Q. I have a question regarding Romans 11:25, speaking of the ‘fullness of the Gentiles’. In your understanding does the fullness occur at the Rapture of the Church, after which God renews his program with the Jews, or at a later time during the 70th week? I would appreciate your scholarly explanation on this subject.
A. In Romans 11:25, Paul was building on Acts 15:13-18 where James said that first God was going to take a people for Himself from the Gentiles and then He would turn again to Israel. The Greek word translated “take” literally means “to take for oneself for the purpose of carrying away”. It’s a reference to the rapture, and indicates it will take place before the 70th Week of Daniel begins.
Therefore, my understanding of Romans 11:25 is that the rapture will take place when the fullness (full number) of the Gentiles has been reached. This is the total number of believers who will be part of the Church.
After that God will turn back to Israel to complete the last week of Daniel’s 70 weeks prophecy (Daniel 9:24-27). The Greek phrase translated “has come in” in Romans 11:25 means to come from one place to another, as in “what time does the train from Chicago come in?” According to John 14:2-3 the Church will be coming from Earth to the Father’s house in Heaven.