What Shall Christians Do During the Great Tribulation?

I have mentioned that there will be a great deception by the Antichrist so he can draw multitudes to believe and worship him. There are rules to follow to avoid being deceived. Jesus Christ Himself had mentioned these to the apostles.

“Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many
people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

“So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel – let the reader understand – then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak. How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. 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, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect – if that were possible (Matthew 24:9–25).

Tribulations will come for a purpose. Read "Why Should Some Christians Suffer in the Great Tribulation?" The tribulation period is God’s way of bringing weakness to our pride as Paul wrote,

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor 12:9).

It is in the times of weakness and suffering that we remember God. Those who shall endure and keep the faith shall find salvation:

I answered, “Sir, you know.” And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Rev 7:14).

Though your people, O Israel , be like the sand by the sea, only a remnant will return. Destruction has been decreed, overwhelming and righteous. The Lord, the LORD Almighty, will carry out the destruction decreed upon the whole land. Therefore, this is what the Lord, the LORD Almighty, says: “O my people who live in Zion, do not be afraid of the Assyrians, who beat you with a rod and lift up a club against you, as Egypt did. Very soon my anger against you will end and my wrath will be directed to their destruction” (Isa 10:22–24).

You will hear of wars and rumours of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains (Matt 24:6–8).

And in Isaiah 54:8,
“In a surge of anger I hid my face from you for a moment, but with everlasting kindness I will have compassion on you,” says the LORD your Redeemer.

To survive the Great Tribulation in spiritual sense, we need to strictly observe three rules.

First Rule: Stand firm to the end
Jesus said that he who stands firm to the end will be saved. Why? Many say that once saved, always saved. That is not totally true. Of course God promises everlasting life to those who accept Him as Lord and Saviour. Understand that we are saved by grace through faith (Eph 2:8–9). Both grace and faith should be present to produce salvation so if one of these is missing or lost then there is no salvation that can happen. Now, is it possible to lose faith? Jesus said plainly, “At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other.” Also take note in Heb 11:6 it says,

"And without faith it is impossible to please God..."

True Christians in the last days shall endure until the end just like what Stephen did. God will not stop persecution but will reward us if we persevere.

Satan knows he cannot take away your salvation but he knows for sure that it is possible to take away your faith from God. That is why his aim for every Christian is to take away that faith so in turn, you lose salvation. In doing so, his only tool is to deceive many by his display of awesome miracles and wonders that I have already discussed previously. Read "The Antichrist" to find out his power over men. That is why Jesus again stressed,

“At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect – if that were possible.”

Jesus Christ was emphasizing in simple words, God's grace is enduring but our faith may be not. Some Christians will say salvation cannot be taken away anymore even if we sin and we were already sealed with the Holy Spirit for His possession (Eph 1:13–14). It is also true that Jesus Christ is the author and perfecter of our faith (Heb 12:2) but nothing from God can be forcibly imposed on us if we reject Him even after salvation has occurred. Our destiny is always and still by our own free will or choice. That was how He created the first man Adam, and that is still the same for all of us. Adam chose his destiny and he fell. Of course He has sealed us with the Holy Spirit but if we are deceived and received also the seal of the Antichrist, the Holy Spirit will surely leave us. He can perfect our faith only if we allow Him to work in us. Read:

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot . I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm — neither hot nor cold — I am about to spit you out of my mouth (Rev 3:15-16).

The passage suggests that a person was already accepted or saved but since he did not hold on to the faith, he was about to be rejected. A book can be written about security of salvation but Jesus had said and warned us that many will turn away from faith in the last days. We need to endure unto the end and preserve our faith. Jesus provided us a perfect example in Stephen. He endured unto the end and before he died he forgave his persecutors.

While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep (Acts 7:59-60).

Remember, our faith is wavering and need to hold on to it as Paul warned with a big "if" in 1 Col 22-23 in regards to our salvation.

But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— if you continue in your faith, established and firm, and do not move from the hope held out in the gospel.

In the Great Tribulations only the Christians with unwavering faith to the end shall be saved.

Second Rule: Do not look back
Again, Jesus warned, “then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak.”

Lot's wife looked back at burning Sodom and turned into a pillar of salt (Genesis 19:26).

This reminds us of Lot’s wife who looked back to the burning Sodom and she turned into a pillar of salt (Gen 19:26). Do not hold anything more valuable than God during those times of distress. Do not worry about how you will survive – about money, food, shelter or clothing. Salvation from God in those times will be a matter of a careless decision that we will make. Once the Antichrist appears and started to rule the world, do not look back to take away your life’s earthly possessions. We must flee from the society and go to the mountains. You will not survive anyway to mix yourself with the society since if you are a Christian, you cannot buy or sell. Do not hold your life too precious during that time. We should welcome death at any moment. If death is our end, so be it. Be aware that when Jesus Christ comes, billions of people have already been killed by the Antichrist. Invest with your life and gain eternity. We will be rewarded for fighting for our faith and enduring unto the end.

Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it (Matthew 10:39).

Also in Luke 12:4-6-

"I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him [God] who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him."

Third Rule: Always pray and wait upon the Lord patiently
Now, if you are among those who will be blessed to escape to the mountains or is able to survive mingling with the unbelievers in society, there is one thing to remember still – wait patiently. For sure, as it is already written, there will be no sign of rescue from God except the promise that He will help us defend ourselves during trials and questioning from the enemy (Luke 21:13–15). There will be lots of frustrations among Christians during that time. Many will lose patience, and well, even faith ultimately. Those days will be the longest days of seemingly endless troubles but the prophecies shall be fulfilled that all believers will be subjected to all kinds of unimaginable persecutions. Satan will test and exploit our every weakness to the limit. Isaiah wrote a prophecy to encourage us in those times of hopelessness.

The last days survivors of the Great Tribulation are compared to the eagle. After they have become weak from hardships and persecutions, they will be made strong to prepare them for their long walk to the Promised Land we call the Great Exodus.

Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint (Isaiah 40:30–31).

When the Lord returns in the last day, He will gather His elect from all corners of the globe. Christians who are still alive by then, regardless of their physical condition will be miraculously healed and regain strength and will never get tired anymore. The reason is they will be walking into the way to Jerusalem in a Great Exodus which will be discussed in the next topic. Now, you are finally rescued safe from the reach of the Antichrist. The long wait will be greatly rewarded and salvation is secured forever for we can now see God face to face and there will be lots of joy and tears. Please remember that the bottom line is to be alert and pray always. Pray that He will rescue you from all evils during those days.

"Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man” (Luke 21:36).

At this point, many will ask: How about the rapture? Should not all believers safe by then, taken to heaven out of the reach of the antichrist through the last days rapture? You will be surprised about the biblical truth on the rapture. Read "Is The Traditional Rapture Doctrine Biblical?".

Next, we will study the last days version of the Great Exodus when all Christians will be rescued from their tribulation and from the rule of the Antichrist, the last days Pharaoh.

In order for you to get saved and become a Christian please follow these simple steps.