Let’s Talk About the Coming Tribulation Over Several Posts, Shall We? All right…

September 11, 2013 at 12:50 PM 11 comments

A basic outline of the end times.

A basic outline of the end times.

I teach Eschatology (the study of the end times) often. I’ve done so at numerous churches and most recently at a Bible Prophecy Conference for the Deaf near Reserve, NM.

A very controversial subject related to the study of end times is of course, the Rapture. I think it’s been done to death, don’t you? Does it matter when we are “caught up” to be with Christ forever and whether or not it will happen during our lives? Who cares? I’m going to be here as long as it is His will for me to be here. I won’t be leaving one moment sooner than I am supposed to leave and that will most likely be through my natural death, not the Rapture. I don’t build my life around the Rapture. I build my life around the fact that one day, I will be with Him. Because of that, I want to be sure that what I’m doing here pleases Him.

Frankly, I don’t care when the Rapture happens. I don’t care when my death happens either. It’s in His hands and there it will stay. I have my beliefs concerning the Rapture, but it does no good to argue about it. None. I realize there appears to be a growing number of individuals (mainly PostTribbers) who now believe that the PreTrib Rapture is not only wrong, but is/has caused irreparable damage to the spiritual lives of many. Because they now see the PreTrib Rapture position as one built on deception, then those who believe it are deceived. Moreover, those who believe it are guilty of deceiving others when they teach about the PreTrib Rapture position. It is this “deception” (they believe) that will cause many to fall away from Christ in the end.

Of course, their belief fully negates God’s ability to keep saving, in my opinion. It actually denigrates God and removes Him and His power from the picture completely. Rather than see the extraordinary problem with their own view regarding the PreTrib Rapture position, they continue to point the finger at the person who believes in the PreTrib Rapture as the culprit, or enemy of the faith.

I am stating loudly and clearly that I reject such a proposition. God is far more powerful than these individuals credit Him with being. The only deception I see is in Satan’s ability to pit one Christian against another. History has examples of people who worked side by side – Pre and Post Tribbers – as they spread the gospel of Jesus Christ. Today, we are being forced to choose sides and remove ourselves from “deceivers.” That is something that grieves the Lord immensely. I will have no part in that. I believe that the Rapture will occur prior to the coming Tribulation, but I would rather talk about the coming Tribulation because that is going to drastically affect the entire world. The Rapture will as well, but for other reasons. During the Tribulation, people will have ample opportunities to receive Christ and His salvation. Not so with the Rapture.

The Tribulation is another area of controversy. Is there an area of Scripture that is not controversial, we might ask? The Tribulation is described as a period of time – seven years – in which God pours out His wrath onto this world and humanity. He does this for two reasons: 1) to purify Israel and gather to Himself the final Remnant of Jews, and 2) to judge the people of the world for how they have continued to reject Him as God and for how they have treated Israel, the apple of His eye.

The ultimate purpose of the Tribulation is geared toward culling from the nation of Israel (not simply defined by borders here, but comprising all Jews) a final Remnant of believers who will have their eyes open to the truth about Jesus Christ. They will come to see that Jesus Christ is God. Their eyes will simply be opened.

This very same thing happened to the thief on the cross who hung next to Jesus as they both died (cf. Luke 23). That thief at one point, ridiculed and harassed Jesus. Then, he saw Him as He was and marveled. He then embraced that truth, humbled himself, and asked to be remembered by Jesus. Jesus responded by telling the man that they would be together in paradise that very day.

This is what will occur in the hearts of those Jews whom God has chosen to be part of His final Remnant. They will see the truth, they will embrace that truth, and they will become messengers of the gospel of Christ during the Tribulation period because of it.

But as I conclude this post today, the one thing I would like to clarify is regarding the Tribulation itself. What is it and how do we know? We will get into this in greater depth, but we need to understand that the Tribulation period is the final “week” that Daniel highlights in Daniel 9:27. This last week translates to a period of seven years. We will discuss this in an upcoming post.

Some today now believe that the Tribulation is only to be three and a half years in length based on Matthew 24. I will show why this is not the case and I will also show what Jesus was actually referring to in that passage.

The Tribulation is referred to as many things in Scripture from the “day of the Lord,” to “Jacob’s Trouble.” These names are interesting for what they tell us. With respect to the label, “the day of the Lord,” people argue about whether or not that is one specific day or a period of time. As someone who takes the Bible literally (not literalistically), I am supposed (it is alleged) to see the word “day” and understand it as one 24-hour period because that’s what a day is (I’m told). However, when I say I take the Bible literally, I am talking about determining the literal meaning.

We’ve all heard people say something like, “You know, back in the day…” or “I remember in my day growing up…” In both cases, the term “day” is not referencing one specific 24-hour period. It is representative of a period of time. How long that period of time is depends upon what the person speaking about it means. In other words, the context.

I believe the same thing applies here with the phrase “day of the Lord” in Scripture. Yes, there is a specific “day” upon which Jesus returns to earth to judge the nations and begin setting up His Millennial Kingdom at the end of the Tribulation. At the same time, since Jesus controls all the action of the Tribulation (once he opens the scroll; directing the opening the Seals, the blowing of the Trumpets, and the pouring out of the Bowls), it can also be stated that the entire Tribulation period is His time, or the “day of the Lord.”

When we come back next time, I’ll get into a bit more depth with “the day of the Lord.” I’ll also begin to provide Scriptural information about why I believe the Bible teaches that the Tribulation will be a full seven years. We will then go over what happens during those seven years. Join me then and bring your Bible!

Entry filed under: israel, Posttribulational Rapture, Pretribulational Rapture, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology. Tags: , .

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11 Comments

  • […] This is the time of the Tribulation (not “a” tribulation). As mentioned in my earlier article, God does this for two very important reasons. If you haven’t read that article, I would […]

  • 2. Sherry  |  September 11, 2013 at 1:06 PM

    Interesting that you mention that there are teachers that are saying the Tribulation won’t be a full seven years since I’ve been seeing that to be so lately by a couple of my favorite online bible prophecy teachers. I’ve always believed it to be the full seven years with the last 3 1/2 being the most severe of times.

    I also believe that the pious post-tribbers are confusing man’s wrath on man with God’s wrath on man. There will be both of those wraths during the Tribulation Period.

    I’m looking forward to your posts on this subject-I love studying the End Times.

    • 3. modres  |  September 11, 2013 at 1:10 PM

      You hit several nails on the head, Sherry. Within the last few years, I’ve met more people who have abbreviated the Tribulation down to 3.5 years, as if God’s Word has changed. Ridiculous šŸ™‚

      Regarding the wrath situation, I believe as you do, that there confusion over the wrath issue, with many believing that the wrath poured out during the Tribulation comes from man or Satan, but not God. That’s like saying Satan destroyed Sodom or created the Flood of Noah’s day. No, those events were brought to pass by God’s hand and His alone. They were indicative of His wrath and so will the Tribulation period be as well.

      • 4. Sherry  |  September 11, 2013 at 4:04 PM

        I like how you explained God’s wrath being poured out in history and that’s what it will be in the Tribulation. I may have to use it some day… šŸ˜›

      • 5. modres  |  September 11, 2013 at 4:25 PM

        Seems obvious, doesn’t it?

        Use whatever you’d like! I’m sure others mentioned it before I did.

      • 6. libslayer2013  |  September 12, 2013 at 11:01 AM

        I love this post and I’ll tell you why.

      • 7. modres  |  September 12, 2013 at 12:26 PM

        Why?

      • 8. libslayer2013  |  September 12, 2013 at 11:11 AM

        I found myself caught up in this exact conversation with a good friend of mine. Personally I believe the Bible defines a pre-tribulation rapture and my friend believes the rapture will come 3.5 years into the tribulation. As we talked I realized that it suddenly didn’t matter to me. Our job is to evangelize and share God’s message until He comes and we were wasting previous time disputing a mute point.. We sometimes get so caught up in the future that we forget about the present . The tribulation is going to be horrific fer those who’ rejected God and those numbers include our loved ones and friends. Our mission should always be to ensure everyone around us hears the Gospel so that we’ll be blameless at His coming.
        BTW, I’m looking forward to your coming blogs.

      • 9. modres  |  September 12, 2013 at 12:26 PM

        Thank you for your comments. The most important thing we can to is spread the gospel whether they listen or not. Now is the time. Now is the day.

      • 10. libslayer2013  |  September 12, 2013 at 12:29 PM

        Don’t get me wrong, I love a good theological discussion. But when discussion detracts from mission then we have a small problem. šŸ˜€

      • 11. modres  |  September 12, 2013 at 12:36 PM

        And that is EXACTLY the problem. When the discussion detracts from the mission – as it does too often with Eschatology – we are doing something wrong. šŸ™‚


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