We Do Not Know the Day

or the hour of Christ’s return at the Rapture. But one day billions of people will suddenly vanish from the face of the earth. Are you ready?

- Dr. David Jeremiah

Chaos on Earth

Chaos on Earth

Imagine a Moment coming soon to our planet that will change everything and everyone forever. Imagine ambivalent, unaware people conducting their business, scurrying around, trying to make sense of their lives. Depending on where you look on our globe, the scene may be very different, yet in many ways it's the same.

In the United States, in China, in Argentina, in Indonesia, in Kazakhstan.

People loving, laboring, longing.

All over the world that day, billions will be eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, celebrating birthdays, battling sickness, digging graves. People will be getting up or going to bed, working or playing, enjoying their pleasures or indulging their vices.

I try to imagine these things happening all over the world, from the rising of the sun to the place where it sets. What will people think when the Moment comes?

I wonder what the headlines will be on the morning of that day. Wars and rumors of war. Earthquakes. Famines. Loud voices deceiving many. New laws. Old lies. New dilemmas. Nation rising against nation, kingdom against kingdom. Parts of the world may report an earthquake, a famine, or a plague.

Will the news be written by artificial intelligence? Will people be able to tell truth from fiction?

I wonder what the weather will be that day. Sunny in one place, cloudy in another? Something is about to happen in the skies—if only people would look up in expectation! In the unseen realms, the glory of the Lord is gathering, the angels are assembling, and the skies are preparing to part. But most people will be looking down at their phones, addicted to the newest messages or oldest sins.

I wonder what Christians will be doing that day. Will they be as surprised as everyone else when the Rapture occurs? Will they be eager, ready, and waiting?

Can't you see the masses moving about as usual? Millions of people walking around all day on the streets of New York, Tokyo, Mumbai, worried about their money, wondering about their relationships, anxious about their images, following the world stock markets, the latest music, the latest sports scores.

It will be an ordinary day on this globe—until, suddenly, it isn't.

One day soon, the world will face the Great Disappearance!

Billions of people. Gone in a flash more powerful than an atomic burst, yet silent. Invisible! Sudden! Inexplicable!

Try to imagine this extraordinary Moment on planet Earth. Every single follower of Jesus Christ, as well as all those under the age of accountability—all the babies, young children, and mentally disabled—gone in a flash, along with all those who have died in Christ.

Bodies will disappear from their coffins at funeral homes all over the world. Patients will vanish from hospital beds. Babies from their cribs. Children from their classrooms.

Imagine cars flying down the freeway with missing drivers, planes with missing pilots, nuclear submarines with missing commanders, nations with missing leaders, parents with missing children.

In various parts of the world, Christian congregations will be meeting for worship. Suddenly the buildings will be empty—or nearly So—as the churches resume their services in the sky! Soldiers will be missing in action. Emergency responders will find their numbers depleted. Prisons will be partially depopulated, especially those filled with Christians under persecution.

News reports will spread like wildfire, but the Christian press will be strangely silent. There'll be no believers to report the news.

People will frantically search for their loved ones, but phone calls will go to voicemail and texts will be unanswered.

In today's world, just one missing-person case can grip the nation. What about a billion? What will people think? What panic will they feel? What theories will they embrace?

The FBI has been tracking missing-person cases for years. The bureau has a website devoted to it with picture after picture of those whose whereabouts are unknown. These people seemingly just vanished. Many times foul play is involved. In virtually every case families are torn apart with grief, community life is disrupted, and law enforcement is focused on solving the mystery.

The oldest active missing-person case in America involves Marvin Clark, who vanished October 30, 1926, while on his way to visit his daughter in Portland, Oregon. He traveled by bus. He boarded the bus in Tigard, Oregon, but failed to get off at his destination. He simply disappeared. He was in his early seventies at the time, and his case is still open. Authorities are still looking for his remains—if there are any.1

One of the strangest missing-person cases in Canada involved thirty-two-year-old Granger Taylor of British Columbia. On November 29, 1980, he left a note to his parents saying: "Dear Mother and Father, I have gone away to walk aboard an alien spaceship, as reoccurring dreams assured a 42 month interstellar voyage to explore the vast universe, then return. I am leaving behind all my possessions to you as I will no longer . . . require the use of any."2

No one has seen Granger since.

For the record, I don't believe he was abducted by aliens, but I can see how the world will be gripped by a thousand conspiracy theories in the aftermath of the coming Rapture. Global panic will help prepare the way for a one-world government, the emergence of an ironfisted ruler, and the onset of the Tribulation.

It will be utter chaos on an unimaginable scale for those left behind.

For most of my life I've been thinking about this very day: the predicted Moment when Jesus will reenter earth's atmosphere for His church. The reason I'm asking you to imagine it is because I've been doing the same for decades. It's hard to get your head around the pandemonium that will engulf our planet when Jesus fulfills His promise to come for His people.

I think it helps us to visualize that day as best we can.

After I graduated from seminary, I became the youth director of a large New Jersey church. It takes special skill to work with teenagers, and I don't mind telling you I was nervous about relating to them and them to me.

It didn't help when the senior pastor told me that my first contact with the group would be at a summer conference where I was to teach them a weeklong study on Bible prophecy. I've never had a more challenging assignment!

Thankfully, someone had given me a copy of a fictitious newspaper designed to show the events and headlines on the day of the Rapture. The headlines said:


On the first night of the conference, I asked a few kids to play the historic role of newsboys and go throughout the group, hollering "Extra! Extra! Read all about it!" Soon, the teenagers were devouring the paper.

The lead article began: "At 12:05 this morning a telephone operator reported three frantic calls regarding missing relatives. Within fifteen minutes all communications were jammed with similar inquiries. A spot check from around the nation found the same situation in every city. Sobbing husbands sought information about the mysterious disappearance of their wives. One husband reported, 'I turned the light on to ask my wife if she remembered to set the clock, but she was gone. Her bed clothes were there. Her watch was on the floor, but she vanished.' "

Another headline read:


I can tell you those teenagers didn't just sit idly through my talks about prophecy. They wanted to know the details!

This wasn't hypothetical, I told them, but prophetic. The same Bible that describes our Lord Jesus ascending into the sky and disappearing into the clouds also tells us of His imminent, impending return for His people. For reasons I'll explain in this book, we call it the Rapture. It's the resurrection of those who are dead in Christ, immediately followed by the "snatching up" of the final generation of Christians on earth.

Dr. Tim LaHaye pondered this approaching day at length. He said that at the Moment of the Rapture "a million conversations will end mid sentence. A million phones will suddenly go dead. A woman will reach for her husband's hand in the dark, and no one will be there. A man will turn with a laugh to slap a colleague on the back and his hand will move through empty air. A basketball player will make a length-of-floor pass to a teammate streaking down court and find there is no one there to receive it."3

Do Babies Go To Heaven?

If you believe in Jesus, you’ll be saved during the Rapture. But what about the young kids in your life, like your children or the neighbor’s child? Are they safe if they’re too young to decide about eternity?

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This isn't science fiction, conspiracy theory, or mindless speculation. When Christ comes for His people, it will be in the twinkling of an eye. The trumpet will sound, the Lord will shout with the voice of authority, the dead will rise, and we who are alive will be caught up in the air to meet the Lord in the sky.

Between the resurrected and the raptured, billions of people will exit this planet in an instant. But billions more will be left behind. It will be chaos on our globe but incredible, glorious joy in the skies.

This is the Rapture—the Great Disappearance. I've been studying this in Scripture all my adult life, and now I want to write about it as fully as I can. It's vital to know what the Bible says about this coming day, the next event on God's prophetic agenda for the earth.

I think you'll be fascinated, motivated, and highly encouraged as you study the pages to come. Most of all I hope you'll be well prepared for that day.

It's one thing to try to imagine that day and another to see what the Bible truly says about its who, why, when, where, and how. I believe the Scriptures are clear on this subject, and I want to show you the pertinent passages in God's Word that discuss it. That's because we're not just to imagine it but to anticipate it with all our hearts and look forward to it with all our souls.

Don't put this book down yet. Just turn the page, and let's get started. After all, time is short. I can't wait for you to see what's just ahead. The Moment can come at any moment.

Even now!

1 "Disappearance of Marvin Clark," Wikipedia, accessed May 25, 2023, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disappearance_of_Marvin_Clark.

2 Tyler Hooper, "B.C.'s Granger Taylor Left a Note Saying He Was Boarding an Alien Spaceship—Then He Disappeared," CBC Docs POV, accessed May 1, 2023, https://www.cbc.ca/cbcdocspov/features/bcs-granger-taylor-left-a-note-saying-he-was-boarding-an-alien-spaceship.

3 Tim LaHaye, The Rapture (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 2003), 39.

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