are simply a beautiful fantasy without any grounding in reality.
About the "secret rapture:"
There is a common theme found in many conservative Christian novels about the end times. The Rapture is predicted to cause mass confusion among those left behind. The unsaved who remain are aware of the disappearance of tens or hundreds of millions of people, but most will not seem to know the cause. Mass panic will result. According to W. Fred Rice, promoters of the secret rapture theory teach that most people left behind on Earth would believe that the missing Christians were captured by aliens or that some unexplained scientific phenomenon had occurred to make them vanish. 1
Some believe that during or after the secret rapture, non-saved people who are left behind would be given the option of becoming saved by repenting of their sins and trusting Jesus as Lord and Savior. 1
It can be argued that if a rapture were to happen, it could not be secret. There is simply too much knowledge about the rapture circulating:
Are airlines taking precautions in the event of the rapture?
Snopes.com, a web site that tracks down rumors and urban legends, quotes two postings about the rapture that they lifted from the Internet, one in 2003 and the other in 2004:
To a believer in the rapture, such a precaution by airline companies would make a great deal of sense. According to the teachings of many fundamentalist and other evangelical Christian denominations, when Jesus appears, believers who have died will have their bodies reconstituted, will emerge from their graves, and will rise in the air to meet Jesus in the sky. When that is finished, believers who are still living will also rise. A common belief is that the latter group will levitate, passing through ceilings, roofs of cars, cockpit ceilings, etc without injury to themselves or to the material that they pass through. All sorts of vehicles will be abandoned by their drivers: busses, subway trains, airplanes, ships, etc and could cause crashes with enormous loss of life. The only exception might be diesel locomotives. They typically have "deadman" controls that automatically apply the brakes if the engineer stops moving.
Thus, it might appear logical to some that airline companies might schedule their flight crew so that there was at least one non-believer on board who could take over control of the plane.
Some rumors state that there are Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations in place to prohibit a saved pilot from serving with a saved co-pilot.
Snopes.com checked with the FAA and American Airlines, and confirmed that neither has regulations of this type in place.
They rate the story as "false."
The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.
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