Lately, the pre-tribulation rapture has been brought into disrepute by many who contend the church will go through the tribulation period. The tribulation is the declared wrath of God poured out upon this world for embracing lawless sinfulness and brazenly, sinfully rejecting God and His Son Jesus Christ. The truth that the tribulation is God’s express judgment upon all of mankind is declared throughout the Scripture.
29 ‘”For behold, I begin to bring calamity on the city which is called by My name, and should you be utterly unpunished? You shall not be unpunished, for I will call for a sword on all the inhabitants of the earth,” says the Lord of hosts.’ 30 “Therefore prophesy against them all these words, and say to them: ‘The Lord will roar from on high, And utter His voice from His holy habitation; He will roar mightily against His fold. He will give a shout, as those who tread the grapes, Against all the inhabitants of the earth. 31 A noise will come to the ends of the earth—For the Lord has a controversy with the nations; He will plead His case with all flesh. He will give those who are wicked to the sword,’ says the Lord.” 32 Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Behold, disaster shall go forth from nation to nation, And a great whirlwind shall be raised up From the farthest parts of the earth. 33 “And at that day the slain of the Lord shall be from one end of earth even to the other end of the earth. They shall not be lamented, or gathered, or buried; they shall become refuse on the ground.” Jeremiah 25:29-33
23 “Behold, the whirlwind of the Lord Goes forth with fury, A continuing whirlwind; It will fall violently on the head of the wicked. 24 The fierce anger of the Lord will not return until He has performed the intents of His hears. In the latter days you will consider it.” Jeremiah 30:23-24
19 “Behold, a whirlwind of the Lord has gone forth in fury—A violent whirlwind! It will fall violently on the head of the wicked. 20 The anger of the Lord will not turn back Until He has executed and performed the thoughts of His heart, In the latter days you will understand it perfectly.” Jeremiah 23:19-20
1 Come near, you nations, to hear; And heed, you people! Let the earth hear, and all that is in it, The world and all things that come forth from it. 2 For the indignation of the Lord is against all nations, And His fury against all their armies; He has utterly destroyed them, He has given them over to the slaughter. 3 Also their slain shall be thrown out; Their stench shall rise from their corpses, And the mountains shall be melted with blood. 4 All the host of heaven shall be dissolved, And the heavens shall be rolled up like a scroll; all their host shall fall down As the leaf falls from the vine, And as the fruit falling from a fig tree. Isaiah 34:1-4
1 Who is this who comes from Edom, With dyed garments from Bozrah, This One who is glorious in His apparel, Traveling in the greatness of His strength?—“I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.” 2 Why is your apparel read, And Your garments like one who treads in the winepress? 3 “I have trodden the winepress alone, And from the peoples no one was with Me. For I have trodden them in My anger, And trampled them in My fury; Their blood is sprinkled upon My garments, And I have stained all My robes. 4 For the day of vengeance is in My heart, And the year of My redeemed has come. 5 I looked, but there was no one to help, And I wondered that there was no one to uphold; Therefore My own arm brought salvation for Me; And My own fury, it sustained Me. 6 I have trodden down the peoples in My anger, Made them drunk in My fury, and brought down their strength to the earth.” 7 I will mention the lovingkindness of the Lord and the praises of the Lord, According to all that the Lord has bestowed upon us, And the great goodness toward the house of Israel, Which He has bestowed on them according to His mercies, According to the multitude of His lovingkindnesses. Isaiah 63:1-7
25 “And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars: and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; 26 men’s hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 27 Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Luke 21:25-27
30 “Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooks, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, 31 because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this by raising Him from the dead.” Acts 17:30-31
3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, 4 so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, 5 which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; 6 since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, 7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, 8 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 Christ. 9 These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, 10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed. 2 Thessalonians 1:3-10
11 Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. 12 His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. 13 He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called the Word of God. 14 And the armies of heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. 15 Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. 17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in the midst of heaven, “Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, 18 that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great.” Revelation 19:11-18
9 When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held. 10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” 11 Then a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed. Revelations 7:9-11
The passages above reveal God’s wrath is poured out upon unbelievers, not His children. Though the climax of God’s wrath is the return of Jesus Christ to execute His personal judgment upon all the wicked, the events (seven seals, seven trumpet and seven bowl judgments) leading up to this awesome and glorious return of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as the judge of all the earth, are the prelude to His final execution of His righteous wrath. Why would He include His children who have been redeemed by faith that He shed His blood for them so that they can be forgiven and receive the gift of eternal life, which is knowing and spending eternity with God the Father and Jesus Christ Whom He has sent (John 17:3)? The tribulation is the execution of God’s wrath upon this sinful world; He is not going to include His precious children under that judgment. Additionally, God pours out His wrath upon those who have persecuted and murdered His precious children. Why would they be included in His just judgment? Notice that the martyred souls have to wait for their brethren and fellow servants who are also to be murdered for following Jesus Christ and believing His Holy Word, the Bible. They are not the recipients of God’s vengeance. How are God’s elect preserved from His wrath to come? They are snatched away when Jesus Christ comes for them and they meet Him in the air!
9 For they themselves declare concerning us what manner of entry we had to you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10 and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come. 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10