Thematic Bible: Tribulation


Thematic Bible






"And write [this] to the angel of the church at Thyatira: These are the words of the Son of God, who has eyes like flaming fire and feet like shiny brass: I know about your deeds, your love, your faith, your service and your endurance, and that your most recent deeds are more numerous than when you first began [your Christian lives]. But I have this against you, that you tolerate that woman [named] Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. She teaches and deceives my servants into [practicing] sexual immorality and into eating things sacrificed to idols. read more.
And I gave her time to repent, but she refused to repent of her sexual immorality. Listen, I will throw her, and those who commit sexual unfaithfulness with her, into a bed where they will experience terrible suffering unless they repent of her [or, their] practices.

anguish and distress. He will bring these upon every human being who does wrong, upon the Jews first, then also upon the Greeks [i.e., Gentiles].


As Jesus left the Temple, His disciples approached Him as He was walking along the road and pointed out the Temple buildings. He responded to them by saying, "Do you see all these structures? Truly I tell you, there will not be one stone left on another here that will not be thrown down." And as He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, His disciples came to Him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things [you just spoke of] happen? And what will be the sign that indicates your presence and the end of the [present] age?" read more.
And Jesus answered them, "Pay attention so that no one leads you astray [from the truth]. For many [false teachers] will come, claiming to be me, and saying, 'I am the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one]' and they will lead many people away [from the truth]. And you will hear of wars [going on] and rumors of [other] wars [pending]. Do not worry, for such things must necessarily happen. But the end has not yet come. [Note: By "the end" here Jesus probably alludes to the downfall of Jerusalem, in AD 70, with its attending destruction of the Temple buildings]. For nations will wage war against one another, and kingdoms will attack one another. And famines and earthquakes will occur at various places [in the world]. But all these things are [only] the beginning of terrible times. At that time people will turn you over [to the authorities] for persecution and will [even] kill you. And people from all countries will hate you for being loyal to me. And then many people will fall away [from God] and they will turn one another over [i.e., to the authorities for punishment], and they will hate one another. And many false prophets will appear and will lead many people away [from the truth]. And because sin will abound, many people will grow cold in their love [for one another]. But the person who holds out [i.e., remains faithful to God] until the end [i.e., of this time of severe persecution] will be saved [from destruction]. And this good news concerning the kingdom [of heaven] will be preached to people throughout the world as a testimony [of God's message] to all nations. Then, [after that] the end [i.e., of Jerusalem, the Temple, etc.] will come. "Therefore, when you see that disgusting thing which causes total destruction [i.e., the Roman armies. See Luke 21:20], which Daniel the prophet spoke about [Dan. 9:27; 11:31; 12:11], standing in the sacred place [i.e., Jerusalem and especially the Temple area], (let the reader understand [what is meant by this]), then those [of you] in Judea are to run away into the [nearby] mountains. [Also], the person who is on a housetop [Note: This was a flat area where people retired for rest, prayer, etc., with its stairway on the outside], is not to take any of the belongings from his house as he comes down [to flee]. The person who is in a field [i.e., doing farm work] is not [even] to return [to his house] to get his coat. It will be too bad for those who are pregnant and who are nursing babies in those days. And pray that it will not be in the winter or on a Sabbath day when you will have to flee [from the city]. [Note: Jewish Sabbath day restrictions on travel (only three-fifths of a mile) and city gate closures would make leaving the city nearly impossible]. There will be great trouble [during these times], such as had never been from the beginning of time up to the present, or ever will be [in the days to come]. And if those days had not been as short as they were no one would have been saved [i.e., from the devastating destruction]. But for the sake of the elect [i.e., God's people], those days will be short.

As Jesus left the Temple, one of His disciples said to Him, "Teacher, look at the kind of stones these buildings are made of " And Jesus responded to him, "Do you see these huge buildings? There will not be one stone left on another here that will not be thrown down." As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, over near the Temple, Peter, James, John and Andrew asked Him privately, read more.
"Tell us, when will these things [you just spoke of] happen? And what will be the sign [that indicates] when all these things are about to be fulfilled?" Then Jesus began saying to them, "Pay attention so that no one leads you astray [i.e., from the truth]. [For] many [false teachers] will come, claiming to be me, and saying, 'I am [the Christ] and they will lead many people astray. And when you hear of wars [going on] and rumors of [other] wars [pending], do not worry, for such things must necessarily happen. But the end has not yet come. [Note: By "end" here Jesus probably alludes to the downfall of Jerusalem in AD 70, with its attending destruction of the Temple buildings]. For nations will wage war against one another, and kingdoms will attack one another. And earthquakes will happen at various places [in the world], and there will be famines. These things are [only] the beginning of terrible times. "But pay attention to yourselves, for people will turn you over to [Jewish] councils [i.e., for judgment] and you will be beaten in synagogues. You will stand trial before governors and kings for being loyal to me. [This will afford you an opportunity] for witnessing to them. And the good news must first be preached to people of all nations. And when they lead you into court, and hand you over [to be judged], do not worry ahead of time about what you will say, but [just] say whatever you are told [i.e., by God] when the time comes. And [at that time] a person will turn his brother over to be killed, and the father will do the same to his child. And children will rebel against their parents and will turn them over to be killed. You will be hated by all people because you belong to me, but the person who holds out [i.e., remains faithful to God] until the end [i.e., the end of this time of severe persecution] will be saved [from destruction]. "But when you see that disgusting thing that causes total destruction [i.e., the Roman army. See Luke 21:20] standing where it ought not to be [i.e., surrounding the besieged city of Jerusalem], (let the reader understand [what is meant by this]), then those of you in Judea are to run away into the [nearby] mountains. Also the person who is on a housetop [Note: This was a flat area where people retired for rest, prayer, etc., with its stairway on the outside] should not go down into his house to take anything out [when he flees]. The person who is in a field [i.e., doing farm work] should not return [to his house] to get his coat [even]. [It will be] too bad for those who are pregnant and those who are nursing babies in those days. And pray that [your flight] will not be in the winter. There will be great trouble during those days, such as had never been from the beginning of God's creation until the present, or even will be [in the days to come]. And if the Lord had not kept those days as short as they were, no one would have been saved [i.e., from the devastating destruction]. But for the sake of the elect [i.e., God's people], whom He chose, He kept those days short.


After seeing [all] these things, I looked and there [I saw] a huge crowd, which no one could count, from every nation, and tribe, and race, and language group standing in front of the throne [of God] and in front of the Lamb. They were dressed in white robes and had palm tree branches in their hands. And they called out in a loud voice, saying, "Salvation comes from [or, "belongs to"] our God, who sits on His throne, and from [or, "to"] the Lamb." And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the [twenty-four] elders and the four living beings. And they fell down on their faces in front of the throne and worshiped God, read more.
saying [See Note at 4:8], "May it be so; May there be praise and splendor and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and strength to our God forever and ever. May it be so." Then one of the [twenty-four] elders asked me, "Who are these ones dressed in white robes, and where did they come from?" And I answered him, "Sir, [surely] you know." And he said to me, "These are the people who have come through the terrible persecution, and they have washed their robes and made them white with the blood of the Lamb. So, [now] they are in front of God's throne and they are serving Him day and night in His Temple. And He who sits on His throne will spread His tent over them [i.e., He will protect them]. They will not be hungry anymore, nor will they get thirsty anymore. The sun will not beat down on them, nor will they become scorched by the heat. For the Lamb, who is at the center of the throne, will be their Shepherd and will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes."


Jesus replied to them, "Do you believe [in me] now? Look, the time is coming --- yes, it is already here --- when each of you will be scattered to his own home, and will leave me [all] alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me. I have said these things to you so that you can have peace in [fellowship with] me. You will have trouble in the world, but cheer up, for I have conquered the world."


And not only this, but we also rejoice in our troubles, knowing that [experiencing] troubles produces endurance; and endurance [produces God's] approval; and [His] approval [produces] hope.