Q. I do have to say that even though I hold to the pre-mil, pre-trib rapture belief, I know there are very godly men and women who hold other beliefs based on careful study of scripture. Isn’t it a matter of preparedness rather than salvation? Should we let this divide the church?
A. You’re correct, the rapture is not a salvation issue. But it’s clear that the Bible only teaches one rapture doctrine, and the one that’s most consistent with a strict literal, historical, grammatical interpretation of Scripture is the pre-trib, pre-milllennial position. All others require some degree of departure from that method. The point of my answer is that we who believe the pre-trib pre-mil view do so because it’s what the Bible says, and yet somehow we’re always on the defensive about it instead of making those who have departed from a literal interpretation to support other views defend their decision to do so.
By the way, Godly men and women disagree on almost every important doctrine in the Bible. Some examples are the Creation, the inspiration of Scripture, the deity of Jesus, the requirements for salvation, agency vs. election, grace vs. works, the role of Israel in the End Times, etc. In each case the Bible has just one position, clearly articulated. But Godly men and women choose to disagree. These disagreements have divided the Church almost from the beginning. Why should the rapture be any different?