Q. First of all, I just want to commend you for your excellent Biblical responses. I have a question regarding the Rapture. I know none of us know the exact time of this event. You maintain that the Rapture will more than likely occur before the 7 year Tribulation. When I read 2nd Thessalonians 2:1-9, it almost seems that the Rapture will occur during the middle of the Tribulation when perhaps the Holy spirit is taken out of the way,and the man of lawlessness is revealed when he takes his seat in the Temple. Could you help me settle this dilemma ? Would the Holy Spirit possibly be taken out of the way( through us) before the Tribulation or during the middle of the Tribulation. Thanks for your response.
A. If you read the passage carefully, you will see that three things that have to happen before the Day of the Lord can come. First there will be a great falling away, as believers in name only drop out of the true Church. Then the Rapture of the Church will come, characterized by the withdrawal of the Holy Spirit. And then the anti-Christ will be revealed, kicking off the Great Tribulation.
Since the great falling away is happening now, the next event that involves believers will be the rapture. Don’t make the mistake of thinking these things necessarily happen one right after another. Paul was just giving the sequence. From other Scripture it’s clear that the rapture has to precede all of the last 7 years. Romans 11:25 and Acts 15:13-18 are two examples.