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What will transpire in the time between the rapture and the time when the tribulation begins?
Note. There will be no true peace until Christ returns to Earth (Zechariah 14:1-9).
Lesson Series – Revelation
Revelation Chapter 7/Angels/Jews/Evangelist/Seal
Revelation Chapter 7 – Christ, Our Great God And Savior – Jews And Gentiles Saved Through The Tribulation – God’s Plan For The Ages
The “sealed of Israel” (Revelation 7:4), who are by sovereign election, Jews who are saved “through” the tribulation, with their number, 144,000, being seen “intact” in Revelation 14:1-5. Pre-tribulation “born again believers in Christ” are saved “from the tribulation,” (Revelation 3:10) by being “caught up” by Christ prior to the beginning of the tribulation (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Titus 2:13). The “caught up saints,” (the born again believers in Christ) will be those who are waiting for “the blessed hope” of the return of Christ in the air to keep them from the judgments of Christ that will fall upon “all who dwell on the earth” (Rev 3:10). For those who miss the rapture, and are left behind to face the judgments of Christ (seal, trumpet, bowl), there is no blessed hope. When Christ returns in the air with His “caught up saints” from heaven, (Zechariah 14:1-5; Revelation 19:11-21; Matthew 24:27-31; 25:31-46) that will not be a “glorious hope” for those “earth dwellers” (Revelation 3:10), who will come under the judgment of the risen Christ, the Lamb of God, the Lion of The Tribe Of Judah, the King Of Kings and Lord of Lords. By the way, the Battle of Armageddon, which is a spiritual battle, does not target those who are born again believers in Christ (Zech 14:3; Rev 16:13-16; Rev 19:17-19; Rev 19:21). Please understand that if you are a born again believer in Christ, and if you are fearful of being one of the many people who will be present in the Battle of Armageddon, please understand that, “you won’t be there!”
Please do not confine the 144,000 “born again” Jewish missionaries to the land of Israel. At the coming of Christ to earth, at the end of tribulation (Matt 24:29), Christ will send out His angels to gather His elect, born again Jews, from the four corners of the earth ( Matt 24:31).
Revelation 7:13-14 discusses the martyred believers in Christ, who are in the presence of God. They had been left behind from the rapture, but had become born again believers in Christ, while in the tribulation, before being martyred by the forces of the anti-Christ. Consider the martyrdom that is shown in Rev 6:9.
The wrath of God begins with the Rapture/Catching Up of the Saints of God, and continues through the Book of Revelation, Chapters 6-19. One might ask why the wrath of God would begin with the catching up of the saints. The reason is simple. When the saints of God are caught up in the air, and are taken away from earth, the only people who will be left on Earth, will be those who had not been born again. Consequently, the “earth dwellers” will be people who do not have God’s Holy Spirit dwelling within their spirits, which prompts righteous living (John 16:7-11). Lawlessness will breakout throughout planet Earth because no governmental leader or citizen will be prompted to righteous living. The seal judgments will begin three and a half years into the 70th week of Daniel. The remaining three and a half years will conclude with the victory of Christ over the “earth dwellers,” who are preparing for their attack on Jerusalem (Zech 14:2) at the Battle of Armageddon. The onset of the seal judgments (Rev 6:1) comes after the anti-Christ breaks his covenant of protection with Israel, “midway” during the 70th week of Daniel (Daniel 9:24-27; key vs 27). God is totally in charge of the events that take place after the rapture of the church takes place, and when the judgments (seal, trumpet, bowl) are poured out on the earth and its “earth dwellers.” God is not a defender against the anti-Christ. God is in charge of every thing that the anti-Christ does. At the time of the Rapture, God removes righteous people from the Earth. At the time that the first seal judgment occurs, and every judgment that follows, God’s wrath is poured out on the people who are left behind, which are unrighteous people. (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Wrath is described as being: anger, wrath, passion; punishment, vengeance, per 1 Thessalonians 1:10,
“even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come” (Strong’s Concordance Note)
us from the wrath ὀργῆς orgēs 3709
Verses Of Note:
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17: 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.
Titus 2:13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,
Revelation 6:9 When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held.
Daniel 9:27 Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; But in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, Even until the consummation, which is determined, Is poured out on the desolate.”
1 Thessalonians 1:10, “…even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.”
Lesson – Revelation Chapter 7 – Christ, Our Great God And Savior – Jews And Gentiles Saved Through The Tribulation
The Sealed of Israel
1 After these things I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, on the sea, or on any tree. 2 Then I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God. And he cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, 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.
A Multitude from the Great Tribulation
9 After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” 11 All the angels stood around the throne and the elders and the four living creatures, and fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying: “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom, 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, “Who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from?” 14 And I said to him, “Sir, you know.” So he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them. 16 They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any heat; 17 for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”
The following study notes come from the MacArthur Study Bible, and are provided by Biblgateway.com
7:1–17 Chapter 7 forms a parenthesis between the sixth seal (6:12–17) and the seventh seal (8:1) and answers the question posed at the end of chap. 6. Two distinct groups will survive the divine fury: 1) 144,000 Jewish evangelists on earth (vv. 1–8) and 2) their converts in heaven (vv. 9–17).
7:1 four corners. The 4 quadrants of the compass; that is, the angels will take up key positions on earth. four winds. A figurative expression, indicating all the earth’s winds—those from S, E, N, and W. The 4 angels will turn off, for a brief interlude, the essential engine of our earth’s atmosphere.
7:2 seal of the living God. “Seal” often refers to a signet ring used to press its image into wax melted on a document. The resulting imprint implied authenticity and ownership and protected the contents (cf. 9:4; Ezek. 9:3, 4). In this case, the mark is the name of God (14:1).
7:4 One hundred and forty-four thousand. A missionary corps of redeemed Jews who are instrumental in the salvation of many Jews and Gentiles during the Tribulation (vv. 9–17). They will be the firstfruits of a new redeemed Israel (v. 4; Zech. 12:10). Finally, Israel will be the witness nation she refused to be in the OT (see notes on Rom. 11:25–27). all the tribes of the children of Israel. By sovereign election, God will seal 12,000 from each of the 12 tribes, promising His protection while they accomplish their mission.
7:9 a great multitude. While the tribulation period will be a time of judgment, it will also be a time of unprecedented redemption (cf. v. 14; 6:9–11; 20:4; Is. 11:10; Matt. 24:14). all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues. All the earth’s people groups. white robes. See note on 3:4. palm branches. In ancient times, they were associated with celebrations, including the Feast of Tabernacles (Lev. 23:40; Neh. 8:17; John 12:13).
7:10 Salvation belongs to our God. Salvation is the theme of their worship, and they recognize that it comes solely from Him
7:11 elders. See note on 4:4. four living creatures. See note on 4:6.
7:12 Blessing…and might. See note on 5:12.
7:13 white robes. See note on 3:4.
7:14 the great tribulation. See notes on 3:10; 6:1, 9, 12. These people didn’t go with the raptured church, since they were not yet saved. During the 7 year period they will be saved, martyred, and enter heaven. Though it is a time of unparalleled judgment, it is also a time of unparalleled grace in salvation (cf. Matt. 24:12–14). washed their robes. Cf. 19:8. Salvation’s cleansing is in view (see Titus 2:11–14). blood of the Lamb. This refers to the atoning sacrifice of Christ (cf. 1:5; 5:9; Rom. 3:24, 25; 5:9).
7:15 His temple. This refers to the heavenly throne of God (see note on 11:19). During the Millennium there will also be a temple on earth—a special holy place where God dwells in a partially restored, but still fallen, universe (see Ezek. 40–48). In the final, eternal state with its new heavens and earth, there is no temple; God Himself, who will fill all, will be its temple (21:22). dwell among them. The preferred reading is that He “will spread His tent over them.” God’s presence will become their canopy of shelter to protect them from all the terrors of a fallen world and the indescribable horrors they have experienced on the earth during the time of tribulation.
7:17 shepherd. In a beautiful mix of images, the Lamb has always been the Shepherd (Ps. 23; John 10:14ff.; Heb. 13:20).
Verses Of Note
1 Thessalonians 4:16 the Lord Himself will descend. This fulfills the pledge of John 14:1–3 (cf. Acts 1:11). Until then, He remains in heaven (cf. 1:10; Heb. 1:1–3). archangel. Very little is known about the organization or rank of angels (cf. Col. 1:17). While only Michael is named as an archangel (Jude 9), there seems to be more than one in the archangelic ranks (Dan. 10:13). Perhaps it is Michael, the archangel, whose voice is heard as he is identified with Israel’s resurrection in Dan. 12:1–3. At that moment (cf. 1 Cor. 15:52, “twinkling of an eye”), the dead rise first. They will not miss the Rapture, but be the first participants. trumpet of God. Cf. 1 Cor. 15:52. This trumpet is not the judgment trumpets of Rev. 8–11, but is illustrated by the trumpet of Ex. 19:16–19, which called the people out of the camp to meet God. It will be a trumpet of deliverance (cf. Zeph. 1:16; Zech. 9:14).
1 Thessalonians 4:17 caught up. After the dead come forth, their spirits, already with the Lord (2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23), are now being joined to resurrected new bodies (see notes on 1 Cor. 15:35–50); the living Christians will be raptured, lit. snatched away (cf. John 10:28; Acts 8:39). This passage, along with John 14:1–3 and 1 Cor. 15:51, 52, forms the biblical basis for “the Rapture” of the church. The time of the Rapture cannot be conclusively determined from this passage alone. However, when other texts such as Rev. 3:10 and John 14:3 are consulted and compared to the texts about Christ’s coming in judgment (Matt. 13:34–50; 24:29–44; Rev. 19:11–21) at the end of a 7 year tribulation, it has to be noted that there is a clear difference between the character of the “Rapture” in that there is no mention of any judgment, while the other texts feature judgment. So then, it is best to understand that the Rapture occurs at a time different from the coming of Christ in judgment. Thus, the Rapture has been described as pretribulational (before the wrath of God unfolded in the judgments of Rev. 6–19). This event includes complete transformation (cf. 1 Cor. 15:51, 52; Phil 3:20, 21) and union with the Lord Jesus Christ that never ends.
Titus 2:13 “blessed hope.” A general reference to the second coming of Jesus Christ, including the resurrection (cf. Rom. 8:22, 23; 1 Cor. 15:51–58; Phil. 3:20, 21; 1 Thess. 4:13–18; 1 John 3:2, 3) and the reign of the saints with Christ in glory (2 Tim. 2:10). glorious appearing. Cf. 2 Tim. 1:10. Lit. “the appearing of the glory.” This will be our salvation from the presence of sin. God and Savior. A clear reference to the deity of Jesus. Cf. 2 Pet. 1:1.
Revelation 6:9 fifth seal. This seal describes the force of the saints’ prayers for God’s vengeance. Its events will begin in the first half and mark the mid-point and events following, in the 7 year period, which is called the Great Tribulation (2:22; 7:14; see notes on Dan. 9:27; Matt. 24:15; 2 Thess. 2:3, 4). The second 3½ year period (11:2; 12:6; 13:5) features the Day of the Lord, in which God unleashes His judgment and wrath on the earth in intensifying waves (see note on 1 Thess. 5:2). under the altar. Probably a reference to the altar of incense, which pictured the saints’ prayers ascending to God (5:8; cf. Ex. 40:5). the souls of those who had been slain. Christians martyred for their faith (cf. 7:9, 13–15; 17:6; Matt. 24:9–14; see also Mark 13:9–13; Luke 21:12–19).
Daniel 9:27 middle of the week. This is the halfway point of the 70th week of years, i.e., 7 years leading to Christ’s second coming. The Antichrist will break his covenant with Israel (v 27a), which has resumed its ancient sacrificial system. Three and a half years of tribulation remain, agreeing with the time in other Scriptures (7:25; Rev. 11:2, 3; 12:14; 13:5, called “Great Tribulation,” cf. Matt. 24:21) as God’s wrath
1 Thessalonians 1:10 “…delivers us from the wrath to come.” This can mean to evacuate out of a current distress (Rom. 7:24; Col. 1:13) or to exempt from entering into a distress (John 12:27; 2 Cor. 1:10). The wrath can refer either to God’s temporal wrath to come on the earth (Rev. 6:16, 17; 19:15) or to God’s eternal wrath (John 3:36; Rom. 5:9, 10).
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The scripture text was taken from Biblegateway.com
The translation of the text is from The New King James Version.
Unless otherwise noted, scripture notes were taken from The MacArthur Study Bible notes that are contained in Biblegateway.com
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