A Study in 1 Thessalonians Chapter 5
As we continue
our study, we will look into the subject of persecution and how it relates
to the Church.
In the book of John, Jesus said:
In essence, we know that Jesus was persecuted and rejected all the way to the cross. He said "If they persecute Me, they will persecute you." This happened to Jesus and is still happening to His church. In the early days, persecution was a way of life for His apostles and His church. Most of the apostles were put to death by cruel and violent means. Jesus also said "No servant is greater than his master." He never said He suffered and died so we won't have to. In America, that's what many TV "faith teachers" have been saying. Many believers equate hard times with "lack of faith," or "lack of obedience." Things like this are so easy to say when they don't realize in other countries persecution is the norm. And they don't study the bible to see what the scriptures mean. Jesus was persecuted. He died a death He didn't deserve. Was this because of His lack of faith or disobedience? No, He was perfect and He was obedient to His Father even unto death on the cross! Remember, no servant is above His master! Should we expect anything else?
If there is persecution now, what's in store for us during the tribulation. John wrote in Revelation concerning the beast:
writes the beast was given to him to make war with the saints (as the
beast has rule for three and one half years). And he will overcome them by
persecution. As we look for a moment
on the tribulation, The Greek word for tribulation is "thlipsis"
or thilibu," which means "pressure" or "affliction."
In The King James Bible, the word "distress" is used for the Great
Tribulation in Luke 21:27. The Greek word for distress is "thilipsis."
The tribulation is a period of affliction, pressure and distress upon the earth. If
there has been persecution on Christians throughout history, then why should
we expect anything different during the tribulation? Many professors of
pre-trib agree about persecution, but they insist it won't happen to the church
during the tribulation because we are not "destined for wrath" and we'll be gone.
Can they come to this conclusion if they thoroughly examined
scripture just to see if it was so? Paul said in his second
letter to the Thessalonian Church:
Their perseverance and faith endures in all the persecutions and trials. And this was something for God's churches were boasting about it. As a result of their afflictions, they will be counted worthy for the kingdom, which they are suffering for. And God is just and he will repay those who persecuted the church with affliction and give relief to the church along with the other churches when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. So we can conclude that the church is relieved of their persecution at the same time God will repay their afflicters, after the tribulation.
Articles in this study