The Great Tribulation in the Cosmos  


C
hristians and Jews have gone through many tribulations, and so have other nations and groups of people, but when Jesus referred to a Great Tribulation, that had never been before in man's history, and would never occur again, what was Jesus referring to?

Let us look at his words:

Matthew 24:
13 but he who endures to the end, he shall be saved; [This means physically saved]
14 and this good news of the kingdom shall be proclaimed in all the world, for a testimony to all the nations; and then shall the end arrive.
15 Whenever, therefore, ye may see the abomination of the desolation, that was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (whoever is reading let him observe)
16 then those in Judea -- let them flee to the mountains;
17 he on the house-top -- let him not come down to take up anything out of his house;
18 and he in the field -- let him not turn back to take his garments.
19 And woe to those with child, and to those giving suck in those days;
20 and pray ye that your flight may not be in winter, nor on a Sabbath;

21 for there shall be then great tribulation, such as was not from the beginning of the world till now, no, never, not shall be.
22 And if those days were not shortened, no flesh would have been saved; but because of the chosen, shall those days be shortened.
23 Then if any one may say to you, Lo, here [is] the Christ! or here! ye may not believe;
24 for there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and they shall give great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, also the chosen.
25 Lo, I did tell you beforehand.
26 `If therefore they may say to you, Lo, in the wilderness he is, ye may not go forth; lo, in the inner chambers, ye may not believe;

27 for as the lightning doth come forth from the east, and doth appear unto the west, so shall be also the presence of the Son of Man;
28 for wherever the carcass
[body] may be, there shall the eagles be gathered together.
29 And immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from the heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken;


I just wanted for everybody to notice that THIS TRIBULATION Jesus is mentioning was going to be different from other tribulations. This type of tribulation had not occurred before -- and the word used for "world" is the Greek word "cosmos" which includes the whole universe. What type of tribulation was going to happen that had never happened before?

The original words translated "from the beginning of the world till now" are "from the antiquity of the cosmos till now".... "no, never, not shall be." Notice that the original Greek uses three negatives -- "no, never, not."

We need to ponder on what could be more terrible than the flood at the time of Noah, or the burning down of whole cities such as happened in Sodom and Gomorrah, or Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Then I looked at the overview of the history of Israel as given in Revelation 12. Please refer to our file Woman with 12 Stars to give you an overview of why God has this battle with Satan, and why is there a tribulation… a tribulation of a magnitude that never ever happened before since Almighty God created the universe. 

Next, I would like you to compare Re 12:7, Daniel 12:1, and Ma 24:21.

Revelation 12:7 Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back

Daniel 12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which stands for the children of your people, and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time.

Matthew 24:21 For there shall be then great tribulation, such as was not from the beginning of the world (cosmos) till now, no, never, not shall be.

From the biblical verses just mentioned above, we see that the battle by Michael and his angels against Satan the devil and his angels is what causes such a great tribulation as never before in the history of man. By reading Revelation 12 we realize that the tribulation in the cosmos occurs in heaven, and as a result, the Devil is sent down to Earth with no access to heaven anymore. The people living in heaven rejoice when the Devil is defeated and is sent down to the Earth. 

Let me say in passing that at the time the bible was written, mankind did not realize the vastness of the universe. Now is the time when we can understand what an accomplishment it is to defeat the Devil out of the whole cosmos and to restrain him to Planet Earth. Yes, the saints that live in heaven surely are rejoicing that the Devil has no access there anymore.

Revelation 12:12
For this reason, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them. Woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, knowing that he has only a short time. 

That is the reason Jesus stated that the Great Tribulation was something that had never happened before in history. It involved the whole universe.

Unfortunately the Devil, like a roaring lion, is on Earth, knowing he has very little time till he is chained and unable to deceive the nations anymore.

On Earth, the Devil goes forth to persecute the "woman" -- Israel and the Christians. The tribulation continues on Earth, but the "woman" will shortly escape the Serpent (Satan the Devil) by flying out of his presence (the rapture) to a place prepared by God in heaven. 

We want you to notice that the rapture occurs after the tribulation in the heavens is over. God shortens the time of the tribulation and takes the Christians out of this earth to the heavens/paradise – the place that is now free of the Devil.

Re 12: 7 Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back

Re 12:14 The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent's reach.

Daniel 12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which stands for the children of your people, and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time, and at that time your people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.

Matthew 24:21 for there shall be then great tribulation, such as was not from the beginning of the world (cosmos) till now, no, never, not shall be.

Matthew 24:28 for wherever the carcass [body] may be, there shall the eagles be gathered together [the rapture].

We highlighted the relevant words in those three biblical books so you would compare the three and realize that the rapture occurs shortly after the tribulation in the heavens, and that the Christians are taken out of this earth before the wrath of God starts.

Now, let us look at some scriptures in the Old Testament that refer to the rapture:


Michael Fighting Satan


Isaiah 26:20-21 Come, my people, enter your chambers, And shut your doors behind you; Hide yourself, as it were, for a little moment, Until the indignation is past. For behold, the LORD comes out of His place To punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; The earth will also disclose her blood, And will no more cover her slain. 
(the rapture, as a place of refuge, occurs before the day of the indignation/wrath of God)

Malachi 3:17-18
"On the day when I act," says the LORD Almighty, "they will be my treasured possession. I will spare them, just as a father has compassion and spares his son who serves him. [the rapture, sparing Christians from the wrath of God.]
Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.
[The saints return from the heavenly abodes back to Earth for the battle of Armageddon and the Millenium].

Zephaniah 2:1-3
Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O nation not desired; Before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the LORD come upon you, before the day of the LORD’S anger come upon you. Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD’S anger.
[the rapture before the day of the Lord's anger/wrath]

Psalm 50:3-6
Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: a fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about him. He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that he may judge his people. Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice. And the heavens shall declare his righteousness: for God is judge himself.

Psalm 144:5-8
Part your heavens, O LORD, and come down; touch the mountains, so that they smoke. Send forth lightning and scatter the enemies; shoot your arrows and rout them. Reach down your hand from on high; deliver me and rescue me from the mighty waters, from the hands of foreigners whose mouths are full of lies, whose right hands are deceitful

The chronological order of the events surrounding the tribulation and the rapture is easier to follow by reading Revelation 12. But in both, the Old and the New Testaments, God has given us information about the tribulation, the rapture, and the wrath of God. Get ready for the rapture because it is imminent.

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