After the Last Trumpet Sounds

Tim LaHaye’s videotape series on the Rapture holds a Major Segment of the Evangelical World in Riveted Fascination. What’s Infinitely More Fascinating are those Many Prophesied Events that Follow the Seventh (Last) Trumpet.


  © Rich Traver,  81520-1411,  7-17-04   [ 10 ] 

Leaving aside for the moment the obvious timing problems [1] which the Rapture Doctrine creates with Biblical Eschatological [2] Theology, a perception exists among many in the Christian Community that the Rapture is for the most part one of the final significant events of this age. After it, the Saints are taken to Heaven, the Earth becomes devoid of life and all human history ends there. “So shall we ever be with the Lord”, as it says in 1st Thess. 4:17.

Actually, nothing could be further from the Truth!

The Seventh (Last) Trumpet is not the final event in the Biblical narrative. The Rapture is not the last major thing to happen, nor is it but the first of a series of final events. Instead, when the Last “Trumpet will sound, and the Saints are raised incorruptible”, [3] we find ourselves at the pivotal point for the institution of a whole new world: One revealed in the Bible as the Millennial Kingdom, ruled by Christ Himself descended, with His Spirit-Born Saints. “Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. ...they shall be priests of God and of Christ and shall reign with Him a thousand years.”... “And have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the Earth.”[4] Most regard the return of Jesus Christ as being the end event in world history, overlooking one of the most well-documented themes, that of the One Thousand Year reign of Christ with His Saints on the Earth. This prophetic era has more written about it than any other. Few churchgoers know the incredible story of what is to be after Christ’s return. Rather than being an end-time event, the return of Christ is the transition between the present evil world and the world to come.

Most ministers delving into eschatological matters (relating to the Second Coming), tend to focus their messages on the events leading up to His return. Few ever go beyond to relate the events which are prophesied to follow. They often can’t! Because to do so would be to expose the true meaning of the Kingdom of God, which they would rather be left unmentioned, as it ‘up-ends’ significant portions of modern theology!

This article will presume the reader is generally familiar with the prophetic events leading up to the return of Jesus Christ at the end of this era. This will instead focus on the massive amount that is written concerning what will happen just after the Seventh Trumpet sounds. In order to not be too lengthy, we’ll consider just a representative number of scriptures on each topic area. There are actually many more than are to be presented here.

Opening the Scene

Revelation 1:1-19 sets the stage for the amazing events described in the book. “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to Him to show His servants - things which must shortly take placeā€¦ (by) His servant John… ‘Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come, …’Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, …’Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this.”

This book presents an extraordinary scenario, not just of the return of Christ, but even more, of the world that will be after it. Christ’s return is clearly shown to occur at the Seventh Trumpet, seen in its chronological time setting in Chapter 11. It is held by many Bible students that Christ’s coming will occur on the Annual Biblical Holyday known as the Day of Trumpets, which is the first day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar. In fact, this chapter contains a perfect general outline of those events which will occur on this Day of Trumpets.

The Seventh Trumpet Sounds

At the Seventh (Last) Trump, announcing Christ’s return, there is a formal declaration of His taking possession of all the Earth’s kingdoms forever. The response to that is the nations being angry, (v.15-18) followed by the application of God’s wrath. It wouldn’t be as appropriate for Him to pour out His wrath except that the earth’s peoples first reacted hatefully. This is also the time of the first resurrection of God’s true servants. (It has to be the 1st Resurrection, involving only the Saints, as Chapter 20:5 shows that there will be no other until the 1000 years are passed.) God then destroys those who destroy the earth.(v.18) Finally in this chapter, we see the Temple of God in Heaven opened, with the Ark of His Covenant exposed to view. We should consider which Ark this is? Is there an Ark of the New Covenant? Moses’ Ark disappeared after the time that Solomon’s Temple was looted and destroyed. There was no Ark in the Second Temple, the one built after Judah’s return from captivity in Babylon. There was no Ark in Herod’s Temple, when its veil was rent at Christ’s Death.

The World Will Be Different

The Temple being opened refers to it being “open” for business. The Ark seen in it is the real Ark, the one after which Moses patterned his replica. The business of the Heavenly Temple is its intercessory and redemptive activities. We see here the Temple being the focus of Spiritual Life in the New Kingdom of God from this time forward. The Ark and its contents are relevant to that. [5]

Dealing With the Beast Power

Certainly, a vital activity in His taking Power and beginning His Earthly Reign is to defeat the forces of the evil powers then in control of the Earth, both civil and religious. We see described rather graphically the defeat of these armies in the Middle East first, in Revelation 19:19-21 and Zech. 14:12-15.

That accomplished, He then turns to deal with that “Beast Power’s” home base, as it’s described in Revelation, chapters 17 and 18. That Beast Power is shown being endorsed and empowered by a collaboration of ‘ten kings’ who surrender their sovereignty into the Super State. They later come to hate that State which they created, and are instrumental in its destruction, as God wills they do. We are given an interesting glimpse into this in Rev. 17:16-17 and Daniel 7:12. After destroying the Beast, these kings remain, for ‘a season and a time’, but with their power taken away, which may indicate it being for a year and a quarter that they remain to facilitate the transitional stage while God’s new government gains full implementation.

Next He deals with another Beast, the religious beast, “the great whore”, the bastion of deception and spiritual pollution, called “Babylon”. We see the fall of this Great Harlot described in Revelation 18: verses 21 on thru 19:4

These accomplished, Christ will hold spectacular public events. He will capture the prominent personalities, the Beast and the False Prophet, and cast them into the Lake of Fire (Rev. 19:20). He'll also hold a public execution of His enemies. In His own words,…"But bring here those enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, and slay them before me." (Luke 19:27)

Finally, Satan himself is banned from contact with society, but just for 1000 years! (Re. 20:1-3) Does religion understand the reason for this? Under what justification is he again re-exposed to humanity?

The New Millennial Kingdom

With all the forces of evil dealt with, God is now able to formally establish His Millennial Kingdom with a reorganized society. Multiple-millions will have physically survived the Great Tribulation period, living over into this new millennium. This is a period of time few denominations can theologically or even logically explain. Ezekiel 5:12-13 offers a clue to the survival rate. One third of the earth’s population, is prophesied to survive. One third of the earth’s population could exceed a billion. If this possibly refers to just the dispersed northern kingdom of Israel[6] , it would be a number even larger, presuming the world’s population isn’t decimated as heavily as is Israel’s alone is.

(At the end of the thousand years, a massive number of people will be resurrected physically, but this is getting ahead of the story.[7] )

In Zechariah 14:20-21, a continuing narrative after the destruction of the Beast’s armies, as seen in the first part of the chapter, we are shown massive celebrations, with delegates from all of the earth’s families being called and represented at the new World Capitol: Jerusalem.

The Marriage Supper of Christ and His Bride (the Resurrected Saints) is described in Revelation 19: verses 7-9

The two houses of Israel are to be re-unified into a single nation once again for the first time since just after the reign of King Solomon. Ezekiel 37:15-24

King David is to be resurrected as King of the re-unified Israel. Jeremiah 30:9 Ezekiel 37:24

The Twelve Apostles are to rule each of the twelve tribes of Israel, under King David. This in Christ’s own words: Luke 22:30 and Matthew 19:28. The Spirit-Born resurrected Immortal Saints are to rule Earth with Christ. Revelation 20:4-6 & 2:26.

At this juncture, it might be particularly interesting and apropos to consider the identity of the 144,000 and the Innumerable Multitudes, mentioned in Revelation 7 and 14.[8] This matter is presented in its own separate article.

The New Religious Order

At the onset of the Kingdom of God, a world proclamation is made. Three Angels will make progressive announcements. First, the Everlasting Gospel is proclaimed, commanding worship of the Creator only, then the fall of Modern Babylon is announced, followed by a Third Angel, uttering an absolute prohibition against the former religious system and its practices. Revelation 14:6-11

God’s Sabbaths, and Holydays are described in Colossians 2:17 as a ‘shadow of things to come’. With many, this wording is seen as justifying their disregard. In fact, if we understand the intent of the statement, that these are ‘outlines of future events’, to use more modern language, we gain a better perspective: One that the new world will be introduced to. Foremost, is the Holyday Event known as the Feast of Tabernacles. All nations will be compelled to be represented in Jerusalem annually to keep this Holy Occasion. Those who today understand the meaning of the Feast of Tabernacles realize that this is in fact the very time in world history that these Fall Holy Days represent. Zech. 14: 16-19. “And it shall come to pass that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of Hosts and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles.” These who ‘came against Jerusalem’ are obviously unconverted and are here still physical. God requires attendance!

The world will become oriented to a new calendar, one which identifies God’s Holydays. The Spring Season, which represent the process of personal salvation, and the Fall Days, which illustrate how God will project the opportunity for salvation to all who live and who have ever lived!

Century Old Children?

The survivors of the Tribulation and their descendants live and repopulate the earth during the 1000 years. These physical people will be co-ruled over by God’s Immortal Saints. Isaiah 65:21-23. These people are described as living the better part of a century in verse 20. (Whether that’s an upper limit or an average remains speculation.) The ‘child’ (of God) and the ‘sinner’ both die a physical death at full age. The contextual placement in Revelation 14:13 illustrates the same thing. This passage refers to that point in time AFTER God’s Kingdom is set-up: after the Three Angels utter their pronouncements, and the new religious order is established. The situation is addressed as to what happens to the people living in that era. It says, “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on, …that they may rest from their labors, and their works follow them.” The ‘from now on’ statement refers to that point in time of this narrative and onward! The Book of Life is ‘opened’ again for the purpose of adding new names! (Rev. 20:12) This begins at the onset of the Millennium, it ends possibly up to eleven hundred years later.

(After the 1000 years there is another resurrection. (Rev. 20:5) These pre-millennial dead will be raised up to stand in the Great White Throne Judgment, and be afforded opportunity for inclusion in-to God’s Family. The Great White Throne extends the opportunity era on beyond the millennium, but to those pre-millennial dead only who were never called (Rev.20:11-12).(The seventh and last annual Holyday foreshadows this very era.) This is not a date, but rather an era in which ‘the Books are opened’ to those who died, never having had an opportunity for salvation. The Bible is to be opened to their understanding after they are raised physical,[9] during that century, plus or minus, that follows it, as Isa. 65: 20 mentions. The Book of Life remains open beyond the millennial age for the addition of their names as well.)

After the millennium, but before the Last Great Day, Satan will be released from restraint briefly. Who in traditional religion is able to rationally explain this occurrence? His rampage is allowed to continue for just a ‘short time’, and then he is cast into the Lake of Fire. Rev. 20:3, 10 & 7:9)

The Second Harvest of Souls

After the end of the millennial age and its century grace period runs out, an all-inclusive resurrection will occur, raising-up all who ever lived, (excepting only those raised in the 1st Resurrection just before the 1000 years) together for final sentencing. In His own words, Christ said, “When the Son of Man comes in His Glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the Throne of His Glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides sheep from goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, Come you blessed of My Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:” (Mt.25:31-46)

These are then judged (sentenced)[10] based on how they do with the opportunity they are then afforded. People of all nations, all who have ever lived, the good and bad together (unlike the 1st Resurrection which involved Saints only) will be separated and consigned to their conduct-appropriate rewards.

The Lake of Fire

A disturbing narrative is found in 2nd Peter 3:12-13. It relates that this present world will be consumed by Fire! This phenomenon is further enhanced by references in the Book of Revelation. The Beast and False Prophet are cast into the Lake of Fire at the beginning of the millennial age.[11] Satan is cast there after his recapture, following his post-millennial escapade.[12] But, most curious is that both Death and the Grave are cast into the Lake of Fire! “Then Death and Hades were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second Death.” (Rev. 20:14) But how can there be no more Death? It HAS TO BE that there are no more physical human beings left alive from this point onward that have not been either converted to Spirit existence or consumed utterly by fire. Death, and the grave needed to hold those dead, will no longer be necessary. There will not be anyone left capable of dying. THIS is the true and final end of this age!

Ain't Over When It's Over!

Beyond this point in history, there is to be yet another Glorious Age. Revelation chapter 21 and onward describes a whole new world, cleansed totally of any human vestige. We see a totally New Earth re-created. With this previous material understood, we can now comprehend that there is to be something out beyond the human redemptive eras.

“And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the Holy City, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying; and there shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” (Re.21:1-4) This is obviously a later era than the millennial age, as that one exists prior to death being abolished.

There is to be another Glorious Universe Headquarters, one in which even God the Father leaves heaven to dwell with His and Christ’s Immortal Saints. In several places we see evidence of a most extraordinary event. After Christ has completed His rule, and conquered every ’enemy factor’, His last conquest being the institution of Death[13] , He will surrender-up the Kingdom to the Father.

King David's ancient prophecy says, “The LORD (YHVH) says unto my Lord (Adonai), ‘Sit at my right hand, Till I make your enemies your footstool’[14] “ It also says in 1st Corinthians 15:24-25, “Then comes the end, when He delivers the Kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet.”

THE Ultimate Future

There IS a world even beyond the millennial age! We are given a veiled glimpse in the statement of Isaiah 9, verse 7, “Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His Kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever.” God’s Kingdom and Spiritual Family are Eternal Institutions.

We tend to regard the prophecy made to Abram on the first of those two nights in Genesis 15, which ultimately became known as Passover night,[15] as referring to the stars as just a numerical quantity. Passages such as Daniel 12:3 leave us to speculate that it might be more literal than originally thought. “Those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the firmament, and those who turn many to righteousness like the stars for ever and ever.”

Are there galaxies to be populated? Are we to be sprinkled out into the universe, with Earth being the Universe Headquarters? Are we going to go where man could never go? God the Father will descend here, after all, as Paul plainly states!

We can be certain at least, of God the Father (YHVH) coming down to earth, joining His Son, receiving the Kingdom from Him and living and ruling over His Family in its fullness. This fact, as well as much of the above material, though Biblical, is conspicuously absent from most traditional ‘Christian Theologies’ Why?

God has given us an incomparable glimpse out into the future. Our being ‘caught-up together to meet Him in the air’ will prove the lesser thrill!

Though, sadly, being in possession of but a ‘little strength’, the Church in the end-time is exhorted to hold fast to its commission and respond to any and all ‘open doors’ afforded to it. (Rev. 3:8)  The safer bet by far is to be found ‘so doing’!                     




[1]  Associating the Rapture with the Last Trump, as presented in 1 Corinthians 15:52, places the event AFTER the Great Tribulation, rather than before it! Essential to the theory is its occurring before the 42 month (some say 7 year) tribulation period. The seventh (Last) Trump of Revelation 11:15-18 is the occasion of the First Resurrection. (Re.20:6) The Rapture is presented as being the occasion of the First Resurrection also. This anomaly places several (seven) Trumpets after the “Last” Trump, and another Resurrection occurring before the First Resurrection! The Saints are in it described as being taken to heaven for protection before the Tribulation, yet in 1st Thessalonians 4:15-16 we see the dead in Christ rising up from their graves to meet the returning Lord in the air at His Second Coming AFTER the Tribulation. Such things happen when a prophetic event is misplaced in time. The Rapture Theory obviously has serious problems when reconsidered in the light of clear Scriptures!

[2]  Eschatology: The study of end-time events, particularly those events having to do with the Second Coming of Christ.

[3]   1 Corinthians 15:52

[4]  Admitted publicly by pastor general Joe Tkach, Jr. finally on a nationally televised broadcast of The 700 Club.

[5]  We are told that it contains Manna, Aaron’s staff, and the tablets of the Ten Commandments. See Hebrews 9:4

[6]  These peoples include nations in addition to the Jewish race. See Steven Collins’ books on The Lost Ten Tribes, and the US and Britain in Prophesy publication as offered by the United Church of God and others.

[7]  See my articles on The Resurrections from the Dead and The Rejected Resurrection for further explanation of this fascinating fundamental Biblical topic.

[8]  These two groups identities have confounded theologians for centuries. A harmonization of the two chapters that refer to them is revealing. Request the article on the subject.

[9]  See my article on The Rejected Resurrection. Christ Himself made frequent reference to a physical resurrection in which peoples of various ages would be raised together in physical form.

[10]  It is important to realize that the Biblical word "Judged" has an evaluative application and a sentencing application. One involves the accumulation of evidence, the other pronounces sentence based on one's guilt or innocence. Consider 1Peter 4:17 as an example of its evaluative application.

[11]  Revelation 19:20

[12]  Revelation 20:10

[13]  1st Corinthians 15:25-26

[14]  Christ often pressed this issue with the Jews, who reacted badly, even murderously! Psalm 110:1 & Mk 14:62, Ac.7:56 Request my article Who Is the Ancient of Days?, and The 134 Emendations for further comments on this passage.

[15]  The article The Abrahamic Covenant reveals startling things regarding this important event. (Galatians 3:29)