Apocalypse Road puts gap between Rapture and Daniel’s 70th week

I had not read Apocalypse Road, by Bill Salus because I thought it was just the continuation of Revelation Road which I have read (it is). I thought it would just be telling me the traditional view about what happens after the Rapture (it does not) I already knew about that. Apocalyptic Road is really about events in the gap between the Rapture and the start of Daniel’s 70th week.

I recently watched some interviews with Bill Salus on his book Apocalypse Road. What Bill said in those interviews sparked my interest because back in 2003/2004 when I was writing my Revelation commentary, I also came to the conclusion that everything said could not occur in just seven years like so many Bible prophecy teachers were teaching. They were saying that as soon as the Rapture occurred, the last seven years for Israel would begin. I simply could not make everything in Revelation chapters 4 through 19 fit in just a seven-year period. In my Revelation commentary, I wrote it would likely be 10.5 years from the opening of the first seal until the second coming.

Part of my rational for the 10.5 years was that 7 years from the Rapture, many people would be expecting some form of Christ to appear and they would receive the false Christ. I said the first five seals would happen before the last 7 years. I claimed the last seven years started with the 6th seal. Of course, this is nothing to be dogmatic about, I could have this wrong and so can Bill Salus.

Bible prophecy teachers like to point out how the Church is not mentioned after chapter 4 of Revelation, suggesting that the Church was taken up to heaven. However, they do not point out that Israel is not even seen in Revelation until chapter 7 at the sealing of the 144,000 Israelite’s. If God was dealing with Israel for their last seven years before this, one might think they would be mentioned.

Bill Salus in Apocalypse Road also sees a gap that he says could be several years. As I said, I have not read the book yet, but from the interviews that I have heard, Salus gives a creditable thesis about events occurring during that gap. Bill astounds me with his ability to come up with new insights on prophetic scriptures and to parse out the details in his teachings. He came up with the greatly expanded Israel theory that occurs as the result of the Psalm 83 war and the Ezekiel 38 war. He also helped develop the theory that there would be a conflict with Iran before the tribulation where people in the Elam area of Iran would be totally evacuated to other nations because of nuclear radiation there. Now we have his gap thesis. Bible prophecy students need to study what Salus says and determine for themselves if his theories are the most likely explanations.

The traditional Dispensation Theology teaching is that when the Rapture occurs the Church Age will be over and then God will immediately turn to Israel to fulfill the last seven years that remain to be fulfilled for Israel. That seven-year period is known as the seventieth week of Daniel. They claim there is no gap between the two events or if there is a gap it is only a matter of days. They claim that everything said from chapters 4 through 19 in Revelation spans only seven years.

The main scriptural support these use for these claims is Matthew 24 and Luke 17. They will point out that it teaches that as soon as Noah and Lot were removed judgment fell. However, the context in Luke does not support that Jesus was talking about the Rapture. Luke 17:30-31 is the day that the Son of Man is revealed. The context indicates that it occurs at the same time that Israel is told to flee to the mountains for protection. This occurs at the mid-point of Daniel’s 70th week and it also marks the start of the Day of the Lord. According to Revelation Chapter 6 the start of the Day of the Lord is at the 6th seal. It seems to me that Jesus was referring to Jews fleeing Jerusalem for physical protection and not the Rapture in those Matthew and Luke passages.

(Lately some of the top dispensational Bible prophecy teachers like Dr. Thomas Ice and Dr. Andy Woods also claim there is some unknown time gap between the Rapture and the start of Daniel’s 70th week.)

I have a difficult time understanding how the two prophets of Revelation chapter 11 are doing their 1260 day ministry from Jerusalem at the same time the four horsemen of the apocalypse are riding on earth and when people are being martyred at the fifth seal. The first five seal events are not God’s judgments, they are satanically led happenings that lead to that. Revelation suggests that the two prophets have a great deal of control over things on earth during the time of their ministry. The whole world rejoices when they are killed by the Beast/Antichrist suggesting the same thing. Therefore, it seems more likely to me that the first 5 seal events bring about God’s judgment. God always sends His prophets before judgment. He sends His two prophets for 1260 days before the judgment of the great Day of the Lord begins.

Satan does not know when the Rapture will occur. He cannot have everything in place the exact hour the Church is removed. Satan can only implement his plan for conquest after the Church departs. The first four seals describe Satan’s conquest of a quarter of the earth. It is the makings of the Beast kingdom. First he rides to conquer through diplomacy, then through war, then through famine, and then through death and spiritual deception. Shortly after they begin to ride, the Harlot that sits in Rome starts to persecute those on earth that will not go along with her revolutionary religious agenda.

Bill Salus believes as I do that the first five seals start to play out prior to Daniel’s 70th week. He says the gap could be several years. Bill believes the Harlot of Revelation 17 plays a big role during that period. Since I don’t have the book, I can’t give you many of the details (I would not anyway) but from the interviews I know that Bill believes the Harlot is the Roman Catholic Church.

A brief summary of Salus’ gap thesis goes something like this:

The Rapture occurs, Harlot religion and satanic spiritual deception headquartered at the Vatican is the power behind the four horsemen. She also is the one persecuting true believers seen at the fifth seal. Israel does not want to be a victim of this overflowing scourge being carried out on earth by Harlot religion so Israel signs a seven-year covenant with the Harlot for protection. The Harlot is still riding death and Hades of the fourth seal when Israel signs that covenant. Israel signs the covenant of appeasement that also allows the Vatican to administrate the religions sites. Israel signs this believing that her Messiah is coming anyway as soon as their Temple is completed. It does not work out the way that Israel thinks. The false Messiah enters the rebuilt Temple, claims to be God and He wars against the Jews. The main proof text for the thesis comes from Isaiah 28. Salus believes the seven-year covenant with the Antichrist is what is being talked about in this Isaiah passage.

Isa 28:15  Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves:
Isa 28:16  Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.
Isa 28:17  Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place.
Isa 28:18  And your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then ye shall be trodden down by it.

Bill also still believes the Psalm 83 war will play out before the seal judgments and he thinks the Ezekiel 38 war “might” also occur before the seal judgments. Bill says Apocalypse Road contains a lot of information about the Harlot and how she will deceive the world. I do not know exactly what Salus wrote, but I would think that Marian signs and wonders and alien disclosures are very likely to be involved.

Enoch is the Rapture type in the Old Testament. There was a long gap between Enoch’s Rapture and the flood judgment. There probably is good reason scripture says that some will stop watching for the second coming. It may not be possible to countdown seven years from the Rapture to the second coming like some have taught. It could be 10.5 years or even more. The Lord just said visible observations pertinent to His coming would all occur within one generation. He did not say it will all be fulfilled in just 7 years.

Keep in mind, that most of the 2.2 billion in Christendom will not be ready and they will not be going in any Rapture. They do not even believe there will be a Rapture. After the Rapture, there will be some that believe that they only have to count down 7 years to the second coming. Some will do that and receive the Antichrist as their Christ. Others will be saved during the trials on earth but it will cost most of them their lives. The Harlot will persecute true believers found within religion. Then the Harlot is destroyed by the ten world leaders that give their allegiance to the Antichrist. The False prophet will then seek to kill all that do not worship the Beast/Antichrist as God.

Anyway, Bill Salus and I believe there is a gap between the Rapture and the start of the 70th week of years that remains to be fulfilled by Israel. You might get Apocalypse Road for more gap details. The 70th week details will be in Bill Salus’ next book called Tribulation Road. You can find more information on ProphecyDepot.

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About Don Koenig

Don Koenig is the founder of ThePropheticYears website. He has been publishing articles on the Internet on Bible prophecy, biblical discernment and Christian worldviews since 1999. You can find well over a thousand articles and thousands of comments written by Don from the homepage of this website.


Apocalypse Road puts gap between Rapture and Daniel’s 70th week — 26 Comments

  1. I too came to believe the seals would start before the last 7 years. But never could settle on just when. But like you say, there is too much to fit into a 7 year period, especially in light of Israel’s having to clean up the mess from a big war, that takes 7 years too, and that can’t coincide with the last 3 & half years of the Great Tribulation. So yes, an extra 3-4 years is needed. It’s good to see reasonable people coming to agree with the plain scripture in a positive way.

  2. I recently was reading some articles by Dr. Andy Woods. He is not a believer in the Psalm 83 war nor does he believe that in 2 Thes 2:7 (For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way) is the Holy Spirit, but the church.

    I admire both Bill and Andy but as usual I find myself confused and wondering who is correct!

    Great job as usual Don, thanks for the good work.

  3. I happen to agree with you also about the 10.5 years. I may but Salus’s book on my Nook and see what he says (bookstores of any type are very scarce around here). Too many people, who will not be in the Rapture, know about it, they have ridiculed it for years, and know about various teachers stating that 7 years later, Christ returns. That sets them up for the Desecration of the Temple and the last 3 1/2 years. The sad part is that too many well meaning teachers loudly proclaim that seven years after the Rapture, Christ returns. This may be setting the fence riders up for a big letdown and welcoming of the AntiChrist. Good post Don.

  4. Arnold Fruchtenbaum also teaches a gap….. 🙂

    His book Footsteps of the Messiah is very helpful and makes it very clear the Rapture does NOT start the last 7 years.

    Thanks for your articles, Don 🙂

  5. I agree that most likely there will be a gap after the rapture. One of the reasons I believe the rapture is closer than we think. Most of the church is in apostasy, trusting in their works to save them, and even taught in many what use to be churches that taught salvation as a free gift like he bible says. Matthew 7:15-23 told us how to tell false teachers. And so did Paul in Galatians 1:8-9.

    They have slick ways of doing this, but it all amounts to the same thing that you have to some how earn salvation by works like what the Catholic church has been teaching for years. Romans 11;6 refutes the whole idea, and it really is a slap in the face to Jesus for what He did for us. Like its not good enough.

    In First Thessalonians 5:4 says we should not be overtaken as a thief. Does that mean that we should know ahead of time when the rapture will be give or take a few months? I do believe the rapture could happen while I am typing this.

    One thing for sure is we should be comforting one another with the soon coming of the Lord in the clouds so we can meet Him in the air. All of those with the Holy Spirit (oil) in their lamps will go at the rapture. Ephesians 1:13 Christ is our righteousness before God.

  6. Dan 9:27  And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week….

    I do believe it is the confirming of this covenant that wiil positively identify the prince that shall come. His identity could probably be guessed at beforehand but not positively known.

    Yet in Revelation he goes forth conquering and to conquer, suggesting the confirming of the covenant took place prior to Revelation 6:2 (if Revelation 6:2 refers to this prince).

    All in all I agree with the thoughts you have presented here.

  7. Hi Brian,

    I do not think people will know for sure who this fellow is before he is raised from a head wound at the midst of the seven years. The confirmed covenant could involve a number of people and most people in the world will not link this with what Daniel says, especially post Rapture.

    I think you’re assuming that the rider on the white horse is the Antichrist. The text does not say that. What if the rider on all the horses is the leading person in the Harlot? Many in the past have thought the white horse is Christianity. Can the rider on the white horse be the leader of pseudo Christianity? Can the four horsemen be picturing the Pseudo Christian conquering of Islam?

  8. Hi,

    The Friends of Israel ministry teach that the Tribulation begins with the signing of the peace treaty and also that the Church will be in heaven after chapter 4 in Revelation.

    I read Salus’s thesis to his book. He teaches the same but clarifies how all the events can take place by placing them in a time gap. The way the events play out according to Salus opened up a few new ways of thinking about Revelation.

    That which really sticks in my mind is the release of total, complete lawlessness after the Rapture. I never understood it that way before. I thought it was bad enough. I just read the news and there was Kathy Griffin displaying her sick stunt/wishful thinking and I thought, yeah, these kinds of people are going to get what they want under the rule of the Harlot, but some of them will get saved and it will be their heads.

    From the last post I had watched half a dozen commentaries on the Revelation Sign supposedly being visible on Sept. 23rd. Some of those were asking, “Can this be when the Rapture happens?” I ask myself, “Is total lawlessness so close that it is straining to break loose so that maybe, just maybe, Jesus will call us up on this next Feast of Trumpets?”

    No I’m not putting all my eggs in that basket and going on a spending spree. Just wondering how much longer the world can continue on as it’s going before God says, “Okay son, go get them out of there.”

  9. Don, you were the first person I had ever read that believed in a gap between the Rapture and the Tribulation. It just makes sense.

    Also, I do believe you are on to something with a pseudo-Christian Harlot leading/backing a war against Islam. Will the Antichrist be on the scene yet or just be a participant I don’t know.

  10. Don, & all,

    The white horse representing Christendom definitely makes sense, when viewed in a context of the four competing world views. The Red horse representing communisim, and the Black hours capitalism, and lastly, the green horse Islam! Notice each color corresponds to the predominant color of each ideology. The pale horse often interpreted as “chlorophyll” or greening, is the color most seen used in Islamic flags, decorations, etc. The other colors are easy to decern.

    It makes sense that these warring factions will come to blows in the near future, as we already are in the warm-up period. It lends credence to the first four seals being opened years before the tribulation 7 weeks actually begins. The fifth seal the results or outcome of the Wars during the first four seals. It’s coming, faster than we can imagine.

  11. It is a stretch.

    How is the black horse Capitalism? The text under that seal indicates shortages, famine and forced rationing indicating state control. It sounds more like that would occur under socialism. Like what we see going on in Venezuela.

    Frankly, these are events after the church is Raptured. The Church is in heaven watching the unsealing of this prophecy just as is John.

  12. Don: You are absolutely spot on with all your observations and comments – I have read Bill Salus new book and the details of his Gap Thesis, and his exegesis is very good on the Gap Theory as well as the events and players in this period and in the Tribulation period to follow. So many are now sucked into the Revelation 12 Sign on September 23rd as being the Rapture and beginning of Daniel’s 70th week. I could support a Pentecost Rapture and the breaking of the 1st seal around the September period and 3.5 Years (1260 days) of pre-tribulation post rapture events before Daniel 9:27 and the start of the 7-year Tribulation period. MARANATHA!

  13. Jim, This Tech stuff is just proof that the second coming will be sooner than they can create these things. God is not going to allow humans to be anything other than humans. Jesus did not die to save Trans humans.

  14. Don,

    You should do another post about the 7000 years allotted to mankind. Even though we cannot be dogmatic about the theory, it seems like it’s what we base most of our timelines off anyways.

    I first became interested in bible prophecy from reading the left behind series as a kid. I used to think there was no gap between the rapture and tribulation until I tried to figure out where the Magog war fit in. Eventually I read about your idea of a 3.5 year gap and it made sense to me. Now I just don’t know where the horsemen riders fit in in relation to Ezekiels war.

  15. Hi Jim,

    I don’t like to repeat what I have already written about. There is too much of that with people saying the same things in different words. That is my major criticism of many contemporary Bible prophecy teachers.

  16. Ok so on topic… I was wondering does the rapture have to be exactly 3.5 years before start or could it be like 5 years, 10, 20, 30 when is the cut off some what reasonable?

  17. We have to remember that the tribulation does not start till the second 3 and a half years. The first half will be bad enough, but there will be peace in Israel for the first 3 and a half years. Then the real time of Jacobs trouble begins.

    As far as the technology for administering of the mark of the beast it is here now. Some places are already administering a chip under the skin in there hand so that they have all their info as far as medical and buying under one chip. It works just like the bar codes only more so. I do believe the one that comes in Revelation will also change our DNA in some way that will ruin us for salvation.

    Some very widely known bible teachers are now saying you can still take the mark of the beast and still be saved. Liars

  18. Hi Jeremy,

    At least one teacher of long ago said it could be 30 years. Current events and biblical timelines tells me the Lord will be coming to set up His kingdom in the 2030’s. So, if the Rapture were today the tribulation would still probably start sometime in the 2020’s.

  19. Don, I happen to agree with your timeline for the rapture. I do have one caveat. I also believe that the Rapture is so imminent that it could happen before I push the “Post Comment” button. Should that happen, there is some missing technology needed for the AC to implement the “Mark” and such that I think is built into your projected timeline. I think that any technology gap could also be filled when the “what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time” from 2 Thessalonians 2:6 is “taken away” in verse 2:7. There are a number of opinions about what that means, and you have discussed them in your previous posts. I do not remember which one you posted (sorry) so I may even parrot your opinion (if I repeat w/o credit, sorry again). My “opinion” is that “what withholdeth” is the spirit filled church. IMO the only effective opposition to evil in our society, abortion, one example, has came from Christians. After the Rapture, that will be gone. One opinion, I’ve seen is that the Holy Spirit is removed, I do not think that is true or the 144,000 witness could not function. I do not think Christ gave the opposition to an angel, as I have read somewhere also because I, personally, think that opposition come from prayers and is the responsibility of the spirit filled church.

    Whatever it really is, after “what withholdeth” is “taken away”, I think that there may be rapid changes in technology to support Satan’s agenda. There may be “breakthroughs” in genetics, computers, communications and medicine to support the “mark”, for example, that have been prevented from development due the Holy Spirit also keeping the Church until removal. Another source of filling the technology gap might be Nephilim, space aliens (demons) or some other outsiders that were prevented from open revelation by “what withholdeth”. So, while I agree with your timeline, I also believe that technological changes can and probably will occur rapidly after the Rapture. I personally wish that the Rapture had happened before I hit the “Post Comment” button.

  20. Hi Phil,

    I don’t know whether you were on Don’s old blog or not but he wrote an article asking if Michael could be the restrainer? It generated a lot of commentary.
    In Salus’s Gap Thesis I believe he said God was holding back total lawlessness to protect the Church and when it was Raptured then lawlessness would be “unrestrained.” I know The Holy Spirit is a popular pick for the one that restrains.
    It doesn’t matter to me anymore because I’m with you; I wish the Rapture had happened before you hit the “post comment button,”

  21. Hi all,

    So on topic, I think this book (It is Free) does a great job at explaining all the rapture views out there on the rapture and the doctrine of Christ imminent return is explained in great detail and why this doctrine is so important to understanding the rapture.


    Book “Toward A Biblical View of the Rapture”

    I wish the Rapture had happened before you hit the “post comment button,” I feel same way and it could happen because HIS return is any time and no man knows the hour or time of HIS coming. Hopefully when he comes he find us working and not asleep. 🙂

  22. Time to throw a wrench and stop the wheels from turning.If the Spring events of Leviticus 23 can be fulfilled in one year, why does it take 7 years to fulfill the Fall events of Leviticus 23? If it takes 5 months to fulfill the 10 plagues of the Exodus, why does it take 7 years to fulfill the 14 judgements of Revelation minus the seals? .Did you know Revelation follows 3 times Day of Trumpet to Day of Atonement? Rev 2:10 has 10 days of Tribulation which can be 10 years, then there is one year fulfillment of the Trumpet and Bowl Judgments, and then there is 10 days at the end of the one year.

  23. Jardalkal,

    Revelation 2:10 already occurred in history. The 14 Revelation judgments occur in the last 42 months and the wrath of God is poured out over the last few months of that period.

  24. There was a book published a couple years ago that demonstrates the same idea – Revelation A Fresh Perspective. Good to see there are more than one with the same insight

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