Monthly Archives: February 2017
Gathering together for the Battle ARMEGGDON, The Physical Fall of (Babylon the Whore) at ARMAGEDDON. And why the Gog and Magog of EZK, 38-39 Battle is DIFFERENT from the Gog and Magog battle at the End of the Millennium.
Revelation 16:12-21 (NASB95) 12 The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river, the Euphrates; and its water was dried up, so that the way would be prepared for the kings from the east.
13 And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon and out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs; 14 for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war of the great day of God, the Almighty. (ARMEGGDON)15 (“Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame.”) (Christians on Earth During 6th Vial.)
16 And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon. (ARMEGGDON)
17Then the Seventh angel poured out his bowl upon the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, “It is done.” 18 And there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty.
19 The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of His fierce wrath. 20 And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. 21 And huge hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, came* down from heaven upon men; and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, because its plague was* extremely severe. (This is Revelation Imagery)
Ezekiel 38:15-23 (NASB95) 15 “You will come from your place out of the remote parts of the north, you and many peoples with you, all of them riding on horses, a great assembly and a mighty army; 16 and you will come up against My people Israel like a cloud to cover the land. It shall come about in the last days that I will bring you against My land, so that the nations may know Me when I am sanctified through you before their eyes, O Gog.”
17 ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Are you the one of whom I spoke in former days through My servants the prophets of Israel, who prophesied in those days for many years that I would bring you against them?
18 “It will come about on that day, when Gog comes against the land of Israel,” declares the Lord GOD, “that My fury will mount up in My anger. 19 “In My zeal and in My blazing wrath I declare that on that day there will surely be ((( a great earthquake in the land of Israel.)))
20 “The fish of the sea, the birds of the heavens, the beasts of the field, all the creeping things that creep on the earth, and all the men who are on the face of (((the earth will shake at My presence; the mountains also will be thrown down, the steep pathways will collapse and every wall will fall to the ground. )))
21 “I will call for a sword against him on all My mountains,” declares the Lord GOD. “Every man’s sword will be against his brother. 22 ((“With pestilence and with blood I will enter into judgment with him; and I will rain on him and on his troops, and on the many peoples who are with him, a torrential rain, with hailstones, fire and brimstone. ))) (REV. Language, I see EZK. 38-39 fitting together) In The Battle of Armageddon and EZK. 38-39 The Beast IS taken, The Birds of the air feast. They fit as one and the same.)
He will further decimate the ranks by pestilence, a deluge of rain, large hailstones, plus fire and brimstone. The descriptions here are identical to that of the last half of the 7 year tribulation in Rev 6:12–17; 11:19; 16:17–21; 19:11–21.
23 “I will magnify Myself, sanctify Myself, and make Myself known in the sight of many nations; and they will know that I am the LORD.”‘ This Applies to Armageddon as there will be No Nations when He Cleanses the earth and heavenly atmosphere at the end of the Millennium and totally removes the curse. Very Different Goals and outcomes.
Revelation 20:4-15 (NASB95) ..and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5 The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.
7 When the thousand years are completed, Satan will be released from his prison, 8 and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together for the war; the number of them is like the sand of the seashore.
9 And they came up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, (((((and fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10 And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.)))
11 First he was bound 2nd lake of Fire:: Revelation 20:1-3 (NASB95) Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold of the dragon, the serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; 3 and he threw him into the abyss, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he would not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were completed; after these things he must be released for a short time. (Two Different Events)
Gog and Magog. The name given to the army of rebels and its leader at the end of the Millennium. They were names of ancient enemies of the Lord. Magog was the grandson of Noah (Ge 10:2) and founder of a kingdom located N of the Black and Caspian Seas. Gog is apparently the leader of a rebel army known collectively as Magog.
Gog. This name is found in 1Ch 5:4. The LXX used “Gog” to render names such as Agag (Nu 24:7) and Og (Dt 3:1), possibly showing that though it was a proper name, it came to be used as a general title for an enemy of God’s people. “Gog” most likely carries the idea “high” or “supreme one,” based on the comparison in Nu 24:7. It refers to a person, described as a “prince” from the land of Magog, who is the final Antichrist. Rev 20:8, where Gog and Magog are referred to again. These titles are used there symbolically of the final world uprising against Jerusalem, its people and Messiah King.
This attack comes not just from the N but the 4 corners of the world, as a world of sinners at the end of the 1,000 year kingdom come to fight the saints in the “beloved city” of Jerusalem. On that occasion, there is only one weapon used—divine fire. This is the climax to the last battle with Satan and his armies, whose eternal destiny is set. It is followed by the final judgment of all the ungodly before the Lord (Rev 20:11–15) and the creation of the eternal, sinless state (Rev 21:1)
Also another big difference between Armageddon/EZK. 38-39 and the Gog and Magog at the End of the Millennium is: the first battle has many weapons and it takes 7 months to clean the up.
Ezekiel 39:11-12 (NASB95) 11 “On that day I will give Gog a burial ground there in Israel, the valley of those who pass by east of the sea, and it will block off those who would pass by. So they will bury Gog there with all his horde, and they will call it the valley of Hamon-gog. 12 “For seven months the house of Israel will be burying them in order to cleanse the land.
In the latter battle there is only one weapon. Fire from Heaven.
Revelation 20:8-9 (NASB95) 8 and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together for the war; the number of them is like the sand of the seashore. 9 And they came up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, and fire came down from heaven and devoured them.
Babylon the great “The Mother of Harlots” Timing of Destruction.
According to Scripture Babylon the Great “The Mother of Harlots” will be Destroyed at the Very End of the Last 3 1/2 years. (See: Revelation 16:17-21 (KJV)
Scripture seems to indicates that this Babylon is the Worldwide Capitalistic and Materialistic system as described in Rev. 17-18. Today America seems to epitomize Babylon the great “The Mother of Harlots” as other Identities have in the past. But the Bible is clear about “The CITIES of the NATIONS FELL. It does Not apply to America only. (If at all.)
And since this occurs (The Destruction of Babylon) at the End of the Last Seven Years can we let up on the “Immediate Destruction of Babylon” train of thought. And if it turns out that America falls before then, all the more proof that she was not Babylon. (There are dozens of Books and Websites proclaiming America as BTW. Beware.)
The Ten Kings receive power one hour with the Beast and the eliminating of 3 of those Kings could happen immediately thereafter? (That could be fine tuned.) But God uses the Beast and the 7 kings to destroy Babylon at the end. “These shall hate the whore and make her Desolate” “God hath put in their hearts to fulfill His will and to agree, and to give their power unto the beast.”
Note: It mentions the 3 of the 10 kings are subdued and in another place it says, plucked up by the roots but they still seem to be mentioned later. So it may be safe that they are brought under submission and possibly the heads of state are removed? I’m mentioning this just so we can stay open on certain aspects. Daniel 7:24 (KJV) 24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. Dan. 2:44; 17:12-17).
So after the Destruction of Babylon is the Second Coming, Resurrection, Armageddon and on into the Millennium. Other small things happen but those are the Basics.
1 Corinthians 13:12-13 (KJV) 12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. 13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
Jacob’s Trouble – A Reply by Reggie Kelly
I think the best and simplest way to explain the time and significance of Jacob’s trouble is just to show that it is the brief but unequaled trouble as described by Daniel (12:1), later called the great tribulation by Jesus (Mt 24:21). Although Daniel does not use the term the ‘day of the Lord’, everything he describes leads up to it. It is particularly helpful to show that Daniel is interested to develop the details of Jeremiah’s reference to the final trouble of unequaled severity (compare Jer 30:7 with Dn 12:1).
Then, with these two manifestly parallel passages before you, the next thing you want to do is point out that just as “Jacob’s trouble” ends with Israel’s national deliverance in Jer 30, so in Daniel’s prophecy, the time of trouble, given as approximately 3 ½ years (7:25; 9:27; 12:7, 11; Rev 11:2-3; 12:6, 12-14; 13:5), also ends in Israel’s final ‘deliverance’ (12:1), and this also marks the time that the righteous dead are raised, as shown in the very next verse (12:2). This is very important, because it so clearly establishes the time.
Although Daniel does not use the term the ‘day of the Lord’, everything he describes leads up to it. Therefore, it is important to note that post-tribulational deliverance of Israel in chapter 30 leads directly into the New Covenant chapters promising regeneration and everlasting continuance to Israel 31-33. Other of the prophets are one on placing this transforming event at the day of the Lord. So here too, the time is clear.
After this, it is a short step to show that Jesus, alluding to Daniel (Mt 24:15), mentions the same event (the unequaled tribulation of verse Mt 24:21) as “immediately” preceding His own return (Mt 24:21-29; all described in distinctive OT ‘day of the Lord’ imagery). Another powerful line of evidence, equally difficult to ignore or re-interpret, is the co-occurrence of the tribulation with the advent and career of Antichrist. It is easy to show that Paul’s “man of sin” (2Thes 2:4; who notably is destroyed at Christ return; 2:8) is manifestly the same individual as Daniel’s ‘willful king’ (11:36; who is destroyed at the end of the tribulation; 11:45).
Again, the very same language is used showing Paul’s dependency on Daniel. Note also that in Dn 7, the kingdom of God comes with the appearance of the glorious cloud coming ‘Son of Man’ in inseparable connection with the destruction of the ‘little horn’, which is significantly identified as the last “beast” (compare Dn 7:11 with Rev 19:20; also 20:4). There is simply no way to make Daniel’s reference to the kingdom apply to Christ’s first advent as taught by amillennialism.
[Note also that the kingdom comes “in the days of these kings” (Dn 2:44).
This is the final stage of Gentile power described in Dn 2 and 7. However, as late as the time of John’s writing, these kings “have received no kingdom as yet, but receive powers as kings one hour with the Beast” (Rev 17:12). Clearly, from the standpoint of John’s writing, both the Antichrist and the ten kings had not yet arrived on the scene, but are projected as yet future. So how could the kingdom be limited to Pentecost and the events of the first century? This shows how far one must violate context to say that Daniel’s vision of the messianic kingdom was fulfilled by the first coming of Christ.]
The evidence can be piled up exponentially for the futurist view that Jacob’s trouble is synonymous with the final unequaled tribulation that ends with Christ’s return and the resurrection at the “last day,” which is the ‘day of the Lord’ not only in the OT but the NT as well, which ‘day” the NT identifies with the blessed hope of the church (1Thes 5:4; 2Thes 1:7-8).
It’s really that simple; and yet, remarkably, what was so well known and expected by Jew and Christian alike in the early half of the first century has fallen into an ominous obscurity. It is well known that the earliest church lived and labored under the shadow of an imminent destruction of Jerusalem.
Though they think they were wrong, virtually all academic biblical scholars acknowledge that the earliest believers expected the Lord’s return in connection with the destruction of Jerusalem, as easily understood from many OT references to the day of the Lord, or the ‘end’ in Daniel. It is well known that other apocalyptic sects such as the community at Qumran were also waiting for an imminent destruction of Jerusalem in connection with a last tribulation of unequaled severity.
It was no secret. It was clear from many OT texts. But with the passing of the 70AD destruction of Jerusalem, the church entered upon a process of re-interpretation that continues to the present through the power of tradition and dogma. But the irony is that we’ve come full circle; and a final world contention over the question of Jerusalem is now threatening as never before, precisely as the prophets predicted.
Only now, when this awesome reality is looming over the heads of an unsuspecting world, the church is comparatively silent. And even when part of the church speaks up concerning a coming Antichrist and tribulation of sorts, it does so with an almost ‘comic-book’ kind of sensationalism that promises that the church will be comfortably absent, so that Jacob’s trouble is made to be strictly ‘Jacob’s problem’.
This, while the greater part of Christendom, particularly the Roman catholic and reformed traditions, also ‘comfortably’ assure us that the tribulation is past, saying that the so-called ‘apocalyptic’ sections of the New Testament (Mt 24; Mk 13; Lk 21; 2Thes 2; Revelation) were all fulfilled in the first century, so that nothing concerning the literal land and nation of the Jews have any more prophetic significance.
What deadly delusion! The church is muted by its own history of interpretation despite a remarkable providence that has made Jerusalem once more a ‘cup of trembling’ as we come again to the threshold of a world crisis over Jerusalem and the Jew. It’s no accident; that’s for sure.
But back to the point. After establishing Jacob’s trouble as synonymous with a future Antichrist time of unequaled great tribulation, it would be helpful to trace the background of the concept in the larger history and goal of the covenant. This is key to showing its future significance, particularly as it relates to Israel. (The significance of Jacob’s trouble for the church has more particularly to do with the final victory of the remnant over Satan (Dn 11:32-35 with 12:1 and Rev 12:12).
Of course the history of the concept of Jacob’s trouble begins with the crisis that Jacob faced upon his learning of the approach of Esau with four hundred armed men. This is the crisis of ultimate weakness that prepared Jacob for his desperate wrestling with the angel of the Lord’s presence at the ford of Jabbok.
For Jacob, this was the ultimate, divinely appointed crisis that brought about the new priestly brokenness that would now distinguish the true “Israel” (one that has ‘power with God’) to be a priestly blessing to all peoples (Zech 8:23). This is very instructive in understanding such passages as Deut 32:36 with Dn 12:7 (the shattering of Israel’s carnal ‘power’). It is a key to the purpose of Jacob’s trouble, and, of course, it is also a pattern for the individual and the true body (Acts 14:22; 2Cor 1:19; Phil 3:3). But the concept of an ultimate weakness and destitution through great tribulation in preparation for a final transforming event of saving revelation goes all the way back to Moses (see Deut 4:30).
Moses knew that although Israel would soon enter the land, the larger part of the nation lacked the kind of heart that could keep and possess the land in any enduring way (see Deut 29:4). Therefore, knowing the everlasting covenant promised to the Fathers, Moses looked ahead to a time of great tribulation that would have its outcome in a national circumcision of the heart, i.e., national regeneration (compare Deut 4:30 with 30:1-6). This anticipates what the prophets would later see as an apocalyptic ‘day of the Lord’. (Note that Deut 4:30 anticipates Jer 30:7).
Now the problem was this: Though there was indeed at all times a righteous remnant of true faith, such as Joshua and Caleb, Daniel etc. (men indwelt by the Spirit), the larger nation was rebellious and unbelieving towards the covenant. This abiding condition exposed the nation to ever recurrent outbreaks of the curses of the broken covenant (Lev 26; Deut 28).
During such times of apostasy, even the presence of a small remnant might forestall, but could never ultimately prevent the inevitable recurrence of judgment and dispersion. In fact, even the righteous remnant, like Daniel, would suffer the same captivity that came as judgment upon the impenitent. But the promise was that the Land would be inherited “forever” by the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in particular (Dn 2:44 “not left to other people”). How could this be if the nation was in continual covenant jeopardy through disobedience and unbelief? A mere remnant was never enough to keep the land forever.
And even at times of comparative revival, there was always the danger of a relapse, and with every defection, there was the constant threat of invasion from the fierce super powers of Egypt, Assyria and Babylon, etc. How could Israel ever “lie down in safety” in such a world, so that none would ever again devour them and ‘make them afraid’? That’s the dilemma of the covenant.
Manifestly, the Land could not be inherited ‘forever’ apart from an enduring and unswerving righteousness, and that not just of a small remnant, but of ‘all’ Israel “from the least of them to the greatest” (see Jer 31:34 et al), and not just for a fleeting moment, but forever (Jer 32:40; as reiterated in Dn 9:24 “everlasting righteousness”). Only in this way could the constant threat (jeopardy) of the broken covenant be remedied forever, thus guaranteeing unbroken continuance (a thousand years of testimony). Only IF all were righteous with an everlasting righteousness could the land be inherited without the danger of further judgement or exile. This, because only an abiding fulfillment of the required covenant faithfulness could guarantee unbroken continuance.
Despairing of Israel’s present condition, and knowing the nature of man and the fleeting restraint provided by even a measure of repentance and revival, the prophets looked ahead to a more radical and permanent cure for Israel’s incurable tendency to always slide back. They also looked ahead for a more radical solution to the domination of the great gentile powers. The revealed solution to the tension between covenant promise and covenant conditionality was the coming ‘day of the Lord’. This was the logic and goal of the covenant from OT perspective; and still is.
God would act in final self-revelation and vindication in the eyes of all nations by His sovereign resurrection and deliverance of a fatally wounded Israel. This deliverance would come at the nation’s darkest hour (see esp. Ps 102:12). At the end of Israel’s last crisis, a surviving remnant would be ‘born’ (made alive) in ‘one day’ (Isa 66:8; Ezk 39:22; Zech 3:9) by a transforming vision, much like the vision that came to Isaiah and later to Paul (compare Isa 6 with Zech 12:10).
I cannot now multiply all the OT passages that show that at this time the nations will be humbled and the righteousness that comes to Israel will be enduring unto children’s children; but that’s the promise. Amazingly this will be accomplished in real history to flesh and blood people that have not yet put on final immortality. This will be the testimony of Israel to the nations. The bodily resurrection that happens to the church at the last trumpet (day of the Lord; Isa 27:13; Joel etc), doesn’t come for the ‘escaped of Israel’ nor for those that will be saved from among the nations during the millennium until the ‘second resurrection’ at the end of the millennium. Talk about a demonstration of grace!
Well, that’s at least some of the logic of the covenant from the more linear perspective of OT revelation, and this is what lies aback of Jeremiah’s vision of Jacob’s trouble and Daniel’s further development of the time of unequaled trouble (Dn 11:31-12:13 with Mt 24:15-31 and 2Thes 2:1-8). Then comes the revelation of the gospel that brings to light the ground and nature of this everlasting righteousness by way of the messianic atonement through the revealed secret of a formerly unknown double advent, and also the further revelation of the interim. This is what lies behind what calls “this mystery” (Ro 11:25), where Paul traces the implications for a glorious divine strategy that makes the one body of Jew and gentile to embody a foretaste of Israel’s coming millennial salvation.
However, in Paul’s mind, nothing that has been revealed in the gospel alters the future salvation of the ‘natural branches’, what Paul calls the salvation of “all Israel”. By his term, the “natural branches,” it is clear that Paul intends physical Jews, and any objective investigation of Paul’s use of the OT texts that he cites in Ro 11 (Ro 11:26-27 with Isa 59:19-21; also Jer 31:34) will show that he has in mind ‘the day of the Lord’ return of Christ. It is the ‘everlasting’ covenant that is established with Israel at that time.
Of course, this is also the New Covenant which has already come by revelation of the mystery that has come to the church in unexpected advance of the ‘day of the Lord’ (see Isa 8:14:17 with Dn 9:24; 12:7). There is so much on this, but can’t get into that now, but when you trace the relationship of revelation to the power of Satan, it becomes evident why the coming in of ‘the natural branches’, as the second stage of the covenant of redemption, and the vindication of the covenant promise, marks the end of Satan’s tenure over the nations (I
The Most High God Rules in the Kingdom of Men
Daniel 4:17 This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men. ….till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will. Dan. 4:25
Daniel 4:34 And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation:
Daniel 4:35 And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?
Daniel 2:21 And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding:
Daniel 5:21 ….till he knew that the most high God ruled in the kingdom of men, and that he appointeth over it whomsoever he will.
Psalm 75:7 But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.
This doctrine holds that there is a Resurrection-Rapture of living believers in Jesus Christ at the end of the age (or the “End time“). Post-tribulationists believe that Christians will remain on the Earth through the three and a half year great tribulation period. This period starts at the Abomination of Desolation and ends at the Battle of Armageddon. They will be gathered by the angels to meet Christ in the air (raptured) at Christ’s second coming immediately after the great tribulation just before the battle of Armageddon and then return with Him as Christ descends to the Earth, to usher in the Millennium (World to Come) on earth.
Matthew 24:29-31 ASV 29But immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun shall 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: 30and 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 on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31And he shall send forth his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 ASV 15For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we that are alive, that are left unto the coming of the Lord, shall in no wise precede them that are fallen asleep. 16For 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; 17then we that are alive, that are left, shall together with them be caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
For additional references, see also the parallel passages from Mark 13:24-27 and Luke 21:20-28. While the passages in Luke 21 parallels Matthew and Mark, it offers a couple of interesting clarifications. This passage in Luke offers interesting references to some of the major events which are greatly elaborated on in the Book of Revelation. Reading all three Books of the Bible in parallel, it would appear that Luke elaborates on the “abomination of desolation” describing Jerusalem being surrounded by the armies of the world and of Jerusalem’s imminent destruction (Luke 21:20).
Another account which lends support to the idea of a post-tribulation rapture is in 2 Peter 3:10-13, where the idea of the “Day of the Lord” coming as a “thief in the night” comes from. This idea of imminence, according to the post-tribulation view, only applies to the wicked and the spiritually unprepared people that are still alive before the Return of Christ. Therefore, only God’s elect (Christians) will fully have a clear understanding of the timing of the second coming, and therefore Christ’s coming will not catch the believers by surprise, but only those who are spiritually ignorant regarding the truth. In the passage of 2 Peter 3:10-13, Christ’s return is equated with the “elements being melted”, and “the earth also and the works therein shall be burned up”. Opposing views are not non-existent within the realm of Christian Eschatology. Two opposing views, pre-tribulationism and mid-tribulationism, see the rapture and the Second Coming (or Greek, paraousia) of Christ as separate events; while in post-tribulationism the two events are identical or simultaneous.
Another key difference between the pre-, mid-, and post-tribulation lines of theology is the number of times that Jesus Christ must return. Although it is not directly referenced, in both the pre- and mid-tribulation raptures, Christ must then return a third time, at the end of the Tribulation period.
The belief is that God’s Elect from all ages will be translated from mortal bodies into immortal glorified bodies at the Second Coming of Christ and that this will be at the end of the age. This event, it is believed, will come at the conclusion of what is termed the 70th Week of Daniel, the final seven years of this present age. This view was held by the early Church Fathers and has been held by Christians since that time. The doctrine of the Post-Tribulation Rapture is today held by a growing number of evangelical Christians. For Post-Tribulationists concerned about the recent decline of Christian faith, doctrine, and morals in the western church, an important reason to advance the Post-Tribulation Rapture doctrine relates to the importance of preparation of believers for “witness under trial”.
The “witness under trial” issue was of major concern to evangelist Corrie Ten Boom, whose family suffered in Nazi prison camps during World War II for the crime of protecting Jews. Corrie Ten Boom preached that the Pre-Tribulation Rapture would leave the Christian church ill-prepared for witness under persecution, just as it had in China when Mao Zedong rose to power, and warned that Pre-Tribulationism was the sort of false doctrine that Jesus warned about.
Another idea is that following the Great Tribulation, the False Prophet, or “The Beast out of the Earth” and the Antichrist or “The Beast out of the Sea” will be condemned upon Jesus Christ’s return, and all those who endured or died for Christ‘s return will be raptured to heaven and, following the Millennium, Satan will be condemned and the remaining dead believers will be raised and raptured into the new heaven.
Post-tribulationists broadly base their doctrine on the complementary concepts that a two phase pre-Tribulation rapture is never mentioned explicitly in the Bible, and that the “whole counsel of Scripture” seems to clearly teach that the resurrection and rapture of the Church will be the result of the visible, physical Second Coming of Jesus Christ to Earth and that Christians are to look and watch for that event.
Matthew 24:29-31 and 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 both mention the same actors (Jesus, his angels) and the same events (Jesus coming, the trumpet of God, and the gathering of the elect) in the same order. The latter passage written by the Apostle Paul is seen as being based on the former because of the usage of “by the word of the Lord” in verse 15 and that they are talking about the same event, but the first passage is explicitly dated “after the Tribulation”, and the second is where we get the term Rapture.
Contrasting opinion maintains that the passages are not talking about the same event despite some similarities because of details that are absent between the two passages and that the rapture event was a “mystery” until it was revealed in First Corinthians which the Thessalonian recipients would have been unaware of.
Post-Tribulationists respond to the opposing views of Pre-Tribulationists in a variety of ways:
Some Post-tribulationalists see the Rapture and the Second Coming of Christ as part of one main event. Support for this claim is found in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 in part because of the way the Apostle Paul introduces his topic, “Now concerning the coming of our Lord and our gathering together with him.” This was an ancient way of introducing your topic of discussion and later Paul refers back to the two nouns at least twice as “the Day of the Lord” or “that day.” Thus, “the coming” and “gathering” seem to be two ways of referring to one event, “the day of the Lord.”
It seems impractical for Paul to go to great lengths describing the coming of the Antichrist (and the falling away) to the Thessalonians in order to calm them down that the day of Christ’s reign on earth had not happened yet if they were not going to be there for it as maintained by the pre-tribulational position. He would be more comforting by reminding them that they wouldn’t be present for it than to precisely detail his recognition and say “Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction”.
The most common passage used in defending a pre-tribulational position is 1 Thessalonians 4. This passage alone does not mention where the gathered ones finally end up but that those who are alive will be caught up to meet Christ in the air and always be with the Lord. Rather it mentions the dead rising, Christ’s coming, angels, the trumpet of God along with the gathering of the elect and all of these participants are present in Matthew 24:30-31 31, which is clearly a Second Coming passage even agreed to by pre-tribulationalists. The author, the Apostle Paul says the Rapture will occur “at the last trumpet”. To be consistent with Revelation 11 this trumpet call must occur after the Tribulation. In the same way, Revelation 21 mentions the first resurrection after the Second Coming in Revelation 19. By definition, there can be no trumpet call after the last one, and no resurrection before the first.
Linguistic support for a one-event 2nd Coming are in the words “meet” and “coming” in 1 Thessalonians 4. The meet in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 and in Matthew 25:1 (a Second Coming parable) refers to the custom of people going out to meet a dignitary as he was approaching their city before he got there, and accompanying or welcoming him back to where they came from. This is also the usage in Acts 28:15 of those going out to meet Paul as he headed toward them in Rome. Also, the Greek term parousia has the idea of a grand dignitary making his arrival to a certain location. The rest of the passage supports this grand arrival with His coming being heralded with trumpet, angels, and a surging ‘city’ of gathered believers going out to meet Him. Who more grand than the Lord Jesus Christ at His coming to reign on earth? This passage lends more weight to the post-tribulational position.
Another strength for this position is Paul saying when the church would receive rest for its suffering. It would take place at the revealing of Jesus Christ with fire and judgment and at this time those who were afflicting the church at Thessalonica would be repaid for such treatment. No mention is made of a Pre-tribulational removal but that rest comes at His Coming and so does judgment.
A passage much debated regarding the timing of the Rapture is Revelation 3:10, which speaks of the Philadelphian church being “kept from the hour of trial which is about to come upon the whole earth to test those who dwell on the earth.” The debate centers around the phrase “kept from” which could be taken to mean “physical removal from” (Pre-trib) or “preservation from or in the midst of” (Post-trib). However it is interesting to note that the verse denotes that the testing is for “those who dwell on the earth.” This is a common phrase referring to unbelievers. What we see later in Revelation, on at least 3 occasions, is that the saints are “sealed” and kept out of harm’s way when God pours out specific judgments which only affect His unbelieving enemies.
Linguistic highlight the idea that Christians are preserved by God through tribulation rather than removed:
I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
This passage is one of the most blunt verses, showing that Jesus himself did not want the Christians taken out of the world in order to protect them from evil but had the intention of preservation in the midst of it. This is a place where pre-tribulationism lacks linguistic favor because this verse and Revelation 3:10 are the only places where the exact phrase tereo ek translated from Greek into keep from are found and that by the same author, the disciple John.
The pretribulational argument that there are ‘two phases’ to Christ’s coming (a Rapture and a later Second Advent) runs into difficulties with Acts 1:11, which nearly equates Christ’s Ascension to heaven with his Second Coming. Logically, the Second Coming cannot have two phases if the Ascension only had one. This eliminates two phases of His Coming with a 7 year interval. Likewise, heaven must “receive” or contain Jesus “until the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient time”. Most scholars see this “restoration of all things” as the one-thousand year reign of Christ on earth (as prophesied in the Old Testament) which begins just after the Second Advent. If Christ is to remain in heaven until this coming rule of His according to thess verses (see also Hebrews 9:27,28), it would seem the next main prophetic event would be the Second Coming rather than Him coming 7 years prior to get the church, bring them back to heaven, and then leaving heaven for earth again as the pre-tribulational rapture position indicates.
Pre-tribulational usage of Luke 17 can also be counter-balanced. In this eschatological scenario, Luke 17:37 explains what happens to the people that are “taken”: the eagles gather together at their [dead] bodies. Do they eat them? “Taken” may also have the idea of judgment and that Luke 17:22-37 is referring to the unmistakable visual nature of the Second Coming. Even the disciples are warned not to believe reports that Christ has come if they have not seen it “for just as the lightning, when it flashes out of one part of the sky, shines to the other part of the sky, so will the Son of Man be in His day. Many take the fact that vultures hovering over a dead body is clearly visible from a great distance away to mean that the Second Coming will be clearly visible and will not be hidden. It seems that Luke 17 can be compared to Revelation 19, which reads that the fowls are invited to a feast—on the flesh of men, small and great, at the Lord’s coming.
The Parable in Matthew 13 explains that the unsaved (tares) are destroyed first before the saved (wheat) are addressed. This parable describes what the kingdom of heaven is like and it uses agricultural metaphor to explain that believers and unbelievers will remain together until the harvest. When is the harvest? Well, when Jesus explains the parable. He says the harvest is the “end of the age” in verse 39. At that time he sends his angels to destroy the tares while the wheat (believers) remain and shine forth as the sun in His Father’s kingdom. This seems to fit better with the Rapture and the Second Coming being one event rather than a time gap of 7 years.
Zechariah 14, speaks of the “Day of the Lord” and that “in that Day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives.” This exactly parallels the angel’s statement in Acts 1, “that as He left so shall He return.” Tying this with I Thessalonians 4:16-17, we see all the living and dead Christians are gathered to Jesus at that time. Going back to Zechariah 14:5 we read, “Then the LORD my God will come, and all the holy ones with him. ” This inexorably links the return of Jesus to the glorification and “rapture” of Christians to Him.
In Revelation 2:25 31 Jesus says to the faithful at Thyatira, “Nevertheless what you have, hold fast until I come.” In other words, ‘hold onto the truth of the Christian faith and its obedience amidst the false teaching of Jezebel and her sins, until My coming again.’ Pre-trib commentators agree this could be talking about the Second Coming of Christ (John MacArthur, Robert L. Thomas). Would Jesus say hold on to the faith until I come again if they were not going to be there when he returned, but would have already been raptured? Expositor’s Bible Commentary also makes this assertion.
Be patient, therefore, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. Behold the farmer waits for the precious produce of the soil, being patient about it, until it gets the early and late rains. You too be patient; strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.
They are to be patient amidst persecution until when? Until the coming (parousia) of the Lord. Parousia is well known to mean “presence” and refers to His second coming many times in the New Testament. Also notice that the farming analogy seems to indicate that the farmer is aware of the coming rains just as the believer is aware of coming end time events. For example Jesus warned “when you see these things begin to take place [end time signs in the sun, moon, and stars / world chaos], straighten up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” This manner of expectancy is objected to on the grounds that it destroys the idea of Christ’s rapture of the church being imminent, or able to occur at any moment. But imminent probably doesn’t mean ‘at any moment’ in the New Testament. Many New Testament passages implicitly rule out an “any second” imminency (Matthew 24:45-51…25:5,19;Luke 19:11-27;John 21:18-19…Acts 9:15…).
 At the very least Apostles Peter and Paul could not have believed in this kind of imminency because Peter was told by Jesus what manner of death he was to die and that it would take place many years later. Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to gird yourself, and walk wherever you wished; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands [be crucified], and someone else will gird you, and bring you where you do not wish to go.” Could Peter think the Rapture was at any moment with this enduring prediction by Jesus? Also, it was told of Paul that he would bear Christ’s name “before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel” and that God would “show him how much he is to suffer for My name’s sake.” Does an any moment Rapture fit with such a massive missionary plan revealed by God for Paul’s life which took decades to complete? Jesus encouraged the first disciples and all Christians, to look for certain events which would indicate His coming was “at the doors.” This coupled with other passages like 1 Thessalonians 5:2-6, seems to indicate moral watchfulness, waiting in expectancy, and sobriety (“be sober”) and that the wrath of that day will overtake those in darkness (unbelievers) like a thief “but you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day should overtake you like a thief.” Thus a different concept of imminency emerges.
Jesus, speaking chronologically in the Olivet Discourse regarding end time events, goes from the escalation of troubling times beginning in the 1st century and the present age (highlighting the destruction of Jerusalem by Rome in A.D. 70) to the time of tribulation and then to His Second Coming without any mention of a prior removal of the church 7 or 3.5 years before it. One author sees Jesus as advocating a “delay” between the destruction of Jerusalem and His Second Advent. On the contrary, he states that “immediately after the tribulation of those days…they [the world] shall see the son of Man coming…and He shall send His angels, and they shall gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” Therefore, Jesus seems to put the rapture just before his second coming or on his way to earth. The phrase “gathering together” describes the rapture in 2 Thessalonians 2:1 using the noun form of the same Greek word.
Paul says: “we who are alive and remain [on the earth] until the coming of the Lord, shall not precede those who have fallen asleep[died].” Then he points out that the Lord’s coming with angels and the trumpet call will invite those already dead in Christ to rise from the dead before the ones on earth participate in the event. Then Paul states: “Then we who are alive and remain [on earth] shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and thus we shall always be with the Lord.” Some commentators note that because Paul used the plural “we” when referring to those who “are alive and remain[on earth]” indicates that Paul believed that he and all believers on earth might witness and be a part of the Second Coming of Christ from earth.
This would indicate that he would be on earth just prior to the coming of the Lord and the Rapture. This is also the usage when he speaks of the same event saying: “We shall not all sleep [die], but we shall all be changed-in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” This passage adds the fact that believers will receive glorified bodies which is missing from the Thessalonian passage].” If believers were raptured before the tribulation then why would Paul use “we” and consider himself with all Christians to possibly be those who would be “alive and remaining [on earth] until the coming of the Lord?” They wouldn’t be alive and remaining on the earth at His coming in a pre-tribulational scenario but would already be with Jesus in clouds along with the other believers who had died in Christ.
“Firstly, we know that the great tribulation cannot start until the necessary preliminary conditions are in place.
Breaking the deadly peace arrangement, the Antichrist descends suddenly upon an unsuspecting Israel that is resting in a false sense of security (Isa 28:15, 18; Dan 8:25; 9:27; 11:23-24; 1Thes 5:3).
Sweeping away all opposition (Dan 11:31; Rev 13:4), he forcibly enters the rebuilt temple of God which must again stand in Jerusalem (‘the holy place’ in ‘Judea’; Mt 24:15-16; 2Thes 2:4; Rev 11:1-2). He then stops the regular (morning and evening) sacrifice that has been only recently reinstated (Isa 63:18; Dan 8:13-14) and places the abomination that triggers the great tribulation (Dan 11:31; 12:1-2, 11; Mt 24:15-16, 21; 2Thes 2:4). It’s that simple. It was meant to be for our protection.” Reggie Kelly
Regarding the 70th week of Daniel, mainly the Last 3 1/2 years of “Great Tribulation” and “New” views.
The length of the Great Tribulation in Scripture is 3 1/2 years.
1.Daniel 7:25 – “a time and times and the dividing of time.”
- Daniel 12:7 – “a time, times, and a half”
- Daniel 12:11 – “a thousand two hundred and ninety days” (plus 30 days)
- Rev. 11:2 – “forty and two months”
- Rev. 11:3 – “a thousand two hundred and threescore days”
- Rev. 12:6 – “a thousand two hundred and threescore days”
- Rev. 12:14 – “a time, and times, and half a time”
- Rev. 13:5 – “forty and two months”
The Resurrection on the Last Day is all throughout the Bible. Jesus coming back at the End of the Great Trib. is a theme throughout the OT and the NT Mt 24:29-31 and dozens of other Scriptures. The whole council of God is so clear that there can be no mistake or room for error, yet false beliefs regarding the End Time Events are widely excepted as Gospel Truth.
Two “Proof Texts” that are widely used and quoted are”not appointed unto wrath” and “for the elects sake those days shall be shortened.”
If you read about the Plagues of Egypt or the Wrath in Revelations, none of those judgments fall on His Children, only on the wicked. And as far as the days being shortened, they are shortened or limited to 3 1/2 years just like the Bible Teaches.
21 For there will be trouble then worse than there has ever been from the beginning of the world until now, and there will be nothing like it again! 22 Indeed, if the length of this time had not been limited, no one would survive; but for the sake of those who have been chosen, its length will be limited. CJB Complete Jewish Bible
Matthew 24:22 (HCSB) 22 Unless those days were limited, no one would survive. But those days will be limited because of the elect.
Jesus Returns at the End of the Great Tribulation, Not before or in the Middle or Two different times.Hebrews 9:28 (HCSB) 28 so also the Messiah, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for Him.
Our Lord’s solemnly warns us that we must not misinterpret prophetic truth.
Jesus gave solemn warnings in Rev.22v19,20., about the serious consequences of adding to, or taking from, His prophetic truth. He looks upon addition to, and subtraction from, prophetic truth, as serious error, not as a matter of opinion.
After reading many books on prophecy, I have come to the conclusion that our Lord’s solemn warnings about the consequences of misinterpreting His prophetic truth, have not been taken seriously. We need to remember that Paul handed over Hymenaeus and Alexander for execution for wrong doctrine on prophecy concerning the resurrection and second coming of Christ. Paul said that their wrong doctrine was blasphemy, and ate like a cancer or gangrene; their false doctrine had overthrown the faith of some Christians.
1Tim.1v18-20. 2Tim.2v15-19. James.3v1. Jesus informs us in Mt.24v48-51., that the pretribulation rapture theory will likewise overthrow the faith of some Christians; for they will look upon the seeming delay of their Lord’s coming, as a denial of the fact of His coming, and as a result backslide from the faith and join with the worldlings in persecuting and beating those who were once their brothers and sisters in Christ.
The perilous last days demand real spiritual preparation. Jesus warns us that we need to watch and pray and seek God for his spiritual armoury and a reserve of oil if we are to spiritually survive those evil times. Mt.24v44 to 25v13. Lk.18v1-8. 21v34-36. Christian leaders who teach that God’s spiritual gifts to His Church have been withdrawn, and oppose and forbid their operation in their churches, are denying to Christ’s Church the essential spiritual equipment that will enable Christians to survive the evil last days of this age.
Jesus pronounced a “woe” upon teachers who take away “the key of knowledge,” and hinder people from having an experience of God and His gifts. Luke.11v52. James.3v1. The gifts of the Spirit give us power for service and confirm the truth of the Gospel; they are the cutting edge of New Testament evangelism. Rom.15v18-21. The Holy Spirit’s devotional gifts help to sanctify Christians and build the fruit of the Spirit in them, and are a necessary and vital divine aid to communion with God. 1Cor.14v1-5,12-20,31. N.B. v4,18. Ps.68v18. God is preparing us for the great day of Christ’s coming, His gifts build “agape” love in the Church. 1Cor.14v1-5,39,40. Heb.2v4. God is pouring out His Spirit upon all mankind, just as He promised to do before the great and terrible day of our Lord’s return. Joel.2v11,28-32. Acts.2v16-21.
In Joel.2v11,31., the word for “terrible,” in “the great and terrible day of His coming,” is “yaw-ray,” which means, “to fear, to put in fear, to fill with dread.” In Acts.2v20., “yah-ray,” is translated by the Greek adjective “epiphanes,” (only here in N. T.); and means “conspicuous, manifest, or notable” and comes from the verb “epiphaino,” “to shine upon, to give light, to become visible, to appear.” “Epiphaino” is used in connection with Christ’s birth and first coming in Luke.1v79., and of Christ’s coming to save us in Titus.2v11. and 3v4.. The noun “epiphaneia,” “a shining forth,” was used by the Greeks of the appearance of a god; it occurs six times in the New Testament, once concerning Christ’s first coming in 2Tim.1v10.; and with Christ’s second coming in 2Thes.2v8. 1Tim.6v14. 2Tim.4v1,8. and Titus.2v13..
Jesus has visited us and shone upon us in his triumphant redeeming humanity. As God the Word He will shine upon this world in the full glory and power of His majestic deity, and, with fierce righteous anger and justice, will cleanse creation of evil men and angels.
Is.25v6-9.34v1-8. 42v13-17. 63v1-6. 66v16. 2Thes.1v7-10. Rev.19v11 to 20v3.6. His second advent will be truly awesome and will produce overwhelming fear among worldly people. Jesus said men will swoon and be lifeless through fear, and will hide themselves in the dens and rocks of the mountains, and cry for the mountains and rocks to fall on them and hide them from God the Father’s face and the wrath of the Lamb. Lk.21v26. Rev.6v15-17.
Paul warns us that this will be an awesome day even for Christians, for this is the day when the exam results of our lives are made known. Paul speaks in 2Cor.5v11., of “the fear of the Lord,” as the motivating force for godly living in the light of that great day; he tells us how he laboured and acted from honour to be well pleasing to Christ at His judgement throne. 1Cor.1v8. 3v10-17. 2Cor.1v14. 5v9-11. Phil.1v10. 2v13,14. 1Thes.5v2. This will be a truly blessed day for Christians who are walking with the Lord and love His appearing. 2Tim.4v8. Titus.2v13. Abiding in Jesus saves us from shame at His second coming. 1Jn.2v28.
It was to be expected that the blessed hope of Christ’s glorious return would be a subject of controversy among God’s people, for prophecy has always resulted in controversy. Indeed, the Old Testament prophets were so controversial that most of them died for their prophecies.
Do we stop preaching or discussing the truth of Christ’s second coming because it is controversial? Of course not! All-important truth is controversial. On many occasions God the Father and Christ spoke strongly to God’s people, and the false prophets among His people. Mt.23v13-39. Mk.3v5. In this study I have used strong words where I felt that I should do so. I have not done this because I enjoy controversy, but so that those who read this study may be informed and challenged to think about Christ’s second coming.
I am concerned that Christians should be brought back to study the Scriptures, instead of accepting man-made theories without question. In Acts.17v10,11. the Bereans were called noble-minded when they received Paul’s doctrine with all eagerness of mind; and continually, carefully and exactly searched the Scriptures to see if what Paul taught was true. “Searched” is “anakrinontes,” the present participle of “anakrino,” “to examine, to sift, to make careful and exact research as in legal processes.” Let us imitate them.
The One Seven (verse 27)
1) The Identity of “He”
Verse 27 speaks of someone coming who will “cause a covenant to prevail with the many for one seven” and at the middle of that seven “cause sacrifice and offering to cease.” At issue is the identity of the “he.” Some understand it as the “Messiah” of verse 26, Who ratified a covenant by His death. But there are several considerations that militate against this view. First, he is said to “cause a covenant to prevail for one week.” Jesus did ratify a covenant, but it is an eternal one. And in order to understand how the covenant sealed in His death could be spoken of as prevailing for seven years we would need some explanation from somewhere. It is impossible to speak of our covenant relationship to Him in such terms. Second, there is no reason to expect any mention of Jesus’ cessation of sacrifices at this point; it would be an awkward jump backwards in the flow of thought. Third, the closest antecedent to “he” is “the coming prince” and is thus the grammatical preference. Fourth, the participle “coming” with the definite article (as mentioned above) seems to refer back to someone previously mentioned or already known. Further, there is something significant about the three and one half years of this seven. These considerations together point back to the activities of the little horn in Daniel 7:25 who works blasphemy for “a time, and times, and the dividing of time” — a period seemingly identical with that of this “he” during the final week. No one is willing to say this speaks of Christ, so are we to think this is meaningless coincidence? Fifth, the activities of this “he” are clearly not those of the Lord Jesus. It would be possible to speak of Christ as ending “sacrifice and oblation” in some sense, but to associate him with “the abomination of desolations” is impossible. Sixth, (to be observed shortly) his activities are cited by the apostles Paul and John in reference to an end time personage. These considerations simply do not allow an association of this figure with the Lord Jesus Christ.
2) His Activities
The activities of this person are described next. “And he shall cause a covenant to prevail with the many for one seven. But (for) half of the seven he shall cause sacrifice and offering to cease.” Taken at its face value and since the Bible never anywhere else mentions such a seven-year-covenant, the statement indicates that this person, evidently of considerable position, will enter into an agreement with Israel (“the many,” the subjects of the seventy sevens) and will somehow violate that agreement three and a half years later. The details of the covenant are not stated, but they clearly involve the freedom to worship in their temple.
The breaking of this covenant is marked by the coming “upon the wing a desolating abominable idol” which will endure “until the end and until that which is decreed shall be poured out upon the desolator.” Virtually all we can know about this act, from this passage of Scripture, is that it is abominable and seems to involve idolatry (shiqutsim). A comparison of this with 2 Thessalonians 2:3ff and Revelation 13 shows unmistakable identification (see chart, page 3). This act of idolatry is what Jesus referred to as “the abomination of desolation standing in the holy place” (Mt.24:15).
The Time Frame
This “coming prince,” then, is Paul’s “man of lawlessness” and John’s “beast from the sea” whose activities are in “immediate” proximity to the return of Jesus Christ (Mt. 24:29; 2 Thes. 2:3ff; Rev.19:11-20:3). It would seem that he is also the “antichrist” of 1 John 4:3. His activities will continue “even until the end, and until that which is decreed shall be poured out upon the desolator.” That is, at the “end” (of the final seven) he will be destroyed. This will be his “destruction in the outpouring” (v.26c, see comments above).
It has already been shown that a time-gap exists between the seven and the sixty-two sevens. As it should be expected, then, verses 26-27 reveal the same chronological relation between the sixty-two and the one seven. Daniel writes that the events of verse 26 occur “after” (achare’) the close of the sixty-two sevens. Verse 27 then proceeds to describe the events of the final seven. The waw consecutive at the beginning of verse 27 (“and”) very naturally continues the narration in chronological and consequential order. The plain reading of the verses, in both the English and the Hebrew, reveals the events of verse 26 to be “after the sixty-two sevens” but before the one final seven. In fact, the burden of proof would lie with any contrary view.
It is clear also that the events of verse 26, stated to be “after the sixty-two sevens,” involve far too much time to be included within the final seven. Whatever date for the crucifixion is preferred, it precedes the destruction of Jerusalem (A.D. 70) by well over thirty years. Yet both must fit within this 490-year complex! The only way to allow the words of the text to stand is to acknowledge another break in the time-table.
Those who wish to see the final seven as expired in the first century with the destruction of Jerusalem face a difficult problem here. They do not want to admit to a gap between the sixty-two and one seven, so they are left to either take the final seven as symbolic of a larger period of time (than seven years) or simply shrug their shoulders in wonder.
According to Jesus’ and Paul’s interpretation in Matthew 24 and 2 Thessalonians 2 (respectively), the “great tribulation” and “the day of the Lord” will be marked by this act of idolatry in the temple. This event, yet future to them, has yet to be witnessed by history.
Further, as mentioned above, the six purposes of the seventy sevens have yet to see completion. The sins of Israel have not yet been finished, the Old Testament prophecies have not yet been fulfilled, nor has the holy of holies been anointed. These await fulfillment, and so the seventieth seven must still be future.
Moreover, Jesus specified the “abomination of desolation” of the final seven to be yet future, “immediately” prior to His return (Mt. 24:15, 29). Indeed, it is the sign of the end of the age. Thus, Jesus Himself casts this final week into an eschatological setting.
Finally, all other Biblical references to this period of time (“half of the week”; three and one half years) are in an eschatological setting (cf. Rev. 11:2-3; 12:6, 14).
The time frame of the seventieth seven is clearly eschatological. Nor is this time frame constructed upon hermeneutical or even theological grounds but exegetical. Daniel’s seventieth seven awaits the Day of the Lord for its fulfillment (2 Thes. 2:2-3).
One loose end remains. Verse 26 speaks of “the people of the coming prince” destroying Jerusalem (in A.D. 70), while verse 27 speaks of the prince as an eschatological personage. As mentioned previously (pages 13-14), these kinds of “jumps” in time are common in Biblical prophecy and need not seem surprising. Many identify “the people” as the Romans and “the coming prince” as from the realm of the Roman Empire. This view may present difficulties which are easily avoided if “the people” are understood simply as “evil” or “ungodly” people” of [i.e., ‘from whom will come’] the coming prince.”
Summary and Implications
The statements of the text are very precise. Their interpretation only requires a look into history to see what dates began and ended the seven and the sixty-two sevens and a look into the Scripture to find correlation with the events described in the one (final) seven. The interpretation presented here has sought to account for all the details in the text in a way that is consistent with other related Scriptural statements. Debatable hermeneutical assumptions have been deliberately avoided so that the text could be allowed to speak for itself.
Daniel teaches us that the final seven years of this age will witness a world leader rising to power and eventually working great blasphemy in the temple in Jerusalem–an event which marks the “great tribulation” (Mt.24) and “the day of the Lord” (2 Thes.2). This assumes a political future for the nation of Israel as well as the reconstruction of her temple, an event not uncommon in the prophetic word (Ezekiel 40-43; 2 Thes.2:4; Rev. 11:1-2, etc.). At the culmination of the seventieth seven Jesus Christ will return to execute judgment upon the man of sin and his following (Dan.9:26-27; Mt.24:29ff; 2 Thes. 2:2-12; Rev.19:11-20:3). The nation of Israel will then turn to her Messiah in faith (Zech.12:10) so that her transgressions and sins will be “brought to an end.” At last, every Old Testament prophecy will have come to fruition, and the temple itself will be consecrated.
In summation, the seventy sevens unfold as follows
587 B.C. (“Issuing the Word to restore & rebuild Jerusalem”)
-49 years (“seven sevens”)
538 B.C. (“an anointed one, a prince”; Cyrus)
(gap of unspecified duration)
440 B.C. (“street and moat return in time of distress”)
-434 years (“sixty-two sevens”)
6 B.C. (birth of “Messiah,” Jesus Christ)
(gap of unspecified duration)
Events specified (“after the sixty-two sevens”):
1) Crucifixion of Messiah
2) Destruction of Jerusalem “until the end”
?? A.D. (“covenant prevailing” with Israel)
+3½ years (“the half of the seven”)
?? A.D. (“abomination of desolation”)
?? A.D. (“the end”; return of Christ; judgment upon
“the coming prince”)
Endnotes — Daniel 9
1 The Coming Prince (1957; reprint, Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1984), pp. 67-75.
2Edward J. Young, The Prophecy of Daniel (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1949), p.199.
3 nechetak, niphal perfect, 3rd person masculine singular.
4See also John Bright, A History of Israel. (1959; reprint, Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1976) p. 382. Also W. F. Albright, The Biblical Period from Abraham to Ezra, p. 91, and note 185 [cited in John Bright, op cit]).
5The Prophecy of Daniel, p.207.
6See C. F. Keil, Commentary on Daniel, in Commentary on the Old Testament, by C. F. Keil and F. Delitzsch, Vol.9 (reprint, Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1985), pp. 362-363.
7So The New Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew-English Lexicon, p.1055. Cf. Dt. 29:16; 2 Kings 23:24; Jer. 4:1; etc.
After a Solid Foundation in the Bible, be a reader of Solid Christian Writers for more knowledge of His Word.
“Everything we read needs to be tested with the Word, Never the other way around, texting the Bible with your favorite Authors or teachers. The Bible Alone is the final say on “Christianity” and on that Foundation alone. There all the Writings of man come to the Light as to their legitimacy and faithfulness to His Word. The Bible gives the ratings and not the Amazon readers.”
The apostle says to Timothy and so he says to every preacher, “Give thyself unto reading.” The man who never reads will never be read; he who never quotes will never be quoted. He who will not use the thoughts of other men’s brains, proves that he has no brains of his own.
Brethren, what is true of ministers is true of all our people. You need to read. Renounce as much as you will all light literature, but study as much as possible sound theological works, especially the Puritanic writers, and expositions of the Bible.
We are quite persuaded that the very best way for you to be spending your leisure, is to be reading or praying. You may get much instruction from books which afterwards you may use as a true weapon in your Lord and Master’s service. Paul cries, “Bring the books”–join the cry. -Charles Haddon Spurgeon