In response to http://www.fivedoves.com/letters/dec2010/brucew1216-1.htm
My view on that is that after the Rapture, many people will still be saved - they are the Tribulation Saints.
It’s not my purpose here to discuss who they are, whether only new believers + some previous purposeful backsliding and unrepentant professing Christians, or whether only new believers (that became born again Christians after the Rapture). What we do have to agree on is that the Tribulation Saints come from many nations and tongues. (Rev. 7:9-10), and not only Jews.
I believe that many Tribulation Saints are martyred, but many survive and are rescued via another Rapture, at the end of the Shortened Tribulation, which I believe will happen on the Day of Trumpets. Instants after the last Rapture, God pours His holy Wrath on Earth, in a way that no believer (be it the present day Church or the future Tribulation Saints) will suffer the Wrath of God.
"Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, WE SHALL BE SAVED FROM WRATH through Him."
1 Thessalonians 1:10
"And to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who DELIVERS US FROM THE WRATH TO COME."
1 Thessalonians 5:9
"For God DID NOT APPOINT US TO WRATH, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ."
(These scriptures were provided by yourself on your other post)
Many people say that The Wrath of God begins to be poured on Earth in the beginning of the Tribulation, which I think cannot be the case, because there will still be believers on Earth during the Tribulation (even if only new believers after the First Rapture). According to God’s Word, the Wrath of God can only be poured on Earth when there is no believer on Earth any longer. All tragedies that happen during the Tribulation period before the Second Rapture aren’t God’s Wrath yet.
In summary, the order or events in my view is:
1. Dead in Christ rise first (this must precede the Rapture because this is what the Bible says)
2. Some time after that (could be a few minutes or could be days or even weeks after the Resurrection) the Rapture takes place (let’s call it the First Rapture). Jesus Himself comes to the clouds to receive His bride and escort them (us!!!) to Heaven. The first Rapture could be compared to Noah’s rescue. Everything was peaceful and he and his family were living in relative peace when the it began to rain (it had never rained before) and Noah and his family were rescued. Christ is our Ark and we are firm in our faith in Him. All were taken to the ark in pairs, the same way that Jesus is coming to the clouds to fetch His bride.
3. Tribulation starts / The Two Witnesses appear on Earth and begin their ministry / 144.000 Jews are sealed and also begin their ministry. Antichrist deceives millions, but not all.
4. The Two Witnesses (which I believe are Elijah and John the Apostle, but that’s another subject that I’m not going to discuss now) are killed in the middle of the Tribulation, rise after 3 ½ days and are raptured to Heaven (this rapture is only for those Two Witnesses)
5. In the middle of the Tribulation, the False Prophet begins his reign, persecutes and kills many Tribulation Saints.
6. Some time after that, God shortens the Tribulation and rescues the surviving Tribulation Saints (let’s call it the Second Rapture), together with the 144.000. The Second Rapture is performed by angels, not by Jesus Himself. The Second Rapture is analogous to Lot’s rescue, just before fire and brimstone was poured on Sodom, where immorality and wickedness was rampant (believe me, things are horrible now, but they will be much worse after the Church is taken, as Christians today are the salt and light of the Earth). Angels were sent to rescue Lot and his family and hold them by the hand to escape Sodom’s destruction, instants before God sent His judgment.
7. Instants after the Second Rapture (The Last Trump), the Wrath of God is poured on Earth
8. All believers (those who had died, those recued in the First Rapture and those rescued in the Second Rapture) are then united in Heaven, the 144.000 join the bride and also sing the New Song.
9. As the Body of Christ is complete then, Jesus is coronated King in Heaven, the Wedding Supper of the Lamb starts, the Judgment Seat of Christ happens (only now all believers are joined and that can happen) and rewards are given.
10. Some months after that, Jesus comes back to Earth together with His saints.
Bruce, I’ll be glad to correspond with you by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and provide more details about the above view.
I believe the first Rapture is very likely to happen on some Pentecost day (let’s hope 2011!!!), and the Second Rapture is very likely to happen on the Day of Trumpets, many years later. While our blessed Hope doesn’t happen, let’s continue to be the salt of the Earth and light of this world! Many unbelieving and lost people depend on our love and compassion and testimony to be saved and so that God’s name is glorified. Let’s take this opportunity!
(sorry for any mistakes in my English, my mother tongue is Portuguese)