Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church
The Tribulation period has nothing to do with the Church Age Saints. The “Time of the Gentiles” will soon be fulfilled at the rapture of the Church and the Age of Grace will be over. The seven (7) year tribulation period, also referred to as the Time of Jacob’s Troubles, will be centered on the Nation of Israel and the Jews.
The Bible clearly teaches that the Church Age saints will be raptured BEFORE the 7 Year Tribulation period. Matthew Chapter 24 must be rightly divided. Here, the Lord Jesus Christ is speaking to Jews about future events that will involve the Nation of Israel. Importantly, the tribulation period (Daniel’s 70th Week), is also referred to as the “Time of Jacob’s Trouble,” since it deals with the Nation of Israel and the Jews. It is important to distinguish between the “RAPTURE” and the “SECOND COMING.”
In the Rapture, Our Lord Jesus Christ will come before the tribulation to receive His Bride. The “blood washed” saints will receive their “glorified bodies,” be “married” to the bridegroom and appear before the “Bema Judgment Seat” to receive our “rewards.” The rapture is primarily described in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, 1 Corinthians 15:51-54 and John 14:2-3. On the other hand, in the event known as the “Second Coming,” Jesus will return during the Battle of Armageddon at the end of the Tribulation period. The Church will accompany Him in their new glorified bodies. Christ will destroy the enemies and nations that oppose Israel and the Gospel. Jesus Christ will reign for 1000 years in His Millennial Kingdom.
At the rapture, the “times of the Gentiles” will be fulfilled, God’s focus will return to the Nation of Israel. Revelation Chapter 4:1-5 reveals powerful clues that indicate a pre-Tribulation rapture or catching away of the Church. It is worthy to note that the word “church” appears nineteen times in the first three chapters of Revelation, but, significantly, the word is not used again until chapter 19. In other words, in the entire lengthy description of the Tribulation in Revelation, the word church is noticeably absent. In fact, the Bible never uses the word “church” in a passage relating to the Tribulation. Perhaps, the reason is that Revelation Chapter 4 reveals the end of the Church age and the beginning of the 7 year Tribulation period or the 70th week of Daniel (Daniel Chapter 9: 24-27).