Bible Studies/post rapture
Is this accurate? :
After the rapture, there is a judgment of the nations on earth
as well as a judgment of the individuals who were raptured.
Getting raptured doesn't mean automatic salvation,
which is based upon the judgment of the individual
after the rapture.
Thanks for your help.
ANSWER: Hi Jennifer,
There is not uniform agreement among Christians regarding end time events, or the timing of these events. Good people understand various passages differently.
I happen to subscribe to the view that Jesus Second Coming will take place in two stages. The first stage is often referred to as "The Rapture." Jesus will not descend the whole way to earth but will meet His people "in the air," at which point He will take them to heaven.
This is followed by a 7-year period of time referred to as The Great Tribulation. Both Daniel and John (Revelation) speak about this. It is also mentioned in other Scriptures.
At the end of The Great Tribulation, Jesus will return to earth itself and will wage war with the nations of the earth to establish His kingdom. This is called The Battle of Armageddon. Following this battle, and prior to the establishment of Christ's Millennial Kingdom (see Revelation 20), the Judgment of the Sheep & Goats will take place. This is the judgment of which we have been speaking--a judgment of individuals, a judgment of nations.
You said, "Getting raptured doesn't mean automatic salvation." I disagree, though you have it backwards. If one is truly saved, he will be raptured. This is not to say that he is beyond hope. He can still accept Christ during the 7-Year Great Tribulation spoken of in Revelation.
(This may make things even more confusing, but the FINAL judgment does not take place until the end of the Millennial [thousand year] earthly kingdom. This is because some believers ("Sheep") will go from the earthly Tribulation period to the Millennial Kingdom in their earthly bodies. While they are believers, their children and descendants will all have the opportunity and responsibility to embrace (or reject) King Jesus. The Bible speaks of a final rebellion--The Battle of Gog and Magog--after which comes the final judgment, which ushers in the Final State.
I Thessalonians 4:16-18 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.
I Corinthians 15:51-54 51 Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. 53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”
Matthew 24:30-36 30 “Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. 31 And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.
32 “Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. 33 Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it[c] is near, right at the door. 34 Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
36 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[d] but only the Father.
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Thanks very much for your response, and I could still use
some clarity regarding salvation and rapture.
Only those who are saved will be raptured so judgment of individualsl and salvation comes before the rapture?
Being raptured means automatic entry to the Kingdom of Heaven without
judgment which happened prior to the rapture?
If there is no judgment after the rapture, then when
does the judgment of individuals take place?
Thank you very much for your help.
ANSWER: Very good questions, Jennifer.
John 5:24: [Jesus said,] Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.
John 10:27: [Jesus] My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”
I Thessalonians 4:16-18 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.
Romans 8:1 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
II Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
When Jesus comes back, He will rapture the believers (Christians) who are on earth at that time. Those who have died will be raised from their graves, and those who are alive and remain will be taken with them. My understanding is that this will take place immediately before the 7-year Tribulation.
So yes, only those who are saved will be raptured. Salvation comes before the rapture (and will come to others after the rapture). But judgment takes place later. The Judgment of the Sheep and the Goats will take place at the end of the 7-Year Tribulation, at which time Jesus will descend to earth itself, conquer the nations of earth, and establish His 1000-year reign on earth. There will be one final uprising at the end of the Millennial Kingdom--The Battle of Gog and Magog, in which Christ will be victorious. Following that, at the end of the 1000-year rule, there will be a final judgment (The Great White Throne Judgment).
Your second question ... yes, being raptured means automatic entry into the Kingdom of Heaven without judgment. Those who have been saved are beyond condemnation.
If you still have questions, keep them coming.
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Thanks so much for your quick and comprehensive response, and
yes, I could still use clarity.
Salvation comes before the rapture which is before the tribulation, but judgment happens afterward?
How does judgment follow salvation instead of precede it?
And, if believers are automatically saved by simply believing, then what is the judgment about after they were already saved?
Many thanks, once again.
Let's take your questions one at a time.
Salvation comes before the rapture which is before the tribulation, but judgment happens afterward? Yes.
How does judgment follow salvation instead of precede it? Go back and read the verses I gave you. When one is saved, judgment is avoided. When God judges, He is ascertaining guilt. We are all guilty before God. Jesus served our sentence and took our guilt, so, if we accept His substitutionary death as payment for our sin, He takes our guilt, and we receive His righteousness instead. There is no condemnation and no need for judgment. We belong to God, our sins are forgiven, and we are spared from the trial and sentencing.
And, if believers are automatically saved by simply believing, then what is the judgment about after they were already saved? It is the judgment (condemnation, declaration of guilt and sentencing to punishment) of all those who rejected Jesus Christ.
Here's the point. We're all guilty. We're all sinners. (Romans 3:10, 3:23, 6:23) We all deserve to die. We cannot pay for our own sins, nor can anything we do make up for our wrongs or earn our salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9, Titus 3:5). Our only hope is to rely on Jesus to do for us what we could not do--merit God's favor through a perfect life. By His death, He served our sentence and took our place. By accepting this gift, we can avoid God's judgment. (John 1:12, 3:16, Romans 10:9-13)
So there is therefore no condemnation (Romans 8:1), and no need to stand before God, the Judge, for our sins.