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When is Jesus coming back?  When will the Rapture take place?

Christ Jesus will return to take those who are truly Christian to heaven with Him.  This will consist of all who make up the Christian Church; from the time of its beginning, to the time of His return. This is known as the resurrection and rapture.1

For seven years, we will be with our Lord in heaven.  At the end of this period, we will return to earth and Christ Jesus will set up His earthly kingdom; it will last for 1000 years.  At the end of this period, the redeemed of mankind will dwell upon the new earth, in the new heaven, with God for all eternity.  This is spoken of in the book of Revelation, chapters twenty one and twenty two.2  

As to when the resurrection and rapture will take place, there are three strong cases, found in the Bible, which suggests that it will be just prior to the seven year period of tribulation the earth and its inhabitants will experience.

The first case can be found in what Christ Jesus said to the Church in Philadelphia (in modern day Turkey): “Since you have kept My command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth.”This promise applies to all who make up the Christian Church.  Jesus rescues us from the coming wrath.4  

The second case can be found in what is written in (Revelation 4:4.)  In it, we see twenty four elders before the throne of God; they are dressed in white with "crowns" of gold on their heads.  Since only those who make up the Christian Church are promised "crowns" as rewards in heaven, these twenty four elders are representative of all who make up the Christian Church. This takes place just prior to the time of tribulation.

Finally, we do not see the Christian Church upon the earth for the entire time of tribulation.

 

Bible References:

1 (John 14:2-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17; 1 Corinthians 15:52)

2 (Revelation 19:11-15, 20:3; Matthew 24:30-31, 25:31-23)

3 (Revelation 3:10)

4 (1 Thessalonians 1:10)

5 (Revelation, chapters 4 through 19)

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