What is the Coming Tribulation All About? Part 1

July 9, 2014 at 10:48 AM 2 comments

asteroid_earthThe specifics of the coming Tribulation are taught in Scripture. For those who question it or prefer to interpret Scripture allegorically, feel free to continue in that vein and ignore this series on what Jesus Himself promised would be the worst tribulation that ever occurred on the earth (cf. Matthew 24). It is not my intent to open up a debate about the timing of the Rapture or other aspects of end times components. I’m not interested in debating anyone over it as it really serves no good purpose and usually winds up getting people sidetracked. If you disagree with my opinions here, that’s perfectly fine. Please do not assume though that your disagreement with me is an invitation to “straighten me out.” I’m quite certain you have better things to do with your time.

I’m also delving into this subject because there appears to be a growing consensus that the Tribulation has actually begun. In my opinion, based on my understanding of the Bible, it has not begun yet. It certainly feels close though, doesn’t it? There is one specific event which must occur before the Tribulation can occur. We’ll get into that as we go.

The word “tribulation” is used in Scripture in several ways. First, it is used in a general way to note that life is often replete with difficulties (tribulations) that vex us, that try our faith. If allowed, these seasons of tribulation will cause us to grow in our faith. They are ordained by God and it is our job to humble ourselves under His mighty hand so that in due time He will lift us up (cf. 1 Peter 5:6).

Second, the word “tribulation” is also used in a very specific way to point to a time set by the Lord Himself and has come to be known as THE tribulation period. Context can and often does make the difference between understanding exactly how a word or phrase is used in Scripture.

For instance, Paul, in his letter to the Romans stated this about tribulations in general: “And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance…” (Romans 5:3). Paul is speaking here of the general difficulties that everyone, including Christians experience in this life.

James points to the same thing in James 1:2-4. “ Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” This type of tribulation can include persecution as well that comes from the world (ultimately, from Satan). God can and does use this type of persecution to strengthen our resolve, our faith, our testimony to the world.

However, there is a huge difference between this type of general tribulation (also referred to as trials) noted by Paul, James, and others, and the specific tribulation that Jesus points to in the Olivet Discourse. There, in Matthew 24, Jesus points to a specific period of time toward the end of this current age in which we live, when because of the fact that God will pour out His judgment on the earth in the form of His wrath, the world will be a terrible place to live during that time.

Why is this time period designated to be a time of God’s wrath? If we look at Daniel 9:27, we will clearly see that the final “week” (seven years) of human history begins when the “he” in that verse confirms a covenant with the many for one week. The “he” in that verse refers to the Antichrist (going back to the first antecedent being the “prince” of the people who is to come in verse 26b; not Messiah, but the other “prince” in the text).

Antichrist will broker some type of covenant with the many (referring here to Israel; the entire ninth chapter of Daniel refers to the people of Israel or Daniel’s people). Once he does that, Israel will have effectively signed a deal with the devil (literally) and it is at that point, God’s patience with His nation comes to an end. We note that in Revelation 5 and following, all activity related to the Tribulation period (the final “week” of human history referenced in Daniel 9:27) is directed by the Lamb from the throne. Satan is merely one of the players in the unfolding events.

purposes

Click on the image to enlarge

We need to understand then that this specific tribulation that Jesus refers to in Matthew 24 is a set period of time referenced in Daniel 9:27 (and various other places throughout Scripture) and there are specific reasons why God has decreed that this period of seven-years will occur as the Tribulation/Great Tribulation. Please note the image (click to enlarge) that supplies the reasons for this coming period of Tribulation, as noted in Daniel 9:24-27.

  1. To finish the transgression (which is tied to the rejection of Messiah)
  2. To make an end of sin
  3. To make reconciliation for iniquity
  4. To bring in an age of righteousness
  5. To cause a cessation of prophecy
  6. To anoint the Most Holy Place

The above reasons essentially do one thing: pull out of Israel God’s final remnant and perfect them. This is the main reason for the coming Tribulation/Great Tribulation. The secondary reason is to pour out God’s wrath on the earth, onto the nations that have rejected Him and His chosen people. From beginning to end, the entirety of the seven years represents God’s wrath and we will spend time in this brief series to look at many of the aspects of the Tribulation period, when it begins, what happens during it, what happens immediately afterwards, and what occurs after that.

Read more about Dr. Fred here on his author page at Amazon.com

Entry filed under: Dr. Fred, Political Correctness, Politically Correct, Politics, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy. Tags: , .

America as a Nation Cannot Take Much More… What is the Coming Tribulation All About? Part 2

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