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Who Will Populate The Millennium Zechariah 14:16; Is Pre-trib Rapture A Lie?


Mr.  Malone:

If you ask someone, whose gonna populate the millennium who believes in a post tribulation rapture and they say look at Zechariah 14:16 and their  answer is "sinners" what would you say to them?

What does Zechariah 14:16 really mean....if you can help, its what post trib people like to say now I guess which is wrong but what is Zechariah 14:16 really saying??



Unfortunately, debating about the timing of the rapture is a waste of your time and you will never change their mind.  But for the sake of my readers I will explain this passage.  

Also see Why a post-tribulation rapture can't possibly be correct!

At first glance it does sound like all survivors of the tribulation period will enter into the millennium without a hitch...but taking the Bible as a whole is where this argument loses all its steam.  Let's take a look at this passage.

[16] And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.
[17] And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain.
[18] And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. (Zechariah 14)

First of all, when the Lord comes back there will only be two kinds of people on the earth, those who have taken the mark of the beast and those who have not.  Some time during the second half of the tribulation period, God will send angels throughout the world (Revelation 14:6-7) to preach the Gospel to very man, woman, and child in their own native tongue.  Commonsense dictates, if you saw an angel flying through the air preaching the Gospel that would be more than enough proof to determine without a doubt who the real and only true God is.  These angels will start appearing in the sky just after the Antichrist commands that every living person must take his mark and worship his image (around mid-point of the tribulation period).  God will also send another angel with a follow up warning:   

[9] And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,
[10] The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
[11] And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name (Revelation 14).

This angelic warning from God to the whole world is very clear.  If you take the mark of the Antichrist or worship His image your eternal fate is will be thrown into the lake of fire.  But here's a new twist that some pre-wrath proponents are trying to pass off as Biblical.  Recently, I was discussing with a pre-wrath believer regarding this very subject of who would populate the millennium.  Their answer, based on Zechariah 14:16-18. sinners and those who take the mark of the beast. Their argument was that since the Bible is clear that Jesus would have to rule His kingdom with a rod of iron (Egyptians cited for not wanting to come and worship God yearly-rebellion), they assumed that this rebellion would start from day one of the millennium.  With this said, their only conclusion was that those who have taken the mark must be allowed into the millennium and will be thrown into the lake of fire at the end of the reign of Christ.  Their thinking, when Satan is released back on to the earth, they will be more than ready to follow him in open rebellion against Christ.

Of course, this story couldn't be further from the truth and is tantamount to the same lie Satan told Eve in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:1-7).  They are completely ignoring the pure truth of the Gospel.  When God says this will be the outcome for an action He will keep His Word every time.  

No, those who take the mark and worship the beast will be thrown into the lake of fire when the beast and the false prophet are cast the Second Coming of Christ (Armageddon).

[20] And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
[21] And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh (Revelation 19)

The remnant mentioned in this passage are the followers of the Antichrist.  They will be slain and cast into the lake of fire just as God promised.

After the Battle of Armageddon and the ensuing judgment of the nations, the only one's who will be left will be those who have not taken the mark but have chosen to serve the Lord.  

In that day, there will be no neutral ground.  Either you have taken the mark or you haven't.  Those mentioned in Zechariah 14:16 are those who have not taken the mark because they chose to serve the Lord.  What post-tribulationalist/pre-wrath believers would have you believe is that these survivors simply did not participate in the battle of Armageddon.  Therefore, when Christ sets up His kingdom, they will simply come out of their hiding places (from all nations) and enter into the millennium with the mark of the Antichrist.  That couldn't be further from the truth.   

Because of Revelation 14:9-11 we have to eliminate any interpretation of the fate of those who have taken the mark other than death and the lake of fire.  It won't matter whether one participates in the Battle of Armageddon... if you take the mark you're going to be put to death and sent to an eternal hell.  You can't have it both ways and making up strange philosophies to prove your position won't change that.  

To interpret that lost people (those who have taken the mark) will get a second chance and be granted passage into the millennium just because they didn't take part in the Battle of Armageddon is a complete contradiction in Scripture.  It didn't hold up in the Garden of Eden and it won't hold up then.

To say that there will be those on the earth (at the Second Coming) who will take a neutral position and not take the mark nor elect to serve God is completely unbiblical as well.  You can't do that today so why would the Lord allow this to happen at His coming!  Either you're serving the Lord or you're serving Satan!  Either you're on your way to heaven or on your way to hell.  There are no fence straddlers today and there won't be any then.   

You must understand that the witness of Christ will be very strong during the tribulation period from the 144,000 witnesses to the angels in the sky.  The Gospel will be everywhere and will be preached.  From this witness many from every nation on earth will come to know the Lord and will not take the mark out of their undying allegiance to the Lord.  In that day, there will be no question as to the existence of the True Living God.

One thing that needs to be cleared up, after the Lord judges the world and sets up His earthly kingdom, He will present His millennial laws.  Everyone at that time will be commanded to follow them without question and everyone will gladly do so for many generations to come...but there will come a time and generation that will rebel against God with their hearts.  They will still be forced to follow the laws of God but their hearts will be far from Him. It will be for this day that these laws will be established, and when that day comes, He will rule the nation's with a rod of iron (Revelation 2:27, 12:5, 19:15).  These are those whom Zechariah 14:17 & 18 speaks of.   God knows that the day will come when man's heart will seek to rebel against Him even in the absence of Satan.  For man does not need the presence of Satan to sin.  

It's hard to say how long it will take before rebellion takes root but that day will come.  When it does, God will cut off the blessings from those nations or tribes (rain).  He will send famine to their land and they will quickly fall back in line.     

In that day, everyone will worship God whether they want to or not, but all those who enter into the millennium initially will love the Lord and will choose to serve Him voluntarily.  It will be out of love and from a grateful heart that their service will spring forth.  

Thankfully, there are no passages in the Bible that indicate there will even be the slightest rebellion against God during the one-thousand year reign of Christ except for when Satan is released from his chains of darkness at the end of the millennium.  Of course, Satan's uprising will be short-lived and his earthly army destroyed swiftly.

Are you ready to meet the Lord?  If not, your time is running out!

Terry Malone

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If you haven't had a chance to take a look at my book "Revelation Revealed", I encourage you to go to my website and explore what this book has to offer.  I believe it will give you a clear understanding of the end times and the order in which it may come.  Pick up a copy today for yourself or a loved one who does not know the Lord.  I know it will be a spiritual blessing to you and will help support this ministry.  To order a copy of Revelation Revealed please click here.

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