I believe that the saints would be raptured before the Great Tribulation. But the Bible makes frequent references to the saints who still remain on this earth during the time of the Great Tribulation. Are they the ones who compromised with the world, and whose faith turned lukewarm as a result?
First of all, you must realize that the theory of pre-tribulation rapture that you believe in is in fact a false doctrine. This is the part where many Christians have misunderstood. They think that because the saints would already have been raptured before the Great Tribulation, when its time comes there would only be sinners on this earth. However, the problem is that the Bible makes frequent references to the saints who, while still remaining on this earth during the time of the Great Tribulation, overcome persecution with perseverance and are martyred.
Many people therefore mistakenly think that these saints that are left behind and persecuted in the Tribulation's time are the ones who had compromised with the world and whose faith were only lukewarm.
People who hold this view live in such confusion because they do
not know the exact time of the rapture from the Word of God. When,
then, is the exact time of the rapture? On this issue, Paul spoke
to us in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4 as the following: "Now, brethren,
concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering
together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled,
either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though
the day of Christ had come. Let no one deceive you by any means;
for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first,
and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes
and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped,
so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that
he is God."
"The man of sin… the son of perdition" here refers to the
Antichrist who would emerge in the midst of the Great Tribulation.
In other words, the Antichrist would make his appearance in the
world before the rapture and raise himself high as God. He would
therefore make idols of himself and force people to worship and
serve him. To bring everyone under his control, he would also make
people receive the mark of the Beast's name or number on either
their right hands or foreheads, and forbid anyone who does not have
this mark from buying or selling anything.
When this Beast appears in the world, the people of this world will be coerced to receive the mark made of his name or the number of his name. As such, everyone whose name is not written in the Book of Life since the creation would all end up receiving the mark and worshipping the Beast.
However, because the saints who have become God's people have the Holy Spirit dwelling in their hearts, they cannot worship any creature as God apart from their true Lord God. The Holy Spirit living in their hearts would therefore give them the strength to resist the coercion of Satan and of the Antichrist and to defend their faith with their martyrdom. And the Holy Spirit would also give them the words with which they can stand against their enemies.
Revelation 17:12-13 tell us, "The ten horns which you saw are
ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive
authority for one hour as kings with the beast. These are of one
mind, and they will give their power and authority to the beast."
The Antichrist would receive authority to persecute the saints and
reign the nations of the world for only a very short while. The
Antichrist's demand to receive his mark, therefore, will shortly
be followed by the martyrdom of the saints.
Revelation 11:11-12, on the other hand, tell us, "Now after the three-and-a-half days the breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them. And they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, 'Come up here.' And they ascended to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies saw them." From this fact, that the two martyred witnesses were resurrected and raptured in three and a half days, we can also see that the interval between our martyrdom and rapture is not such a long time either. These two witnesses were raptured simultaneously with their resurrection. When the Lord returns, the martyred saints and the surviving saints who did not receive the mark of the Beast will all be resurrected, lifted up to the air, and receive the Lord in the air.
Therefore, we can realize that the appearance of the Antichrist, the saints' martyrdom and resurrection, and their rapture are all closely interrelated with each other. Paul and John thus explained to us the time of the saints' rapture in such detail. All the saints will go through the first three and a half years of the Great Tribulation. Until the plagues of the seven trumpets are all over, in other words, they would all be still remaining on this earth.
And with the appearance of the Antichrist, the saints would enter into the second three-and-a-half-year period of the Great Tribulation, and they would remain on this earth until they are martyred for refusing to receive the mark of the Beast. Realizing this, we must all receive the nurturing of faith in God's Church now, at this very present time.