Fred Coulter—January 1, 2011

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Greetings, everyone; welcome to Sabbath services! This is the second part of the fourteen things to watch for in prophecy—see how they're building up, see how they're developing. The first time I gave this was in 1967 in Boise. The reason that we gave it is because it was becoming apparent in 1967 that in 1972 we were not going to a place of safety. We didn't learn the lesson. No man knows the day or the hour! God has made it very, very evident now, that we have passed all the 6,000-year periods that different men can scheme up looking at chronologies in the Bible, from 4023, 4025B.C., 404B.C., we have passed all of them. It's not set in timing that we understand. Rather, for us God has set it in events and then after we reach certain events, then we can understand the timing a little more, but not until then.

As I mentioned, here's the framework on which all prophecy in the Bible hangs, in addition to the Holy Days. That's why we have the book, God's Plan for Mankind Revealed by His Sabbath and Holy Days. But it hangs on these seven, so you might want to write these down:

  • Israel—which then goes back to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob
  • the Jews—because there's the house of Israel, the house of Judah
  • Jerusalem
  • Christ
  • the Church
  • the world
  • the Kingdom of God

Those are the seven things that are the framework for all prophecies. Now we covered Dan. 9 at the beginning of the 14 Things in Prophecy to Watch For #1 where we showed that it was for the people of Judah, the people of Israel. Let's look at the prophecy concerning Israel. Then we're going to look at the Jews and Jerusalem, because all the prophecies in the end-time are sooner or later going to circle around Jerusalem.

Jeremiah 31:31: "'Behold, the days come,' says the LORD, 'that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.'…. [And that is the thing that most of the Protestants totally miss.] …Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which covenant of Mine they broke, although I was a husband to them,' says the LORD; 'But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel: After those days,' says the LORD, 'I will put My law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people'" (vs 31-33). When the Holy Spirit was given on the day of Pentecost in 30A.D. that was the start of it for the firstfruits, but not all of Israel. That will happen after the Kingdom of God is set up and the return of Christ. So let's see how it is with the Jews.

Luke 21:20: "But when you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, then know that her desolation has drawn near…. [The desolation, we're going to talk about as one of the key things that is the trigger for the Great Tribulation.] …Then let those who are Judea flee to the mountains, and let those within her go out, and let not those in the countries come to her; for these are the days of vengeance, so that all these things that have been written may be accomplished" (vs 20-22). All things, just like it is where we read all nations, the whole world, it means all of them, not some little local event.

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…. [Who is in that area of the country? Well, the tribe of Manasseh is not; the tribe of Joseph is not, but the tribe of Judah—correct? Judah and Jerusalem!] …And in that day I will make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people.... [That's one of the central points of the problems of the world today—Jerusalem and Judea.] ...All who burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces..." (vs 2-3).

Now you know why there has been no peace. There's not going to be any peace until a certain event happens and then there will be peace for a short time. But I can guarantee you this: the Jews will not have any peace with the Arabs until they have permission to build the temple. Now they're not going to have to take the Mosque of Omar. That's sitting on what used to be Fort Antonio. Down over the Gihon Spring, which is south of Fort Antonio, is where the temple will be built.

When the Palestinians and Arabs hear, 'We will negotiate to build the temple away from the Mosque of Omar,' then they will agree to it. If you go online, look up The Temple Institute and see how much they already have ready. They have priest garbs and hats. They have the shovels and the sensors and they have the incense, and they have the altar of incense all ready to go. They've got a lot of things ready to go. Because we'll see one of the next things that we'll cover is there has to be a temple. We'll see that in just a bit here.

Verse 5: "And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, 'The people of Jerusalem shall be my strength in the LORD of hosts their God." In that day I will make the governors of Judah like a hearth of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire among the sheaves. And they shall devour all the people all around, on the right hand and on the left hand…." (vs 5-6). Boy, have not the Jews done that?

Remember the 1967 war? The great Egyptian army was wasted in two days. Then he says, v 7: "The LORD also shall save the tents of Judah first..." Did not also with the salvation through Christ go to the Jews first? Yes!

Revelation 7:4—the 144,000—notice who is listed first of the tribes of the children of Israel: "And I heard the number of those who were sealed: one hundred forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel. From the tribe of Judah..." (vs 4-5). First! It's exactly like God said it's going to be, 12,000; then the tribe of Reuben, because he was the firstborn. Then it lists all of them right on down to Benjamin, who was the last born.

Zechariah 12:7: "The LORD also shall save the tents of Judah first, so that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the people of Jerusalem may not be magnified above Judah. In that day the LORD shall defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And it shall be, he who is feeble among them at that day shall be like David; and the house of David shall be like God, like the angel of the LORD before them. And it shall be in that day that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem" (vs 7-9).

Now, notice what this is going to do. The people have wanted to know when would the Jews repent? Here it is right here, v 10: "And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the people of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplication. And they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced... [Think about that statement right there. Who is giving this statement? The Lord—right? The God of the Old Testament—correct?] ...they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced... [What does this tell us? Christ was the Lord God of the Old Testament—right? Yes!] ...and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourns for his only son, and shall be in bitterness over Him, as the bitterness over the firstborn."

Now notice what's going to happen here in how this repentance is going to occur. It talks about the "…great mourning…" (v 11) Jerusalem all the way down to Megiddo. Verse 12: "And the land shall mourn, every family apart: the family of David apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart... [Who was Nathan? Nathan was the son of David! The line did not come down through Mary from Solomon because of his sins and the sins of the other kings. But it came down from David to Nathan (Luke 3).] ...and their wives apart; The family of the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart; the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart; All the families who remain, every family apart and their wives apart'" (vs 12-14). So that's the way that they are going to repent. God looks at Jerusalem and the Jews.

The first six things that we covered 14 Things in Prophecy to Watch For #1:

Period of Peace and Security

Which begins at the beginning of the last seven years. When that begins, you better, if you find yourself in a poor spiritual condition, you better seek God with all your heart, because in three and a half years the Tribulation is going to begin. So don't be fooled when this comes in.

King of the North and King of the South

There has to be a king of the north and a king of the south, because Dan. 11:40 says, 'the king of the south pushes at him, the king of the north comes against him.'

World Trade and World Currency

We also put all of these on a tipping scale zero to ten, or a tipping point, five is flat.

  • peace and security—zero
  • king of the north, king of the south—2-3—a lot has to be developed there

Europe right now is going in, in a low downturn economically. They've got problems with the Muslims. They have a whole lot to solve before they can become a world power like they want to be. They're finding that it's pretty hard to compete against the United States, much harder than they figured. And as I gave in the sermon recently, in order to bail out some of those countries, even the European Central Bank had to borrow from the Federal Reserve. Hello! What does that tell you.

  • for world trade/world currency—5-6—but it's sitting there kind of teeter-tottering back and forth, but it will have to come suddenly.

Now, how many have watched Glenn Beck's afternoon show? You ought to watch it. His radio show is kind of 'ding-dong,' but his television show is really good. There's a book coming out about the fifteen days to the New World Order (The Day After the Dollar Crashes: A Survival Guide for the Rise of the New World Order by Damon Vickers) It gives a really good scenario, so I'm going to give a sermon on it when I get the book. It's not going to be printed until February. But the New World Order will be a new world currency. So I would say 5-6 on that right now and it could go to 10—BANG! Overnight!

Mark of the Beast

How many remember the sermon I gave: The Mark of the Beast is Here, when the digital angel came out. Remember that? And I got letters, 'Oh, what do I do, what I do?' I said, 'This is just a start. It'll take quite a few years.

Now just to update you on what they've been able to do. They have not perfected an invisible tattoo that they can put on the right hand or on the forehead. Can't you imagine the persuasiveness? 'No one will see it. It won't hurt. Don't you have credit cards? Don't they have numbers?' But they don't tell you they're going to perfect it in such a way that they can control the mind! So when you take the mark of the beast, not only will you not be able to buy and sell, you're going to give up your personal choice.

Now I've got another sermon I'm going to bring showing how that low-levels of magnetism against the brain can change the way that you think and also the way that you make moral decisions. So it's quite something.

  • the mark of the beast—6-7

The Rise of the Kings of the East and the North

You've got Russian, you've got China, you have Southeast Asia. I gave a sermon on that on Afghanistan. Just today someone gave me a report that this things come off the Internet, BANG! BANG!—that you get the information real quick. It's exactly what I said in Afghanistan—what are we doing there. So that's going to happen.

  • I put that on a scale between 5-6, somewhere in there, tipping down for more power toward them

The Fall of Israel, the Ten Tribes

    • I think we're at about 6-7

When the world currency comes in, as I pointed out, and this is where I ended up back in Lev. 26, 'I will break the pride of your power' and what makes us powerful. Not just the armies—that's part of it—but the armies are supported by what? By dollars! And the pride of our power is the almighty dollar—which will be an almighty failure! And they have to make all other currencies go down, too, in order to bring in a world currency.

Matthew 24 is very interesting from this point of view: I want you to read it from the perspective that this chapter is made for today. It starts out with the time of Jesus, as we pointed out, but where does it end up? With the second coming of Christ! It covers that whole period. But the things that are talked about here have to be known only by rapid communication.

Remember last week there was an earthquake in New Zealand? BANG! 'News Alert! Earthquake in New Zealand'; pictures right away; same thing with virtually anything that takes place. So you think about it now. Since this applies to the whole world and all Christians everywhere, this could not be way back in the days when messages came by horseback, or donkey-back, or by foot, or by boat. You wouldn't know about wars for two or three years after they started; some of them you would never know. But today you hear everyone immediately—right? Yes! So there it is.

Also, He says Matthew 24:13: "But the one who endures to the end, that one shall be saved." There are two ends:

  • you die or put in the place of safety—called the grave
  • you endure to end and you are changed at the last trumpet

Verse 14: "'And this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be proclaimed in all the world for a witness to all nations..." This doesn't tell us how much, how long, anything like that. But there are more means to preach it today than before and also there is the first of the three angels in Rev. 14 and he preaches the Gospel, the everlasting Gospel to all the nations. So are we going to have an angel going around preaching to the people? Now, they're not going to be able to shoot it down. They're not going to be able to stop it; and his message is going to go to all nations in all of their languages.

Then we have the two witnesses on top of that, and so forth. Then He says: "...shall be proclaimed in allthe world for a witness to allnations, and then shall the end come'" (v 14).

The Temple and the Abomination of Desolation and the Beast Power

This is a key; we'll see what has to happen in order for this to take place, v 15: "'Therefore, when you see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the Holy place... [we see that in Dan. 12. This is not necessarily the one in Dan. 8. But what I want you to do, I want you to look at the rest of this statement here] ...standing in the holy place' (the one who reads, let him understand)."

Now if you have a red-letter Bible, you will see the words in parenthesis are not in red letters—right? Jesus did not say this, because He wasn't writing something, He was speaking. So how did this get in there? This had to be put there by the Apostle John and those with him when they canonized the Scriptures, because of two things:

  • the temple was destroyed in 70A.D.
  • they were working on canonizing the New Testament in about 95-96A.D.

They could look back and see there's no temple. Yet we know that Jesus said the Gospel's going to be preached and 'then the end shall come.' Then He talks about the 'abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet.' So in order for those who would receive the New Testament later, John put this statement in there. And here is why he must have put the statement in there, because it has to do with the temple. 'The abomination of desolation standing in the Holy place.' Where is the Holy place? In the temple!

Now back to Revelation 11:1—this was a vision given to John by the angel: "Then the angel gave me a measuring rod like a staff, saying, 'Arise and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and those who worship in it.'…." A vision of the temple, but the temple had been destroyed. Now what does that tell us? That tells us there has to be another temple built! Unless there's another temple built, there's no Holy place in which the abomination of desolation to stand in—right? John has this vision and then he tells us he knows that something has to happen with the temple, so he puts that parenthetical statement in here, 'The one who reads, let him understand,' because he didn't.

"'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'" (v 2). Now forty-two months is approximately three and a half years.

Matthew 24:15: "(the one who reads, let him understand)... [vs 16-20 are all statements made for the local area first, and beyond after that.] ...Then let those who are in Judea flee into the mountains.... [Where are the mountains? East!] ...Let the one who is on the housetop not come down to take anything out of his house… [you better make it fast] …and let the one who is in the field not go back to take his garments. But who to those women who are expecting a child, and to those who are nursing infants in those days! And pray that your flight be not in the winter, nor on the Sabbath" (vs 15-20). It isn't going to take place in the winter and it's not going to happen on the Sabbath.

Now, if you get the chart that goes with series of Daniel and Revelation, you will see that I have this part of it beginning some time about one month after the Feast of Tabernacles. So that's not in the winter, it's not in the spring, it's not in the summer—it's before winter. That's why He's saying, 'Don't let your flight be in the winter.'

Verse 21: "For then... [Those two words: for then, answers the question: When? When will the Great Tribulation begin? 'When you see the abomination of desolation which was spoken of by Daniel the prophet standing in the Holy place.'] ...For then shall be Great Tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until this time, nor ever shall be again." Now what I want you to notice is this:

  • has to do with Jerusalem
  • has to do with the Jews
  • has to do with the world
  • has to do with all nations

—and that can only be a global society. The abomination of desolation is spoken of by Paul in 2-Thess. Also, in John canonizing the New Testament he also had the writings of the Apostle Paul with him—didn't he? Which means, he read and he understood the second chapter, which is why he said, 'Let the one who reads, let him understand.' When Paul wrote 2-Thess. in 51A.D. the temple was still standing. But before it was destroyed in 70A.D., there was no 'abomination that made desolate,' because the event in 2-Thess., the second chapter, had not yet occurred. This will occur at the end-time and we will see by what is given here that it could only happen in the end time, no other time!

2-Thessalonians 2:1: "Now we beseech you, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him... [we're gathered together at the resurrection—correct? Yes!] ...That you not be quickly shaken in mind, nor be troubled—neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by epistle, as if from us, saying that the day of Christ is present" (vs 1-2).

Didn't Jesus say the same thing? Matthew 24:23: "Then if anyone says to you, 'Behold, here is the Christ,' or, 'He is there,' do not believe it." That agrees exactly with what Paul wrote.

2-Thessalonians 2:3: "Do not let anyone deceive you by any means because that day will not come unless the apostasy shall come first... [That's on a scale of about 10, if you want a tipping point on that, though it's not listed here; let's say 9-1/2 to 10, because we are a scale that the world is apostatizing from God terribly, and even in the Churches of God there is some grave questions about their behavior as well.]

"...and the man of sin shall be revealed—the son of perdition" (v 3). We are going to see that this man of sin, the son of perdition is the one who makes the Holy place an abomination. This is worse than what Antiochus Epiphanes did in offering swine on the altar, because here's what he does. Now this is the beast. So we'll get into the beast and the false prophet here in a little bit, but the beast shows up in many different areas. This is the one person who is going to be the leader of the final world government. "The one who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is an object of worship; so that he comes into the temple of God and sits down as God, proclaiming that he himself is God" (v 4). So that tells us

  • there must be a temple
  • there must be the Holy place
  • there must be the beast power to come in and do this

—and that would be the king of the north. So we've covered part of it. You can take each one of these and expand it out even more. Let's see that it's for the end-time.

John is looking at this when he's canonizing the New Testament, and he says, 'Well, the temple has been destroyed, but I was given a vision of the temple and told to measure it.' Now Paul writes that 'there is one who is going to come and sit in the temple of God,' but it didn't happen during our day, and the temple is gone, so it must be for the future.

Verse 5: "Do you not remember that when I was still with you, I told you these things? And now you understand what is holding him back in order for him to be revealed in his own set time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already working; only there is one Who is restraining at the present time until it arises out of the midst. And then the lawless one will be revealed..." (vs 5-8).That's the man of sin, the son of perdition. You can't have anyone having a greater sin than claiming, 'I am God,' and go into the temple of God, and say, 'I am God, I am above every other object that is worshiped on earth.'

Let's add to the temple and Jerusalem, number seven, let's add the beast power. Rev. 13 is the only other place that we have language similar to 2-Thess. 2. Rev. 13 talks about the beast, seven heads and ten horns, and so forth.

Revelation 13:5: "And a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies was given to him... [That sound a lot like 2-Thess.? Yes!] ...and authority was given to him to continue for forty-two months…. [Similar to what we read over there in Rev. 11—correct? Yes, indeed!] …And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, and His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. And he was given power to make war against the saints, and to overcome them; and he was given authority over every tribe and language and nation. And all who dwell on the earth will worship him... [Now that's something—isn't it? You talk about us being left on the outside.] ...whose names have not been written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world" (vs 5-8). That's why there's going to be martyrdom.
Let's see his fate. Let's see that this takes us right up to the end again, the return of Christ. 2-Thessalonians 2:8: "And then the lawless one will be revealed (whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth, and will destroy with the brightness of His coming).... [Second return of Christ—yes?] ...Even the one whose coming is according to the inner working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in those who are perishing because they did not receive the love of the truth, so that they might be saved…. [So that's why it's imperative that we receive the love of the Truth.] …And for this cause, God will send upon them a powerful deception that will cause them to believe the lie" (vs 8-11).

The whole world is going to go after the beast. The whole world is going to worship the beast. He is the king of the north who comes down and goes into the Holy land, and then goes into the temple.

  • there must be a temple
  • there must be the king of the north
  • there must be the beast

in order for these things to happen.

False Prophet

Let's come back to the book of Revelation again. Now just to show you it doesn't take a lot of repetition to make it so, but there are only three places where the words 'false prophet' are written. It talks about many false prophets back there in Matt. 24, but the false prophet, the first one we find in:

Revelation 16:13: "Then I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet."

We also find a fulfillment of what happens to the beast. Revelation 19:20: "And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet who worked miracles in his presence, by which he had deceived those who received the mark of the beast..."

Now the other one, it doesn't say false prophet or it doesn't say the false prophet, but it describes him. The beast and the false prophet are together all the time. Revelation 13:11: "And I saw another beast rising out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, but he spoke like a dragon." Very interesting—isn't it?

Now someone wrote me an email the other day, as a matter of fact it was on Thursday saying, 'I was watching a past filming of the funeral of John Paul II and I noticed that there was a cross that was hung upside down. And then I saw it again in another location hung upside down.' And she said that she looked up what does it mean to have a Christian flag or cross hung upside down—what does that mean? Satan worship! So I told her, 'That's really a good observation.' Spoke like a dragon! False prophets come in what? Sheep's clothing—two horns like a lamb.

Verse 12: "And he exercises all the authority of the first beast... [Which is worldwide authority.] ...and he causes the earth and those who dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed…. [The whole world worships Satan and worships the beast.] …And he performs great wonders, so that he even causes fire to come down to the earth from heaven in the sight of men" (vs 12-13). You know when you look at the world's religions, it's going to take a great reformation of Islam in order for it to work. There is going to have to be some real changes there. Now it's possible. I don't know how quickly it will come.

How many saw a special during the lead up to Christmas season on television, that in the Arab country of Dubai—that's the most westernized Arab nation. That's where they have that big 2700-story tower that they built and the buildings and it's also known as the gold exchange capital of the world. In one of their huge hotels, all catering to rich westerners, guess what they had right in the atrium in Abu Dhabi, Dubai? A Christmas treeall decorated! I saw that and I said, 'Uh-hum.' I wonder if the miracles from the false prophet will be enough to tip the scale for the Muslims to agree for a while? We don't know! So there has to be the false prophet.

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The Two Witnesses

Now I don't know exactly when the man Ron Weinland—who is supposed to be a minister in a Church of God—decided that he was one of the two witnesses. He led everybody on with letters for a long time and said, 'Well, I'll let you know who the second witness is going to be in a little while.' Well, lo and behold, it turned out to be his wife. Now I don't know when it started, but we will see that we can declare him not only a false prophet now, but definitely when we reach a certain point, we can declare him by the Bible and by time limitation, he is a liar.

It's like another man, I forget his name, he was minister in the Church of God down there in the Pasadena area and he said he was one of the two witnesses and that Herbert Armstrong would be resurrected and they would be the two witnesses. About two years after he had died, he hadn't been resurrected, so he said, 'Well, I guess I'm the only one left, so I have to do the duty of both the witnesses.' One man is the two witnesses. 'Hello, hello, who are you? I'm me, I'm you.'

Let's see about the two witnesses (Rev. 11). Let me tell you what I believe is an error in interpretation. And you will see this mostly in commentaries. You will also see other people preach it. Actually we'll talk about three errors.

One we find in Revelation 11:2: "...and they shall trample upon the Holy city for forty-two months…. [42 months! Now it is interpreted in most commentaries as three and a half years. And they equate it with the next verse as being identical.] …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). So they say 1,260 days is the same as 42 months. If it's the same, why didn't God use the same identifying term?

We read of 42 months in Revelation 13:5: "And a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies was given to him; and authority was given to him to continue for forty-two months." That is after the deadly wound was healed. So we have 42 months over here. Forty-two months has to do with evil and trampling upon the Holy City and the abomination of desolation. Why the difference—42 months vs 1,260 days? A prophetic year is not 360 days, because in the fulfilling of prophecy God uses the calculated Hebrew calendar.

When did Christ die? At the appointed time! What day was that? Passover day!—according to the calculated Hebrew calendar, not according to a year with 360 days, because today the solar year is 365-1/4 days. In the Hebrew calculated calendar you have two averages of years:

  • a common year, which is 355 days
  • a leap year, which is 385 days

In months, you don't necessarily have to have an entirely whole month. What if it's missing a day or two, would you still say it's a month in that month? Yes! Now what about the 1,260 days? In both of these, both the case of the beast, we read where he was cast into the Lake of Fire—right? When he's cast into the Lake of Fire, that's the end of the 42 months—right? He's gone! When is he cast into the Lake of Fire? On the Feast of Trumpets, pictured by Trumpets, when Christ and the saints come back to the earth. The beast and the false prophet are cast into the Lake of Fire. So you count back 42 months and this is what I have on that Daniel and Revelation Series, you count back 42 months from there and where do you come on the calculated Hebrew calendar for the seven last years and then the three and a half years? Forty-two months, you come to Passover, right around that time.

Now what does he do with the sacrifices? Once we have gone through it, now we can begin to add other things to it. What does he do with the sacrifices when he comes into the temple around Passover time? No Passover lambs will be offered—correct? No offerings will be given there! Now can you imagine what this is going to do to the Jews? I've often thought, if they had a hit squad for Paul, you know they're going to have one for the beast. That's probably why he receives the deadly wound. So there's a difference between the 42 months and the 1,260 days.

When does the 1,260 days end for the two witnesses? They're finally overcome and die. They view their bodies. Revelation 11:11: "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. And they heard a great voice from heaven, say, 'Come up here!' And they ascended into heaven in a cloud; and their enemies saw them rise" (vs 11-12). What did Jesus say many times in the Gospels? 'The last shall be first!' Here are the last two martyred and the first two resurrected.

Immediately after that, v 14: "The second woe is past. Behold, the third woe is coming immediately. Then the seventh angel sounded his trumpet; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, 'The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and His Christ, and He shall reign into the ages of eternity'" (vs 14-15). Christ hasn't yet come to the earth to take possession, but now they officially belong to Him at the resurrection. When does the resurrection take place? What day pictures the resurrection? Pentecost! In the case of the beast, you're counting back from Trumpets 42 months. In the case of the two witnesses you're counting back from Pentecost. And where does this come? One month after the Feast of Tabernacles, the two witnesses come on the scene.

Now that's going to disturb the beast power, the very air. First of all, let's read about the two witnesses here and then we'll ask: Who are they? Now let's look at the two witnesses here, and then we'll ask and find out who they are according to the Bible.

Verse 3: "And I will give power to My two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth." We have the twelve hundred and sixty days—right? So if someone could let me know when Ron Weinland started, then let's find out when the 1,260 days happens. Does he drop dead for three and a half days and after that is he raised into heaven? If so, he's one of the two witnesses. If his wife is included in that, then she has to be included in it.

But v 4 gives us another identification: "These are the two olive trees, and the two lampstands that stand before the God of the earth…. [Now we'll come back to that in just a bit. But notice the power and the authority that they have. No two men ever like it on the face of the earth.] …And if anyone attempts to harm them, fire will go out of their mouths and devour their enemies...."

'Don't get near him, he's got the hottest breath in the world!' It's probably speaking and the fire comes out. Doesn't say they call it down from heaven. The false prophet calls down fire from heaven in the sight of the beast. The two witnesses who were on the scene first, fire comes out of their mouth and devours the enemies. That's a little different proposition—isn't it?

"...For if anyone attempts to harm them, he must be killed in this manner. 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" (vs 5-6). Now that's a lot of power. Isn't it something, someone stands up and says, 'I'm one of the two witnesses.' That could seem a little greedy for power. Be careful what you say!

"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…. [Jerusalem! Notice its spiritual condition.] …Then those of the peoples and tribes and languages and nations 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 will rejoice over them, and will make merry, and will send gifts to one another, because these two prophets had tormented those who dwell on the earth" (vs 7-10).

Those are the peoples and tribes and languages and nations (v 9) shall see their bodies three and a half days. How are they going to do that without modern technology? I imagine when John was given this vision, he couldn't understand how that would be. I imagine down through time when people read the book of Revelation, some of these things they couldn't make heads or tails of. How is the whole earth going to see them? They didn't even know that the Indians inhabited South America and they had great cities down there. They also discovered, just as a side bar here, the Indians in the Amazon Forest had a way of taking that acidic soil and they made soil to grow food in that was topsoil six feet deep. And today they can't figure out how they did it. You know, they were just Indians down there. It has to have the modern technology for that to take place.

Who are the two witnesses? Remember we saw where there has to be a temple, which then has a Holy place, which then there are offerings that are being made. The Bible tells us who the two witnesses are. I can tell you unequivocally, it is not going to be any church minister from any Church of God! It's going to be who Zechariah 3 & 4 tell me.

Zechariah 4:11, because we read back in Rev. 11 that the two witnesses are called 'the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the God of the earth.' Now in the past, someone interpreted that and said, 'Well, the Church is the lampstand (Rev. 1 & 2). So the two lampstands back there have to be a representative from two churches.' Not so! The lampstands of the churches are one set of lamps. The two lampstands by the God the whole earth are these right here:

Zechariah 4:11: "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?' And I answered again and said to him, 'What are the two olive branches beside the two golden pipes, emptying the golden oil out of themselves?' And he answered me and said, 'Do you not know what these are?' And I... [Zechariah to the angel] ...said, 'No, my lord.' And he said, 'These are the two anointed ones who stand by the LORD of the whole earth'" (vs 11-14). So these are the two olive trees.

So, let's read who they are. First, we're going to talk about here in Zechariah 3 a high priest at the coming temple in Jerusalem. 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. And the LORD said to Satan, 'May the LORD rebuke you, Satan! May even the LORD Who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you!.… [There we go again, the end-time prophecy centering on Jerusalem.] ...Is this not a brand plucked out of the fire?.... [rescued from sure death] ...Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel" (vs 1-3).

When they start the things of the temple again it's going to be overlaid with all the traditions of the Jews. So here is going to be an absolutely instant conversion, just like with the Apostle Paul when he was Saul. BAM! He was knocked down on the road going to Damascus. Well, here's the high priest, angel's going to come and he's going to strip away the blindness, reveal who he is.

"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.' [Give him the priest robes! Later, as one of the two witnesses, he's going to be wearing sackcloth.] …And I said, 'Let them set a clean mitre on his head.' And they set a clean mitre on his head and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the LORD stood by. And the angel of the LORD charged Joshua, saying, '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 those who stand by'" (vs 4-7). Now there was a high priest called Joshua, the son of Josedech' he was the type.

"'Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, you and your fellows who sit before you; for they are men wondered at, for behold, I will bring forth My Servant the Branch!.... [Who is that? That is Christ! Because a 'Branch shall come out of the root of Jesse'—right? Yes!] ...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. 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'" (vs 8-10). So then it blends into the type of the Millennium.

So, one of the two witnesses is going to be the high priest from the coming temple in Jerusalem. It's not going to be a minister out of the Church. The Jews would never listen to anyone other than their own. Just to give you an example: The head of the Worldwide Church years ago when he was traveling around the world, he helped get a park for the Jews in Jerusalem. He donated $200-thousand for the park. Well, one of the members went over to Jerusalem and was looking for the park and finally found it. It was a little four-by-four square of land with a little fence built around it and a dedication that this was the dedication by Herbert W. Armstrong. And what was he supposed to be? He was supposed to be the only apostle on earth to talk to people and let them know about God. Did the Jews listen to him? Oh, no, they flattered him, took his money and took his gifts! Told him he was a nice man, 'We really enjoy you and we'll let you fly your jet from Jerusalem straight on in to Cairo, Egypt, so you can visit Sadat. Isn't that wonderful, aren't we nice people. Thank you for the $200-thousand and the park.' I don't think it cost more than maybe $1-2,000 to get the ironwork done and put in place and make the plaque. It was certainly so small nobody could play in it.

I bring this out to show you the Jews will not listen to anyone who is not a Jew. Will they listen to the high priest? Yes! That's the one they'll listen to, especially if they understand that he has power from God.

We'll find out who the other one is, 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... [Now this is what you see at the temple]: …And two olive trees beside it... [This is symbolic of the oil coming directly from heaven to the two witnesses. What did we read back in Rev. 11 concerning the two witnesses? These are the two olive trees—right? Yes!] ...And two olive trees beside it, one on the right side of the bowl, and the other on the left side of it.' 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 1-6).

Who was Zerubbabel? Just like Joshua was the high priest at the temple when they came back out of the Babylonian captivity, the very first one, so likewise the governor of Judea who was there at the time to do it was Zerubbabel. So who do we have has the two witnesses? The coming high priest at the temple and a coming governor of Judea! Will the Jews listen to them? Yes! When we get done with this, we'll answer the question: What about Elijah, how does he fit in?

"This is the Word of the LORD to Zerubbabel, saying, 'Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit,' says the LORD of hosts.... [And isn't that exactly what they were empowered with to do their ministry as we read in Rev. 11. By God's Spirit, 'not because of who you are or what you are, it's because what I'm going to give you to do.'] (And here is the challenge then): ...'Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel...'" (vs 6-7).

  • Who is the great mountain? Mountain is a type of government!
  • What is the great government on the earth then? The one-world government!
  • Who is the head of that? The beast!
  • And who is his partner in crime? The false prophet!
  • Where are they? In Jerusalem!
  • Where are the two witnesses? In Jerusalem!

Boy, what a clash that is going to be. They can go in everyday like Moses and Aaron, 'Thus says the Lord.' Get them! POOF! disintegrated on the spot. It's not going to be any smart-aleck, power-seeking minister from the Church of God. So whoever proclaims to be one of the two witnesses, you better find some sackcloth now and find some ashes, and go find a quiet, private place and put the sackcloth and cover yourself with ashes and repent to the deepest part of the soul of your being. Otherwise, you're going straight into the Lake of Fire to be so presumptuous to say, 'I am one of the two witnesses and, oh, my wife is the other one.'

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!'.... [That has to be preaching the gospel of the coming of Christ—right? So this tells us who the two witnesses are.] ...And the Word of the LORD came to me, saying, 'The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house….'" (vs 7-9).

Whoever dedicates the first stone to the temple, that is going to be the one! Do you think that it would be a Church of God minister invited over there to help lay the foundational stone of the temple—'a dirty Gentile' as the Jews would look at it? Nonsense!

"'…His hands shall also finish it.' And you shall know that the LORD of hosts has sent me 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. These seven are the eyes of the LORD which run to and fro through the whole earth'" (vs 9-10). So God has his eyes—that's another one.

If you don't have the sermon, The Seven Spirits of God and the Holy Spirit of God, you need to listen to that one, because God has seven spiritual apparatus' that are like eyes going through the earth. He knows what's here all the time. If you think we can put a global-positioning satellite up there and we can, from how many ever thousands of feet in the air, zero down on a car and read the license plate and say, 'Aha, we got you,' don't you think God has even better than that? He knows what's going on, on the earth!There isn't going to be any happenstance.

"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?'" (v 11).

What about Elijah? Let's look at another one here, Malachi 4:5: "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD." Can one man be the only apostle on earth? be Ezekiel's watchman on the wall? be the prophet Elijah? and be one of the two witnesses? NO! Now you know why the Church was punished and scattered. That kind of carnal exaltation and lifting up in pride God is not going to countenance.

"Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD. And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the sons, and the heart of the sons to their fathers, lest I come and strike the earth with utter destruction" (vs 5-6). That means eliminate the earth entirely.

What about John the Baptist? We know John the Baptist Jesus said was the Elijah to come. But this one talks about another Elijah before the 'coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.' Was the ministry of Jesus Christ the 'coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord'? No! It was

  • peace
  • grace
  • mercy
  • forgiveness

So there is another one who is coming, another Elijah. Where do we look for this Elijah to come from? Since Jesus identified John the Baptist as Elijah, let's ask who John the Baptist was? Who was he? The son of a priest—right? So, if the parallel follows the same, then the coming Elijah is also going to be a priest! What is he going to do? You've got the two witnesses, witnessing to the whole world, fighting back and forth between the beast and the false prophet.

Boy, that's going to be something to see. You can just almost watch the nightly news and here is Christiane Amanpour and she has a special report from Jerusalem. What happened today? 'Well, I'm standing right next to this pile of dust and this was the great general of the great, great army, and look, there he is. How did that happen? Well, he was sent to kill these two witnesses and all of a sudden out of their mouth came fire and poof, there he is.'

It's not going to be anyone from the Church of God. Listen, I think if we're just honest and look at what's happening in the Churches of God, it's all we can do to overcome our sins and get rid of our selfishness and petty fights and stupidity and draw close to God and set all the carnality aside. We don't need what's going on now. But what's going on now is because of pride and vanity and neglecting the brethren, and all kinds of things like that. I think we need to step back and just say, 'Hey, let's not look for titles. If you're a minister, fine, serve the brethren of God. Take the test of John 21 and Peter.'

'Do you love Me? Feed My sheep.' Three times. If that were done, then all the problems could be solved, but it's going to take some humility and repentance to do it. We don't know if it'll happen, but at least we've eliminated three positions from any of the Churches of God today.

So with that, we'll pick it up next time with the rest of the fourteen things. So that brings us up through number nine.

Scriptural References:

  • Jeremiah 31:31-33
  • Luke 21:20
  • Zechariah 12:2-3, 5-7
  • Revelation 7:4-5
  • Zechariah 12:7-10, 12-14
  • Matthew 24:13-15
  • Revelation 11:1-2
  • Matthew 24:15-21
  • 2-Thessalonians 2:1-2
  • Matthew 24:23
  • 2-Thessalonians 2:3-8
  • Revelation 13:5-8
  • 2-Thessalonians 2:8-11
  • Revelation 16:13
  • Revelation 19:20
  • Revelation 13:11-13
  • Revelation 11:2-3
  • Revelation 13:5
  • Revelation 11:11-12, 14-15, 3-10
  • Zechariah 4:11-14
  • Zechariah 3:1-10
  • Zechariah 4:1-11
  • Malachi 4:5-6

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Daniel 9
  • Luke 3
  • Zechariah 12:11
  • Daniel 11:40
  • Leviticus 26
  • Revelation 14
  • Daniel 12, 8
  • Revelation 1, 2
  • John 21

Also referenced:

Sermons:

  • 14 things in Prophecy to Watch For #1
  • The Mark of the Beast is Here
  • The Seven Spirits of God and the Holy Spirit of God

Sermon Series:

  • Daniel and Revelation
  • Fulfilling End Time Prophecies
  • The World Financial System

Books:

  • God's Plan for Mankind Revealed by His Sabbath and Holy Days by Fred Coulter
  • The Day After the Dollar Crashes: A Survival Guide for the Rise of the New World Order by Damon Vickers (coming in February)

FRC:lp
Transcribed: 1-11-11
Formatted: 1-12-10

 

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