The Revelation of Jesus to John the Apostle is such a complex book, made more complex by the fact that the majority of it was revealed to John while he was in the Spirit. What he saw and recorded was in the Spiritual Realm. Here is the problem. In the Spiritual Realm there is no time. Time is a physical element that we in the Physical Realm have to deal with.
We are currently seeing many of the factors described by the Lord Jesus in Matthew chapter 24, Mark chapter 13 and Luke chapter 21; wars, earthquakes, pestilence, et cetera. I just read a book that proposed that we are now in the times of the “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse,” the first four seals of the Revelation chapter 6.
This book carefully showed the possibility that, just as when Jesus was resurrected, when the Church is resurrected there will be an earthquake, but even greater. The author believes the great earthquake of Revelation 6:12 is that earthquake. I am not yet convinced of that conclusion as there are many earthquakes described in the Revelation.
But, this caused me to study chapter 6 and Matthew chapter 24 closer. What I found is that the Lord Jesus laid out the sequence of the first four seals in exact order in Matthew 24:4-8. Then He said that this would be the “beginning of sorrows.” The Greek word translated as “sorrows” (Strong’s G5604) means the pain of childbirth. It is very possible that what we are witnessing now in early 2020 are those beginnings, signaling the soon coming “birth” of the Tribulation.
Jesus then described persecution which is much like what so many of our Brothers and Sisters are seeing now in many parts of the world. He then stated that this Gospel would be preached to the entire world, and then the end would come. Please note that Jesus did not say that the entire world would believe.
Jesus then warned in Matthew 24:15-20 that when those in Israel see the Abomination of Desolation, they should flee. In this statement, Jesus was also confirming the validity of the Prophet Daniel. Additionally, the Apostle Paul told us that the “man of sin” would sit in the Temple claiming to be God. (Second Thessalonians 2:4) This is the Abomination of Desolation. Revelation 13:5 prophesies that power will be given to this person for forty-two months, or three and one-half years. Most prophecy students believe that three and one-half year period of the Tribulation will be the very worst that mankind has ever witnessed on earth, and is distinguished in the Bible as the Great Tribulation (Matthew 24:21, Revelation 7:14).
Because I take the Lord at His word, I believe that the Church will not go through the Lord’s great wrath. I believe the “snatching up” of the Church is pictured by the immediate transporting of John into Heaven in Revelation 4:1-2. Right now, it appears that we are seeing the beginning of sorrows. If that is correct, the Day is near. Pray and witness, the time is short. Praise the Lord for His wonderful grace to those who believe in Him!