The Tribulation Martyrs
“And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto everyone of them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled” – (Rev.6:9-11).
“And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? And whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” – (Rev.7:13,14).
“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death” – (Rev.12:11).
Here we see the martyred saints of the faithful remnant during the Tribulation. They do not get saved and born again until after the rapture. Jesus speaks of the martyrs in (Mt.24:9) – “Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.” Great persecution comes upon them by the Beast because of their born again testimony and many are killed, the vast majority by being beheaded. They refused to get the mark of the Beast or worship him and his image. “… and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands…” – (Rev.20:4).
Money, the root of all evil, is the reason for this beheading and not some other way. We are being told today to sign the backs of our driver licenses so they can harvest our organs for profit after our death. You can get $40,000 for one kidney now. Imagine what an entire human body is worth with two kidneys, two eyeballs, a heart, liver, lungs, gall bladders, bones, marrow, blood, skin, etc. etc. They want unpoisoned and intact organs worthy of harvesting for the unsaved. The Beast will make untold millions by harvesting Christian bodies. The tribulation saints will be jailed and executed, mostly by beheading. Monkeys and dogs have had head transplants and they would love to try it on humans.
The members of the tribulation body of Christ will have their heads cut off because Satan hates Christ who is the ‘head’ of the church. He’s striking at the body of Christ and symbolically the head which is Christ. “And he is the head of the body, the church” – (Col.1:18).
During the tribulation, martyrdom will be as common as it is uncommon today. But the general population will not hear much about it as this is done in prison, not in public. Millions will be martyred, sealing their testimony for Christ with their own blood. Those who trust in Christ in that day will be forced to stand the acid test of being faithful even unto death. Notice that these martyrs do not desire to avenge themselves but leave all vengeance to God. “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord” – (Rom.12:19). They do not take up weapons against the Beast – “… he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints” – (Rev.13:10). Jesus takes vengeance on the Beast at His second coming – “in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God…” – (2 Thes.1:7,8). This will be the greatest period of cruelty to Christians the world has ever known. Hitler’s cruelty to the Jews will be but dress rehearsal of the Antichrist-Beast’s cruelty to Christians.
God gives us a glimpse of the brutal persecutions against the Tribulation saints. Hitler’s horror camps have provided a terrible example of what lies ahead. First there was discrimination; then the ghettos, then the concentration camps and the mass extermination camps. Nearly six million Jews and millions of others were killed. There was never a time in history with such calculated cruelty. The sadistic cruelty, the torture, the starvation, the mass murder, the diabolical experiments on live human guinea pigs etc. etc. Mass murder was a state industry with byproducts. And much worse is coming because the Beast rules the world and Hitler didn’t and body parts are worth big money.
They are given white robes that signify the righteousness that Christ has purchased for his people (see Rom.3:21-24, – I Cor.1:30 – 2 Cor.3:21). They are clothed in God’s righteousness, which may be marked in a special way that shows the universe that they are the martyrs of Christ – along with their martyr’s crown – (Rev.2:10).
There is another group, a great multitude, that also are saved during the Tribulation and probably many of them are martyred for their testimony of Christ also, but some may receive special protection from God and make it through alive – (Rev.7:9,13,14). Thus we see the mercy and grace and love of God during the tribulation also. Christ will save people out of every nation and tongue on earth. They are the tribulation saints.
They have white robes and palms in their hands and this shows us that they are both virtuous and victorious; white robes and green palms of victory. They sing praises to God for their salvation by Christ. They were washed as white as snow inwardly when Christ cleansed them of their sins and now they wear white robes of righteousness for eternity. They were washed by the blood of the Lamb. “Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood” – (Rev.1:5). In wrath God remembers mercy. Green palm branches, the color of life and victory over death. Not the color of money in palms of hands.
They no doubt receive the highest rewards of all the saints because the martyrs “loved not their lives unto the death” – (Rev.12:11). That’s the supreme sacrifice following the example of Christ on the cross. “And, behold, I came quickly, and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be” – (Rev.22:12). Jesus said “He that loveth his life shall lose it: and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal” – (Jn.12:25). Paul said – “but none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself…” – (Acts 26:24). And such it is with the tribulation martyrs, they do not count their lives dear unto themselves, but keep their eyes on eternal life. Jesus said – “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” – (Mt.10:28).
Martyr means witness and we are also reminded of God’s Two Witnesses, His last two prophets during the Tribulation who are also martyred by the Beast. These two great witnesses for Christ preach and testify to the whole world and the Beast cannot kill them until their 1260 days ministry is finished. They are under God’s witness protection program. “And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against thou, and kill them” – (Rev.11:7). We are soldiers in God’s salvation army and we are in warfare against Satan and his unsaved children, the children of the Devil – (I Jn.3:10).
We must not fear death or the man who has the power to kill our body, because he has no power to kill our soul. Only God has the power to destroy both soul and body in hell. We are not to fear men, but only fear God. We must trust Him, follow Him as He leads, and leave all things in His hands. We who are born again children of God need not fret and worry, because we know that all things – “Work together for good to them that love God…” – (Rom.8:28). The more we fear God, the less we will fear man. If God permits them, they may kill our body, but they can never kill our soul.
Therefore man should be a million times more concerned with saving their souls than saving their bodies. If nobody kills us we shall die anyway. Are you saved and born again? Born again describes what happens to you when you’re truly saved. You become a new born again creature and the old man dies spiritually with Christ on the cross. We are crucified with Christ. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away: behold, all things are become new” – (2 Cor.5:17). It’s a spiritual birth, not a fleshly birth – “That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit… ye must be born again” – (Jn.3:6,7). A person knows absolutely when he’s born again.
O do not spurn the love and grace of God in His beloved Son on the cross as your Savior – “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” – (Acts ). Because if you reject Christ, you’ll spend eternity dying in the lake of fire – “And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire” – (Rev.20:15). Be saved and you can say as Paul did – “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” – (Phil.1:21). Repent of your sins and believe on Christ in your heart by faith and receive remission of sins.
Be saved today and be ready for the Rapture.
Pastor Mike Storti
5000 N. LaCholla-