The Last Trump

1 Cor.15 in its entirety is given over to a thorough treatment of the
doctrine of bodily resurrection. Bodily resurrection is an integral
part of the gospel. This lies in the fact that Christ died, and was
buried, but rose again from the dead on the third day according to the
Scriptures(1 Cor.15:1-11). Ab initio, Paul dealt with the irrefutable
logic that if there is no such thing as physical resurrection, then
Christ is not raised from the dead. If Christ is not raised from the
dead, our faith in Him is in vain, and we are still in our sins (1
Cor.15:17). Besides, the Apostles would be false witnesses of God;
because they testified of God that He raised Christ, whom He did not
raise up(1 Cor.15:15). Then those who died in Christ have perished(v.18). “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” Paul made the assertion that Christ rose from the dead; and His resurrection is an absolute and inviolate guarantee that all men will one day rise from the dead(1 Cor.15:55; Jon.5:25-29). “But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept”(v.19). The twin enemies of man, death and the grave will finally and summarily be defeated at Christ’s Second Advent(1
Cor.15:20-34).

Paul also talked about the nature of bodily resurrection(1 Cor.15:20-50). At death and burial, the physical body is sown inweakness and dishonor. At the resurrection, it raise in power and glory(v.43). The highlight and the climax of Paul’s teaching and the revelation he received on the nature of bodily resurrection is that one generation of believers in Christ shall receive glorified eternal immortal resurrection body without passing through the intermediate
process of death(vv.51-58). “Behold, I show you a mystery; we shall
not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the
twinkling of an eye, at the Last Trump: for the trumpet shall sound,
and the dead in Christ shall be raised in corruptible, and we shall be
changed”(vv.51,52).

Apostle Paul referred to the fact that one generation of believers in Christ
will receive glorified eternal immortal bodies without dying
physically as a mystery. Mystery in Pauline theology has three
characteristics. Firstly, it means something that has always been part
of God’s plan. Secondly, it was not revealed in the OT, but revealed
in the NT. And thirdly, it is only known by divine revelation(Eph.3:5). Here are some of the significant biblical mysteries revealed in the NT: the mystery of iniquity(2 Thess.2:7); the mystery of
Israel’s blindness(Rom.11:12); the mystery concerning Christ and the
church(Eph.5:32); and the mysteries of the kingdom(Matt.13.11).

When we examine the mystery of Christ and the church, we see the three component parts or characteristics of a biblical mystery. ” How that by revelation He made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in a few words, whereby when you read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto His holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; that the Gentiles should be fellowheirs , and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel(Eph.3:3-6). Here Paul revealed that (1) the church had
always been part of God’s plan; (2) and that this biblical truth was
not revealed in the OT dispensation or ages; (3) and that it was
revealed to Paul and other apostles and prophets of the NT by direct
divine communications.

At the core of the purpose of biblical mystery therefore is the
unveiling in the NT dispensation, of a biblical truth that had always
been part of God’s plan but never before revealed in the past ages of
OT dispensation(Matt:13:11; Rom.11:25; 16:25; 1 Cor.2:7; 15:51;
Eph.3:3-5; 5:32; 6:19; Col.1:26,27; 2:2; 4:3; 1Thess.2:7; 1Tim.3:16;
Rev.1:20; 17:5,7). So, we can see here that Paul revealed to the
Corinthians that one generation of believers in Jesus the Messiah
shall receive a glorified eternal immortal resurrection body without
passage through the intermediate process of death, but by being
snatched or caught up or raptured to meet the Lord in the air(1 Cor.15:51; 1 Thess.4:16,17). He also revealed when that Rapture will
take place, “at the last trump, for the trumpet shall sound, and the
dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed”(v.52).
It therefore means that if we identify the last trump, we shall be
able to pinpoint in the eschatological timeline the exact occasion at
which the rapture will occur.

Posttribulationists identify the last trump with the seventh trumpet
of Rev.11:15-19. They also understand it to occur at the end of the
70th week of Daniel. They therefore conclude that since the rapture
must occur at the last trump, and the last trump occurs at the end of
the 70th seven of Daniel, it therefore follows that the rapture must
occur at the end of the 70th seven of Daniel. In other words, the
rapture must be posttribulational. Therefore the church must of
necessity go through the The Day Of The Lord judgment. The midtribulationists also identify the last trump with the seventh trumpet judgment. But unlike the postribulationists, midtribulationists like J. Oliver Buswell place the sounding of the seventh trumpet precisely in the middle of the 70th week of Daniel. They therefore conclude that the church shall be raptured precisely at the midpoint of the 70th seven of Daniel. Therefore the rapture will be midtribuational.
Pretribulationists do not make any strong appeal to the last trump in
relation to the timing of the rapture. The reason for their absence of
appeal to the last trump is obvious. If the rapture were to occur at
the last trump, Pretribulation rapturism have no way to exegetically associate a pre-seventieth week rapture with the last trump.

As we have pointed out earlier, a biblical mystery is the unveiling of
something that had always been part of God’s plan, but not previously
revealed in the OT, but revealed in the NT. The mystery which Apostle
Paul revealed to the Corinthians was that a generation of believers
shall receive a glorified eternal immortal resurrection body without
dying, i.e., through rapture, and that event will occur at the last
trump of God. It must also have been understood and accepted by the
Corinthians. The book of First Corinthians was written around 55-56 AD. The last of the NT books to be written was the Scroll of
Revelation. It was penned by the Apostle John, the revelator about 96
AD. That means there is a gap of forty years between the writing of
these two books of the NT. For Paul’s teaching on the mystery of
bodily resurrection to be meaningful to the Corinthians, they must
have understood the phrase, at the last trump, without the benefit of
the Scroll of Revelation which was written forty years later.

The trumpet played a significant role in the religious ritual of
Judaism and the children of Israel. It’s use began at the time of the
exodus from Egypt, during the wilderness wandering in the time of
Moses. It continues to the present day. When the Israeli army captured
Jerusalem from Jordan during the six day war, on June 7, 1967, after
nineteen years of Jordanian occupation, Rabbi Shlomo Goren, the then chief rabbi of the Israeli army blow the trumpet. He was symbolically calling world jewry to Jerusalem. Today as in Old Testament times, the trumpet is blown at the new moon(Num.10:10), on Israel’s feast days(Lev.25:9), to call a solemn assembly(Num.10:2,3), and to
prepare for war(Num.10:9). The Lord commanded Moses,

“Make thee two trumpets of silver; of a whole piece shall thou make
them, that thou mayest use them for the calling of the assembly, and
for the journeying of the camps. And when thou shall blow with them,
all the assembly shall assemble themselves to thee at the door of the
tabernacle of the congregation(Num.10:2,3).

During the wilderness wandering, the tabernacle was the dwelling place
of God amongst His people, Israel. To assemble at the tabernacle was
to assemble in God’s presence. Similarly, at the rapture, the trumpet
shall be blown to call the church to the presence of God in heaven.
Our brother Paul writing to the Corinthians said, ” 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 who 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(1 Thess.4:16,17). And once again, Our
brother Apostle Paul in that classic passage on the Rapture in First
Corinthians 15, wrote: “Behold I show a mystery: we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, At The Last Trump; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed”(1 Cor.15:51,52).

As we have pointed out earlier, apart from the calling of a solemn
assembly, the second major purpose of the sounding of the trumpet in
ancient Israel was to prepare for war. “And if you go to war in your
land against the enemy that oppresseth you, then ye shall blow an
alarm with the trumpets; and ye shall be remembered before the Lord
your God, and ye shall be saved from your enemies”( Num.10:9).

At the conquest of Jericho, the priests blew the trumpet(Josh.6:4-6). At the defeat of the oppressive Moabites, the judge Ehud blew the trumpet ( Jud.3:27-30). At the defeat of the Midianites Gideon and his small band of three hundred brave men blew the trumpet(Jug.6:34; 7:8-9,13-16,20,22). At the rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem by the returning exiles, Nehemiah instructed the Jews to blow the trumpet whenever under attack by their enemies. “And I said
unto the nobles, and to the rulers, and to the rest of the people, the
work is great and large, and we are separated upon the wall, and one
far from another. In whatever place you hear the sound of the trumpet,
resort ye there unto us. Our God shall fight for us”(Neh.4:19,20).

Because God is about to go to war with His enemies, who are also the
enemies of the children of God and Israel, the trumpet shall be blown
at the start of the Day Of The Lord. The prophet Joel wrote, “Blow
the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain. Let all
the inhabitants of the land tremble; for the Day Of The Lord cometh,
for it is near at hand”(Joel 2:1 ). The trumpet shall be blown shortly before the day of the Lord begins. The prophet Zephaniah proclaimed, “The great day of the Lord is near, it is near, and hasteneth greatly, even the voice of the day of the Lord; the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. That day is a day of wrath, a day of
trouble and distress, a day of waste and desolation, a day of darkness
and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, a day of the
trumpet and alarm against the fortified cities, and against the high
towers”(Zeph1:14-16).

The last trump therefore is the final climatic, consummative and
eschatological outpouring of the wrath of God. The Day Of The Lord
commences with the blowing of a trumpet. The final judgment of God
upon the living wicked earth-dwellers is called The Day Of The Lord.

We conclude therefore that the Corinthians understood that truth. The truth which our brother Paul communicated to them was that one
generation of believers in Christ Jesus shall receive glorified eternal immortal resurrection bodies without passage through the
intermediate process of death. And this shall occur through rapture.
And that rapture will occur at the last trump, the final climatic and
eschatological Day Of The Lord. The trumpet shall be blown, the dead
in Christ shall be raised incorruptible, the living believers
raptured, and then the wrath of God upon the living wicked
earth-dwellers shall begin to be poured out. “For God hath not
appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus
The Christ”(1Thess.5:9).

According to the Scroll of Revelation, God’s wrath is to be meted out
to the living wicked earth-dwellers at the breaking of the seventh
seal(Rev.6:17). The seventh seal involves no direct judgment of its
own, but opens into the seven trumpets. In like manner also, the
seventh trumpet involves no judgement of its own, but opens into the seven bowls. Therefore the seventh seal alone contains both the seven trumpets and the seven bowls. When the seventh seal is broken(Rev.8:1), the seven trumpets and the seven bowls will progressively unfold. They are part of a comprehensive whole. Collectively, the seven trumpets and the seven bowls are God’s Day Of The Lord wrath, the final climatic, comprehensive and consummative eschatological judgment. The last trump is the same as the seventh seal. The Rapture occurs at the last trump(1Cor.15:51-52). The rapture also occurs at the breaking of the seventh seal, immediately prior to the commencement of the outpouring of the wrath of God.

 

Avraham Shallom.

Published by midgdal

I believe the saints will go through the Great Tribulation before being evacuated from the Earth in the rapture.

2 thoughts on “The Last Trump

  1. My good God will continue to bless and keep you for us. If many of our preachers should be telling their congregation such a biblical truth, i believe many will be saved. Your messages keeps me at alart as I know you are saying the truth because I do study my scriptures. More of His grace to you. A million thanks. Shalom.

    Like

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