1st Rapture, the Martyred, and Firstfruits


"Rest ye a little while" from Rev. 6.11 and quoted in page 78 of Come, Lord Jesus, are God's consoling word to those martyrs under the altar who offered themselves as a burnt-offering in the past twenty centuries. They then become raptured at first rapture (7.9), and after being first raptured, they are to wait for the completion of the resurrection at the 7th trumpet until the fullness of their brethren have come in, who will be martyred during Tribulation one by one and raptured separately three and a half days after they are martyred.


The plea by them under the altar in 6.11, "how long, O Lord", implies a long and protracted persecution. While they will be received at 1st rapture, they shall wait, which proves the whole church, therefore, can not all be raptured at once. This is an explanation of the martyrd in relation to rapture. The partial rapture proof by Watchman Nee shows us whom will be raptured when. Page 78 of "Come, Lord Jesus" is most special because it shows us in the Word how very special God treats the martyred in Christ.


Note very carefully, nothing is said about all overcomers being raptured at first rapture in the 5th seal, only the martyred, and elsewhere in the Scriptures we find the living overcomers shall be raptured before the first trumpet as well (see section V in the link in this paragraph for the proof). If you read Revelation 6 carefully and page 78 of "Come, Lord Jesus", this is the conclusion you would come to, as Watchman Nee did prove. I for one can not disagree.


Should we not be humble, and not overassume anything? If you can not find a verse in the Bible that all overcomers are raptured at first raptured, then let it go. Watchman Nee writes, "The Bible seems to imply that at the first rapture there is no resurrection" (p.78). What seems to be the case is not the case at all! "That which God sees first is the burnt-offering;" adding further, "'them that had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus, and for the word of God' (they are now resurrected) - here it is a reference to those people as are found mentioned in 6.11...and 'such as worshipped not the beast, neither his image'—this is referring to those fellow-servants and their brethren mentioned in 6.11 (they also are resurrected)".


Christ speaks to each of the 7 churches in Rev. 2 and 3 to overcome in the church. There are a select few who will be given thrones to sit on (Rev. 3.21) to reign with Christ during the millennial kingdom as reward. Christ is not saying those in the church that have not overcome will not be saved for all Christians overcome, either by his hand of discipline or willingly while still in a body of flesh and blood by the grace of God.


When Watchman Nee says on page 78, ALL the martyrs are "now resurrected" at the fifth seal, just before the 6th seal, how can they be resurrected by the 5th seal if the martyrs of Tribulation have not yet been completed? Or how can Nee say those who go through the Tribulation are "also resurrected"?


The explanation is found in those at 7.9 ("the multitude" before the throne) which include the martyrs, as they die through the Tribulation, and raptured a few days after their death, just like the Two Witnesses are raised after 3.5 days. This is much different than the rapture at 1st rapture or the rapture at 7th trumpet. Those whom are martyred during the Tribulation are raptured like Jesus Christ was, after 3 days. There is some meaning that Jesus was resurrected after 3 days, but martyrs will be resurrected after 3.5 days. Since men are not God and are beings of creation, represented by the number 4, martyrs come closest to Christ and are resurrected 3.5 days after they go to Hades in timeless unawares. Praise the Lord!


Watchman Nee is speaking of the "now" because at some point between the fifth and the seventh seal, they are raptured, and each martyr during Tribulation is raptured which occurs in the immediate context of what is happening at this time.


Therefore, there is a special acknowledgement by God for the martyrs, and the living overcomers and 144,000 firstfruits, at the time at first rapture, are needed before the throne to fight with Michael to cast Satan out of 2nd heaven. Though Satan is not cast out of heaven in the first 42 set of thirty day months of the last week, which is commensurate with beginning of Christ's return (parousia), he shall be cast down by the start of the second half of the Tribulation, called the Great Tribulation. The entire 84 months is considered the consummation of this age.


To repeat, as each martyr during Tribulation is martyred, he is quickly resurrected and raptured to participate and to continue that war from heaven during Tribulation. Just like Paul, they were a living sacrifice, though Paul was not martyred to death. Who is better qualified than these?


The war in heaven starts as soon as the man-child (12.5) is raptured (7.9), between the 6th and 7th seals in the interjection between chapter 6 and chapter 8 (and we see the beginning effects on earth in the 6th seal) which precedes the 7th seal (8.1) that opens up the 7 trumpets of Tribulation. The war in heaven takes three and a half years before Satan is finally cast out of heaven (9.1), and a third of his angels with him, at which point he is given the key at the first woe, the beginning of the Great Tribulation, to release the Antichrist (the 8th) from the abyss.


In all of this who is noted as very special to the Lord at first rapture besides the 144,000 firstfruits? It is none than the martyrs at the fifth seal who are given "white robes" (6.11). I struggled with this matter for many months, then it finally sunk in by the grace of God. I finally realized what Watchman Nee was saying on page 78 of "Come, Lord Jesus". I was impressed, that what my conscience took many months to finally accept, Nee expressed very simply. I was embarrassed that I could not hear sooner. He even said one of the easiest books of the Bible to discern was the book of Revelation. I see that now myself.


Incidentally, it is God's desire that most overcomers be raptured at the last trumpet as comfort to non-overcomers in Abraham's bosom (Hades or Sheol) to be resurrected together. Can you sense this as you read 1 Thess. 4.15-17?


The chronological timing of events are given in even more detail!



Troy Brooks