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Good article laying out the Doctrine of the Rapture and why God would have “hidden” it in scripture.  It also give a good back ground on Bible translations and where the word Rapture comes from…

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The Hidden Doctrine Of The Rapture

Over time I’ve received several questions along the line of the following one.   “Why do you think that such an important occurrence as the rapture is spoken of so few times and why is it so “hidden” in scripture?”

It’s true the rapture is not mentioned very often, at least not directly.  In fact, the Greek word from which we get the whole rapture idea appears only 13 times in the New Testament and and even then it comes to us in a roundabout way.   The Greek word is harpazo and means to catch up or take by force.  In  most English translations of 1 Thes.4:17 it’s rendered “caught up”. The root from which it comes is haireo which means “to take for oneself.” 1 Thes. 4:17 is the only place the word harpazo refers to the rapture of the Church.

On top of that rapture is an English word that comes from the Latin translation of harpazo which is why you can’t find it in your  Bible.  You would have to read 1 Thes. 4:17 in Latin to see it there. (It appears as rapiemur.)  Many people don’t realize that for the thousand years preceding the Reformation, the Latin Vulgate was the primary translation of the original Greek texts.  It was the standard text longer than any other translation before or since.

Although the concept of the rapture appears through out the Bible  it wasn’t until about 20 years after the cross that it was described in any detail.  This is how Paul could say he was revealing a secret (Listen, I tell you a mystery) when he described it in 1 Cor. 15: 51-53. Together with 1 Thes. 4:15-17 it was the first clear teaching of the rapture in the history of mankind. Only with the benefit of Paul’s disclosure can you look back through the Bible and see the many hints of the rapture. (See Rapture References)

There was a good strategic reason to keep all this secret before the cross.  Paul spoke of it in 1 Cor 2:7-8. Explaining that his message of wisdom was not taken from the wisdom of the world, he said,

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