Q. Media has given a lot of attention to this prediction that the world would end May 21. Recently, they interviewed a new testament professor and minister about it. He said that Christians are wrong about the rapture, that the wording means “taking away” and has always meant the wicked. He said God took the wicked away during Noah’s time and what Christians call “the rapture” is actually talking about taking away the wicked. He also said that the idea of a rapture is a new idea, that the early Christians didn’t believe in it. Please address this, as I have been waiting expectantly since I became a Christian.
A. There’s no Biblical support for what this professor says about the rapture. His comparison to Noah’s time is misplaced. Jesus compared Noah’s day to the 2nd Coming not the rapture (Matt. 24:37). In John 14:2-3 Jesus said He would to come back for the Church to take us to be with Him where He is. He was not referring to the 2nd Coming, when He’ll come back with the Church, but to the rapture, when He will come back for us.
He’s also ignoring the fact that Paul taught the rapture in his very first letters. In 1 Thes. 1:10 He said the Lord would rescue us from God’s Wrath. (The Greek wording means out of both the time and place of the Wrath.) And in 1 Thes. 4:16-17 He said the Lord would be taking us to be with Him, not taking the wicked somewhere. It’s not the rank and file believers who read the Bible as it’s written who are mistaken about the rapture. It’s the theologians who think it’s OK to re-interpret it to suit themselves.