LOOK TO JESUS

This is a little different what I normally post but there is nothing more important than looking to Jesus for the answers:

Christians, a group of sinners who are like every other sinner in the world except for one difference, we are saved by His grace alone!  Our sins are forgiven! Does this mean that once we are saved, that we let go of all our sinful ways? Not at all, it just means that we are convicted when we do mess up but then we can go to our Father and repent of our sins and be forgiven.

There has been a conversation on Facebook recently started by a friend of mine who has served in churches for many years but now has completely turned against the organized church, not attending anywhere.  His reasons are that he has been disillusioned by deceit, being lied to, and hurt feelings.  And not only him, but he has seen his wife come home from church crying due to mean things said about her or things that have been said about him. I am not here to criticize him at all. I know this man and he is deeply devoted to Christ.  This is between him and the Lord, but there are a few things that this has brought to mind.

First of all, posting things on Facebook, or any public forum, that is negative about the church or Christianity can never be pleasing to God. This is not the first time I’ve seen this happen. It always brings to mind all the unsaved people using the excuse not to attend church due to all the “hypocrites” there. Jesus started the church. He started it with Peter (Matthew 16:18). The early church of the new covenant did begin in homes, but eventually, buildings were built, as evidenced by the seven churches of Revelation. These buildings became known as the representation of the organized church.  God approves of having a building where large groups of people can get together and pray and sing praises to Him. He provided a tent for the Israelites in the desert for this purpose and then had the temple built under Solomon’s guidance.  But when things are posted publicly about negative things in the organized church, it may possibly cause someone to never want to go to a house of God to hear the word and maybe accept Christ. There is a Biblical way to resolve conflict (Matthew 18:15-17) but all the steps for achieving resolution stays inside the church. NEVER does the Bible say “announce to everyone outside the church” of any conflict that one has from within the building?

And now to address the issue of church attendance when things are not going well inside the building. There are times in churches when issues arise that are not clearly spelled out in the scriptures, where there are questions as to what is right or wrong.  A good way to figure out the solution is to look to Jesus.  Take for example, women serving as preachers  (and I know this may be opening a can of worms).  Jesus loved and respected women so much! He first revealed himself as the promised Messiah to a lowly Samaritan woman (John 4:26), whereas in many other instances, He wanted it kept secret.(Luke 9:20-21, Mark 1:34, Matthew 8:4) And who did he appear to first after raising from the dead?  It was the women who came to tend to His dead body on that resurrection day. And when the disciples did not believe the ladies when they told them, Jesus scolded them. (Mark 16:14).  Yes, Jesus loved women, elevated their status and taught their importance while here on earth, BUT when Jesus choose his twelve disciples to officially preach the word, it was men.  Jesus would have had no problem breaking the norms of the day as evidenced by Him even speaking to the Samaritan woman mentioned above. It was improper at that time for a man and woman to speak in public and also, Samaritans were looked down on by the Jews.  He could have made a woman one of the twelve if He had meant for females to serve in that capacity.  Men and women are equally loved by our Father, but we definitely have different roles and we should uphold our roles to the best of our abilities.

Now to consider if Jesus’ feelings were ever hurt or if anyone ever was mean to Him in church. You don’t have to look far.  After preaching His first recorded sermon, in His own hometown, He was thrown out and then those churchgoers even led Him out to a cliff to throw Him off! Those lovely church members wanted Him dead. (Luke 4:28-10).  The scriptures tell us though that He just went to another city and taught there (Luke 4:31).  Jesus continued to attend church, “as was His custom”( Luke 4:16), in spite of being despised and rejected by most of the leadership.  In every church He ever attended there was conflict with Him being there. The Pharisees were never void of complaining about Him and trying to trick Him.  There was surely a lot of backbiting after they acted nice to Jesus while in public.  The Pharisees were too afraid of the crowds to be unkind to Him to His face (Matthew 21:46).  But yet, we are never told that He ever forsook His “custom” of attending church.

One thing to keep in mind when there is conflict in a church, not everyone that attends church regularly has a personal relationship with Christ.  Some people think that if they come to church on Sunday, that they are saved and have a Christian attitude, but many are actually lost. Never forget that how we react to conflict within the church, may be an example to a lost person even if it never leaves the church.

In summary, before we do anything in this life, whether it’s posting something on Facebook or reacting to something in the church, we should ask ourselves, “Will this glorify God?”.  That is our purpose. He created us to praise and glorify Him.  And as far as the young man who inspired this article, it’s between him and the heavenly Father. But I will say, as far as this author is concerned, unless my health fails or I die, my car will be leaving my driveway every Sunday morning to go to His house to worship, “as is my custom”.

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THE LAST TRUMPET

1 Corinthian 15:52

52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

Is the trumpet in this scripture referring to the 7th trumpet in Revelation? If you are a pre-tribulationist you will say no. That theory believes that the last trumpet in 1 Corinthians is a set of trumpets for the believers whereas the 7th trumpet in Revelation is for non-believers. What? Haven’t they read that there will be saints during the revelation, some of them making it to the end?  The early Christians were called “saints” many times in the scriptures.  Also, the church of Thyatira is told that they will be here until the end of Revelation 2:26.

Revelation 2:26 (KJV)                                                                                                                            26 And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:

Let’s look at what happens at the 7th trumpet:

Revelation 11: 15,18 (KJV)

15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were
great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this
world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his
Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.

18 And the nations were angry, and
THY WRATH IS COME,and the
TIME OF THE DEAD, that
THEY SHOULD BE JUDGED, and that thou shouldest
GIVE REWARDS UNTO THY SERVANTS AND THE
PROPHETS, AND TO THE SAINTS, and them that fear
thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them.

Revelation 11:18 tells us of 4 things that will happen at the last trumpet.

1.  HIS WRATH HAS COME

Who’s wrath is this verse talking about? It’s God’s wrath. The vials (or bowls) are fixing to be poured out.  There are 2 verses that clearly states that the 7 last plagues are filled of God’s wrath.

Revelation 15:1 (KJV)

15 And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvelous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God.

Revelation 16:1 (KJV)

16 And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.

2. It is the time of the dead

Compare this with 1 Corinthians 15:52.

52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

What similarities, right? This is the one thing that convinces me that these two trumpets are the same.  The “dead being raised from incorruptible” certainly is the “time of the dead”.

3. It’s a time of judgment

And at this time the dead shall be judged.  Even the pre-tribulationists say that when Christians are taken up to be with Him that they will have their judgment which leads to the next occurrence..

4. Rewards will be given

People who have the belief that Christians will not have to go through any of the tribulation still believe that,  as stated above, the saved will be judged and rewarded at the time that they are raptured up but Revelation 11:18 clearly states that this is the time of judgment and rewards unto the Saints. So anyone who preaches the Pre-tribulation theory needs to start preaching of three times of judgment and rewards.

There are two other great events John is shown between the 6th trumpet being blown in Revelation 9:13 and the 7th trumpet in Revelation 11:15.                                                                                                                                                                                                                               1. Jesus comes down to Mt. Zion    

Revelation 14:1 (NKJV)    

14 Then I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His Father’s name written on their foreheads.  

2. There is a harvest of the earth

And in this same chapter, in the same time span, right before the bowls are fixing to be poured out (and remember that they contain God’s wrath), John sees a harvest of the earth.

Revelation 14: 14-19 (KJV)

14 And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle.                           15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe.                                                                                                               16 And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped.                                                                                                                                            17 And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle.                                                                                                                                                      18 And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.                                                        19 And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God.

The earth is harvested of the ripe (saved people) and the vine (the unsaved) are thrown to where God’s wrath is.

When comparing the two trumpets of these two Biblical books, it appears that there is a strong argument for them being one in the same. If so, then the 7th trumpet is when we will be raptured up to be with our Lord.  When will the 7th trumpet happen in the sequence of events of the tribulation? That is not clearly spelled out but it will probably be near the end of the 7 years because the last 7 plagues are catastrophic. When the 2nd and 3rd bowl are poured out, all the water in the world is turned to blood and the 4th bowl contains intense heat. Without water to drink, it won’t take long for humans to perish in intense heat. (see more about this in my post “What exactly happens during the tribulation period?”)

Are you ready?

John 14:6 (KJV)

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

 

                                                                          

THE TWO RETURNS OF JESUS AND THE TWO HARVESTS OF THE EARTH (and neither one is before the tribulation begins)

The Bible clearly teaches of two times that Jesus will return to the earth and two times the earth will be harvested, and neither times is before the tribulation begins.

2 RETURNS OF JESUS

#1-Revelation 14: 1

And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Zion, and with him a hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.

Here John saw Jesus (the Lamb) standing on Mt. Zion. He has the 144,000 with Him.  This appearance will be in the midst of the tribulation because the 144,000 are Jews who are given the mark of God in Chapter 7 of Revelation after the 6th seal is opened.  The tribulation begins when the 1st seal is opened.  So, therefore the 144,000  have already received the seal and have died and are now returning to Mt. Zion with Jesus.

#2-Zechariah 14: 3-4

Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.                                                                                                                                   And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.

Jesus will return on the Mt. of Olives in this scripture to do battle.  This is the battle of Armageddon which can be found in Revelation 19

THE TWO HARVESTS OF THE EARTH

#1-Revelation 13: 14-20

14 And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle.           15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe.                                                                                        16 And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped.                                                                                                                                          17 And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle.                                                                                                                               18 And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.           19 And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God.                                     20 And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.

At this harvest of the earth, the saved are reaped first in verse 16.  We know this because the ones that are reaped last are thrown into the “winepress of the wrath of God” in verse 19.  This harvest of the earth happens in the same time span as when Jesus returns to the earth on Mt. Zion.  It’s at the 7th trumpet right before the bowls are fixing to be poured out which contains God’s wrath.  The Bible tells us  plainly in Revelation 15:1 and Revelation 16:1 that God’s wrath is in the bowls (or vials, according to which version of the Bible you read)

#2-Matthew 13:24-19

24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:                                              25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.                                                                                                                               26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.                                                                                                                                        27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?                                         28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?                                                                          29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.                                                                                                                                              30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

Jesus gives an explanation of this parable  in verses 36-43 of that same chapter:

36 Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.           37 He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; 38 The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;                                                                          39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.                                                                                                       40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.                                                                                                                      41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;                                       42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.                                                                                                                                           43 Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Jesus tells us that this harvest is at the end of the world (vs.39).  The unsaved are harvested first in this harvest and are cast into a furnace of fire (vs 42).  Then the saved will be in the kingdom of the Father!

In conclusion, there are definitely going to be two returns of Jesus to the earth and 2 harvests. The harvest in Revelation is in the same time span as the return of Jesus on to Mt. Zion.  Joel 2:32 also ties these two events together:                                                        32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call.”                                                      Joel tells us that at one point the Lord will provide deliverance from Mt. Zion for those that He calls. And when the Lord does return at the rapture, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 tells us that He will return with a shout to call the dead and the living to Him:                        16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first.17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”.      In both the Joel scripture and the 1 Thessalonians scripture, Jesus is calling out to the remnant that He will deliver.

During the harvest on Mt. Zion the saved are harvested first and the unsaved are thrown to where the wrath of God is.  But at the other harvest which Jesus teaches us about, the unsaved are harvested first and thrown directly into the fiery furnace and the saved will be in the Kingdom of the Father.

I pray everyone reading this will be in the kingdom of the Father.  Please ask Jesus into your heart as your Lord and Savior if you have not, confessing that you are a sinner and asking forgiveness. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Light, and NOONE gets to the Father but by Him!

 

 

REVELATION VERSE BY VERSE-CHAPTER 1

During the last quarter at my church, our Sunday School Curriculum has covered some of Revelation.  They did an excellent job on the scriptures that they did cover! I want to share what I learned in my class and also cover the scriptures that they didn’t.  Verses 1-9 of today’s study comes directly from the literature.

REVELATION CHAPTER 1

Verse 1

Jesus is the revealer and the one being revealed!  God gave Him possession. He (Jesus) is the owner.   “What must soon take place“- When we read this we must understand from a heavenly perspective.  God’s timing is not the same as ours. In heaven 1000 years is like 1 day here on earth (see 2 Peter 3:8).  Progression of this verse: God initiated and gave revelation to Jesus. Jesus passed it on to His angel. Angel passed it on to John.

Verse 2

John then wrote the revelation down for everyone else.

Verse 3

Few people were literate in those days.  They would gather in the temple on the Lord’s day for someone to read to them.

Verse 4

The 7 churches were all located in the western part of modern Turkey.   God is past, present, and future. So what are the 7 spirits? That is one of those mysteries. But there a few possibilities.  Maybe the Holy Spirit? Or maybe it’s the 7 eyes of the Lord that Zechariah saw in Zechariah 4:10. One more possibility could be in Isaiah 11:2 which has 7 spirits listed:  Spirit of the Lord, Spirit of wisdom, Spirit of understanding, Spirit of counsel, Spirit of power, Spirit of knowledge and Spirit of fear of the Lord.

Verse 5

3 descriptions of Jesus: First He is called the Faithful witness because He declared God’s message. He was the Prophets of prophets! Second, He is the firstborn from the dead meaning that He was the first to conquer death forever! And then last, but definitely not least, He is the Ruler of the earth, the King of Kings!!! Because of the persecution going on at that time, Christians may have believe that God didn’t love them.  They are assured that this is not true.  His love is demonstrated by His blood.  And just like the blood of a lamb had to be applied to the doorpost during the original Passover (Exodus 12:21-23), Jesus’ blood has to applied to us by our faith in Him.

Verse 6

This is fulfilling the promise that God made to Moses in Exodus 19:6. Jesus’ blood fulfilled this promise! We now all have access to God and can freely approach Him!

Verse 7

His 2nd coming is much different from the first time He came to this earth.  1st coming He came in humility; 2nd coming He will come in glory! His 1st coming was only observed by a few people (Mary, Joseph, and a few shepherds) but at His 2nd coming every eye will see Him! In His 1st coming both the Jewish and Roman court condemned him as a criminal, but at His 2nd coming people will mourn over Him.  Can you imagine being unsaved at this point?

Verse 8

God existed in power and glory before there was time and space.

These are all the verses in Revelation 1 that were covered in my lesson. I will now share some comments on the other verses in these chapters from notes that I have taken in the past and my own study:

Verse 9

The apostle John was very old at this time.  Christians were being severely persecuted by the current Emperor Domitian. John had continued preaching and giving testimony about Jesus. Instead of being killed, he was exiled to a small island, Patmos.  I found the following information on http://bibleworld.com/Patmos/patmos.htm:  “The Romans used the island as a penal settlement to which they sent political agitators and others who threatened the peace of the empire (Tacitus Annals 3.68; 4.30; 15.71). According to Eusebius, John was banished to Patmos by the Emperor Domitian, A. D. 95, and released 18 months later under Nerva (HE III.18.1; 20.8-9).”

Verse 10

A trumpet has always been used in the Bible to signify power.  It draws attention to things that are happening. A trumpet announced the manifestation of God’s presence upon Mount Sinai (Exodus 19:16; 20:18). The year of jubilee when all debts were forgiven was heralded by the blast of a trumpet (Leviticus 25:9). The sounding of trumpets attended the downfall of Jericho (Joshua 6:4-20). A trumpet will attend God’s overthrow of the kingdoms of the earth (Psalms 45:7) and warns that the Day of the Lord is at hand (Joel 2:1). A trumpet signals the gathering of the Church at the rapture (1Corinthians 15:42;1 Thessalonians 4:6) and of the elect prior to the Millennial kingdom (Matthew 24:31). This voice was “like a trumpet”.

Verse 11:

The people in the New Testament days had no Bible as we know it.  All the scriptures were written on Scrolls, and mostly read to the crowds in the temples. Like stated earlier, few people were able to read back then anyways.

Verse 12

Verse 20 of this chapter identifies the 7 lampstands as the 7 churches.

Verse 13

And among these lampstands was Jesus.  The clothing He was wearing here is the same that the high priest wore, signifying that He is the High priest. And what is so great is that we have direct access to Him!

Verse 14

Jesus’ head and hair is as white as snow. White is the color of purity and a sign of righteousness. We are cleansed “whiter than snow”. (Isaiah 1:18 and 1 John 1:9). His eyes were blazing like fire. He has eyes that can see into our souls. We can hide our motives and our true thoughts from the rest of the world, but we cannot hide them from Him!

Verse 15

It appears that Jesus may have not had on shoes. I think John would of mentioned this if it were so. His voice being like the sound of rushing waters is like saying that it sounded like a lot of people, not just one voice.  Ezekiel had the same experience in Ezekiel 1:24.

Verse 16

The seven stars are the 7 angels of each of the 7 churches that He is going to write. (see verse 20). Angels play a very important part in God’s plan. We’ll discuss them more later in Revelations, and maybe have a different study on them one day. Jesus will be fighting with a sword coming out of His mouth, and it will be a sharp double-edged sword. Most Christians, if not all, realize that this sword is the Bible, God’s Holy word (Ephesians 6:17 and Hebrews 4:12).  All Jesus will have to do is speak and the world will be conquered, just as it was created by just a spoken word (Isaiah 11:4).

Verse 17

John fell at the Lord’s feet. I’m afraid today that we have lost the admiration and awe that we should have for God and His Son.  We have lost sight on His holiness. I hear people say OMG all the time. It doesn’t stand for Oh My Goodness, but instead it uses the name of God so irreverently.  As a child  I had a friend that would always say ” ga…” or “gosh”.  One day I used the expression “ga” around my mother and she quickly corrected me. I informed her that I didn’t say God, but she said that it sounded too much like it and that  I should never use His name in any other way but in a reverent way. I have never forgotten that!.  I also hear Him referred to as “the man upstairs”.  I just wish people would stop and think about how it’s going to be to stand before the holy God!! I don’t think anyone will be flippant, but instead I feel that we will all bow down and worship Him. He is HOLY. He is the Lord God Almighty!! His name is to be revered.  Even when Jesus was teaching His disciples to pray, He began, “Our Father, hallowed be Thy name!”(Matthew 6:9)  Jesus Himself taught us that His Father’s name should be held in very high regard, not ever used lightly.

Verse 18

Living eternally is something that we just can’t truly fathom. But it is going to happen! Another promise made to us!

Verse 19

John could of used these instructions to outline the scroll he was writing on.  The sections would of been: What I’ve seen in the past; What I see now; and what the future holds.

Verse 20

Like in a lot of books, the end verse reveals the mysteries of some of the previous verses.

Next week we’ll cover the 2nd Chapter of Revelations.

As always, Comments or questions are welcomed below.

References:

Lifeway Adult Sunday School Literature; Summer 2015.

http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/revelation/revelation-1/revelation-1-17.html

What exactly happens during the tribulation period?

So what is the tribulation and what happens during it? I think the best way to describe it is to look and expound on the scriptures in Revelation. There are 3 stages of the tribulation, with each stage having 7 different occurrences: first are the 7 seals, second the 7 trumpets, and finally 7 bowls of judgment. Why so many seven’s?  The number 7 means completeness in the Bible.

The progression of the tribulation begins in the 5th chapter of Revelations where there are 7 seals that need to be opened. I do believe that the seals being opened, the trumpets being blown, and the bowls being poured will be in the spiritual realm, not something we will be aware of as they are happening.  John, the writer of Revelation, wept in the 4th verse because there was no one who was worthy to open the seals.   But then it was told to him that there was somebody that was worthy, and that was Jesus. Chapter 6 begins with the Lamb opening the first of the seven seals.  This is how things will progress:

1st Seal: The antichrist appears.  He comes riding a white horse, just like Jesus will (Jesus also rides a white horse when He comes back for the final battle.  We’ll study later how the antichrist imitates Jesus in other ways also).  He is given a crown, which makes him able to rule over others.  He also has a bow, without an arrow mentioned, and is set on conquering. So since there are no arrows, it signifies that he will be conquering by peaceful methods.

2nd Seal: Wars will happen between nations.  Peace will be taken from the earth.

3rd Seal:  There will be worldwide famine and starvation.  Food will be scarce, so therefore prices will be very high.

4th Seal: ¼ of earth will die either by the sword, famine, plague or by wild beast.

5th Seal:  There will be people being martyred for proclaiming the word of God.

6th Seal:  There will be a great earthquake.  The sun will turn black and there will be a blood moon.  The sky is going to “recede like a scroll”.  Mountains and islands will be found in different locations than where they originally inhabited.  People, from the richest to the poorest, will cry out in terror while hiding in caves and praying to die.  People will realize then that the day of wrath of the Lamb has come!

After the 6th seal 4 angels will be given power to harm the land and sea (Rev. 7:2), but they are told to wait until 144,000 Jews have received the seal of the living God on their foreheads.  These are 12 tribes of Israel, dating back to Jacob’s sons.  Each tribe will have 12,000 people sealed.  There is one tribe missing though, the tribe of Dan, and is speculated by some to be because of the sin in that tribe, but no one knows for sure.  To replace Dan, Joseph’s son Manasseh is listed.

Also, at this time there will already be saints in heaven that have come out of the tribulation (Revelation 7:7).  Revelation 20:4 reveals that beheading will be the method of execution during the tribulation.  Sound familiar?  I don’t think that I had ever heard of a beheading of someone in my lifetime until the past year or so.  Now it’s on the news often these days that the radical Muslims are participating in these horrid events.

7th Seal:  After the seal is opened in chapter 8 of Revelation, there is a silence in heaven for about half an hour.  Then 7 trumpets are given to 7 angels.  There will be a storm and earthquake during this period.

Then comes the trumpets, all blown by angels.  Trumpets 1-6 are in chapters 8 and 9.

1st trumpet: It brings hail and fire mixed with blood. 1/3 of the earth will be burned up which includes the trees and grass.

2nd trumpet: Something like a large mountain is thrown into the sea (verse 8).  This turns the 1/3 of the sea into blood, 1/3 of all sea life dies, and 1/3 of the ships are destroyed.  Can you imagine the stench with so much sea life death?

3rd trumpet:  A star named Wormwood falls from the sky and turns 1/3 of the river and springs bitter.  Now when John was inspired to write this text, there was no conception among humanity that anything could fall from the heaven and produce bitter waters.  But today, according to the following website, Nasa has acknowledged that there are many nearby asteroids  and comets that could do this:

http://www.cogwriter.com/news/prophecy/nasa-indirectly-confirms-wormwood-prophecy/

It is now known that comets contain a cyanogen gas that when it mixes with water it forms hydrogen cyanide and will have a bitter taste and causes death.  This notion was unheard of in John’s day.  They had no way of knowing about the gases and the fact that bitter water would be the result of a “star” falling from the sky, except through the inspiration of God. This is just one of many points to make doubting people consider that maybe, just maybe, the Bible is God inspired.

And the fact that so many scientific matters baffles the daylight out of the most knowledgeable scientist, is just another testimony of the wonders of God.  We live in a very progressive age,with many new developments being discovered daily, but there still continues to be “mysteries” and there will always be because we are not God.  Only he knows all the mysteries that the heavens hold. Take a look at the following website to be made aware how even the most knowledgeable scientist are still in a state of confusion concerning things not being as they seem like they should, with no logical explanation for them.

http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2010/02nov_epoxi2/

The comet named Comet Hartley 2 puzzles researchers due to the size and purity of the outbursts of Cyanide. In the outburst all rationality says that dust should be a part of it but it is all gas. And the article goes on to say : “We have never seen this kind of activity in a comet before. The amount of gas suggests a global event—but how could such an event occur without dust? It’s a mystery”. So, the expert researcher has admitted that the comet could cause a global event? Interesting!!! Of course he goes on to say in effect, “Don’t worry, it couldn’t harm the earth”.  But I believe that it could possibly do just that. Maybe it will be another “mystery”. Not saying for sure that Wormwood will be comet but it sure seems to be pointing that way

4th trumpet: 1/3 of the sun, moon and stars are darkened.  1/3 of the day will be without light and 1/3 of night also.  Then a warning is sounded to the inhabitants of the earth about the next 3 trumpet blasts to be sounded.  These will be 3 “woes”.

5th trumpet: This is the 1st “woe” (9:12) There will be a demonic invasion of locusts on the earth that are given power like scorpions, including a horrible sting coming from the tail. They are released from the abyss, which is another word for hell (9:2-3).  I wonder if there sting will be part of the punishment in hell along with the fire.   They are not allowed to harm the grass, plants, or trees.  They will be only able to attack the ones that do not have the seal of God on their forehead.  They won’t be able to kill anyone but will be able to torture people for 5 months.  During this time, people will want to die, but there will be no death.  The locusts are going to look like horses, but the faces are going to resemble human.  They will be able to fly.

6th trumpet: 2nd woe- 1/3 of mankind will be killed by three plagues of fire, smoke and sulfur.  But even after all this, mankind does not repent.  They continue to worship demons, money, and idols that cannot see or walk.  They continue in their sexual immorality and the magic arts.

The two witnesses are mentioned between the 6th and 7th trumpet (Rev 11:1-14).  I will expound more on them later, maybe in another post.

Also the “mystery” that I discussed under the pre-wrath theory in a previous post happens here. Refer to that post if you would like more information.

7th trumpet:  After this trumpet there will be a celebration in heaven.  The angels and all other heavenly beings will be aware that the end is very near and that justice is fixing to be done. This is one of the facts that lead me to think that maybe the bowls of God’s wrath being poured out will be a very short period.

Then comes the 7 bowls that are filled with the wrath of God (15:7)

1st bowl: At one point during the 2nd half of the tribulation, considered the great tribulation, the antichrist will require all to take the number 666 on their forehead to be able to buy food and also they would be required to worship his image.  For all those that did take the 666 mark, the 1st bowl of God’s wrath contains ugly, painful sores.

2nd bowl:  Whereas before only 1/3 of the seas turned to blood and 1/3 of the living things within it died, now the whole sea will turn into blood and everything in it will die.

3rd bowl: Same concept with this bowl with the rivers and springs.   They’ll become blood. This is because the people left had killed God’s saints and prophets so now they are given blood to drink. (16:6).  In all probability, this will happen in the last week before Christ returns.  It’s a known fact that people cannot live more than a week without water and that’s when the weather is cool. A more typical estimate is 3 to 4 days. And the time is cut even shorter when intense heat that is about to follow is involved.  65% of the human body is made up of water. It’s lost very quickly when the heat increases which is fixing to happen with the 4th bowl.

4th bowl: The sun will become much hotter. So hot that it will be scorching people.  People will realize that God has control over these things but will STILL refuse to repent and glorify Him.  I wonder if they’ll be thinking, like I’ve heard people say today, “If God is like that, I don’t want to have anything to do with Him.”  That is amazing because if they realize that He is in control, they should also realize that He will have control at the end too.  It’s hard for me to fathom that after they see His great power that all people just don’t fall down and worship Him. It’s so to their detriment that they don’t! The hard headiness and blinders that Satan can instill in people is just to mind boggling to even try to comprehend!

5th bowl: The beasts’ kingdom will be thrown into total darkness.  Men will continue to curse God because they will be in a lot of pain from the sores on their bodies. They will still refuse to repent.

6th: This is getting even more exciting now!  The great Euphrates River will dry up to prepare the way for the armies coming from the east.  This river has always been a hindrance to any type of military movement. It seems to be the dividing line between 2 different types of people. Then 3 evil spirits of demons will appear that will resemble frogs.  They perform miracles and they gather kings of the world to do battle at a place called Armageddon (16:12-14).  Jesus states that He will be coming “like a thief” and informs those that are left to keep their clothes on.

7th bowl:  A loud voice comes out of the temple saying, “It is done!”   There will be lightening, thunder and the worst earthquake that there ever was. Cities will totally collapse. Even islands and mountains disappear and will not be able to be found.  Hail weighing 100 lbs. falls from the sky.  This makes people curse God.  And again, it still amazes me that with each of these curses, the people DO realize who is in control but STILL refuses to repent and turn to Him!  They are just caught up in their own selves, not wanting to admit that they are weak while He is strong.  They are going to hold to this stance to the end.

And FINALLY:

The heavens will open and the most magnificent sight that ever was seen will appear coming out of the sky on a white horse.  I get chills when I think of this.  The man who was scorn, beaten, humiliated and crucified will now come in all His strength and power that has always been a part of Him, even during His time on earth. The armies of heaven follow Him and are dressed in white linen.  His robe will have been dipped in blood. When He opens His mouth a sharp sword will come out and strike down the ones against Him. Zechariah 14: 1-9 tells us that He will stand on Mt. Olives and it will be split and form a great valley.  There will be no daytime or night time.  On this day there will only be one LORD. He will be victorious! He is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords! The beast and the false prophet will be captured and thrown into the fiery lake of burning sulfur.

So this ends the Great tribulation period with our Lord being victorious over all the nations! Hallelujah!

(As always, feel free to comment or ask questions below).

Are we having birth pains?

Are we near the end times?  Let’s look at what Jesus tells us will happen.

Matthew 24:3-8 (NIV)

3 As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”

4 Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. 6 You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of birth pains.

Let’s compare what Jesus said to what is happening in today times:

Many will come in my name claiming ‘I am the Messiah’ and will deceive many.”

If you google “people who claim to be Christ”, you may be surprised that there are many out there that do. Two well known ones in my life time were Jim Jones and David Koresh.  Both of these ended tragically.  Then there is one that really caught my eye, that I had never heard of. His name is Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda. If interested, you can watch a snippet of him making this claim on the Today Show on August 25, 2006.(see below)  He died in 2013, but his followers still are worshiping him. The church he founded is still going strong, with locations in 24 countries, most of them being in Latin America, but there are also a good many in Canada and here in the states. The office of the church is in Miami, Fla.  After saying he was Jesus for awhile, he then claimed to be the antichrist saying that his followers no longer had to follow the teachings of Jesus. He mostly ascribed to the teachings of Paul at this time, but he didn’t even follow them very well.  In his warped mind their was no sin and no need to pray.  Some of his followers even had 666 tattooed on their bodies.  Another man who is still alive and professing to be Jesus is Alan John Miller.  One of his followers, Mary Suzanne Luck, claims to be Mary Magdalene.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jV04YB1JfXc

http://www.nbcnews.com/id/18234605/ns/world_news-americas/t/followers-await-self-styled-antichrist/#.VdXtU_lViko

You will hear of wars and rumors of wars”, “Nations will rise against nations, and kingdom against kingdom.”

There are presently wars in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and many other places. One of the main rumored wars is between China and it’s neighbors and also the U.S.

There will be famines

I imagine you all have heard about the drought in California. Due to the dry land, there are fires popping up everywhere, 145 fires in 5 states was the last count that I heard about on the news. NASA has stated that it is worried that a drought could affect the food supply, not only here but across the globe. This is probably because the U.S. isn’t the only country that is dealing with this problem.  There are very high temperatures causing wildfires in Syria, and destroying a lot of their agricultural land also. As of yet, we have not experience this birth pain but there is now cause of concern that this could possibly happen.

earthquakes in various places

I am in total amazement of the information that I have found on earthquakes, mostly courtesy of the United States Geological Surveys website.  Do you realize that earthquakes happen every day? It is estimated on the mentioned website that approximately 50 happen each day, and more than  20,000 a year! Most of them are very small scaled though, measuring below 4 on the Richter scale, and are in remote areas. But there are a lot of them that aren’t.  Here are just a few that have happened in the past 30 days:

  1. 8-17-15: 4.0 earthquake in Piedmont, Calif.
  2. 8-15-15  6.6 earthquake in Lata, Solomon Islands
  3. 7-29-15  6.3 near Redoubt Volcano, Alaska
  4. 7-27-15  7.0 in Indonesia
  5. 7-27-15 4.5 in Crescent, Oklahoma

There were many more earthquakes listed on the website, but I chose these to show that they are in various places.  And if you watch the news, I’m sure you saw in May this year where there was a 7.8 one in Nepal, killing many people. Earthquakes are increasing in the central and eastern United States.  From 1973 to 2008 there were an average of 21, magnitude 3+ or larger earthquakes but then from 2009 – 2013, that increased to an average of 99 M3+ earthquakes. In 2014 there were 659 M3+ or larger earthquakes in this same area, so they are definitely on the increase. The USA Today ran an article reporting that the United States Geological Survey has also increased the chance of an 8.0 plus earthquake happening in California within the next 30 years from 4.7% to a 7% chance. So frequencies and magnitudes of earthquakes seems to be on the up rise.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/03/11/new-earthquake-forecast-revises-risks-in-california/24745879/

There are few more things that I have noticed about today’s time that seems to be gearing up for the return of our Lord. In Revelation 11:9, John tells us that the 2 witnesses that will be testifying for 1260 days will lay in the streets for 3 1/2 days and that “men from every people, tribe, language and nation will gaze on their bodies” (NIV).  Only by the revelation from the Lord could John had ever imagined a time that this could happen, don’t you think?  There weren’t even televisions at that time. News and letters had to be taken from town to town by someone on a horse. So how in the world could he had ever had the foresight to make this claim if not inspired by our all knowing Father? Today though, we have no problem imagining this happening, even more so with smart phones. And who knows, they may even come up with a big screen that shows in the sky before it’s over with where we won’t even have to look at any object. I heard Dr. David Jeremiah say recently that technology has finally caught up with Revelation. This has happened not only with the ability for everyone on earth to be able to view an event when it happens, but it is also now clear to us how the 666 mark on everyone can become a reality.  The notion of the microchip is growing rapidly.

Did you know that after 40 years the bald eagle is no longer extinct, as reported by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service? There are also other kinds of eagles,  which are in every country except for Antarctica. So what does this have to do with the end times? Revelation 8:13 tells us that an eagle calls out the three woes to the inhabitants of the earth. Unless something within nature changes, there will have to be a lot of eagles for them to be able to communicate with every person in the world.

One more thought.  God promises in several scriptures that the children of Israel will be brought back together:  Isaiah 43:5-6, Ezekiel 20:42 and Jeremiah 23:3-6. This all began after the nation of Israel was granted the right to the land in 1948 and it became a nation again, but it seems to be accelerating now. Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, a leading authority in mainstream Ultra-Orthodox Judaism, is urging Jews to return to Israel.  He feels the coming of the Messiah is very near! Of course, I don’t believe that he is talking about Jesus because the orthodox Jews do not accept Jesus as their Messiah. Remember, they are the ones that crucified Him. But for some reason, he thinks that the promised messiah is fixing to come.  It is my thought that this will definitely increase the numbers of Jews returning to their homeland .  This may even be in preparation for the anti christ. The Jews are going to get along with him at first. The anti christ is even going to allow the Jews to build the 3rd temple in Jerusalem. There are already hints in the air that the temple will be built soon (it definitely has to be built before the first 3 1/2 years of the tribulation ends because that is where the anti christ will stand to declare that he is god).

http://www.breakingisraelnews.com/44534/leading-israeli-rabbi-messiah-imminent-jewish-world/#LVRzHe4vSgSS6HSf.99

So, are the end times upon us?  I do believe we are getting close but Jesus does say in verse 6 of the scriptures at the start of this post that these things do not mean that the end is here, but it is “still to come”.  He reveals that the end will come when the gospel is preached to the whole world in verse 14 of Matthew 24. Due to all the advances in modern technology, it shouldn’t be long before this is fulfilled!

If you enjoyed this and want to learn more, please comment below. Or if you have questions or have any suggestions for future posts, I would love to hear them! I will try to post at least once a week if I have people interested. I am thinking that my next post will describe the stages of the tribulation itself. I hope to hear from you!

The Post Tribulation Theory

This theory says that the rapture will not happen until the end of the age.

  • Mathew 24:27-41:  Jesus describes His coming again.
    1. verse 28:  Birds will be at every carcass (birds gorge themselves on carcasses after the battle of Armageddon –Revelation 19:21)
    2. verse 31:  Will gather His elect from the 4 corners.
      1. Who are the elect?
        1. 1 Peter 1:1-2:  Those who have been sprinkled with Jesus’ blood. I use to think the elect were the 144,000 Jews but they are definitely not (See Revelation 14:1)
    3. verse 29:   It will be a time when the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light.
      1.   There are two times when this occurs: 6th Seal (Revelation 6:12) and 5th bowl (Rev. 16:10)
  • John 6: 39-40:  Jesus says that He will rise up all who believe in Him on the last day two times.
  • Revelation 2:26-27:  And once again, the Church of Thyatira is told that if they do His will until the end, they will have authority over all nations.
    1.    verse 27 states that H will rule them with an iron scepter.
      1. Revelation 19:15-Jesus rules with an iron scepter AFTER He fights the Battle of Armageddon at the end of the tribulation.
  • Revelation 20:4-5:  In these verses is the start of the 1000 year reign.
    1. The ones beheaded had come to life to reign with Christ during the 1000 years.  The rest of the dead does not come alive until after the 1000 years (vs 5).    This is considered the 1st resurrection.  So are there actually 3 resurrections during the tribulation?
  • Revelation 19:7: Informs us that it is now time for the wedding of the Lamb.  This happens right before Jesus returns to do battle against Satan, at the end of the tribulation.

THE PRE-WRATH THEORY

This theory assumes that the Lord will let us go through the part of the tribulation when people can say “peace and safety” but will rescue us before God’s wrath is poured out on the earth.  So this could be a week, a month, a year, or even a day after the beginning or before the end.

  1. Revelation 6:16-17:  First mention of “wrath” in Revelation is at the time of the 6th seal.  This is the wrath of the Lamb though, not God’s wrath.  And verse 17 states that the day of wrath has come.  Note that this is after the tribulation has already begun.  There have already been 5 seals opened.
  2. 1 Thessalonians 1:10 and 1 Thessalonians 5:9:  Both of these verses state clearly that we will not suffer the coming wrath.
    •  But does this mean that Christians will not suffer? Of course not!
    •  Many times saints in the Bible were chained, beaten and kept in jail for the sake of Christ.
    •  Jesus Himself suffered everything that we ever could, but more to a deeper degree: stripped, spat upon, made fun of, mocked, beaten and hung on a cross.
  3. Will we be taken away before the coming wrath or given a way out?
    • Noah and Lot were both rescued from God’s wrath by being told to flee (2 Peter 2:5-9).
    • Will we be given “hidden manna”? (Revelation 2:17)
    • Luke 21:35-37:  We are told to always be on watch so that we may be able to escape what is about to happen.
  4. God’s wrath will be selective.
    • Revelation 9:4: Locust told not to harm ones with seals of God on their foreheads.
      • Who will have the seals?
        1. Revelation 7:3-4: 144,000 Jews
        2. Ephesians 1:13; 2 Corinthians 1:21-22:  Christians
    • Revelation 16:2: Painful sores only on people who have the mark of the beast.
    • Revelation 16:10: 5th bowl of God’s wrath only poured out on the throne of the beast and his kingdom.
  5. Most compelling thought concerning this theory: Comparison of 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 and Revelation 10:6b-7
    • 1 Corinthians 15:51-52:
      1. Paul wrote the church of Corinth that he will tell them a mystery (church of Corinth was made up of Gentiles and Jews).  He goes on to say that everyone will not sleep (referring to death), but will be changed in a twinkling of an eye at the last trumpet, and the dead in Christ will be raised imperishable. Take note that this happens at the last trumpet.
    • Revelation 10:6b-7:
      1. There will no more delay, the 7th (and last) trumpet is about to be blown.
      2. The mystery of God that He announced to His servants is about to be accomplished (in verse 4 of Chapter 10, John is told not to write down what the mystery is that is about to be accomplished).
    • After comparing these 2, look at Revelation 11:15-18:
      1. The 7th trumpet is blown and the 24 elders fell on their faces and worshiped God and says that the time has come for rewarding of His servant and the saints.
      2. Also, the elders reveal that God’s wrath has come (vs. 18)
  6. There are 2 times in Revelation where a voice is heard saying “Come up here”.
    • John’s call to heaven-Revelation 4:1 and
    • Revelation 11:12-Loud voice from heaven tells the two witnesses to ‘Come up here”.
      1. this is after they have been killed by the beast and have been dead for 3 days.
      2. Happens somewhere in the middle of the tribulation.  They will prophesy 1260 days during the tribulation (11:3).
      3. This IS an actual rapture of 2 humans.
  7. There are 2 different times that the Bible tells us that Jesus will actually return to the earth and a harvest of the earth will take place, one at the end of the tribulation and one sometimes during it.  So if the pretribulation period is right, there will actually be 3 harvests.
    • Zechariah 14:3-4
      1. This is referring to when the Lord does battle/Battle of Armageddon. (Rev. 19:11-18)
      2. Will stand on Mt. of Olives which will be split into.
      3. At the end of the tribulation.
    • Revelation 14:1
      1. Will stand on Mt. Zion this time with the 144,000 Jews who had His name on their foreheads.
      2. This is not at the end and couldn’t be at the beginning either since the 144,000 have already been redeemed from the earth (14:3).  This occurs somewhere in the midst of the tribulation.
      3. And remember that in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, Jesus comes down with a loud command.  Is it one of these times or is there still another time He comes to call us home?
  8. There are also two harvests of the earth that is told to us in the Bible.
    • Revelation 14:14-20:
      1. verse 14: One like the Son of Man is seated on a cloud and is wearing a gold crown.
      2. verse 15:  Another angel shouted to the one who was like the Son of Man, to reap the earth with his sickle because the harvest is ripe.
      3. verse 16: The earth was harvested.
      4. verse 17: Another angel with a sickle appeared.
      5. verse 18; Still another angel, who had charge of the fire appeared and told the one with the sickle to reap the grapes.
      6. verse 19: The angel reaps and throws them to where God’s wrath is.
      7. verse 20: Where they were thrown, much blood flowed, as high as the horses bridles.
    • Matthew 13:30, 37-43:
      1. verse 30: Jesus tells the harvesters to first collect the weeds to be burned and then bring the wheat into His barn.  In later verses He explains this parable.
      2. verse 37: The one that sows the good seed is the Son of Man.
      3. verses 38-39:  The weeds are sown by the enemy, the devil.
      4. verse 39: Also makes it clear that this is the harvest at the end of the age.
      5. verse 40: Again, He says that this happens at the end of the age.
      6. verse 42: The weeds will thrown into the fiery furnace where there will be a lot of crying and gnashing of teeth.
      7. verse 43: The righteous will shine like the sun in the presence of our Holy Father.
    • Let’s compare facts of the 2 harvests of the earth:
      1. In Matthew’s parable of the weeds, Christ says two times that the harvest that He is referring to will happen at the end of the age.  Whereas, the harvest in Revelation is before the bowls are fixing to be poured out on the earth which contain the wrath of God.
      2. In Matthew, Jesus sends out His angels to first gather the weeds (sons of the evil one-unsaved) to be burned, and then the wheat (sons of the kingdom-saved) to be put in His barn.  In Revelation, the earth was harvested first of the ripe ones (saved).  THEN the people that were to be thrown into God’s wrath were harvested (unsaved).  So in other words, there is two times that the earth will be harvested, one with the saved being harvested first and the other with the unsaved being first.
      3. In Matthew, the weeds (unsaved) are thrown directly in the fiery furnace, which in Revelations happens after the 1000 year reign (Revelation 20:15) and the righteous will get to be in the presence of the Father.  Whereas in Revelation’s harvest, the saved are reaped , leaving the grapes (unsaved) to be thrown to the place where God’s wrath was going to be, NOT the fiery furnace.  Look again at verse 20 of Revelation 14.  The place these grapes are going to be thrown will be a place where there will be much blood that will be so high as to reach the horses bridle.  This may be the Battle of Armageddon since according to Revelation 19:17-21, it is going to  be a very bloody scene.
    • So let me emphasize that there are definitely two times the Bible makes it clear that the earth will be harvested, one at the end of the age, where the unsaved will be thrown into the fiery furnace and one in the midst of the tribulation, right before the unrighteous are thrown to where God’s wrath is.

          

THE MID-TRIBULATION THEORY

This theory makes the assumption that believers will be here for the 1st half of the tribulation but will be raptured up at midpoint.

  1. Daniel 9:27:  This is the only time that I’ve been able to find that the Bible mentions anything happening at midpoint.  I’m sure that if we recognize the beginning of the tribulation (which I’m not so sure we will), there will be people marking their calendars in hopes that He will come at the midpoint since the rapture did not happen at the beginning.  This is why I don’t think this theory has much credence to it.

THE PRE-TRIBULATION THEORY

This theory is base on the assumption that the church will not have to go through any of the tribulation. Below are some scriptures that the believers of this theory uses to support their belief.

  1.  Daniel 12:1 This scripture talks about a very distressful time, one like no other BUT the ones written in the book of life will be delivered. So which book is it? Let’s hope it’s the Book of Life mentioned in Revelation 13:8.  But there are other books mentioned so it may not be (Revelation 20:12).
  2. 1 Thessalonians 5:3:  People are saying “Peace and safety” at the coming of the Lord.  If people are saying this, it stands to reason that the Lord will return for us before the 2nd half of the tribulation, called the Great Tribulation.  This is when the antichrist will be on a mission to conquer the world and it will be a tremendously devastating time.  It doesn’t seem like anyone will be feeling safe or at peace.
  3. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18:  I have heard this referred to as the “rapture text”.  We learn that we will be caught up to be with Jesus, with the dead in Christ rising first.  Jesus comes down, gives a loud command and we meet Him in the air.  This is quite different from the final time He returns in Revelation 19:11-16.  Then He returns on a white horse with the armies of heaven behind Him.  This scripture points to maybe pre-tribulation or mid, but definitely not post-tribulation.  Although who’s to say that it couldn’t be a week or so before He returns on the white horse?
  4. 2 Thessalonians 2:7:  Something is holding back the power of the antichrist.  Most pre-tribulationists say that this is the church, reasoning that the church will have to be removed before the antichrist can begin His work  Even if this is correct, there is still the fact told to us in Daniel 9:27 that the antichrist’s abomination that destroys will not be revealed until halfway through the tribulation.  I think there is a possibility that we won’t even recognize him as the antichrist until this point, which is discussed more thoroughly in my Study Guide booklet to be published soon (hopefully).
  5. Revelation 3:10:  Church of Philadelphia is going to be kept from the hour of trial.  But is the hour of trial the whole tribulation?  That is not clearly spelled out. (Compare this to Revelation 2:26, the letter to the Church of Thyatira who, according to this passage, will be here until the end).
  6. One of the main reasons that some are convinced that the pre-tribulation is right is because the word “church” is not mentioned after chapter 3 in Revelation.
    • But the word saint is mentioned in Revelation 13:7,10 and Revelation 14:12. (Depending on your version of the Bible, these verses can say saint or holy, they are interchangeable).
      1. The word Saint was used to refer to those who follow Jesus and made up the church at that time:
        • Romans 1:6-7
        • Acts 9:13
        • Acts 26:9-10
        • Philippians 4:21-22
      2. There will be multitudes coming out of the tribulation who have been washed in the blood of the Lamb (Revelation 7:9,13-14).  So are we to say that they ae not part of he “church” and not a “bride” of Christ?
      3. And again, the church of Thyatira will be here until the end. (Revelation 2:26)