Q. I read your latest entry on the subject of the partial rapture, but what is your take on Heb 9:28? Doesn’t that seem to imply the Lord will only appear to those who are looking for him?
“…and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”
A. This verse is not about the rapture and the King James gives us a very cumbersome translation of Hebrews 9:28, so it’s no wonder there’s some confusion. My NIV states it this way.
Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.
The first Coming was to bear our sins, the 2nd coming is to bring us the fulfillment of our salvation. We know that some will receive this at the rapture but there will be many who will not receive it until the 2nd Coming. To include everyone who is waiting requires that we use the 2nd Coming as the fulfillment.
You can compare this to John 6:40 where the same idea applies. Jesus said,
“My Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in Him shall have eternal life and I will raise Him up at the last day.”
In order to include everyone who believes in the Son we have to see this as pertaining to the 2nd Coming. There’s nothing in the Bible to support the idea that only those who are looking for the rapture will be raptured.