Exactly how do we go about this? I have a couple of points I’d like to make before I get into this subject. Charles Finney was a preacher back in the late 1700 hundreds and early 1800 hundreds. According to his testimony; he, as a lawyer went out one day and prayed to have God change his life. When he returned to his office, he explained to the client he was meeting with that he could not argue his case for him, he now argued a case for Jesus Christ. That’s what he did for the remainder of his life.
In ( Luke’s gospel ) Luke says this:
( Luke 1:1-4 )
Forsomuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us, ( 2 ) Even as they delivered them unto us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the word; ( 3 ) It seemed good for me also, having perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus, ( 4 ) that thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed.
As we look at these two men, one, just a man like any other and, then Luke being a man that we have an opportunity to read all he says in God’s word. If you’d like to see an extention of what Luke writes you can read it in ( Acts ). You can see in ( Acts 1 ) and the next few verses that Luke also wrote that as well.
I only point this out because it doesn’t matter whether it’s Charles Finney, Luke in which we see in the Bible or, me. It can also be any other person that has a desire to write and teach anything spiritual; it still takes the Holy Spirit within man to reveal truth and, it also takes the desire of every man to earnestly seek to know truth.
With all due respect, without even comparing myself in a spiritual light to Charles Finney, there is a point to be made. neither he or I, by name can be found in scripture but, Luke’s name is. Luke said he had ( perfect understanding of all things from the very first ). Therefore, with all that Luke understood; it still means nothing to you or I; unless we, by the power of the Holy Spirit truly seek that understanding. Since I used Charles Finny’s name, I’ll say that reading after him, he looked at some things different than I do. But, we all can learn and continue to seek truth!
All these things I point out because ( I believe ) the truth about any subject in scripture can be understood and known as fact, even ( TRIBULATION ). Since Luke had perfect understanding and, penned down the ( Book of Acts ); how well do you understand that book? I only asked that question because, if we seek earnestly to know truth then , it takes (earnest prayer) (sincere desire) and (continual study) on your own to find the facts you need to see.
( Therefore, I set out to prove where I stand on (TRIBULATION FACTS) and why.
I’ll start this by saying that I am (Premillennial). In simple terms, I believe the Bible teaches that Jesus Christ will set up His kingdom for one thousand years right here upon this earth. I believe that what we reference as (the Church) will leave this earth by what we call (the rapture) around seven years before He returns to this earth to set up his KIngdom.
There are those that also have another view. They are called (Amillennial). I can’t say that I completely understand all they believe but, what I understand is that they don’t believe that there will be a millennial riegn of Christ upon this earth. They believe that that the millennial has already begun and that it is identical with the current Church age.
The third word for those with an apposing view is (postmillennial). I guess, in short; the people with this view believe that Jesus Christ will not return until after the peaceful millennial kingdom has been established. I realize that there are many different ways to look at this. Many believe that (The Church) will go through part of (three and one half years) of the triblation.
Since I, within my studying am convinced of the (premillennial) view, I have no reason to even see other views. Look at this verse: (Romans 14:5) One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.
I look at this verse as deeper than just what he is saying there. It’s very necessary that we seek to allow the Spirit of God to settle ourselves in all that we believe. This is what I have tried to do. In other words, what I teach here will not be according to any denomination, School teaching or even anything that I have been taught by any man. I realize that I am a product of all that I have heard but, I have settled these things in my heart. That being simply between the Holy Spirit of God and I.
I’m not hear to do anything other than to allow the Spirit of God to teach truth. What you might believe is completely between you and God. However, all I ask is that you allow God’s Spirit to speak as we study.
There are many (doctrines) to learn in scripture, (The Doctrine of Tribulation) is just one of them. There are many men or people that teach doctrines. The Apostle Paul talked about that in (Colossians 2:22). Jesus Christ talked about it in: (Matthew 15:9) In both places, both men speak of (the Commandments and doctrines of men).
As I seek to teach this, you must understand that (I’m just a man). Therefore, it’s not this man you need to be taught by, I’m simply a vessel seeking to be used by God’s Spirit. One more verse and we’ll get into (Tribualtion).
Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
Did you notice the phrases : (faithful word) (as he hath been taught) (sound doctrine)? You must be taught by the (Holy Spirit of God). That alone becomes (sound Doctrine) If, in what I teach; you are not convinced by God’s Spirit, using God’s word; that I am correct then, leave it alone, you keep searching!
WHAT IS TRIBULATION?
When we speak of Biblical Tribulation, what are we speaking of? That would be the first (Biblical truth) we must understand. Therefore, let’s find the answer to that question. Most people, maybe not all; that speak of (Tribulation) understand and, at least they know about the nation of Israel. Way back in Genesis God Chose them to be His people. He called that nation out, even began it with the birth of Isaac. Isaac was the only (son of promise) of Abraham and Sarah. Abraham had another son after the flesh. His name was Ishmael. He was the son of Abraham and Hagar. She was the handmaid of Sarah. This is a son after the flesh, not after the promise God made to Abraham and Sarah.
The Nation of Israel, being God’s people were, in most cases, not pleasing to God the Father. You can study that out. As we see in (the book of Daniel); Israel was in captivity because of their disobedience to God the Father. However, Daniel was a God fearing man and, he chose to live a life as being obedient to God the Father; even if his nation was not. You can read this whole book and see how God used Daniel because of his obedience. To understand (Tribulation) we must begin in this Book.
Daniel 9: 23-27
AT THE BEGINNING OF THY SUPPLICATIONS THE COMMANDMENT CAME FORTH, AND I AM COME TO SHEW THEE, FOR THOU ART GREATLY BELOVED: THEREFORE UNDERSTAND THE MATTER, AND CONSIDER THE VISION. ( 24 ) SEVENTY WEEKS ARE DETERMINED UPON THY PEOPLE AND THY HOLY CITY, TO FINISH THE TRANSGRESSION, AND TO MAKE RECONCILIATION FOR INIQUITY, AND TO BRING IN EVERLASTING RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND TO SEAL UP THE VISION AND PROPHECY, AND TO ANOINT THE MOST HOLY. ( 25 ) KNOW THEREFORE AND UNDERSTAND, THAT FROM THE GOING FORTH OF THE COMMANDMENT TO RESTORE AND TO BUILD JERUSALEM UNTO THE MESSIAH THE PRINCE SHALL BE SEVEN WEEKS, AND THREE SCORE AND TWO WEEKS: THE STREET SHALL BE BUILT AGAIN AND THE WALL, EVEN IN TROUBLOUS TIMES. ( 26 ) AND AFTER THREESCORE AND TWO WEEKS SHALL MESSIAH BE CUT OFF, BUT NOT FOR HIMSELF: AND THE PEOPLE OF THE PRINCE THAT SHALL COME SHALL DESTROY THE CITY AND THE SANCTUARY; AND THE END THEREOF SHALL BE WITH A FLOOD, AND UNTO THE END OF THE WAR DESOLATIONS ARE DETERMINED. ( 27 ) AND HE SHALL CONFIRM THE COVENANT WITH MANY FOR ONE WEEK: AND IN THE MIDST OF THE WEEK HE SHALL CAUSE THE SACRIFICE AND THE OBLATION TO CEASE, AND FOR THE OVERSPREADING OF ABOMINATIONS HE SHALL MAKE IT DESOLATE, EVEN UNTIL THE CONSUMATION, AND THAT DETERMINED SHALL BE POURED UPON THE DESOLATE.
I shared with a while back that I believe in (pre-tribulation) meaning that Jesus Christ will call the Church home before any part of the tribuation will begin. I want you to know that understanding why I believe that is not simple. God designed his word so that (a person or individual) must be born again to be able to see all the mysteries in scripture. Now, when I say that; it’s still not as simple as just being born again. It takes study and desire to know. It’s just like a physical desire to know something. If you deire to be a brain surgeon, what does it take? You can’t just say the word and get it.
Even as you look at these verses. I read it but, now it must be studied out. What few things I tell you about these verses will just be off the very top. For you to understand and know, you must be (convinced in you own mind). I’ve studied it and I am convinced.
Notice this phrase we see here: (SHALL BE SEVEN WEEKS, AND THREE SCORE AND TWO WEEKS). It says from the going forth of the commandment, that’s a starting point. It ends at (THE MESSIA ). It says (AFTER THREE SCORE AND TWO WEEKS) shall Messiah be cut of. What this means is that after (sixty nine) of the weeks we are speaking of ( Jesus Christ ) will be crucified or (cut off).
That means, when Jesus was crucified, that was the end of the ( sixty nineth week ). In this terminology a week is a period of (seven years). So 69 weeks times 7 years equals 483 years. Therefore, from the going forth of the commandment until the crucifixion of Christ was 483 years. Now, look at this verse:
AND, BEHOLD, THERE WAS A MAN IN JERUSALEM, WHOSE NAME WAS SIMEON, AND THE SAME WAS MAN WAS JUST AND DEVOUT, WAITING FOR THE CONSOLATION OF ISRAEL: AND THE HOLY GHOST WAS UPON HIM. (26) AND IT WAS REVEALED UNTO HIM BY THE HOLY GHOST, THAT HE SHOULD NOT SEE DEATH, BEFORE HE HAD SEEN THE LORD’S CHILD.
Simeon, with a desire to know; had studied and figured out that; according to this time frame he was living in the day that the (Christ child would be born). We, or any person could, and still can study the Old Testament and see, according to a time frame when Christ would be born, live and die.
REALIZING TIME FRAMES IN SCRIPTURE
We’ll begin this section with: ( Hebrews 1:1-2 ) GOD, WHO AT SUNDRY TIME AND IN DIVERS MANNERS SPAKE IN TIMES PAST UNTO THE FATHERS BY THE PROPHETS, ( 2 ) HATH IN THESE LAST DAYS SPOKEN UNTO US BY HIS SON, WHOM HE HATH APPOINTED HEIR OF ALL THINGS, BY WHOM ALSO HE MADE THE WORLDS;
If you are born again, seeking to know truth and, without putting any kind of name or prefix to what is said in these verses, can we agree that it’s simply pointing out that ( GOD ) in different ways, at different times spoke to Israel or, we can say, people since this world began? Can we agree on that?
The Bible tell us here in Hebrews that ( IN THESE LAST DAYS ) God spoke unto them by his Son. I believe the Apostle Paul wrote the book of Hebrews. However, it actually doesn’t matter who. The point is, it was written after the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. So, how did God speak to them or, each of us now? I just want you to notice the change. Jesus Christ arose and went back to the father. Therefore, he was speaking, revealing truth to men a different way even at that time.
I personally know of five different manners that God dealt with man up until the day we live now. That fact has to be seen and, also understood in order to know that even the way he deals with our hearts now will come to a close. So, what was the first way God dealt with man and, when did it end?
In the beginning, God created ADAM and EVE. He placed then in the Garden of Eden. There was a tree in the midst of that garden: ( THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL ). They could eat of every tree in the garden but they could not of the fruit of that tree. That was the law God gave them and, he also told him what would happen if they did. You can read that in the first few chapters of Genesis. We know simply by reading that those two failed the test and, God set them out of the Garden. He placed an angel at the gate so no one could go back in and eat of that tree.
Therefore, that particular way that God dealt with mankind came and went. We have no concern for that tree today do we? Now once they left the garden, how did God deal with people without that tree? As far as we know, it was still only Adam and Eve. However, they did began to multipy upon the face of this earth. There’s a lot that can be taught here but, we are simply looking into how God dealt with mankind. Since Adam and Eve left that Garden and, are now outside of that, shall we say ( protection of God ), we see no law, nothing to govern their actions do we? The only law that God has given to man is that concerning the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. That tree is now behind these two people and they cannot return to that place.
However, notice this verse:
( Genesis 3:22 )
And the Lord God said, Behold, the man has become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:
If you will notice in that verse God says this: ( the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil ). So, from the time that Adam and Eve left the garden, even until the flood of Noah, man was innocent. He had nothing to govern him other than his own conscience. What’s wrong with conscience? It becomes what each person decides what is good and bad. In:
( 1 Timothy 4:2 )
Speaking lies in hypoccrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
Man, left to himself can decide what he believes to be good and bad, right and wrong without some type of guideline to show him ( What God the Father ) deems to be right from wrong. That fact sets a standard. It also gives man a level to seek to live up to.
We could get a lot deeper into this but, I only point that out to show you a difference in ( Adam and Eve ) in the garden and, ( their descendants ) once they left the garden. As a matter of fact; the next time we see God give any direction as far as law is in:
( Genesis 9:6 )
Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man. He also instructs them to be fruitful and multiply. At that point he made a covenant with them that the world would never be destroyed by water again.
Just a little earlier than this; God did speak to Noah, instructing him to build an Ark. Although this was the case, there was no law given at that time other than saying that any man that desired to be spared would have to be on that Ark when the flood came. We can see here where God offered grace before judgement would come. We also know that ( the conscience in man ) would cause him to ( seek God ) by faith only or, remain as they were.
I, myself can see at least seven beginnings and endings in scripture. I say, the time to which we live is the fifth and, we can see two more. As we look at just what I’ve mentioned, we must notice that from the very beginning its always been within the heart of man to know good from evil. I just happens to be that more often than not, more men than not choose to do evil.
For instance, Abraham, the next spiritual man basically mentioned in scripture. Do you realize that Abraham lived four hundred and thirty years before the law as we know it was given? My point is that no matter what man you mention, Adam, Abel, Seth, Noah or Abraham, they all made a choice to seek righteousness and, that even without the power of the law.
So, what can we see so far? We see: ( 1 ) Adam and Eve in the garden. ( 2 ) Their descendants when they left the garden. ( 3 ) We see the flood and, the period of time before God gave Moses the law.
After the flood; the children of Noah became three distinct different groups of people. Each of those groups formed their own set of guidelines or, we could say laws to live by. Within that frame of thought, we do still see that, through scripture we follow the blood line of Seth. We’ll call him the ( spirit man ). We see that Noah was a descendant of Seth. As we leave Noah, we see that Shem is the blood line we follow to Abram, to which was born Isaac, his two sons Esau and Jacob. The youngest; Jacob is the father of the Nation of Israel and, we get the law through that blood line.
I only point this out to make the point that ( the law ) was another way God dealt with mankind and, his people. However, we must consider that ( destruction came ) with the flood and, that before God gave the law. God proved with the law that the knowledge of what he desires doesn’t change a man’s heart. At the same time I make that statement; that law was given to a people God called his own. Once you have ( the knowledge ) you become accountable. Adam was accountable to God for his actions.
We’re building a cause, a reason for (Tribulation). Actually, when we see that God gave ( the law ) to his people (the Nation of Israel) we also see within that period of time the declaration that God gave concerning (Tribulation).
Time is continually moving foward. God gave us the distinction of time in (Genesis 1-2). He said this: (And the evening and the morning were the first day). God doesn’t deal in time but, we do. Again, we need to recognize because of the very fact that (time moves foward). For instance: when God gave Israel the law, because of the moving of time, we can see what they did with the knowledge that was given them. We can also see what God did because of their actions in time.
Actually, as individuals, we are the very same way. As we gain spiritual knowledge, what do we do with that knowledge as time moves foward? Also, what you do with that knowledge will determine how God deals with you as an individual.
If we could ever begin to see the earth as being born and, the people on this earth as the (heart) that governs the affairs of this earth as time moves foward then we could begin to see how, God through disciplinary mearsues brings this earth and all people to the place he desires for them to be. Let me give you an example of something. Let’s say a child is being naughty and in need of discipline. The mother seeks to bring discipline but also says (just wait until your father gets home). What will unfold within that child ( as time passes ) until his or her father returns?
Can you see how in the heart of that child) if he or she seeks to understand what the term (wait until your father gets home) means then, that child has a choice to make? The heart of this earth is the people! We will be judged by the choices we make within the knowledge we have.
After Israel gained the knowledge of (the law) ; the choices that nation made brought about (a decree) from God as time moved foward. It’s actually more about the finished product as far as the Nation of Israel is concerned other than just the fact that (Tribulation) is coming upon the whole world because of their actions.
A DESTINCT CHANGE
So, we see that God revealed to Daniel all about the (weeks). We see that the (sixty-nineth) week came to an end at the very moment that Jesus Christ died on the Cross. Let’s see what all happened at that very moment. We can also see why. It’s two very distinct things that happened at that very moment.
First, we see that the (veil) of the temple was rent from top to bottom.
AND, BEHOLD, THE VEIL OF THE TEMPLE WAS RENT IN TWAIN FROM THE TOP TO THE BOTTOM; AND THE EARTH DID QUAKE, AND THE ROCKS RENT;
Up until this very moment, only thre High Priest could go behind that veil. However, at this moment the perfect Lamb of God had been offered (Jesus Christ) God in flesh had made the perfect sacifice. This signifies that the end of (the time of law) had come. At that very moment any person that chose to could come boldly to God’s throne, not the high priest only.
LET US THEREFORE COME BOLDLY UNTO THE THRONE OF GRACE, THAT WE MAY OBTAIN MERCY, AND FIND GRACE TO HELP IN TIME OF NEED.
What we often fail to understand is that (the Law) was given to the Nation of Israel only. It wasn’t meant for the Gentiles at all. If we offer a comparison, it would be this. God the Father already knew what Adam would do, he just needed for Adam to see himself exactly what he was. God already knew that the Children of Israel could not keep the law. He just needed for them to see that fact. We can also prove that fact in scripture,’
WHEREFORE THE LAW WAS OUR SCHOOLMASTER TO BRING US UNTO CHRIST, THAT WE MIGHT BE JUSTIFIED BY FAITH.
Juat as with Adam and with the Nation of Israel, we, as Gentiles see that we are not perfect when we see our failure in keeping the law. although it wasn’t written for us we still have the priviledge of it being our schoolmaster, teaching us our need for Christ as our Savior.
Another point to be made here is that this act also ushered in the ability for Gentiles to be grafted into the family of God. We are looking into why and what is (tribulation), therefore this is a subject for another day. All this is laid out in the book of (Levitcus). In Levitucus 23:16 you can see( fifty days) which we call (the feast of Pentecost). Those fifty days are relative to the time between the death of Jesus Christ and the day of Pentecost when the Holy Ghost fell and, the Church was born.
The (Tribulation period) is the final week ( seven year period) God determined upon his people (the Nation of Israel). (The Church) is a called out group of people, completely separate from (the Nation of Israel). Now, let’s let God’s word prover this to us. First, look at this verse:
AND HE SAID UNTO ME, DEPART: FOR I WILL SEND THEE FAR HENCE UNTO THE GENTILES.
Also: do you remember this verse in the gospels?
AND THE LORD SAID UNTO THE SERVANT, GO OUT INTO THE HIGHWAYS AND HEDGES, AND COMPEL THEM TO COME IN, THAT MY HOUSE MAY BE FILLED.
When we say (Israel) ( God’s Chosen People), exactly what are we saying? We’re saying that, that was God’s plan. Lookat what the Apostle Paul says in:
NOT AS THOUGH THE WORD OF GOD HATH TAKEN NONE EFFECT. FOR THEY ARE NOT ALL ISRAEL, WHICH ARE OF ISRAEL.
When we consider what God desires to bring to pass using his word, what do we see? We see a desire for all people to be saved. However, just because people were born to an Israelite family did not mean that they believed God’s word. We see the very same picture in the Nation of Israel (Isaac’s family) as we do in Adam’s family in the very beginning. Not all believed!
What we seen in Daniel is God keeping his promise to a people that don’t deserve it. Also we see that because of Israel’s unbelief, the Gentiles are ushered into his family. Now, with all this being said, let’s look a little deeper in Romans.
FOR I WOULD NOT, BRETHREN, THAT YE SHOULD BE IGNORANT OF THIS MYSTERY, LEST YE SHOULD BE WISE IN YOUR OWN CONCIETS; THAT BLINDNESS IN PART IS HAPPENED TO ISRAEL, UNTIL THE FULNESS OF THE GENTILES BE COME IN. (26) AND SO ALL ISRAEL SHALL BE SAVED:, AS IT IT WRITTEN, THERE SHALL COME OUT OF SION THE DELIVERER, AND SHALL TURN AWAY UNGODLINESS FROM JACOB: (27) FOR THIS IS MY COVENANT UNTO THEM, WHEN I SHALL TAKE AWAY THEIR SINS.
What happened is that God put the Nation of Israel, his promises to them on hold untill the Age of Grace is complete. When we see the term (whosoever will) that term includes the Nation of Israel meaning that any person that choses to asked Jesus Christ to become their Savior can become a member of the (Church) the (Bride of Christ). That hold now has been there for over two thousand years. However, when the (fulness of the Gentiles) has been acomplished. God will call his Church home.
I shared with you that we seen two obvious things when Jesus Christ gave up the ghost on the cross. The renting of the veil was one. The second we see here:
AND THE GRAVES WERE OPENED; AND MANY BODIES OF THE SAINTS WHICH SLEPT AROSE, (53) AND CAME OUT OF THE GRAVES AFTER THE RESURRECTION, AND WENT INTO THE HOLY CITY, AND APPEARED UNTO MANY.
So, why did God do this? When the Apostle Paul said that (not all Israel is of Israel) he saying that just because they were born in Isreal didn’t mean they believed God. Salvation has always been by faith. In the Old Testament and in the New. The difference is that OLd Testament Saints looked forward to the resurrect of Christ where we in the New Testament look back to that very same event.
Old Testament saints could not go into the presence of God when they died because the perfect sacrifice had not yet been offered. When they died, they went to a place called paradise, awaiting for the sacrifice to be offered. Where did Jesus tell the thief on the ctoss he would be with him?
AND JESUS SAID UNTO HIM, VERILY I SAY UNTO THEE, TODAY SHALT THOU BE WITH ME IN PARADISE.
Where was Abraham seen by the rich man that died and went to hell? We see that in:
AND BESIDES THIS, BETWEEN US AND YOU THERE IS A GREAT GULF FIXED: SO THAT THEY WHICH WOULD PASS FROM HENCE TO YOU CANNOT; NEITHER CAN THEY PASS TO US, THAT WOULD COME FROM THENCE.
The Old Testament saints, when they died went to paradice, Lazarus in the story and also the thief on the cross went there as well. We seldom ever think about this but, although the gospels in scripture are in the New Testament, the events that happenrd in those gospels transpired, still under the law. When the veil was rent from top to botton it signified the end of the Old Testament. The events that took place after the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ and, the whole (Book of Acts) was what we can call a transition period into the New Testament. I guess we could say that, just like the gospels, the (Book of Acts) at some point became the complete transition into the New Testament.
If you will study (Romans 9-10-11) you will notice that the Apostle Paul is talking about (his brethren) ( the Nation of Israel). In (Chapter 11) we see where God cut off dealing with them. The period of time has now been going on for over two thousand years (the time of the Gentiles).
I’d like for you to consider this. From the time that the Church was born in (Acts 2) until (the fulness of the Gentiles be come in) any person, even every person that has been born in that time frame and, even until the end of this time, every person, Jews, Gentiles all together could have asked Jesus Christ to become their Savior. That means that when the tribulation comes there would be no person on this earth to go through that period of time.
The (Tribulation period) is the last week (seven year) periad that God determined upon Israel in ( Daniel 9). It was never meant for the Gentiles to face but, because of unbelief on the part of Gentiles and Jews alike, many will face God’s wrath during that time. Basically speaking, what will happen during (Tribulation period) God’s going to put the world back just as it was before the flood. In the (Revelation) he calls it a New Heaven and a new Earth.
Would you agree with me that when Noah built the Ark that it was open for all people to come aboard? It’s the same way with (The Church) whosoever will can be saved and become a part of that Church. Just as (Tribulation) has to do totally with Israel as a Nation, (The Rapture) has to do totally with the Church. All the whosoevers that believed.
God always sends grace before destruction. Just as he had Noah to build an Ark before he destrayed the world, he also allowed his only begotten Son to die for the Church that as many as would believe might be saved from destruction. (IT’S THE CHURCH)! Jesus Christ was crucified, dead and buried. He also arose again for his body (the Church). Each person that is born-again; at that very moment becomes a member of the body of Christ, (the Church).
Have you ever considered just how many people actually helped Noah build the Ark? The Bible doesn’t tell us does it? All we know is that eight people got on the Ark. However, if you will read the period of time before the Ark was finished, many people lived and died. They simply died before the Ark was finished.
Those people that died before the Ark was finished were already in paradice. It’s the same way with the Church. Over the last two thousand years many people have helped build the Church. They lived and died, never seeing the completion of the body of Christ. However, they all believed that one day the rapture would take place, to the salvation of the Church before God’s final (week of desolation) upon the Nation of Israel.
When we speak of the (rapture), that word is not found in scripture. However, the event is. Look at these verses:
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
BUT I WOULD NOT HAVE YOU BE IGNORANT, BRETHREN, CONCERNING THEM WHICH ARE ASLEEP, THAT YE SORROW NOT, EVEN AS OTHERS WHICH HAVE NO HOPE. (14) FOR IF WE BELIEVE THAT JESUS DIED AND ROSE AGAIN, EVEN SO THEM ALSO WHICH SLEEP IN JESUS WILL GOD BRING WITH HIM. (15) FOR THIS WE SAY UNTO YOU BY THE WORD OF THE LORD. THAT WE WHICH ARE ALIVE AND REMAIN UNTO COMING OF THE LORD SHALL NOT PREVENT THEM WHICH ARE ASLEEP. (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. (18) WHEREFORE COMFORT ONE ANOTHER WITH THESE WORDS.
That event, we call it ( the Rapture) marks the beginnig of the last week that God speaks of in Daniel. I feel that we need to bring up another scripture as we speak about this. The verses we’ll be looking into is in (2 Thessalonians ) however, If we read and study through the (Book of Daniel) God reveals a lot to us by the dreams that Daniel had. For instance: In ( Daniel 2) we see a statue who’s head was gold and his feet was made of mixed iron and clay. Can you see the weakness in that statue? We’re living in that time now! Satan and those that follow him desire to bring back that (head of Gold) in this world. Today we hear more than ever about the ( One World Order) than in anytime in history that I know of. Now, let’s look at:
2 Thessalonians 2:1-12
NOW I BESEECH YOU, BRETHREN, BY THE COMING OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, AND BY OUR GATHERING UNTO HIM, (2) THAT YE BE NOT SOON SHAKEN IN MIND, OR BE TROUBLED, NEITHER BY SPIRIT, NOR BY WORD, NOR BY LETTER AS FROM US, AS THAT THE DAY OF CHRIST IS AT HAND. (3) LET NO MAN DECEIVE YOU BY ANY MEANS: FOR THAT DAY SHALL NOT COME, EXCEPT THERE COME A FALLING AWAY FIRST, AND THAT MAN OF SIN BE REVEALED, THE SON OF PERDITION; (4) WHO APPOSETH AND EXALTETH HIMSELF ABOVE ALL THAT IS CALLED GOD, OR THAT IS WORSHIPPED; SO THAT HE AS GOD SITTETH IN THE TEMPLE OF GOD, SHEWING HIMSELF THAT HE IS GOD. (5) REMEMBER YE NOT, THAT, WHEN I WAS YET WITH YOU, I TOLD YOU THESE THINGS? (6) AND NOW YE KNOW WHAT WITHHOLDETH THAT HE MIGHT BE REVEALED IN THIS TIME. (7) FOR THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY FOTH ALREADY WORK; ONLY HE WHO NOW LETTETH WILL LET, UNTIL HE BE TAKEN OUT OF THE WAY. (8) AND THEN SHALL THAT WICKED BE REVEALED, WHO THE LORD SHALL CONSUME WITH THE SPIRIT OF HIS M,OUTH, AND SHALL DESTROY WITH THE BRIGHTNESS OF HIS COMING. (9) EVEN HIM, WHOSE COMING IS AFTER THE WORKING OF SATAN WITH ALL POWER AND SIGNS AND LYING WONDERS, (10) AND WITH ALL DECEIVABLENESS OF UNRIGHTEOUS IN THEM THAT PERISH, BECAUSE THEY RECEIVED NOT THE LOVE OF THE TRUTH, THAT THEY MIGHT BE SAVED. (11) AND FOR THIS CAUSE GOD SHALL SEND THEM STRONG DELUSIONS, THAT THEY SHOULD BELIEVE A LIE: (12) THAT THEY ALL MIGHT BE DAMNED WHO BELIEVED NOT THE TRUTH, BUT HAD PLEASURE IN UNRIGHTEOUSNESS.
I’d like to start this by looking at a phrase in these verses: (only he who now letteth will let, until ne be taken out of the way). It’s a few things that I’d like to teach here. First, the only time that God has ever allowed any person that believed in him to possess his very own spirit is in the time to which we now live. We talked about it beginning on the (Day of Pentecost). Before that day, God chose for himself to whom he place his Spirit upon. Therefore, for now over two thousand years, within the hearts of those that are born again, God’s Spirit has been living among sinful men.
If you remember, we talked about studying (Romans 9-10-11). In (Romans 11), if you read that chapter you will see that (Israel) as a nation has be cut off, blinded, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. As a Nation God set them aside that he might graft in another people, the Gentiles.
Secondly,when we see the phrase (only he who now letteth will let) it’s speaking of the people that are willing to allow God’s Spirit to work through their flesh. It says ( until he be taken out of the way). As long as God’s Spirit is upon this earth, the (man of sin) will not be revealed meaning that he doesn’t have complete control of this world. His desire is to sit where only God can sit. But, although, like it says, (the iniquity doth already work), his spirit is hard at work preparing the masses for the day he will attempt to sit where only God can sit.
We can clearly see a great falling away! The longer time moves forward toward the time when the Church will be (caught up) the less spirit of God we will see upon this earth. We often mistake the fact that God’s Spirit is here with a mindset that he is everywhere, but he’s not. He lives only in the fleshly body of those that are born again and, even at that; each of those people must allow him to be seen through their body of flesh. When the rapture takes place, Evey believer will be gone, therefore, so will God’s spirit.
Thirdly, When the Apostl Paul is describing this event he’s looking at the whole advent of the second coming of Christ. We are seeing the Church being caught up which is when Christ shouts and we meet him in the air and, when Christ acrtually comes back to establish his kingdom on this earth for the nation of Israel. The twelve verses we read cover a period of seven years and, if you consider the fact that it states that there will be a (falling away first) we could say even longer than seven years. But, the Apostle Paul is trying to comfort these people, even us concerning how the end of the Church age will transpire.
My fourth point. If we were to study the book of Revelation along with this, we can see that for the first three and a half years of the seven year period we call (Tribulation) things are pretty much normal, not much change as far as how this world works. But, in the middle is when Satan stands and says he’s God. That is what the Bible calls (Great Tribulation). One of the great differences in the Tribulation and when God destroyed the earth by water is the fact that when Noah built the Ark, eight people went aboard and every other thing upon this earth was destroyed. But, during the seven year Tribulation all will not be destryed. There will even be Gentiles that survive that period and, scripture even tells us that One third of Israel will survive.
Tribulation has never been about destroying the earth. The earth was promised to the Nation of Israel. Even back in the very being of the birth of Israel it could have been theirs but, their unbelief and disobedience is what brought about the (70 weeks) of desolation upon them.
It’s a lot to be taught here but,I’ve tried to show you why there is a tribulation. Why it actually has nothing to do with the Church. When I tell you that there will be people that live through the tribulation, you must understand, they still have to die!
I will say though that (the rules will be changed). At that time Jesus Christ will be ruling as Kig of KIngs ove Israel. He gets to decide how things are done in his KIngdom.
Going back to Tribulation, we need to see some more before we close this segment. The very fact that Israel was disobedient is the whole reason we, as Gentiles even have a chance to have salvation. We see that as we study. Look at this:
I SAY THEN, HAVE THEY STUMBLED THAT THEY SHOULD FALL? GOD FORBID: BUT RATHER THROUGH THEIR FALL SALVATION IS COME UNTO THE GENTILES, FOR TO PROVOKE THEM TO JEALOUSY.
Every Gentile, especially born again believers should never speak evil of Israel! and, I’ll add that even those Gentiles that are not saved should thank Israel for even giving them a chance to be saved.
In this segment, I’ve tried to prove from scripture why there is a Tribulation period. Since I’m hear and we have began to study In (Thessalonians) there’s a lot more to teach. Therefore I try and write another segment as it concerns things that we see in that scripture.
The next segment will be (STRONG DELUSIONS)
2 Timothy 1:7