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The Rapture Trap: A Catholic Response to "End Times" Fever [Paperback]

By Paul Thigpen (Author) & Thomas Paul Thigpen (Author)
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Item description for The Rapture Trap: A Catholic Response to "End Times" Fever by Paul Thigpen & Thomas Paul Thigpen...

You hear it everywhere these days: the claim that Jesus Christ is coming back to earth not once, but twice. He's coming in secret to "rapture" Christians from the earth - enabling them to escape the terrible tribulations prophesied in the Bible for the earth's last days.

Publishers Description
Paul thigpen, Ph.D., lays our in clear, simple terms the biblical foundations of Catholic teaching on the age. Drawing from Scripture and Tradition, The Rapture Trap reveals the shortcomings of the "rapture" doctrine and the larger tangle of unfounded religious teachings to which it's tied.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Ascension Press
Pages   100
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.66" Width: 5.64" Height: 0.75"
Weight:   0.75 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 2002
Publisher   Ascension Press
Edition  Rev  
ISBN  0965922820  
ISBN13  9780965922821  

Availability  8 units.
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More About Paul Thigpen & Thomas Paul Thigpen

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Paul Thigpen, Ph.D., is the editor of TAN Books and the best-selling author, co-author or compiler of forty-three titles. Among his most popular books are "Manual for Spiritual Warfare, The Burden: A Warning of Things to Come," and "The Rapture Trap: A Catholic Response to "End Times" Fever." A convert to the Catholic faith, Paul has served the Church as an award-winning journalist, historian, apologist, catechist, and member of the National Advisory Council of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. His work has been circulated worldwide and translated into twelve languages.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Catholic
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Eschatology
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > General

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Church Life > Roman Catholic

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Reviews - What do customers think about The Rapture Trap: A Catholic Response to "End Times" Fever?

This is it!  Oct 22, 2007
A good explanation of dispensationalism and the end times. A must read for anyone interested in this topic.
Not the easiest read, but worth the effort  Jun 20, 2007
The only star missing here is because of one of the book's strengths, and that is due to its thorough historical and Scriptural exegesis - which makes it a little verbose and tough to digest at times.

Not that it's a bad thing - the concepts discussed are highly complex, from eschatological expectations throughout history to symbolism in 1st Century literature, both of which are deeply germane to the topic and support the differences in understanding that arise among 21st century readers from 1st century communications.

This is an effective and thorough undertaking of Rapture, one of the many "Traditions" adhered to by evangelicals.
Breaking the Trap  Jul 1, 2006
The Left Behind phenomenon has finally awoken many churches how poorly they have been explaining their beliefs on the end times. A welcome change has been the large number of books appearing recently from the Catholic, Orthodox, and Reformational traditions to combat this deficiency. Paul Thigpen adds his contribution to this growing counter to the errors of dispensationalism with The Rapture Trap - a book warning Catholics of the dangers of the theological errors and anti-Catholic polemic at the root of the movement.

Thingpen addresses his book to Catholics. He is a staunch believer in the claims of the Catholic Church and makes no pretense of partiality. Although he would no doubt approve of Protestants reading his book and coming to see his view as correct, there is little in the way of an olive branch provided. The book ends up having two major themes - the errors of rapture theology and the necessity of the role of the Roman magaisterium in maintaining correct beliefs - and on the book should be judged on these two points.

After an initial discussion of the Left Behind premise, Thigpen moves to examining the purpose of the first and second comings of Christ and the age of the Church between them. Unlike many "prophecy experts" who try to correlate end times prophecies to current events, Thigpen seeks to first understand the overall economy of salvation before approaching the specific events. The role of the Sacraments in the eschatological vision - overlooked in much of Protestantism - is explained from the Catholic perspective. Only after formulating a framework for understanding the overall message does he them turn to particular passages. Here he does not give an extended exegesis but a general understanding of how the passages relate to endtimes events and how the dispensational view falls far short in this regard.

Thigpen then turns to an overview of the development of eschatology within the Church. In this brief synopsis, he quotes from various Church Fathers and demonstrates the late development of the rapture doctrine. He then goes on to expose the anti-Catholic nature of the Rapture and argues for the importance of the Roman Magisterium in preserving true doctrine. This is followed by a sequence of events that is consistent with official Catholic teaching on the end times.

Thigpen closes with a discussion on the thorny issue of private revelation. Focusing on a number of noted private revelations, he argues that Catholics must - as in all matters - follow the lead of the Magiserium in judging the faithfulness of these revelations to Catholic teaching. Here, as throughout the book, the Tradition of the Catholic Church is taken as the sure guide to correct Biblical interpretation.

While assuning Catholic teaching is correct should hardly be surprising in a book written by a Catholic for other Catholics, there is a sense of Roman triumphalism that is the only unsatisfying aspect of the book. Thigpen ignores the fact that most non-Catholic views of eschatology throughout history are not that different than the views held by Catholics. The major figures of the Reformation were largely amillennialist as are the Orthodox Churches. The dispensational view is a byproduct of how Christianity developed in America and cannot be generalized to Protestantism elsewhere. Furthermore, Catholics have been as prone to strange endtimes delusions as anyone else - as the apocalyptic tone of many Marian apparitions can attest.

Aside from the sometimes overdone Catholic cheerleading, Thigpen presents a strong case against the Rapture. For faithful Catholics reading the book, he will likely succeed in exposing the weaknesses of dispensational eschatology and give a solid understanding of the Catholic view. For this and not the sometimes caustic approach to other Christian traditions, The Rapture Trap is recommended.
An Evangelical Response To Dr. Paul Thigpen's Book, The Rapture Trap  Apr 29, 2006
An Evangelical Response To, Dr. Paul Thigpen's Book, The Rapture Trap:

My own personal journey of faith has led me into the very opposite direction as Dr. Thigpen's. I was raised in a Roman Catholic family, and while making my Conformation back in the early 80's, a sweet nun asked that I purchase a Bible and read it. I did start reading the Scriptures from that point on, and The Holy Spirit gripped me as I started reading The Book of Revelation. "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John, ....:Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near. - Revelation 1:1; 3. I remember reading and calling upon The Spirit of God to speak to me. And I was greatly shaken by what I read! I began to have MANY questions about faith, The Church, God, and life. If God is perfect love, why so much suffering and death in the world? How can He kill all the fish in the sea by His future judgements, if He is good? Why are there so many different churches? God, do I truly "know" You? I never stopped reading The Holy Scriptures from that point on, and shortly thereafter I surrendered, in simple childlike faith, my life to Christ. It was then that I began to have a deep hunger to know God more, and to learn His Word, and fellowship with Christians who had the same longings and desires that I had. That was back in the early 80's. Now over 20 years later, I am station manger and missionary for Grace Walk Radio / Ministries My views on prophecy are very simple, and I'll now get right to the point on why I can not disagree more strongly with Dr. Thigpen and his book:

When Jesus came during His first Advent / Coming, He literally fulfilled 362 major Messianic prophecies. (Here is a WONDERFUL webpage to see an easy to read chart of many of those specific fulfilled prophecies: ).

And as Jesus literally fulfilled 362 major prophecies in His First Advent, there are thousands of prophecies in The Bible relating to the end times; why not be consistent and receive these end time Biblical prophecies the same way??? Dr. Thigpen mentions often about "The Magisterium" of The Church." That is it equal to Scripture on Authority, and how God speaks to leaders of The Roman Church....that one is called to accept these teachings of faith & The Church, otherwise one falls into grievous sin and rebellion against authority. I believe that this is fear and control issue that closes off the wondrous, miraculous role of The Blessed Holy Spirit, as He promises to lead and guide those who follow Jesus, unto all truth (The Gospel of St. John). It is through childlike faith that one enters the kingdom of heaven... which is open to all who call upon The Name of The Lord. Thigpen is correct in saying that were/are many false movements in the protestant church world; however he falls short in not seeing that The Holy Spirit speaks to ANYONE who will call upon The Lord in simple childlike faith. Finally, Dr. Thigpen incorrectly states in his book that the teaching of The Rapture has been fairly recent. This too is false: Just take the time and see what The Holy Scriptures reveal on this special event: (See Isaiah 26:19 - :21; 1 Corinthians 15:50 - :58; 1 Thessalonians 4:18 - :18; 2 Thessalonians 2:1 - :12; & Revelation 3:10). MOST who believe that the many end time prophecies in The Word of God are going to soon be literally fulfilled realize that for one: Matthew 24 is NOT a chapter dealing with The Rapture (this is key when studying the end times); and two: when embraced with simple childlike faith and not closed to the common person though some man made authority, The teaching ministry of The Holy Spirit gives a clear witness of our Lord's Coming for His Church (The Rapture) before the coming 7 year tribulation: and our Lord's literal Return to Rule on earth for 1000 years of rigteouness with His saints (all true believers). One does not need to be made to fear, taking God at His Word. The Holy Spirit WILL reveal Jesus, and the truth of His Word to ANYONE who will call upon Him... Catholic or otherwise!

Call to ME and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things which you know not. - Jeremiah 33:3
Not Only Catholics  Nov 15, 2005
I think that all Christians should give this book a chance. It is always good to know all the different views, and that doesn't mean you have to agree with what he is saying. I personally feel that the belief in pre-tribulation rapture is a false hope. People are hoping that Jesus will simply sweep them up and spare them the devastation of the tribulation, but if you know the trends of the Bible it's quite obvious that this is not so. People sin, God punishes, and BOTH BELIEVERS AND NON-BELIEVERS must deal with God's wrath. Such is the tribulation, and hence it is CALLED the tribulation. It is the final test of man's faith in God. Jesus had faith in God, BUT he was not spared the suffrage of the cross. Job believed, YET still he had to suffer a loss. What should happen if those Christians who believe in pre-tribulation rapture are not called upon by Jesus BEFORE the tribulation? Will they lose their faith because of that? Will they have animosity towards Jesus/God for not "protecting" them from the antichrist and tribulation? Hopefully these questions inspire one to think on how the pre-tribulation rapture theory is a false hope.

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