Finding Christ In The Passover 4 Ending

  Our Lord God considered it pertinent to consecrate every living being, from the firstborn of humans to the firstborn of the animals. “The Lord said to Moses: consecrate to me all the firstborn; whatever is the first to open the womb among the Israelites of human beings and animals, is mine,” Exodus 13:11. Moses helps us to gain insight by explaining to us why every firstborn was to be consecrated before the Lord. “When the Lord has brought you into the land of the Canaanites, as he swore to you and your ancestors, and has given it to you, you shall set apart to the Lord all that first opens the womb. All the firstborn of your livestock that are males shall be the Lord’s. But every firstborn donkey youshall redeem with a sheep; if you do not redeem it, you must break its neck.

  Every firstborn male among your children you shall redeem.” “When in the future your child asks you, ‘What does this mean?’ you shall answer, ‘By strength of hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt, from the house of slavery. When Pharaoh stubbornly refused to let us go, the Lord killed all the firstborn in
the land of Egypt, from human firstborn to the firstborn of animals. Therefore I sacrifice to the Lord every male that first opens the womb, but every firstborn of my sons I redeem.’ It shall serve as a sign on your hand and as an emblem on your forehead that by strength of hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt,” Exodus 13:11-16. Paul the apostle knew and understood this application of the Messiah’s fulfillment and Paul attributed this prophecy to the Messiah. He ascribes Colossians 1:15 to Jesus: “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers all things have been created through him and for him.”

  An interesting factor for us to consider is this. When the time came for the families to kill the Passover lamb, The Mishnah states: “They bring a spit of pomegranate wood and stick it through (the carcass) from the mouth to the buttocks (page 241, 7:1).” Additionally, The Complete Art Scroll Machzor, Pesach, agrees with The Mishnah. As the Messiah was pierced through for the transgressions of our sins, Isaiah chapter 53 explores the entire process of why He was pierced for our transgressions. Psalms 22:16: “They have pierced my hands and my feet.” Other translations render, “Like lions (they maul) my hands and feet.” This is a deliberate corruption of the Hebraic text and is not trustworthy. For more information about this topic go to Glenn Miller, a Christian Think Tank website,

By Michael Jones  

Finding Christ In The Passover Part Three

  This is a final continuation of part 2. I need to make some more important quotes. This will help to make sense of the Eastern culture, during the time of the first century. They considered part of a day equivalent to the whole day. Here are some examples from ApologeticsPress.Org: “Three Days And Three Nights,” an
article written by Eric Lyons. Under the topic, Alleged Discrepancies, He states: “The Jerusalem Talmud quotes rabbi Eleazar Ben Azariah, who lived around A.D. 100, as saying: ‘A day and night are an Onah [a portioin of time] and the portion of an Onah is as the whole of it’ (from Jerusalem Talmud: Shabbath ix. 3, as quoted in Hoehner, 1974, pp. 248-249, bracketed comment in orig.). Azariah indicated that a portion of a twenty-four hour period could be considered the same ‘as the whole of it.’ Thus, in Jesus’ time He would have been correct in teaching that His burial would last ‘three days and three nights,’ even though it was not three complete 24-hour days.”

  “In the first century, any part of a day could be computed for the whole day and the night following it (cf. Lightfoot, 1979, pp. 210-211).” When selecting a sacrificial lamb for Passover, it is very important to go by the strict guidelines found in Exodus. “Your lamb shall be without blemish, a year old male,” Exodus 12:5. The Gospel of Luke 1:31 says, “And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus.” He was the sacrificial lamb. The book of Exodus places an important emphasis on not breaking any bones of the lamb before or after the sacrifice. In fact, Exodus 12:46 mentions: “It shall be eaten in one house; you shall not take any of the animal outside the house, and you shall not break any of its bones."John speaks of this prophetic event strongly, and gives this particular event over to Jesus the Christ.

  “Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who had been crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs,” John 19:32. Verse 36, “These things occurred so that the scripture might be fulfilled None of his bones shall be broken.”

By Michael Jones

Finding Christ In The Passover Part Two

   Matthew 27:45-50 states: “From noon on darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon. And about three o’clock Jesus cried with a loud voice “Eli, Eli, Lema Sabachthani?” that is “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” From the book called, The 7 Festivals Of The Messiah, Ed Chumney’s goes onto mention: “The biblical day goes from evening to evening, from sundown to sundown, which is roughly 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. (Genesis [Bereishit] 1:5,8,13,19,23,31). The day (6:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.) is divided into two 12-hour periods. The evening runs from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. The morning runs from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

  Each 12-hour period is divided into two smaller portions. From 6:00 a.m. to noon is the morning part of the day. From noon to 6:00 p.m. is the evening part of the day. The phrase, "between the evening" (from Exodus [Shemot] 12:6) refers to the period of the day that goes from noon to 6:00 p.m., which is exactly 3:00 p.m. This would be the ninth hour of the day,counting from 6:00 a.m.”

  The Biblical Day

  Evening Morning

  6 p.m. 6 a.m. 6 p.m.

  Morning Evening
  6 a.m. Noon 6 p.m.
 6 a.m. 3 p.m. 6 p.m.

  The 9th hour of the day = 3 p.m. Messianic Fulfillment. Yeshua died at the ninth hour of the day (Matthew [Mattityahu] 27:45-50). This would be exactly 3:00 p.m. (the ninth hour, counting from 6:00 a.m.).” Since we have designated a time of our Messiah’s death, now we can tackle it’s exact day our lamb of God was placed into the tomb.

  The book of Jonah, has given us data of how long he was going to be in the belly of the fish and for how long Jesus was to be placed into the tomb. “The Lord provided a large fish to swallow up Jonah; and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. Jonah 1:17.” Matthew 12:40 gives us this beautiful Messianic fulfillment through telling us, “For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the
sea monster, so for three days and three nights the Son of man will be in the heart of the earth.”

  Therefore, Matthew has given us an Hebraic time frame for us to work with. I will use the information below from a website named Hebrew for Christians, owned and operated by John J. Parsons and with the help of his friend Aaron Eby with this article.

  Nisan 14 evening- Yeshua’s early Seder

  Nisan 14 daytime- preparation day ( Luke 23:54; Mark 15:42). Pesach (Leviticus 23:5). Yeshua dies in the afternoon at the same time that the korban Pesach (Passover lamb) is sacrificed at the Temple, and is buried before evening (before Passover).

  Nisan 15 evening- High Sabbath begins (the actual Seder night)

  Nisan 15 daytime- High Sabbath

  Nisan 16 evening- Weekly Sabbath begins

  Nisan 16 daytime- Weekly Sabbath, waving of the omer

  Nisan 17 evening- Yeshua raised from the dead at/after havdalah (at least before sunrise). Women purchase spices. Nisan 17 daytime- Women bring spices to the tomb early in the morning. Disciples encounter risen Messiah.

  Note: a Jewish day starts at sundown!

  For more of a detail Chart go to: Katzir.pdf

By Michael Jones

Finding Christ In The Passover Part one

  I want to discuss the relevance of celebrating Passover (pesach) and, more importantly, how the Passover all points to Jesus. There is plenty of direct symbolism and in-depth meaning behind this Jewish celebration. It is important for Jewish people in this generation and in Biblical times to keep the Passover.

  Exodus 12:11 says, “It is the Passover of the Lord.” It’s no wonder God told Moses in Exodus 12:24, “You shall observe this rite as a perpetual ordinance for you and your children.” Jesus the Christ explained to his disciples that his Passover with them in Jerusalem would be the last one that he would celebrate with them.

  The Messiah expounds on it for them in Mark 14:25: “Truly I tell you I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom.” Where do we possibly begin to link the Passover to Jesus? First, God lays out His application for Moses and the Israelites, telling them when to have the Passover.

  This pattern can be found in Exodus 12:2. “This month shall mark for you the beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year for you.” This means that the Hebrew date of Passover falls on the 14th of Nisan, which in the Gregorian calendar is the month of April. It is important to note that God, and not Moses, commanded the detailed regulations in how to pick the Passover lamb and when to kill it and how to prepare it.

  Jewish law regulated picking a lamb out for your family to sacrifice. Since you could not take home just any lamb, the Priesthad to thoroughly inspect it for any kind of blot or blemish. Exodus 12:5: “Your lamb shall be without blemish.” In order for the Messiah to meet these criteria, He himself must pass this biblical command of Exodus 12:5, having no blot or blemish.

  For us to start connecting Exodus 12:5 to Jesus, we should proceed to 1 Peter 1:19. “But with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without defect or blemish.” Here we really begin to start understanding who Jesus is from the Passover. Our next progression will be the exact timing of when to kill the Passover lamb, and what the bible has to say about this, and how to correlate it with Christ’s death.

  “You shall keep it until the 14th day of this month, then the whole assembled congregation of Israel shall slaughter it at twilight,” Exodus 12:6. As this important festival came slowly together, on April 14th the entire
assembly of Israel congregated around the sacrificial lamb to be killed. While the entire assembly of Israel were to have been gathered that night for the Passover lamb, the same is true about Jesus, having a congregation of His own around Him.

  “The kings of the earth took their stand and the rulers have gathered together against the Lord and against His Messiah. For in this city in fact both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the gentiles and the peoples of Israel, gathered together against your holy servant Jesus,” Acts 4:26-27. When the time came for all Israel to congregate around the Passover (pesach) lamb, God commanded a special, yet divine, designated area for the actual Passover to take place.

   “You are not permitted to offer the Passover sacrifice within any of your towns that the Lord your God is giving you. But at the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for His name, only there shall you offer the Passover sacrifice, in the evening at sunset, the time of day when you departed from Egypt,” Deuteronomy16:5-6.

  Under Jewish law, the Passover lamb was not to be killed inside the city and if it did occur by ignorance of the law or by not adhering to what God had said then the system would be invalid. This prophecy is brought forth into fruition with the Messiah being brought out of the city of Jerusalem. Hebrews 13:11-12 sheds light
for us to understand the sacrifice aspect of the Passover. “For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest as a sacrifice for sin are burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus also suffered outside the city gate in order to sanctify the people by His own blood.”

By Michael Jones

Is the Antichrist a Jew, Gentile, or Supernatural?


  By Bill Salus

  When determining the true content of the false covenant of Daniel 9:27 it proves helpful to determine the origin of the Antichrist. Will he be a Jew, Gentile, or a Supernatural being like an Alien or Nephilim as some have recently proposed?

  Up until the time of Abraham there were no Jews, all of mankind was Gentile. Abraham, the ancient Hebrew patriarch, fathered the Jewish race through his son Isaac, grandson Jacob, and great grandsons Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph, and Benjamin.

  According to Deuteronomy 7:6 the Lord formed this unique ethnicity from Abraham’s loins for His exclusive divine purposes. One of which, we are informed in Ezekiel 38:8 and 39:7, is to uphold His holy name through; for the watchful eyes of the international community in the latter years. Many eschatologists believe the prophecies of Ezekiel 38 & 39 are about to find final fulfillment, making current events involving Israel and the Jewish people extremely important.

  If the Antichrist is Jewish, the content of the false covenant might favor Israeli covenantal claims made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. These claims include Promised Land extending into Gaza, the West Bank, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia according to Genesis 15:18.

  Additionally, the pages of the false covenant might grant Israel the ability to build their third Jewish Temple upon its former site in the world’s most controversial holy city of Jerusalem. Presently, the preponderance of Muslims vehemently opposes this prospect, claiming Jerusalem is Islam’s third holiest city behind Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia. However, blueprints, Levite priests, and ceremonial religious instruments for the construction and operation of this prophesied coming Temple are already being assembled by several religious Jewish organizations.

  Is the Antichrist a Jew?

  One of the best research works addressing the subject of the origin of the Antichrist was performed by Dr. David Reagan of Lamb and Lion Ministries. He questioned eleven end time’s experts in a series of interviews, which aired on his Christ in Prophecy TV show in May of 2009, regarding this topic. The manuscript for the segment addressing whether or not the Antichrist is a Jew or Gentile can be obtained here:

  In a nutshell the Reagan study concluded with seven no’s to the Antichrist being a Jew, one yes, one could be, one maybe, and one he will be a Jewish - Muslim. In Reagan’s closing summary, he concurred with the seven who suggested the Antichrist will be a Gentile rather than a Jew. Thus, there were eight out of twelve experts agreed upon the Gentile descent of the coming apocalyptic world leader called the Antichrist.

  Had I been among those interviewed, I would have concurred with the eight favoring the Gentile Antichrist. Additionally I would have added an argument to theirs given below:

  The Gentile Antichrist Arguments

  1. Antichrist will be a Gentile of Roman origin. Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum brought this argument forward by quoting Daniel 9:26-27. Similarly, I wrote an article called, “Does Daniel Debunk the Assyrian Antichrist,” that agrees with his conclusion.

  2. Antichrist will command worldwide attention. Don McGee states, “For a Jew to be in that position (commanding worldwide attention) would be a very, very long shot.” Don also suggests the Antichrist will not be associated with Judaism, Islam, or any other religion apart from the one he “institutes for himself.” This is determined by Daniel 11:37.

  3. A Jew won’t make treaties with Jews. Ed Hindson points this out and goes on to remind us that the Antichrist will be an unbeliever according to Daniel 11:37.

  4. Antichrist will lead the final great Gentile world empire. Dr. Mark Hitchcock firmly points this out. He declares this would be “inconsistent for a Jew.” Hitchcock argues this keeps in stride with “the other empires in Daniel 2 and Daniel 7, the leaders of those were all Gentiles.”

  5. The Antichrist prototype was Antiochus Epiphanes, a Gentile. Dr. Mark Hitchcock aptly points this commonly taught fact out. Epiphanes was the ruler of the Greek - Seleucid Empire that oppressed the Jews between 171-164 BC.

  6. The Antichrist rises out of the Gentile world. Several of the experts interviewed, including Hitchcock, brought forward the Revelation 13:1 argument, which identifies the Antichrist as the “Beast” rising out of the “Sea.” The scholarly consensus is the Sea in Revelation 13:1 represents the Gentile world.

  7. The Jews will never accept the Antichrist as their Messiah. Dr. Reagan makes this statement in his closing arguments. He qualifies this by stating “In fact we are specifically told that when the Antichrist reveals himself in the middle of the Tribulation and claims to be god the Jews will be horrified and will totally reject him causing him to turn on them in fury and launch an attempt to annihilate them.” He goes on to distinguish between the possibility that the Antichrist may become the ‘Political Savior” of the Jews, but never their “Spiritual Savior.”

  8. The Jews will never be offered the “Mark of the Beast.” This point was not brought up in the Reagan interviews; however, Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum makes this important point elsewhere in his teachings available though Ariel Ministries. This fact also identifies the Antichrist as a Gentile. One can safely conclude that if the Antichrist was a Jew, the Jews would be among the recipients of the benefits of his cashless Mark of the Beast program alluded to in Revelation 13:14-18.

  The Antichrist Seeks Jewish Genocide Making Him a Gentile

  Although the arguments above strongly suggest the Antichrist will be a Gentile, the one not listed that I believe most compelling is that he orchestrates the final genocidal campaign against the Jewish Race. Zechariah 13:8 points out the Antichrist will be responsible for the deaths of two-thirds of the Jewish population in the land of Israel during the Tribulation period. Many scholars suggest that totals several million more than were killed by Hitler during the Holocaust.

  The repeated Gentile genocidal attempts targeted at the Jews remain atop the list of humanities worst historical crimes against the will of God. The Egyptians, Persians, Romans, and Germans all attempted to destroy the Jewish Race. Deuteronomy 32:10 and Zechariah 2:8 identify the Jews as the “apple of God’s eye.” The destruction of the Jews is the scheming of Satan and the Antichrist is his seed according to Genesis 3:15 and Revelation 13:4.

  The plan of Satan is to prove God is a promise breaker, a liar, with a flawed covenant making character. If Satan can accomplish this he justifies his and his fallen angelic cohorts' rebellious campaign against God and His perfect divine will. Satan has clearly evidenced throughout human history that his modus operandi is to discredit God by killing Abraham’s Jewish descendants.

  In Genesis 13:15, 22:17 and elsewhere God promised Abraham descendants forever. If there are no more Jews, then God is in breach of His covenant with Abraham. Furthermore, the promise of eternal security for all believers, justified by the similar faith of Abraham can be questioned. (Romans 4 and Galatians 3)

  Therefore the Antichrist will be a Gentile; otherwise Satan must also execute him alongside his Jewish brethren. I’ve often wondered why Satan, supposedly so cunning, decided to even have a “seed.” Had he not, he could have discredited God right out the Genesis 3:15 garden gate. The Lord prophesied the coming of Satan’s seed and the bruising of Messiah’s heel by that seed. Should no satanic seed come, then the God of the Bible would be an obvious liar for prophesying such a future fictitious event. To the contrary, the satanic seed is coming and may be birthed already.

  The Jewish Antichrist Arguments

  The arguments for the Antichrist being a Jew can be found in the Reagan project referenced above. There are a few who believe that John 5:43 and Daniel 11:37 point to the Antichrist being a Jew. However, the Reagan study evidences that the arguments for a Gentile Antichrist far outweigh those of a Jewish Antichrist.

  The Supernatural Alien (Nephilim) Antichrist Argument

  Interestingly, there are some scholars suggesting since the Antichrist is the “seed of Satan,” who according to 2 Thessalonians 2:9-10 rises to power supernaturally, that he might not be human at all. They, suggest Christ’s prophecy in Matthew 24:37 and Luke 17:26 comparing the end time’s to the “days of Noah,” should be taken literally.

  Genesis 6:4 informs us that there were unnatural offspring called the Nephilim, inhabiting the earth during the days of Noah. If this relatively new argument has merit it adds an interesting twist to what the true content of the false covenant may be.

Posted by AUTHOR / LECTURER at 5:45 PM

Yom Kippur: 365 Days of Repentance

  David Brickner

  Jews for Jesus – We are drawing to the end of a time the Jewish calendar refers to as the "Days of Awe," that ten-day period that begins with Rosh Hashanah, the Festival of Trumpets, and ends with Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. From the blast of the ram's horn last Wednesday evening until it sounds again before sundown this Saturday, the people of Israel have been called to focus on repentance from sin. But most Jews—indeed, most people—are unclear about what is meant by sin. Nor are we very comfortable speaking of sin and repentance—and so the days between the two holidays are often neglected or ignored.

  Yet the Jewish Scriptures, particularly the book of Psalms, can be a tremendous guide to true repentance. Perhaps that is why the Psalms, most notably Psalm 51, are part of the Jewish liturgy during this season. If we only paid attention, we would discover that repentance is not an occasional requirement, or even an annual appointment for ten days on the calendar. For the follower of God, repentance is to be a lifestyle, 365 days a year.

  King David wrote Psalm 51 after the prophet Nathan had confronted him with his sin: adultery with Bathsheba and the covered-up murder of her husband Uriah. In repenting for these terrible sins, David exhibits an amazing comprehension of the nature of God, the nature of sin and the nature of true repentance. If we can learn these important truths from David's plaintive plea, we will find that repentance can indeed become a year-round lifestyle that will lead us to spiritual health and blessing.

  The foundation of genuine repentance begins with a deep understanding of the nature of God. People fail to repent and fail to live a life of repentance because they have a false understanding of who God is. They either see Him as a judgmental tyrant out to exact vengeance or a benevolent and kindly old man who appears indifferent to the moral condition of His own children.

  As we look at Psalm 51 a beautiful, full-orbed picture of God begins to emerge. David asks God to act "according to lovingkindness and tender mercies." He asks God to act according to His true character, knowing that God is first of all consistent.

  Malachi 3:6 tells us:

  For I am the LORD, I do not change; therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.

  God does not need to be convinced, placated or cajoled into forgiving us. We don't have to wonder what kind of mood God is in before we approach Him. We can rely upon Him to act in accordance with His nature each and every time—He is like clockwork—or rather, clockwork is like Him!

  It is the goodness of God that leads us to repentance, and if we make repentance a daily discipline we will experience His goodness in this way each day.

  The foundation of genuine repentance continues with a deep understanding of the nature of sin. A second reason people fail to repent and fail to live a life of repentance is a false or incomplete understanding of sin. One prevalent misconception of sin limits it to only the grossest forms of deviancy—the evil we can all acknowledge in the worst of criminals but don't see in ourselves. Others regard sin as more pervasive but shrug it off as mere mistakes that we all make. They fail to understand how deadly sin is.

  Psalm 51 shows how David's view of God has deeply informed his understanding of sin. David is graphic in explaining the nature of his sin, but notice that nowhere does he mention the details of his own sinful behavior. How does he describe sin? Transgressions: the crossing of a boundary; iniquity: missing the mark. It all relates to standards far beyond himself, standards that point back to God and His perfections.

  Sin is first and foremost a rebellion against the very nature of God, a shaking of our fist at the heavens. Augustine explained sin as believing the lie that we are self-created, self-dependent and self-sustained. We might speak words of acknowledgment about God, but when we fail to acknowledge who God is with our trust and obedience, we miss the mark. That is sin.

  Two men were trying to escape from an erupting volcano. As they ran from the molten rock they found their only path blocked by another river of boiling hot lava. One man was old and infirm while the other was young and healthy. With a running start the older man tried to leap across the river of fire to safety. He only managed to get a few feet before falling into the bubbling mass. The younger man, with far greater strength and skill catapulted himself much farther. He nearly made it, but still missed the mark and shared the fate of the first man. It didn't matter how much farther he went than his companion. Missing the mark by any degree meant perishing in the burning lava. Understanding the nature of sin, of missing the mark, is one of the keys to repentance.

  The third reason I believe people fail to repent and fail to live a life of repentance is a false or incomplete understanding of what repentance truly is. Once again, David's view of God and of sin very deeply informed his understanding of repentance. It is not a matter of fearing the consequences of getting caught; it is not embarrassment, shame or self-loathing; it is not even genuine regret over hurting someone. While David probably experienced all those things, his repentance went much deeper because he understood something of the nature of God, and that he had done something odious in the sight of the One who created and sustained him. Because he understood something of the true nature of sin, he could only cry out for mercy.

  The cry for mercy comes from someone who has no more tricks up his sleeve. David recognized that he had no basis of appeal, no merit to claim, no leg up to hope for more favorable treatment. In his cry we hear a combined a sense of desperation and resignation. I have nothing else to hope in other than the mercy of God. David is aware of the record of his sin, a catalog of debt, and he pleads as he cries out to the Lord, "Blot out my transgressions." But once again, because he understands the nature of God, there is also a note of hope.

  When was the last time a preacher challenged you to repent? While it is not a politically correct message, it is one that we see over and over in Scripture. Noah's message from the steps leading up to the ark was not, "Something good is going to happen to you." Jeremiah was not thrown into the pit for preaching, "I'm okay; you're okay." Daniel did not go into the lion's den for telling people, "Think positive." John the Baptist was not beheaded because he preached, "Smile, God loves you." The two prophets of the tribulation will not be killed for preaching, "God is in His heaven and all is right with the world." The prophetic message of all these godly people, whether in word or deed was simple: Repent.

  And David is confident, as one who has heard and responded to the call to repent, that as he proclaims the message to others, people will respond; "And sinners shall be converted to You." We must have that same confidence as God's people.

  The rabbis have taught that David's sin was so heinous that had he been confronted immediately by Nathan, his life would have been forfeited, because only death could atone for David's sin. But you remember the story. Bathsheba gave birth to a son, and that son became ill and died. So the rabbis have taught that David's son died in his place. About this they are correct—but they have the wrong son. Y'shua (Jesus) is referred to as the son of David over and over, for that is one of His Messianic titles. His sacrifice once for all for sin is how David ultimately found his forgiveness and it is how all of us can find ours, 365 days a year.

  Colossians 2:14 tells us that Jesus,

  ... wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.


  Christianity's Jewish Roots

  More from Spiritual Life

  Learn more about Christianity's Jewish roots at the Jews for Jesus Web site

  © Jews for Jesus. All rights reserved. Used with permission.


  David Brickner is the Executive Director of the best known Jewish evangelism agency in the world, Jews for Jesus. With branches in eleven countries including Israel, Jews for Jesus is known for its forthright evangelistic approach in major Jewish population centers around the world. A Jewish believer in Jesus himself, David has been in ministry for over thirty years and has appeared many times on secular television and radio programs to make the case for Jews believing Jesus including the internationally-syndicated program Larry King Live. Biblically conservative, as well as contemporary and engaging, he is a sought after speaker for major pulpits and conferences. He is the author of numerous published articles as well as four books including his latest, Christ in the Feast of Pentecost.

"Yeshua Is Our Sukkot Sukkah"

— Parashah Sukkot Chol HaMoed

     Torah: Shemot (Exodus) 33:12 — 34:26

     Haftarah: Ezekiel 38:18 — 39:16

  "YESHUA IS OUR SUKKAH" This week's Parashah is not a text following the yearly chronological reading order, but a special text due to the Sukkot festival. Passover and Sukkot always have a special reading within the festival because both consist of eight days and, therefore, include a Shabbat.

  What it is interesting about this week's reading is that it talks about a very unusual "sukkah" or covering, and that is God's hand.

  "And Yehovah said to Moshe, 'I will do this thing also that you have spoken; for you have found favor in My sight, and I know you by name.' And he said, 'I beg You, show me Your glory.' And He said, 'I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the Name Yehovah before you; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.' And He said, 'You can not see My face; for no man shall see Me and live.' And Yehovah said, 'Behold, there is a place by Me, and you shall stand upon a rock. And it shall come to pass, while My glory passes by, that I will put you in a cleft of the rock, and will cover [sakoti] you with My hand while I pass by'" - Exodus 33:17-22.

  After this encounter God reveals to Moshe His Thirteen Attributes: 1) Mercy; 2) Divine Mercy; 3) Power; 4) Compassionate; 5) Gracious; 6) Long Suffering; 7) Abundant in Kindness; 8) Truth; 9) Preserver of Kindness for thousands; 10) Forgiving iniquity; 11) Forgiving transgression; 12) Forgiving sin; 13) Who cleanses.

   Indeed we have a God who calls us by name and who shows us mercy and grace, who forgives our sins and declare us clean because of the cover of the blood of Messiah. God sent His Son to tabernacle among us — (John 1:14), and by His sacrifice on the cross to cover our iniquities, thus the Sukkah we build at the Sukkot festival not only represents the temporality of our existence and our dependence on God, but also represents Yeshua who humbled Himself as a lowly Sukkah and was born to humanity for the specific purpose to cover our sins in order to restore the fellowship with our God. We cannot come in the presence of a Holy God and live without this cover. We cannot be pure on our own and His Holiness would consume us. Prayer, penitence and charity are not enough; atonement is only made by shedding of blood.

  In the B'rit Chadashah Luke, the physician, has given us a thorough account of the birth of Messiah. Luke wrote the gospel and the book of Acts that we might know the exact truth about what happened. He starts the gospel with the narration of the events of the birth of Yochanan the cousin of Yeshua.

  In Luke chapter 1 we read about Z'kharyah who was of a priestly order and who, in keeping with the timing of various priestly divisions, served in the Temple. His division was called 'Aviyahu.' These divisions were established back in 1 Chronicles chapter 24, and the priests always served at their appointed time up until the destruction of the Temple. The time of Z'kharyah's service gives us the starting point of the events to follow. Z'kharyah and his wife Elisheva were advanced in years and Elisheva was barren. While serving in the Temple an angel appears and tells him about the son that he would have through Elisheva and that this son, who would be called Yochanan, would be the forerunner of the Messiah who will call Yisrael back to God.

  Now, the order of division which Z'kharyah was of and was performing the priestly service in the Temple was the eighth order out of twenty four divisions. Each division served for approximately 15 days, or half a month, in the Temple each year. Therefore, the order of Aviyahu served in the second part of the fourth month. Z'kharyah and Elisheva were at the Temple in the fourth month of the Hebrew calendar. The first month of the Hebrew year is not Tishrei. Tishrei, according to the Torah is the seventh month (Leviticus 23:34). The first month of the Hebrew year is called Aviv (Exodus 12:2 and 13:4), and, therefore, the fourth month is Tammuz. Tammuz comes out in our present day Gregorian calendar as June/July.

  Z'kharyah and Elisheva returned home after his priestly service was completed and Elisheva became pregnant. Elisheva conceived the child that the angel Gavriel had promised. When they had returned home was in the beginning of the fifth month which is called Av. Nine months later, naturally, Yochanan was born.

  Continuing in the same chapter of Luke we hear the angel Gavriel speaking to Miryam and telling her that not only will she bear the Son of God but that her relative Elisheva had conceived in her old age and is now in her sixth month: So we can draw the conclusion that this was happening in the month of Tevet, Elisheva's sixth month of pregnancy, so Yochanan would be six months older than Yeshua.

  Therefore, Yeshua being conceived towards the end of the month of Tevet (December/January), was born nine months later, towards the end of the month of Tishrei (September/October), the seventh month, the month in which we celebrate the High Holidays, the Yomim Noraim, which now can take in a greater meaning when we understand its fulfillment in the very birth of the Messiah Himself. The second part of the month is when Sukkot, or the Feast of Booths, takes place. Chag HaSukkot is celebrated from the fifteenth through the twenty second of the month of Tishrei.

  We, in Messianic Judaism, believe that all Jewish Holy Days are about the Messiah, therefore, the fulfillment of the meaning of Chag HaSukkot, the Feast of Booths is that Yeshua came humbly to His people, He became a very approachable King, the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us (John 1:14). When we can fully realize what it means, that the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us, we will understand that God became a man and humbled Himself so that any one of us, no mater how sinful, how lowly we have become, could become His intimate companion and receive the salvation given by His atoning sacrifice on the cross.

  This is the good news, and that should be indeed a reason to rejoice at this High Holy Days season. This is the season to proclaim the birth of our Messiah, God's covering hand of mercy. Hag sameah Sukkot.

  Shabbat joy, peace and blessings! Shabbat Shalom!

  "You search the Scriptures because you think in them you have eternal life. It is these that bear witness of Me [Yeshua]" John 5:39

The Four Cups Of Passover In The New Testament

  There are four promises in Exodus 6:6-7, which are related to the Passover. These four promises are thoroughly expressed through the four cups of Passover found in the New Testament. Before I discuss in greater detail about these four cups and their actual meanings, I want to talk about communion.

Have you ever thought about where communion comes from? The church has practiced communion for many ages. The Lord has instituted what the church has done many centuries before, which is partaking of the bread and wine in remembrance of what our Lord Jesus has done on the cross.

If you look closer into the passages of Luke 22:17, Luke 22:42-44, and Matthew 26:28-29, there is a connection between communion and Passover. Though churches call Passover communion, in proper term it should be called Passover,since the Passover cup is a crucial cup for Jewish Passover. In Luke 22:17-19, “Then taking a cup of wine, he made the b’rakhah (Blessing(s) and said, ‘Take this and share it among yourselves. For I tell you that from now on, I will not drink the fruit of the vine until the Kingdom of God comes.’ Also, taking a piece of matzah (unleavened bread), he made the b’rakhah; (Blessing(s) broke it, gave it to them and said, ‘This is my body, which is being given for you; do this in memory of me.

  ”Hence,when we are celebrating the Passover or communion we are in unity“ remembering” Jesus the Messiah. The four promises in relation to the four Passover cups is quite relevant even in communion, but let us remember these promises which God instituted in both the Old Testament and the New Testament are the promises He has already fulfilled to the Jewish people.

  Here they are in order:

  Exodus 6:6-7

  A. I am the Lord; I will free you from the forced labor of the Egyptians.
  B. Rescue you from their oppression.
  C. I will redeem you with an outstretched arm with great judgments.
  D. I will take you as my people and I will be your God.

  Therefore, we now have an outline to work with in explaining these four cups of the New Testament Passover from Exodus. The first cup Jesus Christ explains to us is the cup of Sanctification or in Hebrew called the Kiddush (sanctify) cup. In Luke 22:17, “Then, taking a cup of wine, He made the B’rakhah (Blessing) and said, ‘Take  this and share it among yourselves.”This particular form of prayer is possibly close to the original prayer which Jesus the Messiah prayed. In Hebrew, the prayer reads: Baruch atah Adonai, Elohenu Melach ha-olam, borae pree hagafen.

  Now, I will break the sentence structure down for my audience so it can be easily pronounced. Ba-rukh A-tak A-do-nai E-lo-hey-nu Me-lekh ha-‘olam bo-rey pri ha- ga-fen. In English, it says; Blessed are you, O Lord our God, Ruler of the Universe, who created the fruit of the vine.

  1. The Kiddush cup means“s an ctification .” This word should have a sobering effect on us believers for it is a reminder to us that Jesus Christ shed His blood for humanity. There is a unique, but parallel pattern you will begin to see unfold throughout the four Passover cups. When the Messiah prays for each of the
Passover cups, take note that these are not random prayers. Each of those prayers has a special meaning and a connection to each of the four cups. You may now be asking yourself how Exodus 6:6-7 correlates to the text of Luke 22:17.

  In this story, God says, “I am the Adonai; I will free you from the forced labor of the Egyptians.”Here therein lies a special word in the contextual story. The key word in this story is“free.” We have read that the God of the Hebrew people freed them of their burdens and bondages. Even in our generation, sometimes we as humans can be wrapped up in our own burdens of life and bondages this world has. In fact, these same burdens and bondages the Hebrew people had under Pharaoh is a resemblance of our own sins. Before we even existed, our sinful state was presented at the Cross, through the “sanctification” of His blood. He atoned for our sins so that we can experience the forgiveness of our unrighteousness through His death on
the cross. This was at the very heart of Jesus Christ’s first coming.

  2. The second Passover cup is called Plagues. Another name for it is “the cup of wrath,” which finds its origin in Exodus 6:6-7. God is deeply moved by His people that are bound in Egypt, so God speaks to Moses and says, “I will rescue you from their oppression.”Elohim speaks fondly and lovingly about His servants as He speaks collectively for the nation of Israel. During the celebration of Passover with Jesus and the disciples, Exodus 12:12-13 makes mention of the curses of the second cup. “For that night, I will pass through the land of Egypt and kill all the firstborn in  the land of Egypt, both men and animals; and I will execute judgment against all the gods of Egypt; I am Adonai. The blood will serve you as a sign marking the houses where you are when I see the blood, I will pass over you when I strike the land of Egypt, the death blow will not strike you.” 

  This cup reveals God’s direct involvement in delivering His people from Pharaoh. During the Passover, the cup of wrath (plagues) is not to be drunk at all, but rather the contents are poured onto the table while the ten plagues are recited during the Passover meal. Whenever you recite the ten plagues of Egypt, it helps you to
remember how God protected His people. This was also evident when God instructed them to place the lamb’s blood on all three sides of the doorpost. Exodus 12:7, “They are to take some of the blood and smear it on the two sides and top of the door-frame at the entrance of the house.”The blood protected and saved God’s people from the wrath of the death angel, which was to kill all firstborn of every humankind and animal.

  This particular cup also represents the anguish Jesus Christ went through at the Garden of Gethsemane. In Luke 22:42-43, Jesus kneels and prays to the heavenly father and says, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, let not  my will but yours be done.’ There appeared to him an angel from heaven giving Him strength, and in great anguish He prayed more intensely, so that his sweat became like drops of blood falling to the ground.”As we see in this story, the Messiah asked for  this cup of wrath to be taken away from Him. However, we know in order for the prophecies to be fulfilled, God could not take away the cup of wrath from His Son.

  This starting point in the Garden of Gethsemane lead up to a dramatic and heart- breaking event - the Crucifixion. Christ had such perseverance through a horrific tribulation of wrath. Our Messiah is our definite Savior, who’s blood protected us and saved us from spiritual death.

  3. The cup believers partake of during Communion, or the Lord’s Supper, is really called the cup of Redemption. This cup is identified in the text of Exodus 6:6-7, “I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments.”This context above can be found in the story of Exodus 12:13. The theme is about the blood being placed on the doorpost of each Hebrew house. In addition, the second theme is about Egypt being judged by God through the ten plagues.

Exodus 12:13, “The blood will serve you as a sign marking the houses where you are; when I see the blood, I will pass over you when I strike the land of Egypt, the death blow will not strike you.” The blood the Hebrew people placed on all three sides of the doorposts of their houses was a symbolization of Jesus Christ. In the book of John, we find the character of John mentioning, “Look! God’s lamb! The one who is taking away the sin of the world!”Jesus is the Passover lamb. The cup that believers drink from is in the passages of Luke 22:20.

  “This cup is the New Covenant, ratified by my blood which is being poured out for you.”During the night of the Passover, the cup Jesus told His disciples to drink from was the cup of Redemption. Something very intriguing happened that night. Jesus Christ did not drink of this cup spoken of in the book of Matthew and in the book of Luke. The book of Matthew clearly states in chapter 26:29, “I tell you, I will not drink this ‘fruit
of the vine again until the day I drink new wine with you in my Father’s Kingdom.”

  Then the book of Luke reveals in chapter 22:15-16, “And He said to them, ‘I have really wanted so much to celebrate this Seder (Passover), with you before I die! For I tell you, it is certain that I will not celebrate it again until it is given its full meaning in the Kingdom of God.”Then the Lamb of God reiterates in Luke 22:18, “For I tell you that from now on, I will not drink the ‘fruit of the vine’ until the Kingdom of God comes.”
As we approach our final Passover cup, let us keep in remembrance that which Christ our savior did on the cross for humankind. Our final Passover cup is known as “the cup of praise”; another important name for it is “the cup of the kingdom.”

  In the book of Matthew, we find in verse 30, chapter 26, “When they had sung the hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.”This is practiced even today. After the Passover meal, a hymn is sung. In Hebrew, it is called “Hallel,” which is translated as praise. This hymn is not just a song they actually made up. It finds its origins in Psalms 136:

  • Give thanks to Adonai, for he is good, for his grace continues forever.
  • Give thanks to the God of gods, for his grace continues forever.
  • Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his grace continues forever;
  • To him who alone has done great wonders, for his grace continues forever;
  • to him who skillfully made the heavens, for his grace continues forever;
  • to him who spread out the earth on the water, for his grace continues forever;
  • to him who made the great lights, for his grace continues forever;
  • the sun to rule the day, for his grace continues forever;
  • the moon and stars to rule the night, for his grace continues forever;
  • to him who struck down Egypt’s firstborn, for his grace continues forever;
  • and brought Isra’el out from among them, for his grace continues forever;
  • with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, for his grace continues forever;
  • to him who split apart the Sea of Suf, for his grace continues forever;
  • and made Isra’el cross right through it, for his grace continues forever;
  • but swept Pharaoh and his army into the Sea of Suf, for his grace continues forever;
  • to him who led his people through the desert, for his grace continues forever;
  • to him who struck down great kings, for his grace continues forever;
  • yes, he slaughtered powerful kings, for his grace continues forever;
  • Sichon king of the Emori, for his grace continues forever;
  • And ‘Og king of Bashan, for his grace continues forever;
  • Then he gave their land as a heritage, for his grace continues forever;
  • To be possessed by Isra’el his servant, for his grace continues forever;
  • Who remembers us whenever we are brought low, for his grace continues forever;
  • And rescues us from our enemies, for his grace continues forever;
  • Who provides food for every living creature, for his grace continues forever;
  • Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his grace continues forever.

  Jesus Christ and His disciples were singing this very song as they were walking to the Mount of Olives. The Mount of Olives is known as the oil press, and there are some good reasons why it is called that. When the Lamb of God was praying to His father to take the cup of wrath away from Him, Jesus Christ started to sweat drops of blood. This was His first pressing. His second pressing would be when Judas Iscariot handed the Messiah to the Romans and they did all sorts of horrible things to Jesus before His crucifixion. Then, the actual crucifixion that took place was Jesus Christ’s last and final pressing. Matthew 26:50, “But Jesus, again crying out in a loud voice, yielded up his spirit.”Isaiah chapter 53:5, “But he was wounded because of our crimes, crushed because of our sin.”Yet, He lovingly and willfully gave up His life for all of us.

Written by Michael Jones

Rosh HaShanah (Feast of Trumpets)

In 2010 Rosh HaShanah will start on Thursday, the 9th of September and will continue for 2 days until Friday, the 10th of September.The Bible holidays begin at the sunset of the previous day, so Rosh HaShanah wold begin on the sunset of Wednesday, the 8th of September.

Rosh Hashana Overview

The Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah) was celebrated at the beginning of the month Tishri, the first month of the civil year. It was one of the seven days of holy convocation. Tishri is the seventh month of the Biblical calendar, and as such parallels the Sabbath as a special and holy time to seek God. The previous month of Elul is the time of preparation just as Friday is the Day of Preparation for Shabbat. This season is a time of reflection, contemplation, and putting things in order and getting right our relationship with God.

God named the other holidays, Sabbath, Passover, Day of Atonement, etc.; however, this holiday has no name. It’s simply referred to as Yom Teruah (the day of the sounding of the shofar), so it became known as the Feast of Trumpets, a special day calling attention to the coming holy day—the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur). A shofar (ram’s horn) is blown during the Feast of Trumpets service.

Leviticus 23 calls the blowing of trumpets a memorial but does not say what it is a memorial of. Many believe it is a memorial of God’s grace to Abraham when He substituted a ram to be sacrificed instead of Isaac (Gen. 22). It is also regarded by both Jews and Christians as a memorial of the creation of the world, at which the sons of God shouted for joy (Job 38:7). This holiday was the new year’s day, on which the people rejoiced in a grateful remembrance of God’s benefits and implored His blessing for the future year.

The Feast of Trumpets and Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) are the holiest days of the Jewish year. These ten days are called the Days of Awe or High Holy Days. Unlike other holy days, they do not celebrate a season or historical event. This season is a time for looking inward to spiritual growth. The themes surrounding this holiday include:

Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah literally is “Head or beginning of the year.”)
God’s Royalty (Coronation Day)
Day of Judgment
Remembrance (Yom Ha-Zikaron, the day of remembrance)
Birthday of the world

New Year

The Feast of Trumpets is the Jewish New Year. There is little resemblance between the Feast of Trumpets, one of the holiest days of the year, and a typical New Year’s Eve midnight drinking party. It is a celebration of the earth’s physical birthday on Tishri 1, the seventh month of the religious calendar, the first month of the civil calendar. It is the first of the fall holidays and usually occurs in September.

Judaism has several different new years. This is similar to the calendar year starting in January, the new school year starting in September, and many businesses starting fiscal years in July and September. In Judaism, Nisan 1 is the new year for the purpose of counting the reign of kings and months on the calendar. Regardless when the king became ruler, the coronation was on Tishri 1. Elul 1 (in August) is the new year for the tithing of animals. Shevat 15 (in February) is the new year for trees (determining when first fruits can be eaten, etc.), and Tishri 1, the Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah) is the new year for years.

Coronation Day

Another theme of this holiday is God’s royalty. The Jewish liturgical tradition has preserved tunes for many of the prayers that aptly accompany what the Chassidim called “Coronation Day.” The shofar, in this light, announces God’s Kingship: With trumpets and sound of cornet [shofar] make a joyful noise before the LORD, the King (Ps. 98:6).

Through repentance we become God’s subjects. It is said that the day that God manifests His Royalty, the day He created His world, is also naturally the day He sits in judgment. Coronation Day is a joyous day and world celebration.

Judgment Day

The history of the Feast of Trumpets as a “Day of Judgment” is from the legend that God sits in judgment between the New Year and the Day of Atonement over mankind to determine fates for the coming year.

This symbolism is drawn upon to great effect by the authors of the liturgical poems written to heighten the prayers of the season. The sages say that destiny — whether financial, physical, or other– is pre-ordained on one day each year for the entire duration of that year (Talmud Rosh Hashanah).

It is said that on this day God has three books that are opened. Those who have returned to God are written in the Book of Righteousness. All other people are divided into two groups. The first is the wholly wicked whose names are written in the Book of the Wholly Wicked. The other group are considered intermediates. They are people who have not been judged and have ten more days to repent. If they repent by the Day of Atonement their names will be written in the Book of Righteousness. Hosea 14:1-9 expresses this theme.

The sages of the Jerusalem Talmud (Rosh Hashanah 1:3) say, “Normally, someone standing in judgment would dress somberly, cloaking himself in black robes and not trim his beard. After all, he does not know how it will turn out. Israel is different, though. We dress in white and cloak ourselves in white and trim our beards and eat and drink and are joyous for we know that God will do miracles for us. Being judged by God is at once an awesome thing — He knows all — but He is a merciful God. Even judgment itself need not be devoid of joy (Talmud Rosh Hashanah 1:3).


The theme of “remembered” is thought to be from God remembering Sarah and Hannah. A Talmudic dictum (Rosh Hashanah 10b) says that on Yom Teruah, Sarah, Rachel, and Hannah were “remembered.”

Birthday of the World

Jewish tradition believes this day is the birthday of the world because the first part of Genesis, Bereishit, “in the beginning,” when changed around, read Aleph b’ Tishri, or “on the first of Tishri.” Therefore the Feast Of Trumpets is known as the birthday of the world (Adapted Chumney 1994).

The Shofar

The shofar has always had a special place for the Hebrew people. Trumpets were of a great variety of forms, and were made of diverse materials. Some were made of silver (Num. 10:2) and were used only by the priests in announcing the approach of festivals and in giving signals of war. Some were also made of rams’ horns (Josh. 6:8). They were blown at special festivals, and to herald the arrival of special seasons (Lev. 23:24; 25:9, 1 Chron. 15:24, 2 Chron. 29:27, Ps. 81:3 98:6). Trumpets are among the symbols used in the Book of Revelation (Rev. 1:10 8:2) (Bushnell 1995).

Specific uses for the shofar:

It was sounded to bring Moses to the top of the mountain to receive the Commandments. And when the voice of the trumpet sounded long, and waxed louder and louder, Moses spake, and God answered him by a voice. And the LORD came down upon mount Sinai, on the top of the mount: and the LORD called Moses up to the top of the mount; and Moses went up (Ex. 19:19-20).
It was a signal during time of war. And it came to pass, when he was come, that he blew a trumpet in the mountain of Ephraim, and the children of Israel went down with him from the mount, and he before them (Judges 3:27).
It was blown at the start of the Jubilee year. Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubilee to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land (Lev. 25:9).

It was blown during coronation services of a new King. And let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him there king over Israel: and blow ye with the trumpet, and say, God save king Solomon (1 Kings 1:34).
It is a sign of the regathering of dispersed Israel. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the great trumpet shall be blown, and they shall come which were ready to perish in the land of Assyria, and the outcasts in the land of Egypt, and shall worship the LORD in the holy mount at Jerusalem (Isa. 27:13).
* It was sounded as a warning of danger. Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid… (Amos 3:6).
* And the greatest anticipation of all is the day of the arrival of the Messiah. And the LORD shall be seen over them, and his arrow shall go forth as the lightning: and the Lord GOD shall blow the trumpet, and shall go with whirlwinds of the south (Zech. 9:14).

Feasts Of Israel
Dear Ones,

The Fall Holy Days as outlined in Leviticus 23 are approaching. Yahveh says, “These are My appointed times.” (Lev 23:2) These three Fall Feasts are the conclusion of what began with Passover and exemplify and foreshadow Yahshua our Lamb and Yahveh’s plan of redemption. The first of these three is the Feast of Trumpets. It begins at sundown on September 8th. This holy time is commonly known to the Jewish community as Rosh Hashanah (Head of the Year) but biblically as the Feast of Trumpets (Yom Teruah) or the Day of the Awakening Blast.

An integral part of this holy time is the blowing of the ram’s horn-shofar (trumpet), to alert the people that they must repent before a holy Creator who will judge sin and all who fall short of His righteousness. The shofar was made from a ram’s horn reminding the people that Abraham obediently put Isaac on the altar and Yahveh mercifully provided a substitute, a ram caught in a thicket. The sounding of the ram’s horn is an awakening and a warning for Yahveh’s people to come to Him in humility and repentance. He has provided a substitutionary sacrifice, His only begotten Son, Yahshua our Lamb, to forgive and cleanse us of all sin and unrighteousness.

We live in perilous times and the loud sounding of the shofar is as the Hebrew prophet’s words urging the people to escape, to get out of harm’s way. A loud shofar is sounding from heaven to earth beseeching the people to repent and flee from the judgments that are coming into a place of safety under the canopy of Yahveh’s protection-the blood of Yahshua. “Repent, for the kingdom of Yahveh is at hand.”

Where is your soul going to be for eternity, will your name be written in the book of life? The scripture says, “The wages of sin is death but the gift of Yahveh is eternal life in Messiah Yahshua…” (Ro 6:23) and “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.” (Lev 17:11 and Heb 9:22) This year the most holy day of Yom Kippur begins at sundown September 17th. It is the Day of Atonement, a day reminding us that our repentant sins are covered and removed by the atoning blood of our Messiah’s ultimate and final sacrifice. Yahveh says, “Now is the day of salvation if you hear His voice do not harden your heart.”

The final holy day as outlined in Leviticus 23:34 is Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles. This year it begins at sundown on September 22nd and finishes sundown September 30th. This time reminds us of Yahveh’s provision of shelter for Israel as He led them during her wilderness journeys. We are pilgrims on this earth, just passing through, as we long to enter the Promised Land - the Messianic kingdom of Yahveh the Father and Yahshua the Son-our Lamb.

This last great Biblical Feast points to Messiah’s first coming when He came to dwell (tabernacle) among His people. (Jn 1:14) The fulfillment of this Feast is the “blessed hope” of the redeemed which will ultimately be fulfilled and eternally enjoyed by a consecrated remnant of Jews and Gentiles –“one new man” (Eph 2:15) who will experience Yahveh’s kingship and holy presence forever. This time is also called the feast of “great rejoicing” that can only be experienced by those who have repented of their sins and have been cleansed by the blood of Yahshua.

May you open your ears and hear the sound of the shofar. May your heart be pierced with true repentance as you confess your sins and are cleansed with the blood of our Yom Kippur sacrifice, Yahshua. Let us continue to behold our Lamb and uphold His precious blood by glorifying Him in word and deed as we “work out our salvation with fear and trembling.” May you rejoice that your names are written in the Lamb’s book of life as you prepare by His spirit, to enter His soon coming kingdom.

The book of Revelation describes this glorious fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles-Sukkot. “I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from Yahveh … and I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, Behold, the tabernacle of Yahveh is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and Yahveh Himself shall be among them…the first things have passed away. And He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” And He said, “Write, for these words are faithful and true.” … I am…the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. He who overcomes shall inherit these things, and I will be His Elohim (God) and he will be My son.” (Rev 21:2-7)

“To Him who loves us, and released us from our sins by His blood…to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever.” (Rev 1:5)

Longing and waiting for Yahshua’s return and the establishment of His messianic kingdom. In His love and service,


As you gather at this time of the Holy Fall Feasts, the following message could be incorporated as a helpful and loving tool toward repentance and preparation. May Yahveh bless you as you meet together!

The Biblical Feasts of Leviticus 23

The Biblical Feasts as outlined in Leviticus 23, are ordained holy days and are a symbolic picture of the entire redemptive plan of YAHveh, the almighty Creator. “These are the appointed times of YAHveh … a perpetual statute…” (vv. 31,41). Indeed, these prophetic festivals have much to teach all who desire to know their Maker and His eternal plan.

Traditional biblical scholarship acknowledges that YAHveh is the memorial name of the Creator. The title LORD or Adonai (Hebrew) used in most translations of the Bible, are substitutes for His original name YAHveh - Yod Hey Vav Hey (the Hebrew letters spelling His name), which was to be remembered forever (Exodus 3:15). The original divinely given name of the Messiah is YAHshua, meaning YAHveh is Salvation, known to many by the Greek rendered name of Jesus.

We are living in perilous and fearful times. The Bible foretold that these things would happen and it cannot be ignored that the prophesies of scripture are being fulfilled. Inspired by the Creator Himself, we can trust the Holy Bible. The One who created you, longs bless you with the knowledge of His love, purpose and plan for your eternal well being.

Messiah is the fulfillment of all the Biblical Feasts. YAHshua’s death and resurrection were the fulfillment of the Feast of Passover (Pesach) and the Feast of Firstfruits (Bikkurim). YAHshua, the Messiah, was crucified in Jerusalem as the perfect Passover Lamb at the hour that multitudes of Jews were sacrificing their “spotless male lambs” (Exodus 12:3-7.) For those who accept His sacrifice, His blood covers the door posts of their hearts and protects them from eternal death (Exodus 12:12). Yahshua was resurrected as fulfillment of the Feast of Firstfruits. He is “the firstfruits” of those to rise from the dead, promising resurrection and eternal life to those who are covered in His, the Passover Lamb’s blood (1 Corinthians 15:23.) Shavuot (Pentecost), biblically referred to as the Feast of Weeks, was fulfilled precisely on divine schedule when Yahshua poured out His Holy Spirit at Jerusalem exactly fifty days after the Feast of Firstfruits. On this day, three thousand Jewish souls were brought into the eternal kingdom of YAHveh. YAHshua’s sacrificial death opened the way for the promised blessings of Israel to be shared with believing Gentiles who through common faith in His cleansing blood would become united as “one new man” (Ephesians 2:15.)

The Biblical Fall Holy Days are approaching. The first of the three Fall Feasts, is the Feast of Trumpets. This Feast commonly known to the Jewish community as Rosh Hashanah (Head of the Year) but biblically as the Feast of Trumpets (Yom Teruah) or the Day of the Awakening Blast, is a feast calling ones attention to the need for humility and repentance. An integral part of this holy time is the blowing of the ram’s horn-shofar (trumpet), to alert the people that they must repent before a holy God who will judge sin and all who fall short of His righteousness. The shofar was made from a ram’s horn reminding the people that Abraham obediently put Isaac on the altar and YAHveh mercifully provided a substitute, a ram caught in a thicket. When the ram’s horn is sounded it reminds the people, that although YAHveh is warning them to come in humility and repentance, He is merciful to provide a way that their sins can be forgiven, a life for a life, a substitutionary sacrifice. Natural catastrophe requires and brings a loud warning to the people’s hearing urging them to escape and leave the path of destruction, to get out of harms way to a place of safety. Likewise in the spiritual a similar alert and loud warning goes forth from heaven to earth beseeching the people to repent and flee from the judgments that are coming!

We are called to be spiritual people, not just fleshly temporal people of this world. We have a soul and that is the issue. Where is your soul going to be for eternity, will your name be written in the book of life? The scripture says, “The wages of sin is death but the gift of YAHveh is eternal life in Messiah YAHshua…” (Romans 6:23) and “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.” (Leviticus 17:11 and Hebrews 9:22) The most holy day of Yom Kippur is the Day of Atonement, the day repentant sins are washed over, covered and removed by the blood of the ultimate and final sacrifice. The Messiah’s atoning blood averts YAHveh’s wrath upon man’s sins fulfilling all that Yom Kippur pointed to. “Now is the day of salvation if you hear His voice do not harden your heart.”

The celebration of Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles, is in remembrance of YAHveh’s provision of shelter for Israel as He led them during her wilderness journeys. This last great Biblical Feast speaks of Messiah’s first coming when He came to dwell (tabernacle) among His people. This feast will ultimately be fulfilled and enjoyed by a redeemed remnant of Jews and Gentiles who experience His kingship and holy presence forever. This feast is one of great rejoicing that can only be eternally experienced by those who have repented and are redeemed by the blood of YAHshua the Passover Lamb, who is the final Yom Kippur atonement for our sins. The Savior of our souls extends His invitation: “Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of everlasting life.” (Revelation 22:17)



By Terrye Goldblum Seedman

Are you ready and waiting for your glorious soon coming Savior? Time is rolling up like a scroll and the Almighty’s sovereign proclamation to judge the world in righteousness and truth is an impending reality, as trustworthy as labor pains that come upon a pregnant woman. “Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice before Yahveh (God) for He is coming to judge the earth in righteousness and in His faithfulness.” (See Ps 96:11,13) Yahshua, the Savior has infinite love for all mankind, He “does not want anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance” receiving forgiveness through His sacrificial cleansing blood. (2Pe 3:9)

Regarding the last days, our Redeemer said in Luke Chapter 21, “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap… Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” (Lk 21:34,36)

We must pay attention to our Savior’s warning against “dissipation” which is the squandering and wasting of our time, energy, and resources. Dissipation is also defined as selfish indulgence and the extravagant pursuit of pleasure. It denotes any diversion that entices us and draws us away from Yahshua and the high and holy calling He has for His redeemed children.

The clock is ticking, the grains of sand are falling in the hourglass; very little time is left! We are exhorted “to redeem the time for the days are evil.” (Eph 5:16) An important question is – What are you doing of eternal value at this most critical juncture in world history and its threshold into eternity? Most people are dulled and lulled into a stupor because of the varied enticements and preoccupations of this perishing world, including man-made religious agendas, which can deceive, if possible, even the elect. (See Mt 24:24)

The Heavenly Father, Yahveh is continually crying out, “Come out of the world and be separate and holy.” (See 2Cor 6:17) He gave His Son to die on the stake at Calvary, to cleanse you of your sins and to purchase you with His precious blood. This is the unfathomable price He willingly paid to give you eternal life and deliverance from the powers of darkness and deception that rule this world system. True “born again” believers can no longer be half-hearted lip servers, who cater to the flesh’s craving and longings for the things of this world. His Holy Spirit warns, “Do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward the Almighty? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of Yahveh (God).” (Jas 4:4) “Do not love the world nor the things in the world… the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but it is from the world. The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of Yahveh lives forever.” (1Jn 2:15-17)

The love and indulgence of self is an enemy to the love and service of Yahveh the Most High God.

“The enemy comes to deceive the inhabitants of the earth.” (Rev 13:14) The Heavenly Father loves you and is trying to get your undivided attention, wholehearted devotion, and love filled obedience, lest you be ensnared in the world and suffer its coming judgments. Hear His heartbeat, “Open your ears, wake up, O sleeper, now is the day of salvation.” (Eph 5:14 and 2Cor 6:2)

“Humble yourselves in the sight of Yahveh.” Our righteous King longs to bring you to a place of “godly sorrow that leads to true repentance.” (2 Cor 7:10) He is faithful and just to cleanse and consecrate your repentant hearts with the precious blood of His Son. Judgment is coming upon all who walk according to the flesh and live to satisfy their selfish desires and self justified prideful, stubborn, and often rebellious ways.

We must “find out what pleases The Almighty and do it.” (Eph 5:10) “For this you know with certainty, no immoral, or impure person, or covetous man, who is an idolater, or the cowardly, or those who practice magic arts, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Messiah…” (See 1 Cor 6:9, Rev 21:8 and Rev 22:15) May the fire of His eternal presence bring conviction, compelling you to “cast aside every sin that so easily besets you.” (Heb 12:1) In order to be obedient and pleasing to our righteous King, we must “walk by the Spirit, so we will not carry out the desires of the flesh.” (Gal 5:16) “without holiness no one will ever see Yahveh (God).” (Heb 12:14) The Heavenly Father is purifying a redeemed remnant, to become as a beloved holy bride, who is preparing and longing to be with her soon coming eternal bridegroom. (See Jn 3:29 and Rev 19:7)

Are you eagerly preparing and longingly waiting for your Savior’s return? Are you making every effort to know your precious Redeemer more intimately in the spirit, adoring Him with an ever-increasing love, because He is becoming your utmost heart’s desire? Are the desires of His heart your interests? Apostle Paul said, “Many seek after their own interests, not those of Messiah Yahshua.” (Php 2:21)

Are you struggling with a conflict of interest? What is competing for your attention and affection? Are there cravings for other things that make you like an adulterer, idolater, and His enemy because He is not enough for you? Are the cares and preoccupations of daily life hindering your faith, love, and growing relationship to our great King and Redeemer?

Yahshua the Messiah said, “Make every effort (strive with all your being) to enter through the narrow door, because many I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to.” (Lk 13:24-28)

True disciples must “count the cost” to forsake everything to follow the Good Shepherd on that narrow path that leads into His eternal righteous kingdom. The redeemed remnant will continue to “work out their salvation with fear and trembling” as they glorify the Father and bring the love and uncompromised truth of the Savior to a lost and dying world.

Yahshua continually cautions His disciples, “be on guard” against the deceptive pull of this world, including its man-tainted religious systems that compromise and often nullify the very words of Yahveh His Father; the full counsel of the Old and New Testament Scriptures. “For this is the love of Yahveh, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.” (1Jn 5:3)

He made it clear that although many would want to, only a remnant- “a few would enter that narrow gate and that narrow path that leads to eternal life.” (Mt 7:13-14) Messiah elaborates, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ (‘Master, Master,’) will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. many would say to Me on that day, ‘Master, Master,’ did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ “And then I (Yahshua) will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness (the breaking of Yahveh’s commandments).’ (Mt 7:21-23)

Our Savior described the tragic reality of so many religious people who thought their destiny was sealed in the eternal promised land, His forthcoming Messianic kingdom. Instead the many were assigned a place with the hypocrites where there will be everlasting “weeping and gnashing of teeth.” “Many are called but few are chosen.” (Mt 22:14)

Our precious sacrificial Lamb has poured out His atoning blood to redeem you to be His very own, now and forever. He says, “Behold, I am coming soon and My rewards are with Me. I will give to everyone according to what they have done;” (Rev 22:12) whether by Messiah’s indwelling Holy Spirit, which brings eternal dividends, or by man’s vain dead end efforts. “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.” (Pr 14:12)

Dear ones take your eyes off this dying world! Our Savior is crying out, “Look up, lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” (Lk 21:28) Our Heavenly Father’s infinite love, mercy, and grace, when humbly and wholeheartedly sought, will ensure that you will be “more than a conqueror through Yahshua Messiah ” and endure victoriously to the end. To Him be all the praise, honor, and glory!

“Inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment, so Messiah also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many shall appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those (the few) who eagerly await Him.” (Heb 9:27-28) Don’t delay, make ready, be waiting, rejoice, he is coming soon!


I humble myself in prayer before You, Yahveh my Heavenly Father and Yahshua my beloved Savior,

I ask you to convict me of my many sins causing me to have true godly sorrow that leads me to life changing repentance. I confess that I have been selfish, stubborn, rebellious and prideful in many ways. Forgive me for disobedience and catering to my love for the things of this world. Please cleanse me with the blood of Yahshua the Lamb. I need Your help to make every effort to ascend on Your narrow path, I want to be part of the few, the redeemed righteous remnant, who seek and do Your will. Draw me so close to You that I will not be anxious or fearful in the midst of these perilous times. Give me a hunger and a thirst for righteousness, a desire to pray and read Your Scriptures, so that I may be obedient to you in my words and actions. I want to redeem the time that is left; “Teach me to number my days, that I might present to you a heart of wisdom.” (Ps 90:12) I acknowledge that apart from You I can do nothing. I humbly thank You for strengthening my faith through Your cleansing blood and the power of Your Name and Spirit, that I can endure victoriously to the end as I eagerly await your return.


by Edgar Meneses

“For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 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; 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” (1 Thess. 4:15-17).

The above New Testament quotation describes the Rapture of the Church. The blessed hope of the Christian is Christ taking him to Himself forever, as He promises in John 14:2,3, “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. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” The question is: WHEN?

“Rapture” is taken from the Latin word raptus, translated “caught up” from the verb rapere, which means “to transport from one place to another.” The Greek original is harpazo, which denotes a violent SNATCHING AWAY.

The Rapture is the time when faithful Christians are suddenly snatched away from the earth to be with the Lord Jesus Christ. A split second ahead of the translation of living Christians is the resurrection of “the dead in Christ.” In heaven, or in earth’s atmosphere, or in space, they will be judged before the Judgment Seat of Christ for rewards (2 Cor. 5:10 ; 1 Cor. 3:10-15) while on earth, for seven years, those left behind will be undergoing the test of their lives under the most terrible period of time known as “the Tribulation” (Matt. 24:29).

I used to ignore the topic “Rapture of the Church” whenever I encountered it in my readings. After all, I had been taught that the only Second Coming of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be visible, with power and great glory; that there will be no secret Rapture. Some writers I've read virtually ridiculed the “rapture theory.” I gave my silent assent as a matter of course.

Lately, however, I got myself interested in the subject and, to my surprise, I found out that a Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church has more scriptural bases than Post-Tribulationists will care to admit. At the outset let me point out that Post-Tribulationists – those who hold that the Rapture will happen after the Great Tribulation – have no great doctrinal variance with Pre-Tribulationists, those who believe that the Rapture will occur shortly before the Tribulation Period starts. They are both premillennialists. The bone of contention, therefore, is the timing of the Rapture in relation to the Tribulation Period.

First of all, let’s make sure what period of time we are referring to. We’ve all heard about “the great tribulation,” at least those of us who are Bible readers. Even then there are different beliefs about this subject. Some say it all had happened in AD 70 when the Roman General Titus burned Jerusalem and the temple. Others believe that the great tribulation has been going on since the first century. Let’s see what the Bible says.


The Olivet Discourse recorded in Matthew 24 and 25 gives us the certainty we are looking for. The disciples asked Jesus, “Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” Here it is clear that it is about the end of the age that the disciples were asking about. The Tribulation, then, is that short period of time – seven years – that immediately precedes the “end of the world,” or age.

The Lord gave the general course of events in the world from His time to the end of this age. He enumerated a series of prophesied occurrences which have characterized the world. False teachers, wars, famines, pestilences, and earthquakes spoken of in Matt. 24:4-7 have been happening since our Savior uttered those words, only with increased intensities in the last century.

Persecutions described in verses 9-13, as applied to Christians, began almost immediately after the establishment of the Church on Pentecost. The fulfillment of this part of the Olivet Prophecy is well documented (I have my copy of Fox’s Book of Martyrs), and will no doubt continue with increased severity in the near future.

Matthew 24:14 has a double reference. In line with the great commission in 28:19,20 this prophecy refers first to the Church preaching the gospel of salvation to the world, beginning in Jerusalem (Acts 1:8). Secondly, it refers to the powerful preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom during the Tribulation Period to be carried out by the 144,000 Jewish evangelists (Rev. 7:3,4) and by the Two Witnesses (Rev. 11:3). The end will come, Christ says, only after the gospel of the Kingdom has been preached in all the world. The exact fulfillment of this particular prophecy will come only during the Tribulation, when, once again, the focus of God will be on the Jews’ part in proclaiming the promised Kingdom of God to be established literally on earth.

Some contend that there will be no literal Kingdom of God, also known as the Millennium (Rev.20:1-6), but they are mistaken. Acts 1:6 says, “When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?” We should remember that Jesus had been with His disciples for forty days after His resurrection, “speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God” (Acts 1:3). The fact that they asked the Lord about “the kingdom” points to Him having taught them about it. Notice that He did not censure the disciples’ query. He did not say, “who says there’s going to be a literal Kingdom of God on earth?” Instead, He answered, “It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power” (verse 7). But I have digressed… our concern for the moment is to pin down the Tribulation. Then we will determine, from the word of God, when the Rapture is going to happen in relation to the Tribulation.


Matthew 24:15-28 deals with the Great Tribulation. Notice in particular verses 21 and 22. “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” The Tribulation will be a unique period of time in world history. Nothing that has gone before is like it. This proves that the preterists’ belief that the prophecies of Matthew 24 had all been fulfilled in AD 70 is wrong. Hitler’s Holocaust was greater than AD 70 in the number of Jews killed. And Christ foretold that the Tribulation will be greater than the Holocaust! Not only for the Jews, but this time the whole world will be affected by the coming judgment from God.

I don’t want to sound like a doomsday prophet, but, if we are going to be realistic about it, we can’t help but conclude this world is not facing the best of times. Somehow we can feel that something ominous is going to descend upon us all. Recently, I watched a news item on television about Russia testing her 1991 missiles “for future use.” The Middle East continues to be volatile like a tinder box ready to explode anytime; violence there has not stopped. Iran is very vocal about her intentions. But global war is not the only threat to world stability. The weather pattern worldwide has gone awry, with more than the normal number of strong typhoons, tornadoes, hurricanes. Depletion of ozone gas layer continues unabated, with impending dire consequences to all life on the planet. Earthquakes, as prophesied by the Lord, are occurring “in divers places.” The December 26, 2004 earthquake-generated tsunami that hit south Asia and part of east Africa is a specific fulfillment of His prophecy – “…upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth…” (Luke 21:25,26). I have always believed that this prophecy will come to pass inside the Tribulation Period. Now I have to adjust a little bit. No doubt the full fury of tsunamis are yet to come, but the December 26 catastrophe serves to warn the world of the soon-coming judgment of God, and at the same time to awaken a sleeping Church, asleep to prophecy (Luke 18:8 ; Matt. 25:5).

For clarity and for specific signification we will call the last seven years of this world the Tribulation, and the second half of that period – the last three and a half years – the Great Tribulation (Matt. 24:21). This brings us to the book of Daniel. We will return to the Olivet Discourse later.


Here is the explanation why the Tribulation will last seven years, after which Christ will come in power and great glory. It is in Daniel 9:24-27.

The prophet Daniel was given by God a prophecy on the nation Israel and its capital city Jerusalem about 530 BC. The prophet had been confessing Israel’s sins and his own when the angel Gabriel delivered to him probably the most amazing prophecy in the Bible, the prophecy of the “Seventy Weeks.”

“Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most holy” (Dan. 9:24). Seventy weeks of years is meant here, or 490 Biblical years of 360 days a year. We know that the first half of the verse was fulfilled by Christ at His first coming almost two thousand years ago – “to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity.” The other half He will fulfill at His Second Coming.

“Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and three score and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after three score and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself” (verses 25, 26a). Nehemiah testified (Nehemiah 2:1-8) that the proclamation by Persian King Artaxerxes Longimanus to rebuild Jerusalem came out on Nisan 1, 445 BC, calculated by the Royal Observatory, Greenwich to be March 14, 445 BC. Sixty nine weeks, or 483 years (i.e., 173,880 days) from March 14, 445 BC would bring us to April 6, AD 32, the exact day when Jesus Christ was presented to the Jews as their Messiah (Luke 19:36-44). (This is based on the computations made by Sir Robert Anderson in his Christological interpretation of the 70-Week Prophecy.) The exact timing of His triumphal entry into Jerusalem is a proof of His Messiahship. Had he entered Jerusalem sooner or later, it would mean He was not the “Messiah the Prince.” Here we have an example of how exact and reliable Bible prophecies are. We can therefore be sure that the specific prophecies that refer to our time will come to pass precisely as written in the Holy Scriptures (1 Pet. 1:19-21).

Just as the angel Gabriel predicted, the Messiah was “cut off,” that is, slain – crucified – after the 69 weeks of years had expired, not for Himself but for the sins of the whole world (John 3:16). It happened within five days. Then what? “and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined” (Dan. 9:26b). This was fulfilled in AD 70 when the Romans under Titus burned Jerusalem and the temple. Thirty seven years had passed since AD 32 before verse 26b was fulfilled, therefore it is obvious that the last week of the Seventy-Week-Prophecy – or the last seven years – cannot have been fulfilled at that time. God’s time clock for Israel must have stopped at the close of the 69 weeks in AD 32. Yet the prophecy must fulfill all of the 70 weeks.

The 70th Week: “And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate” (verse 27). Who is “he” that shall confirm a covenant with many for one week? Here is an error in interpretation made by some. It is supposed that “he” is the Messiah accomplishing His ministry for seven years but was killed “in the midst of the week.” It is believed that God’s time clock for the Seventy Weeks stopped at the Crucifixion and will restart at the Second Coming, and the Messiah will preach again for another three and a half years. That there is a Prophetic Gap of about 2000 years after the 69 weeks is seen correctly. But the interpretation is wrong. For one thing, and this is important, the antecedent of “he” is misplaced. And the “covenant” is misunderstood. The whole seventieth week is wrongly interpreted to be the Messiah’s preaching ministry to the Jews.

Who, then, is “he” and what is the “covenant”? The “he” in Daniel 9:27 is none other than “the prince that shall come” mentioned in verse 26. Bible expositors agree that he is the end-time Antichrist. He is the Beast from the sea (Rev. 13) and the “little horn” of Daniel 7:8. He is referred to by Christ in John 5:43, “…if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.” This coming personal Antichrist will be accepted by the Jews as their messiah. When this powerful man appears on the world scene he will make a “covenant” – or a treaty – with many for seven years. The “many” refers to the nation of Israel and other nations. Since Jerusalem, in the last days, will become “a cup of trembling… a burdensome stone for all people” (Zech. 12:2,3), the covenant spoken of in Daniel 9:27 must be a peace settlement for Jerusalem and the whole Middle East. The man who will be able to bring about peace in the region will be looked up to by the whole world as a hero, in fact more than a hero – he will be worshipped (Rev. 13:3,4,8). But after three and a half years from the signing of the treaty – “in the midst of the week”- his true colors will come out. He will break the formal agreement with the Jews and will enter the rebuilt temple in Jerusalem, causing the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and proclaim that he is God (2 Thess. 2:4)! Why? He is also “that man of sin… the son of perdition” (verse 3).

We have seen that the 70th Week of Daniel 9:24-27 is yet to come. God’s prophetic time clock for His plan for the Jews and for the establishment of the Kingdom stopped on April 6, AD 32, when the Messiah was formally rejected by the Jews (John 1:11). Within two months the Church was inaugurated on the day of Pentecost (John 1:12.13 ; Acts 2). We are right now in the closing days of the Prophetic Gap between the 69 Weeks and the 70th Week. The last seven years to complete the prophecy of Daniel 9:24-27 are being held in abeyance by the presence of the Church of God on earth (2 Thess. 2:6-8). The Church, because it will no longer have role on the earth during that time (Rom. 11:25), will be raptured to heaven shortly before the 70th Week sets in.

We are now ready, in this article, to appreciate the scriptural proofs for a Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church. But before that, let me get back to the Tribulation which corresponds to the 70th Week.


The following scriptures give other names for the impending Tribulation that will engulf this unsuspecting world:

“Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty… Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it… Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger” (Isaiah 13:6,9,13).

“Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it” (Jer. 30:7).

“And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end” (Dan.12:9).

“For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” (Rev.6:17)

“…Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come; and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters” (Rev. 14:7).

“As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of the world” (Matt. 13:40).

“Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee; hide thy self as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast… For the indignation of the Lord is upon all nations, and his fury upon all their armies…” (Isaiah 26:20 ; 34:2).

“And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time…” (Dan. 12:1).


Proof number one for a Pre-Tribulation Rapture of the Church is in the Olivet Discourse itself. I never realized it before but it is now clear to me. “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matt. 24:29,30). This is the glorious Second Coming of Jesus Christ. It is plain that He will come after the Tribulation. Verse 31, at first glance, is the strongest proof for a Post-Tribulation Rapture: “And he shall send his angels with a great shout of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”

Now, where is the Pre-Trib Rapture there, you might say. It’s so plain that Christ, as He descends from heaven, uses His angels to rapture the Church at His Second Coming. How could you explain that away in order to push a Pre-Trib Rapture?

Before further explanation, let me go forward in Matthew 24. “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (vv. 36,37). Two facts can be gathered here: 1) The day or the hour of Christ’s coming cannot be known by any man, and 2) His coming is compared to the days of Noah. We don’t have to guess what the days of Noah were like, for the next verses say, the Lord speaking, “For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; SO SHALL THE COMING OF THE SON OF MAN BE” (vv. 38,39).

“The coming of the Son of man” in verses 37 and 39 refers to the first stage of the Second Advent, that is, Christ coming to rapture the Church to heaven before the Tribulation begins, as promised in John 14:2,3.

A) Our Lord enumerated the signs that would precede His Second Coming, including cataclysmic occurrences such as international conflicts, famines, pestilences, and earthquakes. And He gave the specific sign of the “abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet.” When people see these signs happening they should be sure the Second Coming is near, in fact, only three and a half years away from the Abomination of Desolation. “So likewise ye, when ye shall see these things, know that it is near, even at the doors” (v. 33).

But Jesus also says, “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh” (v. 44). How can these His seemingly contradictory statements be reconciled? Surely, Christ will not contradict Himself! In one verse He says watch for signs of His coming; a few verses later He warns us to be ready, for there is no specific sign of His coming.

We are therefore forced to conclude that our Savior must be talking about two distinct and separate events. There must be two future Comings. The first one requires no specific sign to watch before it occurs; the other will be preceded by so many signs. In other words, first He comes to rapture His Church. Then seven years later (refer back to the 70-Week Prophecy) He comes to end the Great Tribulation (v. 22) and rescue the Jews at Armageddon (Rev.19).

B) The Rapture cannot be Post-Tribulational because just like in days of Noah it will be “business as usual” in the world just before “the coming of the Son of man” (v. 39) – “eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage.” That is hardly the situation during the Great Tribulation, when hundreds of millions will die from wars, famines, etc. If we go by the book of Revelation BILLIONS will have already died by the end of the Great Tribulation; the days of Noah were not like that before he and his family were taken into the ark. If Jesus is coming at a time similar to the days of Noah when the world is relatively peaceful this coming must occur before the Tribulation. Therefore, He is coming for the Church at that time – the first phase of His “parousia.”

C) The Second Coming in glory can be pinpointed to the day by believers who will be alive during the Tribulation. How? By simply counting days from the setting up of the Abomination of Desolation and referring to Daniel 12:11,12. But the Coming discussed in Matthew 24:36-44 will be sudden and unexpected. This “coming of the Son of man” cannot be the one that is referred to in verse 30, where it is stated that all the tribes of the earth will finally see the Son of man after a series of signs have happened.

D) “Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left” (vv. 40,41). These verses immediately follow the Noahic comparison. People are “taken” – raptured – before the time of global cataclysm suddenly comes on the whole world. This is a Pre-Tribulation taking-away of Christians to heaven (John 14:2,3).

Now concerning the gathering of “the elect” Matthew 24:30, 31 does not substantiate a Post-Tribulation Rapture of the Church, contrary to what many believe. When the Second Coming occurs Jesus Christ comes down to earth with His saints from heaven; the saints will have been in heaven for seven years by that time (Zech. 14:5 ; Jude 14 ; Col. 3:4 ; 1 Thess. 3:13 ; 4:14 ; Rev. 19:14). The Church, the Bride of the Lamb, is already in heaven when the Lord returns to earth in glory (Rev. 19:7-9). Wherever the Husband goes there goes His Wife.

Who, then, are the “elect” whom the angels will gather from the four winds? Mark 13:27 makes it clearer; “And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.” The Bible does not leave us in the dark as to who God’s “elect’’ are. In Isaiah 45:4 God is quoted as saying, “For Jacob my servant’s sake and ISRAEL mine elect. . . .” Therefore, it is the remnant of Israel in the last days who are the “elect” that will be gathered from around the globe when Christ begins to establish His Kingdom in the Millennium. It is thus prophesied by God in Isaiah, “And I will bring forth a seed out of Jacob, and out of Judah an inheritor of my mountains; and mine elect shall inherit it, and my servants shall dwell there” (65:9). Ezekiel sheds more light: “As I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely with a mighty hand, and with a stretched out arm, and with fury poured out, will I rule over you” (Ezek. 20:33). The language strongly indicates that the fulfillment of this prophecy is shortly after the Tribulation.

Matthew 24:31 and Mark 13:27 are enlarged upon by the following verses from Ezekiel: “And I will bring you out from the people, and will gather you out of the countries wherein ye are scattered, with a mighty hand, and with a stretched out arm, and with fury poured out. And I will bring you into the wilderness of the people, and there will I plead with you face to face. Like as I pleaded with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so will I plead with you, saith the Lord GOD. And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant: And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am the LORD” (vv. 34-38).

The gathering of the elect at the Second Coming will also include the resurrection of Old Testament saints, as strongly indicated in Daniel 12:1,2. The first resurrection and the translation of living Christians at the Rapture will include only the Bride of Christ, that is, the Church. Notice 1 Thessalonians 4:16 – “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven…and the dead in Christ shall rise first.” But the gathering of the elect ISRAELITES, including the dead Old Testament saints, will happen at the Second Coming of Christ after the Tribulation; they will be gathered together “from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven,” the remnant from every corner of the earth, and the dead Israelite saints from heaven where their spirits will be brought from.


The apostle Paul’s letters to the Thessalonians were his earliest. He is said to have spent only four weeks in Thessalonica on his second missionary journey. Within one month he had taught a number of important doctrines to the Thessalonians, including the Rapture. The Rapture is mentioned in every chapter of the first letter (1 Thess. 1:10 ; 2:19,20 : 3:12,13 ; 4:13-18 ; 5:1-11). But our concern under this heading is the Rapture lesson contained in Second Thessalonians.

It is unfortunate that many Christians today do not believe that Christ will return for the Church before the Tribulation. In fact, many are not anymore waiting for Christ’s return; they say we are now in the Millennium, that it may take thousands of years from now before the Judgment Day comes. They are called amillennialists. I’ve heard of their “Kingdom Now” theology. I just wonder how they can locate the Kingdom in this present evil world. I guess Augustine of Hippo is the original culprit. As for the Post-Trib premillennialists, however, it seems to me that they would rather have Jesus return for them after the Tribulation. Are they too curious about Tribulation events and therefore they want to see them with their own eyes? Maybe they just don’t see the light yet. What amazes me more is that some, seeing the scriptural proofs for a Pre-Tribulation Rapture, still have a hard time accepting it. A case of “doctrinal inertia,” I suppose, if not a display of unbelief. But I check myself – 1 Corinthians 4:5 says, “…judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts….”

Choices of various beliefs regarding the Rapture were simply not available during apostolic times. The early Church held only the Pre-Tribulation Rapture preparatory to premillennial Second Coming, as taught by the apostle Paul. Only in the fourth century did the churches begin to abandon the belief when prophecy began to be interpreted allegorically, and Amillennialism gained acceptance through the influential teachings of Augustine.

The converts in Thessalonica believed in a Pre-Trib Rapture. Second Thessalonians was occasioned by their being “shaken in mind…troubled… that the day of the Lord is now present” (2:2, correct translation). Paul wrote in order to assure them that the rumor that the Day of the Lord had begun was just that, a rumor. Chapter 2:1,2 presents the theme of the letter: “Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of the Lord is now present.” Probably a forged letter was circulating, stating that they were now inside the Tribulation; and that the persecutions they were experiencing at the hand of their enemies were part of the fulfillment of the prophecies. But the persecutions and hardships were not the cause of their being “shaken” and “troubled.” They were greatly agitated and disturbed because they thought they were LEFT BEHIND! They knew that if they were now inside the Tribulation – the 70th Week – the Rapture must have already occurred. And what were they doing on earth? They were therefore very afraid – frightened – maybe they were left behind because of some sin on their part, and now they were about to face the Antichrist and endure the Tribulation.

Think about it. If Paul had taught the Thessalonians a Post-Trib Rapture why would they be shaken in mind to find themselves in the Tribulation? Instead of being troubled they would rejoice in the realization that the Rapture was now only seven years away; what they had to do now was to prepare some civil defense and wait for the Second Coming. But that was not the case. The Thessalonian converts were fearful because they were taught by the apostle that before the Tribulation would begin the Rapture must come first to deliver them “from the wrath to come” (1Thess. 1:10). But here they were, supposedly caught in the middle of the Tribulation, and their feet literally still on the ground; they had not been “caught up.” That’s why they were confounded.

As hinted above, the confusion about the timing of the Rapture in the Second Thessalonians has resulted from a mistranslation – “that the day of Christ is at hand” (2:2). Paul would not caution them against the day of Christ being at hand. Why, he believed so. He taught an imminent coming of Christ for the Church (1 Cor. 15:51,52). He was saying in effect to the faithful Thessalonians, “Don’t you worry, don’t believe the detractors, we are not yet in the Tribulation Period. Didn’t I tell you that the Rapture must come first? At the Rapture we shall ALL be included. If all the immature Corinthians will be raptured, you can be sure you will be. Some things must first occur in the world before the day of the Lord can begin. And you will not be present on earth to witness the full manifestation of those things. As I taught you before, RAPTURE FIRST.”

The apostle Paul was reassuring the brethren that the Rapture was still future though imminent. Why, he himself was still there. He who was one of the two apostles to whom the mystery of the Rapture was revealed (along with John). The fact that Paul was not yet raptured was proof enough to the Thessalonians that the “snatching away” had not yet occurred. But he went on to unveil something more:


Second Thessalonians 2:3 : “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day” - the Day of the Lord, verse 2 - “shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.” The apostasy in the churches was already underway even during Paul’s time, “for the mystery of iniquity doth already work” (v. 8a). It was to intensify until the whole world would have totally abandoned God’s truth (Matt. 24:11 ; 2 Tim. 4:3). Right now “the whole world lieth in wickedness” (1 John 5:19), but just before the start of the Tribulation and about the time of the Rapture the world and professing Christendom will have committed the Great Apostasy, having “believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thess. 2:12b). Side by side with the Great Apostasy is the rise of the Antichrist.

But the other event to occur before the Day of the Lord (the Tribulation being the first short part of the Day of the Lord) is the RAPTURE ITSELF. The Antichrist will not be revealed unless his Restrainer is finished with the work of restraining. “For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth” – or restrains – “will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed” (2 Thess. 2:7, 8a). The restrainer of the Antichrist is the Holy Spirit. Nothing and nobody in the world can do the job of restraining Satan, who is the force behind the Antichrist. The Holy Spirit has been doing the work of a restrainer since the days of the apostle Paul. Only an omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent Being can do that. When the Holy Spirit, in His capacity as the Restrainer, is “taken out of the way,” then the Antichrist will be free to reveal himself, for God will now allow it. Now, the “taking out of the way” of the Restrainer from the world scene is the same as saying that the Church is raptured – taken away from the earth – because the Holy Spirit works primarily through the Church in controlling the outbreak of apostasy in the professing Christendom and in the world.

When the Church is taken away, then the Great Apostasy will be complete and the Antichrist will reign supreme over the whole world.


“… denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:12,13). It is assumed by many that this passage is referring only to the glorious Second Coming. I’ve read the book, “The Blessed Hope,” written by Post-Tribulationist George Ladd. He put forth Titus 2:13 as a proof text for a Post-Trib Rapture. But the syntax contradicts that position. Look at that. “Looking for that blessed hope,” – one event, that is, the Rapture, - “and the glorious appearing of … Jesus Christ,’ another event. They are two distinct events, separated by seven years of Tribulation.

Why is the Rapture called the “blessed hope” of the Christian? The answer is in 1 John 3:2,3, “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be; but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.” The first and primary purpose of the Rapture is to change us completely. “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body…” (Phil. 3:20,21 New King James Version). The Rapture is the time when the living and dead Christians are finally given their spiritual bodies (1 Cor. 15:51-54). No wonder it is called the Blessed Hope.

But there is a secondary reason why the Rapture is “that blessed hope.”


The Rapture of the Church can hardly be called a “hope” – or at least its being a hope is tarnished – if it comes after the Tribulation. Imagine it. If the Rapture is Post-Trib, how can one be hopeful when he knows he is to undergo the difficulties of the Tribulation? In all likelihood he may even face martyrdom. The Antichrist will have open opportunity of killing the saints, as revealed by Jesus, Daniel, John, and others. The Rapture is somewhat “spoiled” if it is Post-Tribulational. Happily, that is not the case. God promises to deliver His children prior to the Tribulation by transporting them to heaven. Consider the following:

A) “… to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come” (1Thess. 1:10). “For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” (5:9). The wrath to come is the Tribulation, exhaustively described in Revelation 6 – 18. By the time the First Horseman rides (Rev.6:1) the Church (Rev. 2 & 3) will have been transported to heaven (Rev. 4:1).

B) Christ to the Church: “Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which will come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth” (Rev. 3:10). This is a promise from Jesus to the faithful in Philadelphia. We know that Philadelphia is an end-time Church, the sixth of the seven Churches. The Philadelphian Era of God’s Church covers the period from about 1750 to Rapture. God’s promise is clear-cut – “I… will keep thee from the hour of temptation,” – or the time of trial – “which shall come upon all the world.” “The hour” refers to the short period of seven years when God’s righteous judgments will be poured out on sinning mankind. How can anyone mistake the meaning of that scripture? God will deliver the Church from the Tribulation. And the means is by transporting her to heaven: “Come up hither…” (Revelation 4:1).

C) In 2 Peter 2:4-10 the apostle spoke of “judgment” on the world of the ungodly during the days of Noah and Lot, wherein God saved the just from the outpouring of judgment, for “the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptation, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished” (v. 9). The conclusion that we can derive here is that God will deliver His own – the godly – before He allows the global “day of judgment” – the Tribulation – to begin, just as He did to Noah and Lot. We are therefore assured that the Church will not go through the coming Tribulation. God’s promise will never fail. We are expected to believe that; can we do otherwise?

However, some argue that if God will keep us from the troubles ahead it would not be fair to the countless thousands who died from martyrdom throughout the centuries, and they presume that there’s no reason why we should escape the same fate. Sort of a sado-macho thinking, not scriptural. Who are we to question God? “Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” (Gen. 18:25) God is just, no question about that. We ought to be thankful that we have the additional blessing of protection from the Wrath to Come by divine “summons” to heaven at the Rapture.


The noted Bible scholar William Barclay commented that the apostle Paul was wrong when he proclaimed, “We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 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” (1 Cor. 15:51,52). Barclay stated positively that Paul made a mistake in believing that Christ could come in his day. “The wise are not always right” – pointing to Barclay, not to the apostle. But, was Paul wrong in believing that the Lord’s coming for the Church was imminent? Of course not. Christ could have come in the first century. Remember, there was no specific sign given the Church to signal the approach of the Rapture. Christ simply promised, “I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:3). Time and again the Lord warned the disciples to be ever ready, for He could come anytime (Luke 12:34-40 ; 21:34-36 ; Mark 13:32-37 : Matt. 24:36-44).

Against the Doctrine of Imminence the argument is advanced that Christ could not come unless world condition has deteriorated to the point when it is possible for mankind to obliterate himself from off the face of the earth, as prophesied by Jesus Himself in Matthew 24:21, 22, and that that time came only after almost two thousand years. I believe this argument does not destroy imminency of Christ’s coming for the Church. Remember the Tower of Babel. God Himself does not underestimate man. “And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do; and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do” (Gen. 11:6). As we have seen, only the Restrainer has been hindering the Antichrist from becoming active on the world scene. Had God decided to take away the Restrainer any time from apostolic times, world condition could have come to where it is right now by the “genius” of man; nothing could have hindered him from rapidly developing ways and means of destroying himself within a seven-year period. Once the 70th Week had begun, all the prophecies that pertain to the period must come to pass, regardless of when within the last twenty centuries it began. Right now we are exactly in that situation; therefore the Rapture is more imminent now than ever.

This is a strong proof for the correctness of the “rapture theory.” The Doctrine of Imminence can only be applied to the Pre-Trib Rapture, which will happen unexpectedly like an operation of a thief in the night. A thief does not give signs to his potential victims. The Rapture, being imminent, requires no signs. It will come at an hour when people of the world – including many Christians – least expect it. Imminency cannot refer to the glorious Second Coming because this coming of Jesus Christ will be preceded by specific signs for which He told His disciples to watch.

Of the two stages of the Second Advent only the first – the Rapture of the Church - is imminent. Jesus, Paul, Peter, and John talked imminence. Therefore, the doctrine of an Imminent Rapture is true. Otherwise, Jesus and His apostles were liars.


Although I think that the foregoing logical, scriptural proofs of the Pre-Trib Rapture are unassailable enough, I offer here, last, the most concrete evidence – the book of Revelation.

The book of Revelation is not as mysterious as is commonly supposed. “Apocalupsis” is an unveiling. It is the Revelation of Jesus Christ (1:1), meaning, it is a book about the person of Jesus - His Deity – His testimony, and about His Second Coming and the events thereafter. The future events leading to the setting up of the Kingdom are set forth in the book in explicit details.

Of all the books of the Bible only the Revelation has a special blessing for its readers: “Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand” (1:3). There, again, is imminency. The blessing is reiterated near the end of the book, “Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book” (22:7).

Revelation was written by the apostle John about the year AD 96. This fact alone should dispose of the claims of preterists that the events mentioned in the book up to chapter 19 refer to the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. I follow the futuristic interpretation of the book, as well as the literal. Literal interpretation allows for allegorical or symbolic interpretation when the text and contexts dictate it. But otherwise we take the primary, commonsense, ordinary, and literal meaning of the words used by John, and the other biblical writers for that matter.

From the fourth century Augustine has dominated the theological thinking of the churches. His teachings have continued to be the basis of the amillennial approach to prophecy only because of the allegorical method of interpretation. We cannot begin to realize the damage this has inflicted to professing Christendom and to the world in general. (Anti-Semitism, for example, can be traced to it.) Spiritualizing the Revelation caused uncounted souls to disbelieve in the coming millennial Kingdom of God. They also spiritualized away God’s judgmental warning in 22:18,19 - “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, if any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” Actually, I cannot conceive how anyone can interpret that in any way except literally. Of course, the phrase “take away from the words of the book of this prophecy” does not mean to literally print our own copy of Revelation in which words have been edited out, or to cut off parts of the last pages of our Bibles. The plain meaning of “take away” must be disbelieving what the words are saying in plain language. For instance: Amillennialists would say that the Millennium is mentioned only in Revelation 20:1-7, therefore it is not true that there will be a Millennium. That is taking away from the words of the book of Revelation. We had better take warning. There is no doubt that the “God, that cannot lie” (Titus 1:2) means what He says and says what He means. It is a fearful thing to knowingly reject Revelation.

If we will follow the flow of events described in Revelation we can see clearly that the Rapture of the Church is Pre-Tribulational. The outline of the book is presented in chapter 1 verse 19: “Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter.” Thus the book is divided into three parts – 1) the things which thou hast seen, 2) the things which are, and 3) the things which shall be hereafter. “Hereafter” is meta tauta in Greek. This is significant for locating the timing of the Rapture in the book of Revelation. We’ll see later why. This little lesson in Greek I owe to Chuck Smith.


The term “Tribulation Hour” is taken from Revelation 3:10: “Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.” Another lesson from Greek here is that the preposition “from” – “from the hour of temptation” – is ek, which means out of. The Philadelphian faithful, as well as all the faithful remnant from Thyatira down to Laodicea, are promised escape out of the time of the Tribulation, not through it. In other words, they will be evacuated from the earth just before the Tribulation begins.

“The things which thou hast seen” refers to John’s vision of Christ (1:8-20). “The things which are” are the messages to the seven Churches (chapters 2 and 3), which corresponds to the whole Church Age. “And the things which shall be hereafter” refers to the Tribulation Hour and thereafter (chapters 4 to 22).

Revelation 2 and 3 spans the Church Age from Pentecost to Rapture. Revelation 4:1 is the point in the panorama of events when the Church is raptured. Notice: “AFTER THIS…” After what? Of course, after the Church Age described in chapters 2 and 3. It’s the same meta tauta in 1:19. “After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter.” Here is a double meta tauta, so that the readers of Revelation will not mistake that from here on they will be reading of events future from the Rapture, that is, “after these Church things.”

In vision John is taken up to heaven. He is the representative of the Church being raptured to heaven at the close of the Church Age and prior to the start of the Tribulation. The language of Revelation 4:1 is very much similar to the Rapture text of 1 Thessalonians 4:16,17. People who contend that the Thessalonian scripture refers to Christ’s Coming in glory are simply mistaken. Notice that the event described is a meeting “in the air.” We do not right then and there descend on the Mount of Olives. Instead we go up to heaven – “Come up hither,” Christ says. We return to earth with the Lord of Lords and King of kings seven years later (Rev. 19), after the Tribulation Hour described in chapters 6 through 18 is finished (The book was written chronologically, with some flashbacks or interludes, or parentheses).

The command "come up hither," as can be seen in context, means coming into heaven. We know that the Two Witnesses will be raptured to heaven: "And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them" (11:12). Likewise, the Church, when the time comes, will be commanded, "Come up hither"! (4:1)


Chapters 4 and 5 portrays to us what will happen when we get to heaven at the Rapture. Don’t we look forward to that? I understand that some sincere and godly people are repulsed by the idea of going to heaven. For so many years we have been bombarded by the unorthodox and “iconoclastic” teaching, “Nobody will go to heaven!” What a tragedy; we were virtually taught not to believe the Bible, because the Bible does teach people can go to heaven. It was Joseph Goebbels, Hitler's propaganda minister, who once said that when a lie is constantly repeated long enough people will tend to believe it. Something similar has happened to our view of heaven. Partly because of not taking the words of the Bible literally we have been misled into believing that humans do not go to heaven. And, perhaps, out of a desire to be different from apostate Christianity, we were only too willing to believe that no one is going to heaven.

Let me cite right now just one scripture that proves humans, indeed, go to heaven, right from within the Rapture Text: “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God BRING WITH HIM” (1 Thess. 4:14). Whether that means God will bring the dead Christians with Jesus to heaven or from heaven is not important just now. The point is, people do enter heaven because Jesus ascended to heaven (Acts 1:9-11).

What’s more, the Revelation pictures the Church in heaven praising God after the Rapture in 4:1. John saw in vision the glory of God. “And round about the throne were four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment,; and they had on their heads crowns of gold” (v. 4). I believe these twenty-four elders are humans, not angels, for angels are never crowned. The Judgment for rewards must have been finished at this point in time because they have already been rewarded with crowns (cf. James 1:12 ; 1 Pet. 5:4). “And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth” (5:9,10). The redeemed, who are raptured to heaven by this time, are looking forward to Christ’s return to earth when they, with Him, will begin to reign. How clear!

While the Church is in heaven worshipping God, down on earth the Tribulation rages on. It is graphically described in chapters 6 to 18.


“After these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God” (19:1). The Marriage of the Lamb with His Wife, the Church, is made in heaven (vv. 7,8), after which they will return to earth. But first the Bridegroom and the Bride have to destroy their enemies: “And I saw heaven opened…” Twice in Revelation the door of heaven is opened. First, in 4:1, to receive the Church at the Rapture. Second, to let Christ and His Church – now His Wife – return to earth. “…and behold, a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war…” (At the Rapture the Lord will not be riding a white horse, Acts 1:9-11.) “And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (19:11, 14-16). This is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ in power and great glory. He comes with His Wife the Church. No wonder Jude says, “…Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all…” (Jude 14,15).

After the Judgment of the Nations (Matt. 25:31-46) the Millennial Reign will begin. The Lord will not be alone ruling the world, for “we shall reign on the earth” (Rev. 5:10). “And so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thess. 4:17).


For those who can’t see the Rapture in chapter 4 verse 1, I challenge them to look for the Church on earth during the Tribulation. Remember, the Tribulation period corresponds to chapters 6 through 18. I know that Post-Tribulationists will be quick to point to the “woman” of Revelation 12. Let’s look at that. “And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars” (12:1).

Just because the great false religious system of the Tribulation is called a “woman” and a “whore” in Revelation 17 many are quick to conclude the woman in chapter 12 is the true Church. But they are mistaken. As we have already seen by so many scriptural proofs the Church will not go through the Tribulation. The obvious truth is that the woman in Revelation 12 is not the Church. She is ISRAEL. Proof? In Genesis the patriarch Joseph dreamed the exact “wonder” pictured in Revelation 12:1. “And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more, and behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me” (37:9). This proves that the woman in Revelation 12 is the nation Israel. “And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered” (Rev. 12:2), referring to the Messiah being born from Israel, “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” (v.5), that is, Christ ascended to heaven. The “Place of Safety” for this woman is referred to in verses 6 and 14; this is taken to mean by Post-Tribulationists that the Church is on earth during the Tribulation. “And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days…And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.”

It is indisputable that a remnant of Israel will be protected from the wrath of Satan for a period of three and a half years. The question is, are these believing remnant literal descendants of the Jews or the Church? The answer is given by the Lord Jesus Himself in Matthew 24. Speaking of the beginning of the Great Tribulation, His instruction is for the JEWS: “Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take anything out of his house: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! But PRAY YE THAT YOUR FLIGHT BE NOT IN THE WINTER, NEITHER ON THE SABBATH DAY” (vv. 16-20). This is the same flight spoken of in Revelation 12:14. It is the Jews, not the Church, who are to flee to the mountains where there is a special place prepared for them (probably Petra). Notice that Christ is concerned about their flight happening on a Sabbath day. The Jews keep the Sabbath law; the Church does not. While the believing remnant of Israel are in their place of refuge (Isaiah 26:20), the Church is up in heaven preparing for her return to earth to rule with Christ a thousand years.

Can we find the Church on earth during the seven-year Tribulation? If so, we ought to find her mentioned in Revelation 6 through 18. I tried but I didn’t find her in those thirteen chapters.

In Revelation 1 to 3 “church” and “churches” are mentioned nineteen times. The Church is mentioned again only in 22:16, and that only in retrospect. In Revelation 19 the Church, being in heaven, is called the Bride and Wife of the Lamb. (The Church is never called a “woman” in the Bible; another point concerning Revelation 12.)

In the letters to the seven Churches there is the formula, “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches,” to admonish the leaders and members of the Church. But in chapter 13 the admonition-formula is “edited” to conform to the new subject and new situation – “If any man have an ear, let him hear” (v.9). The Church is no more, and the Spirit is gone with her. The Tribulation saints – Jews and Gentiles alike – are being addressed here. Notice the gloomy warning: “He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: and he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and faith of the saints” (v.10). The Tribulation saints are advised to endure with patience and faith. It’s far better to be a believer now and be raptured to heaven when the time comes than to believe later and endure the Tribulation. At that time, the evaluation of a voice in heaven will be, “ Therefore, rejoice, ye heavens, and YE THAT DWELL IN THEM” – the Church, because God spared her the Tribulation - but “Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea!” – those left behind – “for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time” (12:12). Where would you rather be at that time?

One more scriptural proof that the Church will not be present on earth during the Tribulation is in Revelation 7. “After this” – after John has seen the 144,000 Jewish servants of God sealed – “I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb” (vv.9,10). These are new arrivals in heaven. John does not know who they are. One of the elders in heaven asks him, “What are these which are arrayed in white robes? And whence came they?” (v.13). Notice John’s answer: “Sir, thou knowest” (v.14). If these people were part of the Church John would know. The elder goes on to enlighten John, “These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (v.14). These people are Tribulation converts. They will pay the price of martyrdom for their belated faith. I can imagine that they will include people who will believe because of the witness of Church members who used to “pester” them with the gospel or with the “rapture theory.” For them, “to see is to believe” will be amended to to see not is to believe. In other words, when their Christian relatives, regular acquaintances, and friends – and enemies, for that matter – are gone, nowhere to be found on earth, then they will believe. “Those people, after all, told the truth,” they will finally realize

Salvation will still be available during the Tribulation. Only it will be a terrible time for believers. I’d rather be a believer NOW.


Now that we have seen that the Rapture will occur immediately before the Tribulation, does it make any difference? In this regard I have received some not-so-positive responses from people with whom I have tried to share this “discovery.” One commented that to know when the Rapture will occur in relation to the Tribulation is not important at all. Whether it is Pre-Trib or Post-Trib, he said it should not make any difference; what's important is “to do the work” (in a sense, that is true). A friend said that trying to know where in the chronology of endtime events the Rapture will happen is “merely an intellectual exercise.” “It is not of urgent importance,” insisted a local church elder. They have their reasons for such indifferent responses to the Rapture question, but one thing I can infer from their comments: they do not believe that Christ may come any moment now; if they did they would not say those words.

How is it, then? Is it important to know the timing of the Rapture? Does it make any difference in a Christian’s life to know that the Rapture is Pre-Tribulational and imminent?

First of all, we Christians are expected to be interested in the Lord’s Second Coming. One who is not is suspect. “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God, Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth” (Col. 3:1,2). We have the original disciples for an example, who were very much interested to know the timing of the Second Coming, when they asked the Lord, “Tell us, when shall these things be...?” (Matt. 24:3).

The establishment of the Kingdom of God on earth is a foundational doctrine of the Bible. If we are obeying the injunction to pray “Thy Kingdom come,” out of a sincere heart, then we will be interested to know all things that have to do with that Kingdom, so far as God reveals them, including the Biblical teaching as to when the Rapture will occur in the series of prophesied events.

Not of urgent importance? Christ’s loving warning has a sense of urgency (Matt. 24:36-44 ; Mark 13:32-37 ; Luke 12:34-40 ;21:34-36). It is very important to know and understand that we should be eagerly looking for Him to take us to Himself (1 Cor. 1:7). If we are so careless as to believe that that the Lord will come for us at the end of the Tribulation, then, truly, there is no sense of urgency in us, because we “know” Jesus will not come for at least seven more years ahead of us. That is the doctrine of “My lord delayeth his coming” (Matt. 24:48), which would put us in danger of carelessness in regard to preparing for the Lord’s unexpected coming. On the other hand, when one knows that the Lord may come this very day (the doctrine of imminence), he makes sure he is ready for it anytime, “for every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure” (1 John 3:3). The realization that Christ may come at any moment is the greatest motivating factor for any Christian to live a holy life. It is interesting to note that a “crown of righteousness” is reserved for those who love the doctrine of the Rapture (2 Tim. 4:8).


There have been many a “Disappointment” since the day of William Miller. Are we in a different situation now? Are we really approaching the close of the age? Remember, the disciples asked Jesus the question “WHEN?” And the Lord answered. He gave signs pointing to His Second Coming in glory. And we know the Rapture will come not less than seven years earlier.

There was one incident recorded in the gospels when the Jews were asking for a sign from heaven. The Lord said to them, “When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red. And in the morning, It will be foul weather today: for the sky is red and lowering. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?” (Matt. 16:2,3) Those religious leaders could not discern the signs of the times because they refused to believe Jesus and the scriptures. Today, we, in like manner, are confronted with a similar situation. Will we also close our eyes to the truth? Do we not see that the stage has been set for the endtime prophecies to be fulfilled? Granted, we cannot know for sure exactly when the 70th Week - the Tribulation - will begin. But we are promised that we can know the general time. Notice, “Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7). When God is about to do something with regard to Israel He sends prophets to warn the people. At this stage, no prophet is on the scene (there will be once the Tribulation starts), so we have to go to the writings of the prophets.

But the greatest Prophet of all - the Lord Jesus Christ - gives another sign which is nothing less miraculous. It is the sign of the modern nation of ISRAEL. “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh ; So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled” (Matt. 24:32-34). The fig tree is a symbol of Israel (Hosea 9:10). The parable therefore seems to reveal that when Israel is back on her original land - and she must be if the prophecies are to be fulfilled (Isaiah 66:8) - then the generation which saw the rebirth of the nation (1948) will not pass till the Messiah returns. At any rate, the fact that Israel is back in the Middle East is a sure sign that the prophecies concerning the Kingdom as well as God’s judgment on the nations can now be fulfilled.

Moreover, in the book of Luke, the Lord gave a statement the meaning of which is to me as clear as the day: “...upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring... And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21:25b, 28). The December 26, 2004 tsunami is a clear sign of the nearness of “redemption.” Redemption for the Israelites when they will at last recognize their Messiah, and they will be delivered (Jer. 30:7 ; Dan. 12:1); and redemption for us Christians when we will be raptured to heaven (Rev. 4:1 ; 1 Thess. 4:15-17 ; Rev. 5:8-10 ; Rom. 8:23). I’m reminded of an old song which has the line, “We’re almost there”! That’s how close we are to the Rapture and to the Glorious Second Coming of Jesus Christ.

Our Lord says, “I am... the bright and morning star” (Rev. 22:16b). Although the world is about to enter its darkest hour - “the hour of trial” (Rev. 3:10) - we look eagerly to the breaking of the “light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn and the day star arise...” (2 Pet. 1:19b). The Rapture is the event when the dawn’s bright “morning star” - our Redeemer - will appear in the sky to take us to Himself (John 14:3) when it is still dark in the world (the seven-year Tribulation) before sunrise. Then the Sun of Righteousness (Mal. 4:2) - the “DAY STAR” - shall arise at His Glorious Second Coming.

It is said that the word “rapture” is not in the Bible. Literally, yes. But the revelation of the doctrine is in there. This article, though, is not intended to be exhaustive.


Before I close, I would like to say a few words on Replacement Theology. I understand it to mean that because the Jews rejected Christ, God’s promises to them have all been abrogated and transferred to the Church. Hence, whenever the word “Israel” is mentioned in the Bible, having to do with God’s promises, we have only to change it to “Church” to get the “correct” meaning; and “Jerusalem” is taken to mean “heaven.” I’ve heard that about 3,600 times in the Bible this “magic” is advanced. This gross mishandling of the Word of God is a big reason why so many are not able to see the truth of the Rapture of the Church.

If we understand that God’s program for Israel is distinct from His program for the Church, then it would be clear to us that the Church will have to be raptured before the 70-Week prophecy in Daniel 9:24-27 can be continued to its conclusion. The Church will have to be evacuated from the earth so that God’s prophecies for Israel will be fulfilled during the last seven years, the “time of Jacob’s trouble”.

When the Bible says “Israel” it means Israel, not the Church. Old Testament prophets did not know about the coming of the Church. Although they had some hint of a timespan we call the Church Age, as in Psalm 110:1, the Church itself was a mystery – “hid” in God (Col. 1:26) – to them.

To say that the Church Age is the GREAT PARENTHESIS in the plan of God for Israel is not to minimize the importance of the Church. It is all explained in Romans 9, 10, 11. On the other hand, Replacement Theology does away with God’s promises to Israel, which is a wrong interpretation of the message of the Bible. The plain truth is, the Church is the Bride of Christ and Israel will surely receive all the promises made to them, from the Abrahamic Covenant, the Mosaic Covenant down to Davidic Covenant and the “Marian Covenant.” Let’s look at the last one: “Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end” (Luke 1:30-33).

It is beyond the scope of this article to discuss the Kingdom of God. I am only making this last point to underscore the fact that the prophecies for the endtime will be fulfilled literally, just as the prophecies concerning Christ’s first coming were fulfilled literally. Only by taking the prophecies of the Bible literally will we understand that Christ’s Second Coming will be in two stages – first, the imminent Rapture of the Church, afterwards the Glorious Revelation seven years later. I hope the above seven proofs thereof are complete enough for anyone who heretofore has entertained some honest doubts.

For readers who have not yet accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour, the following scripture references are listed for them to read, study and take to heart. Salvation is not a complicated matter.

1. Romans 3:23

2. Romans 6:23

3. Romans 5:8-10

4. Acts 3:19

5. Ephesians 2:8

6. Romans 10:9,10,13

7. Acts 2:38

SEE YOU AT THE RAPTURE!!! (Take that literally.)