So, going back to the questions, “Where are we in the end times?” and/or “Are we in the Tribulation?”
As I said earlier, these questions usually follow worrisome or alarming mentions of future things to take place from the book of Revelation.
In this, not many people -- in the church especially -- read the book at all. When the topic is written or talked about by those who teach on the subject matter, it usually still leaves the reader or listener with the same question of where are we in the end times. That's because the relationship between the timing and the chapters do not reveal the picture in the reading mind of the events within the time-line of the book.
As the Lord led me to read the book of Revelation over and over in the past months and years, as well as listen to many of the experts on the subject matter, I have become more and more familiar with the peculiarities of the book of the end times, primarily the understanding of the timing of the events. And recently I felt a call from the Lord to share what I have learned and what He has shown me in direct clarity of the events of the timing of the book of Revelation – hence the title of this guide that I'm talking about: TIMING Revelation©.
On page 31 of the 100-page guide, I cover about the question of where we are in the end times, and of the timing of the beginning of the 7-years Tribulation after the Rapture of God's people takes place.
We don't know when exactly, but it cannot be long after because when the rapture takes place, the earth will be in chaos. That is when the antichrist will make his entrance. He could be one of the political leaders of one nation, or the united nations, or a completely unknown political "man with a deceptive plan", no-one knows at this time, who will come forward to use this catastrophic event to show himself as a man able to bring peace.
This initial pseudo-peace will not last long
The first seal depicts the antichrist showing himself on the white horse. This is satan's impersonation of the real Christ coming on a white horse in Revelation 19. During this time the people of the world will be deceived, including the Jewish people of Israel who will be offered a peace agreement supposedly to end all previous agreements.
By the second seal, we see the red horse which represents the end of the false peace, which turns into civil wars, then the black horse of famine and the pale horse of great deaths (third and fourth seals).
In this chapter we go from celebration in heaven to great darkness in the earth as we look at the judgments of the seals, the trumpets and the bowls (or vials) to come -- the judgments that will be poured out onto the unrepentant world.
The judgments of the seals will kill 1/3 of the world's population, and the trumpets will kill another 1/3. This is a summary of what will take place in the following chapters covering the 7-years Tribulation. Throughout these series of seven judgments, as those on earth might think the worst is over, then will begin the next judgments worse than the previous.
It is helpful to understand what this time of Tribulation is about. There are several
theories on when the 7-years Tribulation will begin.
When we speak of the 7-years Tribulation, it refers to the seven years spoken of by Daniel the prophet in the Old Testament, which will come in the very end times. This is the time when God deals with Israel; that's why the church is not here at that time. It is to complete the transgression of sins, to make reconciliation with God's people and to bring everlasting righteousness, as told by the prophet Daniel.
The seventy weeks are speaking of years. The word in Hebrew (heptad) is like our "decades" which speak of ten years. "Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy." (Daniel 9:24).
Some teachings isolate this scripture to the time of Daniel when the seventy years of the Babylonian captivity was coming to the end of which Jeremiah had written about to the people at that time. But in old testament prophecies it is often common to speak of a couple of seasons of prophetic time. In other words there is often a near fulfilment of prophecy and a far fulfilment.
So in this case of Daniel 9, scripture immediately turns to the future, in the next verses, by prophesying about the coming of the Messiah (Jesus) at His first coming some five/six hundred years into the future, and then even further yet into the time of the ends and the the coming of the antichrist (verses 25-27). And the next chapter gets into another of Daniel's visions of future events.
But all this is outside of the scope of this timing of the book of revelation and is for a future level of study yet to be added to this beginning series. But it is added here as an explanation of that the time here is about God's dealing with Israel and not the church. More on that in the guide.
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