Why does the Pre-Millennial view make the most sense?
I have been holding Bible prophecy conferences for over 30 years and my favorite part of each conference is always the question and answer period where we give people in the audience an opportunity to ask any question they please. In this series I'm going to start throwing questions about Bible prophecy at my two guest experts — Gary Fisher of Lion of Judah Ministry and Dennis Pollock of Spirit of Grace Ministries. I know you will enjoy their very fascinating and informative responses.
The Pre-Millennial View
Dr. Reagan: You two hold to a view that is called the Pre-Tribulational, Pre-Millennial Viewpoint. This is the view that there will be a Rapture of the Church followed by a seven year Tribulation period. Jesus Christ will then come back at its end in victory and then reign with the Church for a thousand years. Why do you believe that? Dennis first.
Dennis Pollock: Yes, well, let me ask you this. Did you ever have a snow cone when you were a kid that you took the tip off and you sucked all the juice out of it?
Dr. Reagan: Oh, yes!
Dennis Pollock: It was great, wasn't it? But, when you were done, what did you have left? You ended up with a bunch of flavorless ice that was essentially worthless. You had sucked the life out of that snow cone and it become worthless.
The idea that Christ can only come after all these Tribulation events have been fulfilled, the idea that there has to be a Tribulation first, that there has to be a Antichrist to rise up first, that there has to be the rebuilding of the Temple first, well what it does it puts people in a position to say when they wake up in the morning, "Jesus Christ could not possibly come today, because all of these things haven't been fulfilled." They've sucked the life out of the doctrine of the Second Coming of Christ, because Jesus said to watch for Him because He's coming when we don't expect Him. So, you've totally sapped this event from its vitality and life. The whole point of what Christ is giving us in terms of the doctrine of His return is be alert and be watchful, for He's going to come and surprise you.
Dr. Reagan: Okay, Gary, give me a reason why you believe.
Gary Fisher: Mine was the same answer, but I would put it a little bit different than sucking the juice out of a snow cone, though. One of the things that I love to do at my conferences is talk to "Mr. Lostman." I warn him, "You have so much going on in the world, and yet Jesus could come today. If that's not true then I'm misrepresenting the Scripture."
If you take the idea that Jesus can come today, then the Pre-Trib doctrine is gone. The only doctrine that can satisfy the idea that Jesus can come on any day is the Pre-Trib doctrine. It would disappear, because if Christ cannot come even today then there is no such thing as a Pre-Trib doctrine. The Pre-Trib doctrine demands that He can come at any day. If you place the Rapture in the Mid-Trib or Post-Trib view, then it could not happen today.
Dr. Reagan: That's true. Jesus taught over and over the He may come any moment. That's called imminency. That means He can come at any moment. And, if you believe that a whole bunch of things have to happen first, then there is no immanency. There would be no reason why you should say that Jesus may come today.
Gary Fisher: I want to talk to Mr. Lostman and say, "Get right today while there's still time, because you don't know what is going to happen tomorrow!" Jesus can come today. Without the Pre-Millennial, Pre-Tribulational viewpoint, you do not have that doctrine.
Dr. Reagan: That's a very, very good point! I don't know really how folks who disagree with imminency can get around that point since basically what they are claiming is Jesus is going to come at the end of the Tribulation. If that's true, then do you know what? We should be watching for the Antichrist and not Jesus Christ.
Dennis Pollock: We should have our check-list out, and as soon as all our check boxes have checks in them we can then "allow" Jesus to come.
Dr. Reagan: Yes, because there will be the whole Great Tribulation happening. You've got to have the Temple rebuilt. You've got to have the persecution of the Jewish people, and on and on and on before Jesus Christ returns. But, the Bible says Jesus can return at any moment, and the only way that can happen is if you believe in a Pre-Tribulation Rapture.
When you look at the Rapture and compare it to the Second Coming the two are totally different anyway. In one Jesus appears, the other He comes to earth. In one He comes for His Church, the other He returns with His Church. So, the Pre-Tribulation Rapture view is the only way to really reconcile the Scriptures.