A Thief in the Night
Most pastors associate the phrase 'a Thief in the Night' with the Rapture. But, is that really true? The words 'thief' and 'night' only occur in these two verses.
1 Thessalonians 5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
2 Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
Here are some points to consider:
1) A thief doesn't intentionally announce his presence with a shout and a loud trumpet.
2) Nobody is going to say peace and safety during the Great Tribulation.
3) The two witnesses are killed and then they give gifts... like... peace and safety!
4) The earth isn't going to be burned up at the rapture of the resurrected.
The first 6 angels pour out their vials and THEN this verse takes place...
Revelation 16:15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.
AFTER this... after everything is said and done the earth is then burned up and a new heaven and a new earth are created.
In other words... maybe 'a thief in the night' applies to the 3rd and 4th coming of Jesus... not the 2nd. Jesus will come at the rapture of the resurrected. Jesus will come back for Armageddon. Then, Jesus will come back one last time for Gog and Magog.
Bonus thought: Most of the saints raptured at the resurrection will be ones who died, went to heaven and have lived in heaven WITHOUT a body for hundreds of years.
Wonder what it's like to live without a body for hundreds of years. Can you see without eyes and a body? Do you eat if you don't have a body? Is living as a soul and a spirit more limiting than living in a body?
Consider one more thing. Daniel and Revelation has a lot of information and detail concerning Daniel's 70th week.
What detail... what information is there concerning the millennium? Oh, hey guys... remember that rapture thing that happened several hundred years ago? Yeah. Does anybody know when that time is up?
That is why I think 'a thief in the night' (also) applies to the millennium. After a couple hundred years people are going to talk about the rapture like we talk about the crucifixion... something that happened a long time ago.