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Featured tribulation and suffering part 1

Discussion in 'Eschatology & Prophecy Forum' started by Randy Kluth, Jun 5, 2020.

  1. Randy Kluth

    Randy Kluth Well-Known Member

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    The principle of "embracing suffering as a reality" is contained in the doctrine of Postribulationism. This is a most neglected teaching in Scriptures because of the arguments over whether we should even accept it is there. Faith Doctrine and Prosperity Doctrine, in particular, seek to oppose Postribulationism because they reject the suffering component in it.

    We need to hear the truth about suffering with Christ in this fallen world. Jesus was worried that when we embrace him as our Lord, we would suffer, and then lose faith in him.

    Matthew 24.9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come."

    This was Jesus' message, that for Christians there will be suffering--not just when the Antichrist comes, but *all through the age!* And when this happens, it will try our hearts. It will prove our love or not. The testimony of God's Kingdom will be preached in the midst of this cauldron, so that our metal will be tested, showing our faith genuine or not.

    But Jesus was convinced that his presence with us, by the Spirit, and the righteousness we exhibit, would be enough to hold us during these times. And he warned us to expect these things, that our testimony of his righteousness would be rejected in a fallen world. This is at the heart of Postribulational Theology, and the exact opposite of Faith Doctrine, which attempts to circumvent all suffering.

    Faith Doctrine teaches that we can escape the troubles of this cursed world by simply "confessing it." And Pretribulational Theology opposes Postribulationism, which I outline below, by offering an alternative understanding that avoids the suffering of antichristian persecution.



    2 Thessalonians 1.3 We ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love all of you have for one another is increasing. 4 Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring.

    The Apostle Paul lays it out there. Christians will suffer, but he is pleased that the Thessalonian Christians are remaining strong in their love, and not denying their faith in Christ. This is an explicit warning, to embrace Christian suffering, and not to expect immediate deliverance from it.



    5 All this is evidence that God’s judgment is right, and as a result you will be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are suffering. 6 God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you 7 and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. 8 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might 10 on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.

    Note that Paul makes it clear that the wrongs done to Christians in this world may make them look like they're the "bad guys," as if God is punishing them. But Jesus will return from heaven one day, and bring angry judgment from God, to show that He has been favoring believers, and only giving the ungodly a chance to repent before inflicting vengeance upon them for failing to treat Christians right, and also for living wicked lives.



    11 With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by His power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. 12 We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Jesus' message to his disciples, before he died, was that they should persevere in their goodness, because the Lord would eventually call all men into account for their deeds, whether good or bad. It was an encouragement that in following in his teachings they would be viewed as "the good."
     
  2. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member

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    Truly, to be able to make a 'stand' for our Lord Jesus in these last days requires spiritual courage than can only come from Him.

    Our Lord Jesus did tell us to not fear those who can kill our body (flesh), but not our soul, but to fear Him Who can destroy both body and soul in the lake of fire (Matthew 10:28). Understanding this comes easy for me, since He has given me to grasp many differences between this earthly existence and the heavenly existence which was in the past, and the one which is to come. Nor am I alone in this, since I believe strongly He gives this understanding to those who show themselves approved in study of all of His Word.
     
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  3. marks

    marks Well-Known Member

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    Isn't that a part of Christianity regardless of eschatology?

    I'm pre-trib/pre-mil. Are you thinking I'm light on the doctrines of suffering?

    I think that characterizing pre-trib doctrine as an avoidance doctrine is a very false premise.

    Much love!
     
  4. Randy Kluth

    Randy Kluth Well-Known Member

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    You know, I've just been waiting for someone from the Pretrib camp to say this? I'm all in on that--I just never hear it! Clearly, Suffering is taught quite distinct from biblical eschatology. It's just that in the book of Revelation, and in the book of Daniel, suffering is distinctly connected with the persecution of Antichrist. And I think Pretribbers wish to ignore this. And so they just don't respond to the point.

    But I'm glad you do, because I don't really want to be saying that I disagree with Pretrib in every way. I agree with the future of Israel, and I agree with futurism, which is what Dispensationalism has helped to contribute towards. However, the idea of a Pretrib Rapture is not explicit theology--only the result of logical thinking in coming to terms with the idea that Christ could come "at any moment."
     
  5. marks

    marks Well-Known Member

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    That's saying they are being intellectually dishonest, and in fact I hear this taught in conjuction with pre-trib regularly.

    People are being skinned alive by unbelievers because they hold to Christ in the modern day. I remember some years ago we were hearing reports of Entrea(sp?) rounding up Christians into shipping containers in the middle of the desert where they roasted to death.

    We all know suffering and tribulation are a part of live, and are there to make us fruitful and bring us glory.

    I wouldn't say "only". There's a bit more to it. But unless you take Revelation literally and chronologically, I'll never be able to show it to you.

    The 144,000 are sealed of Israel, and are "the servants of Christ", an inclusive statement. So this is them. There aren't any others. Because the others were just removed, and stand before the throne, an innumerable multitude.

    We could go on from there if you wish.

    Much love!
     
  6. Bobby Jo

    Bobby Jo Well-Known Member

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    The idea that Jesus could come "at any moment" is nonsense, unless it's an untimely death. For example, my wife consistently advises me how precious life is, and that Jesus could come "at any moment" -- IF I DON'T KNOCK IT OFF (for which I immediately tend to comply). But the premise that Jesus could RETURN at any moment is Scriptural ignorance.

    But there's no lack of IGNORANCE in the church,
    Bobby Jo
     
  7. Bobby Jo

    Bobby Jo Well-Known Member

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    Just because 12K out of each of the tribes are numerated, doesn't mean there aren't others. It just calls out a specific GROUP within a crowd.

    So your presumption is exactly that. It ain't no fact.
    Bobby Jo
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2020
  8. Davy

    Davy Well-Known Member

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    The idea that the "great multitude" of Revelation 7:9 represents a pre-trib rapture is an addition by men inserted into that Scripture. As usual, some men quick to build their own reputations and stats with others often don't finish reading what is actually written in God's Word. This case is no exception.

    Rev 7:14-17
    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.

    15 Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple: and He That sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them.


    16 They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.


    17 For the Lamb Which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

    KJV

    Those verses above in red are about the future Millennium time of Christ's reign over all nations per Revelation 20 and Zechariah 14.

    That Scripture is NOT pointing to a pre-trib rapture. It is pointing to the believing Gentiles of Christ's Church that went through the great tribulation, and overcame through the Blood of The Lamb Jesus Christ. That is the meaning of their having made their robes white in the blood of The Lamb. It means they overcame persecution for that time.

    The previous verses about the 144,000 is not some Jewish tribulation saints idea either. ONLY the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi are those called Jews, even today. The rest there are part of the ten lost tribes of Israel, those who mostly lost their heritage as Israelites long ago. They all are Christians.

    Thus all those in that Rev.7 chapter are about Christ's servants that are 'sealed' by God in prep for the great tribulation. The division between the seed of Israel and the Gentiles is to show the sealing of Christ's elect from both, as both together make up His Church.
     
  9. Timtofly

    Timtofly Well-Known Member

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    I think that the scope of reality needs to be taken into consideration. Most of us see the world as 5 continents with 8+ billion people who more or less see each other instantaneous via modern media. Now contrast that to the 1st century, and only a limited Roman Empire. Tribulation to those in the 1st century may have been the California wildfires last year. The scale is completely different between now and then. That does not mean the end trib will scale exactly. Especially if it is still only centered around the Middle East.
     
  10. Keraz

    Keraz Well-Known Member

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    The chapter of Revelation 7, is one of the most mis-represented chapters of the Bible.
    The word 'heaven' is never mentioned in it, so thinking people go to live in heaven is an addition to Revelation.

    These 3 verses are prophesies about the state of Eternity. After the Millennium. Proved by Revelation 21:1-7
    Thank you for this true and correct statement.
    The thinking that the 144,000 male virgins are all Jews, is laughable.
    The entire 'vast multitude', are all the faithful Christians, gathered out of the nations, soon after the Sixth Seal event. Many prophesies confirm this and Ezekiel 38:8b and 12b tells about them. Our heritage and our destiny.
     
  11. Timtofly

    Timtofly Well-Known Member

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    Why does heaven mean anything in this chapter? Seal 6 just opened the spiritual reality of God’s physical presence. Heaven and earth became equal reality. There is no more separation. Angels will be seen as angels, not stars any more. Heaven is no longer specified. I think the problem is those who think they will stay on earth may be sadly mistaken. I think the Garden of Eden and Paradise is a Temple complex where the church, bride of Christ, all of Adam's descendants will serve God. It will not be neccessarily fixed to heaven or earth. Although not sure how those on earth set aside a spot that is 1200 miles by 1200 miles.

    There is no "state of Eternity". Eternity is no time and no change. You say we do not go to heaven. We definitely never go to Eternity. The next reality may only be twice as much time as this was, and then another reality after that. Jesus says there are many different realities existing in God's Eternity. Those 3 verses are the state at that time, 1000 years, before the next Heaven and earth.

    So the fact that Jesus chose 12 disciples who were Jews is laughable? God chose 12 disciples the first time. God is very capable of choosing 144K male virgin Jews, and an exact amount from each tribe as stated. They are not decided by genetic testing. God already knows their genetic makeup and the fact they are Jews. Unless you think that God turns just any human, male or female, into 144K male Jewish virgins? I am not sure why one would think God can not figure out exactly what God does? And yes they were sealed as part of the church as well. They had no choice in who they are or what they are, even being Christian believers. They will serve as disciples of Jesus in the last few years, while Jesus once again has as an earthly ministry. All that was recorded in the Gospels will be at play, once again.

    Chapter 7 is the sealing of the group Jesus will only use on earth. The last half shows the rest of the church has been placed in the temple of God, Paradise and the Garden of Eden where the tree of life still is. Adam and his family restored as those who will have the spiritual duties of God’s temple.
     
  12. Randy Kluth

    Randy Kluth Well-Known Member

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    I know what you mean in terms of numbers. But if you want to scale it, you should also consider proportionality? In the time of ancient Rome, that empire was of great importance. And Israel was God's exclusive people, in the time of Christ and prior to that. So what Rome was in the ancient world, and what they did to Israel, is of great import. It would be like comparing this to today's European Civilization turning against Christianity.

    It does seem that you are defining "tribulation" exclusively as general trouble on earth, in terms of wars, social upheavals, catastrophes, etc.? But I believe the Great Tribulation was specifically defined by Jesus to be the Roman destruction of Jerusalem, followed by an age-long diaspora of the Jewish People. The signs of this impending destruction of Jerusalem in Jesus' time certainly included problems within the Roman Empire and in Israel. But the Tribulation itself was the exile and dispersion of the Jewish People over the last 2000 years!

    This Tribulation will perhaps crescendo in our day, with the rebirth of modern Israel and with the decline of Christian Civilization. The witness to the world of righteousness--the Church--has been in decline for a long time. And now we seem to be in a period of complete apostasy. Where is Christianity in European Civilization anymore?

    And so, we enter a new phase in this age-long Tribulation of the Jewish People. And it does include troubles in the world, social and natural.
     
  13. Randy Kluth

    Randy Kluth Well-Known Member

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    I do understand this argument, and it's logical, though I believe it to be a wrong interpretation. I hold it to be important *not* to fashion our eschatology based on controversial passages, or on symbols that can be misunderstood. If we're going to teach theology with any credibility, we have to assume that it is important to God, and therefore should be clearly spelled out--not cryptically, but explicitly.

    To base your position, then, on an interpretation of the 144,000 is a mistake. It contains no explicit Pretrib Theology at all. Again, this is just *logical thinking,* just as I said it is *logical thinking* to conclude that if Christ is coming soon, and at an unknown time, he must be able to come "at any time." This is poor logic, but it is nevertheless the basis of Pretrib Theology.

    I would only say this about the 144,000 from all 12 tribes of Israel. This cannot literally apply to the NT period, nor to the endtimes, because practical application of Israel's "tribes" lost its value thousands of years ago.

    After the Assyrian and Babylonian captivities, the Jewish People were more associated as a People than as 12 Tribes. As long as the Law was applied under a temple system, the 12 Tribes continued to have significance. But once the Law was curtailed, the 12 Tribes were viewed as relevant only in terms of their original calling to form into one People.

    And this is the significance, I believe, of the 144,000. They represent a remnant of Jewish People, originating from OT times, and coming to believe in Christ.

    They are preserved in the Last Days until Israel is restored as a nation, both geographically and spiritually. The number may or may not be literal. The important thing is that these are literal Jews who represent the future hope of Israel. It is the fulfillment of their ancient promise to coalesce 12 tribes into a single nation.

    It is my assumption that the 144,000 and the Great Multitude of all nations coexist on earth *at the same time.* There is no reason to think otherwise. Israel's trouble in Diaspora, and the sufferings of the Christian Church, are simultaneous experiences.

    This is how Jesus portrayed it even in his Olivet Discourse, while the Church was largely confined to Israel. The fate of Israel under the Romans led to suffering for Christians under the same Empire.
     
  14. marks

    marks Well-Known Member

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    Do ya think?

    So . . . what is the "explicit" eschatology?

    Yikes!

    So . . . I guess it doesn't mean what it says?

    This is why I like to just start with one part.
     
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  15. Keraz

    Keraz Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. A true and correct statement.
    Only those with another agenda believe otherwise.
    Revelation 7:1-3 DOES say the scene that John is viewing is on earth.
    Nowhere is this location changed and even in verses 15-17 which describe Eternity, it is an earthly scene. proved by Revelation 21:1-7
    Humans going to live in heaven is never an option. Jesus said such a thing was impossible. John 3:13, John 8:21-23, +
     
  16. Bobby Jo

    Bobby Jo Well-Known Member

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    Rev. 7:13 Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, “Who are these, clothed in white robes, and whence have they come?” 14 I said to him, “Sir, you know.” And he said to me, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

    15 Therefore are they before the throne of God,
    and serve him day and night within his temple;
    and he who sits upon the throne will shelter them with his presence.

    ... so I guess GOD reigns over HIS ENTIRE CREATION of the HEAVENS from Earth. -- Sounds like those that purported that the Earth was the center of our Solar System (and possibly the center of our Galaxy, the center of the Universe, and the CENTER OF ALL CREATION) were correct.

    I hope GOD has a Warp Speed Starship so that HE can get to the nether reaches from here. And I guess we have NO NEED FOR THE NEW JERUSALEM. Silly GOD.

    GREAT WORK Keras!
    Bobby Jo


    Oh yeah, and what happens when the SUN burns out? ... Silly People ...
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2020
  17. Randy Kluth

    Randy Kluth Well-Known Member

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    I'm having computer trouble responding to this, so the context may be lost. Explicit Teaching is just coming out and saying something without beating around the bush. Instead of logically moving towards concluding something, all we have to do is hear it said plainly. For example, if we want to believe in explicit theology that Jesus is God, we need a statement to that effect. Something like, He is the image of the invisible God. Or, he is the Word of God made flesh.

    It's not enough to say he did the works of God, or acted in the righteousness of God. Explicit theology does not leave room for much doubt. Inferences, however, leave lots of room for doubt, and therefore, for interpretation. I build theology on *explicit statements.* Explicit Eschatology would be the same, explicit and direct statements made about the Eschaton that does not leave us much room for interpretation.

    Over the years I've had discussions with Pretribbers, who I've called upon to produce explicit theology that *Christ is coming before the end of the age, and before the reign of Antichrist. They often admit they have no explicit theology, and proclaim that their doctrine was designed to be based on a mysterious revelation, given only to those open to it. How dangeorus!

    And then they usually go on to claim that my view, Postrib, is just as ambiguous or vague. However, 2 Thes 2 isn't vague at all, but plainly declares that Christ cannot come for his Church unless Antichrist appears first. And then, it unambiguously proclaims that Christ will come not before but *at* the destruction of Antichrist. This is what I mean by explicit eschatology, or explicit theology.

    No, symbols and visions are not explicit theology. They are to be *interpreted.* When the Bible speaks of 144,000 Israelites, it is expected that we draw logical conclusions to understand what the vision means. Daniel understood dreams that Nebuchadnezzar could not understand without him. We also need to be like Daniel, and understand how to interpret dreams.

    The logical assumption we must make is that the 12 tribes were the original clans designed to lead up to a single united Israeli nation. The tribes were not meant to be eternal entities in themselves. We know that because the Bible says so in Eze 37, and we also know that the Bible indicated that the tribes would be dispersed in captivities, making the recovery dependent on a remnant of these tribes. That is, it is not the tribes themselves that are recovered, but the people who had belonged to these tribes.

    This was a verification of the original promise God made to Abraham, that these tribes would be the people who would fulfill the nation. That is, the descendants of Israel, biologically, would become a nation, which was later processed through a group of 12 tribes.
     
  18. Keraz

    Keraz Well-Known Member

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    Obviously what the Bible actually says is unknown to you.
    Revelation 21:2-3 plainly states that God will dwell with mankind in the new Jerusalem, which will come down from heaven.

    Then; read Revelation 21:23 for what happens when the sun burns out.
     
  19. marks

    marks Well-Known Member

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    Hi Keraz,

    The multitude gathered before God's throne is on earth? How is that? Later in the book God's temple is still in heaven. I don't remember. Do you take the book in sequence?

    Much love!
     
  20. marks

    marks Well-Known Member

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    I'm sorry . . . I understand what it means to be explicit. My question was more, What is the eschatology which you find to be 'explicit'?

    Much love!
     
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