFORE and AFTER it, and why Hal Lindsey muddies up her main point so he can (falsely) assert that she was NOT a pretribber! (Google “X-Raying Margaret,” “Margaret Macdonald’s Rapture Chart,” “Pretrib Rapture’s Missing Lines” and “Edward Irving is Unnerving.)
NOTE: The development of the 1800’s is thoroughly documented in my book “The Rapture Plot.” You’ll learn that Darby wasn’t original on any chief aspect of dispensationalism (but plagiarized the Irvingites); that pretrib was initially based on only OT and NT symbols and not clear Scripture; that the symbols included the Jewish feasts, the two witnesses, and the man child – symbols adopted by Darby during most of his career; that Darby’s later reminiscences exaggerated his earliest pretrib development, and that today’s defenders such as Thomas Ice have further overstated what Darby overstated; that Irvingism didn’t need later reminiscences to “clarify” its own early pretrib development; that ancient hymns and even the writings of the Reformers were subtly revised to make it appear they had taught pretrib; and that after Darby’s death a clever revisionist quietly made many changes in early Irvingite and Brethren documents in order to steal credit for pretrib away from the Irvingites (and their female inspiration!) and give it dishonestly to Darby! (Before continuing, Google the “Powered by Christ Ministries” site and read “America’s Pretrib Rapture Traffickers” – a sample of the current exciting internetism!)
Charles Trumbull’s book “The Life Story of C. I. Scofield” told only the dispensationally-correct side of his life. Two recent books, Joseph Canfield’s “The Incredible Scofield and His Book” (1988) and David Lutzweiler’s “The Praise of Folly” (2006), reveal the other side including his being jailed as a forger, dishonestly giving himself a non-conferred “D.D.” etc. etc.!
Brethren scholar Harold Rowdon’s “The Origins of the Brethren” quoted Darby associate Lord Congleton who was “disgusted with…the falseness” of Darby’s accounts of things. Rowdon also quoted historian William Neatby who said that others felt that “the time-honoured method of single combat” was as good as anything “to elicit the truth” from Darby. (In other words, knock it out of him!)
Tim LaHaye’s “The Beginning of the End” (1972) plagiarized Hal Lindsey’s “The Late Great Planet Earth” (1970).
Charles Ryrie”s “The Living End” (1976) plagiarized Lindsey’s “The Late Great Planet Earth” (1970) and “There’s A New World Coming” (1973).
After John Walvoord’s “The Blessed Hope and the Tribulation” (1976) brutally twisted Robert Gundry’s “The Church and the Tribulation” (1973), Gundry composed and circulated a 35-page open letter to Walvoord which repeatedly charged the Dallas Seminary president with “misrepresentation,” “misrepresentations” (and variations)!
“The Fundamentalist Phenomenon” (1981) by Jerry Falwell, Ed Dobson, and Ed Hindson heavily plagiarized George Dollar’s 1973 book “A History of Fundamentalism in America.”
After a prof at Southeastern College of the Assemblies of God in Florida told me that the No. 2 man at the AG world headquarters in Missouri – Joseph Flower – had the label of posttrib, my wife and I had two hour-long chats with him. He verified what I had been told. But we were dumbstruck when he told us that although AG ministers are required to promote pretrib, privately they can believe any other rapture view! Flower said that his father, an AG co-founder, was also posttrib. We also learned while in Springfield that when the AG’s were organized in 1914, the initial group was divided between posttribs and pretribs – but that the pretribs shouted louder which resulted in that denomination officially adopting pretrib! (For details on this and other pretrib double-mindedness, Google “Pretrib Hypocrisy.”)
Since 1989 Thomas Ice has referred to the “Mac-theory” (his reference to my research), giving the impression there’s no solid evidence that Macdonald was the real pretrib originator. But Ice carefully conceals the fact that no eminent church historian of the 1800’s – whether Plymouth Brethren or Irvingite – credited Darby with pretrib. Instead, they uniformly credited leading Irvingite sources, all of which upheld the Scottish lassie’s contribution! Moreover, I’m hardly the only modern scholar seeing significance in Irvingism’s territory. Others in recent years who have noted it, but who haven’t mined it as deeply as I have, include Fuller, Ladd, Bass, Rowdon, Sandeen, and Gundry.
Greg Bahnsen and Kenneth Gentry produced evidence in 1989 that Lindsey’s book “The Road to Holocaust” (1989) plagiarized “Dominion Theology” (1988) by H. Wayne House and Thomas Ice.
David Jeremiah’s and C. C. Carlson’s “Escape the Coming Night” (1990) massively plagiarized Lindsey’s 1973 book “There’s A New World Coming.” (For more info, type in “Thieves’ Marketing” on MSN or Google.)
Paul Lee Tan’s “A Pictorial Guide to Bible Prophecy” (1991) plagiarized large amounts of Lindsey’s “The Late Great Planet Earth” (1970).
Militant Darby defender R. A. Huebner claimed in 1991 to have found new evidence that Darby was pretrib as early as 1827 – three years before Macdonald. Halfway through his book Huebner suddenly admitted that his evidence could refer to something completely un-rapturesque. Even though Thomas Ice admitted to me that he knew that Huebner had “blown” his so-called evidence, prevaricator Ice continues to tell the world that Huebner has “positive evidence” that Darby was pretrib in 1827! Ice also conceals the fact that Darby, in his own 1827 paper, was looking for only “the restitution of all things” and “the times of refreshing” (Acts 3:19,21) – which Scofield doesn’t see fulfilled until AFTER a future tribulation!
Tim LaHaye’s “No Fear of the Storm” (1992) plagiarized Walvoord’s “The Blessed Hope and the Tribulation” (1976).
This was when the Los Angeles Times revealed that “The Magog Factor” (1992) by Hal Lindsey and Chuck Missler was a monstrous plagiarism of Prof. Edwin Yamauchi’s scholarly 1982 work “Foes from the Northern Frontier.” Four months after this exposure, Lindsey and Missler stated they had stopped publishing and promoting their book. But in 1996 Dr. Yamauchi learned that the dishonest duo had issued a 1995 book called “The Magog Invasion” which still had a substantial amount of the same plagiarism! (If Lindsey and Missler ever need hernia operations, I predict that the doctors will tell them not to lift anything for a long time!)
In 1996 it was revealed that Lindsey’s “Planet Earth – 2000 A.D.” (1994) had an embarrassing amount of plagiarism of a Texe Marrs book titled “Mystery Mark of the New Age” (1988).
My book “The Rapture Plot” reveals the dishonesty in Darby’s reprinted works. It’s often hard to tell who wrote the footnotes and when. It’s easy to believe that the notes, and also unsigned phrases inside brackets within the text, were a devious attempt by someone (Darby? his editor?) to portray a Darby far more developed in pretrib thinking than he actually had been at the time. I found that some of the “additives” had been taken from Darby’s much later works, when he was more developed, and placed next to or inside his earliest works! One footnote by Darby’s editor, attached to Darby’s 1830 paper, actually stated that “it was not worth while either suppressing or changing” anything in this work! If his editor wasn’t open to such dishonesty, how can we explain such a statement?
Post-1995 – Thomas Ice’s article “Inventor of False Pre-Trib Rapture History” states that my book “The Rapture Plot” is “only one of the latest in a series of revisions of his original discourse….” And David Reagan in his article “The Origin of the Concept of a Pre-Tribulation Rapture” repeats Ice’s falsehood by claiming that I have republished my first book “over the years under several different titles.”
Although my book repeats a bit of the Macdonald origin of pretrib (for new readers), all of my books are packed with new material not found in my other works. For some clarification, “The Incredible Cover-Up” has photos of pertinent places in Ireland, Scotland, and England not found in my later books plus several chapters dealing with theological arguments; “The Great Rapture Hoax” quotes scholars throughout the Church Age, covers Scofield’s hidden side, a section on Powerscourt, the 1980 election, the Jupiter Effect, Gundry’s change, and more theological arguments; “The Rapture Plot” reveals for the first time the Great Evangelical Revisionism/Robbery and includes appendices on miscopying, plagiarism, etc.; and “The Three R’s” shows hypocritical evangelicals employing occultic beliefs they say they have long opposed!
So Thomas Ice etc. are twisting truth when they claim I am only a revisionist. Do they really think that my publishers DON’T know what I’ve previously written?
Re arguments, Google “Pretrib Rapture Secrets” and also obtain “The End Times Passover” and “Why Christians Will Suffer ‘Great Tribulation’ ” (AuthorHouse, 2006) by media personality Joe Ortiz.
For years Harvest House Publishers has owned and been republishing Lindsey’s book “There’s A New World Coming.” During the same time Lindsey has been peddling his reportedly “new” book “Apocalyse Code” (1997), much of which is word-for-word the same as the Harvest House book – and there’s no notice of “simultaneous publishing” in either book! Talk about pretrib greed!
This is the year I discovered that more than 50 pages of Dallas Seminary professor Merrill Unger’s book “Beyond the Crystal Ball” (Moody Press, 1973) constituted a colossal plagiarism of Lindsey’s “The Late Great Planet Earth” (1970). After Lindsey’s book came out, Unger had complained that Lindsey’s book had plagiarized his classroom lecture notes. It was evident that Unger felt that he too should cash in on his own lectures! (The detailed account of this Dallas Seminary dishonesty is revealed in my 1998 book “The Three R’s.”)
Tim LaHaye’s “Understanding the Last Days” (1998) plagiarized Lindsey’s “There’s A New World Coming” (1973).
More than 200 pages (out of 396 pages) in Lindsey’s 1999 book “Vanished Into Thin Air” are virtually carbon copies of pages in his 1983 book “The Rapture” – with no “updated” or “revised” notice included! Lindsey has done the same nervy thing with several of his books, something that has allowed him to live in million-dollar-plus homes and drive cars like Ferraris! (See my Google articles “Deceiving and Being Deceived” and “Thieves’ Marketing” for further evidence of this notably pretrib vice.)
A Jack Van Impe article “The Moment After” (2000) plagiarized Grant Jeffrey’s book “Final Warning” (1995).
Since 2001 my web article “Walvoord’s Posttrib ‘Varieties’ – Plus” has been exposing his devious muddying up of posttrib waters. In some of his books he invented four “distinct” and “contradictory” posttrib divisions, claiming that they are either “classic” or “semiclassic” or “futurist” or “dispensational” – distinctions that disappear when analyzed! His “futurist” group holds to a literal future tribulation and a literal millennium but doesn’t embrace “any day” imminency. But his “dispensational” group has the same non-imminency! Moreover, tribulational futurism is found in every group except the first one, and he somehow admitted that a literal millennium is in all four groups! On the other hand, it’s the pretribs who consistently disagree with each other over their chief points and subpoints – but somehow end up agreeing that there will be a pretrib rapture! (See my chapter “A House Divided” in my book “The Incredible Cover-Up.”)
Since my “Deceiving and Being Deceived” web item which exposed the claims for Pseudo-Ephraem” and “Morgan Edwards” as teachers of pretrib, there has been a piranha-like frenzy on the part of pretrib bodyguards and their duped groupies to “discover” almost anything before 1830 walking upright on two legs that seemed to have at least a remote hint of pretrib! (An exemplary poster boy for such pretrib practice is Grant Jeffrey. To get your money’s worth, Google “Wily Jeffrey,” also “Morgan Edwards’ Rapture View.”)
FINALLY: Don’t take my word for any of the above. Read my 300-page book “The Rapture Plot” (available by calling 800.643.4645) which has a jillion more documented details on the long-hidden but now-revealed history of the dishonest, 183-year-old, fringe-British-invented,American-merchandised-until-the-real-bad-stuff-happens pretribulation rapture fad. If this book of mine doesn’t “move” you, I will personally refund what you paid for it.
[Just ran into this new web article. Reactions?]
PRETRIB RAPTURE SCHOLARSHIP !
How can the “rapture” be “imminent”? Acts 2:34,35 reveal that Jesus stays at the Father’s right hand in heaven until He leaves to destroy His foes at the second coming to earth. Acts 3:21 says that Jesus “must” stay in heaven with the Father “until the times of restitution of all things” which includes, says Scofield, “the restoration of the theocracy under David’s Son” which obviously can’t begin before or during Antichrist’s reign. (“The Rapture Question,” by the long time No. 1 pretrib authority John Walvoord, didn’t dare to even list, in its scripture index, the above verses! The same Acts verses were also too hot for John Darby – the so-called “father of dispensationalism” – to list in the scripture index in his “Letters”!)
Paul explains the “times and the seasons” (I Thess. 5:1) of the catching up (I Thess. 4:17) as the “day of the Lord” (5:2) which FOLLOWS the posttrib sun/moon darkening (Matt. 24:29; Acts 2:20) WHEN “sudden destruction” (5:3) of the wicked occurs! The “rest” for “all them that believe” is also tied to such destruction in II Thess. 1:6-10! (If the wicked are destroyed before or during the trib, who’d be left alive to serve the Antichrist?) Paul also ties the change-into-immortality “rapture” (I Cor. 15:52) to the end of trib “death” (15:54). (Will death be ended before or during the trib? Of course not! And vs. 54 is also tied to Isa. 25:8 which Scofield views as Israel’s posttrib resurrection!) It’s amazing that the Olivet Discourse contains the “great commission” for the church but not even a hint of a pretrib rapture for the church!
Many are unaware that before 1830 all Christians had always viewed I Thess. 4’s “catching up” as an integral part of the final second coming to earth. In 1830 this “rapture” was stretched forward and turned into a separate coming of Christ. To further strengthen their novel view, which the mass of evangelical scholars rejected throughout the 1800s, pretrib teachers in the early 1900s began to stretch forward the “day of the Lord” (what Darby and Scofield never dared to do) and hook it up with their already-stretched-forward “rapture.” Many leading evangelical scholars still weren’t convinced of pretrib, so pretrib teachers then began teaching that the “falling away” of II Thess. 2:3 is really a pretrib rapture (the same as saying that the “rapture” in 2:3 must happen before the “rapture” [“gathering”] in 2:1 can happen – the height of desperation!). Google “Walvoord Melts Ice.”
Other Google articles on the 183-year-old pretrib rapture view include “Pretrib Rapture Politics,” “Famous Rapture Watchers,” “Pretrib Rapture Diehards,” “X-Raying Margaret,” “Margaret Macdonald’s Rapture Chart,” “Pretrib Rapture’s Missing Lines,” “Edward Irving is Unnerving,” “Thomas Ice (Bloopers),” “Wily Jeffrey,” “The Rapture Index (Mad Theology),” “America’s Pretrib Rapture Traffickers,” “Roots of (Warlike) Christian Zionism,” “Scholars Weigh My Research,” “Pretrib Hypocrisy,” “Appendix F: Thou Shalt Not Steal,” “Pretrib Rapture Secrecy,” “Deceiving and Being Deceived,” and “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty” – most by the author of the bestselling book “The Rapture Plot” (the most accurate and documented book on pretrib rapture history which is obtainable by calling 800.643.4645).
I just read Margaret Macdonald’s visison at this site:
I cannot see anything pre trib in this. This is an absurd myth that many will just not let go of.
Show me one pre trib statement in this vision.
One more note, long lists of accusations against brothers and sisters in Christ add no value to this discussion.
Being left behind, what the Hebrew scriptures say about it.
While in the Matthew 13 we learn that the wicked are taken and thrown in the fire, while the righteous are left behind, as Yeshua said, the meek will (left behind to) inherit the earth, but the wicked will be taken out in judgement.
p.s. I’m not saying Yeshua said, “the wicked will be taken out in judgement,” that was just a final thought I wrote, but Yeshua definitely taught the concept.
I would like to take another look at 2 Thess 2 as it is mentioned above.
The word “apostosia” in 2 Thessalonians 2:3. There are many possible interpretations of this, and I am not dogmatic about any of them. However, in many of the earliest English translations it was translated as “departing” or “departure”.
This word was not used very much in the Bible. It appears in 2 Thess 2:3 and in the LXX of Josh 22:22. It does not appear often in other ancient Greek writings either. According to the Liddle-Scott-Jones Lexicon of Classical Greek the word was also used to indicate a “departure” or a “disappearance” in the classic work “Olympiodorus Philosophus”.
I am not sure if this is what Paul had in mind, but I believe it is possible and that it fits the context well.
2Thess 2:3 could be translated this way:
“Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the disappearance comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,”
Contrary to what post tribulationists assert, this makes perfect sense of the context. Paul does not want the Thessalonians to be troubled (2 Thess 2:2). The events that will occur prior the 2nd coming have not happened yet and there is going to be a departure or a disappearence prior to those events. Both 2Thess 2:3 and 2Thess 2:6-7 are talking about things that must happen prior to the antichrist being revealed. Both this “departure” in 2Thess 2:3 and the removal of the restraining force must from the midst must occur. Paul mentions to them that he had taught them these things already? Could the removal of the restraining force be connected with the “falling away” or “departure” of verse 3?
Many of the options that commentators give for this restraining force do not fit the language that is used here.
It is interesting to remember what Jesus said in Joh 16:
John16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. John16:8 And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: John16:9 of sin, because they do not believe in Me; John16:10 of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; John16:11 of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
This “helper” came into the world is a sense that He was not in the world prior to the beginning of the church. Jesus said to His disciples that “ye are the light of the world” and “ye are the salt of the earth”. The activity of the Holy Spirit in the church could be the “restraining force” that has to be removed prior to the revealing of the man of sin.
I like this translation of of 2 Thess 2:7 from the WPNT (Wilbur Pickering New Translation):
2Thess2:7 For the mystery of the lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He removes Himself.
It is possible then that Paul is reminding them of the departure or disappearance that he taught them in 1Thess 4. He is also reminding them of events that would be happening on earth following the departure. The lawless one cannot be revealed until the restraining force is removed. The events associated with the lawless (2Thess 2:9-12) are not intended as a testing for true believers, but they are for those who have rejected the gospel.
Paul is not giving a detailed chronology of events in 2Thess 1:7-10, teaching them generally of things that are going to happen in the time period when Christ returns. He gives them the chronological details in 2Thess 2. Check out the comments in the Expositor’s Bible Commentary (the older one) on 2Thess 1:7. I love Dr. Brown, but I think he is reading too much into 2Thess 1:7-10.
All of the above may be incorrect, but it is very misleading for post tribulationists to suggest that a pre tribulational rapture cannot be seen in this passage. A pre tribulational reading of this passage is very straightforward.
Sorry for the time in responding, I am back from being out of town and my Mother also had a minor heart-attack which has kept me busy, but she is doing much better now so I have some free time.
Just to look at Isaiah 62:6 being linked to the Church as evidence that the Church will go through the tribulation, the passage argues against this notion. The argument is that the Church is the “watchman”.
6 I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of the Lord, keep not silence,
God tells Isaiah and the nation of Israel that he “has” set watchmen on the walls. When this passage was written, the watchmen were present and on the walls continually reminding God of His promise. This disqualifies the Church since the Church does not come into existence for another 700+ years. Also the Church has not always been the friend of Israel. Though in the last couple hundred years Israel has become loved and cherished by a growing number of believers.
Before we discuss tribulational views in pertinence to the rapture we need to discuss millennial views. I was raised in a background that adamantly taught the pre-trub rapture of the church. While I had a humble and very good pastor, the first time I ever read through the scriptures I was puzzled as to where the scripture was found. I then switched from pre-trib to mid-trib and then from mid-trib to post-trib. That was before I discovered that the discussion needed to go further than just views on tribulation and be extended to views of the millennium. In essence the concept of a pre-trib rapture is something I view as the same escape mentality that 2000 years ago led the Jews to reject Jesus as their Messiah. A clear reading of 2 Thessalonians 1:4-10 completely disproves a pre-trib rapture once and for all. In truth, there need not even be a II Thessalonians to refute the pre-trib rapture idea. A study of the verses I Thessalonians 4:16-17 (which are commonly used in defense of the rapture) in the Greek reveals that when Christ returns we who have believed on him meet him in the air to usher in his kingdom.
[Bro. Pellerin’s July 13 comments will enjoy this web piece I found on Macdonald. They will also enjoy a Google piece titled “Walvoord Melts Ice.”]
Margaret Macdonald’s Rapture Chart !
“church” RAPTURE “church”
(present age) (tribulation)
In early 1830 Margaret was the very first one to see a pre-Antichrist (pretribulation) rapture in the Bible – and John Walvoord and Hal Lindsey lend support for this claim!
Walvoord’s “Rapture Question” (1979) says her view resembles the “partial-rapture view” and Lindsey’s “The Rapture” (1983) admits that “she definitely teaches a partial rapture.”
But there’s more. Lindsey (p. 26) says that partial rapturists see only “spiritual” Christians in the rapture and “unspiritual” ones left behind to endure Antichrist’s trial. And Walvoord (p. 97) calls partial rapturists “pretribulationists”!
Margaret’s pretrib view was a partial rapture form of it since only those “filled with the Spirit” would be raptured before the revealing of the Antichrist. A few critics, who’ve been repeating more than researching, have noted “Church” in the tribulation section of her account. Since they haven’t known that all partial rapturists see “Church” on earth after their pretrib rapture (see the “church-splitting” chart above), they’ve wrongly assumed that Margaret was a posttrib!
In Sep. 1830 Edward Irving’s journal “The Morning Watch” (hereafter: TMW) was the first to publicly reflect her novel view when it saw spiritual “Philadelphia” raptured before “the great tribulation” and unspiritual “Laodicea” left on earth.
In Dec. 1830 John Darby (the so-called “father of dispensationalism” even though he wasn’t first on any crucial aspect of it!) was still defending the historic posttrib rapture view in the “Christian Herald.”
Pretrib didn’t spring from a “church/Israel” dichotomy, as many have assumed, but sprang from a “church/church” one, as we’ve seen, and was based only on symbols!
But innate anti-Jewishness soon appeared. (As noted, TMW in Sep. 1830 saw only less worthy church members left behind.) In Sep. 1832 TMW said that less worthy church members and “Jews” would be left behind. But by Mar. 1833 TMW was sure that only “Jews” would face the Antichrist!
As late as 1837 the non-dichotomous Darby saw the church “going in with Him to the marriage, to wit, with Jerusalem and the Jews.” And he didn’t clearly teach pretrib until 1839. His basis then was the Rev. 12:5 “man child…caught up” symbol he’d “borrowed” (without giving credit) from Irving who had been the first to use it for the same purpose in 1831!
For related articles Google “X-Raying Margaret,” “Edward Irving is Unnerving,” “Pretrib Rapture’s Missing Lines,” “The Unoriginal John Darby,” “Open Letter to Todd Strandberg,” “Deceiving and Being Deceived” by D.M., “Pretrib Rapture Pride,” “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty” and “Scholars Weigh My Research.” The most documented and accurate book on pretrib rapture history is “The Rapture Plot” – a 300-pager that has hundreds of disarming facts (like the ones above) not found in any other source. To get your copy of this bestselling book, call 800.643.4645.
Good Morning Irv,
For an in-depth look at John Nelson Darby and his connection to Margaret check out Paul Wilkinson’s book titled, ‘For Zion’s Sake: Christian Zionism and the Role of John Nelson Darby’:
Please read M. Macdonalds entire vision for yourself in context. Right at the beginning she connects the “sign of the son of man” to the “Lord descending with a shout”.
The “sign of the son of man” is clearly a reference to the Mat 24:30 and the Lrod descending with a shout” is a reference to 1 Thess 4:16-18. She is connecting the 2nd coming with the rapture.
I am not interested in what all the books you list have to say. Show me from the vision itself how it teaches a “partial pre tribulational rapture”. I have read through this vision about 10 times now and I just don’t see it. What I see clearly is that she is equating 1Thess 4:16-18 with Mat 24:30.
Line of Fire staff,
I am dissapointed that posts #57 and #58 above have been allowed to stay on this site. I am hoping that it has not been read by you.
In that post many Christian broters and sisters are charged with being dishonest or with plagarism. This is not ok.
I pray that G-d will bring healing and strength back to your mother…
Regarding Isaiah 62, I’d first say that your interpretation of angelic messengers being the watchmen spoken of is indeed a far stretch from the passage altogether.
You say the church is disqualified, of which I would totally disagree, and that for a number of reasons. First, you must keep in mind that this is spoken in prophetic utterance regarding the last days and the restoration of Israel, and to declare that this not talking about the Church makes no sense at all. After all, is it not the prayers of the Saints that reach the throne of G-d?
Second, it clearly states, “you who make mention of the Lord,” thus identifying His elect. Actually, the church is the only possible candidate to fulfill this passage. The Jew and the Gentile are the One New Man, through the blood of the cross; hence, it will be a blood bought people who bring ongoing intercession up to G-d until the coming of the Lord and the restoration of Israel.
Peter, I’m sorry you’re “dissapointed” with “posts #57 and #58.” (You may have meant to say you were “disappointed” with “posts #54 and #55.”) Not a single pretrib teacher exposed in “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty” (found on Google, etc.) has ever claimed that the writer of it lied about or slandered any of the pretrib teachers he focused on. Which means that Peter Pellerin may have evidence that his favorite pretrib teachers (Ice, Strandberg, Jeffrey etc.) have never come up with! It’s interesting that MacPherson’s research repeatedly gets endorsements from top scholars who have no axe to grind either for or against a pretrib rapture, while pretrib “hired guns” like Ice, Strandberg and Jeffrey (where have I seen these names before?) count on only fellow pretribbers for endorsements! Re Wilkinson’s book on Darby (and Margaret) which I haven’t read yet, maybe you can tell me if he includes the part in “The Origins of the Brethren” (by Dr. Harold Rowdon, a top British scholar who’s even a member of the Darby-adoring Brethren!) quoting historian William Neatby who revealed that Darby’s friends had been saying that the only way to get the truth out of Darby was the “time-honoured method of single-handed combat” – that is, knock it out of him! Peter, I recommend that you adopt the “spare tire” rapture view which is the safest one; for info about it, Google “Letter from Mrs. Billy Graham.”
ON Pre-trib Rapture Call-in Day YOU ARE A BIG HELP THANK YOU GOD BLESS
The Line of Fire with Dr. Michael Brown Pre-trib Rapture Call-in Day YOU WAS A BIG HELP THANK YOU GOD BLESS
[Just spied this on the net. Reactions, anyone?]
Pretrib Rapture History’s Stages
If a young woman in Scotland hadn’t dreamed up the “pre-tribulation fly-away” in 1830; if a British clergyman hadn’t hijacked her dream and sneakily planted it around the world in the 1800s; if a crooked, jailed-for-forgery lawyer with no theological background hadn’t come out with a reference Bible in 1909 with the same fly-away escapism in marginal notes; and if modern-day rapture robber barons and tribulational tycoons hadn’t found numerous ways (and gimmicks like four “blood moons”) to widely mass-market the same delicious delusion for the masses while breaking sales records, no one could now be into the moonshine, looking up at the moon and saying “Moon, you mush be drunk becaush I shee four of you!” LOL (If none of this had ever happened, no one would have written anti-pretrib articles that are on Google etc., articles like “Evangelicals Use Occult Deception,” “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty,” “Pretrib Rapture Pride,” and “Pretrib Rapture Stealth.” And no one would have written “The Rapture Plot” – the most accurate, most detailed, and most highly endorsed nonfiction history of the 184-year-old pretrib rapture theory, available by calling 800.643.4645; the author of it will give $1000 to anyone proving there is any deliberate dishonesty in it.)
[Below are comments I just sent to the “Hip and Thigh” blog of Feb. 3, 2014 which focused on Dr. Brown:]
Irv Spielberg on February 11, 2014 at 9:24 pm said:
Your comment is awaiting moderation.
Sandeen points out in his “Roots of Fundamentalism” that it was the pretribs who, after dwelling in relative harmony at the Niagara Bible Conference alongside posttribs, were the ones who withdrew and formed their own exclusively pretrib conferences and effectively shut out posttrib scholars like Nathaniel West, SRB consulting editor William Erdman, etc. And this cantankerousness and pride is still going on. Whereas posttrib blogs welcome pretribs and their arguments, pretrib blogs overwhelmingly ban honestly questioning posttribs and their arguments – but is “truth” afraid of “untruth”? MacPherson (included above) has stated that if any one word can summarize the history of pretrib interpretation, it is the word “dishonesty” (as in “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty,” one of his many web articles). Thomas Ice seems to be the foremost pretrib defender, but have you truly “vetted” his background and qualifications? I invite you to Google “Be careful in polemics (Peripatetic Learning),” “Walvoord Melts Ice,” “Edward Irving is Unnerving,” “Thomas Ice (Bloopers),” and “Pretrib Rapture Pride.” The PhD that Ice flaunts, BTW, came from a non-accredited school, and the school in Wales from which he desires another “doctorate” has been involved in its own degree-granting scandal! Ice’s unscholarliness and effrontery are two main reasons why posttribs and prewrathers are now strongly opposing pretrib arguments and airing pretrib history’s long hidden dirty linen!
Greatest Hebrew-Christian Scholars NOT Pretrib!
by Dave MacPherson
Jews as well as Christians can cover up facts about the money-making pretrib rapture.
I have in mind Dr. Michael Rydelnik, a widely heard voice on the Moody Radio Network who calls himself either a Hebrew-Christian or a Jewish-Christian – take your choice.
Rydelnik just returned from another trip to Israel and couldn’t wait to use his melodious radio voice to keep his listeners in their expectant state of rapturous stupor.
In order to help shore up the worldwide collapsing of the pillar of sand known as pretrib he started off by daring to say that when the tribulation starts, the “day of the Lord” will also be happening!
Rydelnik thus covered up the fact that neither J. N. Darby nor C. I. Scofield (D. L. Moody’s colleague!) dared to stretch forward the posttrib “day of the Lord” (and tie it to their already stretched-forward rapture) in order to sustain their latter-day pretrib escapism – evidence that Christian Zionists like Rydelnik can sharply disagree with earlier Zionists!
Scofield, for example, states in his Rev. 19 notes that the same “day” is preceded by the posttrib “cosmical disturbances (Joel 2.1-12; Mt. 24.29; Acts 2.19, 20; Rev. 6.12-17).” (In Rydelnik’s case, the future posttrib sun/moon darkening has been preceded by his own scholarship darkening.)
There are historical persons that Rydelnik and other modern pretrib rapture Zionists love to cover up: eminent Hebrew-Christian scholars of the past, all of whom were NOT pretrib!
While names like Biesenthal, Caspari, Delitzsch, Neander, Rabinowitz, and Schereschewsky are practically unknown by most Christians, the names of Baron, Edersheim, and Saphir are much more recognizable.
David Baron (“The Visions and Prophecies of Zechariah,” p. 323) wrote that Paul “spoke of ‘the blessed hope and the appearing of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ’ (Tit. ii.13), for then the hope as regards the church, and Israel, and the world, will be fully realised.”
Alfred Edersheim, who expected only one future coming of Christ for judgment, stated in “The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah,” Vol. II, pp. 451-2: “We shall best succeed, not by going out of the world, but by being watchful in it.”
Adolph Saphir (“The Epistle to the Hebrews,” pp. 95-6) spoke of “the advent of the Messiah, which is yet in the future, to which both the believing synagogue and the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ are looking, when He is to be manifested in great power, and to be acknowledged as King of the whole earth.”
Nowadays the Mideast is constantly in the news. Some feel that Israel can do no wrong while others are convinced that Israel can do nothing right. There are pretrib teachers who even believe that Israel has a special “covenant” with God apart from the Gospel.
And Christians are learning at the same time that a person can disagree with Mideast policies without being viewed as anti-Semitic or hateful. BTW, if pretribs love Jews and Israel as much as they say they do, why don’t they want to be on earth during the time of “Jacob’s trouble” to love and comfort Jewish persons?
Finally, Google “Pretrib Rapture: A Staged Event,” “John Darby Did NOT Invent the Rapture,” “The Unoriginal John Darby,” “Pretrib Rapture Stealth,” “Pretrib Rapture Pride,” “Pretrib Hypocrisy,” and “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty.”
/ I saw the above on the net – just sharing it. /
There is a lot of misinformation out there, and quite a bit of it is purposefully dishonest, though much is solely based on misinformation, but for an in-depth study on John Nelson Darby and Scofield, and men of the like, check out ‘Understanding Christian Zionism: Israel’s Place in the Purposes of God’ by Paul Wilkinson. It is the foremost research and look at Darby’s life and writings. Paul Wilkinson has been a guest on the Line of Fire a couple of times. It’s a great resource
Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/Understanding-Christian-Zionism-Israels-Purposes/dp/1928660851/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1441399942&sr=8-1&keywords=Understanding+Christian+Zionism%3A+Israel%27s+Place+in+the+Purposes+of+God
/ Here’s a web item discussing Wilkinson. /
Margaret Macdonald’s Main Point
By Dave MacPherson
John Darby, Paul Wilkinson, and Thomas Ice are among those who have flunked the Margaret Macdonald test by covering up and misinterpreting what she (as the pretrib rapture originator) actually stated in 1830!
My book “The Rapture Plot” discusses Margaret’s two-part main point (lines 58-63 in her 117-line account): seeing “one taken and the other left” before “THE WICKED” (Antichrist) is “revealed.”
Hal Lindsey’s “The Rapture” correctly says she taught “a partial Rapture” – that only PART of the church will be pretribbed up.
Walvoord’s “The Rapture Question” also describes partial rapturists as “pretribulationists,” and their charts show the “church” BEFORE AND AFTER their rapture in the same way Margaret was a “church splitter.” (Google “X-Raying Margaret,” “Margaret Macdonald’s Rapture Chart,” and “Pretrib Rapture’s Missing Lines.”)
Both John Cardale (in Edward Irving’s journal in Dec. 1830) and John Darby (in his 1853 book) described their visits to mid-1830 meetings Margaret conducted in her home. Darby’s “recollection” was such a mirror of the many details in Cardale’s published account 23 years earlier that I’m convinced that Darby was merely copying Cardale’s details, and Darby listed all of the details except one!
Although Darby mentioned Margaret’s “texts on overcoming” (the “tribulation” or second half of her main point), he deliberately omitted her emphasis on “the coming of the Lord” (rapture) as the church’s “deliverance” before the “judgments coming on the earth” which all visitors, except Darby, admitted was a pretrib event (the “rapture” or first half of her main point)!
Margaret’s visitors included writers for Irving’s journal “The Morning Watch.” Within weeks it reflected Margaret’s unique and original “church/church dichotomy” (“spiritual” church members raptured and “less spiritual” church members left behind) when it saw the “Philadelphia” church raptured BEFORE “the great tribulation” and the “Laodicea” church left on earth.
Well, if Darby could be a revisionist with Margaret’s words, so could Wilkerson and Ice today.
After Joe Schimmel’s Good Fight Ministries produced the “Left Behind or Led Astray?” video (the greatest video exposure ever of pretribism’s dishonesty-riddled history!), Britisher Paul Wilkinson savagely attacked it in an uber-unscholarly way in a video produced by the Berean Call Ministry titled “Left Behind or Led Astray? – Exposed.”
In order to please his think-alike idol, John Darby, Wilkinson deliberately stopped his quotation of Margaret at line 45 so that he could omit the first (pretrib) part of her main point in order to be able to falsely declare that she advocated “a post-tribulation Rapture”!
Thomas Ice has been even more nervy than Wilkinson, his British “twin.” When Ice quoted Margaret’s 117-line account in the Dallas Seminary journal he omitted ALL OF HER MAIN POINT but made up for it by quoting just BEFORE and AFTER it! (Ice’s “PhD” was “earned” at the unaccredited Tyndale Seminary in Texas which, according to World Net Daily, was heavily fined by the State of Texas for illegally issuing degrees – too many degrees for the Texas heat!
Finally, if Ice, Wilkinson and other pretrib escape artists love Jews and Israel as much as they say they do, why don’t they want to be on earth during “Jacob’s trouble” to aid and comfort Jews and others? (Some Google items related to this include “Greatest Hebrew-Christian Scholars NOT Pretrib,” “Roots of Warlike Christian Zionism,” and “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty.”
I watched a 1 hour 40 minute + video response by Good Fight Ministries, producers of ‘Left Behind or Led Astray’, Joe Schimel, Jacob Prasch, and one other as they respond to Paul Wilkinson’s ‘Israel Betrayed, Part2’. They did purposely bend and misrepresent Paul’s talk. I knew very quickly since I was in attendance when Paul gave the talk.
If you havent seen the ‘Israel Betrayed, Part2’, talk, I would encourage any one who is taking Joe Schimel’s or Jacob Prasch’s response to heart to take a listen and see if they fairly represented him and his heart. Not to convince one of pre-trib, but to judge their treatment of Paul’s response and heart.
[Re the rapture, here’s a unique and creative eye-opener I ran into on the web.]
HIJACKERS TARGET MATT. 24 ETC. !
by Dave MacPherson
In a recent dream of mine I saw things that even John Bunyan didn’t dream about in his “Pilgrim’s Progress.”
I was walking down a remote dirt road and came by an old store with a sign that said “Second Coming Store – Established in 1830.”
I opened the door and spotted the elderly owner standing next to shelves covered with many bottles filled with liquids.
“What are you selling?” I asked.
“Second Coming perfume,” he said.
He quickly explained: “Our first and most popular perfume is called ‘Rapture.’ It doesn’t have much substance but smells better than our other perfumes.”
“How was ‘Rapture’ invented?,” I asked.
He responded: “Well, the ‘gather’ in Matt. 24:31 was ‘borrowed’ in 1830 and when it was quietly transferred to a pretrib setting it became much more fragrant and ‘Rapture’ became its new name.”
I also noticed the other bottled perfumes.
Evidently reading my mind, he explained that after “Rapture” came out in 1830, other perfumers realized they’d have to stretch forward other ingredients found in other parts of the Olivet Discourse in order to make “Rapture” even more acceptable.
His other “Rapture”-supporting perfumes were in bottles labeled “Unknown Day & Hour,” “One Taken & the Other Left,” “Thief in the Night,” and “His Elect” (Olivet Discourse “elect” was originally “Church” but later changed to “Israel”).
I wondered why the store owner didn’t have some other Olivet Discourse perfumes like “Sun & Moon Darkening,” “Falling Heavenly Stars,” “Sudden Destruction,” and “Jerusalem Touchdown” which could also be placed in a pretrib setting.
He said: “I could never sell the four perfumes you just mentioned!”
I asked: “Why not? They’re in the same Discourse.”
He blushed and said: “Folks would smell a rat!”
Well, I finally woke up from my dream. If you think my dream was just a dream, then you are dreaming!
Shockproof? Then you’re invited to read “Ready for Rapture Astrology?” (April 9) on the UK blog “Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing” owned by outstanding teacher Treena Gisborn.
Re Paul Wilkinson, Google “GFM’s DVD Survives Paul Wilkinson’s Attack.” Also Google “Pretrib Was New in the 1830s.”
[Lately saw this net comment following the recent rerun of the 2016 rapture debate between Joe Schimmel and Doug Stauffer.]
Re Margaret MacDonald, here’s what Dr. F. Nigel Lee stated: “Dave MacPherson, in his various books, has made a major contribution toward vindicating Historic Christian Eschatology. The 1830 innovations of the disturbed Margaret Macdonald documented by MacPherson—-in part or in whole—-immediately spread to Edward Irving and his followers, then to J. N. Darby and Plymouth Brethrenism, and were later popularized by the dispensationalistic Scofield Reference Bible, by Classic Pentecostalism, and by latter-day pretribulationists like J. F. Walvoord and Hal Lindsey.” (Dr. Lee stated this as the holder of nine EARNED doctorates [!] and as Australia’s most eminent evangelical scholar!) Google “X-Raying Margaret,” “Margaret Macdonald’s Main Point” and “Margaret Macdonald’s Rapture Chart” to find out what Dr. Stauffer censored. Stauffer’s “research” failed to notice that even Hal Lindsey calls Margaret a partial rapturist in his book “The Rapture.” And Walvoord’s “The Rapture Question” refers to partial rapturists as “pretribulationists” (p. 105) – pretribs who, in their “rapture charts” see “church” BEFORE the rapture as well as seeing “church” AFTER the rapture; they are “church splitters”! It’s amazing how many pretrib defenders have seized on Margaret’s statement “The trial of the Church is from Antichrist” and then gotten into a tizzy in public while ranting and screaming that “Margaret was a posttrib” or, even worse, that she was demon-possessed or in a trance or that “MacPherson has covered up many before 1830 who clearly taught pretrib”!!! Google “Scholars Weigh My Research” to find out other evangelical leaders who have endorsed MacPherson’s research since 1970. Also Google “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty,” “Pretrib Hypocrisy,” “Pretrib Rapture Stealth,” “C. I. Scofield’s Hidden Side,” “Famous Rapture Watchers” and “Dr. Watson’s Pretrib Non-Discovery” – just some of the hot articles on the British blog “Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing” hosted by noted teacher Treena Gisborn. BTW, this past July 5th, pretribber Dr. Erwin Lutzer told a packed Moody Church that there are now posttribs as well as pretribs among the MBI personnel, adding “Here at the Moody Church we have decided to not draw a line in the sand about these two views.” (!) But MBI is only reflecting the many worldwide who are now abandoning pretrib for other rapture views – and scary world events are helping to bring about the collapse of the 188-year-old pretrib fantasy!
Dr. Brown, I understand how many pre-trib arguments fall short of real proof. That is why I take the opposite approach. Instead of finding proof of a tre-trib rapture I find proof in the Bible that the rapture cannot happen after the tribulation. Such an approach is much stronger. See what you think about this approach at http://www.rapturesolution.com.
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