A Critique of Marylin Agee's Two Rapture theory.
The following is a critique of Marilyn Agee's "Two Raptures" which can be found in it's entirety on her web site at: http://www.kiwi.net/~mjagee/2rapt.html. I usually don't even bother with false prophets unless they are teaching another gospel or distorting the message of salvation which Marilyn Agee does as I will show below. (Marilyn's comments are in teal and mine in regular type. The scriptures I have referenced are in bold teal.)
"Christ said, 'I have foretold you all things' in Mark 13:23."
"PRE-TRIB AND PRE-WRATH"
"Some Christians expect the Rapture before the Tribulation. Others expect it at the end of the Tribulation just before the Wrath of God is poured out. The reason, as I see it after over 36 years of intense Bible study, is because there actually will be two Raptures. The first one is the Rapture of the Church, the second of the Tribulation saints. "
The wrath of God does not begin at the end of the Great Tribulation but when Christ opens the first seal in Revelation 6 when the AntiChrist is revealed. At first, this appears as a good thing--he comes riding on a white horse (like a hero), with no bow (in peace) and begins to conquer the earth (apparently in peace). However this is still the beginning of judgment and relates back to when Scripture indicates we will be deceived by the Antichrist during the endtimes.
"There are also two views concerning the Pre-Trib Rapture. Some think that every Christian will go in the Rapture. It is the Body of Christ, and they say not a finger will be left behind. Others think that it will be a partial Rapture and that it is possible for a believer to be left behind. I believe that the Philadelphian group of Revelation 3:7-13 will go in the first Rapture, and that the Laodicean group of Rev. 3:14-22 will be left behind at that time. However, they will be taken up with the Tribulation saints at the end of the shortened Tribulation."
Please notice that Agee has singled out the Philadelphian and Laodicean churches as signifying the 1st and 2nd Raptures. What about the other 5 churches? Does this mean there will be 7 Raptures? And if not, why not? Most of those in the Laodicean church were not even saved anyway, because as Jesus said:
So, to say that the Laodicean church is those who die in the Great Tribulation as Martrys just doesn't seem to jell together--unless they repented, but there will be those in the other 5 churches who repent also. What of those?
However, damnation is different from disciplinary chastening. Hebrews 12:6 says, "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth." This is similar to Jesus' message to the Laodiceans. In Revelation 3:19, he said, "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." In both cases, the word translated "chaste" is "paideuo," discipline, to teach by punishment.
To be chastened is not the same thing as being ejected from the Body of Christ because one is not quite perfect enough. All Christians are chastened at one time or another. However, Paul told us in 1 Cor. 12 that the Body is ONE, but has many members and that "we were all baptised by one Spirit into ONE Body, whether Jews or Greeks, slaves or free . . ." (vs 13). He also states that one part is no less a part of the Body than any other part in verse 15/16. He reaffirms that there is only ONE body in verse 20, "As it is, there are many parts, but ONE body" and that the weaker or less honorable members of the Body are just as much a part of the body as the stronger/more honorable members. And then he PLAINLY states, "But God has combined the members of the body, and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be NO DIVISION in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other" (vs 25), and also "if one part suffers, every part suffers with it;" (vs 26). So, either one is a member of the Body of Christ or one is not. And if one is not then they aren't even believers to begin with.
Also the Rapture is known as our "Blessed Hope" (Titus 2:13). What kind of hope is there if we. as believers, unknowingly might not qualify for the Rapture?
Agee has just preached anit-eternal salvation by saying they were believers and Christ spewed them out. As we will see by a comment at the bottom of this article, she preaches eternal salvation. And then in her salvation message from another article she again preaches anti-salvation again. So something doesn't quite jell here. God is not the author of confusion.
Also we have no proof that these people in the Church of Laodicea are all believers. Christ is calling them to repentance (to turn from sin to God/Christ) and He welcomes those who overcome. According to 1 John 4:5 the overcomer is "only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God," and Christ welcomes the overcomer in all of the 7 churches. So not alllll of the Laodicean church are doomed to be spit out in the first place. As we will see below this poses a problem for Agee's theory.
Only if they repent (verse 19, which she didn't include in the quote below.)
It is ONLY those who repent who get to enter the door, and those who repent are members of the Body of Christ, which we saw above is ONE unit and will not be divided.
The scripture above doesn't say anything about the Rapture, and as I just showed above the text doesn't say that all of the lukewarm church fail to repent either. Agee is putting words into the text without scriptural support.
"The situation is different for the Philadelphian church. Addressing them, Jesus said, 'I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door' (Rev. 3:8). This open door is a symbol of the Rapture. As the fourth chapter of Revelation begins, 'behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard...as a trumpet...said, Come up hither.'"
"Indicating more than one Rapture in the parable of the fig tree, Jesus said 'So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things (Israel grafted into her old rootstock and growing), know that it is near, even at the doors.' "
The fig tree scripture Agee is apparently referring to is Matt. 24:32,33 which I agree applies to Israel. However the next scripture she alluded to, regarding Israel being grafted into her old rootstock, occurs in Romans 11 and says the branches representing Israel "were broken off because of unbelief" (Rom 11:20) and will be grafted back on again ---- when? When they believe, "if they do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in . . ." (vs 23). Has Israel believed in Christ yet? No. And it doesn't happen until some time during the Trib. So, these two scriptures that Agee alluded to aren't talking about the same thing as she claims. And notice again, that she didn't leave a reference so you could see for yourself.
It may "fit right in" (like a square peg in a round hole) but, as I will show below, this scripture is not speaking about the Rapture. Also, please notice Agee has gone from Rev. 3:10, to Matt. 24:32,33 to Romans 11 and back to Matt. 24:33 and gave us only one scripture reference which would seem to imply that all her comments derive from the one verse, which isn't true. Also regarding the plural use of the word "doors," not all translations use the plural form of the word "door" so even that is debatable.
"There are at least two days of the Son of man. In Luke 17:22, Jesus mentioned "one of the days of the Son of man" to his disciples."
Now, this is really stretching it. The phrase, "the days of the Son of Man" is referring to the Tribulation, and Agee is trying to make it sound like it is talking about the Rapture, which it isn't because Jesus never taught his Disciples about the Rapture. They didn't even believe he would have to die and be resurrected. No one was at the tomb except the women that followed him (Mark 15:40-41). The disciples were looking for a conquering hero to resuce Israel from domination by the Romans, so when he died on the cross they were disillusioned and they ran away in fear--excpet for John (John 19:26).
Again, Agee has not proven anything by this comment, and especially that these scriptures are speaking about the Rapture at all. We are not expected to find perfect similarity between the two situations--we are to only see that life is proceeding as usual. The message in both scriptures is that these people were not expecting JUDGMENT until it happened. This by itself should exclude this talking about the Rapture because the rapture is our "Blessed Hope" and these scriptures are talking about judgment.
But there are more clues to be found also. Please notice that ALL who were left behind, in both stories were destroyed. This would leave no one to qualify for Agee's 2nd Rapture. And also notice in verse 30 this occurs when the Son of Man is revealed. Also, Christ is not revealed to the world at the Rapture--only at the 2nd coming. Also, Jesus had not explained the Rapture to his disciples so this is not what they would be thinking about. And there is one more reason: those who are taken end up as carion for the vultures (verse 37), which again indicates this is judgment, not the Rapture.
That scripture does not say they are taken to heaven either — they are taken to judgment. As I explained above, the Body of Christ is a unit. Either you are in the Body of Christ or you're not.
Is she implying that the animals were married? How about those animals that were taken in by sevens? Here would be more proof that there must be seven raptures if she would want to take it that far, but let's not encourage her.
"The Jews recognize that there are two trumps."
There are a lot more than two trumps. There were a series of trumpets blown daily during the exodus and at many other times. In fact Scripture mentions about 62 trumpet blowings. There was a trumpet blown at the giving of the Law on Mt. Sanai (Ex 19:16,19).There is a last trumpet blown in Rev 11:15-18, and another in Joel 2:1. There are also trumpets blown at the Feast of Trumpets (Num. 29:1) and also on Yom Kippur (Lev 25:9) and also to announce the year of Jubilee (Lev 25:9-10), during the battle of Jericho (Joshua 6:4-10) and many other events. So unless Paul indicates which trumpet he is referring to we can't just choose one out of thin air and especially not the one that John wrote about several decades later in the Book of Revelation.
Two separate gatherings. Some who teach that there is only one Rapture do not stop to think that if there is a 'last trump,' there has to be a first trump. Neither do they see that at the first trumpet call, THE LORD HIMSELF GATHERS THE SAINTS; and at the last trumpet call, HE SENDS HIS ANGELS TO GATHER THE SAINTS. Therefore, they must be two separate gatherings. We have to rightly divide the word of truth (II Tim. 2:15).
We certainly do have to rightly divide the Word of Truth, but this isn't it. Please notice Agee (again) didn't give the reference for the two scriptures she alluded to above, but it appears she is referring to 1 Thess 4:17 and Matt 24:31. Paul says Jesus does the gathering in the 1 Thess verse and Jesus says the angels do the gathering in the Matt 24 verse. Agee is mixing apples and oranges here because Paul is talking about the Rapture of the Church and Jesus is talking about gathering those "elect" who survived the Trib and it does not say he is taking them TO heaven. And if you will read other accounts of Jesus' coming, he comes TO the earth and stays there at the Judgment--he does not return to heaven right away (See Zech 14 and Rev. 19). It is only during the Rapture that he returns to Heaven with his Bride.
Please notice the above scripture says, "Thou mayest use THEM for calling the assembly" and then it says what it means if they only blow ONE of them. In other words, they are to blow both of them together when assembling the people. The NIV and NAS versions say, "And when both are blown . . ." Also verse 5 and 6 indicate there is not only one blowing of the trumpet but a blowing that indicates it's time for the East camp to set out and another for the South camp. And let's not forget that there are the camps to the West and North also, so there are at least 2 more trumpet blasts besides these. Therefore this is not proof of the last trump at the Rapture.
I'm not sure what Agee means by the 12 princes but I believe they represent the 12 tribes of Isreal.
Please notice how swifly Agee snuck in the Feast of Trumpets into this discussion without any scriptural reference to support it.
That scripture does not say they are taken TO heaven but gathered FROM one end of heaven to the other. The word Heaven has 3 different meanings--it can mean our upper atmosphere, our solar system or the abode of God. If we cannot determine which is meant by the context then we shouldn't be adding words to scripture unless we can find a verse that specifically says so.
If there were going to be two separate Raptures Paul would have surely told us because he wrote both those scriptures.
Agee has no proof this is the same trumpet. It is pure conjecture.
"The last trump is mentioned in I Corinthians 15:51,52:
We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed."
These two verses are talking about the same event--the ONE Rapture.
"According to I Corinthians 15:22,23, those 'in Christ shall all be made alive, But every man in his own order (tagmati, rank).' We realize that there are Church saints and Tribulation saints, each made alive in his own rank".
The word "man" does not occur in the text. It is therefore saying, "everyone" in their own order. This passage is talking about first fruits (which Agee neglected to mention), i.e., Christ rises first at his resurrection and then the Rapture of those in Christ. It is not sorting out two different raptures because as we saw above the Body of Christ is one unit, not two.
NOT! There will be believing survivors after the Tribulation who stay on the earth. See the Sheep and Goat Judgment in Matt. 25.
How can saints be taken TO Heaven and gathered FROM heaven at the same time and then appear in Heaven???
NOT! These are the survivors of the Trib and they do not go to heaven. They stay on the earth through the millennium.
As was discussed above, this is when Christ gathers the elect after the Trib. This is not the church.
"Both Raptures are depicted in the last book of the Bible. The first is seen in the 'Come up hither' of Rev. 4:1. The heavenly scene right after the Rapture is described in Rev. 5. The great multitude who are part of the second Rapture are described in Rev. 7:14,15:"
"These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God.
These cannot just include the 144,000 Jews, for this is 'a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations' (Rev. 7:9). Obviously, the 144,000 can be numbered."
"Sandwiched between these two references to Raptures in the Bible is Revelation 6, which depicts the Tribulation. This chapter starts with the Beast riding forth on a white horse at the beginning of the Tribulation and ends with 'the great day of his (the Lamb's) wrath is come.' The Day of God's Wrath is at the end of the shortened Tribulation. The sixth seal is broken, then Rapture II takes place just before the seventh seal releases the seven trumpet judgments."
NOT! The wrath of God starts with the first seal, which is opened by Christ. (Rev. 6 see above)
"Both the Old Testament and the New Testament agree that the righteous are taken away before the evil to come, i.e., the Tribulation. Isaiah 57:1,2 says, 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."
This is more likely referring to when the Jews are hidden in Petra after mid trib. This was writen to the Isralites and they were never taught about a Rapture.
I agree this is pertaining to the Rapture.
I disagree that this scripture is applying to the Rapture. If you move back a few verses you will see that this passage is talking about Judgment--not the Rapture/our Blessed Hope, "for it (that day that comes on them like a trap) will come upon all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth." Verse 27 indicates this is when "the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory." This is not depicting the Rapture but judgment. The world does not see Christ at the Rapture, only believers.
"To be chosen as part of the Bride of Christ and be taken to Heaven before the Tribulation is the prize we are running the race to win."
Let me clarify: The prize we are running the race to win is to receive an imperishable wreath, i.e., the resurrection/Rapture/Blessed Hope.
Again, Agee has not accounted for those Laodiceans who repent and overcome and all the other churches too.
Paul could not lose his salvation. He was a believer.
Here is where Agee supports eternal salvation. That is good. But it destroys her theory.
The friends of the Bridegroom are neither the Bride nor the Groom. They are guests. They are not part of the bridal party. And those who would not qualify for the Rapture (according to Agee's theory) would neither qualify as the friends of the Groom. They are OT saints which includes John the Baptist.
Now, Agee has not only divided the body of Christ in two but also separated those who attend the marriage from those who attend the feast.
Paul says the prize is the resurrection from the Dead, i.e., the Rapture (see vs 11).
And as you can see this prediction failed along with a multitude of others.
I checked Agee's "Rapture and Salvation" article, which is on the same website as the article above, to see what she believes re salvation. Here is what she says:
Agee also gives John 3:16 and other scriptures that clearly portray the gospel message. HOWEVER, as you can see from what she says above about missing out on the Rapture/Bride of Christ if one forgets to confess a sin, that person is no longer in the Body of Christ, and needs to stay in a state of perpetual sinlessness in order to be considered righteous enough for the rapture. This is a Faith plus Works Gospel, which according to Paul is no gospel at all (Gal 1:6,7).
Paul continues his discourse on the true Gospel in the rest of the book of Galations:
"Consider Abraham: 'He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.' Understand then, that those who believe are Children of Abraham" (Gal 3:6).
Please notice it doesn't say Abraham believed and repented over and over again and then was declared righteous. Abraham was instead declared righteous even before he was circumcised.
"All who rely on observing the law (sacrifices) are under a curse, for it is written: 'Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law (sacrifices).' Clearly no one is justified before God by the law (sacrifices), because the righteous will live by faith" (Gal. 3:10-11)
How many times did Christ die for our sins? Once (Rom 6:10). For SURE we Christians need to continually repent but a TRUE believer has the Holy Spirit residing in them and He will not let them stay in sin. A TRUE believer is already declared a member of the Body of Christ at the moment they believe, and Christ has promised to never let go of one of his own that the Father has given him (John 10:28). We don't get booted out of the Body for a minor infraction and then have to be reinstated, over and over again or miss out on the Body of Christ/Rapture. This is sacrificing Christ all over again. It is also a revolving door Gospel.
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son" (John 3: 16-18). Please notice that believers are NOT condemned and have eternal life.
And the final clincher:
"If we have been united with him in his death, we will CERTAINLY also be united with him in his resurrection" (Rom 6:5).
We are warned about those who will lead us astray from the true Gospel, " For certain men (and women) whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men (and women), who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord " (Jude 1-4).
Marilyn Agee is not only a false teacher but a false prophet teaching a false gospel as well. Don't listen to her.
A good explanation of "the last trump", and where the word Rapture came from: The Greek Harpazo > to the Latin Rapiemur > to the English Rapture, or caught away, can be found on a video by Scott Clarke at ERF Ministries. He also provides audios of several trumpet blasts including the "last trump". He also explains why Matt. 24:29-31 is not talking about the rapture but the 2nd coming.
© August 25, 2000, updated 10-24-12