Rev 3:7 “And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: He who is holy, who is true, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, and who shuts and no one opens, says this:
Rev 3:8 ‘I know your deeds. Behold, I have put before you an open door which no one can shut, because you have a little power, and have kept my word, and have not denied my name.
Rev 3:9 ‘Behold, I will cause those of the synagogue of Satan, who say that they are Jews and are not, but who lie – I will make them come and bow down at your feet, and make them know that I have loved you.
Rev 3:10 ‘Because you have kept the word of my perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation, that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.
Rev 3:11 ‘I am coming quickly; hold fast what you have, so that no one will take your crown.
Rev 3:12 ‘He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God, and he will not go out from it anymore; and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God, and my new name.
Rev 3:13 ‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’
The Open Door . . .
Do you know what it is?
Note: All Bible quotations, unless indicated otherwise, are from the 1769 King James Authorized Version, rendered in modern American English or paraphrased by the authors with standard accepted [Strong’s] alternative definitions.
NOTE: We use the Creator’s original Self-given Hebrew Name, YHVH (which we pronounce Ye-hu’ah), and the original Hebrew name given by Him through the angel Gabriel (Matthew 1:21) to be the Messiah’s name, Yeshua (“he will save” in Hebrew – Strong’s H3442). We also refer to what Christianity disparagingly calls the “Old Testament” with the Hebrew name for it, the Tanakh; to “the Law” as Torah; and to the “New Testament” as the Renewed Covenant Scriptures. Details on request.
First, we should understand that “the Beast” is not a person, but a world government, the final manifestation of “Mystery Babylon”, which is the name of Satan’s spiritual kingdom on the earth. This was envisioned (Daniel 2:31-45) as a giant statue by the prophet Daniel sometime after 605 BC, when Daniel and his friends were taken captive to Babylon. The head of gold represents Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon; the statue’s silver chest stands for the Medo-Persian empire which was to follow Nebuchadnezzar’s; the belly and thighs of bronze symbolize Greece (Macedonia of Alexander the Great); then the iron legs symbolizing the Eastern and Western divisions of the Roman Empire, which lasted until about 476 AD. Finally, the last manifestation of Mystery Babylon is actually a rebirth and continuance of the Roman Empire, as symbolized by the ten toes, which today represent the present ten divisions of the world into ten “spheres of economic influence” according to the published plan of the Club of Rome. So this is nothing less than an outline of the evil spiritual forces involved in all of human history since the Garden of Eden. Next, we look at the individuals which are prophesied to be involved from here on.
The Bible speaks of a person who comes to rule the last great secular world empire, and refers to him as “the man of sin” and “the anti-Christ”. The time of his public ascension to power is immediately before and during the seven year period known as “The Tribulation”, as “Daniel’s 70th Week”, and as “The Time of Jacob’s Trouble”. This will be just before the prophesied return of the Messiah, the Promised One of the Hebrew Tanakh/Christian “Old Testament”. During this time, the Bible prophesies that the anti-Christ will make life as difficult, as painful, and as short as possible for all human beings, but especially for whatever faithful disciples of the Lord Yeshua and Torah-true Jews he can manage to catch.
Unfortunately, untold millions of Christians today believe that they will not personally be around to see the arrival of “the anti-Christ”, because they believe that the God of the Bible is going to whisk them away from danger to be with Him in heaven forevermore before things start getting “interesting”. Why is this a problem? Because it’s simply not going to happen. This belief started around 1830 when a 15-year-old Scottish girl claimed to have had a “vision” about something like this, an ex-Anglican priest named Darby seized on the idea, and fashioned it into a new theological system of his own invention which he called “Dispensationalism”.
Briefly, Dispensationalism is the false teaching that the God of the Bible divided up all of mankind’s history into a number of different time periods (dispensations), usually seven. In each of these “dispensations” God supposedly subjected mankind to a different kind of “test”.
According to those who believe in Dispensationalism, mankind has failed every test to date, and God has finally realized <sigh> that mankind will never be able to “pass” any of His “tests”, so He is going to just go ahead and “grade us all on the curve”, save all living “Christians” just before the Tribulation starts, and be done with it.
However, according to the Dispensationalists, He has done – and will do – all of this without having previously communicated any of it to mankind through the Hebrew prophets as He promises to do (Amos 3:7), or in the teachings of His Son, our Lord Yeshua. Despite these shortcomings, Dispensationalism has proven to be an “easy sell”, especially to American “Christians”, since it tells them what they desperately want to hear – that THEY will be spared the end-times horrors described in the Bible, because THEY are special.
This supposed removal of the “Christian” Church to heaven before the start of the seven-years known as “The Tribulation” is called the “pre-Tribulation” (pre-Trib) Rapture of the Church, especially as popularized in the Left Behind series of books and movies. Although the English word “rapture” does not appear in the Bible, the Christian Church is indeed described in the Bible (1 Thessalonians 4:17) as being “snatched away” (Greek arpazw, arpazo) by the Lord to be with him at the time of his return. This “snatching away” is done in the same sudden manner that a bird of prey – a “raptor” – grabs its dinner off the ground or from the water while in flight. Thus the use of the English word “rapture” to describe the sudden snatching away of the entire living Church from the natural world. “The Tribulation” is a prophesied seven-year period of unprecedented worldwide turmoil just prior to the Lord’s return. Pre-Tribulationism is the belief that the Rapture of the Church will occur before the start of this seven-year period.
Despite the immense popularity of this teaching, most Christians today are unaware that the doctrine of Pre-Tribulationism is a relatively new theory. From the very beginnings of the Christian Church, until about 1830, the idea of a “pre-Trib” Rapture was utterly unknown. But unlike the many doctrinal disagreements over relatively trivial issues which characterize denominational Christianity, the belief in a pre-Trib Rapture is causing today – and has the potential to cause in the future – incalculable confusion and devastation to the entire Body of Christ. The purpose of our book – Exposing Satan’s ‘Left Behind’ – and this paper, is to prove that this is its Satanic purpose. Unfortunately for the Body of Christ – the Christian Church – many of our “leaders” have been seduced by its siren song, as have the churchgoers who follow them unquestioningly.
The reasons for this situation are complicated, as we will show, but the solution is simple: study and believe the Bible. Anyone who reads the Bible – and our small book – with an open mind and an open heart cannot fail to see that the consequences of believing in a non-existent “pre-Trib” (or a “mid-Trib”) Rapture will be truly horrendous for all who choose to ignore the clear Biblical warnings concerning a rising tide of end-times deception.
This shorter paper concentrates on the major flaws of the standard pre-Trib/mid-Trib positions, and uses clear Bibical exegesis to show what the Lord Yeshua intends that we, his sheep, should expect and DO at the proper time, if we expect to “be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.” (Luke 21:36)
In His Glorious Service,
Bob & Suzanne Hamrick
Ignoring the Open Door . . .
the eternally fatal consequences of wishful thinking.
Bob & Suzanne Hamrick
Now these things (events in the Hebrew Tanakh/“Old Testament”) happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the end of the age has come. 1 Corinthians 10:11
Our Lord Yeshua has but a single command to his followers as to what we are ALL supposed to DO in the very moment that he says WE WILL SEE “the Abomination of Desolation”, which will happen at the mid-point of the seven years of The Tribulation. What is that command? If you are Catholic or any standard flavor of Protestant, chances are you’ve never even heard that it applies to YOU!
So WHY is it NOT being preached from every Christian pulpit in the world? Why, indeed? Most of the responsibility for this horrific state of affairs can be laid squarely at the door of the Dispensationalists, those purveyors of the “Pre-Trib Rapture of the Church”, the most successful “Pie in the sky, bye and bye” deception ever hatched by the mind of Satan. And the translators of most modern (1611 King James and later) Bible versions have helped in the deception!
The Sources of the Deception . . .
The standard pre-Tribber’s objection to a post-Trib timing of the Rapture of the Church is that they think that this necessarily “means” that, if it were true, then the entire Church would have to endure “100-lb. hailstones” (Revelation 16:21) – and a lot more besides – during the last part of the Tribulation, and they don’t believe that “the Lamb” would allow “his Bride” (Revelation 21:2) to go through such, because the Church “is not appointed unto wrath” (1 Thessalonians 5:9).
Having accepted this line of reasoning unquestioningly, they are then willing to torque Scripture, or ignore it altogether, to find justification for the pre-Trib theory. This is “outcome-based” theology at its worst, where a “doctrine” is formulated first, and then whatever Scriptures can be “interpreted” as supporting the new “doctrine”are cut-and-pasted together to do so.
Unfortunately, many post-Tribbers do believe exactly that, that the only alternative to a pre-Trib Rapture is for the “Church” to have to suffer through the entirety of the last half of the Tribulation (the Great Tribulation) along with the lost. BOTH parties seem to believe that “The Tribulation Sweepstakes” is a zero-sum game: whatever the adherents of one theory win, the others lose. But fortunately for both of these positions, BOTH ARE WRONG.
There IS a Biblically sound alternative to both of these “conventional wisdom” beliefs, and it is THE ONLY ONE which is actually going to happen, not according to any denominational wishful thinking, but according to specific promises by the God of the Bible to a specific group of people in Scripture, in the Book of the Revelation 3:6-12 . . .
6 He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches.
7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things says he that is holy, he that is true, he that has the key of David, he that opens, and no man shuts; and shuts, and no man opens;
8 I know your works: behold, I have set before you an open door, and no man can shut it: for you have a little strength, and have kept my word, and have not denied my name.
9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you.
10 Because you have kept the word of my patience, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to test them that dwell upon the earth.
11 Behold, I come quickly: hold fast to that which you have, so that no man can take your crown.
12 I will make him that overcomes into a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall never again go out of it: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
Contrary to what most of “Dispensationalism” teaches, the seven churches in Revelation are surely NOT representative of any seven successive “Ages” (or “Dispensations”), but are actually seven different SPIRITUAL organizations, seven different groups of people who will be alive during the Tribulation, all of whom share the same set of personal spiritual characteristics as described in each of the sections bearing their names. Moreover, while the seven “churches” of Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea all have quite different strengths and weaknesses, ONLY the church of the Philadelphians has NOTHING recorded against it, and ONLY it receives the promise of the “open door”. So, to which of these seven “churches” are you planning to belong?
The Hour of Temptation?
“The hour of temptation” is generally regarded by Dispensationalists and other pre-Tribbers as referring to the entirety of the seven years of the Tribulation. In fact, “the hour of temptation” refers, at the most, only to the last half (second 3½ years) of the Tribulation, also known as the Great Tribulation. At the least, it may only apply to the amount of time during which an individual has to make up his or her mind as to whether to accept the Mark of the Beast or be beheaded.
[NOTE: If a prophetic “week” is actually seven years of calendar time, then “a day” would be a year of calendar time, and “an hour” would be 1/24 of that, or about two weeks of calendar time (a fortnight). We expect that those who are captured by the forces of the anti-Christ and who refuse the physical Mark of the Beast may be given that much time in which to change their minds.]
Why? Because it is probably not until the actual identity of the anti-Christ becomes evident near the mid-point of the seven years of the Tribulation that the physical “mark of the beast” will become mandatory. We have no doubt that it will have been introduced some years prior to that time on a voluntary basis, and many deceived individuals (“early adopters” and “beta-testers”) will rush to “take advantage” of Satan’s offer, just as Adam and Eve did in the Garden of Eden, and for all of the same reasons. But many more will not accept it, which will result in the forces of the anti-Christ having to “insist”.
Whatever the physical “mark” turns out to be, it will be extremely attractive, it will have every appearance of good, will appear to be very useful, and millions will rush to accept it, in the mistaken belief that they will be better off by so doing… especially if they believe that the alternative will be – at the very least – expulsion from society at large and death by starvation for them and their families. Remember Eve’s rationalizations to herself concerning the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden?
“And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.” [Genesis 3:6]
We believe that the coming physical “mark of the Beast” will be Satan’s end-times “apple”. We have below substituted the words “the mark of the Beast” for the original text, “the fruit of the tree”, to show how close the parallel could be.
“And when the woman saw that the mark of the Beast was good for food [one will not be able to buy food without it], and that it was pleasant to the eyes [it will undoubtedly be very high-tech and sleek in appearance] and a thing to be desired to make one wise [it will be offered as a status symbol – the smart thing to do, you know, like “Smart Meters” and “Smart Cards”, and “Smart Phones”?] she took of the mark thereof, and did allow it to be implanted, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did allow it to be implanted.” [Genesis 3:6 – Authors’ paraphrase]
Just as Adam and Eve were tricked into believing a lie in order to achieve a personal “benefit” to themselves in the Garden of Eden, so will many millions of unsuspecting people once again be tricked into choosing against God’s will for them, and damning themselves in the process.
Adam and Eve did not recognize the Serpent for what he was in the Garden, and most will not recognize him for what he is when he comes again with his “mark”, nor will they recognize “the mark” for what it is. Even now, the stage is being set, and the “Pre-Tribulation Rapture” lie represents Act I, Scene I.
Once Satan and his fallen angels are thrown down into the earth [forced into the physical world], at the mid-point of the seven years of the Tribulation, and in the process losing their access to the spirit world […“neither was their place found any more in heaven.” -Revelation 12:8], we expect that the devil will enter into (possess) the anti-Christ, who will then enter a rebuilt Temple in Jerusalem.
This is, however, merely the symbolic part of the Abomination of Desolation, which merely marks its beginning. We expect that the Abomination of Desolation will actually turn out to be a watershed event in human history, which will involve the unwilling involvement of hundreds of millions of the lost, all around the world, and not merely a few witnesses in and around Jerusalem. The term “Abomination of Desolation” actually refers to the spiritual effects of a diabolical world government (Mystery Babylon) on all of lost mankind which will persist for the last 3½ years of the Great Tribulation, until it is destroyed by the Lord Yeshua at his triumphal return.
But at the mid-point of the seven years of the Tribulation, roughly coincident with the entrance of the devil-possessed anti-Christ into a rebuilt Temple in Jerusalem, the mark of the Beast will soon thereafter be made mandatory for all human beings, and there will be “multitudes, multitudes, in the valley of decision.” [Joel 3:14]
The “valley of decision” will also be “the hour of temptation” – an uncertain period of time when all who had not previously accepted the mark of the Beast have to decide whether to do so to save their physical lives [for the time being]. This is what our Lord was telling us to pray that we might be spared in the prayer he gave us, the “Our Father”: …“and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one, for Thine is the kingdom, and the power and the glory forever. Amen.” Anyone who accepts the Mark of the Beast is actually irrevocably declaring his or her allegiance to the devil!
Rev 14:9 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,
Rev 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:
Rev 14:11 And the smoke of their torment ascends up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receives the mark of his name.
So the standard dispensationalist/pre-Trib line about the “hour of temptation” is too early by 3½ years and too long by at least half. So not only will they NOT be raptured when they are expecting to be, they will have [at least] another 3½ years to try to figure out what went wrong.
“The hour of temptation”, traditional post-Trib Version . . .
Some post-Tribbers and many others have instead believed that “the hour of temptation” is the same thing as “the wrath of God”, but the wrath of God is not actually poured out until after the end of the Tribulation. The problem with that arrangement is that, after the end of the Tribulation and before the start of the Millennial Reign there is no longer any point to a temptation, wherein there is either a prize to be won or a fate to be suffered by those subjected to it. Any test in which there is no hope of redemption is not a “temptation”, but rather, a plague. We can find no hope in Scripture that anyone upon whom the Wrath of God is being poured out – on “those who dwell upon the earth” – will be “saved”, i.e., attain immortal life in the coming Kingdom of God on the earth, while it is happening.
However, many will be spared from death, for we know that there will still be those unbelievers who are left alive after Armageddon, and who will actually go into the Millennial Reign of the Lord Yeshua:
“And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, YHVH of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot).” [Zecharaiah 14:16]
We conclude, therefore, that the “hour of temptation” refers to some variable or indeterminate time period wherein those who are tempted may resist the temptation, and still gain salvation. As noted, any “hour of temptation” wherein repentance unto salvation was not possible would not be an “hour of temptation”, but an “hour of plagues”, and wholly indistinguishable from the “wrath of God”. So this position seems to us to be just as untenable as is that of the Dispensationalists and other pre-Tribbers.
“The Hour of Temptation”, Real Deal Version . . .
“Because you have kept the word of my patience, I also will keep you from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.” [Revelation 3:10]
The long and the short of this message is that things are going to get very bad indeed, even before “the hour of temptation” gets started. This is the Lord Yeshua telling those who “keep the word of his patience” that he will deliver them from the evil one, even as he encourages us to pray in the “Our Father”. What does “keep the word of his patience” mean? We believe that it means to be ready to suffer for his sake without complaint, without blaming man or God for our situation, to stand silent before our tormentors, even as he did for us.
“Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Yeshua.” [Revelation 14:12]
“For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;” [Philippians 1:29]
“He that leads others into captivity shall himself go into captivity: he that kills with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.” [Revelation 13:10]
“I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” [Philippians 4:12-13]
So ALL of these witnesses, and more, are available to us in the Bible concerning what the Lord Yeshua expects of us, his Torah-true, commandment-keeping followers.
As mentioned, “the hour of temptation” occurs ONLY during that larger time period known as the Great Tribulation, which is the final 3½ years of the seven years of the Tribulation. So the “keeping” promised by our Lord is surely not the Rapture of the Church, but the physical deliverance from the devil’s power of the Torah-true Jews and the righteous disciples of Yeshua of Nazareth who are alive on earth at the establishment of the Abomination of Desolation, during the Great Tribulation, as referred to by our Lord Yeshua in Matthew 24:15-16…
15 When you therefore shall see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoever reads this, let him understand:)
16 Then let them which be in Judah* (Greek: Ioudaios – members of the tribe of Judah – Strong’s G2453) FLEE into the mountains:
[*Note: Most Bibles have translated “in Judah” above as “in Judæa”, which would only be the area around Jerusalem. This is a KEY MIStranslation! We render it literally, as it is in the Shem Tob Hebrew Gospel of Matthew. This would make it apply to everyone who is of the tribe of Judah, as all begotten-again disciples of Yeshua of Nazareth are, having been “grafted in” to his tribe. (Romans 8:16-17; 11:17-24) This also necessarily makes Yeshua’s command to instantly FLEE into the nearest uninhabited area, apply to all of his disciples/talmidim, wherever we are in the world, in the very moment that WE SEE the Abomination of Desolation happening, as he says we will. Please consider these things carefully.]
We believe that this physical deliverance of his faithful to safety is precisely what our Lord was asking of the Father in His prayer in the garden of Gethsemane, as recorded in John 17:15:
I pray NOT that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.
Moreover, we believe that our Lord was also instructing us to pray for precisely the same thing when he gave us the “Our Father” prayer. There is no portion of this prayer which could not be applied to the perilous situations which will beset the end-times church of true believers! We have rendered the “Our Father” below in modern American English, and expanded the thoughts contained in it, for illustration.
Our heavenly Father, we pray that Your name be given the reverence it deserves. We welcome the imminent re-establishment of Your kingdom on Earth. We joyfully obey your will as expressed in the written Torah, the Prophets and the rest of the Tanakh, and through your only begotten Son, our Lord Yeshua. We thank you, Father, that You will continue to supply all of our needs today as we abide in Messiah Yeshua, obeying his commandments as well. We thank You that You will forgive us, as we forgive those who sin against us. Father, we pray that You will not lead us into temptation, but that You will deliver us from the evil one, even as our Lord Yeshua has prayed to You for us. We pray to You, Father, as the one true Creator God to Whom all reverence is properly due, and the only One whose kingdom, power and glory are eternal. Amen.
This physical deliverance will surely be an entirely separate event from the general resurrection of the righteous dead in Christ and the rapture of the Church [which will not happen until the end of the Tribulation], and is also plainly described in Revelation 12:
1 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars [the 12 tribes of Israel – see Genesis 37:9-10]:
2 And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.
3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, [Satan] having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.
4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven [fallen angels], and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
5 And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to His throne.
6 And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they [God’s angels] should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.[3½ years]
7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven (in the spirit world?).
9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth (into the physical world?), and his angels were cast out with him.
10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, ‘Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Messiah: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
12 Therefore rejoice, you heavens, and you that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has but a short time.’
13 And when the dragon saw that he was cast into the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.
14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle [God’s angels], that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time [3½ years], from the face of the serpent.
15 And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood (an army of evil forces) after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.
16 And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.
17 And the dragon was furious with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which (seed) keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Yeshua Messiah.
This is anticipated by his instructions to his disciples [which surely includes us today] in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 17:22, concerning the coming events of the Great Tribulation in Matthew 24:
1 And Yeshua went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him to show him the buildings of the temple.
2 And Yeshua said unto them, “Do you see all these things? Truly I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, “Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of your coming, and of the end of the age?”
4 And Yeshua answered and said unto them, “Be careful that no man deceive you.
5 For many shall come in my name, saying that I am the Messiah, and shall deceive many.
6 And you shall hear of wars and rumors of wars: see that you be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7 For race shall rise against race, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in various places.
8 All these are just the beginning of sorrows.
9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and you shall be hated by all nations for my name’s sake.
10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
12 And because Torahlessness (Greek: anomia – lawlessness) shall abound, the love of many shall grow cold.
13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all races; and then shall the end come.
15 When you therefore shall see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoever reads this, let him understand:)
16 Then let them which be in Judah (Greek: Ioudaios – members of the tribe of Judah, Strong’s G2453, Yeshua’s tribe, and ours*) flee into the mountains:
17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
19 And woe unto them that are pregnant, and them that have infants in those days!
20 But pray that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:
21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.
23 Then if any man shall say unto you, ‘Behold, here is the Messiah, or there;’ believe it not.
24 For there shall arise false Messiahs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if they can, they shall deceive even the very elect.
25 Behold, I have told you beforehand.
26 Wherefore if they shall say unto you, ‘Behold, he is in the desert;’ go not forth: ‘behold, he is in the secret chambers;’ believe it not.
27 For as the lightning comes out of the east, and shines even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
28 For wheresoever the dead body is (the righteous dead in Christ), there will the eagles be gathered together.
29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
31 And he shall send his angels [“eagles”] with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds [of earth], from one end of heaven to the other.
32 Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When its branch is yet tender, and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near:
33 So likewise you, when you shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.
34 Truly I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
35 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.
36 But of that day and hour knows no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.
37 But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark,
39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be.
40 Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
41 Two shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
42 Watch therefore: for you know not what hour your Lord will come.
43 But know this, that if the owner of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have allowed his house to be broken up.
44 Therefore be you also ready: for in such an hour as you think not the Son of man comes.
45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord has made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he comes shall find so doing.
And in Mark 13:
1 And as he went out of the temple, one of his disciples said unto him, “Master, see what manner of stones and what buildings are here!”
2 And Yeshua answering said unto him, “Do you see these great buildings? there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives over against the temple, Peter and James and John and Andrew asked him privately,
4 “Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign when all these things shall be fulfilled?”
5 And Yeshua answering them began to say, “Be careful lest any man deceive you:
6 For many shall come in my name, saying that I am the Messiah, and shall deceive many.
7 And when you shall hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be troubled: for such things must necessarily be; but the end shall not be yet.
8 For race shall rise against race, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in various places, and there shall be famines and troubles: these are the beginnings of sorrows.
9 But take heed to yourselves: for they shall deliver you up to councils; and in the synagogues you shall be beaten: and you shall be brought before rulers and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them.
10 And the gospel must first be published among all nations.
11 But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what you shall speak, neither premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, speak that: for it is not you who speaks, but the Holy Spirit.
12 Now the brother shall betray the brother to death, and the father the son; and children shall rise up against their parents, and shall cause them to be put to death.
13 And you shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
14 But when you shall see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, [Daniel 9:27] standing where it ought not, (let the reader understand,) then let them that be in Judah FLEE to the mountains:
15 And let him that is on the housetop not go down into the house, neither enter therein, to take any thing out of his house:
16 And let him that is in the field not turn back again for to take up his garment.
[Note: Our Lord Yeshua here prophesies that people on housetops and in fields will be able to SEE “the Abomination of Desolation” when it happens, since he commands them to FLEE in the very instant that they do. But since the Temple Mount is situated atop the highest point in Jerusalem, Mt. Moriah, it will not be possible for anyone on any rooftop in Jerusalem nor in any field around Jerusalem to see inside the Temple at all, much less into the “Holy of Holies”, the innermost part of the Temple, where the anti-Christ is prophesied to make his declaration! If the Temple is reconstructed as it was during the time of Yeshua, as the Temple Mount Faithful and other such groups plan to do, it will still not be possible. This is one more reason to expect that the term “Abomination of Desolation” refers to something far more global than the mere entrance by a devil-possessed human being into a bricks-and-mortar building which is of no particular spiritual significance, since the chabod (visible glory of God) was seen by the prophet Ezekiel to depart from the Temple in 586 B.C., never to return until the Millennial Reign of Yeshua HaMashiach.]
17 But woe to them that are with child, and to them that have infants in those days!
18 And pray that your flight be not in the winter.
19 For in those days shall be affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the creation which God created until this time, neither shall be ever again.
20 And except that the Lord God had shortened those days, no flesh should be saved: but for the elect’s sake, whom He has chosen, He has shortened the days.
21 And then if any man shall say to you, “Behold, here is Messiah;” or, “Behold, he is there;” believe him not:
22 For false Messiahs and false teachers shall rise, and shall even show signs and wonders, to deceive, if possible, even the elect.
23 But take notice: behold, I have foretold you all things.
24 But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light,
25 And the stars (angels) of heaven shall fall, and the (evil) powers that are in heaven (in the spirit world) shall be shaken.
26 And then shall they see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.
27 And then shall he send his angels (“eagles”), and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.
28 Now learn a parable of the fig tree: when its branch is yet tender, and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near:
29 So you in like manner, when you shall see these things come to pass, know that it (the end) is near, even at the doors.
30 Truly I say unto you, that this age shall not pass, until all these things be done.
31 Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.
32 But of that day and that hour no man knows, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father only.
33 Take notice, watch and pray: for you know not when the time is.
34 For the Son of Man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.
35 Watch therefore: for you know not when the master of the house will come, at evening, or at midnight, or at dawn, or in the morning:
36 Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping.
37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, “Watch.”
And in Luke: 17:22-37:
22 And he said unto the disciples, “The days will come, when you shall desire to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you shall not see it.
23 And they shall say to you, ‘See here;’ or, ‘see there:’ go not after them, nor follow them.
24 For as the lightning, that lightens out of the one part under heaven, shines unto the other part under heaven; so shall also the Son of Man be in his day.
25 But first must he suffer many things, and be rejected by this generation.
26 And as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of Man.
27 They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built;
29 But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.
30 Even so shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.
31 In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his belongings in the house, let him not come down to take any of it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back.
32 Remember Lot’s wife. [Don’t look back as you are fleeing!]
33 Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life (for my sake) shall preserve it.
34 I tell you, in that night there shall be two in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left.
35 Two shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
36 Two shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.”
37 And they answered and said unto him, ‘Where, Lord?’ And he said unto them,
“Wherever the [living] body is, to that place will the eagles (angels) be gathered together.”
The actual meaning of these passages is simply that those who are obedient in following the Lord’s instructions to immediately flee into “the mountains” will not be merely individually protected by the power of God in the midst of the temptation, they will be removed from it by Father YHVH’s angels, as a group. And this same event is anticipated in many places in the Hebrew Tanakh/“Old Testament”, such as Isaiah 40:31… “But they that wait upon YHVH shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as EAGLES; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
In fact, this is the reason for the “sealing of the 144,000 Jews” in Revelation 7, which obviously takes place just before the start of the Great Tribulation. Just as only YHVH knows who the righteous Christians are [among all who believe themselves to be!], so also only He knows who those to-be-righteous Jews are [“the remnant of the children of Israel”], so only He can seal them [mark them spiritually for identification]. The purpose of this sealing is so that the to-be-righteous Jews may be later identified by His angels in a split second in the midst of the general population of the world and be removed by them to a place of safety at the proper moment, along with all the Torah-obedient, commandment-keeping Christians, “they who waited upon YHVH”, who obediently fled into “the mountains” at the establishment of the Abomination of Desolation.
“Rapture Ready”? NOT!
If you believe yourself to be “Rapture Ready”, then this necessarily means that you already believe that you “have need of nothing”, which would seem to mean (Revelation 3:17) that you are choosing to be numbered among the Laodicæan church, all of whom believe exactly the same thing about themselves. This is definitely not a good thing, at least not as far as our Lord Yeshua is concerned:
Rev 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodicæans write; These things says the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
Rev 3:15 I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot: I would you were cold or hot.
Rev 3:16 So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spit you out of my mouth.
Rev 3:17 Because you say, “I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing;” and do not know that you are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
Rev 3:18 I advise you to buy from me gold tried in the fire, so that you may be rich; and white raiment, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of your nakedness be hidden; and anoint your eyes with eyesalve, so that you may see.
Rev 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
Conversely, the members of the church at Philadelphia (“brotherly love”) know that there are things that they will have to DO when the time comes, and that time will surely not be until we see the “Abomination of Desolation” (Matthew 24:15; Daniel 9:27), and that DOING these things involves OBEDIENCE and stepping out in FAITH, just as the children of Israel did, when they followed Moses out into the wilderness from the relative safety and security of Egypt.
Consider that when our Lord Yeshua was asked by his disciples how we should pray, he included in the “Our Father”, a specific prayer that the Father would:
“deliver us from the evil one” (Matthew 6:13 – NASB)
Consider that our Lord Yeshua also urges us to pray always (Luke 21:36) that we be found worthy to escape all the things that he had just listed as happening during the last half of the Tribulation, which starts with the Abomination of Desolation (Matthew 24:15 ff). Does the reader really believe that our Lord would promise a specific deliverance from everything that he said would happen during the last half of the Tribulation, to a specific group of his disciples, and not keep his promise?
Consider how this fits perfectly with the Lord Yeshua’s prayer to his Father as he agonized in the Garden of Gethsemane:
I do not ask You to take them out of the world,
but to keep them from the evil one. [John 17:15 – NASB]
Here, our Lord Yeshua is specifically praying that the Father NOT take us out of the world, BUT to still protect us from the evil one, presumably until he returns to end the devil’s dominion.
How else is this possible, unless it refers to a physical deliverance to a place of sanctuary on the earth?
Or what about this . . .
<A Psalm of David> YHVH said unto my Lord (Adoni), “Sit you at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.” [Psalm 110:1]
If the Lord Yeshua cannot leave the Father’s side in heaven until the Father has humbled Yeshua’s enemies – which surely cannot be until the END of the seven years of the Tribulation – HOW could he possibly come “for” his church at the beginning of the seven years? HOW?
The Lord Yeshua even quotes Psalm 110:1 in one of his confrontations with the Pharisees, thereby indirectly claiming that this Scripture referred to himself, implying that he was the promised Messiah. [Matthew 22:42-45] So HOW is a theoretical “pre-Trib” return “for” his church at the beginning of the Tribulation even POSSIBLE, if the Lord Yeshua MUST remain by the Father’s side “until I make your enemies your footstool”, which surely cannot happen until his loud, public, and 100% visible Second Coming, at the END of the seven years of the Tribulation? HOW?
Just HOW could ALL of these Scriptures POSSIBLY be reconciled with a pre-Trib Rapture? Since they describe mutually-exclusive scenarios, either the pre-Trib Rapture scenario is false or Scripture is. Your choice.
For all of these reasons, and many more, we maintain that the TRUE HOPE OF THE CHURCH TO ESCAPE THE GREAT TRIBULATION LIES IN THE PHYSICAL DELIVERANCE which the Lord Yeshua promised to his sheep in Revelation 3:6-12, as quoted previously. In Matthew 24:15-16, he tells us what we are to DO in order to receive the promise:
“When you therefore shall see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoever reads this, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judah [NOTE: not “in Judæa”, the territory, but as the Shem Tov Hebrew Gospel of Matthew has it, “in Judah”! That is, “in the TRIBE of Judah”, into which all Torah-obedient talmidim/disciples of Yeshua ARE indeed “grafted”, as part of the Mosaic Covenant, through faith in Yeshua -Romans 11] flee into the mountains:”
PLEASE CAREFULLY CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:
1.) The Lord Yeshua here tells us – those of his disciples who will be READING his words centuries later – that WE WILL SEE the Abomination of Desolation (whatever it is) prophesied by Daniel.
2.) The Lord Yeshua here tells us that WE WILL SEE the Abomination of Desolation (whatever it is) STAND IN THE HOLY PLACE (whatever that is).
3.) The Lord Yeshua here tells us that THEM WHICH BE IN JUDAH (the Lord Yeshua’s tribe, which all born-again believers are, having been “grafted in” by him into the Covenant – Romans 11) TO IMMEDIATELY FLEE HEADLONG INTO THE NEAREST MOUNTAINS (wilderness, uninhabited area), in the very moment that we SEE the evidence of the Abomination of Desolation all around us.
Traditional exegesis (critical analysis of Bible text) has generally considered that the phrase “the Abomination of Desolation” refers ONLY to the entrance into a rebuilt bricks-and-mortar Temple in Jerusalem by the devil-possessed one called “the anti-Christ”, as described in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4:
2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Yeshua Messiah, and by our gathering together unto him,
2:2 That you be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as though the day of Messiah were at hand.
2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, unless there comes a falling away from the faith first (a great apostasy), and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
2:4 Who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sits in the temple of God, claiming to be God.
While we agree that the above symbolic act will surely be part of the actual Abomination of Desolation, and perhaps even serve as a symbol for it, we find that the phrase “Abomination of Desolation” is descriptive of an event far more global, far more spiritual, and far more horrendous than the mere entry of a devil-possessed human being into a “bricks-and-mortar” building! Moreover, the site of this rebuilt Temple will have not seen the visible presence of YHVH (the chabod – NOT shekinah! – glory) for about 2,600 years, and which is to be rebuilt by a group of UNrighteous practitioners of a dead-covenant religion! [See our paper, “Is Zionism of God?”.]
In Revelation 12, we have the following account of the expulsion from heaven of the devil and his
Rev 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
Rev 12:8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven (in the spirit world).
Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, who deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth (into the physical world), and his angels were cast out with him.
From this, two things should be immediately apparent: first, that Satan is resisting either the expulsion from “heaven”, or being thrown down into “the earth”, or both; and second, that his resistance is most likely because being cast down into “the earth” will entail a drastic reduction of his powers, most likely involving the loss of some specific capabilities which he and his minions had possessed up to that moment. In other words, he knows that being thrown down into “the earth” will put him at a disadvantage compared to the powers that he had so recently enjoyed. But what might they be?
The English language in the Bible is inconclusive, but we suspect that the clue may be found in the tiny preposition (in Greek) eis, which means either “to” or “into”. In Revelation 12:9, where the devil is being forced from “heaven”, this word is rendered by the King James translators as “into”, but in the immediately preceding similar verse Revelation 12:4, where it is Satan who is directing his troops down to the earth to oppose the birth of Messiah, the King James translators rendered this same Greek preposition eis as “to” the earth. But what might this difference in translation mean?
We believe that the KJV translators were trying to convey a different sense in the two events which they could not justify from the Greek texts they had available. We conclude that, when the devil and his fallen angels are thrown down INto the earth, they may lose actually their connection to the spiritual plane altogether, and be limited to physical bodies just as we are. We find confirmation for this opinion in the phrase “neither was their place found any more in heaven”. [Revelation 12:8] If this is correct, it leads to a horrific new meaning to the term “abomination of desolation”.
If the devil, his fallen angels, and the demons are all suddenly excluded from the spirit world, this means that all of these spirit bodies must suddenly find physical bodies to inhabit, and they must be physical bodies which will have a plausible explanation to the human inhabitants of Planet Earth! We know that angels can take on fully functioning male bodies at will, because they have done this in the past, according to the Bible, even impregnating human females before the Great Flood, and thus giving rise to the hybrid race of half fallen angels, half humans, called the Nephilim.
Gen 6:4 There were Nephilim (“fallen ones”, NOT “giants”) in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God (some of the fallen angels) came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.
Gen 6:5 And YHVH saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Gen 6:6 And YHVH regretted that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart.
Gen 6:7 And YHVH said, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for I regret that I have made them.”
Gen 6:8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of YHVH.
Gen 6:9 These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations [no angelic corruption among his ancestors, back to Adam], and Noah walked with God.
Rather, we expect that the most important meaning of the phrase “Abomination of Desolation” refers to the simultaneous and instantaneous demonic possession of those millions of human beings who will have the Mark of the Beast, whether the spiritual mark as a result of their disobedience to the commandments of God, or of the later physical mark from the AntiChrist. This will happen at the very moment when the devil and his troops are cast out of “heaven” altogether by the Archangel Michael and the angels of YHVH at the midpoint of the Tribulation. This then, gives us a clue as to what the apostle Paul was actually speaking of in the following:
1 Co 3:16 Know you not that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
1Co 3:17 If any man defiles the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.
2Co 6:14 Be you not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion has light with darkness?
2Co 6:15 And what agreement has Messiah with the devil? or what part has he that believes with an unbeliever?
2Co 6:16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? for you are the temple of the living God; as God has said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
2Co 6:17 Therefore come out from among them, and be you separate, says the Lord God, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
2Co 6:18 And will be a Father unto you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.
So these are not only exhortations concerning how we are to “walk in the Spirit” as disciples of the Lord Yeshua, they are also now clearly seen to be prophetic cautions of the strongest possible kind, wherein we see that “the Temple” which will be defiled by the devil and his unclean assistants is actually the bodies of those who have either Mark of the Beast, either the physical Mark from the end-times AntiChrist, OR the spiritual mark showing one’s continuing disobedience to the commandments of God and of His Son, whether knowingly or not! (Leviticus 5:17)
Mat 24:15 When you therefore shall see the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (let the reader understand):
Mat 24:16 Then let them which be in Judah (Greek: Ioudaios – the tribe of Yeshua, into which all of his Torah-obedient, born-again talmidim/disciples are adopted) flee into the mountains:
“And if you are Christ’s, then you are also Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” [Galatians 3:29]
If the Abomination of Desolation really is what we believe it to be, namely the worldwide demonic possession of hundreds of millions of people in a moment of time, there will be no possible doubt as to exactly what is happening for those Torah-obedient believers who are not so possessed! It is called “pandemonium”, literally, “all the demons”, and it will be immediately apparent to everyone in the world, whether they are in fields, on rooftops, or wherever! It will be very much as the pre-Trib Rapture is falsely portrayed in the “Left Behind” series of blockbuster movies from the diseased minds of Tim LaHaye, Jerry Jenkins, and their fellow-trinitarians at TBN: planes falling from the skies, trains roaring full speed into railroad stations, massive traffic accidents, fires, explosions, etc., all around the world as the unsaved lose complete control of their bodies to their new inhabitants and controllers, the fallen angels and the demons from the abyss. (Jude 6; 2 Peter 2:4)
The Lord Yeshua is referred to as the Lion of the tribe of Judah in Revelation 5:5. King David was of the tribe of Judah, and Yeshua was/is the son of David, through his human mother Mary/Miryam, although this fact is obscured by an inexcusably OBVIOUS MIStranslation of his genealogy in the very first chapter of the Gospel of Matthew.
Matthew 1:17, listing the Messiah’s ancestors, states that:
“So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.”
Are they? Let’s have a look in your Bible, and count them as we go…
Mat 1:1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.
Mat 1:2 Abraham(1) begat Isaac(2); and Isaac begat Jacob(3); and Jacob begat Judah(4) and his brethren;
Mat 1:3 And Judas begat Phares(5) and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom(6); and Esrom begat Aram(7);
Mat 1:4 And Aram begat Aminadab(8); and Aminadab begat Naasson(9); and Naasson begat Salmon(10);
Mat 1:5 And Salmon begat Booz(11) of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed(12) of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse(13);
Mat 1:6 And Jesse begat David(14) the king; and David the king begat Solomon(1) of her that had been the wife of Urias;
Mat 1:7 And Solomon begat Roboam(2); and Roboam begat Abia(3); and Abia begat Asa(4);
Mat 1:8 And Asa begat Josaphat(5); and Josaphat begat Joram(6); and Joram begat Ozias(7);
Mat 1:9 And Ozias begat Joatham(8); and Joatham begat Achaz(9); and Achaz begat Ezekias(10);
Mat 1:10 And Ezekias begat Manasses(11); and Manasses begat Amon(12); and Amon begat Josias(13);
Mat 1:11 And Josias begat Jechonias(14) and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon:
Mat 1:12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel(1); and Salathiel begat Zorobabel(2);
Mat 1:13 And Zorobabel begat Abiud(3); and Abiud begat Eliakim(4); and Eliakim begat Azor(5);
Mat 1:14 And Azor begat Sadoc(6); and Sadoc begat Achim(7); and Achim begat Eliud(8);
Mat 1:15 And Eliud begat Eleazar(9); and Eleazar begat Matthan(10); and Matthan begat Jacob(11);
Mat 1:16 And Jacob begat Joseph(12) the husband of Mary, of whom was born Yeshua (13) [OOPS!], who is called Messiah.
Mat 1:17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.
Ummmm . . . . Not exactly.
The genealogy in Matthew, supposedly of Joseph, Mary’s husband, does NOT add up to fourteen generations as the rest of the text states that it must. Moreover, while Mary’s husband was named Joseph, the inclusion of his ancestry would be absolutely pointless, since he was not Yeshua’s biological father! The ONLY way that this calculates to 14 generations from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ is if the Joseph named was actually Mary’s FATHER and not her husband. This also would serve to prove Yeshua’s lineage back to David through his mother, who is the ONLY human parent he had! DUH!
This blatantly apparent error has been perpetuated in virtually EVERY modern Bible translation, with no explanations! Should we then be surprised to discover other errors even worse than this? We should not. See our article “Errors in the King James Bible???” at http://TorahKingdomLiving.com .
So our Lord Yeshua surely is of the tribe of Judah, as are we, IF we are Torah-obedient, as testified throughout the Renewed Covenant Scriptures:
The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. [Romans 8:16-17]
To redeem them that were under the law (disobedient to it), that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore you are no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. [Galatians 4:5-7] [See our article “Not Under the Law?” ]
It necessarily follows that, if we are joint heirs of the Abrahamic covenant with Yeshua – and we are– and this by adoption, we must necessarily be adopted into his tribe, even as Hebraic law requires.
We believe that, as grafted in parts of “the seed of the woman” (spiritual Israel) of Revelation 12, we will be “protected from the face of the serpent” in a place of physical sanctuary to be provided by the power of YHVH and His angels. We believe that this is what the Lord Yeshua is referring to in His promises to “the angel of the called-out ones (Greek: ekklesia – church) in Philadelphia”:
8 I know your works: behold, I have set before you an OPEN DOOR, and no man can shut it: for you have a little strength, and have kept my word, and have not denied my name.
10 Because you have kept the word of my patience, I ALSO WILL KEEP YOU FROM THE HOUR OF TEMPTATION, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. [Revelation 3:8 & 10]
We find that the “open door” which “no man can shut” is THE GOD-PROVIDED MEANS OF ESCAPE from the power of the anti-Christ during the Tribulation for all Torah-obedient disciples of Yeshua who OBEY His instructions to FLEE IN FAITH into whatever wilderness is closest at hand when the Abomination of Desolation is seen to happen all around us, LEAVING EVERYTHING WE OWN BEHIND! He makes these promises to NO OTHER of the seven churches mentioned in Revelation, so all who consider themselves begotten-again Christians should plan to be “in” that Church, no matter what.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Thine is the kingdom, and the power and the glory forever. Amen. [Matthew 6:9; Luke 11:12]
YHVH is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures: He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul: He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of YHVH for ever. [Psalm 23:1-6]
“The woman” of Revelation 12 is ALL living members of the True Church of Yeshua Messiah (the ekklesia – called-out ones). These are all (“Gentile” and “Jew”) who are righteous before the throne of God (or who will be righteous, according to the foreknowledge of YHVH – 1 Peter 1:2), when the Abomination of Desolation starts. We also refer to her as “spiritual Israel”, as the apostle Paul did in Galatians 4:26: “But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.” So “the woman” is also the future inhabitants of “New Jerusalem”, who will be “the bride of the Lamb” (Revelation 21:9).
Some of these will be “real” Jews, those who keep the written Torah of Moses and reject the rabbinic Jews’ “oral law”/Talmud (whom Yeshua calls “fake” Jews – the “synagogue of Satan” – “who claim to be Jews but who are not”: Revelation 2:9 & 3:9), and some will be “real” disciples of Yeshua, who obey all of his commandments (as opposed to those “fake” Christians who do not really know him – Matthew 7:21-22; 25:11; Luke 6:46). Those accounted righteous from these two different heritages are such, not through their own blood or deeds, but ONLY through their acceptance of the righteous blood of the Lamb and his deeds. The two groups are of precisely EQUAL IMPORTANCE (but not necessarily equal numbers) before the throne of YHVH, which is borne out by the TWO DIFFERENT GROUPS of “144,000” in Revelation 7 and Revelation 14.
The “144,000” of Revelation 7 cannot be Gentiles, as they are listed as coming from specific Hebraic tribes. The “144,000” of Revelation 14 cannot be Jews, since these are “redeemed from the earth”, which is to say that these were outside the Covenant, “were not a people, but now are a people”. [1 Peter 2:10]
We find that, just as the children of Israel had to venture out from Egypt into a desert wasteland in FAITH, the so-called “Church of Jesus Christ” must also face a similar end-times test, as a group, and this is impossible in any kind of a pre-trib/mid-trib rapture scenario.
Everyone who names the name of “Jesus Christ”/Yeshua HaMashiach desperately needs to consider the horrific, inescapable consequences of choosing to be disobedient to the Lord Yeshua’s single, one-word command to us, to FLEE in the very moment that WE SEE the Abomination of Desolation, as he says we will. Such refusal will automatically result in their being included in “the remnant of the seed of the woman”, upon whom Satan and his forces go off furiously to make war. [Revelation 12:17] He will make war upon the remnant of the seed of the woman because it is the only part of “her” that he can get at! The rest of “the woman’s seed” will already be with her in the sanctuary on the earth provided by YHVH and His angels, having been transported there by the “eagles”/angels of YHVH, through the “open door” promised and provided by the Lord Yeshua.
But we will all, like Lot and his family, have to personally and individually take the first steps through that door ourselves, and perhaps wander in our own personal “wildernesses” for up to three days, as did so many others in the Bible who were fleeing from their enemies in like manner.
But we have the words of our Lord Yeshua himself concerning a very similar situation, when he provided for their physical needs miraculously…
Mat 15:32 Then Yeshua called his disciples unto him, and said, “I have compassion on the multitude, because they continue with me now three days, and have nothing to eat: and I will not send them away fasting, lest they faint in the way.”
Mat 15:33 And his disciples say unto him, “Whence should we have so much bread in the wilderness, as to fill so great a multitude?”
Mat 15:34 And Yeshua said unto them, “How many loaves have you?” And they said, “Seven, and a few little fishes.”
Mat 15:35 And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground.
Mat 15:36 And he took the seven loaves and the fishes, and gave thanks, and broke them, and gave to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude.
Mat 15:37 And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the broken food that was left seven baskets full.
Mat 15:38 And they that did eat were four thousand men, beside women and children.
The Sealing of the “144,000” . . .
We find that the reason for the “sealing” of the “144,000” Jews in Revelation 7 is in anticipation of this event, the miraculous physical transportation of large numbers of humans, that is, “the woman” of Revelation 12, to a place of safety on the earth by the angels of YHVH. These are ALL of those Jews who will be made righteous (according to the foreknowledge of YHVH) at Yeshua’s return. They will surely NOT YET be righteous at the time that they will be transported. The anti-Christ will rise to power at the mid-point of the seven years of the Tribulation. If these to-be-righteous Jews had NOT been so physically protected during the second half of the Tribulation, they could have been killed by the forces of the anti-Christ. Since these would NOT have been righteous until they accept Yeshua at his return at the END of the Tribulation, all such Torah-true Jews who were so killed by the anti-Christ would have perished for all eternity, even as would any other unbeliever! But it is these living Torah-obedient Jews who are prophesied to go into the Promised Land and repopulate it during the Millennial Reign of our Lord Yeshua from Jerusalem. This is why they MUST be protected in the place of sanctuary on the earth, along with the Torah-obedient disciples of Yeshua who obediently FLEE when they see the Abomination of Desolation! Please note that this DELIVERANCE is NOT the Rapture, which does not occur until the END of the Great Tribulation, at our Lord Yeshua’s glorious appearing as the conquering Lion of Judah.
Each righteous, OBEDIENT disciple of Yeshua who is alive at the midpoint of the Tribulation will have previously been “sealed unto redemption” (Ephesians 4:30) as he or she accepted Yeshua as Lord and Savior. It is this “seal”, the Mark of YHVH, by which ALL sufficiently righteous (those commandment-keeping, Torah-obedient disciples who were “found worthy to escape all these things which shall come to pass” [Luke 21:36]) – and those Jews who are-to-be-righteous, will be transported to a place of PHYSICAL SAFETY on the earth by the angels of YHVH. Has anything like this been recorded as happening before, in the Bible? More than once!
You (the children of Israel) have seen what I (YHVH) did to the Egyptians, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings, and brought you unto Myself. (Exodus 19:4)
And these words of the Lord Yeshua…
Luk 17:26 And as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.
[In the “days of Noah”, the Nephilim (fallen angels) had corrupted every bloodline on earth (save that of Noah) by having actual sexual intercourse with human females over the course of centuries. Yeshua says that the Tribulation will be “like that”!]
Luk 17:27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
Luk 17:28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;
Luk 17:29 But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.
[And just HOW did Lot leave Sodom and Gomorrah? He and his family were miraculously transported by the angels/“eagles” to the outskirts of the city and told to FLEE from there without even looking back! The Lord Yeshua says that, before his return, it will be “like that”!]
Luk 17:30 “Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.
Luk 17:31 “In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back.
Luk 17:32 “Remember Lot’s wife.
Luk 17:33 “Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.
Luk 17:34 “I tell you, in that night there shall be two in one bed; the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left.
Luk 17:35 “Two shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
Luk 17:36 “Two shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.”
Luk 17:37 And they answered and said unto him, “Where, Lord?” And he said unto them, “Wherever the body is (Greek: soma – a LIVE body, as is used repeatedly in the New Testament phrase “the Body of Christ!), to that place will the “eagles” be gathered together.”
It is clear that the time period of which the Lord Yeshua was speaking in the above passages was the moment just before his actual return. The Greek word “soma”, which ONLY means a LIVE body, does point to the rapture of the Church at the end of the Tribulation. The similar verses in Matthew, however, FIRST speak of the resurrection of the DEAD in Christ, and then of the COMBINED operation of the gathering of ALL of God’s righteous, both living and those “sleeping”…
Mat 24:28 For wherever the carcass (Greek ptomah – a very DEAD body) is, to that place will the eagles (angels of YHVH) be gathered together.
Mat 24:29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
Mat 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Mat 24:31 And he shall send his angels (“eagles”) with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds (a reference to the entire earth), (and) from one end of heaven to the other.
So, although these references to “eagles” all involve the time period just before the Lord Yeshua’s ONLY second coming, and surely do NOT specifically refer to the period just before the Abomination of Desolation, they demonstrate a consistent symbolism, from Exodus 19:4 through Revelation 12 (below). For this reason we believe that we are on solid ground to extrapolate from these symbols to the reality which we can expect to experience when we OBEDIENTLY flee into the nearest “wilderness” in the very moment in which we SEE the evidence of the Abomination of Desolation swirling all around us!
This experience of the True Church obediently fleeing from the comforts and relative safety of Mystery Babylon into their own unknown personal wildernesses will be an exact parallel of the children of Israel obediently fleeing Egypt into the desert wasteland, and this is surely NO ACCIDENT!
And this, from the Book of the Revelation, Chapter 12…
Rev 12:13 And when the dragon saw that he was cast into the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.
Rev 12:14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle , that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.
Rev 12:15 And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.
Rev 12:16 And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.
Rev 12:17 And the dragon was furious with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which (seed) keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Yeshua Messiah.
But what of those millions of sweet, warm, loving, sincere, preacher-believing, televangelist-believing disciples of “Jesus Christ”, who do NOT keep the commanded seventh-day Sabbath of YHVH, who do NOT keep the commanded festivals of YHVH, who believe that the Torah of YHVH, which IS the marriage covenant between Him and His chosen people (whether Jew or Gentile), has somehow been annulled by the sacrifice of the only-begotten Son of YHVH, who insisted that he only came to RENEW the Covenant in his blood, thereby making it PERFECT?
We believe that it will be this disobedient (or ignorant) “remnant” of “the seed of the woman” who will NOT “be accounted worthy to escape ALL these things which will come to pass”, and who will be truly “left behind” when the angels of YHVH (the “eagles” of Luke 17:37) transport to the sanctuary the main part of the “seed of the woman” – those Torah-obedient disciples of Yeshua who will also OBEDIENTLY FLEE when they are supposed to flee – leaving behind all their worldly goods and all those who either DISobediently or ignorantly do not flee when they are supposed to. These will either be purified with a baptism of fire, or share the fate of the devil and all other lost, depending on the true state of their souls at that time.
And even this is prophesied in the Hebrew Tanakh…
Dan 12:8 And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, “O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things?”
Dan 12:9 And he said, “Go your way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
Dan 12:10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.”
In short, we expect – entirely from Scripture – that ALL who are focused on “raptures” as their end-time hope of escaping the Tribulation are tragically mistaken, and will pay horribly for their misunderstanding with all of the pain and suffering that attends those choices.
Yours in the Lord Yeshua HaMashiach,
Bob & Suzanne Hamrick
Authors of: Exposing Satan’s ‘Left Behind’ – A Handbook for Surviving the Tribulation
Available in paperback (6×9, 400p), or as a PDF download (8½x11, 200p) from:
Also available as a Kindle e-book download from Amazon.com: