Pro and Con 415

Uploaded 10-30-99

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Re: Tribulation
Here are all the scriptures that discuss the Tribulation period, and a summary of our study on this subject.

The word tribulation (sometimes given as affliction) occurs 20 times in the NT. It means pressure, affliction, anguish, persecution and trouble. In only 8 scriptures is Tribulation used in a prophetic manner.

In Duet. 4:30 (the only prophetic use of Tribulation in the OT) there is no clearly definitive time period. "When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days."

Romans 2: 2-9 does not describe the length of timing of Tribulation.

2 Thess 1:6 also does not describe the length or timing of Tribulation.

Of the 5 remaining scriptures, 4 are in the Gospels, and 1 is in REvelations.

Matt 24:15-21 describes the events leading up to the Great Tribulation, which includes the desolation of the Temple which we are specifically told happens 3-1/2 years into Daniel's 70th week. (Dan 9:27 and Rev 12:6,14). This verse therefore refers to the Great Tribulation or the last 3-1/2 years.

Matt 24:29 follows up to what he spoke of in Verse 21 by saying "Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened..." There is no doubt that the tribulation referred to here is that Great Tribulation to which He just referred to in Matthew 24:21.

***The "abomination of desolation" of Mt. 24:15 is the first DAY of the Great Tribulation, the second half of the Seventieth Week of Daniel.

***Then there is a period of time called the Great Tribulation. It lasts 2300 days (Dan. 8:14). Mt. 24:21,22 is talking about those days. It says, "THEN SHALL BE GREAT TRIBULATION, SUCH AS WAS NOT SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE WORLD TO THIS TIME, NO, NOR EVER SHALL BE. And except those DAYS (plural) should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those DAYS (plural, i.e., the Great Tribulation) shall be shortened."

***The last day of the shortened Great Tribulation is the worst day of all. Dan. 11:45; 12:1,2 says, "he (the False Prophet) shall come to his end, and none shall help him. AND at that time (when the False Prophet is deposed on the 2300th day) shall Michael stand up; the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be A TIME OF TROUBLE, SUCH AS NEVER WAS SINCE THERE WAS A NATION EVEN TO THAT SAME TIME: and at that time (the 2300th day, Dan. 8:14) thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake." This is the Pre-Wrath Rapture. Jer. 30:7 says, "Alas! for THAT DAY (first day of the millennial Day of the Lord) is great, so that NONE IS LIKE IT: it is even THE TIME OF JACOB'S TROUBLE, but he shall be saved out of it."

***The first half of the 7-year Tribulation is the 1260 days during which the two witnesses prophesy (Rev. 11:3). Since they prophesy 1260 days, it has to be the first half of the Tribulation. The last half is shortened to 1040 days (the 2300 days of Dan. 8:14 - 1260 = 1040). Also, Elijah must come before the 1000-year Day of the Lord begins on the 2300th day of the Tribulation (Mal. 4:5).

***Mt: 24:29-31 has to do with the 2300th day, the Feast of Trumpets, that begins the 1000-year Day of the Lord. Therefore Mt. 24:15-31 spans the 1040-day Great Tribulation. It has nothing to do with the first 1260 days of the Tribulation.

Mark 13:19 This verse is basically the same as Matthew 24:21...only Mark uses the word affliction instead of Tribulation, but the Greek word was the same.

Mark 13:14-18. Again, Mark records the followup to the previous verse by saying "But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened.." Just like Matthew wrote.

These are all the scriptures where the Messiah spoke of the Tribulation in a prophetic sense. All of them speak of the Great Tribulation that starts in the middle of Daniel's 70th week. Precisely 3-1/2 years into it, which would make the Tribulation exactly 3-1/2 years long.

***This leaves out the 1260 days that Moses and Elijah prophesy. Their 1260 days + 1040 days = Dan. 8:14's 2300 days.

In each instance where the Great Tribulation is used in a prophetic setting, it always refers to the persecution of the Father's people by wicked men. Never is this persecution said to be caused by the Father. Prophetically, the Great Tribulation, which is the second 3-1/2 years of Daniel's 70th week, refers to man's wrath against man, but never the Father's wrath against man.

***The Day of God's Wrath is the 2300th day. After the sixth seal is broken on the last day of this age, the sun and moon (i.e., after 6:00 PM, when the Feast of Trumpets begins) are darkened by smoke from falling meteorites. The smoky heavens will be rolled aside as a scroll and the Sign of the Son of Man (Mt. 24:30) will be seen. Men will say "to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the FACE of him that sitteth on the throne (it is Coronation Day in Heaven, both for Christ and for the Bride of Christ), and from the WRATH OF THE LAMB: FOR THE GREAT DAY OF HIS WRATH IS COME" (Rev. 6:16,17). It is the Feast of Trumpets, the first day of the millennial Day of the Lord.

Revelation 7:13-14 "...These are those that came out of the Great Tribulation..." Here again, the adjective "Great" is found and this clearly refers to the last 3-1/2 years of Daniel's 70th week.

***The Pre-Wrath Rapture of the Tribulation saints takes place before the asteroids of Rev. 8:8,10 strike at noon (Zeph. 2:4,5; Job 20:23; Amos 8:9; Eze. 25:16) on the 2300th day of Daniel's 70th week.

A careful study reveals that an examination of the word Tribulation as used in prophetic context always is used to describe only the time period that begins in the middle of Daniel's 70th week--never the first half of the 70th week. There are no other scriptures that pertain to the Tribulation period in the Bible. Only these.

***When do the two witnesses prophesy? When does the Beast of Rev. 13:2-10 rule? Verse 5 says, "power was given unto him to continue forty and two months." That is the first half of the Tribulation. The False Prophet starts to rule the day he sits in the temple "shewing himself that he is God" (II Thess. 2:4) and places the abomination of desolation at the temple. From that time, the 2nd 1260 days begin (Rev. 12:6,14).

Therefore, to call the entire 7 year period the tribulation period is man-made and falsely applied to scripture, reading into the biblical text that which it does not itself declare.

***Rev. 11:2-6 says, "the court which is without the temple leave out...for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months. And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days...These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy." The famine brought on by the lack of rain is under the 3rd seal, roughly the 3rd year of the Tribulation. It is BEFORE the Satan-possessed False Prophet takes office at the 3 1/2-year mark, when the fourth seal is broken (Rev. 6:5-8) and the abomination of desolation placed at the temple. All three of the first seals are broken during the first 1260 days of the 7 years.

***The Tribulation is Israel's 5th cycle of discipline. The entire 7 YEARS is shown in Lev. 26:28. It says, "Then I will walk contrary unto you also in fury; and I, even I, will chastise you SEVEN TIMES (years, as in Dan. 12:7; Rev. 12:6,14) for your sins."

Here is the reason you have been taught falsely that the Tribulation is 7 years: (Quoted from The Pre-Wrath Rapture of the Church by Marvin Rosenthall, Pg. 106)

***You are being led astray because you are taking what a man says as gospel truth. Only Scripture is without error, in the original editions.

Someone else may object, "But isn't it simply a matter of semantics - a choice of words - it really doesn't mean anything? What's the difference if it is called the 70th week of the book of Daniel or the Tribulation period? The answer to that question is, it means a great deal.

If the 70th week of Daniel is INAPPROPRIATELY given the technical designation of the Tribulation period, and believers are reminded that they are "not appointed...to wrath", that they are "saved from wrath through him", and that they "are not in darkness, that that day should overtake them as a thief", then a case is being built for pretribulation rapturism on a false foundation.

If the 70th week is the Tribulation period, or "the time of wrath" and God's people are exempt from "wrath", the matter is settled. BUT such an argument (as I have shown you) is both UNBIBLICAL AND illogical and cannot be allowed to stand.

***The whole Tribulation is not God's Wrath. Only the 2300th day is the Day of God's Wrath. It comes at 6:00 PM on the last day of this age, after the 6th seal is broken (Rev. 11:12,17). The shortening comes between the breaking of the 6th and seventh seals. The Pre-Wrath Rapture of the Tribulation saints takes place in Rev. 7 BEFORE the 7th seal is broken in Rev. 8.

***After the 6th seal is broken, The huge army led by Gog attacks Israel. Eze. 38:18.19 says, "it shall come to pass AT THE SAME TIME when Gog shall come against the land of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, that MY FURY SHALL COME UP IN MY FACE. For in my jealousy and in THE FIRE OF MY WRATH have I spoken."

***The 7th seal is broken on the Feast of Trumpets that begins the Millennium. Seven trumpet judgments hit Earth that day. Rev. 11:18 says, "And the nations were angry, and THY WRATH IS COME, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged (this is the Judgment Seat of Christ), and that thou shouldest GIVE REWARD unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest DESTROY THEM WHICH DESTROY THE EARTH."

***Eze. 38:19,20 says, "Surely in THAT DAY (the Day of God's Wrath, the first day of the Millennium) there shall be a great SHAKING in the land of Israel (the asteroid of Rev. 8:8 hits the Mediterranean Sea, Zeph. 2:4,5); So that the FISHES of the sea, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the field, and all creeping things that creep upon the earth, and ALL THE MEN THAT ARE UPON THE FACE OF THE EARTH, SHALL SHAKE at my presence (paneh, face; i.e., the Sign of the Son of Man, Mt. 24:30), and the mountains (2 large asteroid pieces, Rev. 8:8,10) shall be thrown down, and the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground."

***The "great mountain burning with fire" that is "cast into the sea" of Rev. 8:8 is the asteroid that falls into the Mediterranean.

***The "great star (aster, star, asteroid, meteorite) from Heaven, burning as it were a lamp" of Rev. 8:10 is the "stone like a great millstone" of Rev. 18 that destroys Babylon on the Euphrates River.

If, in fact, the first 3-1/2 years are not part of the "Tribulation Period" and God's wrath does not start, as pretribulationists assume, at the beginning of the 70th week of Daniel, but considerably further into it, they have built their argument on a foundation that will crumble (when held up to the true light of scripture).

***Your argument crumbles when "when held up to the true light of scripture."

Many great scholars have been quoted as saying "The next prophetic event will be the Day of Christ or the Rapture of the Church. Following that will come the great tribulation, a period of seven years, the 70th week of Daniel."

***And that is why they are "great scholars." That is the correct view.

This view totally ignores the biblical data that clearly indicates the the Tribulation begins at the mid-point of Daniel's 70th week.

Here is the sequence of events according to scripture.

Antichrist signs treaty with many. Beginning of Daniel's 70th week. Man's wrath against man. Hard times caused by Antichrist. Seal 1 - advent of Antichrist, Seal 2- he causes wars, Seal 3- death, Seal 4-famine. All man made events.

***The Beast and the False Prophet "confirm" (Dan. 9:27) what is probably the Final Status Agreement that is to be signed by the PLO and Israel Sept. 13, 2000. I expect the confirmation to be the following Pentecost. Seal 1 - advent of the Beast of Rev. 13:2-10, seal 2 - war, seal 3 - FAMINE, seal 4 - the advent of the False Prophet (Rev. 13:11-18) and death. That is probably what you meant, but we have to examine scripture very carefully and keep everything straight to unravel all its nuances (subtle distinctions).

Antichrist revealed, Temple made desolate..3-1/2 years into Daniel's 70th week. Beginning of Great Tribulation. (and only Tribulation period)

Sometime within 2nd 3-1/2 years....(no one knows exactly when) (This part comes straight from Olivet Discourse - Matthew 24 and 25)

1. Great Tribulation is shortened (Matt 24:22)...
2. Cosmic disturbances in sun, moon...(Mat 24:29)
3. Coming of Elijah (Malachi 4:5)(which could come earlier, but not later than this point)
4. Announcement that Day of the Lord is come (Rev 6:17) (The Father's wrath)
5. Last trump (1 Cor. 15:52)
6. 144,000 sealed (Rev 7:1-8)
7. Great multitude in heaven (raptured believers) (Rev. 7:9-17)
8. The Wrath of God in the form of 7 trumpets and 7 vials. (Rev 8:7 - 9:21 and 15:1-8 and 16:1-21)

***I know when. The Great Tribulation is shortened between the 6th and 7th seals. It lasts 2300 days (Dan. 8:14). The time that the Jews can sacrifice lasts 1260 days. The time that they can't because the temple is defiled is 1040 days. The darkening of the sun and moon start after the sixth seal is broken and become "thick darkness" (Joel 2:1-3) after the 7th seal is broken and the 2 large asteroid pieces impact Earth. Elijah comes on the first day of the 7-year Tribulation. The "last trump" of I Cor. 15:51,52 is the Pre-Wrath Rapture on the 2300th day of the Tribulation. It comes BEFORE the seven trumpet judgments hit Earth. The 144,000 are sealed just before the Pre-Trib Rapture takes place. See Eze. 9 for the type. The mark is put on those to be saved. Then the instructions are "Go ye after him through the city, and smite (v. 5). All saints are called to the General Assembly in Heaven to receive their rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ on the 2300th day of the Tribulation. At that time, "shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the EARTH (the Tribulation saints) to the uttermost part of heaven" (the Bride of Christ, who was caught up in the Pre-Trib Rapture) (Mk. 13:27). Joel 2:16 says, "Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast (the Day of Atonement is 10 days later than this Feast of Trumpets), call a solemn assembly: GATHER THE PEOPLE, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders (called to Heaven in the Pre-Wrath Rapture, Rev. 4:4), GATHER THE CHILDREN, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom (Christ) go forth of his chamber, and the bride (including the Philadelphian wise virgins caught up in the Pre-Wrath Rapture) out of her closet (chupah, also the name of the wedding canopy)." The 7 trumpets hit on the Feast of Trumpets. The vials are the results of the asteroid impacts after some more time has gone by.

***Mk. 13:26,27 says, "then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory (the Sign of the Son of Man, the Second Advent is still 7 months future, Ezek. 39:12). And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the EARTH (the Pre-Wrath Rapture) to the uttermost part of heaven" (those that were taken up there in the Pre-Trib Rapture).

If you will read these verses, and study for yourself, you will learn what the scriptures say, and then you won't repeat erroneous information that others have fed you.

***If your will notice, I have done my own studying for a long long time. I have been able to find out things that I could not find in any book in all my seven years of constant reading of man's books about the Bible. Once I gave up getting answers to some of my burning questions from man's writings and stuck mainly to the Bible and Concordances, I learned new things so fast I could hardly keep up with it.

***At the beginning of this period, I opened my Bible, put my hands on it and said, "Lord! you'll have to show me. I want to know everything you want man to know about the Bible, all the deep things--everything." In all these years since then, I haven't had time to learn everything, there is too much there, but I know far far more than I ever hoped to know. Even after my 7 years of constant study, I still had no idea how much was really packed into that one small book. No man could have ever produced such a book. It took God to do it.

In these days, it is most important to learn to study for yourselves.

***You should take your own advise instead of listening to Rosenthall.

If pre-tribulation rapture is incorrect (and biblically it cannot be proven), even the noted Walvoord in his Book "The Rapture Question" with a concluding chapter entitled "Fifty Arguments for pretrib" admits "It is therefore not too much to say that the rapture question is determined more by ecclesiology (doctrine of the church) than eschatology (doctrine of last things)." In other words he is saying that verses which deal with the church must be used to prove an issue that relates to the prophecy. There simply is no biblical evidence for pretrib rapturism.

***But there is. You shouldn't be quite so dogmatic lest you be proved wrong. We all make mistakes. We are but human. I have made mine, and this is one of yours, but we can learn by our mistakes.

***Look at Nu. 10:2-4. Moses was to make two silver trumpets "for the calling of the assembly, and for the journeying of the camps." These typify the two trumps of God to call the saints to Heaven at the two Raptures. The Lord said, "if they blow but with ONE TRUMPET, then the princes, which are heads of the thousands of Israel, shall gather themselves unto thee." This represents the "trump of God" of I Thess. 4:16. It is the first trump that calls the Bride of Christ to Heaven along with the 24 elders. We are the group "out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation of Rev. 5:9. The 24 elders (12 patriarchs and 12 apostles) are seen in Heaven right after Heaven's door opens and Christ says "Come up hither" with the voice "as it were of a trumpet talking with me" (Rev. 4:1-4).

***In Nu. 10:3, "when they shall blow with them (plural, i.e., both trumpets), ALL the assembly shall assemble themselves to thee at the door of the tabernacle." This typifies two things. The first trump is sounded again to call the Bride to the General Assembly in Heaven on the first day of the millennial Day of the Lord. Then the "last trump" of I Cor. 15:51,52 calls the Tribulation saints to the assembly, because the Judgment Seat of Christ is ready to convene.

***Mk. 13:23 reflects that both trumps are blown that day. It says, "And then shall he send his angels, and shall GATHER together his elect (all of them) from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the EARTH (the Pre-Wrath Rapture) to the uttermost part of heaven" (those that were caught up in the Pre-Trib Rapture).

***Mt. 24:31 only tells us about the heavenly group being called to the assembly. It says, "And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of HEAVEN to the other."

***Psa. 78:23 in the KJV says that the Lord "opened the DOORS of heaven" to rain down manna. Today, I was reading this verse in the literal Concordant Bible. They caught the meaning very well. It says, "And He opened the DOUBLE DOORS OF THE HEAVENS." Eze. 44:5 says, "mark well the entering in of the house, with every going forth of the sanctuary." Psa. 68:24 says, "They have seen thy goings, O God; even the goings of my God, my King, in the sanctuary." Eze. 41:23 says, "And the temple and the sanctuary had TWO DOORS." There are two doors because there are two Raptures--two trumps--two doors--two Raptures. Both Raptures take place before the 7th seal is broken and the 7 trumpet judgments fall on Earth after the Judgment Seat of Christ convenes. Both Heaven and Earth fall silent while the judge is being seated (Rev. 8:1; Hab. 2:20).

Why is this so important? Because when pretrib believers find that they have entered Daniel's 70th week, the consequences will be calamitous. They will be unprepared, spiritually naked, vulnerable and ripe for the Antichrist's deception. It will be a spiritual catastrophe...a satanically planned sneak attack.

***I wonder why the Bible does not tell us to prepare for the Tribulation.

As an example, it is impossible to effectively train an army for a major battle if soldiers are told they will never have to participate. Pretrib holds out the the false hope of IMMINENT rapture, instead of what the scriptures teaches which is EXPECTANT rapture.

***We are the Bride of Christ, not soldiers that are to be trained to fight during the Tribulation. However, the Rapture was never said to be imminent. Everything was planned before the world began. Gal. 6:9 says, "let us not be weary in well doing: for IN DUE SEASON we shall reap, if we faint not." The season seems to be spring. See Song of Solomon 2:10-14.

***Prov. 11:8 in the literal Concordant Bible says, "The righteous one is EXTRICATED from distress (Tribulation), And the wicked one shall come in his stead." Once we are caught up in the Pre-Trib Rapture, the Holy Spirit will stop restraining the revealing of the Wicked One. The Rapture comes first. Then the Wicked One is revealed.

Paul clearly tells his followers "Do not worry that the Day of the Lord has come, the man of lawlessness and Great Apostacy must come first". (2 Thess 2:3) This is proof enough that the rapture is not the next thing the church can expect to experience.

***First, I commend you on your realization that the Day of the Lord is the correct rendering here. It is the Day of the Lord in all major MSS, including the Sinaitic Codex, the Vatican Codex, and the Alexandrine Codex. That is one thing the KJV translators goofed on.

***Here is where you got fooled. You assumed that the Day of the Lord was the Rapture, and it is the Millennium. Therefore, you assumed that the Satan-possessed False Prophet, the wicked one "whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders (Rev. 13:11-18), had to come before the Rapture. It is the other way around. The Rapture has to come before the wicked one is revealed. The words "he apostasia" really mean "the departure," i.e., the Rapture, not the "Great Apostacy." It means the separation as in a divorcement, "apostacion." It is translated as "departure" in early editions of the Bible. Consult these: Tyndale's, Coverdale's, The Great Bible, Beza's, Cranmer's, Breecher's, and The Geneva Bible.

I apologize for the length of this text. You just had many of your facts mixed up, and it was clear to me that you had not studied this for yourself.

***It should be clear to you now that I have studied it at great length.

Do not be daunted by all the data. I have studied eschatology extensively for the last year,

***I know that seems like a long time to a Freshman. By the time they get to be Seniors, they finally realize how very much there is that they don't know. Guess I'm really a senior now. I am nearing 71 years of age. :-) I have studied eschatology extensively since before 1960. That's about 39 years.

and am just now gainly a clear understanding and can now see thru the mist and haze of false teaching and shakey foundations.

***You have more work to do, so use the windshield wiper so you can see clearly. You can avoid being led astray by some man if you just stick to the Bible.

I wanted to learn, because I NEVER WANT TO BE CAUGHT UNAWARE.

***I thank God for that. Please get ready NOW, and stay ready. You have nothing to lose. The foolish virgins find that there is not enough time to get the oil of the Holy Spirit after the Bridegroom comes. He comes quickly (Rev. 22:20). The Pre-Trib Rapture may take you by surprise if you don't. It may take place next Pentecost. I think the two beasts of Rev. 13 will confirm the Final Status Peace Agreement on Pentecost, 2001. We have to be outta here by that time.

I urge you to study the scriptures that I listed above.

***You will see that I have studied these and more. Agape

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Updated 10-30-99