88 – Judgments Of The Tribulation – Seal Judgments

The Judgments of the Tribulation
The video discusses the seal and trumpet judgments of the tribulation.

Will the church go through the tribulation? Read on!

Tribulation Judgments.

Seal judgments.Trumpet judgments. Bowl judgments.

Each of these judgments will occur during the time of the tribulation. The Left Behind series of books, movies, and my series of blog posts on that subject, discuss a time in future history that will be as real, “as a heart attack.” The Left Behind movies show those who miss the rapture, and will be left on earth to face a time of tribulation that will be, as Matthew 24:14 describes:

“For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will.” (New American Standard Bible)

This series of posts on the Judgments of the tribulation will explain the severity of each seal, trumpet and bowl judgment. The perpetrator of each judgment will be identified. Those who are left behind and experience the judgments will also be identified, as well as the reason for their remaining on earth to come under the judgments.

The End Times! Let’s have a discussion.

As it relates to the things that relate to eschatology, and the timing of those events, it has been my experience that some people believe in a pre-tribulation rapture and some don’t; there are others that don’t care or have no opinion, one way or the other. It is my opinion that a leader of a congregation should be able to answer honest questions that come from their church members that relate to the end times. A comment that I have heard many times about the tribulation is, “pre-trib, post-trib, pan-trib,” and it’ll all “pan out” in the end. Such an ill-contrived response to an honest question should never be given. There are many highly respected teachers of the end times who have written and spoken extensively on the events of the end times. There are a few seminaries who have highly regarded instructors who teach eschatology. Dallas Theological Seminary and Moody Bible Institute are two of those seminaries. Evangelical and pentecostal churches are more likely to effectively explain subjects that relate to the end times. Liberal mainline churches, such as those who are members of the National Council of Churches, are less likely to provide such accuracy of discussion.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings of the Bible concerning the end times. Events of the end times relate to the pre-rapture attacks on Israel, the rapture, the resurrection of the just and unjust, “Satan the Anti-Christ and the false prophet,” the Bema Judgment, the tribulation, the three witnesses, the 144,000 Jewish missionaries, the marriage in heaven, the Battle Of Armageddon, the millennium, the binding of Satan, the final judgment, the lake of fire and, “the new heavens, new earth, new Jerusalem and the eternal state.” In one way or other, most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects. More than twenty-five percent of all scriptures relate to prophecy. The following link has a greater discussion of eschatology. https://www.gotquestions.org/Eschatology.html

Left Behind

The Left Behind series of books and movies have been very effective in peaking the interest of people to the eventuality of the rapture of the church. However, many people have considered the subject to be a matter of science fiction. In the series of blog posts that I am now writing, which describes the rapture of the church, and the events that precede and follow that end time event of eschatology, I am using the Left Behind series as a key source of reference. A great deal of prophetic knowledge has been provided by Dr.Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins, who co-authored the Left Behind series. The following link has a video discussion by those authors about the Series. It should be known that the key author was Tim LaHaye. http://leftbehind.com/ The following link provides a biography of the life of Tim LaHaye. https://www.biography.com/people/tim-lahaye-204548

The Late Great Planet Earth

In the early 1970s, I heard about a book that was very popular, and was thought by many to be a book of science fiction. The book was titled, “The Late Great Planet Earth,” and was authored by Hal Lindsey, with the assistance of Carol Carlson. In time, many people began to understand that the book related to the end times study of scripture, and addressed many of the things that Tim LaHaye would later discuss in the Left Behind Series. The following link has more information on “Late Great Planet Earth.”
http://www.zondervan.com/the-late-great-planet-earth

The Seal Judgments

Christ is in charge of opening each of the seal judgments to be unleashed on, “those who dwell on the earth,” (Revelation 3:10, 6:10, 8:13, 11:10, 13:14, 17:2, 17:8). As you read the verses of Revelation that discuss the judgments, pay close attention to whomever is opening each judgment. You will see “the Lamb” (Christ) opening each seal judgment, angels blowing trumpets which unleash the trumpet judgments, and angels pouring out the bowl judgments. Each judgment will affect”earth dwellers,” which are those who dwell on the earth. To question the reality of the rapture of believers, is to have a belief that each judgment will be unleashed by God on every born again man, woman, and child, to include infants, along with the earth dwellers. Earth dwellers are those who had defied God during their lifetime, and never accepted Christ as their Lord and Savior. To question the reality of the rapture of the church, is to deny the teaching of 2 Corinthians 5:21, which states that born again believers have been made to be, “the righteousness of God,” and that even with that state of righteousness, believers will be condemned to suffer from the same judgment as that of the earth dwellers, who are not righteous and have not had their judgment satisfied by the death of Christ on the cross (Romans 8:1). So, the question of the reality of the rapture is a question that explains each person’s view of God’s love for His people.

Consider that which keeps believers in Christ saved from the things of the world, regardless of what those things may be. Believers are “overcomers!”

1 John 5:4 New King James Version (NKJV)

4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

First Seal

Revelation 6:1-2 New King James Version (NKJV) The Seals Are Opened By The Lamb

First Seal: The Conqueror

1 Now I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals; and I heard one of the four living creatures saying with a voice like thunder, “Come and see.” 2 And I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.

First Seal Judgment: The rider of the white horse had a bow and a crown. He went out conquering and to conquer. He is the Antichrist. (RYR)

The rider of the white horse is “the prince to come,”(Daniel 9:26) who will head up the revived Roman Empire and, ultimately, become the world ruler. He is Satan’s masterpiece and the counterfeit of all that Christ is, or claims to be. He is, therefore, cast in the role of conqueror, which seems to be the significance of a the white horse. (Walvoord Commentary)

Second Seal

Revelation 6:3-4 New King James Version (NKJV)

Second Seal: Conflict on Earth

3 When He opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, “Come and see.”4 Another horse, fiery red, went out. And it was granted to the one who sat on it to take peace from the earth, and that people should kill one another; and there was given to him a great sword.

Second Seal Judgment: Red horse. Indicates bloodshed (e.g.,”red horse; take peace from; sword.”)(RYR).

“He was given a great sword.” The sword was given to the Antichrist by God, who is in charge (Mine).

Third Seal

Revelation 6:5-6 New King James Version (NKJV)

Third Seal: Scarcity on Earth

5 When He opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come and see.” So I looked, and behold, a black horse, and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand. 6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not harm the oil and the wine.”

Third Seal Judgment: Black horse. Famine. (RYR)

“A denarius.” A person will have to spend a day’s wages for a loaf of bread with no money left to buy anything else (Walvoord Commentary).

Four Seal

Revelation 6:7-8 New King James Version (NKJV)

Fourth Seal: Widespread Death on Earth

7 When He opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come and see.” 8 So I looked, and behold, a pale horse. And the name of him who sat on it was Death, and Hades followed with him. And power was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword, with hunger, with death, and by the beasts of the earth.

Fourth Seal Judgment: Ashen horse; yellowish-green. Probably represents the inevitable result of disease that accompanies war and famine. “Death” claims the bodies, and “Hades” the souls and spirits of one-fourth of the world’s population. (RYR)

Hades is the abode of the dead. The horsemen have power over 1/4 part of the earth, to kill with the sword, hunger, and wild animals (Walvoord Commentary).

Fifth Seal

Revelation 6:9-11 New King James Version (NKJV)

Fifth Seal: The Cry of the Martyrs

9 When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held. 10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” 11 Then a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed.

Fifth seal judgment: 9. “The souls of those who had been slain.” The martyrs of the first months of the tribulation period. 10. The martyrs are alive and speaking with the Lord in His presence. 11. “Rest for a little while.” i.e., wait a little while. It is difficult for these martyrs to understand why God would allow their murderers to live; yet God asks these saints to trust Him. (RYR)

Consider the following bullets of information, as is seen by John from Heaven.

“those who dwell on the earth (vs 10).” They were persecutors for the Antichrist; they murdered those who came to Christ in the tribulation.” The murders will continue until the time of Christ’s return (second coming). Those who will be martyred during the tribulation will not receive their resurrection bodies until the end of the tribulation, according to Rev 20:4. In summary, there will be two classes of tribulation martyrs, as viewed by John from Heaven; those already slain, and those who are yet to be slain. The “dead in Christ” (those who had accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior prior to the tribulation) will have been raptured/caught up prior to the time of the deaths of the tribulation martyrs/saints being put to death for their faith in Christ. (Walvoord Commentary)

Sixth Seal

Revelation 6:12-17 New King James Version (NKJV)

Sixth Seal: Cosmic Disturbances

12 I looked when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood. 13 And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind. 14 Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place. 15 And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, 16 and said to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! 17 For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?”

Sixth Seal Judgment: 12. These cosmic disturbances are predicted elsewhere in Scripture (Isa 34:4; Joel 2:30-31; Matt 24:29). 16, When the Tribulation comes, men will act as if they believe the end of the world is at hand. (RYR)

All of the elements of a great catastrophic judgment of God are present, and that God is still in control and is undertaking a direct intervention into human affairs. Remember! The church-age “believers in Christ” are not present; they have been raptured out of the world before the tribulation began. God has inflicted His divine punishment upon a blasphemous world. (Walvoord Commentary)

Seventh Seal

Revelation 8:1 New King James Version (NKJV)

Seventh Seal: Prelude to the Seven Trumpets

1 When He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.

Seventh Seal Judgment: 1. “the seventy seal.” This seal includes not only an earthquake, but the 7 trumpet judgments (8:1—9:21; 11:15ff.) and the 7 bowl judgments (16:1–21), with the bowl judgments flowing out of the seventh trumpet and coming in rapid succession just before Christ’s return (see note on 6:1). “silence in heaven.” The silence of awe and anticipation at the grim reality of the judgments God is about to unleash. (MAC)

Consider the wrath of God, in that it is from the Lamb of God that these judgments are designed for “those who dwell on the earth.” (Rev 3:10, 6:10, 8:13, 11:10, 13:14, 17:2, 17:8). The church has been raptured and translated to Heaven before the outpouring of God’s wrath. The church was very prominent in Chapters 2 and 3 of Revelation, but is not mentioned again until 22:16, except as the wife of the Lamb at the close of the tribulation (Rev 19:7-8). Nowhere in scenes of earth that describe the end times (chap 6-19) is the church pictured as being involved in the earthly struggle. We will consider other scriptures that relate to the fact that believers will be delivered from God’s wrath. They will not be seen anywhere on earth, which points to the protection and removal of the church during these days of the wrath of God. We will continue to see that the Anti-Christ is a tool of God, and not someone who is in charge of the events of the tribulation. We will see that the wrath of the tribulation is “God’s wrath,” and not the wrath of the Anti-Christ. (Mine)

The Anti-Christ may be alive today. If so, he will most likely be charismatic in worldwide acceptance. He will most likely be a European from the old Roman Empire, and will be a homosexual. If he is alive today, he will be seen on international television broadcasts. But, in spite of his being viewed by the world, to include believers in Christ, after the rapture occurs believers in Christ will never see him again. (MIne)

Comments are provided by the notes of the MacArthur Study Bible (MAC), Ryrie Study Bible (RYR), and Walvoord Commentary on Revelation.

87 – Left Behind II – Tribulation Force

Left Behind II Tribulation Force

In Left Behind I, we saw a picture of our world that relates to the Jewish Prophet Ezekiel’s Chapter 38-39 prophecy of a multi-nation attack on Israel, written in the year 587 B.C. We saw Israel being prosperous, while most of the world was suffering from famine. We saw Israel being attacked by many opposing nations, with the attacking aircraft being shot out of the sky, without any Israeli ground to air missiles being fired, or without any Jewish fighter aircraft being launched to confront the attackers. Early morning dawn quickly turned to darkness. As the movie progressed, a young charismatic European leader emerged onto the scene, making a pitch for world peace and adequate food supplies.

Very abruptly, millions of people around the world became missing, with small children being the cornerstone of that “rapture,” or catching away that had been predicted by Bible scriptures. Many of those people thought that they were secure in life as “nominal” Christians (in name only), only to come to the reality that they did not have a real relationship with Christ.

There were people who had been left behind, having missed the rapture, who began to study prophetic scriptures. Many of those people thought that they had been secure in life as “nominal” Christians, only to come to the reality that they had not had a real relationship with Christ, that was sealed by saving faith.

Worldwide unrest escalated.

Being supported by a United Nations government-controlled worldwide press, pressure was being mounted for a one-world banking system, and an assault on religion. An alignment of nations, under the rule of the United Nations, confirmed a peace treaty which included Israel. That treaty was brokered by the “young charismatic European,” who had become the Secretary General of the United Nations, and would come to be known as the Anti-Christ.

Some of those who missed the rapture, and were “left behind,” learned that seven years of tribulation would follow the rapture. Worldwide chaos, famines, pestilences and cosmic disturbances were learned to occur during that time of tribulation.

In Left Behind II, we will see a tribulation force of some of those who had been left behind from the rapture. We will see their response to the reality of the emerging Anti-Christ, and to his one-world government, to include that of religion and banking.

The oppression of the Anti-Christ against Jews, and to gentiles who will come to know Christ as their Lord and Savior, will escalate.

The following verses relate to the situation that will face Jews, and gentiles who accept Christ after the rapture takes place.

Matthew 24:6-12 The Passion Translation (TPT)

6 “You will hear of wars nearby and revolutions on every side, with more rumors of wars to come. Don’t panic or give in to your fears, for the breaking apart of the world’s systems is destined to happen. But it won’t yet be the end; it will still be unfolding.

7 “Nations will go to war against each other and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be terrible earthquakes—seismic events of epic proportion, horrible epidemics and famines in place after place. 8 This is how the first contractions and birth pains of the new age will begin!”

9 “You can expect to be persecuted, even killed; for you will be hated by all the nations because of your love for me. 10 Then many will stop following me and fall away, and they will betray one another and hate one another. 11 And many lying prophets will arise, deceiving multitudes and leading them away from the path of truth. 12 There will be such an increase of sin and lawlessness that those whose hearts once burned with passion for God and others will grow cold.

Consider nominal Christians, which are those who will be left behind to face the tribulation after the rapture takes place.

John 17:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

In John 17:3, “to know” is to have an intimate relationship with Christ.

Matthew 7:21-23 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’

Consider the words of Christ,” I never knew you.” He was saying, I have never had an intimate relationship with you.

Nominal, “in name only,” such a ticket to the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:11-15).

Revelation 20:11-15 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Judgment at the Throne of God

11 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them. 12 And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds. 13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead which were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds. 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15 And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

The “great white throne judgment” is a place where the only people who will be assembled there will be those who have not been born again. Many of those will be those which were left behind from the rapture.

John 3:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Unfortunately, there are many families today who will have “a ticket to the lake of fire, on the family plan.” We are told in scripture, “teach your children,” (Deuteronomy 6:6-9).

86 – Prophecies Of Ezekiel – Chapter 1

Israel: Key to Understanding Bible Prophecy
See bio below.

Comments related to this series of posts on the Book of Ezekiel. Comments come from the Ryrie Study Bible.

Ezekiel was a Jewish priest who had been carried off to Babylon by King Nebuchadnezzar with other Jews from Jerusalem in the year 597 B.C. Ezekiel’s ministry to the exiles in Babylon was at the same time as that of Jeremiah to the Jews of Palestine, and of the early years of the ministry of Daniel.

The prophet Daniel had already been taken captive to Babylon in 605 B.C.

The posts that will be published in this study of Ezekiel will be prophetic, as opposed to being chapter by chapter, and verse by verse. A teaching video will also be included in each chapter study. The selected video may actually cover more scripture than that which is shown in the text breakdown which precedes the video.

Chapters 1-24: Prophesied judgments on the kingdom of Judah.

Chapters 25- 32: Prophesied judgments on the gentile nations.

Chapters 33- 48: Prophesied blessings on Israel.

Ezekiel #1: Age and Experience
See bio below.

Life Essentials Videos
Published on Mar 8, 2016

When we are selecting those who are to lead and shepherd the church at the highest levels of leadership, we should consider chronological age.
Ezekiel. 1:1-3; p. 1074

Bio. Dr. Ron Rhodes
Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

Bio. Dr. Gene A. Getz
https://www.moodypublishers.com/authors/g/gene-getz/

79 – Millions Of People Missing! Where Are They?

Consider the news reports from all around the world.
HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF PEOPLE ARE MISSING ! WHERE ARE THEY?
Airplanes crashing – flight crews missing! Cars and trucks colliding – drivers missing! Hospitals report, “No babies anywhere!”
School teachers frantically looking for young children! Clothing seen in restaurants and businesses where people had been seated!
Chaos everywhere! Network news anchors and theologians attribute the situation to global warming and alien abductions!
Congress convenes, and grasps for an explanation as to why, “a scattering of them” is missing.
Many pastors can’t be found – many others are being interviewed by CNN!

WHERE ARE THOSE WHO ARE MISSING?

The answer is found in “The Rapture Of The Church.”

Rapture: Latin, Rapio. Greek, Harpazo. English, Catch up, Snatch away.

WILL YOU, “ALSO,” BE SEARCHING FOR THOSE WHO ARE MISSING?

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and so we will always be with the Lord.

76 – This Will Happen! It’s As Serious As A Heart Attack! Don’t Be Left Behind To Endure It!

Matthew 24:5-8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many. 6 You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end. 7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes. 8 But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs.

70 – Revelation 2 – The Things Which Are – Data

How is Jesus preparing a place for us in heaven?

Your First Hour in Glory, What Will Heaven Be Like?

God’s love for Israel

Restoration of Judah and Israel’

Ezekiel 16:60 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The Covenant Remembered

60 “Nevertheless, I will remember My covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you.

16:60 I will remember My covenant. God is gracious and He always finds a covenant basis on which He can exercise His grace. The Lord will remember the Abrahamic Covenant (cf. Gen. 12:1ff.) made with Israel in her youth. Restoration will be by grace, not merit. an everlasting covenant. This is the New Covenant, which is unconditional, saving, and everlasting (cf. 37:26; Is. 59:21; 61:8; Jer. 31:31–34; Heb. 8:6–13). The basis of God’s grace will not be the Mosaic Covenant, which the Jews could never fulfill, even with the best intentions (cf. Ex. 24:1ff.). When God establishes His eternal covenant, Israel will know that God is the Lord because of His grace. (Note: MacArthur Study Bible)

Introduction To Post

There are some people who may be confused about the meaning of the following verse, because of inclusion of the words, “to whom who overcomes.” Some may believe that their salvation is not secure in Christ. Some may believe that more than faith in Christ is necessary to keep them secure in Christ, which makes their understanding of salvation as being based on “something that they have to do.” So, they are constantly trying to determine what it is that they must do to keep them secure in Christ. The truth of scripture is that faith in Christ keeps us “secure in Christ,” at all times, and under all circumstances. We can never fall out of the eternal and saving grasp of Christ. The parachute of saving faith is nothing that we can make for ourselves; Christ makes it for us. It is nothing that will ever fail to open; Christ opens it for us. It is nothing that will ever wear out; Christ makes it new, and keeps it new. We would never know how to make the spiritual parachute of saving faith, or that we would need such an umbrella; only Christ makes it, offers it to us, and maintains it in eternal perfection.

It is very helpful to use scripture to explain scripture, as is shown in the “scripture that follows the scripture,” of concern.

Revelation 2:7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

7 …”To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’

The following scripture shows that whomever has been born again, is an overcomer, and will find their eternal place of residence in the Paradise of God, which is the Presence of God. See the MacArthur Study Bible note.

1 John 5:4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

MacArthur Study Bible note.

5:4 overcomes. John clearly defines who these overcomers are: they are all who believe that Jesus is God’s Son, and all that means. The overcomers are believers—all of them (cf. 2:13). The word for “overcomer” comes from a Gr. word meaning “to conquer,” “to have victory,” “to have superiority” or “conquering power.” The word reflects a genuine superiority that leads to overwhelming success. The victory is demonstrable; it involves overthrowing an enemy so that the victory is seen by all. Jesus also used this word to describe Himself (John 16:33). Because of believers’ union with Christ, they too partake in His victory (Rom. 8:37; 2 Cor. 2:14). The word “overcomes” in the original language conveys the idea that the believer has continual victory over the world.

Revelation Chapter 2-3 – Data

Text – Revelation Chapter 2-3 – God’s Plan For The Ages 70

Revelation 2-3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Chapter 2

Message to Ephesus

1 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write:

The One who holds the seven stars in His right hand, the One who walks among the seven golden lampstands, says this:

2 ‘I know your deeds and your toil and perseverance, and that you cannot tolerate evil men, and you put to the test those who call themselves apostles, and they are not, and you found them to be false; 3 and you have perseverance and have endured for My name’s sake, and have not grown weary. 4 But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. 5 Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place—unless you repent. 6 Yet this you do have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. 7 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’

Message to Smyrna

8 “And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write:

The first and the last, who was dead, and has come to life, says this:

9 ‘I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich), and the blasphemy by those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. 10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, so that you will be tested, and you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes will not be hurt by the second death.’

Message to Pergamum

12 “And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write:

The One who has the sharp two-edged sword says this:

13 ‘I know where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is; and you hold fast My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days of Antipas, My witness, My faithful one, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells. 14 But I have a few things against you, because you have there some who hold the teaching of Balaam, who kept teaching Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols and to commit acts of immorality. 15 So you also have some who in the same way hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans. 16 Therefore repent; or else I am coming to you quickly, and I will make war against them with the sword of My mouth. 17 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.’

Message to Thyatira

18 “And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write:

The Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet are like burnished bronze, says this:

19 ‘I know your deeds, and your love and faith and service and perseverance, and that your deeds of late are greater than at first. 20 But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. 21 I gave her time to repent, and she does not want to repent of her immorality. 22 Behold, I will throw her on a bed of sickness, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of her deeds. 23 And I will kill her children with pestilence, and all the churches will know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts; and I will give to each one of you according to your deeds. 24 But I say to you, the rest who are in Thyatira, who do not hold this teaching, who have not known the deep things of Satan, as they call them—I place no other burden on you. 25 Nevertheless what you have, hold fast until I come. 26 He who overcomes, and he who keeps My deeds until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations; 27 and he shall rule them with a rod of iron, as the vessels of the potter are broken to pieces, as I also have received authority from My Father; 28 and I will give him the morning star. 29 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’

Commentary. Notes provided by MacArthur Study Bible.

2:1—3:22 Although these 7 churches were actual, historical churches in Asia Minor, they represent the types of churches that perennially exist throughout the church age. What Christ says to these churches is relevant in all times.
2:1 angel. The elder or pastor from the church (see note on 1:20). Ephesus. It was an inland city 3 mi. from the sea, but the broad mouth of the Cayster River allowed access and provided the greatest harbor in Asia Minor. Four great trade roads went through Ephesus; therefore, it became known as the gateway to Asia. It was the center of the worship of Artemis (Greek), or Diana (Roman), whose temple was one of the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World. Paul ministered there for 3 years (Acts 20:31), and later met with the Ephesian elders on his way to Jerusalem (Acts 20). Timothy, Tychicus, and the Apostle John all served this church. John was in Ephesus when he was arrested by Domitian and exiled 50 mi. SW to Patmos. seven stars. See note on 1:16. seven golden lampstands. See note on 1:12.
2:2 who say they are apostles. The Ephesian church exercised spiritual discernment. It knew how to evaluate men who claimed spiritual leadership by their doctrine and behavior (cf. 1 Thess. 5:20, 21).
2:3 not become weary. For over 40 years, since its founding, this church had remained faithful to the Word and the Lord. Through difficulty and persecution, the members had endured, always driven by the right motive, i.e., for Christ’s name and reputation.
2:4 left your first love. To be a Christian is to love the Lord Jesus Christ (John 14:21, 23; 1 Cor. 16:22). But the Ephesians’ passion and fervor for Christ had become cold, mechanical orthodoxy. Their doctrinal and moral purity, their undiminished zeal for the truth, and their disciplined service were no substitute for the love for Christ they had forsaken.
2:5 remove your lampstand. God’s judgment would bring an end to the Ephesian church.
2:6 the deeds of the Nicolaitans. A problem in Pergamos also (vv. 12–15), this heresy was similar to the teaching of Balaam (vv. 14, 15). Nicolas means “one who conquers the people.” Irenaeus writes that Nicolas, who was made a deacon in Acts 6, was a false believer who later became apostate; but because of his credentials he was able to lead the church astray. And, like Balaam, he led the people into immorality and wickedness. The Nicolaitans, followers of Nicolas, were involved in immorality and assaulted the church with sensual temptations. Clement of Alexander says, “They abandoned themselves to pleasure like goats, leading a life of self-indulgence.” Their teaching perverted grace and replaced liberty with license.
2:7 him who overcomes. According to John’s own definition, to be an overcomer is to be a Christian (see note on 1 John 5:4; cf. vv. 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21). tree of life. True believers enjoy the promise of heaven (see notes on 22:2; Gen. 2:9).
2:8 angel. See note on v. 1. Smyrna. Smyrna means “myrrh,” the substance used for perfume and often for anointing a dead body for aromatic purposes. Called the crown of Asia, this ancient city (modern Izmir, Turkey) was the most beautiful in Asia Minor and a center of science and medicine. Always on the winner’s side in the Roman wars, Smyrna’s intense loyalty to Rome resulted in a strong emperor-worship cult. Fifty years after John’s death, Polycarp, the pastor of the church in Smyrna, was burned alive at the age of 86 for refusing to worship Caesar. A large Jewish community in the city also proved hostile to the early church. the First and the Last. See note on 1:17.
2:9 who say they are Jews. Although they were Jews physically, they were not true Jews but spiritual pagans (cf. Rom. 2:28). They allied with other pagans in putting Christians to death as they attempted to stamp out the Christian faith. synagogue of Satan. With the rejection of its Messiah, Judaism becomes as much a tool of Satan as emperor worship.
2:10 devil. The Gr. name for God’s archenemy means “accuser.” For discussion of Satan, see notes on Eph. 6:10–17. tribulation ten days. Their imprisonment will be brief. crown of life. It is the crown which is life, or the reward which is life, not an actual crown to adorn the head. “Crown” here does not refer to the kind royalty wear, but to the wreath awarded winning athletes.
2:11 who overcomes. This identifies every Christian (see note on v. 7). the second death. The first death is only physical; the second is spiritual and eternal (cf. 20:14).
2:12 angel. See note on 1:20. Pergamos. Pergamos lit. means “citadel” and is the word from which we get parchment—a writing material developed from animal skin, which apparently was first developed in that area. Pergamos (modern Bergama) was built on a 1,000-foot hill in a broad, fertile plain about 20 mi. inland from the Aegean Sea. It had served as the capital of the Roman province of Asia Minor for over 250 years. It was an important religious center for the pagan cults of Athena, Asklepios, Dionysius (or Bacchus, the god of drunkenness), and Zeus. It was the first city in Asia to build a temple to Caesar (29 B.C.) and became the capital of the cult of Caesar worship. two-edged sword. See note on 1:16.
2:13 where Satan’s throne is. The headquarters of satanic opposition and a Gentile base for false religions. On the acropolis in Pergamos was a huge, throne-shaped altar to Zeus. In addition, Asklepios, the god of healing, was the god most associated with Pergamos. His snake-like form is still the medical symbol today. The famous medical school connected to his temple mingled medicine with superstition. One prescription called for the worshiper to sleep on the temple floor, allowing snakes to crawl over his body and infuse him with their healing power. Antipas. Probably the pastor of the church. faithful martyr. Tradition says Antipas was burned to death inside a brass bull. “Martyr,” a transliteration of the Gr. word, means witness. Because so many of the witnesses faithful to Christ were put to death, the word “martyr” developed its current definition.
2:14 doctrine of Balaam. Balaam tried unsuccessfully to prostitute his prophetic gift and curse Israel for money offered him by Balak, king of Moab. So he devised a plot to have Moabite women seduce Israelite men into intermarriage. The result was the blasphemous union of Israel with fornication and idolatrous feasts (for the story of Balaam, see Num. 22–25). things sacrificed to idols. See Acts 15:19–29.
2:15 Thus you also. The teaching of the Nicolaitans led to the same behavior as Balaam’s schemes. doctrine of the Nicolaitans. See note on v. 6.
2:16 sword of My mouth. See note on 1:16.
2:17 overcomes. See note on v. 7. hidden manna. Just as Israel received manna, God promises to give the true believer the spiritual bread the unbelieving world cannot see: Jesus Christ (cf. John 6:51). white stone. When an athlete won in the games, he was often given, as part of his prize, a white stone which was an admission pass to the winner’s celebration afterwards. This may picture the moment when the overcomer will receive his ticket to the eternal victory celebration in heaven. new name. A personal message from Christ to the ones He loves, which serves as their admission pass into eternal glory. It is so personal that only the person who receives it will know what it is.
2:18 angel. See note on 1:20. Thyatira. Located halfway between Pergamos and Sardis, this city had been under Roman rule for nearly 3 centuries (ca. 190 B.C.). Since the city was situated in a long valley that swept 40 mi. to Pergamos, it had no natural defenses and had a long history of being destroyed and rebuilt. Originally populated by soldiers of Alexander the Great, it was little more than a military outpost to guard Pergamos. Lydia came from this city on business and was converted under Paul’s ministry (Acts 16:14, 15). eyes like a flame of fire. See note on 1:14. feet like fine brass. Cf. 19:15; see note on 1:15.
2:20 Jezebel. Probably a pseudonym for a woman who influenced the church in the way Jezebel influenced the OT Jews into idolatry and immorality (cf. 1 Kin. 21:25, 26). sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. Cf. Acts 15:19–29; see note on v. 14.
2:22 sickbed. Lit. “bed.” Having given this woman time to repent, God was to judge her upon a bed. Since she used a luxurious bed to commit her immorality, and the reclining couch at the idol feast to eat things offered to false gods, He was to give her a bed in hell where she would lie forever.
2:23 her children. The church was about 40 years old as John wrote, and her teaching had produced a second generation, advocating the same debauchery. who searches the minds and hearts. God has perfect, intimate knowledge of every human heart; no evil can be hidden from Him (Ps. 7:9; Prov. 24:12; Jer. 11:20; 17:10; 20:12). according to your works. Always the basis for future judgment (20:12, 13; Matt. 16:27; Rom. 2:6). Works do not save (Eph. 2:8, 9), but they do evidence salvation (James 2:14–26).
2:24 the depths of Satan. This unbelievable libertinism and license was the fruit of pre-gnostic teaching that one was free to engage and explore the sphere of Satan and participate in evil with the body without harming the spirit (see Introduction to 1 John: Background and Setting).
2:26 overcomes. See note on v. 7.
2:27 rule them with a rod of iron. Lit. “shepherd them with an iron rod.” During the millennial kingdom, Christ will enforce His will and protect His sheep with His iron scepter from any who would seek to harm them (cf. Ps. 2:9).
2:28 the morning star. John later reveals Christ to be “the Bright and Morning Star.” Although the morning star has already dawned in our hearts (2 Pet. 1:19), someday we will have Him in His fullness.

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66 God’s Plan For The Ages – About Israel – Ezekiel 11 – Visions: Wicked Princes and Departing Glory

“Be still, and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10

Angus Dei – Michael W Smith and The Prestonwood Choir

No More Night

I Then Shall Live – Prestonwood Choir

Consider God

“God is love” 1 John 4:8 – New American Standard 1977 http://biblehub.com

Consider God’s love for Israel

“I have loved you with an everlasting love” Jeremiah 31:3 – New American Standard 1977 http://biblehub.com

The Prophecy Of The Messiah

What does Daniel 9:27 tell us about when the Messiah would come?

Consider God and Ezekiel

Text

Lesson Preview

Ezekiel Chapter 11

Date: 594 B.C. (Scofield Study Bible)

Place: Ezekiel in exile in Babylon; his visions of Jerusalem, in the Southern Kingdom Of Judah and during the Millennium.

Consider the following verses that illumine the relationship that existed between God and Ezekiel.

Ezekiel Chapter 11

vs 1, 2, 4, 13, 14, 24, 25 (Key phrases of each verse)

Ezekiel 11:1 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Moreover, the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the east gate of the LORD’s house which faced eastward”
Ezekiel 11:2 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“And He said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who devise iniquity and give evil advice in this city”
Ezekiel 11:4 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Therefore, prophesy against them, son of man, prophesy!”
Ezekiel 11:13 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Now it came about as I prophesied, that Pelatiah son of Benaiah died. Then I fell on my face and cried out with a loud voice and said, “Alas, Lord GOD! Wilt Thou bring the remnant of Israel to a complete end?”
Ezekiel 11:14 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying,”
Ezekiel 11:24 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me in a vision by the Spirit of God to the exiles in Chaldea. So the vision that I had seen left me”
Ezekiel 11:25 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Then I told the exiles all the things that the LORD had shown me.”

Consider the honor that Ezekiel was given in visions by God, in that he was allowed to see the Glory of God departing the temple in Jerusalem (Ezekiel 11:23), and that he was allowed to see the Glory of God returning to the temple again, also in Jerusalem during the Millennium (1,000 year reign of Christ, Revelation 20:4). It will not be until the time that the Millennial temple is present, that the Glory of God will return to the temple (Ezekiel 43:1-5). Even though the temple will be rebuilt (515 B.C.), after the Jews return to Jerusalem, after having spent 70 in exile in Babylon, the Glory of God will not return to any man-made temple (1 Corinthians 3:16-17). The vision of Ezekiel 43 will not occur until after the tribulation and the second coming of Christ to earth have taken place (Zechariah 14:1-16, Revelation 19:11-21, Matthew 24:29-31). Present in the Millennial temple will be God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit (Ezekiel 43:1-7; 44:4-5; Revelation 20:4-6).

Ezekiel’s vision of the Glory of God departing the temple in Jerusalem, and returning to the return to the temple

Ezekiel was taken captive to Babylon in 597 B.C., in the first of three deportations of Jews from Jerusalem. Ezekiel’s vision of the destruction of the temple took place in 594 B.C. The temple was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 B.C (2 Kings 25:8-11/2 Chronicles 36:19). The story of the deportations of Jews by the forces of Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar, and of the destruction by his forces of the temple and city of Jerusalem, can be found in 2 Kings 24-25, and 2 Chronicles 36:5-21.

Ezekiel 11:23 New American Standard Bible (NASB) (Bible Gateway) 1995

23 The glory of the Lord went up from the midst of the city and stood over the mountain which is east of the city.

Ezekiel 43:1-5 New American Standard Bible (NASB) Bible Gateway 1995

Vision of the Glory of God Filling the Temple

1 Then he led me to the gate, the gate facing toward the east; 2 and behold, the glory of the God of Israel was coming from the way of the east. And His voice was like the sound of many waters; and the earth shone with His glory. 3 And it was like the appearance of the vision which I saw, like the vision which I saw when He came to destroy the city. And the visions were like the vision which I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell on my face. 4 And the glory of the Lord came into the house by the way of the gate facing toward the east. 5 And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me into the inner court; and behold, the glory of the Lord filled the house.

Consider the diary of God that illumines your relationship with Him.

Lesson Text: Ezekiel Chapter 11

Ezekiel 11 New American Standard Bible (NASB) 1995 https://www.biblegateway.com

Evil Rulers to Be Judged

1 Moreover, the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the east gate of the Lord’s house which faced eastward. And behold, there were twenty-five men at the entrance of the gate, and among them I saw Jaazaniah son of Azzur and Pelatiah son of Benaiah, leaders of the people. 2 He said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who devise iniquity and give evil advice in this city, 3 who say, ‘The time is not near to build houses. This city is the pot and we are the flesh.’ 4 Therefore, prophesy against them, son of man, prophesy!”

5 Then the Spirit of the Lord fell upon me, and He said to me, “Say, ‘Thus says the Lord, “So you think, house of Israel, for I know your thoughts. 6 You have multiplied your slain in this city, filling its streets with them.” 7 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “Your slain whom you have laid in the midst of the city are the flesh and this city is the pot; but I will bring you out of it. 8 You have feared a sword; so I will bring a sword upon you,” the Lord God declares. 9 “And I will bring you out of the midst of the city and deliver you into the hands of strangers and execute judgments against you. 10 You will fall by the sword. I will judge you to the border of Israel; so you shall know that I am the Lord. 11 This city will not be a pot for you, nor will you be flesh in the midst of it, but I will judge you to the border of Israel. 12 Thus you will know that I am the Lord; for you have not walked in My statutes nor have you executed My ordinances, but have acted according to the ordinances of the nations around you.”’”

13 Now it came about as I prophesied, that Pelatiah son of Benaiah died. Then I fell on my face and cried out with a loud voice and said, “Alas, Lord God! Will You bring the remnant of Israel to a complete end?”

Promise of Restoration

14 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 15 “Son of man, your brothers, your relatives, your fellow exiles and the whole house of Israel, all of them, are those to whom the inhabitants of Jerusalem have said, ‘Go far from the Lord; this land has been given us as a possession.’ 16 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Though I had removed them far away among the nations and though I had scattered them among the countries, yet I was a sanctuary for them a little while in the countries where they had gone.”’ 17 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “I will gather you from the peoples and assemble you out of the countries among which you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel.”’ 18 When they come there, they will remove all its detestable things and all its abominations from it. 19 And I will give them one heart, and put a new spirit within them. And I will take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, 20 that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them. Then they will be My people, and I shall be their God. 21 But as for those whose hearts go after their detestable things and abominations, I will bring their conduct down on their heads,” declares the Lord God.

22 Then the cherubim lifted up their wings with the wheels beside them, and the glory of the God of Israel hovered over them. 23 The glory of the Lord went up from the midst of the city and stood over the mountain which is east of the city. 24 And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me in a vision by the Spirit of God to the exiles in Chaldea. So the vision that I had seen left me. 25 Then I told the exiles all the things that the Lord had shown me.

Notes – Ezekiel Chapter 11 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible) Bible Gateway

11:1 twenty-five men. Ezekiel, though at the temple only in the vision (cf. 8:3, and see note there), saw because God, who was everywhere present and all-knowing, impressed specific details on him in the vision. The wicked leaders (cf. v. 2) were part of God’s reason for the judgment (vv. 8, 10). Ezekiel was taken in spirit to the very place which the glory of God had left in 10:19 and was given a vision of “twenty-five men,” who represented, not priests, but influential leaders among the people, who gave fatal advice to the people (v. 2). Jaazaniah the son of Azzur. See note on 8:11.
11:3 caldron…meat. Though this is obscure, it may be that the bad advice these leaders were giving was that the people should not be engaged in business as usual, “building houses” or taking care of their comfort and futures, when they were about to be cooked like meat in a pot over a blazing fire. The idea must have been that the people should get ready for battle, and be prepared to fight, not focusing on comfort, but survival. Jeremiah had told the people to surrender to the Babylonians and save their lives, rather than fight and be killed (cf. Jer. 27:9–17). These false leaders, like the prophets and priests whom Jeremiah confronted for telling the people not to submit, scorned Jeremiah’s words from God and would pay for it (v. 4). Cf. 24:1–14.
11:6 multiplied your slain. Leaders who misled Israel by inciting false expectations of a victorious defense, rather than peaceful surrender, were responsible for the deadly results. Many people died in resisting Babylon.
11:7 I shall bring you out. The false leaders thought that unless they fought, they would all be in a caldron, i.e., the city. But here the Lord promised that some would be delivered from the city, only to die on Israel’s border in the wilderness (vv. 8–11). This was literally fulfilled at Riblah (cf. 2 Kin. 25:18–21; Jer. 52:24–27).
11:13 Pelatiah…died. The death of one leader from v. 1 was a sign that God would indeed carry out His word. Apparently this leader did die suddenly at the time Ezekiel was shown the vision, so that the prophet feared that this death meant death for all Israelites (9:8).
11:14, 15 Ezekiel was told he had a new family, not the priests at Jerusalem to whom he was tied by blood, but his fellow exiles in Babylon, identified as those who were treated as outcasts. The priesthood was about to be ended and he was to have a new family.
11:15 Get far away. The contemptuous words of those still left in Jerusalem at the carrying away of Jeconiah and the exiles indicated that they felt smugly secure and believed the land was their possession.
11:16 little sanctuary. This is better rendered “for a little while,” i.e., however long the captivity lasted. God was to be the protection and provision for those who had been scattered through all the 70 years until they were restored. The exiles may have cast off the Jews, but God had not (Is. 8:14). This holds true for the future restoration of the Jews (vv. 17, 18).
11:19, 20 a new spirit. God pledged not only to restore Ezekiel’s people to their ancient land, but to bring the New Covenant with its blessings. Cf. 36:25–28, and see note on Jer. 31:31–34.
11:23 the mountain…east. The glory of God moved to the Mt. of Olives to which the glorious Son of God will return at the Second Advent (cf. 43:1–5; Zech. 14:4).
11:24 brought me in a vision. Again, Ezekiel has remained bodily in his Babylonian house, seen by his visitors (v. 25; 8:1). God, who supernaturally showed him a vision in Jerusalem, caused his sense of awareness to return to Chaldea, thus ending the vision state. Once the vision was completed, Ezekiel was able to tell his exiled countrymen what God had shown him (v. 25).

Comments related to this post.

The book of Ezekiel show’s God’s prophetic purposes being fulfilled in the lives and nation of Israel. Jimmy DeYoung has called the book of Ezekiel, “the timeline of the Jews,” and the Book of Daniel, “the timeline of the Gentiles.”

Purpose of Writing: https://www.gotquestions.org/Book-of-Ezekiel.html

Ezekiel ministered to his generation who were both exceedingly sinful and thoroughly hopeless. By means of his prophetic ministry he attempted to bring them to immediate repentance and to confidence in the distant future. He taught that: (1) God works through human messengers; (2) Even in defeat and despair God’s people need to affirm God’s sovereignty; (3) God’s Word never fails; (4) God is present and can be worshiped anywhere; (5) People must obey God if they expect to receive blessings; and (6) God’s Kingdom will come.

For information that relates to the preparation of this post, and to sources of information, please click onto the following link.

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65 – The Thief In Heaven

The Anchor Holds – First Baptist Church Jacksonville, FL

Marriage of the Lamb – First Baptist Church Jacksonville, FL

Luke 23:42-43J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)

42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

43 And Jesus answered, “I tell you truly, this day you will be with me in paradise.”

The above short conversation took place when Christ and a thief were hanging “side by side” on a cross in Jerusalem. Both knew that death was imminent. Our Lord, God the Son, knew that after His death he would be in the Presence of God the Father. The thief, based on His exhibited faith in Christ, knew that he could be saved from the eternal absence from God, and be placed in God’s immediate Presence. So, the thief “called on the Name of the Lord” (Romans 10:13). Based on this introduction, let’s continue with our discussion of whether the thief ended up that day in Heaven, or in Paradise. Let’s consider a key verse of this whole discussion.

Key verse: John 3:3

New American Standard Bible

Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

When we consider Heaven, the thought is often related to the “eternal state,” which occurs after the Great White Throne Judgment (for unrighteous people) has taken place (Revelation 20:11-15). In the eternal state we find the New Heaven and New Earth and New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:1-2). The eternal state is the place where all born again, righteous, saints of God will spend their eternity, in the Presence of God. That is the place where the thief on the cross will be found, but not yet. All righteous, born again saints of God/believers in Christ, will find their place with the thief on the cross, “in the eternal state,” where all of the saints of God, of all of the ages, will be present and will see the face of God (Rev 22:4). (Repetition was used here to ensure that all designations of: righteous, born again, saints of God, believers in Christ relate to the same group of people who will spend their eternity in the eternal state with God.)

The normal usage of “heaven,” as is spoken today, relates to the place of “righteous spirits,” whether they are of righteous people who may be alive, dead, resurrected or caught up and in the Presence of God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit). So, let’s consider the word, “spirit.”

1 Thessalonians 5:23 New American Standard Bible

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Spirit, soul and body. The body is our “fingers, toes and nose, etc.” Soul relates to our “mind,” our emotions, our intellect, in essence, it is “who we are,” the three words of a lady who is now in the Presence of God. I like to say that my spirit is in the center of my chest, immediately above my heart. I often make a fist and pound it on the heart area of my chest, and say, “God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit), I know that you’re there; thank you!” Our spirit is that part of us that prompts our mind to thoughts of righteousness or unrighteousness, depending on whether we have been born again, which is actually, “whether our spirit has been born again.” We have no control over our spirit. If our spirit has been born again, God will prompt our mind to righteous thoughts. If we have not been born again, Satan prompts our mind to unrighteous thoughts. Those who have not been born again, have no Godly wisdom residing within them. A born-again believer in Christ is the recipient of God’s wisdom, and receives His wisdom each and every day of life (John 16:7-11). So, let’s consider the reason that our mind is so easily swayed. We must go back to the Garden Of Eden.

After the creation of the world by God (Elohim), we read the following:

Genesis 1:21 New American Standard Bible

“God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.”

Yes! Everything in the garden, in creation everywhere, was “very good.” All remained “very good” until the sin of Adam and Eve (Gen 3:6), and the curse that quickly followed (Gen 3:8-22), which was a curse on all of God’s creation. Up until the time of the sin of Adam and Eve, there was total perfection in the Garden. There was no sickness or death. Alligators didn’t eat little dogs, etc. There were no imperfections of nature..no storms, earthquakes, etc. But, after the sin of Adam and Eve, sin and death entered the world, with catastrophic results.

Romans 5:12 GOD’S WORD® Translation

“Sin came into the world through one person, and death came through sin. So death spread to everyone, because everyone sinned.”

We can also see that, today, the state of nature is no longer present in the world, as it was in the garden..it is no longer perfect. The perfect state of mankind (body, soul and spirit), also became cursed. The mind and body entered a death spiral upon conception. Our spirit does not die; it is eternal. It’s eternal place depends on its state, whether it is righteous or unrighteous. Upon the moment that we were conceived, our mind and body began developing (sorry pro-choice people; check out Dr. Louis Pasteur’s “Law of Biogenesis;” life comes from existing life.”)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biogenesis …Each of us is flawed at birth, due to the curse, even in our embryonic state. Within each embryo is a mature spirit, that has been flawed. A body and soul are developing. Life comes from life, due to the “life” that is present in each sperm and egg. That life will come into our world, and will find its way to death (body and soul). The spirit will have a flawed and unrighteous presence, which will exist into eternity, unless it is made righteous. A righteous and non-flawed spirit comes from our spirit being born again (John 3:3), which is a result of the action of God’s Holy Spirit (John 3:8).

Consider the following verses that show a transition from flawed sinner to perfected saint of God.

John 1:29 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

“The next day he *saw Jesus coming to him and *said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”

The sin of the world that needs to be taken away, which will allow unsaved people to have eternal life with Christ, “is the sin of unbelief.”

John 3:16-18 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

belief in Christ (vs 16) or unbelief (vs 18). Belief results in eternal life with Christ. Unbelief results in condemnation, such as is shown in the tribulation (Revelation 6-18 Judgments of God), and in the lake of fire (final and eternal judgment)

John 3:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

John 3:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

God’s Holy Spirit causes the new birth to happen.

If you believe in Christ, you have been born again. If you have been born again, you believe in Christ.

Ephesians 2:8-9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

A simple faith in Christ as Lord and Savior makes all of the above happen (John 1:29 to Ephesians 2:8-9).

The following things happen after a person has been born again.

Our spirit dwells with the spirit of Father/Son/Holy Spirit

John 14:20 New American Standard Bible – This verse relates to the knowledge that the Apostles will have after the resurrection of Christ. This intermingling of Spirits includes the spirits of all born again believers of all times.

“In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.”

Romans 8:1 New American Standard Bible – After we have been born again, no condemnation of God, awaits any believer in Christ.

“Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

2 Corinthians 5:8 New American Standard Bible – Upon the deaths of believers, their souls and spirits are in the Presence of God
.
“we are of good courage, I say, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord.”

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) Relate vs 8 to vs 10. In vs 8 Paul is discussing where believers will be, if they are not in the body, whether by death, resurrection or rapture. From vs 10, the next step is the marriage of the Lamb, Rev 19:7, where the raptured and resurrected saints of God, step out from Heaven (Paradise/3rd Heaven/Presence of God), with Christ and begin their descent to earth for the Battle of Armageddon (Rev 19 11-21). More of the discussion of things related to the return of Christ to earth will be discussed later on in this post.

10 For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

2 Corinthians 5:17 New American Standard Bible – Upon new birth, the saint has a new spirit which will prompt the believer to righteous living. The original, sinful spirit, has passed away; it will no more prompt the believer to unrighteousness.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”

2 Corinthians 5:21 New American Standard Bible – Upon our new birth, Christ has taken our sin on Him, making Him to be “sin” (not a sinner) so that He can take sin’s judgment. Our spirit of sin has been replaced by a spirit that is as perfect as the Spirit of Christ.

“He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

Colossians 1:27 New American Standard Bible – After we have been born again, the Spirit of Christ dwells within our born again spirits.

“to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

1 John 5:19 New American Standard Bible – This verse explains that which makes it all possible for us to be “in God.” Until we were born again, we were “darkness.” Upon our new birth, we became “light.” Without the new birth, we would have continued to be “darkness,” and would not have been permitted to be “in God.” (John 1:9)

“This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.”

Now, let’s consider Lazarus and the rich man.

Luke 16:22-23 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

22 Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s bosom; and the rich man also died and was buried. 23 In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and *saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom.

In the following discussion, “Kingdom of God,” and “Millennial reign of Christ,” both relate to the same thousand year period which immediately follows the tribulation and second coming of Christ to earth. A saint is any righteous person. A righteous person is anyone whose spirit has been born again. Tribulation is the time of the judgment of God on unrighteous people, which is also known as “the 70th week of Daniel, which follows the rapture of the church, and ends when Christ returns to earth with His raptured saints.

Lazarus was the righteous poor man. He died and was taken to the bosom of Abraham, which is the Old Testament name for the Presence of God. The rich unrighteous man died, and was placed in Hades (see note below), which is the place of death for unrighteous people, where their souls and spirits remain until the bodily resurrection of unrighteous people takes place at the end of the Kingdom of God (Revelation 20:5). The translation of “hell” is incorrectly used in Luke 16 in some translations. In Luke 16, both of the bodies (Lazarus and rich man) are in the grave. Notice that both men are conscious of their surroundings, with the rich man being in torment, experiencing “God’s condemnation.” His next stop is the resurrection of the unrighteous (Rev 20:5), with the Great White Throne Judgment and the lake of fire soon to follow (Revelation 20:11-15). Lazarus was also conscious of His surroundings, and was having “the time of His life,” in the Presence of God. His next stop is the resurrection of the Old Testament saints (Rev 20:4). (The Old Testament lasts until the crucifixion of Christ; “it is finished,” John 19:30.) At the resurrection of the saints, which is at the end of the tribulation, and at the beginning of the Kingdom of God, the bodies of the Old Testament saints, and tribulation saints, will be resurrected, and reunited with their souls and spirits. All righteous saints (Old Testament, New Testament and Tribulation), will go through the Kingdom, and then enter the eternal state, Rev 21:1-7. These saints are over-comers through their faith in Christ (1 John 5:4).

MacArthur Study Bible note, Dr. John MacArthur.
Luke 16:23. “Hades” was the Gr. term for the abode of the dead. In the LXX, it was used to translate the Heb. Sheol, which referred to the realm of the dead in general, without necessarily distinguishing between righteous or unrighteous souls. However, in NT usage, “Hades” always refers to the place of the wicked prior to final judgment in hell. The imagery Jesus used paralleled the common rabbinical idea that Sheol had two parts, one for the souls of the righteous and the other for the souls of the wicked—separated by an impassable gulf.

Before we arrive at the cross, where the conversation took place between Christ and the thief (also on the cross), we must consider two occurrences that took place, that use the words, “Paradise and third Heaven.”

To set the stage, we must consider a passage where the Apostle Paul is taken up to the third heaven, also called Paradise, while he is still alive. Paul is talking about himself. He mentions Paradise and the third heaven as being the location of God.

2 Corinthians 12:1-4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Paul’s Vision

1 Boasting is necessary, though it is not profitable; but I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord. 2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a man was caught up to the third heaven. 3 And I know how such a man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, God knows— 4 was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which a man is not permitted to speak.

Paul’s conversation with God follows.

2 Corinthians 12:8-9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. 9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

Consider the three heavens.

1 Corinthians 15:40 King James Bible – The first heaven is terrestrial, and is where birds fly. The second heaven is celestial, and is where space ships fly. The third heaven is where God resides, and is also known as Paradise. The third heaven is where Paul was taken, and is generally known as Heaven.

“There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial”

Heaven, the third heaven, the location of God, is also the place where the born again, new testament, believers in Christ will be taken when the rapture of the church takes place. (Rapture: English for “caught up, snatch away.” Latin, rapio. Greek, harpazo). Remember that these are the bodies of New Testament saints, and are not of Old Testament saints. Those caught up, will have their bodies, whether in the grave or alive, to be caught up to the third heaven, where their bodies, souls and spirits will be taken to the judgment seat of Christ for rewards and the marriage of the lamb.

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 New American Standard Bible (NASB) (also, 1 Cor 15:50-54 and John 14:1-3)

16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) – Works are judged. This is not a place for determining the salvation of believers; that took place at the time of the new birth. These believers are the church, the bride of Christ. They are treated with the respect of a cherished bride, the bride of all brides, by Christ, the bridegroom of all bridegrooms. Eph 5:25, “Husbands love your wives.” Christ is not going to humiliate His bride prior to the marriage of the Lamb, which will take place in Heaven at the end of the tribulation, when Christ and His bride begin their ascent to earth at His second coming to earth. Neither will Christ cause His bride to go through the judgments of the tribulation. (The bride of Christ can not be in Heaven, and on earth, at the same time.)

10 For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

Revelation 19:7-21 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Marriage of the Lamb

7 Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” 8 It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

9 Then he *said to me, “Write, ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’” And he *said to me, “These are true words of God.” 10 Then I fell at his feet to worship him. But he *said to me, “Do not do that; I am a fellow servant of yours and your brethren who hold the testimony of Jesus; worship God. For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

The marriage of the Lamb, Christ and his saints (the Church), has taken place. They now ascend to earth, where Christ will be successful in a spiritual battle and victory over the followers of Satan, and where Christ will stand on the mount of Olives in Jerusalem (Zechariah 14:1-4).

The Coming of Christ

11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. 12 His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. 13 He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. 15 From His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. 16 And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”

17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and he cried out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds which fly in midheaven, “Come, assemble for the great supper of God, 18 so that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of commanders and the flesh of mighty men and the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them and the flesh of all men, both free men and slaves, and small and great.”

19 And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies assembled to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army.

Doom of the Beast and False Prophet

20 And the beast was seized, and with him the false prophet who performed the signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image; these two were thrown alive into the lake of fire which burns with brimstone. 21 And the rest were killed with the sword which came from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse, and all the birds were filled with their flesh.

At the second coming of Christ, after the Tribulation (Matthew 24:29), he will judge the nations/gentiles for how they treated the Jews during the tribulation (Matthew 25:31-32…33-46).

Since we have “thoroughly” discussed Paradise and Heaven, let’s consider the thief on the cross. Did the thief go to heaven, or did he go to Paradise?

Luke 23:39-44 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

39 One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!” 40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” 43 And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”

44 It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour,

Question. Did the thief go to Heaven? Because he was not a bird, he did not go to the first heaven. Because the thief was not a space ship, he did not go to the second heaven. But, just as Paul found himself (spirit and soul), in the third heaven, which is Paradise, in the Presence of God, that is where the thief on the cross had his reunion (spirit and soul) with Christ. It appears that the death of the thief took place prior to the death of Christ, which would have him dying before the age of the New Covenant began. With that understanding, the thief died as an old testament saint. Therefore, he will not be bodily caught up in the rapture of the new testament saints, as is described in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. The thief will not experience a bodily resurrection, where his body, soul and spirit will be reunited, until after the end of the tribulation (Rev 20:4). But, until that time, the thief, along with all other Old Testament saints, will be in the Presence of God in Paradise.

As a parting thought, at the time of the rapture of the church, which includes the resurrection of the deceased new testament saints, all bodies, souls, and spirits will be united and reunited in perfection. Bodies will never age and die. Minds/souls will never think a sinful thought. Spirits will continue their dwelling within the Spirit of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The term “dead in Christ, and we who are alive,” shows that it will be born again new testament believers in Christ who are caught up in the rapture (1 Thes 4:16-17).

When the saints are caught up in the rapture, they will be given perfect, glorified, imperishable bodies. The tribulation saints (those who miss the rapture, but come to know Christ during the tribulation, those who will be martyred during the tribulation), will also be given perfect, glorified, imperishable bodies when they have their bodily resurrection, at the end of the tribulation, with their bodies, souls and spirits reunited (Rev 20:4). Such will be the case for the old testament saints who are also bodily resurrected at the end of the tribulation (Rev 20:4).

1 Corinthians 15:50-54 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The Mystery of Resurrection

50 Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51 Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.53 For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality.54 But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory.

Throughout this discussion, it has been shown that there is one thing that has made the salvation of saints possible, which is the born again spirit. Whenever a person has been born again, that person can not be unborn. Our Lord made that fact clear in John 10:27-30

John 10:27-30 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

The born again spirit is the anchor that holds each believer secure in Christ. It was the spirit of Lazarus, and of the thief on the cross, that kept their total beings of body, soul and spirit, anchored to Christ. The words of the opening song say, “the anchor holds.” Lazarus, the thief on the cross, and anyone else who has been born again, will receive a raptured or resurrected glorified “being,” (body, soul, spirit). We, too, will have the same perfection of “being,” as that which Adam and Eve had in the Garden of Eden before they sinned…if we have accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior, and have been born again. Only perfect beings of “spirit, soul, and body,” will be present in the eternal state, as will be the perfect things of nature (there is no Mother Nature), as was its presence during the time of the Garden of Eden. (Revelation 22:1-5)

For information that relates to the preparation of this post, and to sources of information, please click onto the following link.

https://equippingblog.wordpress.com/post-preparation-sources-of-information/

64 – God’s Plan For The Ages – Revelation 2-3 – Discussion

Click onto any blue letter of number to see the Worship And Praise videos and text on the blog.

What does the Bible tell us about two wars that will take place in the end times?

Christ’s Letters to the Seven Churches

God’s love for Israel

Zechariah 8:7-8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

7 Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Behold, I am going to save My people from the land of the east and from the land of the west; 8 and I will bring them back and they will live in the midst of Jerusalem; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God in truth and righteousness.’

Introduction To Post

This post uses repetition for the purpose of teaching things that are often difficult to understand.

The book of Revelation is one of the most criticized, and least taught books of the Bible. Yet, between twenty-five and thirty per cent of all verses in the Bible relate to prophecy. In spite of the encouragement of scripture to study and teach the Book of Revelation, such study and teaching is greatly neglected. In Chapters 1-3 the word “church” is mentioned 19 times. As is mentioned in the video of Revelation 2-3, the church is not mentioned again in the Book of Revelation until we see the second coming of Christ, with His saints, in Revelation Chapter 19:11. Such a lack of reference to the word, “church,” indicates the absence of the born again believers of Christ from the earth, which also verifies that the “rapture of the church,” the snatching away of the saints, has removed the true saints of God from the earth and taken them to Heaven, where the marriage of the Lamb takes place (John 14:1-3, 1 Corinthians 15:50-54, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). The return to earth of the saints with Christ, after the tribulation, is shown in Revelation 19:7-21, Zechariah 14:1-16 and Matthew 24:29-31.

Consider the rapture of the church (from rapio, Latin; from Greek; harpazó: in English, to seize, catch up, snatch away).

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 New American Standard Bible (NASB) (The rapture of the church, “caught up”)

16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.

The judgments of God upon the earth, and upon the earth dwellers, “will happen; it’s not an allegory!” The seal judgments of Revelation 6:1-8:6, will be poured out on the earth by Christ. The trumpet judgments of Revelation 8:7-9:21, will be poured out on the earth by angels. The bowl judgments of Revelation 15:1-16:21, will be poured out on the earth by angels. The judgments become increasingly more severe;”they will happen!” These judgments occur during the 70th week of Daniel, which is also known as the tribulation, and is described by Christ in Matthew 24:21, as to its severity.

When the rapture takes place, all humans that are left on the earth will be here because of their unresolved sin, that is a result of the sin of Adam and Eve, and the curse that followed. ALL OF HUMANITY WAS CURSED. Sin followed and caused death. Only our Spirit is eternal, and will remain eternally, in either a sinful or non sinful state. ALL Sin WILL COME UNDER GOD’S JUDGMENT. The born again experience gives humans a new spirit that is as pure as the Spirit of Christ, exempting them from the judgment that will come upon non born again people. Those who are not born again, have retained the cursed and sinful spirit, and will remain on earth to either accept Christ as their Lord and Savior and be born again and receive a spirit that is free of sin, or will remain on earth and be subject to the judgmental punishment of God. Only through the new birth does anyone receive the new and perfect spirit.

Born again believers in Christ are removed from earth at the time of the rapture; their spirits have no sin. Only sin will remain on the earth. Those who have not been born again, “are sin,” because of the sinful conditions of their spirits. God will judge all sin.

Matthew 24:21 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

21 For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will.

The reason for the tribulation is to judge sin and to call unsaved Jews to accept Christ as Messiah. As believers in Christ, our judgment was satisfied when Christ died on the cross. The severity of the Revelation judgment was experienced by Christ on the Christ; He took our punishment. Believers in Christ have no need to go through the same punishment as those whom did not accept the offer of Christ to accept Him as Lord and Savior. For believers in Christ, He took our place for judgment. He became sin, but not a sinner; we became His righteousness.

2 Corinthians 5:21 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

Where there is no sin, no judgment is needed. Consider the severity of the cross, where Christ took on Him the sin of everyone who would come to know Him as Lord and Savior through the born again process. (Matthew 27:45-54; Mark 15:33-38; Luke 23:44-48; John 16:19-30). Christ took on Him the severity of judgment that will come on the earth dwellers of Revelation. It’s not just a matter of, “He died to take away our sins;” it is much more severe! Consider the words of Christ when He said, in Matthew 27:46.

Matthew 27:46 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

46 About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”

Christ, who was all God and all man, felt the absence of “God the Father” in His life. He felt the severity of the Judgment of God on the sin of the world, becoming His punishment to bear. God would not even look upon Christ, because Christ became sin. We can only stand in the Presence of God after our sin has been removed by the new birth, which is through faith in Christ.

John 1:29 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

29 The next day he *saw Jesus coming to him and *said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!

The sin of the world to be taken away to allow eternal life with Christ, “is the sin of unbelief.”

John 3:16-18 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

belief in Christ (vs 16) or unbelief (vs 18). Belief results in eternal life with Christ. Unbelief results in condemnation, such as is shown in the tribulation (Revelation 6-18 Judgments of God), and in the lake of fire (final and eternal judgment)

John 3:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

John 3:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

God’s Holy Spirit causes the new birth to happen.

If you believe in Christ, you have been born again. If you have been born again, you believe in Christ.

Ephesians 2:8-9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

A simple faith in Christ as Lord and Savior makes all of the above (John 1:29 to Ephesians 2:8-9) to happen.

The term, “earth dwellers, those who dwell on the earth,” refers to those unsaved, unborn again people, who are not “saved, born again, or snatched away from earth.” At the time of the rapture, Christ will rapture, “catch up or snatch away,” those who have been saved and born again from the earth. As the following verses show, those earth dwellers show no remorse for their sinful lives. They refuse the offer of salvation and eternal life with Christ, even though they see the judgments of God being poured out on “all who dwell on the earth,” (Revelation 3:10).

The judgments of the tribulation can not even be compared to the severity of the eternal judgment that will follow, at the Great White Throne Judgment and the Lake of Fire.

Revelation 20:11-15 New King James Version (NKJV)

The Great White Throne Judgment

11 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. 12 And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

The Great White Throne Judgment is for those who have not been born again, from the time of creation until the time of the judgment. The punishment is severe and eternal.

Consider those who are not born again at the time of the rapture of the church; they are earth dwellers. See Revelation 3:10 – 17:8, as follow.

Revelation 3:10 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

10 Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.

Revelation 6:10 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

10 and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?”

Revelation 8:13 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

13 Then I looked, and I heard an eagle flying in midheaven, saying with a loud voice, “Woe, woe, woe to those who dwell on the earth, because of the remaining blasts of the trumpet of the three angels who are about to sound!”

Revelation 11:10 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

10 And those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them and celebrate; and they will send gifts to one another, because these two prophets tormented those who dwell on the earth.

Revelation 13:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain.

Revelation 13:14 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

14 And he deceives those who dwell on the earth because of the signs which it was given him to perform in the presence of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who *had the wound of the sword and has come to life.

Revelation 17:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 “The beast that you saw was, and is not, and is about to come up out of the abyss and go to destruction. And those who dwell on the earth, whose name has not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, will wonder when they see the beast, that he was and is not and will come.

Earth dwellers, who remain earth dwellers by not accepting Christ as Lord and Savior, have their next stop in eternity at the Great White Throne Judgment. Don’t be an earth dweller; accept Christ as your Lord and Savior NOW!

Consider the encouragement that we read in the verses of Revelation to not neglect an understanding of Revelation.

Verses

1:3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and heed the things which are written in it; for the time is near

1:19 Therefore write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after these things.

MacArthur Study Notes

1:3 Blessed. This is the only biblical book that comes with a blessing for the one who listens to it being read and explained and then responds in obedience. This is the first of 7 beatitudes in the book (v. 3; 14:13; 16:15; 19:9; 20:6; 22:7, 14). time is near. “Time” refers to epochs, eras, or seasons. The next great epoch of God’s redemptive history is imminent. But although Christ’s coming is the next event, it may be delayed so long that people begin to question whether He will ever come (cf. Matt. 24:36–39; 2 Pet. 3:3, 4).

1:19 This verse provides a simple outline for the entire book: “the things which you have seen” refers to the vision John has just seen (chap. 1); “the things which are” denotes the letters to the churches (chaps. 2, 3); and “the things which will take place after this” refers to the revelation of future history (chaps. 4–22).

Revelation Chapter 2-3 – Video Discussion

Consider the seven churches that are mentioned. Of the seven churches, only two of them are mentioned elsewhere in the Bible, “Ephesus and Laodicea.” The importance of identifying the other five churches, is that the early believers in Christ were fulfilling the great commission (Matthew 28:18-29; Acts 1:8) and planting churches. Also, of missing significance, is that the church at Rome, which has been called the mother church of Christianity, is not listed as being a recipient of the revelation of Christ. In essence, Rome was left “out of the loop.” So, what are we to think about the church at Rome? Every congregation is important. But, we can see that the church at Rome was not more significant than that of any other body of believers in Christ.

(1) Ephesus (Revelation 2:1-7) – the church that had forsaken its first love (2:4).

(2) Smyrna (Revelation 2:8-11) – the church that would suffer persecution (2:10).

(3) Pergamum (Revelation 2:12-17) – the church that needed to repent (2:16).

(4) Thyatira (Revelation 2:18-29) – the church that had a false prophetess (2:20).

(5) Sardis (Revelation 3:1-6) – the church that had fallen asleep (3:2).

(6) Philadelphia (Revelation 3:7-13) – the church that had endured patiently (3:10).

(7) Laodicea (Revelation 3:14-22) – the church with the lukewarm faith (3:16).

Text – Revelation Chapter 2-3 – God’s Plan For The Ages 64

Chapter 2: http://biblehub.com/nasb77/revelation/2.htm

Chapter 3: http://biblehub.com/nasb77/revelation/3.htm

What does the Bible tell us about two wars that will take place in the end times?

Ezekiel 38 War: Ezekiel 38:1-9 http://biblehub.com/nasb77/ezekiel/38.htm

Battle Of Armageddon:
Revelation 16:13-16 http://biblehub.com/nasb/revelation/16.htm
Revelation 17:14 http://biblehub.com/nasb/revelation/17.htm
Revelation 19:11-21 http://biblehub.com/nasb/revelation/19.htm

Revelation Study

This post is one of many others that you can find in this blog that deal with God’s Plan For The Ages. All posts in this series can be found under the category of Journey. Please follow this blog so that you can receive updates automatically.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

Background

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

Sources

John Ankerberg, Craig Blaising, Darrell Bock, E. Ray Clendenen, Jimmy DeYoung, Andrew Hill, Ed Hindson, Mark Hitchcock, Tommie Ice, Grant Jeffrey, David Jeremiah, Walter Kaiser, Tim LaHaye, Hal Lindsey, John MacArthur, Shawn C. Madden, J. Vernon McGee, Henry Morris, Richard Patterson, J. Dwight Pentecost, John Phillips, David Reagan, Ron Rhodes, Adrian Rogers, Charles C. Ryrie, C.I. Scofield, Renald Showers, Charles Swindoll, Frank Charles Thompson, Merrill Unger, Jack Van Impe, John F. Walvoord, Andy Woods, Roy Zuck, and others.

If you want to make a comment, please place that comment on this blog in the appropriate space at the bottom of this page. If you do not want your comment to be shown, please let me know. I moderate all comments, and will not violate anybody’s trust.

The scripture text was taken from Biblegateway.com

The translation of the text is from The New King James Version.

The Ryrie Study Bible, New American Standard Bible, was used for lesson preparation.

Unless otherwise noted, scripture notes were taken from The MacArthur Study Bible notes that are contained in Biblegateway.com

Everyone should own the Ryrie and MacArthur Study Bibles.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Other bios.

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

God’s Plan For The Ages 62 -Left Behind? Miss The Rapture? What To Do.

Left Behind? Miss the Rapture? Ed Hindson on What To Do.

2 Thessalonians 2:8-12 New King James Version (NKJV)

8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

The following note is one that I sent to an internet friend. The question about unbelievers coming to Christ during the tribulation is one that many people may share.

It has been a year since you raised a very good question about “a strong delusion..” Let me give you some verses that show great support for that verse (2 Thes 2:11). The term “earth dweller” is shown in the following verses to show that there will be people who miss the rapture, who will not accept the truth of Christ, even though they see the world falling apart all around them. You and I are “citizens of heaven,” Phil (3:20), but the earth dwellers will not let go of their love for this world, and will be the recipients of the judgments of God during the tribulation. See, Rev 3:10, 6:10, 8:13, 11:10, 13:8, 13:14, 17:8. But, still, there will be those who will miss the rapture and will come to know Christ as Lord and Savior. See Rev 20:4, “they did not take the mark of the beast.” Rev 8:9-14, tells of those martyred tribulation believers…It will be difficult for unbelievers, who accept Christ during the tribulation, to avoid being put to death by the forces of the Anti-Christ….It has been 41 years since I first heard anything about the end times. But, God has put a deep desire within me to study that part of God’s Word that is often ignored, rejected, neglected, and improperly taught. I encourage you to check out and follow my blog, which deals heavily with the end times. The link follows.

https://equippingblog.wordpress.com/

God’s Plan For The Ages 61 – Final Signs – The Gathering Storm

Final Signs: The Gathering Storm

What are the signs of the Lord’s coming? Listen to what Drs. Ed Hindson Mark Hitchcock say about the Bible’s warnings for the end times.

The Rapture Of the Church: English (to seize, catch up, snatch away); Latin (rapio); Greek (harpazo).
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 1 Corinthians 15:50-54; John 14:1-3. The coming of Christ in the air to take His saints to heaven for rewards and the marriage of the Lamb. This takes place while the tribulation is taking place on earth.

The Second Coming Of Christ, in the air, with his previously raptured saints, at the end of the tribulation, to stand on planet earth at the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem. The reason is to set up His earthly kingdom of 1,000 years, and to bring judgment on sin. Zechariah 14:1-16; Matthew 24:21-31; Revelation 19:11-21, 20:1-15.

Consider the bios of Drs. Ed Hindson, Mark Hitchcoek

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

God’s Plan For The Ages 60 – Revelation 1 – Discussion

Click onto any blue letter of number to see the Worship And Praise videos and text on the blog.

Shout to the Lord – Women of Faith

There is none like you – Women of Faith

Above All

God’s love for Israel

The Davidic Kingdom (Jeremiah 33:14-16)

14‘Behold, days are coming,’ declares the LORD, ‘when I will fulfill the good word which I have spoken concerning the house of Israel and the house of Judah. 15‘In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch of David to spring forth; and He shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth. 16‘In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will dwell in safety; and this is the name by which she will be called: the LORD is our righteousness.’

Introduction To Post

God’s Plan For The Ages 60 – Revelation 1 – Discussion

The scriptures for this text come from “Bible Hub” http://biblehub.com/ Bible Hub is very good for research, having the lexicons for both the Old and New testaments. The 1977 translation is very user-friendly for me; I trust that it will be for you, too. The course of this study of Revelation will have each chapter being shown as a detailed, verse by verse, text study of each post, as well as a video group discussion of the same chapter, but in a separate post. The previous post (58), was a verse by verse text study. To get into the proper cadence for the following chapters, the post of the chapter video discussion will be shown prior to the verse by verse text study post. Concurrently, with the study of Revelation, I am also writing a series of posts on the Book of Ezekiel, which relates closely to the Book of Revelation. I encourage you to follow that series of posts, too. It is my desire to help other seekers of end times information to gain as much knowledge as is possible from this teaching of Revelation, which is all too often ignored, neglected, discounted and criticized. Because of the scriptural emphasis that God has placed on the Jews, verses will also be shown in each post that tell of God’s love for “His chosen people” (Deuteronomy 7:6). Holy Scripture tells of the place of honor that Israel holds in the 1,000 year Kingdom Of God, aka, the Millennial reign of Christ (Revelation 20), and in The Eternal State (Revelation 21-22).

Revelation Chapter 1 – Video Discussion

Following the video discussion of Chapter 1 of Revelation, will be the written words of Revelation Chapter 1. A list of the verses of scripture, that the four speakers used in the video, are provided in the order that the verses were spoken. Bios are provided for each of the speakers, at the bottom of this page. (Drs. John Ankerberg, Ed Hindson, Mark Hitchcock, Ron Rhodes)

Revelation Chapter 1 Video

The Glorified Jesus Reveals the Future

Speaker Notes Revelation 1 – The Glorified Jesus Reveals the Future – Discussion

Following, is a list of the verses of scripture that the four speakers used in the video, in the order that the verses were spoken. Bios are provided for each of the speakers, at the bottom of this page.

Ed Rev 1:1; 1:17; Mark Rev 1:3, 1:4-5; Isaiah 11:1-2; Ron Rev 1:8, 22:13; John Rev 1:5-7; Mark 1 Thes 4:17, 1 Cor 15:52, Rev 1:7, 1:9; Ed Rev 1:19, 1:8; John Rev 1:11; Ed Rev 1:13, 2:4; 2:10, 3:1-2, 3:8, 3:15-16, 3:20, 3:22; John Rev 1:20; Ron Rev 1:12-13; 1:16,1:20, 5:8. John Rev 2:2-4, 2:7; Ron 1 John 5:4-5, Rev 2:8-11, 20:6; John Rev 2:10; Ed Matt 10:32-33.

Revelation Chapter 1 – Text – God’s Plan For The Ages 60

NASB 1977

The Revelation of Jesus Christ

1 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must shortly take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John, 2 who bore witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw. 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and heed the things which are written in it; for the time is near.

Message to the Seven Churches

4 John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace, from Him who is and who was and who is to come; and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne; 5 and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the first-born of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us, and released us from our sins by His blood, 6 and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father; to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. 7 BEHOLD, HE IS COMING WITH THE CLOUDS, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. Even so. Amen.

8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”

The Patmos Vision

9 I, John, your brother and fellow partaker in the tribulation and kingdom and perseverance which are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos, because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. 10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like the sound of a trumpet, 11 saying, “Write in a book what you see, and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.” 12 And I turned to see the voice that was speaking with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands; 13 and in the middle of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed in a robe reaching to the feet, and girded across His breast with a golden girdle. 14 And His head and His hair were white like white wool, like snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire; 15 and His feet were like burnished bronze, when it has been caused to glow in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of many waters. 16 And in His right hand He held seven stars; and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and His face was like the sun shining in its strength. 17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as a dead man. And He laid His right hand upon me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, 18 and the living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades. 19 “Write therefore the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall take place after these things. 20 “As for the mystery of the seven stars which you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.

Revelation Study

This post is one of many others that you can find in this blog that deal with God’s Plan For The Ages. All posts in this series can be found under the category of Journey. Please follow this blog so that you can receive updates automatically.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

Background

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

Sources

John Ankerberg, Darrell Bock, Jimmy DeYoung, Andrew Hill, Ed Hindson, Mark Hitchcock, Tommie Ice, Grant R. Jeffrey, David Jeremiah, Walter Kaiser, Tim LaHaye, Hal Lindsey, John MacArthur, Shawn C. Madden, J. Vernon McGee, Henry Morris, Richard Patterson, J. Dwight Pentecost, John Phillips, David Reagan, Ron Rhodes, Adrian Rogers, Charles C. Ryrie, C.I. Scofield, Renald Showers, Charles Swindoll, Frank Charles Thompson, Merrill Unger, Jack Van Impe, John F. Walvoord, Andy Woods, Roy Zuck, and others.

If you want to make a comment, please place that comment on this blog in the appropriate space at the bottom of this page. If you do not want your comment to be shown, please let me know. I moderate all comments, and will not violate anybody’s trust.

The scripture text was taken from Biblegateway.com

The translation of the text is from The New King James Version.

The Ryrie Study Bible, New American Standard Bible, was used for lesson preparation.

Unless otherwise noted, scripture notes were taken from The MacArthur Study Bible notes that are contained in Biblegateway.com

Everyone should own the Ryrie and MacArthur Study Bibles.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Other bios.

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

Pre-Tribulation Rapture – A Discussion

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

Valid Arguments Against The Pre-Tribulation #Rapture ? NO!

The opening video shows a wonderful discussion that relates to the rapture of the church. Drs. David Reagan and Thomas Ice are recognized as being Bible scholars, having an exceptional understanding of the scriptures that relate to the end times, which is also known as eschatology.

Many people discount the truth of the rapture (English, rapture, from “to seize, catch up, snatch away;” Latin, rapio; Greek, harpazo). The people with whom I have had such a discussion have not taken the time that is necessary to study scriptures that explain the end times. A key verse of scripture that explains the severity of the time of tribulation is Matthew 24:21, “For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will,” (commentary on verse shown below).

By having an understanding of how bad it will be during the tribulation, it will be easier to understand why Christ will not leave His saints, “the bride of Christ,” on earth during that time. For someone to think that the church will have to go through the tribulation, is to believe that every born again man and woman, as well as every infant and little child, will be present when the Judgments of God are unleashed upon the earth. Those judgments, “seal, trumpet and bowl” judgments, are fully described in Revelation, Chapters 6-19. The rapture is for born again believers of Christ. The tribulation is for those people who are not born again, and are known as “earth dwellers,” Revelation 3:10, 6:10, 8:13, 11:10, 13:8, 13:14, 17:8. Please take time to study this post; study it often.

Check out the following link for a more detailed explanation of the rapture:
https://www.gotquestions.org/rapture-of-the-church.html

Matthew 24:21 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Christ discusses the great tribulation with His disciples, who are Jews.

21 For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will.

24:21 great tribulation. The words “has not been” and “nor ever shall be”—along with the description that follows—identify this as the yet-future time in which God’s wrath shall be poured out upon the earth (see note on Rev. 7:14). Jesus’ descriptions of the cataclysms that follow closely resemble the outpouring of divine wrath described in the bowl judgments of Rev. 16 and His subsequent appearing in Rev. 19 (see note on v. 30).(MacArthur Study note)

Bios of Drs. Ice and Reagan can be seen in the following links.

http://www.pre-trib.org/about/dr-ice
Bio – Dr. Thomas Ice

http://christinprophecy.org/staff/dr-david-r-reagan/
Bio – Dr. David R. Reagan

A prior post was written, which has a very detailed study of the things that lead to, and beyond, the rapture. Click onto the following link and that post will be shown to you.

https://equippingblog.wordpress.com/2017/07/31/gods-plan-for-the-ages-56-daniel-9-the-tribulation70th-week-of-daniel/

God’s Plan For The Ages 56 – Daniel 9 – The Tribulation/70th Week Of Daniel July 31, 2017

Ready Or Not! The Rapture! The Second Coming! They’re On The Way!

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

(1/2) Grant Jeffrey – Rapture vs Second Coming

(2/2) Grant Jeffrey – Rapture vs Second Coming

Bioh Grant R. Jeffrey Grant (October 5, 1948 – May 11, 2012)
http://www.grantjeffrey.com/bio.htm
http://www.grantjeffrey.com/

To see the blog full post click onto the following link.

https://equippingblog.wordpress.com/2015/06/23/ready-or-not-the-rapture-the-second-coming-theyre-on-the-way/

Please check out all of our links.

https://equippingblog.wordpress.com/
Equipping

https://cchurchchurch.wordpress.com/
Miscellaneous

https://success2693.wordpress.com/
Audio Visual Library

https://catblog618.wordpress.com/
Culture-Beauty-Arts-Technology

God’s Plan For The Ages 59 – About Israel – Ezekiel 9 – A Vision Of Judgment

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

We Are Standing On Holy Ground – First Baptist Church, Jacksonville, FL

When will the Ezekiel 38 war take place?
John Ankerberg Show

God’s Love For Israel

Text

Jeremiah 30:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 For behold, days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will restore the fortunes of My people Israel and Judah.’ The Lord says, ‘I will also bring them back to the land that I gave to their forefathers and they shall possess it.’”

Lesson Preview

Ezekiel 9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Date: 594 B.C. (Scofield Study Bible)

Place: Jerusalem, Southern Kingdom Of Judah

Notice the personal involvement of God in His judgment of the sin of Jerusalem. We can easily see that “sin is serious stuff!”

Consider verse 9.

9 …“The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great, and the land is full of bloodshed, and the city full of perversity;”

Notice the note on verse 3.

3 “Now the glory of the God of Israel had gone up from the cherub, where it had been, to the threshold of the temple…” (My note) In due time, the Glory of the Lord will leave the temple in Jerusalem, and will not return until the time of “the Millennium/Kingdom of God/future kingdom of Messiah/Millennial reign of Christ.” When the Glory of the Lord leaves the temple,(having fully departed (Ez 11:22, 23), the Glory will not return until (Ez 43:2–7). There will be no such return of the Glory of the Lord when the temple is rebuilt in 515 BC (Ezra 6:16), or when a temple is built during the tribulation (Daniel 9:27; Matthew 24:15; Second Thessalonians 2:4; Revelation 13:14-15). Without the Glory of the Lord, a “temple” is only a “structure,” having a floor, four walls and a roof.)

Notice in verse 4 how righteous Jews will escape God’s judgment by having a mark placed on their foreheads. (“put a mark on the foreheads;” see MacArthur note.)

Notice in verses 5-7 that God’s judgment was all-encompassing, beginning in the temple.

Notice in verses 8-11, the conversation between Ezekiel and God. Ezekiel was pleading for mercy. God reaffirmed that sin must be judged, using the word “perversity, to describe the actions of the Jews of Jerusalem (that which is perverted, perverted justice…Hebrew 4297. “mutteh”)

Lesson Text: Ezekiel 9

The Wicked Are Slain

1 Then He called out in my hearing with a loud voice, saying, “Let those who have charge over the city draw near, each with a deadly weapon in his hand.” 2 And suddenly six men came from the direction of the upper gate, which faces north, each with his battle-ax in his hand. One man among them was clothed with linen and had a writer’s inkhorn at his side. They went in and stood beside the bronze altar.

3 Now the glory of the God of Israel had gone up from the cherub, where it had been, to the threshold of the temple. And He called to the man clothed with linen, who had the writer’s inkhorn at his side; 4 and the Lord said to him, “Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it.”

5 To the others He said in my hearing, “Go after him through the city and kill; do not let your eye spare, nor have any pity. 6 Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary.” So they began with the elders who were before the temple. 7 Then He said to them, “Defile the temple, and fill the courts with the slain. Go out!” And they went out and killed in the city.

8 So it was, that while they were killing them, I was left alone; and I fell on my face and cried out, and said, “Ah, Lord God! Will You destroy all the remnant of Israel in pouring out Your fury on Jerusalem?”

9 Then He said to me, “The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great, and the land is full of bloodshed, and the city full of perversity; for they say, ‘The Lord has forsaken the land, and the Lord does not see!’ 10 And as for Me also, My eye will neither spare, nor will I have pity, but I will recompense their deeds on their own head.”

11 Just then, the man clothed with linen, who had the inkhorn at his side, reported back and said, “I have done as You commanded me.”

The Romans Road

Consider the following verses that explain the road to salvation.

Romans 3:23 New King James Version (NKJV)

23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

Romans 5:8 New King James Version (NKJV)

8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Romans 6:23 New King James Version (NKJV)

23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 10:13 New King James Version (NKJV)

13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Consider the following video discussion of sin, as it relates to those living in the world today.

Will God overlook our sin, or must He deal with it?

In Ezekiel 9, Jerusalem Jews were saved from the judgment of God because of their righteousness (9:4). In the book of Romans, the Apostle Paul explains in Romans 3:21-22 that righteousness comes through faith in Christ, to all who believe in Him as Savior and Lord.

Romans 3:21-22 New International Version (NIV)

Righteousness Through Faith

21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile,

Notes – Ezekiel 9 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

9:1 charge over the city. God summoned His servant angels to carry out His judgments. These angelic executioners (cf. Dan. 4:13, 17, 23) came equipped with weapons of destruction.
9:2 six men. Angels can appear like men when ministering on earth (cf. Gen. 18:1; Dan. 9:20–23). One man. He was superior to the others. Linen indicates high rank (cf. Dan. 10:5; 12:6). Perhaps this was the Angel of the Lord, the pre-incarnate Christ (see note on Ex. 3:2). He had all the instruments of an oriental scribe to carry out His task (vv. 4, 11).
9:3 the glory…had gone up. The glory of God departs before the destruction of the city and temple. The gradual departure of God from His temple is depicted in stages: the glory resides in the temple’s Most Holy Place, between the wings of the cherubs on each side of the ark of the covenant over the mercy seat, then leaves to the front door (9:3; 10:4), later to the E gate by the outer wall (10:18, 19), and finally to the Mt. of Olives to the E, having fully departed (11:22, 23). The glory will return in the future kingdom of Messiah (43:2–7).
9:4 a mark on the foreheads. Since God’s departure removed all protection and gave the people over to destruction, it was necessary for the angelic scribe (Angel of the Lord) to mark for God’s preservation the righteous who had been faithful to Him. Those left unmarked were subject to death in Babylon’s siege (v. 5). The mark was the indication of God’s elect, identified personally by the pre-incarnate Christ. He was marking the elect (cf. Ex. 12:7). Malachi 3:16–18 indicates a similar idea. Cf. Rev. 7:3; 9:4. The marked ones were penitent and were identified for protection. Here was a respite of grace for the remnant. The rest were to be killed (vv. 5–7).
9:8 Will You destroy all? Ezekiel is fearfully aroused in prayer because the judgment on Jerusalem and Israel is so vast. God replies that pervasive sin demands thorough judgment (vv. 9, 10), yet comforts him by the report that the faithful had been marked to be spared (v. 11). Cf. Rom 11:1, 2, 25–27.

Comments related to this post.

This post is one of many others that you can find in this blog that deal with God’s Plan For The Ages. All posts in this series can be found under the category of Journey. Please follow this blog so that you can receive updates automatically..

The book of Ezekiel show’s God’s prophetic purposes being fulfilled in the lives and nation of Israel. Jimmy DeYoung has called the book of Ezekiel “the timeline of the Jews.”

Purpose of Writing: https://www.gotquestions.org/Book-of-Ezekiel.html

Ezekiel ministered to his generation who were both exceedingly sinful and thoroughly hopeless. By means of his prophetic ministry he attempted to bring them to immediate repentance and to confidence in the distant future. He taught that: (1) God works through human messengers; (2) Even in defeat and despair God’s people need to affirm God’s sovereignty; (3) God’s Word never fails; (4) God is present and can be worshiped anywhere; (5) People must obey God if they expect to receive blessings; and (6) God’s Kingdom will come.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

Background

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

Sources

John Ankerberg, Darrell Bock, Jimmy DeYoung, Andrew Hill, Ed Hindson, Mark Hitchcock, Tommie Ice, Grant R. Jeffrey, David Jeremiah, Walter Kaiser, Tim LaHaye, Hal Lindsey, Tremper Longman, III, John MacArthur, Shawn C. Madden, J. Vernon McGee, Henry Morris, Richard Patterson, J. Dwight Pentecost, John Phillips, David Reagan, Ron Rhodes, Adrian Rogers, Charles C. Ryrie, C.I. Scofield, Renald Showers, Charles Swindoll, Frank Charles Thompson, Merrill Unger, Jack Van Impe, John F. Walvoord, Andy Woods, Roy Zuck, and others.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

If you want to make a comment, please place that comment on this blog in the appropriate space at the bottom of this page. If you do not want your comment to be shown, please let me know. I moderate all comments, and will not violate anybody’s trust.

The scripture text was taken from Biblegateway.com

The translation of the text is from The New King James Version.

The Ryrie Study Bible, New American Standard Bible, was used for lesson preparation.

Unless otherwise noted, scripture notes were taken from The MacArthur Study Bible notes that are contained in Biblegateway.com

Everyone should own the Ryrie and MacArthur Study Bibles.

Please follow this blog: https://equippingblog.wordpress.com/

God’s Plan For The Ages 58 – Revelation 1 – The Vision – Data

Click onto any blue letter of number to see the videos and text on the blog.

Michael W Smith A New Hallelujah Featuring The African Children’s Choir Live

Lesson Video

What is the outline from the book of Revelation?

God’s love for Israel

Joel 3:1-2 New King James Version (NKJV)

God Judges the Nations

1 “For behold, in those days and at that time,
When I bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem,
2 I will also gather all nations,
And bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat;
And I will enter into judgment with them there
On account of My people, My heritage Israel,
Whom they have scattered among the nations;
They have also divided up My land.

3:2 gather all nations. The nations of the world will be gathered to Jerusalem to the battle of Armageddon (Zech. 12:3; 14:2; Rev. 16:16; 19:11–21). Valley of Jehoshaphat. The name means “Yahweh judges” (cf. 3:12, 14) and although the exact location is unknown, other prophets spoke of this judgment as occurring near Jerusalem (Ezek. 38, 39; Dan. 11:45; Zech. 9:14ff.; 12:1ff.). This judgment of the nations includes the event of Matt. 25:31–46.

God’s Plan For The Ages 58 – Revelation 1 – The Vision – Data

Lesson Text

Introduction and Benediction

1 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants—things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John, 2 who bore witness to the word of God, and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, to all things that he saw. 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.

Re: verse 1. The Revelation, “singular.” (Mine)
Re: verse 3. A promise of a blessing for those who study the book of Revelation. (Mine)

Greeting the Seven Churches

4 John, to the seven churches which are in Asia:
Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth.
To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, 6 and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
7 Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Re: (the rapture, “the catching up,” from rapio, Latin, from harpazo, Greek, 1 Thes 4:16-18). (Mine)

Re: verse 7. At the coming of Christ in the air, and the catching up of the born again believers in Christ (the saints), with Christ catching up His deceased saints first, with the living saints following; all of those saints will meet in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, with their next stop being Heaven, for rewards and the marriage of the lamb (1 Thes 4:16-18; 2 Cor 5:8; Rev 19:7-8). In this verse 7, we see Christ coming from heaven, “with clouds,” with His next stop being the Mount of Olives, in Jerusalem. At that time, all of the people on the earth (all of the people who had been left behind from the rapture), will see Christ on his way to earth. They had experienced the time of tribulation (the judgments of God and the oppression of the anti-Christ). They will mourn, but not for joy. They will have great fear, and not joy, at the appearance of Christ, as He is on His way for judgment. Christ will inflict severe and eternal punishment on those living gentiles who had mistreated the Jews during the tribulation, Matthew 25:40, “My brethren.” (Zechariah 14:1-16; Revelation 19:11-21; Matthew 24:27-31; Matthew 25:31-46). Christ had taken his saints to heaven as the Lamb of God. He is now seen returning to earth from heaven, with those same raptured saints, as the Lion Of The Tribe Of Judah, who is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords (John 1:29, Rev 5:5, 19:16). (The living gentiles, who had shown compassion for the Jews during the tribulation, had come to know that the Jews were God’s chosen people. Their compassion for the Jews was due to their acceptance of Christ as their Lord and Savior; God granted them entry into the Kingdom/Millennial reign of Christ, from where they would enter into the eternal state (Matthew 25:40; Revelation 21:1-7). Many Bibles, videos of sermons about Christ, and other Christian material, will be available for those who are left behind when the rapture takes place; they will have those sources of information to teach them about Christ. They, and all believers in Christ, are over-comers, because of their faith in Christ, 1 John 5:4) (Mine)

1 John 5:4 English Standard Version (ESV)

4 For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

Vision of the Son of Man

9 I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. 10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, 11 saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.”
12 Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. 14 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; 15 His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; 16 He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength. 17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. 18 I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death. 19 Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this. 20 The mystery of the seven stars which you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands which you saw are the seven churches.

Study Notes

The following study notes come from the MacArthur Study Bible, and are provided by Biblgateway.com

Revelation

1:1 The Revelation. The Gr. word from which the Eng. word “apocalypse” comes lit. means “to uncover, or to reveal.” When it refers to a person, it means that person becomes clearly visible (see Introduction: Title; cf. Luke 2:30–32; Rom. 8:19; 1 Cor. 1:7; 1 Pet. 1:7). Jesus Christ. The gospels unveil Christ at His first coming in humiliation; Revelation reveals Him in His exaltation: 1) in blazing glory (vv. 7–20); 2) over His church, as its Lord (chaps. 2, 3); 3) in His second coming, as He takes back the earth from the usurper, Satan, and establishes His kingdom (chaps. 4–20); and 4) as He lights up the eternal state (chaps. 21, 22). The NT writers eagerly anticipate this unveiling (1 Cor. 1:7; 2 Thess. 1:7; 1 Pet. 1:7). God gave Him. As a reward for Christ’s perfect submission and atonement, the Father now presented to Him the great record of His future glory (cf. Phil. 2:5–11). Readers eavesdrop on the gift of this book, from the Father to His Son. shortly. The primary meaning of this word (lit. “soon”; cf. 2:5, 16; 3:11; 11:14; 22:12; 2 Tim. 4:9) underscores the imminence of Christ’s return.
1:3 Blessed. This is the only biblical book that comes with a blessing for the one who listens to it being read and explained and then responds in obedience. This is the first of 7 beatitudes in the book (v. 3; 14:13; 16:15; 19:9; 20:6; 22:7, 14). time is near. “Time” refers to epochs, eras, or seasons. The next great epoch of God’s redemptive history is imminent. But although Christ’s coming is the next event, it may be delayed so long that people begin to question whether He will ever come (cf. Matt. 24:36–39; 2 Pet. 3:3, 4).
1:4 seven churches which are in Asia. Asia Minor, equivalent to modern Turkey, was composed of 7 postal districts. At the center of those districts were 7 key cities which served as central points for the dissemination of information. It is to the churches in those cities that John writes. who is and who was and who is to come. God’s eternal presence is not limited by time. He has always been present and will come in the future. the seven Spirits. There are two possible meanings: 1) a reference to Isaiah’s prophecy concerning the 7-fold ministry of the Holy Spirit (Is. 11:2); or 2) more likely, it is a reference to the lampstand with 7 lamps (a menorah) in Zechariah—also a description of the Holy Spirit (see notes on 4:5; 5:6; Zech. 4:1–10). In either case, 7 is the number of completeness, so John is identifying the fullness of the Holy Spirit.
1:5 firstborn. Of all who have been or will be raised from the dead, He is the preeminent one, the only one who is the rightful heir (cf. 3:14; Ps. 89:27; Col. 1:15).
1:6 kings and priests. More accurately, “a kingdom and priests.” All who believe live in the sphere of God’s rule, a kingdom entered by faith in Jesus Christ. And as priests, believers have the right to enter God’s presence.
1:7 coming with clouds. This echoes the promise of Daniel: The Son of Man will come with the clouds of heaven (Dan. 7:13)—not ordinary clouds but clouds of glory. In the OT, God often manifested Himself in an energized, blazing light, called the Shekinah or glory cloud. No one could see it fully and live (Ex. 33:20), so it had to be veiled. But when Christ returns, the glory will be completely visible. Cf. Matt. 24:29, 30; 25:31; see notes on 6:12–17. they who pierced. Not a reference to the 4 Roman soldiers usually involved in crucifixion, but to the Jews who were actually responsible for Christ’s death (Acts 2:22, 23; 3:14, 15). Zechariah identified the ones who pierced Him as “the house of David” and “the inhabitants of Jerusalem” and prophesied that they will weep tears of genuine repentance because of what they did to their Messiah (Zech. 12:10). all the tribes…will mourn. The mourning of the rest of the earth’s inhabitants is not that which accompanies genuine repentance (cf. 9:21). It is the result of guilt for sin and fear of punishment (6:16; cf. Gen. 3:8–10).
1:8 Alpha and the Omega. These are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. An alphabet is an ingenious way to store and communicate knowledge. The 26 letters in the English alphabet, arranged in almost endless combinations, can hold and convey all knowledge. Christ is the supreme, sovereign alphabet; there is nothing outside His knowledge, so as there are no unknown factors that can sabotage His second coming. (cf. Col. 2:3). the Almighty. “Almighty God” occurs 8 times in Revelation, underscoring that God’s power is supreme over all the cataclysmic events it records (see also 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7, 14; 19:15; 21:22). He exercises sovereign control over every person, object, and event, and not one molecule in the universe is outside that dominion.
1:9–18 This vision of Christ is equaled in grandeur only by the vision of His final return as King of kings and Lord of lords (19:11–16).
1:9 tribulation and kingdom and patience. Four characteristics that John and his believing readers share: 1) persecution for their faith; 2) membership in the redeemed community over which Christ serves as Lord and King; 3) eager anticipation of the glory of His coming millennial reign on earth; and 4) endurance and perseverance in spite of difficult times. island…called Patmos. Located in the Aegean Sea off the coast of Asia Minor (modern Turkey) and part of a group of about 50 islands, Patmos is a barren, rocky, crescent-shaped island that is about 10 mi. long and less than 6 mi. at its widest point. It served as a Roman penal colony. According to early Christian historian, Eusebius, the emperor Nerva (A.D. 96–98) released John from Patmos.
1:10 in the Spirit. This was not a dream. John was supernaturally transported out of the material world awake—not sleeping—to an experience beyond the normal senses. The Holy Spirit empowered his senses to perceive revelation from God (cf. Acts 10:11). Lord’s Day. This phrase appears in many early Christian writings and refers to Sunday, the day of the Lord’s resurrection. Some have suggested this phrase refers to “the Day of the Lord,” but the context doesn’t support that interpretation, and the grammatical form of the word “Lord” is adjectival, thus “the Lord’s day.” loud voice. Throughout Revelation, a loud sound or voice indicates the solemnity of what God is about to reveal.
1:11 book. The Gr. word refers to a scroll made of parchment formed from papyrus, a reed that grows plentifully along the Nile.
1:12 lampstands. These were portable gold lampstands that held small oil lamps. Each lampstand represented a church (v. 20), from which the light of life shone. Throughout Scripture, 7 is the number of completeness, so these 7 lampstands are representative of all the churches.
1:13 Son of Man. According to the gospels, this is the title Christ used most often for Himself during His earthly ministry (81 times in the gospels). Taken from the heavenly vision in Dan. 7:13, it is an implied claim to deity. garment. Most occurrences of this word in the Septuagint, the Gr. OT, refer to the garment of the High-Priest. The golden sash across His chest completes the picture of Christ serving in His priestly role (cf. Lev. 16:1–4; Heb. 2:17).
1:14 white like wool. “White” does not refer to a flat white color but a blazing, glowing, white light (cf. Dan. 7:9). Like the glory cloud (or Shekinah), it is a picture of His holiness. eyes…flame of fire. Like two lasers, the eyes of the exalted Lord look with penetrating gaze into the depths of His church (2:18; 19:12; Heb. 4:13).
1:15 feet…fine brass. The altar of burnt offering was covered with brass and its utensils were made of the same material (cf. Ex. 38:1–7). Glowing hot, brass feet are a clear reference to divine judgment. Jesus Christ with feet of judgment is moving through His church to exercise His chastening authority upon sin. voice… sound of many waters. No longer was His voice like the crystal clear note of a trumpet (v. 10), but John likened it to the crashing of the surf against the rocks of the island (cf. Ezek. 43:2). It was the voice of authority.
1:16 seven stars. These are the messengers who represent the 7 churches (see note on v. 20). Christ holds them in His hand, which means that He controls the church and its leaders. a sharp two-edged sword. A large, two-edged broad sword. It signifies judgment (cf. 2:16; 19:15) on those who attack His people and destroy His church.
1:17 fell at His feet. A common response to seeing the awesome glory of the Lord (Gen. 17:3; Num. 16:22; Is. 6:1–8; Ezek. 1:28; Acts 9:4). First and the Last. Jesus Christ applies this OT name for Yahweh (22:13; Is. 41:4; 44:6; 48:12) to Himself, clearly claiming to be God. Idols will come and go. He was before them, and He will remain after them.
1:18 keys of Hades and of Death. See note on Luke 16:23. Death and Hades are essentially synonyms, but death is the condition and Hades, equivalent to the OT Sheol, the place of the dead (see note on 20:13). Christ decides who lives, who dies, and when.
1:19 This verse provides a simple outline for the entire book: “the things which you have seen” refers to the vision John has just seen (chap. 1); “the things which are” denotes the letters to the churches (chaps. 2, 3); and “the things which will take place after this” refers to the revelation of future history (chaps. 4–22).
1:20 the angels. The word lit. means “messenger.” Although it can mean angel—and does throughout the book—it cannot refer to angels here because angels are never leaders in the church. Most likely, these messengers are the 7 key elders representing each of those churches (see note on v. 16).

Comments related to this post.

This post is one of many others that you can find in this blog that deal with God’s Plan For The Ages. All posts in this series can be found under the category of Journey. Please follow this blog so that you can receive updates automatically.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

Background

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

Sources

John Ankerberg, Darrell Bock, Jimmy DeYoung, Andrew Hill, Ed Hindson, Mark Hitchcock, Tommie Ice, Grant R. Jeffrey, David Jeremiah, Walter Kaiser, Tim LaHaye, Hal Lindsey, John MacArthur, Shawn C. Madden, J. Vernon McGee, Henry Morris, Richard Patterson, J. Dwight Pentecost, John Phillips, David Reagan, Ron Rhodes, Adrian Rogers, Charles C. Ryrie, C.I. Scofield, Renald Showers, Charles Swindoll, Frank Charles Thompson, Merrill Unger, Jack Van Impe, John F. Walvoord, Andy Woods, Roy Zuck, and others.

If you want to make a comment, please place that comment on this blog in the appropriate space at the bottom of this page. If you do not want your comment to be shown, please let me know. I moderate all comments, and will not violate anybody’s trust.

The scripture text was taken from Biblegateway.com

The translation of the text is from The New King James Version.

The Ryrie Study Bible, New American Standard Bible, was used for lesson preparation.

Unless otherwise noted, scripture notes were taken from The MacArthur Study Bible notes that are contained in Biblegateway.com

Everyone should own the Ryrie and MacArthur Study Bibles.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

God’s Plan For The Ages 57 – About Israel – Ezekiel 8 – A Vision Of Wickedness In The Temple

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

It Is Well With My Soul – FBC Jacksonville, FL

How Close are we to the Events in Ezekiel 38?
John Ankerberg Show
Published on Sep 8, 2015
Our exciting new programs with prophecy experts Dr. Renald Showers and Dr. Jimmy DeYoung. In this four program series we investigate what the Bible teaches about the timing and events that will take place when Jesus returns at the Rapture. Dr. DeYoung also gives us an up to moment report on what is happening in the nations mentioned in Ezekiel 38 today.

Revelation 19:19 King James Version (KJV)

19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.

Note: 19:19 kings of the earth. See 17:12–17. their armies. See 16:13, 14. His army. Zechariah describes this army of the Lord as “all the saints” (14:5). (MacArthur Study Bible)

God’s Love For Israel

Text

Revelation 21:12 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

12 It had a great and high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels; and names were written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel.

Revelation 21:10-12 NASB

10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, 11 having the glory of God. Her brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper. 12 It had a great and high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels; and names were written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel.

My note: The names of the twelve tribes of Israel will be written on the 12 gates of the of the walls of the New Jerusalem

Lesson Text

Ezekiel 8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Date: 594 B.C. (Scofield Study Bible)

Notice the personal involvement of God in all but two verses (10 and 11).

Abominations in the Temple

1 And it came to pass in the sixth year, in the sixth month, on the fifth day of the month, as I sat in my house with the elders of Judah sitting before me, that the hand of the Lord God fell upon me there. 2 Then I looked, and there was a likeness, like the appearance of fire—from the appearance of His waist and downward, fire; and from His waist and upward, like the appearance of brightness, like the color of amber. 3 He stretched out the form of a hand, and took me by a lock of my hair; and the Spirit lifted me up between earth and heaven, and brought me in visions of God to Jerusalem, to the door of the north gate of the inner court,where the seat of the image of jealousy was, which provokes to jealousy. 4 And behold, the glory of the God of Israel was there, like the vision that I saw in the plain.

5 Then He said to me, “Son of man, lift your eyes now toward the north.” So I lifted my eyes toward the north, and there, north of the altar gate, was this image of jealousy in the entrance.

6 Furthermore He said to me, “Son of man, do you see what they are doing, the great abominations that the house of Israel commits here, to make Me go far away from My sanctuary? Now turn again, you will see greater abominations.” 7 So He brought me to the door of the court; and when I looked, there was a hole in the wall. 8 Then He said to me, “Son of man, dig into the wall”; and when I dug into the wall, there was a door.

9 And He said to me, “Go in, and see the wicked abominations which they are doing there.” 10 So I went in and saw, and there—every sort of creeping thing, abominable beasts, and all the idols of the house of Israel, portrayed all around on the walls. 11 And there stood before them seventy men of the elders of the house of Israel, and in their midst stood Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan. Each man had a censer in his hand, and a thick cloud of incense went up. 12 Then He said to me, “Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the room of his idols? For they say, ‘The Lord does not see us, the Lord has forsaken the land.’”

13 And He said to me, “Turn again, and you will see greater abominations that they are doing.” 14 So He brought me to the door of the north gate of the Lord’s house; and to my dismay, women were sitting there weeping for Tammuz.

15 Then He said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? Turn again, you will see greater abominations than these.” 16 So He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’s house; and there, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east, and they were worshiping the sun toward the east.

17 And He said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? Is it a trivial thing to the house of Judah to commit the abominations which they commit here? For they have filled the land with violence; then they have returned to provoke Me to anger. Indeed they put the branch to their nose. 18 Therefore I also will act in fury. My eye will not spare nor will I have pity; and though they cry in My ears with a loud voice, I will not hear them.”

Consider why God would be drawn to jealousy in verse 1-6.

Consider the honor of Ezekiel being called “son of man.”

Ezekiel and Daniel were “all man.” Christ was “all God and all man.”

Barnes’ Notes on the Bible (Ezekiel 2:1)

Son of man – This phrase (which occurs elsewhere in Scripture) is applied especially to Ezekiel and Daniel, the prophets of the captivity. Ezekiel is thus reminded of his humanity, at the time when he is especially permitted to have contact with God.

Question: “What does it mean that Jesus is the Son of Man?”

https://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-Son-of-Man.html

Answer: Jesus is referred to as the “Son of Man” 88 times in the New Testament. A first meaning of the phrase “Son of Man” is as a reference to the prophecy of Daniel 7:13-14, “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.” The description “Son of Man” was a Messianic title. Jesus is the One who was given dominion and glory and a kingdom. When Jesus used this phrase, He was assigning the Son of Man prophecy to Himself. The Jews of that era would have been intimately familiar with the phrase and to whom it referred. Jesus was proclaiming Himself as the Messiah.

A second meaning of the phrase “Son of Man” is that Jesus was truly a human being. God called the prophet Ezekiel “son of man” 93 times. God was simply calling Ezekiel a human being. A son of a man is a man. Jesus was fully God (John 1:1), but He was also a human being (John 1:14). First John 4:2 tells us, “This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God.” Yes, Jesus was the Son of God—He was in His essence God. Yes, Jesus was also the Son of Man—He was in His essence a human being. In summary, the phrase “Son of Man” indicates that Jesus is the Messiah and that He is truly a human being.

Consider why God would be drawn to Jealousy. The Message translation is very informative in this matter.

Ezekiel 8:1-6 The Message (MSG)

The Spirit Carried Me in Visions

8 1-4 In the sixth year, in the sixth month and the fifth day, while I was sitting at home meeting with the leaders of Judah, it happened that the hand of my Master, God, gripped me. When I looked, I was astonished. What I saw looked like a man—from the waist down like fire and from the waist up like highly burnished bronze. He reached out what looked like a hand and grabbed me by the hair. The Spirit swept me high in the air and carried me in visions of God to Jerusalem, to the entrance of the north gate of the Temple’s inside court where the image of the sex goddess that makes God so angry had been set up. Right before me was the Glory of the God of Israel, exactly like the vision I had seen out on the plain.

5 He said to me, “Son of man, look north.” I looked north and saw it: Just north of the entrance loomed the altar of the sex goddess, Asherah, that makes God so angry.

6 Then he said, “Son of man, do you see what they’re doing? Outrageous obscenities! And doing them right here! It’s enough to drive me right out of my own Temple. But you’re going to see worse yet.”

Notes – Ezekiel 8 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

8:1 the sixth year. 592 B.C. (cf. 1:2) in Aug./Sep., a year and two months after the first vision (1:1). the hand of the Lord. This ushered the prophet into a series of visions (v. 3) stretching to the end of chap. 11.
8:2 a likeness. He saw the glory of the Lord (v. 4) as in 1:26–28.
8:3 in visions of God. Ezekiel 8–11 deals with details conveyed only to Ezekiel in visions. Ezekiel’s trip to Jerusalem was in spirit only, while his body physically remained in his house. In visions, he went to Jerusalem and in visions he returned to Babylon (11:24). After God finished the visions, Ezekiel told his home audience what he had seen. The visions are not a description of deeds done in the past in Israel, but a survey of Israel’s current condition, as they existed at that very time. the seat…image of jealousy. God represents to Ezekiel the image of an idol (cf. Deut. 4:16) in the entrance to the inner court of the temple. It is called “the image of jealousy” because it provoked the Lord to jealousy (5:13; 16:38; 36:6; 38:19; Ex. 20:5).
8:4 the glory of…God. God was also there in glory, but was ignored while the people worshiped the idol (v. 6).
8:6 to make Me go far away. Sin would expel the people from their land and God from His sanctuary.
8:7–12 This section describes “greater abominations” (v. 6) of idolatry, namely a secret cult of idolatrous elders.
8:8 dig into the wall…a door. This indicates the clandestine (cf. v. 12) secrecy of these idolaters, practicing their cult in hiding.
8:10 portrayed…on the walls. The temple’s walls are ugly with graffiti featuring creatures linked with Egyptian animal cults (cf. Rom 1:23) and other idols. Leaders of Israel, who should be worshiping the God of the temple, are offering incense to them (v. 11).
8:11 seventy…elders. Obviously not the Sanhedrin, since it was not formed until after the restoration from Babylon, though the pattern had been suggested much earlier (cf. Ex. 24:9, 10; Num. 11:16). These men were appointed to guard against idolatry! Jaazaniah…son of Shaphan. If he was the son of the Shaphan who read God’s Word to Josiah (2 Kin. 22:8–11), we have some concept of the depth of sin to which the leaders had fallen. He is not to be confused with the man in 11:1, who had a different father.
8:14 weeping for Tammuz. Yet a greater abomination than the secret cult was Israel’s engaging in the Babylonian worship of Tammuz or Dumuzi (Duzu), beloved of Ishtar, the god of spring vegetation. Vegetation burned in the summer, died in the winter, and came to life in the spring. The women mourned over the god’s demise in July and longed for his revival. The fourth month of the Hebrew calendar still bears the name Tammuz. With the worship of this idol were connected the basest immoralities.
8:16 worshiping the sun. In the most sacred inner court where only priests could go (Joel 2:17), there was the crowning insult to God. Twenty-five men were worshiping the sun as an idol (cf. Deut. 4:19; 2 Kin. 23:5, 11; Job 31:26; Jer. 44:17). These 25 represent the 24 orders of priests plus the High-Priest.
8:17 put the branch to their nose. The meaning is uncertain, but it seems to have been some act of contempt toward God. The Gr. OT translators rendered it, “they are as mockers.”
8:18 I…will act in fury. God must judge intensely due to such horrible sins (cf. 24:9, 10).

Comments on this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study.

The book of Ezekiel show’s God’s prophetic purposes being fulfilled in the lives and nation of Israel. Jimmy DeYoung has called the book of Ezekiel “the timeline of the Jews.”

Purpose of Writing: https://www.gotquestions.org/Book-of-Ezekiel.html

Ezekiel ministered to his generation who were both exceedingly sinful and thoroughly hopeless. By means of his prophetic ministry he attempted to bring them to immediate repentance and to confidence in the distant future. He taught that: (1) God works through human messengers; (2) Even in defeat and despair God’s people need to affirm God’s sovereignty; (3) God’s Word never fails; (4) God is present and can be worshiped anywhere; (5) People must obey God if they expect to receive blessings; and (6) God’s Kingdom will come.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

Background

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

Sources

John Ankerberg, Darrell Bock, Jimmy DeYoung, Ed Hindson, Mark Hitchcock, Tommie Ice, Grant R. Jeffrey, David Jeremiah, Tim LaHaye, Hal Lindsey, John MacArthur, J. Vernon McGee, Henry Morris, J. Dwight Pentecost, John Phillips, David Reagan, Ron Rhodes, Adrian Rogers, Charles C. Ryrie, C.I. Scofield, Renald Showers, Charles Swindoll, Frank Charles Thompson, Merrill Unger, Jack Van Impe, John F. Walvoord, Andy Woods, Roy Zuck, and others.

Please follow this blog: https://equippingblog.wordpress.com/

God’s Plan For The Ages 56 – Daniel 9 – The Tribulation/70th Week Of Daniel

Click onto any highlighted word to view the videos and text on the blog.

Gaither Vocal Band, Ernie Haase & Signature Sound – Blow the Trumpet in Zion

Daniel 9 Taught by Dave Breese
About Dave Breese (Deceased)
http://www.raptureready.com/david-breese/

Key Verse: Daniel 9:20 New King James Version (NKJV)

The Seventy-Weeks Prophecy

20 Now while I was speaking, praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the Lord my God for the holy mountain of my God,

In Daniel 9:20, we have the key to understanding the 70th week of Daniel, which we will come to know as the tribulation, which ends with the second coming of Christ. In this verse, Daniel is seen praying for the sin of himself and for the sin of Israel. He is not praying for any other people, or for any other land. The focus on Daniel and Israel is the key to understanding eschatology (rapture, tribulation, second coming of Christ, millennium/kingdom age, eternal state), which is about Israel and the church, with the focus being on Israel. The church will not replace Israel for the promises that were made to Israel by God. The church is not a brick and mortar structure, but is the born again body of believers in Christ, which may, or may not, assemble in a brick and mortar structure. God is using His prophecy to Daniel to tell of His plan to restore “His chosen people,” Israel (Genesis 12:1-3; Deuteronomy 7:6), to their promised land (Genesis 13:14-15; 15:18-21; 17:6-8; 28:13-15). The 70th week of Daniel was designed for the Jews and Gentiles who are not believers in Christ. There is no purpose for born again believers in Christ to have a place in the tribulation, whether they are Jew or Gentile.

This article discusses the purposes of the 70th week of Daniel, and shows that week as being the tribulation, as depicted in Matthew 24, and is the key to understanding the tribulation and second coming of Christ. The rapture of the church takes place before the events of Matthew 24. Born again believers in Christ have no place in Matthew 24, or in any other passage that relates to the tribulation. The 70th week of Daniel/the tribulation, is designed for the purpose of God for judging sin, and for bringing Israel to saving faith in Christ as the Messiah. Following the tribulation will be the second coming of Christ, which will be followed by the Millennium/Kingdom age. The word “tribulation” is often used in ways that understate its severity. It will be a time of escalating severity that has never been experienced, per Matthew 24:21, “such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will.” Yes! People go through times of tribulation, but no one will ever experience the kind of tribulation that awaits the 70th week of Daniel.

“The mountain of my God. ” Thy holy mountain – Jerusalem was built on hills, and the city in general might be designated by this phrase. Or, more probably, there is allusion either to Mount Zion, or to Mount Moriah. Barnes Commentary, Daniel 9:16)

Terms for reference. The terms, “1,000 Year Reign of Christ, Millennium, Kingdom, Kingdom Age, and Kingdom Of God,” are synonymous in respect to this article.

Book Introduction – Daniel

Date of Book of Daniel,607 B.C., to 534 B.C.

Date of Daniel 9, 538 B.C.

Scofield Reference Note

Daniel, like Ezekiel was a Jewish captive in Babylon. He was of royal or princely descent ( Daniel 1:3 ). For his rank and comeliness he was trained for palace service. In the polluted atmosphere of an oriental court he lived a life of singular piety and usefulness. His long life extended from Nebuchadnezzar to Cyrus. He was a contemporary of Jeremiah, Ezekiel ( Daniel 14:20 ), Joshua, the high priest of the restoration, Ezra, and Zerubbabel.

Daniel is the indispensable introduction to New Testament prophecy, the themes of which are, the apostasy of the Church, the manifestation of the man of sin, the great tribulation, the return of the Lord, the resurrections and the judgments. These, except the first, are Daniel’s themes also. But Daniel is distinctively the prophet of the “times of the Gentiles” ( Luke 21:24 ), (See Scofield “Luke 21:24”) . His vision sweeps the whole course of Gentile world-rule to its end in catastrophe, and to the setting up of the Messianic kingdom.

Daniel is in four broad divisions:

Introduction. The personal history of Daniel from the conquest of Jerusalem to the second year of Nebuchadnezzar, 1:1-21.

The visions of Nebuchadnezzar and their results, 2:1-4:37.
The personal history of Daniel under Belshazzar and Darius, 5:1-6:28.
The visions of Daniel, 7:1-12:13.
The events recorded in Daniel cover a period of 73 years (Ussher).

Re: The Times Of The Gentiles

Luke 21:24 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

24 and they will fall by the edge of the sword, and will be led captive into all the nations; and Jerusalem will be trampled under foot by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.

Macarthur Study Bible Note: 21:24 the times of the Gentiles. This expression is unique to Luke. It identifies the era from Israel’s captivity (ca. 586 B.C. to Babylon; cf. 2 Kin. 25) to her restoration in the kingdom (Rev. 20:1–6). It has been a time during which, in accord with God’s purpose, Gentiles have dominated or threatened Jerusalem. The era has also been marked by vast spiritual privileges for the Gentile nations (cf. Is. 66:12; Mal. 1:11; Matt. 24:14; Mark 13:10).

trodden down of the Gentiles: Scofield Reference Note: The “times of the Gentiles” began with the captivity of Judah under Nebuchadnezzar 2 Chronicles 36:1-21, since which time Jerusalem has been under Gentile overlordship.

Daniel 9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Daniel’s Prayer for His People

1 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of Median descent, who was made king over the kingdom of the Chaldeans— 2 in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, observed in the books the number of the years which was revealed as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet for the completion of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years. 3 So I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes. 4 I prayed to the Lord my God and confessed and said, “Alas, O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and lovingkindness for those who love Him and keep His commandments, 5 we have sinned, committed iniquity, acted wickedly and rebelled, even turning aside from Your commandments and ordinances. 6 Moreover, we have not listened to Your servants the prophets, who spoke in Your name to our kings, our princes, our fathers and all the people of the land.
7 “Righteousness belongs to You, O Lord, but to us open shame, as it is this day—to the men of Judah, the inhabitants of Jerusalem and all Israel, those who are nearby and those who are far away in all the countries to which You have driven them, because of their unfaithful deeds which they have committed against You. 8 Open shame belongs to us, O Lord, to our kings, our princes and our fathers, because we have sinned against You. 9 To the Lord our God belong compassion and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against Him; 10 nor have we obeyed the voice of the Lord our God, to walk in His teachings which He set before us through His servants the prophets. 11 Indeed all Israel has transgressed Your law and turned aside, not obeying Your voice; so the curse has been poured out on us, along with the oath which is written in the law of Moses the servant of God, for we have sinned against Him. 12 Thus He has confirmed His words which He had spoken against us and against our rulers who ruled us, to bring on us great calamity; for under the whole heaven there has not been done anything like what was done to Jerusalem. 13 As it is written in the law of Moses, all this calamity has come on us; yet we have not sought the favor of the Lord our God by turning from our iniquity and giving attention to Your truth. 14 Therefore the Lord has kept the calamity in store and brought it on us; for the Lord our God is righteous with respect to all His deeds which He has done, but we have not obeyed His voice.
15 “And now, O Lord our God, who have brought Your people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand and have made a name for Yourself, as it is this day—we have sinned, we have been wicked. 16 O Lord, in accordance with all Your righteous acts, let now Your anger and Your wrath turn away from Your city Jerusalem, Your holy mountain; for because of our sins and the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and Your people have become a reproach to all those around us. 17 So now, our God, listen to the prayer of Your servant and to his supplications, and for Your sake, O Lord, let Your face shine on Your desolate sanctuary. 18 O my God, incline Your ear and hear! Open Your eyes and see our desolations and the city which is called by Your name; for we are not presenting our supplications before You on account of any merits of our own, but on account of Your great compassion. 19 O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and take action! For Your own sake, O my God, do not delay, because Your city and Your people are called by Your name.”

Comments: All following notes come from the MacArthur Study Bible.

9:1 the first year. Ca. 539 B.C. made king. This may mean that Darius (a title, not a proper name, see note on 5:31) refers to Cyrus who was made king by God’s allowance (cf. Ps. 75:6, 7). Since Cyrus was the first monarch of the Medo-Persian empire, this time note was also the first year after the death of Belshazzar, when Babylon fell.
9:2 seventy years. Daniel’s study of “the books” (OT scrolls) focused on the years prophesied for the captivity by Jeremiah in Jer. 25:11, 12 and 29:10. Since the end of that span was near, he prayed for God’s next move on behalf of Israel. Cf. 2 Chr. 36:21, where it is indicated that the 70 years of exile were intended to restore the Sabbath rests that Israel had ignored for so many years (cf. Lev. 25:4, 5; 26:34–43).

Jeremiah 25:11 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

11 This whole land will be a desolation and a horror, and these nations will serve the king of Babylon seventy years.

25:11 seventy years. Here is the first specific statement on the length of the exile (cf. 29:10). This period probably began in the fourth year of Jehoiakim, when Jerusalem was first captured and the temple treasures were taken. It ends with the decree of Cyrus to let the Jews return, spanning from ca. 605/04 B.C. to 536/35 B.C. The exact number of Sabbath years is 490 years, the period from Saul to the Babylonian captivity. This was retribution for their violation of the Sabbath law (cf. Lev. 26:34, 35; 2 Chr. 36:21).

Jeremiah 29:10 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

10 “For thus says the Lord, ‘When seventy years have been completed for Babylon, I will visit you and fulfill My good word to you, to bring you back to this place.

29:4–10 Jeremiah’s counsel to Israelites in Babylon was to take all the steps in living as colonists planning to be there for a long time (70 years, 29:10, as 25:11).

Daniel 9:4–19 I prayed. Various aspects of the passage give rich instruction regarding prayer. True prayer is: in response to the Word (v. 2), characterized by fervency and self-denial (v. 3), identified unselfishly with God’s people (v. 5), strengthened by confession (vv. 5–15), dependent on God’s character (vv. 4, 7, 9, 15), and has as its goal, God’s glory (vv. 16–19)
Daniel 9:11 the curse. This refers to the judgment that God brought, as promised, for Israel’s disobedience in the Land (Lev. 26:21–42; Deut. 28:15–68). This is in contrast to the blessings associated with faith and obedience (Lev. 26:3–20; Deut. 28:1–14). God had given the promise that even in a time of judgment, if Israel would confess their sin, He would bring blessing again (Lev. 26:40–42).
9:16. Daniel prayed for restoration in 3 aspects. In effect he asked God to bring back “Your city” (vv. 16, 18), “Your sanctuary (v. 17), and “Your people”(v. 19). God’s answer embraced all three (v. 24).

Gabriel Brings an Answer

20 Now while I was speaking and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the Lord my God in behalf of the holy mountain of my God, 21 while I was still speaking in prayer, then the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision previously, came to me in my extreme weariness about the time of the evening offering. 22 He gave me instruction and talked with me and said, “O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you insight with understanding. 23 At the beginning of your supplications the command was issued, and I have come to tell you, for you are highly esteemed; so give heed to the message and gain understanding of the vision.

9:21 the man Gabriel. This angel, called a “man” because he appeared in the form of a man, appeared also in 8:16. Cf. the angel Michael in 10:13, 21; 12:1. the evening offering. This was the second lamb of two offered daily (cf. 8:14 and see note there), this one at 3 p.m., a common time for prayer (Ezra 9:5).

Seventy Weeks and the Messiah

My note: To gain an understanding of the 70 weeks of Daniel is to gain an understanding of how long it will be until the world that we know is destroyed, with a new one replacing it… New Heaven, New Earth, New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:1-2). The study of the timing of the 70 weeks of Daniel shows that we, who are living in the church age, are living in the time between the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel. The remaining events on the calendar of God are the rapture of the church, the tribulation, the 1,000 year reign of Christ/the Kingdom Age/The Kingdom Of God, the Great White Throne Judgment (for unbelievers), and the eternal state (for those who have been born again). Revelation 21:5 “I am making all things new.” Revelation 21:12, “the names of the 12 tribes of Israel’s sons are inscribed on the gates” (of the New Jerusalem”)

Seventy Weeks and the Messiah

24 “Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy place. 25 So you are to know and discern that from the issuing of a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince there will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; it will be built again, with plaza and moat, even in times of distress. 26 Then after the sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be cut off and have nothing, and the people of the prince who is to come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. And its end will come with a flood; even to the end there will be war; desolations are determined. 27 And he will make a firm covenant with the many for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the wing of abominations will come one who makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one who makes desolate.”

My note: It is important to read these notes on verses 24-27 until they are easily understood. The key to determining the time line of the 70 weeks of Daniel (weeks of years/490 years) is to use “360 day years.” At present time we are living in the time that exists between the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel (weeks of years.we are in the dispensation of grace). The 69th week (the 483rd of 490 years) ended when Christ entered Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. From the time that our Lord was crucified, until the time of the tribulation, born again believers in Christ await the rapture of the church, which precedes the tribulation. For unbelievers, they are not caught up in the rapture, but enter into the 7 year tribulation (the 70th week of Daniel, years 484-490).

9:24–26 Seventy weeks…from…until. These are weeks of years, whereas weeks of days are described in a different way (10:2, 3). The time spans from the Persian Artaxerxes’ decree to rebuild Jerusalem, ca. 445 B.C. (Neh. 2:1–8), to the Messiah’s kingdom. This panorama includes: 1) 7 weeks or 49 years, possibly closing Nehemiah’s career in the rebuilding of the “street and wall,” as well as the end of the ministry of Malachi and the close of the OT; 2) 62 weeks or 434 more years for a total of 483 years to the first advent of Messiah. This was fulfilled at the triumphal entry on 9 Nisan, A.D. 30 (see notes on Matt. 21:1–9). The Messiah will be “cut off,” (a common reference to death); and 3) the final 7 years or 70th week of the time of Antichrist (cf. v. 27). Roman people, from whom the Antichrist will come, will “destroy the city” of Jerusalem and its temple in A.D. 70.

9:24. This highly complex and startlingly accurate prophecy answers Daniel’s prayer, not with reference to near history, but by giving the future of Israel in the final end of the age. God promises 2 sets of 3 accomplishments each.
First, those related to sin are: 1) finish the transgression, i.e., restrain sin and Israel’s in particular in its long trend of apostasy, as in v. 11; 2) make an end of sins, i.e., to judge it with finality (cf. Heb. 9:26); and 3) make reconciliation for iniquity, signifies to furnish the actual basis of covering sin by full atonement, the blood of the crucified Messiah who is “cut off” (v. 26), which affects the first two realities (cf. the fountain, Zech. 13:1).
Second, those accomplishments related to righteousness are: 1) bring in…righteousness, the eternal righteousness of Daniel’s people in their great change from centuries of apostasy; 2) seal up vision…, i.e., no more revelation is needed and God will bring these anticipations to completion by their fulfillment in Israel’s blessing as a nation; and 3) anoint the Most Holy, consecrate the Holy Place in a temple of the future that will be the center of worship in the millennial kingdom (cf. Ezek. 40–48). Clearly this must be understood to sweep to the end of Gentile power and the time of Antichrist right before Christ’s return. Summing up, the first 3 are fulfilled in principle at Christ’s first coming, in full at His return. The last 3 complete the plan at His Second Advent.
9:27 Then. This is clearly the end of the age, the Second Advent judgment, because the bringing in of righteousness did not occur 7 years after the death of the Messiah, nor did the destruction of Jerusalem fit the 7 year period (occurring 37 years later). This is the future 7 year period which ends with sin’s final judgment and Christ’s reign of righteousness; i.e., the return of Christ and the establishment of His rule. These 7 years constitute the 70th week of Daniel. he shall confirm. “He” is the last-mentioned prince (v. 26), leader of the Roman sphere (cf. chaps. 2 and 7), the Antichrist who comes in the latter days. The time is in the future tribulation period of “one week,” i.e., the final 7 years of v. 24. He confirms (lit., causes to prevail) a 7 year covenant, his own pact with Israel for what will turn out actually to be for a shorter time. The leader in this covenant is the “little horn” of 7:7, 8, 20, 21, 24–26, and the evil leader of NT prophecy (Mark 13:14; 2 Thess. 2:3–10; Rev. 13:1–10). That he is in the future, even after Christ’s First Advent, is shown by 1) Matt. 24:15; 2) by the time references that match (7:25; Rev. 11:2, 3; 12:14; 13:5); and 3) by the end here extending to the Second Advent, matching the duration elsewhere mentioned in Daniel (2:35, 45; 7:15ff.; 12:1–3) and Rev. 11:2; 12:14; 13:5. middle of the week. This is the halfway point of the 70th week of years, i.e., 7 years leading to Christ’s second coming. The Antichrist will break his covenant with Israel (v. 27a), which has resumed its ancient sacrificial system. Three and a half years of tribulation remain, agreeing with the time in other Scriptures (7:25; Rev. 11:2, 3; 12:14; 13:5, called “Great Tribulation,” cf. Matt. 24:21) as God’s wrath intensifies. abominations…one who makes desolate. The Antichrist will cause abomination against Jewish religion. This violation will desolate or ruin what Jews regard as sacred, namely their holy temple and the honoring of God’s presence there (cf. 1 Kin. 9:3; 2 Thess. 2:4). Jesus refers directly to this text in His Olivet discourse (Matt. 24:15). See note on 11:31. the consummation. God permits this tribulation under the Antichrist’s persecutions and ultimately triumphs, achieving judgment of the sin and sinners in Israel (12:7) and in the world (cf. Jer. 25:31). This includes the Antichrist (11:45; Rev. 19:20), and all who deserve judgment (9:24; Matt. 13:41–43).

Christ relates the 70th week of Daniel to the tribulation and His second coming.

Matthew 24:3-8 Introduction

Christ tells His disciples, who are Jews, about the coming tribulation.

Christ will continue with a discussion about the great tribulation and His second coming.

The Jews who find themselves in the tribulation will be those who had not accepted Christ as their Lord and Savior, which means they were not born again. From this point, forward, any mention of Jew, or Gentile, relates to those who had not accepted Christ as their Lord and Savior; had not been born again; and had missed the rapture and were left behind to face the oppression of the anti-Christ and the wrath of God (John 14:1-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 1 Corinthians 15:51-58.)

Matthew 24:3-8 New American Standard Translation (NASB)

3 As He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things happen, and what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?”
4 And Jesus answered and said to them, “See to it that no one misleads you. 5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many. 6 You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end. 7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes. 8 But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs.

24:8 sorrows. The word means “birth pangs.” Famines, earthquakes, and conflicts have always characterized life in a fallen world; but by calling these things “the beginning” of labor pains, He indicated that things will get notably and remarkably worse at the end of the era as these unique tribulations signal the soon arrival of Messiah to judge sinful humanity and set up His millennial kingdom. Cf. 1 Thess. 5:3; Rev. 6:1–17; 8:1—9:21; 16:1–21; see note on v. 14.

Matthew 24:9-12 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

This discussion relates to those who will be left behind from the rapture of the church. Christ is speaking to Jews.

9 “Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. 10 At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another. 11 Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many. 12 Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold.

Matthew 24:14 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Note: It is the gospel of the kingdom, not the gospel of Christ, that will be preached.

14 This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.

24:14 preached in all the world. Despite all the tribulations that would come—the deception of false teachers, the wars, persecutions, natural disasters, defections from Christ, and all the obstacles to the spread of the gospel—the message ultimately penetrates every part of the globe. God is never without a witness, and He will proclaim the gospel from heaven itself if necessary (cf. Rev. 14:6). and then the end will come. “The end” refers to the final, excruciating birth pangs (see note on v. 8). This is how Christ characterizes the time of Great Tribulation described in the verses that follow.

Matthew 24:15 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Notice the reference to Daniel that Christ uses to explain the tribulation.

Perilous Times

15 “Therefore when you see the abomination of desolation which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand),

24:15 abomination of desolation. See notes on Daniel 9:27; 11:31. This phrase originally referred to the desecration of the temple by Antiochus Epiphanes, king of Syria in the second century B.C. Antiochus invaded Jerusalem in 168 B.C., made the altar into a shrine to Zeus, and even sacrificed pigs on it. However, Jesus clearly was looking toward a yet-future “abomination of desolation.” Some suggest that this prophecy was fulfilled in A.D. 70 when Titus invaded Jerusalem and destroyed the temple (see note on v. 2). However, the Apostle Paul saw a still-future fulfillment (2 Thess. 2:3, 4), as did John (Rev. 13:14, 15)—when the Antichrist sets up an image in the temple during the future tribulation. Christ’s words here therefore look beyond the events of A.D. 70 to a time of even greater global cataclysm that will immediately precede His coming (cf. vv. 29–31).

Matthew 24:16-20 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Notice the reference that Christ makes to the Sabbath (vs 20). Such a reference would have no meaning to Gentiles. Also, Christ did not have such a discussion with Gentiles. This discussion at the Mount of Olives was made by Christ, to Jews, about Jews.

16 then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains. 17 Whoever is on the housetop must not go down to get the things out that are in his house. 18 Whoever is in the field must not turn back to get his cloak. 19 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! 20 But pray that your flight will not be in the winter, or on a Sabbath.

24:1—25:46 This is the last of the 5 discourses Matthew features (see Introduction: Historical and Theological Themes). It is known as the Olivet Discourse, and it contains some of the most important prophetic material in all of Scripture

Matthew 24:21 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Christ discusses the great tribulation with His disciples, who are Jews.

21 For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will.

24:21 great tribulation. The words “has not been” and “nor ever shall be”—along with the description that follows—identify this as the yet-future time in which God’s wrath shall be poured out upon the earth (see note on Rev. 7:14). Jesus’ descriptions of the cataclysms that follow closely resemble the outpouring of divine wrath described in the bowl judgments of Rev. 16 and His subsequent appearing in Rev. 19 (see note on v. 30).

Matthew 24:22-28 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

22 Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short. 23 Then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or ‘There He is,’ do not believe him. 24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect. 25 Behold, I have told you in advance. 26 So if they say to you, ‘Behold, He is in the wilderness,’ do not go out, or, ‘Behold, He is in the inner rooms,’ do not believe them.27 For just as the lightning comes from the east and flashes even to the west, so will the coming of the Son of Man be. 28 Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.

My comment. 24:22 those days will be shortened. If the afflictions of this time were to continue, “no flesh would be saved,” meaning that no Jews would survive. But “for the elect’s sake” (the elect are Israel, Deuteronomy 7:6); the attack of the anti-Christ is against Israel. Gentiles who come to Christ will also suffer, but the focus of the tribulation is the attack by the anti-Christ on Israel. Daniel 7:25, 7:27 and Revelation 12:14 suggest that the actual length of time that the Beast will be permitted to terrorize the world will be set at 3½ years, which will occur after the anti-Christ breaks the covenant with Israel, which will be the last half of the tribulation.

24:26 do not believe it. No one should consider the claims of self-styled messiahs because all of them are false. When Christ returns, no one will miss it (vv. 27, 28).24:28 the eagles will be gathered together. The location of a carcass is visible from great distances because of the circling carrion birds overhead (cf. Job 39:27–30). Similarly, Christ’s return will be clearly evident to all near and far. The same point is made by the lightning in v. 27. The eagle-carcass imagery here also speaks of the judgment that will accompany His return (Rev. 19:21).

Matthew 24:29-31 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The Glorious Return Of Christ “After” The Tribulation

29 “But immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 And then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory. 31 And He will send forth His angels with a great trumpet and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.

vs 29, “after the tribulation”

24:29 the sun will be darkened. Such phenomena are a common feature of Day of the Lord prophecy (see Is. 13:9, 10; Ezek. 32:7, 8; Joel 2:10, 31; 3:15; Amos 8:9). The ultimate fulfillment of these prophecies takes place during the time of the Beast’s reign (Rev. 6:12, 13; 8:12).
24:30 the sign of the Son of Man. I.e., the Son of Man Himself is the sign. The events described here precisely parallel the description in Dan. 7:13; Rev. 19:11–21. all the tribes of the earth will mourn. I.e., over their own rebellion. Israel in particular will mourn over their rejection of the Messiah (cf. Zech 12:10–12).

My note: 24:31 from one end of heaven to the other. All the “elect/Jews”. from heaven and earth are gathered and assembled before Christ. This is the culmination of world history, ushering in the millennial reign of Christ (cf. Rev. 20:4).See the following verses:

Ezekiel 36:24-29 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

24 For I will take you from the nations, gather you from all the lands and bring you into your own land. 25 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26 Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances. 28 You will live in the land that I gave to your forefathers; so you will be My people, and I will be your God. 29 Moreover, I will save you from all your uncleanness; and I will call for the grain and multiply it, and I will not bring a famine on you.

Ezekiel 37:14 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

14 I will put My Spirit within you and you will come to life, and I will place you on your own land. Then you will know that I, the Lord, have spoken and done it,” declares the Lord.’”

Jeremiah 16:15 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

15 but, ‘As the Lord lives, who brought up the sons of Israel from the land of the north and from all the countries where He had banished them.’ For I will restore them to their own land which I gave to their fathers.

Jeremiah 29:14 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

14 I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I will restore your fortunes and will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I will bring you back to the place from where I sent you into exile.’

Jeremiah 30:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 For behold, days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will restore the fortunes of My people Israel and Judah.’ The Lord says, ‘I will also bring them back to the land that I gave to their forefathers and they shall possess it.’”

My note: Not all Jews will be saved. All will be gathered, but not all will enter into the Millennial Kingdom. Consider Luke 16:19-31, where two Jews had died (Lazarus, a righteous Jew, and the rich man, who was not righteous). Lazarus is shown as being in the bosom of Abraham, which is the Presence of God. Scripture consistently teaches that the spirits of the righteous dead go immediately into the presence of God (Luke 23:43; 2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23). The rich man is shown to be confined to Hades where he was being tormented. “Hades” always refers to the place of the wicked prior to final judgment in hell. Both places of residence are permanent, with no way of going from one place to the other, and with no end to either. (Reference made to MacArthur Study Bible notes)

Matthew 24:40-41 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

40 Then there will be two men in the field; one will be taken and one will be left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one will be left.

John Walvoord’s Note: 24:40, 41 the one who is left, is left to enter the kingdom; the one who is taken, is taken in judgment. I.e., taken in judgment

MacArthur Note: (cf. v. 39) just as in Noah’s day (“took them”; v. 39). This is clearly “not” a reference to the catching away of believers described in 1 Thess. 4:16, 17.

Matthew 25:31-34 New King James Version (NKJV)

The Son of Man Will Judge the Nations

31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. 33 And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.
34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

Matthew 25:40 New King James Version (NKJV)

40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

Matthew 25:41 New King James Version (NKJV)

41 “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:

Matthew 25:45-46 New King James Version (NKJV)

45 Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ 46 And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

The eternal destiny is the same for those in Matthew 25:45-46, as for those who were taken in Matthew 24:40-41. In the Judgment of the Nations, also known as the Sheep and Goat Judgment, Christ is judging the Gentiles as to how they treated the Jews (My brethren) during the tribulation. Because of the compassion that the “sheep” gentiles had for the Jews, it showed that they recognized the Jews as being the elect of God, and that they had come to know Christ as their Lord and Savior. Because the sheep gentiles were granted entry into the Millennium, thereby gaining entry into the eternal state, they would have been given immortal/imperishable bodies, per 1 Corinthians 15:50-54. This passage (1 Cor 15:50-54) relates to the rapture of the church, prior to the tribulation. However, the truth that relates to the sheep gentiles of Matthew 25, is that in order for people to spend eternity with Christ, “they must be given a body that is immortal/imperrishable.”

1 Corinthians 15:50-54 New King James Version (NKJV)

Our Final Victory

50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. 51 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”

Let’s consider the two events that surround the 70th week of Daniel, which are the tribulation and the second coming of Christ. At the second coming of Christ, He sets foot on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, Israel.

The rapture, from rapio (Latin), and harpazo (Greek).

Preceding the tribulation is the rapture, which is a time of comfort for believers in Christ. It is a time where believers are looking for “the blessed hope and appearing of our great God and Savior” (notice that Christ is called God and Savior). The rapture is an event where Christ delivers His saints from the wrath that will fall upon all people who are present during the tribulation. All of the wrath that occurs during the 70th week of Daniel is the wrath of God, which begins with Revelation 6:1 and ends with Revelation 19:21. In the rapture, Christ comes to take His people to heaven. It happens quickly, with no notice to unbelievers, and where deceased believers are resurrected, given immortal and imperrishable bodies, caught up in the air to meet Christ in the clouds, and then are taken to heaven. Believers who are alive will also be given immortal and imperrishable bodies, will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and will also be taken to heaven. Those living believers will never die, but will live eternally with God, as will the resurrected saints. Dead believers will be caught up first; living believers will follow. Christ will come in the air to take His saints to Heaven. The destination of Christ and His saints is Heaven, where the saints go before the bema judgment (the Judgment Seat of Christ) and receive rewards, which is followed by the marriage of the Lamb, which takes place in Heaven. (John 14:1-3; 1 Thes 4:13-18; Titus 1:13; 1 Thes 1:10; 1 Corinthians 15:50-55; 2 Corinthians 5:10…the Holman Christian Standard Bible has the best translation…; Revelation 19:7-9)

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

10 For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

The second coming of Christ.

At the end of the tribulation Christ will return to earth with His previously resurrected saints and angels; He will stand on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, Israel. The tribulation will be a time of God’s vengeance on unbelievers, with a resulting eternal separation of them from God. There will be conflict and public disorder all over the earth. Jews and Gentiles who accept Christ during the tribulation will experience famine, pestilence and cosmic disorders, and will be murdered and come under great persecution by the forces of the anti-Christ. Total worldly conditions will be worse than anyone in the world has ever experienced. The murders of those who turn to Christ will be so numerous that God will shorten the time of tribulation, so that all of God’s people will not be murdered. But, all Jews will be targeted by the anti-Christ. The second coming of Christ will be seen by all who live on the earth. There will be great cosmic disturbances. Those who see Christ coming to earth (with His saints and angels) will mourn at the sight of Him coming on the clouds; that will not be a time of joyful mourning. The angels will be sent by Christ to gather all of the Jews from the four corners of the earth and take them to Jerusalem, but not all Jews will enter the Kingdom of God. Christ will reward the gentiles who showed compassion for the Jews (My brethren), by giving them an immortal/imperrishable body (1 Cor 15:50.53) and allowing them to enter the Millennium/Kingdom. For the Gentiles who did not show compassion of the Jews, they will be taken to judgment, for eternal punishment. The gentiles who showed compassion on the Jews, recognized the Jews as being the elect of God (Christ referred to the Jews as being “My brethren”), which was a result of their coming to know Christ as Lord and Savior. All of the wrath that comes upon the “earth dwellers” (those who were not raptured), comes by the will of God, Christ, and the angels. (2 Thes 2:8-9; Matt 24:4-31; 40-41; 25:31-46; Revelation 3:10; 6:10; 8:13; 11:10; 13:8; 13:14; 17:8; 6:1, 3, 5, 7, 9,12; 8:1, 5; 8:7, 8, 10, 12, 9:1, 13, 11:15; 15:1,16:1, 16:3,16:4, 16:8, 16:10, 16:12, 16:17; 19:11-21; 20:1-15; Zechariah 14:1-16)

Before we close this post, we must consider dispensations, or “times of testing.” The following information comes from the Scofield Study Bible, as a note to Genesis 1:28. The same information is shown in Scofield Reference Notes and Scofield Reference Notes Bible Commentary, both of which are contained on the internet.

In the church age, we are under the dispensation of grace. We have already been tested as to whether we will come to salvation by “grace through faith,” per Ephesians 2:8. We, who have come by grace through faith in Christ have passed God’s test of the dispensation of grace. We will not be present during the tribulation, to be tested again. Those who will be left behind after the rapture of the church takes place, those who are called “earth dwellers,” will be given the opportunity to pass the test of accepting Christ as Messiah, as their Lord and Savior, per Revelation 3:10. However, they will probably be martyred because of that decision.

Revelation 3:10 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

10 Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.

My note: The testing of this verse is for people who had not been born again at the time of the rapture. Believers in Christ persevere because of their new birth by the Holy Spirit. Their spirit dwells within the Spirit of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The Spirit of Father, Son and Holy Spirit dwells within the spirit of the believer who has been born again (John 14:20). Notice the words “My perseverance.” The words of Jude 1:24 show that God keeps us from falling from the Presence of God; it is God’s perseverance, and not ours, that keeps us secure in Him. The truth of God’s Word is that after we have been born again, we can not be unborn from the Spirit of God. John 10:28-29 tells us that “no can can snatch us from God.” “No one” includes those of us who have been born again.

Genesis 1:28 King James Version (KJV)

28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

DISPENSATION: A dispensation is a period of time during which man is tested in respect of obedience to some specific revelation of the will of God. Seven such dispensations are distinguished in Scripture. (See Scofield “Genesis 1:28”), note 5.

“And God blessed them”

The First Dispensation: Innocency. Man was created in innocency, placed in a perfect environment, subjected to an absolutely simple test, and warned of the consequence of disobedience. The woman fell through pride; the man deliberately. 1 Timothy 2:14 God restored His sinning creatures, but the dispensation of innocency ended in the judgment of the Expulsion Genesis 3:24 See, for the other dispensations:

Conscience (See Scofield “Genesis 3:23”)
Human Government (See Scofield “Genesis 8:21”)
Promise (See Scofield “Genesis 12:1”)
Law (See Scofield “Exodus 19:8”)
Grace (See Scofield “John 1:17”)
Kingdom (See Scofield “Ephesians 1:10”)

Make this article relevant for today.

John 3:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Ed Hindson – Can We Still Believe In The Rapture? – God’s Plan For The Ages 55

Ed Hindson – Can We Still Believe in the Rapture – 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

John 14:1-3 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Way to the Father

1 “Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. 3 If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Comfort of Christ’s Coming

13 We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, concerning those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, in the same way, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. 15 For we say this to you by a word from the Lord: We who are still alive at the Lord’s coming will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are still alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.

1 Corinthians 15:50-58 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

Victorious Resurrection

50 What I am saying, brothers and sisters, is this: Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor can corruption inherit incorruption. 51 Listen, I am telling you a mystery: We will not all fall asleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed. 53 For this corruptible body must be clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal body must be clothed with immortality. 54 When this corruptible body is clothed with incorruptibility, and this mortal body is clothed with immortality, then the saying that is written will take place:

Death has been swallowed up in victory.

55 Where, death, is your victory? Where, death, is your sting? 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!

58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the Lord’s work, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

Considering: The Judgment Seat Of Christ, The BEMA Judgment,

The speaker in this video is one of great understanding of God’s Holy Word, especially in relation to eschatology. There are differences of opinion, among the great teachers of the end times. My understanding of the Judgment Seat of Christ, which is known as the bema judgment, holds closer to that which is held by John MacArthur who is also held in great acclaim for his teachings of the end times. Consider his comments that follow 2 Corinthians 5:10.

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

10 For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

NOTE: MacArthur Study Bible. 5:10 This describes the believer’s deepest motivation and highest aim in pleasing God—the realization that every Christian is inevitably and ultimately accountable to Him. the judgment seat of Christ. “Judgment seat” metaphorically refers to the place where the Lord will sit to evaluate believers’ lives for the purpose of giving them eternal rewards. It is translated from the Gr. word be¯ma, which was an elevated platform where victorious athletes (e.g., during the Olympics) went to receive their crowns. The term is also used in the NT to refer to the place of judging, as when Jesus stood before Pontius Pilate (Matt. 27:19; John 19:13), but here the reference is definitely from the athletic analogy. Corinth had such a platform where both athletic rewards and legal justice were dispensed (Acts 18:12–16), so the Corinthians understood Paul’s reference. the things done in the body. Actions which happened during the believer’s time of earthly ministry. This does not include sins, since their judgment took place at the cross (Eph. 1:7). Paul was referring to all those activities believers do during their lifetimes, which relate to their eternal reward and praise from God. What Christians do in their temporal bodies will, in His eyes, have an impact for eternity (see notes on 1 Cor. 4:3–5; cf. Rom. 12:1, 2: Rev. 22:12). whether good or bad. These Gr. terms do not refer to moral good and moral evil. Matters of sin have been completely dealt with by the death of the Savior. Rather, Paul was comparing worthwhile, eternally valuable activities with useless ones. His point was not that believers should not enjoy certain wholesome, earthly things, but that they should glorify God in them and spend most of their energy and time with what has eternal value (see notes on 1 Cor. 3:8–14).

Strong’s Concordance – Lexicon – 968.bema – 2 Corinthians 5:10
béma: a step, raised place, by impl. a tribunal
Original Word: βῆμα, ατος, τό
Part of Speech: Noun, Neuter
Transliteration: béma
Phonetic Spelling: (bay’-ma)
Short Definition: the space covered by a step of the foot, a tribunal
Definition: an elevated place ascended by steps, a throne, tribunal.

the judgment seat βήματος bēmatos 968 a step, raised place, by impl. a tribunal from the same as basis

My note:

John MacArthur relates his understanding of the Judgment Seat Of Christ (bema judgment) to the picture of an athletic event. After the end of a track and field event, such as the 1500 meter run, the top three finishers stand before an official who will give rewards for their accomplishments. The runners stand on a platform that has three individual platforms/steps, each of which has a greater elevation from the ground. The winner of the event stands on the top step and is given a gold medal for his, or her, accomplishment. The runner who finished second stands on a step that is on the right side of the winner’s step, and lower than the step of the winner of the event. The second place runner receives a silver medal. The runner who finished third in the event, stands on the left side of the winner, and two steps below the winner, and one step below the second place finisher. A bronze medal is given to the third place winner. In this setting, all finishers receive rewards for their accomplishments; there is no rebuking of any of the runners for their lack of a greater performance.

There is no great announcement to those who have viewed that race, or to those elsewhere, as to the fact that the runners did not run as many miles as they should have run, in preparation for this particular race; the runners were given their rewards, without chastisement. Those who will be present at the 2 Cor 5:10 Judgment Seat Of Christ will be those who have been born again, are the body of Christ, and are known as the bride of Christ. At the bema judgment, the bride of Christ is given rewards and will take place in the marriage of the lamb. The bride of Christ is the “bride of all brides.” Christ is the “groom of all grooms.” Ephesians 5:25 says for husbands to “love your wives, just as Christ loved the church, and gave Himself for it. It will not be the purpose of Christ to take His bride to the marriage of the lamb, and beat her up on the way to the altar, either physically or verbally.

The bema judgment takes place in heaven after the body of born again believers in Christ, the bride of Christ, has been “caught up” from earth. Consider Revelation 19:7: “Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” The next stop for the bride of Christ is planet earth, as it accompanies the groom, “Christ,” back to planet earth, after the tribulation. for the second coming of Christ, the Battle of Armageddon, to land on the Mount of Olives. (Zechariah 14:1-16; Revelation 19:11-21; Matthew 24:29-31; Matthew 25:31-34; 41, 46; Mark 13:24-27)

Zechariah 14:1-16 http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/zechariah/passage/?q=zechariah+14:1-16
Revelation 19:11-21 http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/revelation/passage/?q=revelation+19:11-21
Matthew 24:29-31 http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/matthew/passage/?q=matthew+24:29-31
Matthew 25:31-34 http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/matthew/passage/?q=matthew+25:31-34
Matthew 25:41 http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/matthew/25-41.html
Matthew 25:46 http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/matthew/25-46.html
Mark 13:24-27 http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/mark/passage/?q=mark+13:24-27

How was the bride of Christ made herself ready?” It was through the new birth, where the spirit of every born again believer in Christ had been made to be as pure as the Spirit of Christ, and at the time of the rapture, or resurrection, (1 Corinthians 15:51-53) is given a body that is without blemish. The same principle applies to the bride of Christ being removed from plant Earth prior to the Tribulation. Revelation 3:10 explains that the severity of the Tribulation, that will come upon “everyone” who is present. “Because you have kept the word of “My” perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.” The testing is designed to cause those who are left behind to come to know Christ as their Messiah, as their Lord and Savior. The perseverance of the saints comes from God (notice “My”). The bride of Christ is kept “from the hour of testing,” because those who are “the church,” came to saving faith in Christ prior to the rapture of the church, which was when “they passed the test;” no further testing is needed. The purpose of Christ is not to “beat up” on His bride on the way to the marriage altar. The tribulation is brought on all of those who are left behind (from the rapture/catching up of the saints/bride), “by Christ” (Revelation 6:1), and “by the angels” (Revelation 8:1; 16:1). The severity of the tribulation will be as Christ describes it in Matthew 24:21. “For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will.” It will not be the purpose of Christ to put His bride into the midst of things that will be worse than those which had ever happened.

1 Corinthians 15:51-53 http://www.biblestudytools.com/1-corinthians/passage/?q=1-corinthians+15:51-53

Make this lesson applicable for today:

Ephesians 5:25, New American Standard 1977

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her;

God’s Plan For The Ages 54 – About Israel – Ezekiel 7 – The Decree Of Severe Judgment

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

Gordon Mote – Mercy Walked In

The Ezekiel 38 War and the Battle of Armageddon
Published on Oct 28, 2016
Dr. Mark Hitchcock, Dr. Ron Rhodes and Dr. Ed Hindson explain what the Bible teaches about the Ezekiel 38 war and what happens in the final battle of Armageddon.

Revelation 19:19 King James Version (KJV)

19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.

Note: 19:19 kings of the earth. See 17:12–17. their armies. See 16:13, 14. His army. Zechariah describes this army of the Lord as “all the saints” (14:5). (MacArthur Study Bible)

God’s Love For Israel

Text

Isaiah 53:2-5 King James Version (KJV)

2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

1 Peter 2:24 King James Version (KJV)

24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

Notes: Isaiah MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

My note: The message is from God to Israel. 53:5 tells of a spiritual healing for the nation of Israel through Christ.

Isaiah

53:2 before Him. Though unrecognized by the world (v. 1), Messiah Jesus was observed carefully by God, who ordered every minute circumstance of His life. dry ground…no beauty that we should desire Him. The Servant will arise in lowly conditions and wear none of the usual emblems of royalty, making His true identity visible only to the discerning eye of faith.
53:3 despised…rejected…despised. The prophet foresees the hatred and rejection by mankind toward the Messiah/Servant, who suffered not only external abuse, but also internal grief over the lack of response from those He came to save (e.g., Matt. 23:37; Luke 13:34). we hid…we did not esteem. By using the first person, the prophet spoke for his unbelieving nation’s aversion to a crucified Messiah and their lack of respect for the incarnate Son of God.
53:4 borne…carried. Cf. vv. 11, 12. Even though the verbs are past tense, they predict happenings future to Isaiah’s time, i.e., “prophetic perfects” in Heb. here and elsewhere in this Servant-song. Isaiah was saying that the Messiah would bear the consequences of the sins of men, namely the griefs and sorrows of life, though incredibly the Jews who watched Him die thought He was being punished by God for His own sins. Matthew found an analogical fulfillment of these words in Jesus’ healing ministry (see notes on Matt. 8:16, 17), because sickness results from sin for which the Servant paid with His life (vv. 7, 8; cf. 1 Pet. 2:24). In eternity, all sickness will be removed, so ultimately it is included in the benefits of the atonement.
53:5 wounded for our transgressions…bruised for our iniquities. This verse is filled with the language of substitution. The Servant suffered not for His own sin, since He was sinless (cf. Heb. 4:15; 7:26), but as the substitute for sinners. The emphasis here is on Christ being the substitute recipient of God’s wrath on sinners (cf. 2 Cor. 5:21; Gal. 1:3, 4; Heb. 10:9, 10). chastisement for our peace. He suffered the chastisement of God in order to procure our peace with God. by His stripes we are healed. The stripe (the Heb. noun is singular) that caused His death has brought salvation to those for whose sins He died. Peter confirms this in 1 Pet. 2:24.

1 Peter

My note: Physical healing comes at glorification. The curse that came as a result of the fall of Adam and Eve, in the garden of Eden, often seems like it will never go away but, it will (1 Corinthians 15:51-57; Revelation 21:4).

2:24 by whose stripes you were healed. From Is. 53:5 (see note). Through the wounds of Christ at the cross, believers are healed spiritually from the deadly disease of sin. Physical healing comes at glorification only, when there is no more physical pain, illness, or death (Rev. 21:4). See notes on Is. 53:4–6; Matt. 8:17 for comments on healing in the atonement.

Lesson Text

Ezekiel 7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Punishment for Wickedness Foretold

1 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me saying, 2 “And you, son of man, thus says the Lord God to the land of Israel, ‘An end! The end is coming on the four corners of the land.3 Now the end is upon you, and I will send My anger against you; I will judge you according to your ways and bring all your abominations upon you. 4 For My eye will have no pity on you, nor will I spare you, but I will bring your ways upon you, and your abominations will be among you; then you will know that I am the Lord!’

5 “Thus says the Lord God, ‘A disaster, unique disaster, behold it is coming! 6 An end is coming; the end has come! It has awakened against you; behold, it has come! 7 Your doom has come to you, O inhabitant of the land. The time has come, the day is near—tumult rather than joyful shouting on the mountains. 8 Now I will shortly pour out My wrath on you and spend My anger against you; judge you according to your ways and bring on you all your abominations.9 My eye will show no pity nor will I spare. I will repay you according to your ways, while your abominations are in your midst; then you will know that I, the Lord, do the smiting.

10 ‘Behold, the day! Behold, it is coming! Your doom has gone forth; the rod has budded, arrogance has blossomed. 11 Violence has grown into a rod of wickedness. None of them shall remain, none of their people, none of their wealth, nor anything eminent among them. 12 The time has come, the day has arrived. Let not the buyer rejoice nor the seller mourn; for wrath is against all their multitude. 13 Indeed, the seller will not regain what he sold as long as they both live; for the vision regarding all their multitude will not be averted, nor will any of them maintain his life by his iniquity.

14 ‘They have blown the trumpet and made everything ready, but no one is going to the battle, for My wrath is against all their multitude. 15 The sword is outside and the plague and the famine are within. He who is in the field will die by the sword; famine and the plague will also consume those in the city. 16 Even when their survivors escape, they will be on the mountains like doves of the valleys, all of them mourning, each over his own iniquity. 17 All hands will hang limp and all knees will become like water. 18 They will gird themselves with sackcloth and shuddering will overwhelm them; and shame will be on all faces and baldness on all their heads. 19 They will fling their silver into the streets and their gold will become an abhorrent thing; their silver and their gold will not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord. They cannot satisfy their appetite nor can they fill their stomachs, for their iniquity has become an occasion of stumbling.

The Temple Profaned

20 They transformed the beauty of His ornaments into pride, and they made the images of their abominations and their detestable things with it; therefore I will make it an abhorrent thing to them. 21 I will give it into the hands of the foreigners as plunder and to the wicked of the earth as spoil, and they will profane it. 22 I will also turn My face from them, and they will profane My secret place; then robbers will enter and profane it.

23 ‘Make the chain, for the land is full of bloody crimes and the city is full of violence.24 Therefore, I will bring the worst of the nations, and they will possess their houses. I will also make the pride of the strong ones cease, and their holy places will be profaned. 25 When anguish comes, they will seek peace, but there will be none. 26 Disaster will come upon disaster and rumor will be added to rumor; then they will seek a vision from a prophet, but the law will be lost from the priest and counsel from the elders. 27 The king will mourn, the prince will be clothed with horror, and the hands of the people of the land will tremble. According to their conduct I will deal with them, and by their judgments I will judge them. And they will know that I am the Lord.’”

Notes – Ezekiel 7 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

4:1—7:27 Here is the first series of prophecies given over a year’s time, of Jerusalem’s conquest by the Babylonians in 586 B.C.

7:1–9 This lament declared that the entire land of Israel was ripe for judgment. God’s patience had ended. The final destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar was in view (586 B.C.).

7:10 rod has blossomed. Verse 11 explains this. Violence had grown up into a rod of wickedness, which likely refers to Nebuchadnezzar, the instrument of God’s vengeance (cf. Is. 10:5; Jer. 51:20).

7:12 buyer rejoice…seller mourn. Such matters of business were meaningless because the Chaldeans (Babylonians) took all the land and killed those they didn’t take captive (v. 15) and the rest escaped (v. 16). Wealth was useless (vv. 19, 20).

7:13 seller shall not return to…sold. There was to be no Jubilee year in which all lands were returned to their original owners (cf. Lev. 25).

7:17–22 This section described the mourning of the helpless and frightened people. In distress, they recognized the uselessness of the things in which they trusted. Their wealth provided nothing. Their “silver and gold” (v. 19), their “ornaments” (v. 20) were as useless as the idols they made with them.

7:22 My secret place. The Holy of Holies in the temple will be desecrated by pagans, that place where only once a year the High-Priest could enter to make atonement in God’s presence

7:23 Make a chain. Ezekiel is to perform another emblematic act of captivity (cf. Jer. 27:2; Nah. 3:10).

7:24 the worst of the Gentiles. Babylonian pagans.

Comments on this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

Background

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

Sources

C.I. Scofield, Merrill Unger, Charles C. Ryrie, Henry Morris, J. Dwight Pentecost, David Jeremiah, John MacArthur, Frank Charles Thompson, Grant R. Jeffrey, John F. Walvoord, J. Vernon McGee, Charles Swindoll, John Phillips, Ed Hindson, Tim LaHaye, Ron Rhodes, David Reagan, Jimmy DeYoung, Renald Showers, John Ankerberg, Hal Lindsey, Mark Hitchcock, Ron Rhodes, Jack Van Impe, Adrian Rogers, and others.

Please follow this blog.

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 – The Rapture Controversy

What are the differences between the rapture and the second coming of Christ? (2:25)

By: Dr. John Ankerberg / Dr. Renald Showers; ©2004

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 King James Version (KJV)

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

The word “rapture” (1 Thessalonians 4:17 – caught up) does not appear in our English Bible. So, why is the word used, and what does it mean?

There are people throughout the world, of which many are believers in Christ, who believe that the rapture of the church is merely an allegory. If the allegory assumption is correct, should we also believe that the “allegory belief” should extend to the resurrection and ascension of Christ into Heaven, as well as the teaching of the anti-Christ and the tribulation? Should we believe that the Battle of Armageddon and the return of Christ with His saints are also allegories? Should we believe that the 1,000 year reign of Christ (the Millennium), and the Great White Throne Judgment, and the eternal state are allegories? Should we believe that the new heaven, new Earth and new Jerusalem are allegories, as well as the first eleven chapters of Genesis? Since 1 Thessalonians 4:17 is to be considered to be an allegory, because it tells of Christ coming to take His believers with Him to Heaven, should we not also consider John 14:3 to be an allegory, because it also tells of the return of Christ to take his born again believers to heaven with Him? Since those two verses are suspected of being allegories, should we not also consider the entire books of John and 1 Thessalonians to be allegories? Because 2 Corinthians 12:2-4 tells of the Apostle Paul being “caught up” to the third heaven, to be in the Presence of God, should not that incident and that book of the Bible also be considered to be allegories? Should not both letters to the believers in Christ, at Corinth and at Thessalonica, also be considered to be allegories? Should not the entire Book of Acts be considered to be an allegory because of the teaching of Christ being taken up to Heaven (Acts 1:9), and Philip being “caught up,” and taken to another location, for the purposes of God (8:39)? Should not Revelation 11:12 be considered to be an allegory because the “two witnesses” are taken up to Heaven? Should not the teaching of Revelation 12:5, where Christ is caught up to Heaven, also considered to be an allegory? Should we not consider the books of Genesis and Hebrews to be allegories because Genesis 5:24 and Hebrews 11:5 state that God “took Enoch up?” Should we not consider the book of 2 Kings to be an allegory because in 2 Kings 2:11 it states that God took Elijah up. And, should not the entire book of Revelation be treated as an allegory because of its controversial teachings on the tribulation, the anti-Christ, the 144,000 Jewish missionaries (none of whom were martyred by the forces of the anti-Christ during the tribulation)? We can add to the list of “suggested allegories,” the Battle of Armageddon with the return of Christ to earth with His saints, the 1,000 year reign of Christ, the Battle of Gog and Magog, the Great White Throne Judgment and the Lake of Fire?

Because of all of those examples of “suggested allegories of scripture,” should not we say that the Bible is “just one big allegory”, and totally worthless? I think not. I believe that the entire Bible is the inspired Word of God, per the following verses of scripture. Notice the first two words, “All scripture.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.

The purpose of God “taking up, catching up,” a believer in Christ, or a group of believers in Christ, to heaven, is to take those people to heaven without causing them to experience death. The word for such taking up is known as Harpazo in Greek, Rapio in Latin, and Rapture in English. Whichever translation is used, the purpose is to show that God is catching up believers in Christ to go to heaven without them experiencing death. (See John 14:2-3, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 1 Corinthians 15:51-58)

Many people teach that the catching up of the saints and the second coming of Christ are the same event. But, there are great differences in those two events. Consider the immediacy of those two happenings. The catching up of the saints is said to be, “in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye” (1 Corinthians 15:51-52). The same act of immediacy is also recorded in John 14:2-3 and 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17. The second coming of Christ takes much longer to take place. Per scripture, Christ will not land on planet Earth, and no one on Earth who has not been born again will see Christ coming out of Heaven to catch up His saints. Those who will see Christ coming to earth, at His second coming, will not be comforted to see His appearing; they will be deeply grieved! The destination of Christ, and of those who are “caught up,” is heaven, where there will be the giving of rewards to the saints, the marriage of the lamb, and the return to Earth with the previously raptured saints of Christ. Then, Christ will inflict judgment on those who had not been raptured, and will set up His earthly millennial Kingdom; the saints will rule and reign with Christ. The destination of Christ, at His second coming, will be the Mount of Olives. Judgment on those, who were left behind from the rapture of the saints, will immediately commence. There is great comfort in the rapture, per 1 Thessalonians 4:18, “…comfort one another with these words.” Opposite emotions will be present among those who are “left behind” from the rapture, when they see Christ returning to stand on planet earth at the end of the tribulation (Matthew 24:29); “they will mourn at His sight” (Matthew 24:30); with “men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world (Luke 21:26). The rapture of the church is described quickly in John 14:2-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; and 1 Corinthians 15:50-58. The scriptures that discuss the second coming of Christ show a much greater sequence of events and time, much longer than “the twinkling of an eye,” as follows: (Zechariah 14:1-14; Matthew 24:29-44; Matthew 25:31-46; Mark 13:24-27; Luke 21:25-36; Revelation 19:7-8…marriage of the Lamb in Heaven to the raptured saints (the bride of Christ) (1 Thes 4:16-17) …Revelation 19:11-21 …the second coming of Christ with the raptured saints/the Battle of Armageddon…Revelation 20:1-6…the 1,000 year reign of Christ/the millennium; Satan bound; saints rule and reign with Christ, those returning/raptured saints, and those resurrected saints of the Old Testament and tribulation.) Notice the words, “immediately after the tribulation,” (Matthew 24:29); and, “in those days, after that tribulation,” (Mark 13:24), which show that the events of the second coming of Christ will happen after the tribulation.

The teaching of the end times, to include the rapture of the church, is a subject that is sorely neglected by pastors. It was forty-one years ago that a pastor introduced me to the teaching of eschatology. That pastor was twenty years my senior. His mentor was twenty years his senior. Both of those brothers in Christ are now with the Lord. But, their teachings go on through the people that they taught, to include this grateful student. It is my hope that more pastors will realize a sense of urgency, as it relates to the end times teaching. There are far too many “people in the pews” who are ignorant of the facts of the end times, and that is because they are sitting under the teachings of pastors who share that same ignorance of God’s Holy Word. Ignorance does not mean “stupid;” it means “not taught.” The MacArthur Study Bible provides excellent notes on all teachings of the Bible, to include the scriptures that relate to eschatology. A limited amount of notes from the MacArthur Study Bible can also be found in biblegateway.com A membership to Biblegateway provides the full extent of the MacArthur notes.

In the year 405 A.D., Jerome completed the Latin Vulgate.”This Latin translation stood as the preeminent Bible text for centuries—and set the standard for future translators” (from the following link).
http://www.christianitytoday.com/history/issues/issue-28/405-jerome-completes-vulgate.html

The first hand-written English language Bible manuscripts were produced in the 1380’s AD by John Wycliffe, an Oxford professor, scholar, and theologian (from the following link).
http://www.greatsite.com/timeline-english-bible-history/

Whether the Latin or Greek translation is used to translate 1 Thessalonaians 4:17 into English, the meaning of both translations is that Christ is going to descend from Heaven (in the air, not coming to earth), and catch up those living believers (at the time of the “catching up”), and take them to Heaven with Him. For a full explanation of the teaching of the “catching up,” (of those living in Christ), and resurrection (of those dead in Christ), read the commentary notes at the bottom of the page.

Posts will follow that address specifics of different end times subjects.

Consider The Following Verses, And Other Data, That Relate To The Catching Up Of The Saints, Which Is Also Known As The Rapture Of The Church.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Those Who Are Dead, And Those Who Are Living, “in Christ,” At The Time Of The Rapture
13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. 15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words.

John 14:2-3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Christ Tells The Apostles That He Will Come Back To Earth And Take Them To Heaven With Him

2 In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. 3 If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.

See study notes at the bottom of the page.

1 Corinthians 15:50-58 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The Mystery of Resurrection

50 Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.51 Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53 For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality.54 But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. 55 O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?”56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; 57 but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.

(My quip) A notice was posted in a Church nursery. The notice read, “we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed.” (vs 51)

Differences Between the Rapture & Second Coming (28:30)

What is the meaning of the word “Rapture?”

https://www.jashow.org/articles/prophecy/biblical-prophecy/what-is-the-meaning-of-the-word-rapture/

Rapture
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapture
rapture; raptura; raptus; harpazo; rapiemur;rapia

1 Thessalonians 4:17 (seize, catch up, snatch away).
1 Thessalonians 4:17 King James Bible
“Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”
Etymology
“Rapture” is derived from Middle French rapture, via the Medieval Latin raptura (“seizure, kidnapping”), which derives from the Latin raptus (“a carrying off”).[17]
Greek
The Koine Greek of 1 Thessalonians 4:17 uses the verb form ἁρπαγησόμεθα (harpagisometha), which means “we shall be caught up” or “taken away”, with the connotation that this is a sudden event. The dictionary form of this Greek verb is harpazō (ἁρπάζω).[18] This use is also seen in such texts as Acts 8:39; 2 Corinthians 12:2-4; Revelation 12:5
Latin
The Latin Vulgate translates the Greek ἁρπαγησόμεθα as rapiemur[19] meaning “we are caught up” or “we are taken away” from the Latin verb rapio meaning “to catch up” or “take away”.[20]

1 Thessalonians 4:17 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.

Strong’s Concordance With Greek Lexicon – 726

harpazó: to seize, catch up, snatch away
Original Word: ἁρπάζω
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: harpazó
Phonetic Spelling: (har-pad’-zo)
Short Definition: I seize, snatch, obtain by robbery
Definition: I seize, snatch, obtain by robbery.

Notice that the transliteration of “to seize, catch up, snatch away,” is “harpazo.” Through the use of transliteration, one word tells the meaning of many more translated words. Check out the following link.

http://www.beingfilled.com/2012/07/translation-transliteration-difference.html

The following are just a few more examples of transliterated words in the New Testament:

Apostle comes from apostlos and means “one who is sent.”
Baptism comes from baptisma and means “immersion.”
Christ comes from cristos and means “anointed one.”
Deacon comes from diakonos and means “servant.”
Epistle comes from epistole and means “letter.”

Strong’s Concordance With Greek Lexicon

1 Thessalonians 4:17 King James Bible

Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

will be caught ἁρπαγησόμεθα arpagēsometha 726 to seize, catch up, snatch away from a prim. root harp-

Acts 8:39 King James Bible – caught away – 726

And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.

snatched ἥρπασεν ērpasen 726 to seize, catch up, snatch away from a prim. root harp-

2 Corinthians 12:2 King James Bible – caught up – 726

I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.

was caught ἁρπαγέντα arpagenta 726 to seize, catch up, snatch away from a prim. root harp-

2 Corinthians 12:4 King James Bible – caught up – 726

How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.

was caught ἡρπάγη ērpagē 726 to seize, catch up, snatch away from a prim. root harp-

Revelation 12:5 King James Bible – caught up – 726

And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

was caught ἡρπάσθη ērpasthē 726 to seize, catch up, snatch away from a prim. root harp-

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible – 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

4:13–18 Even though Paul’s ministry in Thessalonica was brief, it is clear the people had come to believe in and hope for the reality of their Savior’s return (cf. 1:3, 9, 10; 2:19; 5:1, 2; 2 Thess. 2:1, 5). They were living in expectation of that coming, eagerly awaiting Christ. Verse 13 (cf. 2 Thess. 2:1–3) indicates they were even agitated about some things that were happening to them that might affect their participation in it. They knew Christ’s return was the climactic event in redemptive history and didn’t want to miss it. The major question they had was “What happens to the Christians who die before He comes? Do they miss His return?” Clearly, they had an imminent view of Christ’s return and Paul had left the impression it could happen in their lifetime. Their confusion came as they were being persecuted, an experience they thought they were to be delivered from by the Lord’s return (cf. 3:3, 4).4:13 those who have fallen asleep. Sleep is the familiar NT euphemism for death which describes the appearance of the deceased (see note on 1 Cor. 11:30). It describes the dead body, not the soul (cf. 2 Cor. 5:1–9; Phil. 1:23). Sleep is used of Jarius’ daughter (Matt. 9:24) whom Jesus raised from the dead and Stephen who was stoned to death (Acts 7:60; cf. John 11:11; 1 Cor. 7:39; 15:6, 18, 51; 2 Pet. 3:4). Those who sleep are identified in v. 16 as “the dead in Christ.” The people, in ignorance, had come to the conclusion that those who die miss the Lord’s return and they were grieved over their absence at such a glorious event. Thus the departure of a loved one brought great anguish to the soul. But there is no reason for Christians to sorrow when a brother dies as if some great loss to that person has come.4:14 God will bring with Him. As Jesus died and rose, so also will those who die believing in Him rise again so they can be taken to heaven with the Lord (see notes on John 14:1–3; 1 Cor. 15:51–58). These texts describe the rapture of the church, which takes place when Jesus comes to collect His redeemed and take them back to heaven. Those who have died before that time (called “those who sleep”) will be gathered and taken back to heaven with the Lord.4:15 the word of the Lord. Was Paul referring to some saying of Jesus found in the gospels? No. There are none exact or even close. The only explicit reference to the Rapture in the gospels is John 14:1–3. Some suggest that Jesus had said the words while on earth, their substance being recorded later in such places as Matt. 24:30, 31 and John 6:39, 40; 11:25, 26. Similarities between this passage in 1 Thess. and the gospel accounts include a trumpet (Matt. 24:31), a resurrection (John 1:26), and a gathering of the elect (Matt. 24:31). Yet dissimilarities between it and the canonical sayings of Christ far outweigh the resemblances. Some of the differences between Matt. 24:30, 31 and vv. 15–17 are as follows: 1) in Matt. the Son of Man is coming on the clouds (but see Mark 13:26; Luke 21:27), in 1 Thess. ascending believers are in them; 2) in the former the angels gather, in the latter Christ does personally; 3) in the former nothing is said about resurrection, while in the latter this is the main theme; and 4) Matthew records nothing about the order of ascent, which is the principal lesson in Thessalonians. On the other hand, did he mean a statement of Jesus that was spoken but not recorded in the gospels (Acts 20:35)? No. There is reason to conclude this since Paul affirmed that he taught the Rapture as a heretofore hidden truth (1 Cor. 15:51), i.e., “mystery.” Apparently, the Thessalonians were informed fully about the Day of the Lord judgment (cf. 5:1, 2), but not the preceding event—the rapture of the church. Until Paul revealed it as the revelation from God to him, it had been a secret, with the only prior mention being Jesus’ teaching in John 14:1–3. This was new revelation of what had previously been an unrevealed mystery. we who are alive and remain. This refers to Christians alive at the time of the Rapture, those who live on this earth to see the coming of the Lord for His own. Since Paul didn’t know God’s timing, he lived and spoke as if it could happen in his lifetime. As with all early Christians, he believed the event was near (cf. Rom. 13:11; 1 Cor. 6:14; 10:11; 16:22; Phil. 3:20, 21; 1 Tim. 6:14; Titus 2:13). Those alive at the Rapture will follow those dead who rise first (v. 16).
4:16 the Lord Himself will descend. This fulfills the pledge of John 14:1–3 (cf. Acts 1:11). Until then, He remains in heaven (cf. 1:10; Heb. 1:1–3). archangel. Very little is known about the organization or rank of angels (cf. Col. 1:17). While only Michael is named as an archangel (Jude 9), there seems to be more than one in the archangelic ranks (Dan. 10:13). Perhaps it is Michael, the archangel, whose voice is heard as he is identified with Israel’s resurrection in Dan. 12:1–3. At that moment (cf. 1 Cor. 15:52, “twinkling of an eye”), the dead rise first. They will not miss the Rapture, but be the first participants. trumpet of God. Cf. 1 Cor. 15:52. This trumpet is not the judgment trumpets of Rev. 8–11, but is illustrated by the trumpet of Ex. 19:16–19, which called the people out of the camp to meet God. It will be a trumpet of deliverance (cf. Zeph. 1:16; Zech. 9:14).
4:17 caught up. After the dead come forth, their spirits, already with the Lord (2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23), are now being joined to resurrected new bodies (see notes on 1 Cor. 15:35–50); the living Christians will be raptured, lit. snatched away (cf. John 10:28; Acts 8:39). This passage, along with John 14:1–3 and 1 Cor. 15:51, 52, forms the biblical basis for “the Rapture” of the church. The time of the Rapture cannot be conclusively determined from this passage alone. However, when other texts such as Rev. 3:10 and John 14:3 are consulted and compared to the texts about Christ’s coming in judgment (Matt. 13:34–50; 24:29–44; Rev. 19:11–21) at the end of a 7 year tribulation, it has to be noted that there is a clear difference between the character of the “Rapture” in that there is no mention of any judgment, while the other texts feature judgment. So then, it is best to understand that the Rapture occurs at a time different from the coming of Christ in judgment. Thus, the Rapture has been described as pretribulational (before the wrath of God unfolded in the judgments of Rev. 6–19). This event includes complete transformation (cf. 1 Cor. 15:51, 52; Phil 3:20, 21) and union with the Lord Jesus Christ that never ends.
4:18 comfort one another. The primary purpose of this passage is not to teach a scheme of prophecy, but rather to provide encouragement to those Christians whose loved ones have died. The comfort here is based on the following: 1) the dead will be resurrected and will participate in the Lord’s coming for His own; 2) when Christ comes the living will be reunited forever with their loved ones; and 3) they all will be with the Lord eternally (v. 17).

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible – John 14:2-3

14:2, 3 I go to prepare. His departure would be for their advantage since He was going away to prepare a heavenly home for them and will return to take them so that they may be with Him. This is one of the passages that refers to the rapture of the saints at the end of the age when Christ returns. The features in this description do not describe Christ coming to earth with His saints to establish His kingdom (Rev. 19:11–15), but taking believers from earth to live in heaven. Since no judgment on the unsaved is described here, this is not the event of His return in glory and power to destroy the wicked (cf. Matt. 13:36–43, 47–50). Rather, this describes His coming to gather His own who are alive and raise the bodies of those who have died to take them all to heaven. This rapture event is also described in 1 Cor. 15:51–54; 1 Thess. 4:13–18. After being raptured, the church will celebrate the marriage supper (Rev. 19:7–10), be rewarded (1 Cor. 3:10–15; 4:5; 2 Cor. 5:9, 10), and later return to earth with Christ when He comes again to set up His kingdom (Rev. 19:11—20:6).

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible: 1 Corinthians 15:50-58

15:1–58 This chapter is the most extensive treatment of resurrection in the Bible. Both the resurrection of Jesus Christ as recorded in the gospels and the resurrection of believers as promised in the gospels are here explained.
15:50 People cannot live in God’s eternal heavenly glory the way they are. See notes on Rom. 8:23. We have to be changed (v. 51).
15:51 mystery. This term refers to truth hidden in the past and revealed in the NT. See notes on 2:7 and Eph. 3:4, 5. In this case, the rapture of the church was never revealed in the OT. It was first mentioned in John 14:1–3, when it is specifically explained and is detailed in 1 Thess. 4:13–18 (see notes there). sleep. See note on v. 18.
15:52 twinkling of an eye. This was Paul’s way of showing how brief the “moment” will be. The Gr. word for “twinkling” refers to any rapid movement. Since the eye can move more rapidly than any other part of our visible bodies, it seems to well illustrate the sudden transformation of raptured believers. trumpet will sound.To herald the end of the church era, when all believers will be removed from the earth at the rapture (1 Thess. 4:16). dead…raised. According to 1 Thess. 4:16, they are first and the living saints follow (1 Thess. 4:17).
15:54–57 Paul enhanced his joy at the reality of resurrection by quoting from Is. 25:8 and Hos. 13:14. The latter quote taunts death as if it were a bee whose sting was removed. That sting was the sin that was exposed by the law of God (see notes on Rom. 3:23; 4:15; 6:23; Gal. 3:10–13), but conquered by Christ in His death (see notes on Rom. 5:17; 2 Cor. 5:21).
15:58 The hope of resurrection makes all the efforts and sacrifices in the Lord’s work worth it. No work done in His name is wasted in light of eternal glory and reward.

Biographies of speakers of this post.

Consider the qualifications of the speakers in the videos.

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml
Dr. Jimmy DeYoung resided in Jerusalem for at least a portion of the year each year for the last 23 years where he held full credentials as a journalist in the second most populated journalistic city in the world.

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

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God’s Plan For The Ages 53 – About Israel – Ezekiel 6 – Judgment For Idolatry

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

What does the Bible say about the battle of Armageddon?

Revelation 16:12-16 New King James Version (NKJV)

Sixth Bowl: Euphrates Dried Up

12 Then the sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up, so that the way of the kings from the east might be prepared. 13 And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs coming out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. 14 For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.

15 “Behold, I am coming as a thief. Blessed is he who watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame.”

16 And they gathered them together to the place called in Hebrew, Armageddon.

What is the battle of Armageddon? What happens there?

Muslims, Jews, campaign of Armageddon

God’s Love For Israel

Text

Psalm 47:4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

“He chooses our inheritance for us, The glory of Jacob whom He loves. Selah.”

God’s Promises For Israel’s Restoration

Text

Isaiah 43:1 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Israel Redeemed

“But now, thus says the Lord, your Creator, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel, “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine!”

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

Psalm 47:4 He will choose. Again, “He chooses,” serves as a timeless truth. Cf. the election of Israel in Deut. 7:6ff.; Ps. 135:4. On the land of promise as “inheritance,” cf. Deut. 32:8, 9; Ps. 105:11. See notes on Eph. 1:4; 1 Pet. 1:2 for a discussion of the doctrine of divine election. The excellence of Jacob whom He loves. The “excellence” or “pride” of Jacob also refers to the land of Canaan (cf. the term illustratively in Is. 13:19; then in Is. 60:15; Nah. 2:2; etc.). “Whom He loves” is signal terminology for God’s special, elective, covenantal “love” (cf., e.g., Mal. 1:2ff.). This special focus on God’s covenant with Israel does not negate the bigger picture involving blessing to all nations sketched out in the original Abrahamic Covenant of Gen. 12:1–3.

Isaiah 43:1 created…formed. The only explanation for the ongoing existence of the nation of Israel is God’s sovereign grace, which brought her into existence from nothing (cf. Deut. 7:6–11) and sustains her. Since she was God’s creation, she could find comfort in knowing that no one or nothing can destroy her, not even her own wickedness (cf. 43:18–25; Rom. 11:1, 2, 25–27). Jacob…Israel. This double designation (cf. Gen. 32:28) for God’s chosen nation is used by Isaiah 21 times, 16 of them in chaps. 40–49 (9:8; 10:20; 14:1; 27:6; 29:23; 40:27; 41:8, 14; 42:24; 43:1, 22, 28; 44:1, 21, 23; 45:4; 46:3; 48:1, 12; 49:5, 6). This speaks of the Lord’s special attachment to Abraham’s physical seed. Fear not. The Lord repeated His word, relieving Israel’s fear (35:4; 41:10, 13, 14; cf. 7:4). redeemed. God’s redemption of His people from exile is not to be complete until His Servant returns to reign over the faithful remnant in the land of Israel who have believed on Jesus Christ (cf. Zech. 12:10—13:1; Rom. 11:25–27; Rev. 11:13). The limited return from Babylon only typified the final return. See note on 43:14.

Text

Ezekiel 6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Idolatrous Worship Denounced

1 And the word of the Lord came to me saying, 2 “Son of man, set your face toward the mountains of Israel, and prophesy against them 3 and say, ‘Mountains of Israel, listen to the word of the Lord God! Thus says the Lord God to the mountains, the hills, the ravines and the valleys: “Behold, I Myself am going to bring a sword on you, and I will destroy your high places. 4 So your altars will become desolate and your incense altars will be smashed; and I will make your slain fall in front of your idols. 5 I will also lay the dead bodies of the sons of Israel in front of their idols; and I will scatter your bones around your altars. 6 In all your dwellings, cities will become waste and the high places will be desolate, that your altars may become waste and desolate, your idols may be broken and brought to an end, your incense altars may be cut down, and your works may be blotted out. 7 The slain will fall among you, and you will know that I am the Lord.

8 “However, I will leave a remnant, for you will have those who escaped the sword among the nations when you are scattered among the countries. 9 Then those of you who escape will remember Me among the nations to which they will be carried captive, how I have been hurt by their adulterous hearts which turned away from Me, and by their eyes which played the harlot after their idols; and they will loathe themselves in their own sight for the evils which they have committed, for all their abominations. 10 Then they will know that I am the Lord; I have not said in vain that I would inflict this disaster on them.”’

11 “Thus says the Lord God, ‘Clap your hand, stamp your foot and say, “Alas, because of all the evil abominations of the house of Israel, which will fall by sword, famine and plague! 12 He who is far off will die by the plague, and he who is near will fall by the sword, and he who remains and is besieged will die by the famine. Thus will I spend My wrath on them. 13 Then you will know that I am the Lord, when their slain are among their idols around their altars, on every high hill, on all the tops of the mountains, under every green tree and under every leafy oak—the places where they offered soothing aroma to all their idols. 14 So throughout all their habitations I will stretch out My hand against them and make the land more desolate and waste than the wilderness toward Diblah; thus they will know that I am the Lord.”’”

Notes – Ezekiel 6 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

6:3 says the Lord…to the mountains. God had the prophet do this because the people worshiped at idol altars in the “high places” (cf. Lev. 26:30–33; Is. 65:7; Jer. 3:6; Hos. 4:13; Mic. 6:1, 2).
6:7 you shall know that I am the Lord. This clause recurs in vv. 10, 13, 14 and 60 times elsewhere in the book. It shows that the essential reason for judgment is the violation of the character of God. This is repeatedly acknowledged in Lev. 18–26, where the motive for all obedience to God’s law is the fact that He is the Lord God.
6:8–10 The mass of people was rejected, but grace and mercy were given to a godly group in the nation. There never has been nor ever will be a complete end to Israel. The doctrine of the remnant can be studied in Is. 1:9; 10:20; Jer. 43:5; Zeph. 2:7; 3:13; Zech. 10:9; Rom. 9:6–13; 11:5.
6:14 Diblah. A reference to Diblathaim, a city on the eastern edge of Moab (Num. 33:46; Jer. 48:22), near the desert E and S of the Dead Sea.

Comments on this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

Background

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

Sources

C.I. Scofield, Merrill Unger, Charles C. Ryrie, Henry Morris, J. Dwight Pentecost, David Jeremiah, John MacArthur, Frank Charles Thompson, Grant R. Jeffrey, John F. Walvoord, J. Vernon McGee, Charles Swindoll, John Phillips, Ed Hindson, Tim LaHaye, Ron Rhodes, David Reagan, Jimmy DeYoung, Renald Showers, John Ankerberg, Hal Lindsey, Mark Hitchcock, Ron Rhodes, Jack Van Impe, Adrian Rogers, and others.

Left Behind 1 (7-7) – The Rapture Is No Allegory – Be Born Again, or Be Left Behind

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

Left Behind: The Movie – Raptured!

The above video was taken from the Left Behind I movie. The truth of the catching up of the church, also known as the rapture of the church, is greatly criticized, but without credible scriptural basis. The following video provides a good study of the rapture of the church and of the second coming of Christ, which are two separate events. Please understand that the teaching of the end times rapture and second coming of Christ is not an allegory. The scriptures that explain both events are very clear as to their being actual things that happen, and NOT AN ALLEGORY.

The Timing of the Rapture and the Second Coming

Consider the following scriptures that discuss the rapture of the church, also known as the catching up of the saints and the snatching away of the saints. The Greek word for this event is “harpazo.”

Consider Enoch – God took him. God took him up.

Genesis 5:24 New King James Version (NKJV)

24 And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.
MacArthur Study Bible note.5:24 walked with God…was not, for God took him. Enoch is the only break in the chapter from the incessant comment, “and he died.” Cf. 4:17, 18; 1 Chr. 1:3; Luke 3:37; Heb. 11:5; Jude 14. Only one other man is said to have enjoyed this intimacy of relationship in walking with God, Noah (6:9). Enoch experienced being taken to heaven alive by God, as did Elijah later (2 Kin. 2:1–12).

Hebrews 11:5 New King James Version (NKJV)

5 By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God.

MacArthur Study Bible note. 11:5 The quote is from Gen. 5:24. Enoch. See note on Gen. 5:24.The LXX translated the Heb. idiom “Enoch walked with God” with “he pleased God.” The writer combines both in the reference. Enoch was miraculously taken to heaven without dying (cf. 1 Thess. 4:17).

Consider Elijah – “Elijah went up…into heaven”

2 Kings 2:11 New King James Version (NKJV)

11 Then it happened, as they continued on and talked, that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.

Consider the discussion of Christ with His disciples/apostles. – Christ will return for His followers and take them to Heaven. This is the coming of Christ in the air, to not set foot on the earth. Shortly following this event, the time of tribulation will occur on earth, when the Judgments of Christ will be unleashed on the earth, and the anti-Christ will begin persecuting the Jews and those who accept Christ during the tribulation.

John 14:1-3 New King James Version (NKJV)

1 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

MacArthur Study Bible 14:1 Instead of the disciples lending support to Jesus in the hours before His cross, He had to support them spiritually as well as emotionally. This reveals His heart of serving love (cf. Matt. 20:26–28). troubled. Faith in Him can stop the heart from being agitated. See note on 12:27.

MacArthur Study Bible 14:2 mansions. Lit. dwelling places, rooms, or even apartments (in modern terms). All are in the large “Father’s house.”

MacArthur Study Bible 14:2, 3 I go to prepare. His departure would be for their advantage since He was going away to prepare a heavenly home for them and will return to take them so that they may be with Him. This is one of the passages that refers to the rapture of the saints at the end of the age when Christ returns. The features in this description do not describe Christ coming to earth with His saints to establish His kingdom (Rev. 19:11–15), but taking believers from earth to live in heaven. Since no judgment on the unsaved is described here, this is not the event of His return in glory and power to destroy the wicked (cf. Matt. 13:36–43, 47–50). Rather, this describes His coming to gather His own who are alive and raise the bodies of those who have died to take them all to heaven. This rapture event is also described in 1 Cor. 15:51–54; 1 Thess. 4:13–18. After being raptured, the church will celebrate the marriage supper (Rev. 19:7–10), be rewarded (1 Cor. 3:10–15; 4:5; 2 Cor. 5:9, 10), and later return to earth with Christ when He comes again to set up His kingdom (Rev. 19:11—20:6).

In The Presence Of God

2 Corinthians 5:8 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) We are translated out of our bodies, or graves, and taken to the Presence of God.

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) (This is a better translation

Once in the Presence of God, we appear before the Judgment Seat Of Christ, not to determine the fate of our salvation, but to be given rewards, and to be prepared for the Marriage of the Lamb.

10 For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

The next stop is the Marriage of the Lamb

Revelation 19:7-9 King James Version (KJV)

7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. 8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.

MacArthur Study Bible 19:7 marriage of the Lamb. Hebrew weddings consisted of 3 phases: 1) betrothal (often when the couple were children); 2) presentation (the festivities, often lasting several days, that preceded the ceremony); and 3) the ceremony (the exchanging of vows). The church was betrothed to Christ by His sovereign choice in eternity past (Eph. 1:4; Heb. 13:20) and will be presented to Him at the Rapture (John 14:1–3; 1 Thess. 4:13–18). The final supper will signify the end of the ceremony. This symbolic meal will take place at the establishment of the millennial kingdom and last throughout that 1,000 year period (cf. 21:2). While the term “bride” often refers to the church, and does so here (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:22–24), it ultimately expands to include all the redeemed of all ages, which becomes clear in the remainder of the book.

MacArthur Study Bible 19:8 righteous acts of the saints. Not Christ’s imputed righteousness granted to believers at salvation, but the practical results of that righteousness in believers’ lives, i.e., the outward manifestation of inward virtue.

MacArthur Study Bible 19:9 Blessed. See note on 1:3. those who are called. This is not the bride (the church) but the guests. The bride doesn’t get invited, she invites. These are those saved before Pentecost, all the faithful believers saved by grace through faith up to the birth of the church (Acts 2:1ff.). Though they are not the bride, they still are glorified and reign with Christ in the millennial kingdom. It is really differing imagery rather than differing reality. The guests also will include tribulation saints and believers alive in earthly bodies in the kingdom. The church is the bride, pure and faithful—never a harlot, like Israel was (see Hos. 2). So the church is the bride during the presentation feast in heaven, then comes to earth for the celebration of the final meal (the Millennium). After that event, the new order comes and the marriage is consummated (see notes on 21:1, 2). true sayings of God. This refers to everything since 17:1. It is all true—the marriage will take place after judgment.

Revelation 19:7 – We, the bride of Christ, will come under the protection of the Bride Groom, “Christ.” We are the bride of all brides. Christ is the Bride Groom of all Bride Grooms.

Consider the words of the Apostle Paul to the Thessalonians. This is the coming of Christ in the air, to not set foot on the earth. In this passage, “the dead in Christ” will rise first. The “dead in Christ” is a phrase that excludes the dead who never had a saving relationship with Christ. “We who are alive and remain, will be caught up…..” Only living believers in Christ will be caught up (snatched away, caught up, raptured). Both classes of believers (dead and alive), will be taken away to heaven to the Judgment Seat of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10). While the saints of God are in the Presence of God, those who were left behind will be coming under the judgments of God and the persecution of the anti-Christ.

1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 King James Version (KJV)

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

MacArthur Study Bible 4:16 the Lord Himself will descend. This fulfills the pledge of John 14:1–3 (cf. Acts 1:11). Until then, He remains in heaven (cf. 1:10; Heb. 1:1–3). archangel. Very little is known about the organization or rank of angels (cf. Col. 1:17). While only Michael is named as an archangel (Jude 9), there seems to be more than one in the archangelic ranks (Dan. 10:13). Perhaps it is Michael, the archangel, whose voice is heard as he is identified with Israel’s resurrection in Dan. 12:1–3. At that moment (cf. 1 Cor. 15:52, “twinkling of an eye”), the dead rise first. They will not miss the Rapture, but be the first participants. trumpet of God. Cf. 1 Cor. 15:52. This trumpet is not the judgment trumpets of Rev. 8–11, but is illustrated by the trumpet of Ex. 19:16–19, which called the people out of the camp to meet God. It will be a trumpet of deliverance (cf. Zeph. 1:16; Zech. 9:14).

MacArthur Study Bible 4:17 caught up. After the dead come forth, their spirits, already with the Lord (2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23), are now being joined to resurrected new bodies (see notes on 1 Cor. 15:35–50); the living Christians will be raptured, lit. snatched away (cf. John 10:28; Acts 8:39). This passage, along with John 14:1–3 and 1 Cor. 15:51, 52, forms the biblical basis for “the Rapture” of the church. The time of the Rapture cannot be conclusively determined from this passage alone. However, when other texts such as Rev. 3:10 and John 14:3 are consulted and compared to the texts about Christ’s coming in judgment (Matt. 13:34–50; 24:29–44; Rev. 19:11–21) at the end of a 7 year tribulation, it has to be noted that there is a clear difference between the character of the “Rapture” in that there is no mention of any judgment, while the other texts feature judgment. So then, it is best to understand that the Rapture occurs at a time different from the coming of Christ in judgment. Thus, the Rapture has been described as pretribulational (before the wrath of God unfolded in the judgments of Rev. 6–19). This event includes complete transformation (cf. 1 Cor. 15:51, 52; Phil 3:20, 21) and union with the Lord Jesus Christ that never ends.

MacArthur Study Bible 1 Thessalonians 4:18 comfort one another. The primary purpose of this passage is not to teach a scheme of prophecy, but rather to provide encouragement to those Christians whose loved ones have died. The comfort here is based on the following: 1) the dead will be resurrected and will participate in the Lord’s coming for His own; 2) when Christ comes the living will be reunited forever with their loved ones; and 3) they all will be with the Lord eternally (v. 17).

1 Thessalonians 4:17 “Caught up #726, seize, catch up, snatch away, harpazo (see below)

harpazó: to seize, catch up, snatch away
Original Word: ἁρπάζω
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: harpazó
Phonetic Spelling: (har-pad’-zo)
Short Definition: I seize, snatch, obtain by robbery
Definition: I seize, snatch, obtain by robbery.

Consider the letter of the Apostle Paul to the Corinthians, about the return of Christ in the air to take His believers to Heaven with Him, away from the earth, before the tribulation takes place. Earthly believers will be given immortal bodies, “in the twinkling of an eye,” and will be raised just as quickly. Our earthly, corruptible, bodies must be changed into heavenly, incorruptible, bodies in order for us to enter into heaven. Such an incorruptible, or imperishable body of our birth, will be a body that will never decay in heaven; it will live forever; we will live forever in the Presence of God.

1 Corinthians 15:50-53 King James Version (KJV)

50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
MacArthur Study Bible 15:51 mystery. This term refers to truth hidden in the past and revealed in the NT. See notes on 2:7 and Eph. 3:4, 5. In this case, the rapture of the church was never revealed in the OT. It was first mentioned in John 14:1–3, when it is specifically explained and is detailed in 1 Thess. 4:13–18 (see notes there). sleep. See note on v. 18.

MacArthur Study Bible 15:52 twinkling of an eye. This was Paul’s way of showing how brief the “moment” will be. The Gr. word for “twinkling” refers to any rapid movement. Since the eye can move more rapidly than any other part of our visible bodies, it seems to well illustrate the sudden transformation of raptured believers. trumpet will sound.To herald the end of the church era, when all believers will be removed from the earth at the rapture (1 Thess. 4:16). dead…raised. According to 1 Thess. 4:16, they are first and the living saints follow (1 Thess. 4:17)

Pre-Tribulation Rapture

After the rapture of the church takes place, the unwelcomed promise of Revelation 3:10 will soon follow. Those “who dwell on the earth,” is a phrase that is repeated throughout the book of Revelation, and relates to those people who did not know Christ as their Lord and Savior, but aligned themselves with the things of the earth. Believers in Christ do not need to be tested, as will happen to the earth dwellers. When we came to know Christ as our Lord and Savior, we passed “the test.” The judgments of Christ on the earth will begin with the Seal Judgments (Rev 6:1-8:6)), will continue with the Trumpet Judgments (Rev 8:7-9:21), and will end in the Bowl Judgments (Rev 15:1-16:21). The judgments will increase in severity. At the same time, the anti-Christ will be persecuting the Jews, and anyone else who aligns themselves with a belief in Christ as their Lord and Savior. As opposed to being earth dwellers, believers in Christ are Citizens of Heaven (Philippians 3:20).

Revelation 3:10 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

10 Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.

MacArthur Study Bible 3:10 keep you from the hour of trial. Christ’s description—an event still future that for a short time severely tests the whole world—must refer to the time of tribulation, the 7 year period before Christ’s earthly kingdom is consummated, featuring the unleashing of divine wrath in judgments expressed as seals, trumpets, and bowls. This period is described in detail throughout chaps. 6–19. The latter half is called “the Great Tribulation” (7:14; Matt. 24:21) and is identified as to time in 11:2, 3; 12:6, 14; 13:5. The verb “to keep” is followed by a preposition whose normal meaning is “from” or “out of”—this phrase, “keep…from” supports the pretribulational rapture of the church (see notes on John 14:1–3; 1 Cor. 15:51, 52; 1 Thess. 4:13–17). This period is the same as Daniel’s 70th week (see notes on Dan. 9:24–27) and “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (see notes on Jer. 30:7).

Other scriptures that identify “earth dwellers” are: Rev 6:10; 8:13; 11:10; 13:8; 13:14; 17:8. These verses show a hostility of those left behind people toward Christ. Consider the fact that their names were not written in the Book of Life.

Revelation 17:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 “The beast that you saw was, and is not, and is about to come up out of the abyss and go to destruction. And those who dwell on the earth, whose name has not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, will wonder when they see the beast, that he was and is not and will come.

Who will be raptured?

In order for someone to be raptured, they must have the Spirit of God dwelling within their spirits. They must have a spirit just as pure as the Spirit of Christ. In order for that spiritual indwelling and purity to take place, a person must have been born again.

1 John 1:5 New American Standard Bible (NASB) The Spirit of God is pure (lack of darkness).

5 This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.

2 Corinthians 5:17 New American Standard Bible (NASB) To dwell within the Spirit of Christ, we must have a spirit that is just as pure as the Spirit of Christ.

17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.

Colossians 1:27 New American Standard Bible (NASB) To have the Spirit of Christ “in us” is the expectant “hope of glory.”

27 to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

The New Birth: It makes our spirits as pure as the Spirit of Father/Son/Holy Spirit.

John 3:3 New King James Version (NKJV) – The need to be born again.

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

John 3:8 New King James Version (NKJV) – The Holy Spirit performs the new birth.

8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

John 3:16 New King James Version (NKJV) – If we believe in Christ as our Lord and Savior, we have been born again. If we have been born again, we believe in Christ as our Lord and Savior.

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

John 3:18 New King James Version (NKJV) – Without a belief in Christ as our Lord and Savior, we have condemnation as our eternal promise. This condemnation relates to Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and anyone else in the world who does not know Christ as their Lord and Savior – even to those “who say” that they are Christians, but show no spiritual fruit of the new birth (Galatians 5:22-23). The fruit of the Spirit “is,” explains that all of the individual items of spiritual fruit come into a person’s spiritual being when they are born again. Galatians 5:22-23 New American Standard Bible (NASB) “22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control;…”

18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John 14:16-17 New King James Version (NKJV) – When we have been born again, we have the indwelling Presence of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.

John 14:20 New King James Version (NKJV) – The indwelling of the Spirit in our born again spirit.

20 At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.
John 14:26 New King James Version (NKJV) – the Holy Spirit is our never-ending teacher of the things of God.

26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.

John 16:8-11 New King James Version (NKJV) – God’s Holy Spirit will convict the world, through His born again believers, of sin, and righteousness and judgment.

8 And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9 of sin, because they do not believe in Me; 10 of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; 11 of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

John 16:13 New King James Version (NKJV) – the Holy Spirit teaches us in all matters of truth.

13 However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.

Summing it up.

When we are born again, God’s Spirit is always in us and teaching us, and prompting us to do the things of righteousness. People will make mistakes, but someone who has been born again, having the daily prompting to righteousness, will lead a life of holiness. Consider the following verses of scripture that discuss people who show no evidence of having been born again, not having the Spirit of God dwelling within them, and not being prompted to lifestyles of righteousness.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 New American Standard Bible (NASB) These are people whose lifestyles showed that they had not been born again, and did not have the Spirit of God dwelling within their spirits. There are also people who came out those sinful lifestyles and “were washes, were sanctified, and were justified in the Name of the Lord,” which shows that they had been born again and had left their sinful lifestyles.

9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals,10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

Revelation 21:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB) All of these character traits show a lack of personal relationships in Christ as their Lord and Savior.

8 But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

Conclusion

Remember the opening video. Consider the people in the airliner. Families were seated side-by-side. In the “twinkling of an eye,” those who had been born again were removed from their mortal bodies in the cabin of the aircraft, and were immediately caught up to be the Presence of God. (2 Cor 5:8). Consider those who were left behind; they had not been born again.

Consider the realities of life. Consider the things that show that certain people have not been born again. In today’s world, it is quite easy to identify “earth dwellers.”

Consider murder. Consider abortion on demand. Consider people who perform such practices. Consider people who vote to put people in public office, who will also vote to use the force of law to promote abortion on demand.

Consider homosexual marriage. Consider people who conduct such weddings, and those who enter into such abominable unions. Consider the people who vote to put people in public, who will also vote to use the force of law to promote homosexual marriage and will use the force of law to make normal people accept the abomination of homosexuality.

Consider personal thoughts

Matthew 5:28 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

28 but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

James 1:14-15 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

14 But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. 15 Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.

For someone to think of committing the act of adultery begins a slippery slope that may lead to the fulfillment of that act. For someone to think of committing the act of homosexuality is also the beginning of a slippery slope, which may lead to a lifestyle of homosexuality, or of condoning that abomination. For someone to think of killing an unborn baby, is to climb onto yet another slippery slope. Yet the slippery slope that leads to abortion is an act that destroys life. Life comes from existing life (Dr. Louis Pasteur, Law of Biogenesis).
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biogenesis The aorta pumps blood from the heart to the rest of the body. During an abortion, the blood of the unborn baby is seen as the baby is being destroyed. A video will be shown at the bottom of this page which shows the blood of an unborn baby which is being butchered. The blood that will be seen will not be the blood of the mother, but of the baby http://www.webmd.com/heart/picture-of-the-aorta#1

At present time, in America, the Democrat party has on its party platform a statement for abortion, with no limits being imposed. Yet, many “so called” Christians continue to vote for Democrats. The liberal media (ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MSNBC) supports the Democrat party in its pro-abortion legislation. Yet, many “so called” Christians continue to watch those networks, thereby improving the ratings of those networks, and also take into their minds the pro-death reporting that will affect the beliefs of the parents and children of those “so called” Christian families. The Democrat Party also has on it party platform the support of same-sex marriage. The same liberal media outlets (ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MSNBC) also support same-sex marriage. Still, many “so called” Christians continue to watch the pro-homosexual propaganda that is reported by the liberal media. The Democrat Party platform can be seen in the following link. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/papers_pdf/117717.pdf

Let’s make this personal. If you see nothing wrong with the killing of unborn babies, you should have no problem viewing the video of the abortion that follows. If you see nothing wrong with the killing of unborn babies, you do not have the Spirit of God dwelling within your spirit, prompting you to righteousness. Also, if you see nothing wrong with people of the same-sex having sexual relations, or entering into same-sex unions, you do not have the spirit of God dwelling within your spirit and prompting you to righteousness. In either instance, you have not been born again! Your destiny is the Lake of Fire!(Revelation 20:15). It is a personal choice as to whether you will be standing in the line with other people having such similar beliefs that are the result of not having been born again.

The road which leads to the Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11-15), which also leads to the lake of fire and eternal suffering, is a road that is not forced upon anyone. It is only by a personal choice that anyone will take such a trip. Consider such a journey that has only been set aside for people who have not been born again.

Revelation 20:11-15 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Judgment at the Throne of God

11 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them. 12 And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds. 13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead which were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds. 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15 And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

Consider your family. Do you want you and your family to be cast into the lake of fire on the family plan? A better decision for you and your family to make is to spend eternity in the Kingdom of God, by being born again (John 3:3).

John 3:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Scroll down to the bottom of the page for the video of an abortion. When you watch it consider how the people, who are involved in the killing of that unborn baby, have become so ridiculously numb to the taking of life that it seems like a tv reality show.

Eschatology

Eschatology is the study of the teachings in the Bible concerning the end times and of the period of time dealing with the return of Christ and the events that follow. Those events, follow, but are not in the order as shown: the Resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Millennium, the Binding of Satan, the Three witnesses, the Final Judgment, Armageddon, and The New Heavens and the New Earth. In one form or another most of the books of the Bible deal with end-times subjects.

My study of the end times goes back to the year of 1976. There have been many people who have helped me to understand this exciting part of God’s Holy Word. There have also been many credible source documents that I have studied, “over and over.” The following individuals (some alive, and some deceased) are recognized for their knowledgeable of matters that relate to the end times. Their study materials have helped me to prepare this series of posts on “God’s Plan For The Ages.” Their names are presented below in no special order of importance. It is easy to research their qualifications through the internet.

C.I. Scofield, Merrill Unger, Charles C. Ryrie, Henry Morris, J. Dwight Pentecost, David Jeremiah, John MacArthur, Frank Charles Thompson, Grant R. Jeffrey, John F. Walvoord, J. Vernon McGee, Charles Swindoll, John Phillips, Ed Hindson, Tim LaHaye, Ron Rhodes, David Reagan, Jimmy DeYoung, Renald Showers, John Ankerberg, Hal Lindsey, Mark Hitchcock, Jack Van Impe, Adrian Rogers, and others.

Comments on this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Please follow this blog so that you will automatically receive future posts.

LEGRADO

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Left Behind I – A World Of Unbelievers Face The Consequences Of Their Unbelief In Christ (7-6)

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As you consider this post, also consider the fact that there have been too many American Presidents who have been trying to legislate peace in the middle east for too long of a period of time. The truth of the matter is that there will not be peace in the middle east, or anywhere else on earth, until Christ comes back to earth and sets up His millennial (1,000 year) Kingdom (Zechariah 14, Revelation 19-20, Matthew 24-25). The subject of the tribulation has been described as: “pre-trib, mid-trib, and post-trib.” Unfortunately, there have been far too many pastors who have added “pan-trib,” saying that it will “all pan out” in the end. Folks, such a statement shows a great lack of respect for the teachings of the Bible that clearly show that the rapture of the church will come, “as directed by God,” prior to the beginning of the tribulation, and is know as the “pre-tribulation rapture of the church. (Mid-trib means that all believers in Christ (including little babies) will have to go through the first half of the judgments of the tribulation. Post tribulation means that all believers in Christ (including little babies) will have to through all of the judgments of the tribulation. The “off the cuff” insult to God’s Holy Word, that things “will just pan out,” is totally incorrect. God has a plan, which will not just “pan out,” as a result of “happen stance.”) This subject is too serious not to be taught. Too many believers in Christ think that they will have to go through the tribulation, or parts of it, and will also be subjected to the Battle of Armageddon, which is also totally false. Remember the purpose of the leaders of the church, Ephesians 4:11, “equip the saints.”

The following link tells us about the man who authored the Left Behind Series of books.

http://www.christianitytoday.com/gleanings/2016/july/tim-lahaye-dies-left-behind-coauthor-stroke.html

The man who wrote the Left Behind series, Tim LeHaye, was traveling on an airliner. He noticed a pilot flirting with a stewardess. He also noticed that the pilot was wearing a wedding ring. The thought came to Dr. LeHaye about the coming of Christ in the air for the rapture of the church (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17) at such a time that he was observing. Dr. LeHaye soon wrote his first book on the events that surround the rapture of the church, which was titled “Left Behind.” The rapture of the church, which is the coming of Christ in the air to take His believers out of this world, prior to the beginning of the tribulation period (the 70th week of Daniel). This event precedes the second coming of Christ when He will come for judgment of the world, which will come at the end of the tribulation (7 years after the rapture of the church) (Matthew 24:21, 29-30). The teaching of this subject is greatly ignored, and often scorned. The subject of the rapture of the church is taught in clear detail in the Bible, but is not being taught in many Christian congregations; it is an event that is like none other. Let me encourage you to follow this blog and study the posts that relate to this subject. The posts that relate to the end of times can be found by selecting the category of “Journey.” As is shown in the linked article, Tim LeHaye had been the pastor of the congregation where Dr. David Jeremiah is now the Senior Pastor.

God has been very good to me by putting very gifted teachers of the end times in my life. He has also given me a great desire to study things that relate to the end times. Let me encourage you to equip yourselves with study tools that will help you to gain a better understanding of “the Revelation (singular) of Christ (Revelation 1:1). One such tool is the MacArthur Study Bible. Its notes in the book of Revelation, and other books of the Bible, will provide you with information about the end times that may not have been provided to you by other pastors or teachers.

Consider the teaching of this post, “Left Behind I.” Other posts that relate to the Left Behind series and the end times will follow.

Matthew 24:8-12 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

(note) It is important to know that Christ is speaking to Jews (the church had not yet been established) about things that relate to “left behind Jews” who will experience the judgments of God during the tribulation. Much of that which Christ said in this passage would not have had any meaning to Gentiles; e.g., “the Sabbath.” The Sabbath is a sign between God and the Jews, and is to be kept by the Jews (Exodus 33:13). During the time of tribulation, “left behind Gentiles” will also be subjected to the judgments of God (seal, trumpet, and bowl judgments).

8 All these events are the beginning of birth pains.

Persecutions Predicted

9 “Then they will hand you over for persecution, and they will kill you. You will be hated by all nations because of My name.10 Then many will take offense, betray one another and hate one another. 11 Many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.12 Because lawlessness will multiply, the love of many will grow cold.

The persecutions that are discussed are also known as “birth pains,” “birth pangs,” and sorrows, vs 8. Consider the commentary on verse 8 from the MacArthur Study Bible.

Famines, earthquakes, and conflicts have always characterized life in a fallen world; but by calling these things “the beginning” of labor pains, Christ indicated that things will get notably and remarkably worse at the end of the era, as these unique tribulations signal the soon arrival of Messiah to judge sinful humanity and set up His millennial kingdom. Cf. 1 Thes. 5:3; Rev. 6:1–17; 8:1—9:21;16:1–21;

The rapture of the church is not the second coming of Christ, when our Lord will return from Heaven and stand on the Mount Of Olives in Jerusalem. During the tribulation Christ will inflict a series of judgments on all “earth dwellers” (those who missed the rapture because they had not been born again). The purpose of the events of the tribulation will be to judge sin and to bring Israel to accept Jesus as Messiah (Daniel 9:24). The Anti-Christ will be under the control of God. God will not be just an observer; He will be in control of the seal judgments, the trumpet judgments, and the bowl judgments, which will come upon all of those that dwell upon the earth. (Revelation 3:10). No one who is present during the tribulation will be exempted from God’s judgment. Those whom have been born again, and have the Spirit of God dwelling within their Spirits, will not be among those “earth dwellers.” At the time of the rapture of the church, all of those whom have been born again will be removed from the earth. At that time, the only dwellers on earth will be those whom have not been born again; those whom do not have the Spirit of God dwelling within their spirits. Those “unborn again” earth dwellers, and only they, will be the objects of God’s judgments. Such people cling to the things that are not of God, and Heaven. We, whom are born again, are citizens of Heaven and therefore cling to Heavenly matters because of the influence that God’s Holy Spirit places within our spirits (John 16:7-11). Those, whom have not been born again, are minus the dwelling of the Holy Spirit within their spirits, have no understanding of spiritual things (1 Cor 1:18; 2:14), and have no Spiritual leading and influence in their lives. Such people, which have not been born again, (Gentile or Jew) will have the opportunity to accept Jesus as Messiah during the tribulation, and will most likely become martyrs of the Anti-Christ and become tribulation martyrs. To believe that “all” people in the world will go through any part of the tribulation, is to also believe that little children and little babies will also be the objects of the judgments of God. If anyone has any misunderstanding about the severity of the judgments of God, a quick look at those judgments should provide a much clearer understanding of God’s love vs his stern judgment. Check out the seal judgments (Rev 6:1-17); the trumpet judgments (Rev 8:2-9:21; 11:15-19); and the bowl judgments (Rev 15-16). As opposed to the harshness of God’s wrath that will follow when Christ returns to earth for judgment, there is a verse of encouragement for those of us who will have been raptured out of this world.

Titus 2:11-13 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

11 For the grace of God has appeared with salvation for all people, 12 instructing us to deny godlessness and worldly lusts and to live in a sensible, righteous, and godly way in the present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.

It is a “blessed hope” that we believers in Christ have, as we await his coming in the air to take us out of this world, which will protect us from the tribulation and judgments that will soon follow.

Consider the Words of Jesus in Matthew 11:28-30, as they relate to His protection and love for His people.

Matthew 11:28-30 New King James Version (NKJV)

28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

The love of Christ for his people is very clear in Mt 11:28-30. But, did He “very conveniently” leave out of that conversation that His people would have to suffer, along with all those whom are not His people, the horrible conditions of the judgments of the tribulation? I think not! Consider, also, the love that Christ expressed for His Church, which is His Bride/His born again believers of the world that is expressed in Eph 5:25.

Ephesians 5:25 New King James Version (NKJV)

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,

Jesus is the “bridegroom of all bridegrooms.” He tells all of us that His love for us (the born again body of Christ/his bride) is such that he loved us so much that “He died for us.” Jesus, through the work of the Holy Spirit, courted us and “stole our hearts from the unbelieving world.” His Word told husbands to love “their wives.” But, are we to believe that Jesus is going to leave His bride in the world to face the persecution of the Anti-Christ and God’s directed seal, trumpet and bowl judgments? I think not!

During the tribulation, Christ will not be present on earth; He will be judging the earth. Consider where His believers will be; we will be with Him, in Him. When we were born again, our spirits became inhabitants of the Spirit of Christ, and Christ became an inhabitant of our Spirits, as we read in the following verses.

John 10:30 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

30 The Father and I are one.” (note: God the Father and God the Son are literally “One”)

John 14:11 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me. Otherwise, believe because of the works themselves (note: God the Father and God the Son dwell within “The Other”)

John 14:16-17 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever.17 He is the Spirit of truth. The world is unable to receive Him because it doesn’t see Him or know Him. But you do know Him, because He remains with you and will be in you. (note: the Spirit of God dwells literally “in our spirits.” He does not dwell within the spirits of the unborn again world)

John 14:20 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

20 In that day you will know that I am in My Father, you are in Me, and I am in you. (note: we see the literal dwelling of the God-Head in us, and us in the God-Head ‘Father, Son, Holy Spirit)

2 Corinthians 5:17 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come. (note: we are literally, “in Christ”)

Colossians 1:27 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

27 God wanted to make known among the Gentiles the glorious wealth of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. (note: Christ is literally, “in us)

Future posts will discuss scriptures that describe the rapture of the church and the Judgment Seat Of Christ “for rewards for believers in Christ;” the tribulation, the Anti-Christ, and the judgments of God (seal, trumpet, bowl judgments); the martyred tribulation saints (those which came to Christ during the tribulation) and the two slain witnesses which are resurrected; the dragon/Satan, the Anti-Christ/the Beast, the false prophet/a religious leader; the woman of Revelation 12 and the 144,000 Jewish missionaries; the mark of the beast; the preparation for the Battle of Armageddon; the marriage of the lamb and the marriage supper; the second coming of Christ at the Battle of Armageddon (with the accompanying raptured saints and angels); the resurrection of the other saints of all times (Old Testament and tribulation saints); the 1,000 year reign of Christ and the binding of Satan; the loosing of Satan and the Battle of Gog and Magog; the resurrection of those which were not born again and the Great White Throne Judgment (for those not born again); the lake of fire (for Satan, the beast, the false prophet, and for those not born again); the new heaven, new earth, and new Jerusalem; eternity for God’s born again people with God and the Lamb.

This post is one of many that can be found in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to find the Journey posts. If you click onto the following link you will be able to follow the blog and receive automatic updates.

Please follow this blog.

God’s Plan For The Ages 52 – Israel – Ezekiel 5 – Ezekiel Dramatizes Jerusalem’s Fall

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What nations will be involved in the Ezekiel 38 war?

The Ezekiel 38 War and the Battle of Armageddon

God’s Promises For Israel’s Restoration

Text

Isaiah 14:1 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

1 When the Lord will have compassion on Jacob and again choose Israel, and settle them in their own land, then strangers will join them and attach themselves to the house of Jacob.

Isaiah 60:21 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

21 “Then all your people will be righteous; They will possess the land forever, The branch of My planting, The work of My hands, That I may be glorified.

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

Isaiah 14:1 The strangers. These are Jewish proselytes who join themselves to the nation in the final earthly kingdom of Christ.

Isaiah 60:21 inherit the land forever. Israel will inherit the land promised to Abraham (Gen. 12:1, 7; 13:15; 15:18). During the millennial kingdom, that will be the land of Israel as we know it today. In the eternal kingdom, it will be the New Jerusalem, capital of the new creation. I may be glorified. The ultimate mission of Israel is to glorify the Lord (49:3; 61:3).

Text

Ezekiel 5 – New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Ezekiel Dramatizes Jerusalem’s Fall

1 “As for you, son of man, take a sharp sword; take and use it as a barber’s razor on your head and beard. Then take scales for weighing and divide the hair. 2 One third you shall burn in the fire at the center of the city, when the days of the siege are completed. Then you shall take one third and strike it with the sword all around the city, and one third you shall scatter to the wind; and I will unsheathe a sword behind them. 3 Take also a few in number from them and bind them in the edges of your robes. 4 Take again some of them and throw them into the fire and burn them in the fire; from it a fire will spread to all the house of Israel.

5 “Thus says the Lord God, ‘This is Jerusalem; I have set her at the center of the nations, with lands around her. 6 But she has rebelled against My ordinances more wickedly than the nations and against My statutes more than the lands which surround her; for they have rejected My ordinances and have not walked in My statutes.’ 7 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Because you have more turmoil than the nations which surround you and have not walked in My statutes, nor observed My ordinances, nor observed the ordinances of the nations which surround you,’ 8 therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Behold, I, even I, am against you, and I will execute judgments among you in the sight of the nations. 9 And because of all your abominations, I will do among you what I have not done, and the like of which I will never do again. 10 Therefore, fathers will eat their sons among you, and sons will eat their fathers; for I will execute judgments on you and scatter all your remnant to every wind. 11 So as I live,’ declares the Lord God, ‘surely, because you have defiled My sanctuary with all your detestable idols and with all your abominations, therefore I will also withdraw, and My eye will have no pity and I will not spare. 12 One third of you will die by plague or be consumed by famine among you, one third will fall by the sword around you, and one third I will scatter to every wind, and I will unsheathe a sword behind them.

13 ‘Thus My anger will be spent and I will satisfy My wrath on them, and I will be appeased; then they will know that I, the Lord, have spoken in My zeal when I have spent My wrath upon them. 14 Moreover, I will make you a desolation and a reproach among the nations which surround you, in the sight of all who pass by. 15 So it will be a reproach, a reviling, a warning and an object of horror to the nations who surround you when I execute judgments against you in anger, wrath and raging rebukes. I, the Lord, have spoken. 16 When I send against them the deadly arrows of famine which were for the destruction of those whom I will send to destroy you, then I will also intensify the famine upon you and break the staff of bread.17 Moreover, I will send on you famine and wild beasts, and they will bereave you of children; plague and bloodshed also will pass through you, and I will bring the sword on you. I, the Lord, have spoken.’”

Notes – Ezekiel 5 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

5:1–4 a barber’s razor. The sign in shaving his hair illustrated the severe humiliation to come at the hand of enemies, emphasizing calamities to three segments of Jerusalem due to the Babylonian conquest. Some were punished by fire, i.e., pestilence and famine (v. 12), others died by the enemy’s sword, and some were dispersed and pursued by death (cf. v. 12). A small part of his hair clinging to his garment (v. 3) depicted a remaining remnant, some of whom were subject to further calamity (v. 4; cf. 6:8; Jer. 41–44)
5:5 Jerusalem. Here the great city alone was not meant, but was used as a representative of the whole land which, despite its strategic opportunity and responsibility, rejected God (vv. 6, 7).
5:7 Instead of being a witness to the heathen nations, Israel had exceeded them in idolatrous practices. The nations maintained their familiar idols, while Israel defected from their true and living God. God’s people were worse than the pagans in proportion to spiritual knowledge and privileges. The judgments of God are always relative to light and privilege granted. Since Ezekiel’s people were unique in their disobedience, they were to be outstanding in their punishment.
5:8–10 The book of Lamentations reveals how literally these promises were realized when parents ate their children and sons ate their fathers in the times of starvation. Down through the centuries had come the threats of Lev. 26:29 and Deut. 28:53, taken up by Jeremiah (Jer. 19:9; Lam. 2:22; 4:10; cf. Is. 9:20), and sealed in the life of the disobedient nation. Even the remnant would be scattered and suffer.
5:11 as I live. Here was a solemn oath pledging the very existence of God for the fulfillment of the prophecy. It is found 14 times in this book. Their greatest sin was defiling the sanctuary, showing the height of their wickedness.
5:12 The 4 well known judgments (cf. vv. 2–4) of pestilence, famine, sword, and scattering were their judgment. They had no place to offer atoning blood, thus bearing their sins without relief.
5:13–15 Ezekiel’s purpose was to impress on Israel’s conscience God’s intense hatred of idolatry and apostasy. “Fury” and “anger” are repeated 6 times.
5:16 arrows of famine. The evil arrows included hail, rain, mice, locusts, and mildew (cf. Deut. 32:23, 24).
5:17 I, the Lord, have spoken. Cf. vv. 13, 15 for the same expression, which was God’s personal signature on their doom.

Comments on this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

Dr. Mark Hitchcock http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Ron Rhodes http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

God’s Plan For The Ages 51 – Israel – Ezekiel 4 – Jerusalem’s Siege Dramatized

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How close are we to the Ezekiel 38 war?

God’s Promises For Israel’s Restoration

Text

Amos 9:11-15 New American Standard Bible (NASB 1995)

The Restoration of Israel

11“In that day I will raise up the fallen booth of David, And wall up its breaches; I will also raise up its
ruins And rebuild it as in the days of old; 12 That they may possess the remnant of Edom And all the nations who are called by My name,” Declares the Lord who does this. 13 “Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “When the plowman will overtake the reaper And the treader of grapes him who sows seed; When the mountains will drip sweet wine And all the hills will be dissolved. 14 “Also I will restore the captivity of My people Israel, And they will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them; They will also plant vineyards and drink their wine, And make gardens and eat their fruit. 15 “I will also plant them on their land, And they will not again be rooted out from their land Which I have given them,” Says the Lord your God.

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

Amos 9:11–15 Millennial blessings await the final faithful remnant, when Messiah personally reigns over all nations in Jerusalem upon the throne of David, and the Jews are never again pulled up from their divinely inherited land.

Text

Ezekiel 4 – New American Standard Bible (NASB 1977)

Siege of Jerusalem Predicted – Consider Israel and Judah

1 “Now you son of man, get yourself a brick, place it before you, and inscribe a city on it, Jerusalem. 2 “Then lay siege against it, build a siege wall, raise up a ramp, pitch camps, and place battering rams against it all around.
3 “Then get yourself an iron plate and set it up as an iron wall between you and the city, and set your face toward it so that it is under siege, and besiege it. This is a sign to the house of Israel.

4 “As for you, lie down on your left side, and lay the iniquity of the house of Israel on it; you shall bear their iniquity for the number of days that you lie on it. 5 “For I have assigned you a number of days corresponding to the years of their iniquity, three hundred and ninety days; thus you shall bear the iniquity of the house of Israel. 6 “When you have completed these, you shall lie down a second time, but on your right side, and bear the iniquity of the house of Judah; I have assigned it to you for forty days, a day for each year. 7 “Then you shall set your face toward the siege of Jerusalem with your arm bared, and prophesy against it. 8 “Now behold, I will put ropes on you so that you cannot turn from one side to the other, until you have completed the days of your siege.

Defiled Bread

9 “But as for you, take wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet and spelt, put them in one vessel and make them into bread for yourself; you shall eat it according to the number of the days that you lie on your side, three hundred and ninety days. 10 “And your food which you eat shall be twenty shekels a day by weight; you shall eat it from time to time. 11 “And the water you drink will be the sixth part of a hin by measure; you shall drink it from time to time. 12 “And you shall eat it as a barley cake, having baked it in their sight over human dung.” 13 Then the LORD said, “Thus shall the sons of Israel eat their bread unclean among the nations where I shall banish them.” 14 But I said, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, I have never been defiled; for from my youth until now I have never eaten what died of itself or was torn by beasts, nor has any unclean meat ever entered my mouth.” 15 Then He said to me, “See, I shall give you cow’s dung in place of human dung over which you will prepare your bread.” 16 Moreover, He said to me, “Son of man, behold, I am going to break the staff of bread in Jerusalem, and they will eat bread by weight and with anxiety, and drink water by measure and in horror, 17 because bread and water will be scarce; and they will be appalled with one another and waste away in their iniquity.

Notes: Ezekiel 4 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

4:1—7:27 Here is the first series of prophecies given over a year’s time, of Jerusalem’s conquest by the Babylonians in 586 B.C.
4:1–3 portray…Jerusalem. Ezekiel’s object lesson was to use a soft tile to create a miniature city layout of Jerusalem with walls and siege objects to illustrate Babylon’s final coming siege of Jerusalem (588–586 B.C.).
4:4–6 Lie…on your left side…right side. Lying on his side, likely facing N, illustrated God’s applying judgment to Israel, and facing S pointed to judgment on Judah. It is not necessary to assume that Ezekiel was in the prone position all the time. It was doubtless part of each day, as his need for preparing food (v. 9) indicates.
4:4, 6 you shall bear their iniquity. Ezekiel’s action was not to represent the time of Israel’s sinning, but the time of its punishment.
4:5 three hundred and ninety. Each day symbolized a year (v. 6). Israel in the N was accountable during this span of time whose beginning and end is uncertain.
4:6 forty. Judah was also guilty, but the 40 cannot represent less guilt (cf. 23:11). It may extend the time beyond the 390 to 430 or they may run concurrently, but the exact timing is uncertain.
4:7 arm…uncovered. A symbol for being ready for action, as a soldier would do (cf. Is. 52:10).
4:8 I will restrain you. This was to symbolize the impossibility of the Jews being able to shake off their punishment.
4:9–13 make bread. Scarcity of food in the 18 month siege especially made necessary the mixing of all kinds of grain for bread. The “20 shekels” would be about 8 ounces, while “one-sixth of a hin” would be less than a quart. There would be minimums for daily rations. It must be noted that the command of v. 12 regarding “human waste” relates only to the fuel used to prepare the food. Bread was baked on hot stones (cf. 1 Kin. 19:6) heated by human waste because no other fuel was available. This was repulsive and polluting (cf. Deut. 23:12–14) and the Lord calls it “defiled bread” (v. 13).
4:14, 15 never defiled. Ezekiel, like Daniel, had convictions to be undefiled even in his food (cf. Dan. 1:8 and see note there). God permitted fuel of dried cow chips for cooking his food in gracious deference to His spokesman’s sensitivity (cf. 44:31).
4:16, 17 They were soon to have neither bread nor water in any amount, and they were to grieve over the famine and their iniquity (cf. Lev. 26:21–26).

Comments on this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

God’s Plan For The Ages 50 – Israel – Ezekiel 3 – Ezekiel’s Commissioning

Click onto any highlighted word to see the video and text on the blog.

Jimmy DeYoung: Ezekiel 38 War – Nations mentioned in the Bible

God’s Promises For Israel’s Restoration

Texts

Jeremiah 31:31-34 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

31 “Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” declares the Lord. 33 “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 34 They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the Lord, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

Jeremiah 31:31–34 a new covenant. In contrast to the Mosaic Covenant under which Israel failed, God promised a New Covenant with a spiritual, divine dynamic by which those who know Him would participate in the blessings of salvation. The fulfillment was to individuals, yet also to Israel as a nation (v. 36; Rom. 11:16–27). It is set 1) in the framework of a reestablishment in their land (e.g., chaps. 30–33 and in vv. 38–40) and 2) in the time after the ultimate difficulty (30:7). In principle, this covenant, also announced by Jesus Christ (Luke 22:20), begins to be exercised with spiritual aspects realized for Jewish and Gentile believers in the church era (1 Cor. 11:25; Heb. 8:7–13; 9:15; 10:14–17; 12:24; 13:20). It has already begun to take effect with “the remnant according to the election of grace” (Rom. 11:5). It will be also realized by the people of Israel in the last days, including the regathering to their ancient land, Palestine (chaps. 30–33). The streams of the Abrahamic, Davidic, and New Covenants find their confluence in the millennial kingdom ruled over by the Messiah.

Text

Ezekiel 3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Ezekiel’s Commission

1 Then He said to me, “Son of man, eat what you find; eat this scroll, and go, speak to the house of Israel.” 2 So I opened my mouth, and He fed me this scroll. 3 He said to me, “Son of man, feed your stomach and fill your body with this scroll which I am giving you.” Then I ate it, and it was sweet as honey in my mouth.

4 Then He said to me, “Son of man, go to the house of Israel and speak with My words to them. 5 For you are not being sent to a people of unintelligible speech or difficult language, but to the house of Israel, 6 nor to many peoples of unintelligible speech or difficult language, whose words you cannot understand. But I have sent you to them who should listen to you;7 yet the house of Israel will not be willing to listen to you, since they are not willing to listen to Me. Surely the whole house of Israel is stubborn and obstinate. 8 Behold, I have made your face as hard as their faces and your forehead as hard as their foreheads. 9 Like emery harder than flint I have made your forehead. Do not be afraid of them or be dismayed before them, though they are a rebellious house.” 10 Moreover, He said to me, “Son of man, take into your heart all My words which I will speak to you and listen closely.

CONSIDER THE HOLINESS OF GOD (VS 11-14) THE LORD GOD; THE SPIRIT; THE GLORY OF THE LORD; THE HAND OF THE LORD

11 Go to the exiles, to the sons of your people, and speak to them and tell them, whether they listen or not, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’” 12 Then the Spirit lifted me up, and I heard a great rumbling sound behind me, “Blessed be the glory of the Lord in His place.” 13 And I heard the sound of the wings of the living beings touching one another and the sound of the wheels beside them, even a great rumbling sound.14 So the Spirit lifted me up and took me away; and I went embittered in the rage of my spirit, and the hand of the Lord was strong on me.

15 Then I came to the exiles who lived beside the river Chebar at Tel-abib, and I sat there seven days where they were living, causing consternation among them.

CONSIDER THE HOLINESS OF GOD (VS 16) THE WORD OF THE LORD

16 At the end of seven days the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

17 “Son of man, I have appointed you a watchman to the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from My mouth, warn them from Me. 18 When I say to the wicked, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn him or speak out to warn the wicked from his wicked way that he may live, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. 19 Yet if you have warned the wicked and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered yourself. 20 Again, when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and I place an obstacle before him, he will die; since you have not warned him, he shall die in his sin, and his righteous deeds which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood I will require at your hand. 21 However, if you have warned the righteous man that the righteous should not sin and he does not sin, he shall surely live because he took warning; and you have delivered yourself.”

CONSIDER THE HOLINESS OF GOD (VS 22-24) THE HAND OF THE LORD; THE GLORY OF THE LORD; THE SPIRIT

22 The hand of the Lord was on me there, and He said to me, “Get up, go out to the plain, and there I will speak to you.” 23 So I got up and went out to the plain; and behold, the glory of the Lord was standing there, like the glory which I saw by the river Chebar, and I fell on my face. 24 The Spirit then entered me and made me stand on my feet, and He spoke with me and said to me, “Go, shut yourself up in your house.

25 As for you, son of man, they will put ropes on you and bind you with them so that you cannot go out among them. 26 Moreover, I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be mute and cannot be a man who rebukes them, for they are a rebellious house.

CONSIDER THE HOLINESS OF GOD (VS 27) THE LORD GOD

27 But when I speak to you, I will open your mouth and you will say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ He who hears, let him hear; and he who refuses, let him refuse; for they are a rebellious house.

Notes – Ezekiel 3 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

3:1–3 eat this scroll…So I ate. God’s messenger must first internalize God’s truth for himself, then preach it.
3:3 like honey. Even though the message was judgment on Israel, the scroll was sweet because it was God’s Word (cf. Pss. 19:10; 119:103) and because it vindicated God in holiness, righteousness, glory, and faithfulness, in which Jeremiah also delighted (Jer. 15:16). Bitterness also was experienced by the prophet (3:14) in this message of judgment confronting Judah’s rebellion (v. 9). The Apostle John records a similar bittersweet experience with the Word of God in Rev. 10:9, 10.
3:7 Cf. John 15:20.
3:8, 9 I have made your face strong. What God commands (“do not be afraid”) He gives sufficiency to do (“I have made”), so God will enable the prophet to live up to his name (which means “strengthened by God”). Cf. 2:2; 3:14, 24; Is. 41:10; Jer. 1:8, 17.
3:9 rebellious. It is sad to observe that the exile and affliction did not make the Jews more responsive to God; rather, they were hardened by their sufferings. God gave Ezekiel a “hardness” to surpass the people and sustain his ministry as prophet to the exiles.
3:12, 14 the Spirit lifted me up. This is a phrase used to describe the prophet being elevated to a heavenly vision, as in the experiences of 8:3 and 11:1.
3:14 bitterness. See note on 3:3.
3:15 the captives. Tel Abib was the main city for the Jewish captives, who may have included some of the 10 tribes taken long before in the conquering of the northern kingdom of Israel in 722 B.C., as 2 Kin. 17:6 may indicate (“Habor” is the same river as Chebar). remained…seven days. Ezekiel sat with the sorrowing people for 7 days, the usual period for manifesting deep grief (cf. Job 2:13). He identified with them in their suffering (cf. Ps. 137:1), thus trying to win their trust when he spoke God’s Word.
3:17 a watchman. This role was spiritually analogous to the role of watchmen on a city wall, vigilant to spot the approach of an enemy and warn the residents to muster a defense. The prophet gave timely warnings of approaching judgment. The work of a watchman is vividly set forth in 2 Sam. 18:24–27 and 2 Kin. 9:17–20. See notes on 33:1–20.
3:18–21 Cf. chap. 18, and see notes there.
3:18 the wicked…him…his. The emphasis of singular pronouns was on individuals. The ministries of Habakkuk (2:1), Jeremiah (6:17), and Isaiah (56:10) were more national than individual. Ezekiel’s ministry was more personal, focused on individual responsibility to trust and obey God. Disobedience or obedience to God’s messages was a matter of life or death; Ezek. 18:1–20 is particularly devoted to this emphasis. no warning…die. Men are not to assume that ignorance, even owing to the negligence of preachers, will be any excuse to save them from divine punishment. Cf. Rom. 2:12. save his life. This refers to physical death, not eternal damnation, though that would be a consequence for many. In the Pentateuch, God had commanded death for many violations of His law and warned that it could be a consequence of any kind of consistent sin (cf. Josh. 1:16–18). The people of Israel had long abandoned that severe standard of purification, so God took execution back into His own hands, as in the destruction of Israel, Judah, and Jerusalem. On the other hand, God had also promised special protection and life to the obedient. Cf. 18:9–32; 33:11–16; Prov. 4:4; 7:2; Amos 5:4, 6.
3:20 a righteous man. Here is a person who was obeying God by doing what was right, but fell into sin and God took his life in chastisement. The “stumbling block” was a stone of judgment that kills. Ps. 119:165 says: “Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble.” The crushing stone always falls on the disobedient. Hebrews 12:9 says it is better to obey and “live.” Cf. 1 Cor. 11:30; James 1:21; 1 John 5:16.
3:21 delivered your soul. The prophet had done his duty.
3:23 the glory of the Lord. The “glory of the Lord” is central to Ezekiel, appearing in 1:28; 3:12, 23; 10:4, 18; 11:23; 43:4, 5; 44:4.
3:24 shut yourself inside your house. He was to fulfill much of his ministry at home (8:1; 12:1–7), thereby limiting it to those who came to hear him there.
3:25 they will put ropes on you. These were not literal, but spiritual. On one hand, they could be the inner ropes of depressing influence which the rebellious Jews exerted on his spirit. Their perversity, like ropes, would repress his freedom in preaching. More likely, they imply the restraint that God placed on him by supernatural power, so that he could only go and speak where and when God chose (cf. vv. 26, 27).
3:26, 27 you shall be mute. He was not to speak primarily, but to act out God’s message. The prohibition was only partial, for on any occasion (v. 27) when God did open his mouth, as He often did in chaps. 5–7, he was to speak (3:22; 11:25; 12:10, 19, 23, 28). The end of such intermittent dumbness with regard to his own people closely synchronized with Ezekiel’s receiving a refugee’s report of Jerusalem’s fall (24:25–27; 33:21, 22). He also spoke with regard to judgments on other nations (chaps. 25–32).

Comments On This Post

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

God’s Plan For The Ages 49 – Israel – Ezekiel 2 – The Prophet’s Call

Click onto any highlighted word to see the video and text on the blog.

Hal Lindsey Show: The Prophecies of Ezekiel

God’s Promises For Israel’s Restoration

Texts

Isaiah 27:13 New American Standard 1977

It will come about also in that day that a great trumpet will be blown; and those who were perishing in the land of Assyria and who were scattered in the land of Egypt will come and worship the LORD in the holy mountain at Jerusalem.

Jeremiah 30:3 New American Standard 1977

‘For, behold, days are coming,’ declares the LORD, ‘when I will restore the fortunes of My people Israel and Judah.’ The LORD says, ‘I will also bring them back to the land that I gave to their forefathers, and they shall possess it.’”

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

Isaiah 27:13 worship the Lord…at Jerusalem. The prophet reiterates one of his great themes: future worship of regathered Israel on Mt. Zion (24:23; 25:6, 7, 10).

Jeremiah 30:3 I will bring back. This theme verse gives in capsule form the pledge of chaps. 30–33. God’s restoration of the whole nation to their own land (cf. 29:10; Amos 9:14, 15; Rom. 11:26) has in view a final regathering never to be removed again (see note on 16:15) and not just a return in the time of Ezra and Nehemiah (vv. 8, 9; 31:31ff.; 32:39, 40; 33:8, 9, 15, 16). This verse is a summary of the prophecy given in vv. 4–9.

Review

Ezekiel 1:28 NASB 1977

As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw it, I fell on my face and heard a voice speaking.

Text – Ezekiel 2 – NASB 1977

The Prophet’s Call

1 Then He said to me, “Son of man, stand on your feet that I may speak with you!” 2 And as He spoke to me the Spirit entered me and set me on my feet; and I heard Him speaking to me.

Consider Ezekiel 1:28 and 2:1-2. Consider the Holiness God (Elohim, Genesis 1:1).

3 Then He said to me, “Son of man, I am sending you to the sons of Israel, to a rebellious people who have rebelled against Me; they and their fathers have transgressed against Me to this very day. 4“And I am sending you to them who are stubborn and obstinate children; and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD.’ 5“As for them, whether they listen or not—for they are a rebellious house—they will know that a prophet has been among them. 6“And you, son of man, neither fear them nor fear their words, though thistles and thorns are with you and you sit on scorpions; neither fear their words nor be dismayed at their presence, for they are a rebellious house. 7“But you shall speak My words to them whether they listen or not, for they are rebellious.

8 “Now you, son of man, listen to what I am speaking to you; do not be rebellious like that rebellious house. Open your mouth and eat what I am giving you.” 9 Then I looked, behold, a hand was extended to me; and lo, a scroll was in it. 10 When He spread it out before me, it was written on the front and back; and written on it were lamentations, mourning and woe.

Consider God

Genesis 1:1 God

God אֱלֹהִ֑ים e·lo·him; 430 God, god pl. of eloah

430. elohim

elohim: God, god
Original Word: אֱלֹהִים
Part of Speech: Noun Masculine
Transliteration: elohim
Phonetic Spelling: (el-o-heem’)
Short Definition: God

433. eloah

eloah: God, god
Original Word: אֱל֫וֹהַּ,
Part of Speech: Noun Masculine
Transliteration: eloah
Phonetic Spelling: ((shortened) >eloahh {el-o’-ah)
Short Definition: God

Ezekiel 1:28 glory

of the glory כְּבֹוד־ ke·vo·vd- 3519b abundance, honor, glory from kabad

kabod: abundance, honor, glory
Transliteration: kabod
Short Definition: glory

Ezekiel 1:28 LORD

of the LORD. יְהוָ֑ה Yah·weh 3068 the proper name of the God of Israel from havah

Yhvh: the proper name of the God of Israel
Original Word: יְהֹוָה
Part of Speech: Proper Name
Transliteration: Yhvh
Phonetic Spelling: (yeh-ho-vaw’)
Short Definition: LORD

Ezekiel 2:2 Spirit

to me the Spirit ר֗וּחַ ru·ach 7307 breath, wind, spirit from an unused word

ruach: breath, wind, spirit
Original Word: ר֫וּחַ
Part of Speech: Noun Feminine
Transliteration: ruach
Phonetic Spelling: (roo’-akh)
Short Definition: spirit

Notice that the Name of God is “not” Jehovah. It never was, and never will be Jehovah.

John 4:24 “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

is spirit, πνεῦμα pneuma 4151 wind, spirit from pneó

pneuma: wind, spirit
Original Word: πνεῦμα, ατος, τό
Part of Speech: Noun, Neuter
Transliteration: pneuma
Phonetic Spelling: (pnyoo’-mah)
Short Definition: wind, breath, spirit
Definition: wind, breath, spirit.

Notice that God is not “a spirit, ” but “spirit.” Had God been “a spirit” He would have been one of many spirits. But! No! God is spirit. He is Elohim, which is in the plural form, the trinity, one God in three persons. From the time of the creation in Genesis 1:1, there was no creation of “the Spirit of God,” (Gen 1:2) or of “Us” or “Our” (Gen 1:26).

Genesis 1:2 NASB 1977 “the Spirit of God”
And the earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters

Genesis 1:26 NASB 1977 “Let Us; Our image; Our likeness”
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness

Consider the plural form of the singular “name” of God in the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19), “God, three persons in one.”

Matthew 28:19 NASB1977 “in the name” (singular)
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,

them in the name ὄνομα onoma 3686 a name, authority, cause a prim. word

onoma: a name, authority, cause
Original Word: ὄνομα, ατος, τό
Part of Speech: Noun, Neuter
Transliteration: onoma
Phonetic Spelling: (on’-om-ah)
Short Definition: name, character, reputation
Definition: name, character, fame, reputation.

Notes – Ezekiel 2 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

2:1 Son of man. A term used over 90 times by Ezekiel to indicate his humanness.
2:2 the Spirit entered me. What God commands a servant to do (v. 1), He gives power to fulfill by His Spirit (cf. 3:14; Zech. 4:6). This pictures the selective empowering by the Holy Spirit to enable an individual for special service to the Lord, which occurred frequently in the OT. For examples see 11:5; 37:1; Num. 24:2; Judg. 3:10; 6:34; 11:29; 13:25; 1 Sam. 10:10; 16:13, 14; 19:20; 2 Chr. 15:1; Luke 4:18.
2:5 The people cannot plead ignorance.
2:6 briers and thorns…scorpions. Cf. 3:7, 9; 22:29. These are figures of speech God used to describe the people of Judah whose obstinate rejection of His Word was like the barbs of thorns and stings of scorpions to Ezekiel. The wicked were often so called (cf. 2 Sam. 23:6; Song 2:2; Is. 9:18).
2:8 open your mouth and eat. Ezekiel was to obey the command, not literally eating a scroll (vv. 9, 10), but in a spiritual sense by receiving God’s message so that it became an inward passion. Cf. also 3:1–3, 10 and Jer. 15:16.
2:10 writing on the inside and…outside. Scrolls were normally written on one side only, but this judgment message was so full it required all the available space (cf. Zech. 5:3; Rev. 5:1) to chronicle the suffering and sorrow that sin had brought, as recorded in chaps. 2–32.

Comments related to this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Hal Lindsey https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hal_Lindsey
Harold Lee Lindsey (born November 23, 1929) is an American evangelist and Christian writer. He is a Christian Zionist and dispensationalist author. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary with a Master of Theology degree, majoring in the New Testament and early Greek literature.

God’s Plan For The Ages 48 – Israel – Ezekiel 1 – Ezekiel’s Call And Commissioning

Click onto any highlighted word to see the video and text on the blog.

Ezekiel, Israel and the Middle East

God’s Promises For Israel’s Restoration

Texts

Isaiah 14:1 New Living Translation 1 But the LORD will have mercy on the descendants of Jacob. He will choose Israel as his special people once again. He will bring them back to settle once again in their own land. And people from many different nations will come and join them there and unite with the people of Israel.

Jeremiah 31:31-33 New American Stand Bible 1977 31“Behold, days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” declares the LORD. 33“But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the LORD, “I will put My law within them, and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.

Hebrews 8:8 New American Standard Bible 1977 “BEHOLD, DAYS ARE COMING, SAYS THE LORD, WHEN I WILL EFFECT A NEW COVENANT WITH THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL AND WITH THE HOUSE OF JUDAH;

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

Isaiah 14:1 The strangers. These are Jewish proselytes who join themselves to the nation in the final earthly kingdom of Christ.

Jeremiah 31:31–33 a new covenant. In contrast to the Mosaic Covenant under which Israel failed, God promised a New Covenant with a spiritual, divine dynamic by which those who know Him would participate in the blessings of salvation. The fulfillment was to individuals, yet also to Israel as a nation (v. 36; Rom. 11:16–27). It is set 1) in the framework of a reestablishment in their land (e.g., chaps. 30–33 and in vv. 38–40) and 2) in the time after the ultimate difficulty (30:7). In principle, this covenant, also announced by Jesus Christ (Luke 22:20), begins to be exercised with spiritual aspects realized for Jewish and Gentile believers in the church era (1 Cor. 11:25; Heb. 8:7–13; 9:15; 10:14–17; 12:24; 13:20). It has already begun to take effect with “the remnant according to the election of grace” (Rom. 11:5). It will be also realized by the people of Israel in the last days, including the regathering to their ancient land, Palestine (chaps. 30–33). The streams of the Abrahamic, Davidic, and New Covenants find their confluence in the millennial kingdom ruled over by the Messiah.

Hebrews 8:8–12 Quoted from Jer. 31:31–33 (see notes there).

Text – Ezekiel 1 – NASB 1977

The Vision of Four Figures

1 Now it came about in the thirtieth year, on the fifth day of the fourth month, while I was by the river Chebar among the exiles, the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God. 2(On the fifth of the month in the fifth year of King Jehoiachin’s exile, 3 the word of the LORD came expressly to Ezekiel the priest, son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and there the hand of the LORD came upon him.)

4 And as I looked, behold, a storm wind was coming from the north, a great cloud with fire flashing forth continually and a bright light around it, and in its midst something like glowing metal in the midst of the fire.5 And within it there were figures resembling four living beings. And this was their appearance: they had human form. 6 Each of them had four faces and four wings. 7 And their legs were straight and their feet were like a calf’s hoof, and they gleamed like burnished bronze. 8 Under their wings on their four sides were human hands. As for the faces and wings of the four of them, 9 their wings touched one another; their faces did not turn when they moved, each went straight forward. 10 As for the form of their faces, each had the face of a man, all four had the face of a lion on the right and the face of a bull on the left, and all four had the face of an eagle. 11 Such were their faces. Their wings were spread out above; each had two touching another being,and two covering their bodies. 12 And each went straight forward; wherever the spirit was about to go, they would go, without turning as they went. 13 In the midst of the living beings there was something that looked like burning coals of fire, like torches darting back and forth among the living beings. The fire was bright, and lightning was flashing from the fire. 14 And the living beings ran to and fro like bolts of lightning.

15 Now as I looked at the living beings, behold, there was one wheel on the earth beside the living beings, for each of the four of them. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their workmanship was like sparkling beryl, and all four of them had the same form, their appearance and workmanship being as if one wheel were within another. 17 Whenever they moved, they moved in any of their four directions, without turning as they moved.18 As for their rims they were lofty and awesome, and the rims of all four of them were full of eyes round about.19 And whenever the living beings moved, the wheels moved with them. And whenever the living beings rose from the earth, the wheels rose also. 20 Wherever the spirit was about to go, they would go in that direction. And the wheels rose close beside them; for the spirit of the living beings was in the wheels. 21 Whenever those went, these went; and whenever those stood still, these stood still. And whenever those rose from the earth, the wheels rose close beside them; for the spirit of the living beings was in the wheels.

Vision of Divine Glory

22 Now over the heads of the living beings there was something like an expanse, like the awesome gleam of crystal, extended over their heads. 23 And under the expanse their wings were stretched out straight, one toward the other; each one also had two wings covering their bodies on the one side and on the other. 24 I also heard the sound of their wings like the sound of abundant waters as they went, like the voice of the Almighty, a sound of tumult like the sound of an army camp; whenever they stood still, they dropped their wings. 25 And there came a voice from above the expanse that was over their heads; whenever they stood still, they dropped their wings.

26 Now above the expanse that was over their heads there was something resembling a throne, like lapis lazuli in appearance; and on that which resembled a throne, high up, was a figure with the appearance of a man. 27 Then I noticed from the appearance of His loins and upward something like glowing metal that looked like fire all around within it, and from the appearance of His loins and downward I saw something like fire; and there was a radiance around Him. 28 As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw it, I fell on my face and heard a voice speaking.

Notes – Ezekiel 1 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

1:1 thirtieth year. Most likely this was Ezekiel’s age, since the date relative to the king’s reign is given in 1:2. Thirty was the age when a priest (cf. v. 3 with Num. 4) began his priestly duties. River Chebar. A major canal off of the Euphrates River, S of Babylon. visions of God. This scene has similarities to the visions of God’s throne in Rev. 4, 5, where the emphasis is also on a glimpse of that throne just before judgment is released in Rev. 6–19.
1:2 fifth year. This is 593 B.C. The king, Ezekiel, and 10,000 others (2 Kin. 24:14) had been deported to Babylon in 597 B.C., Ezekiel at the age of 25.
1:3 word of the Lord…hand of the Lord. As God prepared Isaiah (Is. 6:5–13) and Jeremiah (Jer. 1:4–19), so the Lord prepares Ezekiel to receive revelation and strengthens him for his high and arduous task to speak as His prophet. Ezekiel the priest. See note on v. 1.

1:4–14 The opening vision focuses on angels surrounding God’s presence.

1:4 whirlwind…fire. Judgment on Judah in a further and totally devastating phase (beyond the 597 B.C. deportation) is to come out of the N, and did come from Babylon in 588–586 (as Jer. 39, 40). Its terror is depicted by a fiery whirlwind emblematic of God’s judgments and the golden brightness signifying dazzling glory.
1:5 four living creatures. Four angels, most likely the cherubs in 10:1–22, appearing in the erect posture and figure of man (note face, legs, feet, hands in vv. 6–8) emerge to serve God who judges. The number 4 may have respect to the 4 corners of the earth, implying that God’s angels execute His commands everywhere.
1:6 four faces. See note on v. 10. four wings. Four wings instead of two symbolize speed in performing God’s will (cf. v. 14).
1:7 legs. They were not bent like an animal’s, but “straight” like pillars, showing strength. calves’ feet. This points to their stability and firm stance.
1:8 hands of a man. This is a symbol of their skillful service.
1:9 did not turn. They were able to move in any direction without needing to turn, giving swift access to do God’s will. Apparently all were in harmony as to the way they moved (v. 12).
1:10 faces. These symbols identify the angels as intelligent (“man”), powerful (“lion”), servile (“ox”), and swift (“eagle”).
1:12 the spirit. This refers to the divine impulse by which God moved them to do His will (cf. 1:20).
1:13 like…fire…torches. Their appearance conveyed God’s glory and pure, burning justice (cf. Is. 6) which they assisted in carrying out even on Israel, who had for so long hardened themselves against His patience.
1:14 Intense, relentless motion signifies God’s constant work of judgment.

1:15–25 This section looks at the glory of God’s throne in heaven.

1:15 a wheel. This depicts God’s judgment as a war machine (like a massive chariot) moving where He is to judge. The cherubim above the ark are called chariots in 1 Chr. 28:18.
1:16 wheel in the middle of a wheel. This depicted the gigantic (v. 15, “on the earth” and “so high,” v. 18) energy of the complicated revolutions of God’s massive judgment machinery bringing about His purposes with unerring certainty.
1:17 did not turn aside. Cf. vv. 9, 12. The judgment machine moved where the angels went (cf. vv. 19, 20).
1:18 eyes. These may picture God’s omniscience, i.e., perfect knowledge, given to these angelic servants so that they can act in judgment unerringly. God does nothing by blind impulse.
1:20 spirit. See note on 1:12.
1:24 noise of many waters. This imagery could have in mind a thunderous rush of heavy rain or the washing of surf on rocks (cf. 43:2; Rev. 1:15; 14:2; 19:6).
1:25 voice. No doubt this is the “voice of the Almighty” (v. 24), since God’s throne (v. 25) was “over their heads.”

1:26 a throne. Cf. Ps. 103:19; Rev. 4:2–8. a man. The Godhead appears in the likeness of humanity, though God is a spirit (John 4:24). The Messiah, God incarnate, is the representative of the “fullness of the Godhead” (Col. 2:9), so this can be a prelude to the incarnation of Messiah in His character as Savior and Judge (cf. Rev. 19:11–16).
1:28 the glory of the Lord. That glory shines fully in the person of Jesus Christ (cf. 2 Cor. 4:6), which is a constant theme in Ezekiel. fell on my face. John, in Rev. 1:17, had the same reaction to seeing the glory of the Lord.

Comments related to this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

God’s Plan For The Ages 47 – Ezekiel – Introduction

Click onto any highlighted word to see the videos and text on the blog.

Introduction to Ezekiel

God’s Promises For Israel’s Restoration

Texts

Romans 11:29 New American Standard Bible

for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

Isaiah 2:2-4 New American Standard Bible

2. Now it will come about that In the last days The mountain of the house of the LORD Will be established as the chief of the mountains, And will be raised above the hills; And all the nations will stream to it.

3. And many peoples will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, To the house of the God of Jacob; That He may teach us concerning His ways And that we may walk in His paths.” For the law will go forth from Zion And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

4. And He will judge between the nations, And will render decisions for many peoples; And they will hammer their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, And never again will they learn war.

Notes: MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

Romans

11:29 the gifts…are irrevocable. See note on v. 1. God’s sovereign election of Israel, like that of individual believers, is unconditional and unchangeable, because it is rooted in His immutable nature and expressed in the unilateral, eternal Abrahamic Covenant (see note on 9:4).

Isaiah

2:2–4 The book of Micah contains this portion of Isaiah’s prophecy almost word for word (Mic. 4:1–3), indicating that the younger contemporary of Isaiah may have obtained the words from him. Both passages present a prophetic picture of Zion in the future messianic kingdom when all people will recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the world.

2:3 mountain of the Lord. Isaiah frequently calls Mt. Zion the “holy mountain” (11:9; 27:13; 56:7; 57:13; 65:11, 25; 66:20).

Biblical Timelines

Per past information that has been provided by Dr.Jimmy DeYoung, the book of Ezekiel is the timeline of the Jews. The book of Daniel is the timeline of the gentiles. These two books provide key information that is necessary for a clear understanding of the end times, as they show fruition in the book of Revelation.

Study Bible Introduction Notes To Ezekiel

Introduction to Ezekiel (MacArthur Study Bible)

Title

The book has always been named for its author, Ezekiel (1:3; 24:24), who is nowhere else mentioned in Scripture. His name means “strengthened by God,” which, indeed, he was for the prophetic ministry to which God called him (3:8, 9). Ezekiel uses visions, prophecies, parables, signs, and symbols to proclaim and dramatize the message of God to His exiled people.

Author and Date

If the “thirtieth year” of 1:1 refers to Ezekiel’s age, he was 25 when taken captive and 30 when called into ministry. Thirty was the age when priests commenced their office, so it was a notable year for Ezekiel. His ministry began in 593/92 B.C. and extended at least 22 years until 571/70 B.C. (cf. 25:17). He was a contemporary of both Jeremiah (who was about 20 years older) and Daniel (who was the same age), whom he names in 14:14, 20; 28:3 as an already well known prophet. Like Jeremiah (Jer. 1:1) and Zechariah (cf. Zech. 1:1 with Neh. 12:16), Ezekiel was both a prophet and a priest (1:3). Because of his priestly background, he was particularly interested in and familiar with the temple details; so God used him to write much about them (8:1—11:25; 40:1–47:12).

Ezekiel and his wife (who is mentioned in 24:15–27) were among 10,000 Jews taken captive to Babylon in 597 B.C. (2 Kin. 24:11–18). They lived in Tel-Abib (3:15) on the bank of the Chebar River, probably SE of Babylon. Ezekiel writes of his wife’s death in exile (Ezek. 24:18), but the book does not mention Ezekiel’s death, which rabbinical tradition suggests occurred at the hands of an Israelite prince whose idolatry he rebuked around 560 B.C.

The author received his call to prophesy in 593 B.C. (1:2), in Babylon (“the land of the Chaldeans”), during the fifth year of King Jehoiachin’s captivity, which began in 597 B.C. Frequently, Ezekiel dates his prophecies from 597 B.C. (8:1; 20:1; 24:1; 26:1; 29:1; 30:20; 31:1; 32:1, 17; 33:21; 40:1). He also dates the message in 40:1 as 573/72, the 14th year after 586 B.C., i.e., Jerusalem’s final fall. The last dated utterance of Ezekiel was in 571/70 B.C. (29:17).

Prophecies in chaps. 1-28 are in chronological order. In 29:1, the prophet regresses to a year earlier than in 26:1. But from 30:1 on (cf. 31:1; 32:1, 17), he is close to being strictly chronological.

Introduction To Ezekiel, Ryrie Study Bible

Ezekiel’s ministry was to keep before the exiles the sins that had brought God’s judgment on them and to assure them o God’s future blessing in keeping with His covenant. Chapters 1-24 were written before the fall of Jerusalem to remind his fellow captives that God’s judgment on the city and Temple was surely coming. Chapters 33-48 contain prophecies of the still future restoration of Israel in the millennial kingdom.

Introduction To Ezekiel, Jeremiah Study Bible

The 48 chapters of Ezekiel cover such areas as: The Watchman; The Glory Of God; The Valley Of Dry Bones; The Restored Temple; Gog and Magog; Israel’s Shepherds; and the New Covenant.

Ezekiel’s messages concentrate on four themes: Holiness, Visions, Judgment and Consolation.

Introduction To Ezekiel, Scofield Reference Notes

Ezekiel was carried away to Babylon between the first and final deportation of Judah (2 Kings 24:11-16). Like Daniel and the Apostle John, he prophesied out of the land, and his prophecy, like theirs, follows the method of symbol and vision. Unlike the pre-exilic prophets, whose ministry was primarily to either Judah or the ten-tribe kingdom, Ezekiel is the voice of God to “the whole house of Israel.”
Speaking broadly, the purpose of his ministry is to keep before the generation born in exile the national sins which had brought Israel so low (e.g. Ezekiel 14:23); to sustain the faith of the exiles by predictions of national restoration, of the execution of justice upon their oppressors, and of national glory under the Davidic monarchy.
Ezekiel is in seven great prophetic strains indicated by the expression, “The hand of the Lord was upon me.” (Ezekiel 1:3; Ezekiel 3:14; Ezekiel 3:22; Ezekiel 8:1; Ezekiel 33:22; Ezekiel 37:1; Ezekiel 40:1).

Comments related to this post.

This post is one of others that you can find in the blog under the category of “Journey.” There, you will be able to locate the Journey posts, in the order of their being published. Please follow this blog. Select Category, “Journey” to see all of the posts that relate to the end times study. The purpose of the study of Ezekiel will be to relate it to the end times.

Biographies

Dr. John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Signs of the Last Days – Dr. Jimmy DeYoung
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

Dr. Renald Showers
http://www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?SpeakerOnly=true&currSection=sermonsspeaker&Keyword=Dr.%5ERenald%5EShowers
Dr. Renald Showers is an author and Bible teacher for The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc.

MacArthur Study Bible Notes
Bio – Dr. John MacArthur – https://www.gracechurch.org/Leader/MacArthur/John?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

Dr. John F. Walvoord, (1910-2012) long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. He is considered perhaps the world’s foremost interpreter of biblical prophecy.
Bio – https://bible.org/users/john-f-walvoord

Dr. Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
Dr. Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.