Are Pre-Tribulation Rapture Believers Escapists?
"Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his master made ruler over his household, to give them food in due season? Blessed is that servant whom his master, when he comes, will find so doing. Assuredly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all his goods." Matthew 24:45-47 People accuse pre-trib Rapture believers of being "escapists." They go on to say that if so many in the world are being persecuted and dying because of their faith, who do we think we are that we should not experience the same? What they don't "get" is that the Rapture has nothing to do with the persecution of the saints - persecution of the saints has been taking place all throughout history. Some believers have suffered for their faith while others not so much and that will continue to the end. But concerning the Rapture, there is a date and time set which is known only to God, when Jesus will come for his Bride, all born-again believers. That date is set, period. Until then persecution will continue and will be stronger in some countries, weaker in others, just as it has always been. If we are escapists we have good reason to be, for it was Jesus himself who TOLD US to pray to be able to ESCAPE the events of the Tribulation. Repeating for emphasis, HE TOLD US TO PRAY TO ESCAPE. In his discourse about the terrible events of "the last days," he said: "Watch therefore, and PRAY always that you may be counted worthy TO ESCAPE all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:36 So if you're not praying this, then you are ignoring a COMMAND AND WARNING that Jesus gave. Friends, we need to take very seriously any command that Jesus gives. The effect the imminence of the Rapture has on believers is just the opposite from what they are accused of. People say pre-trib believers have an attitude of just sitting back and relaxing, knowing the Lord will just take us when things get bad. That couldn't be further from the truth. When one realizes that the Rapture, the end of life on this earth for believers, could take place at any time, the effect that it has on the believer is to bring into close focus the shortness of the time we have to get our ministry and calling done. If I have only a short time to serve the Lord, then I'm going to double down my efforts, realizing that what I do I have to do now. Are there unsaved loved ones? Believers who know their time here might be cut short will pray all the more earnestly for their salvation. Has the Lord given a talent to a believer? Then that believer will use that talent in every way he can think of, to get the work done. Sit back and relax? I don't think so! Are we escapists? Yes, most definitely! And it is the knowledge of the imminence of the Rapture that propels us to serve the Lord in every single way we that we can, and to respond to every opportunity to serve him ...while there is still time. It compels us to work harder than others who do not have this hope. It centralizes in our minds the seriousness of it all, knowing it can all end tomorrow. And it keeps us ever vigilant to be clean before the Lord, always desiring to be purified from the filth of the world, the flesh, and the devil. "And everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure." 1 John 3:3 If you're not an escapist, you might want to consider becoming one. Our "blessed hope" is the greatest motivator for service and personal holiness than any other thing in our walk with the Lord.