J. N. Darby82 influenced by Edward Irving83 and followed by C. I. Scofield84 and the early dispensationalists such as Lewis S. Chafer85 and Charles Ryrie86 held to this position. Ryrie describes pre-tribulationism as 'normative dispensational eschatology' and 'a regular feature of classic dispensational premillennialism'.87 Gerstner acknowledges that virtually all Dispensationalists are also Pre-tribulationists.88
Pre-tribulationist premillennialists believe that Jesus Christ will return at any moment to secretly 'rapture' the church before the Tribulation begins on earth. After seven years of tribulation, Christ will return with His saints to overcome the Antichrist and his forces and establish God's millennial Jewish kingdom on earth. One popular exponent of this position is Tim LaHaye.
Are you ready for Christ's return? Do you believe that at any instant you could find yourself hurtling through the skies to meet your Lord face to face? Are you confident that God will spare you and your loved ones the horrifying judgment of the Tribulation... Are you living your life as if each moment could be your last on earth?89
Lindsey is even more colourful in his depiction of what events on earth will be like,
There I was driving down the freeway and all of a sudden the place went crazy... cars going in all directions... and not one of them had a driver. I mean it was wild. I think we've got an invasion from outer space.90
At the late 19th Century Niagara Prophetic Conferences attended by men like D. L. Moody and C. I. Scofield, alternative views of the chronology of the rapture, already present in the increasingly sectarian Brethren circles, emerged there also and caused considerable internal division within dispensational circles. This came to be known as the 'Rapture-Rupture' 91
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