... and they searched the Scriptures daily...
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In the Twinkling of an Eye


The Doctrine of the Pretrib Rapture

Throughout my travels and conversations on Bible prophecy, there is one subject that comes more frequently than any other: The 'Rapture'. What viewpoint I hold to is usually the first question out of the block. I am quick to tell anyone who asks, that I hold to a Pretribulational viewpoint of the Rapture. In fact I am a member of the Pretrib Research Centre (PTRC), which was founded by Dr. Tim Lahaye and others back in 1992. This think tank is a gathering point for prophecy scholars, authors and teachers to participate in discussions and studies involving eschatology and the doctrine of the Pretrib Rapture. The PTRC wants to impact pastors and individual Christians with the central role and importance that Bible prophecy, especially the any-moment possibility of the Rapture (immenency), should play in the life of the church. Dr. LaHaye and PTRC stress three practical implications that flow from the rapture teaching.

The first implication of pretribulationism is that it leads to godly living in an unholy age.
The first implication of pretribulationism is that it leads to godly living in an unholy age. Next, this New Testament teaching promotes a strong emphasis upon evangelism of the lost. Finally, when believers come to understand this eternal perspective, it leads to a zeal for worldwide missions. This is why those at the PTRC are "looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus."(Titus 2:13) 1The PTRC is blessed by the scholarly minds and support from such members as Dr. Charles Ryrie, Dr. John Whitcom, Dr. David Noebel, Dr. Wayne House, Dr. Randall Price, Dr. Thomas Ice, Dr. Mark Hitchcock, Dave Hunt, Dr. Dwight Pentecost, Dr. Harold Willmington and the late Dr. John Walvoord, Dr. Tim Lahaye and Zola Levitt just to name a few.

Regardless of the theological heavyweights that support this view, there is an ever growing hostility toward the viewpoint of the Pre-Trib Rapture. As members of the PTRC we spend hours in discussion and personal study on these issues and each of us will tell you that we are merely reading the Bible with a literal and consistent hermeneutic and yet the attacks against this view continue.

Sir Isaac Newton once said,

About the time of the end, a body of men will be raised up who will turn their attention to the Prophecies, and insist upon their literal interpretation, in the midst of much clamor and opposition. - Sir Isaac Newton 1642-1727

Perhaps Sir Isaac Newton was correct with this prediction as those of us who hold scripture to its literal sense are under continued attack in this day and age. While these attacks may not be directly aimed at us, they are indirectly aimed at the truth of the Word of God, to which we all hold dear. Whether it is the proponents of the Emerging Church asking, "Did God really say?" or those who study prophecy with a flippant viewpoint of "Oh you don't really believe that do you? God didn't really mean that literally."the attack on the validity and accuracy of Scripture cannot be ignored.

A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Dr. David L. Cooper, the founder of the Biblical Research Society, once said,

When the plain sense of scripture makes common sense, seek no other sense; therefore, take every word at its primary, ordinary, usual, literal meaning unless the facts of the immediate context, studied in the light of related passages and axiomatic and fundamental truths indicate clearly otherwise."

This has been adapted my many scholars and is lovingly dubbed as the Golden Rule for Biblical Interpretation. Mr. Cooper stated, "The knowledge of certain rules of interpretation and the observance of these rules when studying the Scriptures is very important and helpful in arriving at a clear understanding of God's Word."

For what it's worth - I couldn't agree more.

What is 'The Rapture'?

Many people ask, "What are the main Scripture passages that reference The Rapture?"

In all walks of rapture thought whether you be Pre-Trib, Mid-Trib, Pre-Wrath, or Post-Trib, two passages that we all seem to agree on are 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:51-53.

1Thess 4:13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
1Thess 4:14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
1Thess 4:15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
1Thess 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
1Thess 4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
1Thess 4:18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

1Cor 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
1Cor 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
1Cor 15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

In these two passages we see the event that we commonly refer to as 'The Rapture'. The term rapture comes from the Latin word 'Rapturo' which is the translation of the word Harpazo as seen in the original Greek. The word 'Harpazo' (har-pad'-zo) means to seize, to catch (away, up), pluck, pull, or take (by force). 'Harpazo' is usually rendered in the English as the words 'caught up' as in 1 Thessalonians 4:17.

The parallelisms of the two passages of 1 Thess. 4:13-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:51-53 clearly relate them to the same event. Admittedly only 1 Thessalonians mentions being 'caught up' but the similarities are clear evidence of the same event - The Rapture.

Essentially these passages describe an event where at the sound of a trump and in the twinkling of an eye the dead in Christ (Christians who have died) will be raised from the dead. Then those who are alive in Christ will be changed, that is, we will have our bodies changed to immortal and incorruptible bodies much akin, if not exactly like, the body that Christ has now and has had since his resurrection. Christ still showed the nail holes in his hands, and therefore it was still His same earthly body but now changed to be a glorious one fit for heaven. We also require this change because we remain now in our sinful, imperfect bodies that are unfit for glory.

For some this now begs the question as to 'What happens when a Christian dies?'It is important to note that the Bible clearly teaches that at present the dead in Christ are temporarily separated from their bodies. When a Christian dies their spirit does in fact reside in heaven, but their body remains in the grave until this event we call The Rapture - where they will be reunited with their bodies and changed forever.

For interest's sake I should let you know that I would normally include John 14:1-3 in the list of Rapture passages due to the promises in John 14 and how well it would have spoken to the Jewish audience at the time, considering the tradition of the wedding ceremony of the era. I'll leave that tidbit for further explanation in a future article.

Whatever you may have heard about the rapture of the church, you mustn't dismiss it merely because there doesn't seem to be agreement on when it might happen. The truth is that the Bible teaches an event that we call The Rapture quite plainly. There are three primary verses that teach of The Rapture as we have already mentioned: 1 Thess. 4:13-18, 1 Cor. 15:42-56, and John 14:1-3(for some). But there are several other ancillary verses that support the Rapture doctrine in what they speak of in context to eschatology. Here is a sampling of those verses: Romans 8:16-25; Romans 14:10-12; 1 Cor. 3:13-15, 4:5, 7:29-31, 15:22-23; 2 Cor. 4:14, 5:1-5,10; Eph. 4:30, 5:27; Phil. 1:6,10, 2:16, 3:9-11; Col. 3:4; 1 Thess. 1:10, 2:19-20, 3:12-13, 5:9, 5:23; 1 Tim 6:14-15; 2 Tim 1:12, 4:8; Titus 2:13; Heb. 10:25,37, 11:35; James 1:12; 1 Peter 1:5,7,13, 4:7, 5:4; 2 Peter 1:11; 1 John 2:28, 3:2-3; 2 John 1:8; Rev. 4:1-11, 5:1-14, 22:12.

For more discussion of John 14, and other passages that others may cite as rapture passages, I encourage you to read our article, "Identifying the Rapture" also published by Berean Watchmen Ministries. 2

The Differing Rapture Theories

Before we delve into the proofs that a Pre-Tribulation Rapture is the most correct, doctrinally based interpretation of scripture, I feel it is at least fair to present the most common alternate views held by others. There are 5 main views for the timing of The Rapture. The diagram below lays them out on a timeline with Daniel's 70th week 3(commonly called the Tribulation Week).

  • The Pretribulational Rapture:The Rapture will occur before the seven year Tribulation period begins.
  • The Midtribulational Rapture:The Rapture will occur at the midpoint of the seven-year Tribulation. Some people use the timing of the two witness's resurrection of Revelation 11:12 as being the exact point. The major argument however is that with the seal and trumpet judgments in the first half of the Tribulation Week, they see the 7th trumpet judgment being sounded at the 'midpoint'. Verses they use to back this include 1 Corinthians 15:52 where we read, "…at the last trumpet" from which they conclude The Rapture occurs at the seventh trumpet.
  • The Posttribulational Rapture:The Rapture will occur at the end of the Tribulation right before the second coming of Christ back to earth; believers will be raptured up to meet Christ in the air and then will return immediately with Him back to the earth.
  • The Partial Rapture:Faithful, devoted believers will be raptured before the Tribulation, but the rest of believers will be left to go through the purging of the Tribulation. I personally dislike this view the most and you can read why in my article "The Partial Rapture Theory - Debunked" found at the Berean Watchmen website. 4
  • The Prewrath Rapture:The Rapture will occur about three-fourths (five and a half years) of the way through the Tribulation, when the wrath of God begins to be poured out on the earth. (Please note that theoretically the Pretribulational Rapture view is also a type of prewrath argument, as it suggests that we will be removed 'prior' to God's wrath outpouring upon the earth. The viewpoint that many call 'Prewrath' however, is that as supported by proponents such as Marv Rosenthal and Robert Van Kampen.)

Of these views, my estimation is that the Pre-Trib and Post-Trib Rapture positions are still the most common views in evangelicalism today.

Biblical Support of the Pre-Trib Rapture Theory

When one reads through the primary and supporting verses of the Rapture and takes into account the other eschatological prophecies relating to Daniel's 70th week (The Tribulation) and the Second Coming it really becomes quite apparent that the pretribulation viewpoint is the most valid argument.

I'll borrow an acronym used by Dr. Mark Hitchcock in which he identifies 8 key points of proof. The acronym is as follows:

  • P- Place of the church in the book of Revelation.
  • R- Removal of the restrainer
  • E- Exemption from the divine wrath
  • T- Twenty-four elders
  • R- Rapture of the Church versus the return of Christ
  • I- Imminence
  • B- Blessed hope.

P - Place of the church in the book of Revelation.

One overall sense when reading Scripture in reference to prophecies of the Tribulation Week is that none of the key New Testament passages deal with or mention the presence of the Church during that time. At the beginning of Revelation we see Christ giving praise and admonishment to the seven churches in Asia which concludes with Revelation 3:22

Rev 3:22 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

Notice the frequently overlooked fact that the word 'Church' is plural. The messages to the seven churches are for ALL of the churches to heed and know. This is an important eschatological note as is the fact that this is the last time the Church is mentioned until Revelation 19:14.

Rev 19:14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

We know this is the Church following Christ because, Revelation 19:8 tells us,

Rev 19:8 And to her[the bride of Christ] was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

So why might the church be absent between Revelation 3 and 19? Notice now the next verse. Scripture reads:

Rev 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.

This is not the first time that a voice from heaven is described as a trumpet and it brings to recollection the verse from 1 Thess. 4:16,

"heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God."

Interesting that this Revelation passage describes an event at which a sound like a trumpet occurs, a voice declares, "Come up here", and then John finds himself in heaven. Could this imply the Rapture? The removal of the Church from the earth as the 'church age' ends? I would say it certainly is a viable argument.

R - Removal of the restrainer

Though it may be hard to believe, the age in which we now live is described as the age of restraint (2 Thess. 2:6-7). Something or someone is holding back the full release of evil that is to come when the Antichrist is revealed. This restraining power is the Holy Spirit working through the church. When the Church is removed, the Holy Spirit will be "removed" from the earth and thus the restraint is also removed. It is expected that the unique ministry of the Holy Spirit since Pentecost will then revert back to the ministry and activity of the Spirit as documented in the Old Testament. The indwelled Church would be gone.

Remember the promise of Christ, "And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever- the Spirit of truth.."(John 14:16-17) The Holy Spirit is promised to reside with us forever, and if He[the restrainer] is taken out of the earth, this promise can only be fulfilled by us going with Him.

This also finds fulfillment in the earlier verses of John 14 which sets the context of the helper [the Holy Spirit] "In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come a gain and receive youto Myself; that where I am, there you may be also."- John 14:2-3 [emphasis mine]

This passage itself denounces the Post-Trib Rapture position, because if the Rapture occurs at the Second Coming, we will never see 'The Father's House' that was prepared for us, because the rest of eternity lies on earth (eventually renovated).

E - Exemption from the divine wrath

God's word repeatedly promises that God's people, those who have repented and turned to Christ, are exempt from the coming Wrath and by inference - The Tribulation. See John 3:36, Romans 8:1, 1 Cor. 1:10, 1 Thess. 1:9-10, 1 Thess. 5:9 and Rev 3:10 for starters.

T - Twenty-four elders

In Revelation there are 12 references to a group of beings called the "twenty four elders" (Rev 4:4,10;5:5;6,8,11,14;7:11,13;11:16;14:3;19:4). The fact that they are mentioned twelve times (repetition) indicated their importance in Bible Prophecy. There are four main views concerning the identity of these elders, which I'm not going to get into here. Clues throughout Revelation (their title, their position, their crowns, their clothing, their praise, their distinction and their location) that lead me to personally believe that they represent the raptured Church.

R - Rapture of the Church versus the Return of Christ

The argument here comes to light when you systematically place all the next coming of Jesus passages together and try to harmonize them. You quickly find that you cannot because some things appear to be contradictory. That is until you realize that this could in fact be talking about two separate events. When you do this, you end up with a comparative chart similar to the one you see below:

Jesus coming FORHis Church. John 14:1-3, 1 Thess 4:14-17 Jesus coming WITHHis Church Col 3:4, Zech 14:5, Jude 14, Rev 19:14
Caught up with Him in the air 1 Thess 4:13-18 Jesus' feet touch the earth Zech 14:4, Rev:11-21
Christians taken first, unbelievers are left behind. 1 Thess 4:13-18 Wicked are taken first, the righteous (Tribulation saints) are left behind. Matt 13:28-30
Purpose: To present the Church to Himself and to the Father 2 Cor 11:2, Rev. 19:6-9 Purpose: To execute judgment on earth and set up His Kingdom Jude 14-15,Rev 19:11-21, Zech 14:3-4
MARRIAGE: Marriage of Lamb in heaven after the Rapture WAR: Marriage is followed by war on earth at the 2nd coming
Happens in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye (too fast for eyes to see) 1 Cor 15:52 Slow coming, people will see Him come back. Zech 12:10 Matt 24:30, Rev 1:7
Only Christians will see Him 1 John 3:2, 1 Cor 15:52 Every eye will see Him Rev. 1:7
Jesus descends with a shout (for resurrection) 1 Thess 4:16 No shout mentioned Rev. 19:11-21
A resurrection takes place 1 Thess 4:13-18, 1 Cor 15:51-54 No resurrection mentioned Rev 1:7, 19:11-21, Zech 12:10, 14:4-5
Can happen at any time Rev 3:3, 1 Thess 5:4-6 Occurs at end of 7 years of Tribulation Dan 9:24-27 Matt 24:29-30, 2 Thess 2:3-8
No angels are sent to gather (resurrected people don't need angels to help them) Angels sent forth to gather people together for judgment Matt 13:39, 41, 49, 24:31, 25:31, 2 Thess 1:7-10
Spirits of those dead in Christ return with Jesus to receive their their resurrected bodies 1 Thess 4:14-16 Christians return with Jesus in already resurrected bodies riding on white horses. Rev 19:11-21
Jesus does not return on a white horse Jesus returns on a white horse Rev 19:11
For the Church only (those in Christ) 1 Thess 4:14-17 For redeemed Israel & Gentiles Rom 11:25-27, Matt 25:31-46
A message of hopeand comfort1 Thess 4:18, Titus 2:13, 1 John 3:3 A message of judgmentJoel 3:12-16, Rev 19:11-21, Mal 4:5

I - Imminence

The Rapture is presented in the New Testament as an event that, from man's viewpoint, could occur at any moment. We are admonished as believers to be looking forward to it (1 Cor. 1:7; 16:22, Phil. 3:20; 4:5; 1 Thess. 1:9-10; Titus 2:13; Heb. 9:28; Jude 1:21). Only the pretribulational position allows for an imminent, any moment, sign-less coming of Christ for his own.

B - Blessed hope.

The truth of the Rapture is intended to be a comfort and blessing to the Lord's people. It is our "blessed hope" (Titus 2:13). The blessed hope of the Rapture is that Christ will come for the faithful prior to a time of worldwide devastation and God's wrath.

Is this not what the prophet Isaiah spoke of when he said, "Come, my people, enter your chambers, And shut your doors behind you; Hide yourself, as it were, for a little moment, Until the indignation is past. For behold, the LORD comes out of His place To punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; The earth will also disclose her blood, And will no more cover her slain."- Isaiah 26:20-21

Isn't the Pre-Trib Rapture a recent view?

One of the arguments most opponents to the Rapture use is that it can't be right as it was a theory developed much later in comparison to other views. They all say that it began around 1830 through the ministry of J.N. Darby. They declare that the teaching of a 'secret rapture' was not mentioned in Christian literature prior to 1830 and therefore it is not legitimate for consideration.

John Nelson Darby

Many people say that John Nelson Darby got the idea of the Pre-Trib Rapture from a young woman's dreams. In 1830 a young Scottish lass named Margaret MacDonald is reported to have had several visions and dreams involving eschatology and it is believed that because Darby met with this girl, he received the idea from her. This belief that Darby received his rapture doctrine from this young girl is widely argued by author Dave Macpherson (an outspoken protester to the Rapture teachings) and parroted by anyone in the anti-Pre-Trib crowd, who has never taken the time to research the truth of the matter.

The problem with this claim is that history shows that Darby actually got the idea for the Rapture around 1827 when the idea came to him when he started to realize the distinction between Israel and the Church. Darby's own writings repeatedly confirm this at length and you see how Darby awaited Christ's imminent return.

A man may not know much about the Rapture of the church, and yet be waiting for someone to come and take him out of this scene. Before ever I knew about the Lord's coming, I think I loved His appearing. I knew nothing about the doctrine, but the principle of loving His appearing was in my mind…What I delight in, is Christ's coming and setting aside the whole thing I am in. (JN Darby, when asked about Reading at Rochdale from Colossians 1)

Also, if you closely examine Margaret MacDonald visions you will notice that it was not Pre-Tribulational in nature, but rather she was expecting a fiery trial that was to try us, and she foresaw The Church being purged by the Antichrist. MacDonald included herself among the faithful to be tried after the Antichrist is revealed during the Tribulation period. These revelations are completely inconsistent with Darby's teachings.

Further scrutiny of the Darby - MacDonald relationship finds that Darby himself found the utterances of MacDonald to be delusions. In his own words, in The Irrationalism of Infidelity(1853), Darby included an account of the MacDonald family of Port Glasgow. The results of that visit had Darby convinced that what he had heard was the ramblings of a demon, and not a prophecy and truth from God.

Emmanuel Lucunza

Another man named Emmanuel Lucunza (a Jesuit Priest) wrote a book in 1812 titled, "The Coming of Messiah in Glory and Majesty", in which he taught the concepts similar to the modern Pre-Trib Rapture view.

Morgan Edwards

Morgan Edwards (1740) wrote an essay for a class on Eschatology in which he provides support and dialog similar to the Pre-Trib Rapture view.

Pseudo Ephraim

A more ancient document also exists. A sermon was delivered in AD 373 by a Byzantine leader entitled "On the Last Times, the Antichrist, and the End of the World" or "Sermon on the End of the World" includes a concept very similar to the Pre-Trib rapture. Authorship for this sermon is often referred to as being 'Pseudo-Ephraem'. The reason is that we are not positive that it was written or delivered by Ephraem the Syrian, but perhaps a contemporary of him. However, regardless of the author, the dating of the sermon puts it in and around AD 373.

Daniel the Prophet

Regardless of all the proofs out there as to the Pre-Trib view not being that recent of views, I think the one concept that is always overlooked is that which was revealed to Daniel. Poor Daniel who is given dream after dream and prophecy after prophecy, and each time he asks for more clarification he seems to just get more and more confused. However, it is revealed to him that at the time of the end, wisdom will abound and understanding will be given.

Dan 12:4 "But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase."

The inference here is that when we approach the time of the end, things will become more clear to us. This same concept is echoed in the words in Acts and likewise the prophet Joel:


For the studious modern Bible scholar it would seem therefore that the very idea of discrediting the Pre-Trib view simply because it is new is perhaps folly. It might be said that we need to study all the more carefully and be more fully aware to what the Bible teaches on Eschatology because our knowledge may in fact have increased as was promised. Now we must exercise extreme caution here, because this could be a double-edged sword. Many a crazy doctrine has arisen in recent years, which is why we always need to go back to the Bible to verify and systematically analyze everything. I would suggest that additional clarity may be given in modern times in response to the promises given Daniel and the field of eschatology, however there will be no new 'Revelation' given outside of that which was already revealed in the written Word; Refinement and clarity of understanding perhaps, but not rewriting the rules - so to speak. Did not the book of Revelation leave us with this very warning?

Rev 22:18 For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book;
Rev 22:19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

With a warning like that, it is no doubt why those of us who hold to the Pre-Trib Rapture idea, do so with complete assurance in ourselves that we have studied and analyzed all vantage points.

When will the Rapture Occur?

Honestly, time will tell. There are no specific dates or events that are required for the Rapture to occur. And to set a date for a projected return is theological recklessness. No one knows the timing but the Father (Matt 24:36, 42, 44; 25:13; Acts 1:7). If you hear someone setting a date for the Rapture you can know two things right away: 1) He's wrong and 2) He's not paying attention to what's written in the Bible.

Are those left behind lost? Will they have a second chance?

For those who are not killed during the opening events of the Tribulation Week, there will be time for repentance and turning to Christ. If you read through Revelation, it shows repeated purpose in presenting the gospel to the people of the world. We have the sealing of the 144,000 Jewish witnesses of Revelation 7 as a start. Followed closely by the two witnesses of Revelation 11 and then an angel "having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth to every nation, tribe, tongue and people"- These three occurrences are truly the response to the prophecy of Matthew 24, "And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come."- Matt 24:14.

The gospel will still be delivered. The call will still be made, but we shouldn't tarry in our decision. The book of Revelation documents a period of horror and death on planet earth that is unparalleled in the rest of history save maybe the flood of Noah. Don't wait for the times of Revelation to repent and put your trust in Christ, for if you play the odds, you'll be dead before you know it's happened. For those of us who have repented and put our trust in Christ, we do not fear these times of trouble, but rather we are looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ (Tit 2:13).


J.R. Hall.

1. http://www.pre-trib.org/about
2. http://www.bereanwatchmen.com/index.php/our-articles/8-bwm-articles/50-identifying-the-rapture
3. Please see the article "The Mystery of Daniel's 70 Weeks" at http://www.bereanwatchmen.com/index.php/our-articles/8-bwm-articles/19-the-mystery-of-daniel-s-70-weeks
4. For a rebuttal of this view, please see the article, "The Partial Rapture Theory - DeBunked" at http://www.bereanwatchmen.com/index.php/our-articles/8-bwm-articles/28-the-partial-rapture-theory-debunked

Blog and Musings

Friends with Jesus

Jesus Friend

No one reading this could possibly say that they’ve never been in a relationship. I don’t mean a romantic relationship like boyfriend, girlfriend or spouse. I mean relationships such as friends or family. We all have a family, and we’ve all had a friend at some point in our lives.

So what makes a friend a friend? What is so special about friends?

Proverbs 18:24 says, “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”

The inference of the passage is that there is a difference between a companion and a friend. When we ask this question of ourselves, different ideas flood our minds as to what the difference between a companion and a friend is. I’ve heard a comedic one-liner which says, “Friends help you move, but real friends help you move bodies”. While slightly morbid, it does drive home the point that ‘real’ friends have a much deeper relationship with us then just companions. In essence we share our lives with our friends, but only share moments with companions.

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