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[b]Tribulation Coming To America?[/b]
[i]by brother Greg[/i]
A warning to the church in america of coming tribulation
As Christians we are not free from tribulation and persecution. The Scripture says: “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” There is a teaching and way of living in modern American Christianity that says: “I will not suffer.” Suffering in some circles is a evidence of your lack of faith or spiritual blessing from God. Nothing is further from the truth! The Scripture says: “Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind.” Later in the same chapter it says: “the end of all things is at hand.” Saints of God we need to “arm ourselves” with the mentality that suffering is going to happen. We are going to go through hard times and unless we are being taught this by God now we will not be able to stand when the storm comes. Tribulation is coming to America and as David Wilkerson said: “Only those washed by the blood and fully surrendered to Christ will survive.”
Corrie Ten Boom shared this burdened message in 1974 named, Preparing for Tribulation. Here are some excerpts from that article: “There are some among us teaching there will be no tribulation, that the Christians will be able to escape all this. These are the false teachers that Jesus was warning us to expect in the latter days. Most of them have little knowledge of what is already going on across the world. I have been in countries where the saints are already suffering terrible persecution. In China, the Christians were told, "Don't worry, before the tribulation comes you will be translated – raptured." Then came a terrible persecution. Millions of Christians were tortured to death. Later I heard a Bishop from China say, sadly, "We have failed. We should have made the people strong for persecution rather than telling them Jesus would come first. Tell the people how to be strong in times of persecution, how to stand when the tribulation comes – to stand and not faint."
“I feel I have a divine mandate to go and tell the people of this world that it is possible to be strong in the Lord Jesus Christ. We are in training for the tribulation, but more than sixty percent of the Body of Christ across the world has already entered into the tribulation. There is no way to escape it. We are next. In America, the churches sing, "Let the congregation escape tribulation", but in China and Africa the tribulation has already arrived. This last year alone more than two hundred thousand Christians were martyred in Africa. Now things like that never get into the newspapers because they cause bad political relations. But I know. I have been there. We need to think about that when we sit down in our nice houses with our nice clothes to eat our steak dinners. Many, many members of the Body of Christ are being tortured to death at this very moment, yet we continue right on as though we are all going to escape the tribulation.”
AFFLICTED, TORMENTED, AND DESTROYED!
We are so desensitized to reality in America that to spend anytime reading Church history seems to make the whole of modern day American Christianity seem false. The Scriptures speak of those who by faith followed God: "(Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts and in mountain, and in dens, and in mountains, and in dens and and caves of the earth. And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect." Beloved, are you willing to associate yourself with this list of people? Or would you rather have your comfortable padded pews and climate controlled buildings to worship and pray in so our darling little knees won’t get hurt? Does not the Scripture say: "Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshy lusts, which war against your soul." Oh may we be found truly to be those that are “strangers and pilgrims” in this world. We have so many precious promises to claim and memorize how about this one: “Marvel not, my brethren if the world hate you.” Oh it will let us never forget that.
Thomas Brooks wrote this over 300 years ago and their truths are just as timely and applicable today for us: “Let me give you a little abridgment of the sufferings of some of the early Christians, "of whom the world was not worthy."
1. In the reign of Hadrian the emperor, there were ten thousand Christians crowned with a crowns of thorns, thrust into the sides with sharp lances, and then crucified.
2. Others were so whipped, that their entrails were seen, and afterwards they were thrown upon sharp shells, and then upon sharp nails and thorns. And after all this cruelty, they were thrown to wild beasts to be devoured.
3. Multitudes were banished.
4. Others were pulled apart with wild horses.
5. Some were beaten and racked with bars of iron.
6. Others were cast into loathsome dungeons.
7. Some were burnt in the fire.
8. Others were knocked down and had their brains beaten out with staves and clubs.
9. Some were pricked in their faces and eyes with sharp reeds.
10. Others were stoned to death with stones, as Stephen was.
11. Some were dashed in pieces against millstones.
12. Others had their teeth dashed out of their jaws, and their joints broken.
13. Some were cast down from very high places.
14. Others were beheaded.
15. Some were tormented with razors.
16. Others were slain with the sword.
17. Some were run through with pikes.
18. Others were driven into the wilderness, where they wandered up and down, suffering hunger and cold, and where they were exposed to the fury both of wild beasts, and also to the rage of the barbarous Arabians.
19. Some fled into caves, which their persecutors crammed up with stones, and there they died.
20. Others were trodden to death by the people.
21. Some were hanged on gibbets with a slow fire under them.
22. Others were cast into the sea and drowned.
23. Some were slain by being thrown in mines.
24. Others were hanged by the feet, and choked with the smoke of a small fire, their legs being first broken.
25. Some were covered with oil, and then roasted with a soft fire.
26. Others were hung by one hand, that they might feel the weight of their whole bodies scorching and broiling over burning coals.
27. Some were shot through with arrows, and afterwards thrown into stinking prisons.
28. Others were stripped stark naked, and thrown out in cold, frosty nights; and burnt the next day.
29. In Syria, a company of Christian virgins were stripped stark naked to be scorned by the multitude, then shaved, and then torn in pieces and devoured by beasts.
30. Lastly, many women had the joints of their bodies pulled from another, and their flesh and sides clawed with talons of wild beasts to the bones, and their breasts seared with torches until they died.
And thus you have an account of thirty different ways by which the precious sons and daughters of God have formerly been afflicted, tormented, and destroyed! What heart of stone can read over this list with dry eyes? And now tell me, sirs, whether your sufferings are worth a naming in that day, wherein the sufferings of the precious servants of God in the primitive times are spoken of? Oh, no! Well then, take heed of making molehills mountains, and of crying out, "Is there any sorrow compared to my sorrow; or any sufferings compared to my sufferings?"
HOW TO SURVIVE
Corrie Ten Boom shares some very good practical exhortation on how to survive the tribulation and persecution coming: “How can we get ready for the persecution? First we need to feed on the word of God, digest it, make it a part of our being. This will mean disciplined Bible study each day as we not only memorize long passages of scripture, but put the principles to work in our lives. Next we need to develop a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Not just the Jesus of yesterday, the Jesus of History, but the life-changing Jesus of today who is still alive and sitting at the right hand of God. We must be filled with the Holy Spirit. This is no optional command of the Bible, it is absolutely necessary. Those earthly disciples could never have stood up under the persecution of the Jews and Romans had they not waited for Pentecost. Each of us needs our own personal Pentecost, the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We will never be able to stand in the tribulation without it.”
“If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you. Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf. “ And does not the Scripture in another place say: Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven.” There is a time of “rejoicing” coming Saints of God!
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon