Tribtroopers to the end!

The term “Tribtrooper” (Tribulation Trooper) was a phrase used by a dear sister in the Lord Jesus some years ago now who used to write posts related to the end-times as I also did at that time in an online Messianic Jewish website and we still occasionally correspond today even though we live in different countries. The name under which she wrote was “Tribtrooper.” I really liked the term “Tribtrooper” and, like myself, this sister in the Lord also believes that faithful New Covenant believers will go into and the time of Great Tribulation but be saved out of it at the end, hence she used the term “Tribtrooper” she had seen on a car bumper sticker.

As I understand the term it relates to faithful believers as God’s troopers engaged in a war, not a physical war, but one being waged against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil dwelling and operating in the unseen spiritual realm just above the surface of the earth (Ephesians 6:12). Right through the Bible we see this war being waged in the unseen spiritual realm. In the Old Covenant (Testament), when we see God’s people fighting a physical battle or experiencing resistance, we also know that a battle was going on at the same time in that unseen spiritual realm (Daniel 10:12-14).

We are also told in the Bible that there will be a time of Great Tribulation during which the saints of God or His elect will suffer persecution at the hands of the beast empire of the Antichrist also known in scripture as the man of sin. Before we look at several passages of scripture related to this coming persecution of the saints we need to firstly establish some Biblical facts related to it.

1. Tribulation is not wrath

The term “tribulation” in the New Covenant (Testament) in the Greek text is the word “thlipsis.”  This word describes “a pressing together” or “pressure, oppression, affliction, tribulation, distress,” and to be in “dire straits.” The word “thlipsis” is used in the New Testament to describe the time of Great Tribulation at the end of this present age (Matthew 24:21, 29) (Mark 13:24) (Revelation 17:14). The same word is used to describe the affliction oppression and persecution of faithful New Covenant believers (John 16:33) (Acts 14:19-22). Tribulation has always been a mark of faithful believers in every age. In the New Covenant (Testament) we see believers suffering tribulation and it has continued down through history to the present day and for the last three and a half years of this age the tribulation will intensify in the world, in the faithful Assembly (Church) and in Israel (Daniel 12:1-2).

The time of Great Tribulation (thlipsis) is not the wrath of God as the wrath comes right at the end of it after the rapture and resurrection of faithful New Covenant believers has occurred. We are told by the Lord Jesus that “immediately after the tribulation (thlipsis) of those days” that the rapture and resurrection occur (Matthew 29-31). See also the corresponding parallel passage (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17). The loud trumpet call occurs in both references making it the one and the same event.

Two different Greek words are used for “wrath.” One is “orge” and the other “thumos” In the Book of Revelation, where the word “tribulation” is used, it is the Greek word “thlipsis” and only at the end of the Book when the bowls of God’s wrath are poured out is the word “thumos” used for wrath (Revelation 16:1). The Greek word “orge” is also used to refer to the wrath of God (1 Thessalonians 1:10; 5:9). These two words refer to the same wrath but have a slightly different emphasis. “orge” is a wrath expressed in the context of judicial judgement whereas “thumos” is an anger that boils over and afterwards subsides. Faithful believers will experience tribulation in this present world which will intensify during the Time of the Big Trouble but they will never experience the wrath of God (1 Thessalonians 1:10; 5:9). So you see tribulation is not wrath.

2. The “Saints”

The word for “saints” used in both Covenants (Testaments) describes all true and faithful believers (Daniel 7:21-22, 25-27) and many more references are in the Old Covenant (Testament). In the New Covenant (Testament) we see the word “saints” used in (Revelation 13:7) (Romans 8:27) (1 Corinthians 6:2) and in other passages in the New Covenant (Testament) to describe faithful Jewish believers and faithful Gentile believers spiritually grafted into the Commonwealth of Israel (Romans 11:17-18) (Ephesians 2:11-2). In both Covenants (the Old and the New Testaments) we are told that at the end of this age during the time of Great Tribulation lasting three and a half years in duration, that faithful saints will be persecuted (Daniel 7:21; 12:7b) (Revelation 13:7).

3. The “Elect”

The word “elect” is used in the New Covenant (Testament) to describe faithful New Covenant believers and cannot be restricted to only referring to the Jewish people. Many seek to make the elect being gathered to meet the Lord in the air in Matthew 24 and Mark 13 as only Jews as they teach that the Church has already been removed before the time of Great Tribulation occurs. However, the Lord Jesus was not limiting this gathering of His elect saints only to believing Jews but to all believers both Jews and Gentiles as one new man in the Messiah (Ephesians 2:15). The same word “elect” is used to refer to all believers in the New Covenant (Testament) (Matthew 24:22, 24, 33) (Mark 13:20, 22, 27) (Romans 11:7) (1 Timothy 5:21) (2 Timothy 2:10) (Titus 1:1) (1 Peter 1:1).

In Matthew Chapter 24 “the elect” that are caught up to meet the Lord in the air at His Second Coming to earth refers to all believers and it occurs “immediately after the tribulation (thlipsis) of those days” (Matthew 24:29-31). See also (Mark 13:27). Today in our world we see multitudes of faithful New Covenant believers suffering terrible oppression, affliction, suppression, persecution, tribulation, distress and who are in “dire straits because they remain faithful; to God’s Word and the testimony they have maintained. They are already in tribulation (thlipsis). In fact the faithful Body of the Messiah has been in tribulation since the first century and only at the end of this age for the last three and a half years does the tribulation intensify to the point where, for the sake of God’s suffering elect and for the very survival of the world, God will cut those days short (Matthew 24:21-22).

4. Persecution is preparation

The urgent cry of the souls of the martyrs under the altar to be avenged for their cruel martyrdom are even now calling out to God and are being given white robes and told to wait until the rest of their fellow believers are to be killed as they were (Revelation 6:9-11). This cry is happening in eternity where the past, the present and the future all run together. As faithful New Covenant believers we are strangers and aliens in this world and our purpose on earth is to complete God’s will for our lives and this is related to the salvation of sinners and the sanctifying of the saints as God is preparing us now for service in the Messianic Kingdom to come. We will be rewarded on how faithful we were here in this present age using the time, and the talents God has given us to win the lost and to bring back those who have wandered from the sheepfold. Persecution is part of this preparation. As Paul writes; ” that we must through much tribulation (thlipsis) enter into the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22).

5. Called to Suffer

Added to this we are called to suffer as the Lord Jesus suffered (John 15:18-21). Only the Tribtroopers will be the ones who will pass with flying colours as they withstand the final onslaught of the enemy of our souls by the power of the Messiah’s blood, by the power of His Word and by the power of the Holy Spirit and at the end be raptured and resurrected to inherit the Kingdom of God on earth prepared for them from the foundation of the earth (Revelation 5:10) (Matthew 25:34).

6. The Last Trumpet

When that last trumpet sounds, as born again, blood washed, Spirit-filled New Covenant believers we will all be raised to life, raptured and resurrected and know that the Kingdom of God has come to earth and the reign of the Messiah has commenced. As John writes; “The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Messiah and He will reign forever and ever” (Revelation 11:15). See also corresponding scriptures (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17) (1 Corinthians 15:50-52). The whole idea of a pre-tribulation rapture is just not taught in scripture. Many go for it in the western Churches because they have comfortable lifestyles and the idea of suffering persecution is not on the radar or taught from the pulpits. For the most part the faithful Body of the Messiah is already experiencing tribulation (thlipsis). In the last three and a half years it will be global.

7. Triumph after Tribulation

Right now God is allowing Covid-19 to plague the earth, and nations are in turmoil as the Lord Jesus predicted (Luke 21:25-26, 34-36). Satan is wearing down the saints of the Most High and it will peak in the time of Great Tribulation in the last three and a half years of this present age during the reign of the Antichrist. After this period of Great Tribulation the court of heaven will be convened and the Antichrist and his empire judged and destroyed forever. As it is written in the prophet Daniel; “He (the Antichrist) will speak out against the Most High and oppress (wear down) the saints of the Most High, intending to change the appointed times and laws; and the saints will be given into his hand for a time, and times, and half a time. But the court will convene, and his dominion will be taken away and completely destroyed forever” (Daniel 7:25-26). After this the saints still alive, along with the saints who have already died physically but have been resurrected, will inherit the Kingdom of the Messiah. (Daniel 7:17-27) (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18).

8. “Tribtroopers to the end!”

The time is coming when there will be a faithful, spirit empowered regiment of the Messiah’s Tribtroopers, who, during the Time of Great Tribulation, will be supernaturally empowered by the Spirit of the Messiah, to take up their cross and to follow Him into the jaws of suffering and death, being destined to experience tribulation but at the end to experience a glorious and radiant resurrection to co-reign with Him on earth when He has established His Messianic Kingdom! (Revelation 5:10) (Revelation 20:1-6) (Revelation 2:26-27). So then during the time of the Big Trouble the Messiah will have His Tribtroopers who have endured to the end (Matthew 24:13).

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