Who Gets Raptured?

Q. I have been reading your website everyday for about two months now. It was emailed to me as a link from a member of my Sunday school class. The first article I read was the Seven Major Prophetic signs of the Second Coming. After I read it I was hooked. I have read every article you have written on the rapture and prophecy related to current events. Thank you for your diligence and faithfulness to the Word.

I was looking through the FAQ section of (another site) and the author was fielding questions related to the rapture of children and anti pre-trib believers. He was suggesting that the children of unbelieving parents, as well as those who were against a pre-trib view of the rapture, would not be raptured.

For the record, I am a pre-trib believer who also believes that all children who have not yet reached the age of accountability will be raptured. I base this belief on Deuteronomy 1:39, “Moreover, your little ones who you said would become a prey, and your sons, who this day have no knowledge of good or evil, shall enter there, and I will give it to them and they shall possess it.”

I know this passage is not talking about the rapture, but to me it paints a picture of a God of grace who will judge each person according to his/her own choices and not the sins of the parents. If my application of this passage is correct it seems clear that God will most definitely rapture all children who have not yet reached the age of accountability. However, how do you reconcile this passage with other passages which talk about entire households being killed for the sins of the father (Achan, for example)?

Also, in reference to anti pre-trib believers not being raptured, I cannot find any support for this claim. Although I am confident based on your other articles that you agree with my view that they will most certainly be raptured with the rest of us, how would you answer someone who makes the claim that they will not be?

Thanks for you answers in advance. Again, I greatly appreciate your ministry.

A. I’m with you on the rapture of children and “non pre-tribbers”. I guess my response to those who believe otherwise would be to challenge them to prove it by Scripture.

In one place (the other site) says, “The Word of God does not give us solid proof that Christians who oppose the pre-trib rapture will miss out on the blessed event.” I agree. The Rapture is not a “salvation issue” and so what you believe about it doesn’t effect your membership in the Church. When the Church disappears, all of its members will disappear with it.

The author also says that he doesn’t think that children of unbelievers will be raptured. But I’m not persuaded by his use of the Flood and Sodom examples to prove that children of unbelievers don’t escape judgment. Since non-believers think of pre-mature death as a great injustice, it’s natural to see the deaths of the Flood children in the context of judgment, but as believers we’re taught that death is a fast pass to heaven for the righteous. Viewed from that perspective, their deaths were an act of mercy.

Ask yourself this. How would the million or so children on earth at the time of the flood have benefited from being preserved through it? Who would have nursed them, fed and clothed them, raised them?

I think that all those children went to be with the Lord immediately, while Noah and his adult sons were preserved through the Flood as a model of Israel and Lot and his adult daughters escaped from Sodom ahead of time as a model of the Church. The Bible says that God doesn’t judge the righteous with the unrighteous (2 Peter 2:9) and children by definition are righteous. (Romans 7:9) For all we know, they could have been “raptured” at the moment those judgments came.

As far as other judgments are concerned, I believe that any child below the age of reason who died in Old Testament times went immediately to Paradise. Today they go to be with Jesus.

I believe that all children below the age of reason will be taken in the rapture irrespective of their parents’ spiritual condition.

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