Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
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July 27, 2016
Last Updated :
July 27, 2016
The Great Tribulation Period Is Seven-Year First Jewish-Roman War, A Harvest Of Souls And A Harvest of God's Wrath, Jesus Triumphantly Returns To The Earth With Power And Great Glory Caiaphas The High Priest Would Live To See Jesus Return, Key Historical Dates Regarding The Great Tribulation, Our Limited Understanding Of God's Word, Be Humble In Our Understanding, Long Road To Updating All My Articles, By God's Grace Alone, My Position Regarding Doctrinal Debates, Reading Resources
If we wish to take this subject even further, then it is my belief that the harvest of souls which is mentioned in the fourteenth chapter of the Book of Revelation, is directly related to the following verses as well, all of which must have occurred at the end of that Prophetic Age between 70 and 73 AD when Jesus returned, as promised.
As you read the verses below, bear in mind that I no longer believe that the tribulation mentioned here is some future event as Futurists believe. The tribulation, in my view, is the previously-discussed, horrendous, seven-year-long First Jewish-Roman War, which resulted in the destruction of the city of Jerusalem, as well as the Temple. This great war is discussed by Daniel, Zechariah, and other Prophets of the Old Testament era. These verses describe both the harvest of souls, as well as the harvest of wrath, just like the Book of Revelation. John the Baptist was really in tune to the Spirit:
"I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire."
Matthew 3:11-12, KJV
"Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn."
Matthew 13:24-30, KJV
"He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear."
Matthew 13:37-43, KJV
"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: 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. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other."
Matthew 24:29-31, KJV
"And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven."
Mark 13:26-27, KJV
"John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable."
Luke 3:16-17, KJV
Notice that "immediately after the tribulation of those days" -- meaning the seven-year First Jewish-Roman War -- the Lord very specifically says "they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory". This is exactly what He meant when He told His followers that some of them would not die but would still be alive at His Return. Here again are excerpts from the verses that I shared with you in part two:
". . . till the Son of man be come."
Matthew 10:23, KJV
". . . till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom."
Matthew 16:28, KJV
". . . till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power."
Mark 9:1, KJV
". . . till they see the kingdom of God."
Luke 9:27, KJV
Following are some more verses which likewise speak of Jesus returning with power and great glory, and which are directly related to what Jesus says in Matthew chapter twenty-four, as well as in the other two end-of-the-age sermons in the Gospels of Mark and Luke:
"When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:"
Matthew 25:31, KJV
"Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven."
Matthew 26:64, KJV
"Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels."
Mark 8:38, KJV
"And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven."
Mark 14:62, KJV
"For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels."
Luke 9:26, KJV
"And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory."
Luke 21:27, KJV
"Hereafter shall the Son of man sit on the right hand of the power of God."
Luke 22:69, KJV
Let me point out that in Matthew 26:64 and Mark 14:62 above, Jesus is actually responding to Caiaphas the high priest. In other words, the Lord is telling him very directly that just like some of the Disciples, Caiaphas would still be alive when Jesus returned. That is yet more proof that Jesus came back during the late First Century. We have seen three cases now where Jesus says that some of His followers would still be alive when He returned; some of the Romans who pierced Him would still be alive when He returned, and even Caiaphas would still be alive when He returned. What more proof do we need to pinpoint Jesus' Return following the First Jewish- Roman War, or tribulation period? Are you convinced yet? Are you beginning to understand why there is no way that I could possibly ignore all of this information when the Lord began to reveal it to me a few years ago?
For those of you who may be a little confused regarding the specific dates we are using here, let me clarify for you. As we learned earlier, according to the historical record, the First Jewish-Roman War began in 66 AD. Being as it endured for seven years, that means it must have ended in 73 AD. But as we also learned previously, Jerusalem and the Temple were actually destroyed in the year 70 AD. We must assume then that this is when all Jewish sacrifices and offerings ended. This would have occurred right in the middle of the Prophet Daniel's 70th week, or the last seven-year period. This is a perfect match, and it is why Daniel wrote the following:
"And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and IN THE MIDST OF THE WEEK he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate."
Daniel 9:27, KJV
So that is how we arrive at the conclusion that the Rapture of the Saints and Jesus' Return occurred somewhere between 70 and 73 AD. Based on my current understanding, I am more inclined to believe that it was in 73 AD, since Jesus did say "immediately AFTER the tribulation of those days".
Well, we have definitely covered a lot of territory in this series; even more than I personally expected. At this point, some of you may be wondering exactly how much I am convinced of these things. Am I 100% certain of everything I have said in this series? I think it would be foolish for me, or for anyone, to adopt such a staunch position. In fact, it could be outright dangerous, because doing so could easily stump our spiritual growth, and result in our not being willing to accept any further truths which God may wish to reveal to us.
The truth is that we all understand so very little when it comes to the Scriptures. Only our pride leads us to believe otherwise. Sadly, there are so many teachers and preachers in the world today who employ a technique which makes their audience feel like there must be something wrong with them if they don't agree with what the preacher is saying. Such men of God -- if that is truly what they are -- leave no room for doubt when it comes to their teachings. They seem to have the attitude "This is the way it is, and you better believe it." They make you feel foolish if you don't agree with them. They expect you to just hop on their doctrinal bandwagon without question. But look where that has led us. Mass doctrinal deception everywhere. That's where.
Personally, I prefer to not be like that. In my articles, I carefully explain via the Scriptures why I believe as I do, and then I leave it up to my readers to arrive at their own conclusions. As I have often said, the more that I learn in God's Word, the more I realize how little I actually do know and understand. In fact, to be honest, there have been a lot of times when I have felt very discouraged, and I have asked myself what right I have to be teaching the Bible to anyone, when I understand so very little myself. That is why I wrote articles such as "Humility in Our Understanding of God's Word". I am reminded of this verse:
"And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know."
1 Corinthians 8:2, KJV
So, to answer the question, no, I am not one hundred per cent certain about every single thing which I have stated in this series. Am I strongly leaning towards the belief that Christ returned to the Earth during the late First Century? Indeed I am. All of the verses I shared seem very clear in that regard. In my view, there is simply too much evidence in the New Testament to believe otherwise. However, beyond that point, I am less certain about some things. There is a degree of fuzziness, particularly regarding the time frames of certain events which are described in the later chapters of the Book of Revelation. As I said earlier, it is going to take me quite a while to sort it all out.
Whatever the case may be, as a result of my accepting this new understanding regarding Christ's Return, I am now forced to go back and edit a major portion of my articles which deal with what is commonly referred to as Endtime Prophecy. Some of these articles were written as long as nineteen years ago, so they're going to require some serious updates. This represents a major amount of work on my part. No doubt I will be working on it for a few years to come, besides doing everything else that I do with this online ministry, such as create graphics, write poetry, compile KJV Bible verse lists, run my blog, etc. During this time, please be very patient with me, because I don't have nearly as much energy as I did when I began this online ministry over two decades ago. My vision isn't the greatest, and my health is in a slow state of decline as well. But, it's just a natural part of growing old, and by His Grace, I continue on. As the Apostle Paul wrote:
"And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong."
2 Corinthians 12:9-10, KJV
Having said that, my advice to you is that if you decide to read any of my prophecy-related articles that were written or updated before this current date -- that is, before July 27, 2016 -- you should read them with a grain of salt. Some of them will contain information which is no longer in line with my current understanding regarding the Return of Jesus Christ and other related prophetic events. Hopefully, by God's Grace, and with time, I will eventually make the necessary changes in each one of them.
Before concluding this series, I would like to mention one other thing. As I have stated a few times now, due to the contents of this series, I fully realize that it may stir up a hornets' nest in the Futurist camp. A lot of people, which may include some of my online friends, will not like what I have written here. They will resist it for some of the very reasons I have already stated. Some of them may even become very angry with me. They may even make accusations of liar and false prophet against me. If that is what they want to do, that is entirely up to them.
However, please understand that it is not my practice to support or participate in doctrinal debates. As I explain in the article entitled "Should Christians Engage in Doctrinal Debates?", I consider them a waste of time. Thus, if for whatever your reasons you do not agree with how I personally understand the many Scriptures which I have shared in this series, even though you may be tempted to do so, please do not send me heated emails in which you try to force me to debate with you. If you do, your message will simply go to the trash and be forgotten. Likewise, please do not attempt to start a doctrinal argument on any of the social networks where I participate, such as on Facebook. Not only will your comments be ignored, they will in fact be deleted. I hope that you will respect my wish as a fellow Christian.
With these thoughts I will bring this series to a close. I trust that you have enjoyed it, learned something from it, and I pray that it has been a blessing in your life. Most of all, I hope that you have an open heart and mind to receive the Scriptural truths which I have shared in this series. I hope that you are liberated by the truth which I have shared here. I hope you are not an old bottle who is unwilling to forsake any misguided doctrines which you may currently embrace. I know it is not easy, but it must be done.
If you have an account with Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, etc, I would really appreciate if you would take the time to click on the corresponding link that is found on this page. Thank you so very much! May God bless you abundantly!
For additional information, you may want to refer to the list of reading resources below which were also mentioned in this series, or which contain topics which are related to this series. All of these articles are likewise located on this very same website:
Abomination of Desolation: Explained!
Age of Deception, Age of Delusion
Elijah: Where Are the True Prophets of God?
Greater Works Than These Shall He Do . . . and Satan Too
Humility in Our Understanding of God's Word
In the Ages to Come
Is the KJV Bible the Inerrant Word of God?
Leviathan: An Ancient Dragon of the Sea?
Modern False Prophets and Worldly Ecumenism
Remember Lot's Wife: What Was Her Fate?
Revelation's Babylon the Great
Satan: His Origin, Purpose And Future
Satan: King of Tyrus, King of Empires
Should Christians Engage in Doctrinal Debates?
Sorry . . . Jesus is Not Coming at Any Moment
The Fruits of Disobedience
The Great Tribulation and the Rapture
The Misguided End of the World Predictions of Harold Camping
The Office of a Prophet
The Seven Heads
Tradition or Truth? Old Wine or New Wine?
When Was Satan Cast Out of Heaven?
Who Hindered the Antichrist?