“A whistling woman and a crowing hen are an abomination to the Lord” is not in the Bible and neither is an alleged 7-year tribulation period just prior to our Lord’s return.
The recent ‘Abraham’ peace accord of August 13 (still to be signed in September) between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has sparked 2nd coming hype/hysteria in certain Evangelical quarters along with the view that this accord is the treaty to be confirmed (and broken midway) between antichrist and Israel.
There are two overlooked problems in the hype view. 1) The rarity of the word ‘antichrist’ in Scripture and 2) ignorance about the use of ‘[great] tribulation’ in Scripture.
The word ‘tribulation’ [at times ‘affliction’] appears in the King James Version some 25 times, mostly in the New Testament. The word is used to describe,
1) the sufferings of Christians during this age
Acts 14:22; Rom. 5:3; 8:35; 12:12; 2 Cor. 1:4; 2:4; Eph. 3:13; 1 Thess. 3:3-4;
2 Thess. 1:4; Mt. 13:21; 24:21, 29; Mk. 13:19: Jn. 16:33; Rev. 1:9; 2:9-10; 7:9,14
2) the sufferings inflicted upon the sinful and those who reject Christ
Rom. 2:9; 2 Thess. 1:6; Rev. 2:22
3) the sufferings predicted for the Jews at different times in their history
Mt. 24:21, 29; Mk. 13:19; 1 Sam. 10:19; Deut. 4:30; Judges 10:14
There are very few passages that specifically use the expression ‘great tribulation’ and not one supports a notion of an end-time 7 years of tribulation.
The great tribulation of the Olivet Discourse [Mt. 24: Mk. 13: Lk. 21] does not and could not refer to the end-time but relates to the past destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple in AD 70. The warning “when you see, flee…for then…” (Mt. 24: 15, 16, 21) and the woes re pregnant women and suckling mothers (v. 19) make sense only in light of impending tribulation and the need to protect life! If this is a 2nd coming text, why the command to flee and directed to those in Judaea? What should those in Jamaica do?
We find mention of antichrist(s) only in the epistles of John, (1 Jn. 2:18;2:22;4:3; 2 Jn. 7) and the author says antichrists were around in his day in the 1st century! The “man of lawlessness” in 2 Thessalonians may also be another name for antichrist.
The single passage appealed to re antichrist and a 7-year treaty is the terribly handled Daniel 9.26-27 which it is alleged deals with a 7-year treaty or covenant by the Antichrist with Israel. The Antichrist will allegedly break the treaty after 3 ½ years.
The word antichrist is not even in the text, neither in the original nor in any English translation!
A bit of history should help concerning the nature of the tribulation of the period up to AD 70.
Procurator Gessius Florus and his molestation of the Jews led to a revolt in AD 66. Cestius Gallus was called in to quell the revolt and he raced in with troops from Syria, “deliberately burning and pillaging as he went”, and speedily set siege to Jerusalem late in October, AD 66. Jesus’ cue to his disciples was ‘when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies then flee’. They could see but could not flee. Then a strange thing happened—the 1st century Jewish historian Josephus says “without any reason in the world” —Cestius Gallus recalled his troops and withdrew from Jerusalem thus allowing the Christians an opportunity to flee to Pella in the mountains of Perea (cf.Mt.24:21-22). Shortly after Gallus left, Vespasian (appointed Governor of Judaea in February 67), followed by his son Titus, took over the siege.
Churches especially within the Evangelical/Pentecostal camps need a serious exposition of Matthew 24. Mark 13 and Luke 21 with historical tidbits from Josephus’ Wars of the Jews.Josephus was a participant in the war between the Jews and the Romans, at first fighting for his people then switching sides when he saw that his people had no chance of success!It is high time to revisit long-held but unbiblical views!