The Mighty Angel


Series: Revelation (2021)

Passage: Revelation 10:1-11:2

Speaker: Jeff Thompson

Before the final wave of judgments hit the earth, Revelation takes a breather to fill us in on some other developments that have been unfolding during The Tribulation - including something currently unimaginable being built in Jerusalem...

Transcription (automatically-generated):

There is a rumor going around that the Book of Revelation is hard to understand, but we call Cap for you. See, the word revelation means that that something has been revealed. And the first words of this amazing book tell us exactly who it is that's being revealed. It's the revelation of Jesus Christ. Now get ready because we are about to level up a little bit because there's some stuff we should know by now.

So see if you can hang with me and fill in the blanks here. God wanted us to read this book so much that he promised those who take the time to read and respond to it a special blessing. Now here's the level up, and we find that blessing in Revelation. Chapter one, verse three, let's claim it together. Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy and keep those things which are written in it for the time is near.

But God knew there would still be those who would claim the Book of Revelation is hard to understand, so to make it even easier to understand, the Lord also included a simple and easy to follow outline. And we find that in Revelation chapter one, verse 19, where Jesus gives John these instructions, write the things which you have seen that was the resurrected and glorified Jesus in chapter one. Then, John, I want you to write the things which are that relates to the Church age, which is prophesied in chronological order.

In chapters two and three, it began around 32 Ad and continues to the present day. And then lastly, John, the Lord says, I want you to write about the things which will take place after this future events that will unfold after the Church age has ended and the Church age comes to a close.

In chapter four, verse one, let me read it to you. It says this after these things, John says, I looked and behold a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard that was the voice of Jesus in chapter One was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, Come up here and I will show you things which must take place after this. And up. John goes, serving as a picture of the Church who will be raptured to be with the Lord.

Jesus takes all of chapters four and five to show us the Church safe and secure with Him in heaven before he begins to pour his wrath on the Earth that has rejected him. In chapter six and in chapter six, verses 16, those on the Earth reveal that they know and understand the source of their calamity, identifying it as the wrath of the Lamb. And in the Scripture, the Lamb is a reference to who Jesus? That's right. Chapter One introduces the focus of Revelation Jesus Christ.

Chapter two takes us through the Church age up to the present day. Then the Church goes up in chapter four, verse one, we see her safe and secure in heaven for chapters four and five, and then wrath comes down in chapter six. That wrath will continue for a period of seven years that's known as the Tribulation and is documented in chapter six through 19, at which point Jesus returns to the Earth in the event known as the Second Coming, with his Saints to rule and reign on the Earth for 1000 years in what's known as the Millennial Kingdom.

And they'll be even more revealed later in this incredible study of this amazing book. But for now, what you need to know is this, if you love Jesus, then your story ends with the words and they live happily ever after.

Well, as I just mentioned, chapter six through 19 cover a period of seven years where God pours out his wrath on the Earth that has rejected him. As Jesus opened the sealed scroll that is the title deed to the Earth, a judgment was poured out with the opening of each seal. After six seal judgments. There was a pause in chapter seven before the 7th and final seal was opened. When it was opened, we learned that it consisted of seven subjudgments, seven trumpet judgments.

After those six first trumpet judgments were blown, there will be another pause before the final judgment is blown. This is not a pause due to a temporary ceasing of the wrath of God. Rather, it is a literary pause to give John as the recorder and writer under the influence of the Holy Spirit of this book, the opportunity to fill us in on some other events that have been taking place during the Tribulation. We focused on the judgments thus far, but there have been other things happening that we need to catch up on.

When we reach the final Trumpet Judgment, we will learn that it, too, consists of seven subjudgments called bold Judgments.

After six bold judgments, there will be another pause, albeit for a single verse before the final judgement. The 7th bowl judgment. We're going to be studying Revelation chapter Ten today, and we'll also throw in the first couple of verses of chapter eleven as well. So let's jump in chapter ten, verse one, I saw still another mighty angel coming down from heaven, clothed with a cloud and a rainbow was on his head. His face was like the sun and his feet like pillars of fire.

As always, we remember that anytime we see John using the word like or as it means, he's doing his best to describe what he's seeing, even though it's really beyond description. He doesn't have the words. He doesn't have the paradigms to describe it totally accurately. So he just has to do his best. In chapter four, we learned that the original Greek here translated rainbow means Halo, and so the idea is that light and beautiful colors are radiating from the face and head of this angel.

He's glorious, and he's beautiful his feet like pillars of fire, because this angel is bringing a message of judgment to the Earth. Some say this angel is Jesus, while others say it is a mighty angel that is not Jesus. Those who claim it is Jesus do so because they see parallels to the Old Testament appearances of Jesus as the angel of the Lord. There are similarities between the description of this angel and Jesus in Daniel chapter 713 and Revelation chapter One. There is a clear Old Testament counterpart to this chapter found in Ezekiel around the end of chapter two.

In the beginning of chapter three, Ezekiel there is given a scroll to eat by God, and so some posit that the little book John will be given to eat in this chapter must therefore also be given to him by God and not an angel. Now I'm in the camp of those who believe this is a mighty angel, but not Jesus, and I hold that view because when Jesus came to the Earth in the Incarnation, he identified himself as the Son of God. He never appears in the New Testament as the angel of the Lord because his identity has been revealed.

Instead, he is referred to by titles that make it clear who he is. Secondly, Angels can be glorious and beautiful.

Just read the description of Lucifer in Ezekiel 28. In verses five and six, this angel will swear by the Creator God in such a way that it's clear the God he is swearing by is in heaven, while this angel is on the Earth. And in the New Testament, Jesus is the only member of the Trinity credited as the Creator. Lastly, the use of the Greek word Alas instead of heteros. Let me explain if I say to you, can you give me another pencil?

It can be confusing because it's not apparent if I'm asking you to give me another pencil like the one I already have or another pencil that is different to the one I already have. In Greek. This lack of distinction does not exist because there are two variations of the word. Another Alas means another of the same kind, while heteros means another of a different kind. The word that's used in Revelation Ten one is Allos meaning another of the same kind.

In other words, the same kind of Angels we saw in the previous chapter who were blowing the trumpets or to put it another way, there are no Angels like Jesus. Therefore, this angel cannot be another. It cannot be aloss Jesus. Whatever you conclude, it doesn't really make any meaningful difference because it won't change the context. It won't affect the narrative.

It's not a big deal either way, but I did just want to give some clarity and explain how we examine issues like this. When we study the Scriptures. Verse two, he the mighty angel, had a little book open in his hand and he set his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land. This is not a regular sized angel standing on the beach with 1ft on the sand and 1ft in the ocean. This is a giant, massive angel who has 1ft in the sea and 1ft on land to demonstrate the power and authority that he has as God's Messenger to the Earth.

Think of an angel hundreds or perhaps thousands of feet tall. Well, learn the reason it's a little book is because it's going to be given to John, and this vision wouldn't really work if the book that was given to him just crushed him because it was so enormous it had to be a John sized book to work. In the context of this vision. Most Bible scholars believe this little book to be the word of God that's going to be your first filling. They believe this little book to be the word of God, the scriptures.

And we will see why. As we continue in verses three, it says this angel cried with a loud voice as when a lion roars. And when he cried out, seven thunders uttered their voices. And so the idea is this angel is speaking loudly and authoritatively. His proclamation demands attention.

And after he speaks, Thunder roars. And there are voices in this Thunder that say specific things that John can understand. And we know that because of what John says next in chapter four. Now, when the seven thunders uttered their voices, I was about to write, but I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, seal up the things which the seven thunders uttered and do not write them. I wish Jesus would have just told John not to mention this at all because this is like somebody saying, oh, man, I've got something unbelievable to tell you.

You won't believe this, actually, you know what? I don't want to gossip. Forget I mentioned it. Don't worry about it. And we're left thinking, what was it?

Just tell me you can't do that. But for whatever reason, God said that this is not for us to know. If he wanted us to know he would have revealed it. This means that anybody trying to figure out what it is is wasting their time. This is the only sealed thing in this unsealed book.

And I'm okay with that, because if you've been following Jesus for more than a couple of years, then you've realized that there are some things we just can't know or wrap our heads around this side of heaven. We've all got unanswered questions. But the reason we're okay with that is because we've seen enough of God and developed a close enough relationship with God to trust in his character through those unanswered questions. As Paul said, I know whom I have believed. Verse five, the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the land, raised up his hand to the heaven and swore by Him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and the things that are in it, the Earth and the things that are in it and the sea and the things that are in it.

As I mentioned earlier, if this angel is swearing by the Creator God, who is up in heaven, who is Jesus, then this angel cannot also be Jesus. The point of the language used here is that this angel is delivering a message to John from the one who has total authority over all things. And by swearing, this angel is indicating that what he's about to share is absolutely Truthful and vitally important. We keep reading and it says underlying this that there should be delay no longer. But in the days of the sounding of the 7th angel, when he is about to sound.

Underlying this to the mystery of God would be finished as he declared to his servants, the prophets, the Greek word rendered delay in verses six means time. It's Kronos. The idea is that there are going to be no more delays, no more waiting, no more time for the Earth and its inhabitants. The final act is in motion, and it's not going to last very long. The bold judgments are going to be poured out rapidly, likely over days and weeks rather than months and years.

In chapter six, the first group of Tribulation martyrs cried out to God, how long O Lord, Holy and true until you judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the Earth, and we are told it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren who would be killed as they were was completed. Now here in verses six of chapter ten, this angel declares that there will be delay no longer, and I suspect the implication of this is that there are no more Tribulation martyrs to come.

Heaven is not waiting for anybody else. At this point. As I mentioned last time, it's likely that those who do not repent following the fifth trumpet judgment forsake the possibility of ever being saved.

The mystery of God is language used by both Jesus and Paul to refer to the gospel, but it includes everything we currently don't know or fully understand regarding God's plans for the Earth and how he deals with people. We're talking about things like the law, the Incarnation, the cross, the resurrection, the Rapture, the Tribulation Israel's hardening and redemption predestination versus free will, all of it. And as we watch from heaven, everything's going to be revealed and made clear, we're going to see God's plan formed before the world was made fully realized.

Perhaps you've enjoyed a great movie or TV show where all the loose ends and seemingly unrelated storylines suddenly come together in a satisfying crescendo that blows your minds as it all ties together. It will be like that by a factor of whatever the largest number known to humanity is the mystery.

All mysteries will be finished. The phrase, as he declared to his servants, the prophets refers to the last remaining unfulfilled prophecies in the Old Testament. They're about to be fulfilled in this final stage of the tribulation. It's as though this angel holding the little book, which contains all of those prophecies, is telling John, everything in here is about to be fulfilled. All of it.

We're almost there. Verses eight. Then the voice which I heard from heaven, spoke to me again and said, Go, take the little book, which is open in the hand of the angel who stands on the sea and on the Earth. So I went to the angel and said to him, Give me the little book, and he said to me, Take and eat it and it will make your stomach bitter. But it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth.

Would you underline all of that, take and eat it, and it will make your stomach bitter. But it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth. Don't get distracted by the surface level weirdness here. It's a simple idiom that we still use today. Have you ever heard someone say something like, I love that book?

I devoured it. There's a similar idea at work here behind the words. It's a picture of absorbing the Word of God taking it in and letting it affect the deepest parts of oneself. And if you've been around the Bible for a while, then you know that likening God's word to food for our souls is an idiom used multiple times in the Scriptures. This is a picture of what it looks like when God's Word is not only being added to the database in our minds, but it's also affecting our hearts, our emotions, the way we look at people and the world around us, the way we see ourselves and the way we see God.

This is a picture of what it means to meditate on the word of God, to not only say, what does this text mean, but also Lord, what do you want this text to do in me? Is there an action you want me to take? Is there a belief you want me to change? Is there an attitude adjustment that needs to be made? Is there a way that I currently see things that needs to be altered?

So write this down. Verses eight through ten remind us that God's word must be taken into the depths of our heart, affecting us mentally, emotionally, spiritually and practically.

And let me encourage you in that again, as we do revelation, this is not to be just an exercise in intellectual knowledge or academic study of the word. If it's not affecting us mentally, emotionally, spiritually and practically, we're not taking it in. So make sure that you're doing that as we study this book. Verse ten. Then I took the little book out of the Angel's hand and ate it and it was as sweet as honey in my mouth.

But when I had eaten it, my stomach became bitter. If you've been with us throughout our study, then you'll know that almost everything in the Book of Revelation is explained in the Old Testament. Revelation contains over 800 allusions to the Old Testament. And one of the reasons people think this book is hard to understand is because they're not familiar with the Old Testament, especially compared to those to whom John was writing at the time. And by this point in our study of Revelation, you're probably having a similar experience to John.

In this sense, we're going through an amazing book of the Bible. We're understanding it many of us. For the first time, we're learning new things. We're having the future destiny of the Earth, and the Church revealed to us. We're gaining insight into what's going on in the world around us.

It's fascinating. It's faith building. It's reassuring. And yet. And yet if we're really taking this in with not only our minds but also our spirits, revelation is also deeply disturbing because we are reading about real people who will choose to reject God and experience His wrath, real people who will refuse to worship Jesus, instead siding with Satan.

And these are real judgments that are going to fall upon the Earth we currently inhabit. David wrote in Psalm 119, verse 103, how sweet are your words to my taste sweeter than honey to my mouth? The Prophet Jeremiah said, your words were found and I ate them, and your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart. But it's also bitter when you realize most of the world doesn't know any of this is coming because most of the world doesn't care. Revelation is sweet in the mouth, but bitter in the stomach.

And because the text has taken us there, I want to share a practical exhortation with you precious Christian flee from preachers and teachers who are only ever sweet. The Church today is full of these guys and girls, and they're usually among the most popular preachers in evangelical culture. According to the Bible. If their words only ever leave you with a sweet taste, it's probably because they're leaving the other part out. Jesus said, Enter by the narrow gate for wide is the gate, and broad is the way that leads to destruction.

And there are many who go in by it because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life. And there are few who find it. What's the sweet news? There is a way that leads to life and you can find it. What's the bitter news?

It's not easy to find and it's not easy to walk, and most people choose the easy way which leads to destruction. There are many preachers and teachers out there who aren't spreading lies. They're saying what the Bible says. The problem is not in what they're saying. It's in what they're not saying it's in what they're choosing to leave out.

They just never seem to get around to sharing the whole truth of the Bible. They never seemed to share the sweetness and the bitterness. In the last letter he ever wrote, Paul issued this warning to a young pastor, Timothy. The time will come when they those who call themselves Christians will not endure sound doctrine. They won't put up with it.

But according to their own desires because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers and they will turn their ears away from the truth and be turned aside to fables. In the last days, the days we're living in, people are not going to want the whole truth. They're going to want fables. Fables like all you have to do to be saved is just raise your hand and pray a prayer. Then you can just keep living your life however you want and you're good fables like, hey, if you love Jesus, then everything in your life will work out.

You'll get that promotion. You'll always have an abundance of money. You'll be immune from sickness. Times will never be tough. Fables like Jesus came to the Earth to die so that you would have Holy Spirit power to make your dreams come true.

I expect believers who are not in the word to be deceived. Do not be one of them. Don't be one of them. Don't give your time or attention to preachers and teachers who are only ever sweet. Sweet, sweet.

In their efforts to make God's word sweeter. They are leading many to destruction because they are leading people to believe they're saved when they're not.

The end times prophecies of scripture are like the rest of the Bible. Sweet. They are a blessing. But if we're really taking them in, they will also leave us disturbed by the reality of how lost the world around us is. They should leave us nauseous over how sick our culture is.

That's the way it should be, that's the word of God doing what it does and producing in us a Holy discontent, a longing for heaven and a heart for the lost.

Verse Eleven and he said to me, you must prophesy again about many Peoples, nations, tongues and Kings. John is told We're right at the end, John and the end is going to be sweet. But first, a few more things need to take place on the Earth and Jesus wants you to write about them. And these things are going to be difficult to wrap your head around John because almost everyone is going to continue to reject the Lord and their fate is going to leave you with a bitter aftertaste.

It's sweet because God finally deals with the problem of evil on the Earth and good triumphs in the end.

It's bitter because many choose evil and their own destruction over Jesus and Salvation. Let's keep going into the next chapter. Chapter Eleven John writes, Then I was given a read like a measuring Rod. This bamboo like staff was a simple measuring instrument used in John's day. It was hollow and light yet rigid, probably around 10ft long.

Whenever somebody uses a measuring Rod in the Bible, it's a symbol of or precursor to judgment. And because we will not be given the measurements that John took, we can reasonably deduce that the purpose of his actions was to convey something else. Most likely God marking Israel symbolized by the Temple for protection and deliverance as he judged the Earth. Israel will be God's primary agenda during this final phase of the Great Tribulation. There's nothing in this chapter that gives us reason to believe the text is speaking allegorically or mystically, and that's important because the text is going to speak of a future development which seems impossible today.

It says in the angel stood a couple of key historical manuscripts do not contain the phrase and the angel stood. So in all likelihood, this is actually the voice of God that now begins to speak with John, saying, Rise and measure the temple of God, the altar and those who worship there. But leave out the court, which is outside the temple and do not measure it, for it has been given to the Gentiles underlined given to the Gentiles, and they will tread the Holy city underfoot and then underline this 42 months.

There's a lot to unpack here, so let's get to it. First off, there's a massive plot twist.

Write this down.

The Jewish temple will be rebuilt in Jerusalem on the Temple Mount during the first half of the Tribulation. Why will Israel become God's primary agenda during the final phase of the Great Tribulation? Because there remain unfulfilled promises that God has made to Israel, extending as far back as the Book of Genesis, and God always keeps his promises. And so we now see the focus zooming in on one particular city, the Holy city, which of course is Jerusalem. According to Jesus himself, the temple must be rebuilt before we reach the midway point of the tribulation.

I'll tell you how we know that after prophesying the destruction of the temple, which would take place in 70 Ad, Jesus continued prophesying about end times events, and he said this in Matthew 24, verse 15. It's on your outlines when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the Prophet standing in the Holy place underlying Holy place. Whoever reads, let them understand now, here's the part I want you to notice in that verse is Jesus prophesied a future time when an abomination of desolation will stand in the Holy place.

The Holy place is a room inside the temple. And here's what I'm getting at.

Jesus says. This will take place after the temple has been destroyed. So Jesus prophecy here can only be fulfilled if there is a rebuilt temple. This abomination of desolation can only stand in the Holy place if there is a Holy place and there can only be a Holy place if there's a rebuilt temple. The Abomination of desolation Jesus refers to is a term taken from Daniel chapter eleven and twelve.

It's a reference to Antichrist, and the detail you need to know is that around the halfway point of the great of the Tribulation, so three and a half years in Antichrist will enter the Holy place of the rebuilt temple. He will set up a throne for himself and he will demand to be worshiped as God. Our brother Paul prophesied this about Antichrist. Also on your outlines who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped so that he and then get this sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

Up to that point, Israel will have viewed him as a blessing, possibly even as Messiah, because he will have brokered peace in the Middle East, placating Israel's enemies and facilitating the impossible the building of a new temple.

But at the halfway point of the Tribulation, three and a half years in, he will desecrate the temple and set his sights on annihilating ethnic Israel. This turning point will initiate the worst season of persecution the Jewish people have ever experienced. Yes, even worse than the Holocaust. According to Zechariah 13, eight, two out of every three Jews will lose their lives during this horrific wave of Satanic persecution. For most of the past one 1000 thousand 800 years, biblical scholars have generally believed that prophecies like Matthew 20, 415 and two, Thessalonians two four which we just read had to be allegorical or they had to be mystical because Israel had been a wasteland since the second century.

The idea of her coming back to life as a political nation and rebuilding the temple seemed increasingly laughable as the centuries rolled by. And yet, as we now know, the first of those two seemingly impossible events occurred on May 14, 1948. Verses in Daniel chapter eleven and twelve even give us the additional detail that sacrifices resume at this newly rebuilt temple. But Antichrist will put a stop to that when he takes over. Perhaps you're wondering why these Jews are so passionate about rebuilding the temple in Jerusalem well as believers in Jesus.

You and I know that he paid for our sins with his blood on the cross. But if you're Jewish, then you don't believe that Jesus is the Messiah unless you're a messianic Christian. If you're an Orthodox Jew, you believe that Messiah is still yet to come. And according to your Scriptures, that means you should still be offering sacrifices to be made right with God. And so if you're an Orthodox or just a practicing religious Jew, you are heartbroken over the fact that neither you nor any other Jews have been able to make sacrifices for almost 2000 years because there's been no temple in Jerusalem since 70 Ad.

Devout Jews understand that they're not really practicing their religion if they don't have a temple in Jerusalem at which to offer sacrifices, that's why they're so passionate about rebuilding the Temple. What's the hold up with rebuilding the temple? Well, the cultural nuclear bombs known as the Dome of the Rock and the Alaxa Mosque. We'll talk more about those in a minute. In the all of that discourse, Jesus prophesied the destruction of Israel and the scattering of her people.

Speaking of Jews in Jerusalem, he predicted this in Luke 21, verse 24. He said, they will fall by the edge of the sword and be led away captive into all nations. And that's exactly what happened between the fall of Jerusalem in 70 Ad and the rebirth of the state of Israel in 1948. And then Jesus said, And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled. So politically Israel has been restored.

It happened in 1048, but spiritually Israel is as blind as ever. They do not recognize Jesus as their Messiah. And that is symbolized in our time by the fact that Israel controls Jerusalem, but not the Temple Mount, the center of religious Judaism. And that's what Jesus was prophesying. He was saying that from the time the temple was destroyed in 70 Ad, the Temple Mount would be under the control of Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.

The times of the Gentiles will be fulfilled when we reach the end of the Tribulation in Revelation chapter 19. And only then will Israel and Jerusalem truly fulfill their destiny. Take a look at the first sentence in Revelation chapter eleven, verse two. Again, it says, but leave out the court, which is outside the temple and do not measure it, for it has been given to the Gentiles. The Second Temple.

The Temple of Jesus Day, rebuilt by Herod, included the temple proper and a much larger outside area, including several courts. One of them was called the Court of the Gentiles, and as the name suggests, it was for Gentiles who had converted to Judaism. They were not allowed as close to the temple as Jews because remember, the whole temple was centered on the Holy of Holies, and so the closer to the Holy of Holies, you got, the more sacred the ground became in the original Greek, they have two different words for temple.

One refers to the entire temple compound, while the other refers to just the Holy place, including the Holy of Holies. The word for temple that's used in verses one and two, is the word for Holy place, and that could be an important detail, because when you add John's word choice to the fact that the angel tells John to ignore the court which is outside the temple, it raises the possibility that the Bible is telling us that it's not the whole temple compound that's going to be rebuilt.

They're not going to level the temple mountain build from scratch it's likely just referring to the smaller main part, the temple proper, that includes the Holy place and the Holy of Holies. Even though there's a rebuilt temple in Jerusalem. For John to measure in this vision, the Temple Mount will still be apparently given to the Gentiles. Why? Because the times of the Gentiles will only be fulfilled at the end of the Tribulation.

And this lines up with the theory that Antichrist will oversee the reconstruction of the temple adjacent to the Dome of the Rock and the Al Aqsa on a Temple Mount that will continue to be governed by Gentiles, someone other than Israel. Now, perhaps you're wondering how it came to be that Israel controls all of Jerusalem except for the Temple Mount, the most important religious site in their faith. It's clear that Israel would love to have it. The famous Wailing Wall is only frequented as a place of prayer because it's the only surviving accessible portion of the Second Temple.

It's a foundation wall of the Second Temple, and Jews are not allowed to pray on the Temple Mount.

The story of how we got here is inexplicable. In 1967, the Six Day War erupted. Egypt, Syria, and Jordan prepared to attack Israel in what was repeatedly described by Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser and other Arab leaders as a war of annihilation. The goal was to eradicate the Jewish state and all of her people. Genocide was the goal.

But Israel's intelligence services learned it was coming, and so Israel's military launched a preemptive attack that crippled the Arab militaries to such an extent that the conflict was over in just six days. And as she beat back her attackers from her borders, Israel took territory, including all of biblical Jerusalem. This meant the Temple Mount was under Jewish control for the first time in more than two millennia. But then the Israeli general, Moshe Diane, did the strangest thing. When his soldiers took the Temple Mount, they raised a flag almost immediately.

General Diane saw it, and in a desire to establish peace with the nations that had just tried to eradicate him, he ordered the flag taken down and Israeli politicians immediately returned control of the sacred Temple Mount back to the Arab Muslims who control it to this day via the Jordanian authority. So just think about this for a minute. Israel didn't build anything on the Temple Mount, didn't make any changes, even though the people who worship there had just tried to wipe Israel and the Jews off the face of the Earth.

As I mentioned, Jews are not even allowed to pray on the Temple Mount under the Jordanian authority. Israel's actions.

General Diane's actions were baffling. Unless you understand Biblical prophecy, it simply was not yet. The time God has ordained. The times of the Gentiles had not yet been fulfilled. But this has left Israel with an obvious problem.

They now want to build a new temple on the Temple Mount, but they can't do it without risking World War Three. It's interesting that most about Jews believe that one of the things Messiah will do for Israel is rebuild the Temple. I know that peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority and countries like Iran seems impossible right now. But imagine what a game changer it would be if someone showed up with a plan that gave Israel a new temple on the Temple Mount. You can see why Israel would welcome such a proposal.

And the man who brings it. And as I said, they may well even receive him as Messiah. That would have a significant impact on political negotiations. But when that man appears, he will be Antichrist, and he will not be a man of peace for very long. We know that war will follow close behind him, but he is going to go much, much further than that.

Now take a look with me again at the second sentence in Revelation chapter eleven, verse two, it says, and they the Gentiles will tread the Holy city Jerusalem underfoot for 42 months. And I told you to underline that length of time, 42 months. Verse two tells us that some time after the Temple is rebuilt, sentiment in Jerusalem will turn against the Jewish people. This peace will come to an end. As I mentioned earlier, this shift will take place at the halfway point of the tribulation, three and a half years in when Antichrist takes over the temple, and when he demands to be worshiped as God, he will begin to viciously persecute Israel.

We are told this treading underfoot of Jerusalem will last for a very specific amount of time, 42 months, which comes out to exactly three and a half years. The exact length of the back half of the tribulation. Daniel 927 tells us all this. What I want you to focus on. This should be on your outlines is just the appearance of the word weak, it says.

Then he Antichrist shall confirm a Covenant with many for one week, underline one week. But in the middle of the week he shall bring an end to sacrifice an offering, and on the wing of Abomination shall be one who makes desolate, even until the consummation which is determined is poured out on the desolate. Now don't worry about understanding everything in that verse. The part I want to bring to your attention is that the word weak is the Hebrew word Shavuay. It refers to a time period of seven, typically days or years.

In Numerology, it's known as a heptad. While we use the word decade to describe a period of ten years, the Hebrews used the word shavuh to refer to a heptad, a period of seven years. In Daniel 927, the term week refers to a heptad of years, a time period of seven years. When it says that Antichrist shall confirm a Covenant with many for one week, it means that he will lead Israel to sign a peace treaty with her enemies that has a seven year term. That event will Mark the beginning of the seven years of the Tribulation when it talks about him bringing an end to sacrifice and offering in the middle of the week.

It means that he will take over the temple at the halfway point of those seven years and he will break the peace treaty with Israel halfway through it in the middle of the week. Now hang with me because I'm going somewhere with this. Let's take a quick look at Revelation twelve six. If you want to flip there, I'll explain this fully when we study chapter Twelve in a couple of weeks. But for now, I just want you to notice the length of time that is mentioned.

It says then the woman who is Israel fled into the wilderness where she has a place prepared by God that they should feed her there 1260 days. And if you're there, you can underline that 1260 days. This is again talking about the second half of the tribulation, and I need to just walk you through the basic math here. The Bible uses the Jewish calendar while we use the Babylonian calendar on the Jewish calendar, a month is always 30 days, making a year always 360 days. So if we do the math using the Jewish calendar, 1260 days, divided by 30 days, the length of a Jewish month comes out to 42 months or three and a half years.

This is what I need you to understand. The Holy Spirit references this exact length of time in multiple places in Scripture, and he refers to it in days. He refers to it in months, and he refers to it in years for us, 1260 days, 42 months, three and a half years, halfway through a heptad of seven years. The Holy Spirit has been so specific in using these different terms because he wants us to understand that this verse is speaking literally just as he did with the $144,000.

The Holy Spirit has broken the information down repeatedly, as if to say, what else can I do for you to make it clear that I'm speaking literally, what else can I do?

And if the Holy Spirit went to such great lengths to help us understand that this time period is literal, then doesn't it make sense to begin with the assumption that the Tribulation and the events ascribe to it are equally literal? And speaking of time, I'll share one more reference. Daniel 725 tells us this about Antichrist. He shall speak pompous words against the most high, shall persecute the Saints of the most high, and shall intend to change times and law. You see, when Antichrist rises to power on the world stage, he's obviously going to make some significant changes to the legal system.

We know that because one of the defining things he will do is implement what's commonly known as the Mark of the beast, a Mark without which people will be unable to buy or sell or participate in commerce. But according to this verse, Daniel Antichrist will also want to change times. As I teach this, it's 2021. That means we're 2021 years from the birth of Jesus. And yes, I know the math may not be exact.

However, if you're a Muslim, you don't celebrate Jesus, and so your year zero, so to speak, is 622 Ad, because that was the year Muhammad emigrated from Mecca to Medina. And so apparently in his quest to rid the world of every reference to God and Jesus, Antichrist will seek to revise the dating system that revolves around the birth of Christ. He goes on and Daniel and it says, Then the Saints shall be given into his hand for and this is what I want you to notice. Time and times and half a time.

The phrase time and times and half a time seems confusing to us today, but that's because we're used to the concepts of either singular or plural.

We're not used to a concept known as a dual, which appears in some languages, such as Aramaic. In those languages, a single is one and a plural is more than one. But there's also a concept between those two, which is called a dual. The closest equivalent we have in English would be the word both. If I said I had all my friends over for a party last night, both of them.

That would be an example of a duel. In this verse. Time is a singular, and time is a dual. And if you look up the Aramaic word used there for time in a Bible dictionary, it will tell you that it's referring to a year. So here's how the math works.

Time is singular and refers to one year. Times is a dual and refers to two years. Let's see if you can figure this out. So then what would half a time refer to half a year, six months? The phrase time and time and a half a time is simply another way of referring to one year plus two years plus half a year, three and a half years.

Again, that is specifically the length of half of the tribulation, the back half. Specifically, if this number stuff is still confusing to you, don't feel bad. You often have to hear this a few times before you can really track with it. I recommend that you brush up on our studies of Danielchapter seven, eight and nine, which is always you can find on our website at Gospelcity CA. If you listen to those, I think you'll have a much clearer understanding of this.

A quick point to consider, too. Nothing emphatic. But for your interest, it's interesting to me that Daniel says during the first half of the tribulation, Antichrist will persecute the Saints of the most high. But in the second half of the tribulation, the Saints shall be given into his hand. Daniel is clearly saying that something changes at that halfway point of the Tribulation regarding the way in which Antichrist persecutes the Saints.

It could be that the persecution of Christians in the first half of the Tribulation is not state sanctioned. In other words, Antichrist may have discriminatory policies against believers. Vigilante mobs who hate Christians who are worshiping Jesus while he's pouring out his wrath on the Earth, may kill Christians, but it may be that the state is not rounding them up and killing them yet, but that seems to change in the second half of the Tribulation, when Antichrist seeks to wipe out the Saints, and for the most part, he succeeds because the Lord gives him permission to do that.

Well, this chapter in the first couple of verses of chapter eleven, don't have a neat and tidy conclusion, and it's really not my style to try and stretch and associate something that really has nothing to do with the text. So I just want to challenge us with a thought this week.

If you're still with us in this study, then your heart, like mine, is probably crying out, come, Lord Jesus, just come back, Lord. Come. Take us. We long for Him to come and take us to be with Him where he is and make things right on the Earth. But let me be real.

We can only claim to cry come Lord Jesus in sincerity if we're also willing to ask the Lord to come in our lives here and now in a way just as real and powerful as he will at the end of the age. Come Lord Jesus for your Church. But while we wait for that day, come Lord Jesus in my life come and rule and reign and establish your Kingdom. Now in my life, come and judge sin in my life while I still have time to repent. Come in fellowship with me.

Now come and dying with me now, Lord, let your Kingdom come in me now let's make sure that we're always giving the Lord that invitation. Let's make sure that's always our desire. Let's pray together. Would you buy your head and close your eyes? Lord, thank you for your word as always.

Thank you for the details that you have included so that we would know there's a plan for everything and that those who don't know you when you come for your Church will hopefully see that you have a plan for everything and will be included in that great multitude that will be saved out of the Tribulation. Lord, we do pray that your word would go deep into us, that it would affect us not only intellectually, not only academically, not only mentally, but also emotionally spiritually, that it would sink to the depths of our heart, that we would allow it to be sweet in the mouth, but also bitter in the stomach where it needs to be.

That Lord, you would stir in us your heart. For those who don't know you, that you would continually by your spirit, bring to mind faces and names of people that we can pray for and intercede for as others have done for us in our lives. Lord, that we would continually pray for boldness to be used by you for opportunities to share the gospel with others.

And, Lord, we thank you for the sweet reassurance of Salvation and of the truth that you love us. And no matter what, our story will end with you in heaven where we will live happily ever after. And so we invite you now to come into our lives, rule and reign in our lives. Be the King of our lives here and now come Lord Jesus in power in our lives. Whatever that needs to look like right now, we love you.

We bless you and it's in your name. We pray. Amen.

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