There is one very sobering question which weighs heavily upon the writer’s heart, and he would ask his readers to share it. Many of God’s people are being assured today that the Rapture will take place before the Tribulation and that the Church will not experience those terrible days. Those who hold a different view and believe that the Church will suffer in the Tribulation from Antichrist have not been vocal. The author knows of a good number of outstanding Christian leaders who hold this expectation, but they do not wish to be quoted and they have not publicly expressed themselves.
However, can we afford to be silent on this question? In light of the fact that the Word of God nowhere expressly asserts a pretribulational rapture, and since there is no plain affirmation that the Church will be taken out of the world before Antichrist appears, let us suppose that we are in fact in the very last days, and within a matter of months or a few years at most, God moves upon the events of world history so that suddenly a new Caesar or Mussolini or Hitler or Stalin appears who is unquestionably the Antichrist. Suppose that such as person, the incarnation of satanic power, actually gains domination of the entire world as neither Mussolini or Hitler or Stalin were able to do. Suppose that he uses this power to demand a worship of himself and his state upon penalty of death, suppose that martyrs begin to fall by the hundreds of thousands, not only of Jews but particularly of Christians who will not worship the Beast or receive his mark. Suppose that suddenly the people of God find themselves engulfed in a horrible persecution at the hands of the Antichrist when they had been assured repeatedly on the authority of the Word of God that this experience would never befall them. What will be the result? We leave it to the reader’s imagination. Certainly we dare not propagate a teaching of safety about which the Word of God is not indisputably clear, nor should we accept the responsibility of filling the hearts of God’s people with what may be a false hope and thus leave them utterly unprepared for terrible days of persecution when and if they fall. If there is the possibility that the Church is to suffer tribulation at the hands of Antichrist, do not those who believe it have a God-given responsibility to do what they can to prepare the Church for what may be ahead, even though it is a very unwelcome message? Our responsibility is to God, not to man (emphasis mine, The Blessed Hope, 159-60).