The Most Holy Place:
The Feast of Trumpets/Rosh Hashanah
Leviticus 23:24 “…In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have for yourselves a memorial special sabbath of blowing of trumpets, a holy convocation.
I Kings 1:39 Then Zadok the priest took a horn of oil from the Tabernacle and anointed Solomon. And they blew with the shofar, and all the people said, “Lives King Solomon!”
There are many Hebraic traditions about the Feast of Trumpets. The Bible says little about it, just the two clues above from Leviticus: 1) it serves as a special memorial day, and 2) it is to be celebrated by blowing trumpets (shofars, according to Psalm 81:3 and 47:5-9). Long-standing tradition calls this day Rosh Hashanah, “The Head of the Year.” On Tishri 1 (the first day of the seventh month of the religious calendar), it is believed that God created the world.
Kings of the line of David commenced their reigns, and numbered their regnal years, from Nisan 1, the first day of the first month. In ancient times, there was a custom whereby kings, on their regnal day and subsequent memorials thereof, would sit upon their thrones to grant favors and pardons, and hear the cases and pleas of commoners. Cf. Jasher 14:1-4 On Solomonʼs accession day, he pardoned his brother Adonijah, who had attempted to usurp the kingdom. It is likely that he heard the case of the two harlots on a later such day. 1 Kings 1:51-53; 3:16ff.
A long-standing Hebraic tradition is that the King of Heaven sits upon his heavenly throne in a similar way each Rosh Hashanah: thus the meaning of memorial in Leviticus 23:24. Cf. Job 1:6 As Creator, God is king of heaven and earth, and thus judge and benefactor over all. By extension, the tradition says that on a future Rosh Hashanah, the Last Trumpet will be blown to announce the resurrection of the dead, the gathering of Israel/the faithful, and the Great Judgment which shall commence the Messianic Age. Messianic Jews and others presume that Paul had this principal in mind when writing 1 Corinthians 15:51-53 and 1 Thessalonians 4:16. See The Last Shofar: The Latter Horn of Redemption.
The first mention in the Bible of a blowing shofar is Exodus 19:19, when one sounded to announce the descent of God to Mount Sinai. That was “the First Trumpet.” The next day, Pentecost, Israel entered into their blood covenant with God, and selected Israelites ascended to different levels upon the mountain. Only after a full seven days was Moses called to enter fully into the Presence of the Glory of the LORD. Such time-delays for events after the blowing/announcement of the First Shofar suggest similar time-delays for events after the blowing/announcement of the Last Shofar of 1 Corinthians 15.
In the Tabernacle, Rosh Hashanah is represented by the veil that separates the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place, which serves as an entrance/beginning to the latter. In the body of man, this veil represents both the blood-brain barrier and the entrance of the spinal cord into the brain.
The Day of Atonement/Yom Kippur
In Jewish tradition, Rosh Hashanah commences the Ten Days of Awe, which conclude on Tishri 10, the Day of Atonement. The tradition says Godʼs judgment begins on Rosh Hashanah, when the heavenly record books of menʼs deeds are opened before the court of heaven.
Daniel 7 describes the scene of the Great Judgment of God which ends the present world age:
Daniel 7:9 I was beholding until thrones were put down, and the Ancient of Days was seated… 10 …A thousand thousands ministered to Him, and a myriad of myriads stood before Him. The [court of]
judgment sat, and the books were thrown open.
On the Day of Atonement, Godʼs judgment is concluded: the truly repentant receive atonement/expiation, and the rebellious are condemned. Numerous New Testament verses testify that the atonement for sins is accomplished by “the blood of Christ.” Heb. 9:14; 1 Pet. 1:19; etc.
Although the Passover sacrifice of Christʼs blood was a single act, it had a twofold nature, because Jesus is both Son of God and Son of man/Adam. As Son of God, His blood was brought into the heavenly Sanctuary the first time, as outlined at the beginning of Part 4. That day was a Tishri 10 in the new calendrical cycle that commenced with His birth, made up of sacred 360-day years.
As Son of man, His blood is brought “a second time” (Heb. 9:28) into the heavenly Sanctuary after the coming Rosh Hashanah wherein the Last Shofar is blown, which commences the End of the Age judgment. The same court scene described in Daniel 7 was also foreseen by John in Revelation 4-5, where he saw
Revelation 5:6 …in the midst of the throne…a lamb as though having been slain. 7 And He came and took the scroll out of the right hand of him who sat on the throne.
This scroll will contain the written and thus irrevocable judgment of God respecting “the sins of many [people].” Heb. 9:28 By Divine Law, this judgment will take place on another Tishri 10, although in what calendar I will not speculate.
Under Mosaic Law, on Yom Kippur the high priest was to bring the sacrificial blood into the Most Holy Place and sprinkle it “upon the face of the cover/Mercy Seat” [Heb. על־פני הכפרת]. Lev. 16:14 The Most Holy Place corresponds to the head, and the Ark with all of its parts represents the brain: in its highest sense, “the mind of the Lord.” 1 Cor. 2:16 The cover in the center of all of those parts represents the mid-brain, the divider between its nature-oriented functions below, and its mentally-oriented functions above. The bodyʼs two master endocrine glands, the singular pineal and the dual-lobed pituitary, sit above and below, respectively.
The pinealʼs function is heavily influenced by the bodyʼs, and particularly by the two eyesʼ, exposure to light, or the absence thereof. The pineal itself has the morphology of an eye, with a fluid-filled interior and an exterior having retinal (photo-receptor) cells. These retinal cells are significant, because the pineal sits in the middle of the head, and therefore has no exposure at all to the worldʼs light.
The interior of the pineal gland has within it piezo-electric, piezo-chromatic, and piezo-luminescent crystals. Mystics ancient and modern have believed the pineal to be the organ that bridges between the mind of man and the mind of God, and between the worldʼs light and heavenʼs light; and is the “eye single” spoken of by Jesus:
Matthew 6:22 “The lamp of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be phōteinos/lustrous/full of light. 23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!”
With regard to the implications of this verse, more will said in the next article.
In the previous section, we saw the parallel and complementary relationship of earthly and heavenly memorial days – Nisan 1 and Tishri 1 – for earthly and heavenly kings, respectively. The same complementary relationship exists respecting Nisan 10 and Tishri 10. According to Mosaic Law, on Nisan 10, unblemished Passover lambs were to be chosen by Israelite households, to be kept for the Passover sacrifice at the evening of Nisan 14. Ex. 12:3-6 Jesus, the ultimate Passover lamb, was therefore chosen and honored at the home of Lazarus, Martha, and Mary in the evening/beginning of Nisan 10, and then the next day, still Nisan 10, by the “great multitude” in and on the way to Jerusalem. John 12 Therefore, on Nisan 10, faithful believers chose God Incarnate as their Savior. On Tishri 10, God, by means of God Incarnate, will choose faithful believers to be saved.
Next: the Feast of Tabernacles/Ingathering, and the Eighth-Day Solemn Assembly.
The Tabernacle and Court, Part 4:
The Most Holy Place
Under the Mosaic Law of the Israelite Covenant, only the High Priest was allowed to enter into the Most Holy Place of the Tabernacle, and only on one day each year. Lev. 16:2, 34; Heb. 9:7 On that day, the Day of Atonement, he was required to enter the Most Holy Place twice:
Leviticus 16:17 …that he may make atonement  for himself, and for his household, and  for all the assembly of Israel.
Under Christʼs Law of the Church Covenant,
Hebrews 8:1 We have such a High Priest… 2 a Minister of the Holy Places and of the true [i.e., Heavenly] Tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man. … 9:12 …[who] entered  once into the Holy Places, having obtained (for) Himself* eternal redemption. … 24 For Christ has not entered into holy places made with hands, [which are] antitupa/antitypes/representations of the true, but into heaven itself,  now to appear in the Presence of God for us. … 28 To those who eagerly wait for Him, He will appear out [of heavenʼs Sanctuary] a second time without sin to [the purpose of] salvation. *Greek middle/reflexive voice.
The true meaning of this passage out of Hebrews is generally missed. The two-fold atonement required of Aaronic High Priests in the earthly Tabernacle was meant to be an accurate representation of the two-fold atonement ultimately required of the heavenly High Priest, Jesus Christ.
Although Jesus lived a sinless life, God “made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Cor. 5:21; Is. 53:4-6 Therefore, He was unclean upon His Resurrection from the dead, and needed to immediately ascend to the Most Holy Place in heaven to become purified. This is why He said to Mary Magdalene,
John 20:17 “Touch me not, for I have not yet ascended to my Father…”
In contrast, the same day in the evening, after His return from “having obtained (for) Himself eternal redemption” (Heb. 9:12, above), he told His disciples, “Handle Me and see…” Luke 24:39 By that time, atonement had been made “for Himself and for His household.” Lev. 16:17, above.
Aaronʼs household consisted of all Aaronic priests and their families. Christʼs household consists of all Melchizedek/Apostolic priests and their families, because He was
Hebrews 5:10 called by God as High Priest “according to the Order of Melchizedek…” 3:6 [and] Christ [was faithful] as Son [of God] over his own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end.
When the Tabernacle is viewed as an archetypal representation of man, the part that the Most Holy Place represents is the head. In both Hebrew and Greek, the term head is used both literally – the physical part of the body itself – and also and more often figuratively. Meanings for the latter include terms such as leader, chief authority, origin/beginning, foremost, and highest. Paul used this metaphor often:
1 Corinthians 11:3 …know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of a woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God.
Ephesians 5:23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the Church; and He is Savior of the body. … 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones.
Colossians 2:9 For in Him [Christ] dwells all of the fullness of the Theotētos/Divinity/Godhead bodily. 10 And in him your are made full, who is the head of all rule and authority.
This whole concept of levels of headship (hierarchical authority) has been under assault throughout our era of the Seventh/last of Revelation 2-3ʼs churches, the Church of Laodicea. That name is derived from laos/people + dikē/right/justice. All authority/headship in the Church, be it of God, Christ, anointed elders, or fathers of families, is being challenged and rebelled against under the popular cry of “human rights.” This is the spirit of apostasia/apostasy foretold in 2 Thessalonians 2:2-4 that is to precede the coming of both “the Day of Christ” and of the Son of Perdition.
The Realm of the Light
1 John 1:5 …God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.
Matthew 6:22 The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore thine eye is single, thy whole body will be luminous/full of light.
Revelation 1:16 …His [Christʼs] countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.
Luke 3:16 He will baptize you in the Holy Spirit and fire…
Acts 2:3 Then there appeared to them [His disciples gathered on Pentecost] divided tongues as of fire, and one sat upon each one of them.
Exodus 24:2 The sight of the Glory of the LORD was like a consuming fire on the top of the mountain [Sinai].
Exodus 34:29 …the skin of [Mosesʼ] face shone while he talked with Him.
The highest heaven is the realm of the Radiant Light of Divinity, which radiance is (normally) clothed and concealed, progressively, downward through the lower two heavens and then earth. The highest heaven corresponds to the Most Holy Place of the Sanctuary, and to the head of the Divine Man.
The Divine Light was first manifested by and through the Divine Man, the Word of God:
John 1:4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. … 9 …the true light which gives light to every man…
Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God…breathed into his [Adamʼs] nostrils a neshamah/breath of life…
Thus the Divine Breath/Neshamah of Life is light itself.
Like spirit, breath has a higher and a lower nature, manifesting respectively as radiance and as fire.
The only article contained within the Most Holy Place was the Ark of the Covenant, but it was multi-faceted in design and symbolism. It consisted of a gold-covered box that was 2½ cubits broad, and 1½ cubits wide and high: about 45" x 27" x 27." It was covered by a solid gold plate of the same breadth and width, traditionally called the Mercy Seat, although the Hebrew term kapporeth means lid/cover, without suggestion of it being a seat. Formed as one piece with the kapporeth were two solid gold cherubim arising from opposite ends of the cover, which faced each other and spread their wings toward each other, making a canopy over the Ark. Ex. 25:10-20
Exodus 25:21 “…and in the Ark you shall put the Testimony [the two stone tablets having the Ten Commandments] that I will give you. 22 And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the cover/Mercy Seat, from between the two cherubim…about all that I will command/enjoin you…”
Note here the two witnesses of testimony, divided above/below by the partition of the Arkʼs cover – the spiritual witness above, and the material witness below – representing the fact that the Word of God will always have witnesses both heavenly and earthly. Therefore in the End Times, even after the Lord has taken up the elect of His Church to heaven, there will still be saints remaining upon earth to bear witness, ones “keeping the commandments of God, and having the testimony of Jesus Christ.” Rev. 12:17
The Ark and the cherubim are a material representation of the Divine Chariot seen by Ezekiel. Ezek. 1, 10; 1 Chron. 28:18 The cover of the Ark represents the “firmament” thereof:
Ezekiel 1:25 A voice came from above the firmament… 26 And above the firmament…was the likeness of a throne…on…the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a Man high above it. … 28 … This was the appearance of the likeness of the Glory of the LORD.
The Seven Holy Convocation/Assembly Days
Leviticus 23 itemizes seven “moedim/appointed times of the LORD which you shall proclaim to be holy miqrawim/convocations…” Lev. 23:2, 37 The first three of them, appointed to take place in the Spring, were covered in Parts 1-3 of these articles:
1) First month, 15th day: the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and celebration of the Passover sacrifice. Symbolism: deliverance from physical bondage (the lusts of the flesh), and from physical death (via the resurrection of the dead).
2) First month, 21st day: the seventh/last day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Symbolism: water baptism. Purification of the soul from worldly doctrine and relationships, so that it may become able to receive heavenly doctrine and relationships.
3) Early third month, day variable: the Feast of Firstfruits/Pentecost. Symbolism: baptism of the Holy Spirit. Christʼs Spirit provides the way for our Adamic spirits to once again enter into the Presence of God, which ability had been lost at the Fall of Adam.
The four remaining appointed holy convocations take place in the Autumn. They all relate to the establishment of the Kingdom of God/Kingdom of Heaven upon earth:
Matthew 6:10 “Thy Kingdom come! Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
These latter sacred assembly days all relate to the Most Holy Place in the Tabernacle. They are, in order,
4) Seventh month, 1st day: the Feast of Blowing of Trumpets.
5) Seventh month, 10th day: the Day of Atonement.
6) Seventh month, 15th day: the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles.
7) Seventh month, 22nd day: the Eighth Day.
These will be covered in the last two articles of this series.
The Tabernacle and the Court, Part 3:
The Holy Place
The first two articles of this series showed that the Court of the Tabernacle consisted of two unseparated parts, representing the physical body and the soul, as well as the first two requirements of the Gospel:
1) A discipleʼs commitment to sacrifice his unholy desires of the flesh, and
2) A discipleʼs commitment to be purged/cleansed of his soulʼs worldly beliefs and relationships.
These two commitments are required by Christʼs Gospel before a disciple may receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, because
1 Corinthians 2:14 …a natural [Gr. psuchikos/soulish] man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 15 But the spiritual man [pneumatikos] discerns all things…
The Two-Part Tabernacle-Sanctuary
Once the natural man, made up of both body and soul, has been cleansed and prepared, entrance into the Holy Place, in which dwells the Presence of God, becomes possible. Under the Israelite Covenant, only two classes of people were allowed to enter into the Tabernacle: priests and Levites. Num. 18:1-11 Both of these groups were required to first be washed with water and sanctified in front of the Tabernacle, that is, in the area of the Laver. Lev. 8:1-10; Num. 8:5-11 For an expanded explanation of these things, see Careers in the Kingdom: Ecclesiastical Jobs.
The Holy Tabernacle was divided by a veil into into two parts: 1) the Holy Place, and 2) the Most Holy Place. In the body of Man, the former corresponds to the chest, which sits above the abdomen; and the latter to the head, above the chest.
The Holy Place
Once a disciple is allowed into the Presence of God, he is enveloped within Holiness, formerly manifested in part by “the cloud [of]…the Glory of the LORD.” Ex. 40:34, 35 We first find an example of this at Mount Sinai:
Exodus 24:16 Now the Glory of the LORD rested upon Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered/enclothed it six days. And on the seventh day… 18 Moses went into the midst of the cloud…
Psalm 97:2 Clouds and darkness surround [the LORD]…
Now, there were three implements that God commanded to be made and set up in the Holy Place: a Lampstand/Menorah of seven oil lamps, a Table for holding twelve loaves of showbread, and an Altar of Incense to be placed between them.
The priests burned incense on the Altar of Incense morning and evening, creating clouds of smoke, being a representation of holiness. Ex. 30:1, 7-8; Luke 1:8-11 In heaven, the heavenly Sanctuary accepts “sacrifices of praise to God” (Heb. 13:15) and intercessory prayers upon its own Altar of Incense in the very Presence of God:
Revelation 8:1 …in heaven… 3 …another angel…was given much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all the saints upon the Golden Altar which was before the throne. 4 And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended to God from the angelʼs hand.
The Lampstand of seven oil lamps was set up “on the south side of the Tabernacle.” Ex. 40:24 The Sanctuary in heaven has the same:
Revelation 4:5 Seven lamps of fire [are] burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
Another description is provided in Zechariah:
Zechariah 4:2 …I saw, and behold! a menorah/lampstand all of gold, and a bowl on top of it, and its seven lamps upon it; with seven and seven pipes to the lamps which are on top of it. … 10 These seven [lamps] are the eyes of the LORD: they go out in all the earth.
Revelation 5 (also Zechariah 3:8-9) identify these seven eyes as belonging to the Messiah:
Revelation 5:6 …[the] Lamb…having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the Seven Spirits of God having been sent out into all the earth.
The Holy Place of the Tabernacle (Heb. mishkawn: residence) serves as the court of the Holy Oneʼs residence. Because His Holy Presence reigns throughout both parts of His residence, the whole is also called the Sanctuary (Heb. miqdawsh, qodesh; Gr. naos). The forepart – the Holy Place – corresponds to the Second Heaven. That is the Court of the Heavenly Sanctuary, wherein the Most High on occasion lowers Himself to appear on a throne. From the Heavenly Throne He passes judgment upon the angels of the lower two heavens and men who dwell on the earth. Such a judgment in the Latter Days is the topic of Revelation 4-5ff. and Daniel 7:9ff.
All of these lower three realms come under the authority of Godʼs Spirit (Heb. Ruach; Gr. Pneuma), because all spirits derive their origin from “the Word [that] was God.” John 1:1 Ever since the Incarnation, when “the Word became flesh” (John 1:14), the Spirit of God operates through Jesus Christ:
John 3:34 “…God does not give the Spirit by measure unto Him. … 35 The Father…has given all things into His hand.”
2 Corinthians 3:17 Now the Lord [Jesus] is the Spirit… (See also Romans 8:9-10.)
Both ruach and pneuma have dual meanings, depending on the context: spirit or wind. In its lower nature, wind, its most significant use is in the chest cavity, the place of the lungs and the heart. Lung-related words such as pneumonic and pneumonia reflect this. This lower-level ruach/pneuma, via the lungs and the heart, vitalizes manʼs blood, which blood then enlivens the cells of the physical body. But remember, “the soul/nephesh/psuchē is in the blood” – thus the purity of the ruach is related to the purity of the soul in the blood.
The higher nature of the ruach operates through the heart, which not only pumps blood but charges it. Numerous Scriptures speak of the close relationship between the human spirit and heart. Some examples:
Deuteronomy 2:30 …the LORD thy God hardened his spirit, and made his heart obstinate… Psalm 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart… Proverbs 15:13 …by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken. Ezekiel 18:31 …make you a new heart and a new spirit… Romans 2:29 …circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit…
The heart is the abode of the Adamic spirit, from which it reigns as king. Nowadays the human spirit is more commonly known as the ego, each personʼs self-identity. In Greek, egō is the first person, emphatic “I.”
Each personʼs spirit is a gift of God, with preordained (ʻpre-downloadedʼ) abilities and affections. Each spirit has been given the choice of whether or not to submit its kingly sovereignty to the Great Spirit. Such a submission is portrayed here:
Revelation 4:10 …the 24 elders shall fall down before Him who sits on the [Heavenly] Throne…and cast their crowns before the Throne…
For each spirit that chooses not to submit to the King of Heaven, there will eventually come upon it one of two consequences:
1) the spirit will be seduced to submit to Satanʼs kingdom, which ultimately results in it being “cast into the lake of fire” (Rev. 20:10, 14-15), or
2) the spirit will jealously cling to its own dominion, and eventually will be “cast out [alone] into the outer darkness.” Matt. 8:12; 22:13; 25:30; Jude 12-13
The Table of Showbread
In the Sanctuary, the Table of Showbread was placed “on the north side of the Tabernacle.” Ex. 40:22 The Hebrew words translated as “showbread” are lechem panym: lit. “the bread of the Face/Presence [of God].” Under the Israelite Covenant, only the priests were allowed to eat the showbread. Lev. 24:9; Luke 6:4
Jesus, the Word and human Face/Presence of God, said,
John 6:35 “I am the Bread of Life. … 33 For the Bread of God is He who comes down out of heaven and gives life to the world.”
The most external and material representation in the world of the Word of God is the Holy Scriptures. “If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever…” 6:51 That is, all who willingly consume and receive nourishment from Christʼs Word/Teachings/Scriptures are enlivened by “the words of eternal life.” 6:68 A continual consumption of the Word/Scriptures is therefore required of a disciple if he should wish to remain encompassed within the Holiness of God.
The Feast of Firstfruits, a.k.a. the Feast of Weeks, a.k.a. Pentecost
Exodus 24:4 And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD. … 7 Then he took the Book of the Covenant and read it in the hearing of all the people. And they said, “All that the LORD has said we will do and we will hear. 8 And Moses took the blood, sprinkled it upon the people, and said, “Behold, the blood of the covenant which the LORD has made with you according to all these words.”
Acts 2:1 When the day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound out of heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind*… 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit… 1:7 And [Jesus] said to them… 8 “…when the Holy Spirit has come upon you…you shall be witnesses to Me [that is, esp. to His words]…unto the ends of the earth. *Gr. pnoēs, from the same root as pneuma.
Leviticus 23:16 “Count fifty [cf. Gr. pentēkostē: fiftieth] days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall bring a new grain offering to the LORD. 17 …two wave loaves…of fine flour; they shall be baked with leaven: the firstfruits to the LORD.
All of these events took/take place on the Feast of Firstfruits, that is, Pentecost. They mark new covenants: the former with Israel, the latter with the Church.
In Part 2 of this series, we saw that leaven represents doctrine. Disciples are required to first purge themselves of all their old doctrine (represented by the Feast of Unleavened Bread) before their entry into the Holy Place of Godʼs Presence, where they are to ingest the new Bread of Life, with the new leaven of the Word of God through Christ. This is the message represented by the Feast of Firstfruits.
Three additional principles of the Gospel – all summed up in one by the Feast of Firstfruits – are represented within the Holy Place of the Tabernacle:
1) Represented by the Lampstand: a disciple is to receive the Holy Spirit anointing.
2) Represented by the Table of Showbread: a disciple is to consume knowledge and understanding of Christʼs new doctrine.
3) Represented by the Altar of Incense: a disciple is to become engaged in offering sacrifices of praise and intercessory prayer.
These three disciplines are needed by a disciple to prepare him for entry into the Most Holy Place, which is the topic of the next blog.
The Tabernacle and the Court, Part 2:
The Partly-Enclosed Court and the Laver
In Part 1 of this series, it was shown that the first, lowest area of the Tabernacle-Court complex held the Altar of Burnt Offering. It symbolizes the first stage of the Gospel: the sacrifice of all of a discipleʼs fleshly appetites that are contrary to Godʼs Commandments. Only after such a commitment is made may the disciple proceed to the next level of the Way of Salvation, represented by –
2) The Partly-Enclosed Court and the Laver
Exodus 30:17 Then the Lord said to Moses, 18 “You shall also make a Laver [Basin] of bronze…for washing. You shall put it between the Tabernacle of Meeting and the Altar [of Burnt Offering]. And you shall put water in it.”
1 Kings 6:3 The portico in front of the Temple-House was twenty cubits long across the breadth of the house and…ten cubits [wide] from the front of the House.
The portico that fronted Solomonʼs Temple-Sanctuary had no counterpart in the Mosaic Tabernacle. Such an open overhang would not have been practical in the latter structure, covered only with fabrics and skins, because such materials would have been too vulnerable to wind damage. Whereas the portico in Solomonʼs Temple was built of stone and lumber, and was buttressed by two massive pillars.
The Laver and the portico were both situated between the lower part of the Court (with its entrance and Altar) and the Sanctuary. In the body of Man, the area of the Laver and portico corresponds to the upper abdominal cavity, which is partly enclosed and protected by the lower ribs of the rib cage. Above the upper abdomen is the diaphragm, a strong, upwardly-vaulted muscle, which completely partitions the abdomen from the fully-enclosed chest cavity.
The upper abdomen contains organs that regulate the bodyʼs fluids, both the water (lymph) and the blood: kidneys, liver, pancreas, and spleen. These organs sit above, but are not partitioned from, the food-consuming intestines and the body-generating sex. Therefore, both sets of organs, upper and lower, reside in the same abdominal ʻcourt.ʼ
The function of the Laver was “for washing:”
30:18 “You shall also make a Laver…for washing. … 29:1 And this is what you shall do to [the priests] to hallow them… 4 Aaron and his sons you shall bring to the door of the Tabernacle of Meeting, and you shall wash them with water. 30:20 When they go into the Tabernacle of Meeting, or when they come near to the Altar to minister, they shall wash with water, lest they die. 21 …And it shall be a stature forever for them…”
Every priest of God had to be washed in water before being allowed into the Sanctuary, and before ministering in the Court at the Altar. This law was a representation of the second principle of the Gospel: water baptism. It is to immediately follow the commitment of a disciple to abandon (sacrifice) carnal ways.
The lower abdomen is concerned with matters of the flesh: food and drink and sex. The upper abdomen is concerned with water and blood. Bodily waters carry the emotions; blood carries the personʼs soul-lineage, that is, tribal descent:
Leviticus 17:11 The soul of the flesh [Heb. nephesh; Gr. psuchē] is in the blood.
Both the waters and the blood in Man are concerned with human relationships of all types. Relationships are therefore the realm and focus of the soul. In the broadest sense, this realm is “the world” – Greek kosmos: the orderly arrangement of affairs, i.e. of relationships. The problem is,
1 John 5:19 The whole kosmos/world lies in [under] the Evil One. 2:16 For all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – is not of the Father, but is of the world.
Ephesians 6:12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this kosmos/world, against the spiritual hosts of the wickedness in the heavenlies.
Our only solution to this problem is to
1 John 5:2 …love God and keep His Commandments. … 4 For all having been begotten of God overcome the world [i.e., the present order of affairs].
The Feast of Unleavened Bread
The function of the organs of the Laver area of the body is to keep its waters and blood purified and wholesome. The kosmos/world is utterly polluted with sin and corruption. By keeping Godʼs Commandments, we can “escape the pollutions of the world.” 2 Peter 2:20
The Feast of Unleavened bread symbolizes these principles. This feast immediately follows the Passover sacrifice.
Exodus 12:19 “Seven days no leaven shall be found in your houses, since whoever eats what is leavened, that same soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel… 20 You shall eat nothing leavened; in all of your dwellings you shall eat unleavened bread.”
Jesus tells us what leaven signifies:
Matthew 16:5 Then Jesus said to them, “Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.” … 12 Then they understood that He did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
Leaven = doctrine. Most doctrine has been corrupted by worldliness. Therefore, the message of the second principle of the Gospel is this: those who come to Christ must be purged/washed/purified from all of their worldly beliefs and worldly soul-ties (relationships).
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new Creation: old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
John 12:25 “He who loves his soul will lose it, and he who hates his soul in this kosmos/world will keep it unto eternal life.”
For many people, this separation from impure worldly soul-ties is more difficult to accomplish than the sacrifice of fleshly lusts. (“Remember Lotʼs wife!”)
Summary of the Principles of the Court
Godʼs deliverance of Israel out of Egypt spiritually represented their deliverance from:
1) bondage to all evil desires of the flesh, and
2) worldly doctrine and worldly relationships.
Both of these are sins of the natural man. The Mosaic/Israelite Covenant, entered into at Mount Sinai, was limited to
1) the sacrifice of repentance,
2) external washing, and
3) a physical Tabernacle.
Greater spiritual gifts, such as the personal indwelling of the Holy Spirit, and the internal understanding of the Word, cannot be received by the natural man. Such gifts were reserved until Christʼs Covenant with His Church. They were granted in the third stage of the Gospel, and are represented by access to the Holy Place of the Tabernacle. No commoner/natural man was ever allowed to enter into the Tabernacle.
The next two blogs will describe some of the things represented by the two-part Sanctuary.
The Tabernacle and Court: What They Represent
The Mosaic Tabernacle-and-Court (and later, Solomonʼs Temple-and-Court) is the Divine Pattern; is the Way; is the Gospel; is Man. All of the essentials of Godʼs Creation, as well as of His Plan of Salvation, are represented in the Tabernacle-and-Court, with its implements, ordinances, and sacred feast days.
The Four Parts
The whole was made up of two primary parts: 1) the Tabernacle (Sanctuary), and 2) the Court. Each of these also consisted of two parts, making four areas in all. Man, the Gospel, the Plan of Salvation, and the Creation are likewise each divided into four corresponding parts. All manifest the same basic pattern.
1) The Uncovered Court and the Altar of Burnt Offering
The whole tabernacle-court complex was stretched out horizontally upon the face of the earth, befitting its earthly location. However, it can equally be understood if viewed as an upright structure, with the altar of sacrifice near its lowest point. The very lowest point would be the entrance gate.
The lower part of manʼs torso is the belly; below that is the base of the spine and the sex. This is the realm of manʼs most carnal desires: food and sex. If manʼs desires for these things are not disciplined, much evil results.
The court is surrounded by a wall, which encompasses the whole temple-court complex, just as the skin encompasses the body. Man, like the Creation, is limited; unlike the Creator, who is not limited.
The lowermost part of the court is completely uncovered, naked to view and to natureʼs light and weather. That is, it is directly influenced by the forces of the natural world, unprotected but for its wall. Upper parts of manʼs body are more fully protected by the rib cage and the skull, but the belly has no bony protection over it.
In the Creation, there are four realms: three heavens and one earth. The lowest of these, earth, is the realm of the flesh, the realm most susceptible to evil. It is the realm of the greatest testing, and the realm of the greatest potential rewards. That is why God incarnated in the man Jesus, so that a man might overcome and defeat all of the greatest evils found in the Creation, and thereby be accounted worthy to “ascend far above all the heavens” in His authority. Eph. 4:10 Those of us who follow in His Way “will judge angels” (1 Cor. 6:3), beings originally of a higher nature than our human nature.
A means has been provided for man to so overcome all of the evil desires of the flesh. It is represented by the Altar of Burnt Offering, upon which flesh and other foods were offered up to God. Such sacrifices were a type, a representation of what God requires of man to receive salvation from the consequences of the selfish desires of the flesh. Everyone seeking salvation must first commit to sacrificing every carnal desire that is contrary to Godʼs Commandments.
Evil desires always derive from the lowermost nature, because by definition, the lowest is farthest away from the Highest (One). Those who are farthest away from the Lord of Light are therefore, by definition, dwelling in the greatest darkness.
John 3:19 “And this is the condemnation, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the Light and does not come to the Light, lest his deeds should be exposed.”
Now, the last/lowermost of Godʼs Ten Commandments is this: “Thou shalt not covet…” Covetousness is therefore the root of all evil. The Fall of Man commenced when Eve coveted the forbidden fruit of Eden. The Fall of Lucifer commenced, not with pride, but with his coveting the authority and glory of the Most High:
Isaiah 14:13 “For you have said in your heart, ʻI will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God… 14 …I will be like the Most High.ʼ”
Even the worst of sins, beginning with murder and adultery, find their root in some form of covetousness.
Salvation and the Passover
Salvation from the sins of our lowermost nature is found in type by the act which begins the entire Mosaic festival cycle: the Passover sacrifice. The original Passover, which commenced Godʼs final judgment of Egypt, and Israelʼs deliverance therefrom, was merely a type and shadow of the ultimate Passover sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Jesus, as Son of God, was the Divine Man “through [whom] all things became/were made.” John 1:2 That is to say, the Creation as a whole takes its form from Man. But Jesus, as Son of Man, was also the ultimate Natural Man of the flesh:
Philippians 2:8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
– that is, He willingly offered up in sacrifice all of the desires of His flesh, providing us an example of the beginning of the Way of Salvation. Therefore,
Galatians 5:24 …those who are Christʼs crucify the flesh, with its passions and desires.
Romans 8:13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
This is the message of the Altar of Burnt Offering and its corresponding Passover festival. It is the first principle of the Gospel:
1) In order for oneʼs body to receive salvation and a resurrection unto holiness, one must first commit to sacrifice all of the fleshly appetites which are rooted in darkness and covetousness.
Only after such a commitment is made may one progress to the next stage of the Gospel, represented by 2) The Partly-Enclosed Court and the Laver. (To be described in the next blog.)
The 1260 Days
Dan. 11:45 And he [the King of the North] shall
(1) plant the tents of his pavilion between the seas at the glorious holy mountain… 12:1 And at that time…there shall be
(2) a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation unto that same time…
Matt. 24:15 Therefore when you see
(1) the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in a holy place… 21 …then shall be
(2) great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world until this time…
2 Thes 2:3 …the man of sin, the Son of Perdition, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called a god or that is worshiped…
(1) sits as a god in the naos/sanctuary/holy place of God, exhibiting himself that he is a god.
These verses describe the events that lead up to an unprecedented “time of trouble/great tribulation,” which is ultimately caused by the placing of an abomination of desolation (idolatrous image or person) upon Jerusalemʼs holy mountain.
The passages below describe the time period that follows, in which both a persecution and an escape of Godʼs peoples occur, which must be endured for 1260 days.
Dan. 12:6 Until when the end/fulfillment of these wonders?
1) 7 …unto a time, times, and a half [= 3½ times/1260 days]; and when
2) the hand/power of the holy people has been completely shattered/scattered, all these things shall be finished.
Dan. 7:25 And he [the Little Horn] shall speak great words against the most High, and shall afflict the saints of the most High, and intend to change times and law: and they [the saints/holy people] shall be given into his hand
1) until a time and times and the dividing of time [= 3½ times/1260 days]. … 21 I was watching, and
2) the same horn was making war against the saints, and prevailing against them…
Rev. 13:5 And there was given to it [the Beast] a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and authority was given to him [the Mouth/Spokesman] to act
1) forty-two months [= 3½ times/1260 days]. 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God…
2) 7 And it was given to him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them…
We see above that the persecution of the saints on earth shall be for 1260 days. This period seemingly begins with the Great Tribulation, commencing right after the placing of the Abomination of Desolation, but possibly begins some number of days later.
The Relationship of the 1260 and the 1290 Days
Standard translation of Daniel 12:11-12
Dan. 12:11 And from the time that the daily/continual service shall be taken away, and an abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be 1290 days. 12 Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the 1335 days.
Literal translation of Daniel 12:11-12
And from the time the daily/continual service has been caused to be taken away and/even to the placing of an abomination of desolation: 1290 days. Blessed/happy is the one who earnestly waits, and comes/attains to 1335 days.
The standard translation suggests that the 1290 days follow the Abomination of Desolation, and therefore apparently include the 1260 days in some way. But this translation completely ignores the “to the” in the literal text, and misinterprets the infinitive “placing.”
The literal translation indicates that the 1290 days precede the Abomination of Desolation. In contrast, the 1260 days until “the end of these wonders,” during which period “the hand [power] of the holy people [shall be] completely shattered/scattered,” does not begin until their flight into the wilderness, which occurs after the Abomination of Desolation. Dan. 12:1; Matt. 24:15-16, 21
Both the wilderness escape and the 1260 days are found in Revelation 12:
Rev. 12:5 Then the Woman fled into the wilderness, where she has there a place having been prepared from/apo God, that they should
1) feed her there for 1260 days. …
2) 14 And to the Woman was given two wings of the great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness into her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and a half time away from/apo the face of the serpent.
This period was foreshadowed in type during the Exodus. On the first Passover, the LORD sent the Destroyer to defile Egyptʼs temples with the corpses of Egyptʼs slain firstborn. These included Pharaohʼs firstborn son, worshiped as the god Horus, and the Apis bull-calf, another firstborn and god. See Ex. 12:12, 23, 29. Immediately afterward, all the Israelites fled into the wilderness, during which escape the LORD “bore [them] on eaglesʼ wings” (Ex. 19:4), and fed them with manna. Compare Rev. 12:14 above.
The Events During, and the Fulfillment of, the 1260 Days
This will be a turbulent time on earth, with much going on. The first Six Seals of Revelation will be rapidly fulfilled, as they were in type during the Exodus. From the Passover escape unto the LORDʼs descent upon Mount Sinai, when He called up Moses and Joshua into His Presence, only 53 days elapsed. The Latter Day escape, up to the day when Jesus descends in clouds to call up the elect into His Presence, will apparently be just 45 days. (Explained in The 1290 and 1335 Days of Daniel 12:11-12.)
At Mount Sinai, none of the fearful, weak-spirited Israelites and mixed multitude among them were able to approach the LORD. Likewise in the End Times, all of the fearful and weak-spirited Christians and Jews will “turn away from Him who speaks from heaven,” Jesus. Heb. 12:25 These, like the earlier Israelites, will be tested and purged of their world-loving ways during the remainder of the 1260 days.
Those days will include Revelationʼs Seventh Seal and the immediately-following Seven Trumpets. All throughout this period, the Two Witnesses of Revelation 11 –
Rev. 11:3 1) …will prophesy 1260 days, having been clothed in sackcloth. …
2) 5 And if anyone wants to harm them, fire proceeds out of their mouth and devours their enemies. … 6 These have power to shut heaven, so that no rain falls in the days of their prophecy; and they have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to strike the earth with all plagues as often as they may choose.
The same types of miracles were performed in the Exodus era by Godʼs two witnesses of that day, Moses and Aaron.
As shown in the first section above, 1260 days will also be the length of the depredations of Daniel 7ʼs Little Horn = Revelation 13ʼs Mouth/Spokesman of the Beast.
Dan. 7:26 But the heavenly court shall be seated, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and destroy it forever. 27 Then the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High. … 13 I was watching in the night visions, and behold, one like a son of a mortal, coming with the clouds of heaven! He came to the Ancient of Days, and they brought Him near before Him. 14 Then to Him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him.
These events are the same ones foretold to take place at the Seventh Trumpet:
Rev. 11:15 Then the seventh angel sounded, and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdom of this world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” … 17 …You have taken Your great power and reigned. 18 …And the time…came to reward Your servants the prophets and the saints…”
A comparable Divine judgment and then immediate establishment of Godʼs earthly rule took place during the Exodus. That event, Korahʼs rebellion and the consequences thereof, took place over a period of four days. Four days will likewise cover the length of time from the assassination of the Two Witnesses up through their subsequent resurrection and exaltation. See Numbers 16-17 and Revelation 11:7-13.
Although the Kingdom of God will thereafter be “on earth as it is in heaven” among the remnant of His earthly saints, much of the earth will still be enthralled by the Beast. The worldwide establishment of the Kingdom will not come until well after the 1260 days and the Seventh Trumpet. That final judgment and ultimate establishment of Divine order upon earth will take place at the Seventh Bowl.
The same sequence can be seen in the Exodus. There was a long period, a generation, that needed to pass before the LORD was able to whip the Israelites into shape well enough to battle, with the LORDʼs active help, the assembled kings gathered together against them on ʻJoshuaʼs Long Day.ʼ Josh. 10
A similar long period will pass before a comparable alliance of kings will gather against Latter Day Israel. That concluding battle, on another long day when “at evening time…it shall be light” (Zech. 14:7), will be fought at the Seventh Bowl judgment: ʻthe Battle of Armageddon.ʼ At that time, Israel will again fight against an assembly of kings, again with the LORDʼs active help.
Exactly the same sequence of End Time events is allegorically portrayed elsewhere in Israelite history: see The Kingdoms of Solomon and Jesus Christ.
The 1290 and 1335 Days of Daniel 12:11-12
Standard translation of Daniel 12:11-12
Dan. 12:11 And from the time that the daily/continual service shall be taken away, and an abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be 1290 days. 12 Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the 1335 days.
Literal translation of Daniel 12:11-12
And from the time the daily/continual service has been caused to be taken away and/even to the placing of an abomination of desolation: 1290 days. Blessed/happy is the one who earnestly waits, and comes/attains to 1335 days.
“has been caused to be taken away”: Hophal Perfect 3ms of the verb סור [soor]. Hophal stems express causative action with a passive voice. Perfect tense means completed action (past, present, or future, here obviously being future).
“and/even”: the Hebrew conjunction vav, ו. It usually is translated “and,” but also can mean “but, or, even, yet, when.”
“to the”: ל This is the Hebrew preposition lamed, which means “to” or “for.” It has been omitted from the translations of nearly all versions of the Bible. Of the many versions I have consulted, it is found only in Youngʼs Literal Translation. Normally, this preposition would have a Shewa vowel pointing [ ְ ] underneath; but in this case it has a Qamats [ ָ ] underneath, which signifies that it includes within it the definite article “the,” the Hebrew letter ה . So this is to be read, “to the placing of an abomination of desolation…”
“placing”: This is the correct translation of the Infinitive Construct of the verb root נתן [naw-than´], which means “to give, put, place.” An infinitive is a verbal noun, here being “placing.” The standard translation – “is set up” – distorts the meaning of the verb and the phrase.
The addition of the preposition “to” significantly alters the understanding of the text. The standard translation is rather ambiguous – at least, it has been to me – about the relationship of the 1290 days to the two acts: 1) the ending of the daily religious ritual, and 2) the placing of an abomination of desolation. But the inclusion of the simple preposition “to” indicates that the first act begins the 1290 days, and the second act concludes the 1290 days: “from the time of the [removal] even to the abomination of desolation: 1290 days.”
A Historical Precedent
There is a historical precedent, under similar circumstances, for such a prophesied lapse of time. Antiochus Epiphanes (r. 176 - ca. 164 B.C.) was the historical King of the North who brought Temple services to an end, and later caused to “place the abomination of desolation” in 168 B.C. Dan. 11:31 In his case, lawful Temple services were brought to an end years before the final desecration in 168:
2 Macc. 4:23 After a period of three years [of the high priesthood of Jason, who had usurped the high priesthood of the Jewish Temple from his brother, Onias III, by bribing Antiochus]…Menelaus… 24 …secured the high priesthood for himself… 25 [Being a Benjamite,] he… possess[ed] no [lawful] qualifications for the high priesthood… 29 Menelaus left his own brother Lysimachus as deputy in the high priesthood… 32 But Menelaus, thinking he had obtained a suitable opportunity, stole some of the gold vessels of the temple and gave them to [Antiochusʼs deputy] Andronicus… 34 [Then] Menelaus, taking Andronicus aside, urged him to kill [the legitimate Jewish high priest] Onias. Andronicus came to Onias, and resorting to treachery…urged Onias to come out from [his] place of sanctuary; then, with no regard for justice, he immediately put him out of the way. … 39 [Meanwhile,] many acts of sacrilege had been committed in [Jerusalem] by Lysimachus with the connivance of Menelaus…
2 Macc. 5:1 [Not long afterward,] Antiochus made his second invasion of Egypt. Dan. 11:29 At the appointed time he return[ed] and [went] toward the south; but it [was] not like the former time or like the latter. 30 For ships of Kittim [a Roman fleet commanded by Popilius Laenus] c[a]me against him; therefore he [was] grieved, and return[ed] and [was] enrage[d] against the holy covenant, and so acted…and show[ed] regard for those who forsook the holy covenant. 2 Macc. 5:11 … raging inwardly, [Antiochus] left Egypt and took [Jerusalem] by storm. 14 Within a total of three days, 80,000 Jews were destroyed…and as many sold into slavery… 15 Not content with this, Antiochus dared to enter the most holy Temple in the world, guided by Menelaus, who had become a traitor to the laws and to his country. 16 He took the holy vessels with his polluted hands… 1 Macc. 1:54 Now on the 15th day of Chislev in the 145th year [~Dec. 16, 168 B.C.], they erected a desolating sacrilege [likely an idol of Zeus] upon the altar of burnt offering.
This era was prophesied in Dan. 8:12-14, and its “pesha/transgression/lawlessness” was to continue “for 2300 days; then the sanctuary [would] be cleansed.” According to the history provided by the Books of the Maccabees, the ultimate overthrow of the Aaronic priesthood by Menelaus lasted from the latter 170s B.C. (no precise dates given, but enough information to make a rough estimate) up to the cleansing of the sanctuary by the Maccabees in 165 B.C. Now, 2300 days = about 6.3 years, a seeming fit for the length of that period, which reasonably could have begun in 171 B.C.
The 1290 Days
Keeping these things in mind, letʼs go now to the 1290 days of the End Times, which equal 3.53 solar years. We read in Dan. 11:41 that early on, the King of the North “shall enter the Glorious Land, and many shall be enfeebled/overthrown…” Following this, “he shall stretch out his hand against lands, and the land of Egypt shall not escape…also the Libyans and Cushites…” 11:42-43
An unspecified number of months or years later,
Dan. 11:44 …news from the north and the east shall trouble him; therefore he shall go out with great fury… 45 And he shall plant the tents of his pavilion…at the glorious holy mountain… 12:1 And in that time Michael shall stand up [cf. Rev. 12:7]…and there shall be a time of trouble such as never was…
– which is the same wording Jesus used in Matthew 24:21 to describe the Great Tribulation.
So to sum it all up: if the Latter Day King of the North “takes away” Daniel 12:11ʼs “daily services” when he first “enters the Glorious Holy Land,” through subverting its political and/or religious leaders – “many shall be enfeebled/overthrown” (Dan. 11:41) – then the 1290 days would begin at that point, and conclude with the Abomination of Desolation some 3½ years later. The subjection of “lands” – Egypt and Islamic North Africa – could easily take that long, prior to the final crisis. Just as Antiochus was successful in first subverting many of the priests and people, and subsequently succeeded in his original invasion of Egypt, a number of years before he committed his utter defilement and desolation of the Temple in 168 B.C.
This sequence seems to me to be the most likely fulfillment of Daniel 12:11. Whether or not it is how things will play out remains to be seen. So this is something to watch out for: the acts of the King of the North when he (or his men) first enter Jerusalem. Those acts should reveal whether or not this understanding of the 1290 days is valid.
1290 days works out to 43 lunar months + 20 days. There are 43 lunar months between Rosh Hashanah = Tishri 1 and the Nisan 1 of 3½ years later. Adding the 20 days comes to Nisan 21, the last day and second special sabbath day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. This was the day the Israelites crossed through the Red Sea, being finally delivered from Egyptian bondage. Also, in my understanding, Nisan 21 was the day the dead rose (were delivered) from the graves “after His (Jesusʼ) resurrection…” Matt. 27:53
The 1335 Days, Pentecost, Firstfruits, and Rapture
Adding 45 days to Nisan 21 – that is, completing the full 1335 days – comes to Sivan 7, potentially the Feast of Shavout/Pentecost, depending on the year. Rabbinical Jews celebrate Sivan 6 every year for this feast day, the date God gave the Ten Commandments from Mt. Sinai. The next day, the 7th, was when the Israelites entered into their blood covenant with God to keep His law, and those whom God called ascended up before His Presence upon Mount Sinai. Exodus 24
Whether or not the end of the daily services in Jerusalem takes place on Tishri 1 is therefore something else to watch for.
These 45 days (or part thereof) would be the Great Tribulation, which begins with “the placing of an abomination of desolation” on the last of the 1290 days:
Matt. 24:15 “Therefore when you see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet… 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. … 21 For then will be the Great Tribulation…”
A short tribulation fits my understanding for other reasons, which I provide in my blog post Forty Days. The full 1335 days may well end on Pentecost and/or the day before, which two days were the original date of (1st day) Godʼs descent accompanied by earthquake, clouds, and shofar upon Mount Sinai, and (2nd day) His chosen being called up into His Presence. Being a type and shadow of Christʼs descent and His peoplesʼ ascent amidst the very same signs.
Besides being called the Feast of Weeks (Heb. Shavuot), Pentecost is also called “the Day of the Firstfruits.” Num. 28:26; cf. Ex. 23:16; 34:22; Lev. 23:15-17 This is significant, because the elect of Christʼs Church are called both firstfruits and firstborn (i.e., the firstfruits of the womb):
James 1:18 Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.
Heb. 12:22 But you [will] come unto Mount Zion and to a city of the living God, heavenly Jerusalem… 23 to a whole assembly and church of the firstborn having been registered in heaven…
Under the typology of the Mosaic Law, only the firstfruits and firstborn of Israel were to be brought to Godʼs sanctuary. Those who are to ascend in the Rapture will be brought to Godʼs heavenly sanctuary. These things are more fully explained in the blogs The Firstfruits and the Harvest and The Innumerable “Great Multitude” of Revelation 7:9.
Under the more literal translation of Daniel 12:11, the meaning of the verse indicates that the 1290 days will begin with the complete annulment, by the King of the North, of Judeo-Christian worship in Jerusalem. Or, at the least, such worship in the most holy place: on the Temple Mount or in the ancient City of David, if the latter is found to be the original site of the Temple. The 1290 days will come to an end when the Abomination of Desolation is placed; then the Great Tribulation ensues for all or part of 45 days.
These things mean that the 1290 days will be both Pre-Tribulation and Pre-Wrath. Those “blessed/happy [ones]…who earnestly wait, and attain the 1335 days” are ones who successfully both “flee to the mountains/wilderness” and are “accounted worthy to escape all these things [of the Great Tribulation] that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:36; Rev. 7:9 Quite possibly a day of Pentecost will be when the elect/worthy ones ascend upon the heavenly Mount Zion.
The 3½ times/1260 days found in Daniel 12:7 and other Scriptures will be the topic of a later blog. That period is Post-Tribulation.
Antiochus Epiphanes and the End Times
Part 3: The Prophetic Fulfillment
Daniel 11:21-37 prophesied the most significant acts of Antiochus IV Epiphanes (r. 176 – ca. 164 B.C.), one of Daniel 11ʼs human Kings of the North, and also the acts of the Jews during his rule. “In the time of the end [of the age],” essentially the same deeds, in the same sequence, will be committed by Daniel 11:40-45ʼs King of the North, and also by Godʼs people:
1) Lawlessness and Apostasy: of the Jewish people and priests, beginning in the latter 170s B.C., and likewise of both Judaism and the Church in the Latter Days.
2) An invasion of Egypt, followed by a furious return to the Holy Land.
3) An Abomination of Desolation being set up.
4) Persecution of and flight/escape of Godʼs people to the wilderness.
1) The former time of apostasy, sin, and lawlessness committed by Godʼs priests and people began in the latter 170s B.C., when –
1 Macc. 1:11 In those days lawless men came forth from Israel and misled many… 13 …to observe the ordinances of the Gentiles. 14 So they…abandoned the holy covenant.
Dan. 8:12 Because of transgression [Heb. pesha: rebellion, sin; LXX: amartia/sin] an army was given [Antiochus] against the daily [Temple service], and he cast down truth to the ground; and he practiced, and prospered.
1 Macc. 2:15 …the kingʼs officers…were enforcing the apostasy [Gr. apostasia]…
The latter days will provide the same pattern of events:
Dan. 11:41 [The King of the North] shall enter the Glorious Land, and many shall stumble/be enfeebled/be overthrown…
2 Thess. 2:1 …the Day of Christ will not come… 3 …unless the apostasy [Gr. apostasia] comes first, and the man of sin [Gr. amartia] is revealed, the Son of Perdition…
Matt. 24:11 And many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. 12 And…lawlessness will abound…
2) After the initial corruption of faith, an invasion of Egypt follows:
1 Macc. 1:29 Two years later [in 168 B.C.]… 2 Macc. 5:1 …Antiochus made his second invasion of Egypt.
Dan. 11:29 At the appointed time he shall return and go into the South; but it shall not be like the former [time, when he plundered Egypt], or like the latter/last.
The Latter Day invasion, unlike the former, will be successful:
Dan. 11:42 He shall stretch out his hand against lands, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 And he shall have dominion over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt…
3) Following an angry return by the King of the North from Egypt to the land of Israel, he causes an Abomination of Desolation to be set up in Jerusalem:
Dan. 11:30 …and he shall return and be enraged against the holy covenant… 31 …they shall place the abomination of desolation.
1 Macc. 1:54 Now on the 15th day of Chislev in the 145th year [~Dec. 16, 168 B.C.], they erected a desolating sacrilege [likely an idol of Zeus] upon the altar of burnt offering.
A Latter Day abomination is likewise prophesied:
Dan. 11:44 …he shall go out [of the south] with great fury… 45 And he shall plant the tents of his pavilion between the seas at the glorious holy mountain… 12:11 …and an abomination of desolation [will be] set up…
Matt. 24:15 …you [shall] see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in a holy place…
2 Thes. 2:3 …the man of sin [shall] be revealed, the Son of Perdition, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called a god or that is worshiped, so that he sits as a god in the naos/sanctuary/holy place of God, exhibiting himself that he is a god.
4) Immediately following this culminating act of apostasy, a great persecution of Godʼs people begins, and they flee into the wilderness:
1 Macc. 1:41 …the king wrote to his whole kingdom that all should be one people, 42 and that each should give up his customs. … 53 …they drove [the faithful of] Israel into hiding in every place of refuge they had. … 2:15 Then the kingʼs officers who were enforcing the apostasy [Gr. apostasia] came to Modein to make them offer sacrifice. … 19 But Mattathias answered and said in a loud voice… 22 “We will not obey the kingʼs words by turning aside from our religion to the right hand or to the left. … 27 Let everyone who is zealous for the law and supports the covenant come out with me!” 28 And he and his sons fled to the hills and left all that they had in the city. 29 Then many who were seeking righteousness and justice went down to the wilderness to dwell there…
Dan. 11:32 Those who [did] wickedly against the covenant [Antiochus] corrupt[ed] with flattery; but the people knowing their God [were] strong, and acted so. 33 …yet for many days they [were] enfeeble[d] by sword and flame, by captivity and plundering.
A Latter Day persecution and flight is likewise prophesied:
Dan. 12:1 …And there shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation, even to that time. And at that time your people shall escape/be delivered…
Matt. 24:9 Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you… 16 …then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. … 21 For then there will be [the] Great Tribulation, such has not been from the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor shall be.
Rev. 12:1 Then the Woman fled into the wilderness…
At this point, the significant acts of the King of the North against Godʼs people, both past and present, come to an end. Antiochus never returned to Judah, nor was directly involved there. He left to campaign in the east, and thereafter failed to capture the wealthy city of Elymais in Persia. Then,
1 Macc. 6:7 [Hearing] that [the Jews] had torn down the abomination which he had erected upon the altar in Jerusalem… 8 …he was astounded and badly shaken. He took to his bed and became sick from grief, because things had not turned out for him as he had planned. … 16 Thus Antiochus the king died there…
Of the Latter Day King of the North, Daniel prophesies that, after he sets himself up –
Dan. 11:45 …at the glorious holy mountain…he shall come to his end, and no one will help him.
2 Thes. 2:8 …the Lord will consume [him] with the spirit of His mouth, and bring [him] to nought with the brightness of His Coming.
For more information about this person, see my blog, The Son of Perdition Is a Patsy. The prophecy of Daniel 12:11-12 about the 1290- and 1335-day periods of this era will be discussed in the next blog.
Antiochus Epiphanes and the End Times
Part 2: The Transition from the Past to the Present
Antiochus invaded Egypt twice. In describing the second invasion, Daniel 11:29 cryptically prophesies about the End Times:
At the appointed time he shall return and go into the South; but it shall not be like the former [time, when he plundered Egypt], or like the latter/last.
After his second, failed invasion, Antiochus never again entered Egypt, nor ever returned to Judah. He died in Persia during a fruitless campaign to replenish his empty treasury, having spent it on the failed second Egyptian campaign, and then failed campaigns to quash the Maccabean revolt. Therefore, this prophecy about the last time that a King of the North invades the South can only refer to –
11:40 At the time of the end, [when]…the King of the North… 42 …shall stretch out his hand against lands, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 And he shall have dominion…over all the precious things of Egypt…
– which was not the case with Antiochusʼs second campaign, when he was driven out of Egypt in humiliation by the Romans.
When Antiochus was driven out, he
Dan. 11:30 …return[ed to Jerusalem] and [was] enrage[d] against the holy covenant, and so acted…and show[ed] regard for those who fors[oo]k the holy covenant. … 31 And forces [were] mustered by him, and they defile[d] the sanctuary fortress, and they [took] away the daily/continual service, and place[d] the abomination of desolation.
This is the last act prophesied by Daniel 11 for a Seleucid King of the North, even though the Seleucid Kingdom continued until 64 B.C., when it was extinguished by the Romans. However, Daniel 11:40 tells us that the spiritual King of the North, “the sar/prince/chief one” that reigned over this human kingdom from generation to generation (cf. Dan. 10:13, 20-21), remains to this day.
Syrian Kings Antiochus IV and Demetrius I Soter (asc. 162 B.C.) both spent many years of their youth in Rome, learning Roman culture. In a very real sense, Roman and Greek cultures were merged in these two kings. Of Daniel 7ʼs four beast-kingdoms – Chaldeo-Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome – only Rome substantially merged with and promoted, rather than extinguished, the language and culture of its predecessor, Greece. Likewise, the spiritual King of the North also became conjoined with the Roman Empire.
The first and greatest ruler of the Greek beast-empire of Daniel 7 was Alexander the Great. Just before he died, he was officially proclaimed to be an incarnated god by the Greeks. Antiochus IV took the titular name Epiphanes, literally meaning “Over-Shining One,” but by innuendo “A Manifestation of God(hood).” Daniel 11:36-37 prophesied this about him, and thus implicitly about the spiritual sar that possessed his soul:
…he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, [and] shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods…he shall magnify himself above them all.
According to pagan Greek and Roman theology, Zeus/Jupiter, the head of the gods, occasionally incarnated in human or animal form. We see this belief current in the mid-first century A.D., right after Paul performed a miracle in Lystra:
Acts 14:11 …when the people saw what Paul had done, they raised their voices, saying… “The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men.” 12 And Barnabus they called Zeus, and Paul Hermes…
Many scholars believe that the “abomination of desolation” (see Deut. 7:25-26), the idol which Antiochus ordered to be set up in the Jerusalem Temple, had his own face on it.
This practice by the Greek culture of worshiping human rulers as gods was soon adopted by the Romans. The first great Roman emperor, Julius Caesar, claimed that his family descended from one of the gods impregnating one of their human female ancestors. In 42 B.C., two years after his assassination, the Roman Senate decreed that Caesar was a god. His adopted son Octavian, who not long afterward became sole emperor under the titular name Augustus, began calling himself “son of a god.” He and succeeding emperors of the Julian line were proclaimed to be gods by the Senate after their deaths; the practice ending with Nero. He had become so demented and depraved in his final years that the custom ended – for a while.
The Transition Era
Daniel 11:38 But in his place/estate/station he shall give glory to a god of fortresses; and to a god which his fathers knew not he shall give glory with gold, and with silver, and with precious stones, and with desirable things. 39 And/so he shall act for defenders of fortresses with a foreign god, which he shall cause to revere, cause to multiply glory; and he shall cause them to rule among the multitudes. And he shall divide/allot land at a profit.
The much-debated passage of Daniel 11:38-39 speaks only in general terms about the transition period between the time of the god-man Antiochus and “the time of the end.” This passage begins with the phrase, “in his [Antiochusʼs] place/estate/station,” a phrase used previously in verses 7, 20, and 21 to describe the transition of the Seleucid kingdom from a king to his descendant.
The Hebrew noun for “place/estate/station” literally means “something set up.” That is, each king inherited the cumulative “set-ups” of the kingly line, and then added his own acts upon them. These set-ups included, most importantly, the establishment of a belief system.
As noted above, the belief system culminating with Antiochus, which was then passed along to the Romans, was that great human rulers can become known as, and then should be worshiped as, gods.
Upon that “estate,” descendent rulers began to “give glory to a god of fortresses.” Dan. 11:38 Uniquely among the four beast-kingdoms of Daniel 7, the Romans were fort-builders. Previously, cities and temples were what had been fortified, and armies were garrisoned within them at need. But the Roman Empire became the greatest of the four through the practice of their legions building forts for themselves. By this means, their armies were able to concentrate their forces on the ever-expanding boundaries of the empire. There they were readily available to deal with incipient threats, without requiring the time and expense of moving soldiers, equipment, and supplies long distances. (Whereas, for example, the practice of Antiochus was to plunder and leave. This allowed the conquered peoples time to regroup and resist, as the Maccabees did.)
The practice of building military bases, not fortified cities, became the standard for the Anglo-European posterity of the Roman Empire. (That is, those Western governments principally deriving their laws, traditions, and governments from Roman ones.) In our day, such military bases are found throughout the world.
In Revelation 2:12-14, Jesus said the city of Pergamos was “where Satanʼs throne is…where Satan dwells.” According to Strongʼs (G4010), Pergamos means Fortified (Place); it was the capital of Roman Asia. In the Apostle Johnʼs day, the ancient Babylonian religion was practiced in its temple. Many tenets of that religion became infused within pagan Rome, and later within the Roman Church. Therefore, Pergamos may have been the source of the “foreign god” “which [Antiochusʼ] fathers knew not.” In the 1890s, a substantial part of Pergamosʼs ancient temple was disassembled, moved to, and reconstructed in Berlin, where it stands today.
This brings us up to “the time of the end” events of Daniel 11:40 – 12:13, to be examined in Part 3.
Antiochus Epiphanes and the End Times
Part 1: The History
Daniel 11:21 [After the death of Syrian King Seleucus IV in 176 B.C., there] ar[o]se a vile person [Antiochus IV Epiphanes], [who] seize[d] the kingdom by flattery/slickness. 1 Maccabees 1:10 …he had been a hostage in Rome [since 190 B.C., when his father Antiochus III the Great lost most of Asia Minor to Rome at the Battle of Magnesia. Antiochus learned Roman manners and political skills during his 14 years in Rome, and probably returned to Syria with some Roman support and funding.] Dan. 11:22 [His Syrian enemies were] swept away with the force of a flood and broken, and also the foremost one [High Priest Onias III] of the [Jewsʼ holy] covenant.
1 Macc. 1:11 In those days lawless men came forth from Israel and misled many, saying, “Let us go and make a covenant with the Gentiles...” 13 …some of the people eagerly went to the king [Antiochus]. He authorized them to observe the ordinances of the Gentiles. 14 So they…abandoned the holy covenant. Dan. 11:23 And some [of the Jews] binding themselves with him, he act[ed] deceitfully, and r[o]se up and bec[a]me strong with a small nation. 2 Macc. 4:7-9 Jason, the brother of [High Priest] Onias [III], obtained the high priesthood by corruption, [paying a large bribe to Antiochus. :10 Jason then] shifted his countrymen over to the Greek way of life. …14 …the priests were no longer intent upon their service at the altar.
2 Macc. 4:23 After a period of three years…Menelaus… 24 …secured the high priesthood for himself, outbidding Jason… 25 [Being a Benjamite, he] possess[ed] no qualifications for the high priesthood, but had the hot temper of a cruel tyrant and the rage of a savage wild beast. [32-34 Using gold vessels he stole from the temple, he then bribed Antiochusʼs deputy to have Onias III assassinated, ca. 172/1 B.C.]
1 Macc. 1:16 When Antiochus saw that his kingdom was established… 17…he invaded Egypt… 18 …engaged Ptolemy [VI Philometor] King of Egypt in [the] battle [of Pelusium, 171 B.C.], and Ptolemy turned and fled… Dan. 11:25 He [Antiochus] stir[red] up his power and his heart against the King of the south with a great army. And the King of the South [was] stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army, but he [did] not stand… 1 Macc. 1:19 [Antiochus then] plundered the land of Egypt.
1 Macc. 1:20 After subduing Egypt, Antiochus returned in the 143rd year [170 B.C.]. He went up against Israel and came to Jerusalem with a strong force. 21 He arrogantly entered the sanctuary and took the golden altar, the lampstand for the light, and all its utensils[, 22-23 and everything else of value.] 24 Taking them all, he departed to his own land. = Dan. 11:28 While returning to his land [from Egypt] with great riches, his heart [was] moved against the holy covenant; so he act[ed], and return[ed] to his own land.
1 Macc. 1:29 Two years later [in 168 B.C.], 2 Macc. 5:1 Antiochus made his second invasion of Egypt. Dan. 11:29 At the appointed time he return[ed] and [went] toward the south; but it [was] not like the former time or like the latter. 30 For ships of Kittim [a Roman fleet commanded by Popilius Laenus] c[a]me against him; therefore he [was] grieved, and return[ed] and [was] enrage[d] against the holy covenant, and so acted…and show[ed] regard for those who forsook the holy covenant.
1 Macc. 1:31 [Antiochus] plundered the city… 2 Macc. 5:14…80,000 Jews were destroyed…and as many sold into slavery… 15 Antiochus dared to enter the most holy Temple in the world, guided by Menelaus, who had become a traitor to the laws and to his country. 16 [Antiochus] took the holy vessels with his polluted hands… 17…not perceiving that the Lord was angered for a little because of the sins of those who dwelt in the city, and that therefore He was disregarding the holy place.
1 Macc. 1:33 Then they fortified the city of David… 34 And they stationed there a sinful people, lawless men. … 37 On every side of the sanctuary they shed innocent blood; they even defiled the sanctuary. 38 Because of them, the residents of Jerusalem fled, [and] … 39 Her sanctuary became as desolate as a desert… Dan. 11:31 And forces [were] mustered by him, and they defile[d] the sanctuary fortress, and they [took] away the daily/continual service…
1 Macc. 1:54 Now on the 15th day of Chislev in the 145th year [~Dec. 16, 168 B.C.], they erected a desolating sacrilege [likely an idol of Zeus] upon the altar of burnt offering. Dan. 11:31…they…place[d] the abomination of desolation. 1 Macc. 1:54 And on the 25th day of the month [~Dec. 26, 168 B.C.] they offered sacrifice on the altar which was upon the altar of burnt sacrifice.
1 Macc. 1:41 …the king wrote to his whole kingdom that all should be one people, 42 and that each should give up his customs. 43 … Many even from Israel gladly adopted his religion… 52 they forsook the law…and they did evil in the land; 53 they drove Israel into hiding in every place of refuge they had.
Dan. 11:32 Those who [did] wickedly against the covenant [Antiochus] corrupt[ed] with flattery; but the people knowing their God [were] strong, and acted so. 1 Macc. 2:1 In those days Mattathias…a priest of the sons of Joarib… 14 …and his [five] sons rent their clothes, put on sackcloth, and mourned greatly. 15 Then the kingʼs officers who were enforcing the apostasy [Gr. apostasia] came to Modein to make them offer sacrifice. … 19 But Mattathias answered and said in a loud voice… 22 “We will not obey the kingʼs words by turning aside from our religion to the right hand or to the left. … 27 Let everyone who is zealous for the law and supports the covenant come out with me!” 28 And he and his sons fled to the hills and left all that they had in the city. 29 Then many who were seeking righteousness and justice went down to the wilderness to dwell there… 42 Then there united with them a company of Hasidians, mighty warriors of Israel, every one who offered himself willingly for the law.
Dan. 11:32 And those of the people who under[stood] instruct[ed] many; yet for many days they [were] enfeeble[d] by sword and flame, by captivity and plundering. 1 Macc. 3:1 [After the death of the aged Mattathias,] then Judas his son, who was called Maccabeus, took command in his place. [Chapters 3-4: three years of warfare between the Maccabees and the Syrians ensued, with the Jews coming to gain the upper hand, and driving the Syrians out of the land.] 4:36 Then said Judas and his brothers, “Behold, our enemies are crushed; let us go up to cleanse the sanctuary and dedicate it.” 37 So all the army assembled and they went up to Mount Zion. … 47 Then they…built a new altar like the former one. 48 They also rebuilt the sanctuary… 49 …made new holy vessels, and… 50 …lighted the lamps on the lampstand… 52 Early in the morning on the 25th day of the ninth month [~Dec. 24], which is the month of Chislev, in the 148th year [165 B.C.], 53 they rose and offered sacrifice… 54 At the very season and on the very day that the Gentiles had profaned it, [the Temple] was [re]dedicated… 56 So they celebrated the dedication of the altar for eight days… 59 Then…all the assembly of Israel determined that every year at that season the days of the dedication of the altar should be observed with gladness and joy for eight days, beginning with the 25th day of the month Chislev.
This is the eight-day Feast of Dedication (John 10:22), also called Hanukkah, still kept by the Jews to this day.
Index and Summaries of Blog Posts 1-25
This summary of the first 25 posts will help readers more easily find topics of interest to them.
1. Introduction: Hebraic Roots Pre-Wrath
A brief explanation of this blog’s primary focus: End Times prophecy as viewed from the long-ignored Hebraic perspective.
2. The Last Shofar: The Latter Horn of Redemption
Provides the Hebraic background of, and explanation for, Paul’s use of the term “the Last Trumpet” in 1 Corinthians 15:51; then explains its connection to Paul’s often-ignored Rapture prophecy in Hebrews 12:18-28.
3. The Kingdoms of Solomon and Jesus Christ
Shows that all of the primary events of King Davidʼs latter days, and up through the early events of the reign of King Solomon, allegorically portray the sequence of events of the End Times from the Great Tribulation to the establishment of Christ’s own kingdom-reign from Jerusalem.
4. End Times Crib Sheet
A summary outline of the above article, with a few key additions. Good for copying to use as a concise, one-page reference sheet for the order of End Time events. https://www.worthychristianforums.com/blogs/entry/843-end-times-crib-sheet/
5. The Great Tribulation and the Great Deception
Some “strong meat,” quoting passages from many Old and New Testament prophecies and Hebraic allegories, that reveals much not commonly understood about the Abomination of Desolation, Great Tribulation, the Manchild, the Lawless One, and resurrections of the righteous and unrighteous dead.
6. Careers in the Kingdom
Provides a basic description of the Kingdom- (Millennial-) Age’s ecclesiastical, governmental, and commoner employments and responsibilities; and shows how these roles are both similar to and differ from comparable roles in the Mosaic/‘Jewish’ and Church Ages.
7. “The Stars Will Fall From Heaven” = Pole Reversal?
Shows how passages from Matt. 24, Luke 21, and Rev. 6, 9, and 12, about the stars falling from heaven in the era of the Second Coming, together indicate a reversal of Earth’s poles. Evidence about such pole reversals in the past is presented for comparison.
8. Matthew 24:30; Daniel 11:40 - 12:2; 2 Thessalonians 2; Numbers 24:24
Shows how these prophecies outline the political/military/religious events to take place from the period just before the Abomination of Desolation up through the demise of the Son of Perdition at the Coming of Christ in the clouds of heaven.
9. “…and every eye will see Him…” Part 1
An introduction to the prophecy of Revelation 1:7, and parallel Old and New Testament prophecies: the primary implications of “every eye will see” Christ when He comes in the clouds.
10. “…and every eye will see Him…” Part 2
A broader look at the implications of this event, especially for those of a carnal nature. Also, how this event was directly presaged by the LORD’s descent upon Mount Sinai during the Exodus. https://www.worthychristianforums.com/blogs/entry/975-every-eye-will-see-him-part-2/
11. “…and every eye will see Him…” Part 3
An expanded view of how this event was presaged at Mount Sinai, especially concerning those of a soulish nature. Beginning of an understanding about ascents toward the LORD.
12. “…and every eye will see Him…” Part 4
A concluding look at the ascents of those of spiritual and light natures, both at earthly Mount Sinai and at the Coming of Christ upon heavenly Mount Zion. https://www.worthychristianforums.com/blogs/entry/1015-every-eye-will-see-him-part-4/
13. The Three Heavens
A description of the three heavens/worlds above our physical world, and how they correspond to soul, spirit, and breath. Also, how all four worlds are symbolically portrayed by the four different areas of the Holy Temple. https://www.worthychristianforums.com/blogs/entry/1027-the-three-heavens/
14. Revelation 12
Explains all of the essential elements of Rev. 12, including the Woman, the Manchild, the time in history, and the 1260 days.
15. Matthew 24:4-31 Is a Two-Part Prophecy
Explains why Matt. 24:4-14 and Matt. 24:25-31 are two separate but closely related prophecies.
16. The Three Earthquakes of Revelation
Shows why the earthquakes of Rev. 6:12, 11:13, and 16:18 are indeed three separate quakes, and not, as some claim, all the same one.
17. The Son of Perdition Is a Patsy
Shows that 2 Thes. 2:3’s Son of Perdition will follow in the pattern of Judas, the Bible’s only other Son of Perdition; contrary to common misconceptions about his role in the End Times.
18. The Temple-Sanctuary and Court of Revelation 11
An explanation of Rev. 11:1-2 in a question-and-answer format, including details about heavenly and earthly sanctuaries, and who in them may remain or get expelled.
19. When Does the Lord Smite Edom?
Details Latter-Day events upon earth, including the Lord’s punishment of Edom, that are little understood by the Church.
20. “The Antichrist” Myth
Debunks a number of false presumptions about “The Antichrist” that are taught in modern-day churches.
21. The Psalm 83 War: When?
An explanation of the historical background of Psalm 83 and related OT texts, and the modern false presumptions about them.
22. Forty Days
Some of the reasons why the Great Tribulation will likely be much shorter than most people think.
https://www.worthychristianforums.com/blogs/entry/1179-forty-days/23. The Levels and Origins of Loves, and Their Ultimate Fulfillment
Explains the different words for “love” in the Greek language, and God’s uses for these loves in bringing His people into fruitfulness and unity.
24. The Firstfruits and the Harvest
Explains the prophetic application of OT laws about the firstfruits, the firstborn, and the full harvest, as these laws relate to the End Times.
25. The Innumerable “Great Multitude” of Revelation 7:9
An explanation of who these people will be, and what their heavenly role will be in the End Times.
The Innumerable “Great Multitude” of Revelation 7:9
Rev. 7:9 I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, out of all nations, tribes, peoples and tongues, standing before the [heavenly] throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands.
Question: How many people would it take that “no one could number them?” Not, “no man,” but “no one” (obviously excluding God), which would include angels.
We find the mention of a very large number in Revelation 9:
Rev. 9:16 Now the number of the army of the horsemen was 200 million; I heard the number of them.
So if 200 million (lit. “two ten thousands of ten thousands”) can be numbered, clearly the Great Multitude must exceed this amount. It is therefore reasonable to expect that the Great Multitude will number at least one billion people.
Current estimates of the number of professing Christians is in the range of 2¼ billion, out of a total world population of 7.2 billion. However, before the 1800s A.D., total world population was less than a billion, with the number of Christians very much less than that. Therefore, the total number of professing Christians that have lived on earth since the time of Jesus is estimated at 3+ to 5 billion; about half of which are currently alive. However, remember that “the gospel was also preached [and likely still is being preached] to those who are dead” (1 Pet. 4:6), so the total number of those coming to saving faith in the Christ will be significantly higher than 3-5 billion.
At the Rapture, when
1 Thes. 4:16 …the Lord himself will descend from heaven…with a trumpet of God…the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up/raptured together with them in clouds… Heb. 12:24 …to Jesus, mediator of the new covenant…22 to Mount Zion and to the city of the Living God, heavenly Jerusalem… 23 to a general assembly and Church of the Firstborn having been registered in heaven, and to God the Judge of all…
My previous blog article, The Firstfruits and the Harvest, explains the role of these firstborn: “Following the typology of the Mosaic Law, only the Firstfruits/Firstborn are to be brought before Godʼs sanctuary: in the Latter Days, that being the heavenly sanctuary.” This is the heavenly naos spoken of in Revelation 7ʼs passage about the Great Multitude:
Rev. 7:15 “Therefore they [the Great Multitude] are before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his sanctuary/naos.”
In the blog article Job Openings in the Kingdom, it is shown that the Servants of the Priesthood in the heavenly sanctuary correspond to the Levitical servants of the Aaronic priesthood in the earthly sanctuary. Like the Great Multitude, the Levites were called out from among their brethren (the twelve tribes of Israel) to be a firstborn to God:
Num. 8:16 “For they are wholly given to Me from among the children of Israel. I have taken them for Myself instead of all who open the womb, the firstborn of all the children of Israel. 17 For all the firstborn among the children of Israel are Mine…”
The tribe of the Levites comprised only a fraction of all of Godʼs people Israel. So too the Great Multitude, the Church of the Firstborn, will comprise only a fraction of the Lordʼs entire Church. Like the Levites, these are ones God has chosen to serve in holiness before Him. And like the Levites, who were Temple workers but not priests, these will not be granted heavenly priestly authority, a role reserved for the Melchizedek priesthood alone.
The Firstfruits and the Harvest
Under the Mount Sinai Covenant, all firstfruits were to be given to God: not just the firstfruits of the Spring grain harvest, but also of the Autumn harvest of fruit, wine and oil. Likewise, all the firstborn/firstfruit-of-the-womb of both livestock and men – the latter were redeemed with a substitute offering – were to belong to God. Ex. 34:19-26; Deut. 26:2; Neh. 10:35-39
This law applies spiritually under the Covenant of Christ. The Latter Day firstfruits of men’s souls out of the tribes of Israel are the 144,000: “These were redeemed from men, a firstfruit to God and to the Lamb.” Rev. 14:4 Like the 70 Israelite elders on Mount Sinai (Ex. 24:1, 9-10), and the 120 or so Israelite disciples of Christ in the upper room (Acts 1:13-15), the 144,000 Israelites will be sanctified for God’s earthly use at the time that the Presence (Parousia) descends in the clouds of heaven in power and glory.
Upon Mount Sinai and in the upper room, the elect/chosen firstfruits consisted solely of Israelites. At Christ’s coming in the clouds of heaven, however, there is another group, one of predominantly Gentile firstfruits of men’s souls, called “the Church of the Firstborn.” Heb. 12:23 This body, the elect/chosen firstfruits of Christ’s Church, is prophetically represented by the wedding-going virgins – the ready ones – of Matthew 25:1-11; and also, by the fairest-only virgins gathered into the king’s house in the days of Esther. Esth. 2 (Note that the 144,000 are also called “virgins.” Rev. 14:4)
Like the virgins of Esther’s day, the Church of the Firstborn will remain in the King’s house, heaven.
Like the 70 elders and the 120 disciples, and also like Mordecai in Esther’s day, the 144,000 will ‘come down from the mountain/upper room’ to work in God’s service on Earth; but they are later to ascend to the heavenly “Mount Zion…before the throne of God.” Rev. 14:1, 3, 5
Firstfruits are but a small portion of any harvest. The greater parts of both Israel and the Gentile Church will remain on Earth, because they will not have been “ready” at Christ’s return. Matt. 24:44; 25:10 Under the typology of the Mosaic Law, only the best of the harvest, the firstfruits, were to be taken up to God’s Tabernacle. Even so, the Latter Day Firstborn will constitute “a great multitude which no one [can] number” (Rev. 7:9), because they will be the firstfruits of the souls of all 2000 years of Christ’s Church.
Of the congregation represented by the Woman of Revelation 12, the ones who remain in the wilderness for 1260 days will be the largest group of the earthbound, non-firstborn, non-elect believers in Christ. However, Rev. 12 also tells of “the rest of her offspring, who  keep the commandments of God, and  have the testimony of Jesus.” This “rest of her offspring” represents individuals and smaller groups of God’s faithful scattered around the globe.
I give it as my opinion that the Woman’s congregation, seemingly being the largest and most prominent group of God’s earthly people, represents the earthly remnant of the American Church. However, many believers will flee out of other nations and come join with it, both during and after the Great Tribulation. These were foreshadowed in type by the “mixed multitude” of peoples that fled with the Israelites out of Egypt during the Exodus, and by Moses’ Midianite relatives that joined with them afterwards. Ex. 12:38; Num. 10:29; Judg. 4:11
Beginning at the Great Tribulation, the Woman and her offspring, like Israel during the Exodus, will be forced to flee the cities and comforts of civilization and dwell in wilderness areas in “tabernacles,” that is, tents and makeshift dwellings. But like He did with the Israelites during the Exodus, God will sustain their needs there. See Rev. 12:13-17.
During the 1260 days/42 months/3½ times (Rev. 11:3; 12:6, 14; 13:5; Dan. 7:25; 12:7), the 7 Trumpets will carry out God’s earthly judgment upon soul/nephesh/psuche-level men. The 144,000 will be on earth at this time, along with the Two Witnesses of Revelation 11, having been sanctified for the Lord’s earthly ministry. After this 1260-day period of judgment is fulfilled, the full harvest of Earth will commence, as foretold in Revelation 14:
Rev. 14:15 “…for the hour has come to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe. Matt. 13:30 “...gather the wheat into my storehouse.”
God’s harvest refers only to his own peoples, even though “tares” – phony believers – will also be reaped among them, which the angels will separate out from the believers. Matt. 13:37-43 At this time, being that of the 7th Trumpet, the Kingdom of Heaven will become established upon Earth, as foretold in Revelation 11:
Rev. 11:15 Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdom of this world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!”
Again, this is the full harvest, as contrasted to the harvest of the firstfruits, which comes 1260 days earlier. Following the typology of Mosaic Law, only the Firstfruits/Firstborn are to be brought before God’s sanctuary: in the Latter Days, that being the heavenly sanctuary. God’s people from the main harvest receive the secondary blessing, that is, becoming partakers of the earthly portion of the Kingdom of Heaven. Those gathered to the place (or places) wherein the earthly Kingdom is first established will be the ones “gathered into the storehouse.”
The establishment of the Kingdom of heaven upon earth will not be instantaneous over all lands and peoples:
Dan. 2:44 “And in the days of these [pagan earthly] kings, the God of heaven will  set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to another people.  It shall break to pieces and bring to an end all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.”
The defeat of the rival earthly kingdoms will take place at the 7th Bowl judgment, generally known as the Battle of Armageddon. This sequence of 1) the establishment of the earthly Kingdom of Heaven, followed later by 2) the utter defeat of “the Beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies” (Rev. 19:19) is shown in earlier blog articles, such as The Kingdoms of Solomon and Jesus Christ.
The Levels and Origins of Loves, and Their Ultimate Fulfillment
Each of the four worlds – the three heavens and the one earth – has both a corresponding element and a corresponding love.
The Greek language has a specific word for each of these four loves:
Eros: sexual love, the ultimate love of the flesh. Eros is earthly/physical in nature.
Storgē: familial love: the affection for one’s closest blood-relatives, and also for one’s clans, tribe, and race. Storgē is soulish/psuchikos in nature.
Philia: the love of friends that transcends soul-ties: trans-familial “brotherly love.” Philia is spiritual/pneumatikos in nature.
Agapē: all-encompassing love, Divine love, including for one’s enemies. Matt. 5:45 Agapē originates in the Holy Breath-Light of God, and is rebreathed through His children.
The elements corresponding to these four loves are earth, water, wind/air, and fire/light.
All of these worlds, loves and elements derive from a higher source, Divine Life, which is able at will to infill each:
Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God…breathed into his [Adam’s] nostrils Breath of Life, and the man became a living soul.
When operating in flesh, Divine Life produces fruitful (and thus fulfilled) eros; in soul, fruitful storgē; in spirit, fruitful philia; and in breath, fruitful agapē.
To earthly flesh is given the sense of touch. To watery soul is given the closely-related fluidic senses of taste and smell. To airy spirit is given the sense of hearing. And to fiery breath-light is given the sense of sight.
Flesh corresponds to the pinky finger. Soul, and thus storgē/familial love, whose root is marriage, corresponds to the ring finger. Spirit corresponds to the powerful middle finger. Breath-light corresponds to the pointer-of-the-way, the index finger. And the thumb, which is able to face, touch, and encompass them all, corresponds to life.
Life (Hebrew Chayyim/ Greek Zoē) derives from and is infilled with an even higher level of Divine Love, that being Unity (Hebrew Yechidah/ Greek Henotēs), which is both the ultimate source and the ultimate purpose of God’s Divine workmanship:
Psalm 133:1 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.
Galatians 3:28 …you are all one in Christ.
Ephesians 4:1 I [Paul]…beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called… 3 endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace… 13 until we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a completed/fulfilled man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
God’s people will become “completed/fulfilled” only after they are purified in all of their love-natures at the return of Christ. Only then will they be able to stand before the Divine Presence, fulfilling the Divine Plan.
The essence of the Divine Plan is summed up in Isaiah:
Isaiah 55:11 So shall be My Word Who goes out of My mouth:
He shall not return unto Me unfulfilled;
Because lo! He shall have done what I desired,
And shall cause to prosper whomsoever I sent Him.
The Divine Word has been manifested in many forms, including the Holy Scriptures, the lives of men and nations, nature, the spoken oracles of YHWH, and in and through God-made-flesh, Jesus Christ. Thus Isaiah 55:11 can be interpreted in different ways. (The interpretation above uses the literal Hebraic verb tenses.)
The ultimate manifestation of ʽthe Word from the beginning’ was in the man Jesus. John 1:1 And Jesus’ ultimate work is to “cause to prosper whosoever I [YHWH/the Father] sent/sends Him”:
John 6:37 “All whom the Father gives me will come to me… 44 …and I will raise him up in the Last Day. … 15:5 He who abides in me bears much fruit…”
Those fruits derive from all of the various loves, to be ultimately manifested by a unified and “completed/fulfilled man,” the Body of Christ, “in the Last Day.” The Body of Christ shall manifest every form of love, from lowly eros up through transcendental Yechidah, thereby bringing fullness of joy:
John 15:5 He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; … 10 …you will abide in My love… 11 …that My joy may remain in you, and your joy may be full.
Forty days has been the standard biblical period for trial, testing, and tribulation.
The pounding downpour and great upwelling of water during Noah’s Flood lasted 40 days, and even though they were preserved, surely Noah and all with him were greatly buffeted and distressed until God ended the storm.
At the beginning of the Exodus, 40 days marked the initial period of trial and testing of the Israelites. It ended only after they overcame the attack of Amalekites, after which they had rest.
Less than two years afterward, another 40-day test of Israel came in the searching out the land of Canaan by their twelve spies, and the Israelite’s response to their reports.
Elijah’s flight (while fasting) to Horeb, the Mountain of God, took 40 days.
Jesus, the Divine Human, underwent 40 days of trial (while fasting) at the beginning of his ministry.
Then later, after his resurrection, there came a concluding 40 days’ testing of the faith of the disciples up to the time of his ascension.
In our time, a sudden collapse of government, banking, the food distribution system and the electrical grid, coupled with chaos, war, and plague (the events of Seals 1-4), would bring near immediate tribulation for most people. Even those who are prepared might find it difficult to survive 40 days without either Divine or human (Church) assistance. This may be why the Lord said, “unless those days were [i.e., will be] shortened, no flesh would be saved.”
Paul clearly stated in Hebrews 12:18-28 and elsewhere that the Church’s coming to heavenly Mount Zion will mimic Israel’s coming to earthly Mount Sinai. I suspect this will apply to the time period also.
These are some of the reasons why I believe the Great Tribulation will last no longer than 40 days, and possibly some days less than that.
Despite the claims of some that this period will last 3½ or 7 years, not a single verse of Scripture actually says so. On the contrary, the 3½ times/1260-day period applies to earthly Israel, not to the Church. (See the blog post Revelation 12.)
The Psalm 83 War: When?
Another popular but misguided teaching these days says this: Psalm 83 is a prophecy about an End Time war against the nation of Israel.
In fact, this psalm, along with other closely related psalms, speaks about a past event that took place in 485 B.C. In that year, the newly-crowned Emperor Xerxes of Persia, dealing with rebellions throughout the empire at the death of his father Darius, allowed the neighboring enemies of the rebellious province of Judah to punish the Jews for him. (Xerxes had more pressing concerns: an ongoing rebellion in his much more important province of Egypt, and a brewing rebellion in Babylon.)
Nothing in Psalm 83 speaks of its events as taking place in the future of Asaph’s days. On the contrary, they speak of events that he experienced:
Psalm 83 A Song. A Psalm of Asaph. 1 Do not keep silent, O God: do not hold not your peace, and do not be still, O God. 2 For behold, your enemies make an uproar, and those who hate you have lifted up their head. …They have said, “Come and let us cut them off from being a nation, that the name of Israel be remembered no more. 5 …They form a confederacy against you: …Edom and the Ismaelites, 6 Moab and the Hagrites 7 Gebal and Ammon and Amalek, the Philistines…Tyre, 8 Assyria…
Other Psalms written by Asaph make clear that he was writing about events of his own day. In Psalm 74, he wrote:
Psalm 74:1 …of Asaph. O God, why have you cast [us] off for ever? [why] does your anger smoke against the sheep of your pasture? ... 3 Lift up your feet unto the perpetual desolations: all [that] the enemy has done wickedly [or, destroyed] in the sanctuary. ...6 ...they break down the carved work thereof at once with axes and hammers. 7 They have cast fire into your sanctuary, they have defiled the dwelling place of your name to the ground. 8 They said in their hearts, Let us destroy them together: they have burned up all the synagogues of God in the land.
Synagogues/meeting places were an institution begun during the Babylonian captivity, and brought back to the Holy Land with Zerubbabel’s emigration in 537 B.C.
Psalm 80 …of Asaph. 4…O LORD God of hosts, how long will you be angry against the prayer of your people? 5 You have caused them to eat the bread of tears, and caused them to drink tears in great measure. 6 You have made us a strife unto our neighbors, and our enemies laugh among themselves.
All of these things Asaph was experiencing. There is no indication at all that he was prophesying about some far-distant future.
The Book of Lamentations, despite its non-verifiable attribution to Jeremiah, was probably also written by Asaph, or at least by a contemporary. That book begins,
Lamentations 1:1 How isolated sits the city, [that was] full of people! She has become as a widow! She [that was] great among the nations, princess among the provinces, she has become a tributary! 2 …all her friends have dealt treacherously with her, they have become her enemies. ...10 The adversary has spread out his hand upon all her desirable things: for she has seen the heathen entered into her sanctuary, whom you did command [that] they should not enter into your congregation.
The mention of Jerusalem as being “princess among the provinces” discloses that this book was written during the era of the Persian Empire, when Judah was truly a province. During the era of the Babylonian Empire, Judah was a vassal kingdom before becoming desolate, never a province.
The few Jews left (briefly) in Judah after Nebuchadnezzar had carried off captives to Babylon–which captives included all the priests that he had not killed–had plenty of “wine and summer fruit and oil” left for them to harvest. Jer. 40:10 Now contrast that time with this one in Lamentations:
Lam. 4:9 [Those] slain of the sword are better of than [these] slain of hunger: for these pine away, stricken through for [want of] the fruits of the field.
One more point, among many similar points of evidence. Lamentations 4:20 reads,
The breath of our nostrils, the anointed one of the LORD, was taken in their pits, of whom we said, “Under his shadow we shall live among the heathen.”
Now, can you see Jeremiah (or any other righteous chronicler of his day) calling the weak and vacillating King Zedekiah “the breath of our nostrils”?? Hardly. (Ezekiel called Zedekiah a “profane, wicked prince.” Ezek. 21:25)
This “anointed one”–whom the Jews had crowned king over Judah in defiance of the Persian Emperor, inciting him to send his allies against Judah–is spoken of in yet another Psalm of this era:
Psalm 89:39 You [God] have renounced the covenant of your servant, you have profaned his crown to the ground. … 51 …your enemies…have reproached the footsteps of your anointed one/messiah.
God allowed this reproach, because the Jews didn’t have his permission to anoint another king over his people prior to the coming of the Messiah of the house of David. The Jews had been presumptuous, thinking that the prophecies of Isaiah about a Messiah were to be fulfilled in their own day. Therefore, God permitted their enemies to spank them, and depose their false messiah.
About 28 years after this time, Ezra spoke in 457 B.C. about the “captivity, pillage, and humiliation” of Judah “at the hand of the kings of the lands…as it is this day.” Ezra 9:7 In 444 B.C., Nehemiah wept because Jerusalem’s walls had been broken down, its gates burned, and “the remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach;” and later testified to Artaxerxes that Jerusalem “lies waste. Neh. 1:3; 2:3
In stark contrast with this, the Jews and Jerusalem had previously “prospered” under guidance of the prophets Haggai and Zechariah, and Zerubbabel the governor, around 519 B.C. Ezra 6:14 So clearly, sometime after this time of prosperity, the province of Judah suffered an extended period of “captivity, pillage, and humiliation” –exactly what Asaph and others said had begun in their days.
To cut this short and sum up: there is plenty of biblical, historical, and grammatical evidence to show that in Psalm 83 and related texts, Asaph and others were bearing witness about events of their own day, ca. 485 B.C., that they experienced. Neither the verb tenses, nor any other indication or description, suggest that Psalm 83 is prophesying about a future war in the End Times.
“The Antichrist” Myth
The Antichrist – a term broadly used throughout the Church to describe a single man who will come to rule the whole world – is a myth based upon an old rumor.
This rumor has its first and only biblical reference in 1 John 1:18 –
1 John 1:18 Little children, it is a last hour; and as you have heard that Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is a last hour. 19 They went out from us, but they were not of us…
John never acknowledges any truth to this “as you have heard” rumor. Quite the contrary, John later provides a significantly different doctrine of antichrist:
1 John 2:22 Who is the liar but the one [i.e. each one: see 1:18 above] denying that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one denying the Father and the Son. 23 Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either… 4:3 And every spirit that does not confess that Jesus has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the* [spirit] of the antichrist, that you have heard is coming, and now already it is in the world. * The Greek article to = “the” is neuter, agreeing with pneuma/spirit.
So – John clearly defines the term antichrist to be a spiritual belief, being the doctrine of one powerful collective spirit. It is not, nor will be, a single man; rather, this belief had infested, and will infest, “many” spirits and men. The one-man The Antichrist doctrine is never taught by John, and only John uses the word antichrist. Therefore, the one-man The Antichrist doctrine is not biblical.
This is a classic case of the Church being led astray once again by a false doctrine based upon a single biblical verse or phrase. Christians deride Mormons because they have built a major doctrine upon the single phrase from 1 Cor. 15:29 : “…what will they [not, we] do who are baptized for the dead…” But the doctrinal false presumptions about The Antichrist are even more extensive:
The Antichrist is the “coming prince” of Dan. 9:26-27;
who becomes possessed by Satan to become the Son of Perdition of 2 Thes. 2;
who sets himself up as God in a Third Temple (of which templeʼs pre-Millennial construction no scripture testifies);
which he later destroys, along with Jerusalem, before Messiahʼs return;
and he is also the Beast who ascends from the sea and the Abyss;
who is head-wounded unto death;
descends into the Abyss, but is given life again by Satan (where in Hell does that come from?);
who is also, somehow, the “little horn” of Dan. 7 and the Mouth of the Beast of Rev. 13;
…and so on, with a whole list of other labels attributed to one single man.
This whole mythological stew only brings confusion within the Body of Christ. The old “you have heard” rumor has become ʻfact,ʼ and opinion has become unquestioned doctrine. Many of the disagreements between and within the pre-trib, mid-trib, post-trib and pre-wrath camps derive from the eating and regurgitation of this Antichrist-doctrine stew. It is an old and rancid stew, full of incompatible ingredients, and potentially toxic to the eater.
To sum up: there is no The (one-man) Antichrist. Rather, there are a number of End Times antichrists, including 1) the Son of Perdition/Lawless One, 2) the Beast, 3) the False Prophet, 4) the Mouth of the Beast = Little Horn, and 5) Gog. Thus there are at minimum five major end times antichrists, without even mentioning the greatest antichrist of them all, Satan. They are all anti/against Christ, according to Johnʼs definition: ones that deny and oppose the exclusivity of Jesus being the only Christ/Messiah of God.
[If you want to understand why the Son of Perdition is AN antichrist but not The Antichrist (there is no such man), nor the Beast, read my blog “The Son of Perdition is a Patsy.”]
When Does the Lord Smite Edom?
Isaiah 63:1 Who is this who comes from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? This one who is glorious in his apparel, traveling in the greatness of his strength?
I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.
2 Why is your apparel red, and your garments like one who treads in the winepress?
3 I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there was none with me: for I trod them in my anger, and trampled them in my fury; and their blood has been spattered upon my garments, and I have stained all my robes.
4 For the Day of Vengeance [i.e., Wrath] is in My heart, and the year of My redeemed has come.
5 I looked, but there was no one [else] to help, and I wondered, because there was no one [else] to uphold;
Therefore My own arm brought salvation for me, and My own fury, it sustained Me.
Isaiah 34:4 All the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens shall be rolled up like a scroll…
Revelation 6:12 And I looked when he opened the Sixth Seal… 14 And the sky receded like a scroll when it is rolled up…
Isaiah 34:4 All their host shall fall down…as figs falling from a fig tree.
Revelation 6:13 And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its unripe figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind. …
Isaiah 34:5 For My sword shall be bathed in heaven, indeed it shall come down on Edom,
And on the people of My curse, for judgment.
6 The sword of the LORD is filled with blood…
For the LORD has a sacrifice in Bozrah, and a great slaughter in the land of Edom.
7 Because it is the Day of the LORDʼs Vengeance…
Revelation 6:17 For the Great Day of His Wrath has come, and who is able to stand?
Must not the things above – and specifically, this bloody battle fought with the Edomites by the Lord alone – come before this?
Rev. 19:11 And I saw heaven having been opened, and behold a white horse; and the one sitting upon him being called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. … 13 And [he] having been clothed with a garment having been covered in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him… 19 And I saw the Beast, and the kings of the earth and their armies, having been assembled to make war with Him who sat on the horse and with his army.
Are not these TWO distinct events that take place separately? Namely,
1st: The Lord alone, getting His garment stained with blood.
2nd: The Lord with the armies of heaven, “with a garment [already] having been covered/stained [perfect passive participle] in blood,” going out to a another battle sometime after the former battle.
At that later battle, at which time heaven will be opened, Rev. 19:11-13 testifies that Jesus’ clothing will already have been covered in blood. Blood only comes from bodies of flesh. Bodies of flesh and blood only dwell upon the face of the earth. Therefore, what other explanation for this blood is possible than this: Jesus’ clothing will become blood-soaked on earth sometime before his descent in Rev. 19 to fight with the Beast and his allies?
The following prophecy says that the Lord will indeed be upon earth before his wrath is fulfilled at the culminating battle of Rev. 19:
Ezekiel 20:33 [As] I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely with a mighty hand, and with a stretched out arm, and with fury [or, wrath] being poured out will I rule over you: 34 And I will bring you out from the people, and will gather you out of the countries wherein ye are scattered, with a mighty hand, and with a stretched out arm, and with fury [or, wrath] being poured out. 35 And I will bring you into the wilderness of the people, and there I will plead with you face to face. 36 Like as I pleaded with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so will I plead with you, saith the Lord GOD. 37 And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant: 38 And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I [am] the LORD. … 42 Then you shall know that I am the LORD, when I bring you into the land of Israel, into the country for which I raised my hand in an oath to give to your fathers.
Compare the prophecy above with these passages from the Exodus era:
Ex. 33:11 And the LORD spoke unto Moses face to face, as a man speaks unto his friend.
Deut. 5:4 The LORD talked with you face to face in the mount out of the midst of the fire.
Deut. 34:10 And there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face.
Just like in the Exodus era, the Lord will be shepherding his people Israel upon earth before the culminating battle of the End of the Age. The Lord’s shepherding “in the Last Days” (Gen. 49:1) is also witnessed here in Jacob’s prophecy for his son Joseph’s descendants:
Gen. 49:23 The masters of arrows/missiles will have bitterly grieved him [Joseph], and will have shot at him and will have hated him. 24 But his bow shall remain/abide in strength, and the arms of his hands shall be refined (as gold)/made strong by the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob (from thence will be shepherding the Stone of Israel), 25 from the God of thy Father who shall help thee…
“From thence will be shepherding”: Qal predicative active participle in Hebrew. This is a verb, not a noun. “The Stone of Israel” is Christ – “the Stone which the builders rejected” – who will shepherd his people of earthly Israel/Joseph when they come under attack in the Latter Days.
All of these earthly events, including the Lord’s battle with Edom, will take place AFTER the Church has ascended from earth at Christ’s Coming in the clouds.
Scriptures that reveal events before that ascension are detailed in earlier blog posts.
Most of the Church knows little about God’s End Times purposes for “the remnant of Jacob,” earthly Israel; and likewise, most of earthly Israel knows little about God’s plans for the ascended Church.
The Temple-Sanctuary and Court of Revelation 11
Revelation 11:1 And there was given me a reed like unto a rod. And the angel stood, saying, “Rise, and measure the naos [lit. sanctuary] of God, and the altar, and those who worship in it. 2 But the court which is outside of the naos cast out and measure it not, for it is given unto the Gentiles; and the holy city they shall tread under foot forty-two months.
The Greek term naos does not mean a whole temple complex, for which the Greek word hieron is used. Naos refers only to a temple’s innermost holy place, its sanctuary. The word hieron is never used in Revelation. A naos is mentioned 16 times:
– 10 of them directly speak of it being “in heaven,” or are linked to a near verse that does: 11:19 (twice); 14:15, 17; 15:5, 6, 8 (twice); 16:1; 16:17 ;
– 2 of them refer to it being the Holy One Himself: 21:22 (twice);
– 2 more of them, 3:12 and 7:15, also are clearly heavenly, but you can check them out for yourself to decide.
NOT A SINGLE VERSE in Revelation speaks of a “Temple/naos on earth,” or “in Jerusalem,” or “in the holy city.” Therefore, there is no good reason to presume an earthly exception for the other two uses of naos in Rev. 11:1-2; especially since later in the chapter, verse 19 says “the naos in heaven.”
Questions: How could the outer court of a heavenly sanctuary be trampled by the Gentiles? And when it says “don’t measure the outer court, as it is given over to the Gentiles” – could that be the case in heaven?
Answer: Let’s read it literally: “And the court the [one] external/outside [G1855 exothen] of the sanctuary expel [G1544 ekballo (from G1537 ek/out of + G906 ballo/throw)] out [G1544 exo]…”
Clearly, the exterior court of God’s sanctuary is to be cast out outside – but outside of what? Outside of heaven, that is, the realm of God’s Presence, is the reasonable answer.
The outer court of the earthly Temple in Old Testament days was the Court of the Gentiles. There, uncircumcised and unsanctified Gentiles were allowed, but no closer. In heaven, no unsanctified souls will be allowed to remain at all. Therefore, this place for the congregation of unsanctified ones cannot be allowed to remain near the heavenly sanctuary, the place of the Presence of God.
The principle behind this was explained in the blog post The Three Heavens: “In the heavens, there is no distance in terms of space, because there is neither space nor time. Distance in the heavens is determined by similarity and oppositeness. For instance, the holier the spirit, the closer its proximity to the Divine; while spirits that rebel against God are by their very nature at vast ‘distances’ (in appearance) from Him.” All summed up in these words of Jesus:
John 3:20 “…everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen…”
The souls that comprise the outer court of God’s spiritual Temple cannot remain anywhere near the heavenly sanctuary, because they are unsanctified. Therefore, they are far in spirit from God’s and the heavenly saints’ very nature. (How this collective group of unsanctified souls will temporarily be able to come into heaven at all will be explained below.)
The sense given by the three “outs” of verse 2 is that the outer court is to be expelled WAY away from the heavenly naos – and where else to but earth? This soulish congregation will therefore likely dominate the Temple Mount on earth, or part of it, which “glorious holy mountain” (Dan. 11:45) Gentiles have been “treading underfoot” since the first century, as Jesus foretold in Luke 21:24.
The same word ekballo was used to describe the event when Jesus “CAST OUT all those who bought and sold in the temple” (Matt. 21:12): it indicates a violent expulsion.
Question: In 2 Thessalonians 2 – if God’s naos is the heavenly sanctuary, does the Son of Perdition eject God from His naos and then set himself up as a god? How does the Son of Perdition get into the heavenly sanctuary?
Answer: 2 Thes. 2 doesn’t indicate that the naos spoken of there is in heaven, and neither do I. Those events take place on earth.
Question: The two witnesses prophesy on earth, would you agree?
Answer: Absolutely. The passage shifts in Rev. 11:2 from the heavenly to the earthly perspective. Such shifts back and forth from heavenly to earthly perspectives is common in Revelation.
Question: If so, the context could be seen as continuing in an earthly view. But how do we have Gentiles or ‘nations’ in heaven, where part of the holy precinct is given over to them, and not counted with the rest? If no unsanctified souls are allowed in heaven, how is it that there is an outer court to be cast out?
Answer: This scripture will help to explain the coming scenario of Rev. 11:1-2 :
Matthew 22:11 And when the king came in to see the [wedding] guests, he saw there a man which did not have on a wedding garment. 12 So he saith to him, “Friend, how did you come in here not having a wedding garment?” And he was speechless. 13 Then said the king to the servants, “Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him [Gr. ekbalete] into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Clearly, there will be some weeding out of those who ascend, but don’t belong.
Now, how come folks with no wedding garment can make it into the heavenly wedding in the first place? How come Jesus will cast out (ekballo) his unprofitable servant? Matt. 25:30 How come Satan and his angels have to be cast (ballo) from heaven? Rev. 12:7-10
In heaven, no unsanctified souls or spirits will be allowed to remain. Clearly some do get in, then are cast out. This gets us into some deep mystical issues, such as “the eye single” that Jesus spoke about. Matt. 6:22 When Jesus appears in the clouds, to be “seen by every eye” (Rev. 1:17; 6:16 = 6th Seal) – every eye of both the living and the dead (Matt. 26:63-64) – that seeing shall be with spiritual sight. Such spiritual sight will freak most people out, and they will “hide themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains, and say to the mountains and rocks, ‘Fall on us, and hide us from the [All-Seeing] Face’…” Just like they essentially did at the First Shofar at Mount Sinai: “when the people saw, they removed, and stood afar off.” Ex. 20:18
Now, there are some people who are spiritually adept, shall we say, who will be able to withstand this spiritual opening, and who will go in, believing themselves to be chosen and worthy. But their souls will not have born the fruits of the Spirit which comprise heavenly “fine linen” garments – “for the fine linen is the RIGHTEOUS ACTS of the saints.” Rev. 19:8 Without such garments/works of righteousness – chiefly including saving faith in the cleansing blood of Jesus, which faith then matures fruits/works via the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22; 1 Cor. 12:4-11) – they will not be found worthy to stand in the presence of the host of heaven:
Luke 21:36 “…pray always that you may be accounted worthy…to stand before the Son of Man.”
Rev. 7:14 “These are the ones who…washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore they are before the throne of God…”
“Faith without the works of the Holy Spirit is garmentless,” to paraphrase James 2:26.
Many of this group in the outer court of the Gentiles will be unsanctified professing believers in Jesus. There is a great body of those who believe that they are saved and are going to heaven, merely because they have voiced a sinner’s prayer, and maybe had some spiritual experience. But again, these will not have the white wedding garments required to be a part of the celebration, because their mere belief-of-the-lips never matured any Spirit-begotten fruit.
Finally, let us now turn this whole debate upon its head, and consider the proposed alternative. If this is a physical temple and court, as so many believe, then how could John – because that is whom the angel is addressing – bodily pick up the court and cast/throw it? And yet the Gentiles in it remain alive to “tread the holy city underfoot”? That whole scenario is patently absurd.
The only sense in which a temple court filled with a vast number of people (souls) could be expelled would be in the spiritual sense. And for this we have clear precedence, with scriptures that speak about Satan and his angels being cast out of heaven, and the spiritual ruler of Tyre being “cast…out of the [heavenly] mountain of God.” Ezek. 28:16, 14
The Son of Perdition Is a Patsy
When Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested on November 22, 1963, he asked the police what he was being charged with. They told him the murder of President Kennedy. He then said, “So Iʼm the patsy.” A few days later, he was dead and despised.
Whether or not one believes Oswald shot Kennedy, what he said was true: Kennedy was dead, and Kennedyʼs enemies had a patsy to take the blame.
Judas was also patsy. When he threw the blood-money for Jesusʼ betrayal into the holy naos/sanctuary of the Temple (Matt. 27:5) – coins with pagan gods idolized upon them – he committed the Abomination of Desolation for that age. Jesus called him “the Son of Perdition.” John 17:12; 6:70-71 After Judas had been so used by Satan and apostate Jews to effect the death of Jesus, he was then disdained by his masters like the dumb fool he was. And, like Oswald, he became dead and despised soon afterward
The Son of Perdition for our age, a.k.a. the King of the North, will similarly be used as a patsy. He will invade the Middle East, seemingly from the north through Syria, then occupy Israel and subdue Islamic North Africa. Dan. 11:40-43 This Satan-deluded god-man will bring his forces from Europe by means of “ships of Chittim.” Num. 24:23-24 His invasion will inflame the rest of the world, particularly the peoples of Islamic and Jewish Middle East, but also peoples “from the east” – probably Iran and/or China, “and from the north” – Syriaʼs ally Russia. Dan. 11:44 “He shall [then] plant the tents of his pavilion between the seas at the glorious holy mountain [that is, the Temple Mount: this will be the Abomination of Desolation for our age], but shall come to his end, and no one will help him.” Dan. 11:45
Like Judas, this patsy will quickly end up dead and despised, because his usefulness to Satan will be over. Satanʼs sole plan for him is to cause world-ending chaos, that is, the Great Tribulation. Dan. 12:1; Matt. 24:15, 21 This will cause the collapse of the current worldʼs political system, and set the stage for “a New World Order,” that is, the Beast Kingdom – in which kingdom the Son of Perdition will have no part at all.
Jesus, in his appearance in the clouds to be “seen by every eye” (Rev. 1:17; 6:16 = Sixth Seal), will gather his Elect to himself, even while shepherding the earthly Remnant of Jacob into the “place prepared of [Greek apo: lit. away from] God, that they should feed her there 1260 days.” Matt. 24:31; Rev. 12:6 This Remnant will “have the testimony of Jesus.” Rev. 12:17 But not having prepared themselves for his Coming, they wonʼt be able to ascend to him. Among the Remnant will be the sealed and sanctified 144,000, who will shepherd them during the 1260 days.
As for the Son of Perdition, “…the Lord shall consume [him] with the spirit of his mouth, and shall bring [him] to naught with the brightness of his coming.” 2 Thes. 2:8
The “door” into the heavens will then be quickly “shut” (Matt. 25:10), along with every Spirit-opened eye, leaving forlorn virgins pleading to be allowed in. (“I do not see/perceive [Greek: oida] you,” Jesus will tell them. Matt. 25:11-12) Sometime thereafter, “the Beast that ascends out of the Abyss” (Rev. 11:7), having been released at the Fifth angelic Trumpet (Rev. 9:1-2, 11-12), will proceed to fulfill the “strong delusion” ordained by God. 2 Thes. 2:11 The little horn/Mouth of the Beast will utter his blasphemies against God, deceive the world, and persecute the earthly saints for 1260 days. Dan. 7:8, 25; Rev. 13:5-7
By this time the Son of Perdition, the patsy used by Western apostate Christianity to fully betray its once great heritage –
this deluded god-man, who commits the Abomination of Desolation, which brings to pass the chaos of the Great Tribulation –
he will have become no more than a hiss and a byword of history. Just like Judas, the only other son of perdition, who was used by apostate Judaism to fully betray their own once great heritage. John 17:12
Instead of being the great operator and insider heʼd been duped into believing himself to be, the Son of Perdition will turn out to be just another dumb-fool patsy. Like Judas. Like Oswald.
The Three Earthquakes of Revelation
Some people believe and teach that the the Seals, Trumpets and Bowls of Revelation all take place concurrently. Others teach that only the Trumpets and Bowls are concurrent, and are part of the Seventh Seal. There are many reasons why neither of these things is possible, when all of the other scriptures, particularly the Old Testament prophecies, are taken into account. I will mention just one item here: the three earthquakes of Revelation.
As I show in the blog post The Exodus and the End Times, all the significant events of the Exodus were types and shadows of the Day of the LORD. Therefore, it is noteworthy that three different large earthquakes also took place during the Exodus era. Here are the Exodus-era types, and their Day of the LORD fulfillments:
1) The Exodus, at Mount Sinai: Thick darkness, earthquake, God’s trumpet/shofar sounding. The LORD descended upon Mount Sinai in clouds of smoke; most people cowered away from his Presence. But those who were ready went up into his Presence. Ex. 19:16f.; 20:18
1) 6th Seal: Thick darkness, earthquake, God’s trumpet/shofar sounding. Jesus descends in the clouds; most people are greatly afraid and hide themselves. But those who are ready go up into his Presence. Rev. 6:12-17; 1 Thes. 4:16; Matt. 24:29-30
2) During the Exodus sojourn in the wilderness: Moses and Aaron, after having prophesied and performed similar miracles as the Two Witnesses of Relation 11, were confronted and accused by Korah and others. The LORD then validated their ministry, killing thousands of their adversaries by earthquake, fire and plague. Num. 16; Ex. 7-10
2) 6th Trumpet, Priestly Section: The Two Witnesses prophesy, burn their enemies with fire, turn waters to blood, and smite the earth with plagues. They are accused and attacked by the Beast and others. God publicly validates their ministry by raising them from the dead; an earthquake then kills thousands. Rev. 11:3-13
3) After the Exodus, in Canaan: Joshua – Yeshua – and the Israelites defeated the many armies gathered together against them on ‘the day the sun stood still.’ “[T]he earth trembled and shook” amidst a great storm (Jasher 89:15), and great hailstones fell from heaven. The Canaanite armies were routed and slaughtered, and their kings were captured alive and “cast into” a cave. Josh. 10
3) 7th Bowl: “[T]hunderings and lightnings…a mighty and great earthquake…great hail from heaven.” Jesus – Yeshua – and the armies of heaven descend to destroy the armies gathered together against them. The Beast and the False Prophet are captured alive, and “cast into” the lake of fire. Rev. 16:17-21; 19:11-21
All the events of the Exodus which foreshadow events of the End Times were sequential in time. There are no scriptures that prove the events of the End Times will not likewise be sequential. On the contrary, the three examples above show that each of these End Time earthquakes will take place under completely different circumstances.
Addenda: For “those who dwell upon the earth” (Rev. 3:10; 6:10; 11:10; 13:8, 12, 14 (2); 14:6; 17:8), the Seals-Trumpets-Bowls, and likewise the three earthquakes, will occur separately and sequentially over time. But for the ones in the heavenly realms of Everywhen, the Seals-Trumpets-Bowls (and all other events of history) are eternally everywhen. This is the realm in which God dwells, and into which prophets visit during their visions of the future. Because all events – past-present-future – already exist there. (And don’t ask me to explain that!)
In this one sense only are those correct who speak of the Trumpets and Bowls being simultaneous. But for “those who dwell upon the earth” in time, the Seals, Trumpets, and Bowls will occur separately and sequentially over a period of many years.
Matthew 24:4-31 Is a Two-Part Prophecy
Chapters 24 and 25 of Matthew consist of many End Time topics addressed by Jesus, including Signs of the End of the Age, the Fig Tree, Wise and Evil Servants, Wise and Foolish Virgins, and others.
For three decades, I unwittingly assumed that the prophesied events of Matthew 24:4-31 will all occur in one continuous sequence. Then came a head-slapping-duh moment, when I realized that verses 4-14 contain one topic-with-sequence, and verses 15-31 contain a second topic-with-sequence. That is to say, two separate but closely-related prophecies are to be found here:
1) Matthew 24:4-14 contains a general overview of the events of the Great Tribulation. It has long been recognized that:
– the “many” false christs (:5) are the White Horse of Revelation 6’s 1st Seal;
– “wars and rumors of wars” (:6) are the 2nd Seal’s Red Horse;
– “famines” (:7) are the 3rd Seal’s Black Horse;
– “pestilence and earthquakes” (:7) are the 4th Seal’s Pale Horse;
– and the hatred and murder of the saints, instigated by false prophets (:9-12), cause the martyrdom foretold by the 5th Seal.
2) Beginning in Mathew 24:15, Jesus shifts to a different topic-with-sequence:
– how the Great Tribulation will begin (:15);
– how the saints should respond (:16-26);
– how the Great Tribulation will end (:27-29);
– and how Christ will return (:30-31).
When Jesus speaks in Matthew 24:23-24 of “false christs and false prophets” coming forth, he is speaking of the same ones earlier mentioned in verses 5 and 11: he thereby ties his two narratives together into a greater whole. Jesus first focuses only upon the Great Tribulation (= the birth-pangs); then second, outlines the main pre-Tribulation event (the Abomination of Desolation), the mid-Tribulation events (deceptions, trials, and testings), and the post-Tribulation events (the Second Coming). The first prophecy of 24:4-14 describes neither the AD nor the Second Coming. And the second prophecy of 24:15-31 skips over the details about the GT provided by the first prophecy.
I hope this understanding will be helpful to some of you. I’m sure that many already know it. And I’m sure that many will reject it, because they already have fixed their eschatologies upon the events of verses 4-31 being in one continuous sequence. Misconceptions such as “the Tribulation” being followed by “the Great Tribulation” are one result of such thinking.
1) When does this happen? 2) Who is the woman? 3) Where is the wilderness? 4) What do clothed with the sun, moon under her feet, and crown of 12 stars mean?
5) What is meant by a thousand two hundred and threescore days?
1) When. Jesus told John,
Rev. 1:19 Write the things which you have seen [past], and the things which are [present], and the things which will take place after these [future].
“The things seen” (by John up to that point) are told in Rev. 1:9-20. “The things which are” – that is, that were taking place at the time of John’s visions – are told in Rev. 2-3, when Jesus tells each of the 7 churches, “I know your works.” Then, beginning in Rev. 4:1, we find:
Rev. 4:1 After this I looked and beheld a door standing open in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me, saying, Come up here, and I will show thee things which must take place after these [things].
Everything John was shown from Rev. 4:1 onward is future from – “after” – his day. This includes everything in chapter 12. The birth and ascent of the Manchild that John saw in Rev. 12:5 are future; although the birth and ascent of Jesus was of the same pattern and type. Jesus himself tells us who the Manchild shall be:
Rev. 2:26-27 The one overcoming, and the one keeping my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall shepherd/pastor them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to pieces: as I also have received from my Father.
Rev. 12:5 She bore a Manchild, who is about to shepherd/pastor all nations with a rod of iron.
Rev. 12:7-11 then reveals that this Manchild, a collective body, the elect-of-the-elect overcomers, will participate in the casting down of Satan and his angels out of heaven:
Rev. 12:7 And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the Dragon [Satan]… 11 And they overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their souls unto death.
The “they” of verse 11 cannot refer to any non-human angels, only to men, that is, to those ascended overcomers of the Manchild(ren) cleansed and empowered by the blood of Jesus.
These events take place “at the time of the end” (Dan. 11:40), the “time Michael shall stand up” (Dan. 12:1; Rev. 12:7), just prior to and during “a time of trouble such as never was” (Dan. 12:1; Matt. 24:21), that is, the Great Tribulation.
2) Who is the Woman? Like the Manchild, the Woman-with-child is a mystical body. Not the Church, which is a Virgin Bride. And not the race of Israel, which is flesh-and-blood.
Western left-brain Protestant Christianity has largely ignored any concept of the Feminine Divine, even though the Adamic race was “made in Elohim’s image, male and female.” Gen. 1:27 Catholicism has carnalized the Feminine Divine into the person of Mary. Only mystical Judaism, and to some extent mystical Christianity, have spoken of the Feminine Divine.
Hebraic teachings of old say that one of the attributes of the One God is the emotional desire to form, gestate, bring forth and nurture living creatures. This tradition also says that when Adam and Eve were driven out of God’s garden into the earthly wilderness, this Divine Feminine either went with them or regularly visited them, in order to nurture her children as any mother would. The most well-known name for her is the Shekhinah, the feminine Presence/form of the Divine.
This mystical Woman/mother – emotionally bound to the nurturing of her children, and to their upbringing in wisdom, righteousness, and maturity – is spoken of in Ezekiel:
Ezek. 19:2, 10-13 What is thy mother? A lioness: she lay down among lions, she nourished her whelps among young lions. … Thy mother is like a vine in thy blood [the place of the soul, Lev. 17:11], planted by the waters: she was fruitful and full of branches by reason of many waters. And she had strong rods for the scepters of them that bore rule, and her stature was exalted among the thick branches, and she appeared in her height with the multitude of her branches. But she was plucked up in fury, she was cast down to the ground, and the east wind dried up her fruit: her strong rods were broken and withered; the fire consumed them. And now she is planted in the wilderness, in a dry and thirsty ground.
In Revelation 12’s account of the End Times, the Woman again goes “into the wilderness” when her offspring are driven out once more. Rev. 12:6, 14-17; Luke 21:36
3) Where is the wilderness? The wilderness is always a place apart from the comforts and security of civilization, wherein God tries and tests his people. There he separates and rejects the rebels, and teaches the obedient his torah/doctrine/Way. The wilderness is an unpopulated or sparsely populated place, generally a desert and/or mountainous region.
In our land, many visionaries have foreseen it to be the Intermountain West, which is just such a place.
4) Clothed with the sun…
Rev. 1:16 …his [Jesus’] countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.
John 1:4, 9 In Him was life; and the life was the light of men. …the true Light, which gives light to every man…
Gal. 3:27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on [been clothed with] Christ.
Rom. 13:12 …let us put on the armor of light.
4) the moon under her feet… The moon is symbolic of the types and shadows of the Mosaic Law. All of the Old Testament feast days derive their times from the position of the moon.
“Under her feet”: the symbolism appears to be twofold. First, the Mosaic Law represents an earthly level of spirituality. Second, it represents a foundation/basis for upper levels of wisdom and sanctification. Although the Shekhinah is heavily involved in the earthly affairs of her children, she is still Divine, and therefore stands in authority over all created things.
4) on her head a crown/stephanos of 12 stars. In the New Testament, a stephanos invariably symbolizes the honors and authority achieved through overcoming, through gaining the victory:
1 Thes. 2:19 …our…crown/stephanos of rejoicing…
2 Tim. 4:8 …the crown/stephanos of righteousness…
James 1:12 …the crown/stephanos of life…
1 Pet. 5:4 …the crown/stephanos of glory.
This type of victory only became possible after the advent of Christ (and His victory over sin and death), through the reception of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, the 12 stars in the stephanos represent Apostolic ability and authority to overcome the world, pride, and the flesh.
The other New Testament word for crown, diadema, refers to regal authority-by-descent. The Book of Revelation says that only Christ, Satan, and the Beast wear diadems. The Beast will receive his crowns and throne from Satan. Rev. 13:1-2 Satan gained his from Adam, to whom it was originally authorized (Gen. 1:26, 28), prior to Adam submitting himself to the serpent’s word. Christ overcame Satan’s lies and temptations, thereby earning back regal authority over Earth. (Only Christ is able to wear both stephanos and diadema.)
5) What is meant by 1260 days? 1260 literal days.
While there have been day-for-a-year fulfillments of this period in type, these are now past. The 1260 days/42 months/3½ times take place during the period of the 7 Trumpets, the Mouth of the Beast (Rev. 13:5) = Daniel’s Little Horn (Dan. 7:25), and the Two Witnesses (Rev. 11:3). Jeremiah 30:7 calls it “the time of Jacob’s trouble.” (This is “the remnant of Jacob” spoken of in many Old Testament prophecies.)
When Christ appears in the clouds to take up the elect/chosen of his Church, “every eye shall see him.” (Rev. 1:7 See the articles under that title.) At that time, all of earthly Israel will see their true Messiah. Many of them will undergo 1260 days of wilderness trials in order to become either submissive and sanctified, or else purged and separated. They will be shepherded by the 144,000 Israelites “sealed upon their foreheads” (Rev. 7:3; 14:1) at the heavenly appearance of Jesus. The 1260 days will conclude at the 7th Trumpet, and then Christ’s reign will be proclaimed “in heaven,” and he will begin to establish his earthly kingdom. Rev. 11:3, 7-18
Daniel 7:25-27 [During the 1260 days:] And he [the Little Horn] shall speak pompous words against the Most High, and shall afflict the [Israelite] saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and half a time [= 1260 days]. But the heavenly court shall have been seated, and [after the 7th Trumpet is blown] they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end. And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.
Micah 5:8-9 And [then] the remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles in the midst of many peoples like a lion among the beasts of the forest, like a young lion among the flocks of sheep: who, if he passes through, both treads down, and tears in pieces, and none can deliver. Thine hand shall be lifted up upon thine adversaries, and all thine enemies shall be cut off.
The Three Heavens
There is a lot of misunderstanding about the three heavens/worlds above this material world. They are not places, as we generally understand that word: they are spiritual states of consciousness.
The New Jerusalem is a state of collective consciousness, that of the Bride of Christ. The Bride of Christ is the spiritual union of all born-from-above believers. Every description about heavenly Jerusalem’s layout and adornment – gates and foundations, gemstones and gold, etc. – represent different attributes of spirituality such as truth, holiness, and devotion, each with its own infinity of varieties and degrees.
In the heavens, there is no distance in terms of space, because there is neither space nor time. Distance in the heavens is determined by similarity and oppositeness. For instance, the holier the spirit, the closer its proximity to the Divine; while spirits that rebel against God are by their very nature at vast “distances” (in appearance) from Him. Spirits that have an especial love for children are drawn closer to other spirits like themselves, and appear more alike in form, than are spirits that are especially gifted in doctrine.
There are an infinity of types of heavenly societies, each with its own collective appearance. “For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ…having…differing gifts…” Rom. 12:4-6 Every societal countenance/appearance corresponds to the unique love/agape of that society.
The three heavens in order consist of:
3rd (lowest): Soul (Hebr. nephesh/Grk. psuche). “The soul of the flesh is in the blood." Gen. 9:4; Lev. 17:11 Soul/nephesh is the level of developmental consciousness of the seed of Israel, and corresponds to the laver section of the Temple: the water of the washing of repentance. The lowest heaven pertains to all those who keep YHWH’s Covenant of 10 Commandments, given to Israel at Mount Sinai – with plenty of grace applied, of course. This heaven is called the Garden, also Paradise.
2nd (middle): Spirit (ruach/pneuma.) The Church is a spiritual/pneumatikos body. This corresponds to the Holy Place of the Temple, the place of the 7 Spirits (the 7 Lights of the Menorah), and the Word of Truth (the Table of Showbread). This level pertains to those who have true faith in Jesus, and are led by the Holy Spirit – again, with grace applied. This is the place of the Court, wherein the angelic Powers have convened in the past (e.g. Job 1:6); and are soon to convene again for the Judgment of God, in the company of the elect of the human race. Dan. 7:9-10ff.; Rev. 4-5; 7:9ff.
1st (highest/preeminent): Breath-Light (neshamah/emphusao). This is the level of the “revealed sons of God” (Rom. 8:19), and corresponds to the Most Holy Place of the Temple. This highest heaven pertains to ones called to come nearest to the Light of the Presence/Face of God (Luke 1:19; Rev. 6:16, etc.), who do not observe Him from afar off, nor turn away their faces out of shame because of unwashed (unrepented) sins. Rev. 3:21; 12:5
Again, all of these things are forms and degrees of spiritual consciousness.
In the Temple, the level of the altar of fleshly sacrifice is that of all persons who live according to the desires of the flesh. One must sacrifice one’s carnal desires; only then can one be washed in the laver of water baptism, in order to enter into the two chambers of the Holy Sanctuary. The altar is the level of our material world, which must be purified by fire.
In sum, the heavens represent degrees of holiness: soul, spirit, and very breath. The flesh must be purified by the soul [taught via the Sinai Covenant], the soul must be purified by the Spirit [brought via the Last Supper Covenant], and the spirit must be purified by the emanated breath-light of the Holy One, when the Lord appears in the light of his glory.
If you keep these things in mind, you will not get caught up in the apparent-only “material” descriptions of the New Jerusalem.