Aren't the gathering of "elect believers" in Matthew 24:31 and the harvesting of "ripe grapes" in Revelation 14:16 the same event?
I believe that Matthew 24:31 and Revelation 14:15 are parallel passages. In Matthew 24:30,31, Jesus said that the Son of Man will be coming on the CLOUDS of the sky, with power and great glory, and HE WILL SEND His angels to gather His elect believers. In Revelation 14:16, John showed that the Son of Man, Jesus, sitting on a CLOUD, will swing his sickle over the earth and the earth will be harvested. I believe the SICKLE that Jesus swings is symbolic of the fact that He will cause the harvest by ordering His angels to harvest the earth. Why do you not believe that they are the same event?
Matthew 24:31 says that Jesus will command His angels to gather the elect, whereas Revelation 14:15,16 says that an angel from heaven will tell the Son of Man to swing His sickle to gather a harvest. Furthermore, Revelation 14:17 says that an angel, other than the Son of Man, will have another sickle. According to 14:18,19, that angel will be commanded by yet a third angel to swing his sickle and gather the clusters of evil "grapes" to be thrown into the winepress of God's wrath.
In Revelation 14:15-19, two sickles are being swung. In both cases, angels (not the Son of Man, Jesus) will tell those with the two sickles (Jesus and another angel) to use them in two different harvests: the first for "stragglers" saved very late in the 70th Week, and the second for unsaved nonbelievers. These latter unbelieving rebels, even after countless obvious and unmistakable signs and warnings, will have refused God's last chance to acknowledge His Lordship and, thus, to be saved.
There is a clear distinction between the swinging of one sickle, specifically by Jesus (not by many angels), and the swinging of a second sickle, specifically by one single angel. Thus, it is a huge stretch to make the nebulous assumption (ascribing it to mere "symbolism") that, in Revelation 14:16, Jesus will be commanding His angels to gather the elect, which is the case in Matthew 24:31.
I am convinced that Matthew 24:31 (the primary Pre-wrath Rapture) and Revelation 14:16 (the secondary Post-tribulation Rapture) are two different events, separated probably by about a year in time: the day of vengeance. Most likely, this period of time will be the seventh year of the 70th Week.
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