The Seventh Trumpet and the Second Rapture
Or, The Last Trump and the Pre-Wrath Rapture
"In a moment, in the twinkling
of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be
raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed"
(1 Corinthians 15:52).
by Tom Stewart
he 7th Trumpet judgment is the announcement that the kingdoms of this world are now become the kingdom of Christ. This is the prelude to the opening of the Vials of the wrath of God. "And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in Heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our LORD, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever. And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, We give thee thanks, O LORD God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because Thou hast taken to Thee Thy great power, and hast reigned. And the nations were angry, and Thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that Thou shouldest give reward unto Thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear Thy Name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth. And the temple of God was opened in Heaven, and there was seen in His temple the Ark of His Testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail" (Revelation 11:15-19).
This is the judgment that is identified with the Last Trump, the one the ancient Jews identified with the Day of the Awakening Blast [Yom Teruah] of the shofar (ram's horn) before Jehovah, their King. "With trumpets and sound of cornet make a joyful noise before the LORD, the King" (Psalm 98:6).
The Church age also reaches its' conclusion at the sounding of the 7th Trumpet. "But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as He hath declared to His servants the prophets" (Revelation 10:7). The Church is a mystery in that it was not understood until after the time of Christ's first coming that the Gentiles had any part of Jehovah. Now both Jew and Gentile would be fellow heirs to Christ by means of the Church, which is the body of Christ. "And he [Christ] is the head of the body, the church" (Colossians 1:18 ). "This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church" (Ephesians 5:32). "Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to His saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Colossians 1:26-27).
On Tishri 1 (Rosh HaShanah) of the Jewish calendar, the 7th Trumpet sounds in fulfillment of the Feast of Trumpets as declared by the LORD to Moses in Leviticus 23. "And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation. Ye shall do no servile work therein: but ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD" (Leviticus 23:23-25).
The 7th Trumpet sounds 8 days prior to the last day of the Tribulation Week on day 2,512 of that Week.
This can properly be called the Second "Come Up Hither", or the Rapture, because the LORD resurrects His two prophets and gives the command to Moses and Elijah, approximately one hour prior to this 7th Trumpet judgment, to "Come up hither". "And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them. And they heard a great voice from Heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to Heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them. And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of Heaven. The second woe is past; and, behold, the third woe cometh quickly. And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in Heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our LORD, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever" (Revelation 11:11-15).
Remember, the First "Come Up Hither" (called the Pre-Tribulational Rapture by most-- I label it the First "Come Up Hither" to distinguish it from the Second "Come Up Hither") takes place before the Tribulation Week begins. "After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in Heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter" (Revelation 4:1).
Why would the LORD Jesus have two "Come Up Hither"s?
First, because His Word plainly declares so in Revelation 4:1 and 11:12.
Second, because it is in keeping with His just desire to not punish the righteous with the wicked. "That be far from Thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from Thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?" (Genesis 18:25).
Third, because it is in keeping with His character as the Good Shepherd to lovingly protect His sheep. "I am the Good Shepherd: the Good Shepherd giveth His life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the Good Shepherd, and know My sheep, and am known of Mine" (John 10:11-14).
Fourth, why should our LORD allow even the disobedient and foolish (the backslidden) to participate in this joyous event when sin still is being entertained? Jesus' parable of the ten virgins in Matthew 25 demonstrates that though we are saved by grace and not works, we must be sober to be allowed to participate in the First "Come Up Hither". "Then shall the kingdom of Heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the Bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the Bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the Bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet Him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the Bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with Him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, LORD, LORD, open to us. But He answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh" (Matthew 25:1-13).
Fifth, it is entirely like the LORD Jesus to pursue even His backslidden people, who will not be ready to obey the command before the Tribulation Week begins to "Come Up Hither", until they are ready to obediently come to Him, whether by a martyr's death or by Rapture. "Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them" (Hebrews 7:25). "And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand" (John 10:28).
Finally, it is His solemn promise to deliver His people, who are trusting under the shadow of His wings, from the time of "temptation, which shall come upon all the world to try them that dwell on the earth" (Revelation 3:10b). "Because thou hast kept the WORD of My patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation" (Revelation 3:10a). Why wouldn't we accept a promise like this for all we could receive?... "Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man" (Luke 21:36).
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