Concerning tribulation salvation, can people be saved in the tribulation? Yes.
This question addresses tribulation salvation. There are a number of preachers today preaching that if you don’t get saved before the rapture, then there is no chance for you to get saved in the tribulation. There is good reason for this, though it is not so.
- In 2 Thes. 2:8-12, we find that many will perish “because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie; that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” In the tribulation, people who don’t love the truth end up believing a lie. They believe that salvation is a fantasy or a figment of the imagination. And God is the one that will make them believe this lie (compare Eze. 14:9).
- In the church age, salvation is a free gift which is given to anyone who will receive Jesus Christ by faith, and put their trust in his finished work at Calvary. However, during the tribulation, there is an element of works involved in salvation. Look up Rev. 14:12 and 12:17. Tribulation saints not only have faith in Jesus Christ, but they also “keep the commandments of God.” So, if people won’t accept simple salvation now, why would they accept Jesus when they have to keep the law, as well? That’s not very likely.
- During the tribulation, people must have the mark of the beast in order to buy and sell (Rev. 13:17). Without the mark, they will have no way to buy food. Tribulation saints, therefore, will be starving because they cannot take the mark of the beast (Rev. 7:16). If they take the mark, they will lose their salvation (Rev. 14:9-10). So, why would a person that rejected Christ now be willing to go through that much suffering then? They wouldn’t. They would probably take the mark, instead.
- During the tribulation, many of the saints are martyred for their faith in Jesus Christ and for the testimony of his word (Rev. 20:4; 6:9). Again, why would someone who rejected simple salvation in Christ without the threat of death suddenly be willing to die for him? They wouldn’t.
So, concerning tribulation salvation, it is likely that those who reject Christ now won’t get saved in the tribulation. However, that doesn’t mean that there won’t be Gentiles saved in the tribulation. There will be millions saved in the tribulation. They will be saved out of all nations. Look at Rev. 7:9-14 and notice some key things about tribulation salvation.
- Rev. 7:9, these people are saved because they are before the throne, before the Lamb and wearing white robes.
- Rev. 7:9, these people are from “all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues.” So, they are not just Jews, but rather, they are also Gentiles.
- Rev. 7:10, they are praising God for salvation.
- Rev. 7:11, they are in heaven, so they were raptured before the second coming of Christ.
- Rev. 7:14, they were saved out of the great tribulation.
Now, notice that before you ever see these people in heaven, you find another group of saints in heaven in Rev. 5:8-12. These are the church age saints that were raptured before the tribulation.
So, the answer to our question this week is, “Yes.” People will, in fact, be saved during the tribulation. But if you find that you are not saved yet, then please trust Christ as your Savior now. Don’t wait. It will be much harder to get saved if the Lord returns before you get saved. And the likelihood is that you will not get saved then, anyway.
Hope this helps,
Pastor Bevans Welder