Before examining these ideas, let us look at one good example of a leading Baptist Mason who was very useful in spreading these ideas from the pulpit and radio. His name is Rufus McKinley Dodrill. People in Indianapolis will remember him for several things. Some remember there was a bad spirit in his large Broadway church. After his death his large Broadway Church practically vanished.(This is where the importance of the long range consequences of our actions can be seen.) Others will remember how he spoke over the radio for 37 years, much of it om prophecy. Others will remember how most of the Baptist churches in that area were spin-offs from Dodrill's Broadway Baptist Church. Dodrill wrote about the Secret Rapture in his book Keep Your Eye on the Sky The Key to Prophecy which was published in 1972. He provides a big chart of his Dispensational Premillenial overview of history in the book's back. On page 31 he states, "When Billy Graham will have finished his last evangelistic campaign, he will have preached the Gospel to every nation."56
A little further on p. 42 one reads that he is fully aware many scriptures contradict his Secret Rapture theory. "As I have studied prophecy over the years I was struck by apparent contradictions...How could Jesus come as a thief in the night and yet at the same time on the clouds of great glory and every eye see him?" He finds the key to this contradiction (which to him proves an invisible rapture) is that a certain week in Daniel's prophecy "was postponed till the end of the Church Age." He sees the figure of 144,000 as literal Jewish evangelists and that the Jewish Kingdom of David will be restored. That the man was a Mason, doesn't mean his doctrines are necessarily wrong. But it is important for Christian to go back and unravel who has been teaching us some of these doctrines and where they originated. It is especially critical to our study of the One-World-Religion because the Secret Pre-Trib rapture theory has almost wiped out Christian oppostition to the One-World-Power. Upset Christians have confronted this Author, "Why are you bothering about this, we are going to be raptured. God is not going to allow us to suffer."
ARE THESE IDEAS BIBLICAL?
The Pre-Trib rapture theory has been discredited by Theologians, and has fallen into disrepute in recent years with Bible scholars. Even so, it comes as a shock to many to hear that the teaching is not in the Bible. (This isn't to say that no one claims it comes from the Bible. As this is a historical expose, not a doctrinal dissertation, the reader is encouraged to examine the Secret Rapture and why it is not Biblical from other sources.)
The Encyclopedia of American Religions by J. Gordon Melton states that the Rapture idea started with Margaret McDonald in 1830.
For 18 centuries, Christians had believed in what is called today the Post-Trib Rapture—that is that when Christ returned they would be caught up with him. This is what 1 Thes 4:13-18 clearly indicates. However, several Protestant groups in Ireland, Scotland and England with Jesuit ties began preaching a secret Rapture after Margaret's visions.
A confluence of two sources, a Scottish lady Margaret McDonald with her visions, and the Irvingites, helped influence Darby to adopt the Rapture theory. The first source was a channeler or spirit medium, and the second source, the Irvingites, received their teaching from a "Rabbi Ben Ezra" which was the pen-name of a Jesuit Emanual Lacunza (pronounced Lacuntha)(1731-1801) of Spanish heritage.
Margaret McDonald lived near Glasgow, Scotland at Port Glasgow. A brilliant Englishman Dr. Robert Norton was an actual witness of what Margaret had spoken during her visions, and had also received her own written accounts of everything. Her first vision was Feb. 1, 1830. Her visions that the Christians would be raptured seperately before Christ would return came in the spring of 1830. Norton cleared the air with his rare book The Restoration of Apostles and Prophets; In the Catholic Apostolic Church in 1861. This book tells the story of how Margaret's visions started the Rapture belief.
The Irishman John Darby, Robert Norton, and a number of Irvingites, and many others came to Margaret's house to hear her visions. Edward Irving (an ex-Scottish Presbyterian) wrote in a letter "The substance of Mary Campbell's and Margaret Macdonald's visions or revelations, given in their papers, carry to me a spiritual conviction and a spiritual reproof which I cannot express."
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