General

The Seven Churches (Part 1)


re-post
This last week I started restudying the book of Revelation. To do this I decided this time as I did with the Book of Daniel to use a commentary to gain a better insight into the word of God. Now I have tried more than one and found only one to be really of any true worth.
The Walvoord Commentary series is what I would recommend. In most areas with them I have had little conflict with what was represented. I did find that Dr. John F. Walvoord, or the editors, since he has gone on to be with Christ, that he is anti-Catholic, but he gives a good argument for this in one the churches to be discussed. I also found him to be pro-Baptist, which I actually feel is not a good thing. He had the belief of “once saved always saved.” This, I personally believe, has become an open door to apathy thus helping to create the state of the falling away from God we are now experiencing in Christianity today.
Now it is important to get a grasp upon the most important element within the Bible, especially the New Testament. It was written for those that have already become true followers of Jesus Christ. It is for those that have fallen to their knees and bowed before Him and asked Him into their hearts. It is a guide book into striving to become a true reflection of our Savior. So when John is writing these letters to the seven churches it is to those that committed within their hearts to truly be Christian. Now most in this world say they are Christian, because they have gone to church when they were young in most cases, but they never truly surrender their lives to following the Son of God. This is apathy, this is a sin. This is why people have such a hard time understanding the Bible, let alone striving to follow it teachings. They think they are Christian, but in reality they aren’t. This has occurred not only due to Catholicism, but also due to Baptist teaching, both of which are man-made doctrines and not given by God through His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus gave us the true baptism which occurs after you commit your heart and soul to Christ, something that is impossible for a baby to do. Christ gave us the taking of unleavened bread a simple of His body and of wine the symbol of His blood. These are the only ceremonies given to the Church. He also taught that those that have been saved can fall away from their salvation due to freewill. Christ Himself made this clear in John 15. It is reinforced in 2 Peter 2 as well as in two of the letters going to be discussed in this series. For these letters were given to the “messengers” of the seven churches and so as Christ says at the end to every church “He that hath an ear, let him hear…”
Here is an important element that the Walvoord Commentary brought to light to me that when thought upon actually makes sense. The state of the churches even though contemporary for they can exist as contemporaries in other churches that now exist. However, this is what I found enlightening is that the state of the churches are also linear. Meaning they follow one after the other throughout the church age. The first church being the church at the time the letters are written to the last church being the state of the church as a whole is at the time when it is near the end of times or the time for what is stated within Revelation to actually take place.

It is time for an awakening


As I write this we are in the middle of the coronavirus shutdown of the world. I was original led to republish my Olivet Discourse series which ended yesterday. However, for me at this time is still a few days away.
The Lord led me to read Isaiah. As I did so I was awed and amazed.

Isaiah 1:2 Listen, O heavens! Pay attention, earth!
This is what the Lord says:
“The children I raised and cared for have rebelled against me. 3 Even an ox knows its owner, and a donkey recognizes its master’s care— but Israel doesn’t know its master. My people don’t recognize my care for them.” 4 Oh, what a sinful nation they are— loaded down with a burden of guilt. They are evil people, corrupt children who have rejected the Lord. They have despised the Holy One of Israel and turned their backs on him. 5 Why do you continue to invite punishment? Must you rebel forever? Your head is injured, and your heart is sick. 6 You are battered from head to foot— covered with bruises, welts, and infected wounds— without any soothing ointments or bandages. 7 Your country lies in ruins, and your towns are burned. Foreigners plunder your fields before your eyes and destroy everything they see. 8 Beautiful Jerusalem stands abandoned like a watchman’s shelter in a vineyard, like a lean-to in a cucumber field after the harvest, like a helpless city under siege. 9 If the Lord of Heaven’s Armies had not spared a few of us we would have been wiped out like Sodom, destroyed like Gomorrah. 10 Listen to the Lord, you leaders of “Sodom.” Listen to the law of our God, people of “Gomorrah.” 11“What makes you think I want all your sacrifices?” says the Lord. “I am sick of your burnt offerings of rams and the fat of fattened cattle. I get no pleasure from the blood of bulls and lambs and goats. 12 When you come to worship me, who asked you to parade through my courts with all your ceremony? 13 Stop bringing me your meaningless gifts; the incense of your offerings disgusts me! As for your celebrations of the new moon and the Sabbath and your special days for fasting— they are all sinful and false. I want no more of your pious meetings. 14 I hate your new moon celebrations and your annual festivals. They are a burden to me. I cannot stand them! 15 When you lift up your hands in prayer, I will not look. Though you offer many prayers, I will not listen, for your hands are covered with the blood of innocent victims. 16 Wash yourselves and be clean! Get your sins out of my sight. Give up your evil ways. 17 Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows. 18 “Come now, let’s settle this,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool. 19 If you will only obey me, you will have plenty to eat. 20 But if you turn away and refuse to listen, you will be devoured by the sword of your enemies. I, the Lord, have spoken!” (NLT)
Now there will be those out there that say: “What does this have to do with me? This is about ancient Israel. That is true. However, God does this to us in the future to apply to how we interact with him.
So looking at it in that light. I will try and show you how this is relevant now. First off looking at the United States of America. As I have discuss in the past this nation is the second nation on earth to be created with the blessing of God. We were created a nation for Christians. Yes, the constitution does say all religions are welcome and allowed, but that in itself is a Christian ideal. Most who do not know Christianity do not realize this very fact, but that is another topic altogether.
So let us look at verses 2 and 3 with the U.S. in this light:
“The children I raised and cared for have rebelled against me. 3 Even an ox knows its owner, and a donkey recognizes its master’s care— but the Untied States doesn’t know its master.”
The very fact that those reading this are scoffing and laughing at me at this moment just verified my wording of this verse. Thank you for the validation. For you have just shown that you do not acknowledge God as your master. Nor does most in the world at this time.
God is no longer honored, respected or even acknowledged by most in the U.S. or the world. Those that do still do not truly know God as their “master.” God who is the creator of this world, of this solar system, of this galaxy, of this universe. Who, deserves to be known as not only our “master,” but our Creator.
“My people don’t recognize my care for them.” The United States is the envy of the world. To the point that thousand rush our boarders illegally. To the point that they are so envious that that seek our destruction. Either through violence or laws that tear apart our financial stability. However, many within this nation wish to rip it apart and crush it under laws that are design to place us perpetually under lockdown as we are right now. Removing cars and trucks from the roads and forcing us into trains. To keep the airlines closed. Why do they do this? Because they know they are right and they know best for everyone. Why? Because they seek to rule and control. They see themselves as a form of god. Desiring to have their names go down throughout history. Why? Because they do not know or recognize God as their Creator, nor His Son, Jesus Christ as our eternal King. Nor see His care for us, which is the reason why this nation is so great. Purely due to His grace and blessings upon this nation. However, it must be added that this statement is aimed at those that acknowledge God and His Son. In other words, those that say they are “Christian” and mayhaps even Jewish. It is those that mouth the words of a faith, when in reality they do not truly practice their faith. As will be shown in these verse. Being religious does not mean you are practicing true faith or a belief in God, or His Son. This is the problem. This is one reason we are experiencing this plague. And yes I used the word “plague.”
Plague – to cause worry, pain, or difficulty to someone or something over a period of time (Cambridge Dictionary)
4 Oh, what a sinful nation they are— loaded down with a burden of guilt. They are evil people, corrupt children who have rejected the Lord. They have despised the Holy One of Israel and turned their backs on him.
Does this verse not describe the United States today? Do not most reject God? Do they strive to remove God and Jesus from the public view? Do not most live their lives in some form of sin or sins?
Evil – morally bad, cruel, or very unpleasant (Cambridge Dictionary)
Corrupt – to make someone or something become dishonest or immoral (Cambridge Dictionary)
This sentence does fit the behavior and actions of the people of the United States. So these verses do apply to this nation and should be acknowledged and listened to.
5 Why do you continue to invite punishment? Must you rebel forever? Your head is injured, and your heart is sick. 6 You are battered from head to foot— covered with bruises, welts, and infected wounds— without any soothing ointments or bandages. 7 Your country lies in ruins, and your towns are burned. Foreigners plunder your fields before your eyes and destroy everything they see.
How do these verse apply to the United States? First off let us go to the King James:
5 Why should ye be stricken anymore? Ye will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. (KJV)
6 From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrefying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment. (KJV)
7 Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers. (KJV)
Stricken – (nakah) smite – to affect mentally or morally with a sudden pang (Dictionary.com)
Faint – (davvay) – (davah) – to be ill, unwell
Soundness – (methom) – the fact of being in good condition
Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers.
Thousands if not millions of businesses closed even before this plague hit this nation. Look to Detroit, entire blocks of empty and abandoned homes to the point that they appear to be burned out and in some cases actually are. Millions have crossed our boarders illegally and run to sanctuary cities and states or the hide in the rural towns removing our language and replacing it with theirs. Many break our laws even further, Killing, raping, stealing. This is the United States today.
9 Except the Lord of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah. (KJV)
10 Hear the word of the Lord, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah. (KJV)
So if the previous verses show that this can also be applied to the United States. Then the warning should be listened to as well. NOTE: I know I did not include verse 8 for this verse deals with Jerusalem and is of the past and not required here unless you live in Israel itself.
First and most important here is that those within Israel then and the United States now are compared to Sodom and Gomorrah. Living in and for sin and not for God and His laws, which are given within the Bible.
11 To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the Lord: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. (KJV)
First off I need to make this perfectly clear. This is pointed at the nation as a whole. Not each and every individual. When the United States was young most went to church and worshipped God and His Son the Lord Jesus Christ. When this was pointed toward Israel the Jewish people within the nation had turned away from God and were not attending synagogue as they should. That is how the United States is today. Hardly any attend church and even those that do there is a question mark about them. So the sacrifice given unto God from the entire nation is what God is referring to here.
12 When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? (KJV)
13 Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and Sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting (KJV)
14 Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them. (KJV)
15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. (KJV)
God did not see the sacrifices coming from Israel as voluntary any longer. The ones He loved the most were the ones that were voluntary. Now all he was given were the mandatory ones. The rituals. These were not savory to Him. All that were left were sin offerings. Constantly and never ending sin upon sin. God became discussed by the smell. That is how he sees it coming from America today.
16 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; (KJV)
17 Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.(KJV)
18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.(KJV)
19 If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land:(KJV)
20 But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.(KJV)
As always God offers a way to forgiveness. But it is up to the nation as a whole to do these things and if they refuse they shall suffer. Did Israel repent? Did they return to God?
As history has shown us they did not. Do I expect those within the United States to listen? Will they repent? Some will, most will not, not until it is too late.
We are in the last days. The fact that the world is within a plague is testament of this truth. Will the world listen? Will they repent? Per the Scriptures, no they will not. Not until it is too late.

The Olivet Discourse (Part seventeen)


Final announcement of his coming death
At the end of the Olivet discourse Jesus finishes His teaching unto the apostles with this final warning of his coming death.
Matthew 26:1 – When Jesus had finished saying all these things, he said to his disciples, 2 “As you know, Passover begins in two days, and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.”
The Bible makes no mention of the reaction to these words by the apostles. Instead it goes right to where the elders of the religious order in Jerusalem are plotting with Caiaphas to do just what Jesus had just stated would occur.
The fact that there is no mention of a response from the apostles shows their blindness to most of what they had just heard.
To summarize
What we learn from the Olivet discourse is a snapshot into the future. We learn that Jesus will not have His second return as soon as many expect. In fact He states in the parables that He will appear to be delayed. We learn that His return will be like a thief in the night, and shows that there are different rapture events. One will occur without any warning while a separate one will occur with the sky itself darkening. We learn that if things do not go quickly the human race will become extinct.
We are warned to stay alert and stay true to the Bible and the teachings of Jesus Christ. We are shown that there will be those that are like the people that were before the great flood. They will be living their lives as if nothing is going to happen and yet in the blink of an eye all will change in an instance and will be signaled by the first rapture. This will then cause those that realize the truth to accept Jesus Christ as the Messiah and in turn these will be persecuted.
He tells those of the Jewish faith to watch for the desecration of the Holy of Holies which speaks of a third temple and when it occurs to flee quickly.
Out of all of it though is the warning to stay prepared. To stay alert. To watch for the signs of His return. These signs are now present as never before. They are global. They are affecting everyone and everywhere. There can be no doubt that we are in the end times of the world as we now know it.
So get right with God. Learn the Bible and follow the teachings within it. For we are told to obey and follow the Bible and to do what is right and righteous. For if we don’t we will be left behind and must face the horror that that entails.

The Olivet Discourse (Part sixteen)


The judgement of the nations
Matthew 25:31 – “But when the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit upon his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered in his presence, and he will separate the people as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will place the sheep at his right hand and the goats at his left. 34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. 36 I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’ 37 “Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing? 39 When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’
Now once again I wish to remind those that have been following this series about the word “nations.”
Nations is ethnos in the Greek and in actuality refers to races not an actual country.
So basically it is stating that all the people of the earth are gathered before Jesus as He sets upon His Throne. The fact that He is separating them points to the Great White Throne Judgment at which time we will have the books of our life opened and reviewed as well to see if our name is listed in the Book of Life.
By how the verses plays out about separating the sheep from the goats and that those on the right, the sheep, “inherit the Kingdom.” Shows that there is a judgment here.
Matthew 25:41 – “Then the King will turn to those on the left and say, ‘Away with you, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his demons. 42 For I was hungry, and you didn’t feed me. I was thirsty, and you didn’t give me a drink. 43 I was a stranger, and you didn’t invite me into your home. I was naked, and you didn’t give me clothing. I was sick and in prison, and you didn’t visit me.’ 44 “Then they will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and not help you?’ 45 “And he will answer, ‘I tell you the truth, when you refused to help the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were refusing to help me.’ 46 “And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life.”
Those that deny God and His Son’s teachings will have to join their true master Satan in the pit of fire that has been reserved for them for all eternity.
However if you are found to be righteous and true to God and the teachings of the Bible you will go into the next phase of existence and partake of the tree of life to live for all eternity in the service of God.

The Olivet Discourse (Part fifteen)


Parable of the three servants and the talents or silver
Matthew 25:14 – “Again, the Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of a man going on a long trip. He called together his servants and entrusted his money to them while he was gone. 15 He gave five bags of silver to one, two bags of silver to another, and one bag of silver to the last—dividing it in proportion to their abilities. He then left on his trip. 16 “The servant who received the five bags of silver began to invest the money and earned five more. 17 The servant with two bags of silver also went to work and earned two more. 18 But the servant who received the one bag of silver dug a hole in the ground and hid the master’s money. 19 “After a long time their master returned from his trip and called them to give an account of how they had used his money. 20 The servant to whom he had entrusted the five bags of silver came forward with five more and said, ‘Master, you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more.’ 21 “The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’ 22 “The servant who had received the two bags of silver came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two bags of silver to invest, and I have earned two more.’ 23 “The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’ 24 “Then the servant with the one bag of silver came and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate. 25 I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.’ 26 “But the master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy servant! If you knew I harvested crops I didn’t plant and gathered crops I didn’t cultivate, 27 why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.’ 28 “Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver. 29 To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. 30 Now throw this useless servant into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
This parable deals within not just salvation but of spreading the Word of God to others. So that they too can partake of the wonders and glory that are to be given unto all that are faithful in the eternal life to come. Those that are faithful to the Word of God and spread it faithfully and accurately are blessed and given more responsibilities. While those that receive their salvation and hide it and do not share unto the world the teachings of Jesus Christ are not welcome in the house of the Lord and are cast into the pit “where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Do not hide your faith and belief in God and His Son Jesus Christ. Do not defame the Word and the teachings that are within the Bible. Most importantly share your faith to the world. Do not hide away the fact that you are Christian.

The Olivet Discourse (Part fourteen)


A change of topics
Now that Jesus has answered the two questions posed to Him by the apostles. Jesus continues the discourse into a deeper teaching that He wanted the disciples to hear before He could not teach them. Here again He starts this teaching with a parable.
The parable of the ten virgins
Matthew 25:1 – “Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 The five who were foolish didn’t take enough olive oil for their lamps, 4 but the other five were wise enough to take along extra oil. 5 When the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep. 6 “At midnight they were roused by the shout, ‘Look, the bridegroom is coming! Come out and meet him!’ 7 “All the bridesmaids got up and prepared their lamps. 8 Then the five foolish ones asked the others, ‘Please give us some of your oil because our lamps are going out.’ 9 “But the others replied, ‘We don’t have enough for all of us. Go to a shop and buy some for yourselves.’ 10 “But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came. Then those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was locked. 11 Later, when the other five bridesmaids returned, they stood outside, calling, ‘Lord! Lord! Open the door for us!’ 12 “But he called back, ‘Believe me, I don’t know you!’ 13 “So you, too, must keep watch! For you do not know the day or hour of my return.
This parable deals with the Rapture. Within it is a very complex imagery of belief and preparedness, as well as Christ stating He may be delayed. Let’s try and look at the imagery presented here.
First off we have the bridesmaids. The word “bridesmaids” is in itself extremely important to understand for within it is referring to salvation itself. In other books within the Bible Jesus Christ is referred to as the “bridegroom” and the Christian peoples are the “bridesmaids.” Just as the Jewish people are called the bride to God Himself.
Now note how wording is done in the first verse of this chapter. In the KJV it is this way:
“Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.”
“Went forth to meet.” This is humanity using their free-will to accept Jesus Christ as their Savior and journeying forth to learn more about Him through pray and reading of the Bible. This is signified with the statement “which took their lamps.” The lamps are lit, which again points to acceptance of Christ and salvation.
“And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.”
For the lamps to stay lit it shows we must be prepared. This is accomplished through reading the Bible and seeking to understand it. Since we do not know when the groom will appear we must stay within the Word of God and live our lives accordingly. We must live our lives in accordance with the Bible every day for we do not know when Jesus will come.
However as is shown in the parable there are those that do not. They live their lives in and of the world and so are not prepared for His return. These are the foolish. However note this next verse:
“While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.”
Jesus makes it clear that in our eyes, the bridegroom, Jesus, will tarry, will delay.
We also see that those that all that accepted Christ will fall asleep. We all wonder and become distracted.
“And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.”
The “cry” is the warning signs that we are taught to look for, which at this very time are being seen and heard throughout the entire world. So the virgins, the bridesmaids, are instructed to go to meet the bridegroom. We are instructed to fix our lives and get back on track and to return to our path of faith and obedience to the Word of God.
“Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.”
Those that did not see the signs and did not prepare or “trimmed their lamps” soon enough find they are not prepared. So they turn to those that are prepare for the return of Christ. So they tell those not ready to go and read the Bible and learn the truth and get their lives in order.
Then Christ returns and the rapture occurs and those not prepared are left on the earth. They scream up to the heavens and say “Here we are Lord we are ready for you!” and per the Bible Christ reply will be:
“Verily I say unto you, I know you not.”
They are left here to suffer the torments that are to follow for the next three and a half years. They must now accept Christ and preach His Word. They must suffer insult and injury as well as persecution. They will be offered the mark of the beast and many will accept the mark. While those that do not will accept their fate and suffer pain and agony as they are beheaded. They will become the martyrs of the Tribulation and will number in the billions.
Revelation 7: 9 After this 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; 10 And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. 11 And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, 12 Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen. 13 And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? 14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. 16 They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. 17 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

The Olivet Discourse (Part thirteen)


You must be ready and alert
Matthew 24:40 – “Two men will be working together in the field; one will be taken, the other left. 41 Two women will be grinding flour at the mill; one will be taken, the other left. 42 “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming. 43 Understand this: If a homeowner knew exactly when a burglar was coming, he would keep watch and not permit his house to be broken into. 44 You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected. 45 “A faithful, sensible servant is one to whom the master can give the responsibility of managing his other household servants and feeding them. 46 If the master returns and finds that the servant has done a good job, there will be a reward. 47 I tell you the truth, the master will put that servant in charge of all he owns. 48 But what if the servant is evil and thinks, ‘My master won’t be back for a while,’ 49 and he begins beating the other servants, partying, and getting drunk? 50 The master will return unannounced and unexpected, 51 and he will cut the servant to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Now I wish to show you this from 1 Thessalonians then we will discuss these passages:
5:1 – Now concerning how and when all this will happen, dear brothers and sisters, we don’t really need to write you. 2 For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night. 3 When people are saying, “Everything is peaceful and secure,” then disaster will fall on them as suddenly as a pregnant woman’s labor pains begin. And there will be no escape. 4 But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief. 5 For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night. 6 So be on your guard, not asleep like the others. Stay alert and be clearheaded. 7 Night is the time when people sleep and drinkers get drunk. 8 But let us who live in the light be clearheaded, protected by the armor of faith and love, and wearing as our helmet the confidence of our salvation. 9 For God chose to save us through our Lord Jesus Christ, not to pour out his anger on us. 10 Christ died for us so that, whether we are dead or alive when he returns, we can live with him forever. 11 So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.
Just so you understand once again. There were two questions asked by the apostles to Jesus. There are two answers given, but in a way that gives details that has left many confused and mislead. From verse 4 through 31 Jesus described the end of the known world at this time. Verses 32 through 51 describe His return.
Now note that in the first part this is mentioning of signs and wonders. The darkening of the sun no light from the moon. The stars hidden. Those of evil perform signs and wonders. These are all things that none can deny for all will see them. So how can the return of Christ be like a thief in the night? A surprise. It cannot.
So even though the return is spoken of by Christ.It actually occurs before the events he has just spoken of in the previous section. Yet there is mention of a type of rapture in the first part people will say and question at this point. Yes that is true, but the wording is very clear here as was shown in part eleven of this series.
There will be three raptures. The first is what is being referred to by Jesus at this time. The second will occurs at the midpoint of the Tribulation period when the third temple is desecrated by the anti-Christ. The third will occur as described in verse 31 and will deal only with the Jewish people.
How else can Jesus come as a thief in the night? It must be at a time when no one is looking or expecting him. It is as stated in the previous part of this series, like the times before the great flood. People will be living their lives as if nothing has changed. Nothing has occurred to give them pause or wonder.
Jesus Himself promised that those that are alert will not partake of the Tribulation (Revelation 3:10), but those of the tribes of Israel that have not accepted Jesus as the Messiah will. Why? Because they denied Him when He walked amongst them nearly two thousand years ago. It is those of the tribes of Israel that are called the elect that He will gather unto Him upon His return. For further confirmation of this, read the following:
Revelation 7:1 – Then I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds so they did not blow on the earth or the sea, or even on any tree. 2 And I saw another angel coming up from the east, carrying the seal of the living God. And he shouted to those four angels, who had been given power to harm land and sea, 3 “Wait! Don’t harm the land or the sea or the trees until we have placed the seal of God on the foreheads of his servants.” 4 And I heard how many were marked with the seal of God—144,000 were sealed from all the tribes of Israel: 5 from Judah 12,000 from Reuben 12,000 from Gad 12,000 6 from Asher 12,000 from Naphtali 12,000 from Manasseh 12,000 7 from Simeon 12,000 from Levi 12,000 from Issachar 12,000 8 from Zebulun 12,000 from Joseph 12,000 from Benjamin 12,000
These are the select, the elect, and the chosen. All from the tribes of Israel. These are those that verse 31 is referring to and no others. For those that left when Christ returned as a thief in the night are already gone. So how can they leave a second time? Then this is prove there will be multiple raptures. One for those that stayed alert. One for those that were martyred during the first half of the Tribulation and the third will be as mentioned above.

The Olivet Discourse (Part twelve)


The parable
Now it is important that we understand the import of the parable. Jesus when He started His ministry to the Jewish people He would talk plainly and openly. However they rejected Him. His sole purpose was to be the true Messiah, the true King to Israel. Yet they turned their backs upon Him. When this reject became all too clear to all involved Jesus stopped speaking plainly. Instead He started to speak in parables.
Now He is talking exclusively to his apostles, yet he gives them a parable. This is twofold. The main reason is due to the fact that even though they are His chosen twelve they too are blind to the full truth. The other is that when it is time that the gospels be written that this parable be included so that those with the eyes will see and the ears hear.
Matthew 24: 32 “Now learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its branches bud and its leaves begin to sprout, you know that summer is near. 33 In the same way, when you see all these things, you can know his return is very near, right at the door.
When these signs that He has mentioned, especially those spoken by Him in verse 4 through 14 then we will know that the return of Jesus Christ to this planet is near.
The sign of Noah
Matthew 24: 34 I tell you the truth, this generation will not pass from the scene until all these things take place. 35 Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will never disappear. 36 “However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows. 37 “When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day. 38 In those days before the flood, the people were enjoying banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat. 39 People didn’t realize what was going to happen until the flood came and swept them all away. That is the way it will be when the Son of Man comes.
He makes it very clear that life will be going on as usual, just as it was before the flood which destroyed the civilization in which Noah lived in before the deluge. Christ has given us signs to look for and they are now being fulfilled worldwide. Time is running out and too many don’t know nor care, for all that is important to them is themselves.

The Olivet Discourse (Part eleven)


The Second coming of Christ
Matthew 24:26 “So if someone tells you, ‘Look, the Messiah is out in the desert,’ don’t bother to go and look. Or, ‘Look, he is hiding here,’ don’t believe it! 27 For as the lightning flashes in the east and shines to the west, so it will be when the Son of Man comes. 28 Just as the gathering of vultures shows there is a carcass nearby, so these signs indicate that the end is near.
29 “Immediately after the anguish of those days, the sun will be darkened, the moon will give no light, the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.
30 And then at last, the sign that the Son of Man is coming will appear in the heavens, and there will be deep mourning among all the peoples of the earth. And they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And he will send out his angels with the mighty blast of a trumpet, and they will gather his chosen ones from all over the world—from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven.
Now there are those that see the events in verse 31 as the Rapture. However this is not the case.
Revelation 3: 10 “Because you have obeyed my command to persevere, I will protect you from the great time of testing that will come upon the whole world to test those who belong to this world. 11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take away your crown. 12 All who are victorious will become pillars in the Temple of my God, and they will never have to leave it. And I will write on them the name of my God, and they will be citizens in the city of my God—the new Jerusalem that comes down from heaven from my God. And I will also write on them my new name.
It is this promise that shows that the Rapture and the events that occur at the return of Christ at the end of the Tribulation are two separate events.
As we look at verse 31 from Matthew in the KJV:
“And he shall send 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.”
We see that the term chosen ones goes to elect
Elect – eklektos – chosen out, elect, choice, select: of those chosen out by God for the rendering of special service to Him (of the Hebrew race, particular Hebrews, the Messiah, and the Christians)
In this case though since the Christians are removed before the Tribulation as is promised in Revelation 3:10 this must mean the Hebrews or Jewish people.
So this is the third Rapture and is of the Jewish people. The First Rapture takes place before the Tribulation begins and is as shown above for those Christians that have been loyal unto to God through His Son Jesus Christ. The Second Rapture occurs at the midpoint of the Tribulation at which time the third temple is desecrated. It is here that those that are martyred in the name of Christ will be called up before the Throne of God. It is also at this time that 144,000 will receive the mark of God and will bear witness through the last half of the tribulation. Since it is clearly shown that the 144,000 are all Jewish adds more evidence that the third Rapture which happens as Christ returns is solely for the Jewish people. The chosen and promised nation of God unto Abraham.
The Second coming will be an event that will be witnessed by the entire globe and will take at least a full day to accomplish as Christ appears at a fixed point in the sky above and the earth will rotate below Him and all will see that Christ is real and He has returned. None will be able to question this.

The Olivet Discourse (Part ten)


Signs of the Great Tribulation
As Jesus spoke to His apostles on the Mount of Olives. To answer the two questions they had posed to Him. He began by describing the signs of the world and human behavior before the coming judgment. These signs were addressed in the previous parts of this series. Now Jesus tells His disciples of the tribulation itself.
Now it must be noted that he mentions the defilement of the holy area in a temple. At this time there is no Jewish temple in Jerusalem. The fact that there will be is another sign that the coming tribulation is near.
Matthew 24: 15 “The day is coming when you will see what Daniel the prophet spoke about—the sacrilegious object that causes desecration standing in the Holy Place.” (Reader, pay attention!) 16 “Then those in Judea must flee to the hills. 17 A person out on the deck of a roof must not go down into the house to pack. 18 A person out in the field must not return even to get a coat. 19 How terrible it will be for pregnant women and for nursing mothers in those days. 20 And pray that your flight will not be in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For there will be greater anguish than at any time since the world began. And it will never be so great again. 22 In fact, unless that time of calamity is shortened, not a single person will survive. But it will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen ones. 23 “Then if anyone tells you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah,’ or ‘There he is,’ don’t believe it. 24 For false messiahs and false prophets will rise up and perform great signs and wonders so as to deceive, if possible, even God’s chosen ones. 25 See, I have warned you about this ahead of time.
When this third temple is defiled those within Israel are told to flee from there immediately not even bothering to gather anything. For that moment to hesitate will be enough to mean their death. He says that this time will far more arduous than at any other time in recorded history, and the only thing that will save the human race itself will be that God puts an end to it.
Then he shows that the anti-Christ, the false messiah well have powers and abilities, as will his prophet that will cause even those true to God to have cause to wonder and ponder. However they will see the truth and overcome, for they will know the teachings of the Bible and know that these humans are liars and are of the devil.
It is also important to note that at this point this is all He says about the tribulation period. He instead goes right to the point of answering the question probed by the twelve. His return, which will be in the next part of this series.