As we see the escalation of tumult, depravity, suffering and destabilisation across the world I feel it is time to talk once more about the rapture from a bridal perspective. As the Body of Christ, for the most part, we’ve come to where we are regarding the rapture on a basis of openness and respect for different views concerning when the rapture will take place. I rarely touch on the subject because I know the immediate disconcertment it raises in so many and the lack of appetite many have to discourse with others on the subject. Yet, this is exactly what I feel the Lord is leading me to do, that is to invite a respectful conversation about the rapture from a bridal perspective. Now I realise the ongoing debate is incredibly complex so as best I can I want to avoid going down any number of possible “rabbit holes”. As a starting point, I will present a sequence of scriptural principles that undergirds my own personal conviction for a post-tribulation rapture. And here’s where I openly welcome your comments, questions or thoughts you have regarding what I’ve shared. I’ll share each principle in a separate post to keep a sense of progression, and so today the first point is:
There is no wedding before the resurrection.
Eph 5:31-32 NKJV – 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
The concept of marriage is that the two shall become one flesh. Developing this thought further, there has to be a compatibility of that flesh in order for them to become unified as one. This was foreshadowed in the Genesis account of Adam and Eve. Gen 2:18 NKJV – 18 And the LORD God said, “[It is] not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” But then once each animal had passed him by, the Bible says that “there was not found a helper comparable to him.”Gen 2:20. Then of course, we remember the story of how Adam was put into a deep sleep and out of his side a rib was taken from which the Lord created a wife for him. Then when Adam awoke he declared “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” Gen 2:23
In order to become “one flesh” it requires a compatibility of the two bodies, that they are exactly alike and able to be co-joined together. This leads to the important question, when will we have a body that is comparable to our Bridegroom’s? Paul answers this question in his powerful discourse on the resurrection in 1 Corinthians 15. It’s a lengthy passage and I encourage you to read it, but here for our purposes, I’ll select just a few of the verses:
1 Corinthians 15:42-44 NKJV – 42 So also is the resurrection of the dead. The body is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption. 43 It is sown in dishonour, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. 44 It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.
1 Corinthians 15:51-53 NKJV – 51 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed– 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal [must] put on immortality.
In these verses, Paul makes it very clear that before the resurrection our bodies are not yet gloried, but that at the last trumpet, the dead will be raised incorruptible and we shall be changed. And to whose image shall we be changed, well Paul answers that also
1 Corinthians 15:49 NKJV – 49 And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.
Okay, in summary, the point I’ve made today is that there can be no wedding before the resurrection because to be married requires our bodies to be like His glorious body, and that won’t happen until the resurrection. Now you might be wondering what this has to do with the rapture, and that’s where I’ll pick up next time. But for now, I welcome your comments and questions on the points I’ve raised here.
Lastly, I just want to say what a wonderful hope we have in Christ. To know we shall be changed to be like Him, and that we shall become one with Him as a Bride to her Groom. Lord, we hasten the day and join the Spirit to cry “Come!”