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Teachings of Jesus 40 of 40. the rapture. one in the bed. Jan Luyken etching. Bowyer Bible.gif
One in the bed
Teachings of Jesus 39 of 40. the rapture. one at the mill. Jan Luyken etching. Bowyer Bible.gif
One at the mill
Teachings of Jesus 38 of 40. the rapture. one in the field. Jan Luyken etching. Bowyer Bible.gif
One in the field
Jan Luyken's three-part illustration of the rapture described in Matthew 24, verse 40, from the 1795 Bowyer Bible

The rapture is an eschatological concept of certain Christians, particularly within branches of American evangelicalism, consisting of an end time event when all Christian believers who are alive, along with the resurrected dead believers, will rise "in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air". This theory grew out of the translations of the Bible that John Nelson Darby edited to fit his doctrines. It was promulgated by the cult followers of Darbyism, a doctrine that has been deemed heretical by most mainstream Christians. [1] [2] Some adherents believe this event is predicted and described in Paul's First Epistle to the Thessalonians in the Bible, [3] where he uses the Greek harpazo (ἁρπάζω), meaning to snatch away or seize. Though it has been used differently in the past, the term is now often used by certain believers to distinguish this particular event from the Second Coming of Jesus Christ to Earth, mentioned in Second Thessalonians, Gospel of Matthew, First Corinthians, and Revelation, usually viewing it as preceding the Second Coming and followed by a thousand year millennial kingdom. [4] Adherents of this perspective are sometimes referred to as premillenial dispensationalists, but amongst them there are differing viewpoints about the exact timing of the event.

Christian eschatology is a major branch of study within Christian theology dealing with the "last things." Eschatology, from two Greek words meaning "last" (ἔσχατος) and "study" (-λογία), is the study of 'end things', whether the end of an individual life, the end of the age, the end of the world or the nature of the Kingdom of God. Broadly speaking, Christian eschatology is the study concerned with the ultimate destiny of the individual soul and the entire created order, based primarily upon biblical texts within the Old and New Testament.

The end time is a future time-period described variously in the eschatologies of several world religions, which teach that world events will reach a final climax.

Christianity is an Abrahamic monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. Its adherents, known as Christians, believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and the savior of all people, whose coming as the Messiah was prophesied in the Hebrew Bible, called the Old Testament in Christianity, and chronicled in the New Testament. It is the world's largest religion with about 2.4 billion followers.


The term "rapture" is especially useful in discussing or disputing the exact timing or the scope of the event, particularly when asserting the "pre-tribulation" view that the rapture will occur before, not during, the Second Coming, with or without an extended Tribulation period. [5] The term is most frequently used among Christian theologians and fundamentalist Christians in the United States. [6] Other, older uses of "rapture" were simply as a term for any mystical union with God or for eternal life in Heaven with God. [7]

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Most of the country is located contiguously in North America between Canada and Mexico.

Heaven Place where beings such as gods, angels, spirits, saints, or venerated ancestors are said to originate, be enthroned, or live.

Heaven, or the heavens, is a common religious, cosmological, or transcendent place where beings such as gods, angels, spirits, saints, or venerated ancestors are said to originate, be enthroned, or live. According to the beliefs of some religions, heavenly beings can descend to earth or incarnate, and earthly beings can ascend to heaven in the afterlife, or in exceptional cases enter heaven alive.

There are differing views among Christians regarding the timing of Christ's return, such as whether it will occur in one event or two, and the meaning of the aerial gathering described in 1 Thessalonians 4. Many Christians do not subscribe to rapture-oriented theological views. Though the term "rapture" is derived from the text of the Latin Vulgate of 1 Thess. 4:17—"we will be caught up", (Latin: rapiemur), Catholics, as well as Eastern Orthodox, Anglicans, Lutherans, Mormons, [8] the United Methodist Church [9] and most Reformed Christians, do not generally use "rapture" as a specific theological term, nor do any of these bodies subscribe to the premillennialist dispensationalist theological views associated with its use, but do believe in the phenomenon—primarily in the sense of the elect gathering with Christ in Heaven after his Second Coming. [10] [11] [12] These denominations do not believe that a group of people is left behind on earth for an extended Tribulation period after the events of 1 Thessalonians 4:17. [13]

Catholic Church Largest Christian church, led by the Bishop of Rome

The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide as of 2017. As the world's oldest and largest continuously functioning international institution, it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church is headed by the Bishop of Rome, known as the pope. Its central administration, the Holy See, is in the Vatican City, an enclave within the city of Rome in Italy.

Lutheranism form of Protestantism commonly associated with the teachings of Martin Luther

Lutheranism is one of the largest branches of Protestantism that identifies with the teaching of Martin Luther, a 16th-century German reformer. Luther's efforts to reform the theology and practice of the church launched the Protestant Reformation. The reaction of the government and church authorities to the international spread of his writings, beginning with the 95 Theses, divided Western Christianity.

Mormons Religious group part of the Latter Day Saint movement

Mormons are a religious and cultural group related to Mormonism, the principal branch of the Latter Day Saint movement of Restorationist Christianity, initiated by Joseph Smith in upstate New York during the 1820s. After Smith's death in 1844, the Mormons followed Brigham Young to what would become the Utah Territory. Today, most Mormons are understood to be members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Other Mormons may be independently religious, secular and non-practicing, or belong to another denomination. The center of Mormon cultural influence is in Utah, and North America has more Mormons than any other continent, though the majority of Mormons live outside the United States.

Pre-tribulation rapture theology originated in the eighteenth century with the Puritan preachers Increase and Cotton Mather and was popularized extensively in the 1830s by John Nelson Darby [14] [15] and the Plymouth Brethren, [16] and further in the United States by the wide circulation of the Scofield Reference Bible in the early 20th century. [17]

Increase Mather Puritan minister, academic, activist

Increase Mather (1639–1723) was a powerful Puritan clergyman in the Massachusetts Bay Colony and was president of Harvard College for twenty years (1681–1701). He was influential in the administration of the colony during a time that coincided with the notorious Salem witch trials.

Cotton Mather New England religious minister and scientific writer (1663-1728)

Cotton Mather was a New England Puritan minister, prolific author, and pamphleteer. He left a scientific legacy due to his hybridization experiments and his promotion of inoculation for disease prevention, though he is most frequently remembered today for his involvement in the Salem witch trials. He was subsequently denied the presidency of Harvard College which his father, Increase Mather, had held.

Plymouth Brethren religious denomination

The Plymouth Brethren or Assemblies of brethren are a conservative, low church, non-conformist, evangelical Christian movement whose history can be traced to Dublin, Ireland in the late 1820s, originating from Anglicanism. The group emphasizes sola scriptura, the belief that the Bible is the supreme authority for church doctrine and practice, over and above any other source of authority. Plymouth Brethren generally see themselves as a network of like-minded free churches, not as a Christian denomination.


"Rapture" is derived from Middle French rapture, via the Medieval Latin raptura ("seizure, kidnapping"), which derives from the Latin raptus ("a carrying off"). [18]

Middle French is a historical division of the French language that covers the period from the 14th to the early 17th centuries. It is a period of transition during which:

Medieval Latin Form of Latin used in the Middle Ages

Medieval Latin was the form of Latin used in Roman Catholic Western Europe during the Middle Ages. In this region it served as the primary written language, though local languages were also written to varying degrees. Latin functioned as the main medium of scholarly exchange, as the liturgical language of the Church, and as the working language of science, literature, law, and administration.


The Koine Greek of 1 Thessalonians 4:17 uses the verb form ἁρπαγησόμεθα (harpagisometha), which means "we shall be caught up" or "taken away", with the connotation that this is a sudden event. The dictionary form of this Greek verb is harpazō (ἁρπάζω). [19] This use is also seen in such texts as Acts 8:39 , 2Corinthians 12:2-4 and Revelation 12:5 .

Koine Greek, also known as Alexandrian dialect, common Attic, Hellenistic or Biblical Greek, was the common supra-regional form of Greek spoken and written during the Hellenistic period, the Roman Empire, and the early Byzantine Empire, or late antiquity. It evolved from the spread of Greek following the conquests of Alexander the Great in the fourth century BC, and served as the lingua franca of much of the Mediterranean region and the Middle East during the following centuries. It was based mainly on Attic and related Ionic speech forms, with various admixtures brought about through dialect levelling with other varieties.


The Latin Vulgate translates the Greek ἁρπαγησόμεθα as rapiemur [20] meaning "we are caught up" or "we are taken away" from the Latin verb rapio meaning "to catch up" or "take away". [21]

English Bible translations

English versions of the Bible have expressed the concept of rapiemur in various ways:

Doctrinal position

The Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, [25] the Anglican Communion, Lutheranism and Protestant Calvinist denominations have no tradition of a preliminary return of Christ. The Orthodox Church, for example, rejects a preliminary return because it depends on a pre-millennial interpretation of prophetic scriptures, rather than an amillennial or postmillennial fashion. [26]



  1. Those who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not precede those who are dead. (1 Thess 4:15)
  2. The dead in Christ will resurrect first. (1 Thess 4:16)
  3. The living and the resurrected dead will be caught up together in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. (1 Thess 4:17)
  4. The rapture will occur during the Parousia. "those who are alive and remain unto the coming (Parousia in Greek) of the Lord, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air" (1 Thess 4:15-17)
  5. The meeting with the Lord will be permanent. "And so shall we ever be with the Lord" (1 Thess 4:17) [27]

One or two events

Most pre-millennialists divide the rapture and second coming into two events. Some dispensationalist pre-millennialists (including many Evangelicals) hold the return of Christ to be two distinct events, or one second coming in two stages. According to them 1 Thessalonians 4:15–17 is seen to be a description of a preliminary event to the return described in Matthew 24:29–31. Although both describe a coming of Jesus, these are seen to be different events. The first event is a coming where the saved are to be 'caught up,' whence the term "rapture" is taken. The second event is described as the second coming. The majority of dispensationalists hold that the first event precedes the period of tribulation, even if not immediately (see chart for additional dispensationalist timing views).

Amillennialists deny the interpretation of a literal 1,000-year rule of Christ, and as such amillennialism does not necessarily imply much difference between itself and other forms of millennialism besides that denial. However, there is considerable overlap in the beliefs of Amillennialists (including most Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Anglicans, and Lutherans), post-millennialists (including Presbyterians), and historic pre-millennialists (including some Calvinistic Baptists, among others) with those who hold that the return of Christ will be a single, public event. Those who identify the rapture with the second coming are likely to emphasize mutual similarities between passages of scripture where clouds, trumpets, angels or the archangel, resurrection, and gathering are mentioned. Although some (particularly some amillennialists) may take the rapture to be figurative, rather than literal, these three groups are likely to maintain that the passages regarding the return of Christ describe a single event.

Some proponents believe the doctrine of amillennialism originated with Alexandrian scholars such as Clement and Origen [28] and later became Catholic dogma through Augustine. [29]


Dispensationalists see the immediate destination of the raptured Christians as being Heaven. Roman Catholic commentators, such as Walter Drum (1912), identify the destination of the 1 Thessalonians 4:17 gathering as Heaven. [30]

While Anglicans have many views, some Anglican commentators, such as N. T. Wright, identify the destination as a specific place on Earth. [31] [32] This interpretation may sometimes be connected to Christian environmentalist concerns. [33]

Views of eschatological timing

According to 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 and Matthew 24:37-40 the rapture would occur in the Parousia of the Lord where the Greek "Parousia" is used to describe the events:

1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 ASVMatthew 24:37-40 NIV
15 According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord (παρουσίαν Parousia), [34] will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming (παρουσία Parousia) [35] of the Son of Man. 38For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming (παρουσία Parousia) [36] of the Son of Man. 40Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left.
Comparison of Christian millennial interpretations, including premillennialist, postmillennialist, and amillennialist viewpoints Millennial views.svg
Comparison of Christian millennial interpretations, including premillennialist, postmillennialist, and amillennialist viewpoints
Comparison of differing viewpoints amongst premillennialists about timing of tribulation. Tribulation views.svg
Comparison of differing viewpoints amongst premillennialists about timing of tribulation.

In the amillennial and postmillennial views there are no distinctions in the timing of the rapture. These views regard the rapture, as it is described in 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 would be identical to the second coming of Jesus as described in Matthew 24:29-31 after a symbolic millennium.

In the premillennial view, the rapture would be before a literal millennium. Within premillennialism the pre-tribulation position is the predominant view that distinguishes between the rapture and second coming as two different events. There are also other positions within premillennialism that differ with regard to the timing of the rapture. [37]

Premillenialist views

Though the Catholic Church does not generally regard biblical prophecy in texts such as Daniel and Revelation as strictly future-based (when viewed from the standpoint of our present time), in 1590 Francisco Ribera, a Catholic Jesuit, taught "futurism"—the idea that most of Revelation is about the imminent future (rather than containing certain prophecies that were already fulfilled in the early years of the church). He also taught that a gathering-of-the-elect event (similar to what is now called the rapture) would happen 45 days before the end of a 3.5-year tribulation.[ citation needed ]

The concept of the rapture, in connection with premillennialism, was expressed by the 17th-century American Puritans Increase and Cotton Mather. They held to the idea that believers would be caught up in the air, followed by judgments on earth, and then the millennium. [38] [39] Other 17th-century expressions of the rapture are found in the works of: Robert Maton, Nathaniel Holmes, John Browne, Thomas Vincent, Henry Danvers, and William Sherwin. [40] The term rapture was used by Philip Doddridge [41] and John Gill [42] in their New Testament commentaries, with the idea that believers would be caught up prior to judgment on earth and Jesus' second coming.

An 1828 edition of Matthew Henry's An Exposition of the Old and New Testament uses the word "rapture" in explicating 1 Thes. 4:17. [43]

Dr. Samuel Prideaux Tregelles (1813-1875), a prominent English theologian and biblical scholar, wrote a pamphlet in 1866 tracing the concept of the rapture through the works of John Darby back to Edward Irving. [44]

Although not using the term "rapture", the idea was more fully developed by Edward Irving (1792–1834). In 1825, [45] Irving directed his attention to the study of prophecy and eventually accepted the one-man Antichrist idea of James Henthorn Todd, Samuel Roffey Maitland, Robert Bellarmine, and Francisco Ribera, yet he went a step further. Irving began to teach the idea of a two-phase return of Christ, the first phase being a secret rapture prior to the rise of the Antichrist. Edward Miller described Irving's teaching like this: "There are three gatherings: – First, of the first-fruits of the harvest, the wise virgins who follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth; next, the abundant harvest gathered afterwards by God; and lastly, the assembling of the wicked for punishment." [46]

Pre-tribulational premillennialism

The pre-tribulation position advocates that the rapture will occur before the beginning of a seven-year tribulation period, while the second coming will occur at the end of it. Pre-tribulationists often describe the rapture as Jesus coming for the church and the second coming as Jesus coming with the church. Pre-tribulation educators and preachers include Jimmy Swaggart, J. Dwight Pentecost, Tim LaHaye, J. Vernon McGee, Perry Stone, Chuck Smith, Hal Lindsey, Jack Van Impe, Chuck Missler, Grant Jeffrey, Thomas Ice, David Jeremiah, John F. MacArthur, and John Hagee. [47] While many pre-tribulationists are also dispensationalists, not all pre-tribulationists are dispensationalists. [48]

John Nelson Darby first proposed and popularized the pre-tribulation rapture in 1827. [49] This view was accepted among many other Plymouth Brethren movements in England. Darby and other prominent Brethren were part of the Brethren movement which impacted American Christianity, especially with movements and teachings associated with Christian eschatology and fundamentalism, primarily through their writings. Influences included the Bible Conference Movement, starting in 1878 with the Niagara Bible Conference. These conferences, which were initially inclusive of historicist and futurist premillennialism, led to an increasing acceptance of futurist premillennial views and the pre-tribulation rapture especially among Presbyterian, Baptist, and Congregational members. [50] Popular books also contributed to acceptance of the pre-tribulation rapture, including William E. Blackstone's book Jesus is Coming, published in 1878, [51] which sold more than 1.3 million copies, and the Scofield Reference Bible, published in 1909 and 1919 and revised in 1967. [52]

Some pre-tribulation proponents, such as Grant Jeffrey, [53] maintain that the earliest known extra-Biblical reference to the pre-tribulation rapture is from a 7th-century tract known as the Apocalypse of Pseudo-Ephraem the Syrian. Different authors have proposed several different versions of the Ephraem text as authentic and there are differing opinions as to whether it supports belief in a pre-tribulation rapture. [54] [55] One version of the text reads, "For all the saints and Elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins." [56] [57]

There exists at least one 18th-century and two 19th-century pre-tribulation references: in an essay published in 1788 in Philadelphia by the Baptist Morgan Edwards which articulated the concept of a pre-tribulation rapture, [58] in the writings of Catholic priest Manuel Lacunza in 1812, [59] and by John Nelson Darby in 1827. [60] Manuel Lacunza (1731–1801), a Jesuit priest (under the pseudonym Juan Josafat Ben Ezra), wrote an apocalyptic work entitled La venida del Mesías en gloria y majestad (The Coming of the Messiah in Glory and Majesty). The book appeared first in 1811, 10 years after his death. In 1827, it was translated into English by the Scottish minister Edward Irving.[ citation needed ]

The rise in belief in the pre-tribulation rapture is often wrongly attributed to a 15-year-old Scottish-Irish girl named Margaret McDonald who was of the first to receive a spiritual baptism under a Pentecostal awakening in Scotland. In 1830, she supposedly had a vision of the end times which describes a post-tribulation view of the rapture that was first published in 1840. It was published again in 1861, but two important passages demonstrating a post-tribulation view were removed to encourage confusion concerning the timing of the rapture. The two removed segments were, "This is the fiery trial which is to try us. - It will be for the purging and purifying of the real members of the body of Jesus" and "The trial of the Church is from Antichrist. It is by being filled with the Spirit that we shall be kept". [61] [62]

During the 1970s, belief in the rapture became popular in wider circles, in part because of the books of Hal Lindsey, including The Late Great Planet Earth , which has reportedly sold between 15 million and 35 million copies, and the movie A Thief in the Night , which based its title on the scriptural reference 1 Thessalonians 5:2. Lindsey proclaimed that the rapture was imminent, based on world conditions at the time. [63]

In 1995, the doctrine of the pre-tribulation rapture was further popularized by Tim LaHaye's Left Behind series of books, which sold tens of millions of copies [64] and was made into several movies and four real-time strategy video games.

Mid-tribulational premillennialism

The mid-tribulation position espouses that the rapture will occur at some point in the middle of what is popularly called the tribulation period, or during Daniel's 70th Week. The tribulation is typically divided into two periods of 3.5 years each. Mid-tribulationists hold that the saints will go through the first period (Beginning of Travail), but will be raptured into Heaven before the severe outpouring of God's wrath in the second half of what is popularly called the great tribulation. Mid-tribulationists appeal to Daniel 7:25 which says the saints will be given over to tribulation for "time, times, and half a time," - interpreted to mean 3.5 years. At the halfway point of the tribulation, the Antichrist will commit the "abomination of desolation" by desecrating the Jerusalem temple. Mid-tribulationist teachers include Harold Ockenga, James O. Buswell (a reformed, Calvinistic Presbyterian), and Norman Harrison. [65] This position is a minority view among premillennialists. [66]

Prewrath premillennialism

The prewrath rapture view also places the rapture at some point during the tribulation period before the second coming. This view holds that the tribulation of the church begins toward the latter part of a seven-year period, being Daniel's 70th week, when the Antichrist is revealed in the temple. This latter half of a seven-year period [i.e. 3 1/2 years] is defined as the great tribulation, although the exact duration is not known. References from Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21 are used as evidence that this tribulation will be cut short by the coming of Christ to deliver the righteous by means of the rapture, which will occur after specific events in Revelation, in particular after the sixth seal is opened and the sun is darkened and the moon is turned to blood. [67] However, by this point many Christians will have been slaughtered as martyrs by the Antichrist. After the rapture will come God's seventh-seal wrath of trumpets and bowls (a.k.a. "the Day of the Lord"). The Day of the Lord's wrath against the ungodly will follow for the remainder of seven years. [68] [69]

Partial pre-tribulation premillennialism

The partial, conditional or selective rapture theory holds that all obedient Christians will be raptured before the great tribulation depending on ones personal fellowship (or closeness) between she or he and God, which is not to be confused with the relationship between the same and God (which is believer, regardless of fellowship.) [70] [71] Therefore, it is believed by some that the rapture of a believer is determined by the timing of his conversion before the great tribulation. Other proponents of this theory hold that only those who are faithful in their relationship with God (having true fellowship with Him) will be raptured, and the rest resurrected during the great tribulation, between the 5th and 6th seals of Revelation, having lost their lives during. [72] Still others hold the rest will either be raptured during the tribulation or at its end. As stated by Ira David (a proponent of this view): “The saints will be raptured in groups during the tribulation as they are prepared to go.” [73] Some notable proponents of this theory are G. H. Lang, Robert Chapman, G. H. Pember, Robert Govett, D. M. Panton, Watchman Nee, Ira E. David, J. A. Seiss, Hudson Taylor, Anthony Norris Groves, John Wilkinson, G. Campbell Morgan, Otto Stockmayer and Rev. J. W. (Chip) White, Jr.

Post-tribulational premillennialism

In the post-tribulation premillennial position, the rapture would be identical to the second coming of Jesus or as a meeting in the air with Jesus that immediately precedes his return to the Earth before a literal millennium. The post-tribulation position places the rapture at the end of the tribulation period. Post-tribulation writers define the tribulation period in a generic sense as the entire present age, or in a specific sense of a period of time preceding the second coming of Christ. [74] The emphasis in this view is that the church will undergo the tribulation. [75] Matthew 24:29–31 - "Immediately after the Tribulation of those days...they shall gather together his elect..." - is cited as a foundational scripture for this view. Post-tribulationists perceive the rapture as occurring simultaneously with the second coming of Christ. Upon Jesus' return, believers will meet him in the air and will then accompany him in his return to the Earth. In the Epistles of Paul, most notably in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 ("the dead in Christ shall rise first") and 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, a trumpet is described as blowing at the end of the tribulation to herald the return of Christ; Revelation 11:15 further supports this view. Moreover, after chapters 6–19, and after 20:1-3 when Satan is bound, Revelation 20:4-6 says, "and they lived, and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection."

Authors and teachers who support the post-tribulational view include Pat Robertson, Walter R. Martin, John Piper, George E. Ladd, [76] Robert H. Gundry, [77] and Douglas Moo.

Non-premillennialist views


In the postmillennialist view the millennium is seen as an indefinitely long time thus precluding literal interpretation of a thousand-year period. According to Loraine Boettner "the world will be Christianized, and the return of Christ will occur at the close of a long period of righteousness and peace, commonly called the millennium." [78] Postmillennialists commonly view the rapture of the Church as one and the same event as the second coming of Christ. According to them the great tribulation was already fulfilled in the Jewish-Roman War of 66–73 AD that involved the destruction of Jerusalem.[ citation needed ] Authors who have expressed support for this view include the Puritan author of Pilgrim's Progress, John Bunyan, Jonathan Edwards and Charles Finney.


Amillennialists view the millennial rule of Christ as the current, but indefinite period that began with the foundation of the church and that will end with the Second Coming—a period where Christ already reigns with his saints through the Eucharist and his church. They view the life of the church as Christ's kingdom already established (inaugurated on the day of the Pentecost described in the first chapter of Acts), but not to be made complete until his second coming. This framework precludes a literal interpretation of the thousand-year period mentioned in chapter twenty of Revelation, viewing the number "thousand" as numerologically symbolic and pertaining to the current age of the church. Amillennialists generally do not use "rapture" as a theological term, but they do view a similar event coinciding with the second coming—primarily as a mystical gathering with Christ. To amillennialists the final days already began on the day of the Pentecost, but that the great tribulation will occur during the final phase or conclusion of the millennium, with Christ then returning as the alpha and omega at the end of time. Unlike premillennialists who predict the millennium as a literal thousand-year reign by Christ after his return, amillennialists emphasize the continuity and permanency of his reign throughout all periods of the New Covenant, past, present and future. They do not regard mentions of Jerusalem in the chapter twenty-one of Revelation as pertaining to the present geographical city, but to a future new Jerusalem or "new heaven and new earth", for which the church through the twelve apostles (representing of the twelve tribes of Israel) currently lays the foundation in the messianic kingdom already present. Unlike certain premillennial dispensationalists, they do not view the rebuilding of the temple of Jerusalem as either necessary or legitimate, because the practice of animal sacrifices has now been fulfilled in the life of the church through Christ's ultimate sacrifice on the cross. Authors who have expressed support for the amillenialist view include St. Augustine. [79] The amillennialist viewpoint is the position held by the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and Anglican churches, as well as mainline Protestant bodies, such as Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians and many Reformed congregations. [80]


Since the origin of the concept, many believers in the rapture have made predictions regarding the date of the event. The primary Biblical reference cited against this position is Matthew 24:36-37, where Jesus is quoted as saying about his Parousia; "But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming (Parousia) of the Son of man be." (RSV). Also in 2 Peter 3:10, it says “The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up” (see also 1 Thessalonians 5:2). [81] Another potential problem for those attempting to set a date for the rapture arises from Matthew 24:34, where Jesus is quoted as saying "Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled" (KJV).

Any individual or religious group that has dogmatically predicted the day of the rapture, a practise referred to as "date setting", has been thoroughly embarrassed and discredited, as the predicted date of fulfillment has invariably come and gone without event. [82] [83] Some of these individuals and groups have offered "correct" target dates, while others have offered excuses and have tried to "correct" their target dates, while simply releasing a reinterpretation of the meaning of the scripture to fit their current predicament, and then explain that although the prediction appeared to have not come true, in reality it had been completely accurate and fulfilled, albeit in a different way than many had expected.

Conversely, many of those who believe that the precise date of the rapture cannot be known, do affirm that the specific time frame that immediately precedes the rapture event can be known. This time frame is often referred to as "the season". The primary section of scripture cited for this position is Matthew 24:32–35; where Jesus is quoted teaching the parable of the fig tree, which is proposed as the key that unlocks the understanding of the general timing of the rapture, as well as the surrounding prophecies listed in the sections of scripture that precede and follow this parable.

Failed predictions

Some predictions of the date of the second Coming of Jesus include the following:

Some predictions of the date of the rapture include the following:

See also

Related Research Articles

Second Coming Christian and Islamic belief regarding the future (or past) return of Jesus after his ascension

The Second Coming is a Christian and Islamic belief regarding the future return of Jesus after his ascension to heaven about two thousand years ago. The idea is based on messianic prophecies and is part of most Christian eschatologies.

In Christian eschatology, the Great Tribulation is a period mentioned by Jesus in the Olivet Discourse as a sign that would occur in the time of the end.

The Olivet Discourse or Olivet prophecy is a biblical passage found in the Synoptic Gospels in Matthew 24 and 25, Mark 13, and Luke 21. It is also known as the Little Apocalypse because it includes the use of apocalyptic language, and it includes Jesus' warning to his followers that they will suffer tribulation and persecution before the ultimate triumph of the Kingdom of God. The Olivet discourse is the last of the Five Discourses of Matthew and occurs just before the narrative of Jesus' passion beginning with the anointing of Jesus.

Dispensationalism is a religious interpretive system and metanarrative for the Bible. It considers biblical history as divided by God into dispensations, defined periods or ages to which God has allotted distinctive administrative principles. According to dispensationalism, each age of God's plan is thus administered in a certain way, and humanity is held responsible as a steward during that time. Dispensationalists' presuppositions start with the inductive reasoning that biblical history has a particular discontinuity in the way God reacts to humanity in the unfolding of their, sometimes supposed, free wills.

<i>The Late, Great Planet Earth</i> book by Hal Lindsey

The Late, Great Planet Earth is a best-selling 1970 book by Hal Lindsey with Carole C. Carlson, and first published by Zondervan. The book was first featured on a prime time television special featuring Hal Lindsey in 1974 to 1975 with an audience of 17,000,000 and produced by Alan Hauge of GMT Productions. Years later, it was adapted by Rolf Forsberg and Robert Amram during 1976 into a film narrated by Orson Welles and released by Pacific International Enterprises. It was originally ghost-written by Carlson, whom later printings credited as co-author. Lindsey and Carlson later published several sequels, including Satan Is Alive and Well on Planet Earth and The 1980s: Countdown to Armageddon.

Premillennialism, in Christian eschatology, is the belief that Jesus will physically return to the earth before the Millennium, a literal thousand-year golden age of peace. The doctrine is called "premillennialism" because it holds that Jesus' physical return to earth will occur prior to the inauguration of the Millennium. Premillennialism is based upon a literal interpretation of Revelation 20:1–6 in the New Testament, which describes Jesus' reign in a period of a thousand years.

John F. Walvoord was a Christian theologian, pastor, and president of Dallas Theological Seminary from 1952 to 1986. He was the author of over 30 books, focusing primarily on eschatology and theology including The Rapture Question, and was co-editor of The Bible Knowledge Commentary with Roy B. Zuck. He earned AB and DD degrees from Wheaton College, an AM degree from Texas Christian University in philosophy, a ThB, ThM, and ThD in Systematic Theology from Dallas Theological Seminary, and a LittD from Liberty Baptist Seminary.

Amillennialism, or amillenarism, in Christian eschatology, involves the rejection of the belief that Jesus will have a literal, thousand-year-long, physical reign on the earth. This rejection contrasts with premillennial and some postmillennial interpretations of chapter 20 of the Book of Revelation.

Post-tribulation rapture eschatological theory about the a combined resurrection and rapture of all believers coming after the Great Tribulation

In Christian eschatology, the post-tribulation rapture doctrine is the belief in a combined resurrection and rapture of all believers coming after the Great Tribulation.

<i>A Thief in the Night</i> (film) 1972 film

A Thief in the Night is a 1972 evangelical Christian film written by Russell S. Doughten, Jr., directed and produced by Donald W. Thompson, and starring Patty Dunning as Patty Meyers, the main character and protagonist, along with Thom Rachford, Colleen Niday and Mike Niday in supporting roles. It is the first installment in the Thief in the Night series about the Rapture, Tribulation, and Second Coming of Christ. The film is set during the near future, focusing on Patty, a young woman who was not raptured and who struggles to decide what to do in the face of the Tribulation.

Futurism is a Christian eschatological view that interprets portions of the Book of Revelation, the Book of Ezekiel, and the Book of Daniel as future events in a literal, physical, apocalyptic, and global context.

Christian Historicism is a method of interpretation of Biblical prophecies which associates symbols with historical persons, nations or events. The main primary texts of interest to Christian historicists include apocalyptic literature, such as the Book of Daniel and the Book of Revelation. It sees the prophecies of Daniel as being fulfilled throughout history, extending from the past through the present to the future. It is sometimes called the continuous historical view. Commentators have also applied historicist methods to ancient Jewish history, to the Roman Empire, to Islam, to the Papacy, to the Modern era, and to the end time.

Christian eschatology is the branch of theological study relating to last things, such as concerning death, the end of the world, the judgement of humanity, and the ultimate destiny of humanity. Eschatological passages are found in many places in the Christian Bible, with many being found in the Old Testament prophets, especially in Isaiah and Daniel. Many are also found in the New Testament books, such as Matthew 24, Matthew 25, the General epistles, the Pauline epistles, and the Book of Revelation. This article is currently a general overview of the different Christian eschatological interpretations of the Book of Revelation. The differences are by no means monolithic as representing one group or another. Many differences exist within each group.

Margaret MacDonald was born in 1815 in Port Glasgow, Scotland and died around 1840. She lived with her two older brothers, James and George, both of whom ran a shipping business. Beginning in 1826 and through 1829, a few preachers in Scotland emphasized that the world's problems could only be addressed through an outbreak of supernatural gifts from the Holy Spirit. In response, Isabella and Mary Campbell of the parish of Rosneath manifested charismatic experiences such as speaking in tongues. Around 1830, miraculous healings were reported through James Campbell, first of his sister Margaret MacDonald and then of Mary Campbell. Shortly thereafter, James and George MacDonald manifested the speaking and interpretations of tongues, and soon others followed suit in prayer meetings. These charismatic experiences garnered major national attention. Many came to see and investigate these events. Some, such as Edward Irving and Henry Drummond, regarded these events as genuine displays from the Holy Spirit. Others, including John Nelson Darby and Benjamin Wills Newton, whom the Plymouth Brethren sent on their behalf to investigate, came to the conclusion that these displays were demonic.

<i>Left Behind</i> (novel) 1995 novel by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins

Left Behind: A Novel of the Earth's Last Days is a best-selling novel by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins that starts the Left Behind series. This book and others in the series give narrative form to a specific eschatological reading of the Christian Bible, particularly the Book of Revelation inspired by dispensationalism and premillennialism. It was released on Sunday, December 31, 1995. The events take place the day of the Rapture and the two weeks following.

Seventh-day Adventist eschatology

The Seventh-day Adventist Church holds a unique system of eschatological beliefs. Adventist eschatology, which is based on a historicist interpretation of prophecy, is characterised principally by the premillennial Second Coming of Christ. Traditionally, the church has taught that the Second Coming will be preceded by a global crisis with the Sabbath as a central issue. At Jesus' return, the righteous will be taken to heaven for one thousand years. After the millennium the unsaved will be punished by annihilation while the saved will live on a recreated Earth for eternity.

The concept of a prewrath rapture is one of several premillennial views on the end times events among some evangelical Christians, and states that Christians will be raptured at the end of a time called the Great Tribulation, and before The Day of the Lord. The prewrath position emphasizes the biblical distinction between Satan's wrath in the Great Tribulation and the wrath of God.

Historic premillennialism is the designation made by premillenialists, now also known as post-tribulational premillennialism. The doctrine is called "historic" because many early church fathers appear to have held it. Post-tribulational premillennialism is the Christian eschatological view that the second coming of Jesus Christ will occur prior to a thousand-year reign of the saints but subsequent to the great apostasy.

Francisco Ribera Spanish theologian

Francisco Ribera (1537–1591) was a Spanish Jesuit theologian, identified with the Futurist Christian eschatological view.


  1. McKim, Donald K (2014-04-09). The Westminster Dictionary of Theological Terms, Second Edition: Revised and Expanded. Presbyterian Publishing Corporation. pp. 261–. ISBN   9781611643862 . Retrieved 26 December 2014.
  2. Chopra, editor, Ramesh (2005). Encyclopaedic dictionary of religion: Q-Z. Delhi: Isha Books. p. 638. ISBN   81-8205-203-3 . Retrieved 6 April 2015.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  3. 1 Thessalonians 4:17
  4. Hays, J. Daniel; Duvall, J. Scott; Pate, C. Marvin (2009-05-26). Dictionary of Biblical Prophecy and End Times. Zondervan. pp. 692–. ISBN   9780310571049 . Retrieved 26 December 2014.
  5. Mills, Watson E.; Bullard, Roger Aubrey (1990). Mercer Dictionary of the Bible. Mercer University Press. pp. 736–. ISBN   9780865543737 . Retrieved 26 December 2014.
  6. Cf. Michael D. Guinan, "Raptured or Not? A Catholic Understanding", Catholic Update, October 2005, https://web.archive.org/web/20140404105238/http://www.americancatholic.org/Newsletters/CU/ac1005.asp ("For many American fundamentalist Christians, the Rapture forms part of the scenario of events that will happen at the end of the world....[T]he more common view is [the pre-tribulation view].") (emphasis added); (American Anglican commentary), Comment of Jon Edwards ("[T]he word 'rapture' can be found before 1830. But before 1830 it always referred to a POST-TRIB rapture....").
  7. Michael D. Guinan, "Raptured or Not? A Catholic Understanding", Catholic Update, October 2005, https://web.archive.org/web/20140404105238/http://www.americancatholic.org/Newsletters/CU/ac1005.asp (According to Guinan, the word "rapture" is used in different ways: "Spiritual writers have used it for mystical union with God, or our final sharing in God’s heavenly life". However, for many American fundamentalist Christians, "the Rapture forms part of the scenario of events that will happen at the end of the world....[T]he more common view is [the pre-tribulation view]".) "It was over 30 years ago that a student in my Scripture class asked me that question. Drawing on all my years of Catholic education (kindergarten through the seminary and doctoral studies), I replied, 'The what?' I had never heard of it.").Michael D. Guinan, "Raptured or Not? A Catholic Understanding", Catholic Update, October 2005.
  8. Left behind? Mormons, who don't really buy this Rapture thing
  9. Where does the “Rapture” fit into United Methodist beliefs?
  10. Michael D. Guinan, "Raptured or Not? A Catholic Understanding", Catholic Update, October 2005, https://web.archive.org/web/20140404105238/http://www.americancatholic.org/Newsletters/CU/ac1005.asp . Cf. "Catechism of the Catholic Church - The Profession of Faith". Vatican.va. Retrieved 2011-10-21.
  11. Anthony M. Coniaris, "The Rapture: Why the Orthodox don't preach it," Light & Life Publishing, Life Line, September 12, 2005, Volume 2, Issue 3, available at https://web.archive.org/web/20121109035607/http://www.light-n-life.com/newsletters/09-12-2005.htm accessed January 27, 2012.
  12. Brian M. Schwertley, "Is the Pretribulation Rapture Biblical?", Reformed Online, https://web.archive.org/web/20130311041013/http://reformedonline.com/view/reformedonline/rapture.htm, last accessed January 27, 2012.
  13. See notes above for specific denominations (Catechism - Catholic, Light & Life Newsletter - Orthodox, Lutheran Witness - Lutheran, Reformed Online - Reformed).
  14. Cf. Ian S. Markham, "John Darby", The Student's Companion to the Theologians, p.263-64 (Wiley-Blackwell, 2013) ("[Darby] simultaneously created a theology that holds the popular imagination and was popularized very effectively in the margins of the Schofield Bible."), https://books.google.com/books?id=h6SHSAjeCrYC .
  15. Carl E. Olson, "Five Myths About the Rapture," Crisis p. 28-33 (Morley Publishing Group, 2003) ("LaHaye declares, in Rapture Under Attack, that “virtually all Christians who take the Bible literally expect to be raptured before the Lord comes in power to this earth.” This would have been news to Christians — both Catholic and Protestant — living prior to the 18th century, since the concept of a pretribulation rapture was unheard of prior to that time. Vague notions had been considered by the Puritan preachers Increase (1639-1723) and Cotton Mather (1663-1728), and the late 18th-century Baptist minister Morgan Edwards, but it was John Nelson Darby who solidified the belief in the 1830s and placed it into a larger theological framework."). Reprinted at http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=5788 .
  16. Blaising, Craig A.; Bock, Darrell L. (November 1993). Progressive Dispensationalism. Wheaton, IL: Bridgepoint Books. ISBN   9781441205124.
  17. The Scofield Bible: Its History and Impact on the Evangelical Church, Magnum & Sweetnam. Pages 188-195, 218.
  18. c.1600, "act of carrying off," from M.Fr. rapture, from M.L. raptura "seizure, rape, kidnapping," from L. raptus "a carrying off" (see rapt). Originally of women and cognate with rape.
  19. ἁρπάζω is root of strongs G726 and has the following meanings: (1) to seize, carry off by force; (2) to seize on, claim for one's self eagerly; (3) to snatch out or take away.
  20. 1 Thessalonians 4:17. deinde nos qui vivimus qui relinquimur simul rapiemur cum illis in nubibus obviam Domino in aera et sic semper cum Domino erimus (Latin Vulgate).
  21. Elwell, Walter A., ed. (2001-05-01) [1984]. Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (2nd ed.). Baker Academic. p. 908. ISBN   9781441200303. Book preview
  22. 1Thess 4:16 "Afterward we that lyuen, that ben left, schulen be rauyschid togidere with hem in cloudis, metinge Crist`in to the eir; and so euere more we schulen be with the Lord."
  23. Bishop's Bible 17 "Than we which lyue, which remaine, shalbe caught vp together with them in the cloudes, to meete the Lorde in the ayre: And so shall we euer be with the Lorde."
  24. NETBible. Bible.org, 2005. Retrieved 2012-02-06.
  25. "About the Supposed Rapture". Omaha, Nebraska: Greek Orthodox Church of Greater Omaha. Archived from the original on 2014-04-02. Retrieved 23 January 2011. Rapture is a popular term among some Protestant sects for the raising of the faithful from the dead....The belief in rapture tends to be what is called 'pre-tribulation'.
  26. Cozby, Dimitri (September 1998). "What is 'The Rapture'?". Rollinsford, New Hampshire: Orthodox Research Institute. Retrieved 2015-03-22.
  27. "1 Thessalonians Chapter 4:15-18- the Rapture!". Genesis to Revelation. 2019-06-19. Retrieved 2019-06-19.
  28. Lindsey, Hal (1989-06-01). The Road to Holocaust. Bantam Books. p. 77. ISBN   978-0-553-05724-9.
  29. Keeley, Robin, ed. (November 1982). Eerdmans’ Handbook to Christian Belief. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans. p. 415. ISBN   978-0-8028-3577-2.
  30. Drum, Walter (1912-07-01). "Epistles to the Thessalonians". Catholic Encyclopedia . New York City: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved 2010-12-12.
  31. Wright, N. T. (2008-02-05). Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church. HarperOne. p. 133. ISBN   978-0061551826. When Paul speaks of 'meeting' the Lord 'in the air,' the point is precisely not—as in the popular rapture theology—that the saved believers would then stay up in the air somewhere, The point is that, having gone out to meet their returning Lord, they will escort him royally into his domain, that is, back to the place they have come from. Even when we realize that this is highly charged metaphor, not literal description, the meaning is the same as in the parallel in Philippians 3:20. Being citizens of heaven, as the Philippians would know, doesn’t mean that one is expecting go back to the mother city but rather means that one is expecting the emperor to come from the mother city to give the colony its full dignity, to rescue it if need he, to subdue local enemies and put everything to rights.
  32. Holding, James Patrick, ed. (2010-08-24). Defending the Resurrection. Xulon Press. p. 25. ISBN   978-1609576547. Foreword by Gary Habermas.
  33. Bouma-Prediger, Steven (2010-04-01) [2001]. For the Beauty of the Earth: A Christian Vision for Creation Care. Engaging Culture (2nd ed.). Baker Academic. ISBN   978-0801036958..
  34. http://biblehub.com/text/1_thessalonians/4-15.htm
  35. http://biblehub.com/text/matthew/24-37.htm
  36. http://biblehub.com/text/matthew/24-39.htm
  37. Elwell, Walter A., ed. (2001-05-01) [1984]. Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (2nd ed.). Baker Academic. p. 910. ISBN   9781441200303. Book preview
  38. Kyle, Richard G. (May 1998). The Last Days Are Here Again: A History of the End Times. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books. pp. 78–79. ISBN   978-0-8010-5809-7.
  39. Boyer, Paul (September 1992). When Time Shall Be No More: Prophecy Belief in Modern American Culture. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. p. 75. ISBN   978-0-674-95128-0.
  40. William Watson (April 2015). Dispensationalism Before Darby: Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century English Apocalypticism (Lampion Press, 2015), ch.7.
  41. Doddridge, Philip (March 9, 1738). Practical Reflections on the Character and Translation of Enoch (sermon). Northampton : Printed by W. Dicey and sold by ...R. Hett ... London, J. Smith in Daventry, Caleb Ratten in Harborough, J. Ratten in Coventry, J. Cook in Uppingham, Tho. Warren in Birmingham, and Matt. Dagnall in Aylesbury. OCLC   30557054 . Retrieved 2015-03-13.
  42. Gill, John (1748). An Exposition of the Revelation of St. John the Divine. London: Printed for John Ward. OCLC   49243272 . Retrieved 17 May 2011.
  43. Henry, Matthew (1828). An Exposition of the Old and New Testament. Volume 6. Philadelphia: Edward Barrington & George D. Haswell. p. 617. At, or immediately before, this rapture into the clouds, those who are alive will undergo a mighty change, that will be equivalent to dying.
  44. Tregelles, Samuel Prideaux (1864). The Hope of Christ's Second Coming: How is it Taught in Scripture? and Why?. London: Houlston and Wright. Reprint: Tregelles, Samuel Prideaux (2006-04-01). The Hope of Christ's Second Coming. Milesburg, PA: Strong Tower Publishing. ISBN   978-0-9772883-0-4.
  45. Oliphant, Margaret (1862). The life of Edward Irving, minister of the National Scotch Church, London. First volume. London: Hurst and Blackett. pp. 220–223. Retrieved 2015-03-17.
  46. Miller, Edward (1878). The history and doctrines of Irvingism. Vol II. London: C. Kegan Paul & Co. p. 8. Retrieved 2015-03-16.
  47. Lindsey, Hal (1983-07-01). The Rapture: Truth or Consequences. Bantam Books. p.  25. ISBN   978-0553014112.
  48. Erickson, Millard J. (1977). Contemporary Options in Eschatology: A Study of the Millennium. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House. p.  125. ISBN   0-8010-3262-8.
  49. Bray, John L (1982). The origin of the pre-tribulation rapture teaching. Lakeland, Florida: John L. Bray Ministry. pp. 24–25.
  50. Blaising, Craig A.; Bock, Darrell L. (November 1993). Progressive Dispensationalism. Wheaton, IL: Bridgepoint Books. p. 11. ISBN   978-1-56476-138-5.
  51. Blackstone, William E. (1908) [1878]. Jesus is coming (Third ed.). Fleming H. Revell Company. OCLC   951778.
  52. Scofield, C. I., ed. (1967) [1909]. Scofield Reference Bible . Oxford University Press. ISBN   978-0-19-527802-6.
  53. Ephraem the Syrian, JoshuaNet, 27 Jul. 2010. http://joshuanet.org/articles/ephraem1.htm & © 1995 Grant R. Jeffrey, Final Warning, published by Frontier Research Publications, Inc., Box 120, Station "U", Toronto, Ontario M8Z 5M4.
  54. Warner, Tim (2001). "Pseudo-Pseudo-Ephraem". The Last Trumpet. Tampa, Florida: Post-Trib Research Center. Archived from the original on 2005-02-18.Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  55. See Apocalypse of Pseudo-Ephraem for a detailed explanation of the text and the controversy.
  56. Missler, Chuck (June 1995). "Byzantine Text Discovery: Ephraem the Syrian". Coeur d'Alene, Idaho: Koinonia House. Retrieved 2015-03-22. For all the saints and Elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins.
  57. Hommel, Jason. "A Sermon by Pseudo-Ephraem". Jason Hommel's Bible Prophecy Study on the Pre Tribulation Rapture. Grass Valley, California . Retrieved 2015-03-22. For all the saints and elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins.
  58. Marotta, Frank (1995). Morgan Edwards: An Eighteenth Century Pretribulationist. Jackson Township, New Jersey: Present Truth Publishers. ISBN   978-0-9640037-8-1. OCLC   36897344.
  59. Hommel, Jason. "The Jesuits and the Rapture: Francisco Ribera & Emmanuel Lacunza". Jason Hommel's Bible Prophecy Study on the Pre Tribulation Rapture. Grass Valley, California. Archived from the original on 9 December 2010. Retrieved 22 January 2011.Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  60. Strandberg, Todd. "Margaret MacDonald Who?". Rapture Ready. Archived from the original on 11 January 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2011. Darby reported that he discovered the rapture teaching in 1827Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  61. Hommel, Jason. "Margaret MacDonald's Vision". Jason Hommel's Bible Prophecy Study on the Pre Tribulation Rapture. Grass Valley, California. Archived from the original on 15 January 2003. Retrieved 14 November 2016. Quotes the account in The Restoration of Apostles and Prophets In the Catholic Apostolic Church (1861).Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  62. Wilkinson, Paul Richard (1 December 2008). "Appendix: Margaret McDonald's Utterances". For Zion's Sake: Christian Zionism and the Role of John Nelson Darby. Wipf and Stock Publishers. pp. 262–263. ISBN   1556358075. A more complete version, combining the text in Norton's Memoirs and that in The Restoration of Apostles and Prophets In the Catholic Apostolic Church (1861), all cited secondary from Macpherson, The Incredible Coverup.
  63. Balnius, Nicole. "Hal Lindsey". Rapture Ready. Archived from the original on 5 February 2007. Retrieved 23 January 2011.Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  64. "Left Behind Series - Official Website of the Book Series". Tyndale House . Retrieved 2015-03-23.
  65. Erickson, Millard J. (1977). Contemporary Options in Eschatology: A Study of the Millennium. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House. p.  164. ISBN   0-8010-3262-8.
  66. Hoekema, Anthony A. (1994-09-06) [1979]. The Bible and the Future (revised ed.). Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans. p. 164. ISBN   0-85364-624-4.
  67. "Welcome to the Pre-Wrath Consortium". Pre-Wrath Consortium. Archived from the original on 2004-10-20.Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  68. Rosenthal, Marvin J. (1990-06-22). The Pre-Wrath Rapture of the Church. Thomas Nelson. ISBN   978-0840731609.
  69. Marvin Rosenthal, author of The Prewrath Rapture of the Church, is a proponent for the prewrath rapture view. His belief is founded on the work of Robert D. Van Kampen (1938–1999); his books The Sign, The Rapture Question Answered and The Fourth Reich detail his pre-wrath rapture doctrine.
  70. LaHaye, Tim; Ice, Thomas (August 2001). Charting the End Times: A Visual Guide to Understanding Bible Prophecy. Tim LaHaye Prophecy Library. Harvest House. ISBN   978-0736901383.
  71. "Overview of the Partial Rapture Theory" (PDF). Valley Bible Church Theology Studies. Lancaster, California . Retrieved 2015-04-01.
  72. White, J. W. Jr. (2008-02-28). The Partial Rapture "Theory" Explained: Escaping The Coming Storm. Xulon Press. ISBN   9781604776843.
  73. David, Ira E. (1935-11-15). "Translation: When Does It Occur?". The Dawn: 358.
  74. Walvoord, John F. (1979-08-12) [1957]. The Rapture Question (Revised and enlarged ed.). Zondervan. p. 128. ISBN   978-0-310-34151-2.
  75. Erickson, Millard J. (1998-12-01) [1977]. A Basic Guide to Eschatology: Making Sense of the Millennium (revised ed.). Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House. p. 152. ISBN   0-8010-5836-8. Originally published in 1977 under the title Contemporary Options in Eschatology: A Study of the Millennium.
  76. Ladd, George Eldon (1990-03-20) [1956]. The Blessed Hope: A Biblical Study of the Second Advent and the Rapture. Eerdmans. ISBN   978-0802811110.
  77. Gundry, Robert H. (1999-10-14) [1973]. The Church and the Tribulation: A Biblical Examination of Posttribulationism. Zondervan. ISBN   978-0310254010.
  78. Boettner, Loraine (1984). The millennium ([Rev. ed]. ed.). [Phillipsburg, N.J.]: Presbyterian and Reformed Pub. Co. ISBN   978-0875521138.
  79. "The Rapture" . Retrieved 2017-09-19.
  80. Garrison, J. Christopher (2014). The Judaism of Jesus: The Messiah's Redemption of the Jews. Bloomington, Indiana: WestBowPress. p. 264. ISBN   978-1-4908-2974-6.
  81. "What Does the Bible Teach about the Secret Rapture?" . Retrieved 2012-04-05.
  82. Strandberg, Todd. "The Date Setters Diary". Rapture Ready. Archived from the original on 24 June 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2007.Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  83. Nelson, Chris (2011-05-18). "A Brief History of the Apocalypse" . Retrieved 2015-04-01.
  84. Sears, William (1961-06-01). Thief in the Night: Or, The Strange Case of the Missing Millennium. Welwyn, England: George Ronald Publishing Ltd. ISBN   978-0853980087.
  85. Barbour, Nelson H. (1877). Three Worlds, and the Harvest of This World (PDF). Rochester, New York: Nelson H. Barbour and Charles Taze Russell. OCLC   41016956 . Retrieved 2015-04-03. (See also: Wikipedia's article on Three Worlds (book) )
    as cited by:
    Penton, M. James (1997-08-09) [1985]. Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah's Witnesses (2nd ed.). University of Toronto Press. pp. 21–22. ISBN   978-0802079732.
  86. The Finished Mystery, 1917, p. 485, 258, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, pages 206-211.
  87. The Way to Paradise booklet, Watch Tower Society, 1924, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, pages 230–232.
  88. Smith, Chuck (1978-01-01). End Times: A Report on Future Survival. Costa Mesa, California: Maranatha House Publishers. p. 17. ISBN   978-0893370114.
  89. "88 Reasons Why the Rapture Will Be in 1988".
  90. Nelson, Chris (18 June 2002). "A Brief History of the Apocalypse; 1971–1997: Millennial Madness" . Retrieved 23 June 2007.
  91. "We are Almost There". Archived from the original on 12 June 2008. Retrieved 22 July 2008.Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  92. Ravitz, Jessica (2011-03-06). "Road trip to the end of the world". CNN . Retrieved 2011-03-06.
  93. LAist Archived 2011-07-20 at the Wayback Machine , 24 May 2011.
  94. Kettley, Sebastian (2017-09-23). "End of the world 2017: Why American Christians are getting VERY worried about September 23". Express.co.uk. Retrieved 2017-11-06.