Fred R. Coulter—March 25, 2012
Are there people who are resolute in what they believe even though they don't have all the knowledge and even though they may not have the Spirit of God within them?
There is a definite dividing line between those, we can say of the Protestants, who are for Jesus. Remember what Jesus said, because James and John came to Him and said, 'Master, we saw a man casting out demons in Your name and we forbad him.' He said, 'Don't forbid him. If they are on our part, they are for us.' But they weren't called to salvation—right? They're not against Christ, but they don't understand the Truth.
They believe in Jesus, they saw miracles, saw healings, saw casting out of demons, so they are for us or on our part. What about people like that who are really staunch in what they believe as much as they believe, what happens to them if they refuse the mark of the beast, which is going to be coming? What happens to them if they don't make an idol and bow down to the beast?
We read there in Rom. 8, 'if anyone have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.' That's the dividing line. You have to have the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God comes as one Spirit, but there are two aspects to it:
- begettal from the Father for eternal life
- from Christ for the mind of Christ and forming Christ in you
Jesus told the disciples on the Passover night that He was going to send the Holy Spirit. He told them it's the Spirit of Truth and it has been with you, but then it will be within you.' There may be a lot of people out there who have the Spirit of God with them from the seven Spirits that God sends from His throne. There may be a lot of people who will give their lives, but not attain to eternal life.
Talking about Babylon the Great. The reason God calls it Babylon the Great is because the whole world is now patterned after modern Babylon the city, the religion, the economics, and the structure of the cities.
If you watch any documentary, you see Japan, all the signs in a strange language you don't understand. If it were English, you would think you were in an American city; same way with China; India's starting to catch up. Same way with Malaysia, Europe, Middle East, all patterned after the city Babylon the Great. That means the whole world.
Revelation 17:5: "…MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF THE HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. And I saw the woman drunk with the blood of the saints..." (vs 5-6). The saints are who? What makes a person a saint? The Holy Spirit! Saint comes from the word sanctified.
If you have the Holy Spirit you have been sanctified by God. They will be in the first resurrection.
Verse 6: "And I saw the woman drunk with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus…." (v 6). Two categories. There will be a lot of people martyred because they've heard of Jesus and they won't give in to the beast and they will be killed. They will quality for the second resurrection. When they're raised they're going to think, 'Hey, I'm in heaven.' We'll have to tell them: 'Not quite.'
Let's come back to 1-Peter 3, because the question is, and this is used by the Protestants to say that when Jesus was in the tomb He went to warn the spirits in prison. In the Faithful Version we have that corrected. You can even read it in the King James Version if you read it properly and understand it.
1-Peter 3:15: "But sanctify the Lord God in your own hearts... [That is through the fellowship and with one another and with God the Father and Jesus Christ.] ...and always be prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks you the reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and reverence; having a good conscience, that, whereas they may speak against you as evil doers, those who are reviling your good way of life in Christ may be ashamed. For it is better, if it is the will of God, for you to suffer while doing good than to suffer for doing evil. Because Christ indeed once suffered for sins..." (vs 15-18).
You know that with the Passover coming up. I added to The Death of Christ (in the upcoming book, The Appointed Times of the Messiah) one more element that we'll cover here in just a little bit.
"...the Just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God; on the one hand, He was put to death in the flesh; but on the other hand, He was made alive by the Spirit... [Notice, no punctuation after Spirit.] ...by which He also went and preached to the spirits in prison, which disobeyed in a past time, when once the long-suffering of God was waiting in the days of Noah..." (vs 18-20).
If you go from "…made alive by the Spirit…" (v 18)—When did He witness to them? "…when once the long-suffering of God was waiting in the days of Noah..." (v 20). So, it wasn't while He was in the grave, because He was dead in the grave. Furthermore, what was the last thing He said before He died? He said, 'It is finished,' and His Spirit went to God. If the Spirit went to God, how could He—if He were in the grave three days and nights—by the Spirit go witness to the demons who are in prison when He had not yet been resurrected by the Spirit?
The key thing is: "…when once…"—that is in the days of Noah. That has nothing to do with Jesus going in the Spirit when He was still in the grave. If He didn't have the Spirit of God and if He was dead and His body was in the grave three days and three nights—and God did not allow Him to see corruption—how was it that when He was supposed to be in the tomb and God had control of the Spirit, because He said, 'Father, into Your hands I commend My Spirit,' then He gave up the Spirit, it went to God.
God did not give the Spirit again until after three days and three nights so that He would be resurrected. How could He, while He was dead in the tomb, go by the Spirit to warn the demons who were in prison? It didn't happen that way!
The Baptism of Blood unto Death:
I'll tell you what I added to the thing concerning the death of Jesus. Luke 12:50 "For I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how burdened I am until it be accomplished!" That was the day of the crucifixion.
Let's notice something else very interesting. This is Jesus' last prayer, John 17:4. "I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work that You gave Me to do." What work was that? That had to be
- the work of preaching the Gospel
- teaching the disciples
- witnessing to the world
but He yet another work to do. That was the baptism, which in the book I wrote, The Baptism of Blood unto Death.
Let's see how Jesus in this prayer also anticipated it, Luke 22:40: "And when He arrived at the place, He said to them, 'Pray that you do not enter into temptation.' And He withdrew from them about a stone's throw; and falling to His knees, He prayed, saying, 'Father, if You are willing to take away this cup from Me—nevertheless, not My will, but Your will be done'…. [notice what happened]: …Then an angel from heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him. And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. And His sweat became as great drops of blood falling down to the ground. And after rising up from prayer, He came to His disciples and found them sleeping for grief" (vs 40-45).
Let's see where He refers to this baptism that He needed to be baptized with. Remember He said in Luke 22, 'If you are willing to take away this cup from Me.' Notice how He brings this together in Matt. 20. This is when the mother of James and John wanted to get her two sons a promotion to be on the right hand and the left hand.
Matthew 20:22: "But Jesus answered and said... [to the two sons] ...'You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink... [they were on their way to Jerusalem] ...and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?' They said to Him, 'We are able.'" Sometimes we say things out of good intentions, but God holds us to our word. They had no idea what they were saying.
Verse 23: "And He said to them, 'You shall indeed drink of My cup, and shall be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with; but to sit at My right hand and at My left hand is not Mine to give, but shall be given to those for whom it has been prepared by My Father.'"
That baptism and cup in Matt. 20 brings it all together. That's why I wrote in the book (The Appointed Times of the Messiah) that Jesus was literally baptized in His own blood unto death, because it just literally streamed off His body. The last thing that happened was that the spear was thrust into Him. Apparently it was thrust into Him from the right side of the abdomen coming right up and piercing the heart. Because one of the Psalms says, 'pierced My heart.' That was to make sure that every drop of blood that He had was shed.
Now notice John 19:28: "After this, Jesus, knowing that all things had now been finished, so that the scripture might be fulfilled, said, 'I thirst.' Now a vessel full of vinegar was sitting there. And after filling a sponge with vinegar and putting it on a stick of hyssop, they put it up to His mouth. And so, when Jesus had received the vinegar... [just let it touch His mouth] ...He said, 'It is finished'" (vs 28-30). That ties right back in with Luke 12:50[transcriber's correction] about the baptism that He was burdened 'till it was accomplished.' He knew that every single thing concerning the plan of God hinged on that final day.
That is the Creator of all mankind, the one Who judged all mankind and gave everyone the law of sin and death, that He took that upon Himself so that He without sinning, though He had full human nature, would become the perfect sacrifice for the sin of the world. And it's sin going clear back to Adam and Eve. So we added that part to the crucifixion.
Let's look at another question here concerning the Nazarite vow. A lot of people assume that Jesus was a Nazarite because He came from Nazareth, but that didn't make Him a Nazarite. How we know it didn't make Him a Nazarite? This also tells us He did not have long hair, because a Nazarite was to have long hair.
Numbers 6:2: "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them, 'When a man (or woman) shall separate himself in order to vow the vow of a Nazarite, in order to separate himself to the LORD, he shall separate from wine and strong drink and shall drink no vinegar of wine, or vinegar of strong drink; neither shall he drink any liquor of grapes, no eat moist grapes or dried. All the days of his consecration he shall eat nothing that is made of the grapevine, from grape seeds even to a stem'" (vs 2-4). John the Baptist had a Nazarite vow. Once they took the Nazarite vow it shows what they are to do.
Verse 13: "And this is the law of the Nazarite, when the days of his consecration are fulfilled, he shall be brought to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And he shall offer his offering to the LORD... " (vs 13-14). It lists all the offering, the meal offering, the ram offering.
Verse 18: "And the Nazarite shall shave the head of his consecration at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation…" He was to let his hair grow long. Can you imagine how long John the Baptist's hair was at 30-years-old? I picture him as a redhead. I never pictured him as a redhead until I met a Jew who was a redhead. I thought that maybe John the Baptist was a redhead.
Can you imagine what a fierce countenance he must have had? He couldn't shave his beard, couldn't trim his eyebrows, so I think of him with flowing long hair, eyebrows that go way up. I just picture him in my mind when the scribes and Pharisees came and he said to them, 'You vipers, you snakes-in-the-grass, who has warned you to flee from the wrath to come. Bring forth fruit meet for repentance.'
The question is the last sentence, after he's done with all the ritual, v 20: "And afterward the Nazarite may drink wine"—because the vow is ended. It's set for a specific period of time. We know Jesus did not have a Nazarite vow because He made wine, He drank wine, and was accused of being a glutton and winebibber—right? Remember when He explained that He also said of John, 'You went to John. Behold he's got demons.' So he must have been pretty fierce. 'The Son of man He's a winebibber and a glutton.' Can't please human nature.
What is this talking about? Zechariah 6:9. "And the Word of the LORD came to me saying, 'Take from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah... [Doesn't tell us who they are except they are from the exiles who have come from Babylon.] ...from the exiles who have come from Babylon; and in that same day you go and enter the house of Josiah the son of Zephaniah. And take silver and gold, and make crowns, and set them on the head of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest" (vs 9-11).
What they did was this: They must have been skilled in gold and silver work and God selected them particularly to make this crown. Remember when you read about setting up of the tabernacle of the congregation that God chose specific men to do it.
Which also shows something else: When God wants something done for Him that is going to personally represent Him, He's going to choose the one to do it! Just like with the ones who were working on the tabernacle and making all the implements, the gold and the brass and silver and all of that, He gave them specific wisdom and knowledge to do so. So He wanted these particular men to do it.
Here is what it represents, v 12: "And speak to him, saying, 'Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying, "Behold the Man whose name is The BRANCH!.… [Christ; showing that Christ will be High Priest and with a crown.] ...And He shall grow up out of His place, and He shall build the temple of the LORD."'"
Prophecy of the Church. Put in your notes, 'Know you not that you are a temple of God' (1-Cor. 3). The spiritual work that God is doing is tremendous. All God wants is our love and full cooperation and obedience. We have to do our part; God will do His part.
"...and He shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon His throne. And He shall be a priest upon His throne; and the counsel of peace shall be between them both." And the crowns shall be for a memorial in the temple of the LORD..." (vs 13-14)—and then it lists them again.
Let's see also another prophecy, which probably portends the coming high priest in the soon-to-be-built temple in Jerusalem. Remember this, we undoubtedly have here in Zech 3 and 4 with Joshua the high priest, a prophecy of the coming two witnesses.
- one will be a priest from the temple
- one will be the governor of Judea
If you want to keep your eyes on prophecy, while we're right here in Zechariah, since we're speaking of the Middle East. As you watch the news, is this not a true accurate prophecy being fulfilled this very day?
Zechariah 12:2: "Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people all around, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem. And in that day I will make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people…." (vs 2-3).
What is the focus of the news today? Jerusalem, Judah, Iran! I have a special message for Ahmadinejad: 'You need to read the Book of Esther to find out what happened to your ancestors when you decided to exterminate the Jews. Be careful! Your own bombs may explode right upon you!' Oh, wouldn't that be a great tragedy! There has to come the two witnesses. We also bring this out in the book, The Appointed Times of the Messiah.
Back to Zechariah 3; here again Joshua the high priest. It shows that he fulfilled the first one prophetically—Christ. This one here shows that it is also a prophecy that there will be a high priest on the scene for the return of Christ to help usher in the Millennium. But Satan doesn't want that.
Do you suppose the Jews have been given over to Satan for an awful long time? Yes, they have! But remember, beginning with the 144,000 the first ones listed there in Rev. 7 are 12,000 of the tribe of Judah. He said there in Zech. 12 that He would 'save the tents of Judah first.' So, God is not done with it yet.
One little sidebar:. Netanyahu is having Bible studies at his own home. I wonder what they're studying. Because God is going to grant them repentance. God is going to grant the house of Nathan, the house of Aaron, the house of Levi repentance. It's going to be sudden and dramatic like this.
Zechariah 3:1: "And He showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him.... [That happened to Jesus—didn't it? Yes, indeed!] ...And the LORD said to Satan, 'May the LORD rebuke you, Satan! May even the LORD Who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked out of the fire?'" (vs 1-2).
When God decides to save someone and use them like that, it's just like Saul who became the Apostle Paul. He was out there running down the road or walking down the road or riding a donkey, whatever, and God decided to call him. BANG! Knocked him to the ground. 'Yes, Lord, what do you want?' There are times when you can have a sudden change of attitude—right? We have it here.
Verse 3: "Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And He answered and spoke to those who stood before him, saying, 'Take the filthy garments from off him.' And to him He said, 'Behold, I have caused your iniquity to pass from you, and I will clothe you with ceremonial robes'" (vs 3-4). That's what happened to Joshua the high priest, the one who came out of Babylon. Joshua and Zerubbabel, the governor, they laid the foundation of the temple.
Verse 5: "And I said, 'Let them set a clean mitre on his head...'"There will be that ceremony. There will be the high priest chosen. God is going to be in it. This is how God is going to start dealing with the Jews. How long the temple is going to function before the sacrifices are cut off, we don't know. But when they are cut off, what do you suppose the high priest and the governor are going to do? They'll be chosen as the two witnesses and they will be dressed in sackcloth!
We'll probably see this ceremony and the world's going to say, 'This is a wonderful thing. Look at temple. Look at the gold. Look at robe. Look at the mitre. Look at what a wonderful thing this is.' If you're not home at your TV, take out your Smartphone. If you have a dumb phone, then you'll have to wait till you get home. You'll see it happening. The events at the end-time, we're going to have instantaneous communication. We're going to know, we're going to see it. The world is going to say, 'Hooray, we finally have peace! Hooray, the beast is a marvelous man! Hooray, finally the world is going to live at peace with one another!' It'll be without the true God. It'll be with their god, Satan and the man of sin, the son of perdition.
Verse 6: "And the angel of the LORD charged Joshua, saying... [This is to the Joshua of the day when they started to rebuild the temple.] ...'Thus says the LORD of hosts, "If you will walk in My ways, and if you will keep My charge, then you shall also judge My house, and shall also keep My courts, and I will give you places to walk among these who stand by. Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, you and your fellows who sit before you; for they are men wondered at... [a prophecy of Christ] ...for behold, I will... [didn't tell you when] ...bring forth My Servant the Branch! For behold, the stone that I have set before Joshua: On one stone are seven eyes! Behold, I will engrave its engraving upon it," says the LORD of hosts, "and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day"'" (vs 6-9).
That's when God forgave everything that the Jews did before they went into captivity. He had to cleanse the land. Remember, the land was not cleansed until the 70-years were fulfilled and it's had its land Sabbaths for 70-years.
Verse 10: "'In that day,' says the LORD of hosts, 'you shall call, each man to his neighbor, to sit under the vine and under the fig tree.'" We have a dual prophecy here as well referring to Christ and the beginning of the Millennium.
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When you read these things about Joshua the high priest and then definite references to Christ—Grace, Grace, etc. and the Branch, and also Zerubbabel you have the literal high priest, Joshua. You have the prophetic High Priest, Christ. You have a type of the coming one of the two witnesses. The prophecy can have several different applications because it's not just the name of the person alone, but also the office they are engaged in. So likewise, Zerubbabel was a type of Christ as governor.
Christ is King and Priest. You have them even blending together. But here I want to focus in on the two witnesses and we'll see how they connect with this part of the Book of Zechariah.
Zechariah 4:1: "And the angel that talked with me came again and awakened me, as a man that is awakened out of his sleep. And he said to me, 'What do you see?' And I said, 'I see, and behold, a lampstand, all of it gold, and a bowl on its top, and its seven lamps upon it, and seven pipes to the seven lamps on its top'" (vs 1-2).
This is not the lampstand that was sitting before the Holy of Holies. That was like a candelabra with little cups. You've seen these little plastic things where they put syrup in and they bring it to you if you eat pancakes at a restaurant and you pour it out. Those little cups of gold were made similar to that and they would lay a wick in that little area that you would pour from and they would fill the little cup with olive oil. The priests had to light that between the two evenings. Those represent—just put in your notes there, Rev 4 and 5—the seven eyes of the Lord; the seven Spirits.
What we are talking about here is something entirely different. This construction, if you look at it: "...behold, a lampstand, all of it gold, and a bowl on its top..." (v 2). So here above it is a bowl full of olive oil feeding down to the seven lamps. Entirely different than what was at the temple. This is prophetic.
"...and seven pipes to the seven lamps on its top" (v 2)—coming down to the seven lamps. This is more like the seven lampstands of Rev. 1. Let's look at it. This may prove to be very interesting indeed.
A lot of people think that the seven lampstands represent the seven olive oil bowls with the wicks in them. These represent the churches. Revelation 1:11, this is voice he heard: "Saying, 'I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last; and, what you see, write in a book, and send it to the churches that are in Asia: to Ephesus, and to Smyrna, and to Pergamos, and to Thyatira, and to Sardis, and to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.' And I turned to see the voice that spoke with me..." (vs 11-13). How do you turn to see the voice? I don't know, but he turned in the direction of the voice to see if there was anyone there. He didn't see anyone.
"...and when I turned, I saw seven golden lampstands; And in the midst of the seven lampstands one like the Son of man..." (v 13). In the midst. So these have to be in a circle and Christ in the middle. Christ gives Spirit to the Churches—correct? Seven lampstands, Christ in the middle of them. These we know are the Churches, as we will see.
Verse 20: "The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands, is this: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches; and the seven lampstands that you saw are the seven churches." Totally different!
Let's look at the seven Spirits of God. This is what John saw, the most detailed vision of the throne of God in the whole Bible:
Revelation 4:3: "And He Who was sitting was in appearance like a jasper stone and a sardius stone; and a rainbow was around the throne, like an emerald in its appearance. And around the throne were twenty-four thrones; and on the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white garments; and they had on their heads golden crowns. And proceeding from the throne were lightnings and thunders and voices; and seven lamps of fire, which are the seven Spirits of God, were burning before the throne" (vs 3-5). These are not the seven lampstands. These seven Spirits before the throne of God are a type of the lampstand that was in the temple.
Revelation 5:6: "Then I saw, and behold, before the throne and the four living creatures, and before the elders, was standing a Lamb as having been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes..." We know this is a type of Christ—right? What are the seven horns coming out of the head of the Lamb? These have to be the seven Churches, because Christ is the Head of the seven Churches—right? The Head controls the horns.
We have several descriptions concerning the Church—lampstands, Christ in the middle. Zech. 4, lampstands with a golden bowl at the top of it with pipes coming down to feed those lamps, which is different than the one that is before the Holy of Holies. It wasn't in it, but it was just right in front of it. They had the little seven cups of oil with the wick standing on the candelabra. These seven Spirits represent what God then is doing spiritually. "...having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God that are sent into all the earth" (v 6). This is Christ knowing what's going on in the earth. God isn't gone somewhere way off. God knows exactly what's going on on the earth. No question about it. He's involved in these things.
We find in 2-Chron. 16 that 'the eyes of the Lord go to and fro through all the earth seeking those who are seeking Him.' Then we have John 6, the Father draws a person—correct? How does He know when to draw one? Many of the people I have talked to here recently that we have baptized—and by the way in the last about six weeks we have had eight baptisms from Church at Home, brand new people.
How does God start dealing with a person? Everyone of them said, 'I got down on my knees and said God show me the Truth.' They don't know where the Church. They don't know anything about anything, but their lives are such they want God. God answers those prayers—right? If they are seeking and knocking and asking, they will receive. So the seven eyes of the Lord are constantly knowing what's going on in the world, as well as the angels. There's a lot going on we don't even see.
It's just like the law of gravity. It's everywhere. Just like all of the electronic—how shall we say—magnetic electronic waves in the air which right in this room if they have WiFi here you can hook up your Smartphone. You can hook up your computer, just turn it on and you've got it. All television stations, all radio stations, but you have to have a tune-in dial to get it—right? Same way with God! There are people out there who are seeking and then God begins to deal with them and begins to draw them. So this is how God does it. When we read these things, let's not make the mistake of thinking that they're all referring to one thing.
Zechariah 4:3: "And two olive trees beside it, one on the right side of the bowl, and the other on the left side of it." This is quite a thing. You have the big bowl and on the right and left of it you have the two olive trees. Coming down from the bowl, directly to the seven lampstands, the oil of God, a type of God's Spirit, coming down to the seven Churches.
Brethren, let's just say this. If you read Rev. 2 and 3 very carefully, don't you think that there are those Churches of God today, all seven that are functioning on the earth as God sees them? We're limited in our thinking because we think in terms of a corporate church. So men who want control say, 'Well, you leave this organization, you're leaving God.' Really? Is this the throne of God? No! You leave God if you reject Him.
- Organization can't save you.
- Organization can't throw you in the Lake of Fire.
- Christ is our Savior.
- He gives us of His Spirit.
We are to be fed through the Church so the Church, the collective body of Christ, with Christ as the Head of it needs to be doing the will of God, preaching the Word of God—right? Yes!
Now then, you read of the seven Churches. You have the good, you have the not so good; you have the bad, you have the ugly; you have the dead and you have the lukewarm—right? Doesn't that describe the Churches of God today? Yes!
He didn't know what this is. Verse 4: "And I answered and spoke to the angel who talked with me, saying, 'What are these, my lord?' Then the angel who talked with me answered and said to me, 'Do you know what these are?' And I said, 'No, my lord.' Then he answered and spoke to me, saying, 'This is the Word of the LORD to Zerubbabel..." (vs 4-6). This is to the governor. We can apply this to one of the two witnesses. This is why I have said that the two witnesses will be the coming high priest at the temple and the governor of Judea!
There's one other that has to come into the equation. That's the final Elijah, Mal. 4. What is he going to do? He is going to do the work of serving the people that repent in Judea because of the two witnesses. Remember, Jews need a sign. There are going to be signs given to them. The priest, the governor, two witnesses and then the one who will fulfill the last Elijah.
Here's something we all need to learn. "…'Not by might... [by your own ability] ...nor by power... [that you may be able to exercise] ...but by My Spirit,' says the LORD of hosts." (v 6). What are we talking about in all these things we've been talking about? Various aspects of the Spirit of God—correct?
Verse 7: "'Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain; and he shall bring forth the head stone with shoutings, "Grace! Grace unto it!"'" You can apply that to the coming of Christ. You can apply that to the beginning of the Millennium. You can apply that to the time when they finish the temple, when you read of it back there in the Book of Ezra.
Verse 8: "And the Word of the LORD came to me, saying, 'The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house. His hands shall also finish it.'" That was the second temple. It may very well apply to the coming governor of Judea at the end. He may be there to help lay the foundation stone.
When they lay that foundation stone, it's going to be a big ceremony. You know that the governor of Judea is going to be there. You know the one who has been selected from the house of Aaron to be the high priest will be there. They already have the garments and things already made at the Temple Institute waiting for the day.
The only thing holding up is where to put the temple, not where the Mosque of Omar is now. They have the Western Waiting Wall and all the Jews go there and pray before it. One man saw an old Jew, what they do they rock back and forth when they are praying. When the old man got done he said, 'How long have you been praying here?' He said, 'For sixty years ever since Jerusalem has been freed from the Arabs.' What do you pray about? 'I pray for the state of Israel, I pray for the Jews everywhere. I pray for the coming of the Messiah.' What's that been like? Has anything ever happened? He said, 'No!' Then how do you explain it? He says, 'Sometimes I feel like I'm talking to a wall.'
Verse 9, speaking of the people. "And you shall know that the LORD of hosts has sent me [Zechariah.] to you. 'For who has despised the day of small things? For they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel... [laying the cornerstone] ...These seven are the eyes of the LORD which run to and fro through the whole earth'" (vs 9-10).
See how that ties back with Rev. 4 and 5; 2-Chron. 16. Add to that all the angels. Remember the time of Elisha when Samaria was surrounded by armies? The assistant of Elisha said, 'How are we going to get out of this?' Elisha looked at him and said, 'There are more for us than there are of them.' Looked around like that. So, Elisha said, 'Lord, open his eyes so that he may see.' What did he see? Hosts of angelic chariots! And what happened? The armies were defeated!
Verse 11: "And I answered and said to him, 'What are these two olive trees on the right side of the lampstand and on its left side?'" So again, the bowl, the pipes coming down to the seven lamps, the two olive trees—all together.
Verse 13: "And he answered me and said, 'Do you not know what these are?' And I said, 'No, my lord.' And he said, 'These are the two anointed ones who stand by the LORD of the whole earth'" (vs 13-14). That's something!
Let's come back to Revelation 11 concerning the two witnesses. We'll put the picture together; it's like a big puzzle. How many here have ever put together a 1,000 piece puzzle? Remember how good you felt when you got the border done? Then how good you felt when you got some of the other things put together? What an achievement it was when you put the last piece in? That's kind of like understanding these prophecies; there are many aspects to it, but it paints one big picture!
Revelation 11:1: "Then the angel gave me a measuring rod like a staff, saying, 'Arise and measure the temple of God, and the alter, and those who worship in it." Here's John. He was given this vision. This was about 98A.D. The temple was destroyed in 70A.D. and still barren ground. He's given this vision and told to measure the temple. This perplexed him. You can see that in this particular situation.
Just put in your notes there, Matt. 24:15, 'And when you see the abomination of desolation stand in the Holy Place...' There's a parenthetical statement there which says, 'The one who reads let him understand.' Who put that there? Jesus didn't speak it, because when you were able to see the abomination of desolation stand in the holy place, then you knew the great tribulation was going to take place.
How are you going to put it together? John received a vision that there's going to be a temple. He knows there's no temple in Jerusalem. He reads 2-Thes. 2, because he's got all the books of the New Testament there to do the final canonization. When he's doing the final canonization, because he didn't know how to put it together because there was no temple, yet there was the vision of the temple and there was the man of sin, the son of perdition who goes into the temple of God and says that he is God. John was alive when the temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in 70A.D. He knew that never happened. So he knew three things:
- there's no temple
- the prophecy of the man of sin, the son of perdition going into the temple
- if the temple doesn't exist and it didn't happen when it was destroyed in 70A.D. there's got to be another temple—right?
So he inserts the statement: 'The one who reads, let him understand,' because 'I, John—as he was given this job to canonize the New Testament with the Book of Revelation—don't understand it.' But he knows that these are the true words of God.
He says, v 2: "But leave out the court that is within the temple area, and do not measure it because it has been given up to the Gentiles; and they shall trample upon the holy city for forty-two months. And I will give power to My two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth" (vs 2-3).
When they install the temple, which they are going to build, they'll have on all of their regal ceremonial robes. I don't know how the governor of Judea is going to dress at that time, but when the man of sin, the son of perdition comes into the temple and stops the sacrifices, then they're going to rip their clothes. The two witnesses will become the two witnesses clothed in sackcloth. God is going to give them overwhelming power because these are 'the two anointed ones that stand before the God of the whole earth.'
Verse 4: "These are the two olive trees, and the two lampstands that stand before the God of the earth." [see Zech. 4.] Can't be the Church. They're not coming from the Church. We've seen how many come along and say they're the two witnesses. Even the Jews in Jerusalem they have a special squad to handle prophets. You've heard of it, haven't you? Some come in and say, 'I'm Jeremiah.' Some come in and say, 'I'm Elijah.'
You know the account of this one special detective was handling one Elijah. They put him in a hotel to try and get him to calm down and talk with him, and so forth. The next day another Elijah came in. So, you know what happened. When they had breakfast in the morning, he invited them both to the table and he said, 'Elijah, I'd like you to meet Elijah.'
These are the ones who "…stand before the God of the whole earth…. [notice the power that has been given to them] …And if anyone attempts to harm them, fire will go out of their mouths and devour their enemies. For if anyone attempts to harm them, he must be killed in this manner'" (vs 4-5). That's going to set all the news channels ablaze. We know the whole world is going to see these things taking place.
Verse 6: "These have authority to shut heaven so that no rain may fall in the days of their prophecy; and they have authority over the waters, to turn them into blood, and to smite the earth with every plague, as often as they will. And when they have completed their testimony, the beast who ascends out of the abyss will make war against them, and will overcome them, and will kill them. And their bodies will lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified. Then those of the people and tribes and languages and nations shall see their bodies three and a half days..." (vs 6-9).
The whole world is going to see this. The events that are going to happen in the end time are going to be big time, huge events that God is going make happen. The two witnesses are going to have such absolute power. Can you imagine the ceremonies they're going to have for the soldiers that attempted to kill the two witnesses and ZAP! fire came out of their mouth. All they do is speak the word and here comes the fire. A walking blow torch. We could make a great movie on that, couldn't we? God is going to do the real thing.
Now notice what they did: "...shall see their bodies three and a half days, for they will not allow their bodies to be put into tombs. And those who dwell on the earth... [It's going to be a worldwide thing. Remember this at the end: Everything is going to be worldwide—all nations, all languages, all tongues, all people.] ...and will make merry, and will send gifts to one another, because these two prophets had tormented those who dwell on the earth. Then after the three and half days, the spirit of life from God entered into them and they stood on their feet; and great fear fell upon those who were watching them" (vs 9-11). Just like God always does. When the enemy thinks they have won, BANG!
Remember in the days of Hezekiah? The Syrian army of 180,000 had surrounded Jerusalem. The commander came and told the people sitting on the wall of Jerusalem, 'Don't listen to Hezekiah, or Isaiah, when they tell you that your God's going to take care of it. You look what the king of Assyria has done to all these nations and we want to tell you we've got all the booty: the gold, the silver, all the precious jewels, and everything like that. We have slaughtered and destroyed the armies of these nations and you're going to be just like it. So, give this letter to Hezekiah, the terms of surrender.'
Hezekiah went into the house of the Lord and prayed about it. Isaiah came with the message. The answer: God is going to fight the battle for you. You won't have to fight. The next morning they got up, no battle. Sennacherib, the king of Assyria got up and it was real silent. Why is it so silent out there? He looked and the 180,000 troops were all dead! So when God decides to do something, it's going to be done in great power.
When the two witnesses come back to life, can you imagine what they're going to do? I picture this, they'll be television cameras right there. The world will know.
Verse 12: "And they heard a great voice from heaven, say, 'Come up here!…. [This is right at the start, just before the seventh trump is sounded.] …And they ascended into heaven in a cloud; and their enemies saw them rise. And in that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell; and seven thousand men were killed in the earthquake. And the rest were filled with fear, and gave glory to the God of heaven. The second woe is past. Behold, the third woe is coming immediately. Then the seventh angel sounded his trumpet..." (vs 12-15). That is the resurrection. There are going to be a lot of things happen.
That helps answer the question of Zechariah!
- Revelation 17:5-6
- 1-Peter 3:15-20
- Luke 12:50
- John 17:4
- Luke 22:40-45
- Matthew 20:22-23
- John 19:28-30
- Numbers 6:2-4, 13-14, 18, 20
- Zechariah 6:9-14
- Zechariah 12:2-3
- Zechariah 3:1-10
- Zechariah 4:1-2
- Revelation 1:11-13, 20
- Revelation 4:3-5
- Revelation 5:6
- Zechariah 4:4-11, 13-14
- Revelation 11:1-15
Scriptures referenced, not quoted:
- Romans 8
- Numbers 6:20
- 1-Corinthians 3
- Revelation 7
- 2-Chronicles 16
- John 6
- Revelation 2, 3
- Malachi 4
- Matthew 24:15
- 2-Thessalonians 2
Also referenced: Book:
The Appointed Times of the Messiah (coming soon)
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