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Revelation 3:10


10 Because [hoti] thou hast kept [tereo] the word [logos] of my [mou] patience, [hupomone] I also [kago] will keep [tereo] thee [se] from [ek] the hour [hora] of temptation, [peirasmos] which [ho] shall come [mello] [erchomai] upon [epi] all [holos] the world, [oikoumene] to try [peirazo] them that dwell [katoikeo] upon [epi] the earth. [ge]    KJV-Interlinear

10 'Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell upon the earth.    NASB

Here we have the promise of Christ, to keep the Church from the severe testings of the Tribulation.

There are three basic views regarding the timing of the Rapture.The first view is that it will occur prior to the Tribulation, the second view is that it will occur at the mid-point of the Tribulation, and the third view is that it will occur at the end of the Tribulation.

The argument for the first view is the more supported in scripture, while the second view has very little support and is more of an arbitrary view, while the third view disregards this promise of God as well as being inconsistent with other predicted events.

But first things first.

The word for kept or keep, ‘tereo,’ is used twice in this passage.This means to keep permanently.

In the first instance it refers to the one spiritual thing that is permanent in every believers life, which is salvation.

All believers are saved when they believe in Christ, however their spiritual growth is dependent on their positive volition toward Bible doctrine.  And though many will advance in their spiritual lives, most will not because of their disinterest, indifference, and so forth.

These flaws and failures of believers, we have been studying in these last several letters to the churches, which address all believers in our current dispensation.Showing the many failures and flaws that Christians have within their spiritual lives, thus the challenge to ‘overcome’ and succeed in ones spiritual life, rather than fail.

Salvation is never lost to any believer in Christ, never for any reason. It is permanent.  And keeping it is not a choice, but the result of the decision to believe in Christ.

Therefore, because believers possess something that is permanent, namely salvation, then God will keep (permanently) them from the hour of testing which is to come.The testing is future from the Church (collectively for all of the Church).

Since these letters are addressed to the churches, plural, which we have studied in every letter, and since this entire book is prefaced on the end times, then the entire Church, or group of believers in our dispensation is being addressed. 

Yet to come, is a reference to something in the future relative to the Church, therefore the Church of believers, in our dispensation, must be fully selected and assembled, and known historically before the time of ‘testing’ can come into existence.  It is future relative to the entire church.

Keep from, ‘tereo ek,’ means permanently out from.  The meaning of ‘ek’ is the key as to when and how the Church Age (our dispensation) believers will fit in, to the plan for the Tribulation.

The word for from, ‘ek,’ means out from, exclusive from, away from, not a part of.  It does not mean to coexist simultaneously with, but means to be completely excluded from.  And what is the Church being kept from?  The hour of testing.It will not participate whatsoever in the test, which we will get to in a moment.

If the Church was going to be a part of the testing period, then ‘en’ and ‘dia’ would have been used to convey the idea that the church would be ‘preserved in the midst of’ the test.  But that phrase is not used.

The phrase ‘tereo en’ is used three times in the New Testament and in all three it means to carry through, or to coexist with, Acts 12:5; 1 Peter 1:4; Jude 21.

Whereas, ‘tereo ek,’ which we have here, means the opposite, or to be excluded from.It is used in several passages to convey the meaning of being ‘kept completely out of,’ John 17:15, Col 1:13, Acts 26:18, 1 John 5:19, and John uses the same phrase here.

The Church has received a promise from Christ, to be kept out of the terrible time of testing which is to come.  That time of testing cannot occur, until the entire Church is formed, and then removed, such that they will not be a part of that future time.

And there is another concept that needs to be considered.And that is, if the Church is to be kept from the Tribulation, then they could not be a part of the Tribulation, simply because the Tribulation will see many people believing in Christ, and martyred for their belief.That is not being preserved from harm, Rev. 6:9-11; 7:9-14.

Next, the passages that speak of the Rapture, do not speak of judgment, John 14:1-4; 1 Cor 15:51-54; 1 Thess 4:13-17.

Third, the Rapture and the Second Advent are two very separate and distinct events.They cannot happen simultaneously at the end of the Tribulation. 

Fourth, the Church will return with Christ at the Second Advent, therefore, they must already be with Him in heaven, in order to be able to return with Him.These last two items are detailed out in our study of Dispensations.  You can find that study in the Special Studies Library on the web site.

The ‘test,’ speaks of a very dramatic test at some point in the future. It will be worldwide, ‘it shall come upon all of the world.’It is future from the Church Age, and there is but one period remaining in history of which the Bible speaks as a time of testing, it is for a definite and specific period of time, ‘the hour,’ (it is not ongoing), it will show what the real nature of people really is, ‘try them that dwell upon the world,’ this last phrase is used in all of the Tribulation prophecies, Dan 9:25-27, Jer 30:7, Rev. 6:10; 8:13; 11:10; 13:8, 12, 14; 14:6; 17:2, 8.

The hour of testing is the Tribulation, it is brief when compared with history, and is referred to in Daniel’s ‘seventieth week’ prophecy and in Jeremiah’s ‘time of Jacobs trouble’ prophecy.

Unbelievers who live in the Tribulation will either pass the test by repenting, Rev 6:9-11; 7:9-10,14; 14:4; 17:14, or fail it by refusing to repent and are damned, Rev 6:15-17; 9:20; 16:11; 19:17-18.

The ‘test’ is the entire period of hardships that will occur in the seven year period of the Tribulation.

The discipline which is referred to in the other letters to the other churches, is contemporary with their existence, but this is more than a disciplinary measure, it is a judgment.  And the promise here is not only future but that the church will be spared from it.


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Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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