Friday, December 24, 2021
At the middle of our three-week discovery it’s fitting to discuss the mid-point of the tribulation, the time for which God has made a plan of escape to His safety and provision for the last 1,260 days of the great tribulation. Know when to make your urgent flight, for as it was in the days of Noah and Lot, so too will our window of opportunity be small and short, it’s indeed limited.
Before the escape of believers at the appointed time we must be spiritually prepared; as the Lord said we must be “counted worthy to escape” (Luke 21:36). Jesus said “Watch therefore, and pray always…” Those two commands are not optional. Our escape from great tribulation will require that we “watch… and pray”, and live in that readiness. We’re to “Be holy, for I [God] am holy” (1 Peter 1:16); and “we should be holy and without blame before Him in love” (Eph. 1:4); just “as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct” (1 Peter 1:15). “Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance” (1 Peter 1:13–14). Being watchful, prayerful, holy and obedient – these are prerequisites for our escape, loving God and His Christ more than anyone or anything else. “Remember Lot’s wife” (Luke 17:32). She appeared to be prepared, but when she looked back she proved her heart was not God-centered, but earth-centered. Her earthly stuff and in-laws were back in Sodom and Gomorrah! A solemn warning for us to forsake all things, being prepared at the appointed time to flee with all haste to the safety and provision of our holy God!
The Holy Spirit calls us to consider with all solemnity what it meant to Noah and Lot when their time came to escape to God’s safety and provision. Their life’s work to that point abandoned; the homes they’d built, their finances, servants and animals, were abandoned; relationships of people they’d known all their lives, abandoned, for the love and call of God. The Lord Jesus gave us the examples of Noah and Lot for our understanding, that we too be equipped to abandon all things earthly in exchange for finding God’s provision for 1,260 days of the great tribulation. Our God is a kind and loving God who makes provisions for His children, but He won’t force faith in the testimony of His Son on anyone. It’s a choice everyone must make by faith of his own free will.
In His love, mercy and grace, God in Christ gave us six signs by which to know the time has come to escape to God’s safety and provision for 1,260 days of the great tribulation. These six events will occur almost simultaneously one with another. These six identifying signs are:
- When Satan and his angels are cast out of heaven and to the earth, Rev. 12:7–12.
- When the beast from the pit kills God’s two 1,260-days witnesses, Rev. 11:3–10.
- When Antichrist, the abomination of desolation stands in the temple, Matt. 24:15.
- When a flying angel preaches the gospel to all who dwell on the earth, Rev. 14:6.
- When a flying angel cries “Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of earth”, Rev. 8:13.
- Where eagles are gathered, showing the way to safety, Luke 17:37 & Matt. 24:28.
I have confidence that God can and will show true believers when the time has come to escape, but in general preparation of that time we want to know when the seven-year tribulation begins, and then with a physical, pre-printed calendar, count down the 1,260 days of the first half of the tribulation, which begins with the two witness’s devastating 1,260-days ministry in Jerusalem. I mention having a calendar because I believe that soon now, at the beginning of the tribulation, globalists, in their New World Order quest, will disrupt or entirely cut off internet and other communications to thwart people’s plans of eluding them. When that occurs, hatred against believers, the unvaxxed, and non-conformists will explode, deemed unfit for society. Global comms, internet, cell phones, and radios will likely be taken down by the ruling elite. They’ll want no one escaping their evil grasp as “the man of sin…the son of perdition” (2 Thess. 2:3) establishes his rule. That’s when we begin our 1,260 days calendar count down to the mid-trib.
Allow me to lead you in a passage of Scripture that is erroneously applied by the evangelical church holding to the easy road of getting to heaven by the delusional pre-trib rapture belief. The Scripture is Luke 17:26–37. First, with special emphasis on verses 34–36 where the Lord repeats three times, the phrase “the one will be taken and the other left”, dispensational teachers say that for one to “be taken” shows the rapture, but that’s wrong and they know it! Both people in these examples remain on earth; “one will be taken” to God’s provision and “the other left”, meaning rejected from God’s provision for 1,260 days of great tribulation. This is proven by the original Greek where Strong’s #3880, to “be taken” means “to take to, to take with one’s self, to join to one’s self” and “to accept…not to reject”, under one’s own power of going, and does NOT mean a supernatural catching away! These verses accurately read; “the one will be taken [accepted] and the other left [rejected]”, meaning accepted into God’s safety and provision, while the other is rejected and unworthy of that safety and provision. Regarding Christians who are unprepared and found unworthy, their being “left behind” will be due, no doubt, to their unbiblical fairytale faith in the pre-tribulation rapture, or living a worldly, careless, lukewarm spiritual life.
The very limited time to escape per Luke 17:26–37, is notably referred to as the days of Noah and Lot. “In that day, he who is on the housetop, and his goods are in the house, let him not come down to take them away. And likewise the one who is in the field, let him not turn back” (Luke 17:31). The slaughter of believers will then begin. This is the time of which Jesus warned of “great tribulation”, but “the woman was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent” (Rev. 12:14). Jesus said “Remember Lot’s wife. Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will save it” (17:33). This will be another time when God’s Word will be proven true, that “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hos. 4:6). And it will be so because many false teachers convinced many gullible Christians to disregard the testimony of Christ for the end-time gathering of His elect. Then “many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another” (Matt. 24:10).
And where is the place to which we shall flee? As the Lord Jesus is unfolding these traumatic events, His disciples clearly understand that He is revealing to them that there’s a place of safety and provision, an escape from the time of great tribulation. This is true, because at the end of His discourse they asked Him, “‘Where Lord?’ So He said to them, ‘Wherever the body is, there the eagles will be gathered together’” (Luke 17:37). So, what do eagles have to do with any of this? Remember, God said, “I am the Lord, I do not change” (Mal. 3:6); and “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Heb. 13:8); and “You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself” (Exo. 19:4). That was metaphoric, but at the beginning of the great tribulation it will be literal. Where eagles are gathered, is safety. God works according to His will, not the will of men; nor does He work according to the will of corrupt leaders like John Darby who led the Church in rebellion and end-time unbelief of Christ.
Consider again, Noah and Lot, and what it meant for them to forsake everything they’d known their whole lives, to trust the Lord in an escape from coming destruction. Dear reader, God did not rapture Noah off the earth to spare him from the flood; nor did God rapture Lot off the earth to spare him the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Nor will God rapture us off the earth to spare us the seven-year tribulation. And God did not give us His Word and these examples to be ignored, they are invaluably important. Additionally, God does not show favoritism, Luke 20:21, nor does He show partiality, Rom. 2:11. But today, Satan’s deceptive strategy has led the church to believe that God is partial and that He does show favoritism, causing millions to believe in the unbiblical and false pre-trib rapture. Many believers have been deceptively lured into the belief that they can ignore all the warning signs of the times, to trust in an imminent rapture BEFORE the tribulation. It’s all a deceptive lie from the Devil! They reject Christ’s teaching as not being applicable to the Church, as multiplied millions have embraced Satan’s end-time deception!
God said from ancient times “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hos. 4:6). That’s been true for millennia past, and it’s true today. The Church is unprepared for the massive falling away by “offense” (Matt. 24:10), that will be revealed at the tribulation. And God concludes that O.T. verse saying “Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me; [seriously, here, read 1 Peter 2:9 where God said of true believers that, we “are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood”! My emphasis added. True believers are priests of God! But rejection of knowledge forfeits being priest!] because you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children” (Hos. 4:6b). Don’t miss the point, rejection of God’s knowledge and forgetting His law or Word, produces God’s rejection of that person, even carried down to the next generation. This is true and confirmed by the Spirit, saying, concerning the Son of God, that “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him” (John 3:36). [My emphasis added]
Lastly, from me and my family to you and yours, have a wonderful celebration remembering the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and His amazing gift of eternal life through true faith in His life, death, burial, and resurrection. God’s blessings to all for a very Merry Christmas!
Marlin J. Yoder