After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.(Revelation 7:9-10) KJV
The Left Behind books and movies are an example of gross mis-handling of scripture. Christians are taught that anyone left behind has lost their opportunity to repent and escape the judgement of God.
However, scripture describes a great multitude saved out of great tribulation who go on to dwell in the Millennial Kingdom. Most people who read this passage probably imagine that it’s taking place in heaven. In part this is because it goes on to say:
And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.(Revelation 7:11-12) KJV
Angels standing around a throne sounds like heaven, but there are some obvious clues that this passage isn’t describing an event in heaven.
And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.(Revelation 7:13-17) KJV
Here are some reasons why this passage can’t be describing an event in heaven:
- .. came out of great tribulation .. this is before the Millennial Kingdom,
- .. serve him day and night .. there is no night in heaven,
- .. in his temple .. there is no temple in heaven.
Obviously this passage is describing the scene in Jerusalem after the tribulation. A great multitude of people will survive the tribulation by believing in the Lord. So what about the doctrine that no one can repent during the tribulation? Here’s an example of how it is described:
And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain, And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.(Revelation 16:10-11) KJV
People blasphemed God and refused to repent even as they experience the tribulation engulf them. Here’s some deduction for you, in the form of a question:
- IF no one can repent during the tribulation,
- BUT a great multitude is saved out of great tribulation,
- THEN who is the great multitude?
The great multitude has to be either:
- Christians who experienced the tribulation?
- or people who convert to Christianity in the midst of the tribulation?
What do you want to believe? Both options ago against current mainstream Christian teaching. That’s deduction for you. Sorry. We just have to survive the tribulation.
November 27th – Wines on the Lees
Anyone who survives the tribulation will live in peace on the Lord’s holy mountain and enjoy the good things of life.