A national preacher was heard on the radio in 2009 saying that because the Bible says that Lot had to be taken out of Sodom before God could destroy the city, and that because Rahab had to be taken out of Jericho before the walls could fall down and the city destroyed, and that because the Jews had to be taken out of Egypt before God brought His judgment on that city, it all proves that God’s church will also be taken away from this world before He brings tribulation on it.
His point was that God would rapture His people away from Earth before the tribulation. That preacher said that there was nothing more plainly taught in the Bible than the Pre-Trib Rapture, but is this REALLY what the Bible plainly teaches?
What really happened to Rahab, and to the Jews? Were they physically taken out of harms way like Lot was, or were they protected through the whole ordeal?
- Rahab was NOT removed from the city until after the walls of Jericho came down, but was saved while still in Jericho. (Joshua 2:8-22; 6:22-25)
- The Jews were NOT removed from Egypt until after the plagues fell, but were saved while still in Egypt. (Exodus 12)
- The story of Lot shows us that when God is ready to totally destroy this earth then He will remove His people. (Genesis 19)
The ending of the Rahab story can be found in Joshua 6:1-24
1 Now the gates of Jericho were securely barred because of the Israelites. No one went out and no one came in.
2 Then the Lord said to Joshua, “See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands, along with its king and its fighting men. 3 March around the city once with all the armed men. Do this for six days. 4 Have seven priests carry trumpets of rams’ horns in front of the ark. On the seventh day, march around the city seven times, with the priests blowing the trumpets. 5 When you hear them sound a long blast on the trumpets, have the whole army give a loud shout; then the wall of the city will collapse and the army will go up, everyone straight in.”
6 So Joshua son of Nun called the priests and said to them, “Take up the ark of the covenant of the Lord and have seven priests carry trumpets in front of it.” 7 And he ordered the army, “Advance! March around the city, with an armed guard going ahead of the ark of the Lord.”
8 When Joshua had spoken to the people, the seven priests carrying the seven trumpets before the Lord went forward, blowing their trumpets, and the ark of the Lord’s covenant followed them. 9 The armed guard marched ahead of the priests who blew the trumpets, and the rear guard followed the ark. All this time the trumpets were sounding. 10 But Joshua had commanded the army, “Do not give a war cry, do not raise your voices, do not say a word until the day I tell you to shout. Then shout!” 11 So he had the ark of the Lord carried around the city, circling it once. Then the army returned to camp and spent the night there.
12 Joshua got up early the next morning and the priests took up the ark of the Lord. 13 The seven priests carrying the seven trumpets went forward, marching before the ark of the Lord and blowing the trumpets. The armed men went ahead of them and the rear guard followed the ark of the Lord, while the trumpets kept sounding. 14 So on the second day they marched around the city once and returned to the camp. They did this for six days.
15 On the seventh day, they got up at daybreak and marched around the city seven times in the same manner, except that on that day they circled the city seven times. 16 The seventh time around, when the priests sounded the trumpet blast, Joshua commanded the army, “Shout! For the Lord has given you the city! 17 The city and all that is in it are to be devoted[a] to the Lord. Only Rahab the prostitute and all who are with her in her house shall be spared, because she hid the spies we sent. 18 But keep away from the devoted things, so that you will not bring about your own destruction by taking any of them. Otherwise you will make the camp of Israel liable to destruction and bring trouble on it. 19 All the silver and gold and the articles of bronze and iron are sacred to the Lord and must go into his treasury.”
20 When the trumpets sounded, the army shouted, and at the sound of the trumpet, when the men gave a loud shout, the wall collapsed; so everyone charged straight in, and they took the city. 21 They devoted the city to the Lord and destroyed with the sword every living thing in it—men and women, young and old, cattle, sheep and donkeys.
22 Joshua said to the two men who had spied out the land, “Go into the prostitute’s house and bring her out and all who belong to her, in accordance with your oath to her.” 23 So the young men who had done the spying went in and brought out Rahab, her father and mother, her brothers and sisters and all who belonged to her. They brought out her entire family and put them in a place outside the camp of Israel.
24 Then they burned the whole city and everything in it, but they put the silver and gold and the articles of bronze and iron into the treasury of the Lord’s house. 25 But Joshua spared Rahab the prostitute, with her family and all who belonged to her, because she hid the men Joshua had sent as spies to Jericho—and she lives among the Israelites to this day.
The coming tribulation is not the end of the world, nor is the tribulation happening at the same time as when the earth will be totally destroyed by fire. According to the Bible these events are 1,000 years apart. (See Revelation 20 & Jeremiah 4:23-28) Jesus illustrated the end of the world in His parable of the Wheat and Tares found in Matthew 13:24-43.
24Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:
25But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
26But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
27So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
28He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
29But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.
30Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
He tells us very plainly what this parable means and how He will deal with the evil that His enemy has created:
36Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.
37He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man;
38The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;
39The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.
40As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.
41The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;
42And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
43Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.
Jesus does not want us to be misled. In fact, He finished by saying, “Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.” Are you “hearing” what Jesus is saying, or only what some preacher is saying?
The Pre-Tribulation Rapture is not Biblical!