Tanak Foundations-Concpets on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 26

We know that the False Messiah is “himself also an eighth and is one of the seven” (Rev 17.11). The “seven” are Egypt, Babylon, Assyria, Medo-Persia, Greece, Rome and the seventh is Revived Rome. Remember this because we are going to see other references to “the seven shepherds” and so on. These ten horns are not the heads of their countries but they receive authority from their home countries “as kings” with the beast for “one hour” (a short time). Some sort of disaster occurred and these ten representatives are sent to a meeting where the False Messiah is present, but he is not the False Messiah yet. No country does this sort of theing unless there is an extreme emergency.

In the book, “Prophecies in the Book of Esther” by Joseph Good, Hatikva Ministries, p. 86-87, we have some insight into why there are ten kings. They will be related to what is called the “Decem Viri” of ancient Rome, meaning “Ten Men.” Good writes, “Rome was founded and settled around 753 B.C.E. After a few kings, the citizens of Rome grew tired of the tyrants who had ruled. This caused the ancient Romans to form a republic. However, a problem persisted for several years, clashes between the two classes. The Patricians were wealthy and powerful. The Plebians were poor and over taxed. Each group had to serve in the military, but representation from the Plebian caste was limited. This led to a series of disputes between the two classes which lasted many years. During one such dispute, the Plebians withdrew to one of the hills of Rome ans settled, insulating themselves from the Patricians. From this the Plebians formed a group known as the Tribunal. At first the Tribunes were two men, but the Tribunal later grew to include at least ten. After many more disputes with the Patricians, the Plebians commissioned the Decem Viri, ten men, to write a code of laws that would protect their rights and the rights of all Roman citizens.

“The Decem Viri were not nobles. They represented a society promising to give legal protection that was much needed. The group formed about 450 B.C.E and remained for less than two years. The legal code they compiled was called the Twelve Tablets because the codes were written on twelve separate tablets of clay. The actual tablets have not survived, but the laws written on them have survived centuries. These laws, developed by the Romans, were among the most complete and complex system of laws in the ancient world. The laws have likewise strongly influenced the character of the laws in virtually every nation of Western Europe, with the exception of England.”

“Following the fall of the Roman Empire, and through the Middle Ages, the ancient laws fell into disuse. However, late in the eleventh century, the ancient Roman law was rediscovered and studied by scholars. Today, even the United States has been influenced by this old code. For example, the ancient Tribunes had the power to forbid certain action on part of the Roman Senate, comprised of Patricians. By calling out, “Veto” (I forbid) action could be stopped. The veto has become a powerful part of the legal system of the United States.”

“The Decem Viri provided a service to Rome. However, their corruption and misuse of power forced them from this position less than two years after their commission. This corresponds directly to the False Messiah as described in Daniel and Revelation as having ten kings who direct his empire.” The “ten” can be seen in Dan 7.7-8, 24; Rev 13.1, 17.12. They will have “one purpose and they give their power and authority to the beast” (Rev 17.13). With that in mind, let’s look at a brief overview of the Birth-pains.

The False Messiah comes to power in “one hour” (Rev 17.12) and this panic could only be caused by the fear caused by the destruction of Babylon (USA-Rev 17.10, 15). The ones that destroyed Babylon will also attack Israel three years later, called the invasion of Gog and Magog (Russia and her allies in Ezek 38-39). Europe will enter into a three year war with Gog and Magog (Isa 20.1-6 prophecy-more on this later).

We have seen in the teaching “Is America Babylon” on this site that Babylon is the USA, but there will be other nations represented by ancient terms. Another way of seeing this is the Scriptures have what is called the “Code of Nations.” For example, in Ezek 38.17-18 we are told that this invasion is “in that day” or the Day of the Lord. We are also told, “Are you the one of whom I spoke in former days through my servants the prophets of Israel who prophesied in those days for years that I would bring you against them?”

But now we have a problem. Before this chapter we do not have any Scriptures about Gog and Magog. So, how can God say he has spoken about Gog and Magog for years through the prophets? Where is it? The ancient scholars of Israel asked the same question.

In the book, “Everyman’s Talmud” by Abraham Cohen it says in a comment on Isa 9.7 that “the Holy One wished to make Hezekiah the Messiah and Sennacherib Gog and Magog.” Now, God never wished to make Hezekiah the Messiah, that was rabbinical thought, but it tells us something. The Assyrian king Sennacherib was seen as a picture of Gog and Magog. This concept can also be seen in the Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 94a.

If you compare what is said about Gog and Magog in Ezekiel 38 and 39 and what is said about the invasion of Israel by Assyria in Isaiah, Micah, 2 Kings and 2 Chronicles, you will find that the two match. You can even go to Josephus and find out what happened during the Assyrian invasion with Sennacherib. Everything you need to know about the invasion of Gog and Magog was previously described with the invasion by Assyria, thus giving us insight into Ezek 38.17. Ezekiel only gives us two chapters, but these other books give us many chapters. Eschatologically, Assyria is Russia (Gog and Magog).

So, we have seen that Babylon is the United States, Assyria is Gog and Magog and Egypt will be a picture of Europe and the False Messiah (Leviathan, Rahab, Pharaoh). We have said before that “Cush” could be either Ethiopia or Mesopotamia, depending on the context.

After the destruction of Babylon (USA) there will be survivors who were outside of the country when the attack came. These survivors will join themselves to Europe and the kingdom of the False Messiah (Rev 17.3). eventually, he will turn against these survivors (Rev 17.16). Who are these survivors? They will be the U.S. military and government agents outside of the country, They will be tourists, business people and others who are outside of the country. Once the destruction hits the mainland of the United States, they will have no other place to go. Naturally, they will find refuge and support in Europe because many have European ancestry and they speak English there. The military will come under NATO agreements.

In Isa 20.1-6 we see an Assyrian officer coming from Sargon to Ashdod, and he captures it. Yehovah spoke to Isaiah and told him to go “naked and barefoot.” He then said, “Just as my servant Isaiah has gone naked and barefoot three years as a sign and token against Egypt (Europe) and Cush (Babylon, or the survivors of the attack on the USA), so the King of Assyria will lead away the captives of Egypt and the exiles of Cush, young and old, naked and barefoot with buttocks uncovered to the shame of Egypt. Then they shall be dismayed and ashamed because of Cush their hope and Egypt their boast. So the inhabitants of this coast land will say in that day (the Day of the Lord), ‘Behold, such is our hope, where we fled for help to be delivered from the King of Assyria, and we, how shall we escape?'”

This chapter tells us in the Sowd level (hidden, secret) that the False Messiah and the “exiles” from Cush (USA) will be fighting a three year war with Russia (Assyria/Gog and Magog) and will be losing. We know that Egypt was called the “iron furnace” in Deut 4.20; Jer 11.4 and 1 Kings 8.51. After the Holocaust in Europe and the iron furnaces of the concentration camps, the remaining Jews left for the land of Israel and they called it the “Exodus.” A movie by that name was made with Paul Newman that had this “Exodus” as a theme.

In Psa 74.13-14 we have Leviathan (Rev 13.1) and it will be a picture of the False Messiah. It talks about how Yehovah “broke the heads” (plural) of Leviathan (Pharaoh) at the Red Sea and being delivered from Egypt. What does Pharaoh have on his crown? A “serpent” or cobra. So, we have seen that Babylon is the United States, Egypt is Europe, Assyria is Russia and Gog and Magog, and Israel is Israel.

In Part 27 we will pick up here with more concepts on this.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 25

Isa 18.4-7 says, “For so the Lord said to me, ‘I will take my rest (rest is “M’nuchah” which is also a term for the Messianic Kingdom and the Olam Haba in Heb 4.1-11), and I will look from my dwelling place like a clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.’ For before the harvest, when the bud is perfect and the sour grape is ripening in the flower, he will both cut off the sprigs with pruning hooks and take away and cut down the branches. They will be left together for the mountain birds of prey and for the beasts of the earth; the birds of prey will summer on them, and all the beasts of the earth will winter on them. In that time a present will be brought to the Lord of Hosts from a people tall and smooth, and from a people terrible from their beginning onward, a nation powerful and treading down, whose land the rivers divide (the meaning of Mesopotamia) to the place of the name of the Lord of hosts, to Mount Zion.”

What present is being brought? Some teach this is talking about the Ark of the Covenant being brought from Ethiopia. However, the area being talked about here is “Cush” of Mesopotamia. We don’t believe this at all. We believe the Ark is already in Jerusalem beneath the Temple Mount. We have shown this in another teaching on this website called “Temple 201-Where is the Ark of the Covenant.”

So, again, what is being brought? It is the Basar (gospel) being brought back to the Jewish people. This is the “real gospel” not the Replacement Theology gospel that is being taught today. Most Christians who will read this statement will not have any idea what we are talking about. Why? Because they have been taught this “other gospel” of Replacement Theology and that is all they know.

This true gospel follows the pattern of Yeshua. He ministered in Israel for three and a half years first because he was sent to the “lost sheep of the house of Israel” not to the non-Jew. After he is resurrected he sends out his talmidim into the nations and the non-Jews. Paul said the basar was “to the Jew first, then the non-Jew” (Rom 1.16). We will have the same pattern in the Birth-pains with the 144,000. They will go to Israel first and carry the basar message because they have a double anointing. Paul said he was “born out of time” in 1 Cor 15.8 because he saw that his ministry to the non-Jews was like the 144,000 in the last days.

In the first three and a half years of the Birth-pains Israel is going to have all sorts of things happen and the 144,000 will minster in Israel. At the mid-point Israel has believed in Yeshua for six months, since the defeat of Gog and Magog (Russia). Israel will flee into the wilderness on Nisan 10 when the False Messiah claims to be God and desecrates the Temple. They will be there for the remaining three and a half years and be out of the picture (Rev 12.1-17). Then the 144,000 are sent to the non-Jews in the nations, just like in the first century, but can’t be stopped (Mic 5.7-9). So, we are going to look at another portion of Scripture that alludes to the 144,000 and is directly linked to Rosh Ha Shanah and the timing of the resurrection of the righteous.

In Isa 6.1-13 we will see something very similar to Rev 4, which is a Rosh Ha Shanah passage. We have the Lord high and lifted up and the court is seated, so we know it is Rosh Ha Shanah. Angels take burning coals and Isaiah’s sins are forgiven. He hears the voice of the Lord asking, “Whom shall I send and who will go for us?” He is looking for a shaliach like in Isa 18.2. Isaiah is seeing a vision that alludes to the 144,000 and he volunteers to go. We see what the 144,000 will be doing in this passage (v 9-10). Isaiah asks, “How long” and he is told in Isa 6.11-13. This is a picture of the commission of the 144,000.

The last ten kings of Judah tell us about what happens in the Birth-pains, and we discussed this at the end of our teaching on Second Kings. Isaiah sees this vision just as King Uzziah dies and it is before Uzziah’s son Yotham begins to reign. Uzziah is the last king before the last ten kings of Judah, that means in the eschatological sense, Uzziah is a picture of the days leading up to the Birth-pains, so this vision is right at the beginning of the Day of the Lord (Rosh Ha Shanah) and Isaiah’s commission alludes to the commission of the 144,000 which also occurs at the beginning of the Day of the Lord (Rev 14.4 as “first fruits”).

The rise of the False Messiah is directly linked to the fall of Babylon (USA). The fear caused by the destruction of Babylon (USA) in one hour creates a panic in Europe where it is feared that the same fate will fall on them unless they act immediately. The False Messiah is the one to keep your eye on when it comes to when the Natzal (Rapture) occurs. The Scriptures are full of information about the False Messiah and you can go to our teaching called “Torah and New Testament Foundations-The False Messiah” on this website for more information.

The fall of Babylon is discussed in Rev 18.1-19 and we see fear and panic in verses 9-19. Rev 17.11-12 says, “And the beast that was, and is not, is himself also an eighth, and is one of the seven, and is going into perdition (destruction). The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast.” The beast is the seven-headed beast of Rev 13.1 of “Leviathan.” We will develop these concepts out later.

Dan 9.26 says, “The people of the prince who is to come” and that “prince” is the False Messiah. He is of the people who destroyed the city of Jerusalem and the Temple. We know that the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple and Dan 9.27 says, “He (the prince who is to come) shall confirm the covenant with many (Jews) for one week (a shavuah of seven years) and in the midst of the week (1260 days into the Birth-pains, the exact halfway point of Nisan 10) he will cause the sacrifice and the oblation (in the temple) to cease, and on the wing of abominations will come one who makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed is poured out on the one who makes desolate.”

Now, Rome is Europe and we know the False Messiah will come out of Europe. The merchants who were made rich by Babylon in Rev 18.11-19 is seen as Kittim in a book called “The Book of Isaiah” from Judaica Press, Vol 1 on Isa 23.1. Kittim were merchants who dwelt with Babylon, and Kittim was how you said Rome, or “Europe.” This is confirmed in Dan 11.30 where it says, “Ships from Kittim will come against him.” They are talking about Gaius Popillius Laernas who was a Roman ambassador. He was sent to Antiochus Epiphanes IV (a picture of the False Messiah) in ships. Laernas told Antiochus to abort his attack on Alexandria. He drew a circle around Antiochus and told him to decide what he was going to do before he left the circle. Antiochus withdrew but would come back later. This verse conforms that Kittim is Rome (Europe). The fear and panic by the merchants of Europe (Kittim) over the destruction of Babylon (USA) is what catapults the False Messiah into power.

Rev 17.11-13 tells us that the ten horns are not the heads of their countries (v 12), but they will give their power and authority to the beast, not knowing he is the False Messiah. There must be a meeting where the main powers in Europe gather to discuss what to do after the USA is destroyed. The False Messiah is in that meeting and he has a plan, but they must act quickly. So the main powers (ten of them) give him power to confront the crisis because there is no time to go pack to their individual governing assemblies to ratify what he wants. So, they do it and this vaults him into power.

In Part 26 we will pick up here.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 24

In order to understand how events “play out” we need to go over Jewish eschatology. One of the problems we will have doing this is we will make statements we can’t prove right away, but they can be proven. For example, the war of Gog and Magog can be established as to when it happens. It will start on a Rosh Ha Shanah and end on a Yom Kippur at the end of the third year, going into the fourth year, of the Birth-pains. It has to do with the coming of the False Messiah and the Jews fleeing into the Jordanian wilderness six months later.

Because we will not be studying these certain events, we will be making statements related to these events but will not be taking the time to go into each detail exactly. What we want is for you to get the general overview of it and have it in the back of your mind. So what we want to do now is give a brief overview of Jewish eschatology and the seven years of the Birth-pains using Jewish sources and references.

What have we seen so far? We have seen that the “Day of the Lord” will begin on Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001 from creation. All the righteous will be resurrected and caught up to heaven in the Natzal. These believers are called the “clouds of heaven.” The coronation of Messiah, and wedding of the Messiah and his Bride, will take place at that time, and Messiah and the Bride will enter the Wedding Chamber or “Chuppah” for the start of the Shavuah L’ Chuppah.

On earth, the average people (sinners or Chata’im”) and the wicked (Rashim) are left behind. The 144,000 are anointed witnesses that will be set aside at this time. They are seen in two passages from the book of Revelation alone, but they are also seen in passages in the Tanach. We are going to examine the 144,00 and we will begin to deal with that. From that point we will move forward into an overview of the Birth-pains.

Revelation 6 gives an overview of the entire contents of the “scroll” given to Yeshua at the coronation. Rev 7 begins to give detail. This can be compared to a house being viewed from the outside. After that, you go in and view the rooms one by one. This can be established by the first verses of Rev 6.1-4. Then look at Rev 7.1-3 and the 144,000.

Many believe the Book of Revelation is chronological but you can see right away it is not. In true “apocalyptic style” of the Jewish people shortly before and shortly after Yeshua, they will come in to give the “big picture” and then drop back and begin to examine the big picture piece by piece. That is not chronological. Notice that Rev 6.1-4 had death and war, but Rev 7.1-8 starts out by saying that before any harm can come to the earth, there is the sealing of the 144,00. So, Rev 7.1-8 must happen before Rev 6.1-4.

There are two passages that relate to the 144,000 in Revelation, Rev 7.1-8 and Rev 14.1-8. The 144,000 are the “first fruits” of the new age that has begun called the Atid Lavo (Rev 14.4) and they are the redeemed of the Lord after the resurrection of the righteous has occurred in the Natzal. This is established as they are called the “first fruits” (bikurim). They are redeemed from among men, being first fruits to God and to the Lamb. Also the “new song” (Messiah has come) is being sung by them. They sing, as it were, a new song before the throne. They have a message to the world, “having the everlasting basar (gospel) to preach to those who dwell on the earth, to every nation, tribe, tongue and people (Rev 14.6).” The destruction of Babylon is the next event and then we will have the rise of the False Messiah. Then we have those who worship him next after that.

Now, everything Yeshua and the first century talmidim taught could be established in the Tanak, so where can we establish the 144,000 from the Tanak? Let’s look for just a few of these. About a thousand years ago, Saadiah Gaon wrote 10 reasons for blowing the shofar on Rosh Ha Shanah. Reason 10 says, “To recall our faith in the future resurrection. As it is said, ‘All inhabitants of the world and dwellers on the earth:when he lifts up a standard on the mountains, you will see it; and when he blows the trumpet you will her it (Isa 18.3).'” In the peshat (literal) level by some commentators, this is talking about the Assyrians and judgment, but we are not going to look at that level right now because there is a deeper level (Sowd) in Isa 18.1-7, and we have just seen allusions to it in our passages in Revelation.

Notice that the phrase “all inhabitants of the world and dwellers (“on/in” is not in the original Hebrew but is implied) the earth” seems redundant. However, in Jewish thought, the inhabitants of the world is the living, and the dwellers in/on earth are the dead, and they are on the look out for the “banner” or “standard” that is to be lifted up and they will see it, a resurrection. The word “banner” is the word “nes” in Hebrew and it is a term used for the Messiah (Isa 5.26, 11.10, 11.12, 13.2). We also see that the “banner” was lifted on a mountain (Isa 13.2, 18.3).

Now, the “heavens” are called “shamayim” in Hebrew and it basically means “there is water.” In Greek there are two words, and one means “outer space” and the other means “the sky” with the clouds we see. This is the phrase that is used for the top of a mountain. When the banner (standard) is on a high mountain it will relate to the resurrection. In Isa 62.10 it says, “Go through, go through the gates (a Rosh Ha Shanah term)! Prepare the way for the people (like Elijah/Yochanon), build up, build up the highway, take out the stones (another reference to Elijah/Yochanon), lift up a banner (nes) for the peoples.” Jer 51.27 deals with the destruction of Babylon (USA), “Set up a banner (nes) in the land. Blow the trumpet among the nations! Prepare the nations against her, call the kingdoms together against her: Ararat, Minni and Ashkenaz. Appoint a general against her; cause the horses to come up like the bristling locusts.”

In these passages the destruction of Babylon is linked with the idea of a resurrection at the blowing of the shofar. Three passages (Isa 13.2, 18.3 and Jer 51.27) are in chapters that deal with the destruction of Babylon. Babylon is the USA in Bible prophecy and is destroyed withing the first 10 days of the Day of the Lord. So, the question remains, where are the 144,000 in the Tanak?

Isa 18.1-2 says, “Woe to the land shadowed with buzzing wings which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia (Cush/Mesopotamia) which sends ambassadors (shaliachim/apostles/sent ones) by sea, even in vessels of reed on the waters saying, ‘Go, swift messengers (malkim/angels), to a nation tall and smooth, to a people terrible from their beginning onward, a nation powerful and treading down; whose land the rivers divide (Mesopotamia).'”

Now, Cush can mean Ethiopia but it can also mean Mesopotamia. The father of Nimrod was Cush (Gen 10.8-12), and founded Babylon. Ibn Ezra wrote a commentary on this chapter and he said Isa 18 is talking about the region of Babylon and Assyria. So, in Isa 18.3 we have all the inhabitants of the world and dwellers on the earth, and when the Lord lifts up a banner on the mountains, they will see it. When he blows a shofar they will hear it. Notice that at the resurrection of the dead righteous, and the gathering of the living righteous, a shofar is heard and the Natzal is seen.

Now, who else sees and hears this? The ambassadors (shaliachim) and the messengers of Isa 18.2. They are some of the inhabitants of the earth at the time. This is the sign that Elijah gave to Elisha in 2 Kings 2.9-14. If Elisha sees Elijah being taken, then he would have a double anointing. So, the sign is the same with the 144,000 as with Elisha, “If you see them when they go” they will get a double portion of the anointing. We will see this anointing in another 144,000 passage in Mic 5.7-9 later. What makes the 144,000 the first fruits of the Birth-pains and the Atid Lavo? Obviously, they know the Scriptures and follow the Torah and so they have a Scriptural base, but they are not yet believers when the Natzal (Rapture/gathering) happens. They are the first to be saved during the Birth-pains, so they are “first fruits.”

They will see the Natzal and the resurrection and hear the shofar and become believers. They will be anointed to carry the message of God (the Basar/gospel) to the world, and they will be anointed with a double anointing of Elijah, and that is one reason the story of Elijah and Elisha is given to us.

We will pick up here in Part 25.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 23

There is a second stage of the wedding process called the “Kiddushin” where there is another contract called the “Ketubah.” This contract is where the bride is brought to the groom and they enter into a full marriage. They are already husband and wife at the betrothal, and to dissolve the betrothal would require a divorce called a “Get.” But now they are “married” in its fullest sense. This going to be related to the Messianic Redemption, or “Greater Redemption.”

Psa 45 1-17 is another coronation psalm and part of the ancient Rosh Ha Shanah ceremony according to Sigmund Mowinckel in his book “The Psalms in Israel’s Worship.” Psalm 45 is as follows with our commentary, “To the Chief Musician (of the Temple choir), set to the Shoshanim (lilies shaped like trumpets, a theme of Rosh Ha Shanah). A maskil (instruction) of the sons of Korah. A song of love. My heart overflows with a good theme (Messiah); I address my verses to the King (Messiah); my tongues is the pen of a ready writer (being moved by the Ruach Ha Kodesh). You (Messiah) art fairer than the sons of men; grace is poured through thy lips; therefore God has blessed thee forever. Gird thy sword (sharp mind in the Torah) on thy thigh (symbolized by the tzitzit-Rev 19.15-16), O Mighty One, in thy splendor and thy majesty! And in thy majesty ride (Rev 19.11) on victoriously (Rev 6.2), for the cause of truth (Torah) and meekness and righteousness; let thy right hand (skill) teach thee awesome things. Thine arrows (sword, famine, pestilence) are sharp; the peoples fall under thee, thine arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.”

“Thy throne, O God (Elohim) is forever and ever (Heb 1.8), a scepter of uprightness is the scepter of thy kingdom. You have loved righteousness, and hated wickedness; therefore God (Father), thy God, has anointed (one of the stages of a coronation of a Jewish king) you (the Messiah) with the oil of joy above thy fellows. All thy garments are fragrant with myrrh (spiritually purified character) and aloes (used in prayer incense) and cassia (spreads in the wind/ruach); out of ivory palaces will be mine that will make me glad (the palaces which are prepared for you in Eden will surpass the finest palaces of ivory here). Kings daughters (believers for the sake of imagery. Just as the king is seen as the “son” his wife is alluded to as his “daughter” and the same as the “queen and bride-1 Chr 28.5-6) are among thy noble ladies, and the queen (Israel, the Kahal as a whole) stands at thy right hand in gold from Ophir. Listen, O daughter, give attention and incline your ear; forget your people and your father’s house (leave the world of unbelief. Messiah is to be preferred above all human relations); then the king will desire your beauty (the righteousness he gives us); because he is your Lord, bow down to him.”

“And the daughter of Tyre (symbolizes the non-Jews Israel will have dominion over in the Messianic Kingdom-Isa 45.14; 66.19-20) will come with a gift; the rich among the people will entreat your favor (of every nation). The King’s daughter (same as the bride and queen) is all glorious within (speaks of her character); her clothing is interwoven (by God) with gold. She will be led to the King in embroidered work (not filthy rags-Isa 61.1-through 62.5); the virgins (non-Jewish believers for the sake of imagery and part of the Kahal), her companions who follow her, will be brought to you (like Chava was brought to Adam-Eph 5.22-32). They will be led forth with gladness and rejoicing (voluntarily and eager); they will enter into the King’s palace (the “mansions” of John 14.1-3, the inner chambers). In place of your fathers will be your sons (born from the marriage-the “elect”); you shall make them princes in the earth (to rule and reign-Rev 20). I will cause they name to be remembered in all generations; therefore the peoples (non-Jews of all nations will eventually acknowledge his sovereignty) will give you thanks forever and ever.”

On the day of the coronation of the Messiah on Rosh Ha Shanah, it will also be the day of the wedding of the Messiah. We had the betrothal at Mount Sinai on Shavuot (Pentecost) in the first redemption, now we will have the full marriage in the second redemption on Rosh Ha Shanah. A Jewish wedding would last a “shavuah” which means a “seven” and it can be seven days, weeks, months or years. This is known as the “Shavuah L’ Chuppah” or the “Shavuah of the Wedding Canopy.” Gen 29.27-28 says, “Fulfill her week (shavuah), and we will give you this one also for the service which you will serve with me still another seven years. Then Jacob did so and fulfilled her week. So he gave him his daughter Rachel as wife also.”

Joel 2.1 is a Rosh Ha Shanah verse, “Blow a trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm on my holy mountain.” Joel 2.11 says, “The Day of the Lord is great and indeed awesome, and who can endure it?” The Hebrew word for “awesome” is “nora” and remember that the days between Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur and called the “Yamim Noraim” or “Days of Awe.” This is a picture and another name for the seven year Birth-pains.

Now, Joel 2.15 says, “Blow a trumpet in Zion, consecrate a fast, proclaim a solemn assembly.” When do we have a fast on a solemn assembly? On Yom Kippur. Joel 2.16 says, “Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children and the nursing infants. Let the bridegroom (Messiah) come out of his chamber (chedar-Psa 45.15 he went in), and the bride from her bridal chamber (chuppah).”

Anciently, the chedar and the chuppah was a huge tent and the couple would go in there for seven days after the wedding. They would not need to come out for anything. Everything is right there for them (food, drink, clothes, etc). In this passage the bride and groom are coming out of the chamber. So how long have they been in there? A “shavuah” or a “seven.” So, eschatologically, they have been in there for the seven years of the Birth-pains. We will be able to show this is a Yom Kippur by the next passage.

Joel 2.17 says, “Let the priests, the Lord’s ministers, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, ‘Spare the people, O Lord, and do not make thine inheritance a reproach, a byword among the nations. Why should they among the peoples say where is there God?'” There is only one ceremony conducted in the Temple between the porch and the altar in the entire year. That day is Yom Kippur and Yehovah answers this prayer in Zech 14.1-7.

We are able to identify what is happening by the phrases to understand that this is a Yom Kippur. This is another example of how Yeshua will return to Jerusalem on a Yom Kippur. If the bride and the groom come out of the wedding chamber by Yom Kippur, when did they go in? Isa 26.20 says, “Come my people, enter into your chamber (“B’Chederecha”), shut your doors behind you; hide yourself, as it were, for a little while, until the indignation is past.” The “indignation” as we have shown previously is a synonymous term for the Birth-pains. They went in at Rosh Ha Shanah, at the beginning of the Day of the Lord.

We have already gone over Isa 26.1 through 27.13 and we have seen that it covers Rosh Ha Shanah to Yom Kippur. In an overview we have Rosh Ha Shanah and the phrase “open the gates that the righteous nation may enter.” We have “On that day” or the “Day of the Lord” in 26.1-2 and we have the Natzal (Rapture) in 26.20. We also have Leviathan (the False Messiah) in 27.1 and the Shofar Ha Gadol being blown on Yom Kippur, with the return of the Messiah and the exiles in 27.12-13 (see Matt 24.29-31).

In Part 24, we will pick up here.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 22

Let’s talk about the coronation of a Jewish king. There is a book called “Ancient Israel” by Roland De Vaux. He was a Jesuit priest and an outstanding scholar. He excavated Qumran and much of this book is good. There are other parts that use the “Wellhausen Theory” that says the Bible wasn’t written by the people whose names are in the title. In other words, the Torah had numerous authors and different periods. In the first half of the book he discusses Israel.

In Chapter 5 we have “The Person of the King” and in Section 2 we have “The Coronation Rites.” There are five steps to the coronation of a Jewish king. There was the Investiture with Insignia, The Anointing, The Acclamation, the Enthronement and the Homage of the high officials.

We have two coronation examples for us in Scripture. We have the coronation of Solomon and the coronation of Joash. In 2 Kings 11.1-21 we have the story of Joash and he will be a picture of Yeshua. Joash is hidden away in the Temple for six years (6000 years) and then is coronated as king in the seventh year (Day of the Lord). Athaliah in this story is a picture of the False Messiah and she is overthrown and killed in the seventh year.

In 2 Kings 11.12 we have the Investiture with Insignia (crown and testimony), the Anointing and the Acclamation (“Long live the king”). In 2 Kings 11.19-20 we have the final two steps of Enthronement and Homage, and these steps can also be seen in 1 Kings 1.46-47 and Psa 2.12.

We have seen that Rev 4 is a Yom Ha Din and a Rosh Ha Shanah (4.1-2). A throne was set up in heaven, and one sat on the throne, just like in Dan 7.9-10. Now, if we go to Rev 5.1-14 we will see it as a Coronation and Enthronement of a Jewish king, just like in Dan 7.13-14, and that king is Yeshua, who has been anointed already. We have the investiture in Rev 5.7, and the acclamation in verse 9. We have the enthronement in Rev 5.13 and homage in verse 14. We also have a phrase in Rev 5.9 that says, “And they sang a new song.” This expression means “the Messiah has come” in Hebrew thought. Rev 14.3 says, “And they sang a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one could learn the song except the 144,000 who had been purchased from the earth.”

Isa 42.10 says, “Sing to Yehovah a new song” and it is “shir chadash” in Hebrew, which is masculine. Usually this term is “shirah chadash” which is feminine, but Messiah has come so it is in the masculine. Psa 96.1 says, “Sing to Yehovah a new song” and it is masculine again, meaning Messiah has come. This psalm is recited at the beginning of the Sabbath, which is a picture of the Day of the Lord. What do they sing at the beginning of the Day of the Lord? A new song! Messiah comes at the beginning of the Day of the Lord on Yom Ha Din Rosh Ha Shanah. Christianity has no concept about this because they have done away with the Sabbath, so these concepts are lost to them and are never taught. Psa 98.1 is also a Sabbath song and it says, “Sing to Yehovah a new song.” The “new song” is a Messianic psalm.

We know that during the acclamation of a Jewish king a shofar is blown (2 Sam 15.10). 2 Kings 11.14 says that trumpets were blown when Joash was coronated. When Solomon was anointed king they blew a trumpet (1 Kings 1.39). In a Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor, after the Shacharit (morning) service, shofarot are blown during the Mussaf (additional) service. You can see this on p. 508-521 in the Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor by Artscroll.

One of the reasons for blowing the shofar is the “Kingship.” In the liturgy for Rosh Ha Shanah, it literally says, “At the start of the Mussaf service: Order of the Shofar Blowing. The following psalm is recited seven times by the entire congregation, ‘Psalm 47, to the chief musician. A Psalm of the sons of Korah. Oh, clap your hands (acclamation) all you peoples, shout to God with the voice of triumph! For the Lord Most High is awesome; he is a great king over all the earth. He will subdue the peoples under us, and the nations under our feet. He will choose our inheritance for us, the excellence of Jacob whom he loves. Selah. God has gone up with a shout (teruah), the Lord with the sound of a trumpet (shofar). Sing praises to God, sing praises! Sing praises to our king, sing praises. For God is the king of all the earth; sing praises with understanding, God reigns over the nations; God sits on his holy throne. The princes of the people have gathered together (we will come back to this when we talk about the Natzal (“rapture”), the people of the God of Abraham. For the shields of the earth belong to God; he is greatly exalted.'”

This is read seven times (number of completion) because the people are to take notice of what is being communicated. It is Rosh Ha Shanah, we have the acclamation of a king (“clap your hands”), we have a shout (teruah is a shofar note) and a shofar (1 Thes 4.16). The princes are being gathered together because there is going to be a coronation.

Now we are going to another coronation psalm (Psa 45), but before we do let’s talk about the two redemptions. As we have said before, the “first redemption” is also the “lesser redemption” and that is when Moses the Shaliach (sent one, apostle, agent) takes the people out of Egypt. If the story stopped there, it would not be the whole story as to why the Exodus happened in the first place. They were freed from Egypt in order to go to Mount Sinai and receive the Torah and the Mishkan. Here is the rest of the story.

A Jewish wedding had two basic stages anciently. There was no ceremony, marriage licenses or a need to have a “minister” because those things are relatively new, just a few hundred years old. But there was a “Shire Erusin” or a “betrothal stage” where the couple was considered married. Then there was also the “full marriage” or “Kiddushin.” Marriage is understood as more of a contract (covenant) than a ceremony. Biblically, it is not like what they do today. It basically consisted of an agreement (covenant) between the two families, negotiated by the fathers usually. The only biblical requirement was that the two parties leave their family and cleave to one another to form a new “house.” If there were no parents, and they were older, it was an agreement between the man and the woman. Abraham had an agreement with Bethuel about Isaac and Rebekah. She agreed and left her home and went to Isaac and when he saw her, he took into his mother’s tent and that was it. No ceremony, no minister. God is entering into a “brit” or “covenant” with Israel. He is giving them the Torah as a Shitre Erusin or betrothal covenant. She agrees to it in Exo 24.3-7, and that was it, they were betrothed. We will get to the full marriage later.

The festival of Shavuot celebrates the giving of the Torah to Israel (betrothal). This festival is also known as Yom Ha Bikurim” when the first fruits of the crops are brought (called the “Sheva Minim” or “seven species”). They are brought in a ceremony to the Lord in the Temple.

Jer 2.1-3 says, “Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, ‘Go and proclaim in the ears of Jerusalem, saying Thus says the Lord, I remember concerning you the devotion of your youth, the love of your betrothals, your following after me in the wilderness, through a land not sown. Israel was holy (had a kedusha) to the Lord, the first of his harvest. All who ate of it (devoured Israel) became guilty; evil came upon them’ declares the Lord.'” These verses refer to the first Shavuot when God gave the Torah to the people. This was the betrothal contract or Shitre Erusin.

In Part 23 we will begin to deal with the second stage called the “Kiddushin” or “full marriage” where there is another contract called the “Ketubah.” The full marriage is associated with the festival of Rosh Ha Shanah and that is why the wedding of the Messiah is a theme. In the Natzal, we will be going to the coronation of the Messiah, but there will also be a wedding.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 21

Now we are going to look at Rosh Ha Shanah and its significant laws and prayers. In the Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor (prayer book) by Artscroll in “An Overiview-That You Make Me Your King”, p. XVII, it says, “God’s sovereignty is the primary theme of Rosh Ha Shanah and the ten days of judgment it inaugurates. The service of the day is filled with references to God as King and the prayers longing for the day when His mastery will be acknowledged by all human beings. The shofar service of the Mussaf (meaning “additional service” and it is during the Mussaf of the Shacharit or “morning” service that the shofar is blown one hundred times) Amidah (standing prayer, also known as the Shemonah Esrei or Eighteen Benedictions) begins with ten Scriptural verses speaking of God’s Kingship and the Talmud teaches, we recite these verses so that we should proclaim Him as our King.”

Yehovah is seen as being “crowned King” on Rosh Ha Shanah, and that is an important point. The themes of God as king is particularly stressed on Rosh Ha Shanah because of the days’ association with his judgments (Talmud, Berakot 12b). During the prayers of the day it is necessary to recite ten Bible verses which have the theme of God as King (Malkuyot); ten which have the theme of God as he remembers (Zikronot); and ten which have reference to the Shofar (Shofarot-Mishnah, Rosh Ha Shanah 4.5-6).

In the article “Rosh Ha Shanah” in the Encyclopedia Judaica it says, “These are explained as God saying, ‘Recite before me on Rosh Ha Shanah Malkuyot, Zikronot and Shofarot: Malkuyot so that you may proclaim me King over you, Zikronot so that your remembrance may rise favorably before me; and through what? Through the Shofar (Talmud Rosh Ha Shanah 16a). The four names of the festival in Jewish tradition based on the above are: Rosh Ha Shanah, Yom Teruah (‘Day of blowing the horn’), Yom Ha Din (‘Day of Judgment’), and Yom Ha Zikaron (‘Day of remembrance’).”

Now, we know that Yehovah is a spirit and he does not have form or flesh. This is why Yeshua is called “the image of the invisible God (Col 1.15).” Throughout the Tanak it is prophesied that the Messiah would be the “sent one” of Yehovah. In the Gospels Yeshua states that he is the “sent one.” The coronation on Rosh Ha Shanah that we have been referring to is the coronation of the Messiah, the sent one of God.

In Jewish thought, there are two redemption’s. These two redemption’s are called the Redemption out of Egypt, or the “lesser redemption.” The other redemption is called the Messianic Redemption of “greater redemption.” We have Moses as the “shaliach (sent one) of the first redemption (Egyptian)” and we have Yeshua as the “shaliach of the second redemption (Messianic).” The word “shaliach” means “sent one” or “agent.” In Jewish thought the “sent one” is a huge concept, but non-Jews will not think much about it.

In Isa 11.10-12 it tells us about the second redemption. So, let’s look into the concept of the shaliach from the Encyclopedia of the Jewish Religion, p. 15, Adama Books, in the article “Agent.” It says, “AGENT (Heb Shaliah): The main point of the Jewish law of agency is expressed in the dictum ‘a person’s agent is regarded as the person himself” (Ned. 72b; Kidd 41b). Therefore any act committed by a duly appointed agent is regarded as having been committed by the principal, who therefore bears full responsibility for it with consequent complete absence of liability on the part of the agent.” In other words, Moses and Yeshua are agents of the Father and every word that comes from them is as if the Father himself said it (Deut 18.15).

So, Dan 7.9-10, 13-14, is the coronation of the Messiah on Rosh Ha Shanah. We have gone over this so many times in this teaching that we should be able to say, “That’s Yom Ha Din, that’s Rosh Ha Shanah.” In these passages, the Son of Man is the Messiah, the clouds of heaven are the righteous and the Ancient of Days is the Father. Then to him (Messiah) was given dominion and the glory and a kingdom. This is the start of the Messianic Kingdom and you will also notice this is before the heavenly court, it is not taking place on earth, and it is a Rosh Ha Shanah. God has laid out all these concepts and gave it to the Jewish people like this one. It is a coronation on Rosh Ha Shanah, a Yom Ha Din in heaven before the start of the Messianic Kingdom. Now, let’s develop the concept of the “clouds of heaven.”

Heb 11 is called the “Hall of Fame of Faith.” It goes through and gives examples of those who exhibited the confidence explained in Heb 11.1. They had confidence (faith) and acted upon it. Faith in Hebrew is called “Emunah” and it is related to the word “Amen.” It is made up of three components: Da’at (Knowledge of God), Ahav (Love of God), and Mitzvot (Commandments of God). If one of these components is missing, you have a breakdown of biblical faith.

Then we go to Heb 12.1 and it says, “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” Yeshua said in Mark 14.62, “I am, and you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.” Other passages may say he is coming with “many thousands of his holy ones’ (Jude 14) or “from the midst of ten thousand holy ones” (Deut 33.2). These are the resurrected righteous. We have already seen that when Yeshua is coronated the resurrection has already occurred. The clouds of heaven (the righteous) are presented before the Ancient of Days with Yeshua, and to Yeshua the kingdom is given. We also have in Rev 1.7, “Behold, he is coming with clouds, and every eye will see him, even they who pierced him. And all the tribes of the land will mourn because of him. Even so, Amen.”

So, here is a question. How can the Messianic Kingdom begin in heaven? If Yeshua is crowned King on Rosh Ha Shanah, this inaugurates the Messianic Kingdom. Remember, this is the start of the Day of the Lord and Rosh Ha Shanah is an ancient name for the Day of the Lord, or “Lord’s Day.” Here is more to the answer to our question.

Let’s look at the lesson of David. he was crowned king over Judah in Hebron. Hebron was called “Abraham’s Bosom” because he was buried there and it became an idiom for “heaven” and “paradise” and the abode of the righteous. It is believed that the resurrection will begin there, then it will move to Jerusalem and then to the rest of the world. The daily Temple service called the Tamid could not begin until the sun (Messiah) lit up the east as far as Hebron (Mishanh, Tamid 3.2). This alludes to the resurrection beginning in Hebron because remember, waking up every morning is a rehearsal for our resurrection. David ruled for seven years in Hebron, then he came to Jerusalem (1 Chr 29.27). Hebron is a type of heaven, and in Luke 16.22 it says, “So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s Bosom. The rich man also died and was buried.”

So, spiritually, what does this mean? Messiah will reign from heaven for seven years (in peace), but these same seven years will be a time of war and trouble on earth (the Birth-pains/Tribulation). Then at the end of the seven years, Yeshua will move his throne to Jerusalem (like David) and rule for the remainder of the thousand years (Messianic Kingdom; Millennium; Day of the Lord; Atid Lavo; Sabbath of God; Lord’s Day).

So, the question is, why does Christianity say we have to have the “Tribulation” before the Messianic Kingdom? Because they don’t believe you can have it during the Day of the Lord because to them it is supposed to be a time of peace. As a result, to them, it doesn’t fit. But its like going into a movie theater to watch two movies that begin at the same time. On one screen you could be watching a love story, but on another screen next to you there is a horror movie going on. In the same way, there are “two theaters” going on at the same time eschatologically. One is in heaven (a love story) and the other one on earth (horror).

In Part 22, we will begin with a teaching about the coronation of a Jewish King.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 20

Here is what we have picked up so far. There are two days in the year that are called Yom Ha Din, the “Day of Judgment.” Those two days are Rosh Ha Shanah on Tishri 1 and Yom Kippur on Tishri 10. There will be two resurrections, the first is on Rosh Ha Shanah at the beginning of the Day of the Lord and the Birth-pains. This is a resurrection of the righteous only. The second resurrection will be on Yom Kippur at the end of the Day of the Lord. This will be for the righteous not yet resurrected who became believers during the Day of the Lord, and a resurrection for the wicked. The righteous are resurrected to rewards and eternal life, and the wicked are resurrected to the Second Death.

We have also seen that there will be three books that are opened on Rosh Ha Shanah. The first book is the Book of the Tzadikim (righteous), the Book of Life. The second is the Book of the Chata’im (sinners or average people). The third is the Book of the Rashim (wicked). The Tzadikim are resurrected on Rosh Ha Shanah as the gates of heaven open. Those that remain are given seven years to the next Yom Ha Din to turn to Yehovah when the gates of heaven close on Yom Kippur, the day when Messiah Yeshua comes to Jerusalem to reign on earth. So, on Rosh Ha Shanah the gates of heaven are opened and the books are opened. At the end of Yom Kippur the gates of heaven are closed and the books are closed.

Paul stated that the resurrection of the Tzadikim (righteous) will occur at the “last trump” or shofar. The last trump is the shofar of Rosh Ha Shanah. Therefore, the resurrection of the righteous will be on Rosh Ha Shanah, at the beginning of the Day of the Lord. Yeshua said that when he comes to Jerusalem he will send the angels out to gather in the elect with the sound of a “great trumpet” or Shofar Ha Gadol. The Shofar Ha Gadol is the shofar of Yom Kippur. Therefore, Yeshua will come to Jerusalem at his second coming on a Yom Kippur.

On Rosh Ha Shanah all men are judged. Those that are righteous are placed in the Book of the Righteous (Sefer Ha Tzadikim), also known as the Book of Life. Those that are wicked are placed into the the Book of the Wicked (Sefer Ha Rashim), also known as the Book of Perdition. When one is placed in one of the books listed above they are sealed in that book.

To really get a grasp of all this we recommend that you get a Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor (prayer book) and read all the way through it. At the end you will understand much more. Then take a Yom Kippur Machzor and read all the way through that, and you will understand what we have just presented. It will almost be automatic and you will see it all over the Scriptures, where it is repeated over and over again.

What happened is this. When Christianity developed after 70 A.D. and the war with the Romans, non-Jews disappeared out of the Torah-based faith as it was, and began to do their own thing. They threw out all the Jewish understandings of all this and that is why we have dozens of theories about the “Rapture.” Most are not aware of or not following what God had laid down. Yehovah gave these things to the Jewish people so the world could look and see and understand his word (Deut 4.5-8).

There is group known as the Chata’im (sinners) or average people as we have said. On Rosh Ha Shanah these are the ones that have not been deemed a Tzadik (righteous) by Yehovah nor have they been deemed a Rasha (wicked). They are given ten days (from Rosh Ha Shanah to Yom Kippur) to repent and be judged righteous by Yehovah. We call these ten days the “Yamin Noraim” or the “Days of Awe.” We will have the Day of the Lord starting on Rosh Ha Shanah, then ten days later we have the Birth-pains beginning on Yom Kippur.

You can see that anyone who has not been judged righteous on Rosh Ha Shanah has time to repent. But, you are taking a chance once the Birth-pains begin on Yom Kippur because it will be a horrible time. The death toll will be in the billions and you may not make it through the whole seven years. If one is deemed righteous by Yehovah their names are recorded in the Book of the Tzadikim (righteous). If they do not repent by Yom Kippur when Yeshua returns, they are inscribed in the Book of the Rashim (wicked). Those that are wicked are sentenced on Yom Kippur (a Yom Ha Din) in Matt 25.31-46. This judgment is like the Yom Kippur ceremony when two goats are brought before the Lord and separated, one to Yehovah and the other to Azazel.

The earth will be 6001 years old exactly on Tishri 1 (Rosh Ha Shanah), year 6001. The Birth-pains will start on a Yom Kippur, Tishri 10, and will end on a Yom Kippur, Tishri 10, seven years later. This will also be a Yovel year (Jubilee) according to Isa 63.1-6.

Remember, Dan 7.9-10 is our original Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Ha Din passage, and it says, “thrones were put in place and the Ancient of Days is seated; his garment was as white as snow, and the hair of his head was like pure wool, his throne was a fiery flame, its wheels a burning fire; a fiery stream issued and came forth from before him. Thousands and thousands were attending him, and myriads upon myriads were standing before him; the court was seated and the books were opened.” We went through the article in the Jewish Encyclopedia on the Day of Judgment and it identified this passage as being Rosh Ha Shanah.

Dan 7.19-20 says, “Then I wished to know the truth about the fourth beast, which was different from all the others, exceedingly dreadful, with its teeth of iron and its nails of bronze, which devoured, broke in pieces, and trampled what was left with its feet; and about the ten horns that were on its head, and the other horn which came up, before which three of them fell, namely that horn which had eyes and a mouth which spoke pompous words, whose appearance was greater than his fellows.” This is describing the False Messiah.

So, now look at Dan 7.21-22, “I kept looking and that horn was waging war with the saints (tzadikim) and overpowering them until the Ancient of Days came and judgment was passed in favor of the saints (tzadikim) of the Highest One and the time arrived when the saints took possession of the kingdom.” This is Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur at the end of the Birth-pains.

Notice, Dan 7.9-10 is Yom Ha Din Rosh Ha Shanah and the Ancient of Day was seated and the court sat. But now, the Ancient of Days came and judgment was passed. This is after the False Messiah, and the kingdom is now in the possession of the righteous, so this is Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur. So you can see how you determine which Yom Ha Din it is, Rosh Ha Shanah or Yom Kippur. Dan 7.23-28 is a recap of Dan 7.19-22 but with more detail. Now we are going to go to the Encyclopedia Judaica for more information.

We have a book in our library called “The Psalms in Israel’s Worship” by Sigmund Mowinckel. He is quoted in the article on Eschatology in the Encyclopedia Judaica and was a Christian. In the article on Rosh Ha Shanah, Mowinckel is referred to, “More recently, however, S. Mowinckel (The Psalms in Israel’s Worship, 1 (1962, 120FF) has advanced the suggestion that there existed in pre-exilic Israel an autumnal new year festival on which God was “enthroned” as king (analogous to the Babylonian enthronement of Marduk). He claims to have found marked traces in many of the psalms to substantiate his assertion. Although Mowinckel’s thesis has won wide acceptance, it is still the subject of debate.” But everything is going to be the “subject of debate” so keep that in mind.

He says there was an enthronement new year festival in the fall. In the article on the “Day of the Lord” Mowinckel and others said the Day of the Lord was originally a new year festival. So we have this term “Day of the Lord” and we know that is is a thousand year period that some call the Messianic Kingdom, the Millenium, the Atid Lavo, Lord’s Day and the Sabbath of God. But it was also a name for the festival of Rosh Ha Shanah. This is consistent with the teaching that says we have six thousand years and then we go into the Day of the Lord, and the very festival the Day of the Lord starts on is Rosh Ha Shanah, the birthday of the world in Gen 1.2-5, the first day of creation and head (first) of the civil year. This gives us insight into Rev 1.10 where it says, “I was in the Spirit (in tune with) on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet.” The Book of Revelation is all about the Birth-pains and the Messianic Kingdom. Did he see this revelation on a Sabbath, or a Rosh Ha Shanah (also called the “Lord’s day”) which teaches about the vision he saw? And notice there is a trumpet associated with this.

In Part 21 we will pick up here.

In Part 21, we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 19

This article also gives us another source to search out and learn words, phrases, idioms and concepts. The source is called the Targum Yonaton (Jonathan). This is an Aramaic paraphrase of the Scriptures written about the time of Yeshua. Yonaton was believed to be a student of Hillel the Elder. Now with all these sources, why hasn’t Christianity or the Messianic Movement caught on to this? Why are they still interpreting from a Christian background, using Christian understandings, when Yehovah has given us a wealth of information in the above sources (in the article)?

The Pharisees taught that on the first day of the civil year (Rosh Ha Shanah) God sits in judgment over the creation and the books of life and death were opened, along with books containing the records of the Tzadikim (righteous) and the Rashim (wicked). Eventually, a third class of people was understood called the Chata’im (sinners). Another name for them was “Benonim” of the “average” people. They weren’t righteous yet (Tzadikim) and they weren’t wicked (Rashim), but they were just average sinners.

Once you are written into the Book of Life you are sealed. Once you are written into the Book of Death you are sealed. But, God is still dealing with the Chata’im (sinners) and some of them will repent. When Yeshua referred to the “sinners” he was referring to this third group. They weren’t righteous yet, and they weren’t the wicked either. They were the average person who still can repent (Matt 9.10-13, 11.9, 26.45; Mark 2.15-17, 14.41; Luke 5.30-32, 6.33-34). In Psa 69.28 we learn of the Book of Life and the living are the “righteous” in the second part of the verse. They are admitted into the Kingdom of God. The wicked cannot enter and they are blotted out of God’s book (Exo 32.32). This concept comes from the citizen register seen in Ezek 13.9; Jer 22.30; Exo 32.30-34.

From the article “Book of Life” in the Jewish Encyclopedia it says, “The life which the righteous participate in is to be understood in a temporal sense. Dan 12.1, however, those who who are found written in the book and who shall escape the troubles preparatory to the coming of the Messianic Kingdom are they who together with the risen martyrs are destined to share in the everlasting life referred to in verse 2. The eternal life is certainly meant in 1 Enoch 47.3, 103.3, 104.1, and frequently in the New Testament (especially in Revelation). The Targum (Isa 4.3; Ezek 13.9) speaks of the ‘Book of Eternal Life.’ Temporal life is apparently prayed for in the liturgical formula: ‘Inscribe us in the Book of Life.’ The Mishnah tells us that the deeds of every human being are recorded in a book (Avot 2.1, 3.16). The ‘Sefer Hasidim’ (Ch 33) pointedly adds that God is in no need of a Book of Records; ‘The Torah speaks the language of men’ (figuratively).”

In the Jewish Encyclopedia article on the “Day of Atonement” it says, “There is, indeed, in heaven a book wherein the deeds of every human being are minutely entered (Avot 2.1, 3.16; A book of record ‘Book of Remembrance’ is alluded to-Mal 3.16). Three books are opened on the first day of the year, says the Talmud (Rosh Ha Shanh 16.b); one for the thoroughly wicked, another for the thoroughly pious, and the third for the large intermediate class. The fate of the thoroughly wicked and the thoroughly pious are determined on the spot; the destiny of the intermediate class is suspended until the Day of Atonement, when the fate of every man is sealed (Rosh Ha Shanha 16a).”

“In the liturgical piece ‘Unetanneh Tokef’ ascribed to R. Ammon of Mayenee (Zunz,’Literaturgesh, P.107), a still weirder sense unfolded: ‘God, seated on his throne to judge the world, at the same time judge, pleader, expert and witness, openeth the Book of Records; it is read, every man’s signature being found therein. The great trumpet sounded; a still, small voice is heard; angels shudder, saying this is the day of judgment; for his very ministers are not pure before God. As a shepherd mustereth his flock, causing them to pass under his rod, so doth God cause every living soul to pass before him to fix the limit of every creature’s life and to foreordain hits destiny. On New Years’s Day the decree is written; on the Day of Atonement it is sealed who shall live and who are to die, etc. But penitence, prayer and charity may avert the evil decree. All depends on whether a man’s merits outweigh the demerits put to his account (Maimonides ‘Yad Teshuvah 3.3).'”

“It is therefore desirable to multiply good deeds before the final account on the Day of Atonement. Those that are found worthy are entered in the Boom of Life (Exo 32.32; Isa 4.3; Psa 69.28; Dan 12.1; see Charles, ‘Book of Enoch” p.131-133). Hence the prayer ‘Enter us in the Book of Life (inscribe us; but ‘seal us’ that is ‘seal our fate’ in the closing prayer on the Day of Atonement).’ Hence, also, the formula of salutation on New Year’s Eve, ‘May you be inscribed (in the Book of Life) for a happy year.’ In letters written between New Year and the Day of Atonement, the writer usually concludes by wishing the recipient that God may seal his fate for happiness. Thus, in late Judaism, features that were originally peculiar to New Year’s Day were transferred to the Day of Atonement.”

So, up to Rosh Ha Shanah, you would have the greeting “Inscribe us for a good year.” But after Yom Kippur you would not say that because that would imply they weren’t righteous. After Rosh Ha Shanah you would say “May you be sealed until the Day of Redemption (Yom Pedut or Yom Kippur). Rosh Ha Shanh is the day of inscribing and Yom Kippur is the day of sealing. These are eschatological concepts and Paul used the term “sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise” and “sealed for the Day of redemption” in Eph 1.13 and 4.30. He probably wrote Ephesians during Teshuvah or the High Holy days of Rosh Ha Shanah to Yom Kippur. He uses Rosh Ha Shanh and Yom Kippur terms and concepts throughout the book

In Job 1.6-8 we have the concept of a Yom Ha Din presented. There was a day when the sons of God (angels) presented themselves before the Lord. Job was seen as “blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.” The Book of Job tells us about the redemption of man, the coming of the Messiah, the resurrection of the dead, the Natzal (Rapture), the False Messiah and False Prophet and the war of Gog and Magog. How many people reading this know that? As a side note, Psa 75.2-3 says, “When I select the appointed time (moed/festival) it is I who judge with equity. The earth and all who dwell in it melt (with fear); it is I who have firmly set its pillars.” This is referring to a Yom Ha Din on Yom Kippur.

According to the Targum, the day of the heavenly session in Job 1.6 was no other than the first of the year. Therefore in Jewish thought the Book of Job begins on a Rosh Ha Shanah. So, let’s look at the eschatology of the book of Job. By doing this we can come back to this at later times and draw information from it.

It is believed that the Book of Job is the first book of the Tanak and predates Moses. In the eschatology of Job we see that the sons of God are the nations appearing before God. Job is Israel and Satan is the accusor. We have the theme of resurrection in Job 14.14-15, Rahab is pride in Job 9.13 and Egypt in Isa 30.7, which symbolizes Europe in prophecy. We have the Tannin or serpent in Job 26.13 and Isa 27.1, and Leviathan, the seven-headed beast that arises out of the sea in Job 41 and Rev 13.1. Leviathan is a picture of the False Messiah. The Behemoth in Job 40.15-24 who arises out of the land (Rev 13.11) is the False Prophet. In addition, Behemoth is a picture of Assyria and Gog and Magog (Russia), and Leviathan is a picture of of Egypt and Europe, from which the False Messiah rises. Let’s look at these words.

Rahab is a word that means “proud” or “harlot.”” It also means “broad” because of the thickness of a wall. Harlots would set up shop in the walls of a city. The “Red Light District” in Amsterdam is called “The Broad” because it used to be in the walls that surrounded Amsterdam. But Rahab is also a term for Egypt because Egypt was a very fortified place with broad walls in the fortresses. Why is all this important? As we will see later this word will be associated with the False Messiah.

The second word to keep in mind as we move forward is “Tannin” meaning “serpent.” Job 26.12-13 says, “He quieted the sea with his power, and by his understanding he shattered Rahab. By his breath the heavens are cleared; his hand has pierced the fleeing serpent (tannin).” Now, let’s go to Isa 27.1 where it says, “In that day (Day of the Lord) the Lord will punish Leviathan, the fleeing serpent with his fierce and great and mighty sword, even Leviathan the twisted serpent, and he will kill the dragon (tannin) who lives in the sea.” So, we have the name Leviathan associated with Rahab, the fleeing serpent, the twisted serpent, the dragon who lives in the sea, and Egypt. Rev 13.1 says, “And I stood upon the sand of the sea and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads.” This is Leviathan, a picture of the False Messiah. So, who is Leviathan”

In the article “Leviathan” in the Encyclopedia Judaica it says, “The word Leviathan seems to derive from the root LVY ‘to roll’, which is further confirmation of its serpentine form. In the Bible it is used interchangeably with several other sea monsters-Tannin (“dragon”), Rahab and Yam (‘sea’ of which the last named alternates with Neharim ‘flood’ in Hab 3.8)- all of whom are represented as supernatural enemies of God. This hostility directly reflected a myth widely known in pre-Biblical sources of a primordial combat between the creator deity and the forces of the sea, personifying chaos, which the former must overcome to create and control the universe.” Also from the article, “More relevant is a cylinder seal from Tell Asmar of the Twenty-Fourth Century B.C., which pictures two men fighting a seven-headed serpent.” This is exactly what we see in Rev 13.1. In Job 41 we have a whole chapter on Leviathan, a picture of the False Messiah.

So, if Rahab is Egypt (Isa 30.7), then Pharaoh of Egypt is a picture of the False Messiah. What does Pharaoh have on his crown? A serpent! Isa 1.1-4 and Mic 1.1-5 has almost the same terminology, and they are Yom Ha Din passages because they are the words of a court bringing charges against Judah and Samaria. Look for court-type language in these and other passages because it will give us a “heads up” about a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) context.

We will pick up here in Part 20.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 18

Picking up from Part 17, the Jewish Encyclopedia continues, “The book of Jubilees (30.20-22) speaks of two heavenly tablets or books: a book of life for the righteous, and a book of death for those that walk in the paths of impurity and are written down on the heavenly tablets as adversaries (of God). Also, according to 36.10, one who contrives evil against his neighbor will be blotted out of the book of remembrance of men, and will not be written in the book of life, but in the book of perdition.”

The book of Jubilees is part of the Pseudo-pigrapha and not considered Scripture. However, it was a book that was well known and in use in the First Century (time of Yeshua) so it does tell us what some Jews thought and how they interpreted these expressions like the “book of life” or the “book of remembrance” and some words like “perdition.” We will recall that 2 Thes 2.3 talks about the “son of perdition” (KJV) or “destruction” (NASB). Jubilees 30.20-22 and 36.10 also has information on the book of life and the book of those w.ho will be destroyed. The book of the rashim (wicked) is not a book one would want to be written down in.

In Dan 7.10 and 1 Enoch 47.3 the “Ancient of Days” is seen as sitting on his throne with the book of life (living) opened before him. 1 Enoch 104.1 says that the tzadikim (righteous) are written before God and in 1 Enoch 108.3 the rashim (wicked) are blotted out of the book of life and the “books” of the holy ones. So, Enoch says the same thing as Daniel. Remember, a person reading this two thousand years ago would immediately understand that it is talking about Rosh Ha Shanah.

Again, the Jewish Encyclopedia says in the article called “Book of Life” that “this book is mentioned in Hermas (Vision 1.3; Mandate 8; Similtude 2); In Rev 3.5, 7.8, 17.8, 20.12-15, where two books are spoken of as being ‘opened’ before the throne, the book of life and the book of death.” The unrighteous are written into the book of death, along with their evil works, in order to be thrown into the lake of fire. Now compare Dan 7.9-10 and Rev 4.1-11. We have already established that this is Rosh Ha Shanah because “a door was opened.” When Dan 7.9-10 is coupled with Rev 4.1-11 they fit like a glove. Isa 6.1-4 is also similar and considered a Rosh Ha Shanah passage, and we will come back to Isa 6 to pick up some information on the resurrection.

What we need to realize right away is the Bible is full of chapters that are going to deal with festival terms and phrases. That is why Paul could say to the Thessalonians that “as to the times (festivals) and seasons, brethren, you have no need for anything to be written to you.” Even though we cannot keep the festivals outside of Jerusalem and the Temple today, that doesn’t mean we should not study the liturgy, the prayers, the idioms, phrases and concepts associated with them because they will help us rightly divide the word of truth (Scriptures).

In the Bible, everything has been written in a sub-language, and in order to understand what is happening, we need to understand the sub-language. There is a sub-language for the festivals and every other topic in the Bible like the Temple, eschatology,etc, and this is not given by God to be confusing. The Bible should be one of the easiest books to understand that has ever been written. God is the author and he is not the author of confusion. However, a believer will have to seek to understand what he is communicating, and that is the problem.

We are not allowed to interpret the Scriptures on our own. We are not to interpret the Scriptures by asking, “What do you see in this verse” like in most bible studies. We must go back to the phrases, concepts and idioms (the sub-language) of whatever the topic is we are studying. There is a sub-language for doctors, engineers, computer programmers and the military. In the same way, the Bible has a sub-language.

In Rev 13.8 it says, “All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Who are they worshiping? They are worshiping the False Messiah who is described as a seven-headed beast that rises up out of the sea in Rev 13.1 (remember this).

Rev 20.12-15 says, “And I saw the dead, both small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” Notice we have both the righteous and the unrighteous being judged here. It is Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur. This is at the end of the Day of the Lord. Remember, you will be able to know what Yom Ha Din it is by the context.

Again, quoting from the Jewish Encyclopedia article called the “Book of Life” it says, “It is the book of life in which the apostle’s names are written in heaven (Luke 10.20), or the fellow workers of Paul (Phil 4.3), and the assembly of the first-born (Heb 12.23; compare with 1 Clement 14). To these books of records, allusion is made also in 1 Enoch 81.4, 89.61-77, 90.17-20, 98.76, 104.7; Apocalypse of Baruch 24.1 ; Ascension of Isaiah 9.20.” All of these last ones are out of the Pseudo-pigrapha. Our primary references should be the Scriptures at all times (Tanak, Gospels and Epistles). After that, we do have the Apocrypha, additions that are not a part of the Scriptures but are valuable resources to us. The original 1611 KJV of the Bible included the Apocrypha. Then we have the Pseudo-pigrapha which are the apocalyptic books written about the same time as the Apocrypha. Then we have the Dead Sea Scrolls and the rabbinical writings.

These contain a tremendous amount of information and every one of these have references to the book of life and the book of death and have commentaries about the language and phrases being used like awake, Ancient of Days, books are opened, the court was seated, the door was opened, etc. These will be little “diving boards” that will tell us what is happening.

So, let’s read from some of the references above from the Pseuodo-pigrapha. 1 Enoch 81.4 says, “And at that time I said: ‘Blessed is the man who dies righteous and good, concerning whom no book of iniquity has been written, and against which no guilt has been found.'” From the Apocalypse of Baruch 24.1, “For behold! The days come and the books shall be opened in which are written the sins of all those who have sinned, and again also the treasuries in which the righteousness of all those who have been righteous in creation is gathered. For it shall come to pass at that time that you shall see-and the many that are with you-the long-suffering of the Most High, which has been throughout all generations, who has been long-suffering towards all who are born (alike), those who sin and those who are righteous! And I answered and said: ‘But behold! O Lord, no one knows the number of those things which are to come.'”

In the Jewish Encyclopedia article on the “Book of Life” it says, “The Eschatological or Annual Roll Call. While the prevailing tendency among apocryphal writers of the Hasidean School was to give the book of life an eschatological meaning-and to this inclines also Targum Yonaton to Isa 4.3 and Ezek 13.9 (compare Targum Yerushalmi to Exo 32.32), the Jewish Liturgy and the Tradition relating to the New Years and Atonement days adhered to the ancient view which took the book of life in its natural meaning, preferring, from a sound practical point of view, the this-worldliness of Judaism to the heavenliness of the Essenes.”

We can see from this article that the book of life was given an eschatological meaning, especially during the time of Yeshua. We know that the book of life is tied into the concept of Yom Ha Din, so that means that it gets tied in with the annual Yom Ha Din. What is important is that we realize that at the time of Yeshua, when the Gospels, Epistles and Revelation was written, that Yom Ha Din was seen as not only an annual day of judgment, but it was also an eschatological Yom Ha Din coming on a Rosh Ha Shanah when the righteous would be judged and the unrighteous will be given time to repent.

In Part 19 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on The Natzal (Rapture)-Part 17

Now we are going to look at Isa 27.1-13, “On that day (Day of the Lord) the Lord will punish Leviathan the fleeing serpent with his fierce and great and mighty sword (the Word of God-Rev 19.15), even Leviathan the twisted serpent (Nachash-Gen 3.1 and a picture of the False Messiah) and he will kill the dragon (Tannin) who lives in the sea. In that day (day of the Lord) a vineyard of wine will sing of it. I, the Lord, keep it, I water it every moment. Lest any hurt it, I guard it night and day, I have no wrath. Should someone give me briars and thorns in battle (false teachers and enemies in the vineyard) then I will go through them, I would burn them completely. Or let him take hold of my strength, that he may make peace with me, and he shall make peace with me. Those who come he shall cause to take take root in Jacob; Israel shall blossom and bud, and fill the face of the world with fruit. Has he struck Israel as he struck those who struck him? Or has he been slain according to the slaughter of those who were slain by him? In measure, by sending them away you contended with them. He removes them by his rough wind in the day of the east wind (Day of the Lord).”

“Therefore, by this the iniquity of Jacob will be covered; and this is all the fruit of taking away his sin; when he makes all the stones of the altar like chalk stones that are beaten to dust; Asherim and incense altars will not stand. For the fortified city (Jerusalem) is isolated, a homestead forlorn and forsaken like a desert; there the calf will graze, and there it will lie down and feed on it’s branches. When its limbs are dry, they are broken off (Rom 11.12-24); women come and make a fire with them. For they are a people of no understanding, therefore, their maker will not have compassion on them. And their creator will not be gracious to them. And it will come about in that day (Day of the Lord) that the Lord will start his threshing from the flowing stream of the Euphrates to the brook of Egypt; and you will be gathered one by one, O sons of Israel (survivors and exiles gathered in the Birth-pains). It will come about in that day (Day of the Lord) that a great trumpet (Shofar Ha Gadol on Yom Kippur/Yovel) will be blown; and those who were perishing in the land of Assyria (where the ten tribes were exiled) and who were scattered in the land of Egypt (where others went to flee from Babylon/Kings of the East) will come and worship the Lord in the holy mountain at Jerusalem.”

As we can see from these two chapters we have the Day of the Lord, the opening of the gates and the righteous entering in on Rosh Ha Shanah, a time of judgment, Birth-pains, the resurrection, the False Messiah and the great trumpet on Yom Kippur and the regathering of the people of Israel.

Remember, Yom Ha Din is a name given to Tishri 1, which is Rosh Ha Shanah (Lev 23.24). Dan 7.9-10 and Dan 7.22 describes the divine judgment where the Ancient of days is sitting upon a throne where the books are opened. There is a specific day in the year when God holds judgment over the world. For more information, go to the Jewish Encyclopedia and look up Day of Judgment, Day of the Lord and Eschatology. Dan 7.9-10 will be the Yom Ha Din of Rosh Ha Shanah and Dan 7.22 will be the Yom Ha Din of Yom Kippur.

The Tanak is full of references that are understood as a Yom Ha Din (Ezek 20.37; Dan 9.11; Joel 3.12-14; Isa 57.1-2, etc). We know that there are two days designated as a Yom Ha Din so how do we know which one is being referred to? One way is by the context of the passage. If only the righteous are resurrected it is Rosh Ha Shanah. If both the righteous and and wicked are resurrected, or the righteous are given authority to judge, it is Yom Kippur. The context will determine whether it is at the beginning of the Day of the Lord or at the end. In other words, we will have two points in time where there will be a resurrection. One will be at the beginning of the Day of the Lord, and the other will be at the end of the Day of the Lord (Atid Lavo; Millennium; Lord’s Day, etc) when the righteous and the wicked will be resurrected. Who are the righteous in the Second Resurrection? These are those who become righteous during the day of the Lord (one thousand years) and they passed away.

Now, Dan 7.9-10 talks about “books” being opened at Rosh Ha Shanah and this judgment. The question is, what books? Lev 23.24 says, “Speak to the children of Israel saying, ‘In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have a Sabbath rest, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, a holy (has a kedusha) convocation (proclamation).'” A memorial or remembrance is a Zikaron” in Hebrew. But what does “Zikaron” have to do with books?

Mal 3.16 says, “Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord listened and heard them; so a book of remembrance was written before him for those who fear the Lord and who meditate on his name.” A “book of remembrance” is called a “Sefer Ha Zikaron.” Lev 23.24 tells us that Rosh Ha Shanah has another name, Yom Ha Zikaron (Day of Remembrance).

God has a “muster roll” in which all the righteous are recorded for life, and to be blotted out of it meant death (Exo 32.32-33). It is with reference to the Book of Life that the remnant are spoken of as being written unto life (“among the living”) in Jerusalem (Isa 4.3; Ezek 9.4) where one of the angels who had the “scribes ink horn upon his loins” is told to mark the righteous for life, while the remainder of the inhabitants of Jerusalem are doomed (see “Book of Life” in the Jewish Encyclopedia).

Moses says in Exo 32.32-33, “Yet now if you will forgive their sin-but if not, I pray, blot me out of your book which you have written. And the Lord said to Moses, ‘Whoever has sinned against me, I will blot him out of my book.'” Look at Isa 4.3 and Ezek 9.4 side by side and you will see a similar theme. Notice in the Ezek 9.4 passage that the righteous are being marked on their foreheads. In Rev 13.18 the unrighteous are being marked on their foreheads. What are these marks?

The forehead is seen in biblical thought as the seat of the intellect/mind. The Jewish people have a letter called a “Shin” and it is the “sh” or “s” sound depending on what side the dagesh (a dot) is placed. The letter “shin” with the dagesh on the right side above the letter is used to symbolize some names of God (Shaddai, Shalom). The letter is also on the Tefillin and the Mezuzah. The unrighteous are marked by a false shin (with the dagesh on the left above the letter making the “s” sound as in “Satan”). How are they marked? Just as the righteous are marked by their actions (the hand) and their intellect/mind (foreheads). They follow the Torah and their actions and how they think marks them (Matt 5.16). In the same way the unrighteous are marked by what they do (the hand) and how they think (the forehead).

In the Jewish Encyclopedia in the article on the “Book of Life” it says, “The Psalmist likewise speaks of the book of life in which only the names of the righteous are written and from which even the unrighteous are blotted out (Psa 69.28, 139.16). Even the tears of men are recorded in this book of God (Psa 56.8). Dan 12.1-6 says, ‘Everyone that shall be found written in the book…shall awake to everlasting life.’ This book is probably identical with the “book of remembrance” in which are the recorded deeds of those that fear the Lord (Mal 3.16).”
We have mentioned earlier in Isa 26.19 that the word “awake” has a significance to Rosh Ha Shanah. Another word is “arise” and we will see this in Dan 12.2, so keep these two words in mind.

So, let’s take a brief moment to talk about “belief” or faith in God. We are not talking about someone who says they believe in God or the Messiah. Most people say they believe that. We are talking about someone who believes with the faith of God that there is a Messiah and God moved through him for the redemption of mankind. We enter into that redemption by “emunah” (faith, confidence, action). The message of the Basar (gospel/good news) is that Yeshua has come to initiate that redemption.

Now, remember this rule of thumb. If there is a resurrection of the righteous, it is Rosh Ha Shanah. If there is a resurrection of the righteous and the wicked, like in Dan 12.1-2, then it is Yom Kippur. One is at the beginning of the Day of the Lord (Yom Ha Din Rosh Ha Shanah) and the other is at the end of the Day of the Lord (Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur), the final judgment.

In Part 18 we will pick up here and continue to discuss what books are opened on Yom Ha Din.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 16

In the Artscroll Machzor (Prayer Book) for Rosh Ha Shanah, p. 135, it says that Rosh Ha Shanah is a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) and it has a full commentary. Both Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur are known as a Yom Ha Din. However, the main point of Rosh Ha Shanah is it is the greater Yom Ha Din. Yom Kippur is a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) for those who were not judged as righteous on Rosh Ha Shanah. The Coronation of the Messiah occurs on a Rosh Ha Shanah, and it is also the beginning of the Messianic Kingdom.

In the Yom Kippur Machzor (Prayer Book) by Artscroll Publications, p. 233, it says that Yom Kippur is a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) but there is no commentary because the Yom Ha Din of Rosh Ha Shanah is the greater Yom Ha Din with greater significance. That is why there is commentary in the Yom Kippur Machzor.

The Shofar Ha Gadol, or the Great Trumpet, is blown at the conclusion of the last service on Yom Kippur called “Neilah.” A Tekiah Gedolah (a great long blast of the shofar) is blown and this shofar is associated with the shofar blast of the Yovel (Year of Jubilee). Neilah means the “Closing of the Gate.” We will discuss the concept of the “opening and closing of the gate” later. But, the opening of the gate is a reference to Rosh Ha Shanah, and the closing of the gate is a reference to Yom Kippur. It also relates to repentance, so keep these concepts in mind.

In the Yom Kippur Machzor on the Neilah service, p. 765, the commentary says, “The sound of the shofar inspires within us a yearning for the shofar that will herald our ultimate freedom-the ‘Great Shofar’ that will announce the coming of the Messiah. This is also the reason for the custom to call out ‘Next Year in Jerusalem’ at this point.” In Matt 24.29-31 that is exactly what we see, and in Isa 63.1-6 the Messiah comes on a Yovel (v 4) even though the texts don’t say it is Yom Kippur, it expects you to already know that. Lev 25.9 says, “Then you shall cause the trumpet of the Yovel to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month (Tishri 10); on the day of atonement (Yom Kippur) you shall make the trumpet to sound throughout all your land.”

Paul wrote that the resurrection would occur “at the last trump.” We have already seen in Jewish thought that the last trump was Rosh Ha Shanah. Yeshua said his coming to earth would be at a time of the blowing of the Shofar Ha Gadol (“the great trumpet”) and that is Yom Kippur (Matt 24.29-31), and the gates of repentance are closed. So, this tells us these two events (the resurrection and his coming to earth) can’t be at the same time. You cannot have the “last trump” on Yom Kippur with the “great trump.” This understanding takes the “post-Trib” theory off the table and shatters it.

Now we have the concept of the “opening of the gates.” In Jewish thought the gates of heaven are opened on Rosh Ha Shanah and they are closed on Yom Kippur (Rev 4.1, Psa 24.1-10, Isa 26.1-3 for example). Isa 26 starts out on a Rosh Ha Shanah and proceeds chronologically through the Birth-pains and ends on Yom Kippur at the conclusion of Isa 27.12-13 with the blowing of the Shofar Ha Gadol (the great trumpet).

Let’s go to Rev 4.1 and the phrase “a door was opened in heaven.” In Jewish understanding, on Rosh Ha Shanah the gates (or doors) of heaven are opened. On Yom Kippur they are closed. If you were Jewish 2000 years ago and read this, you would have no problem seeing that this was a Rosh Ha Shanah verse.

Psa 24.1-10 is a Rosh Ha Shanah psalm. It is read in every Rosh Ha Shanah service and it is a major emphasis. Psa 24.7-10 says, “Lift up your heads, O gates, and be lifted up, O ancient doors (doors and gates are synonymous), that the King of Glory may come in! Who is the King of Glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O gates, and lift up O ancient doors, that the King of Glory might come in! Who is the King of Glory? The Lord of Hosts (the armies), he is the King of Glory.” The reason that this psalm is read in association with Rosh Ha Shanah is the verses about the “opening of the gates.” It is a major concept behind what God is communicating about Rosh Ha Shanah. Now, let’s go to Isa 26 and 27.

The Bible uses many types of Hebrew poetry such as Hebrew parallelisms. That is where the first line is repeated in a different way in the second line (see Num 24.17 for example). Another form of Hebrew poetry is called a “Chiastic Structure.” This is a structure in which words or concepts are repeated in reverse order (A, B, C, B, A). The Book of Isaiah is a chiastic structure, so is the Torah. There are many examples of this. When Yeshua said, “The last shall be first and the first shall be last” it is a chiastic structure (A,B,B,A).

Isa 26 and 27 is a chiastic structure and we are going to look at these two chapters. We will see that it talks about the Birth-pains prophetically. So, let’s begin in Isa 26.1-10 where it says, “In that day (the Day of the Lord) this song will be sung in the land of Judah: ‘We have a strong city; God will appoint salvation for the walls and ramparts. Open the gates (it’s Rosh Ha Shanah) that the righteous 2nation which keeps the truth (Torah) may enter in. You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for in Yah the Lord (Yehovah) we have an everlasting rock.'”

So, notice we have the “Day of the Lord” (“in that day”) and the “opening of the gates” so we know we are dealing with Rosh Ha Shanah. The song continues in verse 5, “For he brings down those who dwell on high, the lofty city; he lays it low, he lays it low to the ground, he brings it down to the dust. The foot shall tread it down-the feet of the poor and the steps of the needy. The way of the just is uprightness; O Most Upright (God), you weigh the past of the just (it is Rosh Ha Shanah, Yom Ha Din and a day of judgment). Yes, in the way of your judgments, O Lord, we have waited for you; the desire of our soul is for your name and for the remembrance of you. With my soul I have desired you in the night, yes, by my spirit within me I will seek you early; for when your judgments are in the earth (the Birth-pains) the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness. Let grace be shown to the wicked, yet he will not learn righteousness; in the land of uprightness he will deal unjustly and will not behold the majesty of the Lord (Isa 26.1-10).”

Notice in v 9 it says, “We will seek you early” so let’s develop this out a bit. The Lord gave the sun and moon for “signs and for seasons” in Gen 1.14. Paul wrote to the Thessalonians that he had no reason to write to them about the times and seasons because the day of the Lord was coming like a “thief in the night” (1 Thes 5.1-2). Thirty days prior to Rosh Ha Shanah we have a season called “Teshuvah” which means “repentance.” The idea is to be ready for the Yom Ha Din of Rosh Ha Shanah so we should “seek him early” before we get to the Day of Judgment so that day will not come upon us like a “thief in the night.”

Picking up again in Isa 26.11, “O Lord, when your hand is lifted up, they will not see. But they will see thy zeal for the people and are envious; yes, the fire of your enemies shall devour them. Lord, you will establish peace for us, for you have also done all our works in us. O Lord, our God, masters besides you have had dominion over us but through you alone we confess your name. The dead will not live, the departed spirits will not rise; therefore you have punished and destroyed them. You have wiped out all remembrance of them. You have increased the nation, O Lord, you have increased the nation; you are glorified; you have expanded all the borders of the land. Lord, in trouble (the Birth-pains) they have visited you, they poured out a prayer when your chastening was upon them. As a woman with child is in pain (the Birth-pains) and cries out in her pain, thus we were before you (Hos 5.15 to 6.3; Jer 30.4-8; 1 Thes 5.1-3; Matt 24.8).”

“As she draws near the time of her delivery, so have we been in your sight, O Lord. We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have, as it were, brought forth wind; we have not accomplished any deliverance in the earth, nor were inhabitants of the world born. Your dead shall live (we are still in Rosh Ha Shanah and the theme of resurrection here) with my dead body, their corpses will rise. You who lie in the dust ‘awake’ and shout for joy (we will look at the term “awake” as a term and idiom associated with Rosh Ha Shanah, and Paul uses it in Eph 5.15)), for your dew is as the dew of the dawn (“dew” is a term for resurrection) and the earth will give birth to the departed spirits (resurrection at the beginning of the Day of the Lord on Rosh Ha Shanah). Come my people, enter into your rooms (“rooms” is the Hebrew “chedar” and a word associated in Joel 2.15 with the wedding of the Messiah) and close your doors behind you; hide for a little while until the indignation runs its course (“indignation” is another synonym for the Birth-pains-a specific period of time). For behold, the Lord is about to come out from his place (Hos 5.15; Joel 2.15-17) to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity, and the earth will reveal her bloodshed and will no longer cover her slain (Isa 26.11-21).” These verses clearly teach that the resurrection of the righteous (Natzal/Rapture/Gathering) will occur at the beginning of the Day of the Lord and before the Birth-pains begin.

In Part 17 we will pick up with Isa 27.1-13.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations- Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 15

There is an article on the Day of Judgment in the Jewish Encyclopedia and it says, “The Mishnah, Rosh Ha Shanah 1.2, contains the first known reference to the Day of Judgment. It says: ‘Four times in the year the world is judged: on Passover a decree is passed on the produce of the soil; on Pentecost the fruits of the trees; on New Years Day all men pass before him (an expression rendered by the Amoraim ‘like young lambs’) and on the Feast of Tabernacles a decree is passed on the rain of the year.'” It is taught that on New Years Day that a threefold prayer should be recited, and the first one lifts up God as king, called “Malkiot”. There is a second prayer that asks God to remember for the good of man called “Zikronot” and the third prayer refers to the trumpet blasts called “Shofarot.” It is the belief that on New Years Day all men are judged and the decree is sealed on the Day of Atonement.

Now we are going to talk about Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) and the resurrection of the righteous. We are going to go into some deep spiritual aspects to this concept and they are not generally taught because people who come out of a church are coming from a Christian background and because Christianity moved away from the Jewish understandings of these things, they were thrown away. So, we are going to see many, many references to the terms used to refer to Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shanah). Even “messianic” writers talking about the resurrection will not refer to Jewish sources, even when they were raised in the synagogues or are Jewish themselves. They totally miss everything that was there and all the phrases and terms that are used to describe the resurrection of the righteous.

Now, here is the question. Can we establish that the resurrection of the righteous will occur on a Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shanah) and how do we do that? Many believe that the resurrection will occur on a Rosh Ha Shanah and the resurrection is one of the main aspects of Orthodox belief, both ancient and modern. It is one of the points of the Thirteen Articles of Faith by Mosses Maimonides in the twelfth century A.D. You can research those principles for yourself.

It is the custom of many congregations to recite these principles daily after the morning prayers called “Shacharit.” There is another set of daily prayers called the “Shemonah Esrai” or the Eighteen Benedictions. It is also called the “Amidah” or “Standing Prayer.” The second petition speaks about the resurrection. When a person wakes up in the morning, it is customary to recite a prayer called the Modeh Ani and it says, “I thank you, living and enduring king, for you have graciously returned my soul within me. Great is your faithfulness.” Sleep is a rehearsal for death, and waking up is a rehearsal for the resurrection.

The concept of “resurrection” is a central part of Jewish life. Everyday in the Temple they conducted the Tamid (“continual”) Service (Num 28.1-8). This was done two times a day, once in the morning (about 9 a.m.) and once in the afternoon (about 3 p.m.). These two time periods were called the “Hours of Prayer” (Acts 2.15, 3.1, 10.30; Luke 1.10; Dan 6.10, 9.21; 1 Kings 18.29, 36).

In the morning service a lookout was sent to the highest place in the Temple so he could see if the sun had risen and they could see Hebron (Mishnah, Tamid 3.2). If he could see Hebron, a lamb was brought from the Chamber of Lambs, which was in the southwest corner of the Beit Ha Moked. So, why is Hebron so important here? Because this is where the Cave of Machpelah is and Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are buried there. In Jewish thought that is where the resurrection will occur first. From there it goes to the Mount of Olives.

In Lev 23.24 and Num 29.1 we learn about Yom Teruah, the day of the trumpet blowing, and the trumpet blowing is associated with Rosh Ha Shanah. Why do we associate the blowing of trumpets (shofar) with the resurrection? Because of 1 Cor 15.51-52 and 1 Thes 4.16. The word “Teruah” means both a “shout” and a “blast of a trumpet” (either a “shofar” or ram’s horn, or a “Chatzrof” which were silver trumpets in Num 10).

In Jewish literature there are three “shofarot” (trumpets) that are named. There is the “First Trumpet, the Last trumpet and the Great Trumpet (Shofar Ha Gadol). So, let’s look at the term “Last Trumpet” (1 Cor 15.52). There is a book called “Tz’enah Ur’enah” by Artscroll Publications. It is a book that is directed towards women and it is very concise. Many commentaries are very detailed and developing out just one concept can take pages. But Tz’enah Ur’enah is very concise and to the point. The reason for this is because this book was designed for women who were not obligated to pray and study like the men in Jewish custom. The women were to maintain an observant household and that is a full time job. Their job was just as important as the men studying. When the two came together it makes for a strong family.

But, a women still wants to study (or she should want to) but can’t dedicate hours a day to it, so Tz’enah’ Ur’enah was written to meet that need. In Vol 1, p. 112, it says, “Abraham’s ram: the shofar for Rosh Ha Shanah. Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught in the thicket by its horns (Gen 22.13). The ram was prepared for this moment during the six days of creation. Chizzkuni writes that because the ram was ensnared in the thicket, Abraham understood that God had sent a sacrifice in place of his son. Had the ram not been tangled there Abraham would have thought that it belonged to someone else, and would not have sacrificed it. R. Bechaye writes that after a year during which God’s people became heavy with sin and became distant from him, they took the horn of a ram on Rosh Ha Shanah, and by virtues of their shofar blast, he forgives them of all their transgressions.”

Now, there are two horns on this ram. We are going to see that one of these horns is going to be called “The Last Trump.” By this we can establish that the “last trump” mentioned by Paul is a shofar that is associated with Rosh Ha Shanah. Commenting on Exo 19, Tz’enah Ur’enah, Vol 2, P. 383 says this, “When the ram’s horn is blown long (19.13). When a long note is blown on the shofar they will be permitted to climb onto the mountain, as that will be their sign that the divine presence has left. The shofar came from the ram which had been sacrificed in place of Isaac. R. Bechaye questions, was that ram not burned, together with its horns horns, skin and flesh? How could this be the source of the shofar that was blown on Mount Sinai? The answer is that God created a new ram out of the ashes. Pirkei De R. Eliezer writes that the ram’s bones were made into the foundation for the altar in Jerusalem, its sinews were used as strings on King David’s harp, and its skin was made into a belt for Elijah. Its left horn was blown as a shofar on Mount Sinai and its right horn will be blown to herald the coming of the Mashiach.” When we put this all together, the left horn is blown at Shavuot and the right horn heralds the coming of the Messiah.

In Jewish thought there are two redemptions. The first one is called the Egyptian (first) Redemption. It is the “lesser” of the two redemptions. The second one is called the Messianic Redemption and seen as the “greater” of the two. Since the left side with most is seen as weaker than the right side, the left horn is for the Egyptian Redemption (first) and the right horn is for the greater Messianic Redemption (second).

Exo 19.18-19 talks about Mount Sinai being completely engulfed in smoke. The smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain shook. When the blast of the trumpet sounded long it became louder and louder (not natural), and Moses spoke and God answered him by voice. This is the first shofar of the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai. The “last shofar” or trump is the shofar of the coming of the Messiah. The last shofar is the shofar of the resurrection (1 Cor 15.51-52).

The resurrection in Jewish thought occurs on Yom Ha Din, the Day of Judgment, and Rosh Ha Shanah is a Yom Ha Din. The last trumpet is not the seventh trumpet of the Book of Revelation because this is apocalyptic language (seals, bowls, trumpets). The last trumpet of the Birth-pains is the Shofar Ha Gadol (The Great Trumpet) spoken of in Matt 24.29-31. It will be blown when Yeshua returns to the earth on Yom Kippur. We ill establish that concept later.

In Part 16 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 14

Christianity places the Tribulation before the day of the Lord, ending with the second coming of the Messiah and the start of the Millennium. In Jewish Eschatology, creation began on Tishri 1, year 1 (Gen 1.1-5). We call the time period before the creation the “Olam Haba” or “World to Come” (Heb 6.5). The 6000 years is called the “Olam Ha Zeh” or “Present Age” (Matt 24.3). On Tishri 1, year 6001 (Rosh Ha Shanah-Lev 23.24) the “Millennium” or “the Day of the Lord” begins, also called “the Sabbath of God” or the “Lord’s Day.” The weekly seventh day Sabbath teaches this time period.

The period is also called the “Atid Lavo” or “Future Age or Coming.” The Chevlai Shell Mashiach, or Birth-pains of the Messiah, are the first seven years of the Day of the Lord or Millennium. At the end of year 7000, we go back into the Olam Haba or World to Come. Now, everybody knows if A equals B, and B equals C, then A equals C. What we are going for is that the Naztal, Rapture and Gathering are synonymous terms. We are going to link that terminology with other terms that will tells us when certain events occur.

The information you will have will be, at time, overwhelming and we are not going to establish all this partially. You will know where the Scriptures are that talk about the Natzal (Rapture or Gathering), when it will be, why it happens, who is taken and where everyone goes. So, with that said, let’s look at another eschatological terms called “The Day of Judgment” or “Yom Ha Din.”

In the article called “The Day of Judgment” in the Jewish Encyclopedia it says, “It is a name given to the first of Tishri, as being the New Year’s day.” Now, the first of Tishri is a new moon and it is also “Rosh Ha Shanah” (A equals B). The article continues, “In the Bible the day of the blowing of trumpets is the first day of the seventh (sabbatical) month (Lev 23.24); and no mention is made of the Day of Judgment. The Day of God in the sense of a time of divine judgment of the wicked, is the one that will appear at the end of days; and a description of the divine judgment in heaven is found in Dan 7.9, 10, 22, where the Ancient of Days is depicted as sitting upon a throne while the books are opened before him. This description is also found in the Apocryphal books. Of a specific day in the year on which God holds judgment over the world, no trace is found in the pre-Talmudic literature.” Now, remember the scene in Dan 7.9-10 where the Ancient of days is sitting on a throne, the court is seated and the books are opened before him? Keep that in mind as we move forward.

In Jewish Eschatology, Dan 7.9-10 is Rosh Ha Shanah. We are going to see this same type of setting in the New Testament, another book of the prophets, in the Pseudo-pigraphal writings and popping up all over the place. It’s not going to tell you “this is the day of Judgment” but it expects you to already know that. Nowhere will it tell you, “This is Rosh Ha Shanah” but it expects you to already know that. It won’t tell you, “It’s Tishri 1” because it expects you to know that already. That is why we need to master certain concepts like the two calendars and the festival dates. God gave a certain liturgy for these things so that we can understand what was happening when Yeshua came along. When he was talking we should be saying, “Look at what he is saying!” God gave us tools, but we have neglected the tools and read it with very little understanding.

So, what have we found out? Yom Ha Din is a name for Tishri 1 (Rosh Ha Shanah) and it is also known as Yom Teruah (Day of the Awakening Blast of the shofar). It comes from two passages, Lev 23.24 and Num 29.1. It is also known as Yom Ha Zikaron (Day of Remembrance). In Mal 3.16 it says, “Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a Book of Remembrance was written before him for those who fear the Lord and whom esteem his name.” In Jewish thought, this is a “Sefer (book) Ha Zikaron” and we know that “Zikaron” is one of the names for Rosh Ha Shanah.

In Dan 7.9-10, a passage that the Jewish Encyclopedia says refers to Rosh Ha Shanha, it says, “I kept looking until thrones were set up and the Ancient of Days was seated and his vesture was like white snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool. His throne ablaze with flames, its wheels a burning fire. A river of fire was flowing and coming out from behind him. Thousands and thousand were attending him, and myriads upon myriads were standing before him. The court was seated and the books were opened.”

Now, we just learned the name for one of the books, the Sefer Ha Zikaron (Mal 3.16). We will learn of other names for this book that are found in the Scriptures (A=B and B=C, then A=C). If we see Sefer Ha Zikaron we know it is talking about a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) and that is Rosh Ha Shanah. If it is talking about the “Sefer Chaim” (Book of Life) being opened we k now it is Rosh Ha Shanha.

Now, remember, the first day of the seventh month on the Civil Calendar is Rosh Ha Shanh (Yom Teruah). It is also called “the Day of the Lord” or “Lord’s Day.” The festivals of Rosh Ha Shanah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot in Tishri are also called the “Day of the Lord” because they would up to the Temple for Rosh Ha Shanah and stay through+ Sukkot. Rosh Ha Shanah “blends into” Yom Kippur, which “blends into” Sukkot and Shemini Atzeret (concluding eighth day). These festivals teach us about the seventh day of God, or the “Millennium.” Dan 7.9-10, 13-14 happens at the first Day of the Lord (Rosh Ha Shanah).

In Dan 7.21-22 it says the “horn” (False Messiah) was “waging war with the saints and overpowering them until the Ancient of Days came and judgment was passed in favor of the saints of the Highest One and the time arrived when the saints took possession of the kingdom.” Then in Dan 7.26 it says, “Then the judgment (court) will sit and they shall take away his (False Messiah) dominion to consume and destroy it unto the end.” These verses are a Yom Ha Din, but one is at the beginning of the Birth-pains (dan 7.9-10, 13-14) and the these last two verses refer to the end of the Birth-pains.

Are they both Rosh Ha Shanah? No. In Jewish Eschatology there are two days that are called a Yom Ha Din.” One is Rosh Ha Shanah and the other is Yom Kippur. One teaches about the beginning of the Birth-pains and the other teaches about the end of the Birth-pains. Dan 7.9-10 is recognized as a Yom Ha Din, the Day of Judgment (Rosh Ha Shanah). Keep all this in mind and be familiar with the terminology in this passage. Now, let’s go to Rev 4.1-1 and read the passage. What you will see is it is Rosh Ha Shanah with the same description we saw in Dan 7.9-10. Let’s go to Isa 6.1-4 and read it. What you will see is it it a Rosh Ha Shanah passage with the same description we have seen in Dan 7.9-10 and we need to know that.

Yom Ha Din is also in the Pseudo-pigrapha, 1 Enoch 46.1-6, “And there I saw one who was a “Head of Days” and his head was white like wool. And with him there was another whose face had the appearance of a man and his face was full of grace like one of the Holy Angels. And I asked one of the Holy Angels, who went with me and showed me all the secrets, about that Son of Man, who he was, and from where he was, and why he went with the Head of Days. And he answered me and said to me: ‘This is the Son of Man who has righteousness and with whom righteousness dwells. He will reveal all the treasures of that which is secret, for the Lord of the Spirits has chosen him, and through uprightness his lot has surpassed all others, in front of the Lord of Spirits, forever. And this Son of Man, who we have seen, will rouse the kings and the powerful from their resting places, and the strong, and he will break the teeth of the sinners. And he will cast down the kings from their thrones, and from their kingdoms, for they do not exalt him, and they do not praise him, and do not humbly acknowledge from where their kingdom was given to them. And he will cast down the faces of the strong and shame will fill them, and darkness will be their dwelling, and worms will be their resting place. And they will have no hope of rising from their resting places, for they do not exalt the name of the Lord of Spirits.'” What we have here is a Rosh Ha Shanah passage, and a Jewish reader would tie this into Dan 7.9-10 and Rev 4.1-11.

In Part 15 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 13

Historically, the passage in Jer 46 is talking about the 7th Century B.C. Babylon has become the “big kid on the block” and they are making a move to control Assyria and take their authority. Assyria had been the enemy of Egypt, but now the Babylonians are the bully. Pharaoh Necho has allied Egypt with the Assyrians to stop the Babylonians. They are marching north out of Egypt against Babylon to help the Assyrians at Charchemish.

On the way, Josiah is allied with the Babylonians at this time and he tries to stop Pharaoh Necho. A battle is fought in the Valley of Megiddo. The city of Megiddo was on a hill, called “Har Megiddo.” Some believe that this is where the term “Armageddon” (Har Megiddo) comes from. The “tell” of the city sits right next to the Valley of Megiddo.

This battle may be a picture of the Battle of Armageddon according to some. Josiah was the sixth king of Judah and this means that this battle could occur in the sixth year of the Birth-pains. We have covered this concept in other teachings but we will say this. Rev 16.13-16 talks about three spirits coming out of the mouths of Satan, the False Messiah and the False Prophet like frogs. Frogs catch their prey with their mouths, and this alludes to the false teachings that come out of the mouths of Satan, the False Messiah and the False Prophet to catch their victims. They are sent out to gather the world for a war, not a battle, and they are gathered to a place called “Armageddon” as it is written in most English translations. This is not a great battle in the last days before the Messiah comes, like in Christian eschatology. This is a war over who is going to be worshiped and it has been an ongoing war for a long time.

Har Megiddo means “Mount Megiddo” but there is no “mount” there, just a hill. However, “Har Moed” means “mount of assembly or appointed times” (festivals-Isa 14.13) and can be sounded with a “G” sound (Har Moghed). In Gen 10.19, Josh 10.41 Amos 1.6 and other places, the “ayin” (silent in Hebrew) in Gaza is vocalized like a “g.” So the “ayin” in “Moed” can be sounded as “Moghed” or “Har moghedon” (“Armageddon”). Isa 14.13 and Isa 65.11 talks about a battle over obedience to the Torah or the “mount of the appointed times.” This is not a “battle” but an on-going “war” and it has been Satan’s desire to be worshiped on the “Mount of Assembly” or the festivals (Temple Mount-see 2 Thes 2.4). The history of the Jewish people will be a picture of what is going to happen when Messiah comes.

Jer 46.10 says that “This is the day of the Lord of Hosts, a day of vengeance that he may avenge himself on his adversaries.” This is very important because we know that it is a battle that has happened, but it is also a picture of a battle that will happen in the future. This battle at Charchemish (north of Israel) will happen again.

Christianity teaches that the great last battle will be the battle of Armageddon, but that is impossible. The Scriptures teach that the last battle is at Jerusalem (Zech 14) and Yeshua returns there. Megiddo is 80 miles to the north.

After this battle at Megiddo, the war will move north to the Charchemish area, then move south to Syria and northern Israel. The Scriptures say these battles are in “the day of the Lord.” Now, if you go to Christian sources about prophecy it will never teach this. They do not teach in the seminaries that the Day of the Lord in all of these passages are a picture of what is to come.

Ecc 1.9-11 says, “That which has been is what will be, and that which is done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which it is said, ‘See, this is new.’ It has already been in ancient times before us. There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remembrance of former things nor will there be any remembrance of things that are to come by those who will come after.” The Hebrew name for this book is “Kohelet” and it means the “gatherer” and “congregation.” The Gathering is a Scriptural name for the Natzal (Rapture).

So, to answer our earlier question as to who the Egyptians, Assyrians and the Babylonians are in prophecy, the Egyptians will be Europe, led by the False Messiah (Pharaoh). The Assyrians will be the Russians under the authority of the False Messiah and the army of the Babylonians will be the Kings of the East (Rev 16.12). Remember, Babylon was referred to as “the east.”

Next, let’s look at another term that we have in Jewish Eschatology called the “Birth-pains of the Messiah” or the “Chevlai Shell Mashiach.” If you want to talk prophecy with Jewish people in Israel, bring up the “Birth-pains of the Messiah.” If you want to clear out a room in Israel, bring up the “Tribulation.” Why? Because the “Tribulation” is coming from a Christian perspective, but the Jews call it the Birth-pains. Christians talk about “Armageddon” and Jews talk about “Gog and Magog.”

The Babylonian Talmud says in Sanhedrin 97a, “Our rabbis taught: In the seven year cycle, at the end of which the Son of David will come…at the conclusion of the Septennate, the Son of David will come.” The word “Septennate” refers to a period of seven years. Writing about the messianic texts of Judaism, Raphael Patai said, “The idea became entrenched that the coming of Messiah will be preceded by greatly increased suffering…this will last for seven years. And then unexpectedly the Messiah will come” (The Messiah Texts, p. 95-96). According to the Babylonian Talmud in Shabbat 118a on “The Travails of the Messiah” p. 590 it says, “The advent of the Messiah was pictured as being preceded by years of great distress.”

The Dead Sea Scrolls and ancient rabbinic literature called the severe troubles of this seven year period “The Birth-pains of the Messiah” (Millar Burrows, “More Light on the Dead Sea Scrolls” p.343-344). According to the Babylonian Talmud, the reason for this designation is because travail precedes birth, and this travail “precedes the birth of a new era” or the messianic age (Sanhedrin 98b on “Birth-pains of the Messiah” p.665). Just as a woman must go through a period of birth-pains before her child is born into the world, so the world must go through seven years of birth-pains before the Messianic Age is born into the world.

Dan 9.27 talks about this period of seven years. A covenant will be made with Israel for seven years. In the middle of the week (three and a half years) the False Messiah will end the korbanot in the Temple and set up the Abomination of Desolation. The word used for “week” in that verse is “shavuah” meaning a period of seven (seven days, weeks, months or years, etc). The period of a wedding is a shavuah (Gen 29-27; 29.28). For further information on shavuah, go to the Brown, Driver, Briggs Lexicon. As a side note, the “Abomination of Desolation” is not an “act” but an image, idol or icon according to the Hebrew words being used.

So, in Jewish Eschatology the Birth-pains is a period of seven years. Christianity calls this period the Tribulation but there will be a major difference between these concepts concerning the timing and the amount of information given. In Part 12, we have given many Scriptural passages concerning the birth-pains and the synonyms used for the birth-pains. Many people are never taught that these passages were about, or alluding to, that future time calked the Birth-pains. But Yehovah has fashioned the history of Israel in such away so that these stories will tell the story of the Redemption as well (here now, but not yet). Every word points to the coming of the Messiah and the events surrounding it. What we need is the “code” to open up our understanding to fill in all the gaps on virtually every subject concerning the Natzal, the Birth-pains and the Messianic Kingdom to come.

Read all these passages and take note of the “context.” Look for phrases like “the day of the Lord” or “in that day.” For example, let’s look at Jer 30.6-9. We have a “woman in childbirth” and “that day”, “trouble”, “on that day” and “David their king.” Right away we know the Lord is communicating something messianic to us in every verse. If we go through every one of the passages given in Part 12 we will see all kinds of terms about what happened anciently and what will happen prophetically.

The “tribulation” on the other hand is only used in about five verses (Matt 24.9, 24.21, 24.29; Mark 13.19, 13.24 for example) but there are hundreds of verses that talk about the birth-pains (or a synonym of it) over and over again. We have been using limited terms.

So, what have we found out about the birth-pains so far? We have learned that the birth-pains are seven years long. The birth-pians are called the Tribulation in Christianity. The birth-pains are at the beginning of the Day of the Lord, and the Day of the Lord is the same thing as the “Millennium.” Therefore, the birth-pains are included in the “Millennium” and not before it (Jer 30.6-9). Keep that thought in mind as we move forward.

Now, we will have major differences between Christian Eschatology and Jewish Eschatology. When you see the wealth of information God has given Israel, you will see why they are called “The Chosen People.” If you have ever gone through a Passover Seder, you will wonder why you ever fooled around with rabbits, Easter baskets and eggs. The Jewish people were to go through the world and teach the nations about God and the Redemption using the terms, concepts, idioms and phrases that Yehovah gave them to teach his truth. What people need to do is put aside all the things they learned in church and come into all this like a newborn and learn. We also need to stay away from jumping to conclusions until we have studied something all the way through, and confirm what it is being communicated. Let Yehovah renew our minds.

The Tribulation is totally Christian terminology. The Chevlai Shell Mashiach (Birth-pains of the Messiah) is the Jewish terminology. The key event of the Christian Tribulation is the Battle of Armageddon. The key event of the Jewish birth-pains is the battle of Gog and Magog. Christianity places the Tribulation before the Day of the Lord, ending with the second coming of the Messiah and the start of the Millennium (1000 years). In Jewish Eschatology, the Chevlai Shell Mashiach are the first seven years of the Day of the Lord (1000 years). At the end of that period, we go back into the Olam Haba or “the World to Come.”

In Part 14 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 12

The Jewish Encyclopedia gives some titles for the day of the Lord. It says, “An essential factor in the prophetic doctrine of divine judgment at the end of time, generally, though not always, involving both punishment and blessing. It (day of the Lord) is identical with ‘That Day’ (Isa 17.7; Hos 2.18; Micah 2.4; Zech 9.16, 14.4,6,9); ‘Those Days’ (Joel 3.1); ‘That Time’ ( Jer 31.1; Zeph 3.19-20); or simply ‘The Day’ (Ezek 7.10; or ‘The Time.'”

There are many, many titles for the Day of the Lord and we need to watch for these as we study. These terms are not limited to the Tanak. They are also in the Gospels and Epistles. They are not talking about a certain day of the week, but a prophetic time called “In that day.” In the book, “Rosh Ha Shanah and the Messianic Kingdom to Come” by Joseph Good, p. 163-173, there is a list of various titles for the Day of the Lord and the Birth-pains of the Messiah, and we would like to include these titles here.

These titles are: “the Day of the Great Slaughter (Isa 30.25); the Day of the Lord’s Vengeance (Isa 34.8); a Day of Trouble and Rebuke and Blasphemy ((Isa 37.3; 2 Kings 19.3); the Day of Salvation ((sa 49.8); the Day of Vengeance of Our God (Isa 61.2); the Day of Vengeance (Isa 63.4; Prov 6.34); the Day of Slaughter (Jer 12.3); the Day of Affliction (Jer 16.19); the Day of Doom (Jer 17.17-18-“evil”, Jer 51.2-“trouble”, Job 21.30-“destruction”, Amos 6.3-“evil”); the Day of the Lord of Hosts (Jer 46.10); a Day of Vengeance (Jer 46.10); the Day You Have Announced (Lam 1.21); the Day of His Anger (Lam 2.1); the Day we Have Waited For (Lam 2.16); the Day of Your Anger (Lam 2.21); the Day off the Lord’s Anger (Lam 2.22; Zeph 2.2-3); Behold, the Day (Ezek 7.10); the Day of the Wrath of the Lord (Ezek 7.19); the Day (Ezek 3.2; Joel 1.15; 1 Cor 3.13; Ezek 30.3; Mal 4.1); a Day of Clouds (Ezek 30.3); the Day of Egypt (Ezek 30.9); the Day of Your Fall (Ezek 32.10).”

The titles continue: “the Day that I Am Glorified (Ezek 39.13); the Day of Jezreel (Hos 1.11); the Day of Rebuke (Hos 5.9); the Day of Our King (Hos 7.5); the Appointed Day (Hos 9.5); the Day of the Feast of the Lord (Hos 9.5); the Days of Punishment (Hos 9.7); the Days of Recompense (Hos 9.7); the Day of Darkness and Gloominess (Joel 2.2; Zeph 1.15); a Day of Clouds and Thick Darkness (Joel 2.2; Zeph 1.15); the Great and Terrible Day of the Lord (Joel 2.31); the Day of Battle (Amos 1.14; Psa 140.7; Zech 14.3; Prov 21.31); the Day of the Whirlwind (Amos 1.14); the Day of the Lord Upon All Nations (Oba 15); the Day of Your Watchman and Your Punishment (Mic 7.4); the Day of Trouble (Nahum 1.7; Psa 50.15; Hab 3.16); the Day of Jacob’s Trouble (Jer 30.7); the Day of His Preparation (Nahum 2.3); the Day of the Lord’s Sacrifice (Zeph 1.18); the Great Day of the Lord (Zeph 1.14); a Day of Wrath (Zeph 1.15); a Day of Wrath (Zeph 1.15); a Day of Trouble and Distress (Zeph 1.15).”

More titles include: “a Day of Devastation and Desolation (Zeph 1.15); a Day of Trumpet and Alarm (Zeph 1.16); the Day of the Lord’s Wrath (Zeph 1.18); the Day of His Coming (Mal 3.2); the Great and Dreadful Day of the Lord (Mal 4.5); the Day of Judgment (Matt 10.15; Matt 11.24; Matt 12.36; Mark 6.11; 2 Pet 2.9; 1 John 4.17); the Son of Man Will Be in His Day (Luke 17.24); the Day When the Son of Man is Revealed (Luke 17.30); the Great and Notable Day of the Lord (Acts 2.20); the Day of Wrath and Revelation of the Righteous Judgment of God (Rom 2.5); the Day of Our Lord Yeshua ha Mashiach (1 Cor 1.8); the Day of the Lord Yeshua (2 Cor 1.14); the Day of Redemption (Eph 4.30); the Day of Messiah (Phil 1.10, 2.16); the Day of Yeshua ha Mashiach (Phil 1.6); the Day of Judgment and Perdition of Ungodly Men (2 Pet 3.7); the Day of God (2 Pet 3.12); the Judgment of the Great Day (Jude 6); the Great Day of his Wrath (Rev 6.17); the Great day of God Almighty (Rev 16.14); the Day of My Calamity (2 Sam 22.19); the Day of his Wrath (Job 20.28; Psa 110.5); the Day of Wrath (Job 21.30; Prov 11.4); the Day of Battle and War (Job 38.23); the Day of My Trouble (Psa 77.2, 86.7, 102.2); the Day of Your Power (Psa 110.3); the Day of Adversity (Prov 24.10); the Day When the Keepers of the House Tremble (Ecc 12.3); the Day of His Espousals (Song 3.11); the Day of the Gladness of His Heart (Song 3.11); A Day on Which He Will Judge the World in Righteousness by Whom He Has Ordained (Acts 17.31); the Day the Lord Binds up the Bruise of His People (Isa 30.26).”

The following are synonyms for the Birth-pains of the Messiah: “TROUBLE (2 Kings 19.3; 1 Chr 22.14; 2 Chr 15.4, 29.8, 32.18; Neh 9.27,32; Job 3.26, 38.23; Psalms 9.9,13, 10.1, 13.4, 20.1, 22.11, 25.17,22, 27.5, 31.7,9, 34.6,17, 37.39, 41.1, 46.1, 50.15, 54.7, 59.16, 60.11, 66.14, 69.17, 71.20, 73.5, 77.2, 78.33,49, 81.7, 83.17, 86.7, 88.3, 90.7, 91.7, 102.2, 104.29, 107.6,19,26,28, 108.12, 116.3, 119.143, 138.7, 142, 143.11; Prov 11.8, 12.13, 25.19; Isa 8.22, 22.5, 26.16, 30.6, 32.10,11, 33.2, 37.3, 46.7, 57.20, 65.16,23; Jer 2.27,28, 8.15, 11.12,14, 14.8,19, 30.7, 51.2; Lam 1.21; Ezek 7.7,27, 26.18, 27.35, 32.13; Dan 12.1; Nahum 1.7; Hab 3.16; Zeph 1.15). WHIRLWIND (2 Kings 2.1,11; Job 37.9, 38.1,40.6; Psalm 58.9; Prov 1.27, 10.25; Isa 5.28, 17.13, 40.24, 41.16, 66.15; Jer 4.13, 23.19, 25.32, 30.23; Ezek 1.4; Dan 11.40; Hos 8.7, 13.3; Amos 1.14; Nahum 1.3; Hab 3.14; Zech 7.14). INDIGNATION (Deut 29.28; Job 10.17; Psa 69.24, 78.49, 102.10; Isa 10.5,25, 13.5, 26.20, 30.27,30; 34.2, 66.14; Jer 10.10, 15.17, 50.25; Lam 2.6, Ezek 21.31, 22.24,31; Dan 8.19, 11.36; Mic 7.9; Nah 1.6; Zeph 3.8; Mal 1.4; Heb 10.27; Rev 14.10). TRAVAIL (Gen 3.15, 35.16-20, 38.27-28, 48.3; 2 Kings 19.3; Psalm 48.3-6; Isa 13.8, 21.3, 23.4, 26.17, 37.3, 42.14, 54.1, 66.7-9; Jer 4.31, 6.24, 13.21, 22.23, 30.6, 31.8, 48.41, 49.22-24, 50.43; Hos 9.11-12, 13.13; Mic 4.9-10, 5.3; Matt 24.8; Mark 13.8; John 16.21-24; 1 Thes 5.3; Rev 12.2).”

As you can see, the Scriptures are full of information about this if you know what you are looking for, and the Day of the Lord and the Birth-pains of the Messiah will be referenced over 300 times. Here is a concept on these titles. We know that there are titles and idioms for the holidays in America like Thanksgiving. It is called “Turkey day” Because it describes what we eat. If we say “over the river and through the woods” we are talking about a song for Thanksgiving. If we say “Jingle Bells” everyone knows it is a song for Christmas. These are descriptive and tell us what’s happening.

In the same way, these titles on the Day of the Lord are very descriptive and tell us what’s happening. We have the day of vengeance, slaughter, trouble and anger. But on the other hand, we have the day of “his Coming”, the “Day of His Espousals” and the “Day the Lord Binds Up the Bruises of His People” and so on. So, how can we have a day that is terrible and destructive, and on the other hand a day that is great and looked forward to? We will find these answers when we go into Jewish Eschatology. Remember, the Day of the Lord is the same as the “Millennium.” But, how can there be “bad” in the “Millennium?”

In Jer 46.1-10 there is a description of an ancient battle in the days of Josiah. However, it goes on to say, “For that day belongs to the Lord God of Hosts, a day of vengeance, so as to avenge himself on his foes” (46.10). This battle between the Babylonians, Assyrians and Egyptians happened long ago, but we are told that this battle will happen again. This is what is called a “double reference prophecy” in the day of the Lord. So, who are the Egyptians prophetically? Who are the Assyrians prophetically? Who are the Babylonians prophetically?

In Part 13, we will pick up with this passage in Jer 46.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 11

Now, the question in the First Century was, “Are there two messiahs or two comings.” In Matt 11.1-3 and Luke 7.19-23 we have two passages about Yochanon (John) who is in prison. He asks Yeshua through a messenger, “Are you the coming one or should we expect another?” Many people are taught that Yochanon was going through a time of doubt. He had been arrested and put into prison and he knew he was going to be put to death eventually, so he had some doubts about Yeshua. In other words, “Are you going to fulfill all the prophecies about Messiah or is there a Messiah Ben David after you?”

First of all, Yochanon was not doubting. He knew Yeshua was the Messiah Ben Joseph (the Suffering Servant) because he said so in John 1.29. We have gone over what he probably said. He had seen the Ruach Ha Kodesh descend upon him, which was a sign to him who the Messiah was (John 1.33-34). Yeshua tells the messenger to go tell Yochanon “the things you have seen and heard: the blind receive sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have the gospel preached to them.” All of these are in reference to the Messiah Ben Joseph and the Messiah Ben David, so Yeshua is telling Yochanon that he will fulfill both messianic roles and there would be no reason to expect another. Here is a side note. Nowhere in Isa 35.5-6 or 61.1 does Isaiah mention that the Messiah will raise the dead. However, the Isaiah Scroll found at Qumran includes it. It is possible that Yeshua was quoting from the Qumran Scroll.

Hos 6.1-3 says that Israel will be stricken for two days (two thousand years) and in the third day (the Messianic Kingdom of one thousand years) he will revive them and raise them up. They will pursue the knowledge of the Lord and that his coming is as established as the morning and he will come like the rain.

Now, we know from our study of time that from Creation to the coming of Messiah was 4000 years. Then you have a 2000 year period (two days) after 70 A.D. where Israel was dispersed and torn among the nations. Then the Lord will come at the beginning of the seventh day (Messianic Kingdom). So, the “third day” is the third day after the “two days.” Let’s talk about the “rain” in this passage.

Messiah will come like the latter and former rain. One of these rains come in the spring and the other comes in the fall. We have the spring rains that come right before the spring festivals. The fall rains start during or right after the fall festivals. Joel 2.23 says, “Be glad then, you children of Zion and rejoice in the Lord your God; for he has given you the former rain faithfully and he will cause the rain to come down for you-the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month.”

So here is a question. How can you have a rain “in the first month” in the spring and “in the first month” in the fall unless there are two calendars? Not only will we have two comings of the Messiah, but they will be in the first month of spring (Nisan) and the first month in the fall (Tishri). We know Yeshua came in the first month of the Religious Calendar in the spring (Nisan) to fulfill the spring festivals of Pesach (died), Hag Ha Matzah (buried), Bikurim (raised from the dead) and sent the Ruach Ha Kodesh (Holy Spirit) on Shavuot. We have already established that the spring festival season is not over until Shavuot.

That means that his second coming will be in the first month of the Civil Calendar, in the month of Tishri in the fall to fulfill Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shanah) on Tishri 1 (the Natzal/Rapture), Yom Kippur on Tishri 10 (second coming to the earth) and Sukkot on Tishri 15-21 and Shemini Atzeret (eighth day) on Tishri 22 (to initiate the Kingdom on earth). If he fulfilled the spring festivals on the very date they were celebrated by doing something significant in the plan of salvation, we have every reason to expect he will do the same in the fall festivals. So we have major information here in Joel 2.23. He will come in Nisan and Tishri and fulfill the festivals (the appointed times).

Now, let’s look at some basic terms related to Jewish Eschatology. At this point we want to have them and know what to look for because we will see that the Natzal (Rapture) is talked about from Genesis to Revelation. We will have hundreds of references and you will see them once you have the terms. The reason why these references were glossed over by us is because we didn’t know what these terms were talking about. Most people know two passages about the Natzal (Rapture) which are 1 Cor 15.50-52 and 1 Thes 4.13-18. But we are going to show hundreds of references from the Scriptures, the Jewish Liturgy and from various writings and texts. Another question to ask now is, “Who is going to have more information, the person with the two verses or the person with hundreds of verses?” What we want to reveal is how to see these many passages.

There are basic terms to know in order to understand Jewish Eschatology. Some of these terms are the Day of the Lord, the Birth-pains of the Messiah, the Abomination of Desolation, the Day of Judgment, Gog and Magog, the Ingathering of the Dispersed and the rebuilding of the Temple. Many will no doubt say, “Oh, I know all about all that.” However, most people come with what they have learned in Christianity or other places. Most people do not realize that ancient Judaism had a doctrine about the Natzal or “gathering.”

Did Yeshua ever teach anything that could not be found in the Tanak? What about Paul? Where was Paul’s proof to back up what he wrote in 1 Cor 15 and 1 Thes 4? There is nothing in the New Testament that we cannot find in the Tanak. It must be there or it is not from God (Deut 4.2). Here is an essential understanding. Through the readings that are read, some of the prayers that are prayed and the customs attached to each festival Yehovah gives the information that defines what will happen in each phase of the second coming of Messiah. To interpret eschatology without Jewish understandings of the festivals is to reduce the Scriptures down to mere bones. So, let’s start with an understanding of the “Day of the Lord.”

The day of the Lord is a one thousand year period and it is a time of judgment for the unrighteous, but it is also a time of blessing for the righteous. The day of the Lord is also called the Messianic Kingdom and it begins with the coronation of the Messiah. The Day of the Lord was not only a name for the Sabbath, it is also an ancient name for Rosh Ha Shanah (Tishri 1). Sigmund Mowinckel was a biblical scholar who died in 1965. He wrote a book called “The Psalms in Israel’s Worship” among other books and we have this book in our library. He is referenced in the Encyclopedia Judaica in articles about Rosh Ha Shanah. It will state that Mowinckel’s research found that Rosh Ha Shanah was called “the Day of the Lord” anciently. That was also what they called all the festivals of Tishri, but it was primarily used for Rosh Ha Shanah.

In 2 Pet 3.8-10 it says, “But beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years is as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some count slackness, but is long-suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away (from one condition to another) with great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat (this is figurative language for swift judgment-Exo 15.15; Zech 14.12; Psa 75.3; 1 John 2.17; Isa 24.1-23), and the earth and its works (of man like governments, cities, things used by man, religious customs and traditions, things outward and earthly-Gal 4.3) that are in it will be burned up.”

1 Thes 5.1-3 says, “But concerning the times and seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say,’Peace and safety’ then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant, and they shall not escape.” Remember, right before this passage we have 1 Thes 4.14-18 where Paul is talking about the Natzal (Rapture/Gathering). So, the “Day of the Lord” and a “thief in the night” are going to be expressions that are common among the Jewish people in reference to the topic of the Natzal, which is also known as the “gathering” in 1 Thes 2.1.

In Part 12, we will begin to give some titles for the Day of the Lord and we will list them here, but they can be found in the book called, “Rosh Ha Shanah and the Messianic Kingdom to Come” by Joseph Good of Hatikvah Ministries, P. 163-173. What we will find that the day of the Lord or some variant of that day can be found over 300 times in the Scriptures and it will be a time of judgment for the unrighteous and also a time of blessing for the righteous at the same time.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 10

In the First Century, a popular view concerning the coming of the Messiah by the Pharisees was that there would be at least two separate Messiahs. The first “Messiah” was known as the “Mashiach Ben Yosef” or “Messiah Ben Joseph” who would be a suffering Messiah as prophesied in Genesis and the prophet Isaiah. This was based on Gen 49.22-24 where it says, “Joseph is a fruitful bough, a fruitful bough by a spring, his branches run over the wall. The archers have bitterly attacked him, shot at him and hated him. But his bow remained in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob (From there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel).” In the Book of Isaiah we have what is called the “Suffering Servant Passages” (there are four).

In the Wikipedia article called “Servant Songs” it says that Isa 42.1-4 is a passage that says the Servant is the one chosen by God and anointed to establish justice throughout the world. Isa 49.1-6 says the Servant speaks to the entire world and identifies himself as one called by God before birth. Isa 50.4-11 tells us the Servant declares his confidence in help from God even when he faces physical persecution. Isa 52.13 through 53.12 tells us the suffering of the Servant and how he was oppressed even though he is innocent.

It is advised that these passages be studied in their entirety to get the full expression of what the Messiah Ben Joseph is in relation to the Suffering Servant. We are attempting to lay a foundation so that we can understand the Natzal (Rapture) because all of this is part of that. Then what we have studied will be put together piece by piece to the point where we will understand the Natzal in its fullness. Only then will we be able to differentiate between truth and error on this subject.

In the Jewish Encyclopedia article on the Messiah Ben Joseph it says, “Finally there must be mentioned a Messianic Figure peculiar to the Rabbinical Apocalyptic Literature, that of Messiah Ben Joseph. The earliest mention of him is in the Talmud, Sukkah 52a and 52b where three statements occur in regard to him, for the first of which Rabbi Dosa (c. 250 ) is given as authority, in the last of three statements only his name is mentioned, but the first two speak of the fate which he is to meet, namely, to fall in battle (as if alluding to a well-known tradition). Details about him are not found until much later, but he has an established place in the apocalypses of later centuries and in Midrash literature-in Saadia’s description of the future (“Emunot ve Deot” Chapter 8) and in that of Ha Gaon (Ta’am Zekonim” p. 59). According to these, Messiah Ben Joseph will appear prior to the coming of Messiah Ben David; he will gather the children of Israel around him, march to Jerusalem, and there, after overcoming hostile powers, reestablish the Temple worship and set up his own dominion. There upon Armilus, according to one group of sources, or God and Magog according to the other, will appear with their hosts before Jerusalem, wage war against the Messiah Ben Joseph and slay him. His corpse, according to one group, will be unburied in the streets of Jerusalem; according to the other, it will be hidden by the angels with the bodies of the Patriarchs until Messiah Ben David comes and resurrects him.”

Now, Armilus is a Jewish way of referring to the False Messiah or Rome because it comes from the word “Romulus.” For more information on the False Messiah, see “Torah and New Testament Foundations-The False Messiah” (33 parts) on this website. As believers, we don’t necessarily agree with all this but we must remember that we see everything in a mirror dimly. In the Jewish concept of prophecy, only Moses saw through clear glass. Everyone else has obscured vision. So what is this saying in a nutshell? The Jews of the First Century had a concept of two messiahs to come. One would be slain by Rome and resurrected by the conquering King Messiah Ben David, who would finalize everything.

We know that Yeshua was the Servant of God. His ministry was for three and a half years and he died on Passover (Nisan 14). That means his ministry began around the fall festivals of Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shanah), Yom Kippur and Sukkot. In John 1.29 most translations say, “The next day John saw Yeshua coming toward him and said, ‘Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.'” But here is the problem with that translation. At Yom Kippur there are two goats. One is offered as a sin offering to God, and the other is Azazel.

So, we have a problem. If the lamb is not used as a sin offering, how could Yeshua be the sin offering? We would expect a goat, but not a lamb. How this is translated would not have made sense to John’s listeners. We know God has given the korbanot for our instruction.

There is a book called, “The Christology of the New Testament” by Oscar Cullman. On p. 71 it says, “The works of C.F. Burney and J. Jeremias have shown that the Aramaic phrase for ‘Talyah d’ Laha’ means both ‘Lamb of God’ and ‘Servant of God’ and it probably lies behind the Greek expression for ‘Lamb of God.’ Since the expression ‘Lamb of God’ is not commonly used in the Old Testament as a designation for the Paschal Lamb, it is probable that the author of John thought probably of the ‘Eved ha Shem.'” This is also confirmed in the book, “The Aramaic Origins of the Fourth Gospel” by C.F.Burney, p. 107-108.

In other words, it does not make sense for Yochanon (John) to cry out, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.” But, the Book of John written in Hebrew and the people spoke Hebrew. There were Aramaic loan words and phrases that were still used, just like there are loan words and phrases from other languages that we use today. It is probable that Yochanon said, “Behold! The servant of God who takes away the sins of the world.” This refers to the concept of the Servant Messiah that everyone knew at the time.

Later in the chapter we see the Messiah Ben Joseph being referred to concerning Yeshua in John 1.45-49. First of all, Phillip refers to Yeshua as the “son of Joseph.” He does not mean his earthly father because Phillip didn’t know Yeshua’s family at this point. He is referring to the Messiah Ben Joseph. Secondly, why was Nathaniel so amazed because Yeshua said he saw him “under the fig tree?”

One of the idioms for the Messianic Kingdom is “under the fig tree” (1 Kings 4.25; Mic 4.4; Zech 3.10). What Yeshua is saying is he saw Nathaniel is a righteous man in the kingdom and he would have a part in the resurrection of the righteous. This amazes Nathaniel and he knew that Yeshua was the Messiah and the Son of God and the King of Israel (a parallelism).

In Part 11 we will pick up here with the question that was asked in the First Century, “Are there two messiahs or two comings?” In fact, that is the exact question Yochanon asked Yeshua (Matt 11.3). This will relate to our study of the Natzal.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 9

In Gen 8.4 we learn that the Ark rested on the mountains of Ararat on the seventeenth of the first month. What date is that on the calendar? It is the seventeenth of Tishri on the Civil Calendar (it is before Exo 12). What is the significance attached to this date? What we will find is Israel passed through the Red Sea and Yeshua was resurrected (passed through the waters of death) on that date. Both of those events happened after Exo 12 so the dates are reckoned according to the Religious Calendar, the seventeenth day of the first month of Nisan. In addition, Hezekiah cleansed the Temple (2 Chr 29.17-24) and Haman is killed on Nisan 17 (Est 3.12 through 7.10).

So, as we have shown you in just a few examples, Knowing these dates can lead us to something significant in the plan of God even today. These calendars are tremendously important. That’s why Paul says in 1 Thes 5.1 that, “Now as to the times (moedim) and the seasons (zemanim), brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you.” Lev 23 tells us about the biblical festivals. The Hebrew word for “appointed times” is the word “moed” meaning “appointment.” The Hebrew word for “convocation” is “Mikrah” and it means “rehearsal, recital” (Lev 23.2).

The festivals were appointments with God at the Temple on certain dates to “rehearse” God’s prophetic plan. The seven festivals are Pesach (Passover); Hag Ha Matzah (Unleavened Bread); Yom ha Bikurim (First Fruits); Shavuot (Pentecost); Yom Truah (Day of the Awakening Blast of the Shofar also known as Rosh Ha Shanah); Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) and Sukkot (Booths).

There are seven “Shabbatons” or “High Sabbaths” in Scripture. They are Nisan 15 (first day of Hag Ha Matzah); Nisan 21 (last day of Hag Ha Matzah) Shavuot or the fiftieth day after the first day of the week after Passover; Tishri 1 (Yom Teruah or Rosh Ha Shanah); Tishri 10 (Yom Kippur and Tishri 22 (Shemini Atzeret). We need to have a working knowledge of the calendar and the dates of the festivals and Shabbatons. Scripture will say certain things are happening on these dates.

Now, in this particular study, Tishri 1 (Yom Teruah or Rosh Ha Shanah) and its idioms, ceremonies, prayers and concepts will be very important towards a proper understanding of the Natzal (Rapture) as we shall see. The Lord expects you to know these dates, festivals and concepts (1 Thes 5.1). Now, let’s look at some “zemanim” (or seasons) that deal with our topic.

First, let’s look at the Counting of the Omer. From the day of the waving of the omer before God in the Temple (also called Bikkurim or first fruits of the barley harvest) to Shavuot is fifty days. The people were to count seven sabbaths, and the fiftieth day is Shavuot (always occurs on the first day of the week).

The day Yeshua rose from the dead was Nisan 17 and it was the day they waved the omer of “bikurim” (first fruits). Paul will write his letters (epistles) in the sub-language of the festivals and the Temple. We know that he alludes to Bikurim and the counting of the omer in his teaching about the resurrection of Yeshua in 1 Cor 15.20-23. Yeshua rose from the dead on Nisan 17 which was the day of first fruits (Bikurim) and later raised people from the dead as the first fruits of the coming harvest, beginning on the Natzal (Rapture). He kept the “appointment” and “rehearsal.” Thses verses are in the sub-language of the festivals.

Another season we will talk about is the season of Teshuvah (repentance). This is a forty day period that begins on Elul 1 and goes through Tishri 10 (Yom Kippur). Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur are both called a “Yom Ha Din” or “Day of Judgment.” We will establish this later. Every day during this period a shofar is blown and Psa 27 is read.

This brings us to another season called the “Yamim Noraim” or the “Days of Awe.” This goes from Tishri 1 and Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shanah) to Tishri 10 (Yom Kippur), for a total of ten days (the number of judgment). These days are called the Days of Awe because all mankind is judged on Rosh Ha Shanah, a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment). Those that are not judged as righteous on Rosh Ha Shanah have ten days to repent. Then there is a final judgment of mankind on Yom Kippur, another Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment). The Yamim Noraim are the last ten days of Teshuvah.

Now, Eph 4.30 says, “Do not grieve the Ruach Ha Kodesh (Holy Spirit) of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” Another name for Yom Kippur is Yom Ha Pedut meaning “Day of Redemption.” It is also called the “Day of Sealing.” This tells us that the Book of Ephesians was probably written around the High Holy days of Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur because he is using the terms and concepts that come from those festivals.

We believe that the Book of First Corinthians was written around Passover, Unleavened Bread and First Fruits. We just looked at a passage associated with Bikurim (First Fruits). 1 Cor 6 through 8 talks about concepts found in Passover and Unleavened Bread. This tells us that Paul was teaching concepts in conjunction with these festivals because it was that time of the year. Again, we see this practice in our passage in Ephesians giving concepts associated with Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur. There is a connection between Rosh Ha Shanah and Sukkot. The fall festivals (Yom Teruah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot) are connected together in practice and in thought. Here are a couple of examples.

In 1 Kings 8.1-2 we see that Solomon assembled to himself in Jerusalem the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the chief fathers of the children of Israel. They were going to bring up the Ark of the Covenant of Yehovah from the city of David, which is Tzion. Therefore, all the men of Israel assembled with King Solomon at the feast in the month of Ethanim, which is the seventh month (Tishri on the religious calendar).

We have already seen that the Targums said that the ancients called Ethanim the first month (on the civil Calendar-Targum Ben Uzziel on 1 Kings 8.2). Solomon is going to dedicate the Temple and everyone comes on Tishri 1 (Yom Teruah or Rosh Ha Shanah) for the festival “in the month of Ethanim.” They are going to bring up the Ark out of the tent David made for it and move it into the Temple (about a half a mile). Then he dedicates the Temple.

1 Kings 8.65-66 says, “So Solomon observed the feast at that time, and all Israel with him, a great assembly from the entrance of Hamath to the brook of Egypt, before the Lord our God for seven days and seven more days, even fourteen days. On the eighth day he sent the people away and they blessed the king. Then they went to their tents joyful and glad of heart for all the goodness that the Lord had shown to David his servant and to Israel his people.”

So, how could he send everyone away on the eighth day when everyone was assembled to celebrate for fourteen days. The key to understanding this passage is the calendar. You have the Festival of Sukkot which goes for seven days, then you have a day attached to it called “Shemini Atzeret” or the “Concluding Eighth Day.” So now we can understand this passage. They assemble on Tishri 1, then on the eighth day of Tishri he starts his fourteen days of dedicating the Temple (Tishri 8 through the Tishri 21). The actual dedication of the Temple started on Tishri 8.

We have another example of people coming up on Tishri 1 (Yom Teruah/Rosh Ha Shanah) and then they stay there and celebrate through Sukkot in Neh 7.73 through 8.18. Now, as you read these dates it won’t say it is Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shanah) or Yom Kippur but God expects us to know these dates.

There is a Jewish saying, “On Rosh Ha Shanh men are judged, on Yom Kippur men are sentenced and on Hoshanah Rabbah (seventh day of Sukkot) men are delivered over to judgment (Jerusalem Talmud, Rosh Ha Shanh 84.8). This actually happened on Oct 16,1946 (Tishri 21 that year) when ten Nazi war criminals were hung after the Nuremberg Trials on Hoshanah Rabbah. Herman Goering was supposed to be the eleventh one hung but he committed suicide two hours before. This fulfilled a hidden prophecy in the book of Esther (see the book “Computorah” by Moshe Katz, p. 107). Hoshanh Rabbah means “The Great Salvation.” This concept is also related in the saying, “signed, sealed and delivered.”

We have been establishing a foundation and giving information and concepts will all come together when we get into the Natzal specifically. Please keep these concepts in mind that we have already given and go over the passages given. In Part 10 we will pick up with the concept of the Two Messiahs and the popular view in the first century by the Pharisees that there would be two separate Messiahs. The first one was called the Messiah Ben Joseph who would be a “suffering Messiah” as promised in Genesis and Isaiah, and the Kingly Messiah who comes to restore the Kingdom of God and destroys the enemies of God. This concept will be very important in our understanding of the Naztal (Rapture).

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 8

Let’s go to a passage in Exo 23.14-17. This is after Exo 12 so we would calculate the date by using the Religious Calendar. This passage deals with what is called the “Pilgrimage Festivals” or the “Shelosh Regalim” meaning “Three Foot Festivals.” The phrase we want to look at is in v 16 where it says that the festival of Sukkot is at the “end of the year” or “turn of the year.”

Now, Unleavened Bread in v 15 is in Nisan (Aviv) on the religious Calendar, the first month. Then we have the festival of Harvest (Shavuot) in the third month of Sivan of the Religious Calendar. Then we have Sukkot in the seventh month of Tishri on the Religious Calendar. So, the question is, how can Sukkot be at the “end” or “turning” of the year when it is only the seventh month of the religious year, with five more months to come? We’ll come back to that.

Gen 7.11 says the “windows of heaven were opened” on the second month, the seventeenth day. Gen 8.4 says the Ark rested in the seventh month, the seventeenth day of the month, on the mountains of Ararat. Both of these dates are before Exo 12 where we get another calendar, so obviously, the calendar being used is the Civil Calendar. This was the calendar of Adam, Noah and Abraham (Civil).

Tishri was also called “Ethanim” (1 Kings 8.2). In the Targum Ben Uzziel on the verse it says, “in the month of Ethanim, that is, the seventh month, in the month that the ancient ones called the first month but now is called the seventh month.” So, we are able to see there was a calendar there.

The Shemitah is a seven year cycle. Crops are planted for six years and in the seventh year you didn’t plant anything. The seven year cycle and the end of the year can be seen in Deut 14.23-29. In v 28 it says, “at the end of every third year (third and sixth year of the cycle) you shall bring out all the tithe (second tithe) of your produce in that year and shall deposit it in your town” (storehouses there). This was the Levitical city in your area. On other years, you brought your second tithe (Ma’aser Sheni) to the Temple.

Now, notice it says that you should do this “at the end of the third year” at Sukkot. But how can Sukkot be at the end of the year? Even in the Civil Calendar, if Tishri is the first month, then Elul would be at the “end of the year, not Tishri. We don’t call Jan 15th the end of the year, so how can this be?

Well, first of all, time in the Bible is not like how we reckon it in the west. We start the year on Rosh Ha Shanah (head of the year) on Tishri 1. But the year is not over till we finish the fall festivals and the last day that is attached to Sukkot called “Shemini Atzeret” or the “Concluding Eighth Day.” This day is also called “Simchat Torah” or ‘Rejoicing in the Torah.” That is the day the Torah readings begin again. So, at Rosh Ha Shanah the year is over, but not totally over until Shemini Atzeret. Therefore, Sukkot is at the end of the year on the Civil Calendar, and the seventh month on the Religious Calendar. So, we can prove there were two calendars.

In Exo 12.2 it says, “This month shall be your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you.” This is the month of Nisan (Aviv) and Nisan is the seventh month on the Civil Calendar, and the first month on the Religious Calendar. God is instituting a second calendar in Exo 12.

There were also two other calendars used. One was the the calendar for trees. Why is that important? Because you had to tithe off of them if it was withing the defined borders of Israel. The new year for trees was the first of Shevat because that is when trees start to bud. These trees (fruit) had to bear fruit within four years or you were obligated to cut it down. This is what is called “Orlah” meaning “uncircumcised” (Lev 19.23-25). Why is the word for “uncircumcision” used for trees? There is a connection between circumcision and fertility (bearing fruit). This command is also a picture of the relationship between God and Israel spiritually (Jer 2.21, 11.16; Psa 80.9-12; Isa 5.2). Israel failed to produce good fruit (Isa 5.5-6; Ezek 15.6).

Yeshua comes to Israel as the promised Messiah. Luke 13.6-9 tells us about a parable where a certain man (God) had a fig tree (Israel). He came looking for fruit and found none. He told the vineyard keeper (Yeshua) that it has been three years (Lev 19.23-25) and to cut it down. But the vineyard keeper (Yeshua) said they should leave it alone. He would use several means to try and make it fruitful. If it does not bear fruit in the fourth year (full maturity after he has done some work on it), then it would be cut down (which Israel was in 70 A.D.)

In Mark 11.12-20 Yeshua comes to a fig tree (Israel) expecting to find fruit, but does not find any. He curses the fig tree and the next day they saw that the fig tree had withered from the roots. Then Yeshua goes into a teaching about faith (emunah) in Mark 11.22-23. He says, “Whoever says to this mountain (Temple Mount) ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes, what he says is going to happen shall be granted to him.”

Now, the Faith Movement for the last forty years that we have been hearing about them falsely teaches that this means if we say something in “faith” it must happen as we say it, but is that the meaning? Let’s look a this as it may have been understood by those listening to Yeshua.

We know that “the sea” is the nations (Isa 57.20). Spiritually, Yeshua is saying that with faith (confidence in God and his word) that the falsehoods that were being taught on the mountain where the Temple stood (Shammai’s Sanhedrin sat there enforcing the 18 Edicts and other false teachings) can be overcome and they can enter the Kingdom of God. A sharp mind (analytical) in the Torah is called an “uprooter of mountains” in Jewish idiomatic thought. When God gave the Torah, Israel was at the “foot of the mountain” (Exo 19.17). The word used there is “tachat” and it means “under.” So, Israel (in a way) was “under the mountain.”

Matt 21. 43-44 says that the Kingdom of God will be taken away from them (unbelieving Israel, the unfruitful fig). The Kingdom of God was seen as God’s rule in your life. If you accepted Yeshua and followed the Torah, the Kingdom of God was upon you. If you didn’t accept him you were not following the Torah and you were rejecting the Kingdom of God. He who falls on the stone (Yeshua) will be broken to pieces in repentance, but on whomever it falls will be scattered like dust (crushed).

Sinai is synonymous with the Torah. Faith will remove the judicial aspect of the Torah in charges against us that kill us. Without faith, Sinai falls on the unbeliever and crushes them. Sinai was the time of God’s betrothal to Israel (Jer 2.2) and so it was seen as a wedding “chupah” or canopy over their heads, and the people were under it if they followed the Torah. If they rejected the Torah the weight of it would crush them. As we know, Israel rejected Yeshua and true Torah observance and Israel was scattered like dust. The other calendar used was when you tithed your animals and that was on the first of Elul. How do you calculate how old your animals are? You start counting on Elul 1.

So, let’s look at our two main calendars, the Religious and the Civil. Previously, we have already listed the months of the Civil and Religious calendars. It would be helpful to write them down side by side is a list, 1 through 12. You will see that the first month on the Civil Calendar (used in the Bible before Exo 12) is Tishri and the seventh month is Nisan. On the Religious Calendar the first month is Nisan and the seventh month is Tishri (used after Exo 12). Why is this so important? Because the dates given before Exo 12 are according to the Religious Calendar. This knowledge will play a role in defining the time of year when the Natzal will occur as we shall see as we move forward.

In Part 9 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 7

In Part 6 we gave examples (pictures) of the number four and six. These numbers are all in relation to the number seven, so let’s take a look at pictures of the number seven. We have the seventh day Sabbath and Jacob works for seven years to obtain a bride. Leah has seven children, six sons (6000 years) and then a girl (a picture of the bride/judge in the Sabbath of God). There is a seven year drama involving Absalom in 1 Sam 13 through 18. Seven talmidim go fishing in John 21 and there is a wedding in Cana on the seventh day (“third day” after the fourth day of John 1.43). Moses makes seven trips up Mount Sinai and Enoch was the seventh from Adam (Jude 14).

Isa 4.1 says that “seven women shall take hold of one man saying, ‘We shall eat our own food and wear our own clothes; only let us be called by your name to take away our reproach.'” This is an allusion to the complete bride (seven) in marriage to the Messiah who takes away their reproach. Dinah was the seventh child of Leah and her name means “to judge.” In the Messianic Kingdom the bride (female) will be with Yeshua and will be judges along with him.

Hos 6.1-3 says, “Come, let us return to the Lord; for he has torn, but he will heal us; he has stricken, but he will bind us up; after two days (2000 years or days five and six) he will revive us; on the third day (day seven) he will raise us up.; that we may live before him. Let us know, let us press on to know the Lord. His going forth is established as the morning; and he (Messiah) will come to us like the rain, the latter and former rain unto the earth.” Now, when were the Jewish people dispersed out of the land the last time? It was 2000 years ago when Rome came and destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple. So they left 4000 years after creation, and four plus two equals six, right? So the “third” day from the fourth day is actually the seventh day in this verse.

This concept also applies to John 1.19 through 2.1. We have already established that there were six days and then a wedding in Cana. The four days begin in John 1.19, with the second day in John 1.29. The third day is in John 1.35 and the fourth day is in John 1.43. Then John 2.1 says “on the third day” and this is in relation to the fourth day in John 1.43. The third day after day 4 (1.43) is the seventh day (2.1).

Eschatologically, there will be 6000 years (six days) and then a wedding at the beginning of the seventh day (1000 years) called the Messianic Kingdom, the Day of the Lord, the Atid Lavo and the Sabbath of God. We see Phillip becomes a believer on the fourth day when Yeshua says, “I saw you under the fig tree (John 1.48) and Phillip acknowledges Yeshua as the Messiah (John 1.49). Being under the fig tree is an idiom for the Messianic Kingdom (1 Kings 4.25; Mic 4.1-4; Zech 3.10) and that is why Phillip called him king in the next verse. He was saying he say Phillip as a righteous man in the kingdom. Not only do we need to understand the concept of Jewish time and eschatology, we need to understand Jewish expressions, terms, idioms and phrases. If we fail to do this, we won’t understand the true context of what is being communicated. This is necessary to understand the concept of the Natzal (Rapture) in it Jewish context found in the Scriptures.

We have another picture in Matt 17.1-4 where it says, “After six days (6000 years) Yeshua took Peter, James and John his brother, and brought them up to a high mountain (higher insight and this took place on Mount Hermon, the place where God cut the Covenant between the Halves with Abraham in Gen 15) and he transfigured (like Moses in Exo 34) and his face shown like the sun (type of his former glory) and his garments became white as light. And Moses and Elijah (the two witnesses of the Torah and the Prophets) appeared to them, talking to him. And Peter answered and said to Yeshua, ‘Lord, it is good for us to be here, if you wish, I will make three sukkahs (Lev 23.44-45) here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.'” Now Sukkahs are made at Sukkot and Sukkot is a festival that teaches the coming of the Messiah and the Messianic Kingdom after the 6000 years, or on the seventh day. Peter is making a clear connection to what he was seeing with the festival of Sukkot.

In Luke 9.28-33 we have a similar account and what seems to be a contradictory passage, but it really isn’t when you understand Jewish eschatology and time. In our passage in Matthew it says “six days” and in our passage in Luke it says, “about eight days.” In the Matthew passage we have six days, a picture of the 6000 year Olam Ha Zeh. In the Luke passage the “eight days” is alluding to the eighth day of God (after the 7000 years) called the Olam Haba (World to Come) when there is no more time. This day is rehearsed at the festival pf Sukkot and it is the eighth day of the festival called Shemini Atzeret (eighth day conclusion-Lev 23.36). When using the numbers and concepts God gave to the Jewish people God communicates messages to us. Now we are going to look at the four calendars used in the Scriptures. This concept is essential in understanding the Natzal (Rapture) at its timing during the year.

How biblical are the four calendars? Exo 12.1-2 says, “This month shall be the beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you.” This is the month of Aviv (Nisan) and this occurs in the spring. Some believe that this is the only calendar used in the Bible but we will establish that this is not true. We will need to go back to the Tanak and Jewish understandings to see how all of this works.

Exo 12 establishes what is known as the Religious Calendar (how the festivals are set). The twelve months of the religious year are Nisan (Aviv), Iyar (Zif), Sivan, Tammuz, Av, Elul, Tishri (Ethanim), Chesvan (Bul), Kislev, Tevet, Shevat and Adar. In the Mishnah, Rosh Ha Shannah 1.1 it says, “There are four ‘New Year’ days: on the first of Nisan is the New Year for kings and feasts; on the first of Elul is the New Year for the Tithe of cattle “R.Eleazar and R. Simeon say the first of Tishri); on the first of Tishri is the New Year for the reckoning of years of foreign kings, of the years of release and Jubilee years, for the planting of trees and for vegetables; and the first of Shevat is the New Year for fruit trees (so the School of Shammai; and the School of Hillel say on the fifteenth thereof).”

So, in this passage from the Mishnah we learn that there is a Civil Calendar beginning of Tishri 1. The twelve months of the Civil Calendar are Tishri (Ethanim), Chesvan (Bul), Kislev, Tevet, Shevat, Adar, Nisan (Aviv), Iyar (Zif), Sivan, Tammuz, Av and Elul. To calculate time in the Bible, from Gen 1.1 to Exo 11.10, the Civil Calendar would need to be used. From Exo 12.1 onward you would use the Religious Calendar (the one that starts in Nisan (Aviv).

In Part 8 we will begin by giving you an example of the Civil and Religious calendar being used in the same passage and then move on to discuss the biblical calendars in more detail. Keep in mind that we are just laying foundational teaching for the Natzal and knowing these calendars will relate to what biblical festival the Naztal (Rapture) will occur on, and what time of year, and to understanding the dates of the Birth-pains and significant prophetic events during that period.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament