It would appear that a Christian group has made a very bold statement that states that they have predicted the end of the world. According to this group, the rapture will happen this Saturday, and the end of the world will happen on October 11.
I have been trying to approach this biblically, and have tried to NOT "point and laugh," but it would appear that this has been introduced to my children as well. While I am all up for a good witnessing session (I love to spread God's word as much as the next person), when my child comes to me upset and worried that she's going to be "left behind" when the rapture happens . . . Well, that's when I have to step in with my own doctrine - steeped in truth.
There are many out there that are worried about the rapture - when will it happen? Will I be taken? Will I be "left behind". But in my reading and research on the subject there are a few things that I've noticed. So, today I will share them with you dear readers - this is why you should not worry about the rapture.
1. (This is going to be an unpopular statement) The rapture is NOT biblical. Many rapturists will quote scripture to back up their claims. The problem with this tactic is that you have to be using scripture in context for it to be valid. For example: Matthew 24:30-31 is often used to prove the rapture is biblical. If however we look at this verse in its complete context, we will find that there is an whole other series of events that is to take place before Christs followers are taken into heaven. Essentially, the Earth will not be a pleasant place for Christians. Other scriptures that should be looked at in context are 1 Thessalonians 4:16-7; Matthew 24:40-41; and Revelation 3:10-11.
2. The rapture was not taught as a doctrine until the 1830's. According to the Biblical Eschatology Blog, the revelation was a concept brought about by delusional "visions" of an ill woman involved in a religious cult. Rather than looking at things biblically, some ministers decided to take this idea and run with it, taking scripture out of context and twisting it to fit their needs. Weather the rapture was meant as a comfort (don't worry, we won't be here when all the bad stuff is going to happen) or a scare tactic (you'd better be good or you'll be left behind) is hard to say. But it certainly was (and still is) an effective method for keeping parishioners in line.
3. If there IS going to be a rapture, if you are a true believer in Christ, you don't need to worry anyway. The fact is, weather or not there's a rapture is of little consequence. If there IS - Christs followers will be the ones taken. That includes those that don't believe in the rapture.
4. When we get into heaven, chances are, we will remember none of our earthy tribulations, and if we do, it will only make us appreciate Heaven more. In the coming times, Christians will be oppressed, tormented, mocked. The end days for Christians will be similar to the Holocaust for the Jews, according to Matthew 24. The good thing for us is, when we get to heaven, we will be surrounded by all the glory and majesty of God.
5. Chances are good that the second coming will not happen until many, many years from now. In fact, it is quite plausible that it won't happen for hundreds or thousands of years from now. The bottom line is, weather it happens on Saturday or in 378 years, no one knows (Matthew 24:36).
Jesus tells us in the Bible to not worry (Matthew 6:34). Rather, we should spend each day as though the Second Coming were tomorrow - Our focus should always be on God and teaching other's about Christ's love and God's amazing grace through our actions and words. Believe. Let Christ shine through you. Don't worry.
By the way, I am sure that the people spreading the Gospel about the prediction of the rapture are good, wonderful, and devout in their beliefs. I in no way believe them to be false prophets and in no way do I make the judgement that they are foolish and/or delusional. I feel that their love for Christ is so strong and they long so deeply for His return that they really and truly want this to be true. My heart and prayers goes out to them and I pray that they continue their ministry, even after May 22 and October 12 have come and gone.
Blessings to you all.