Q. My Bible has a footnote on John 11:26, about which I have a question. The footnote claims that the phrase ‘shall never die’ refers to the second death of Revelation 2:11 and 20: 6. But to me the phrase suggests the rapture. Your opinion, please.
A. In John 11:25-26 Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.”
Note that the context of John 11 is the physical death of Lazarus. If Jesus was referring to the second, or spiritual death, He could have stopped at the end of verse 25, where He was speaking of dead believers who will be raised to eternal life and will never die again.
But in verse 26 He went on to speak of living believers who will never die at all. There is only one generation of believers who will be taken directly into heaven without dying first, and that’s the one He will take in the rapture.
While Jesus never taught openly about the rapture, we can see He did leave a hint or two about it. Another one is in John 14:2-3, where Jesus didn’t promise to return to Earth to be with believers where they are, as He will in the 2nd Coming. He promised to take us to Heaven to be with Him where He is, as as He will in the rapture.
To us, these appear to be definite hints of the rapture. But I wonder whether anyone who didn’t already know about the rapture would have been able to understand it from just these two hints. I’m glad Paul came along to give us a clearer understanding of this incredible promise.