Allusions to the Rapture in the Tanakh :: By Mark A. Becker

[Note: This author is a pre-Tribulation rapture believer, and this article reflects that view.]

Introduction

This article was fun for me and may have been written only for myself, but I did want to share it with others. Should the title have a subtitle of, “For Entertainment Purposes Only”? Let the reader be the judge.

“For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope” (Romans 15:4).

The Bible is filled with amazing pictures of truth that can help us see more clearly what has been prophesied and, when found, what these gems can mean to the student and what he or she is to glean from them.

An example of what I’m talking about would be the many “types” of Christ found throughout the Tanakh (Old Testament). These figures would include Adam, Isaac, Joseph, and David, among many others.

We also have amazing pictures of the rapture seen in the lives of Enoch, Elijah, and Daniel, and in other figures and types, as well.

The focus of this article isn’t on “pictures” of the rapture, but on possible “snapshots” or glimpses.

And, please, keep in mind that when one dies and goes to be in the presence of the Lord, this too is a type of rapture in and of itself. The believer hasn’t received his new body yet, and even though I obviously haven’t had this experience myself, I can hardly think of a more “rapturous” event; well, other than the rapture itself.

One of the many things I have learned from my Scripture study is that the Word of God is layer upon layer of remarkable multiplicity. That is, when one digs deep beneath the surface, there is an insurmountable amount of treasure to be found. So much so that this is the reason I truly believe we will be studying the Scriptures in eternity with The Word, Jesus Christ, teaching us things we never would have been able to see without His insight.

I’ve noticed that similar to finding our Lord Jesus Christ in every book of the Bible (and what a joy that is!) are “snapshots” of what seems to allude to the rapture.

Now, I’m not dogmatic on this โ€“ only God knows โ€“ but it sure seems that many of the passages speaking of God protecting and preserving His people, to me, have this seemingly secondary application hinting to the rapture.

It’s not like I’m actually looking for them. I’m truly not. They just seem to make themselves known to me. Maybe it’s just me, but I thought I’d share with you these snapshots or glimpses; many are found in the psalms.

To begin our journey into the Tanakh, let’s cite a Brit Hadassah (New Testament) passage:

“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory” (Colossians 3:1-4).

A beautiful passage assuring us of the rapture, and notice that “[our] life is hid with Christ in God.” We will definitely be “hid with Christ in God” when we are taken to the Father’s house at the rapture. This would be an example of the “snapshots” I would like to share.

Let’s begin with two of my favorite “snapshot” passages and, seemingly, some of the most vivid.

“For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock” (Psalm 27:5).

A beautiful snapshot of the rapture, surrounded by two equally powerful verses:

“One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in his temple… And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the Lord” (Psalm 27:4 & Psalm 27:6).

Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men! Thou shalt hide them in the secret of thy presence from the pride of man: thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues. Blessed be the Lord: for he hath shewed me his marvellous kindness in a strong city” (Psalm 31:19-21).

Notice how in Psalm 27:5 & Psalm 31:20, David, the Sweet Psalmist of Israel (2 Samuel 23:1), uses the word “pavilion” in his descriptions of our safety in God as He “hides” us in the “secret of His tabernacle” and in the “secret of [His] presence!” Both Hebrew words translated “pavilion” mean “shelter, covert, lair.”

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty” (Psalm 91:1).

Deliver me, O Lord, from mine enemies: I flee unto thee to hide me” (Psalm 143:9).

Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. Selah” (Psalm 32:7).

In the rapture, we will certainly be “preserved… from trouble,” for Christ is our “hiding place.”

And say ye, Save us, O God of our salvation, and gather us together, and deliver us from the heathen, that we may give thanks to thy holy name, and glory in thy praise” (1 Chronicles 16:35).

This is within the prayer of David when he carried the ark to Jerusalem. The context is the second coming to save Israel but, again, I can’t help but see an allusion to the rapture as well. The Lord will “gather us together, and deliver us from the heathen [nations]” before the Tribulation (1 Thessalonians 4:17).

He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that he may judge his people. Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice” (Psalm 50:4-5).

What a powerful snapshot this is! “He shall call to the heavens above” (the dead in Christ coming to the clouds of the earth to be reunited with their new bodies), “and to the earth” (those alive at His coming to be reunited with their new bodies), “to judge His people” in the Bema Seat Judgment of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10).

“… and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:16b-17).

The rapture can certainly be summed up by the statement from God, “Gather my saints together unto me!” Beautiful!

And, seemingly, in the same “snapshot” vein:

“Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the Lord have created it” (Isaiah 45:8).

Saving Scriptures abound. Here are just a few:

But the salvation of the righteous is of the Lord: he is their strength in the time of trouble. And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him” (Psalm 37:39-40).

We will be “deliver[ed]” from the wicked “in the time of trouble” because we “trust in Him.”

Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast. I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me. He shall send from heaven, and save me from the reproach of him that would swallow me up. Selah. God shall send forth his mercy and his truth” (Psalm 57:1-3).

We will make our “refuge” in “the shadow” of the “wings” of the Almighty, “until [those] calamities be overpast.” That is, our presence with our Savior in heaven throughout the Tribulation period.

In thee, O Lord, do I put my trust: let me never be put to confusion. Deliver me in thy righteousness, and cause me to escape: incline thine ear unto me, and save me. Be thou my strong habitation, whereunto I may continually resort: thou hast given commandment to save me; for thou art my rock and my fortress” (Psalm 71:1-3).

The LORD will “deliver” us in His “righteousness,” and we will “escape” to where we “may continually resort.” This reminds me, again, of Paul’s teaching concerning the rapture, “Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:17).

From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. Selah” (Psalm 61:2-4).

God will deliver when the time is right…

The righteous is delivered out of trouble, and the wicked cometh in his stead” (Proverbs 11:8).

But the salvation of the righteous is of the Lord: he is their strength in the time of trouble. And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him” (Psalm 37:39-40).

And [David] said, ‘The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence. I will call on the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies'” (2 Samuel 22:2-4).

God will certainly deliver His people from the “violence” of their “enemies,” secured in Christ’s “refuge” at the rapture when, afterwards, Satan and man’s fury will be in overdrive.

I have waited for thy salvation, O LORD” (Genesis 49:18).

This statement by Jacob, as he was prophesying over his twelve sons, seemingly comes out of the blue. Jacob was obviously seeing into the future, the Messiah of Israel’s fulfillment of the protoevangelium of Genesis 3:15. But, in light of its prophesying nature, I just can’t help but see an allusion to the rapture.

My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away” (Song of Solomon 2:10).

For 2,000 years, Christians have seen an amazing correlation between King Solomon (King Jesus) and his Shulamite bride (the church, the bride of Christ). A beautiful analogy of our relationship to our Creator, Redeemer, Savior, and King and His much anticipated cry to “come away” with Him in the rapture.

Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast” (Isaiah 26:20).

This sure appears to be more than a “snapshot” or a glimpse of the rapture! The Lord is calling His people to “enter thou into thy chambers.” Jesus said that He was preparing a place for us (John 14:3). Then we are to “hide [ourselves] as it were for a little moment, until the indignation [Tribulation] be overpast.” Does it get any more beautiful?!

But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day” (Proverbs 4:18).

“The perfect day” seems to allude to the “day of Christ,” which is the rapture of the church (Philippians 1:3-10) when we will finally be perfected; the resurrection of Old Testament and Tribulation saints at the end of the Tribulation when Christ comes back to establish His Millennial Kingdom (Daniel 12:2-3), and then they will be perfected; and the ultimate “perfect day,” of course, will be the Eternal Kingdom when we shall all live in eternity with our God and Savior, Jesus Christ, in “perfect” peace, love, joy, and fellowship (Revelation 21:1-27 & Revelation 22:1-5)!

Conclusion

I realize that some would want to point out that many of these verses, in context, are speaking of the Lord’s protection and provision of His saints on the earth. While this is true, is it really such a leap to say that these verses can also be speaking of the Lord’s protection and provision for His saints from the earth? Even if just for a “glimpse” or a “snapshot”?

I suppose I could have titled this article, Possible Allusions to the Rapture in the Tanakh, but for me, personally, it extends past the possible or the plausible. If it doesn’t for the reader, that’s fine โ€“ I just wanted to share what I so often perceive.

For those who do see, and have seen other passages of Scripture in their private Bible study time that I haven’t included in this article (as I’m certain it wasn’t exhaustive), please email me with your finds or comments. I look forward to seeing other gems.

Thank you for your time and consideration on this unique topic, leaving

you with this wonderful passage with immense implications on many levels:

The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come. He shall enter into peace: they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness” (Isaiah 57:1-2).

Love, grace, mercy, and shalom in Messiah Yeshua, and Maranatha!

Email: mab10666@yahoo.com