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!¬† ūüėČ

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‚Äôs revelation and dealings with humanity can be broadly¬†separated into ‚Äúages‚ÄĚ.¬† It is progressive in nature, as each “dispensation”, or “age”, unfolds into the next.¬† This is the basis for¬†Dispensational Theology.¬† It‚Äôs 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¬†‚Äú‚ÄėAnd 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‚Äôs 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‚Äôs 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 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 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.

‚ÄúBehold, 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‚ÄĚ. ¬†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 РJesus Christ.  Under the new covenant, we are covered by the blood of the Lamb Рthe 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,¬†‚ÄúThis is my body, which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.‚Ä̬†In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying,¬†‚ÄúThis cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.‚Ä̬†¬†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,¬†‚ÄúIf even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.‚Ä̬†¬†Indeed,¬†so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, ‚ÄúI tremble with fear.‚Ä̬†¬†

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,¬†‚ÄúYet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.‚Ä̬†¬†This phrase, ‚ÄúYet once more,‚ÄĚ indicates¬†the removal of things that are shaken‚ÄĒthat is, things that have been made‚ÄĒin 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‚Äôre 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 ‚Äď ‚ÄúThe Last Trump‚ÄĚ.

…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 ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ the last of the 7 Trumpet Judgments?¬† Is this ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ the last trumpet sounded on the Feast of Trumpets?¬† Is it the ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ of a Jubilee year on Yom Kippur?¬† Is it the ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ sounded in a feast year on the mysterious Eighth Day after the Feast of Tabernacles?¬† Or is the ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ something else?¬† Could the ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ 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 ‚Äď 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,¬†‚ÄúIf even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.‚Ä̬†¬†Indeed,¬†so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, ‚ÄúI tremble with fear.‚Ä̬†¬†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¬†s√°lpigks¬†‚Äď “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 ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ that sounds at the time of the rapture is likely this battle cry of remembrance ‚Äď 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‚Äôs 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 ‚Äúmessiah‚ÄĚ will most certainly appear.

Will Israel accept or reject the ultimate false messianic figure?

As on earth, it is in heaven‚Ķ I believe that the Last Trump will also initiate the greatest heavenly battle of all time.¬† I believe that¬†THIS¬†is the ‚Äúheavenly dragon sign‚ÄĚ we have been watching for.¬† I believe it will occur in conjunction with the rapture‚Ķ 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 ‚Äď Feast of God, Battle Cry, Call to Assembly, or all of the above, the Last Trump is clearly sounded by God Himself.¬†¬†The ‚ÄúLast Trump‚ÄĚ 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 ‚Äú7 Year Tribulation‚ÄĚ, or the Time of Jacob‚Äôs Trouble.¬† How could this possibly be considered the ‚ÄúLast Day‚ÄĚ?¬† Isn‚Äôt the ‚ÄúLast Day‚ÄĚ 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 ‚ÄúLast Day‚ÄĚ 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 ‚ÄúLast Day‚ÄĚ it is sandwiched in between statements of eternal life.¬† It is also strongly connected to Him being the bread of life ‚Äď that whoever comes to Him shall not hunger and whoever believes in Him shall never thirst.

The ‚ÄúLast Day‚ÄĚ is the Resurrection/Rapture event¬†for believers.¬† It marks the main harvest of the First Resurrection. Unbelievers won‚Äôt be resurrected until the end of the Millennial Kingdom, for the Great White Throne Judgment.¬† So why does Jesus call it a ‚ÄúLast Day‚ÄĚ?¬† Why use such a confusing term?¬† Well‚Ķ There¬†is¬†a specific Day that the scriptures talk about hundreds of times.¬† This Great Day will mark the end of humanity‚Äôs reign on earth, so one might refer to it as the Last Day of an era ‚Äď 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 ‚ÄúLast Day‚ÄĚ 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‚Äôs 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 ‚Äď 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‚Äôs not a doorway or window that opens, it‚Äôs the¬†entire sky¬†‚Äď no pushing and shoving necessary, there will be plenty of room for everyone if this is the rapture¬†ūüėČ

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 ‚ÄúFeast of Unknown Day/Hour‚ÄĚ.¬† Note, too, that even if Pentecost is ‚ÄúTHE Day‚ÄĚ, the actual date and time (hour) will vary for believers worldwide because of time zones :).¬† And we still don‚Äôt know the year.¬†ūüėČ

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, ‚ÄúLet 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‚Ķ‚ÄĚ 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;6¬†and you shall be to me a¬†kingdom of priests and¬†a holy nation.‚Äô These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.‚ÄĚ7¬†So Moses came and called the elders of the people and set before them all these words that the¬†Lord¬†had commanded him.¬†8¬†All the people answered together and said, ‚ÄúAll that the¬†Lord¬†has spoken we will do.‚ÄĚ

¬†The¬†Lord¬†said to Moses, ‚ÄúGo 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, ‚ÄėTake 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.‚Äô When¬†the trumpet sounds a long blast, they shall come up to the mountain.‚Ä̬†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, ‚ÄúBe ready for the¬†third day;¬†do not go near a woman.‚ÄĚ

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,¬†‚ÄúYou speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, lest we die.‚Ä̬†20¬†Moses said to the people, ‚ÄúDo not fear, for God has come to¬†test you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.‚Ä̬†21¬†The people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the¬†thick darkness where God was.

[Additional commandments Given – the Law]

3¬†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,¬†‚ÄúAll the words that the¬†Lord¬†has spoken we will do.‚Ä̬†¬†6¬†And¬†Moses took half of the blood and put it in basins, and half of the blood he threw against the altar.¬†7¬†Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it in the hearing of the people. And they said,¬†‚ÄúAll that the¬†Lord¬†has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient.‚Ä̬†8¬†And Moses took the blood and threw it on the people and said, ‚ÄúBehold the blood of the covenant that the¬†Lord¬†has made with you in accordance with all these words.‚ÄĚ

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

¬†‚ÄúYou 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.¬†¬†‚ÄúAnd 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.‚Ä̬†¬†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 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.‚Ä̬†¬†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.‚Ä̬†¬†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:¬†ŌÄőĪőĹőģő≥ŌÖŌĀőĻŌā, őĶŌČŌā, Šľ°
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¬†panŠłógyris¬†(from¬†3956¬†/p√°s, “all” and¬†58¬†/agor√°, “the public square, meeting place”) ‚Äď 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

‚ÄúYour heart must not be troubled. Believe¬†in God; believe also in Me.¬†¬†In My Father‚Äôs 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.‚ÄĚ ¬†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 ‚Äúreceived‚ÄĚ ‚Äď 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, ¬†‚ÄúAs I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me,¬†and every tongue shall confess¬†to God.‚Ä̬†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‚ÄĒeach one‚Äôs 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‚Äôs 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 ‚Äúage of grace‚ÄĚ 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 blood, the 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,¬†‚ÄúThis is the blood of the covenant that God commanded for you.‚Ä̬†¬†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,¬†‚ÄúIf even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned.‚Ä̬†¬†Indeed,¬†so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, ‚ÄúI tremble with fear.‚Ä̬†¬†

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,¬†‚ÄúYet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.‚Ä̬†¬†This phrase, ‚ÄúYet once more,‚ÄĚ indicates¬†the removal of things that are shaken‚ÄĒthat is, things that have been made‚ÄĒin 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!

 

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

We have been studying Pentecost, otherwise known as Shavuot or the Feast of Weeks, as one of God’s appointed times (mo’ed).¬† 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?

This is the main question I am setting out to answer with this study series, and for that we need to review what dispensations are.

What Are the Dispensations?

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

Jack Kelley at GraceThruFaith explains dispensationalism in this way:

Dispensationalism is a method for interpreting the Bible. The Greek word from which we get dispensation appears only 7 times in the New Testament and is only translated as such in four of those, all by Paul and all in the King James (1 Cor. 9:17, Ephes. 1:10, Ephes. 3:2, Colossians 1:25). Other meanings of this word are stewardship, administration, and economy.

A dispensationalist believes that God has dealt with humanity in different ways at different times‚ÄĒrevealing to us His character and His plan for mankind. These different periods of time are called dispensations.

Some say that dispensationalism is a relatively modern system of theology first proposed by John Nelson Darby in the mid-1800s. But evidence that the early church believed in the principles of dispensationalism can be found in the 2nd Century writings of Justin Martyr and Irenaeus. Justin Martyr saw four distinct periods (dispensations) and gave them the names of the principle players, Adam to Abraham; Abraham to Moses; Moses to Christ; and Christ to Eternity. Irenaeus also saw four periods, from the Creation to the Flood, from the Flood to the Law, from the Law to the Gospel, and from the Gospel to Eternity.

More recently most scholars have settled on seven dispensations. Each one has begun with an agreement between God and man that man has subsequently broken, causing the agreement to fail and requiring a judgment. Here are the seven dispensations in chronological order.

1) Innocence: Between the Creation and the Fall of Man in the Garden

God interacted freely and personally with Adam and Eve during this period. Then they broke the only rule He had given them (Genesis 3:11-13) and were expelled from the Garden. Sin entered the world.

2) Conscience: Between the Fall and the Flood

God allowed man‚Äôs conscience to govern his behavior without Divine interference. Because of the sin nature passed down from mankind‚Äôs first parents, the result was that¬†‚Äúthe wickedness of man was great in the earth, and every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually‚Ä̬†(Genesis 6:5). God pronounced judgment upon the world and destroyed all but 8 members of the human race in the Great Flood.

3) Human Government … From the Flood to Abraham

After the flood, God told Noah to go forth and replenish the Earth (Genesis 9:7). Noah’s descendants disobeyed God’s commandment, setting about instead to build a great city and tower from which to study the stars (Genesis 11:4). God confused man’s language, causing them to stop building the tower, and scattered them through out the world (Genesis 11:8-9).

4) Promise: From Abraham to Moses

God promised Abraham a homeland for his descendants (Genesis 17:8) and a son for him and Sarah (Genesis 17:15-16). But they grew tired of waiting and produced a son on their own, who they named Ishmael (Genesis 16:1-2.15). When God’s promised son Isaac was born, Ishmael was sent away (Genesis 21:8-13) causing enmity between the Jews (descendants of Isaac) and Arabs (descendants of Ishmael) that continues to this day. After Mohammed, a descendant of Ishmael’s, founded Islam this enmity took on religious significance and became even more intense.

5) Law: From Moses to Jesus

God gave Moses the 10 Commandments and promised the Jews a life of peace and plenty in a Kingdom of their own if they obeyed (Exodus 19:5, Exodus 20:1-17). After repeated periods of disobedience which included rejecting their Messiah King, God withdrew His offer of the Kingdom and expelled them from their land (Matt. 21:43, Luke 19:41-44).

6) Grace:¬†From Pentecost to the Rapture‚ÄĒthe Church Age

No longer requiring righteousness through works, God granted a righteousness by grace through faith in the completed work of Christ to all who accept, whether Jew or Gentile (Romans 3:21-24). Most will not accept and will be punished through eternity.

Note: It’s important to realize that Grace didn’t replace Law, it just interrupted it.  Law has another 7 years to run, called Daniel’s 70th Week (Daniel 9:24-27), which fills the time between the Rapture and the 2nd Coming. During this time all the nations to which Israel has been scattered will be completely destroyed and Israel will be disciplined in preparation for receiving the Kingdom (Jeremiah 30:4-11).

7) The Kingdom: The 1000 Year Reign of Christ that begins with the 2nd Coming

This time Israel will accept the Kingdom offer (Zechariah 12:10, Zechariah 14:8-9). Satan will be bound (Rev. 20:2), all unbelievers will be expelled from the planet (Matt. 25:41-46), and God will once again dwell in the midst of His people (Ezek. 43:6-7). You’d think the world could finally live in a manner pleasing to God. But we can’t. Eventually, with the exception of Israel, the world will rebel against God and His people. God will send fire to consume them all (Rev. 20:7-10).

Source: https://gracethrufaith.com/topical-studies/dispensationalism-2/

A chart demonstrating these 7 dispensations would look like this:

dispensations.jpg

We will examine Dispensational Theology in more depth another time, but for today let’s examine how the Feast of Pentecost fits in to a discussion of Dispensations.¬† The only two dispensations connected to Pentecost are Law and Grace (Church Age).

Shavuot – The Dispensation of Law Begins

Shavuot, or the Feast of Weeks, is a memorial to the giving of the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai.  According to Hebrew4Christians, Shavuot at Mount Sinai is considered the day on which Judaism was born.  This is what we refer to as the giving of the Covenant of Moses, or the Laws of Moses.  We discussed this more fully in Part 1, The Giving of the Law, The Giving of Grace.

What is notable is that the Dispensation of Law ended on the day it began – Pentecost.

Pentecost – The Dispensation of Grace Begins

On the celebration of this feast day after Jesus’ resurrection, the Holy Spirit was given to the body of Christ in power and as a seal.¬† Thus, Pentecost is associated with the “birthday of the Church”.¬† In the church age, the Holy Spirit reveals to us the spirit behind the letter of the Law.¬† We refer to this as the age (or dispensation) of Grace.¬† Again, we discussed this more fully in Part 1, The Giving of the Law, The Giving of Grace.

Our question here is, will the Dispensation of Grace end on the day it began – Pentecost?

Pentecost – The Dispensation of Law + Grace Begins???

Once the Church Age ends with the removal of the Restrainer (the indwelling, sealing ministry of the Holy Spirit), it seems that salvation will be similar to how it was in the Old Testament under the Law.¬† The Holy Spirit will not be “gone” from the Earth, and He will still be involved in convicting of sin and leading people to repentance.¬† Salvation, as always, will be by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.

However, it will be necessary to act out that faith, as per the parable of the Sheep and Goats in Matthew 25.  Believers will be held accountable for what they do, or do not do, as if it were for Jesus Himself.  It seems Tribulation-Age Saints will need to pray for God not to take His Holy Spirit from them as David did:

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
    and renew a right spirit within me.
 Cast me not away from your presence,
    and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
    and uphold me with a willing spirit. 

Psalm 51:10-12 ESV

The Tribulation Saints will be responsible for remaining faithful in the face of severe deprivation and persecution.  The question is, when will the Grace Dispensation end and the Tribulation Dispensation begin?

Conceptions and Births

We mentioned above, that Shavuot, or the giving of the Law, was the “birth of Judaism”.¬† We also mentioned that Pentecost, or the giving of the Holy Spirit, was the “birth of Christianity”.¬† As Scottie Clarke has pointed out so succinctly… was this our birthday… or our conception?¬† What do you think?

If the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai was the conception of Judaism, was it birthed in fullness with the start of Christianity?  One might consider that to be true in some sense, as Christ was the fulfillment of the law and the prophets:

Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.  Matthew 5:17 ESV

One might then wonder… what will happen at the fulfillment of the church age?¬† The end times revolve around a theme of birth, birth pains, and deliverance.¬† More on that can be found here:¬†Braxton Hicks, Labor Pains, and the Time of the End.

1200px-Birthday_candles.jpg

The Rapture of Enoch

Only two humans have ever been translated to heaven alive, bypassing death.¬† One of these is the Patriarch Enoch, who came before the global flood.¬† The other is Elijah, who was one of the Old Testament Prophets.¬† As far as I know, there is no mention of what day Elijah was raptured.¬† There is, however, tradition surrounding Enoch’s rapture.¬† Jack Kelley writes about it here:

By tradition, Enoch, one of the patriarchs from¬†Genesis 5, was born on the day later to be known as Pentecost. Enoch‚Äôs name means ‚Äúteaching,‚ÄĚ a primary function of the Church (Matt. 28:19-20).¬† For this reason many scholars see him as a ‚Äútype‚ÄĚ of the church as well.¬†Genesis 5:21-23¬†indicates that Enoch had a close relationship with God and was actually taken live (raptured) into Heaven before the Great Flood. Pre-Trib scholars see this event as one of several Old Testament hints that the Church will disappear from Earth before the Great Tribulation.

These same traditions also hold that Enoch was taken on his birthday. So here’s a man, identified with the Church, perhaps being born and raptured on the day that would become Pentecost, the day the Church was born.  Will the Church be raptured on our birthday, too?

Source: https://gracethrufaith.com/topical-studies/holidays-and-holy-days/the-feast-of-pentecost/

The scripture passage is found here:

When Enoch had lived 65 years, he fathered Methuselah.  Enoch walked with God after he fathered Methuselah 300 years and had other sons and daughters.  Thus all the days of Enoch were 365 years. Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.  Genesis 5:21-24 ESV

From Scripture itself, all we know is that Enoch was raptured before the flood.¬† We don’t know his birthday or which date he was taken from the Bible – this information comes from extrabiblical texts so should be taken with a grain of salt.

Interestingly, Enoch lived 365 years, which is the number of days in our post-flood calendar year.¬† His son, Methuselah, was the longest-lived human.¬† Methuselah’s name means “his death shall bring judgment”, and in the year when Methuselah died, the flood came.¬† I always wondered if there was a connection between the gap of time between Enoch’s rapture and the coming of the flood – the gap is 669 years.¬† Perhaps you can figure something out!

Besides the birthday connections, the Bible does contain some prophecies about Pentecost.¬† Let’s examine these next!

Pentecost Part 3 – Pentecost Prophecies

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 Are the 7 Dispensations?  (GraceThruFaith)

What are the 7 Dispensations? (Gotquestions)

Meaning of the Names in Genesis 5 – God’s Redemption Story (Chuck Missler)

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

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

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.¬† What has started out as a single post is evolving into a series through which I hope to bring you along on this fascinating journey of discovery about Pentecost, perhaps our “highest watch date”:

  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

What is Pentecost?

Pentecost, otherwise known as Shavuot or the Feast of Weeks, is one of God’s appointed times (mo’ed).¬† God set appointed times on His calendar from the beginning of creation. ¬†Genesis 1:14 declares¬†‚ÄúAnd God said, ‚ÄúLet there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and¬†let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years‚ÄĚ.¬† (ESV)¬† The sacred times, or seasons, are the¬†fixed or appointed times when God would meet with His people.¬† These appointed times are illustrative pictures for humanity of God‚Äôs redemption plan.

The Hebrew word for ‚Äúholy convocation‚ÄĚ or ‚Äúsacred assembly‚ÄĚ is¬†mikrah, which also means a ‚Äúdress rehearsal‚ÄĚ. ¬†Every time these festivals are acted out, it is a dress rehearsal for the prophetic plan of God (similar to the New Testament visual aids of water baptism and communion). ¬†These appointed times are the ‚ÄúMoedim‚ÄĚ and are detailed in Exodus 12-13, Leviticus 23, Numbers 28-29 and Deuteronomy 16.

Note that they are the appointed feasts of the Lord, and as such, they transcend Israel. While they were initially given to Israel, they are just as applicable to believers today.  These appointed times point clearly to Christ.  An overview of these can be found here: The Feasts of God РHis Appointed Times.

Gary Stearman of Prophecy Watchers describes Pentecost in this way:
We have demonstrated numerous remarkable connections between Pentecost and the prophetic conclusion of the church age. It is the fourth and central feast among the seven Feasts of Israel: Passover, Unleavened Bread, Firstfruits, Pentecost, Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur and Tabernacles. The first three are spring festivals, representing the blood sacrifice and resurrection. The last three come in the fall, calling forth judgment and the establishment of the Kingdom. At the center ‚Äď in the early summer ‚Äď is Pentecost. In the Bible, it is represented by two loaves of leavened bread, held aloft by the High Priest. Today‚Äôs Jews celebrate it annually, in a ceremony called, ‚Äúdecorating the bride.‚ÄĚ This reminds us of the church, the ‚Äúbride of Christ.‚ÄĚ
(Source: https://prophecywatchers.com/the-mystery-of-pentecost/)

In this post I’m going to challenge you to consider whether or not Pentecost has been completely fulfilled, and what that means to us as the body of Christ.

Shavuot is considered the day on which Judaism was born (the Age of Law).  Pentecost is also considered the day on which the Church was born (the Age of Grace).  Will a future Pentecost mark another dispensation change? 

I am thinking, of course, of the end of the Church Age and the start of a 7 year “Age of Wrath”.¬† It’s certainly worth studying, so let’s delve into it!¬† I have used Hebrew4Christians as a resource when indicated by quotation marks and the source is here:¬†http://www.hebrew4christians.com/Holidays/Spring_Holidays/Shavuot/shavuot.html

Feasts.jpg

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;6¬†and you shall be to me a¬†kingdom of priests and¬†a holy nation.‚Äô These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.‚ÄĚ7¬†So Moses came and called the elders of the people and set before them all these words that the¬†Lord¬†had commanded him.¬†8¬†All the people answered together and said, ‚ÄúAll that the¬†Lord¬†has spoken we will do.‚ÄĚ

¬†The¬†Lord¬†said to Moses, ‚ÄúGo 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, ‚ÄėTake 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.‚Äô When¬†the trumpet sounds a long blast, they shall come up to the mountain.‚Ä̬†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, ‚ÄúBe ready for the¬†third day;¬†do not go near a woman.‚ÄĚ

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,¬†‚ÄúYou speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, lest we die.‚Ä̬†20¬†Moses said to the people, ‚ÄúDo not fear, for God has come to¬†test you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.‚Ä̬†21¬†The people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the¬†thick darkness where God was.

[Additional commandments Given – the Law]

3¬†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,¬†‚ÄúAll the words that the¬†Lord¬†has spoken we will do.‚Ä̬†¬†6¬†And¬†Moses took half of the blood and put it in basins, and half of the blood he threw against the altar.¬†7¬†Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it in the hearing of the people. And they said,¬†‚ÄúAll that the¬†Lord¬†has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient.‚Ä̬†8¬†And Moses took the blood and threw it on the people and said, ‚ÄúBehold the blood of the covenant that the¬†Lord¬†has made with you in accordance with all these words.‚ÄĚ

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

¬†‚ÄúYou 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.¬†¬†‚ÄúAnd 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.‚Ä̬†¬†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

The First Pentecost (Shavuot) in the Old Covenant

Shavuot is the feast that marks the giving of the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai.¬† In this way, it can be considered the “birthday of Judaism”.¬† The first Shavuot occurred exactly 7 weeks after the Exodus on Sivan 6.¬† This feast also became an agricultural celebration of God’s provision for Israel.¬† It marked one of the 3 times per year that adult men would need to go to Jerusalem to make sacrifices (the others being Unleavened Bread/Passover in the early spring and Tabernacles in the fall).¬† The first Shavuot is described in great detail in the above passages.

During the festival of Shavuot, a sample of the first of the wheat harvest¬†(note that believers in Christ are often referred to as the wheat, as opposed to the tares) was brought to the priests.¬† This wheat was baked into two loaves of leavened bread and waved before the altar.¬† Notably, this is the only feast that includes leaven in the offering.¬† The purpose for the inclusion of leaven isn’t detailed, but it possibly points to both Jew and Gentile being made into one body under the New Covenant.¬† Why two loaves, and not just one?¬† I believe it is again pointing to the same thing – one loaf for Israel, one loaf for Gentiles under the New Covenant:

For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace,  and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility.  Ephesians 2:14-16 ESV

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.  Galatians 3:28 ESV

Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.  Colossians 3:11 ESV

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Awesome.¬† Let’s keep going.¬† Hebrew4Christians continues – “Moses ascended the mountain, and there God commanded him to tell the leaders that if they would obey the LORD and keep His covenant, then they would be the LORD’s “kingdom of priests and “holy nation“.”¬† (Exodus 19:6) Hmmmm, sound familiar?¬† In the Church Age fulfillment of Shavuot, we are also called a royal priesthood and holy nation:

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.  1 Peter 2:9 ESV

Ok, carrying on!¬† The people respond that they will follow the LORD’s commandments and enter into covenant with Him.¬† [This, of course, is the covenant of the Law, which in the future gets superseded by the New and Better Covenant in Jesus’ blood.]¬† God tells them to “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”.¬† They were to sanctify themselves via specific purification rites, which they carried out as directed.¬† In the new covenant, we are washed and purified by the blood of Jesus. [I’m telling you – it’s all about the blood!]

Incidentally, this “third day” was not repeated at Pentecost in 32AD, nor is it prophesied to be repeated in the future despite what some Catholic sites are erroneously claiming.

Hebrew4Christians continues – “Rabbinic tradition says that the Torah was actually given on the sixth of Sivan, the Shabbat following the new moon of Sivan that year.¬† On Shabbat morning of the sixth of Sivan, exactly seven weeks after the Exodus, all the children of Israel gathered at the foot of Mount Sinai, where the LORD descended amidst thunder, lightning, billowing smoke, fire, and the voluminous blast of the shofar.¬† The LORD then declared the foundation of moral conduct required of the people, the Ten Commandments.¬† The sound of a shofar grew louder and louder until terror gripped the heart of the people.¬† As the LORD began speaking the second commandment, however, the people began falling back in fear…”

Thunder, lightning, billowing smoke, fire, and the voluminous blast of the shofar sending terror into the heart of the people.  NOTE THIS!!!

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Moses then takes the blood of the sacrifices and throws half upon the altar and half upon the people, ratifying the covenant with blood.¬† Moses, Aaron, Aaron’s sons, and the 70 elders of Israel then ascended Mount Sinai to eat a “covenant affirmation meal” with the LORD.¬† Yes, these all dine with the LORD Himself (Exodus 24:9-11).¬† Hmmm, there’s an upcoming wedding feast where we will dine with the LORD Himself.¬† I wonder if it will occur in conjunction with a future Shavuot?

Greek translators later called Shavuot “Pentecost”, as it occurs 50 (penta) days after the Passover.¬† So that is what we will call it from now on.

The First Pentecost in the New Covenant

On to the New Testament and the New Covenant!¬† On the celebration of this feast day after Jesus’ resurrection, the Holy Spirit was given to the body of Christ in power and as a seal.¬† Thus, Pentecost is associated with the “birthday of the Church”.

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

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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

This sealing ministry of the Holy Spirit I believe is a special key to understanding the seals of Revelation 6.  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.

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 may be the feast that marks the culmination of our redemption.

Did Jesus Fulfill Shavuot / Pentecost Completely?

There is no question that Jesus fulfilled the first three Spring feasts in entirety through His death (Passover), burial (Unleavened Bread), and resurrection (Firstfruits).  When the Holy Spirit came down at Pentecost, did that completely fulfill this feast?

We noted that the shadow always points to the substance ‚Äď who is Jesus Christ. ¬†Jesus sent His Spirit to the church for this age, and that has been looked at as the definitive fulfillment. ¬†Recently, however,¬†Greg at A Little Strength¬†has noted that the Holy Spirit isn‚Äôt actually Christ Himself.¬† It was the Father who sent the Holy Spirit of Christ:

Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing.   Acts 2:33 ESV

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.  John 14:26 ESV

Jesus fulfilled the first 3 Spring Feasts Himself in the same year, and He will literally fulfill the 3 Fall Feasts Himself at the Second Coming all in the same year.  Could it be that BOTH the giving of the Law and the giving of the Holy Spirit were only partial (shadow) fulfillments of Pentecost?  Could it be that Jesus snatching his church on the day of Pentecost will be the ultimate consummation of this feast?  We know He will literally and personally call us up to be with Him someday.  I cannot say I have a prophetic answer for this, but this interpretation is worth considering.

For today, we need to further examine how Pentecost marks a change in God’s dealings with mankind, and we will do so in the next post:

Pentecost Part 2 – The Feast that Marks Dispensation Changes

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.

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!