What is the Tribulation?
The Tribulation is a seven-year period described, in most detail, in the Book of Revelation, chapters 6-18. This seven-year period isn’t just a fancy time span picked out by some Bible scholars, no, this is a fulfillment of Daniel 9:27.
“And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.”
This ‘week’ that this verse refers to actually means ‘a week (specifically, of years)’ (Strong’s Hebrew Dictionary) so how many days are in a week? 7, so thus a week of years would be seven years.
What to learn more about the Tribulation? Read Revelation 6-18, it has better value then what I could tell you.
What is the difference between the Second Coming, and the Rapture?
First of all, the Second Coming is when Jesus Christ comes down to the Earth right after (Matthew 24:29) the Tribulation (see above) to establish His kingdom on Earth for one thousand years (millennium). The Rapture is before the Tribulation (see above) and no one knows when it will happen except for the Father (Matthew 24:36).
The Rapture is spoken of by angels (Acts 1:11) by Paul (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, and 1 Corinthians 15:51-54) and Jesus (Matthew 24:36, 42, 44, 50, 26:64, Mark 14:62, etc.) It is obviously an important event.
The Second Coming is, a lot of times, mistaken for the Rapture and vice versa, but what verses in Matthew 24 pertain to the Second Coming and what ones to the Rapture? You will have to allow me more study time.
Panic arises when some people think of the year 2012. The reason for the panic?
Well, back in the time when the Mayans existed as a nation they had a problem, their calendar ended on December 23rd, 2012. And, because of this sudden ending of their calendar they believed that that date marks the end of the world. But, does it?
First of all, the end of the world predicted by the Mayans has no scientific value. It doesn’t prove anything, it doesn’t hold any fact and there is no plausible reason that the world would end on December 23rd.
Secondly, do you know why the Mayans don’t exist today? Because the Spaniards killed them. The Mayans could predict the end of the world but they couldn’t predict their own destruction?
Thirdly, even if Jesus Christ returned right this second the end of the world couldn’t even make it within the next seven years. Why? The Bible predicts a seven year Tribulation that will give the world one last chance to turn from their sin. After the Tribulation all people are brought to justice and the world will be refreshed into a new world.
So, will the world end on December 23rd? Absolutely, without a doubt, not!
But, the question does bring up a interesting note, what if Jesus were to return today and rapture His Church from the earth? Would you be ready? The Bible tells us we don’t know the day or the hour, we just always have to be prepared.
If you haven’t repented from your sin and turned to Jesus Christ as you only Savior please do today. When the rapture does happen you have to be prepared!