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Important Conclusions

We have seen what the church and her destiny is. We have learned the
character of the tribulation. It is evident that the true church has
nothing whatever to do with this time of trouble. We add some
important conclusions with further proofs that the church will not pass
through the tribulation.

1. The tribulation is a judgment period. When this predicted trouble
comes for the world, for Jews and Gentiles, the church is no longer
here, but possesses its promised rest and glory. The Thessalonians had
been disturbed by a rumor as if that tribulation preceding the day of
the Lord had come. In the second Epistle to them the apostle makes it
clear that this was not the case, and points out the fact that those
who troubled and persecuted them would have as a recompense
tribulation, while the troubled believers would have rest (2 Thess.
i:4-9). Nowhere in the Epistles of Paul addressed to the church, and
unfolding church truths, is there a word said about that tribulation.
If the church would pass through this judgment period with which the
ages closes, the Spirit of God would certainly have mentioned it and
given His exhortations so suited for such a time. But inasmuch as
nothing is said in these church epistles it is a logical conclusion
that the true church will not be in the tribulation.

2. Not alone will the church not be in that time of trouble, but that
time, the last prophetic week of Daniel, cannot begin as long as the
true church is on earth. This is made clear by one of the great
prophecies of the New Testament. In the Second Thessalonians chapter
ii the statement is made that the day of the Lord (His visible
manifestation) cannot come till there be first the apostasy and the Man
of Sin, the son of perdition (the Antichrist) be revealed. It is
during the last seven years that both of these conditions are reached.
But the apostle also states that there is One who hinders the complete
apostasy and its leader, the Antichrist. Something is in the way which
keeps back the full manifestation of the mystery of lawlessness. This
hindering One must be first taken out of the way. The hindering One is
the Holy Spirit. He dwells in the body of Christ, the church. As long
as He is here on earth in and with the true church the two conditions
necessary for the final seven years of this age cannot be fulfilled.
Before the tribulation can come the church must have been called away
to her heavenly abode.

3. If the church were to pass through the tribulation period all the
exhortations to wait for the Coming of the Lord, to watch for Him, to
be ready, would have no meaning. It would be more correct to exhort to
wait for the coming of the beast. The blessed hope to meet Him, would
lose its blessedness. Instead of being a bright outlook to be with
Christ in glory, it would be the worst pessimism, for believers would
not face immediate glory, but tribulation, judgments, and the
persecutions of the beast from the pit. Everything in Scripture is
against this teaching, which has been accepted by not a few, that the
church must pass through the tribulation, and after all it is an
important truth for the spiritual life of a believer. If the Lord
cannot come for His Saints till the Roman empire is again in existence,
and the two beasts have made their appearance to do their work, if He
cannot come till the Jews are back in Palestine and have rebuilt their
temple, then the real power of that blessed hope in the daily life of a
Christian is gone. The danger then is to say, "My Lord delays His
Coming," and with it drift into worldly ways.

Next: The Ten Virgins Or The Midnight Cry

Previous: What Is The Tribulation?

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