...When Christ comes to earth for the second time we are told in Matthew 25 that He will divide the believers from the unbelievers. Now if the rapture were to take place at the same time as the second coming how cold the believers and unbelievers be separated on earth? At the Rapture all the living believers will be caught up to join Him in the clouds.
Here is the chief reason why we believe the Rapture occurs before the Tribulation: the prophets have said that God will set up a Kingdom on earth over which the Messiah will rule. There will be mortal people in that kingdom. If the Rapture took place at the same time as the second coming, there would be no mortals left who would be believers; therefore, there would be no one to go into the Kingdom to repopulate the earth.
In his popular book, The Late Great Planet Earth, Hal Lindsey wrote the chief reason why he believed in the pre-trib rapture. In essence he believed if the rapture is after the tribulation no mortals would be left to repopulate the earth during the Millennium. This is an important issue for pre-tribbers and post-tribbers alike.
In previous articles key verses were examined pre-tribbers use to substantiate their claim. As responses were to them and conclusion was the church will indeed go through the tribulation and the rapture will happen when Jesus returns after the tribulation.
Are there verses in scripture that can counter the claim by Hal Lindsey and other pre-tribbers alike?
This study intends to address their position beginning in Zechariah.
In that day shall the LORD defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the LORD before them. And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon. And the land shall mourn, every family apart; the family of the house of David apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their wives apart...
The Lord told Zechariah He will defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And in that day, He will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. This of course, comes after the tribulation when Jesus returns. At the rapture, true believers in Jesus will be changed from mortal to immortal. At this time, the Lord will pour a spirit of grace and of supplication to the inhabitants. And they will look upon Him who they pierced. And they will mourn for Him. Now at this time they realize that this is the Messiah and they cry for grief. These are some of the remnant who survive and go into the Millennium as mortals and they become believers after the post-trib rapture.
There something that must be mentioned. Pre-tribbers believe that there is no more grace when Jesus comes. But in Zechariah, Jesus will pour the spirit of grace and supplication to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. As we continue in Zechariah:
In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness. And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land. And it shall come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live; for thou speakest lies in the name of the LORD: and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesieth.
In the day Jesus returns, there will be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and uncleanness. And the Lord will cut off all the idols and all the prophets, and no more they should be remembered.
And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.
In the above verse, two-thirds of all the land will be cut off and the remaining third will be left. And the remaining third will be refined as silver through fire and they will be tried as gold. Then they will call on his name, and then the Lord will hear them and call them "My people." and the people will say "my God." This is the refinement that happens after the rapture. And they will be the mortals who enter the millennium.
BEHOLD, THE day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.
When the day of the Lord comes, He gathers the nations to battle against Jerusalem. The city is taken, and half of the city goes into captivity. And then the Lord will go forth and fight against the nations.
And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south. And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: and the LORD my God shall come, and all the saints with thee. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark: But it shall be one day which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light. And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be. And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one. All the land shall be turned as a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem: and it shall be lifted up, and inhabited in her place, from Benjamin's gate unto the place of the first gate, unto the corner gate, and from the tower of Hananeel unto the king's winepresses. And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.
And on that day Jesus will stand on the Mount of Olives after the post-trib rapture and the Mount splits and creates a valley. Then the inhabitants flee into the valley. And the Lord comes with the saints and the inhabitants. And the Lord will be King over all the earth
And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, and their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth. And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour. And Judah also shall fight at Jerusalem; and the wealth of all the heathen round about shall be gathered together, gold, and silver, and apparel, in great abundance. And so shall be the plague of the horse, of the mule, of the camel, and of the ass, and of all the beasts that shall be in these tents, as this plague.
The Lord Jesus will smite all the nations with a plague who came up and fought against Jerusalem. And Judah will also fight at Jerusalem.
And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.
This is another part of scripture, that needs to be recognized. Everyone who is left among the nations who fought against Jerusalem will go up year to year to worship the King Jesus and keep the feast of tabernacles. These are the survivors among the nations who are mortals who enter the millennium. And among the families who do not go the feast of tabernacles, the Lord will smite with a plague. Notice, Zechariah calls them the heathens. So there will also be unbelievers who enter the millennium.
I agree with Hal Lindsey when he wrote from his book "At the Rapture all the living believers will be caught up to join Him in the clouds." It is after the post-trib rapture when Jesus offers the spirit of grace and of supplications to the people in Jerusalem. There will be those who will call upon the Lord. As we have seen also, there will be heathen among the survivors.
In the Book of Acts, at Pentecost, Peter quoted from the prophet Joel concerning the church and the day of the Lord:
And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke: The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come: And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
And in this is what is written by Joel:
And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.
In reference to a previous article, there are cosmic signs that come after the tribulation and before the day of the Lord, when Jesus returns. And at that time whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be delivered. And there will be a deliverance among the remnant who the Lord calls.
The Study concludes with a passage in Isaiah:
For, behold, the LORD will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by his sword will the LORD plead with all flesh: and the slain of the LORD shall be many. They that sanctify themselves, and purify themselves in the gardens behind one tree in the midst, eating swine's flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, shall be consumed together, saith the LORD. For I know their works and their thoughts: it shall come, that I will gather all nations and tongues; and they shall come, and see my glory. And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them unto the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, that draw the bow, to Tubal, and Javan, to the isles afar off, that have not heard my fame, neither have seen my glory; and they shall declare my glory among the Gentiles. And they shall bring all your brethren for an offering unto the LORD out of all nations upon horses, and in chariots, and in litters, and upon mules, and upon swift beasts, to my holy mountain Jerusalem, saith the LORD, as the children of Israel bring an offering in a clean vessel into the house of the LORD. And I will also take of them for priests and for Levites, saith the LORD.
In Isaiah, Jesus comes in fire. And with fire and His sword Jesus pleads with all flesh. And the ones who sanctify themselves to Idols and the ones who eat unclean things will be gathered together and consumed. And the Lord will gather all nations and tongues and they will see the Lord's glory. He will send those who escape to the nations that have not heard of His fame. And they shall declare the Lord's glory among the Gentiles. And some of them will become priests and Levites.
Now who could be among the survivors? One group is the Jewish remnant who called upon the name of The Lord. The others could be under aged children and babies in their mother's wombs. They are under the age of accountability and do not have the capacity to understand God's word. There is a possibility that pregnant mothers could be some of the survivors in order to bring the unborn to full-term. These are just a few of the heathen who enter the millennium.
The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD'S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of the LORD.
 Hal Lindsey, The Late Great Planet Earth ©1970, 1977 Zondervan Publishing House. Taken from the book The Greatest Works of Hal Lindsey ©Inspirational Press Page 115
 Revelation 1:7: Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.