For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18
Last week we looked at where I believe the Rapture, the battle of Gog and Magog, and the start of the 70th Week occurs. This week, we will look at the aftermath and the seven months (or more) leading up to the 70th Week proper. First, let me add that the seven months are just speculation on my part. I have always believed that there would be a gap between the Rapture of the Church, and the official starting of Daniel’s 70th Week. That gap could be longer, or it could be shorter. No one knows for sure. No one will know either until it comes to pass. Anything anyone has to say on this particular subject (gap or none), is speculating, regardless of their degrees, titles, or how many books they have written.
What I have previously mentioned in numerous briefs, is how and why the Rapture of the Church politically, culturally, and economically reconstructs this world. You cannot remove millions of people in the blink of an eye from around the world, and not have that make huge geopolitical impacts. Centers of power will shift. Military forces will change their allegiances. Economies will be restructured accordingly. Just as it was concerning the time of Christ’s first coming, the conditions on the ground will be perfectly aligned for Bible prophecy to find its complete fulfillment.
But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law…Galatians 4:4
It has long been a goal of secret societies and powers to bring the entire world into a one-world system. To do this, they have organized the rise and fall of nations. They have financed revolutions. They have sown the seeds of economic and political disparity through socialist and Marxist (via universities and via media) doctrines. While they have been successful in steering the world in that direction over the past two centuries, what the Rapture (to them) represents, is the best of all possible crises.
The Rapture (Harpazo-Greek) was created and designed by God as an escape mechanism for His Body the Church (Matt. 16:18, Col. 1:18, Eph. 5:23, and Revelation). This divine plan has not gone unnoticed by Satan. If we understand that Satan and his fallen hordes influence the affairs on this planet then it makes sense why these secret groups have long sought to bring the entire world under one power. They think it is their power, but in reality, they are simply only willing stooges doing Satan’s bidding.
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12
The Rapture is going to happen and it will happen prior to the beginning of the 70th Week of Daniel. How do I know this? There are many reasons, but the main one I keep coming back to, is that the 70 Weeks (as given to Daniel), only concerns the nation of Israel. The Church is not found within the first 69 Weeks, it only makes sense we are not in the last week either. However, in order for the last Week to be only seven years in length and still accomplish everything Revelation chapters 4-19 says has to happen, then the political, technological, economical, and religious groundwork must be in place prior too.
Why then do I believe a gap must exist between the Rapture and the 70th Week? Primarily, because the Bible does not directly connect the two. We know each must happen, yet they do not have a direct cause vs. effect (or causality) relationship. The causation will be indirect (or second-order effects). Put plainly, the Rapture only opens up the possibility for this “New World Order” to come about. However, the Rapture is only going to occur in the “fullness of time” so that the geopolitical (et. al.) outcomes happen according to Scripture. Politically speaking, the world has been in this “primed” position for the last seventy years since the end of World War II.
So what was lacking?
Revelation 11 and 13 could not come about (as the world was then) because of these two chapters (in particular 11:9 and 13:16-17) which could not be fulfilled to the letter. The technology to use and enforce these mechanisms simply did not exist until just recently.
Still, these technological limitations do not directly correlate to the Rapture; yet, you can see the cause vs. effect situation the Rapture would have on the world. It could be that if the Rapture had occurred in the 1960s, or 70s, or even 80s, the gap between the Rapture and the start of the 70th Week would by necessity be longer. Given where we are today and how interconnected the world is technologically and economically, that prophetic gap seems to be shrinking.
What is interesting is that the two limitations we have identified above, are the two which seem to be gaining the most advancements. In 2008, YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, and like media platforms were still in their infancy. Also since 2008, we have seen a rapid decline in the confidence of fiat currency as well as the increased digitization of all global currencies. Even now, we have seen the popularization of Bitcoin, Litecoin, and other digital currencies using blockchain technologies.
These alternatives have to be able to take over once the Rapture occurs. That means an alternative to the US Dollar must be able to assume the role of global, reserve currency. That means another entity similar to the United States in size, authority, and power must be able to rise up and assume the role of global leadership to fill the vacuum we leave. That means that another religious faith(s) must be able to fill the gap that true, biblical Christianity leaves. If we wonder why the Rapture has not happened yet (as of February 2018), it is because these things must exist prior to and for the last seven years to play out.
Therefore, in the aftermath of the Rapture and the restructuring the world will go through, a revived Roman Empire (the Beast) must still contend with one final geopolitical obstacle. That is the competing/threatening Russian alliance to the north and east. This is where the battle of Gog and Magog (Ezekiel 38-39) comes into play. Once God supernaturally destroys these invading armies on Israel’s northern border, the world experience another major tectonic shift in power.
Imagine the European Union experiencing the reverse wealth transfer from the US after the Rapture. Europe had surrendered much of that wealth, technology (people/systems) to the US before, during, and after WWII. Imagine them now, no longer having to compete with the US as rivals, and no longer facing an immediate threat to their east (namely Russia). They would by default (aside from China), become the major power player in the world.
Let me caveat on this real quick. I know the position of the Pre-Tribulation Rapture is in large measure, predicated on imminency. I do not seek to diminish that by saying the Rapture is predicated on anything other than God’s timing. Yet, here we are 2,000 years later. If the Rapture could have occurred at any moment over the past two millennia, and it has not, there must be a reason for this. We should not dismiss this out of hand. Where I believe imminence plays a factor, there is nothing scripturally that makes the Rapture dependent on something else for it to happen. To which I agree.
Below is a plausible scenario given that the gap is seven-months. Granted, this is a gross oversimplification of what could happen. I do not possess the time or space to list out every possible scenario or detail.
The United States In large part, the US has fractured to the point of no return. Large portions of the US have become ungoverned and lawless. Society (or what remains), breaks down relatively quickly with urban areas experiencing the sharpest spike in looting and violence. Our system (a Constitutional Republic) is based on the rule of law to function properly. If the government is no longer functioning, this means our nation returns very much to the “Old West” days when states revert to largely lawless territories. Furthermore, with the realization of what has happened, the stock market will tank, and the subsequent bank runs will cripple our financial sectors. Panic creates a ‘herd-mentality’ where huge swaths of people abandon their current situations to go back to family and home for protection, safety, and the necessities of life.
At this point (post-Rapture and post-Gog), Israel is doing massive cleanup operations to their immediate north. The Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa Mosque are destroyed (or damaged to the point of no return), which leaves Israel the opportunity to begin construction on their own Temple. Jews from around the world continue to make Aliyah back to Israel, particularly those from the United States. Not only does Israel’s population swell, but also her borders.
After the battle of Gog, Israel expands out her northern borders considerably to control what used to be Lebanon and Syria. The expansion also serves to make room for all the returning Jews coming from the west and the north. With Shia Islam (aligned with Russia) in shambles, and the Sunni-nations (aligned with the US and Turkey) in disarray, Israel no longer faces (or fears) the wrath of Islam nor the political meddling from the West. In addition, with the influx of Jews from around the world, she recognizes that now is the time to rebuild her temple.
The Rise of the Beast
Without the US taking the role as the world’s superpower, the world looks to another powerful nation(s) to take charge. What rises in the midst of the chaos both in the Americas and in Eurasia, is a reenergized Europe. Although Europe does lose Christians and children to the Rapture, their loss is dramatically less destabilizing than what has occurred in the US.
Since the EU military is still in its infancy, the NATO leadership structure converts to the long-sought-after European Defence Force. Much, if not all of the US military-industrial complex corporations already share offices and headquarters with Europe, shifting their resources and assets to the EU would not be difficult. There would also be a need for a massive expansion in the business of private military companies/ mercenaries, who offer services for security and protection (ex. Blackwater). The EU’s first priority would be securing the abandoned gold, ships, jets, tanks, missile systems, and nuclear weapons from what was left of the United States and Russia, before the Chinese (or anyone else) could get their hands on them. Even if the EU only secured what was on our east coast, this still would significantly bolster what they currently have.
Because the battle of Gog and Magog significantly drains much of the military-aged males in Russia, Eurasia, Turkey, and northern Africa, the EU’s borders will significantly increase without much effort. Without a looming threat to the east (Russia), NATO is repurposed to act on the new global stage. This means securing the Mediterranean and what was western Russia and Turkey.
Israel (now larger) remains a friendly, yet potential contender in the Mediterranean. She has nuclear weapons, a functioning government, and a powerful military. In fact, from the EU’s perspective, Israel remains the only “potential” threat to the EU’s unlimited expansionistic ideas. While other nations in the Middle East remain relatively intact (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, etc.) none possess the strength Israel has regarding energy (natural gas), weapons (Iron Dome, nuclear weapons, F35, etc.), and experience to repel both immediate and far threats to their sovereignty. At some point, the EU’s hot/cold relationship with Israel would need to be cemented into a mutual defense contract/covenant to prevent either a future clash or existential threat.
Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; But in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, Even until the consummation, which is determined, Is poured out on the desolate.” Daniel 9:27