Ron Rhoads in his book The End Times in Chronological Order, seems to be quite certain of how the next steps of the future, leading up to the Tribulation, will play out. And he is not alone. Others like Joel Rosenberg, Arnold Fruchtenbaum, and Thomas Ice (all whom I admire as prophecy scholars) agree with him. Here are five future events that Ron Rhoads (and myself) sees happening, in Chronological order…
FROM NOW UNTIL THE TRIBULATION
1. The rapture of the Church. Nothing needs to happen before the rapture. And it seems that this event will kick off all of the next major end time events prophecies in scripture.
2. Russia and her allies invade Israel (Ezek. 38-39). With the world being in a state of shock and chaos after the rapture, and with Israel’s only true ally, the United States, greatly reduced in number, Russia and her Muslim allies will think to seize the moment by attacking Israel, thinking that the United States is too crippled to lend any support.
Well, as we know from Scripture, these marauders will invade Israel, but will be soundly defeated by the Lord himself, and not a single Israelite will be hurt. An earthquake, infighting, disease, and torrential rain, hail and burning sulfur will all be God’s doing and will bring massive death and destruction so that “no further attack against Israel by these evil forces will be possible!”
3. Possible revival in many nations (Ezek. 38:23). We can’t be sure of any true conversions as a result of the how God will save Israel from certain annihilation; we can only speculate what will happen from what verse 23 says,
“And I shall magnify Myself, sanctify Myself, and make Myself known in the sight of many nations; and they will know that I am the Lord.”‘
4. The rise of a revived Roman Empire led by the antichrist. Indeed, the destruction of Russia and her allies will set the stage for the antichrist and the Tribulation. Thomas Ice writes,
If the tribulation is closely preceded by a failed regional invasion of Israel (by Russia and her Muslim allies), then this would remove much of the Russian and Muslim influence currently in the world today and allow a Euro-centric orientation to arise.
Yes, as I see it, Isis, and all the other extreme Muslim groups, along with Russia will be wiped out, leaving the antichrist plenty of space and freedom to conquer the world.
5. The signing of a peace pact with Israel (Dan. 9:27). With Russia and the extreme Muslims out of the picture, a peace pack with Israel will be easy; the new world leader (the antichrist) will be the one to sign that peace treaty. But it will be a treaty that he will not intend to keep; for in the middle of the 7-year treaty he will break it and strike against Israel and seek to destroy them.
Also, we know that the day the treaty is signed is the very day that the Tribulation begins, referred in Daniel 9:27 as the 70th week. I personally think this will be the beginning of world War III (see Revelation 6:1-4). But Israel will be safe (protected by the antichrist) for the first three and one-half years.