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What is the end times tribulation?

The tribulation is a future seven-year period when God will finish His discipline of Israel and finalize His judgment of the unbelieving world. The church, comprised of all who have trusted in the person and work of the Lord Jesus, will not be present during the tribulation (Got Questions Ministries takes a pretribulational approach to eschatology). The church will be removed from the earth in an event called the rapture (1 Thessalonians 4:13–181 Corinthians 15:51–53). In this way, the church is saved from the wrath to come (1 Thessalonians 5:9).

Throughout Scripture, the tribulation is associated with the day of the Lord, that time during which God personally intervenes in history to accomplish His plan (see Isaiah 2:1213:6–9Joel 1:152:1–313:141 Thessalonians 5:2). It is referred to as “tribulation . . . in the latter days” (Deuteronomy 4:30, ESV); the great tribulation, which refers to the more intense second half of the seven-year period (Matthew 24:21); “a time of distress” (Daniel 12:1); and “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7, NKJV). And we have this description of the tribulation that attends the day of the Lord:


“That day will be a day of wrath— a day of distress and anguish, a day of trouble and ruin, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and blackness— a day of trumpet and battle cry” (Zephaniah 1:15–16).

The tribulation will be marked by various divine judgments, celestial disturbances, natural disasters, and terrible plagues (see Revelation 6—16). In His mercy, God sets a limit on the duration of the tribulation. As Jesus said, “Those will be days of distress unequaled from the beginning, when God created the world, until now—and never to be equaled again. If the Lord had not cut short those days, no one would survive” (Mark 13:19–20).

Daniel 9:24–27 reveals the purpose and time of the tribulation. This passage speaks of 70 weeks that have been declared against “your people.” Daniel’s people are the Jews, the nation of Israel, and Daniel 9:24 speaks of a period of time in which God’s purpose is “to finish transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy.” God declares that “seventy sevens” will fulfill all these things. The “sevens” are groups of years, so 70 sevens is 490 years. (Some translations refer to 70 “weeks” of years.)

In Daniel 9:25 and 26, the Messiah will be cut off after “seven sevens and sixty-two sevens” (69 total sevens), beginning with the decree to rebuild Jerusalem. In other words, 69 sevens (483 years) after the decree to rebuild is issued, the Messiah will die. Biblical historians confirm that 483 years passed from the time of the decree to rebuild Jerusalem to the time when Jesus was crucified. Most Christian scholars, regardless of their view of eschatology, have the above understanding of Daniel’s 70 sevens.

God said that 70 weeks had been determined (490 years), but, with the death of the Messiah, we only have 69 weeks accounted for (483 years). This leaves one seven-year period to be fulfilled “to finish transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy” (Daniel 9:24). This final seven-year period is what we call the tribulation—the time when God finishes judging Israel and brings them back to Himself.

Daniel 9:27 gives a few highlights of the final week, the seven-year tribulation period: “[A ruler] will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’ In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.” Jesus refers to this passage in Matthew 24:15. The ruler who confirms the covenant and then sets up the abomination is called “the beast” in Revelation 13. According to Daniel 9:27, the beast’s covenant will be for seven years, but in the middle of this week (3 ½ years into the tribulation), the beast will break the covenant, putting a stop to the Jewish sacrifices. Revelation 13 explains that the beast will place an image of himself in the temple and require the world to worship him. Revelation 13:5 says that this will go on for 42 months, which is 3 ½ years (the second half of the tribulation). So, we see a covenant lasting to the middle of the “week” (Daniel 9:27) and the beast who made the covenant demanding worship for 42 months (Revelation 13:5). Therefore, the total length of time is 84 months or seven years.

We also have a reference to the last half of the tribulation in Daniel 7:25. There, the ruler will oppress God’s people for “a time, times, and half a time” (time=1 year; times=2 years; half a time=½ year; total of 3 ½ years). This time of oppression against the Jews is also described in Revelation 13:5–7 and is part of the “great tribulation,” the latter half of the seven-year tribulation when the beast, or the Antichrist, will be in power.

A further reference to the timing of events in the tribulation is found in Revelation 11:2–3, which speaks of 1,260 days and 42 months (both equaling 3 ½ years, using the “prophetic year” of 360 days). Also, Daniel 12:11–12 speaks of 1,290 days and 1,335 days from the midpoint of the tribulation. The additional days in Daniel 12 may include time after the tribulation for the judgment of the nations (Matthew 25:31–46) and time for the setting up of Christ’s millennial kingdom (Revelation 20:4–6).

In summary, the tribulation is the seven-year period in the end times in which humanity’s decadence and depravity will reach its fullness, with God judging accordingly. Also during that time, Israel will repent of their sin and receive Jesus as their Messiah, setting up a time of great blessing and restoration (Zephaniah 3:9–20Isaiah 1235).

What is the end times tribulation?

What is the End Times Tribulation? (

What is the End Times Tribulation? If you’re looking for a Tribulation definition and explanation of these seven years of tribulation, watch this Tribulation video. In it, Pastor Nelson with Bible Munch uses the Bible to explain what happens during Daniel’s 70th week and the Great Tribulation time within it, which all follows after many signs of the end times and the Pre Tribulation rapture.

What is the Great Tribulation?

What is the Great Tribulation?

The Tribulation is a future time period when the Lord will accomplish at least two aspects of His plan: 1) He will complete His discipline of the nation Israel (Daniel 9:24), and 2) He will judge the unbelieving, godless inhabitants of the earth (Revelation 6 - 18). The length of the Tribulation is seven years. This is determined by an understanding of the seventy weeks of Daniel (Daniel 9:24-27; also see the article on the Tribulation). The Great Tribulation is the last half of the Tribulation period, three and one-half years in length. It is distinguished from the Tribulation period because the Beast, or Antichrist, will be revealed, and the wrath of God will greatly intensify during this time. Thus, it is important at this point to emphasize that the Tribulation and the Great Tribulation are not synonymous terms. Within eschatology (the study of future things), the Tribulation refers to the full seven-year period while the “Great Tribulation” refers to the second half of the Tribulation.

It is Christ Himself who used the phrase "Great Tribulation" with reference to the last half of the Tribulation. In Matthew 24:21, Jesus says, "For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever shall." In this verse Jesus is referring to the event of Matthew 24:15, which describes the revealing of the abomination of desolation, the man also known as the Antichrist. Also, Jesus in Matthew 24:29-30 states, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days . . . the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory." In this passage, Jesus defines the Great Tribulation (v.21) as beginning with the revealing of the abomination of desolation (v.15) and ending with Christ’s second coming (v.30).

Other passages that refer to the Great Tribulation are Daniel 12:1b, which says, "And there will be a time of distress such as never occurred since there was a nation until that time." It seems that Jesus was quoting this verse when He spoke the words recorded in Matthew 24:21. Also referring to the Great Tribulation is Jeremiah 30:7, "Alas! for that day is great, There is none like it; And it is the time of Jacob’s distress, But he will be saved from it." The phrase “Jacob’s distress” refers to the nation of Israel, which will experience persecution and natural disasters such as have never before been seen.

Considering the information Christ gave us in Matthew 24:15-30, it is easy to conclude that the beginning of the Great Tribulation has much to do with the abomination of desolation, an action of the Antichrist. In Daniel 9:26-27, we find that this man will make a "covenant" (a peace pact) with the world for seven years (one “week”; again, see the article on the Tribulation). Halfway through the seven-year period—"in the middle of the week"—we are told this man will break the covenant he made, stopping sacrifice and grain offering, which specifically refers to his actions in the rebuilt temple of the future. Revelation 13:1-10 gives even more detail concerning the Beast’s actions, and just as important, it also verifies the length of time he will be in power. Revelation 13:5 says he will be in power for 42 months, which is three and one-half years, the length of the Great Tribulation.

Revelation offers us the most information about the Great Tribulation. From Revelation 13 when the Beast is revealed until Christ returns in Revelation 19, we are given a picture of God’s wrath on the earth because of unbelief and rebellion (Revelation 16-18). It is also a picture of how God disciplines and at the same time protects His people Israel (Revelation 14:1-5) until He keeps His promise to Israel by establishing an earthly kingdom (Revelation 20:4-6).

What is the time of Jacob’s trouble?

What is the time of Jacob’s trouble?


The phrase the time of Jacob’s trouble comes from Jeremiah 30:7, which says, “Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it” (KJV). It is our view that the time of Jacob’s trouble corresponds to the seven-year tribulation of the end times.

In the previous verses of Jeremiah 30, the Lord is speaking to Jeremiah the prophet about Judah and Israel (Jeremiah 30:3–4). In verse 3, the Lord promises that, one day in the future, He will bring both Judah and Israel back to the land He had promised their forefathers. But their return will involve many distresses: “How awful that day will be!” (Jeremiah 30:7). It will be “the time of Jacob’s trouble”—Jacob being a synecdoche for all the nation of Israel. Verse 5 describes Jacob’s trouble as a time of great fear and trembling. Verse 6 describes it in terms of the pains of childbirth, indicating a time of agony. But there is hope for the people of Israel, for the Lord promises He will save them. Even though this is “the time of Jacob’s distress” (NASB), and even though “in all history there has never been such a time of terror” (Jeremiah 30:7, NLT), God will deliver His people.

In Jeremiah 30:10–11 the Lord references the blessings that will come after the time of Jacob’s trouble: “‘I will surely save you out of a distant place, your descendants from the land of their exile. Jacob will again have peace and security, and no one will make him afraid. I am with you and will save you,’ declares the Lord.”

As part of the deliverance He provides from the time of Jacob’s trouble, the Lord says He will destroy the nations who held Judah and Israel in captivity, and He will never again allow Jacob to be completely destroyed. The Lord also describes this as a time of discipline for His people. He says of Jacob, “Though I completely destroy all the nations among which I scatter you, I will not completely destroy you. I will discipline you but only with justice; I will not let you go entirely unpunished.”

Jeremiah 30:7 says, “That day is great, so that none is like it.” The only time period that fits this description is the end-times tribulation. This time is unparalleled in history.

Like Jeremiah, Jesus described the tribulation as a unique time of suffering, speaking of “great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again” (Matthew 24:21). The Lord also used some of the same imagery as Jeremiah. In Matthew 24:6–8, He said the appearance of false christs, wars and rumors of wars, famines, and earthquakes are “the beginning of birth pains.”

Paul, too, described the tribulation using the simile of birth pains. First Thessalonians 5:3 says, “While people are saying, ‘Peace and safety,’ destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.” This event follows the rapture and the removal of the church in 1 Thessalonians 4:13–18.

These “birth pains” are described in detail in Revelation 6—12. One purpose of the tribulation—“the time of Jacob’s trouble”—is to bring Israel back to the Lord (see Jeremiah 30:22Hosea 6:1–2Zechariah 12:10).

The time of Jacob’s trouble demonstrates that God keeps His promises, judges sin, and saves those who trust in Christ. In the end times, God will pour His judgment on a wicked world, and this seven-year tribulation, from Israel’s point of view, is the time of Jacob’s trouble. In this time, God purges His chosen people of the wicked and unbelieving, but “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved; for on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be deliverance, as the Lord has said, even among the survivors whom the Lord calls” (Joel 2:32; cf. Romans 10:13). After that time of Jacob’s trouble is a time of peace, as the Lord Himself sets up His kingdom on earth for 1,000 years (Revelation 20:1–6; cf. Isaiah 11).

What is the day of the Lord?

The phrase “day of the Lord” usually identifies events that take place at the end of history (Isaiah 7:18-25) and is often closely associated with the phrase “that day.” One key to understanding these phrases is to note that they always identify a span of time during which God personally intervenes in history, directly or indirectly, to accomplish some specific aspect of His plan.

Most people associate the day of the Lord with a period of time or a special day that will occur when God’s will and purpose for His world and for mankind will be fulfilled. Some scholars believe that the day of the Lord will be a longer period of time than a single day—a period of time when Christ will reign throughout the world before He cleanses heaven and earth in preparation for the eternal state of all mankind. Other scholars believe the day of the Lord will be an instantaneous event when Christ returns to earth to redeem His faithful believers and send unbelievers to eternal damnation.

The phrase “the day of the Lord” is used often in the Old Testament (e.g. Isaiah 2:1213:69Ezekiel 13:530:3Joel 1:152:1,11,313:14Amos 5:18,20Obadiah 15Zephaniah 1:7,14Zechariah 14:1Malachi 4:5) and several times in the New Testament (e.g. Acts 2:201 Corinthians 5:52 Corinthians 1:141 Thessalonians 5:22 Thessalonians 2:22 Peter 3:10). It is also alluded to in other passages (Revelation 6:1716:14).

The Old Testament passages dealing with the day of the Lord often convey a sense of imminence, nearness, and expectation: “Wail, for the day of the Lord is near!” (Isaiah 13:6); “For the day is near, even the day of the Lord is near” (Ezekiel 30:3); “Let all who live in the land tremble, for the day of the Lord is coming. It is close at hand” (Joel 2:1); “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision” (Joel 3:14); “Be silent before the Lord God! For the day of the Lord is near” (Zephaniah 1:7). This is because the Old Testament passages referring to the day of the Lord often speak of both a near and a far fulfillment, as does much of Old Testament prophecy. Some Old Testament passages that refer to the day of the Lord describe historical judgments that have already been fulfilled in some sense (Isaiah 13:6-22Ezekiel 30:2-19Joel 1:153:14Amos 5:18-20Zephaniah 1:14-18), while others refers to divine judgments that will take place toward the end of the age (Joel 2:30-32Zechariah 14:1Malachi 4:15).

The New Testament calls it a day of “wrath,” a day of “visitation,” and the “great day of God Almighty” (Revelation 16:14) and refers to a still future fulfillment when God’s wrath is poured out on unbelieving Israel (Isaiah 22Jeremiah 30:1-17Joel 1-2Amos 5Zephaniah 1) and on the unbelieving world (Ezekiel 38–39Zechariah 14). The Scriptures indicate that “the day of the Lord” will come quickly, like a thief in the night (Zephaniah 1:14-151 Thessalonians 5:2), and therefore Christians must be watchful and ready for the coming of Christ at any moment.

Besides being a time of judgment, it will also be a time of salvation as God will deliver the remnant of Israel, fulfilling His promise that “all of Israel will be saved” (Romans 11:26), forgiving their sins and restoring His chosen people to the land He promised to Abraham (Isaiah 10:27; Jeremiah 30:19-31, 40; Micah 4Zechariah 13). The final outcome of the day of the Lord will be that “the arrogance of man will be brought low and the pride of men humbled; the Lord alone will be exalted in that day” (Isaiah 2:17). The ultimate or final fulfillment of the prophecies concerning the day of the Lord will come at the end of history when God, with wondrous power, will punish evil and fulfill all His promises.

What is the day of the Lord?
What is the Great and dreadful day of the Lord?

What is the “great and dreadful day of the Lord” (Malachi 4:5)?

As Malachi closes out the prophecies of the Hebrew Scriptures, he records God’s announcement that He will “send the prophet Elijah to you before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes” (Malachi 4:5). This day of the Lord is a time that will be both “great” and “dreadful” or “awesome” (ESV) or “terrible” (NASB).

Earlier in the same prophecy, the Lord had affirmed that He would send His messenger to prepare His path, and then He would appear in His temple (Malachi 3:1). The coming of that messenger announcing the arrival of the Messiah happened just over four hundred years later. John the Baptist was the messenger, and the Lord Jesus appeared in the temple. Now we await the fulfillment of the rest of Malachi’s prophecy, when the great and dreadful day of the Lord will take place.

The coming of the day of the Lord is announced by Isaiah as destruction from the Almighty (Isaiah 13:6Joel 1:15). It will cause everyone to be terrified (Isaiah 13:7). The day of the Lord will be cruel and a day of fury and burning anger (Isaiah 13:8). It will be a time when the lights in the heavens will be greatly disturbed (Isaiah 13:10), and the world will be visited with judgment (Isaiah 13:11). The day of the Lord will be a day of clouds (Ezekiel 30:3), darkness (Amos 5:1820), and gloom, like nothing that has ever happened before nor will happen after that day (Joel 2:2). The day of the Lord will be a great and awesome day that no one can endure (Joel 2:11). The day of the Lord will be accompanied by great wonders in the sky and on earth, and, before that day arrives, God will darken the sun and the moon (Joel 2:31). It will be a day of justice, in which fair judgment will be meted out to nations (Obadiah 1:15). Even in those awesome and terrifying times, anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved (Joel 2:32). The day of the Lord is near, and it will come quickly when it is time (Zephaniah 1:714).

Based on the various references to the day of the Lord in the Hebrew Scriptures, it is evident that the day of the Lord will be a time of judgment that includes the time of Jacob’s trouble or distress (Jeremiah 30:4–7); it is the seventieth “seven” of the prophetic calendar God gave to Daniel (Daniel 9:24–27); and it is the great tribulation that Jesus predicted (Matthew 24:21). After the judgments of the tribulation, Jesus will return to earth to finish the judgment and establish His kingdom (Revelation 19—20).

In the day of the Lord, the Lord of Hosts will have a day of reckoning. All will be humbled, and the Lord alone will be exalted (Isaiah 2:1217). In that day His beauty and glory will be evident to all (Isaiah 4:2). In that day the remnant of Israel will truly rely on the Lord, the Holy One of Israel (Isaiah 10:20). In that day, there will be giving of thanks and making His deeds known among the nations (Isaiah 12:4). The day of the Lord will be the culmination of His judgment and the establishment of His rule on earth. As Ezekiel records fifteen times, “they will know that I am the Lord” (Ezekiel 6:1028:22–2629:9–2130:25–2633:2934:2735:1536:3839:28).

Even as we learn of the justice and judgments of the Lord accompanying the great and dreadful day of the Lord, we also see His incredible grace and mercy, as all who believe in Him have eternal life (John 6:47) and will not see condemnation (Romans 8:1). Nothing can separate God’s redeemed from His love (Romans 8:38–39).

What Do We Know about the Tribulation? 

What Do We Know about the Tribulation?  Clarence L. Haynes Jr.


The Tribulation, also known as the Great Tribulation, is an unprecedented period that will be experienced on the earth. There has never been a time like it before and there will never be one like it after. We often think of the tribulation as God’s judgment, but have you ever thought it is also about God’s covenant? Honestly, it is not possible to go through every detail of the tribulation in one article, so I will give you an overarching view so you can walk away with a little more understanding of what the tribulation is.

What Is the Tribulation?

The word “tribulation” means severe trial or suffering, and the Great Tribulation is a time of God’s judgment for man’s rebellion. This period, which lasts seven years, begins with the rapture of the church (more on this later) and during this time God will complete his discipline of Israel and final judgment upon the unbelieving citizens of the world. This will be a period of great trial and great suffering unmatched in human history. Here are two portions of Scripture that give you some insight into this period of tribulation.

“For there will be greater anguish than at any time since the world began. And it will never be so great again. In fact, unless that time of calamity is shortened, not a single person will survive. But it will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen ones” (Matthew 24:21-22). 


“At that time Michael, the archangel who stands guard over your nation, will arise. Then there will be a time of anguish greater than any since nations first came into existence. But at that time every one of your people whose name is written in the book will be rescued” (Daniel 12:1).

In addition to being called The Great Tribulation, the Bible also gives this period different names. Here are some examples:

Time of Jacob’s Trouble

“Alas! For that day is great, So that none is like it; And it is the time of Jacob’s trouble, But he shall be saved out of it” (Jeremiah 30:7, NKJV).

“In all history there has never been such a time of terror. It will be a time of trouble for my people Israel. Yet in the end they will be saved!” (Jeremiah 30:7, NLT).

Day of the Lord

“The day of the Lord is near,
the day when destruction comes from the Almighty.
How terrible that day will be!” (Joel 1:15). 

“That terrible day of the Lord is near.
Swiftly it comes—
a day of bitter tears,
a day when even strong men will cry out.

It will be a day when the Lord’s anger is poured out—

a day of terrible distress and anguish,
a day of ruin and desolation,
a day of darkness and gloom,
a day of clouds and blackness” (Zephaniah 1:15).

Where Does the Tribulation Fall in the End Times Map?

To understand where the tribulation falls on the end times map, there is one consensus among Christians and people who study the Bible. The tribulation precedes the second coming of Christ. As to when this tribulation period begins, that answer will depend on who you ask. To clarify what I mean, I will connect it to another event on the prophetic calendar which is the rapture of the church. When it comes to the rapture, there are three prevalent thoughts as to when this will happen.

Pre-Tribulation – This is the belief the rapture happens before the tribulation and the rapture of the church is the event that kicks off this seven-year period of tribulation. 

Mid-Tribulation – This is the belief the rapture happens in the middle of the tribulation. Possibly after the first three and a half years.

Post-Tribulation – This is the belief the rapture happens at the end of the tribulation and immediately precedes the second coming of Jesus Christ.

For those who believe in a pre-tribulation rapture, there is a clear timeframe as to when the tribulation begins. For those who don’t, then their end times map may look a little different. Regardless of what view you have, all we know for certain is this period will precede the second coming of Christ.

What Will Happen at the Tribulation?

During the tribulation period, God is dealing with those who have chosen to reject him, and he is dealing with Israel. God is disciplining Israel and calling them to repentance because of the covenant he established with Abraham. What you will also discover as you study more about this time is that even during judgment, God still offers mercy and the opportunity to repent. And some people will. What is fascinating is even in the face of horrific judgment, many people will still harden their hearts toward God. The judgement during the tribulation will push people deeper into their rejection and rebellion against God.

The tribulation is not just a period of judgment, it is also a period of redemption. During this time God will redeem Israel and this will happen because God has never forgotten the covenant he made with Abraham thousands of years ago. While I don’t have the space to cover how all that works in this article, I did a teaching on this topic where I explored this aspect of it in greater detail. You can find that teaching on The Bible Study Club.

During the tribulation, there will be a world leader who will arise, and he will be the most prominent leader on the earth during this time. We know the leader as the antichrist. When he comes, he will seem to accomplish on the earth what no other leader has been able to do, bring peace. He will sign a peace treaty with Israel however that will only last three and a half years because he will break the treaty. You can read more about this in Daniel 9 but here is one verse to reference for you.

“The ruler will make a treaty with the people for a period of one set of seven, but after half this time, he will put an end to the sacrifices and offerings. And as a climax to all his terrible deeds, he will set up a sacrilegious object that causes desecration, until the fate decreed for this defiler is finally poured out on him” (Daniel 9:27). 

As I said before, there are many more details, which is why I hope this motivates you to continue to study this topic to fill in all those details.

Should Christians Worry about the Tribulation?

If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, should you be worried about the tribulation? The answer is no.


As I mentioned earlier there are many Christians who believe in pre-tribulation rapture and if this is accurate, then we won’t be here and there is no need to worry about the tribulation. Just for the record, no one knows for certain when the rapture of the church will happen. While it is a good discussion to have to hear different viewpoints, it should never be a point of division because no one is one hundred percent certain.

Based on this let’s consider something else. What if the rapture does not happen before the tribulation? Should Christians worry? The answer again is no. Even if we must go through part of or all the tribulation (again no one knows for certain) your hope and confidence should always be in the God who is able to keep you in every circumstance. He will not fail you and he will never leave you or forsake you, so you do not have to worry. This does not mean there won’t be challenging times if we must go through the tribulation. It just means you have a hope that others outside of Christ will not have.

Final Thoughts about the Tribulation

My goal here today was not to give you an exhaustive exposé on the tribulation, but to whet your appetite and hopefully give you a foundation to begin a study of the tribulation. As I said before there is so much more information to discover.

Should you continue studying the tribulation let me will caution you on one thing. Don’t let the study of Bible prophecy become a distraction. You can spend years looking at dates, times, signs, and everything associated with Bible prophecy. Knowing this information should create more urgency to share the gospel and reach more people. Since you understand what will happen in the future let’s try to rescue as many as we can. This should be the motivation of all study of Bible prophecy.

Let’s not make the goal just knowing all the facts about the tribulation, let’s make the goal saving as many people from the judgment of God as possible. I believe this is what God would want us to do anyway.

Are We on the Verge of the Tribulation? :: By Britt Gillette

After two years of global turmoil, people are starting to realize we aren’t going to “return to normal.” We’ve endured a global pandemic, widespread social unrest, vaccine passports, and compounding global supply chain issues. Now, we have a major war in Eastern Europe, fuel and food price inflation, and rumors of an impending global financial crisis.

Everywhere you look, it seems as though the end is near. Is it? What does the Bible say? How close are the end times, the Tribulation, and the rapture of the church?

Fortunately, we don’t have to guess. Jesus Himself told us how to recognize the general timeframe of His return. When the disciples said, “Tell us the signs of your coming and the end of the age” (Matthew 24:3), Jesus told them a number of things to look for. He then said, “When you see all these things, you can know my return is near. I’m right at the door” (Matthew 24:33). He also said, “When all these things begin to happen, look up for your salvation is near!” (Luke 21:28).

This means the #1 indication Jesus will return soon is all the signs appearing together. Both Jesus and the prophets told us what those signs are, and the appearance of just one is reason enough to take notice. But the arrival of one sign after another demands your attention. It’s the sign Jesus said to look for. This convergence of signs is confirmation our generation will witness the Second Coming – not according to me, but according to Jesus.

The Convergence of Signs

So, what are these signs? This article will only cite a few. These signs are undeniable, and their convergence should convince you the return of the Lord is close at hand. They include:

Israel Back in the Land – God promised to bring the Jewish people back into the land of Israel before He returned (Jeremiah 23:7-8). He said He would call them from “among the nations” (Ezekiel 39:28), from “the farthest corners of the earth” (Isaiah 11:12), and from “north, south, east, and west” (Psalm 107:3). He promised to welcome them home from the lands where they were scattered (Ezekiel 20:34). When they did, He promised to return and establish His everlasting kingdom (Isaiah 11:11-12).

The Jewish People in Control of Jerusalem – Jesus said armies would surround Jerusalem, destroy the city, and enslave its citizens. The Roman legions fulfilled this prophecy in A.D. 70. Jesus then said people other than the Jewish people will control Jerusalem for a time, until the Jewish people once again control Jerusalem. When they did, Jesus promised to return (Luke 21:24-28). Since 1967, the Jewish people have controlled Jerusalem.

The Gospel Preached Throughout the World – When asked about the end of the age and the signs of His coming, Jesus said to look for a very specific sign. He said the Gospel will be preached throughout the entire world. Every nation will hear it. And then? And then, the end will come (Matthew 24:14). For centuries after the crucifixion, the Gospel was confined to a small area surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. In the past two centuries, Christians have brought the Gospel to every nation in the world. Today, missionaries are in every nation. The Bible is translated into hundreds of languages, and the message of Jesus is sent around the world by radio, TV, satellite, and the Internet. For the first time in history, this generation is on the verge of spreading the Gospel to every last person on earth.

An Increase in Travel and Knowledge – Six hundred years before Jesus, an angel gave Daniel a special message. He said “travel and knowledge” will increase in the end times (Daniel 12:4). For centuries of human history, dramatic gains in travel and knowledge did NOT take place. Yet the last two hundred years have seen explosions in the speed and frequency of travel as well as the amount and availability of knowledge.

Arrival of the Exponential Curve – Jesus said a variety of global signs will come before His return and the end of the age. These signs will be spiritual, natural, societal, and political in nature. He said they will appear in a distinct way – “like birth pains” (Matthew 24:3‐8). This means the frequency and intensity of these signs will increase as we near His return. Our generation has seen the exponential increase in war and famine Jesus said to look for. In the 20th Century alone, more people died from war and famine than lived on the earth when Jesus spoke these words.

Israel Surrounded by Enemies – The Bible says enemies will surround Israel in the end times. Those enemies will say, “Come, let us wipe away the nation of Israel. Let’s destroy the memory of its existence” (Psalm 83:4) and “Let us take for ourselves these pasturelands of God” (Psalm 83:12). Ezekiel said Israel’s neighbors will say, “God has given their land to us” (Ezekiel 11:14‐17), and “Israel and Judah are ours. We will take possession of them. What do we care if their God is there?” (Ezekiel 35:10). Ever since the rebirth of Israel in 1948, the daily headlines have included these Bible verses. Israel’s Muslim neighbors claim the land of Israel for themselves, and they have no regard for the God of Israel.

Israel’s Exceedingly Great Army – Ezekiel said, in the end times, Israel will field “an exceedingly great army” (Ezekiel 37:10). Zechariah said Israel will be like a fire among sheaves of grain, burning up the neighboring nations (Zechariah 12:6), and even the weakest Israeli soldier will be like David (Zechariah 12:8). Since 1948, Israel has fought no less than four conventional wars against its neighbors. Despite being outnumbered more than 50 to 1, Israel has achieved overwhelming victory every time.

Rise of the Gog of Magog Alliance – The Bible says a military alliance that includes Russia, Iran, Turkey, and a number of Muslim nations will attack Israel “in the latter days” (Ezekiel 38:8) when God brings His people home from among the enemy nations (Ezekiel 39:27). Today, we see those very nations coming together for the first time – an alliance that has never existed in world history.

Rise of a United Europe – The Bible says a revived Roman Empire will come to power in the end times (Daniel 2, Daniel 7, Revelation 17). According to Daniel, it will be a ten-nation alliance of weak and strong nations. Some parts will be as strong as iron, while other parts will be as weak as clay (Daniel 2:42). We see the beginning of this alliance in the European Union – a coalition of weak and strong nations struggling to stay together.

The Rise of Global Government – The Bible says a single government will rule the world politically (Revelation 13:7), religiously (Revelation 13:8), and economically (Revelation 13:16‐17) in the last days. It will rule over “all people, tribes, and languages” on the face of the earth (Revelation 13:7). Its authority will be so complete that no one will be able to buy or sell anything without its permission (Revelation 13:16‐17). For centuries, a true global government was impossible. Today, world leaders openly discuss it.

Denial of the Signs – Almost two thousand years ago, Peter issued a warning. He said in the last days people will mock the idea of Jesus returning. They will make fun of those who believe in the Second Coming and say exactly what we hear today – things like, “I thought Jesus was coming back? What happened to His promise? Generation after generation has said He’s coming. Yet, since the beginning of the world, everything has remained the same!” (2 Peter 3:3‐4).

The Hour is Late

Keep in mind, these signs haven’t always been present. Generations of Christians lived and died without witnessing any of these signs. For centuries of Christian history, none of these signs were present. Today, they all are. Jesus said when you see these signs, you can know His return is near. He’s right at the door (Matthew 24:33). In fact, Jesus said the generation witnessing these signs will not pass away before He returns (Matthew 24:34). So despite the skeptics and naysayers, Jesus is coming, and ours is the generation that will witness His return. The convergence of all these signs confirms it.

Are We on the Verge of the Tribulation?

For many years now, we’ve seen the convergence of the signs Jesus and the prophets said to look for. Now, in 2022, we see a specific alignment of events that could lead to the outbreak of the Tribulation at any moment. These specific events are identical in nature to the events the Bible says will occur during the Tribulation. Whether or not these events are merely a preview of the events to come, or the actual events the Bible describes for the Tribulation, remains to be seen. However, keep in mind these events will roll out in the midst of the very season when Jesus said He would return.

So, what are these possible Tribulation events in the making? Here are just a few:

Central Bank Digital Currencies – Over the past couple of years, central banks have openly discussed the introduction of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs). The central banks wield power over some of the largest economies in the world – the United Kingdom, Canada, China, the European Union, and the United States. Despite these public discussions, conventional wisdom says the rollout of CBDCs remains years in the future. The conventional wisdom is wrong. China has already released a digital yuan and recently released digital yuan wallets for both Android and iOS smartphones.

In March, President Biden signed an Executive Order titled “Ensuring Responsible Development of Digital Assets.” The order requires federal agencies to submit to the President within 180 days:

“a technical evaluation of the technological infrastructure, capacity, and expertise that would be necessary at relevant agencies to facilitate and support the introduction of a CBDC system should one be proposed. The evaluation should specifically address the technical risks of the various designs, including with respect to emerging and future technological developments, such as quantum computing.”

By September 2022, this technical evaluation will be complete. Then, have no doubt about it – once the next crisis hits, the U.S. will roll out its own CBDC to replace the dollar.

Why does this matter? CBDCs will be centralized, government-controlled programmable currency. This means if the government decides it doesn’t like you for whatever reason (think Canadian truckers), they can cut off your access. In other words, you won’t be able to buy or sell. Sound familiar? The Bible says the Antichrist will implement this same system. Those who refuse the mark of the beast will be unable to buy or sell (Revelation 13:17). We’re now on the verge of a global rollout of a technology identical in ability to the mark of the beast technology the Bible says will dominate the world during the Tribulation.

World War III – The Bible says there will be a World War III (Revelation 6:4), and we’re much closer to it today than when 2022 started and probably the closest we’ve been since the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. Every day seems to bring a new escalation between NATO and its allies and Russia over the latter’s invasion of Ukraine. NATO has sanctioned Russia, is providing arms to the Ukrainian resistance, and many of its members have called for direct intervention in Ukraine. Even if NATO avoids a direct military conflict, all it takes is for Russia to make one mistake that leads to a deadly strike in Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, or Romania (all NATO members bordering Ukraine), and all of NATO will be obligated to respond.

A full-blown war between Russia and NATO means World War III and the likely use of nuclear weapons. In 2019, the U.S. ran a war game to simulate what would happen in the event of a Russian invasion of Ukraine. The result was nuclear war with over a billion people dead. It’s a stark reminder that, at any moment, the war in Ukraine could escalate into World War III.

Hyperinflation – In 2022, inflation has become a serious problem for almost every major economy in the world. The March 2022 headline inflation number for the U.S. was 8.5% – the highest since 1981. For the EuroZone, it came in at 7.5%. In Germany, wholesale prices rose 22.6% year-over-year. EU natural gas prices increased six-fold. Global oil prices rose 67%, wheat prices doubled, and corn prices went up 50%. Fuel and food riots have erupted in Peru, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan. And unrest is brewing in countless other countries as well.

Could we be on the brink of hyperinflation? Maybe. Maybe not. But the Bible says the whole world will one day experience hyperinflation. When that happens, an entire day’s wages will only buy enough food to barely survive (Revelation 6:6).

Global Famine – As we entered 2022, the world already faced a major food crisis, both in terms of supply and price. Since then, the situation has only gotten worse. The Russian invasion of Ukraine cut off Russian and Ukrainian exports via the Black Sea. Together, they account for 12% of all global calories consumed. The sanctions against Russia have compounded ongoing supply chain issues, and many countries have banned agricultural exports. Add in poor harvests, rampant fertilizer shortages, and an avian flu plague destroying millions of chickens and turkeys, and it becomes clear we’re heading toward the worst food crisis in modern times.

In fact, it’s worse than that. Famine is coming on a mass scale. We simply aren’t going to grow enough food in 2022. The result will be a biblical famine. The only question is whether it will be one of the famines Jesus spoke about in Matthew 24:7 or the Tribulation famine of Revelation 6:5-8.

Jesus is Coming Soon

If the world stage is now set for the Tribulation, how close must the rapture be?

The Bible says the rapture will take place before the Tribulation. Jesus promised His church, “I will keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth” (Revelation 3:10). If you’re reading this and you’re a Christian, your time on this earth is short. Your race (1 Corinthians 9:24-27) is nearing its end, so make sure to finish well. Live a holy, godly life as you look forward to the day of His coming (2 Peter 3:11-12). Take advantage of every opportunity to spread the Gospel. Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything Jesus has commanded (Matthew 28:19-20).

The day will come when you will lose the opportunity to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. So do it now while you still can. Jesus is coming soon.


Britt Gillette is author of the free ebook Coming to Jesus as well as the books Signs of the Second ComingRacing Toward Armageddon, and The End Times. Receive his book 7 Signs of the End Times for free when you sign up for his monthly newsletter.

Are We on the Verge of the Tribulation?
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