The Revelation Challenge, Part 2

Revelation 22:7

“Behold, I am coming quickly! Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book.”

The point of Part 1 is that the challenge of reading Revelation is the apocalyptic language. Like many before me, my brain went numb, and I went running for the Gospels!  I figured that things would unfold per God’s plan.  Me understanding the plan wasn’t going to change it any, so what’s the point aside from the fact that it is there?

For one, Jesus told us in Matthew 24 that we are to watch. That’s nigh on impossible if we don’t know what to watch for.  Still, there’s the language to deal with.  Which brings me to the really important reason; The Rapture!

Herein lies the rub. Most people believe that said Rapture will occur prior to the Tribulation.  Some believe it will happen after.  We have the Pre-Trib and Post-Trib schools of thought.  If you’re a Pre-Tribber, what do you care about the Tribulation?  You expect to be raptured out of here and eating angel food cake before anyone can say “666.”

If you’re a Post-Tribber, you’re worried, because you believe you’re going to have to deal with all of those nightmares. Not that that helps you understand Revelation any better, but there it is.

Here’s the bad news (like there isn’t any yet), Rapture will come after The Great Tribulation. No question, no doubt.  How can I be so sure?

Matthew 24, select verses:

20 And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22 And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened… 26 “Therefore if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it. 27 For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be… 29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

Verses 21 and 22 indicate that the elect will still be around for the Tribulation. The days wouldn’t have to be shortrened for the elect if they have already been raptured away.  After all of this, verse 31 tells his THAT is when His angels will come to collect His elect.

From Revelation 7, select verses:

After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb… 13 Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, “Who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from?”  14 And I said to him, “Sir,[b] you know.”  So he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.  15 Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them.

They came out of the Tribulation. Their reward for not succumbing to those trials is described in verse 15.

No Rapture to Easy Street before the galactic poo hits the fan. I guess we should study up, eh?

I will submit to you that, while not easy, Revelation is not entirely impenetrable. Stay tuned for PART THREE!

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