In my studies of my favorite subject, the catching up or Rapture of the Church, I have noticed something that has changed my view of the matter. Since then I have been looking at the Revelation a little differently.
I have thought, and maybe you have also, of the Rapture as a mysterious event that will leave the people still on earth (earth dwellers – 21 times in the Revelation) confused and open to any suggestion as to what just happened. The Bible tells us that they will know, if not immediately, then soon thereafter.
Part of the difficulty of understanding the Revelation is the fact that there is no “time” in Heaven. God is outside of time, and His spiritual realm does not have clocks. In reading this wonderful prophecy it appears we must depend on the sequence of events. In the first verse of Revelation chapter four, John is called to Heaven by a voice like a trumpet, a rather clear picture of the Rapture. If Revelation 4:1 is the Rapture of the Church, then we have a beginning point.
That means that chapter four and chapter five of the Revelation are apparently at the beginning of the period of earth time that we call the Tribulation. The Apostle John witnessed a Heavenly scene, with untold millions of beings around the Throne of God. Chapter five describes the search for the One worthy to open the sealed scroll, i.e. the title deed to the earth. Of course, it is the Lamb of God, Jesus Messiah.
In the Revelation 6:15-17 all mankind, kings, great men, rich men, chief captains, mighty men, slaves and free men will go to caves and the rocks to hide. (Notice the seven classifications of mankind, indicating completion or all of mankind.) Although I do not know the timing, everyone on earth will hide in caves and the rocks because they know that the day of the wrath of Jesus the Lamb has come!
If this is not enough, an angel will fly through the skies and preach the eternal gospel in every language to earth dwellers! (Revelation 14:6-7)
That means that those on earth will know that a supernatural event occurred when Christians disappeared. There are numerous verses in the Revelation that confirm that knowledge.
The Tribulation will be a time of numerous supernatural events. Even if you explain some of these with natural events like earthquakes or nuclear bombs, there are many, many happenings that can only be supernatural. The people on earth will know what is happening and the reason for it, but they do not repent. The people on earth will have knowledge, but sadly many will refuse to ask forgiveness. (Revelation 9:20-21, 16:9, 16:11)
Recently, we have heard many proclamations from Christians that say they have heard from the Holy Spirit. I do not doubt that the Lord can and will speak to whomever He wishes. The accuracy of these claims is yet to be seen. The Bible tells us that as the Day approaches, more Believers will see visions and dream spiritual dreams. (Joel 2:28-31) I believe this indicates an increase in supernatural activity.
Today, we are actually blessed to not be able to visually witness the struggle of wicked, evil spirits with the forces of our Heavenly Father. But during the Tribulation, and possibly before, that contest will break forth and will be seen by all. I suspect that as that Day draws nearer, more and more supernatural events will occur, as prophesied by the Prophet Joel.
I believe that during the Tribulation the people on earth will see great supernatural events. And, as always, God will give them a choice. Many will choose Salvation, at great cost to their earthly life. But many will refuse the offer of Salvation, and their cost will be even greater to their eternal life.
Thank you Lord Jesus, for paying the price for my Salvation. May He be praised forever and ever!