7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.
8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
9 If any man have an ear, let him hear.
Those who believe the Church will go through the Tribulation have been known to point to Rev. 13:7 as one of the reasons for believing this.
However, consider the words of Jesus Christ in Matthew 16:18….
“Upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
In order for the “saints” being referenced in Rev. 13:7 to be “the Church” in the process of going through the Tribulation, then the words of Jesus in Matt. 16:18 would have to be discarded as at least hyperbole and at worst prevarication!
Because in Rev. 13:7 we see what some are claiming is “the Church” being OVERCOME by the dark forces of Hell–when Jesus proclaimed that the gates of Hell would not prevail against “the Church!”
An additional point to ponder….
Notice v. 9…. “If any many have an hear, let him hear.”
Interestingly, the similar admonition found 7 times in Revelation 2 & 3 specifically lists the scope of what the Spirit was saying as being limited to the ecclesia… “the Church”.
“He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.”
See Rev. 2:7, 11, 17, 29, 3:6, 13 & 22.
It seems obvious that what is being spoken in Rev. 13 is NOT being addressed to “the Church” in the manner of that which was being spoken in Rev. 2 & 3 was.
This is just another small clue showing that “the saints” of Rev. 13:7 are not “the Church” as we know it today.
Rather, this term is referring to the “Holy Ones” of the Age to Come, i.e., those who will be saved out of the Tribulation.
Pastor Tim Cormier