I’m sure you know as do we all, that as with most things you just can’t have it both ways. So, is this not true when considering this verse with it’s promise?
Here are the considerations needed to be made in this passage:
1. Is this church of Philadelphia representative of all who are alive at the time of the Resurrection and Rapture? And is it also representative of those believers who are alive during the time of Tribulation?
2. Is the “hour” in this verse equivalent to the entire Tribulation or just to the Wrath that the believer in Christ will escape but which comes to finally seal the world’s fate?
3. Does God’s wrath equal a 7 year Tribulation?
Some say that Scripture has taught from the early days of the apostles that the Lord’s Coming was imminent, and that we as believers are to have always been expectant of the possibility of His “any moment” appearing. Yet here in this verse is where we encounter our first concern with this teaching. In order for the Philadelphia church to be the only representative of “the church” of the end time one must adopt a theory of seven ages within what is deemed by these scholars as the church age, but which both Jesus and Paul call this age. In these men’s thinking Philadelphia is the sixth age and would accordingly represent the church who will be Raptured prior to Tribulation. Thus to them missing this “hour” would mean missing the Tribulation itself. But if there are seven consecutive ages within this age as they teach, then there can be nothing imminent about the Lords return until some trigger causes it to be imminent. In this case that trigger is the ripening of the Philadelphia church age. We have discussed what must ripen in other articles here on this site.
Philadelphia was told that she will be kept from an hour of testing which is to test all earth dwellers. If this message is for us today what is its meaning? The Tribulation is never in scripture called a test of God’s doing, yet this hour is a test for the whole world. The Tribulation is a test that Satan will bring for the existent believers of that day. Listen:
10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, so that you will be tested, and you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.
So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus.
Revelation 12:17 NASB
And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death.
Revelation 12:11 NASB
Then He said to me, “ It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. He who overcomes will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son.
Revelation 21:6-7 NASB
7 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’
Revelation 2:7 NASB
This overcoming of Satan for the believer in Christ and in His blood is the test identified with the Tribulation. So then what is the meaning of Revelation 3:10? Is it Satan’s wrath against believers in Christ?
Even the tribulations that we go through today as believers are never a testing for the world. So how does one identify a test that is for earth dwellers only?
So, could hour mean a seven year Tribulation or could it instead mean an hour of God’s final wrath which is only for the world? Orge is one of the two Greek words for wrath, could it’s outpouring represent the hour in question here? We have also discussed this in other articles.
When one studies Gods wrath in relation to the believer it becomes apparent that we are not appointed to Orge. Several scriptures tell us this. Nor when studying Revelation is Orge present for the entire time of the Tribulation. Orge when it appears in Revelation is associated with the second coming and it is recognized and seemingly understood by those opposed to Christ, who would be earth dwellers. It is understood as a soon coming but undesired event connected to Christ’s appearance. Listen:
and they * said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”
Revelation 6:16-17 NASB
This entire passage on the seals is in alignment with Jesus’ description of end-time events in Matt. 24. This verse is not the beginning of those events but the end of them. Christ has made His appearance here.
Therefore it seems that this promise to us is for the escape from Orge wrath which is poured out at Jesus second coming to earth. The Rapture proceeds it.
The word Orge is found in Rev. 6:16-17; 11:18; 14:10; 16:19 and 19:15.
When these passages are read one can see that the Lord is present and His actual reign is at its very beginning. This Orge wrath is for that very time of His Glorious Appearing. In my book I have shown the evidence for this understanding, and on this site I have dissected the bowls of Thumos wrath poured out before the Lord returns and compared them with Orge in an article titled: Is The Great Tribulation Really God’s Wrath — is it really the wrath that we will not see? Aug 11, 2017
The Bible teaches that you and I are not appointed for Orge, it is reserved for the children of Orge (the children of wrath). At the time it is poured out it must even be felt in Hell itself thus effecting all of God’s enemies; for at that very time (the time of the Second Coming) it is finished.
May God bless you as you continue your study of His word.