At Christ’s Second Coming, faithful saints, both those on earth as mortals and those in their graves, will be caught up to meet him in the clouds. What is the so-called “rapture” and when will it take place?
We know that Jesus will not be alone when He comes. Jude, the Lord’s brother, quotes Enoch, telling us that Jesus “cometh with ten thousands of his saints” (see Jude 1:14; compare 1 Thessalonians 3:13).
The traditional Christian source text for the “rapture” is found in 1 Thessalonians:
For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent [precede] them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: 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. Wherefore comfort one another with these words. (1 Thessalonians 4:14–17; emphasis added.)
It appears that the time of being “caught up . . . in the clouds” will take place at the same time that Christ actually comes. He hinted at this dramatic time in His Olivet discourse when He said:
Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left. (Matthew 24:40–41; emphasis added.)
Modern revelation also speaks of this amazing day:
And the saints that are upon the earth, who are alive, shall be quickened and be caught up to meet him. And they who have slept in their graves shall come forth, for their graves shall be opened; and they also shall be caught up to meet him in the midst of the pillar of heaven—they are Christ’s, the first fruits, they who shall descend with him first, and they who are on the earth and in their graves, who are first caught up to meet him; and all this by the voice of the sounding of the trump of the angel of God. (D&C 88:96–98; compare D&C 109:75; see also D&C 78:20–21; emphasis added.)
So when Christ comes again, He will come with thousands of saints and will be joined by thousands of saints who are yet mortal or who have not yet been resurrected. Those who will be resurrected at this time will be “first caught up to meet him.”
What a spectacular moment that will be. But an even more important moment is this moment. What can we do, you and I, right now at this moment to better prepare ourselves for the great and dreadful day (see Malachi 4:5)?
Note: A new page on this site lists all the posts on this blog that discuss the Second Coming.