*Pastor’s Note: We will continue, in no particular order questions posed from the excellent book by Mark Hitchcock entitled, The Complete Book of Bible Prophecy. My hope and prayer is that it will give some insight into much of the end-times prophecy the Bible speaks of and hopefully alleviates some of the fears and confusion people have about studying prophecy. The following is the next in a line of questions I present to you from his book:
Are the Rapture and the Second Coming Identical Events?
Bible prophecy strongly object to the notion that the Rapture and the second coming of Christ are distinct events separated by seven years. They contend that this is teaching two future comings of Christ, while the Bible only presents one Second Coming.
The only way to resolve this issue is to set what the Bible says about these two events side-by-side to see if it is describing the same occurrence. You be the judge!
|The Rapture||The Second Coming|
|Christ comes in the air (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)||Christ comes to earth (Zechariah 14:4)|
|Christ comes for His saints (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)||Christ comes with His saints (1 Thessalonians 3:13; Jude 14)|
|Christ claims His Bride||Christ comes with His Bride|
|Not in the Old Testament||Predicted often in the Old Testament|
|There are no signs – it is imminent (1 Corinthians 15:52)||Portended by many signs (Matthew 24:4-29)|
|A time of blessing and comfort (1 Thess. 4:18)||A time of destruction and judgment (2 Thess. 2:8-12)|
|Involves believers only (John 14:1-3; 1 Cor. 15:51-55; 1 Thess. 4:13-18)||Involves Israel and the Gentile nations (Matthew 24:1-25:46)|
|Will occur in a moment – only His own will see Him (1 Corinthians 15:51-52)||Will be visible to the entire world ( Matthew 24:27; Revelation 1:7)|
|Tribulation begins||Millennium begins|
|Christ comes as the bright morning star (Rev. 22:16)||Christ comes as the sun of righteousness (Malachi 4:2)|
Mr. Hitchcock’s teachings are informative and enlightening as well as inspirational and any book you can get for yourself from his writings will most definitely be well-worth it. I hope you are blessed AND informed and some of these questions and answers will give you a greater strength to walk in confidence and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Bible prophecy ALWAYS points to God and His plans for this world that He created through Christ Jesus. Therefore, for true Christians, it is meant to be a comfort that God continues as always to have everything under control despite what it might appear to the average person.