Biblical Eschatology

A Biblical study of eschatology and the pre-tribulational & post-tribulational rapture views of the end times.

Harpazo the Greek Word for Rapture

Two arguments I hear is that since the rapture is based on the Greek word ἁρπάζω (harpazo), which means "to snatch", the rapture will be fast and unseen. Some also claim that harpazo is a technical term for the rapture. Verses such as John 10:28 prove that harpazo is not a technical term.

John 10:28 NET
I give them eternal life, and they will never perish; no one will snatch ἁρπάσει
(harpazo) them from my hand.
Webster’s defines snatch as "to attempt to seize something suddenly." They also define it as "to take or grasp abruptly or hastily." Before I get further into the Greek, in English, if I snatch someone's purse, it does not mean no one will see it happen. Additionally, a robbery consists of two parts, the robbery (snatch) and the getaway. Optimally the getaway should be fast, but if it's slow, it does not negate the snatch aspect of the initial robbery.

When Jesus ascended back to heaven after his first coming, it was a slow drawn-out process that was clearly visible to all who were there to witness it.
Acts 1:9-11 NASB
9And after He had said these things, He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. 10And as they were gazing intently into the sky while He was going, behold, two men in white clothing stood beside them. 11They also said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven."
I would doubt any pre-triber would argue that this return to heaven could be considered a rapture (harpazo), since it was visible and not fast moving. Therefore, would it be wrong to say that Jesus was snatched?

It may surprise you, but in fact the Bible says that Jesus was raptured (harpazo) back to heaven!
Revelation 12:5 NASB
And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up ἡρπάσθη (harpazo) to God and to His throne.
This return to heaven as a harpazo was Jesus’ accession back to heaven after His resurrection from the dead; the same exact event described in Acts 1:9-11. In Acts it says he will return the same way he left, but as outlined in Acts, it is clear that this harpazo was a slow event that was clearly visibly. Therefore, since Jesus returns in the same way He left, Jesus will slowly and visibly descend (Cf. Acts 1:9-11).

In relationship to the rapture in 1 Thessalonians 4:17, Paul further describes it in 5:2 occurring on the day of the Lord and like a thief in the night. Peter further describes this event in his second letter.
2 Peter 3:10 NASB
But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.
In his epistle, Jude further describes the rapture occurring on the day of the Lord, while the earth is being burned with fire.
Jude 1:23 NASB
save others, snatching ἁρπάζοντες (harpazo) them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.
This is exactly what occurs during the post-trib rapture. We are raptured out of the earth immediately before fire rains down and destroys all inhabitants of the earth.

We Are Not Appointed to Wrath

The Timing of the Rapture

The Testimony and Parables of Jesus

Does apostasia in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 refer to the rapture?

The Church Not Found In Revelation

The Resurrection

1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11, New Doctrine or Just a Clarification?

Who Escapes What in Revelation 3:10?

Imminence Refuted

John 14 - In My Fathers House

Harpazo the Greek Word for Rapture

Behold! I tell you what mystery means

The Dead in Christ & Tribulation Saints

Andy Woods

Revelation is NOT Chronological

Is the Holy Spirit the Restrainer?

What I believe - Day of the Lord Timeline

Understanding Zechariah 14

Blasted Hope or Blessed Hope?

Understanding Greek Pronouns and Their Importance

The Comfort Given by Paul

The Rapture in Revelation 7, Part 1

The Rapture in Revelation 7, Part 2

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