The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope in Jesus Christ

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Whether you have studied much or little about the pre-tribulation rapture of the church, I want you to be confident that this belief is well-supported by scripture.

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. (Titus 2:11-14)

While we are watching the signs of rumors of wars, third Temple progress, attitudes in society and in the church, among others, the BIG EVENT – the resurrection of the dead in Christ and the transformation of living saints into resurrection bodies – is almost upon us. After the transformation from temporal to eternal, a literal “catching away” of those who believe in Jesus will occur. This is commonly known as the rapture, from the Latin translation of “caught up” – rapiemur (from rapio). The Greek word is harpazo (Strong’s 726). Both mean “we are caught up” or “we are taken away”, and suggest suddenness and aggressiveness. HELPS Word-studies defines harpazo as “seize by force; snatch up, suddenly and decisively – like someone seizing bounty (spoil, a prize); to take by an open display of force (i.e. not covertly or secretly).” (Source)

The rapture isn’t going to be a secret, but it will be sudden! Let’s examine the scriptures pertaining to this glorious event!

First, passages that promise to spare the saints from wrath:

Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. (Revelation 3:10)

“But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:36)

Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. (Romans 5:9)

For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. 1 (Thessalonians 5:9-10)

For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come. (1 Thessalonians 1:9-10)

We are not destined for wrath! God has never poured out His wrath upon His righteous ones in the past, and He won’t do so in the future either. How is God going to spare us from wrath? It’s all a part of the gift of transformation from temporal to eternal.

Second, passages talking about our transformation from temporal to eternal:

Listen! I am telling you a mystery: We will not all fall asleep, but we will all be changed [allasso], in a moment, in the blink of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed. For this corruptible must be clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal must be clothed with immortality. When this corruptible is clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal is clothed with immortality, then the saying that is written will take place:

Death has been swallowed up in victory.

Death, where is your victory?

Death, where is your sting?

(1 Corinthians 15:51-55)

But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. (Philippians 3:20-21)

For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just. (Luke 14:14)

I would suggest that these two passages have a near and a far fulfillment, which is common in prophecy:

Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment. (John 5:28-29)

And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. (Daniel 12:2)

This transformation, or changing, occurs in the twinkling of an eye – instantaneously. The dead in Christ will be transformed – rise from the grave and be united with a resurrection body. Then, we who are alive and remain, will be transformed into our eternal bodies. Together we will all be caught up to be with the Lord. The dead who are not in Christ will be resurrected in the second resurrection – the one to judgment at the Great White Throne.

Because a lot of people have confusion over the resurrection events I will summarize:

First Resurrection

  1. Jesus and the Many Saints – approx. 32-33 AD – 1 Corinthians 15:20, Matthew 27:52-53 (note: the FIRST harvest of the Feasts of God – Unleavened Bread)
  2. Main Resurrection / Rapture event – hopefully this year 🙂 – 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 (note: will this be on the SECOND harvest of the Feast of God – Pentecost?)
  3. Tribulation Martyrs – between second coming and millennial kingdom – Revelation 20:4,6 (note: the THIRD harvest of the Feasts of God – Tabernacles)

Some believe that the Old Testament saints will be resurrected from the dead along with the church pre-tribulation, and some believe that they will be resurrected from the dead along with the tribulation martyrs post-tribulation. From our perspective as the alive body of Christ (the church), I would suggest this isn’t an issue to raise any ruckus about; what is clear is that they will be raised at some point and rule with Christ during the Millennial Kingdom.

Second Resurrection

Occurs after the millennial kingdom, in 1007+ years – Revelation 20:5,11-15, John 5:29b.  Includes all unbelievers from the beginning of time. It would also seem to include any believers who may have passed away during the Millennial Kingdom.

Third, passages predicting the “harpazo” of the saints:

Just as man is appointed to die once, and after that to face judgment, so also Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many; and He will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who eagerly await Him. (Hebrews 9:28)

“She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne” (Revelation 12:5)

“Your heart must not be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come back and receive you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also.” (John 14:1-3)

Note how Jesus said He will receive [Strong’s 3880] us unto Himself as you read the next passage:

Two men will be in the field; one will be taken [received, Strong’s 3880] and the other left. Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken [received, Strong’s 3880] and the other left. (Matthew 24:40-41)

Interestingly, Strong’s Concordance states the word used, paralambanetai, #3880, has the common usage as “I take from, receive from, or: I take to, receive; I take with me”. HELPS Word-studies further adds that this taking is “aggressive; to take (receive) by showing strong personal initiative”. (Source) The ones aggressively taken, harpazo‘d, will be received unto the Lamb. There are those who disagree with this interpretation, but this is not a salvation issue so we can “agree to disagree”.

Fourth, passages containing the transformation, catching up, and sparing from wrath:

We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, concerning those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope. Since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, in the same way God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep through Jesus. For we say this to you by a revelation from the Lord: We who are still alive at the Lord’s coming will certainly have no advantage over those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and so we will always be with the Lord. Therefore encourage one another with these words. (1 Thessalonians 4:13-17)

This is such an encouraging passage of scripture! The trumpet in the Old Testament (shofar) was used to summon for worship or to summon to battle. To believers, this trumpet blast will mean – Come Up Here! To angels, this trumpet blast will mean Prepare For Battle!

We see that the souls of those who have died in Christ are currently WITH GOD, and Jesus will bring them with Him when it is time for Him to call us home. (This refutes the concept of “soul sleep”). We then see Jesus descending from heaven with a SHOUT (not a whisper, this isn’t a secret!)! The bodies of the dead in Christ are then resurrected and transformed into an eternal body like Christ’s own. These bodies join their waiting souls! Then, all believers who are alive on earth will be transformed and caught up (harpazo) with them. (This refutes any notion of a time gap between transformation and catching up).  These words are to be an encouragement!!!

As a pregnant woman about to give birth writhes and cries out in her pains, so we were before You, Lord. We became pregnant, we writhed in pain; we gave birth to wind. We have won no victories on earth, and the earth’s inhabitants have not fallen. Your dead will live; their bodies will rise. Awake and sing, you who dwell in the dust! For you will be covered with the morning dew, and the earth will bring out the departed spirits. Go, my people, enter your rooms and close your doors behind you. Hide for a little while until the wrath has passed. For look, the Lord is coming from His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity. The earth will reveal the blood shed on it and will no longer conceal her slain. (Isaiah 26:17-21)

Totally amazing Old Testament rapture passage. Isaiah 26 clearly reveals that the dead will rise and enter their “rooms” (where Jesus has gone to prepare a place for us), after which God will pour out His wrath on the inhabitants of the earth. Before the mystery of the rapture was revealed through the apostle Paul, no one understood the meaning of such passages – however, they were clearly there, waiting to be understood at the proper time. I personally believe that since Isaiah was writing to the Old Testament saints, this indicates that the they, too, will be resurrected PRIOR to Daniel’s 70th week.

Fifth, Other Passages Where People are Harpazo’d:

And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried [harpazo] Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. (Acts 8:39)

I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up [harpazo] to the third heaven—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows. And I know that this man was caught up [harpazo] into paradise—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows— and he heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter. (2 Cor 12:2-4)

And when the dissension became violent, the tribune, afraid that Paul would be torn to pieces by them, commanded the soldiers to go down and take him away from among them by force [harpazo] and bring him into the barracks. (Acts 23:10)

The teaching of a carrying, seizing, snatching, or catching up/away is found a number of times in scripture. In each case it is sudden and does not rely at all upon the person being carried away by the Spirit of God. Of note, the word is also used to describe how no one else is able to snatch, seize, or carry away:

I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch [harpazo] them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch [harpazo – pluck, seize] them out of the Father’s hand. (John 10:28-29)

God, in His omnipotence, is able to carry us away at His will. Also in His omnipotence, He is able to prevent anyone else (human or spirit) from taking us away from Him. How reassuring is that! We are safe in His hand.

 

Sixth, Salvation Before the Day of the Lord:

Note that God’s WRATH begins at the Day of the Lord. The Day of the Lord is not defined by “tribulation” or “great tribulation” or “greatest tribulation”, but by God’s wrath encompassed in the Trumpets and Bowls. The “greatest tribulation” that Jesus mentions in Matthew 24 comes from the antichrist, who will be seated in the Temple proclaiming to be “god”. We will also be spared from this “greatest tribulation”, but that’s not why we are spared. We are spared from God’s wrath, which begins far earlier than the “greatest tribulation”. God’s wrath would seem to begin once the Yom Kippur ceremony has been performed in heaven (at the end of Seal 7), but all the world recognizes that the time of His wrath has come at Seal 6. I personally believe that all 7 seals open at the moment of the rapture, and their effects are felt throughout the entire 70th week of Daniel.

Consider all the below occurring within milliseconds:

  • the resurrection of the dead in Christ, their transformation, and uniting of their bodies and souls
  • the transformation of the living in Christ, and their catching up to be with Jesus
    the removal of the “Restrainer” from the earth (the indwelling Holy Spirit in the body of Christ)
  • Apocalyptic Horses 1-4 released from restraint and lunge forward to begin their tasks
  • The entire world recognizes that the wrath of the Lamb and God (one on the throne) has come

“When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale. The sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?” (Revelation 6:12-17)

Who can stand? Everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord can stand.

After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:9-10)

This is also shown in Acts 2, when Peter quotes Joel 2:

“And I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke; the sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day. And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’”

Note that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved – when? BEFORE the day of the Lord begins.

[I understand that many within the pre-tribulation rapture watching community will disagree with the timing of these passages and that is ok. This is not a salvation issue. It isn’t even a rapture timing issue (we all agree in a pre-tribulation rapture, where no believer will face the wrath of God). I want you to understand that it’s okay to consider different possibilities for how exactly Revelation chapters 4-6 play out in a pre-tribulation way. NONE of us have it figured out 100% correctly! So please don’t throw out the rest of this article because you believe the rapture MUST be pictured with the open door in Revelation 4, with billions of us represented by only 24 elders.]

Subsequent to the resurrection / rapture event, the heavenly Yom Kippur ceremony begins:

When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. Then I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. And another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden censer, and he was given much incense to offer with the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar before the throne, and the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, rose before God from the hand of the angel. Then the angel took the censer and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth, and there were peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning, and an earthquake. (Revelation 8:1-5)

In the earthly Yom Kippur ceremony, performed yearly as a shadow to the heavenly ceremony, we see the following performed:

  • prayers, from all the people
  • half an hour of silence
  • the high priest enters the holy of holies only on this one day, the day of atonement
    he stands at the altar with a golden censer, offering incense to God, until the entire chamber is filled with smoke
  • the end of the ceremony is marked by the Tekiah Gedolah – a long, loud blast from the shofar

More on the Yom Kippur ceremony can be found on the Temple Institute website and Messianic applications can be found on the Hebrew For Christians website.

This pattern of rapture followed by the Day of the Lord can also be seen in 2 Thessalonians 2:

Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him [the rapture], we ask you, brothers, not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day [the day of the Lord] will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed… (2 Thessalonians 2:1-3)

The pattern is Rapture (our gathering together to Christ) – the man of lawlessness revealed (immediately post-rapture) – the Day of the Lord begins.

The rapture is an event, not a day. The rapture is not connected at all to the Day of the Lord. We are swept out of the way before the Day can begin. Whenever scripture mentions “that Day”, or “that great and terrible Day”, it is referring to the Day of the Lord, which is the time period of God’s wrath throughout the 70th week of Daniel (7 years). It culminates at the 7th bowl and the Second Coming of Christ. The Day of the Lord has to do with Israel, not the church.

 

Seventh, the Lord’s Prayer:

I want you to take a close look at the Lord’s Prayer with me:

“Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread,

and forgive us our debts,

as we also have forgiven our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil.”

(Matthew 6:9-13)

Your Kingdom Come

Jesus gives us the example to specifically pray for Him to come back and set up His Millennial Kingdom!

Your Will be Done on Earth as it is in Heaven

We long for Jesus to rule humanity, with His will being carried out upon the Earth. We are praying for the literal fulfillment of all biblical prophecies when we recite these phrases. There’s a lot more that could be said, but I’m going to keep it simple here – “Please come, Jesus, and fix everything better!!!” It’s the next two phrases I think we need to mine more deeply.

Lead Us Not Into Temptation

While Jesus promises not to allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear, are we really to pray not to be tempted at all? Scripture is clear that we *will* be tested and tried, throughout the church age. We are to consider these trials and tribulations a joy:

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. (1 Corinthians 10:13)

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-4)

Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame (Romans 5:3-5)

In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 1:6-7)

Is it possible then that “lead us not into temptation” doesn’t mean the regular trials of faith and life that we are certainly to encounter and are even to embrace? Let’s look at the interlinear to see!

LeadStrong’s 1533 eispheró – to bring or lead, to carry inward

TemptationStrong’s 3986 peirasmos – an experiment, a trial, temptation; trial, probation, testing, being tried; temptation; calamity, affliction. Thayer’s Greek Lexicon adds the additional insight of “adversity, affliction, trouble”.

Does a trial, testing, calamity, affliction, and trouble remind you of something you have probably studied often – the Time of Jacob’s Trouble (Jeremiah 30:7)? Could Jesus have been encouraging us to pray “do not carry us forward into the Times of Trouble”? Does He suggest this elsewhere as well? I believe He does:

“But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:36)

What about the word Jesus chose for temptation, that we are to pray to not be led into? It’s not the same as the “greatest tribulation”, that begins long after the rapture event. Instead, He uses the word for trouble and trial, which is also used here:

Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial [peirasmos] that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. (Revelation 3:10)

then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials [peirasmos], and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment… (2 Peter 2:9)

Jesus tells us to pray that we will not be led into the hour of trial that is coming upon the whole world, that we will have the strength/worthiness to escape all these things that are going to take place! The only way we can be worthy to escape is through His blood as our covering – being born again into the family of God.

But Deliver Us From Evil

If we are to pray to not be led into the time of trouble on earth, what else are we to pray? That we are to be delivered from evil, in general? Or is there a more specific meaning here?

DeliverStrong’s 4506 rhuomai – to draw to oneself, deliver; I rescue, deliver (from danger or destruction). From HELPS Word-studies – “properly, draw (pull) to oneself; to rescue (“snatch up”); to draw or rescue a person to and for the deliverer.”

Note the term “snatch up”? Sounds kinda like the harpazo, or rapture, doesn’t it! Where else is rhuomai used? Let’s see!

Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver [rhuomai] me from this body of death? (Romans 7:24)

When do we get delivered from this body of death? At the resurrection/rapture event!

For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers [rhuomai] us from the wrath to come. (1 Thessalonians 1:9-10)

…and if he rescued [rhuomai] righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); then the Lord knows how to rescue [rhuomai] the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment… (2 Peter 2:7-9)

As in the days of Lot, we will be rescued before God’s wrath pours down on those who “refused to love the truth and so be saved” (2 Thessalonians 2:10).

EvilStrong’s 4190 ponéros – evil, bad, wicked, malicious, slothful. It is also translated as “evil one”. From Thayer’s Greek Lexicon – ὁ πονηρός is used pre-eminently of the devil, the evil one: Matthew 5:37; Matthew 6:13; Matthew 13:19, 38; Luke 11:4 R L; John 17:15; 1 John 2:13; 1 John 3:12; 1 John 5:18f

It is important to note that in the Greek, there is a definitive article tou (the) in front of ponērou. Thus the translation is most accurately rendered “the evil (one)”. Thus we are to pray to be delivered from the evil one, satan, himself.

In the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus is teaching us to pray for Bible prophecy to be fulfilled, including that we would not be led into the time of trouble on earth (the “tribulation” or 70th week of Daniel), that we would be delivered from the evil one (satan, including his unholy trinity of the antichrist and false prophet), and that Jesus would come and establish His millennial kingdom on earth. Built in to the Lord’s Prayer is a plea to be raptured!!! Isnt’ that amazing!??!!

Do we see hints of this anywhere else in scripture?

Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! (2 Peter 3:11-12)

Peter speaks of waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God (the day of the Lord). We know from our scripture study above, that the rapture occurs BEFORE the day of the Lord, and so when we pray for the day to haste we are also praying for the rapture!

Summary:

I truly believe the scriptures above speak for themselves. God has not destined us for wrath, but for salvation. We are supposed to encourage one another with the words of our blessed hope – that we will be taken and received unto Jesus, to be with Him forever. We will be worthy to escape all these things that are coming upon the earth, through the blood of the Lamb. Church age believers will be snatched up into the Day of Christ, while those left behind on earth will continue on into the Great and Terrible Day of the Lord.

As far as WHEN?

“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read Blessed Assurance:  A Guide to Rapture Readiness.

it is well.jpg

 

Note:  This article was originally published June 1, 2017 here:  The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope.


Further Resources:

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

 

 

Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast That Ties Everything Together for the Church

This probably won’t cover everything you need to know about the Feast of Pentecost… but it might come close!  😉

In studying the Feast of Pentecost, one of God’s Appointed Times (Mo’ed), it is becoming increasingly clear to me that this feast ties together so many loose ends for the church.  What has started out as a single post is evolving into a series, through which I hope to bring you along on a fascinating journey of discovery!  Pentecost – our “highest watch date”!

If you will remember, the Feasts of God tell the redemption story of mankind. The Jewish men were required to make 3 pilgrimages per year to Jerusalem, to honor these feasts:

1. Early Spring Feasts (Passover / Firstfruits)
2. Late Spring Feast (Pentecost)
3. Fall Feasts (Tabernacles)

Interestingly, the first resurrection (for believers) also has 3 stages:

1. Firstfruits – Jesus and the “many saints”
2. (main resurrection / rapture event)
3. Tabernacles – the tribulation martyrs resurrected to rule during the millennial kingdom

Are you seeing the pattern I am? Pentecost is the feast that has to do with the church – it is our birthday! Enoch, a type for the gentile rapture, was reportedly “raptured” on his birthday at 365 years old. In the extrabiblical books (the Book of Enoch) it states that his birthday was on Pentecost.  Will we be “raptured” on our birthday as well?

While studying the Feast of Pentecost, I have been praying very earnestly for God to connect threads of scripture together for me.  I believe He gave me Joel 2 and Hebrews 12 as two key passages.  Through my studies, I believe that Pentecost can be scripturally connected with all of the following:

  • The Rapture of the Church and the Resurrection of the Dead in Christ
  • Dispensation Changes
  • Covenant Confirmations
  • The Removal of the Restrainer
  • The Trump of God
  • The Last Trump
  • The Last Day
  • The Start of the Day of the Lord
  • The Gog/Magog Battle of Ezekiel 38-39
  • The Beginning of Birth Pains (the Time of Jacob’s Trouble)
  • The Blood Moon Sign

I will summarize each of these topics here, and you can click on each title for the full post, and additional resources!  Here’s a quick shortcut list:

(In progress)

  1. Pentecost Part 1 – The Giving of the Law, The Giving of Grace
  2. Pentecost Part 2 – The Feast That Marks Dispensation Changes and Birthdays
  3. Pentecost Part 3 – Pentecost Prophecies
  4. Pentecost Part 4 – Temples of God and the Removal of the Restrainer
  5. Pentecost Part 5- The Counting of the Omer – Day and Hour Unknown?
  6. Pentecost Part 6 – God’s Covenant Changes on Pentecost – It’s All About the Blood
  7. Pentecost Part 7 – A Picture of a Pentecost Rapture in Hebrews 12
  8. Pentecost Part 8 – Pentecost, Joel 2, and the Coming of the Day of the Lord
  9. Pentecost Part 9 – The Trumpets and the Feasts
  10. Pentecost Part 10 – The First Trump and the Last Trump – On Pentecost?
  11. Pentecost Part 11 – God’s Battle Cry in the Last Trump
  12. Pentecost Part 12 – Covenants Confirmed, Covenants Proclaimed
  13. Pentecost Part 13 – The Resurrection on the Last Day
  14. Pentecost Part 14 – The Harvest of the Church Pictured on Pentecost (Amos 8)
  15. Pentecost Part 15 – The Day the Skies Open
  16. The Feast of Weddings and Wedding Suppers

Pentecost Part 1 – The Giving of the Law, The Giving of Grace

Pentecost, also known as Shavuot or the Feast of Weeks, is one of God’s appointed times.  These feast days clearly point to God’s redemption plan for humanity.  We are currently in the “Summer Gap” between the Early Spring Feasts (Jesus’ Death and Resurrection – Suffering Servant) and the Fall Feasts (Jesus Second Coming in Power and Great Glory – King of Kings and Lord of Lords).

The first Pentecost, Shavuot, marked the giving of the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai.  In this way, it can be considered the “birthday” of Judaism.  On the first celebration of this feast day after Jesus’ resurrection, the Holy Spirit was given to the body of Christ in power and as a seal for the coming day of redemption.  Thus, Pentecost is also associated with the “birthday” of the Church.

The coming of the Holy Spirit upon all believers is unique to the church age.  Whereas in the Old Covenant (Age of Law), the Holy Spirit came upon specific individuals such as the kings, prophets, and judges, the Holy Spirit in the New Covenant (Age of Grace) comes upon all believers at the moment of salvation to Seal them for the Day of Redemption.

In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.  Ephesians 1:13-14 ESV

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed  for the day of redemption. Ephesians 4:30 ESV

Hebrew4Christians describes the festival of Shavuot as “the culmination of the redemption, sometimes called Atzeret Pesach, or “The Gathering of Passover””.  Culmination of redemption, and the gathering, hey?  Brings to mind these verses:

Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him… 2 Thessalonians 2:1 ESV

For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.  And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.  Romans 8:22-23

It’s looking like Pentecost just may be the feast that marks the culmination of our redemption.

Pentecost Part 2 – The Feast That Marks Dispensation Changes and Birthdays

As we said, Shavuot is considered the day on which Judaism was born (the Age of Law).  Pentecost is considered the day on which the Church was born (the Age of Grace).  In this way, Pentecost has already marked the beginning and ending of several dispensations.

Will a future Pentecost mark another dispensation change?

God’s revelation and dealings with humanity can be broadly separated into “ages”.  It is progressive in nature, as each “dispensation”, or “age”, unfolds into the next.  This is the basis for Dispensational Theology.  It’s not perfect, but it helps us grasp how God has progressively revealed Himself and His redemption plan to humanity.

dispensations

Pentecost was the day on which the dispensation of Law began…and ended.  Pentecost was the day on which the dispensation of Grace began…and will end???  Remember that when the church age ends, a new 7 year “dispensation” will begin that seems to involve both Law AND Grace (per Matthew 25, sheep and goats judgment).  The tribulation saints will be responsible for remaining faithful without the sealing of the Holy Spirit in their hearts.

Tradition holds that Enoch was both born and raptured on Pentecost.  Will we be as well?

1200px-Birthday_candles

Pentecost Part 3 – Pentecost Prophecies

I have been fascinated by the way Peter quoted Joel 2 in Acts 2:16-21 – on the first Pentecost of the Church Age.  Through this passage, I believe he defines the beginning and end of the church age for us.  Peter affirms that the Holy Spirit coming at Pentecost was a partial fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy:

But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel:

[start of church age]

17 “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
    and your young men shall see visions,
    and your old men shall dream dreams;
18 even on my male servants and female servants
    in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.

[church age]

19 And I will show wonders in the heavens above
    and signs on the earth below,
    blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;
20 the sun shall be turned to darkness
    and the moon to blood,
    before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.
21 And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

[end of church age]

Verses 17-18 mark the beginning of the church age.  There is a pregnant pause“, so to speak, between Verses 18 and 19.  Verses 19-21 mark the end of the church age.  It is clear why Peter quotes Joel 2:28-29 on Pentecost as fulfilling that part of Joel’s prophecy.   The end of the Holy Spirit’s sealing ministry in the church will be marked by wonders in the heavens, signs on the earth, blood, fire, vapor of smoke, darkened sun, and a blood red moon.  These events clearly did not occur on the first Pentecost, so why would Peter mention them in his sermon – on Pentecost?  Could it be that he is announcing the future fulfillment of the remainder of Joel’s prophecy on some future Pentecost?  

pentecost 1

I believe that what Peter did NOT quote is just as important to study as what he DID quote, and for that we turn to Joel 2.

“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh;
your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams,
and your young men shall see visions. Even on the male and female servants
in those days I will pour out my Spirit. “And I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke.  The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes.  And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.  For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the Lord has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the Lord calls.  Joel 2:28-32 ESV

I believe Peter is clearly defining the ending of the church age for us, on Pentecost. That’s why he included verses 30-32a in his sermon, on Pentecost.  I can think of no other reason why he would bother including verses 30-32a and leaving off 32b.  He did NOT include verse 32b, because that part will be fulfilled at the second coming, during the Fall Feasts.

Pentecost Part 4 – Temples of God and the Removal of the Restrainer

In the old testament, under the Old Covenant, God’s Holy Spirit dwelt among His people in the Holy of Holies first in the Tabernacle, then in the First Temple.  I am not sure when God’s presence left, perhaps it was when the Temple was destroyed or when the Ark of the Covenant left?  Regardless, His presence never did dwell in the Second Temple and neither did the Ark of the Covenant.  I would suggest a connection between this Ark of the Covenant – a symbol of the Mosaic Covenant – and the Holy Spirit’s dwelling, but would have to research further.

When Jesus came to the earth, the fullness of God dwelt in Him (Colossians 2:9).  When Jesus died for the sins of the world as the Lamb of God, the veil in the temple was torn in two.  Jesus Himself became our high priest.  No longer would the Spirit of God reside in the Holy of Holies in a building built by human hands.  He would now come to reside within the hearts of individual believers, and this takes us once again to Pentecost.

In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in himwere sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.  Ephesians 1:13-14 ESV

And it is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, and who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.  2 Corinthians 1:21-22 ESV

The sealing of the Holy Spirit is the mark of being part of the New Covenant, at least in the church age.  This time of special sealing is coming to an end, though, as the day of our redemption through the resurrection/rapture event draws near. The Holy Spirit will depart from the hearts of individual believers when the Restrainer is removed and the church is taken up into heaven in what we refer to as the “rapture”.  There is only one possible identity of the Restrainer: The Holy Spirit residing within the true body of Christ.

There will then be a push to finally build that Third Temple.

ezekiels temple.png

Pentecost Part 5- The Counting of the Omer – Day and Hour Unknown?

Shavuot is the last of the Spring feasts.  It concludes the Feast of Weeks, which begins at Firstfruits.  This is kind of confusing, so here’s a diagram:

countomerdays

In Deuteronomy, the Israelites are told to “count the seven weeks from the time the sickle is first put to the standing grain” (Deut 16:9 ESV).  Pentecost came exactly 7 weeks after the first harvest of barley.  Hebrew4Christians states “The 49 day countdown to the holiday is called the “Sefirat Omer” – Counting of the Omer.  Every day of the countdown a special blessing was recited naming exactly how many more days were left before the climactic 50th day – a Jubilee of days!”

Since the Feast of Firstfruits can vary by several days on the Hebrew calendar, Pentecost can also vary by several days.  Firstfruits is determined by “the day after the Sabbath following Passover”.  Seven full weeks later is Pentecost.  Thus, the day of Pentecost is not easily determined until after Firstfruits has been established for that year.  As we will see below, there is some variation in how the word “Sabbath” is applied in these day counts.

Interestingly, the Sadducees, Pharisees, and Karaites all had different methods of calculating the date on which Pentecost was to fall.  If you have been following the discussions about whether or not the “Barley Was Abib”, then you have already been introduced to the Karaite version.  Thus, it seems that Pentecost is also a contender, along with the Feast of Trumpets, for the “Feast of Unknown Day/Hour”.

Pentecost Part 6 – God’s Covenant Changes on Pentecost – It’s All About the Blood

As we discussed previously, Shavuot is the feast that marks the giving of the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai.  This Law is regarded as the “Old Covenant”, or the “Mosaic Covenant”.  It was given by God, agreed to by the Hebrew people, and was ratified by the blood of sacrifices as well as a covenant meal.  Moses literally sprinkled the blood of the sacrifices upon the people to “cover them”.

When Jesus came, He fulfilled the Law and the Prophets and made a New Covenant in His blood.

“Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah”.  Jeremiah 31:31 ESV

When Jesus came, He made a new covenant, a better covenant, in His blood.  Jesus fulfilled Jeremiah’s new covenant prophecy through His death and resurrection.  It was given by God, agreed to by individual believers, and ratified by the blood of the ultimate sacrifice – Jesus Christ.  Under the new covenant, we are covered by the blood of the Lamb – the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world!

nothing but the blood

Jesus is the fulfillment of both the Law (the covenant of Moses) and the Prophets (the dispensation of the Law).  A new covenant and dispensation (Grace/Church Age) began at His death and resurrection.  The covenant meal that reminds us of this sacrifice is referred to as communion.  Communion points us to when Jesus will return and complete the redemption of our bodies.  It points to the consummation of our redemption, our wedding supper with Him!

For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body, which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”  For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.  1 Corinthians 11:23-26 ESV

Communion is meant to remind us that JESUS IS COMING BACK FOR US!!!!!!!  Partake in communion joyfully, saints!

And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,  so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.  Hebrews 9:27-28 ESV

Again, Christ will appear a second time TO SAVE THOSE WHO ARE EAGERLY WAITING FOR HIM!

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering,  and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect,  and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.  Hebrews 12:22-24 ESV

Wow, just wow, guys.  Mind blown.  Read that last passage again and tell me if you see a clear picture of the rapture.  We just read that the new covenant in Jesus’ blood will be completely fulfilled when we celebrate it with Him in heaven.  The taking of communion – remembering Christ’s blood shed and body broken for us – is to remind us that He is coming back for us!!!  He will appear a second time to save those who are eagerly waiting for Him!!!  And now in Hebrews 12 we have a clear connection of this event to Pentecost.

Pentecost Part 7 – A Picture of a Pentecost Rapture in Hebrews 12

My dear watchmen, how have we not seen this???  Is this not clearly a rapture passage?  When is it that we will come to the heavenly Mount Zion and the city of the living God?  When do we enter our chambers, the ones that Jesus has been preparing for us in the Heavenly Jerusalem?  When will we attend a festal gathering?  When will the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven assemble?  Surely this is describing the rapture!

mount zion

Ok, you are saying, I can see the rapture here, with our assembling together in heaven at the redemption of our bodies.  But where does Pentecost fit in?  For this we turn to the entire passage to ascertain context:

For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire and darkness and gloom and a tempest and the sound of a trumpet and a voice whose words made the hearers beg that no further messages be spoken to them.  For they could not endure the order that was given, “If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.”  Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I tremble with fear.”  

The passage starts out describing the giving of the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai on what day?  PENTECOST.  It continues with no interruption:

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering,  and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

This is the rapture connection we have discussed above.  And what follows?  Keep going…

See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven.  At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.”  This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain.  Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe,  for our God is a consuming fire.  Hebrews 12:18-29 ESV

Did you note the connection which confirms that the author is connecting the escaping at Mount Sinai and the escaping what is to come next?  The author then describes a shaking of the heavens and the earth, to remove the powers from them in order to establish Jesus’ Kingdom that will never be shaken!  We know that at the rapture there is an escape route, followed by a time of wrath on earth.

But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.  

Luke 21:36 ESV

The giving of the Law on Mount Sinai was a somber and dramatic occasion, ON PENTECOST, which the author of Hebrews ties together with a future festal gathering in heaven as an escape, followed by a shaking of the heavens and the earth.  Could this be a clue that this gathering will also occur on a future PENTECOST, followed by a time of tribulation on earth?

Pentecost Part 8 – Pentecost, Joel 2, and the Coming of the Day of the Lord

Just as God marked His arrival on Mount Sinai with a time of darkness upon the mountain, the Day of the Lord will be a time of great darkness over the whole earth.  While the Day of the Lord and the Giving of the Law at Sinai obviously have very different intents and purposes, I want you to notice how God’s interactions with humanity invoke fear and terror in the hearts of man.

When praying for understanding the connections between Pentecost and the Day of the Lord several nights ago, the Lord brought to mind a song from when I was a kid in church:

 

I believe a key passage to understanding the connections between Pentecost, the Day of the Lord, the Ezekiel 38-39 war, and the rapture of the church is found in Joel Chapter 2.

Notice that a trumpet sounds in Zion before the Day of the Lord begins (Joel 2:1-2).  The Day of the Lord follows, accompanied by darkness, clouds, gloom, and thick darkness.  Note the assembly of the people, the bridegroom and the bride leaving their chambers.  The bridegroom would leave His chamber, heaven, at the time of the opening of the skies to reveal Him.  The bride would leave her earthly chambers to come join Him in the heavenly ones that He has prepared for her.  We will speak more on this wedding in a future post!

Next, however, we need to examine this trumpet that is blown in Zion!

Pentecost Part 9 – The Trumpets and the Feasts

We want to examine which trumpet is blown in Zion in Joel 2:1-2.  To examine this, first we’re going to back up a little bit and discuss another trumpet, and see if we can connect them.  There has been a lot of confusion and controversy surrounding three little words – “The Last Trump”.

…in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  1 Corinthians 15:52 ESV

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.  1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV

Is this “Last Trump” the last of the 7 Trumpet Judgments?  Is this “Last Trump” the last trumpet sounded on the Feast of Trumpets?  Is it the “Last Trump” of a Jubilee year on Yom Kippur?  Is it the “Last Trump” sounded in a feast year on the mysterious Eighth Day after the Feast of Tabernacles?  Or is the “Last Trump” something else?  Could the “Last Trump” be the trumpet blast that is sounded in Mount Zion right before the Day of the Lord???  We will examine all these in this post.

A key passage is found in Numbers 10, which informs us that trumpets are involved in ALL the Feasts of God:

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying,  “Make two silver trumpets. Of hammered work you shall make them, and you shall use them for summoning the congregation and for breaking camp…  On the day of your gladness also, and at your appointed feasts and at the beginnings of your months, you shall blow the trumpets [chatsotsrah, H2689] over your burnt offerings and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings. They shall be a reminder of you before your God: I am the Lord your God.  Numbers 10:1,10 ESV

What we really want to know is which type of trumpet is the Last Trump????  Is the Last Trump a chatsotrsrah, that will sound on a Feast Day?

For this, we need to find out what kind of trumpet the First Trump was, and when it was sounded.  I do not believe that the First and Last Trump will both be sounded at the rapture, because I believe the First Trump has already sounded – on Pentecost!

 

Pentecost Part 10 – The First Trump and the Last Trump – On Pentecost?

The very first mention in the Bible of a trumpet blast is found in Exodus chapter 19.  You should be familiar with this chapter by now, as it records the very first Pentecost, when God came down to meet with Moses on Mount Sinai to give the 10 Commandments.  More specifically, God instituted the Mosaic Covenant and the Dispensation of Law on this day.  And He did so with the First Trump in scripture.

The First Trump was one long blast which summoned the entire congregation before Mount Sinai.  It also sounded the very first Pentecost.  So now let’s look, what kind of trumpet and blast is the Last Trump?

…in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet [salpigx, G4536]. For the trumpet [salpigx, G4536] will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  1 Corinthians 15:52 ESV

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet [salpigx, G4536] of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.  1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV

We have to connect the Greek (New Testament) with the Hebrew (Old Testament).  We know the Last Trump is a Salpigx:

Last Trump: G4536, salpigx (1 Corinthians 15:52; 1 Thessalonians 4:16)

How do we connect the salpigx to the Hebrew?  Fortunately, Hebrews 12 gives us the answer:

For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire and darkness and gloom and a tempest and the sound of a trumpet [salpingos, G4536] and a voice whose words made the hearers beg that no further messages be spoken to them.  For they could not endure the order that was given, “If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.”  Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I tremble with fear.”  Hebrews 12:18-20 ESV

We now know that the Sinai Trump, the First Trump, is equivalent in meaning to the Last Trump.  They are of the same kind:

Sinai Trump: G4536, salpingos (Hebrews 12:19)

So what exactly does the concordance have to say about a salpigx?

HELPS Word-studies

4536 sálpigks – “properly, a war-trumpet” (WS, 797) that boldly announces God’s victory (the vanquishing of His enemies).

In the OT, trumpets were used to called God’s people to war, and to announce victory wrought by Him. That is, a military clarion that proclaimed the Lord inspired and empowered the victory on behalf of His people.

Source: http://biblehub.com/greek/4536.htm

The “Last Trump”, while also calling us to assembly on the Heavenly Mount Zion as we have studied in Hebrews 12 (the rapture), seems to primarily be a call to war.

Do you remember what Numbers 10 told us was one of the purposes of the silver trumpets, which seem to be used interchangeably with the ram’s horn shophar?

And when you go to war in your land against the adversary who oppresses you, then you shall sound an alarm with the trumpets, that you may be remembered before the Lord your God, and you shall be saved from your enemies.  

The sounding of the trumpets, when used in war, was to cause Israel to be remembered before the Lord their God in order that He should save them from their enemies.  Does this sound shockingly familiar???

Pentecost Part 11 – God’s Battle Cry in the Last Trump

The sounding of the trumpets, when used in war, was to cause Israel to be remembered before the Lord their God in order that He should save them from their enemies.  From Parts 9 & 10 of our study, it seems that the “Last Trump” that sounds at the time of the rapture is likely this battle cry of remembrance – for God to rise up and save Israel from destruction.

God has seemed conspicuously silent towards Israel for the last several thousand years, but in the near future God will break His silence in a specific war detailed in Ezekiel 38-39.

gog_magog

It’s impossible to overemphasize the significance that God Himself is arranging this war exactly according to His schedule.  He will use Gog / Magog as a set-up for both Israel and the nations.  It will be deliberately presented so that it can be interpreted by Israel as the final war (Battle of Armageddon).  When God intervenes, Israel will look for the Messiah to inaugurate the Messianic Kingdom.  A “messiah” will most certainly appear.

Will Israel accept or reject the ultimate false messianic figure?

As on earth, it is in heaven… I believe that the Last Trump will also initiate the greatest heavenly battle of all time.  I believe that THIS is the “heavenly dragon sign” we have been watching for.  I believe it will occur in conjunction with the rapture… as we go up, the angelic hosts go to war.

9045-st-michael-defeats-the-devil-eug-ne-delacroix

The Last Trump will not be sounded by humans.  No matter what it is associated with – Feast of God, Battle Cry, Call to Assembly, or all of the above, the Last Trump is clearly sounded by God Himself.  The “Last Trump” that will call us up to heaven is the trumpet voice of God Himself, issuing forth from the Heavenly Mount Zion just as it did at the First Trump on the earthly Mount Sinai.  It will be a call for the body of Christ to assemble, a call for the angels to go to war, and a call for God to intervene on behalf of His people for the sake of His Holy Name.

Pentecost Part 13 – The Resurrection on the Last Day

We understand that the future resurrection/rapture event will occur prior to what is commonly known as the “7 Year Tribulation”, or the Time of Jacob’s Trouble.  How could this possibly be considered the “Last Day”?  Isn’t the “Last Day” of existence right before the eternal state, when the heavens and the earth are destroyed in preparation for the Great White Throne Judgment?  It’s a great question!

the last daya

The only references to the “Last Day” are found in the book of John.  From these passages it is clear that the Last Day has to do with a resurrection to eternal life.  This resurrection is specifically for believers.  Each time Jesus mentions the “Last Day” it is sandwiched in between statements of eternal life.  It is also strongly connected to Him being the bread of life – that whoever comes to Him shall not hunger and whoever believes in Him shall never thirst.

The “Last Day” is the Resurrection/Rapture event for believers.  It marks the main harvest of the First Resurrection. Unbelievers won’t be resurrected until the end of the Millennial Kingdom, for the Great White Throne Judgment.  So why does Jesus call it a “Last Day”?  Why use such a confusing term?  Well… There is a specific Day that the scriptures talk about hundreds of times.  This Great Day will mark the end of humanity’s reign on earth, so one might refer to it as the Last Day of an era – The Great and Terrible Day of the Lord.

The resurrection/rapture on the Last Day marks the start of the Day of the Lord.  The “Last Day” is the last possible day to get in on the major resurrection/rapture event, before the wrath of God is unleashed upon the earth and the world as we know it comes to a screeching halt.

Pentecost Part 15 – The Day the Skies Open

I’m a sola scriptura kind of gal, so I try not to include extrabiblical texts in my studies.  I do peek into Jewish expectation at times, as I believe that end times prophecy revolves around Israel and the Hebrew people.  Their expectations will play into how they respond to God’s call.  For that reason, we are going to briefly peek into a Kabbalistic Jewish custom today regarding the Feast of Pentecost.

The custom is known as the Tikkun Leil Shavuot.  The kabbalistic Jews stay up all night studying the Torah in preparation for the celebration of Shavuot (Pentecost).  Included in this tradition is the belief that the skies open up for a brief moment during the night.  Now, why do I include this mystical tradition in our study?  I include it because we actually are anticipating the skies rolling back as a scroll!

it is well.jpg

When seal 6 is opened, the sky vanishes like a scroll that is being rolled up.  This is the human perception of what is happening in the earth’s atmosphere and the universe.  It seems that what is occurring here is that the Third Heaven (supernatural) is becoming visible and colliding with the First and Second Heavens (natural realm of atmosphere and space).  The entire sky appears opened, allowing visibility into heaven – people on earth try to hide from what they see, which presumably is God on His throne (or some bright and terrifying supernatural scene).  Note, it’s not a doorway or window that opens, it’s the entire sky – no pushing and shoving necessary, there will be plenty of room for everyone if this is the rapture 😉

Chasing Pentecost 2018

We may never be able to know for sure which date God sees as the true date for Pentecost.  Thus, it seems that Pentecost is also a contender, along with the Feast of Trumpets, for the “Feast of Unknown Day/Hour”.  Note, too, that even if Pentecost is “THE Day”, the actual date and time (hour) will vary for believers worldwide because of time zones :).  And we still don’t know the year. 😉

Possible Pentecost 2018 Dates, starting at sunset in Jerusalem on the Gregorian Calendar.  The Gregorian calendar dates are unchanged whether you use the new moon or the sighting of the first crescent sliver.  The Hebrew calendar dates may vary by 1 day based on moon sighting so 2 days are listed:

May 20, 2018  [5-6 Sivan]

May 27, 2018  [12-13 Sivan]

June 24, 2018  [11-12 Sivan] 

Personally, I believe the Karaites method of determining the Spring Feast Dates is most accurate.  I believe this because they base their determinations on the moon as well as the agricultural conditions.

And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years…” Genesis 1:14 ESV

From the data I have sifted through, it seems probable that Pentecost should occur on May 20, 2018.  There is a small possibility that there should have been a leap month added, pushing Pentecost to June 24, 2018.  I will update if I find information that would suggest otherwise.

 

Under Construction

  • Pentecost Part 12 – Covenants Confirmed, Covenants Proclaimed
  • Pentecost Part 14 – The Harvest of the Church Pictured on Pentecost (Amos 8)
  • The Feast of Weddings and Wedding Suppers

For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. 23 And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.

It appears that God rises up in wrath to supernaturally protect Israel from imminent destruction, and whisks the church out of the way at the same time.  God is fully in charge of the timing of this event – he “hooks the jaws” of Gog to lead him as a horse into position.  Likewise, Jesus is the “author and finisher of our faith”, and thus controls when the “fullness of the Gentiles” (Rom 11:25) is complete.  God has a Day of which He has spoken, and this Day will begin exactly at the time He has preordained.

 


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

Does Scripture Support a Pentecost Rapture? (PDF – T.W. Tramm)

The Feast of Pentecost (GraceThruFaith)

Shavuot – Revelation and the Fruit of the Spirit (Hebrew4Christians)

The Mystery of Pentecost (Prophecy Watchers)

Sweet Hour of Prayer (A Little Strength)

The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope

Seals, Sealing, and the Ministry of the Holy Spirit

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!


Passages Describing the Feast of Pentecost

When studying Biblical teaching, I believe it is always important to read the source for yourself.  Not just a verse or two, but the entire relevant passage.  This will sharpen your discernment skills, as you examine the scriptures for yourself to see if these things are so.  Because we are going to be discussing Pentecost in great detail over the next few posts, I encourage you to read through the following at least once.  So with no further delay, here are the relevant passages describing the celebration of the Feast of Pentecost (Weeks):

On the third new moon after the people of Israel had gone out of the land of Egypt, on that day they came into the wilderness of Sinai.

Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine;and you shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.”So Moses came and called the elders of the people and set before them all these words that the Lord had commanded him. All the people answered together and said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do.”

 The Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments 11 and be ready for the third day. For on the third day the Lord will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. 12 And you shall set limits for the people all around, saying, ‘Take care not to go up into the mountain or touch the edge of it. Whoever touches the mountain shall be put to death. 13 No hand shall touch him, but he shall be stoned or shot; whether beast or man, he shall not live.’ When the trumpet sounds a long blast, they shall come up to the mountain.” 14 So Moses went down from the mountain to the people and consecrated the people; and they washed their garments. 15 And he said to the people, “Be ready for the third day; do not go near a woman.”

16 On the morning of the third day there were thunders and lightnings and a thick cloud on the mountain and a very loud trumpet blast, so that all the people in the camp trembled. 17 Then Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they took their stand at the foot of the mountain. 18 Now Mount Sinai was wrapped in smoke because the Lord had descended on it in fire. The smoke of it went up like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain trembled greatly. 19 And as the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him in thunder. 20 The Lord came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain. And the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.

[10 Commandments Given]

18 Now when all the people saw the thunder and the flashes of lightning and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking, the people were afraid and trembled, and they stood far off 19 and said to Moses, “You speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, lest we die.” 20 Moses said to the people, “Do not fear, for God has come to test you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.” 21 The people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was.

[Additional commandments Given – the Law]

Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord and all the rules. And all the people answered with one voice and said, “All the words that the Lord has spoken we will do.”  And Moses took half of the blood and put it in basins, and half of the blood he threw against the altar. Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it in the hearing of the people. And they said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient.” And Moses took the blood and threw it on the people and said, “Behold the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you in accordance with all these words.”

15 Then Moses went up on the mountain, and the cloud covered the mountain.16 The glory of the Lord dwelt on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days. And on the seventh day he called to Moses out of the midst of the cloud. 17 Now the appearance of the glory of the Lord was like a devouring fire on the top of the mountain in the sight of the people of Israel. 18 Moses entered the cloud and went up on the mountain. And Moses was on the mountain forty days and forty nights.

Exodus 19:1, 5-8, 10-20; 20:18-21; 24:3, 6-8, 15-17

 “You shall count seven full weeks from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering.  You shall count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath. Then you shall present a grain offering of new grain to the Lord.  You shall bring from your dwelling places two loaves of bread to be waved, made of two tenths of an ephah. They shall be of fine flour, and they shall be baked with leaven, as firstfruits to the Lord.  And you shall present with the bread seven lambs a year old without blemish, and one bull from the herd and two rams. They shall be a burnt offering to the Lord, with their grain offering and their drink offerings, a food offering with a pleasing aroma to the Lord.  And you shall offer one male goat for a sin offering, and two male lambs a year old as a sacrifice of peace offerings.  And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits as a wave offering before the Lord, with the two lambs. They shall be holy to the Lord for the priest.  And you shall make a proclamation on the same day. You shall hold a holy convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work. It is a statute forever in all your dwelling places throughout your generations.  “And when you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, nor shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the Lord your God.”  Leviticus 23:15-22 ESV

26 On the day of the firstfruits, when you offer a grain offering of new grain to the Lord at your Feast of Weeks, you shall have a holy convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work, 27 but offer a burnt offering, with a pleasing aroma to the Lord: two bulls from the herd, one ram, seven male lambs a year old; 28 also their grain offering of fine flour mixed with oil, three tenths of an ephah for each bull, two tenths for one ram, 29 a tenth for each of the seven lambs; 30 with one male goat, to make atonement for you. 31 Besides the regular burnt offering and its grain offering, you shall offer them and their drink offering. See that they are without blemish.  Numbers 28:26-31 ESV

You shall count seven weeks. Begin to count the seven weeks from the time the sickle is first put to the standing grain. 10 Then you shall keep the Feast of Weeks to the Lord your God with the tribute of a freewill offering from your hand, which you shall give as the Lord your God blesses you. 11 And you shall rejoice before the Lord your God, you and your son and your daughter, your male servant and your female servant, the Levite who is within your towns, the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow who are among you, at the place that the Lord your God will choose, to make his name dwell there. 12 You shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt; and you shall be careful to observe these statutes.  Deuteronomy 16:9-12 ESV

Pentecost Part 15 – The Day the Skies Open

I’m a sola scriptura kind of gal, so I try not to include extrabiblical texts in my studies.  I do peek into Jewish expectation at times, as I believe that end times prophecy revolves around Israel and the Hebrew people.  Their expectations will play into how they respond to God’s call.  For that reason, we are going to briefly peek into a Kabbalistic Jewish custom today regarding the Feast of Pentecost.

The custom is known as the Tikkun Leil Shavuot.  The kabbalistic Jews stay up all night studying the Torah in preparation for the celebration of Shavuot (Pentecost).  Included in this tradition is the belief that the skies open up for a brief moment during the night.  They also believe that Shavuot represents the wedding of God, and stay up all night to “decorate the bride”.  Let’s examine some commentaries on this custom:

Tikkun Leil Shavuot

A kabbalistic custom emanating from the mystics in Safed (sixteenth century) is to stay up the whole (first) night of Shavuot studying Torah. The tikkun — a set order of study — was composed of selections from the Bible, rabbinic literature and even mystical literature such as the Zohar. In this fashion the kabbalists prepared for the momentous revelation of the following morning.

This practice of staying up all night is in stark contrast to that of the Israelites at Sinai, who according to tradition slept late into that morning and had to be awakened by Moses. In atonement for this, Jews nowadays stay awake all night. The sense of preparation for Sinai is heightened by a mystical tradition holding that the skies open up during this night for a brief instant. At that very moment, we are told, God will favorably answer any prayer. The kabbalists also regard Shavuot as the wedding of God and Israel and of God’s masculine and feminine parts. Therefore, we stay up all night to “decorate the bride.” While the kabbalists instituted other tikkunim (for the seventh day of Pesah and for Hoshana Rabbah), this is the only one widely observed.

Source:  The Jewish Holidays by Michael Strassfeld, p. 73-74 (https://www.sefaria.org/sheets/36435)

And a second one:

Now children, listen to me: I’ll tell you something of my youth. Now your father is old, and if he let his beard grow as did Abraham, you’d see white hair in his beard. But I too was once a little boy who used to do the things children do. While the old men sat in the house of study preparing themselves for the time of the giving of the Torah the following morning, my friends and I would stand outside looking upward, hoping to catch the moment when the sky splits open and everything you ask for (even supernatural things!) is immediately given you by God — if you are worthy and you catch the right moment. In that case, why do I feel as though none of my wishes has ever been granted? Because I had so many things to ask for that before I decided what to wish first, sleep came upon me and I dozed off. When a man is young, his wishes are many; before he gets around to asking for anything, he is overcome by sleep. When a man is old, he has no desires if he asks for anything he asks for a little sleep.

From The Sign by S.Y. Agnon from A City in its Fullness (https://www.sefaria.org/sheets/36435)

Now, why do I include this mystical tradition in our study?  I include it because we actually are anticipating the skies rolling back as a scroll and the wedding of Christ!

The Sky Be Rolled Back As A Scroll

It Is Well with My Soul
Horatio G. Spafford

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Refrain:
It is well with my soul,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin—oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!—
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.

If you’ve been reading through my website at all, you are likely aware that I clearly see the rapture of the church in Seals 5&6, pretribulation.  Let me briefly review for those of you who haven’t been following.  In part 3 of this study series on Pentecost, we reviewed Peter’s Pentecost Prophecy.  In it, he quoted a portion of Joel 2, which I believe defines for us the beginning and ending of the church age.  Peter ends his quotation of Joel 2 with this:

And I will show wonders in the heavens above
    and signs on the earth below,
    blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;
the sun shall be turned to darkness
    and the moon to blood,
    before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.
And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’  Acts 2:19-21 ESV

If Peter is telling us that the church age will end with the signs detailed in Acts 2:19-21, where do we find a match for this in scripture?  There is only one place:

When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood,  and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale.  The sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place.  Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb,  for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?”  Revelation 6:12-17 ESV

When seal 6 is opened, the sky vanishes like a scroll that is being rolled up.  This is the human perception of what is happening in the earth’s atmosphere and the universe.  It seems that what is occurring here is that the Third Heaven (supernatural) is becoming visible and colliding with the First and Second Heavens (natural realm of atmosphere and space).  The entire sky appears opened, allowing visibility into heaven – people on earth try to hide from what they see, which presumably is God on His throne (or some bright and terrifying supernatural scene).  Note, it’s not a doorway or window that opens, it’s the entire sky – no pushing and shoving necessary, there will be plenty of room for everyone if this is the rapture 😉

it is well.jpg

Seal 5 is a picture of the dead in Christ rising and being transformed into robed resurrection bodies, followed immediately by Seal 6 where the ones still alive and remaining are transformed. This process is described in Isaiah 26:

Your dead shall live; their bodies shall rise.
    You who dwell in the dust, awake and sing for joy!
For your dew is a dew of light,
    and the earth will give birth to the dead.

 Come, my people, enter your chambers,
    and shut your doors behind you;
hide yourselves for a little while
    until the fury has passed by.
 For behold, the Lord is coming out from his place
    to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity,
and the earth will disclose the blood shed on it,
    and will no more cover its slain.

Isaiah 26:19-21 ESV

The body of Christ, both dead and alive, will enter our rest in heaven as per Isaiah 26.  Meanwhile on earth, the number of martyrs will continue accumulating until their fullness is complete (Rev 6:11).  The souls of these martyrs accumulate on the sea of glass in heaven (Rev 15:2).

For more detailed analysis, I recommend these posts:

The heavens will open at the START of the Day of the Lord to receive us (Revelation 6), and at the END of the Day of the Lord to let us out (Revelation 19)!

When the Sky Is Opened

There are several other occasions upon which the sky is opened, which confirm our suspicion that it is not the actual blue sky that opens but that another dimension (the spiritual one) is unveiled.  Let’s take a look at these:

 In the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, on the fifth day of the month, as I was among the exiles by the Chebar canal, the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.  Ezekiel 1:1 ESV

And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”  Matthew 3:16-17 ESV (also, Mark 1:10, Luke 3:21)

Now when they heard these things they were enraged, and they ground their teeth at him.  But he, full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.  And he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.   Acts 7:54-56 ESV

And he said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”  John 1:51 ESV

…and saw the heavens opened and something like a great sheet descending, being let down by its four corners upon the earth.  Acts 10:11 ESV

After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.”  Revelation 4:1 ESV

Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war.  Revelation 19:11 ESV

Other uses of the word dianoigo, or to open fully, is used to describe eyes opening to recognize (Luke 24:31), opened understanding of the scriptures (Luke 24:32), and hearts opened (Acts 16:14).  What is being opened in these instances are the spiritual heavens and spiritual understanding.

We now need to further investigate the second part of the Jewish Kabbalistic tradition on Pentecost – The Decorating of the Bride!

Pentecost Part 16 – The Feast of Weddings and Wedding Suppers

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

The Blood Moon Sign

The Prophetic Significance of Blood Moons and How They Relate to the Rapture of the Church

The Noisy, Not-So-Secret Rapture of the Church

Braxton Hicks, Labor Pains, and the Time of the End

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

 

Pentecost Part 13 – The Resurrection on the Last Day

We have been studying the Last Trump and its possible connection to a future Pentecost.  Now we are going to tackle another “Last” – the “Last Day”.

We understand that the future resurrection/rapture event will occur prior to what is commonly known as the “7 Year Tribulation”, or the Time of Jacob’s Trouble.  How could this possibly be considered the “Last Day”?  Isn’t the “Last Day” of existence right before the eternal state, when the heavens and the earth are destroyed in preparation for the Great White Throne Judgment?

It’s a great question, so let’s examine what scripture says about the “Last Day”:

“Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.”   Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”  Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven.  For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world. They said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.” Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe.  All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.  For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me.  And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day.  For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.” No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him.  And I will raise him up on the last day.  So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.  Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.  John 6:27-28,31-40,44-45,53-55 ESV

Now when Jesus came, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles off, and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother.  So when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, but Mary remained seated in the house. Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.  But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.”  Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.  Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”  She said to him, “Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who is coming into the world.”  John 11:17-27 ESV

The only references to the “Last Day” are found in the book of John as shown above.  From these passages it is clear that the Last Day has to do with a resurrection to eternal life.  This resurrection is specifically for believers.  Each time Jesus mentions the “Last Day” it is sandwiched in between statements of eternal life.  It is also strongly connected to Him being the bread of life – that whoever comes to Him shall not hunger and whoever believes in Him shall never thirst.  We see this exact phrase immediately after the rapture:

They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

 “Therefore they are before the throne of God,
    and serve him day and night in his temple;
    and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence.
 They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore;
    the sun shall not strike them,
    nor any scorching heat.
 For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their shepherd,
    and he will guide them to springs of living water,
and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”  Revelation 7:14-17 ESV

 

If you’re struggling with this being a picture of the newly (pretribulation) raptured church, I recommend reading through these posts:

Jesus’ response to Martha I believe is very telling – I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.”  Those who have died in Him shall live, and those who are living in Him shall never die.  This is clearly a picture of the future resurrection/rapture event!  There is only one moment when millions of living believers will be able to bypass death:

Listen! I am telling you a mystery:  We will not all fall asleep, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the blink of an eye, at the last trumpet.  For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed.  For this corruptible must be clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal must be clothed with immortality.  When this corruptible is clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal is clothed with immortality, then the saying that is written will take place:

Death has been swallowed up in victory.
Death, where is your victory?
Death, where is your sting?

1 Corinthians 15:51-55 ESV

We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, concerning those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope. Since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, in the same way God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep through Jesus. For we say this to you by a revelation from the Lord: We who are still alive at the Lord’s coming will certainly have no advantage over those who have fallen asleep.  For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first Then we who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and so we will always be with the Lord Therefore encourage one another with these words.  (1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 ESV)

Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.  John 5:28-29 ESV

 

Note how John refers to the “resurrection of life” and the “resurrection of judgment”.  There are TWO resurrections – the “First Resurrection” and the “General Resurrection”.  The First Resurrection has multiple parts.  I am working on finishing that post and will insert a link to it here when it is ready!  But for now gotquestions explains it like this:

Question: “What is the first resurrection? What is the second resurrection?”

Answer: Daniel 12:2 summarizes the two very different fates facing mankind: “Many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” Everyone will be raised from the dead, but not everyone will share the same destiny. The New Testament reveals the further detail of separate resurrections for the just and the unjust.

Revelation 20:4-6 mentions a “first resurrection” and identifies those involved as “blessed and holy.” The second death (the lake of fire, Revelation 20:14) has no power over these individuals. The first resurrection, then, is the raising of all believers. It corresponds with Jesus’ teaching of the “resurrection of the just” (Luke 14:14) and the “resurrection of life” (John 5:29).

The first resurrection takes place in various stages. Jesus Christ Himself (the “first fruits,” 1 Corinthians 15:20), paved the way for the resurrection of all who believe in Him. There was a resurrection of the Jerusalem saints (Matthew 27:52-53) which should be included in our consideration of the first resurrection. Still to come are the resurrection of “the dead in Christ” at the Lord’s return (1 Thessalonians 4:16) and the resurrection of the martyrs at the end of the Tribulation (Revelation 20:4).

Revelation 20:12-13 identifies those comprising the second resurrection as the wicked judged by God at the great white throne judgment prior to being cast into the lake of fire. The second resurrection, then, is the raising of all unbelievers; the second resurrection is connected to the second death. It corresponds with Jesus’ teaching of the “resurrection of damnation” (John 5:29).

The event which divides the first and second resurrections seems to be the millennial kingdom. The last of the righteous are raised to reign “with Christ a thousand years” (Revelation 20:4), but the “rest of the dead [that is, the wicked] lived not again until the thousand years were finished” (Revelation 20:5).

What great rejoicing will attend the first resurrection! What great anguish at the second! What a responsibility we have to share the Gospel! “And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire” (Jude 23).

Source: https://www.gotquestions.org/resurrection-first-second.html

The “Last Day” is the Resurrection/Rapture event for believers.  It marks the main harvest of the First Resurrection. Unbelievers won’t be resurrected until the end of the Millennial Kingdom, for the Great White Throne Judgment.  So why does Jesus call it a “Last Day”?  Why use such a confusing term?  Well… There is a specific Day that the scriptures talk about hundreds of times.  This Great Day will mark the end of humanity’s reign on earth, so one might refer to it as the Last Day of an era – The Great and Terrible Day of the Lord.

The resurrection/rapture on the Last Day marks the start of the Day of the Lord.  The “Last Day” is the last possible day to get in on the major resurrection/rapture event, before the wrath of God is unleashed upon the earth and the world as we know it comes to a screeching halt.

I would suggest that this is perhaps the Day that Jesus was referring to when He taught:

But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.  Matthew 24:36 ESV

The Last Day, the Resurrection/Rapture Day, the start of the Day of the Lord – perhaps all the same great day.

Parallel Tracks – On Earth as it is In Heaven

There are parallel tracks running at any given time – one in the supernatural / spiritual realm (the “third heaven”), and one in the natural / physical realm (the “first and second heavens”).  In end times prophecy, we see views from both perspectives.  The Day of Christ is the heavenly track while the Day of the Lord runs its course on earth.

on-earth-as-it-is-in-heaven-copy.jpg

And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,  so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.  Hebrews 9:27-28 ESV

The Day of Christ is the day of redemption, when the age of grace is complete and the church is called to join Jesus in glory.  Jesus tells us in Luke to pray that we are have the strength to stand before the Son of Man and escape all the things that are going to come upon the earth (Luke 21:36).  We do this by being AWAKE spiritually – being born again and sealed by the Holy Spirit.

The body of Christ will be spared from the Day of the Lord.  Followers of Christ are to look forward to the Day of the Lord, as it signals our being gathered unto Christ.

Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn!  2 Peter 3:11-12 ESV

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.  Hebrews 10:24-25 ESV

The Day of the Lord is a day of wrath upon the earth, where those “who refused to love the truth and so be saved” will experience horrific catastrophe in the judgments of God.

You will be a part of one “Great Day”, and they both begin with the rapture of the church.  Which “Day” you are a part of is up to you!

No study of resurrections would be complete without studying the main Biblical theme surrounding the resurrections – The Harvests.  Thus, let us study the Harvest of the Church!

Pentecost Part 14 – The Harvest of the Church Pictured on Pentecost (Amos 8)

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

The Day of the Lord

The Day of Christ- BEMA Seat

The Day and the Hour That is Unknown

The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope

The Large Multitude Coming “Out Of” Great Tribulation – Part 1

The Large Multitude Coming “Out Of” Great Tribulation – Part 2

Who Will Stand Before the Son of Man?  Examining Luke 21:36

The Overcomers – Studying the Letters to the Churches in Revelation 2&3

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

the last daya

Pentecost Part 11 – God’s Battle Cry in the Last Trump

And when you go to war in your land against the adversary who oppresses you, then you shall sound an alarm with the trumpets, that you may be remembered before the Lord your God, and you shall be saved from your enemies. 

Numbers 10:9 ESV

The sounding of the trumpets, when used in war, was to cause Israel to be remembered before the Lord their God in order that He should save them from their enemies.  From Parts 9 & 10 of our study, it seems that the “Last Trump” that sounds at the time of the rapture is likely this battle cry of remembrance – for God to rise up and save Israel from destruction.

In Parts 7 & 8 of our study, we noted the connections between the heavenly Mount Zion, our assembling together at the time of the resurrection/rapture event, and the coming of the Day of the Lord.  Let’s review Joel 2, which connects the trumpet of alarm sounding from Zion (which can refer to both the Heavenly Mount Zion, Heavenly Jerusalem, and the Earthly Jerusalem), the coming of the Day of the Lord, the assembling of the people and the bridegroom and bride leaving their chambers (the resurrection/rapture event?), and God sparing His people for the sake of His Holy Name.  God becoming jealous for His land and having pity on His people sounds like Him remembering the Abrahamic Covenant (Israel land and people covenant).  It also sounds exactly like the purpose of the Gog Magog war in Ezekiel 38-39.  Let’s review the passage:

Joel 2:1-2,15-20 ESV

Blow a trumpet in Zion;
    sound an alarm on my holy mountain!
Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble,
    for the day of the Lord is coming; it is near,
a day of darkness and gloom,
    a day of clouds and thick darkness!

Blow the trumpet in Zion;
    consecrate a fast;
call a solemn assembly;
     gather the people.
Consecrate the congregation;
    assemble the elders;
gather the children,
    even nursing infants.
Let the bridegroom leave his room,
    and the bride her chamber.

 Between the vestibule and the altar
    let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep
and say, “Spare your people, O Lord,
    and make not your heritage a reproach,
    a byword among the nations.
Why should they say among the peoples,
    ‘Where is their God?’”

 Then the Lord became jealous for his land

    and had pity on his people.
 The Lord answered and said to his people,
“Behold, I am sending to you
    grain, wine, and oil,
    and you will be satisfied;
and I will no more make you
    a reproach among the nations.

 “I will remove the northerner far from you,
    and drive him into a parched and desolate land,
his vanguard into the eastern sea,
    and his rear guard into the western sea;
the stench and foul smell of him will rise,
    for he has done great things.

In case you are wondering, Zion’s Trump is H7782, Shophar  (Joel 2:1-2).  I think we’ve covered the other connections fairly well in previous posts, so let’s examine the connection with the Battle of Gog & Magog found in Ezekiel 38-39.

The Battle of Gog & Magog – Ezekiel 38-39

God has seemed conspicuously silent towards Israel for the last several thousand years, but in the near future God will break His silence in a specific war detailed in Ezekiel 38-39.

“Gog” and the many nations intend to plunder Israel.  However, we are shown how God sets this war up Himself to fulfill His plans and purposes.  He then intervenes supernaturally to save Israel from certain annihilation for the sake of His own name. 

Basically, God will raise Israel’s enemies up against her in such a way as to guarantee her destruction, just so that He can prevent her from being destroyed.  God breaks His silence with Israel for the purpose of announcing to an unbelieving world that  He intends to fulfill His covenant promises!  He will reclaim Israel as His people and His land.  God mentions this purpose 70 times in the book of Ezekiel; four times in these two chapters alone, to ensure He gets His point across.  However, He has one final test for Israel.

gog_magog

It’s impossible to overemphasize the significance that God Himself is arranging this war exactly according to His schedule.  He will use Gog / Magog as a set-up for both Israel and the nations.  It will be deliberately presented so that it can be interpreted by Israel as the final war (Battle of Armageddon).  When God intervenes, Israel will look for the Messiah to inaugurate the Messianic Kingdom.  A “messiah” will most certainly appear.

Will Israel accept or reject the ultimate false messianic figure?

There are strong connections between Ezekiel 38-39 and the opening of Seal 6 in Revelation 6.  These connections also seemingly mark the beginning of birth pains (Matthew 24, Luke 21, Mark 13).  Collectively, Seal 6, Matthew 24, and Ezekiel 38-39 would seem to mark both the Rapture and the beginning of the Day of the Lord.  We discussed in Part 3, with Peter’s Pentecost Prophecy, how Seal 6 and the end of the church age ties in with Pentecost.  I hope you are starting to notice how all these threads are being woven together to form a beautiful tapestry!

Spare your people, O Lord,
    and make not your heritage a reproach,
    a byword among the nations.
Why should they say among the peoples,
    ‘Where is their God?’”

 Then the Lord became jealous for his land

    and had pity on his people.
 The Lord answered and said to his people,
“Behold, I am sending to you
    grain, wine, and oil,
    and you will be satisfied;
and I will no more make you
    a reproach among the nations.

 “I will remove the northerner far from you,
    and drive him into a parched and desolate land,
his vanguard into the eastern sea,
    and his rear guard into the western sea;
the stench and foul smell of him will rise,
    for he has done great things.

Gog approaches Israel “from the North”, and he will be driven away and slain on the mountains of Israel. Ezekiel 39:4-6 describes this stench, with my commentary in brackets:

You shall fall on the mountains of Israel, you and all your hordes and the peoples who are with you. [Emphasis is on the mountains of Israel, where they will be gathered] I will give you to birds of prey of every sort and to the beasts of the field to be devoured. [instead of humans offering clean animals in sacrifice, humans will be a sacrifice to the birds of prey and beasts of the field – ceremonially unclean animals.  Note the connection here to Luke 17:37 – the first of the sacrificial feasts God prepares for the birds of prey.  This places a strong connection between the rapture at the same time as or followed immediately by the Gog Magog war.] You shall fall in the open field, for I have spoken, declares the Lord God. I will send fire on Magog and on those who dwell securely in the coastlands, and they shall know that I am the Lord. [God will also send judgment on the countries these people came from – the land of Russia and the coastlands – those who stayed behind will not be spared from wrath]

I believe that the upcoming Ezekiel 38-39 (Gog/Magog) war will occur in conjunction with the rapture, and that the antichrist will claim it was the Battle of Armageddon.  He will then seek to “change the times and laws” and attempt to set up his own “kingdom age”.  For more study on the Gog/Magog battle, I refer you to these posts:

The Heavenly Battle – Revelation 12

As on earth, it is in heaven… I believe that the Last Trump will also initiate the greatest heavenly battle of all time.  I believe that THIS is the “heavenly dragon sign” we have been watching for.  I believe it will occur in conjunction with the rapture… as we go up, the angelic hosts go to war.

9045-st-michael-defeats-the-devil-eug-ne-delacroix

As I discussed in this post: Revelation 12 – A Visual RearrangementI believe that Revelation 12 gives an overview of the entire Day of the Lord from a unique vantage point.  I believe that verses 1-6 give an overview, and the rest of the chapter fills in details.  I have discussed Revelation 12 verse by verse HERE.  The part that the Last Trump introduces I believe is this (my commentary in brackets):

And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems.  Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon.  And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.

His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. [Seal 6, Rev 6 – 13 and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale.  Does the Holy Spirit (Restrainer) remove with a violent wind (gale) just as He came down with a violent wind in Acts 2?]  And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it.

She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne,  [resurrection/rapture event]

10 And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. 11 And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.  [Revelation 7 – After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”]

12 Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!” [1 week of years – 7 years – Restraint has now been lifted on the earth with the removal of the Restrainer, and satan will unleash his plan of deception.  God will send a powerful delusion on those who refused to believe the truth, so that they will believe satan’s lies. 2 Thess. 2]

There is no longer any place (purpose) for the accuser of the brethren (satan) in heaven, because we have been redeemed!  For one brief moment in time there are NO CHRISTIANS left to accuse!  We will conquer him by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony, loving not our lives even unto death.

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.  Romans 10:9-10 ESV

For more on the dragon sign, you can check out these posts:

Who Sounds the Last Trump?

…in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  1 Corinthians 15:52 ESV

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.  1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV

last trump.jpg

The Last Trump will not be sounded by humans.  No matter what it is associated with – Feast of God, Battle Cry, Call to Assembly, or all of the above, the Last Trump is clearly sounded by God Himself.  We’ve been examining the different types of trumpets in Scripture, and trying to discern whether the Last Trump is a shophar or the silver trumpets.  But what if the Last Trump, like the First Trump, is referring to the trumpet voice of God?  David Lowe proposes this concept very well in his books Earthquake Resurrection and Then His Voice Shook the Earth.  Lowe explains it this way:

Just what could Paul have meant by the “trumpet of God” in I Thessalonians 4:17? Does the idea of God Almighty placing a gold or silver trumpet to his mouth come to mind? Given his omnipotence, the idea of the Creator of the universe placing a literal trumpet to his mouth in heaven seems a bit unnecessary. Could it be that the trumpet of God is actually his voice rather than a trumpet that he places to his mouth and blows?

Fortunately, there is a wealth of scripture that will shed some light on these questions. The first is Exodus chapter 19, in which the scene is set for the giving of the Ten Commandments. The following is the Septuagint version of the passage:

Exo 19:16 And it came to pass on the third day, as the morning drew nigh, there were voices and lightnings and a dark cloud on Mount Sinai. The voice of the trumpet [salpiggo] sounded loud, and all the people in the camp trembled.

Exo 19:17 And Moses led the people forth out of the camp to meet God, and they stood by under the camp.

Exo 19:18 Now Mount Sinai was altogether in smoke, because God had descended upon it in fire; and the smoke went up like the smoke of a furnace, and the people were exceedingly amazed.

Exo 19:19 And the sounds of the trumpet [salpiggo] were growing much louder. Moses spoke, and God answered him with a voice.

It is clear from this famous account that the voice heard from the mountain was the sound of a trumpet.  As God spoke to Moses, his voice reverberated and shook Mount Sinai, and the people were extremely terrified. When Paul recounted this spectacle in the letter to the Hebrews, the voice of the trumpet is again mentioned:

Heb 12:18 For you have not come to something that can be touched, to a burning fire and darkness and gloom and a whirlwind

Heb 12:19 and the blast of a trumpet [salpiggos] and a voice uttering words such that those who heard begged to hear no more

The trumpet and the voice are again combined in describing God’s communication to the Israelites.  Another example of supernatural communication and trumpets is found in Revelation, when John  encountered the Lord on the isle of Patmos:

Rev 1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day when I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet [salpiggo],

Rev 4:1 After these things I looked, and there was a door standing open in heaven! And the first voice I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet [salpiggo] said: “Come up here so that I can show you what must happen after these things.”

Revelation chapter 1 states that John heard the resurrected Jesus Christ speaking to him, who would have been seated at the right hand of God after his ascension. In both cases, John described the voice he heard as a loud trumpet blast.

In each of the verses explored above, the Greek words salpiggi or salpiggo are used to describe a trumpet or the sound of the trumpet. These Greek words are also found in the two prophetic passages in I Corinthians and I Thessalonians in describing the sound just before the dead are resurrected:

I Cor 15:52 in a moment, in the blinking of an eye, at the last trumpet [salpiggi]. For the trumpet will sound [salpisei], and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.

I The 4:16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a shout of command, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet [salpiggi] of God [theos], and the dead in Christ will rise first.

According to Strong’s Concordance, these words are associated with the reverberation and vibration sound made by a trumpet when it is blown. These Greek words have root word origins that are too interesting and important to bypass. Again according to Strong’s Concordance, one root word is salos, which
means the quavering or billowing of the waves on the sea, and is used but once in the New Testament:

Luke 21:25 “And there will be signs in the sun and moon and stars, and on the earth nations will be in distress, anxious over the roaring of the sea and the surging waves [salou].

Source: http://www.earthquakeresurrection.com/excerpts/08.voiceandtrumpet.pdf

The “Last Trump” that will call us up to heaven is the trumpet voice of God Himself, issuing forth from the Heavenly Mount Zion just as it did at the First Trump on the earthly Mount Sinai.  It will be a call for the body of Christ to assemble, a call for the angels to go to war, and a call for God to intervene on behalf of His people for the sake of His Holy Name.

This introduces us to our next post:

Pentecost Part 12 – Covenants Confirmed, Covenants Proclaimed

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

The Covenant With Israel – Who Confirms It?

Connecting Isaiah 17, Psalm 83, Ezekiel 38&39

When God Intervenes (Douglas Berner) – I recommend this book for multiple reasons, but it has a very good discussion of the Gog Magog war.

The Silence is Broken!  God Hooks Ezekiel’s Gog & Magog (Douglas Berner) – If you are really interested in Ezekiel 38-39, this is an exhaustive discussion of it!

Douglas Berner has several short articles available online.

The Trumpet of God and His Voice: Are They the Same? – David Lowe

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

Pentecost Part 10 – The First Trump and the Last Trump – On Pentecost?

Ok guys, hang on to your hats, this is going to blow you away!  Fellow watchwoman Kate Engel and I have been chewing on this the last few days and I will try to present our findings!

The First Trump

The very first mention in the Bible of a trumpet blast is found in Exodus chapter 19.  You should be familiar with this chapter by now, as it records the very first Pentecost, when God came down to meet with Moses on Mount Sinai to give the 10 Commandments.  More specifically, God instituted the Mosaic Covenant and the Dispensation of Law on this day.  And He did so with the First Trump in scripture:

When Moses told the words of the people to the Lord,  the Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments  and be ready for the third day. For on the third day the Lord will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people.  And you shall set limits for the people all around, saying, ‘Take care not to go up into the mountain or touch the edge of it. Whoever touches the mountain shall be put to death.  No hand shall touch him, but he shall be stoned or shot; whether beast or man, he shall not live.’ When the trumpet sounds a long blast [yobel H3104; mashak H4900], they shall come up to the mountain.”  So Moses went down from the mountain to the people and consecrated the people; and they washed their garments.  And he said to the people, “Be ready for the third day; do not go near a woman.”

On the morning of the third day there were thunders and lightnings and a thick cloud on the mountain and a very loud trumpet blast [chazaq H2389; shophar H7782], so that all the people in the camp trembled. Then Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they took their stand at the foot of the mountain.  Now Mount Sinai was wrapped in smoke because the Lord had descended on it in fire. The smoke of it went up like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain trembled greatly.  And as the sound of the trumpet [shophar, H7782] grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him in thunder.  The Lord came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain. And the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.  Exodus 19:9-20 ESV

The words used for trumpet in this passage are Strong’s H3104, Hebrew yobel, and H7782, Hebrew shophar.  I want you to note that they are used interchangeably.  This blast was used to call the Israelites to assembly at the foot of Mount Sinai in preparation to enter into covenant with God.

Yobel, H3104
Strong’s Concordance
yobel: a ram, ram’s horn (a wind instrument)
Transliteration: yobel
Short Definition: jubilee

Brown-Driver-Briggs

2 designation of 50th year, marked by blowing of cornets, AV ‘jubile’ (so Late Hebrew יוֺבֵלᵑ7 יובֵילָא, as loan-word); originally no doubt שְׁנַת הַיּוֺבֵל year of the ram (‘s horn), as Leviticus 25:13,28,40,50,52,54 (all H), Leviticus 27:17,18,23,24 (all P), but then, without שׁנת, as יוֺבֵל הִוא תִּהְיֶה לָכֶם Leviticus 25:10 a ram (‘s horn blowing) shall it be to you; so Leviticus 25:11Leviticus 25:12Leviticus 25:15Leviticus 25:28Leviticus 25:30Leviticus 25:31Leviticus 25:33 (all H), Leviticus 27:18Numbers 36:4 (both P).

Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance

jubile, ram’s horn, trumpet

Or yobel {yob-ale’}; apparently from yabal; the blast of a horn (from its continuous sound); specifically, the signal of the silver trumpets; hence, the instrument itself and the festival thus introduced — jubile, ram’s horn, trumpet.

http://biblehub.com/hebrew/3104.htm

Did you notice the very interesting connection between the first description of the long trumpet blast [yobel mashak] and the Jubilee?  When we go to Leviticus 25:9, which designates the Jubilee trumpet blast, the Hebrew words used are the trumpet [shophar] of the Jubilee [teruah].  We examined teruah in our last post as a great shouting, such as on the Feast of Trumpets (Shouting).  Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance links the yobel to the specific signal from the silver trumpets.

Shophar, H7782
Strong’s Concordance
shophar: a horn (for blowing)

Transliteration: shophar
Phonetic Spelling: (sho-far’)
Short Definition: trumpet

At the First Trump, we have both the yabal and the shophar being used interchangeably, with links to the silver trumpets.

Call to Assemble, Call to Battle

The shofar, or ram’s horn trumpet, features regularly in the service of the Temple.  God also commanded Moses to make two silver trumpets to be sounded regularly.  The Feasts of God all involve the sounding of trumpets.  Besides being blown on the feast days, the trumpets were used to call the Israelites to assembly, to call them to battle, to announce their months, and to sound at burnt offerings and peace offerings. Let’s examine the passage in Numbers 10:

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying,  “Make two silver trumpets. Of hammered work you shall make them, and you shall use them for summoning the congregation and for breaking camp.  And when both are blown, all the congregation shall gather themselves to you at the entrance of the tent of meeting.  But if they blow only one, then the chiefs, the heads of the tribes of Israel, shall gather themselves to you.  When you blow an alarm, the camps that are on the east side shall set out.  And when you blow an alarm the second time, the camps that are on the south side shall set out. An alarm is to be blown whenever they are to set out.  But when the assembly is to be gathered together, you shall blow a long blast, but you shall not sound an alarm.  And the sons of Aaron, the priests, shall blow the trumpets. The trumpets shall be to you for a perpetual statute throughout your generations.  And when you go to war in your land against the adversary who oppresses you, then you shall sound an alarm with the trumpets, that you may be remembered before the Lord your God, and you shall be saved from your enemies.  On the day of your gladness also, and at your appointed feasts and at the beginnings of your months, you shall blow the trumpets over your burnt offerings and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings. They shall be a reminder of you before your God: I am the Lord your God.”  Numbers 10:1-10 ESV

Based on studying what the trumpet blasts are to be used for:

  • one trumpet blast – the chiefs and heads of the tribes shall be gathered
  • two trumpets sounding in one long blast – summoning the entire congregation
  • gathering them together in assembly at the entrance of the tent of meeting
  • breaking camp
  • sounding an alarm right before war
  • the purpose of reminding God to save them from their enemies
  • sounding the day of gladness
  • sounding at appointed feasts
  • sounding at the beginnings of months
  • sounding over burnt offerings
  • sounding over the sacrifices of peace offerings

The First Trump, as we saw above, was one long blast which summoned the entire congregation before Mount Sinai.  It also sounded the very first Pentecost.  So now let’s look, what kind of trumpet and blast is the Last Trump?

The Last Trump

…in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet [salpigx, G4536]. For the trumpet [salpigx, G4536] will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  1 Corinthians 15:52 ESV

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet [salpigx, G4536] of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.  1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV

We have to connect the Greek (New Testament) with the Hebrew (Old Testament).  We know the Last Trump is a Salpigx:

Last Trump: G4536, salpigx (1 Corinthians 15:52; 1 Thessalonians 4:16)

How do we connect the salpigx to the Hebrew?  Fortunately, Hebrews 12 gives us the answer:

For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire and darkness and gloom and a tempest and the sound of a trumpet [salpingos, G4536] and a voice whose words made the hearers beg that no further messages be spoken to them.  For they could not endure the order that was given, “If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.”  Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I tremble with fear.”  Hebrews 12:18-20 ESV

We now know that the Sinai Trump, the First Trump, is equivalent in meaning to the Last Trump.  They are of the same kind:

Sinai Trump: G4536, salpingos (Hebrews 12:19)

So what exactly does the concordance have to say about a salpigx?

G4536, Salpigx
Strong’s Concordance
salpigx: a trumpet

Original Word: σάλπιγξ, ιγγος, ἡ
Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
Transliteration: salpigx
Phonetic Spelling: (sal’-pinx)
Short Definition: a trumpet
Definition: a trumpet, the sound of a trumpet.

HELPS Word-studies

4536 sálpigks – “properly, a war-trumpet” (WS, 797) that boldly announces God’s victory (the vanquishing of His enemies).

In the OT, trumpets were used to called God’s people to war, and to announce victory wrought by Him. That is, a military clarion that proclaimed the Lord inspired and empowered the victory on behalf of His people.

[“The trumpet was the signal employed to call the hosts of Israel to march as to war, and is common in prophetic imagery (Is 27:13). Cf. The seventh angel (Rev 11:15)” (WP, 1, 193).

Trumpets in the OT summoned God’s saints for His righteous wars (Nu 10:9; Jer 4:19; Joel 2:1). See also Lev 23:24,25; Nu 10:2-10; Ps 81:3.]

Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance

trumpet.

Perhaps from salos (through the idea of quavering or reverberation); a trumpet — trump(-et).

see GREEK salos

Source: http://biblehub.com/greek/4536.htm

The “Last Trump”, while also calling us to assembly on the Heavenly Mount Zion as we have studied in Hebrews 12 (the rapture), seems to primarily be a call to war.

Do you remember what Numbers 10 told us was one of the purposes of the silver trumpets, which seem to be used interchangeably with the ram’s horn shophar?

And when you go to war in your land against the adversary who oppresses you, then you shall sound an alarm with the trumpets, that you may be remembered before the Lord your God, and you shall be saved from your enemies.  

The sounding of the trumpets, when used in war, was to cause Israel to be remembered before the Lord their God in order that He should save them from their enemies.  Does this sound shockingly familiar???

Pentecost Part 11 – God’s Battle Cry in the Last Trump

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church

 last trump


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

The Day of the Lord

The Day of Christ- BEMA Seat

The Millennial Kingdom

Who Will Stand Before the Son of Man?  Examining Luke 21:36

What’s Shaking?  The Earth, The Heavens, or Both?

The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

 


Passages Describing the Feast of Pentecost

When studying Biblical teaching, I believe it is always important to read the source for yourself.  Not just a verse or two, but the entire relevant passage.  This will sharpen your discernment skills, as you examine the scriptures for yourself to see if these things are so.  Much of the fall ruckus over the Jubilee and Yom Kippur could have been avoided if everyone had just read Leviticus chapter 23.  So with no further delay, here are the relevant passages describing the celebration of the Feast of Pentecost (Weeks):

On the third new moon after the people of Israel had gone out of the land of Egypt, on that day they came into the wilderness of Sinai.

Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine;and you shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.”So Moses came and called the elders of the people and set before them all these words that the Lord had commanded him. All the people answered together and said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do.”

 the Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments 11 and be ready for the third day. For on the third day the Lord will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. 12 And you shall set limits for the people all around, saying, ‘Take care not to go up into the mountain or touch the edge of it. Whoever touches the mountain shall be put to death. 13 No hand shall touch him, but he shall be stoned or shot; whether beast or man, he shall not live.’ When the trumpet sounds a long blast, they shall come up to the mountain.” 14 So Moses went down from the mountain to the people and consecrated the people; and they washed their garments. 15 And he said to the people, “Be ready for the third day; do not go near a woman.”

16 On the morning of the third day there were thunders and lightnings and a thick cloud on the mountain and a very loud trumpet blast, so that all the people in the camp trembled. 17 Then Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they took their stand at the foot of the mountain. 18 Now Mount Sinai was wrapped in smoke because the Lord had descended on it in fire. The smoke of it went up like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain trembled greatly. 19 And as the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him in thunder. 20 The Lord came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain. And the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.

[10 Commandments Given]

18 Now when all the people saw the thunder and the flashes of lightning and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking, the people were afraid and trembled, and they stood far off 19 and said to Moses, “You speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, lest we die.” 20 Moses said to the people, “Do not fear, for God has come to test you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.” 21 The people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was.

[Additional commandments Given – the Law]

Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord and all the rules. And all the people answered with one voice and said, “All the words that the Lord has spoken we will do.”  And Moses took half of the blood and put it in basins, and half of the blood he threw against the altar. Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it in the hearing of the people. And they said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient.” And Moses took the blood and threw it on the people and said, “Behold the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you in accordance with all these words.”

15 Then Moses went up on the mountain, and the cloud covered the mountain.16 The glory of the Lord dwelt on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days. And on the seventh day he called to Moses out of the midst of the cloud. 17 Now the appearance of the glory of the Lord was like a devouring fire on the top of the mountain in the sight of the people of Israel. 18 Moses entered the cloud and went up on the mountain. And Moses was on the mountain forty days and forty nights.

Exodus 19:1, 5-8, 10-20; 20:18-21; 24:3, 6-8, 15-17

 “You shall count seven full weeks from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering.  You shall count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath. Then you shall present a grain offering of new grain to the Lord.  You shall bring from your dwelling places two loaves of bread to be waved, made of two tenths of an ephah. They shall be of fine flour, and they shall be baked with leaven, as firstfruits to the Lord.  And you shall present with the bread seven lambs a year old without blemish, and one bull from the herd and two rams. They shall be a burnt offering to the Lord, with their grain offering and their drink offerings, a food offering with a pleasing aroma to the Lord.  And you shall offer one male goat for a sin offering, and two male lambs a year old as a sacrifice of peace offerings.  And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits as a wave offering before the Lord, with the two lambs. They shall be holy to the Lord for the priest.  And you shall make a proclamation on the same day. You shall hold a holy convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work. It is a statute forever in all your dwelling places throughout your generations.  “And when you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, nor shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the Lord your God.”  Leviticus 23:15-22 ESV

26 On the day of the firstfruits, when you offer a grain offering of new grain to the Lord at your Feast of Weeks, you shall have a holy convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work, 27 but offer a burnt offering, with a pleasing aroma to the Lord: two bulls from the herd, one ram, seven male lambs a year old; 28 also their grain offering of fine flour mixed with oil, three tenths of an ephah for each bull, two tenths for one ram, 29 a tenth for each of the seven lambs; 30 with one male goat, to make atonement for you. 31 Besides the regular burnt offering and its grain offering, you shall offer them and their drink offering. See that they are without blemish.  Numbers 28:26-31 ESV

You shall count seven weeks. Begin to count the seven weeks from the time the sickle is first put to the standing grain. 10 Then you shall keep the Feast of Weeks to the Lord your God with the tribute of a freewill offering from your hand, which you shall give as the Lord your God blesses you. 11 And you shall rejoice before the Lord your God, you and your son and your daughter, your male servant and your female servant, the Levite who is within your towns, the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow who are among you, at the place that the Lord your God will choose, to make his name dwell there. 12 You shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt; and you shall be careful to observe these statutes.  Deuteronomy 16:9-12 ESV

Pentecost Part 9 – The Trumpets and the Feasts

We want to examine which trumpet is blown in Zion in Joel 2:1-2.  To examine this, first we’re going to back up a little bit and discuss another trumpet, and see if we can connect them.

There has been a lot of confusion and controversy surrounding three little words – “The Last Trump”.

in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  1 Corinthians 15:52 ESV

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.  1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV

Is this “Last Trump” the last of the 7 Trumpet Judgments?  Those who would try to refute a pretribulation rapture claim that Paul was referring to the last in the series of trumpet judgments which John would write about some 20-40 years later.  The difficulty with the Trumpet 7 Judgment interpretation, despite the obvious lack of reference for Paul’s audience at the time he wrote it, is that there are no additional trumpets mentioned in the sequence.  Notable too, is that angels blow the 7 trumpets of judgment, compared to the rapture, in which the trumpet of God is sounded.  The Last Trump isn’t the 7th Trumpet of Revelation.

What is the Last Trump then?  Is this “Last Trump” the last trumpet sounded on the Feast of Trumpets?  Is it the “Last Trump” of a Jubilee year on Yom Kippur?  Is it the “Last Trump” sounded in a feast year on the mysterious Eighth Day after the Feast of Tabernacles?  Or is the “Last Trump” something else?  Could the “Last Trump” be the trumpet blast that is sounded in Mount Zion right before the Day of the Lord???

Last Trump Contenders

Many watchmen have correctly identified that the Feasts of God are a beautiful picture of God’s redemption plan for humanity.  It is commonly assumed that all 4 Spring Feasts have been fulfilled (although we have been challenging that belief about Pentecost in this series).  Thus, focus has mostly been on the Fall Feasts as possible rapture date contenders, so let’s take a moment to examine these:

Feast of Trumpets (Yom Teruah) – I understand the connections that have been made regarding the “last trump” with the Feast of Trumpets.  I mean, the name of that feast alone tends to make it stand out as a strong contender.

Speak to the people of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall observe a day of solemn rest, a memorial proclaimed with blast of trumpets [teruah, H8643] , a holy convocation.  Leviticus 23:24 ESV

On the first day of the seventh month you shall have a holy convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work. It is a day for you to blow the trumpets [teruah, H8643]… Numbers 29:1 ESV

From Hebrew tradition, it seems that the Feast of Trumpets contained the “last trump” and Yom Kippur sounded the “great trump”.  On the Feast of Trumpets, traditionally 100 blasts of the shofar would be sounded, with the last being the Tekiah Gedolah – a specific long blast.  Despite the lack of scriptural corroboration for these blasts, the Jewish traditions seem very compelling.  As such, this feast has remained a “high watch” day for me as a possible shadow fulfillment with the rapture.

The shofar blasts are truly spine tingling and if you’ve never heard them I highly recommend checking them out on YouTube.  Here’s a sample:

Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) – Another Last Trump contender that I have considered as a possibility is Yom Kippur.  The 10 Days between the Feast of Trumpets and the Day of Atonement are somber and reflective, during which one’s eternal fate is believed to be “sealed”.  It is said in Jewish tradition that books are opened on the day of Yom Teruah (Feast of Trumpets).  The righteous are written in the Book of Life, the wicked are written in the Book of Death, and those in limbo have ten days to repent before their fate is sealed in one book or the other.  Seal 7 seems to describe the Yom Kippur Temple ceremony in the heavenly temple, right before God’s wrath begins to rain down upon the earth.  Thus,  Yom Kippur could possibly both start and end the Tribulation period (as far as the day counts go, I believe the earth will be rocked back to 360-day-years at the time of the rapture).

The Jubilee Trump – The Trump announcing a Jubilee is a very specific loud trumpet blast [tekiah shophar] found in Leviticus 25:9.  Despite what many are teaching about this trumpet, the Jubilee Trump is sounded on Yom Kippur to mark the START of a Jubilee year, not the end of one.  The main excitement over the Jubilee cycle has come from a so-called prophecy by a Rabbi named Judah ben Samuel.  This prophecy is *HIGHLY SUSPECT* and I have detailed that here: Does Yom Kippur 2017 Mark the Loud Trump of a Jubilee?  Looking at significant dates in Israel’s history would indicate there is a possibility that 2017 could indeed start a Jubilee.  Dan Matson has done a lot of work studying this possibility at WatchForTheDay if you want to check it out.  In my opinion, the Jubilees are about Israel, and releasing her from slavery.  While gentile believers have been freed from our slavery to sin, I’m wondering if the Jubilee has more to do with the fulfillment of Daniel’s 70th week than it does about the snatching of the Bride of Christ.  As such, I personally believe the Jubilee will fall on the 6000th year of human government at the end of the Tribulation period.  (By the way, I believe we are currently in approximately year 5993 – God’s Prophetic Timeline – 7000 Years of Humanity).

The Eighth Day – I personally never found the eighth day compelling as a possible rapture date.  The Feast of Tabernacles clearly is associated with the Millennial Kingdom rule of Christ, although some have suggested it could shadow fulfill by our “tabernacling” with Christ in our “chambers” during the time of tribulation (as per Isaiah 26).  It is true that there is a trumpet blast on the 8th Day of the Feast of Tabernacles, which would be the final trumpet blast of that year’s feast cycles.  It would mark the “Last Trump” of the feast year.

The Fall Feasts – Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles – point to the future completion of God’s redemptive program.  I believe the complete fulfillment of all 3 fall feasts will occur in the same year, at the Second Coming. What we don’t know is if there will be a Shadow fulfillment of these feasts, or not.  I have studied them in the past here:

  1. The Feasts of God – His Appointed Times
  2. The Harvest of the Church and the Fulfillment of the Feasts of God 
  3. Jewish Traditions in the Fall Feasts
  4. Yom Kippur – Do We Go Up As Wrath Comes Down?

With the fall feasts discussed, let’s examine the possibility that the “Last Trump” is not connected to a Feast of God at all.

No Feast – Hillary MC recently posted an interesting study in which she suggests that BOTH the First and Last Trumps will sound at the time of the rapture, perhaps not in connection with any Feast Date:

Look at the order:
  1. The dead in Christ rise first
  2. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds
Or, look at it another way:
  1. The trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible (the dead rise before we do)
  2. We who are alive and remain shall be changed at the last trump
See it?
  1. The trumpet shall sound (this is the first trump): the dead rise and the corruptible puts on incorruptible
  2. The trumpet sounds again (this is the last trump) and we shall be changed: this mortal puts on immortality and we are caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air.

There are two trumpets for the rapture. Or two trumpet blasts: a first one and a last one. The first, for the dead in Christ. The last, for we who are alive and remain.

“And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Make thee two trumpets of silver; of a whole piece shalt thou make them: that thou mayest use them for the calling of the assembly, and for the journeying of the camps. And when they shall blow with them, all the assembly shall assemble themselves to thee at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.” (Numbers 10:1-3)
Who is The Door?
Source: https://www.facebook.com/notes/hillary-mc/what-is-the-last-trump-of-the-rapture-of-the-church/187206301889451/

With all these possibilities discussed, I personally believe that the “Last Trump” is connected to the Feasts of God as well as to the Rapture of the Church.  The challenge has been how to demonstrate this connection in scripture.  I believe the key might be contained in Joel chapter 2, with the Trumpet being blown in Zion.

What’s That You’re Blowing?

When we examined the Feast of Trumpets earlier, we noted that the “day of blowing” was to be with the trumpets, or with shouting [teruah, H8643].  

Strong’s Concordance
teruah: a shout or blast of war, alarm, or joy

Original Word: תְּרוּעָה
Part of Speech: Noun Feminine
Transliteration: teruah
Phonetic Spelling: (ter-oo-aw’)
Short Definition: shout

NAS Exhaustive Concordance

Word Origin
from rua
Definition
a shout or blast of war, alarm, or joy
NASB Translation
alarm (5), battle cry (2), blowing (1), blowing trumpets (1), joy (1), joyful sound (1), resounding (1), shout (10), shout of alarm (1), shout of joy (1), shouted (1), shouting (4), shouts of joy (1), signal (1), trumpet blast (1), war cries (2), war cry (1).

Source: http://biblehub.com/hebrew/8643.htm

This word is used on a number of occasions in scripture, and is translated “the Jubilee”, blowing of trumpets, an alarm, the shout, an alarm is to be blown, a great shout (Joshua with the walls of Jericho), shouting, rejoicing, war cry, and shouts of joy.  Sometimes the blowing is via ram’s horn (shofar), sometimes by human voices, sometimes by a pair of silver trumpets, and sometimes it is unspecified.

shout.png

Digging deeper, we find that there are TWO different types of trumpets.  First, is a ram’s horn shophar.  Second, is a pair of silver trumpets.

The ram’s horn is the shophar [H7782].

Strong’s Concordance
shophar: a horn (for blowing)

Original Word: שׁוֹפָר
Part of Speech: Noun Masculine
Transliteration: shophar
Phonetic Spelling: (sho-far’)
Short Definition: trumpet

NAS Exhaustive Concordance

Word Origin
from shaphar
Definition
a horn (for blowing)
NASB Translation
horn (4), horns (1), ram’s horn (1), trumpet (46), trumpeter* (1), trumpets (19).

Source: http://biblehub.com/hebrew/7782.htm

shofar.jpg

This pair of silver trumpets is the chatsotsrah [H2689].

Strong’s Concordance
chatsotsrah: (an ancient) trumpet

Part of Speech: Noun Feminine
Transliteration: chatsotsrah
Phonetic Spelling: (khats-o-tser-aw’)
Short Definition: trumpets

NAS Exhaustive Concordance

Word Origin
from an unused word
Definition
(an ancient) trumpet
NASB Translation
trumpet (1), trumpeters (3), trumpets (26).

Source: http://biblehub.com/hebrew/2689.htm

silver trumpets.jpg

Let’s go to a key passage in Numbers 10, which informs us that trumpets are involved in ALL the Feasts of God:

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying,  “Make two silver trumpets. Of hammered work you shall make them, and you shall use them for summoning the congregation and for breaking camp…  On the day of your gladness also, and at your appointed feasts and at the beginnings of your months, you shall blow the trumpets [chatsotsrah, H2689] over your burnt offerings and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings. They shall be a reminder of you before your God: I am the Lord your God.  Numbers 10:1,10 ESV

The trumpets used to be used at the Feasts of God are the chatsotsrah, the two silver trumpets.

That’s all very nice and good, but what we really want to know is which type of trumpet is the Last Trump????  Is the Last Trump a chatsotrsrah, that will sound on a Feast Day?

For this, we need to find out what kind of trumpet the First Trump was, and when it was sounded.  I do not believe that the First and Last Trump will both be sounded at the rapture, because I believe the First Trump has already sounded – on Pentecost!

Pentecost Part 10 – The First Trump and the Last Trump – On Pentecost?

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

What is the “Last Trump” of the Rapture of the Church?  (Hillary MC)

The Last Trump of the Rapture Explained (Beginning and End)

The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

 

Pentecost Part 8 – Pentecost, Joel 2, and the Coming of the Day of the Lord

In part 7 of our study on Pentecost, we connected Hebrews 12 both to the original Pentecost (Shavuot) and a future rapture followed by a time of wrath on earth, also possibly starting on Pentecost.  Let’s examine that connection more fully in this post.

Thunder, Lightning, Smoke, Fire, and Terror

Remember back in part 1 of our study I told you to remember the thunder, lightning, billowing smoke, fire, and the voluminous blast of the trumpet sending terror into the heart of the people on Mount Sinai?  This is what the author of Hebrews is referring to.  See the comparison:

Exodus:

On the morning of the third day there were thunders and lightnings and a thick cloud on the mountain and a very loud trumpet blast, so that all the people in the camp trembled.  Then Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they took their stand at the foot of the mountain.  Now Mount Sinai was wrapped in smoke because the Lord had descended on it in fire. The smoke of it went up like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain trembled greatly.  And as the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him in thunder.  The Lord came down on Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain. And the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.

[10 Commandments Given]

Now when all the people saw the thunder and the flashes of lightning and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking, the people were afraid and trembled, and they stood far off  and said to Moses, “You speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, lest we die.”  Moses said to the people, “Do not fear, for God has come to test you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.” The people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was.

Exodus 19:10-20; 20:18-21

Hebrews:

For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire and darkness and gloom and a tempest and the sound of a trumpet and a voice whose words made the hearers beg that no further messages be spoken to them.  For they could not endure the order that was given, “If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.”  Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I tremble with fear.”  

[that was on the first Pentecost, the giving of the Laws of Moses on Sinai]

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering,  and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect,  and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

[this suggests the resurrection/rapture event in my opinion, when we are gathered to the heavenly Mount Zion]

See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven.  At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.”  This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe,  for our God is a consuming fire. 

[this section is referring to the entire Day of the Lord, which culminates in God shaking the heavens and the earth to remove the kingdoms of humanity and of the fallen angelic realm.  This is when Jesus will set up His Millennial Kingdom – at the Second Coming]

Hebrews 12:18-29 ESV

A Time of Darkness

Just as God marked His arrival on Mount Sinai with a time of darkness upon the mountain, the Day of the Lord will be a time of great darkness over the whole earth.  Let’s see how well the descriptions match up:

Mount Sinai – Giving of the Law

Preceded by:

  • a time of consecration beforehand, they should ensure their garments are washed
  • come near the mountain, but do not touch it on penalty of death
  • refrain from sexual intercourse
  • stand before the mountain

Marked by:

  • thunder
  • lightning
  • fire
  • smoke
  • thick cloud
  • darkness
  • gloom
  • tempest
  • very long, loud trumpet blast
  • a great earthquake
  • thunderous reverberating voice of God
  • all the people terrified

Day of the Lord – Coming of Wrath

Preceded by:

  • The gathering of believers unto Christ (the apostasia, or rapture) – ensure our garments are washed in the blood of the Lamb!
  • Believers gather on the heavenly Mount Zion, a place of rejoicing!  (Heb12)
  • The revealing of the antichrist
  • Elijah will appear

Marked by:

  • thunder
  • lightning
  • hailstones
  • fire
  • torrential rains
  • blood
  • columns of smoke
  • sulfur
  • darkness
  • wonders in the heavens and on the earth
  • great earthquake, starting in Israel and spreading globally
  • mountains thrown down
  • cliffs shall fall
  • every wall shall tumble to the ground
  • all the people on earth terrified

While the Day of the Lord and the Giving of the Law at Sinai obviously have very different intents and purposes, I want you to notice how God’s interactions with humanity invoke fear and terror in the hearts of man.  At the conclusion of each of the Seals, Trumpets, and Bowls, there are flashes of lightning, thunder, and rumblings.

Behold, the day of the Lord comes, cruel, with wrath and fierce anger, to make the land a desolation and to destroy its sinners from it.”  Isaiah 13:9 ESV 

God will rise up to protect Israel from certain destruction in order that all prophecy can be fulfilled; this begins the Day of the Lord.  The Day of the Lord is an intense period of God’s intervention and judgment (wrath) on earth.

During the Day of the Lord:

  • The earth, and in particular Jerusalem, will be cleansed of its bloodguilt (answering the prayers of the Seal 5 martyrs)
  • Nations will be judged by how they treated Israel
  • Wickedness will be purged
  • Those who rejected God’s salvation plan will be punished (2 Thessalonians 2)

The Second Coming of Jesus Christ ends the wrath of the Day of the Lord and will bring about Israel’s reconciliation with God.  Ultimately, the Day of the Lord will prepare the earth (physically) and its inhabitants (spiritually) for Jesus to usher in His Millennial Kingdom.

Blow A Trumpet in Zion!

When praying for understanding the connections between Pentecost and the Day of the Lord several nights ago, the Lord brought to mind a song from when I was a kid in church:

 

I believe a key passage to understanding the connections between Pentecost, the Day of the Lord, the Ezekiel 38-39 war, and the rapture of the church is found in Joel Chapter 2.

Joel 2:1-2,15-20,28-32 ESV

Blow a trumpet in Zion;
    sound an alarm on my holy mountain!
Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble,
    for the day of the Lord is coming; it is near,
a day of darkness and gloom,
    a day of clouds and thick darkness!

Blow the trumpet in Zion;
    consecrate a fast;
call a solemn assembly;
     gather the people.
Consecrate the congregation;
    assemble the elders;
gather the children,
    even nursing infants.
Let the bridegroom leave his room,
    and the bride her chamber.

 Between the vestibule and the altar
    let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep
and say, “Spare your people, O Lord,
    and make not your heritage a reproach,
    a byword among the nations.
Why should they say among the peoples,
    ‘Where is their God?’”

 Then the Lord became jealous for his land

    and had pity on his people.
 The Lord answered and said to his people,
“Behold, I am sending to you
    grain, wine, and oil,
    and you will be satisfied;
and I will no more make you
    a reproach among the nations.

 “I will remove the northerner far from you,
    and drive him into a parched and desolate land,
his vanguard into the eastern sea,
    and his rear guard into the western sea;
the stench and foul smell of him will rise,
    for he has done great things.

“And it shall come to pass afterward,
    that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh;
your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
    your old men shall dream dreams,
    and your young men shall see visions.
 Even on the male and female servants
    in those days I will pour out my Spirit.

“And I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke.  The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes. And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the Lord has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the Lord calls.

 

Notice that a trumpet sounds in Zion before the Day of the Lord begins (Joel 2:1-2).  The Day of the Lord follows, accompanied by darkness, clouds, gloom, and thick darkness.  Note the assembly of the people, the bridegroom and the bride leaving their chambers.  The bridegroom would leave His chamber, heaven, at the time of the opening of the skies to reveal Him.  The bride would leave her earthly chambers to come join Him in the heavenly ones that He has prepared for her.  We will speak more on this wedding in a future post!

I also want you to note the connection to God arising so His heritage is not made a reproach among the nations, the Northerner being removed, and his stench and foul smell arising.  This has connections to the battle of Ezekiel 38-39, the purpose of which is to exalt God’s Name among Israel and the nations!  We will also delve into that further in a future post!

We also have our special passage that we discussed in Part 3 in Peter’s Pentecost Prophecies, regarding the connection between the blood moon sign and the end of the church age.

Next, however, we need to examine this trumpet that is blown in Zion!

Pentecost Part 9 – The Trumpets and the Feasts

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

The Day of the Lord

Precursors to the Day of the Lord

Examining the Day of the Lord in Depth

Does Scripture Support a Pentecost Rapture? (PDF – T.W. Tramm)

The Feast of Pentecost (GraceThruFaith)

Shavuot – Revelation and the Fruit of the Spirit (Hebrew4Christians)

The Mystery of Pentecost (Prophecy Watchers)

The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope

The Blood Moon Sign

The Noisy, Not-So-Secret Rapture of the Church

Seals, Sealing, and the Ministry of the Holy Spirit

Braxton Hicks, Labor Pains, and the Time of the End

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

 

Pentecost Part 4 – Temples of God and the Removal of the Restrainer

At this point, I want to take a brief moment to discuss God’s temples in relation to the Feast of Pentecost.  Prior to Moses and the giving of the Law and the Old Covenant, God spoke to people directly.  He then led the Israelites into their promised land by His presence through a pillar of cloud by day and a column of fire by night.  I am not aware of any specific connection to feast dates prior to the first Pentecost (Shavuot), but I will update this post if I discover any!

Tabernacle, First & Second Temples

We have already discussed in parts 1-3 of this study that God instituted the dispensation of Law and the Covenant of Moses on the first Pentecost (Shavuot).  In addition to the 10 Commandments and the 603 laws given to rule Israel, God also gave Moses detailed instructions to build Him a Tabernacle in which His presence would dwell:

Exactly as I show you concerning the pattern of the tabernacle, and of all its furniture, so you shall make it.  Exodus 25:9 ESV

This Tabernacle was to be patterned after the heavenly Temple.  We know that God gave the instructions for His earthly Tabernacle in association with the first Pentecost.  It took awhile to prepare all the furniture and supplies according to plan, and in the second year on the first day of the first month (1 Nisan), God commanded Moses to set it up:

 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying,  “On the first day of the first month you shall erect the tabernacle of the tent of meeting.  And you shall put in it the ark of the testimony, and you shall screen the ark with the veil.  And you shall bring in the table and arrange it, and you shall bring in the lampstand and set up its lamps.  And you shall put the golden altar for incense before the ark of the testimony, and set up the screen for the door of the tabernacle. You shall set the altar of burnt offering before the door of the tabernacle of the tent of meeting, and place the basin between the tent of meeting and the altar, and put water in it.  And you shall set up the court all around, and hang up the screen for the gate of the court. Then you shall take the anointing oil and anoint the tabernacle and all that is in it, and consecrate it and all its furniture, so that it may become holy.  Exodus 40:1-9 ESV

In verse 3 we see how the ark of the testimony (covenant) is screened by the veil – this is the veil that is torn in two when Jesus died.  In verse 9, note how the tabernacle and everything within it is to be anointed with oil.  In the Bible, oil often is used to refer to the Holy Spirit.

tabernacle.jpg

What Exodus doesn’t record for us is how long it took Moses to set up the tabernacle and complete the anointing process.  Was it days?  Weeks?  Did the glory of the Lord fill the tabernacle on Pentecost?  We just are not told, but the glory of God does come down after the anointing:

Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle.  And Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud settled on it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle.  Throughout all their journeys, whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the people of Israel would set out.  But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not set out till the day that it was taken up.  For the cloud of the Lord was on the tabernacle by day, and fire was in it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel throughout all their journeys.  Exodus 40:34-38 ESV

In the old testament, under the Old Covenant, God’s Holy Spirit dwelt among His people in the Holy of Holies first in the Tabernacle, then in the First Temple.  Instructions for the first Temple were given to King David, to be constructed by his son Solomon.  This Temple was also to be patterned after the heavenly Temple.  It was built over a period of approximately 7.5 years and we are told in 1 Kings chapter 8 that God’s presence entered the Temple during the Feast of Tabernacles in the month of Tishrei.  I am not sure when God’s presence left, perhaps it was when the Temple was destroyed?  Or perhaps it was when the Ark of the Covenant left…

The second Temple was rebuilt in around 525BC. Ezra 3 records the dedication service, which was also held during the Feast of Tabernacles in the month of Tishrei.  Notably, God’s Holy Spirit never did fill the Holy of Holies in the Second Temple. Notably, the Ark of the Covenant never was present in the Second Temple.

2nd temple.jpg

Prior to the cross, the Israelites worshiped God first in the Tabernacle and then in the Temple.  This temple and sacrificial system pointed forward, towards Jesus.

The Holy Spirit came upon, or anointed, special people chosen by God such as prophets, kings, priests, and judges.  This was represented by anointing with oil (Exodus 29:7; Exodus 30:22-33; 1 Samuel 16:1; 2 Kings 9:6; Ecclesiastes 9:8).

God’s presence, sometimes called His Shekinah Glory, filled the Holy of Holies and seems to be connected with the Ark of the Covenant.  I would suggest a connection between this ark and the Holy Spirit’s dwelling, but would have to research further.

The Holy Spirit was also represented by the Menorah in the Tabernacle/Temple, which was to be kept burning at all times:

“You shall command the people of Israel that they bring to you pure beaten olive oil for the light, that a lamp may regularly be set up to burn.  In the tent of meeting, outside the veil that is before the testimony, Aaron and his sons shall tend it from evening to morning before the Lord. It shall be a statute forever to be observed throughout their generations by the people of Israel.  Exodus 27:20-21 ESV

When Jesus came to the earth, the fullness of God dwelt in Him (Colossians 2:9).  When Jesus died for the sins of the world as the Lamb of God, the veil in the temple was torn in two.  Jesus Himself became our high priest.  No longer would the Spirit of God reside in the Holy of Holies in a building built by human hands.  He would now come to reside within the hearts of individual believers, and this takes us once again to Pentecost.

Bodily Temples & The Holy Spirit as Restrainer

On the first Pentecost after Jesus’ death and resurrection:

When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place.  And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.  And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them.  And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.  Acts 2:1-4 ESV

pentecost.jpg

We previously discussed that the coming of the Holy Spirit upon all believers is unique to the church age.  Whereas in the Old Covenant (Age of Law), the Holy Spirit came upon specific individuals such as the kings, prophets, and judges, the Holy Spirit in the New Covenant (Age of Grace) comes upon all believers at the moment of salvation to Seal them for the Day of Redemption.  Instead of living in building, God takes up residence within us at the moment of salvation:

In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in himwere sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.  Ephesians 1:13-14 ESV

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed  for the day of redemption. Ephesians 4:30 ESV

And it is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, and who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.  2 Corinthians 1:21-22 ESV

But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge.  1 John 2:20 ESV

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own,  for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.  1 Corinthians 6:19-20 ESV

The sealing of the Holy Spirit is the mark of being part of the New Covenant, at least in the church age.  This time of special sealing is coming to an end, though, as the day of our redemption through the resurrection/rapture event draws near. The Holy Spirit will depart from the hearts of individual believers when the Restrainer is removed and the church is taken up into heaven in what we refer to as the “rapture”.  In 2 Thessalonians 2, we learn that there is a “what” that is restraining the man of lawlessness that must be removed.  The phrase specifically used is “that which”, as in “that which is restraining him”.  We also learn that there is a “he” that is restraining the man of lawlessness that must be removed.  The word is “the one”, as in “the one restraining him”.

The Restrainer is both a “what”, or “that which”, and a “he”, or “the one”.  There is only one possible interpretation for the Restrainer: The Holy Spirit residing within the true body of Christ.  The “what” is the church, the “he” is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit’s presence on the earth through believers acts as a restraining force to lawlessness in general, as believers are salt and light to the world.  As far as the man of lawlessness, we are told next that he is empowered by satan.  Satan, as the anointed cherub, was the head of the angelic host before he fell.  So the Restrainer must be more powerful than satan, in order to be able to hold him back until his appointed time.  The only One powerful enough to do this is God (the Holy Spirit).

The presence of the body of Christ, indwelt by the Holy Spirit, is currently restraining the man of lawlessness.  The Holy Spirit is restraining the full expression of the mystery of lawlessness and will do so until He is taken out of the way.  I understand that these can be confusing concepts and they are frequently argued against so I have devoted entire posts to them here:

  1. Studying the Prophetic Keys in 2 Thessalonians 2:
    1. Part 1 – That Day Will Not Come Until…
    2. Part 2 – The Restrainer and the Restrained in 2 Thessalonians 2
    3. Part 3 – The Apostasia [Departure/Falling Away] and the Revealing of the Lawless One
  2. The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope
    1. Part 1 – Where is the Church in Revelation?
    2. Part 2 – The Large Multitude Coming “Out Of” Great Tribulation
    3. Who Will Stand Before the Son of Man?  Examining Luke 21:36

This sealing ministry of the Holy Spirit I believe is a special key to understanding the seals of Revelation 6.  I believe that the transference of His sealing from the church to the 144,000 marks the opening of the Seals of Revelation and is detailed in this post:  Seals, Sealing, and the Ministry of the Holy Spirit.  As we saw in Part 3 of this study, it appears that Peter may have defined the day the Restrainer will be removed as Pentecost: Pentecost Part 3 – Pentecost Prophecies.

When we are redeemed from the earth, we will see both the Father and the Son in all their glory:

Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.  1 John 3:2 ESV

Back to a Physical Temple

Future events predicted in Biblical Prophecy involve a Jewish Temple.  Since a Temple hasn’t existed since 70AD, a new one must be built to at least partial completion (minimum: altar of sacrifice) before certain prophesied events can occur.  This is one of the reasons why the Third Temple is so interesting – the closer the Third Temple comes to being a reality, the closer we must be to other end-time events.

  • In Revelation 11 we are told:  “Then I was given a measuring rod like a staff, and I was told, “Rise and measure the temple of God and the altar and those who worship there,  but do not measure the court outside the temple; leave that out, for it is given over to the nations, and they will trample the holy city for forty-two months.  And I will grant authority to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.” (V1-3 ESV)  John sees and measures a future temple which will exist during the times of the end.  We will discuss the ministry of the two witnesses elsewhere, but here we notice that the outer court of the gentiles may or may not be constructed in this Third Temple.
  • In the books of Daniel and Matthew (Daniel 9:27, Matthew 24:15), we are told that during the yet future 70th week of Daniel, an event known as the “abomination of desolation” will occur to desecrate the Temple/altar.  For this to occur, a Jewish Temple needs to be in place, or at the very least, an altar of sacrifice.
  • We also know from Daniel that there will be Jews in Old Covenant relationship with God, and that they will be offering daily sacrifices.  At some point during the 70th week of Daniel (likely at the abomination of desolation), a strong ruler (the lawless one) will cause the sacrifices to cease (Daniel 9:27).  So thus, we know the sacrifices will be restarted before this stopping can occur.
  • In 2 Thessalonians 2:4, we are told the man of lawlessness will “set himself up in the temple and proclaim to be god”.  For this to be possible, there must be a Third Temple in place.
  • The prophet Ezekiel describes a temple in chapters 40-48, the likes of which has never existed.  The third temple may try to follow these very detailed plans.  It is unclear if the Third Temple will become the Millennial Kingdom Temple, or if a Fourth Temple will be built.  It will depend how exactly the Third Temple meets Ezekiel’s Millennial Temple description.
  •  Note that the temple Ezekiel describes is far larger than the current temple mount could hold, so even if the third temple is built on Mount Moriah, the entire city of Jerusalem will need to be resurfaced in the Millennial Kingdom to allow the temple to be built to specification.

ezekiels temple.png

While the glory of God will not enter a physical Temple in the Time of Jacob’s Trouble, He will again dwell in the Temple during the Millennial Kingdom.  For more on the Third Temple, please see this post:  The Third Temple – Prophecy and Progress.

With this discussion on the Temples of God and the Holy Spirit as Restrainer within the body of Christ complete, let’s continue on in our study with how to determine the day of Pentecost:

Pentecost Part 5- The Counting of the Omer – Day and Hour Unknown?

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church


ADDENDUM April 24/18:  Our watching sister Kate Engel has most interestingly pointed out that God led the Israelites into the Promised Land via the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night.  That’s not the interesting part.  The astonishing part is that the cloud/fire acted as a RESTRAINER – if the cloud settled, the people camped.  If the cloud lifted, the people set out.  Does this foreshadow the Restrainer settling down to mark the Church Age and being lifted to end the Church Age as He leads us into the heavenly realms?  It’s worth considering!

On the day that the tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered the tabernacle, the tent of the testimony. And at evening it was over the tabernacle like the appearance of fire until morning. So it was always: the cloud covered it by day and the appearance of fire by night.  And whenever the cloud lifted from over the tent, after that the people of Israel set out, and in the place where the cloud settled down, there the people of Israel camped.  At the command of the Lord the people of Israel set out, and at the command of the Lord they camped. As long as the cloud rested over the tabernacle, they remained in camp.  Even when the cloud continued over the tabernacle many days, the people of Israel kept the charge of the Lord and did not set out.  Sometimes the cloud was a few days over the tabernacle, and according to the command of the Lord they remained in camp; then according to the command of the Lord they set out.  And sometimes the cloud remained from evening until morning. And when the cloud lifted in the morning, they set out, or if it continued for a day and a night, when the cloud lifted they set out.  Whether it was two days, or a month, or a longer time, that the cloud continued over the tabernacle, abiding there, the people of Israel remained in camp and did not set out, but when it lifted they set out. At the command of the Lord they camped, and at the command of the Lord they set out. They kept the charge of the Lord, at the command of the Lord by Moses.  Numbers 9:15-23 ESV


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

Seals, Sealing, and the Ministry of the Holy Spirit

The Four Horsemen – Seals 1-4

The Martyrs Under the Altar – Seal 5

The Blood Moon – Seal 6

Heavenly Silence – Seal 7

The Third Temple – Prophecy and Progress

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!

 

Pentecost Part 7 – A Picture of a Pentecost Rapture in Hebrews 12

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering,  and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel. 

Hebrews 12:22-24 ESV

My dear watchmen, how have we not seen this???  Is this not clearly a rapture passage?  When is it that we will come to the heavenly Mount Zion and the city of the living God?  When do we enter our chambers, the ones that Jesus has been preparing for us in the Heavenly Jerusalem?  When will we attend a festal gathering?  When will the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven assemble?  Surely this is describing the rapture!

Mount Zion and the Heavenly City of Jerusalem

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem…

In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. John 14:2-3 ESV

But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,  who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.  Philippians 3:20-21 ESV

Come, my people, enter your chambers,
    and shut your doors behind you;
hide yourselves for a little while
    until the fury has passed by.
For behold, the Lord is coming out from his place
    to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity,
and the earth will disclose the blood shed on it,
    and will no more cover its slain.  Isaiah 26:20-21 ESV

Blow the trumpet in Zion;
    consecrate a fast;
call a solemn assembly;
     gather the people.
Consecrate the congregation;
    assemble the elders;
gather the children,
    even nursing infants.
Let the bridegroom leave his room,
    and the bride her chamber.  Joel 2:15-17 ESV

“Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.”  And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God,  having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal.  Revelation 21:9-11 ESV

We will live in our Father’s house, in the heavenly Jerusalem, on the heavenly Mount Zion.  At some point (I believe after the Millennial Kingdom when the new heaven and new earth are made) it will come down out of heaven.

mount zion

Festal Gathering

…and to innumerable angels in festal gathering…

Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.  Revelation 19:9 ESV

Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”  This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church.  Ephesians 5:31-32 ESV

And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut.  Matthew 25:10 ESV

Remember in Part 1 of our study, we noted that on the original Pentecost (Shavuot), the elders of Israel ascended Mount Sinai to eat a “covenant affirmation” meal with the LORD?

Then Moses and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel went up,  and they saw the God of Israel. There was under his feet as it were a pavement of sapphire stone, like the very heaven for clearness.  And he did not lay his hand on the chief men of the people of Israel; they beheld God, and ate and drank.  Exodus 24:9-11 ESV

Assembly of the Firstborn

…and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven…

Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him… 2 Thessalonians 2:1 ESV

Our assembly is described in the interlinear as Strong’s #3831:

panéguris: a festal assembly

Original Word: πανήγυρις, εως, ἡ
Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
Transliteration: panéguris
Phonetic Spelling: (pan-ay’-goo-ris)
Short Definition: a festival assembly
Definition: a festival assembly.

HELPS Word-studies

3831 panḗgyris (from 3956 /pás, “all” and 58 /agorá, “the public square, meeting place”) – properly, an assembly-place where people met for a common purpose, especially to celebrate (commemorate) or be festive (BAGD).

Source: http://biblehub.com/greek/3831.htm

“Your heart must not be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you.  If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come back and receive you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also.”  John 14:1-3 NKJV 

Note how Jesus will receive us unto Himself as you read the next passage.

Two men will be in the field; one will be taken [received] and the other left.  Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken [received] and the other left.  Matthew 24:40-41; Mark 13:34-35 ESV  

Interestingly, the word used, paralambanetai, is used elsewhere to represent “received” – as in, the ones taken will be received unto the Lamb.  Our reception into heaven is when we are taken from the earth and assemble together before the Lamb.  That we are enrolled in heaven means that we are in the Lamb’s book of life from the foundation of the world (Rev 17:8).

God, the Judge of All

…and to God, the judge of all…

I believe this is a reference to the Judgment Seat of Christ, where saints will receive or lose their rewards:

And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.  Hebrews 9:27-28 ESV

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. (2 Corinthians 5:10 ESV)

Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God;  for it is written,  “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.  (Romans 14:10-12 ESV)

Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw—each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done.  If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward.  If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire. (1 Corinthians 3:12-15 ESV)

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.  Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.  (1 Corinthians 9:24-25 ESV)

Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing. (2 Timothy 4:8 ESV)

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. (James 1:12 ESV)   (Also Rev 2:10  Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. ESV)

And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. (1 Peter 5:4 ESV)

Look! I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me to repay each person according to what he has done. (Revelation 22:12 ESV)

I believe that the Day of Christ is the heavenly track while the Day of the Lord runs its course on earth.   The Day of Christ is the day of redemption of the saints, when the “age of grace” is complete and the true body of Christ is called up to join Jesus in glory.  The Day of the Lord is the day of judgment for those who “refused to love the truth and so be saved”.

Spirits of the Righteous Made Perfect

..and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect…

I believe this is related to our complete redemption through the blood of the Lamb.

Listen! I am telling you a mystery:  We will not all fall asleep, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the blink of an eye, at the last trumpet.  For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed.  For this corruptible must be clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal must be clothed with immortality.  When this corruptible is clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal is clothed with immortality, then the saying that is written will take place:

Death has been swallowed up in victory.
Death, where is your victory?
Death, where is your sting?

1 Corinthians 15:51-55 ESV

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.  Ephesians 4:30 ESV

In him we have redemption through his bloodthe forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace,  which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight  making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory.  In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.  Ephesians 1:7-14 ESV

Jesus, the Mediator of a New Covenant

…and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant…

Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant. For where a will is involved, the death of the one who made it must be established.  For a will takes effect only at death, since it is not in force as long as the one who made it is alive. Therefore not even the first covenant was inaugurated without blood.  For when every commandment of the law had been declared by Moses to all the people, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water and scarlet wool and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people,  saying, “This is the blood of the covenant that God commanded for you.  And in the same way he sprinkled with the blood both the tent and all the vessels used in worship.  Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins. Thus it was necessary for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these rites, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.  For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.  Nor was it to offer himself repeatedly, as the high priest enters the holy places every year with blood not his own,  for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.  And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,  so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.  Hebrews 9:15-28 ESV

The Sprinkled Blood

…and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel. 

The sprinkled blood refers back to the blood of the Lamb, Jesus, the mediator of the New Covenant.  The blood of Abel refers to the purpose of the Day of the Lord, which is to cleanse the earth of its’ bloodguilt and wickedness and punish those who refused to love the truth and be saved (2 Thessalonians 2:12).

The Pentecost Connection

Ok, you are saying, I can see the rapture here, with our assembling together in heaven at the redemption of our bodies.  But where does Pentecost fit in?  For this we turn to the entire passage to ascertain context:

For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire and darkness and gloom and a tempest and the sound of a trumpet and a voice whose words made the hearers beg that no further messages be spoken to them.  For they could not endure the order that was given, “If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.”  Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I tremble with fear.”  

The passage starts out describing the giving of the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai on what day?  PENTECOST.  It continues with no interruption:

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering,  and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

This is the rapture connection we have discussed above.  And what follows?  Keep going…

See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven.  At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.”  This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain.  Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe,  for our God is a consuming fire.  Hebrews 12:18-29 ESV

Did you note the connection which confirms that the author is connecting the escaping at Mount Sinai and the escaping what is to come next?  The author then describes a shaking of the heavens and the earth, to remove the powers from them in order to establish Jesus’ Kingdom that will never be shaken!  We know that at the rapture there is an escape route, followed by a time of wrath on earth.

But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.  

Luke 21:36 ESV

The giving of the Law on Mount Sinai was a somber and dramatic occasion, ON PENTECOST, which the author of Hebrews ties together with a future festal gathering in heaven as an escape, followed by a shaking of the heavens and the earth.  Could this be a clue that this gathering will also occur on a future PENTECOST, followed by a time of tribulation on earth?

Let’s examine the connection of Hebrews 12 to the Day of the Lord to see if we are on the right track:

Pentecost Part 8 – Pentecost, Joel 2, and the Coming of the Day of the Lord

Main Pentecost Study Menu: Everything You Need to Know About Pentecost, the Feast that Ties It All Together For The Church


Further Resources:

Are you CERTAIN of your Salvation, beyond a shadow of a doubt?  Do you KNOW that no matter when the rapture occurs, you will be counted worthy to escape?  If not, please read What Must I do to Be Saved.

The Day of the Lord

The Day of Christ- BEMA Seat

The Millennial Kingdom

Who Will Stand Before the Son of Man?  Examining Luke 21:36

What’s Shaking?  The Earth, The Heavens, or Both?

The Rapture of the Church – Our Blessed Hope

God’s Mosaic – A Whole Scripture Overview of Things To Come

Main Menu – God’s Mosaic Prophecy Model

The Bible is infallible.  I am not.  I am merely challenging traditional models and testing them against Scripture.  I believe that traditional pretribulation teachings provide a solid backbone upon which to lay the musculature of details, some of which I think might need to be adjusted slightly.  I encourage you to consider my thoughts as you also examine the scriptures to see if these things are so!