A Pre-Tribulation Rapture?

 

For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.  - Matthew 24:27

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Soldiers of Christ  Prepared to Save & Die, not Kill

by Bill Wong

 

 

 

Christians everywhere would say without a doubt we are in a constant battle everyday with the enemy (Satan means adversary). He is our accuser, a liar and a murderer, and would love nothing more than to see us dead. He does not just want us to be physically dead, but more importantly, he wants to see us spiritually dead – and not have that precious free gift that the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ has bought us.

 

The Bible tells us that this war will only get worse and worse until the return of the Lord Jesus, who alone is able to stop it before there is no flesh left alive on earth (Matthew 24:22). In the Book of Revelation which describes all that is yet to come, we are told the enemy – through the Beast (antichrist) – his world dictator, and the False Prophet – his world religious figure, will make war with the saints of God during the Great Tribulation and overcome them:

 

Revelation 13:

4     So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, "Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?"

5     And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months.

6     Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven.

7     It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation.

8     All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

9     If anyone has an ear, let him hear.

10   He who leads into captivity shall go into captivity; he who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.

(NKJV)

 

 

Who are these saints who will be overcome during the Great Tribulation, but will ultimately have their names written in the Lamb’s Book of Life?

 

A pre-tribulation rapture doctrine, which most Protestant denominations believe, teaches that all Christians (“the Church”) will be taken away to heaven before this war begins. So a pre-tribulation rapture doctrine teaches that those who are at war with and are slain by the enemy during the Great Tribulation as referenced in Revelation, but yet will live forever for their faith, are those who are “left behind” – a Jewish remnant who believe in Christ and anyone else who converts during this great time of trouble.

 

However, does the Word of God truly teach this? Are we really to believe these saints are only the Jewish remnant and converts or are they all Christians – any and all believers in Christ regardless of ethnicity, who will live through the tribulation and not be taken away from it? All Christians must know the answer to this question, because our eternal destiny depends on it. We need to know the truth. We need to get stronger and be prepared.

 

 

In Revelation chapter 6, which begins the unfolding of the plagues and disasters that befall the earth in the tribulation, Christ – the Lamb of God, takes the scroll with seven seals and begins to open each seal.  

 

This is the 5th seal:

 

Revelation 6:

9     When the Lamb broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained;

10   and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, "How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?"

11   And there was given to each of them a white robe; and they were told that they should rest for a little while longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brethren who were to be killed even as they had been, would be completed also.   (NASB)

 

 

These are all saints who have died for their faith and they are given white robes. But notice in verse 11 that they are told to wait until even more of their fellow believers are to be killed or martyred. In the following chapter, we are told about other believers, including the ones who they must wait for to complete the number of those who will be slain in the name of Christ.

 

 

First, the Bible tells us about the 12,000 from each of the 12 tribes of Israel:

 

Revelation 7:

3     saying, "Do not harm the earth, the sea, or the trees till we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads."

4     And I heard the number of those who were sealed. One hundred and forty-four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel were sealed:

5     of the tribe of Judah twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Reuben twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Gad twelve thousand were sealed;

6     of the tribe of Asher twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Naphtali twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Manasseh twelve thousand were sealed;

7     of the tribe of Simeon twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Levi twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Issachar twelve thousand were sealed;

8     of the tribe of Zebulun twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Joseph twelve thousand were sealed; of the tribe of Benjamin twelve thousand were sealed.     (NKJV)

 

 

Then, after this we are told about the ones mentioned previously who must also die in Christ’s name:

 

Revelation 7:

9     After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands;

10   and they cry out with a loud voice, saying, "Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb."

11   And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures; and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God,

12   saying, "Amen, blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever. Amen."

13   Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, "These who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and where have they come from?"

14   I said to him, "My lord, you know." And he said to me, "These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

15   "For this reason, they are before the throne of God; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will spread His tabernacle over them.

16   "They will hunger no longer, nor thirst anymore; nor will the sun beat down on them, nor any heat;

17   for the Lamb in the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and will guide them to springs of the water of life; and God will wipe every tear from their eyes."   (NASB)

 

 

We are told in verse 9 that these fellow brethren are also given white robes and have come from every nation, tribe, peoples, and tongues which tells us that they are Christians.

 

But please note Revelation 7:14 – this great multitude lived through and died from the end time tribulation. This means that Christians will be living through the tribulation and during this war with the enemy, believers will perish, but as we can see – though we die in Christ, we will live with Him forever.

 

A pre-tribulation rapture doctrine will say that the reference to those “who come out of the great tribulation” in verse 14 means these saints were raptured away before tribulation (they come out by avoiding it).  However, this is wishful thinking and a false assumption that has no support in the Bible.  These saints go through or come through the tribulation as martyrs, just like their brethren in the 5th seal.  Remember, the saints in the 5th seal of Revelation 6 are told to wait for others who will also die for their faith; in the very next chapter, the great multitude of Revelation 7 are these other saints who suffer and die in the tribulation.

 

Where does it ever say any of these saints mentioned in Revelation – the book of end times, are still alive, much less taken away in a pre-tribulation rapture?  The Book of Revelation --- as well as every single book in the Bible, clearly never talks about saints being spared tribulation, but instead they must endure it and even die a martyr's death (see Hebrews 11). 

 

We will discuss a couple of the reasons why these Christians who have lived and died during the Great Tribulation are not “left behind” people, but are Christians who have NEVER left the earth, and are the saints who the enemy wages war against.

 

 

Reason #1:

 

When the Bible talks about God’s holy ones (saints or angels), there is never any indication of one type of saint being different than another type of saint. The Bible uses the term to apply to all holy ones, without differentiation. This separation or detailed description of “different” saints should most appropriately be applied to describe the saints during the end-times if there is one group being taken away while the other group remains. However, this is not what we find. There is absolutely no indication of some saints being taken away while other saints remain to fight.

 

Instead, the saints in Revelation, as is the case in the entire Bible, are just plainly called ‘saints’ which the Bible does not explain to mean anything else, but all believers. The way the saints are referred to in Revelation show that these saints are “just” saints. We are not told they are those who will convert and become saints “later” or anything like that.

 

 

Reason #2:

 

The saints in Revelation 7 are clearly stated to have been martyred during the Great Tribulation and they will be resurrected to eternal life.   So which resurrection will they be in? The Bible tells us in Revelation 20 that there are two general resurrections: the 1st resurrection to reign with Christ for 1000 years and the 2nd resurrection will be for judgment before the Great White Throne. But notice the description of those who are in the 1st resurrection:

 

Revelation 20:

4     Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

5     The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection.

6     Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.   (NASB)

 

 

It is evident these saints in the first resurrection also have endured the Great Tribulation, because they are described as not worshipping the beast or receiving his mark.

 

 

Now let us go back to the description of the saints who endured the Great Tribulation in Revelation 7 and compare the two:

 

Revelation 7:

14   I said to him, "My lord, you know." And he said to me, "These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

15   "For this reason, they are before the throne of God; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will spread His tabernacle over them.

 

 

The saints in Revelation 7 and 20 share two distinctive characteristics which define who they are:

 

1. They both come out of the Great Tribulation, having died for their faith.

 

2. They both are before the throne of God and in the temple of God; they are priests ruling with Christ.

 

 

These two sets of verses in two different chapters are describing the same saints.

 

 

So the question of whether the saints the enemy wages war against are Jews and anyone “left behind”, or are Christians who will not be raptured at all from tribulation and will remain in this war (the pre-tribulation rapture is false), can only be answered if we answer the following question:

 

If the saints in Revelation 7 and 20 who have come through the Great Tribulation are resurrected in the 1st resurrection, then when are the dead pre-tribulation saints resurrected?

 

 

A pre-tribulation rapture uses 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 to support their belief. So when are these dead saints, which would be a great multitude of “the Church” over the centuries, be resurrected?

 

There can be no arguing that the saints in the 1st resurrection have triumphed in the end time tribulation by dying for the glory of God in Christ. Therefore, the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine cannot say the saints in this 1st resurrection are the raptured pre-tribulation saints.

 

But yet the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine must account for the resurrection of the pre-tribulation saints who are taken into heaven along with those they believe are still alive. The only thing a pre-tribulation rapture doctrine can try to do is create another resurrection to account for the great multitude of believers which must happen before any tribulation in the Book of Revelation. 

 

However, the Bible only shows there is one small resurrection of a select group of saints before tribulation: these are the literal 144,000 firstfruit of Revelation 14, but they are the apostles and early believers who are Jews and represent the woman Israel as natural branches of the olive tree and not grafted in wild branches.  They are the firstfruit Pentecost offering and because of this reason and its small size, they are not considered part of, or as, the much larger general resurrections called the 1st and 2nd resurrections in Revelation, which consist of most believers who ever existed.  

 

Please see the articles: 'Book of Revelation does not show a pre-tribulation rapture' and 'God's Salvation Plan in the Biblical Feast Days', especially the sections about the Wavesheaf Offering, Pentecost and the Feast of Trumpets.

 

 

Since there are only these two general resurrections and the second is for the Great White Throne judgment:

 

Revelation 20:

11   Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them.

12   And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds.

13   And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead which were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds.

14   Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire.

15   And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.   (NASB)

 

 

We can conclude that the saints in Revelation 7 and Revelation 20 are the same saints and will be in the 1st resurrection.

 

So the only option a pre-tribulation rapture believer has is to somehow squeeze their pre-tribulation resurrection into the 1st resurrection together with the saints in Revelation 7 and Revelation 20.

 

Of course, this is impossible, because the saints in Revelation 7 and 20 come through tribulation into this 1st resurrection as the Bible declares. The existence of martyred saints in Revelation 7 and 20 is completely opposite of the entire premise of the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine where their rapture and resurrection is to avoid this tribulation and therefore must happen before this 1st resurrection. It is like oil and water and cannot mix. So there is nowhere to place a resurrection of pre-tribulation saints anywhere.

 

 

Therefore, the only true option a pre-tribulation rapture believer has is this:

 

Please realize, acknowledge and accept the truth that the saints who the enemy wages war with during the Great Tribulation are Christians who are not raptured away at all, but must endure the tribulation. They will be rewarded for their faith even unto death by being raised in the 1st resurrection.

 

A resurrection of saints before the tribulation is not found in the Bible. If it were true, it would surely be mentioned as one of these resurrections and in fact, by definition and sequence, a pre-tribulation resurrection would be called the 1st resurrection instead, because it must precede the resurrection of those who come through the Great Tribulation.  Also, if such a pre-tribulation rapture/resurrection existed, it would surely be indicated as such, and placed clearly within the sequence of events. However, this is not the case and a pre-tribulation rapture is found, on all points, to be undeniably false.

 

Christians are not taken away before tribulation and there are no people “left behind”. Everyone is here on earth. The difference is some will go through tribulation standing firm in Christ – dying for Him, while most of the people in the world do not know Christ or will fall away.  

 

Which one will you be? Do you really know you are in a war?

 

Please seek God’s truth and when you have it – hold onto it as if your life depends on it, because it does. Do not be misled by the great lie of a pre-tribulation rapture; the enemy wants nothing more than to soften you up and weaken you – all the easier to destroy you when tribulation comes “unexpectedly”.

 

 

 

 

We are soldiers

 

The Bible tells us we are soldiers:

 

Philippians 2:

  25But I thought it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your   messenger and minister to my need;     (NASB)

 

Philemon 1:

1Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, To Philemon our beloved brother and fellow worker,

2 and to Apphia our sister, and to Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church in your house:   (NASB)

 

2 Timothy 2:

1 You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

2 And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.

3 You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

4 No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.

5 And also if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules.

6 The hardworking farmer must be first to partake of the crops.

7 Consider what I say, and may the Lord give you understanding in all things.
8 Remember that Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, was raised from the dead according to my gospel,

9 for which I suffer trouble as an evildoer, even to the point of chains; but the word of God is not chained.

10 Therefore I endure all things for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.    (NKJV)

 

 

 

There are a few things we must keep in mind:

 

 

1) Paul calls everyone who believes in Christ a soldier of Christ. This includes the Jew and the Gentile (remember, Jews – like Paul, were the first Christians).

 

 

2) As a soldier and knowing the Bible says that both Jew and Gentile are ONE man now, do we really believe that we will be abandoning our fellow soldiers in their greatest time of need? What kind of comrade is that – who leaves the battlefield and his company behind?  Soldiers in this world of physical battles are taught not to and do not, leave their comrades, so why would soldiers of Christ who fight the spiritual battles on the side of truth and saving lives for eternity leave their comrades?

 

 

3) Many Christians consider Paul to be a model Christian, who only imitates the Lord and tells us we must do the same:

 

1 Corinthians 11:

9 Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.    (NKJV)

 

 

 

Therefore, we must note what Paul says in 2 Timothy 2:10 above. He says he will suffer for the chosen of God. As a soldier, he helps recruit other soldiers. As a soldier, he is also prepared to suffer and lay down his life for his fellow soldier.

 

So what is Paul saying?

 

The Bible is telling us that all believers in Christ are considered soldiers and all soldiers must be prepared to fight TOGETHER against our common enemy.

 

 

And so when we look again to the time yet future when the enemy will wage war against the saints, these saints are really soldiers in this war.   We are soldiers of Christ. The Book of Revelation bears this out, while also telling us about the greatest tribulation the world will ever see.

 

It defies common sense, much less Biblical truth, to espouse a doctrine which says that all the soldiers will leave the battlefront (Christians will be raptured away) of the worst war ever, and leave it to be fought by a small contingent of new recruits (the “left behind”).

 

It is a grave error to teach that Christians – the soldiers of God, will leave the field when the harvest is most ripe and ready to be reaped.

 

It is a grave error to teach that Christians – the soldiers of God, will leave their comrades at their greatest time of need.

 

It is a grave error to teach that Christians – the soldiers of God, will leave the war that the enemy wages against God and Christ. Remember, the enemy hates God and Christ above all, and his attack is against them – and therefore, also all who love them.

 

 

Do we consider people who are saved to be our brethren since they likewise have faith in God and Christ, and we will live together with these saved people in eternity as well?  Of course we do – all who are saved and have eternal life are our brethren.  How then can we leave the battlefield when God explicitly tells us we must be like Christ and since He laid down His life for us, we must also lay down our lives for our brethren?   

 

1 John 3:

16    By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.

17    But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?

18    My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.    (NKJV)

 

 

How is it possible to leave the battlefield when we know the entire world is in need of the gospel which is the only thing that saves for all eternity?   Supposedly leaving the battlefield and letting whoever are “left behind” fight for themselves is a total lie that goes against everything the Bible tells us about imitating Christ and giving up everything we are and have to save even one sinner. 

 

 

Again, the apostle Paul tells us we must suffer ourselves and for the brethren – and all who suffer, will partake of the reward.  There is no doubt that the Bible teaches there is no pre-tribulation rapture, but we all stay, fight and endure as soldiers, comrades – brethren.  We stay strong so we may help others.  We stick together to the very end as brothers and sisters for God in Christ:

 

2 Corinthians 1:

3    Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,

4    who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

5    For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ.

6    Now if we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effective for enduring the same sufferings which we also suffer. Or if we are comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.

7    And our hope for you is steadfast, because we know that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so also you will partake of the consolation.    (NKJV)

 

 

How is it possible that Christians, who are the soldiers of God, will be missing in action (MIA) when they are needed the most?  

 

It is NOT possible...

 

Let us not be deceived by a pre-tribulation rapture doctrine, but truly love everyone in deed and truth.

We can only love in deed and truth if we are present to help those in their time of darkest need during the darkest days of history.

 

 

Who do the soldiers of the enemy fight against but the soldiers of God?

Are Christians these soldiers of God? God’s Word unequivocally says YES.

 

 

So ask yourself:

 

Are you a Christian?

 

Are you a soldier?

 

 

The same answer applies to both, because if yes, you are a Christian, then yes, you are God’s soldier. And the Bible says his soldiers will be at war until the bitter end. If you are a Christian, the Bible tells us to expect to be engaged in the battle and persevere even at the expense of our lives, but our reward will be eternity.

 

If you say you will leave the battlefront at the most momentous stage and theater of the war by being raptured away, then you are saying you are NOT a soldier, because no true soldier leaves his comrades behind.

 

If you are no soldier, then you are no Christian.

 

 

 

 

How do we win this war?

 

As soldiers of Christ, we must always be reminded that the warfare we are engaged in is not a physical battle, but a spiritual battle. We are not to be afraid of those who can only kill us here on earth, for the example of the Lord Jesus tells us we can be raised to live forever.

 

Matthew 10:

28`And be not afraid of those killing the body, and are not able to kill the soul, but fear rather Him who is able both soul and body to destroy in gehenna.     (YLT)

 

 

If we are engaged in battle and the great war is coming, will you be able to stand during that day? Not your physical life, but is your eternal life assured?

 

The war is not about who is left standing and living at the end of the war or about not having to suffer tribulation, but it is about who will fight and endure spiritually for God’s glory in Christ through the Great Tribulation and live even after we die, and be left standing before God and the Lamb for all eternity.

 

By God’s will and power, our goal as soldiers of Christ is to give glory to God in Christ and to be used by God to effectively teach God’s truth and save others eternally, while also standing steadfast ourselves to make sure we do not lose our crown.

 

The enemy’s goal is to make sure we cannot do these things. He wants us dead, but not just to kill us physically, but spiritually. He is making it so that we will not be able to stand at the greatest time of trouble and falter spiritually, in our faith.  

 

How will he do this? Well, the war has already started. He has planted the seeds of his ultimate victory to see us die eternally, by making believers think they are not soldiers, but instead will leave at the time where steadfast faith is an absolute requirement to persevere lest we fall. He is making it so that we will be completely asleep and will be utterly ill-equipped to fight when tribulation comes.

 

 

How will the enemy win?

 

If he can make us deny our faith and our savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

 

Denying Christ can be manifested in 1 of 3 ways:

 

1. If we blaspheme God and turn our backs from Him.  

 

2. If under tribulation, we deny Him because we do not want to suffer or die.

 

3. We are deceived into believing a false religion, such as a false Christ and a false gospel which is what the False Prophet will try to do during this time of tribulation.

 

 

How will we win? We win when do the all of the following:

 

1. We must never curse or blaspheme God and turn away from Him.

 

2. When we confess the Lord Jesus Christ and never deny Him – even if we must die in Jesus’ name.

 

3. We must not be deceived by the enemy’s false world religion. This is why knowing God’s Bible truth is critical in these last days; we must be able to discern what is true and what is false. The False Prophet will push a false Christianity and will look like a lamb, but speak like a dragon (Revelation 13:11).

 

 

The devastating effect of the pre-tribulation rapture lie is that once Christians realize they are not taken away from tribulation and have been believing a false hope for so long, they will be in such a weakened and disillusioned state that they will be more likely to deny God in any one of these three ways – and this is what we, as soldiers of Christ, must never do.

 

There is a two-pronged attack against Christians that lies within the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine.

 

The first is that the shock and complete unpreparedness will make Christians turn away from God whether they do this by cursing God or denying Christ.

 

The second is that it weakens them and makes it easier to be deceived by this false world religion. Even more, the Beast and False Prophet will force believers to make a decision: bow to the Beast or die. After the shock of not being raptured away, they will be in such a condition that many people will be much less willing or able to endure torture and even death in the name of Christ.

 

As a Christian, to blaspheme God is to also to deny the blood of His son which was shed for us, so items 1 and 2 amount to the same thing. This article deals more with the aspect of not denying Christ, even when faced with death.

 

Please see article ‘The Example of Job’ which discusses cursing God.

 

Please also see the articles ‘Who is the False Prophet’ and ‘The Great Apostasy/Falling Away’ in the section ‘Signs of the Times’, and also section ‘Catholicism Revealed’, for more on the False Prophet and the one world religion to come.

 

 

Therefore, we must know the truth that sets us free, and this truth begins with the knowledge and wisdom of God He gives to us everywhere in the Bible: as Christ suffered and died, we must be prepared to suffer and die for Him.

 

Trying to get us to deny our faith and accept a false religion is something the enemy has always done and that is why there are so many martyrs throughout history. In the future when the world is falling apart before the return of Christ, this would be no different, but even more magnified, as the Bible makes it very clear that the enemy – through his Beast and False Prophet, will be targeting the saints.

 

To not deny the Lord Jesus even if it means dying for Him is the most powerful test and witness of our God-given faith. Indeed, it is the fullest measure of what being a Christian is. And this is the most important reason why a pre-tribulation rapture doctrine is not true. It is beyond reason to think we will be “missing” during the events that will demand we “put up or shut up”, and will define us for all eternity as one who loves his savior enough to die for Him and never deny Him.

 

Christians have always been martyred for their faith which continues to this very day. It makes no sense to think we are an exception and will not suffer as all believers have. We are supposed to have the faith of Abraham – do you think he would refuse to suffer or die for Christ? Or do we forget he was willing to show his faith in God by sacrificing his own son? Most people, not just Christians, are willing to die for their spouse or their children; will you be ready to die for your God?

 

The Bible tells us Christians are refined under fire; how can this happen if we are supposedly taken away? What good are we if we are missing to help our brothers and sisters? How would we know we are true Christians with a faith that can transcend the grave if we are missing to suffer and die in the name of the Lord Jesus?

 

The Bible tells us everywhere that we will suffer for our faith and must give up everything, even our lives, but we need not fear about this, because in the end, we will be with God our father and the Lord Jesus Christ forever:

 

Acts 14:

22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, "We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God."     (NKJV)

 

Romans 8:

17   and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.

18   For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

 

35   Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

36   Just as it is written, "For Your sake we are being put to death all day long; We were considered as sheep to be slaughtered."

37   But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.

38   For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,

39   nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God,

         which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.    (NASB)

 

Philippians 1:

29For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,   (NKJV)

 

Philippians 3:

7But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.

8More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,    (NASB)

 

 

But a pre-tribulation rapture doctrine denies this and is preparing all Christians who believe in this doctrine for a huge and devastating fall.

 

The Bible tells us that we absolutely must not deny the Lord Jesus or He will deny us:

 

2 Timothy 1:

7For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

8Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God,   (NKJV)

 

2 Timothy 2:

11 This is a faithful saying:
      For if we died with Him,
     We shall also live with Him.
12 If we endure,
     We shall also reign with Him.
      If we deny Him,
     He also will deny us.
13 If we are faithless,
     He remains faithful;
      He cannot deny Himself.       (NKJV)

 

Revelation 2:

13   "I know your works, and where you dwell, where Satan's throne is. And you hold fast to My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days in which Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells.   (NKJV)

 

Luke 12:

8     "Also I say to you, whoever confesses Me before men, him the Son of Man also will confess before the angels of God.

9     But he who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God.     (NKJV)

 

Comment:  This is exactly why Christians who are God’s soldiers are not taken away before the tribulation.  They must confess the Lord Jesus before men and the need to do this only grows exponentially as the enemy escalates his war against us and all mankind.  It is un-Biblical to say that Christians are removed before tribulation, because their witness for Christ will also be removed.  But it is completely Biblical to understand that we must be witnesses for Christ even in face of persecution and death to the very end.  Nowhere are we told that the ministry of reconciliation which is our solemn duty ever ends:

 

2 Corinthians 5:

17   Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

18   Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation,

19   that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

20   Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God.

21   For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.    (NKJV)

 

 

In truth, to confess and not deny Christ before men in the face of death is our greatest privilege, and we only have the strength to do this by the power of God for His glory.  This privilege is given to us and never leaves until we draw our last breath.

 

 

The extremely unfortunate part of all this is that believers in the false pre-tribulation rapture doctrine will be prime targets for the enemy, because when they find out they are not raptured away as they have always been taught and believed, they will be shocked, weakened, disillusioned, angry, and completely unprepared – and therefore ripe to blaspheme God and deny Christ.

 

How will you react when you find out at the last minute, if you are even fortunate enough to be able to find out at all, that all you have been taught about a pre-tribulation rapture is false and you must stay and withstand tribulation even though you are completely spiritually unprepared? How will you feel when because you have not been taken away, you believe the terrible lie that it must mean you are not one of God’s chosen? Will you be able to fight at that point? How strong will your faith be then?

 

The Lord Jesus said in the time leading right up to His return, that there will be a falling away and He questioned if there will still be faith in the world:

 

Matthew 24:

9     "Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name.

10   "At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another.

11   "Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many.

12   "Because lawlessness is increased, most people's love will grow cold.

13   "But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved.    (NASB)

 

Luke 18:

7     now, will not God bring about justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them?

8     "I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes,

          will He find faith on the earth?"     (NASB)

 

 

The pre-tribulation rapture doctrine is the initial phase of the enemy’s war against God’s people. It is a spiritual attack to keep us completely unprepared and unequipped until the time comes when the enemy will swoop in for the kill when tribulation begins.

 

1 Peter 5:

8     Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.

9     Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.   (NKJV)

 

 

If you believe in this pre-tribulation rapture, you are being led right into the enemy’s trap, and you have been defeated even before the Great Tribulation has started. You are already a casualty in this war.

 

It is our fervent hope that Christians everywhere will wake up, because the time is short and as soldiers of Christ we must put on the armor of God to withstand during the day of evil.

 

Ephesians 5:

15   Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise,

16   making the most of your time, because the days are evil.   (NASB)

 

Ephesians 6:

10   Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.

11   Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

12   For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

13   Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14   Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness.

15   and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

16   above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.

17   And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;

18   praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints ---

19   and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel,

20   for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.   (NKJV)

 

Comment: Notice that the first part of the armor mentioned is God’s truth. As God is truth and His word is truth, it is all-important and without it, nothing else can follow. To know the truth that a pre-tribulation rapture doctrine is a lie and is perhaps the greatest weapon the enemy uses in his arsenal against us, is absolutely pivotal. As the old saying goes: “knowing is half the battle”. We must pray for strength and now prepare ourselves with the other parts of armor. With the truth, we cannot be deceived by the enemy’s many tricks and schemes.

 

 

Our battle is a spiritual battle we must win, but believing we will be taken away from tribulation when the Bible says we will not, will virtually see to it that we will be a casualty in this war and we will be part of the great falling away from the faith.

 

The way we win this spiritual battle is to expect and be prepared to suffer and die in name of the Lord Jesus Christ – this is why we are called CHRISTians. We must never deny Him – or He will deny us.

 

 

 

 

Conclusion

 

As soldiers of Christ, we must be prepared for a spiritual battle with the enemy. As the father of lies, one of his greatest weapons is the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine, which targets the very core of our faith. This doctrine has created a false sense of security in Christians, who believe they will not have to suffer the tribulation to come. Because of this pre-tribulation rapture lie, Christians believe the great falling away or apostasy does not pertain to them; they will not be here for it.

 

However, the Bible truth is that it is the pre-tribulation rapture doctrine which ensures that it is the believers of this lie who are the ones who will fall away.

 

When they find out they are “still here”, how will they react? What condition will they be in? Will they be useful anymore as a soldier of Christ?   Will they even reject the faith which they will claim has lied to them?

 

The devil is the father of lies, but God does not lie. The Bible tells us there is no rapture of “the Church” before the tribulation begins. It tells us as soldiers in His service, we will not leave the battleground and leave our fellow servants to fight without us in the time of greatest peril. It tells us we must not lose faith and deny our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, even when confronted with death.

 

Revelation 12:

11"And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death     (NASB)

 

 

The Bible makes it clear that those who perish in the Great Tribulation will be rewarded and raised in the 1st resurrection, which means there is no resurrection for any dead saints of “the Church” in a supposed pre-tribulation rapture before this 1st resurrection.

 

We must arm ourselves with the truth not just for our good, but for the benefit of the body of Christ and for God’s glory. Without God’s truth, we are nothing. This is never more so true than now: because if we believe in the pre-tribulation rapture lie, we are good for nothing in God’s army; we are defeated before we have even begun.  We will be dead on arrival, DOA, in this battle from the very beginning, like useless salt to be trampled underfoot.

 

How can we be a good soldier of Christ if we are not even in the battle? And if we are not in the battle, then are we really soldiers? But all Christians are called soldiers of Christ. So then we must seriously think that if we are not present during the greatest battle – then are we really Christians?

 

I plead with you, reader, to see the truth of God’s word. The pre-tribulation rapture is a deadly lie. The birth pangs of the tribulation have already begun and the greatest tribulation the world has ever known will soon be upon us. The hour is late and it is far past time we must wake up to the truth before it is too late and prepare yourself and put on the armor of God. Our battle is for the glory of God and even death cannot separate us from the Lord Jesus:

 

Romans 13:

11   Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep;

          for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed.

12   The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.    (NASB)

 

 

Remember, the Lord Jesus suffered, but knew it was for the greater good and that He would be raised again. The Lord Jesus endured tribulation of His own for us. The Bible says we should have the mind of Christ. And so please wake up and be prepared to prove we are true CHRISTians – who must stand up and confess Christ and never deny Him – even if we have to suffer and die for His name through the Great Tribulation. The promise of our God is that we will rule as priests with Him and Christ forever and ever, but we must stand fast.

 

 

As the old saying goes:  “Knowing is half the battle.”

 

And again, “Knowledge is power”.

 

 

Now we know.  

 

 

Now go strengthen and prepare yourself against the enemy in this war he has waged against you.

You are a soldier of Christ – we must never forget this.

 

As soldiers of Christ, we do not kill, but save in His name.

 

As soldiers of Christ, we will live though we die in His name.

 

 

We are ready to die for our family and loved ones. Do we love the Lord Jesus?

 

Do we really?

 

There is no greater glory than to die for our God and His son, our Lord and Savior.

 

 

And we do it side by side with our fellow soldiers, leaving no one behind.......