The Rapture


Are there any images of resurrections or raptures (harpazōs) in the scriptures?  Let’s see: In the Older Covenant we have the following pictures or patterns: One man disappeared and nobody knew what happened to him.  One man disappeared while others watched.  One man died and was buried, but nobody knew where.  These I believe are  prophetic patterns of The Rapture.  But there are more than just those three . . .

Past Resurrections / Raptures / Harpazōs
1. Enoch Raptured (Genesis 5:18-24)
Genesis 5:22-24 – “Enoch walked with Yahweh after he fathered Methuselah 300 years and had other sons and daughters.  Thus all the days of Enoch were 365 years.  Enoch walked with Yahweh, and he was not, for Yahweh took him.”
Hebrews 11:15 – “By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because Yahweh had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased Yahweh.”
Enoch represents those who are taken (translated) before a time of tribulation.  The Bride of Christ are those who are translated in the twinkling of an eye and caught up alive in the Rapture prior to the beginning of the final tribulation period.  Jude tells us that Enoch was the seventh generation from Adam and we are in the seventh millennium from Adam.  Enoch walked with Yahweh 300 more years after Methuselah was born, was given notice of the season when this would happen, then was taken.  Similarly, so we can know the season, but not the day and hour.  Paul affirms that the Bride of Christ are those who are not amongst those who are in darkness.

2. Moses Resurrected (Matthew 17:1-3)
Deuteronomy 34:5-6 – “Moses was buried by Yahweh and no man knows where his grave is today.”
Moses represents those who have died in Yeshua, but whose bodies can’t be found.  According to the Gospels, we know that Moses lives as he was seen by Peter and others talking to Yeshua.  Another Newer Covenant picture is found in Matthew 27:52-53 – the saints who slept (had died) who were seen walking the streets; raised from the dead and bodies were missing.

3. Elijah Raptured (2 Kings 2:11-14)
2 Kings 2:11-14 – “As they were walking and talking, a chariot and horses of fire appeared and separated Elijah from Elisha. Then Elijah went up to Heaven in a whirlwind.  Elisha saw it and shouted, ‘My father! My father! I see the chariots and charioteers of Israel!’. ”
Twice, scripture tells us that the day of Elijah’s departure, translation, or rapture, was known to the sons of the prophets (2 Kings 2, verses 3 and 5). When Elijah was taken up, or raptured, Elisha, and undoubtedly one or both schools of prophets, watched him enter the chariot and ascend into Heaven.  No doubt there will be many watching as the Bride of Christ is caught up into the clouds.

4. Lazarus Resurrected (John:11)
John 11:6 – “When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was.”
John 11:10 –“Our friend Lazarus is asleep; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.”
John 11:20 – “Martha, when she heard that Jesus was coming, went to meet Him, but Mary stayed at the house.”
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 – “The dead in Christ will rise first; then we who are alive and remain will be caught up.
John’s passages are a parallel to Paul’s. Lazarus lying in the grave for two days is a picture of those who sleep in Yeshua Ha’Mashiach.  The four days represent the period of history from Abraham to the rapture!  Martha is a picture of those who are alive at Yeshua’s coming.  Mary is a picture of those who are tribulation saints that are raptured during that period, as well as the Jews who are still waiting for their messiah!

5. Yeshua’s Rapture (Acts 1)
Acts 1:1-2 – “Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when He was taken up to heaven.”
Acts 1:9-11Yeshua was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.”
While Yeshua and his disciples were discussing the restoration of the kingdom, Yeshua was taken up into the clouds and ascended to the Father.  This ascension was so fascinating to those watching that two “men” had to interrupt them and basically tell them to get on with their lives until Yeshua returned!  Will many watching so intently as the Bride of Christ is caught up into the clouds that angels must once again advise the lookers on to get on with their lives?

6. Saints and Sinners Raptured at Yeshua’s Resurrection (Matthew 27, Ephesians 4, Colossians 2)
Matthew 27:51-53 – “At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. The earth shook, and the rocks were split. The tombs also were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised.  After his resurrection they came out of the tombs and entered the holy city and appeared to many.”
Ephesians 4:7-10 – “When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.”
Colossians 2:14-15 – “Christ defeated all powers and principalities. He let the whole world see them being led away as prisoners when he celebrated his victory.”
Scripture clearly tells us that the dead rose at the time of Yeshua’s resurrection from the grave.  Scripture also clearly tells us that both those who were saints, and those who were defeated foes were taken with Yeshua when he ascended.

Future Resurrections / Raptures / Harpazōs
7. Rapture of the Bride (1 Thessalonians 4)
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 – “The dead in Christ will rise first; then we who are alive and remain will be caught up.
When Yeshua descends with a shout, the voice of an Archangel, and the trump of Yahweh, both those who have already died and those who are still living and who have accepted Yeshua as their Lord and Savior will be caught up into the clouds.

8. Rapture of the Two Witnesses (Revelation 11)
Revelation 11:11-13 – “But three and a half days later, Yahweh will breathe life into their bodies. They will stand up, and everyone who sees them will be terrified. The witnesses will hear a loud voice from heaven, saying, ‘Come up here’.  And while their enemies are  watching, they will be taken up to heaven in a cloud.”
After being killed by the Antichrist and lying dead in the street for three days, the two witnesses come back to life and ascend into heaven while the entire world watches.

9. Tribulation Saints Resurrected (Revelation 20)
Revelation 20:4 – “And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded . . . and they came to life and reigned with Mashiach for a thousand years.”
At the end of the tribulation period, those who have accepted Yeshua as their Lord and Savior during that time will be raised from the dead and will rule with Yeshua over those who live during Yeshua’s millennial reign.

10. Other Saints Resurrected (Daniel 12, Ezekiel 20, Matthew 25).
Daniel 12:1-2 – “Many people who have already died will live again.  Everyone whose name is written in God’s book will be saved.”
Ezekiel 20:34-38 – “I will bring you among the nations as I brought your ancestors into the desert with Moses.
Matthew 25:31-46  – “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.”
These resurrections all occur just after the second coming of Yeshua.  Yeshua will be seated on his glorious throne and will judge all humans who have survived the great tribulation.  The saved will be ushered into the millennium kingdom and the lost cast into hell. Old Testament believers are resurrected and ushered into the millennium kingdom.  The Jews are gathered once again in the wilderness and the saved enter the millennium kingdom.  Saved Gentiles, too, will enter the millennium kingdom.

11. Millennial Dwellers Resurrected (Revelation 20)
Revelation 20:5 – “The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed.”
Revelation 20:11-15 – “And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne. Then books were opened, and the book of life was opened. The dead were judged by what they had done, which was written in the books.
At the end of the millennium all who have died from Adam until that day that have not yet been resurrected will be resurrected, and along with the surviving humans, will be judged according to their works. The righteous will enter eternity in the kingdom and the unsaved will be cast into the Lake of Fire.

There are many examples of resurrections and raptures throughout scripture.  Many even appear to have “advance notice” of the times and seasons in which they will occur.  The individual who has placed their trust in Yeshua Ha’Mashiach is raised to eternal life.  The individual who has not is either confined to hell until the judgment at the Great White Throne, or is raised only to be cast into the Lake of Fire.  Which individual will you choose to be?

Final Thought
Prophecy continues to unfold as foretold by the Hebrew Prophets.  Today we are one day closer to the return of Yeshua than we were yesterday and tomorrow we will be even one day closer.  For almost two thousand years the Jews would proclaim “Next year in Jerusalem!”  I now proclaim “Next Yom Teruah in the clouds!”  Time is short – Yeshua Ha’Mashiach is coming soon – get busy reaching the lost.