Not long ago the news media reported on a meeting of scientists who discussed the weather, the seas, and perhaps earthquakes. They predicted worse weather ahead than we have had in the last few years, including more hurricanes, more tornados, and more tsunamis.
Interestingly, the Bible predicts some of the same things in the future, including the earth convulsing with unprecedented earthquakes, unbelievably large hail, and other mammoth disturbances.
The period in which these things will happen is called the Tribulation and will follow the Rapture. The Tribulation will be the most intense seven years in all of history. The Bible is very precise about that period. It divides the Tribulation into two equal lengths — one part immediately following the other — and each half having exactly 1,260 days (Jewish calendar, 3 1/2 years, Revelation 12:6).
Horrendous upheavals will come during the Tribulation, and at the end there will be hailstones weighing 100 pounds(!) (Revelation 16:21); an earthquake so severe that islands disappear and mountains are shaken down (Revelation 16:20), along with “flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder” (v. 18).
During the horrid Tribulation, the Antichrist, a ruthless world dictator, will rule the world and millions will die (see Revelation 6:7; 9:15). Human nature says, “Such unspeakable things can’t happen to me.” But it can! And it will.
Any day God’s judgment can come, and He will declare, “That’s enough! It is over.” Then His wrath will fall upon all who have rejected His Son.
“Oh,” but you say, “Surely not! God is loving and gentle! He wouldn’t do that!”
What about Noah’s day? What about Sodom and Gomorrah? Remember, Jehovah is a just God as surely as He is merciful and loving. The apostle Paul warned, “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days” (2 Timothy 3:1).
What depressing news, you say. The gospel is supposed to be good news! We all like good news; we all prefer upbeat talk and writing, but there isn’t much of that in the Tribulation. Jesus said, “For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now — and never to be equaled again. If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive” (Matthew 24:21, 22).
J. Dwight Pentecost, anticipating the imminent Tribulation, wrote: “It seems as though God has prepared this world for judgment. In spite of the generations of preaching and teaching and warning, men have rejected the message of the Word of God, and it appears that God is bringing them now to the time of judgment.
“The only thing that prevents the beginning of that judgment is the presence of the believers here on earth now. The time could shortly come when the stage master will push the button and the curtain will go up, and those judgments will begin.”
Christ will come back to earth (the Second Coming, Revelation 19:11-16), and end the battle of Armageddon. When He comes, He will find the earth wet with tears and soaked with blood, but He will immediately bring wonderful, worldwide peace. For a thousand years (the Millennium) Christ will rule the world from Jerusalem in blessed peace and tranquility.