I wrote up this whole thing, but it got eaten, so let me give you the short version.
In 1 Thessalonians 4:13 it talks about the coming of our Lord and the great day of his return.
13 But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.
15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.
Long before Jesus died for our sins, God was refereed to as Our Lord. You could argue that Paul was being a bit cryptic here, if it wasn't for the very clear letter he wrote to the Thessalonians detailing the coming of "Our Lord Jesus Christ," in 2 Thessalonians 2
2 Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, 2 not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. 3 Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God[c] in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
You could argue AGAIN that he's clarifying some points, and I've actually heard people make up several little stories that are in no way scriptural to explain the fact that this description does not seem to match up with the completely non-violent, comforting version Paul had written in his previous letter. But ultimately, the simplest explanation is that he is talking about two separate events.
Christ himself stipulated that the coming of OUR LORDwill be as a thief in the night, but Christ's return will have many many restrictions placed upon it.
I think sometimes people forget that God ultimately is the one who will raise us. He raised Jesus, he raised Ezekiel, he will raise the witnesses, and he will raise us. This, in my opinion, is why John saw GOD first in the book of Revelation. In fact, you only need read Revelation 11 to realize that this event is a two-fold victory. For when the angel blows the seventh trumpet it is proclaimed:
“The kingdoms[f] of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!”
I would encourage anyone who doubts a Pre-Tribulation rapture to reread scripture with an unbiased eye and anywhere you read "Lord" accept the fact that this word can either mean Jesus OR God, and that when Jesus famously said "The Son of Man is coming at a day you do not expect." He might actually be referring to future Christians who wrongfully assume Jesus Christ will be the one to greet them when they are called to Our Lord in heaven.