Where Are We Now? Discerning the Time in the Last Days
Then He also said to the multitudes, “Whenever you see a cloud rising out of the west, immediately you say, ‘A shower is coming’; and so it is. And when you see the south wind blow, you say, ‘There will be hot weather’; and there is. Hypocrites! You can discern the face of the sky and of the earth, but how is it you do not discern this time?” Luke 12:54-56
The goal of this article is to share the IMHO-version of where we are on the prophetic timeline of the end.
I offer this humbly. It is my current understanding and I am open to being corrected by the Holy Spirit and Scripture as I continue my journey with the Lord.
Please search these things for yourself and don't take my word on it, but ask God to show you what is true. I don't want to be just adding to the noise here, or sharing one opinion out of five billion other opinions. I've prayed about this a lot and this is where I am today. It's a bit scholarly, so take your time.
Synopsis: I believe the seven-year "tribulation" begins with the trumpets. The seals are not part of Daniel's 70th week and Jesus has been opening them for the last 2000 years. I believe we are currently in the time of the 5th seal. The harpazo of the Church will occur at, or just after, the 6th seal.
If you've read my article Daughter of Daylight you know that I am a pre-trib, pre-millenial believer in the Son of God, Jesus the Messiah.
Being pre-trib means that I interpret Scripture to say that the body of Christ, the Church, will not experience what is known as "the tribulation." I believe the Bible is clear that the last seven years of life on earth—at least life as we know it—are for three specific things: to warn unbelievers, to restore Israel, and to punish sin. These seven years are called Daniel's 70th week (based on Dan. 9:24-27), the time of Jacob's Trouble (Jer. 30:6-7), days of indignation (Zeph. 3:8-9), vengeance (Is. 63:3-5), and wrath (Is. 13:9-13, Zeph. 1:15, Rom. 2:5). The last half of these years are described as a time of "great tribulation" by Jesus (Matthew 24:21).
Right now we live in the age of the Gospel of Grace. This is the dispensation that Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles, was given in order to preach his gospel of salvation through grace by faith. (Rom. 16:25, Eph. 2:8, Eph. 3:1-7) This is the age of the Church (Eph. 5:23-32, Col. 1:18, 24). As the body of Christ, we are saved simply by believing from the heart that the Son of God, Jesus, died on the cross for our sins, was buried, and rose again the third day according to the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:1-4, Rom. 10:6-13). We aren't required to do anything other than trust.
For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him. 1 Thess. 5:9-10
This is good news! The Church is not appointed to the days of indignation, vengeance or wrath. We do not need the warnings to unbelievers, the punishment of sin (because Christ bore our punishment already on the cross), or God's dealing with Israel. It has never been, nor will it ever be, easier than it is now to become saved. Don't get me wrong—the Christian faith is not an easy life. But the gospel of grace teaches that salvation comes simply through belief because of the atonement we have through Christ. As soon as this dispensation ends, a new one begins—and comes with a new gospel: the Gospel of the Kingdom.
The Gospel of the Kingdom
There cannot be two saving gospels at one time. The gospel of grace and the gospel of the kingdom cannot co-exist. Paul wrote, "But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed." (Gal. 1:8) This is important! Because later, in Revelation 14, we do see another gospel preached by an angel: Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth—to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people. (Rev. 14:6)
What is this everlasting gospel?
It is the gospel of the kingdom. Jesus said, "But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come." (Matt. 24:13-14) This is not the gospel of salvation by grace through faith. The Gospel of the Kingdom is the message of John the Baptist of repentance for the remission of sins (Mark 1:4) and what Jesus first preached to Israel.
Mark tells us, Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” (Mark 1:14-15; see also Matt. 4:23, Matt. 9:35) It is a gospel of repentance (Matt. 4:17, 9:13; Mark 6:12) and of baptism (Matt. 3:11, Acts 19:3-5). We know that Israel rejected and crucified the Messiah, and so God turned for a time with grace to the Gentiles (Rom. 3:24, Rom. 11:6, Rom. 11:11-12, Rom. 11:25-26). But God is not finished with Israel. After the Church is caught up to God, the gospel of the kingdom will be preached once again...
...and then the end will come. (Matt. 24:14)
In addition to the preaching angel, it is my belief that this gospel will be preached by the two witnesses (Rev. 11:2-12) who prophesy for 1260 days (three & a half years). Some also teach that the Jewish remnant, the 144,000 from the twelve tribes of Israel who have the seal of God on their foreheads (Rev. 7:3-8), will proclaim this gospel.
For more on the different gospels, please view the following sermons by Preacher Robert Breaker.
Salvation during the tribulation
Let's recap what we have so far and look at a couple of new points: the Church is not appointed to wrath (1 Thess. 5:9-10). Before this time, believers in Jesus will be removed through the harpazo, which is Greek for the catching-away described in 1 Thess. 4:17. After the body of Christ is removed, the Age of Grace will end and a new dispensation will begin. For seven years, God will focus on Israel & unbelievers. The Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached. However, I see two things added to the requirements of salvation during this time. I'll edit this in the future to reflect any changes in understanding, but consider the following—
To be saved during the tribulation, one must:
believe the gospel, AND two more things:
1) Do not worship the beast or image of the beast, or receive his mark:
Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.” Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. (Rev. 14:9-12)
2) Endure to the end. "But he who endures to the end shall be saved." (Matt. 24:13, Mark 13:13)
This time of tribulation will be virtually impossible to survive. Trib saints—those who come to Christ after the harpazo—will most likely be required to lose their lives for the gospel. During this time the antichrist and false prophet will arise, who will force those who are living to worship the beast and be marked, or to be killed.
And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed. He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. (Rev. 13:12-17)
If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. (Matt. 5:29-30)
For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. Mark 8:35
The Gospel of the Kingdom during the days of Daniel's 70th week involve repentance, keeping the commandments of Jesus, and holding fast til the end. This is a far cry from the gospel for the Church, which is simply: believe and be saved.
Biblical prophecy tells us:
Therefore He shall give them up, Until the time that she who is in labor has given birth; Then the remnant [I believe this could be the sealed 144k] of His brethren shall return to the children of Israel. (Micah 5:3)
Before she was in labor, she gave birth;
Before her pain came,
She delivered a male child.
Who has heard such a thing?
Who has seen such things?
Shall the earth be made to give birth in one day?
Or shall a nation be born at once?
For as soon as Zion was in labor,
She gave birth to her children. (Is. 66:7-8)
Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘If a woman has conceived, and borne a male child, then she shall be unclean seven days; as in the days of her customary impurity she shall be unclean...’” (Lev. 12:1-2)
Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars. Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born. She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up to God and His throne. (Rev. 12:1-5)
Here we see that Israel has been "given up" until the time that she who is in labor has given birth. The birth happens first, and then the labor...7 years of labor for Israel. This sign in the heavens appears on September 23, 2017. Time is short!
A child in the womb is not appointed to the mother's birth pains.
So, what time is it?
The book of Revelation describes a series of seals, trumpets, and bowls that hold current events, plagues of warning, and the wrath of God.
I believe that the seals described in Revelation 6 & 7 are pre-trib. The seals are not judgments.
When I say pre-trib, I mean before the beginning of Daniel's 70th week. There is tribulation during the seals, as in trouble and trial and heartache and suffering. (See John 16:33) But my understanding of Scripture leads me to believe that Jesus has been opening the seals ever since he ascended to the throne and that definitely the first four, and perhaps the first five, have already been opened.
It is my belief that we are in the seals right now, most likely in the 5th seal.
I also believe that the harpazo of the Church happens in seal 6, with room for a bit of overlap which I will explain below.
First, here is an overview of the seven trumpets & seven bowls.
In Scripture, the trumpet judgments are a foretaste of the wrath to come.
The seven trumpets of Revelation are a serious and deadly warning for the people of the earth. For some it will be a sobering wake-up call, for each trumpet brings a plague that closely resembles the ancient plagues of Egypt. (Remember the movie The Ten Commandments?) Many will perish, but there will still be a chance to repent and follow the gospel of the Kingdom.
But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues [still alive!], did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk. And they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts. (Rev. 9:20-21)
>>> But if they do repent & obey the gospel of the kingdom, they will be saved! <<<
I believe the trumpet judgments occur during the first half of Daniel's 70th week.
Also happening at this time: the two witnesses, the continuing rise of the "man of sin" (the anti-christ) and the sealing of the 144k
Each plague is unique and the fifth trumpet provides a valuable insight about how God works with His people during this time: [The locusts] were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. (Rev. 9:4) The ones with the seal of God on their foreheads (Rev. 7:3) are the 144k from the twelve tribes of Israel. This is a contrast to the Church Age, where believers are sealed by God and given the Holy Spirit:
Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee. 2 Cor. 1:21-22
In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory. Eph. 1:13-14
And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Eph. 4:30
The trumpets are not for the Church. Instead, they are a last-days warning call to repentance for those who missed their chance the first time to be delivered from death and receive eternal life.
The bowl judgments contain "...the seven last plagues, for in them the wrath of God is complete." (Rev. 15:1)
While the trumpets exist to sound the alarm and wake people up to the truth of what's to come, the bowls of wrath are literally a pouring-out of God's fury. This starts around the mid-point of Daniel's 70th week and becomes what Jesus described as a time of great tribulation.
Also at this time: the abomination of desolation and the rise of the "son of perdition" which is when satan indwells the man who acted as the antichrist and is "given authority to continue for forty-two months" (Rev. 13:5)
As brutal as these days will be, Scripture again suggests that there will remain a chance to repent and be saved. Revelation 16:11 says, They blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and did not repent of their deeds. But if they do repent and obey the gospel, enduring until the end, they will be saved. As I shared above, they will most likely lose their earthly life, but they will have gained their souls. (See Mark 8:34-38)
The bowls of wrath complete the seven-year time of Jacob's trouble and lead up to Armageddon & the second coming of Jesus the Messiah.
As I look at the prophetic timeline of the last days, I believe that right now we are in the seals. Here is why.
The revelation that Jesus gave to the Apostle John shows us that after Jesus ascended to His Father (Acts 1:9-11), He took the scroll (Rev. 5:5-7) and began opening the seals (Rev. 6:1). The scroll contains judgments, but the seals are simply holding the scroll closed. Each time a seal is opened (seals 1-4), John is told, "Come and see." In seals 5-7 looks & observes. This is different than the judgments where angels are actively blowing trumpets or pouring out bowls of wrath.
There is a fascinating parallel to the first five seals and Jesus' conversation with his disciples about the end. Grab your bible and take a look:
“But the end is not yet...”
1st seal: The royal conqueror; Rev. 6:1-2
- Jesus: “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.” Matt. 24:4-5
2nd seal: Great conflict on earth; Rev. 6:3-4
- Jesus: “And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.” Matt. 24:6
“The beginning of sorrows...”
3rd seal: Scarcity & economic distress; Rev. 6:5-6
- Jesus: For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Matt. 24:7-8
4th seal: Widespread death; Rev. 6:7-8
- Jesus: ...And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. Matt. 24:7
5th seal: Cry of the martyrs: Rev. 6:9-11
- Jesus: Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name's sake. Matt. 24:9
Note: this is where I believe we are right now.
>>> Here is the shift in dispensations. Stay with me! <<<
“And then the end will come...”
6th seal: The shaking of heaven & earth; Rev. 6:12-17
I looked when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood. And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind. Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place. And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, and said to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?” Rev. 6:12-17
- Jesus: AND THEN many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. Matt. 24:10-14
6th seal, continued
Here is where it gets even more interesting. Before continuing with opening the 7th and last seal, two new events take place. John says, "After these things..." which confirms a sequence of events:
- First, the 144k of the twelve tribes of Israel are sealed with the seal of God on their foreheads. (Rev. 7:1-8) Consider Micah 5:3.
- Second, a new dynamic is introduced: a great and innumerable multitude clothed in white robes standing before the Lamb (Jesus).
After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Rev. 7:9-10)
Shortly after, a heavenly elder tells John,
“These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them. They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any heat; for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” (Rev. 7:14-17)
When he says, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb,” He is talking about true believers from the dispensation of the Gospel of Grace, who are cleansed from their sins by the blood of Jesus. Remember that after this dispensation, salvation works a little differently. The multitude in this passage is the faithful Church who is caught up to God and his throne before, or as, Daniel's 70th week begins.
Here we also see the words, "...who come out of the great tribulation." We know that Jesus describes the latter part of this time as being great tribulation, and this passage is one reason why I formerly believed in a mid-trib or post-trib rapture. However, if we go back a few chapters, we see something so beautiful that Jesus said about his faithful Church:
...‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens”: “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name. Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie—indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. (Rev. 3:7-12)
I believe the 6th seal describes a catastrophic cosmic & earthly event that also brings the age of grace to a close and ushers in the time of Jacob's Trouble. At this time, Jesus, as promised in John 14, 1 Cor. 15:50-52, and 1 Thess. 4:17 receives his Church in the air and takes us to always be with him.
This also offers a startling expansion of the conversation between Jesus and his disciples in Matthew 24. As we saw above, after he tells them that some will be martyred for his name's sake (Matt. 24:9), the next thing to expect is:
AND THEN many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. Matt. 24:10-14
Why "and then...offended?"
I believe that when the Church is caught up to God, many who thought they were the church will be left behind. I cringe using that phrase because of its pop-culture evangelical nuance, but I truly and sadly believe that many in this age will find themselves vomited out of his mouth because they are neither hot or cold—
“I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—”(Rev. 3:15-17)
These are the lukewarm Christian-in-name-only folks who may have a form of godliness, but deny its power (2 Tim. 3:1-7). They will see what happened and will be offended that they were not included in the rapture. But for those who are here now, there is hope! Jesus, the Way, Truth & Life goes on to say,
I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. (Rev. 3:18-21)
Then...deception and lawlessness.
Continuing Jesus' discourse, he says that after many are offended, will betray one another & hate one another, then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many, and lawlessness will abound.
Why (then) will lawlessness abound? Why (then) will false prophets arise and deceive many?
There must be a cataclysmic shift. Something huge has to happen here. Offenses, betrayals, false prophets, lawlessness, and hatred of others have occurred since the fall of man. What is different now, at this point? The answer is found in 2 Thessalonians 2.
And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thess. 2:6-12)
Right now Jesus, the light of the world, indwells believers. Light keeps the darkness away. With the Church out of the earth, the light of the world will go out. The Holy Spirit will still be in the world, but I believe He will operate as He did in the Old Testament, Law & Prophet days. Once the restrainer is gone, and the influence of the Holy Spirit is removed, indeed: lawlessness and deception will abound.
After this, Jesus goes on to say: But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. (Matt. 24:13-14)
This clearly announces a gospel that is different than our current gospel of grace: the last days gospel of the kingdom.
And because there cannot be two gospels at one time, the gospel of the kingdom can only be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations once the Church is no longer present on the earth. My theory is that once the restrainer is removed during the harpazo and the lawless one is revealed per 2 Thess. 2, this marks the beginning of the end.
The 7th seal
The seventh seal is a mysterious seal. It seems to indicate a transition and in my reading of Matthew 24, I don't find an adequate parallel, except maybe with the earthquake:
When He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and to them were given seven trumpets. Then another angel, having a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all the saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended before God from the angel’s hand. Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and threw it to the earth. And there were noises, thunderings, lightnings, and an earthquake. So the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound. Rev. 8:1-6
In the future I may share my ideas about the 7th seal. I've been talking about it with a friend and there are some truly touching possibilities here.
Once the fire is thrown to earth, the seven angels prepare to sound the trumpets for the judgments. And this is when I believe Daniel's 70th week begins.
Room for a bit of overlap
I want to mention that it's possible that the harpazo could begin in the 5th seal. Consider the following:
When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held. And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” Then a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed. (Rev. 6:9-11)
I am interested in the point about a white robe. White robes are given to bodies. In the following seal we see the multitude wearing their white robes already in heaven. We know from Paul that the dead in Christ rise first, and we who are alive & remain meet them and Jesus in the air. It could be that the souls under the altar are joined with their bodies here in the fifth seal, which could indicate a rapture.
At the same time, it could be that these are not the dead in Christ. Their desire for being avenged does not represent the spirit of forgiveness & love that believers are encouraged to have. They could be Old Testament saints.
In closing, I believe that we are currently experiencing the 5th seal. Believers are being martyred like never before across the globe. I believe the body of Christ will be removed from the earth at or after the 6th seal, which could easily happen within the next month or two. And with the trumpet judgments, the 7-year time of Jacob's Trouble will begin.
Here is a brief overview of how I see events unfold:
- Pre-trib: first 5 seals
- Pre-trib/beginning trib: harpazo (the catching away of the Church at the last trump, the trumpet of God & the Lord gathers his people), 6th & 7th seals, the sealing of the 144k, the revealing of the lawless one (the man of sin in 2 Thess. 2:3)
- First half: seven trumpet judgments, 2 witnesses, antichrist in power
- Mid-point: the abomination of desolation
- Last half: seven bowl judgments, Jews fleeing (Matt. 24:15-22), satan indwells antichrist (the son of perdition in 2 Thess. 2:3-4), mark of the beast
- Very end: 2nd Coming & angels gather the tares first (Matt. 13:30, Matt. 24:29-31), Armageddon
- Millenial kingdom / new heavens & new earth