Christians have been taught that there is coming the great tribulation and it will last for seven years prior to the end of the world! Antichrist will arise and impose the ‘mark of the beast’ upon man and God will release His fury against unregenerate man. But the Christians will be raptured away before this happens! There are differences as to when this will happen. The question is frequently asked, ‘Are you pre-trib, mid-trib or post-trib? The carnal reasoning minds of man have come up with some cunningly devised fables, for the scriptures show a totally different picture which we will try to unveil for you. Observe the contrast with man’s ideas and God’s truth.
TRIBULATION IS A DOORWAY
Acts 14:21 And when they had preached the gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra, and to Iconium, and Antioch, (22) Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God. A [process of ‘He must increase and I must decrease’ in one’s life to enable Christians to graduate into the Kingdom of God.
BE OF GOOD CHEER . . .
John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. The ways of the world will strongly oppose God’s ways — but in Christ victory is assured.
Read this carefully and you will see that Jesus spoke it to the Jews and this prophetic word was fulfilled in AD.70 when the Roman General Titus brought an end to the ‘old’ Jewish nation. Jesus also said that His people would escape to the mountains, which they did.
Romans 2:9 Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that does evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; (10) But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that works good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile:
The Greek word translated TRIBULATION is THLIPSIS and simply means pressure... with secondary meanings of oppression or affliction.
Tribulation is pressure upon every man to remove all aspects of the ‘flesh’ for this pressure is upon the ‘soul’ —the area where the mind, emotions and will need correction through submission to God’s thinking. The ancient Greeks never used this word THLIPSIS in connection with human suffering.
Every son receives correction from God for He is changing us from glory to glory into His image. Knowing that this is God’s purpose, we can rejoice and glory in tribulations . . . This word and dealing parallel the experience pictured in threshing wheat — the separating of the kernels from the chaff. Likewise the pressing of the grapes in order to get the wine. Each is a specific pressure-step with a purpose until ‘Christ be formed in you’ (Gal. 4:19).
13 TIMES ...’ TRIBULATION’ IS IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
Note this — in every instance in the new testament, tribulation is in relation to God’s called-out ones who He is purposing to bring the perfection of His image
Romans 5:3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation works patience.
Romans 8:35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? (37) Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. All victory is through Him, the Living Word
COMFORTED IN TRIBULATION
2 Cor 1:3 Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;
2 Cor 1:4 Who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. ‘Been there, done that!’ — experience should produce wisdom that will help you and others.
2 Cor 7:4 Great is my boldness of speech toward you, great is my glorying of you: I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation. We grow together. Eph 3:13 Wherefore I desire that ye faint not at my tribulations for you, which is your glory. Are you a slow learner? 1 Thess. 3:4 For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and ye know.
2 Thess. 1:4 So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure. No quick fixes!
DON’T trouble GOD’S SAINTS
2 Thess. 1:6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you;
UNDERSTANDING GOD’S PROCESSINGS
Rev 1:9 I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. Rev 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.
Rev 2:10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. The number ‘10’ in scripture has the meaning of testing. Could go as far as martyrdom but it also means the full experiential ‘death’ of the old Adam life in us!
Rev 2:20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.
The ‘Jezebel spirit’ makes overtures towards God’s people in the name of religion . . . therefore be on the alert not to be caught up with her seductive teachings!
Great Tribulation came upon the Jews as God concluded and removed the old covenant with its literal priesthood, sacrifices and laws. Rev 2:22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. Rev 7:14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. I will walk through the valley of the shadow of death and fear no evil (Psa.23).
Christ said that He would never leave us . . . He said through Paul that He works ALL things together for good — for we love Him and are surrendered to His plans in and through us.
By taking offence with someone’s words or actions, we are displaying that we are not yet ‘dead’ in Christ ... more than just in word!! Great peace have they which love thy law, for nothing shall offend them (Psa.119:167).
For ye are dead and your life is hid with Christ in God. Defending your position or actions indicates that you still think you have some rights! Remember that a ‘corpse’ does not react!