What is "the great tribulation" in Revelation 7:14 ?
What is the Great tribulation?
Tribulation, according to Bible Hub’s definition and the Word help studies, the Greek lexicon 2347 means persecution, affliction, distress, tribulation. From thlibo 2346; thlíbō (the root of 2347 /thlípsis, reflecting an original "b"/bēta) –
properly, rub together, constrict (compress), i.e. pressed together; (figuratively) oppressively afflict (distress), i.e. like when circumstances "rub us the wrong way" that make us feel confined (hemmed in); restricted to a "narrow" place
Tribulation means a pressure (what constricts or rubs together), used of a narrow place that "hems someone in"; tribulation, especially, internal pressure that causes someone to feel confined (restricted, "without options").
2347 /thlípsis ("compression, tribulation") carries the challenge of coping with the internal pressure of a tribulation, especially when feeling there is "no way of escape" ("hemmed in").
The adjective great means exceeding, great, large on a grandeur scale, and or something on a grandeur scale; great tribulation, has Christ said, that has not took place since there was a nation, nor ever will be. It’s global.
Thus, the Great Tribulation described by Christ is not the same level of persecution or tribulations, however, it is the worse pressure, persecutions, and affliction an Elect will experience than others. Matter of fact, the great tribulation for his elect’s sake those days are shortened.
The explanation of Jesus Christ concerning the tribulations that will come over the world, some are not on the same level or degree as the Great tribulation, but they are tribulations which the saints who are suffering are found worthy of the Lord.
The Tribulation, persecution, or afflictions, we shall suffer which does NOT describes the Great tribulation:
Mark 13:10-13; Luke 21:12-18, v 12 “Persecute you”; Matthew 24:13 “afflicted” same word thlípsis 2347 persecuted or tribulation; nor in Revelation 2:10 Church of Smyrna who suffer “tribulation” dying for their faith, Antipas Revelation 2:13; the Thessalonians who suffer “Afflictions” 2 Thessalonians 1:4-6 from their country as Paul did from his, the Jews 1 Thessalonians 2:14; even Apostle John Revelation 1:9 I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
However, these, above, describes not that Great tribulation spoken of by the Lord, Jeremiah 30:7, and Daniel 12:1 in Matthews chapter 24.
A couple of Scriptures that reference and or describe a Great tribulation for his people:
Jeremiah 30:7 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.
Daniel 12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
The Emergence of the Beast or that WICKED one and the abomination of desolation stand in the holy place
Matthew 24: 15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Mark 13:14 But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judaea flee to the mountains:
(Here is the specific time, event and person takes place: the Beast/little horn in Daniel 8:9-12; ch 11:36 claims to be god or that is called God 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4. The time line discussed below.)
Starting from this point, verse 15, where the abomination of desolation, “Stand in the holy place” is the commence of the Great tribulation.
(Luke 21:20 the desolation or when the armies are surrounding Jerusalem; this is referring to 70 AD when Jerusalem was destroyed. It is not the same as Mathew and Marks account of the abomination of desolation or the BEAST/Antichrist)
Time is shortened for the Elect’s sake:
Matthew 24:22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortenedMark 13:20-21.
The Lord’s concern for the Elect and the False Christs and False prophets shewing great signs and wonders
Matthew 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
Mark 13:22 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.
The most important point to make is the two prophets who prophesies for three and a half years, finishes their testimony, are killed by the Beast; they were in the Great tribulation time period, thus, the Great tribulation did not occur before they emerged from the scene.
Furthermore, women who is the children of israel will be #1 taken care of and protected #2 from the face of the serpent (the Beast or Antichrist) for 3 and a half years.
#1 Revelation 12:6 And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. 14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. Thereby, all Israel being saved Romans 11:26, Daniel 12:1, Jeremiah 30:7, and Revelation 12 women represents all Israel: men, women, children, and infants will be delivered/saved.
#2The two prophets are prophesying for 3 and a half years. They are visibly and CLEARLY there within the exact timeline of the Beast. Revelation 11:3 3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. Revelation The Beast years he reigns are 3 and a half years, interesting.
The beast, the Antichrist, or Wicked one arises out of the bottomless pit and kills the two prophets.
#3 Revelation 11:7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.
Also, to take note, the Beast rules for 3 and a half years.
Revelation 12:14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.
Revelation 13:5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. This is 3 and a half years: same timeline as the TWO prophets.
#4 This beast and false prophet are destroyed or killed by Jesus Christ in Revelation chapter 19:20,21.
In 2 Thessalonians 2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming.
**As a result, notice the time line: #1, the women representing the children of Israel are saved from the beast; #2 it was the beast who kills the two witnesses; thereby, #3, the two prophets are in the timeframe of the Beast; #4, it is Jesus Christ who destroys the beast or antichrist.
Therefore, it’s all in the same period. Thus, the great tribulation is in the timeline of the Women/all Israel being Saved, the two prophets, the Beast, and the Lord from Heaven who destroys the Little horn/Beast.
Matthew 24:29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days…” and Mark 13:24, “But in those days, after that tribulation…” AFTER, the Great tribulation, the two prophets are heavens and earth are shaken; the power of heaven is shaken
An example, of an external and internal conflict in Christians, in nations experiencing a great tribulation, having pressure, feeling compressed or hemmed in, is in Revelation 13:16-17 shown below; it details all people: great, small, poor, rich, free or bond will have to receive a mark, upon their foreheads or in their right hands; mark in their right hands is possibly, a Radio-frequency identification (RFID) chip; externally, resulting in an economic deprivation and or being financially cutoff for those who does not receive the mark: buying groceries, nor selling any product/merchandise is not an option.
Also, the internal struggle would be for saints/Christians not give in to worship the beast neither his image as Revelation 14:9, 11-12 & Revelation 15 shown below; we need to have patience so we, as the Lord said can, “possess ye your souls” Luke 21:19.
Those who succumbs to the tribulation, affliction, or pressure and worships the beast, having the number of the beasts name or receiving said mark, are economically free to purchase or to buy and sell merchandise or product, groceries etc.
Revelation 13:16And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: 17And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
Revelation 14:9And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand…11And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. 12Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
Scriptures which refers to, and or describes a Great Tribulation:
Luke 21:19 In your patience possess ye your souls.
The term Great Tribulation was first coined by the Lord; Jesus Christ quotes Daniel 12:1 specifically, and had Jeremiah 30:7 in mind, in Matthew 24:21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. Mark 13:19 For in those days shall be affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the creation which God created unto this time, neither shall be.
Daniel 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
Daniel 12:1 not as the great tribulation but as “A time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time”; this time of trouble is referring to israel “the children of thy people” and “the saints”: Gentiles believers.
Daniel 11:36 And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done.
Daniel 11: And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate…
The Great Tribulation was first introduced, as “Great” in Jeremiah, as Jacobs trouble. Then the prophet Daniel provides the timeframe of this “time of trouble” he says it’s a time, times and half of a time; The Lord thru Daniel informs us its connected to Jeremiah 30:7 by the use of similar language Daniel 12:1 “and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time”; notice, both Jeremiah and Daniel state that Israel shall be saved from it above: this is the same event describe in Jeremiah.
I think some of Daniel prophecies in chapter 7, 8 and 11 represent a type and shadow of Babylon, Medo Persia, Greece, Rome’s rulers; a type of little horn in Antiochus Epiphanes iv or of some figure in the past.
However, the book of Daniel prophecies are pointing to a future time and fulfillment of the little horn, the Beast or Antichrist in a future period.
Jesus Christ quotes partially Daniel 11 in Matthew 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:); some suppose this could be destruction of the temple in AD 70 wherein these prophecies were fulfilled; however, looking at the time line, it is even a more distant future.
Therefore, the Great tribulation is not anyone who has ever lived on earth but referring to a particular time that takes place in the future.