What is “the secret rapture” theory and where did it come from? First, will I list up mainly what it is.
- The New Testament church era, the initial phase of Christ’s kingdom, as prophesied by the Old Testament prophets.
- The New Testament church can win occasional victories, but eventually she will fail the mission, losing influence and corruption, as the worldwide “evil” increases towards the end of the church age.
- The church will pass through a future worldwide difficult time in travail. This era is known as the great tribulation that will put the sentence and the end of this modern era.
- Christ will return at the end of the tribulation, or right in such Church rapture, resurrect the dead saints and carry out the sentence of the righteous in “a moment”.
- Christ will come down to earth with his saints, fight the battle of Armageddon, bind Satan, and establish a global political kingdom, which will be personally managed by him for a thousand years from Jerusalem.
- At the end of the millennial reign, Satan will be released and a massive revolt and a violent attack against Christ and His saints will occur.
- God will intervene with fiery conviction to save Christ and the saints. The Resurrection and the Judgement of the wicked will occur and the eternal order will begin.
I will come back with more on what I think about these different questions on the topic “end time” later, but will here present a short summary of how this “secret rapture” theory comes from.
“For many it is both amazing and shocking to discover that the teaching of a “secret rapture” is not found in any Bible translation. It is not even mentioned in any “Christian” literature prior to the year 1830″.
In his book, The Unbelievable Pre-Tribe Origin, reveals Dave McPherson that this vision of a “secret rapture” was born in England in the mid 1800’s. Edward Irwing would reportedly be the first to preach this message in a church in Scotland. How this message occurred in Edward is a funny story in itself in the modern church history.
Irving held some eccentric positions on the use of “spiritual” gifts, including tongues and prophecy. He claimed that these gifts were for today’s “churches”, and there were quite a few supporters of his radical ideas. But when it appeared chaotic disturbances in Irving’s services, the manifestations of these “gifts”, took the Scottish church action, and Irving was deposed from his position as a priest in 1832. The ultimate result of Irving’s deposition is the formation of the Catholic Apostolic Church, which still exists today. Irving’s movement grew and became the basis for today’s Pentecostal movement.
But back in 1830’s, during one of Irving’s sessions and before his dismissal, fell a young Scottish girl, named Margaret MacDonald, in a trance. After several hours of “vision” and “prophecy,” she revealed that Christ’s Second Coming would occur in two phases, not just one. Christ would first be visible only to the righteous, then he will come again to execute wrath judgment upon the injustice in the world.
This “secret rapture” was the support of Irving when he claimed that he too had heard a “voice” from heaven, commanding him to teach this. Some modern scholars argue that Irving’s speculations about the “rapture”, had been influenced by the Spanish Jesuit priest, Lacunza, and his book which Irving had translated in 1827 under the title, The Coming Of The Messiah In Glory and Majesty.
John Darby, an Englishman and pioneer of the “Plymouth Brethren” movement, was caught in this secret rapture philosophy to Irving. When Darby heard about Irving’s business, he traveled to Scotland to talk to Irving and his followers about the “secret rapture”. It was Darby who was the master developer of the “Written” arguments to support the theory who is now developed.
Darby development of the “rapture” theory was later very popular in Britain and eventually the United States, mainly as a result of Cyrus Scofield’s notes of his Scofield Reference Bible that many people know of.
Others who have also played a major role in the spread of this doctrine is William Miller, and out of this guy came millerism. He predicted the coming of Jesus in 1843-44, but as we know it was total error (we are still here), and a large part of his army left him. A product of this we have today Adventists.
“If one accepted Darby’s view of the secret rapture … Benjamin WillsNewton Pointed out, simply Many Gospel Passages must ask “Renounced as not properly ours.’ ”
Belief in the “secret rapture” doctrine has become so prevalent among “evangelical” and “fundamentalists” today’s that many sitting in the pews and assume that teaching goes back to the apostles themselves and Jesus. Regardless of who you consider to be the inventor of this teaching – whether Irving, Darby, Margaret MacDonald or a Jesuit priest – one thing is clear, the “secret rapture” theory is a relatively new teaching. Moreover, it has no basis in reality or was ever taught by Jesus, the apostles or the early movement, started by Jesus.