Dan 3:13 — Dan 3:18 (NKJV Strong’s,)
Then Nebuchadnezzar, in rage and fury, gave the command to bring Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. So they brought these men before the king. Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the gold image which I have set up? Now if you are ready at the time you hear the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, and you fall down and worship the image which I have made, good! But if you do not worship, you shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. And who is the god who will deliver you from my hands?”
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”
I quote the above verse because I feel in my spirit that this passage of scripture and Revelation 13 are related. The 3 Hebrew children in the book of Daniel and the Christians mentioned in Revelation 13 face the same dilemma. Failure to worship the image as is stated in Daniel and the image and the beast as spoken in Revelation 13 are punishable by death.
Many have been taught that we will be raptured before the tribulation occurs, however, the book of 1 Thessalonians says differently.
2Th 2:1 — 2Th 2:3 (NKJV Strong’s,)
The Great Apostasy
Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,
The Word states that the rapture will not happen until 2 events occur first.
The first is the great falling away. Again I feel in my spirit that the great falling away of which Paul speaks about and the passage from Matthew 24 as quoted below are related.
Mat 24:6 — Mat 24:13 (NKJV Strong’s,)
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. 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.
“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. 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.
The “many offended” mentioned by the Lord and the great falling away spoken of by Paul are related, I firmly believe.
Those who have been led to believe believe that they will be raptured and spared all that the Lord says will happen will become the “offended” when things don’t go according to what they were taught and fall away.
The next thing is that the antichrist must be revealed. In Revelation 13 those who are not killed are forced to take the mark or face starvation because they will not be able to buy or sell. Food and the other niceties of life are included in this.
John the Baptist is a perfect example of this . Here is a man who saw the Holy Spirit descend like a dove upon Jesus and heard the voice of the Father declaring that Jesus was His Son in Whom He was well pleased. However, when John was sent to prison and facing beheading he sends messengers to Jesus asking if He was the one or should He be looking for another. For reasons known only to Jesus, He chose not to intervene. It is what Jesus says to the crowd after the messengers of John leave that is pertinent to this posting.
Matthew 11:6 (NKJV Strong’s,)
And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”
So here’s my question. If the pretribulation rapture turns out to be a false teaching, but believed many, will you take the attitude of the 3 Hebrew children and say that God is able to deliver us BUT should He choose not to we will not bow down to your image nor take the mark. Or will you be among the many who become offended, loose their faith and fall away and become deceived by the coming false prophets as described by Jesus and ultimately by the false prophet who introduces the antichrist to the world?
This is something to take to the Lord with prayer because your eternal destiny is dependent on your response to what is to come.