The Origin of the Pretribulation Rapture with Evidence

I have tried to be fair in this short article, attempting to avoid over-reaching the facts or drawing unwarranted conclusions. Yet, the evidence points to an inescapable conclusion. The pretribulation rapture view did not grow out of a diligent study of the Scriptures, or revival of early Christian doctrines. Rather, it was birthed from the womb of charismatic excesses, and developed by a preacher known for his heretical views of the person of Christ. Interestingly, Irving’s heresy was precisely the same heresy as many modern self-appointed prophets – that Jesus was a proto-type “Christian,” possessing a fallen sinful nature, and able to live godly only by the power of the indwelling Spirit. While Irving himself was already developing dispensationalist ideas in 1825, his pretribulationism was not the direct outgrowth of the implications of his dispensational leanings. Rather, the secret rapture of the wise virgins first appeared in the visions of Margaret MacDonald, followed by the prophecies among Irving’s congregation.