Welcome to Thus Say the Prophets!
The Revelation of Y'shua the Anointed:
A Study into the Noahide Nazarene Way
By Ben Ruach ha Kodesh (John of AllFaith) � 9.21.09
Go to the index page for: The Revelation of Y'shua the Anointed
In chapter six John escorted us quickly through the opening of the first six of the seven scrolls but much was left unsaid. Now he will parenthetically give us more information about the fifth sealed scroll. While the Revelation of Y'shua the Anointed is presented in a basically chronological manner there are a few places that are parenthetical. This is the first.
Parenthetic: More on the Fifth Sealed Scroll: The Martyrs!
As stated in chapter six, the first six sealed scrolls are opened simultaneously or in the same flow of related events. It is during this period that the following occurs.
7:1 After this, I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, so that no wind would blow on the earth, or on the sea, or on any tree.
Remember that the prophecy was not written with chapters and verses. The divisions are intended to aid our studies not establish time lines. Therefore what is now happening falls on the heels of the final verses of chapter six:
6:12 I saw when he opened the sixth seal, and there was a great earthquake. The sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became as blood.
6:13 The stars of the sky fell to the earth, like a fig tree dropping its unripe figs when it is shaken by a great wind.
6:14 The sky was removed like a scroll when it is rolled up. Every mountain and island were moved out of their places.
6:15 The kings of the earth, the princes, the commanding officers, the rich, the strong, and every slave and free person, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains.
6:16 They told the mountains and the rocks, "Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb,
6:17 For the great day of his wrath has come; and who is able to stand?"
And then utter stillness and silence across the globe (7:1)! Just imagine this!
Following the cacophonous rocking of the foundations of their very existence with earthquakes, tsunamis, meteors, with unheard of phenomena taking place in the heavens like the appearance that the sky is being rolled and unrolled like a scroll, with people going mad, unable to cope with the things that are taking place around them... and then suddenly and without warning dead silence and stillness everywhere! And without the winds the temperatures will soar, the humidity will rise suffocatingly, and the pollution and pollen counts will go off the charts! Global warming indeed! Silent pandemonium!
And the Golden One, the Rex Mundi, using all of his charisma and lying persuasion will convince the global citizens that everything is under control! "Do not believe the angels! Do not believe the thundering Voice of HaShem! Trust me!" he urges! And his followers will!
John 5:43 I [Y'shua] have come in my Father's name, and you don't receive me. If another comes in his own name, you will receive him.
5:44 How can you believe, you who receive glory from one another but don't seek the glory that comes from the only God?
7:2 I saw another angel ascend from the sunrise, having the seal of the living God. He cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was given to harm the earth and the sea, 7:3 saying, "Don't harm the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, until we have sealed the bondservants of our God on their foreheads!"
In the midst of this growing chaos, from the East, an angelic being of extraordinary splendor and authority will arise! This could be literal or figurative but I expect it to occur as written.
Recall that Lucifer was the Son of the Morning:
Isaiah 14:12 How you are fallen from heaven, day-star, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, who laid the nations low!
Now his replacement arises in, I expect, full public view! A direct slap in the face of Rex Mundi and his Master Lucifer!
As noted in chapter six: As the fifth seal is removed the people will have decided which side they are on. The people of the planet will divide into two distinct camps: Those will who stand with the Beast and those who will stand with Moshiach. THIS is the separating of the Sheep and the Goats (Matt 25:32), the Wheat from the Chaff (Matt 13). THESE will be the bridesmaids who either did or did not keep their lamps filled with oil and their wicks suitably trimmed (Matt 25:1). NOW the Darkness has descended and everyone must choose a side! The next few verses reveal those who will stand!
7:4 I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel:
7:5 of the tribe of Judah were sealed twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Reuben twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Gad twelve thousand,
7:6 of the tribe of Asher twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Naphtali twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Manasseh twelve thousand,
7:7 of the tribe of Simeon twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Levi twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Issachar twelve thousand,
7:8 of the tribe of Zebulun twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Joseph twelve thousand,
of the tribe of Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand.
One common area of debate among students of prophecy is the identity of these hundred and forty four thousand. The text identifies them with absolute clarity but still countless teachers and entire denominations manufacture what are frankly bizarre doctrines around them.
A couple of examples of such unbiblical teachings will suffice: the Jehovah's Witnesses teach that this is a select group of righteous Jews and Gentiles gathered from across time and anointed as heavenly rulers who will oversee the new earth society once the theocratic kingdom is established. The Seventh Day Adventists are even further off the mark with their belief that the number might or might not be literal, but that "the Israel" mentioned in the prophecies is "spiritual" Israel not the Israel of the Torah! Based on this unbiblical notion they teach that the hundred and forty four thousand will all be Christians (mostly Adventists) even thought the text specifically states otherwise!
But remember, when studying the prophets if their words make sense literally take them literally. This will help avoid many pitfalls!
Truth is always consistent. If ones doctrines are contradictory something is amiss with ones doctrines. This is a case in point. Because of the Nicolaitane heresy (discussed in chapters two and three) and the rejection of the Jewish people as the Elect of HaShem, such clear verses must be "spiritualized."
MANY Christians wrongly believe that HaShem has abandoned His people (although He said He never would). This being true, they reason, He would not now be calling 144,000 Jews to do His bidding! And yet not only do these verses directly identify this group as Jews, the next verses make it clear that there are also Gentiles in a separate but related calling, making it certain that these are/will be literally Jewish people, 12,000 from each tribe as the text says. Of course most Jews today do not know which tribe of Israel they are from, but HaShem does, so it will work out just fine! Likewise, we know from the prophets that the Temple will be rebuilt during this period and much lost information will be recovered.
Let's continue and read about their Gentile co-workers:
7:9 After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude, which no man could number, out of every nation and of all tribes, peoples, and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, dressed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands.
7:10 They cried with a loud voice, saying, "Salvation be to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!"
These hundred and forty four thousand Jews along with the great multitude of Gentiles are they whom we saw in chapter six standing before the Throne of HaShem in the "Sea of Glass." They are from all parts of the world, from all cultures and languages and ethnic groups. What they all have in common is that they have united with Moshiach in the service of HaShem and care nothing about their own lives and fortunes. These are the faithful martyrs, some of whom will survive but most of whom will not. They declare the praises of HaShem and are utterly committed to Shiloh, His Chief Commander.
As the Israelites stood before HaShem at Mount Sinai both receiving His Torah and pledging their fidelity to Him and to one another, so too these throngs will stand and receive their holy commission from HaShem. As we saw in verse four above, HaShem will seal them as His own even as He did the Hebrews/Jews at Sinai. According to Jewish tradition every Jew who has or will ever live was present at Sinai when the Torah was given. The same will be true with these people. Although many of them are still located on the Earth, yet to be martyred, within the "Sea of Glass" they will all be present before HaShem.
The word "seal" here is sphragizo and means to set aside as special, to protect and also indicates proof of ownership. These people, both Jews and Gentiles, will enter into a special relationship with HaShem and they will obey His Word in service to Moshiach.
7:11 All the angels were standing around the throne, the elders, and the four living creatures; and they fell on their faces before his throne, and worshiped God, 7:12 saying, "Amen! Blessing, glory, wisdom, thanksgiving, honor, power, and might, be to our God forever and ever! Amen."
To HaShem alone be the Glory and the Praise and the Thanksgiving!
7:13 One of the elders answered, saying to me, "These who are arrayed in white robes, who are they, and from where did they come?"
7:14 I told him, "My lord, you know."
He said to me, "These are those who came out of the great tribulation. They washed their robes, and made them white in the Lamb's blood.
7:15 Therefore they are before the throne of God, they serve him day and night in his temple. He who sits on the throne will spread his tabernacle over them.
7:16 They will never be hungry, neither thirsty any more; neither will the sun beat on them, nor any heat; 7:17 for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne shepherds them, and leads them to springs of waters of life. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes."
Note the wording here. The elder asks John who these people are who are dressed in white robes, and where they come from. It is implied that not all of those present are wearing the white robes and yet their presence in this holy place declares their willingness to be martyrs.
It is also informative that John is told that they washed their own robes, making them white in the Lamb's blood. In other words, like Master Y'shua they can say:
John 10:17 Therefore the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again. 10:18 No one takes it away from me, but I lay it down by myself...."
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