The Doctrines Of The Coming Of Christ And The Great Tribulation

Extracted from The Great Tribulation Part V, by Dr. Stanford E. Murrell*

1. Doctrine Of The Coming Of Christ

1. Jesus said that there would be some standing before Him who would not taste of death until they saw the Son of Man coming in His kingdom. (Matt 16:28; Luke 21:27)

2. On the Mount of Olives the disciples asked the Lord for the sign of His coming. (Matt 24:3)

3. Jesus likened His coming (parousia, advent, physical aspect or presence) to the lightning which cometh out of the east and shineth unto the east. (Matt 24:27)

4. Jesus said there would be days of tribulation in which the sun would be darkened and the moon would not give her light and the powers of the heavens would be shaken and people would see the Son of Man coming (kataggeleus, a proclaimer, setter forth) in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (Matt 24:30; Mark 13:26; Luke 21:26, 27)

5. The coming of the Son of Man would be like the days of Noah. (Matt 24:37, 39; Mark 13:36)

6. Only evil servants would say, My lord delayeth his coming. (Matt 24:37,39; Mark 13:36)

7. Faithful servants are rewarded when the Lord cometh. (Matt 24:26)

8. In a parable Jesus told what He would expect at His coming. (Matt 26:64; Mark 14:62)

9. Jesus told the high priest that he would see the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of power and coming in the clouds of heaven. (Matt 26:64; Mark 14:62)

10. Peter referred to the coming of the Just One (Acts 7:52), associating the prophetic reference to the First Advent.

11. Paul speaks of the saints waiting for the coming (apokalupsis, revelation, manifestation) of the Lord. (1 Cor 1: 7)

12. At the coming, parousia of Christ there will be the resurrection from the dead. (1 Cor 15:23)

13. Paul wanted others to be present at the coming of Christ so he could rejoice. (1 Thess 2:19)

14. When Christ comes the saints will be sanctified. (1 Thess 3:13)

15. At the coming of Christ there will be a generation of saints who will meet Him in the air. (1 Thess 4:15)

16. Sanctification must characterize the life of every Christian until the coming of Christ. (1 Thess 5:23)

17. The hope of the coming of Christ becomes a motivating force for faithful service. (2 Thess 2: 1)

18. At the coming of Christ the Wicked One will be destroyed. (2 Thess 2:8)

19. Christians are to be patient in the hardships of life until the coming of the Lord. (Jas 5:7)

20. The coming, parousia is near. (Jas 5:8)

21. Skeptics mock that Jesus is coming again. (2 Pet 3:4)

22. When Jesus comes the heavens shall be set on fire and dissolved and the elements shall melt. (2 Pet 3:12)

23. The Christian is to live in such a manner as not to be ashamed before Christ as His coming. (1 John 2:28)
Of the sixty six times that the word coming is used in the New Testament, fourteen times the word is directly associated without question to the Second Advent of Christ (Heb 9:28 cp. 1 Cor 1:7; 15:23; 1 Thess 2:19; 3:13; 4:15; 5:23; 2 Thess 2:1; 2:8; Jas 5:7;
5:8; 2 Pet 1:16; 3:4; 3:12; 1 John 2:28).

24. In four other passages there is a parabolic application. (Matt 24:48; 25:27; Luke 12:45; 19:23)

25. The passages in Matthew (16:28; 24:27; 24:30; 24:37, 38, 39; 25:27) Mark (13:26, 36; 14:62), and Luke (21:27) may better refer to the coming of Christ in special judgment upon national Israel in AD 70.

26. In the Old Testament the word coming is used 33 times.

27. Only in Malachi 3:2 and 4:5 is the word coming associated with the Messiah.

28. Malachi 3:2, which speaks of the Lord coming suddenly to His Temple, is fulfilled in Matthew 3:1, 3. (Rev 6:17 cp. Heb 12:29)
Malachi 4:5 refers to the prophet Elijah coming before the great and dreadful day of the Lord. This coming is associated with the First Advent. Matthew 11:14 plainly teaches the fulfillment of this prophetic utterance in the life of John the Baptist.

What About Escaping Tribulation?

Since so much has been made within the Christian community about the possibility of God's people escaping some future great tribulation period by removal, it would be good to remember that God has never promised that the Church as a whole would ever be excluded from the trails of life. Consider the Doctrine of Tribulation under several points.

2. Doctrine Of Tribulation

1. The word tribulation is found 22 times in the Authorized Version. The word tribulations is found 4 times.

2. To suffer tribulation (Greek, thlipsis) is to suffer affliction, to be troubled, to suffer due to the pressure of circumstances, or the antagonism of persons.

3. In examining the passages that speak of tribulation it becomes evident that all God's people in all ages have known emotional, spiritual, and physical affliction. (Deut 4:30; Judges 10:14; 1 Sam 26:24; 1 Sam 10:19; Matt 13:21)

4. Tribulation also comes to those who are not God's people in the form of Divine discipline. (Matt 24:21, 29; Mark 13:24; 2 Thess 1:6; Rom 2:9, 22)

5. Of particular concern is the Christian and tribulation. The Bible clearly makes the following statements:

  A. The Disciples of Christ, for as long as they are in the world shall have tribulation. (John 16:33)

  B. Only through much tribulation will the saints enter into the kingdom. (Acts 14:22)

  C. The value of tribulation is that it works patience. (Rom 5:3; 12:12)

  D. To endure tribulation is not to be loved less by Christ (Rom 8:35) for nothing shall separate us from His faithful love.

  E. God finds a special way to comfort the saints who suffer. (2 Cor 1:4)

  F. Paul could find reasons to rejoice in the very midst of tribulation (2 Cor 7:4; Rom 5:3; 2 Thess 1:4) and therefore did not want anyone else to worry on his behalf. (Eph 3:13)

  G. When believers at Thessalonica were surprised at the suffering they had to endure, Paul reminded them he had taught that Christians must suffer. (1 Thess 3:4)

  H. John on the isle of Patmos does not divorce himself from tribulation nor does he ever say of himself that he represent those who shall not suffer tribulation. On the contrary, John considers himself at the moment of his writing to be a companion in suffering. (Rev 1:9)

  I. The tribulation of the saints is well known to the Lord (Rev 2:9, 10) and is for a stated purpose.

  J. Always, God's people emerge victorious out of tribulation no matter how great. (Rev 7:14)

6. In all the Biblical passages there is not a single word that God will spare His people from the purifying effects of tribulation. Just the opposite is stated and demonstrated time and again.

7. The story of the Old Testament, the writing of the New Testament, the documentation of 2,000 years of history testify to the blood of the saints in the Church.

8.  Any teaching which seeks to exempt God's people from tribulation during any period of human history will not find support from the 26 passages which uses this word.

Dr. Murrells materials on this website used with his kind permission.