I knew I’d be opening a can of worms even before I popped the top. There are only a handful of hot button issues within the church nowadays, and besides the timing of the catching away, we have the debate over eternal security, and of course the debate as to whether or not the gifts and baptism of the Holy Spirit are still among us.
To those of you who exhibited such a level of Christian character that I could not post your comments for fear that someone reading them might take offense at your choice of words, I forgive you, and God bless you. What you do not seem to grasp is that when I first began studying the topic of the catching away, or the rapture, I did so desiring wholeheartedly to discover that the Bible supported and backed up a pre-tribulation catching away.
I’m not one of those guys who wants to suffer for suffering’s sake, but only insofar as it brings glory to God. I am not looking forward to, or desirous of seeing those times, and as I said in yesterday’s post, I pray every day that I be counted worthy to escape.
As far as judging my pre-tribulation believing brothers, you might be surprised to know that I pray for them more than I pray for myself, that their faith would endure and not fail during the coming days. I’m not judging anyone, and if I’ve come off as ‘judgy’ it was unintended. I will, however, stand on the word of God, and believe the words of Jesus as He spoke them without attempting to reinterpret them or filter them through the prism of human understanding.
I know all the scriptures used to support a pre-tribulation rapture, I’ve studied them, collated them, meditated upon them, and everyone is peripheral to the primary topic. Only when one has predetermined what they will perceive in a particular scripture passage, whether Amos 5, Daniel 7, Daniel 9, or 2 Thessalonians 2, is the notion of a pre-tribulation rapture supported.
What I mean by this, is that if I go into the word of God intent on finding Scripture passages to support my position on any given topic, if I interpret and reinterpret a certain verse long enough, it will eventually mean what I want it to mean.
‘You who love the Lord, hate evil! He preserves the souls of His saints; He delivers them out of the hand of the wicked.’
‘For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.’
See, there! Pre-tribulation supported by Scripture.
These along with the other verses used to support this stance are peripheral scriptures, given to interpretation, tangentially relational to the primary topic.
Jesus said, ‘then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven,’ meaning ‘after’ which is a lot more conclusive than the indirect scriptures used to defend this position.
We’ve already established we will not suffer the wrath of God, but being spared persecution would make God unjust, and His word a lie, since it was in His word we are told ‘all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.’
I’m sorry; I don’t have a seminary degree, or the penchant to twist scripture into a pretzel just to make it support my denominational edicts. I read the Book, I read the words of Jesus, and I believe them. To me black is black. It is not white which has, through time and the process of oxidation turned a darker shade of white yet is not black as we understand black to be.
The Book is simple; we complicate it.
As far as Christ saying to His bride ‘hey let’s get married – I’ll beat the daylights out of you then we’ll go out to dinner!' It’s when we attempt to superimpose our thoughts upon God’s thoughts and filter His heart and intent through the prism of human understanding that we get such gems.
It is in hardship, affliction and persecution that the power and presence of God in us and through us is all the more evident. When God allows us to suffer persecution, He’s not beating the daylights out of us, He is facilitating the perfect environment in which we, His bride, will walk in the authority and power rightly ours.
When we are weak He is strong, for His power is perfected in weakness.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10, “And He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, than the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.’”
What we perceive as God beating the daylights out of us is in fact God preparing His bride for her wedding day.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.