Reconciling Free Will With Prophecy

Q. Thank you for your ministry. I was wanting to know if the number of the gentiles have to be a number only God knows then how do you explain saying the rapture will be in 2011? I am referring this to the 483 years from the time Suleiman ordered Jerusalem’s walls rebuilt and the second coming. In seeing God’s plan so precise to numbers, if we have free will how does he get the number of the Gentiles being saved in this time frame of 483 years?

A. Before I answer your question let me remind you that the 483 year time frame I spoke of in my article about the Ottoman Empire could be just a fascinating coincidence. I have a lot more confidence in the following:

First, I believe Matt. 24:34 says many of the people being born at the same time Israel was reborn (1948) will still be alive at the 2nd Coming. Psalm 90:10 says the average human lifespan is 70 years. 1948 plus 70 means the 2nd coming should happen in 2018.

Second, I believe Romans 11:25, Acts 15:13-18, 1 Thes, 1:10 and others say the Rapture has to happen before the last 7 years begin. If the 2nd Coming takes place in 2018 that means sometime by the end of 2011 the rapture will occur.

Third, I believe God knows the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10), and has always known how many members the Church will have and when that number will be reached.

Therefore, if my interpretation of Matt. 24:34 and Psalm 90:10 are correct, He knows the full number of the Church will be reached before the end of 2011 even though every one who comes in does so by choice.

If it doesn’t happen by then it won’t mean that God couldn’t make it happen, it’ll mean my interpretation of the above verses is incorrect and 2011 was the wrong year. But the principles still apply. Even though we all come into the Church by choice, God knew from the beginning when the Church will reach its full number and will make good on His promise to rescue us from the End Times judgments before they begin.

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