Alan Kurshner of Eschatos Ministries on the Prewrath Rapture.
What are key passages that best represent the Prewrath Rapture position?
I think the strongest passage is 2 Thessalonians 2, where Paul reassures Thessalonian believers that they are not experiencing the day of the Lord’s wrath. Paul explains that they are not experiencing the day of the Lord’s wrath because two discernible events must happen first—the revelation of Antichrist and the apostasy. Since they have not happened, Paul argues, the day of the Lord has not materialised. This passage eliminates the possibility of a Pretribulation Rapture.
I also see Jesus’ Olivet Discourse as a key passage that supports the Prewrath Rapture position. It depicts all the key elements: the Antichrist’s great tribulation, cutting short of the great tribulation, celestial disturbances, Son of Man’s return to the clouds, rescue of God’s people, and the impending wrath of God.
I would argue, as well, from the book of Daniel and Revelation, but the former two passages, in my view, form a strong case for the pre-wrath position.
What role does Daniel 9 have in your understanding of the timing of the rapture?
I do not see Daniel 9 informing a particular eschatological sequence vis-à-vis the rapture question (but I do in Daniel 11:36–12:4). There are at least two points that Daniel 9 informs us on: (1) There will be a future seven-year period during which time key events will unfold, and (2) the fulfilment of the salvation of Israel will happen when the seven-year period is complete.
How does your understanding of the rapture affect your life?
Jesus ominously warns believers, “See, I have told you beforehand” (Matt 24:25). This is not a cliché, but a real warning to God’s people. The great tribulation will be a concrete event occurring in the future just before the Lord returns. Jesus says it will be characterised by martyrdom, hatred, apostasy, betrayal, deception, and lawlessness. So much so that he says, “such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be” (Matt 24:21).
To be sure, if we do not experience this event in our lifetime, there are still important faith-principles that we can use to apply to our lives in the present time.
Since God has ordained that the last generation of church will experience tribulation before she meets her Rescuer bride-groom, should this not be an urgent warning for the church? The temptation during the great tribulation to capitulate to persecution, false teaching, and slothfulness will be intense. There will be two imperative duties for the believer during the great tribulation: to overcome the adversity through faith and to encourage the fellow believer to do the same.
One final implication is saliently portrayed in the angelic warning not to take the beast’s mark, lest they suffer eternal punishment in hell (see Revelation 14:9–12).
God perseveres the faith of his people through concrete warnings, so it is incumbent on Christian leaders not to dismiss these eschatological warnings for their people that God has entrusted to them. So the practical implications for the basic correct interpretation are sober for the believer.
This information is taken from Alan Kurshner’s book Antichrist Before the Day of the Lord: What Every Christian Needs to Know About the Return of Christ.