In one of the comments to my article “Does the bible teach that the Temple in Jerusalem will be rebuilt?” the other day, the commenter stated that Proverbs 10:30 means that there will be no rapture of the saints;
“The righteous shall never be removed: but the wicked shall not inhabit the earth.”
I missed that verse in my response, but that does not mean I don’t have an opinion on it;
My first response is that he is taking the verse out of context. Have a look at the verses immediately preceding it;
“27 The fear of the LORD prolongeth days: but the years of the wicked shall be shortened. 28 The hope of the righteous shall be gladness: but the expectation of the wicked shall perish. 29 The way of the LORD is strength to the upright: but destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity. ” Proverbs 10:27-29
The context of “removed” in this passage is “taken in judgment”, It has nothing to do with the rapture of the Church. This is a statement regarding the End of the Tribulation period, NOT its beginning! At that point the Tribulation believers will be held aloft by angels, as destruction and judgment rains down beneath them. Matthew 24:31
And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Matthew 24:31
It is useful cross-referencing this passage with the parallel passage in Mark;
And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven. Mark 13:27
When most people read “heaven” they immediately think of God’s home, but I don’t think this is a reference to the third Heaven. The reference to “the four winds” is meant to make us think of the atmosphere, the first heaven.
These people are being lifted off of the surface of the earth, into the “heaven” of the atmosphere. (See Genesis 1:20) They are taken to the “uttermost part of heaven” which is the corresponding part of the atmosphere above where they were lifted from. They will be witness to God’s judgment on their enemies. And in the generations of their offspring to come, they will be there to tell them of that which they have seen.
My correspondent has, however hit upon something that I came across while researching for The Spirit of Prophecy; Proverbs 10:30 will be jumped on by the “Church” members who are left after the Rapture! Let’s face it, many pastors, Bishops, Cardinals, the pope, and many members of all denominations will be left behind. They will have to come up with something to explain why they were not taken.
This is it!
Many of these people will say that those people who disappeared in the rapture were taken in judgment! They will say things like “Those evil people who stood in the way of Christian unity were removed and taken to Hell!” They will also use this verse to say that they themselves “are the righteous, who have inherited the earth!” Should they say that “it was Satan who took those people to Hell” they will have committed the unforgiveable sin! (Matthew 12:31)
Of course there will be those who say that it was an “alien abduction“, even the Antichrist might say this, but I am not talking about unbelievers, but of professing believers! Just because someone believes in God does not make them a true believer! It just makes them a lost deist!
Those who profess to be believers will look for an explanation in the bible! Those who are honest may actually get saved, but anyone who believes the Rapture of the Church was an act of judgment against them, will be predisposed to follow the Antichrist!
This should be viewed as a warning to those who deny the Rapture today, including my correspondent! They are already preparing to deny the Rapture by taking Scripture out of context, and teaching others to do so! I am sorry, but professing Christians are sometimes used as tools of Satan to pass around false doctrine! There can only be one true biblical Eschatology! All the others are either misinterpretations, products of human imagination, or worse!