Fred R. Coulter—April 25, 2009

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Someone asked a question concerning a place of safety. Can God spare you and protect you wherever you are? In spite of the circumstances? Yes! Without a doubt!

I've got a book called A Thousand Shall Fall by Susi Hasel Mundy, a German who was drafted into the Wehrmacht. He was a Seventh Day Adventist keeping the Sabbath. He said he would not work on Saturday, and 'I'm keeping my Bible.'

Well, you would think they would take him out and string him up immediately, but they didn't. God gave him grace and favor in the eyes of his superiors. They put him into the transportation department, and he was able to have every Sabbath off. Since a lot of them were Catholics, he would work on Sunday and he would pick up a lot of the mechanical work on Sunday that they wouldn't want to do.

He went with the army all the way to the Ukraine and came back at the end of the war all in one piece. So, God can protect you wherever you are.

Psalm 91 says that 'a thousand shall fall at your right hand' and ten thousand at your other side; however, it will not come near you! The question is not whether God can do it, but what is the will of God? Let's think on that for a minute!

Unfortunately, those who believe in a rapture confuse it with the resurrection and what we find in Rev. 12. We know, obviously, this is in a time just before the Great Tribulation takes place.

Revelation 12:13: "And when the dragon saw that he was cast down to the earth, he persecuted the woman who had brought forth the man-Child. And two wings of a great eagle were given to the woman, so that she might fly to her place in the wilderness…" (vs 13-14). That is not heaven!

Heaven is never referred to as a wilderness! It's always referred to as a paradise, heaven!

"…where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent" (v 14). This is where a lot of them get the rapture.

'Hooray! We're going to escape the Tribulation.' Doesn't everyone want to escape the Tribulation? I've never heard anyone stand up and say, 'Hooray! I know I'm going into the Tribulation!' Everyone wants to escape!

Verse 15: "And the serpent cast water out of his mouth as a river, so that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood. But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth, and swallowed up the river that the dragon had cast out of his mouth. Then the dragon was furious with the woman and went to make war with the rest of her seed…" (vs 15-17).

The King James Version says 'remnant,' which is kind of misleading in English because it means the smaller number left over like with a bolt of cloth. If you go to a fabric store, you wait until they have a remnant sale, which means most of everything on each bolt has been sold, and now you can come in and buy the remnant.

But the Greek doesn't mean that. It means the rest, or the other. So, remnant makes you think that almost everybody is going to the wilderness, actually going to a place of safety. But that's not the case! We're confronted with:

  • Is it God's will that you go to a place of safety?
  • Is it God's will that you be protected wherever you may be?
  • Is it God's will that you give your life in martyrdom?

All three can be applied at different times! Obviously, going to a place of safety is only a one-time thing.

Verse 17: "Then the dragon was furious with the woman and went to make war with the rest of her seed, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ."

A lot of people have said that the ones going to a place of safety are those who are in the Philadelphia Church, and all those bad Laodiceans are going to go through the Tribulation. Well, there are some folks who still belong to Sardis and others who belong to Thyatira. Did you know that the Seventh Day Adventist identify themselves as Thyatira? {Note the DVD: Israel of the Alps (produced by the SDAs)} I think you would be astonished how they apply themselves directly to that section in Rev. 2.

I think it's also kind of ironic that the ones who believe that they are Philadelphians today—meaning brotherly love—have a very hateful regime! You cannot even visit your loved ones of your own family if they are in a different Church of God. How's that for brotherly love? They think that they're going to a place of safety.

All of those who think they're going to a place of safety, regardless of who they are, do you think that evangelist A would get along with evangelist B? and Pastor A—who thinks he really ought to replace evangelist A—is going to get along with evangelist A and B?

If the place of safety is over in Petra, and there are caves, who gets the choicest cave? Who is going to be in charge? Got to have someone in charge! You will probably have six or seven people step up and say, 'I'm in charge!' No, you're not, I'm in charge! 'No, you're not!' A nice peaceful placer to spend three and a half years! It won't work that way!

Revelation 3:7: "And to the angel of the Church in Philadelphia, write… [v 8]: 'I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, and no one has the power to shut it because you have a little strength, and have kept My Word, and have not denied My name.'"

Well, we used to preach that in Worldwide Church of God. What happened? They denied the name of Christ and even removed it! So, it can't be them!

  • Who is going to a place of safety?
  • Who is going to make the judgment?

I remember that we were told, years ago: we believed in fleeing in 1972 and going to a place of safety. How do we know we're going to go?

  • the apostle will call the evangelist
  • the evangelist will call the pastors
  • the pastors will call the preaching elders
  • the preaching elders will call the local elders
  • the local elders will call you

What if that evangelist, pastor or local elder didn't like you? He's going down the line and he says, 'I'm not going to call this one here, he's got a bad attitude.'

So, everybody who is to go to the place of safety goes to the place of safety. The poor little victim who didn't get the phone call and didn't get his ticket either and went on the wrong airline, whatever. Finally he goes through the Tribulation, goes through hell and high water and finally was martyred, died and was resurrected. As soon as he's resurrected, Jesus comes and says, 'Oh, I'm so glad you made it.' I'm glad to be here! 'Did You know that local elder so and so didn't call you and you should have gone to a place of safety.'

It's not going to be that way!

It's based upon a misunderstanding, v 9: "Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who proclaim themselves to be Jews and are not, but do lie. Behold, I will cause them to come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. Because you have kept the Word of My patience, I also will keep you from the time of temptation…" (vs 9-10)—not tribulation! There is a difference!

What is the temptation that is coming upon the whole earth, before the Tribulation? What do you think it is? The mark of the beast! That is the great temptation:

"…which is about to come upon the whole world to try those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly; hold fast that which you have so that no one may take away your crown" (vs 10-11). So, there are crown-stealers out there who bring false doctrine!

Do you think that we can properly judge ourselves with God's judgment to say that 'we're Philadelphians, they're Laodiceans, they're Sardis or Thyatira'? Of course not, because God knows the heart! God is going to make the decision on it.

To fly away into the wilderness on the wings of a great eagle is a way of protection. Let's see how that's going to happen, and who is going to make the selection. It won't be the local pastor.

  • What if the phones are out everywhere?
  • What if he's arrested and thrown in jail and his list confiscated?
  • How are you going to go?
  • How do you know you're going to go? I don't, and you don't!

Luke 17:20: "Now, when the Pharisees demanded of Him when the Kingdom of God would come…" The reason that the Pharisees, scribes and Sadducees did not accept Jesus for the most part is because the way they read the prophecies was: when Messiah comes He's going to hook up politically with them! They were the ones who were in power and Jesus didn't do that and that infuriated them. So, the Pharisees were demanding "…when the Kingdom of God would come…"—'so we can be in power with the Messiah.'

"…He answered them and said, 'The Kingdom of God does not come with observation; neither shall they say, "Behold, it is here!"….'" (vs 20-21).

We're going to talk about how it's going to come, because it's going to come in a powerful way. You don't have to be watching for it; it's going to show you that it's coming!

"'…Or, "Behold, it is there!"….'" (v 21). What did it say about the Messiah? He's in the desert, don't go up there! or He's in a hidden chamber, don't go there!

"…For behold, the Kingdom of God is standing in the midst of you" (v 21). It's not in the heart! Do you think that the Kingdom of God can be in anybody's heart? Especially an evil heart of the belief of the scribes and Pharisees? No way!

So, He was in the midst of them! What was Jesus? The King! The king and kingdom are synonymous in prophecy.

Verse 22: "Then He said to the disciples, 'The days will come when you shall desire to see one of the days of the Son of man, and shall not see it.'" There are two ways to interpret this:

  • the days that they lived through with the ministry and teaching of Jesus; they're not going to see that again
  • to see one of the days of the Lord leading up to the end, and they are not going to see it in the way that they expected

Verse 23: "And they shall say to you, 'Look here,' or, 'Look there.' Do not go, neither follow them. For as the light of day, whose light shines from one end under heaven to the other end under heaven, so also shall the Son of man be in His day. But first it is necessary for Him to suffer many things and to be rejected by this generation. Now, as it was in the days of Noah, so also shall it be in the days of the Son of man" (vs 23-26).

It's talking about days. Is not one of the days of the Son of man when He intervenes to take people to a place of safety? Would you not say that's one of the days of the Son of man? Yes, because He's causing it to be done! It's not the day of the Son of man, because that takes place a little later. But one of the days of the Son of man.

Verse 27: "They were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah went into the ark, and the Flood came and destroyed them all."

There were the days of Noah before the Flood, and there were also the days of Noah after the Flood. What took place after the Flood (Gen. 11). What were they wanting to do? Build a tower to reach into the heavens! God came and confounded their languages and scattered them. So, God is the Inventor of all of the languages originally, and Adam and Eve were created with a functioning language already in their minds.

To build a tower to heaven they are not contemplating to do that. Watch it on the History Channel. They are going to build, with nano technology—meaning one atom at a time—made of carbon, a cable that goes clear up into maybe halfway to the moon, maybe not quite that far. On the end of it they will have something that will keep it from falling back to the earth. But with this nano-tube that reaches clear up into the heavens is so light that weight will not pull it back down, because it's made of carbon.

They can send along that cable things up into space with very little power and very cheap. There's a tower into the heavens. When I saw that I thought: think of that; they think they can do! Remember why God confounded their languages? Because now there is nothing they can imagine to do that they cannot do! So, again, we are back at that point!

Morally we are again back at this point; v 28: "And it was the same way in the days of Lot: they were eating, they were drinking, they were buying, they were selling, they were planting, they were building; but on the day that Lot went out from Sodom… [Wouldn't you say that was at the last minute?] …it rained fire and sulfur from heaven and destroyed them all. This is how it shall be in the day that the Son of man is revealed" (vs 28-30). Isn't it interesting that He didn't say the Day of the Lord?

Just think of the things of Sodom. Just think of what happened when the angels went to visit Lot. They had a homosexual riot in the streets! 'Look! There are two new men, let's get them!' You know what happened.

Let's understand how Lot and his family leave. They got a phone call from Abraham! 'Lot, God says you've got to get out of there!' NO!

  • How did they go? The angels took them!
  • Do you not think that the wings of a great eagle describes transportation by angels a whole lot better than airplanes? Yes, indeed!
  • How are the people going to go to a place of safety?
  • How are they going to be chosen? By God, Who is going to tell the angels to take them!
  • Where did Lot escape to? A place of safety!

Verse 31: "In that day, let not the one who is on the housetop, and his goods in the house, come down to take them away; and likewise, let not the one who is in the field return to the things behind. Remember Lot's wife" (vs 31-32).

If you're in Judea it says to flee to the mountains! When that happens, you don't think about anything else, you just get out! If you have faith that God will provide for you, you don't have to go back and get anything.

I remember that a lot of people in the WCG, when they would go to Sabbath services they would have they're little 'Petra box' in the trunk of their car, just in case they went on the Sabbath! But what did Jesus say in Matt. 24? Don't let your flight be on the Sabbath! So, why take your 'Petra box' in the trunk of you car? What are you going to take? Your Bible, medication and all these things!

Verse 32: "Remember Lot's wife. Whoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whoever shall lose his life… [for My sake] …shall preserve it. I tell you, in that night…" (vs 32-34).

Which night? In the day that the Son of man is revealed by taking those who are going to go to a place of safety to the place of safety! That's going to be the start!

I want you to think about this: "…there shall be two in one bed; one shall be taken, and the other shall be left" (v 34). Why not both? I don't know, God makes the judgment!

Verse 35: "Two women shall be grinding together…" When do you generally grind flour? You begin early in the morning and you quit before it get hot, because grain can explode if it's really hot and if it's very dry!

"…one shall be taken, and the other shall be left. Two men shall be in the field… [What are they doing in the field? Plowing, planting—day time!] …one shall be taken, and the other shall be left" (vs 35-36).

What is Jesus talking about? He's talking about a single day on the earth where there is day and night, different time zones! When they are taken, who are they taken by? The angels! Remember Lot and his wife! The angels took them!

This is how God is going to take people to a place of safety!The angels will come and say, 'We're going!' if that happens to be one of us, we should say, 'Yes sir! Let's go!' That's going to be quite an exciting flight over to wherever the place of safety is.

Another thing that's important: That's going to be the day that Christ is revealed in direct intervention in the world!

This pictures day and night because in different parts of the earth it will be different time zones.

Verse 37: "And they answered, saying to Him, 'Where, Lord?' And He said to them, 'Where the body is, there will the eagles be gathered together.'" Carried on the wings of a great eagle!

Where is the place of safety? I'll give you a precise answer that is very simple to understand:

  • If you don't know where it is and you go there, you will know when you arrive!
  • If you think you know, and you don't go, that knowledge didn't do you any good!

Revelation 12:17: "Then the dragon was furious with the woman and went to make war with the rest of her seed…"

If war is being waged against the people of God who have been left behind—and it doesn't say that these were the weak ones:

  • Can the weak ones stand up and be martyred? No!
  • Is it God's will to protect you wherever you are? No!

Christ gave His life for us, and at that time we give our lives to Christ. We made that agreement with Him in baptism! God can give us whatever strength we need.

Rev. 6—the seals are opened: 1-4, and obviously begins the Great Tribulation with the second seal.

Revelation 6:9: "And when He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the Word of God…" This was in vision to tell John what was going to happen, knowing that others had been martyred.

"…and for the testimony that they held; and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, 'How long, O Lord, Holy and true, do You not judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?' And white robes were given to each of them; and they were told that they should rest a short time, yet, until it be fulfilled that both their fellow servants and their brethren also would be killed, just as they had been" (vs 9-11).

So, when the dragon makes war against 'the rest of her seed who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ' they are going to be martyred. At this time it's not God's will to protect you wherever you are.

Another thing to remember in this, I think is important for us to realize. Satan being so furious and wroth at that them for not taking the mark of the beast, he is going to ferret them out wherever they are and kill every last one. He's going to think that he has succeeded, because he has killed every last one of them! I truly believe that!

If all the saints were left to go through this part of the Tribulation:

  • What would happen to the Church?
  • What if some did not go to a place of safety? It would die out!
  • What did Jesus says concerning the Church that He would build? The gates of the grave shall never prevail against it!

Those who are in a place of safety are there because of God's judgment that they should go, but also because of the prophecy of Jesus that it would never die out. After all of these have been martyred, then the sign of the Son of man appears in heaven and then right after that the 144,000 and the great innumerable multitude are saved. So, immediately God has the last and the final harvest of the firstfruits (Rev. 7).

They will be converted for one year, and these represent the laborers who went into the field at the 11th hour. Remember the parable: Starts out in the morning and then the 6th hour, 9th hour, 11th hour. These are the ones who came in at the 11th hour, converted for one year!

If it takes place on the next to the last Pentecost, then this is God's great harvest to fulfill the 50th Day. The next year will come the resurrection of all.

Is God's harvest at this particular time with in the last year, is this greater than all combined down through history? I don't know! The Church has always been small and scattered. Here we have a great innumerable multitude and the 144,000. Very possible that it could be more than all down through time, because God directly did this, miraculously did this in a special way, which is different than in how He calls us and gives us the Holy Spirit. God can do that!

There was an angel sent to seal them with the Holy Spirit. An angel doesn't come and seal us with the Holy Spirit. We are sealed with the Holy Spirit when we've repented, are baptized and receive the laying on of hands. God gives His Holy Spirit to us and we are sealed. I've often wondered how many are going to be saved in that.

Scriptural References:

  • Revelation 12:13-17
  • Revelation 3:7-11
  • Luke 17:20-37
  • Revelation 12:17
  • Revelation 6:9-11

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Psalm 91
  • Revelation 2
  • Genesis 11
  • Matthew 24
  • Revelation 7

Also referenced:

  • Book: A Thousand Shall Fall by Susi Hasel Mundy
  • DVD: Israel of the Alps (produced by the SDAs)

FRC: bo
Transcribed: 3/16/18