As we continue to live through this Coronavirus crisis, people are asking, “Are we currently living in the Tribulation?”
The Tribulation: Defined
First let’s define “Tribulation,” for there’s tribulation little “t”, and then there’s THE Tribulation capital “T”. When talking about the Tribulation, as Bible prophecy describes, we’re not talking about the inevitable day–to–day sufferings we all share caused by living in this fallen world. Rather, prophecy is talking about an event — The Tribulation.
The Tribulation goes by a number of different names and descriptions in the Old Testament:
- The Day of the Lord (Isaiah 2:12)
- A Day of Reckoning (Isaiah 2:12)
- A Day of Wrath (Zephaniah 1:15)
- A Day of Trouble and Distress (Zephaniah 1:15)
- A Day of Destruction and Desolation (Zephaniah 1:15)
- The Time of Jacob’s Distress (Jeremiah 30:7; Daniel 12:1)
- The Great and Terrible Day of the LORD (Joel 2:11,31)
Jesus described is as, “For then there shall be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21). What Jesus is talking about will be the worst time in all of human history.
The Tribulation: Purpose
God has a four–fold purpose for the Tribulation:
- To pour out His wrath upon the nations of the world for all their evil, as He did during the Flood.
- To bring multitudes of people to finally accept Jesus as Savior.
- To gather a remnant of Jewish people who finally accept Jesus as Messiah.
- For Jesus to defeat evil and set up His Kingdom.
And, the book of Daniel tells us that the Tribulation will last for seven years, beginning when the ascending one–world ruler — the Antichrist — makes a peace covenant with Israel. After that, the book of Revelation describes horrors so terrible that Jesus declared that “unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved” (Matthew 24:22). Events like:
- A one–world ruler risen to power who rules over a global government.
- The Antichrist making and breaking a peace covenant with Israel.
- A one–world religious system being implemented.
- A new world war being waged so great that a quarter of the world’s population — almost 2 billion people in today’s numbers — are slaughtered.
- Death by mass starvation and rampant plagues.
- The worst evils let loose from people’s hearts so that they sin exceedingly.
- Violence, theft, and witchcraft become the norm.
- Demons run reckless, no longer obscured.
- The planet cracked apart by earthquakes, meteors, and fire so that the entire biosphere teeters on the brink of collapse.
- Christians and Jews hunted down like animals to be slaughtered.
- The Antichrist’s name tattooed on his people’s right hand or forehead, or face starvation.
The Tribulation: Exemption
None of these are happening, so clearly, we are not currently living in the Tribulation, but eventually it will come. Don’t lose hope, for did you know that Christians in this Church Age will not have to endure the horrors of the Tribulation? While the Tribulation, like the Flood was, is God pouring out His judgment upon mankind for our sins, believers in Christ are promised exemption from God’s wrath. As 1 Thessalonians 5:9 reveals, “For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The wrath of God is meant only for those who live in rebellion against Him, and not for those who have accepted Jesus as Savior. They are promised to be raptured off this earth before the Tribulation begins.
So, no matter how bad the world gets today, it’s nothing compared to what life will be like during the Tribulation. Make sure you never have to face those terrible days. Accept Jesus’ lifeline of salvation today.