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October 21, 2019 1:00 am
When you read the book of Revelation.
What's the main lesson that you should come away with. What's the key truth. God will literally keep his promise and his program in place.
It is a literal promise and program of the kingdom is literal promise and program judgment is literal promise and program for Israel's redemption is literal promise and program of an earthly brainless of the tribulation reveals everything you want. I want a categorical revelation. It is keeps his word. That's a key truth in the book of Revelation, but questions regarding the future events described in Revelation can be confusing.
That's certainly true with the time that we call the great tribulation. How long does it last. Will Christians go through the tribulation and suffer along with everyone else even more basic is it a literal time or is it a figurative period of time. Well Stephen baby believes that God's word is to be interpreted literally and that the tribulation is a real and literal time today on wisdom for the heart.
We begin a series on the coming tribulation and we begin with a lesson today called a crash course on the coming tribulation.
Let's get started. There is an uneasiness in our country these last few years of my generation that I think everybody feel we watched in the last two years alone. Rogue nations acquire sophisticated weaponry threaten the balance of world powers the past months we listen to political leaders, most of their growing nuclear capabilities.
Diplomacy in the Middle East is attempting one more time to reconcile the irreconcilable.
We listen to leaders predict the danger of earth running out of natural resources in the coming ecological crisis, the rise of the Far East is interesting to watch this in the last couple of years now, with more than 200 million military personnel currency reserves for the child. By the way, a great rate of $30 million in our my interest rates doing by going to see you know their exploding economy is funding a war machine that insiders are admitting is being prepared for the European union continues to emerge as a growing world power prospects of global governance, which is their motto. Sort of the ongoing cry of the United Nations add that our own health. The national Institute of health infectious diseases according to remain a leading cause of death worldwide. I've been in countries in Africa were age will literally wipe out the entire population of country in the next 10 to 15 years. Diseases thought to be obsolete once again become a global threat, including the antibiotic resistant strain of tuberculosis which is just surfaced again in our country and others. If there were ever times you could call troubled. These would be those times. I think most people, even the average Joe on the street feels that I found it interesting to read a result of U.S. News & World Report which revealed that 66% of American quite high, including at least one third of them who never attend church believe the world is going ON in the near future. Not exactly optimistic are whether or not any of the current crises have anything to do with the ending of the church, a we do not know.
But one thing is certain we are experiencing today and what we are expressing is nothing compared to the coming global crisis that will hit this planet sometime in the future. Just when it will arrive. No one knows we make a lot of things that seem to indicate is just around the corner, which is okay. We love the thought and talk of his. This period of crises is known as the tribulation period and were about to begin our study in the book of Revelation, where we discover all that it will mean the planet Earth and the human race. I invite your attention back to the book of Revelation. If you were with us in our study in chapter 5, we celebrated with the redeemed in hopes of having to remember my singing morning is a Lamb that was slain in and in fact we play the role of the angelic beings who shouted a man a man a man it's true it's true the truth, he is worthy of all my needs and and blessing and honor and glory. Now the scene shifts as were from having to work that will happen over and over again through the book of Revelation is John records the most amazing and horrifying events that will occur on planet Earth known as ovulation. So in Revelation 6 verse one John opens by saying why the land is again being the eyewitness. He watches the lab open the scroll and at its first seal little enrollment. Each seal, revealing a little bit more of God's wrath on earth. The opening of this first seal signals the beginning of the tribulation the hour of testing, it was called Revelation 310, from which the church is been promised relief when I thought I do is cover the first four seals in chapter 6, pictured as four horsemen in verses one to a then as I study further.
I realize it only covers one chapter 6 after further study really don't have time to do is introduce chapter 61 I want to do is expound the space on the space between chapter 5 and chapter 6 space there says an awful lot call is simply a crash course on tribulation and an answer 13 or 14 questions that set the stage so that we can understand more fully what it means when this first seal is is opened, and I can tell you after going through this party.
One time, it is a crash course it is fast. That's why many use screens which I don't particularly like the use but I want to do that just to kind of help you keep you hear about a lot of terms that may be due to you get here, but our millennialism the belief of noting them a post millennialism that were distorting melding into a new era premillennialism which we are the believes the coming of Christ will precede the millennial kingdom pre-tribulation Alyssa which believes the rapture will occur before the tribulation and then Christ returning before the king say I can just tell them that's all right.
These terms are any terms will hear now it is crash course and then over the course of together settings. Revelation though begin to make more and more sense question number one.
What exactly is the tribulation. Why would summarizing the financial this way, the time of unparalleled human suffering demonic boldness, cosmic disturbance, Jewish awakening gospel preaching and global prices you could use as a categorical term for the tribulation. The simple phrase the wrath of God might be the simplest way to think and for several years the earth will literally stagger like a drunk man under the weight of God's enormous wrath.
The first five chapters of Revelation reveal the sovereignty of Christ in the church. These chapters will reveal the severity of Christ in his chastisement. We've outlined the book of Revelation. One author said the tribulation is hell on earth, and it always true. The term tribulation covers the entire seven years, but the term great tribulation is used by our Lord to describe the last half of the tribulation. That's important understand are those by the believe that the rapture will occur at that halfway point that midway point around the midway point believing what they call the pre-wrath rapture. Only one more view to tuck away. The problem with with that is found in its title, like the title pre-wrath rapture exposes one of the primary flaws of their views since the first 3 1/2 years are certainly experiencing the wrath of God would be anything less than that Christ referred to the first 3 1/2 years as a labor pain. Tell your wife she begins a labor you're really not feeling anything is no problem. She does how to have the four Horsemen of Revelation 6 and the first part or half of the tradition viewed as any other way as expressions of God's terrifying wrath and horrifying conditions on the planet in which one corner of the world's population will die. That's an expression of God's wrath, but the term tribulation I believe covers the entire seven years first part being labor pains. The second part being known as the great tribulation. Question number two.
When does the tribulation again. Well, that's a little like asking when is the rapture occur. Speculation abounds, Saul right now. One word is the word writing down soon. That's the word that's all we needed no it's all that the Lord has given us soon if I can write the word sooner sooner than ever. I can remember I've lived long enough now to remember arguments going back to the 70s so maybe can remember arguments that went by Eve. Even before then. I can remember graduating from high school in 1976 hearing passionate arguments about how was going to happen in the rapture. In 1976. I remember arguments for 1988 in 1989 in 1992 in the year 2000 number that one.
Many people were saying it's going to happen. The year 2000, asking to trigger all and more recently the fall of 2006. All these books were published in all these men rode and speculated it gave their opinions of all I can say is always prophecy experts have one thing in common. Gratitude are not treated like Old Testament prophets. One mistake and that's it. One book published in 1917 and my research uncovered made headlines as it attempted to prove that events leading up to world war one could only mean the tribulation was going to occur than 25 years later group of authors observed the rise of Hitler and said that he fit perfectly. Description of an. Still others have made arguments for Mussolini arguments for Joseph Stalin, Henry Kissinger, and I've heard some even with Bill Clinton. I will think any of those are true.
By the way, I believe the Scriptures reveal the tribulation period beginning sometime after the rapture of the church. There are some things that have to take place for the tribulation to begin to believe it begins immediately after the rapture church from chapter 6 of Revelation on word is the tribulation period unfolds.
There is absolutely no reference to the church on earth. Based on what we've already studied in chapters 4 and five of Revelation.
I believe the church age ended and we been worshiping the Lord now. Prior to these seals being open with him in heaven represented by the present beautiful priority. The elders events such as the bema seat assembly. The marriage supper of the Lamb. The rewarding of the saying of getting back at those rewards.
Lord take place with us in heaven while the tribulation is taking place her so II say that to say the rapture is still in the future.
Obviously, because the church is still on planet so far as I can tell and the tribulation is still that in the future because can't occur till after the rapture.
There are those who believe that the tribulation has already occurred and they spiritualize much of the Bible prophecy relative to this period of time. They believe that we are currently living in the millennia. The tribulations pass a literal interpretation, however, of the text of Scripture repeat sort of reveal nothing in history as we know it could ever match all the events described by Christ in Matthew 24 and what we see unfolding chapter 6 and onward.
Furthermore, the antichrist cannot break his covenant with Israel in the middle of the tribulation unless the temple is standing based on the pictures I have seen, there is no temple yet for him to desecrate Daniel chapter 9 clearly pictures the tribulation.
Beginning after the destruction of the current temple which occurred in A.D. 70.
Daniel also clearly reveals that the antichrist will desecrate the temple that is yet to be rebuilt and he'll do it in a horrific way. So if the temple has not been rebuilt the tribulation covenant between Israel and the antichrist cannot sign and then broken by the desecration of the temple by this antichrist.
Furthermore, Jesus Christ. Matthew 24.
Clearly places the desecration of the temple by the antichrist during the tribulation.
The desecration of the temple was certainly as others would point out that took place. I believe it was simply illustrated by Antiochus epiphanies right type is the fourth 167 BC with desecrate temple, but Christ says that the desecration of the temple by the antichrist and still in the future is delivering this news to his disciples, Daniel chapter 9 verse 27 is a key verse that informs us tribulation or the 70th week of Daniel will commence. It will be triggered by the signing of a covenant between antichrist and Israel. Daniel also informs us that this temporary covenant of peace will be broken. Halfway through the tribulation period, which will then trigger the last half known as the great tribulation with all the horror and suffering of the first half simply doubled and tripled in intensity by knowing a piece covenant with the enterprise has nothing to do with the church.
It has everything to do with Israel in there and let me add this one error, which must be avoided in order to interpret these prophetic texts literally and understandably. My view is the error of identifying the church with Israel as our covenant friends. It is impossible to me and taking property at face value for the church to ever fulfill Israel's role during this time of purification and purging as he unveiled the church would have to be literally located in the near East.
It would have asked to be ethnically Jewish and would have to be reconstituted or constituted as a state, which the church is not of the church is not Israel.
Israel is not the church, although they are both key elements of God's unified program for history according to Daniel's prophecy and what were going to observe in Revelation chapter 6 the anti-Christ will come, bringing peace, primarily to the Middle East the whole world there will be those of a fight against them.
But primarily to the Middle Eastern region surrounding which is what most of us however at this point would consider it possible there's no way.
Peace will ever come to the Middle East. One things for sure.
Not only the Middle East but the world at large is at this point in time, longing to see it happen. Are we weary of one more headline that little strip of land is constantly in the news, that is, is the hobby. It seems intuitively in the human heart for for what is going to happen and this feelings of pessimism so often relate to the Middle East. The world is longing, I believe the hearer the fees of this first horseman brings peace even though only lasts a brief period of time primarily 3 1/2 years into the tribulation when I hear the president of Iran openly praying for the appearance and the coming of the 12th email that will usher in peace and justice cannot help believe the world at large is more ready than ever for someone peace effect in our next session will you want to talk about 12. The mom who embodies I believe the profile mission of the antichrist. Question number three what is the purpose of the tribulation to be several reasons fairly quick. Several purposes. Number one to ready Israel for the king. Zechariah 13 records. Listen to this two thirds of the people in the land will be cut off and die, says the Lord, but 1/3 way this course, Israel will be left in the way. I will bring that group through the fire, making them pure.
Just as gold and silver are refined and purified by fire. They will call on my name then and I will answer them. I will say these are my people, they will say the Lord is our God specific prophecy relating to Israel as it is ready for the coming king second to remunerate humanity with just punishment is another purpose of the tribulation.
If you can imagine the horror's of the tribulation war hail, fire, affect a fireball from heaven.
At one point, oceans polluted falling stars darkness sores on the bodies of those who follow the antichrist see turning the blood, scorching heat, and more and more, and even still, humanity will do what humanity will curse God. You would think that they would fall on their knees and say this something is happening in repentance is the hear the gospel that they will refuse of God will be seen as just as he reveals the depravity of mankind and the just desserts of sin.
Another purpose to reveal God's sovereignty over his creation. He will manipulate the universe. He will control the forces and use them to his will and purpose. Remember the Pharaoh of Egypt mocking God God because he was refused at least the plagues upon the land in a similar, yet far more reaching display of arrogance. The antichrist will set himself against the God of heaven, God will is will pour out his plagues which reveal his sovereign control of of nature and creation, revealing that he is God alone. In fact, it becomes even more amazing that there will be continued on belief why because mankind will follow any but God they will bow their knee to anyone but their creator God will be seen in some other purpose to reveal Satan's true character and corruption of the tribulation will unmask him no angel of light.
No, no horror. I've been a wonderful plan for you and you follow my guides and you can find divine enlightenment and you can have the life you've always wanted to have everything that he is not currently teaching through his false teachers basically make you God study this at length in the past all that is now put aside is now offered to you as the Dragon in fact the red Dragon Revelation calls and because of his. His lust for blood chilling. He doesn't care for humanity is going to be en masse in an unusual way very clear way during the tribulation.
We cannot imagine his utter hatred for God's daughter hatred for God's creation is utter hatred for humanity. He knows as we have song that his doom is what sure, but he plunges ahead, motivated by his near insane hatred for God. If I John records Revelation 12 verse 12 this amazing description of things growing insanity was and is therefore rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them as a reference to us celebrating with them in heaven. Rejoice by what you owe or see for the common great wrath, because he knows that his time is short, staggering state he's doing all this because he knows his time is short.
You think he starts doing all these things because he knows his time is short prisoner on death rubbing talk. You have 60 minutes before you die spending 60 minutes rail against and cursing God is the same unmask his corruption. There's another purpose it is to redeem a host of believers from around the world. Imagine the implication of those who are martyred will look at in chapter 7. There are martyred during the tribulation that come to faith in Christ after the rapture during the tribulation and there martyred by the million by the forces of antichrist in been killed by him because they announced and would not recant their allegiance to Jesus Christ will be bloodshed like no other time for those who follow Christ, but there will be this redemptive portion of the tribulation, and a host of believers will be added one final purpose of the tribulation. This is a comprehensive, by the way with this is oldie with today is to revive Israel for her Messiah. This is the fulfillment of Romans chapter 11 where Paul speaks with confidence at the faithfulness and completion of God's election of Israel as he announces that the remnant of Israel will be saved to amazing Israel is still around. Even today, Jews still exist it in the strengths visited interesting and never met a for listing I've ever met a Hittite my heaven but Jews exist which is part of this ethnic Israel that God allows continue to exist, he will revive them.
He will write reconstitute them and redeem them. In fact, Zechariah taken at face value and explain the sense records that at the end of this purified times what we know as the tribulation. After the nations are destroyed, against Jerusalem say that is the redeemed nation of Israel will look upon him whom they want pierced. They are revived prepared for their Messiah. There's much more for us to learn about this in Wharton. Of time called the great tribulation, but were going to conclude this lesson tomorrow. This lesson was significantly longer than what we could fit in a single broadcast so will bring you the second half of this message. Next time you've tuned into wisdom for the heart and this is the Bible teaching ministry of Stephen Davey Stephen is the senior pastor at colonial Baptist Church in Cary, North Carolina. With today's lesson we begin a series through the great tribulation called four horsemen in the coming world madness will spend the next several days looking at the great tribulation, and I hope you'll be with us for all of it even though we've moved onto a new series it's not too late to get a copy of Stephen's newest book called Philippians. It's our latest addition in the wisdom commentary series and it's our featured resource during the month of October. We can give you information about how you can get a copy if you call us today at 866-482-4253 will also find this commentary on our website which is wisdom online.org between now and tomorrow.
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