It is biblically unjustified for anyone to teach that after the Rapture, the antiChrist will arise to persecute those left behind. Shortly before the Rapture, the antiChrist will be paralyzed, masterly inactivated by the cosmic disturbances and the appearance of the Shekinah in the heavens. “And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood; And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?”(Rev.6:12-17).
It is after the cosmic disturbances that the clans of Judah who have been hiding in the Judean wilderness and Jerusalem and its environs shall be able to wage guerrilla warfare against the antiChrist and his armies. “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem. And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. In that day, saith the Lord, I will smite every horse with astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open mine eyes upon the house of Judah, and will smite every horse of the people with blindness. And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, The inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be my strength in the Lord of hosts their God. In that day will I make the governors of Judah like an hearth of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire in a sheaf; and they shall devour all the people round about, on the right hand and on the left: and Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place, even in Jerusalem. The Lord also shall save the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem do not magnify themselves against Judah. In that day shall the Lord defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the Lord before them. And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.”(Zech.12:2-9).
After the cosmic disturbances, the clans of Judah shall be able to retaliate against the armies of the surrounding nations that gathered against Jerusalem in the Jehoshaphat campaign. The prophet Zechariah was using the language of his day to communicate divine truth. However, these shall be sophisticated modern tanks metaphorically referred to as horses. The tank drivers and crew shall lose their minds, and the tanks themselves shall malfunction. This should not surprise us inasmuch as the EMP from the sun, stars, comets, meteorites and asteroids shall disrupt communication, making it extremely difficult for both tanks and crew to function at all let alone efficiently.
We can see here that from the breaking of the sixth seal, the condition on Earth is one of utter chaotic confusion as men scramble and scurry for safety under the rocks and mountains, invoking the rocks and the mountains to fall upon them as they instinctively realize that God is about to punish the world for her evils. Men’s heart will fail them for fear of those things that coming upon the Earth. “And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.”(Luk.21:25-26). The primary concern of people on Earth at this time is personal safety, not the enforcement of some law by the antiChrist. Even the kings of the Earth including the antiChrist and his most senior military commanders and security agents are terrified, paralyzed, and masterly inactivated and incapacitated by the cosmic disturbances and the appearance of the coming of the Son Of Man in the heavens(Rev.6:15). At this time, the saints are looking up for their redemption draweth nigh. “And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.”(Luk.21:27-28).
The Great Day Of The Lord is come and who shall be able to stand? The answer is of course no one including the antiChrist. The only two things he will be permitted to do will be to kill the two witnesses at the expiry of their ministry at the end of the 70th week and to gather his armies for destruction 30 days later at the battle of Armageddon. “And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified. And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth. And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them. And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them. And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven. The second woe is past; and, behold, the third woe cometh quickly”(Rev.11:7-14). ” And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.”(Rev.16:16).
“And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. 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. 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.”(Rev.19:17-21). It is inconceivable that the antiChrist would have so much worldwide influence and persecute those who refuse to be branded with his mark of allegiance once the Day Of The Lord has begone, a time when God alone is supposed to be exalted.
Up until now, the restrainer is the one that hinders the antiChrist from manifesting. “And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:”(2 Thess.2:6-8). And the restrainer is archangel Michael according to Dan.12: 1.
After the removal of the restrainer, the antiChrist will manifest and persecute the saints during the Great Tribulation. But as soon as the Lord appears in the heavens, he is masterły incapacitated. What follows is the Day Of The Lord. The antiChrist cannot persecute the saints in the Day Of The Lord. In that Day, only the Lord is exalted. In that Day the haughtiness of men and the loftiness man shall be bowed down. In that Day, men shall throw away their idols, the demonized images of the Beast which they have made for themselves to worship in their homes, offices and cars, being instructed by the enforcer, the second Beast, also called the false prophet(Rev.13:14), to the moles and the bats to hide in the rocks and mountains from the glory of the Lord when He arises to shake terribly the Earth(Is.2:8-18). Both the prophet Isaiah and Apostle John the revelator are unanimous in testifying that the wicked earth-dwellers shall seek refuge in the rocks and mountains. In that Day no mortal will be exalted. In that Day no idol will be exalted. And the idols He shall utterly abolish. In that Day, the gods that have not made the heaven and the Earth shall perish from under the Earth and from under these heavens. “Thus shall ye say unto them, The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the Earth, and from under these heavens.”(Jere.10:11). No man or idol will be exalted in that Day.
The reason why the antiChrist cannot persecuted the saints after the Rapture is two fold. Firstly, there are no saints to persecute. The believers have been raptured, taken to heaven. Anyone in the Church who is unbranded with the Mark Of The Beast and left behind is not a true believer in Jesus Christ in the first place. The one has been a false believer all along. The 144,000 from the twelve tribes of Israel are sealed for protection and hidden in the modern day red rose city of Petra which is biblical Sela, a very difficult terrain to access. In New Testament times, it was called Pella. It is in the Edomite wilderness which is in modern day Jordan(Rev.7:1-8). Even during the outpouring of the bowls, the newly saved remnant of Israel are hidden in Azel(Zech.14:5). No one knows the location of Azel. It is an undisclosed location being unmentioned in biblical times either in the land of Israel or anywhere else in biblical history and geography.
Secondly, the antiChrist will be masterly inactivated by the cosmic disturbances(Rev.6:12-17; Matt.24:39-30), and by the brightness of Christ’s Coming(2 Thess.2:8). The only two groups of people left on Earth unprotected at that time will be branded followers of the antiChrist who will be the majority, and unbranded Gentiles, the minority. We come to this understanding through the process of elimination. Remember that during the first part of the wrath of God, the trumpet judgments(Rev.8,9), all the inhabitants of the Earth are targeted including the surviving unbranded remnants of Israel. This is to cleanse, purge, and purify Israel. Only one-third of the Jewish population which enter the 70th week of Daniel will survive. “And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God.”(Zech.13:8,9). This is horrible. It is sad. Only one-third of the Jewish population that enter the 70th week will survive. Even if it were only in the land of Israel, that is a staggering number.
Every Jew who survived the 70th week unbranded will be automatically saved because Israel have been purged, purified, and cleansed by the Great Tribulation, the Time of Jacob’s trouble(Jer.30:7), and the trumpet judgments, and her sin atoned for. Because by the end of the 70th week, her transgression is finished, her sin ended, and reconciliation made for her iniquity(Dan.9:24). And then they will look upon Him whom they pierced and mourn for Him as one mourneth for his only son when they see that their Messiah has nail pierced hands. “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddo. And the land shall mourn, every family apart; the family of the house of David apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their wives apart; The family of the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart; the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart; All the families that remain, every family apart, and their wives apart.”(Zech.12:10-14).
The only ones exempted from the trumpet judgments are the 144,000 from the twelve tribes of Israel(Rev.7:1-8). These are Jews who have devoted, dedicated, and consecrated themselves to the God from their youth. They were not only unmarried but were virgins all of their entire life. It is possible to be a celibate but not a virgin. These men were not only celibates but also virgins. The unbranded Jews other than the 144,000 will be rejoicing when they see the Shechinah in the heavens, that their Messiah has finally come to deliver them, not knowing that they are not exempt from the trumpet judgments. “For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.”(1 Thess.5:3). These unbranded Jews are in expectation of the coming of the Messiah. But they do not know that they are not exempt from the trumpet judgment segment of the wrath of God. The day of the Lord is first darkness and gloominess before light for them. “Woe unto you that desire the day of the Lord! to what end is it for you? the day of the Lord is darkness, and not light. As if a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house, and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him. Shall not the day of the Lord be darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?”(Amos 5:18-20). For the believers in Jesus the Messiah of Israel, the Day Of Christ is light in perpetuity.
The branded followers of the antiChrist will be the object of God’s wrath in the bowls, being specifically targeted(Rev.16,17,18,19). The unbranded unbelievers will not be specifically targeted in the bowl judgments. Any hurt they incur will be collateral damage. By the way, it is the unbranded Gentiles who survive the wrath of God that will appear at the Sheep and Goat Judgment(Matt.35:31-46). The sheep will be justified to repopulate the Earth in the Millennium alongside the saved remnant of Israel(Rom.11:25, 26). The goat will be executed and banished to Hell. We can see the enormity of the teaching that some believers will be left behind after the rapture to face the antiChrist. There are no two Great Tribulations, but one which occurs beginning from the midpoint of the 70th week before the Rapture of the Church. After the Rapture is the wrath of God which is contained in the seventh seal. The breaking of the seventh seal which occurs on the same day the Church is raptured opens into the wrath of God consisting of 7 trumpets and 7 bowls.