That’s right. The originators of the pretribulation rapture theory are none other than the Jesuits. And, I can’t say that I’m too terribly surprised.
With all of the lies and corruption that permeate the Jesuits, it should not surprise us that they would deliberately seek to corrupt any interpretation of the bible, if it means that the Roman Catholic Church is glorified – which is what they have sworn to do, at all costs. But, we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
The Jesuits, or Societas Iesu, was started when Ignatius of Loyola got six young men together and started their own monastic order in 1534. Pope Paul III put his stamp of approval on the whole idea six years later. They then went on to become one of the most vicious organizations ever devised by man. Heinrich Himmler, the founder and head of the German Gestapo, credits the Jesuits as being the model for his organization.
With such a powerful tool in the hands of the Pope, it is easy to see why the Pope would order the Jesuits to destroy the Protestant Reformation and all other forms of Christianity. The Jesuits took over the Office of the Inquisition. They penetrated and subverted every political institution in Europe, as well as any and all religious institutions. In fact, they became so successful, the monarchies of Europe pressured the Pope to disband them – which he did, in 1773. But, like a really bad case of cancer, they came roaring back.
And, they wrote books.
When the Protestant Reformation began, men like Luther and Knox claimed that it was the Catholic Church itself who was to be the Antichrist. This made the Pope nervous, and at the Council of Trent, the Pope commissioned the Jesuits to counteract this dangerous idea.
In the late 1500s, two Jesuits, Francisco Ribera and Roberto Bellarmino, came to the Pope’s rescue and created a new Roman Catholic doctrine called Futurism, or Jesuit Futurism. Basically, Jesuit Futurism just says that the Roman Catholic Church can’t possibly have anything to do with the Antichrist. Of course, they wrote it in Latin, which kept it from being a ‘best seller’.
Along comes Chilean-born Manuel Lacunza, a Jesuit priest who found himself with too much time on his hands, because he’d been defrocked. (Remember that part about the Pope disbanding the Jesuits in 1773?) Lacunza built on the ideas of Ribera and Bellarmino by adding that all the good Christians (i.e., Catholics) would be resurrected BEFORE the Antichrist. However, he said that after this ‘rapture’, the Roman Catholic Church would side with the Antichrist.
The Pope liked it, except for the last bit, so he banned it.
Undeterred, Lacunza chose to write in Spanish and publish under the name Rabbi Juan Josafat ben-Ezra. Of course, someone else could have chosen that name, since the book came out in 1811, ten years after he died. Whatever the case, the book gained popularity throughout Spain and eventually wound up in the hands of a Scottish Presbyterian, Edward Irving.
For Irving, it was love at first cite. In fact, he was so taken with the book that he promptly took up the study of Castilian Spanish so that he could translate the book into English. His translation was published in 1827 as “The Coming of the Messiah”. The name ‘Edward Irving’ might sound familiar because he is one of the fore-runners of the Charismatic and Pentecostal movements.
The famous Margaret MacDonald, whose vision(s) created a massive sensation throughout Scotland and Great Britain in 1830, was a member of Irving’s congregation.
Also in 1830, it appears that Irving started preaching that the Rapture will occur in two stages – a secret one before the Antichrist and a public one at the end of the Great Tribulation. The question of which came first, Maragret MacDonald’s vision or Irving’s teaching, gets a little more difficult to figure out.
John Nelson Darby, was 30 when news of what was going on hit the headlines. He did his own investigation into the matter and incorporated what he saw into something called Dispensationalism. He also made his own translation of the bible which some say is deliberately biased towards his Dispensationalist views and the theory of the pretribulation rapture.
Darby visited the US six times between 1859 and 1874, preaching Dispensationalism and the pretribulation rapture. He also spent much time preaching in Europe, developing a reputation as an interpreter of bible prophecy.
All this and more, impressed the man that would be the biggest promoter of the Secret Rapture: Cyrus Ingerson Scofield. Scofield, a Kansas lawyer, published the first edition of his famous Scofield Reference Bible in 1909. By 1930, more than one million copies of his Bible were in print.
At this point, it was all over. Literally.
By placing his commentary of the Bible within the Bible itself, he essentially elevated his own thoughts on the Bible to be almost as important as the Bible itself. Whether this was intentional, or not, is immaterial. The fact is that his errors instantaneously became legitimate in the eyes of everyone who read his bible.
With the advent of the Scofield Bible, seminaries became major proponents of the Jesuit Pretribulation Rapture theory.
So, now that you know the shaky foundations of this theory, why not take a moment and look at the Bible itself.
Try to find ANY reference to a ‘Secret Rapture’ in the Bible. You cannot.
Try to find ANY reference in the Bible to a Rapture before Jesus returns. You cannot.
Read Matthew 24. Is there anyone who can explain this chapter in any other way than that the Rapture will occur at the SAME TIME that Jesus returns?
Matthew 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Matthew 24:31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
Can the explanation be any clearer?
Read II Thessalonians 2. Can you explain this away also?
II Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
Read down through the rest of the chapter. Beware that you do not fall into the category of ‘them that perish':
10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
Seriously folks. You must wake up. Stop believing in this Pretribulation Rapture lie and start preparing for what’s coming.
It may already be too late.