Well, I almost made it past rapture-pa-looza without commenting. I am going to be short and sweet here. I have no desire to be controversial on this topic. Many of my Christian and Non-Christian friends have asked me about the prediction that the "rapture" was coming today.
My opinion was that it would not happen today primarily because I believe it will never happen. I don't believe in the rapture. It is ok if you do. I can see how some Christians interpret a few Biblical passages in a such a way to get there. I'm just saying that I am not one of them.
I do believe in some down-right unbelievable things: physical resurrection after death, a second physical returning of Jesus to earth, a future "New Heaven and New Earth," etc. I am not denying the rapture because it appears on the surface to be unrealistic and a little wacky. I am denying it because I don't believe it is mentioned the Bible as a futuristic prophecy.
Instead of writing why I believe this, I will include a few links below to some New Testament scholars who have influenced my thinking on how to interpret the disputed passages, particularly I Thessalonians 4:13-18.
We need not dread the end of the world. Our faith teaches that the world will be redeemed and beautiful someday through the reign of God in Jesus. That's our future. That is the truth that spurs us to endure the current "tribulations" that some of us are currently suffering. The world isn't going to end so much as it is waiting to begin. That's the point, IMHO (as the kids say).
So, read these links if you want to know more. (I have some fear of the comments to follow this post. I hope no uncivilized arguments ensue. I won't be commenting. If you know me personally we can talk about it next time you see me...)
*I am hoping listing Jim Zartman with Greg Boyd and N.T. Wright will not go to his head.
**If I am wrong about this I will issue an apology to those of you who believe mid-flight. I promise.