Shepherds of Tradition

Friday, June 26, 2020

Today is the thirteenth anniversary of and I invite you to get your Bible, sit down and tighten your spiritual seat belt. Do you love truth or tradition; truth or fantasy; truth or wishful thinking? I ask because the Jesus of the Bible is “the truth” (John 14:6). Yet on multiple fronts “another Jesus” (2 Cor. 11:4) is taught, and particularly so regarding unity and the rapture.

The Jesus of the ever-popular, ear-tickling pre-trib rapture lie is not the Jesus of the Bible. And pastors, ministers and Bible teachers who teach that nonsense are shepherds of tradition and wishful thinking that lead many astray from the end-time gospel of the Jesus of the Bible.

The Jesus of the Bible said “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword” (Matt. 10:34), which is a sword of division dividing those who receive and believe by faith the Words and testimony of the Good Shepherd from those who do not. And if you truly love the Jesus of the Bible you will shockingly discover that people in the organized church have been, and continue being greatly deceived by end-time hirelings and false teachers.

The Jesus of the Bible said “I am the good shepherd…But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming [tradition and deception] and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. The hireling [more interested in popularity, tradition and money] flees [truth] because he is a hireling [hiding in the safety of tradition] and does not care about the sheep. [But the Jesus of the Bible said] I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own” (John 10:11–14).

The Jesus of the Bible also said “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved” (John 10:9); and that “he who does not enter the sheepfold, but climbs up some other way, [the pre-trib rapture way] the same is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them, and his sheep follow him, for they know his voice. Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers” (John 10: 1–5).

Nobody taught more about the end-times than the Jesus of the Bible who said He gathers His elect “Immediately after the tribulation” (Matt. 24:29–31 and Mark 13:24–27). So the question must be asked: “Are you His elect?” If yes, then you must believe the testimony of the Jesus of the Bible concerning the end-times and prepare accordingly. If you say “No, that you are not His elect”, then you haven’t been born again by the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit for which I invite you even now to repent of your unbelief and sin: “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Rom. 10:9–10). True faith will then act upon the testimony of the Jesus of the Bible.

Recently, CBN News quoted Christian author Jeff Kinley regarding the pre-trib rapture belief wherein he said that “It’s not a salvation issue. But it is an important issue.” But that’s highly misleading. It’s in fact a matter of enduring salvation, not necessarily now but in the tribulation. If one believes in an early pre-trib rapture, high offense and falling away is biblically probable, exampled by the false teachings of Hymenaeus and Philetus who taught an early resurrection, “and they overthrow the faith of some” (2 Tim. 2:17–18). But when the truth pointed to a later resurrection, offense and the overthrow of their faith resulted in some. And the same will occur in the tribulation when many realize they’re in the tribulation and were deceived.

Note that according to 1 Thess. 4:16–17, the most clear rapture verses in Scripture, the rapture of believers being “caught up” is PRECEDED BY the resurrection of dead believers! It’s therefore impossible to separate the rapture from the resurrection of the dead. These occur together. And at John 5:28–29 Jesus taught “the resurrections unto life” and “the resurrection of condemnation”. These two resurrections occur just moments apart, or simultaneously as Jesus taught.

The Jesus of the Bible taught concerning the just and the unjust to “Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, [angels] ‘First gather together the tares [unbelievers] and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn’”. (Matt. 13:30). Jesus further explained this Parable of Wheat and Tares, see Matt. 13:36–43). The capstone to this is that the resurrection of the dead occurs “at the last day” (John 6:40, 44, 54), NOT seven years before “the last day” which would be required for a pre-tribulation rapture!

The Words of the Jesus of the Bible affirms all the above when He taught that He gathers His elect “Immediately after the tribulation of those days” (Matt. 24:29–31), meaning immediately after the great tribulation, the last 3 1/2 years of the rule of Antichrist. Yet, shepherds of tradition throw the testimony of the Jesus of the Bible to the ground in order to support their own wishful thinking. And they’ve deceived millions with their false hope which will create anger, rage and high offense, see Matt. 24:10, when they realize they have been lied to and deceived.

Spring of 2020 roared disruptively into our lives. Round one of COVID-19 caused 45 million Americans to lose their jobs, forced tens of thousands into bankruptcy, quarantined hundreds of millions for months by governments’ stay-at-home orders, and caused much suffering, isolation, depression and anxiety; all due to globalists’ evil plans of subjugating the world to the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda For Sustainable Development. Christian, are you awake and discerning?

America’s history is being rewritten by radical left globalists. Statues of historical truths and people are smashed and removed at the demand of radical scoundrels. This will not end well!

And from coast to coast America has been set ablaze with intercity fires, riots, looting, killing, rage, racism, brutalities and thefts amid numerous forms of willful and unrestrained lawlessness. And now many idiotic liberal mayors, governors and congressional lawmakers support the most radical forms of lawlessness seen in the history of this nation, not the least of which is the stupid and senseless demand to defund the police! The overthrow of America is visibly underway!

Everything that’s occurring is prophetically foretold in the end-time gospel of the Jesus of the Bible, but the institutional church is virtually silent on all this which will soon become much worse. I read numerous Christian authors and publications weekly bemoaning the fact that the organized church is spiritually fast asleep through all this. But the reality is that one day soon many more agonizing end-time events will come upon the earth and many will mourn; hearts will fail for fear, Luke 21:26, and many in the church will be very angry and highly offended.

Since June 2007 I’ve taught the end-time gospel according to the Jesus of the Bible and have suffered much rebuke and ridicule for not toeing the line of traditional pre-tribulationism. The number of people in the organized church that exchange the testimony of the Jesus of the Bible for the pre-trib rapture deception is amazing. It’s as though the Jesus of the Bible never taught on the end. It’s like ancient Israel all over again, as God’s Spirit said: “An astonishing and horrible thing has been committed in the land: the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule by their own power; and My people love to have it so. But what will you do in the end?” (Jer. 5:30–31).

The summer months of 2020 have just begun, and prophetically, things will get much worse, for we are in the pre-tribulation era. That’s not a scare tactic, just simply the truth…again, according to the Jesus of the Bible and discerning signs of the times. But we live in a land where choice is king, where most people accept the teachings of men but reject the teachings of the Jesus of the Bible. And that choice is clearly seen as many pastors, ministers, teachers and laypeople ignore the testimony of Jesus for the end-times. But you be informed to endure to the end. I believe more firmly than ever, and like I’ve said numerous times over the last several years, based on Jesus’ Parable of the Fig Tree, Matt. 24:32-35, the final seven years of this age will begin either by the fall harvest months of 2020, or at the latest by the fall harvest months of 2021.

False shepherds of the pre-trib rapture say the rapture will be a silent and secret event, known and heard only by believers. But they lie. Scripture speaks nowhere of a secret redemption. The rapture is about redemption. They mock the very Word of God, because “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. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air” (1 Thess. 4:16–17); and “when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus” (2 Thess. 1:7–8). Does this sound secret to you! Absolutely not! For when Christ is revealed “Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him” (Rev. 1:7).

Who do you believe, the True Shepherd, the Jesus of the Bible, or the shepherds that prefer end-time traditions of false promise? The choice is yours. But as it was in Noah’s day, the time will soon come when opportunity of the truth will be consumed in trying to survive the next calamitous event. The 7-year tribulation has not yet begun, but when it does, The Revelation’s apocalyptic Seal, Trumpet and Vial Judgments and more will be packed into those seven years. Tribulation events of those days will overwhelm the earth and those unprepared so rapidly as to demoralize natural logic and reason. Therefore, the Jesus of the Bible said “See, I have told you beforehand” (Matt. 24:25).

Marlin J. Yoder

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About the author

I'm a non-denominational ordained minister, and have written for many years and teach the truths of Jesus Christ with an emphasis on the end-times. This on-line and in-person ministry to which God called me helps many people to know the truths of Christ rather than traditions of men which make "the word of God of no effect" (Mark 7:13).


  1. Thank you Marlin, for your being faithful to the call of Christ! Thanks for your steadfast belief in the truth of the Word of God all these many years. Yes, I love the truth! Yes, I desire to stand firm while enduring to the end of our lives or to the end of these end times. Yes, the sword of the Word of God brings spiritual division between those few who truly believe in Jesus and truly believe His written Word and those many who do not!

    How glorious it is to be known by our God, and to know our God through His Word, Jesus, who came in the flesh and dwelt among us of whom we have tasted of the goodness of God. We have beheld His glory and continue to do so by way of the studying of the Word of God to show ourselves approved unto God and not unto man.

    It is so comforting to know that as we enter into the doorway Of Christ Jesus, who is the straight and narrow gate to the truth, we are blessed by His Holy Spirit who enables us to endure to the end of our lives or to the end of this age. Praise be to God who leads and guides us in this life and is preparing us for life eternal.

    As a new believer in Jesus in 1978, being drawn to Christ by His Spirit, I had much earthly baggage. It was and is the Word of God that cleansed me on a daily basis from my ugly and evil past. Early in my journey to and with Jesus, the Holy Spirit impressed upon me to study the life and words of Jesus. Forty-two years later I do not regret a single day. Though I am still learning His many important lessons of a lifetime, His mercies are new and needed every morning.

    His living and sharper than any two-edged sword of His Word continues to restore my lost at times and weary soul constantly. From my perspective, studying the life and words of Jesus has become a life-long adventure! What more important life could be studied and learned from and be more eternally inspiring than the life of Jesus Christ of the bible as you Marlin call Him?

    As we approach the final days on earth under the cruel and lawless rule of man and the from the beginning of creation enemy of our souls, the more we should be reading, studying, and meditating on the life-giving words of Jesus Christ. For when we see with our own eyes, the evil end times Antichrist standing in the holy place proclaiming himself to be God, life on earth will drastically change for the worse.

    And if we are not prepared, as you many times warn us Marlin, if we are not spiritually and physically prepared our time to prepare at that point will cease to exist. And what if there is another world-wide lockdown due to end time pestilence or more of the biological unleashing of a virus more deadly than covid-19? Will we be prepared?

    Jesus on several occasions warned us to be watchful, to be ready, and to be prayerful. Thank you Marlin for your faithful efforts in helping us to be righteously ready and prepared for tribulation! Meanwhile, we will look unto Jesus and forward to the coming of Christ immediately after the tribulation of those days.

    I will end as you Marlin ended your article, “See, I have told you beforehand.” Jesus has warned us within the Word of God. What will we do with His many warnings? For according to Jesus, “Those who endure to the end shall be saved.” That should be our lifetime end game goal. And with His help, we will endure to the end!!!
    In Him Always, Amen…

    1. I have studied many books on pretrib rapture and always came to the same conclusion that it’s a cobbled together set of passages that they are forcing to say what they want to believe. I am convinced we will experience the tribulation and am trying to prepare for it as best I can. I’m glad I found your site today.

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