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As I sit here with my head on a swivel after the initial SITREP broadcast discussing the findings around this issue, I am thankful that the sea of “Monkey Nation” supporters run deep around the world and that we have so many “trackers” with the ability to do what I do that I know should something happen to me, there are tens of thousands that can continue on with this effort. As it is said, “give a man a fish feed him for a day, teach a man to fish, feed him for life.” I have indeed taught so many enthusiasts around the world how to watch the skies over the past 2 years from YouTube that they could never stop the effort. Thank God for that. Plus, the tools to track just keep getting better and easier - eg SkyGlass.
I hear so many people talking about a “great awakening” taking shape “any day now” and while I will say that God is certainly separating the wheat from the tare (Matthew 13:24-30), the fact is that the Bible tells us quite the opposite will occur during the times we are witnessing. 2 Thessalonians 2:3 “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition.” We know also that the man of lawlessness will not appear until the Christians are gone because we are the ones holding him back!
So cruel what they are doing to this family. Be praying
Faith is important. Our faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ is an eternal blessing. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God: not of works lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9. The problem is, many who make a confession of faith don’t really believe what they’ve confessed. Or, they choose to live by the standards of the world rather than by God’s standards. If you really stop and think about what Christ did for you, you might be more willing to live for Him, putting aside the selfishness of the human sin nature, to live to honor Christ who shed His blood for your salvation. “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1. It is true that nothing we do is good enough to earn our right to a place in Heaven. Only faith in Jesus and His righteousness will bring salvation.
I am always amazed when I read about the people in Scripture and realize there was nothing superhuman about them. The only difference between them and me, is that they put aside their fear in order to accomplish the task they knew God had asked then to do. For instance, Esther was just a young, pretty woman who happened to be Jewish. Through a series of events, she found herself married to King Ahasuerus. He was the rather temperamental king of Babylon. There were many Jewish families who had remained in Babylon after the days of the captivity were over, and a very hateful man named Haman desired to see all of them killed. His plan nearly succeeded, but because Queen Esther went to God in prayer, and stepped out in faith, she was able to thwart the plan. “Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink, three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.” Esther 4:16. The king could have had her killed for coming to him on her own without being summoned. Her faith was strong, and her motives were pure. As the story unfolds, God used her in a marvelous way, and the Jewish people were saved. Esther lived her faith.
The writer of Hebrews gives us a definition of faith, as well as examples of people who stepped out to serve God and make changes to the people and circumstances around them. “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1. Faith is the difference between obedience to God, and failure to serve Him. Faith in Jesus Christ is the difference between eternal life and eternal death. The world around you may judge you by your works, and appearances, but Christ judges you by your faith. Our faith should show in our actions, and indeed it should affect the way we treat others and our attitudes. If you have a strong dislike for people and have no good things to say to people who annoy you, then you aren’t living your faith. If you only show disdain and anger when another human says something that you take to be demeaning to you, then you are showing selfish pride, and are far from living your life for Christ. It’s Satan who is governing your words and actions, not the love of God. You can combat this spiritual attack on your faith. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double-minded.” James 4:7-8. Double-minded? If you profess faith in Christ while speaking and acting in ways that represent Satan you are double-minded. You need to draw close to God and let the Holy Spirit guide you.
Sometimes we talk so much about Jesus and His love, that we begin to think that everything we do is OK. It’s true our sins are forgiven when we truly believe in His sacrifice, but that doesn’t mean we have a license to sin all we want. If you have truly placed your faith in Him, then your life should reflect that faith. Works cannot and will not bring salvation, but if there’s no change in your attitude, maybe you need to examine your true faith. “Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.” James 2:18. Don’t think that works only consists of helping old ladies across the street, or knocking on doors to share the Gospel. Works is anything you do trying to earn salvation. For instance, Christians should show grace and mercy to other people, for no other reason than it glorifies Christ. Pride of self should be set aside, and Christ’s love should rule your heart. Yes, that’s adding “works” to your faith, but living a Christ-like life is a good idea. “But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?” James 2:20. Don’t be deceived, you need to let the Holy Spirit live in you and through you. Anger, sarcastic words, and a disdain for fellow human beings are attitudes that don’t come from God. God is love and Satan is hate. Which one do you serve?
It’s easy to just allow your human sin-nature rule, but by doing so you aren’t honoring Christ. That makes others question whether your faith is real. You see, you might believe in your mind that God is real, but so does Satan and his minions. “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” James 2:19 . Look at that verse carefully. Of course, the demons believe there is one God. They live in the spiritual dimension and they’ve seen Him. But does the verse say anything about their response to Him? Does it say that they’ve asked for His forgiveness? No. Does it say they’ve accepted His death as payment for their sins? No. Does it say they’ve received Him into their heart? No. Have they repented and made peace with Him? No. All it says is that they believe there is one God. If you continue in your sin after you’ve confessed faith, then maybe your confession wasn’t honest. We can look to Scripture and see that demons are real, and they can control the actions of people. We can also see that they are no challenge to Jesus. In the Gospels we read an account of a man in Gadera who was possessed by demons. We can gain much insight from studying this event. The young man was tormented by these evil beings. He was violent and an outcast from society. “And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones. But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshipped him,” Mark 5:5-6. The demons who possessed the young man recognized Jesus and ran to worship Him. The demons hadn’t repented or asked for forgiveness, but they “worshipped” (gave lip service) to Jesus. Jesus simply told them to come out of the man. He didn’t use“holy water” or fancy words, but only commanded them to come out of the man. They had to obey Jesus, and they entered into a herd of swine and ran into the sea. Demons recognize Jesus and trembled, but their worship wasn’t true worship, and they didn’t follow Him. Jesus knows the difference between a repentant soul and one that is just trying to get to Heaven.
Be sure you worship Christ in spirit and in truth. Time is running out and soon Jesus will call all who have earnestly called on Him for salvation, to go Home in the Rapture. When the Rapture happens, the Church-age will be over. After that, people may come to faith in Jesus, but the indwelling of the Holy Spirit won’t happen. These “Tribulation Saints” will be beheaded when their faith is made known. They are the martyrs who won’t worship the Anti-Christ or take his mark. They will wish they had truly loved Jesus prior to the Rapture. There’s no excuse for anybody to be left behind to face Hell on Earth during the Tribulation. “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:40. God doesn’t want anyone to spend eternity in the lake of fire and has given us Scripture to guide us on how to avoid eternal death. The Bible is available in any bookstore, and usually easy for most people to find a place where God’s truth is preached. If you’re a professing Christian with a bad attitude and vicious words on your lips, you may push people away from Christ instead of being the means of showing His love and drawing lost souls to Him. In Muslim nations it may be very difficult to find true Christians, but you can always pray and talk to God. “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Romans 10:9. Those are comforting words. Faith is the key.
Don’t be like the demons who give lip-service but have no true faith. Jesus entered His creation to bring salvation to mankind. He became human in order to save humans. Give Him your heart and allow Him to cleanse it. People around you will hear you say you’re a Christian, but they will also hear your lips speak evil of others and watch to see if your actions honor Christ. Don’t allow the evil in the world dictate your life. Even the demons believe and tremble. Let Jesus be your example and guide.
God bless you all,
Recommended prophecy sites:
All original scripture is “theopneustos” God breathed.
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- by Michael Snyder -
I don’t know if I have the words to describe what we have just seen. Summer just ended, and within one week we have already witnessed the most costly natural disaster in the entire history of the United States. There are some areas along the west coast of Florida that have literally been destroyed. Some have compared the devastation to the dropping of an atomic bomb, and that is not an exaggeration at all. The state of Florida has never experienced a storm quite like this before, and recovery is going to be measured in years.
When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, it was a Category 3 storm.
Hurricane Ian had maximum sustained wind speeds of 155 mph, and that put it just 2 mph short of being a Category 5 storm.
But the high winds weren’t what made Ian so horrible.
What made Ian so horrible was the storm surge. Giant walls of water picked up cars, boats, telephone poles and palm trees and tossed them around like toys. According to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, what we just witnessed was a “500-year flooding event”…
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said the storm caused a “500-year flooding event” and said Coast Guard helicopters were plucking trapped residents from the roofs of homes. Communities across the state were or will be swamped by the overwhelming waters, he said.
“The impacts of this storm are historic and the damage that has been done is historic,” DeSantis said. “We’ve never seen a flood event like this, we’ve never seen a storm surge of this magnitude.”
This storm greatly strengthened right before it made landfall, and a lot of people were caught off guard by that.
It was already too late when many finally realized that they should evacuate, and it appears that there was a “substantial loss of life” as a result…
“This could be the deadliest hurricane in Florida history,” Biden said after a briefing at FEMA emergency management headquarters in Washington.
He said the numbers “are still unclear, but we’re hearing reports of what may be substantial loss of life.”
In fact, Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno says that “the fatalities are in the hundreds”…
“This is a life-changing event for all of us,” Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno told “Good Morning America.”
“I don’t have confirmed numbers — I definitely know the fatalities are in the hundreds,” he added.
“So far, confirmed in the hundreds,” he said, noting that conditions were too dire for his officers and other rescuers to get a true sense of the disaster.
Was he referring to just his county or the state as a whole?
Someone should ask him that question.
This is truly a historic tragedy, but some have decided that all of this chaos makes it the perfect time for a crime spree…
Amid the chaos of Hurricane Ian, looting and other crimes have been committed in Lee County.
In coordination with Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno, County Commission, city managers and city councils, Dejarlais announced a 6 p.m. curfew for Lee County, which will be in place until further notice.
“To be sure, and I feel safe relaying this in on behalf of law enforcement, there’s going to be a zero-tolerance policy for looting and violence in this town,” Dejarlais said.
I suppose that we shouldn’t be surprised that looting is happening.
Every time there is some sort of a major disaster, this is what some of us do.
It truly is disgusting.
This is a time when everybody should be pulling together. According to one estimate, the economic damage from this storm could be somewhere in the neighborhood of 260 billion dollars…
Experts expect the damages to cost up to $260 billion, though the clean-up efforts are currently unable to get underway as swathes of Florida remain underwater.
Prior to Hurricane Ian, the costliest natural disaster in U.S. history was Hurricane Katrina.
According to the GAO, Katina caused 170 billion dollars in damage…
Hurricanes Katrina, Sandy, Harvey, and Irma (selected hurricanes) caused costly damages and challenges for some populations in affected communities. In these communities, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) estimated the cost of damages to be approximately $170 billion for Katrina, $74 billion for Sandy, $131 billion for Harvey, and $52 billion for Irma. These estimates include the value of damages to residential, commercial, and government or municipal buildings; material assets within the buildings; business interruption; vehicles and boats; offshore energy platforms; public infrastructure; and agricultural assets.
At this point, it appears that Katrina has been knocked out of the top spot.
Right at the end of September 2022, we have witnessed the costliest natural disaster in U.S. history by a wide margin.
And Ian is not done yet.
As I write this article, the city of Charleston is “bracing for a direct hit” very early on Friday morning…
Charleston is bracing for a direct hit from Hurricane Ian with storm surges of up to 7ft as it hurtles towards the historic city after barreling through Florida leaving swathes of the state decimated and at least 13 dead.
Monster tempest Ian has recharged from a tropical storm back into a Category 1 hurricane as it angles northwards towards South Carolina to pummel the state Friday morning, as well as neighboring North Carolina and Georgia.
Landfall in Charleston is expected around 8am on Friday, with the surrounding states also being issued with several extreme weather warnings.
When the damage to Charleston is factored in, the total economic damage from this storm could easily surpass 300 billion dollars.
This is not something that we are going to be able to bounce back from easily.
For years, I have been warning that unprecedented natural disasters would be headed our way.
Now it is happening right in front of our eyes.
The summer is over, the fall is here, and winter is coming.
We have been through so much already, but the rest of 2022 is inevitably going to have even more surprises for us.
“Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him” (Genesis 5:24).
Enoch is a type of our future departure from the earth at Jesus’ appearing. Hebrews 11:5 tells us this about his sudden disappearance:
By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God.
Enoch’s faith pleased God (see 11:6), but what exactly did he believe? The text does not directly answer that question; it only reveals that he pleased the Lord. Genesis 5:24 simply says that he “walked with God” before he vanished; others saw Enoch’s faith and knew the reason why no one could find him; he wasn’t killed by a wild animal, kidnapped, or lost somewhere. “God took him.”
Jude 14 adds that Enoch also “prophesied, saying, ‘Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his holy ones.’” Isn’t amazing that about six centuries before the Noahic flood, the Lord was already talking to Enoch about His Second Coming?
Enoch’s faith included an understanding of, as well as a belief in, future prophecy.
What does all this have to do with us?
Just as Enoch gained a reputation in the ancient world for his faith despite the rampant wickedness and lawlessness, so our belief in what Scripture says about our future sets us apart from the world.
Enoch lived 365 years before God took him away from the earth. From all that we know about the wickedness and lawlessness of the antediluvian world, that’s a long time to walk faithfully with the Lord.
Like Enoch, we must persevere amid today's ridicule of our hope, such as the article CNN mocking the Rapture, as we eagerly await our “blessed hope.”
What can help us do that?
KNOW THAT THE RAPTURE IS A BIBLICAL EVENT
Please understand that the Rapture is a biblical event. Consider the following quote from the late Dr. Ed Hindson, a beloved scholar whose insights into biblical prophecy we sorely miss:
“If you disagree on the timing of the rapture, please don’t tell people, ‘There’s never going to be a rapture.’ No, there must be a rapture or the Bible is not true. There must be a time when the archangel shouts, when the trumpet sounds, and the dead in Christ are raised and the living are caught up (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). We may differ on the timing of the rapture but not the fact of the rapture.”
As Dr. Hindson alludes to in the above quote, there must be a time when the event, which Paul describes in numerous passages, happens or God’s Word is not true. Our hope in what we today call the “Rapture” rests upon what Scripture says will take place.
It’s a biblical event that cannot be combined with the Second Coming.
(Note: The Rapture will happen before the seven-year Tribulation. I have written many articles to that effect and spend many chapters in my book, The Triumph of the Redeemed, demonstrating why it must happen before this time of God’s wrath upon the earth.)
The Rapture is something we read about in passages such as 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17.
“For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.”
Our hope as New Testament saints consists of the following sequence of events that the Bible tells us will happen quickly, almost simultaneously:
Jesus appears; He descends from heaven (1 Thessalonians 4:16; 1 John 3:2-3; Colossians 1:4).
There’s a “cry of command” and the shout of the archangel (1 Thessalonians 4:16).
The “trumpet of God” sounds (1 Thessalonians 4:16).
Jesus raises the dead in Christ and joins them the souls that He brings with Him at His appearing (1 Thessalonians 4:14-16; 1 Corinthians 15:52).
Believers living at the time of Jesus’ appearing receive their immortal bodies (1 Thessalonians 4:17; 1 Corinthians 15:50-54; Philippians 3:20-21; Romans 8:23-25).
Jesus takes His bride, the church, to the place He’s prepared for them in His Father’s house (John 14:2-3, 17:24; Colossians 3:4). We appear with Jesus in glory.
The Rapture is a biblical event. The Lord will catch us up to be with Him someday and just like Enoch, I believe that most of us will still be alive when this happens.
REMEMBER THAT THE RAPTURE IS OUR GOSPEL HOPE
Unfortunately, many people today divorce the Rapture from the Gospel, but this was not the case in New Testament times.
1 Thessalonians 1:9-10 tells us that Paul’s initial proclamation of the Gospel in Thessalonica included the fact of Jesus’ appearing to take believers away from the earth before a future time of wrath, which he later described as the “Day of the Lord:”
“For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.”
Their conversion story consisted not only of turning to God and away from idols, but also that of waiting for Jesus’ appearing (AKA, the Rapture).
Pay close attention to the words in Romans 8:23-24a:
“And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved.”
The Rapture is when we will receive our immortal bodies (hence “the redemption of our bodies”). Notice what the apostle says about our anticipation of this event, “For in this hope we were saved.” The Rapture is an essential aspect our Gospel hope.
Jesus often promised eternal life to those who would believe in Him and talked about His return for us in the Upper Room as He prepared His disciples for life without His physical presence. The apostles, especially Paul, later added more details about our hope under the inspiration for the Holy Spirit.
The Rapture is either described or clearly alluded to in these New Testament texts: John 14:2-3; Philippians 3:20-21; Colossians 3:4; 1 Corinthians 1:7, 15:51-57; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-8; Titus 2:11-15; Hebrews 9:28; James 5:7-8; 1 Peter 1:13; 1 John 3:2-3, and Revelation 3:10-11a. 22:12, 20.
The Rapture was hardly an afterthought in the minds of the apostles as they proclaimed the Gospel.
HOLD TIGHTLY TO THE LORD FOR STRENGTH
It’s not easy being an Enoch in today’s world. It requires courage to hold on to our beliefs in Jesus’ imminent appearing amid ridicule from the world and from other believers.
CNN recently posted an article that mocks the Rapture by telling someone’s story about the anxiety it caused her. This woman, however, does not understand the Gospel message nor what Scripture says about our hope in Jesus’ appearing.
Of course, if people think their salvation depends on their good behavior and they never hear about the glories ahead for them in eternity, teachings about a sudden disappearance from all the things they love on earth will scare them. But that is NOT the Gospel nor is it the Gospel hope that we find throughout the New Testament.
One more thought about the CNN hit piece on the Rapture. Perhaps it’s an indication that Satan knows Jesus’ appearing will happen very, very soon and desires to get ahead of the curve by attacking it.
All this fierce opposition to our hope means that we must continually rely on Christ for our strength as we cling to the words of Scripture. The numerous passages I cited above confirm that the Rapture in a biblical event. Don’t lose hope.
I know it’s not easy waiting for the Lord to return for us; I also struggle with the wait at times. I never thought we would remain on the earth so close to the seven-year Tribulation, but here we are.
The longer the wait, the more we need the Lord’s help in order to persevere in our hope of Jesus’ soon return.
The example of Enoch encourages us to endure amid the opposition to our hope that we encounter at every turn. And, we will not have to wait until we are 365 years old for it to happen.
Furthermore, the Lord will reward our faith despite the seemingly long, long wait.
THERE’S A SURE REWARD FOR LOVING JESUS’ APPEARING
God rewarded Enoch for his faith. He took him long before He judged the ancient world and included his name in Hebrew 11, a chapter that many regard as the hall of fame for faith. And, he has been with the Lord all these millennia.
For those of us who dare to be like Enoch in our walk of faith, there will be special reward for maintaining our hope in Jesus’ imminent appearing. In 2 Timothy 4:8, Paul wrote:
Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.
When Jesus comes for His church, He will take all born again saints to His Father’s house in heaven just as He promises us in John 14:2-3. However, in 2 Timothy 4:8, the apostle tells us there will be a special “crown of righteousness” for those who long for or love His appearing, even if they, like Paul, die before the Rapture.
The Lord will reward those who persevere in holding on to their belief in the pre-Tribulation Rapture despite the wait.
I realize that “dare to be an Enoch” doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as does “dare to be a Daniel.” I thought about “endeavor to be an Enoch” or “emulating Enoch,” but such phrases don’t convey the boldness required to be an Enoch today.
Enoch stood out in the ancient world because of his faith, which included a belief in the Second Coming of Jesus, which still hasn’t happened. We also please the Lord as we hold tightly to the Gospel message of grace and expectantly long for Jesus’ appearing to take us home.
I will close with the words of Romans 1:16-17:
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”
Hold tightly to your anticipation of Jesus’ soon appearing. Jesus will come for us very, very soon. He will not disappoint us and He will most certainly reward us for our perseverance and endurance as we eagerly await His appearing.
My book, The Triumph of the Redeemed-An eternal Perspective that Calms Our Fears in Perilous Times, is available on Amazon.
Ed Hindson, Future Glory (Eugene, Oregon: Harvest House Publishers, 2021), p. 14.
Be praying for the people of Florida and also Cuba as they clear up after the Hurricane.
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The Jewish civil new year 5783 has come and gone, and to many, it was a bit of a disappointment that the Rapture didn’t take place on Rosh Hashanah (Yom T’ruah or the Day of Trumpets) this year. I am of those who expect the Rapture imminently, but I also understand that we cannot know the day or the hour of that event when Yeshua will come in the sky and call the believers up before the Tribulation. But after Rosh Hashanah comes Yom Kippur, and we should continue to pay close attention. So, how does that relate to Yom Kippur, the Great Tribulation and the Antichrist?
As I have explained before, I see a connection between Rosh Hashanah and the Rapture, Yom Kippur and the Great Tribulation and Sukkot (Tabernacles) and the Millennial Kingdom. The Fall Feasts have a thematic connection to the end times not necessitating an exact day fulfillment. In fact, all the Levitical Feasts of the Lord found in Leviticus 23 have a prophetic significance as it pertains to the redemptive career of the Messiah. It is quite beautiful to behold when we connect all the dots. But again, Rosh Hashanah is behind us, and we are now in the ten days of awe in preparation for the most solemn day of Yom Kippur known as the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16).
Rabbis teach that the fate of all Jews is decided on Yom T’ruah (The Day of Trumpets), but it isn’t sealed until Yom Kippur. This is a time of introspection and repentance when Jewish people go out of their way to seek forgiveness from anyone they might have hurt throughout the year. The sabbath that falls within these ten days is known as Shabbat Shuvah (the Sabbath of repentance).
Leviticus 23:26-32 tells us that the Day of Atonement is all about repentance, humility and affliction: 26 “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 27 “On exactly the tenth day of this seventh month is the day of atonement; it shall be a holy convocation for you, and you shall humble your souls and present an offering by fire to the Lord. 28 You shall not do any work on this same day, for it is a day of atonement, to make atonement on your behalf before the Lord your God. 29 If there is any person who will not humble himself on this same day, he shall be cut off from his people. 30 As for any person who does any work on this same day, that person I will destroy from among his people. 31 You shall do no work at all. It is to be a perpetual statute throughout your generations in all your dwelling places. 32 It is to be a sabbath of complete rest to you, and you shall humble your souls; on the ninth of the month at evening, from evening until evening you shall keep your sabbath.”
Yom Kippur is a very serious and solemn day on the Jewish calendar, possibly the most important of the year for Jewish people. It is never referred to as a feast but rather, as a fast. It is known by several names, including Yom Kippur: The Day of Atonement, Shabbat Shabbaton: The Sabbath of Sabbaths (Leviticus 16:31, and Yom Hakippurim: The Day of Atonements (Leviticus 23:27). It is the holiest day on the Jewish calendar and is the only time that a day other than the Sabbath is also called a sabbath.
Biblically, Yom Kippur is never connected to a fast, but based on Leviticus 23:27-29, the rabbis decided that the “affliction” of the soul must refer to abstinence from food. According to Judaism on this day of judgment, all deeds–good or bad– are weighed in heaven and God inscribes one’s name in one of three books (Wicked, In-Between or Righteous), sealing their fate for the next year until the next Yom Kippur. The basic rabbinic principle of Yom Kippur is that man can atone for his own sins through works. It relies heavily on the affliction of the body. Yom Kippur is a time when Jewish people experience affliction of the body more than the traditional affliction of the soul. It includes no eating or drinking. No washing or bathing. No anointing (creams, ointments, perfume). No leather shoes (luxury items). No sexual relations with spouse.
Yom Kippur is a day of repentance and expiation of sins by God, also based on Ezekiel 33:19: But when the wicked turns from his wickedness and practices justice and righteousness, he will live by them. The book of Jonah is also read to teach that you cannot run from God and that God will forgive whoever repents like the Ninevites. It is found in three passages of the Torah: Leviticus 16:1- 34; Leviticus 23:26-32 and Numbers 29:7-11. In the Torah, it served three purposes: To cleanse the people and the Tabernacle, to remind Israel of her national standing before God, and to call for individual repentance.
Leviticus 16:1-34 details the duties of the High Priest and serves as the foundation for 16:11, “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atonement.”
Yom Kippur will be fulfilled by the Great Tribulation also known as The Time of Jacob’s Trouble and will culminate with Israel’s national Atonement in the Tribulation.
Ezekiel 20:33-38 sets the stage, “33 As I live,” declares the Lord God, “surely with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm and with wrath poured out, I shall be king over you. 34 I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you from the lands where you are scattered, with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm and with wrath poured out; 35 and I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there I will enter into judgment with you face to face. 36 As I entered into judgment with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so I will enter into judgment with you,” declares the Lord God. 37 “I will make you pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant; 38 and I will purge from you the rebels and those who transgress against Me; I will bring them out of the land where they sojourn, but they will not enter the land of Israel. Thus you will know that I am the Lord.
God will purge rebels and regenerate willing unbelievers who seek the righteousness of God through Yeshua the Messiah. This will bring about Israel’s national regeneration. The key word biblically and rabbinically is “affliction,” both of the soul and the body. On Yom Kippur, atonement was made for the nation, not the individual through the sacrifice of the two goats. But national atonement was not achieved unless there was an affliction of the soul at the individual level. Two other key passages to be considered for Yom Kippur’s fulfillment are Hosea 5:15-6:3) and Zechariah 12:10-13:1).
During the seven-year Great Tribulation, “left behind Israel” will suffer the affliction of the body as two-thirds of all Jewish people alive at that time will perish (Zechariah 13:8-9) (Hosea 5:15). Additionally, Zechariah 12:10) and Hosea 6:1-3, speak of the spiritual affliction of Israel that will lead to a corporate acceptance of Yeshua as the Messiah of Israel and will usher the physical Second Coming of Yeshua.
There is a beautiful prophetic connection between all the feasts of the Lord and the end times. Believers should really be excited about what is to come and how God has perfectly linked it to His “yearly convocations” but when it comes to Yom Kippur, we all need to reflect. What is so exciting about billions left behind to suffer and die, including half of the world population and within those numbers, two-thirds of the Jewish people alive at that time?
We look forward to the Rapture and rightfully so, and we look forward to the 1,000-year Messianic kingdom on earth when we will tabernacle with God in the flesh. Accordingly, none of us look forward to the Tribulation since we will be taken out before it starts. Yet, we need to think of all those left behind at the mercy of the Antichrist. Things will start with a promising peace treaty (Daniel 9:26-27), but soon the Antichrist will turn on people and demand to be worshipped as god. People will either take the Mark of the Beast and survive the Tribulation, only to be doomed to eternal torment in the Lake of Fire for rejecting Yeshua, or they will reject the Mark and become Tribulation martyrs.
The Tribulation is as certain to happen as the Rapture will. We are still here on earth, and people who don’t know Yeshua are also around us. Now is the time to be bold with the Gospel because the clock is really ticking. If any of the five red heifers turn out to be kosher, we could see the ashes of that animal come to Jerusalem within one year (a plot of land on the Mount of Olives has already been purchased for the sacrifice of the animal). Then, all we need is for the Temple to be rebuilt, and I believe that the Antichrist and his peace treaty with Israel will be instrumental in that part.
Be encouraged to know that any Jewish man you share the Gospel with now could potentially become one of the 144,000 Jewish men used by God to change the world during the Great Tribulation. Now is not the time to be quiet. We know the whole story; we know the players and we know the end. The victory is ours, so, let’s share the Gospel with those who need to become members of the blessed Body of Messiah!
ARE YOU READY??
“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”(1st Thessalonians 4:16 -17)
Very familiar verses for all prophecy writers and readers alike has been the subject of much debate and confusion over the last 150 years. Many critics believe that this verse is talking about the church being taken up in the air at the seventh trump that the seventh angel blows to signal the bowl judgments spoken of in Revelation chapter 16. That would be a Post-Tribulation model. But are they right?
I had a brother in Christ, who at the very mention of the word “rapture”, became very irate and bellowed, loudly, quote “there is no scripture in the bible that speaks of a rapture.” end-quote. But is he right, or just ignorant of the fact that Paul and many writers pointed to a “catching away” of the church and there are found many instances in the bible that support that doctrine? You can find examples of this teaching in both New and Old Testaments. Let's take a journey through biblical chapters and see what we find, shall we?
Noting the above verse quoted in the start of this message, note the underlined words to “be caught up”. Are there any other verses in the bible with the same words that mean the same thing as this verse does? The Greek word for this phrase is “harpazo” #726 in Strong's Concordance that was translated into the Latin Vulgate as “rapiemur” and came from the derivative of the Greek word #138 in Strong's Concordance “haireomai” which literally means “to seize, catch away up, pluck, pull, or take by force”, hence the modern English word “rapture”, that often maligned word, that many in the conservative church movements equate with some type of emotional display or escape hatch for those who disbelieve the church goes through the Tribulation. Getting back, are there any other verses that use the exact same word used here of “harpazo”? Turn with me now to 2nd Corinthians:
“I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.12:3 And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;)12:4 How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.”(2nd Corinthians 12:2)
Paul is speaking of himself being caught into paradise and heard things, that I believe he shared with the church during his days when he wrote his epistles. He calls it a mystery...what is the word he used....? Correct, it was the Greek word,
"harpazo". Paul was snatched in the spirit into heaven. Paul uses the word twice. The Old Testament is full of the prophecies concerning the second coming of the Lord God at the end of the age, but in Paul's epistle, especially in this letter to the Corinthians and the Thessalonians, Paul speaks of a mystery that would not have been a mystery to those who studied the Torah or the major/minor prophets, but here refers to this mystery, or something that previously had not been known. And further, Paul equated it with the known Feast of Trumpets, referring the last trump that is blown at it's conclusion and not referring to John's description in Revelation, as John had not even written the last book of the Bible when Paul wrote these letters to the churches. So even in that respect, they are not the same trumpet and should not be confused with each other. One trumpet expresses indescribable joy and the one in Revelation heralds the beginning of indescribable horror that slays nearly all of mankind.
Now let's turn to another verse that speaks of this same snatching away, but in a different context.
(Matthew 11:12) , “And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence , and the violent take it by force .”
(Matthew 13:19) “When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side. “
Different context, but same meaning...to be snatched away, by force. Now another, found in Gospel of John it is used four different times.
“When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force , to make him a king, he departed again into a mountain himself alone.”(John 6:15)
12 “But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming , and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth : and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.”(John 10:28-29)
28 “And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish , neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
29 My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.
30 I and my Father are one.” (John 10:28-30)
Again, in Acts 23:10, Jude 1:23, Revelation 12:5 “And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.”
Let's not forget Phillip the apostle when he had baptized the Ethiopian eunuch after explaining who Isaiah chp. 53 was speaking of and revealed to Him that Jesus was the Messiah,
“And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.” (Acts, 8:39)
If you've been keeping count, that is 13 times in the New Testament including the ones I didn't quote , but gave reference to, that the word “Harpazo” is used and it means in every instance to be removed by force, without warning being snatched away...not each mention of the Greek word “Harpazo” has to do with with the mystery that Paul speaks of, but it shows that the word was used repeatedly to speak of with the same definition and example.
WHAT ABOUT THE OLD TESTAMENT?
Good question. Is there anything that can point to a parallel word that has the same meaning used in Greek in these passages found in also in the Old Testament.? Matter of fact, there is. There a examples of men being “snatched up” and removed from this earth. Let's start with the earliest known example in Genesis:22 "And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters:
23 And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years:
24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.” (Genesis 5:22-24)
Here the word for the underlined phrase “took him ” is the Hebrew word #3947 in Strong's, “leqach” which means to “receive, reserve, seize, send for, take away, or fetch”.
Paul speaks of Enoch this way in the book of Hebrews:
“By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away (translated him). For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.” ( Hebrews 11:5)
The word used for “translated, or taken him away” is the Greek word, metatithemi, Strongs #3346, which means “transport, exchange, change sides, carry over, change, remove”. Scoffers will use the passage in verse 13 of that same chapter,13 “These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.” (Hebrews 5:13)
But to use that verse as proof that Enoch died contradicts verse 5, and the bible cannot contradict itself. So Enoch was “snatched away, removed” from this earth alive and did NOT see death, but verse 13 applies to all others who lived by faith.
Another example is the prophet Elijah and we will turn to 2nd Kings
“ And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.” ( 2nd Kings chapter 2:1)
And as we read down “And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.”(2nd Kings 2:11)
What is the Hebrew word for the phrase “would take up” in verse 1 of the above passage? It's the word and the equivalent word as used in the example of Enoch, as this word is “Leqach” used to describe the snatching away of Enoch. Some will make a convoluted argument that both men are dead and died in faith, but they use logic that is beyond their grasp of the infinite, not believing that God is Sovereign and He can do whatever He wishes to do, apart from their finite analogies. They will use “did not see death” and try to explain the second death. That's stretching the meaning of the text and we have no clue to do so. It's best to take what the Word says literally and not add your own meaning, by adding or subtracting from God's message. They will say that he lived 365 years and no longer, but you can't count eternity, because it's without time. So again, they try to rationalize their preconceived ideas to support their doctrine of “believers in Jesus Christ” not being removed bodily from this earth in an instant....or the bible says, in the “twinkling of an eye.”
Note that we have covered Enoch, Elijah, Phillip, Paul, our Lord and Savior, and finally the Church itself, the bride of Christ being described with the words “snatched up, or plucked by force” from the earth.
But still the critics will not believe. I point them to some passages that mirror each other and tell us why these examples were given to us. First is Isaiah:
“Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.
20 Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.
21 For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.”(Isaiah 26:19-21,)
And her companion verse, spoken of by my Lord,
“In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.”(John chapter 14:2-4)
What do these companion verses say to you? They tell me that Jesus will bring us unto Himself and we will be rewarded a mansion in the New Jerusalem, as He promised. There we will wait for the indignation, or His wrath to be over-past or to subside. These verses speak of resurrection, changing from mortal to immortal, and not being present when His wrath comes upon this earth, both the resurrected dead in Christ, and the living who are both changed as Paul spoke of in the very first verses of this message.
THE DOCTRINE OF THE RAPTURE IS A MODERN ONE?
In recent years, many opponents of the pre-tribulation rapture view have made dogmatic assertions that this view was never taught before 1820 A.D. There have been attempts to attribute the origin of this view to John N. Darby.... but this is false and misleading. Ephraem the Syrian wrote, in 373 AD, "For all the saints and Elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins." ... revealing that the early church fathers themselves were indeed teaching this.
This text was originally a sermon called “On the Last Times, the Anti-Christ, and the End of the World.” There are four existing Latin manuscripts (the Parisinus, the Augiensis, the Barberini, and the St. Gallen) ascribed to St. Ephraem or to St. Isidore . Some scholars believe this text was written by some unknown writer in the sixth century and was derived from the original Ephraem manuscript.
The sermon describes the events of the last days, beginning with the rapture, the Great Tribulation of 3 1/2 years duration under the Antichrist's rule, followed by the Second Coming of Christ. In Ephraem's book “The Book of the Cave of Treasures”, written about 370 A.D., he expressed his belief that the 69th week of Daniel ended with the rejection and crucifixion of Jesus the Messiah. Although this does not prove that the doctrine of the Rapture is correct, it does show that even early Church Theologians were teaching this and it is NOT a modern device of an immature girl and John Darby, as some claim, but a doctrine of the early church.
The glorified Jesus, the Great I AM, that I AM spoke of this in the His precious Word, as Ephraem the Syrian did, when our Lord spoke in Revelation:
“Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.”(Revelation 3:10)
As I have hammered home the interpretation of what Jesus was telling John, that the Greek word for “Will keep thee from” is the Greek Word “EK” which literally means to be taken from the time and period of the event. That abolishes the theory that the church goes “through” the coming Tribulation, instead of as Jesus spoke, to be removed from the time of the event.
Paul echoes what Jesus spoke to John some 30 years later, when he penned these verses,
“But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.
9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.”(1st Thessalonians 5:8-10)
POINT AND COUNTERPOINT!!
The Church is a specific group of believers in Jesus Christ. It is not a building ... nor is it any particular denomination or religion. It is also known as the Body of Christ. The Living Church of God is a living organism that began at Pentecost -- see Acts 2:1-4 and culminates at the rapture -- see 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18. It does not include anyone who was a believer prior to or after the two above-mentioned events. The terms saints or elect refer to another specific group of believers. This group includes all the Old Testament saints, as well as those who become believers in Christ after the rapture. I've made many references in past messages that the Tribulation is designed for two things, and two things only and that is:
-Pouring out of God's wrath on an unrepentant, and rebellious world,
-refining Israel as silver is refined in the fire....and we are NOT included in that refining. Why?
Because there is no need, as Jesus paid it all at the cross, and to think otherwise smacks of “catholic purgatory” that Jesus blood and sacrifice just was not sufficient to fully save the sinner. A serious mistake by a past ruling Theocracy.
There is a marked difference in the Bible when you look at references to the Church compared with references to the saints or the elect. The Church is always referred to in very narrow and distinct terms, whereas the saints or the elect are always referred to in very broad terms. More pointed, however, is the fact that the word Church never appears again after Revelation 3:22 -- you'll only see the words “saints or the elect” mentioned throughout the rest of the book -- and this is directly after a very significant reference to this “catching away by force” , that Jesus mentions in Revelation 3:10
ASSESSMENT and CONCLUSIONS
What is the tribulation? It is the wrath of God. When does it start? When the first seal is broken in chapter 6 of Revelation by our Lord, Jesus Christ. What are we not appointed to? We are not appointed to wrath, but salvation through Him, Jesus Christ our Lord. How will the tribulation begin to commence? When the Church of God is removed out of the way. Isaiah 26:19 we covered above, and in 2nd Thessalonians
“For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let (the Holy Spirit), until he be taken out of the way.
2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.” (2nd Thessalonians 2:7-10)
But forewarning to those who belong to a “church”...these bible verses who speak of the removal of the CHURCH will not be everyone who sits in pew, or says some “hail marys” in some repetitive fashion, or think their pope, priest, or their pastor can usher them into God's Kingdom. It's not about being Catholic, or Protestant or something somewhere in between. It is solely dependent on the application of the blood of Jesus Christ to your life and clothing your spirit with His Righteousness. There are many verses that point solely to Jesus Christ being the “Way, the Truth and the Life”. No man can come to the Father in Heaven except through Him. All roads do not lead to eternal life, but believing in your heart of hearts and accepting His free pardon for your sins through Grace and faith in the only Begotten Son of God.
“For God so loved the world, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17, God sent not His Son to condemn the world, but the world through Him might be saved.” (John 3:16-17)
God has given us example after example. He has given us story after story to show the TRUE children of God being removed out of the way. He has given us words to show that HE WILL remove the TRUE, blood washed church before His wrath is poured out on this earth. How much more clear does He need to be? When someone remarks, “the rapture is not found in the bible”, then my reader, you can direct them to passages that show they misunderstand. And if they still don't get it, then that's Ok...you can explain it to them on your way up to meet the Lord in the air
“Believe on the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt be saved” Don't be left behind when all hell breaks loose on this earth in the coming Tribulation, which may be sooner than anyone cares to think of....maybe even this year??? Are you ready?
This is Pastor Mike Taylor, praying God's salvation in your life and to ready for the soon return of our King of kings, and Lord of lords, Jesus Christ, our Savior. If there is anything I can help you with, pray with you about, or just listen, email me at
firstname.lastname@example.org . Or visit me online at
, for more messages based on the Word of God. God bless you all, Till we meet at Jesus Feet.
Hi Lawrence, glad you found us, I'm glad Amir opened the comments, just to say hello to him.
It's great to have someone localish on the website, I used to work in Kinghorn many decades ago decorating a nursing home.
We don't have any prophecy led churches here in Helensburgh too. It's disheartening not having fellowship locally with likeminded believers.
Christians here looks at you as a mad man if you mention end time events.
I think we must follow the same kind of preachers online.