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I defined what is meant by pretrib “imminence.” I also noted what it does not mean. In addition, I cited first-hand noted pretrib statements on what imminence means:
John Nelson Darby: “No events, no earthly circumstances, intervene or modify the direct summons [to be raptured]….[T]here is no event, I repeat, between us and [being raptured to] heaven.”
Charles C. Ryrie: “An imminent event is one that is always ready to take place. Pretribs recognize that something may happen before an imminent event occurs, but they do not insist that anything must take place before it happens; otherwise, it would not be imminent” (emphasis his).
John Walvoord: “There is no teaching of any intervening event. The prospect of being taken to heaven at the coming of Christ is not qualified by description of any signs or prerequisite events.”
J. Dwight Pentecost: “To the church no such signs were ever given. The church was told to live in the light of the imminent coming of the Lord to translate them in His presence.…The doctrine of imminence forbids the participation of the church in any part of the seventieth week.”
John A. Sproule: “Christ can return for His Church at any moment and that no predicted event will intervene before that return” (emphasis his).
John MacArthur: “There are no other events that must occur on the prophetic calendar before Christ comes to meet us in the air. He could come at any moment.”
Robert L. Thomas: “By common consent imminence means that no predicted event will precede the coming of Christ.”
Thomas Ice: “[I]mminency means that the rapture could take place at any moment. While other events may take place before the rapture, no event must precede it. If prior events are required before the rapture, then the rapture could not be described as imminent” (emphasis his).
Renald Showers: “Other things may happen before Christ’s coming, but nothing else must happen before it takes place. If something else must happen before it can take place, then it is not imminent. The necessity of something else taking place first destroys the concept of the imminent coming of Christ.”
Mark Hitchcock: “First, imminency means that, from the human perspective, the Rapture could occur at any moment. Other events may take place before the Rapture, but no event must precede it.…Second, imminency means that the Rapture is a signless event.…Third, imminency means that the Rapture is certain to happen, but not necessarily soon” (emphasis his).
*For the bibliography of these quotes, see my forthcoming book responding to pretrib imminence.
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