Thursday, March 26, 2009

Are some already "raptured"?

For a while now, I have been contemplating and re-examining my anti-rapture stance. I had previously been certain that Christians were not going to heaven and that when a man dies, his soul sleeps until the day of Jesus' advent or coming.

Today, as I set out to examine the spiritual issues, the issue returns.

In Ephesians 1:10 (KJV)it says (breaking into the thought):
That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:

The issue raised th question of whether there are currently persons living in heaven. Are some persons already "raptured" (for want of a better term)?

Two weeks ago, at a Millsborough Bible Study group, I was trying to defend my position against the adherents of Pre-tribulation rapture on John 14. The perspective was that Jesus is gone to prepare a place for us to take us there. I opposed that perspective, stating that the place being prepared could either be that of being a position of authority or if it was physical, it would be relocated to the earth for us to live in.

On checking the Vine's Complete Expository Dictionary (p. 392), I found that the term "mansions" coming from the Hebrew word did not suggest a physical dwelling, but rather a "staying" or "abiding".

Yet by March 17, I came across Revelations 3:21 (KJV), which says:
To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

I examined the above verse and began to consider where would Christ's throne be located. Is it currently in heaven? Does the above verse imply that Christ's throne is in heaven?

The reward to be given is a seat in the throne of Jesus. However the L-RD in the passage states that Jesus sat down with His Father in his throne. Thus, it tells me that Jesus is yet to sit on his throne. He is awaiting coronation. Those who overcome will be found at his coronation and have a seat with him.

Just like how not everyone could be present at Barack Obama's installation ceremony and lunch, I picture the privilege of being at Christ coronation to be similar and even with even more grandeur.

Then, I came across in March 20, Ephesians 2:6 (KJV), which states (breaking into the thought):

And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

This sitting in heavenly places - raised again the issue of whether the sitting in heavenly places means that saints and believers will be taken to heaven to even sit or be seated. For me it is clear that the heavenly places refer to the positions of authority and not physical place.

Today, I read Ephesians 1:10 (KJV) which I already alluded to in the blog, which got me thinking that there are inconsistencies with the scripture and my thoughts. Clearly there are some already with Jesus, while there are a people on earth to be gathered for the coronation.

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