I have just finished Zondervan’s latest edition of Three Views on The Rapture, subtitled Pretribulation, Prewrath, or Posttribulation. I set aside my other reading (The Coming Millennial Kingdom) and blogged a little less in order to get through this book. Now I’m going to give you my summary of it, and then later I will blog about some of the individual issues within the book.
Overall this book is a must read for those who want to stay versed on how the debate over end times events is progressing. While some may think that the rapture is a small portion of the entire scope of events so this book is not worth it, consider the following. This book focused more on the eschatological Day of the LORD, great tribulation, and wrath of God than the actual rapture. While the rapture was a focal point, the aforementioned issues played a significant role in how each view developed their case. Also, the introduction of the Prewrath view changed the playing field from the last version of this book almost beyond recognition.
The case presented by each one was cordial, giving respect to their colleagues for their esteemed work. The critique that each one gave of the other two was irenic, not giving in to petty comments, but actually engaging with the very substance of each one’s main points. Blaising, Hultberg, and Moo all asserted that the timing of the rapture is not something that should divide Christians, and that no one can know for certain the exact nature of its timing.
So who wins the debate? That’s what everyone wants to know, right? Well, you’re just going to have to keep reading over the course of the next month or so as I blog about it. I will tip my hand just a bit though. It’s no surprise that I am Prewrath, for over ten years now. But humor me a bit. The Prewrath view has caused each other view to more clearly define the Day of the LORD. No longer are general ideas good enough to represent one’s view in the debate. Scripture is required to define the timing and nature of the Day of the LORD and accompanying wrath of God that occurs in the last days. Because of the acute nature of the Prewrath position, each other position has had to “up their game” so to speak. Entire arguments that were once standards have been totally discarded, or relegated to a mere honorary mention.
So, buy the book and then read along with me as together we discuss the issues that lead us to our rapture position. I haven’t blogged on the rapture in quite a while, so I think it’s timely to bring the subject back for a bit. I will be blogging through the rest of The Coming Millennial Kingdom (LORD willing) and other things that may be of interest to all you prophecy scholars.
Have fun and stay busy – Luke 19:13
-The Orange Mailman