Wednesday, 12 March 2014 00:00

The Great Tribulation of Roman Persecution

Revelation 11:1-3 (NASB)

Then there was given me a measuring rod like a staff; and someone said, “Get up and measure the temple of God and the altar, and those who worship in it. 2 Leave out the court which is outside the temple and do not measure it, for it has been given to the nations; and they will tread under foot the holy city for forty-two months. 3 And I will grant authority to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for twelve hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth.”

Matthew 24:21-22 (NASB)

For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will. Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.

"It is sufficient for chronological interest that prophecy depends upon the presupposition that the destruction of the Holy City had not yet occurred. This is derived with the greatest evidence from the text, since it is said, ver. 2, that the Holy City, i.e., Jerusalem, is to be trodden down by the Gentiles. . . . This testimony of the Apocalypse, which is completely indisputable to an unprejudiced mind, can still be misunderstood only with great difficulty"(Fredrick Dusterdieck, Handbook of Revelation p. 46).

When dispensationalists tell you of a coming Great Tribulation, based on Revelation 11 and Matthew 24, they neglect the remarkable truth that the tribulation spoken of by Jesus and John occurred in A.D. 70. The reason for this neglect is the wide-spread, mistaken belief that John wrote Revelation AFTER A.D. 70.

Revelation was written pre-AD 70 because:

  1. John is told by the angel that he "must prophesy again before many people,nations, tongues and kings" (Revelation 10:11). If John was written in A.D. 90 to 95, then John was well over 90 years old and it would have been impossible to travel to so many places in his elderly age.
  2. There were only SEVEN churches in Asia Minor, and there was only a short period of time when there were ONLY seven churches there -- A.D. 62 to A.D. 69. Paul established nine churches in his missionary journeys, but the cities of Colossae, Hierapolis and Laodicea were destroyed by an earthquake in A.D. 61. Only Laodicea was rebuilt. Soon, there were many more churches in the area.
  3. The Temple is still standing (Revelation 11:1-2 - see above quote by Frederick Dusterdieck).
  4. The Tribes of the earth (Revelation 1:7) are spoken of as still gathered, not scattered. After A.D. 70, the Jews were scattered all over the earth and settled in many different nations.
  5. Jerusalem is still standing. "Mystery, Babylon the great, the mother of Harlots (Jerusalem) ... that great city ... shall be thrown down" (17:5-6, 18; 18:20-21). Next time we'll examine Jerusalem as Babylon.
  6. The sixth of Rome 'that is' is Nero, the Beast (see Revelation 17:9-10).
  7. John says his prophecies must soon take place (Revelation 1:1, 3; 2:16; 3:11; 22:6, 7, 10, 12, 20).

What does the Bible say about your life and tribulation?

What does the Bible say about the future of your life?

What does the Bible say about the reign of Jesus Christ?

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