Jacob’s trouble is a term used once in scripture… Jer. 30:7. Because of the time of Jacob’s trouble produces a scattering of the people of Israel to the 4 winds, this time refers to 70 AD. Isaiah tells us that when Israel becomes a nation again it will never be scattered again. This happened in 1948. The time of Jacob’s trouble is an event of the past. Why then is it important for the time of “Jacob’s trouble” to be considered the great tribulation? For one reason and one reason alone. It is to separate Israel from the church so that the pretrib doctrine can exist. With the separation we can attempt to have Paul write to the Gentile church and Jesus address Israel. That is as long as we overlook Peter (2 Peter 3:10) who wrote to the Gentile church and gave them the same message the Jesus (Matthew 24:29-35) gives Israel.
Often those who don’t believe in the pretrib view point at the last trumpet in 1 Cor. 15:51,52, and say, “Look God tells us exactly when the rapture is.” Those who believe in the pretrib view look at the last trumpet and say, “that could mean anything, there are a lot of last trumpets”.
The last trumpet issue isn’t just a surface, flippant reference. There is a lot to it. Let’s take a look:
Paul tells us when the rapture (1 Thess. 4:17 catching up) takes place (1 Thess 5:3, as a thief in the night). Peter tells us when it takes place in the timeline (2 Peter 3:10, as a thief in the night). Paul also tells us when the rapture takes place 1 Cor. 15:51,52. “I tell you a mystery… at the last trumpet.” John writes in Rev. 10:7, when the seventh trumpet is sounded, “the mystery of God will be finished, as He as declared to His servants the prophets.” this is the only time that the word mystery is used in light of end time events in the New Testament. But it doesn’t end there…
At the last trumpet, the kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our God, and He rules and reigns forevermore Rev. 11. this is the end of the first prophesy that John was told about when he was told he would ‘prophesy again’… Rev. 10:11. The first prophesy ends at the end of chapter 11. You can’t have Jesus ruling and reigning forevermore and then the beast ruling in the next chapters. There are two separate prophesies. Let’s look deeper. Have you had the pleasure of seeing the documentary video called, “The star of Bethlehem”? It’s a very popular around Christmas and is shown in many denominations. It is a well done video concerning the star and shows the signs in the heavens and how the wise men followed the star and knew what to look for. Although it is exclusively about the star of Bethlehem, (you can get it on amazon for around 6-10 bucks). It shows that the sign in the heaven Rev. 12:1 is one in the same as the star of Bethlehem. The woman clothed in the sun with the moon at her feet… The second prophesy that John writes in Rev (Rev. 12-16). is an overlay of the first (Rev. 6-11). It give us the exact beginning, the star of Bethlehem. These signs in the heavens do not repeat themselves unless you actually believe the Earth is millions and millions of years old. So to understand the overlay of the two prophesies the trumpets and bowls are one in the same. Yes one gives amounts concerning an event, and the other just lists the event, but overlay them and you will see the similarities. The 5th seal martyrs are one in the same as those who don’t take the mark of the beast. You can now see the clear separation between the judgments (trumpet and bowl) commonly thought of as the wrath of God and the tribulation (wrath of man). This clear distinction also brings light and clarifies the confusion that the great tribulation and God’s wrath cannot be one in the same.
So in understanding this we understand that the trumpets and the bowls are one in the same and that the last trumpet in not in the middle, but the end, we see the exact same placement of the rapture declared by Paul; at the last trumpet, and at the last bowl, Rev. 16:15 “I come as a thief”. So you see, “at the last trumpet which is the 7th trumpet is the rapture and it’s not the only verse that declares it. We see this declared In Rev. 16:15 at the parallel sister prophesy of the bowls, “I come as a thief…” at the same timing. Even if 1 Cor. 15:51,52 hadn’t declared the timing of the mystery of the last trumpet, the bowls prophesy declares the exact timing anyways.
Luke 21:36, Jesus tells us to …pray always that we may be worthy to escape all that is coming on the Earth…
“PRAY ALWAYS” That makes it worthy of meditation and consideration. How often should it be prayed? What does it mean to be worthy? How do we become worthy? What are we escaping?
Often those who believe the pretrib doctrine notice the word escape and that seems to be their entire focus. They say, “Look we can escape all the tribulation and persecution that is coming on the Earth. This is the rapture. My question is; if you believe that escape means rapture, do you or have you ever prayed this prayer that you are told to “always pray”? If you are always praying that you will be worthy to be raptured then who gets raptured? Just those who are worthy? My understanding is that those who are saved get raptured. Therefore how is worthiness a consideration of salvation? We are not saved by works. Worthiness has everything to do with works. We cannot be worthy to be raptured any more that we can be worthy to be saved. Why would we always pray that we would be saved, so we could get raptured, so we could escape? Does praying for salvation become a mantra? These, of course, are rhetorical questions, and bring to light that the word escape cannot be the rapture. In fact it proves the opposite. We must be praying always that we can be worthy to escape each and every part of what is coming upon the Earth because we are going to be there to experience it.