While I don't think Christians should totally isolate themselves... perhaps you might just take a short, temporary "retreat" for quietness, prayer and Biblical meditation (meditating on the Scriptures). This can strengthen us for when we once again associate with those needing Christ.
No of course not, the church isn't on earth during the 70th week. The contemporary church is holy, pure and righteous as it exists. It's only those others that will have to endure hardship, like the 100,000 a year that die for their faith in Jesus. Clearly they aren't worthy to be 'raptured' beforehand.
Holy writ is tradition? That's off base.
And again we see the church is more holy and perfect than those who have to die in Christ during tribulation. So if the trib saints are pictured in scripture thus,
9 After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. 10 And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”
11 All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying: “Amen! Praise and glory
and wisdom and thanks and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!” 13 Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes—who are they, and where did they come from?”
14 I answered, “Sir, you know.” And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore,
“they are before the throne of God and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence. 16‘Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst.
The sun will not beat down on them,’ nor any scorching heat. 17 For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water. ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.
where is the 'church' shown like the above? I mean the church should have abundant praise above the trib saints as the church is walking the earth already pure and holy just like Jesus did. There must not be a single spot or blemish in the whole body. So where is the laudatory moment for purely righteous church taken off the earth by the millions before death?
THE BEAST & BABYLON METAPHORS
A metaphor is a figure of speech that carries a meaning across from its likeness to the thing it represents.
The first beast in Revelation 13 is a metaphor intended to mean the very real natural wickedness of man that rises from the sea of sinful humanity and manifests as very real IMPERIAL CONTROL.
The second beast in Revelation 13 is a metaphor intended to mean the very real man of wicked nature that rises from the earth of evil vanity and manifests as the very real IMPERIAL CONTROLLER.
The 7 heads of the beast are Imperial Entities and we learn these metaphorical heads morph into mountains which represent kings (Imperial Entities) as follows:
(9) And here is the mind which has wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sits.
(10) And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he comes, he must continue a short space.
(11) And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goes into perdition.
Glory to God who knows all things and reveals the meaning of His Word, as follows:
1. Egypt (fallen)
2. Assyria (fallen)
3. Babylon (fallen)
4. Medo-Persia (fallen)
5. Greece (fallen)
6. Political Rome (fallen since Paul wrote to the Thessalonians and John wrote the Revelation)
7. Papal Rome (active)
8. PERDITIOUS ROME - on the way, watch this space. (Figuratively Rome is all exalted human government worldwide)
The whore of Babylon is a metaphor depicting all the very real corruption, deception, and exploitation of sinful man attended by the chaos and confusion of Politics, Commerce, and Religion under the power of Satan. The final zenith of the natural wickedness of man results in the deposing of the whore of Babylon from atop this metaphorical first beast from the sea where she has become a restrictive burden, and in juxtaposition to this fulfillment of prophecy we have the man of wicked nature who is the second metaphorical beast from the earth, rising to the pinnacle of power to be enthroned in Christendom as a P.O.P.E (President Of Planet Earth), whence he imposes his mark on those who are deceived into receiving him as their prophet. The apostasy from genuine Christianity will facilitate the insinuation of this false (possibly Jesuit) prophet into the hearts and minds of false converts, leaving only a remnant who will be martyred for their faith during this great tribulation.
Glory to God who knows all things and reveals His plans to His people.
actually, im not assuming, the wine in both cases I listed, was indeed alcoholic. It is true, that there were two forms of wine used in hebrew and greek writing, and the Jews used both alcoholic and non-alcoholic wine, and while the greek words differ, the english word is the same. The word used in timothy when Paul was addressing timothy, was the word used for alcohol, as was the word used in matthew in the marriage feast. Also, its important to note, the traditions of the time, in that a wedding was a celebration-and they used actual, alcoholic wine in it. Id have to look it up, but if memory serves me right, they would start with the non-alcoholic stuff, and work their way up to the alcoholic stuff. If they run out, it means they ran out of both the non and alcoholic drinks, and the ruler of the feast couldnt tell it wasnt water, that it was very good, every indication from the original greek, to the customs to the context indicates that Jesus first miracle was indeed, turning water into an alcoholic beverage.
Even on my missions trip in moldova, they had basically two forms-one was called Musk (not sure on the spelling) and it was non-fermented, basically grape juice. they kept it in airtight containers, and you could open it, and drink it as is, or let it ferment for a time and turn to wine. Both were very good.
And yes, the Bible has strong words against drinking to much-being drunk is very much listed as a sin and the Bible condemns drunkeness in both the old and new testaments. but nowhere, does it say drinking in moderation is a sin, and there are health benefits to certain alcoholic drinks such as wine when drank in moderation. Its like anything on this earth, everything has a "purpose" and God intended everything He made to have a good wholesome purpose, and when used to that purpose, it is good, but when it is abused, as humans are good at doing to pretty much everything, it is a bad thing.
The point is, believing every time we see pure, white, clean linen in scripture it must be translated saints is incorrect. It's like saying the only time the lawn is wet is because it just rained. There are other reason the lawn could be wet, just like there are others attired in pure, white, clean linen in scripture.
Pure, white, clean linen is a badge of righteousness, not class, not a group identifier. The angels of God are righteous hence, they also wear clean white linen, therefore the armies of heaven that return with Jesus to fight at the end of thee age could indeed be angels and cannot be summarily judged to be the newly, or even past, translated believers.