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PSA: Accounts being compromised, overcharged. Malice13 May So you got to let the Bible speak for itself, you have to let the Bible interpret for itself and you have to make allowances for when the Bible is poetic then accept it is poetic literature.
When it is apocalyptic accept it as apocalyptic literature. I want to come back for a moment to a questions concerning the Rapture that relates to Revelation.
And that is: Where is the Rapture in the book of Revelation? Dennis Pollock: It was Philadelphia. Reagan: Sometimes people point to chapter 4 and they say that when John was taken up to Heaven, raptured up to Heaven that this was a type of the Rapture of the Church.
What do you all think about that? Nathan Jones: Yeah, you get to chapter 19 and all of sudden the Church is in Heaven. Reagan: The focus of the first 3 chapters is on the Church.
Reagan: And suddenly no mention of the Church, it mentions Saints, well is that the Church? Dennis Pollock: Well clearly there are believers throughout the Tribulation.
Reagan: Welcome back to Christ in Prophecy and our forum about the book of Revelation. Fellas, let me ask you this question is the book of Revelation in chronological order?
Gary Fisher: I think it is. Reagan: I think I would say that in general, overall it is in chronological order, but I think that in the book of Revelation there are both flashbacks, and flash forwards.
Dennis Pollock: My answer would be yes and no. In general yes, but there are parenthesis where you have God inserting a whole concept.
You have the parenthesis in Revelation 13 where He talks about the beast and how he gets his start and who his worker is. Well the Antichrist shows up a long time before Revelation 13 but God just takes one vision.
Reagan: Well there is almost a rhythm where the Lord will talk about these judgments that are coming upon the earth and they build and they build and the terror becomes increasing and then all of sudden it just cuts off and there is a parenthesis where He encourages the reader to look forward to the end, we are going to win in the end, the saints are going to come out victorious and then He will pick up the narrative again and start talking about another tribulation.
Sometimes there is a look backwards for example in Revelation 13 he looks back to the birth of Jesus and starts talking about that.
Reagan: We are used to flashbacks in modern fiction writing, what we are not used to are flash forwards because God knows what is going to happen in the future He can flash forward and talk about it.
And we need those throughout Revelation. Reagan: Now one of the areas in the book of Revelation where it has been the most speculation has to do with chapter 7 where it talks about , people.
Dennis Pollock: And of course probably almost all Jews, well not all but most Jews would not be able to tell you what tribe they are from, but God knows He has excellent record keeping in heaven.
So it would be no problem at all for Him to choose from different tribes and raise up these individuals.
Dennis Pollock: One thing you have to remember is that God is a communicator, I mean He knows how to communicate and it would be foolish for him to write a book out so mystical, so bizarre, so highly symbolic that nobody could get anything out of it.
It would be like you inviting me to come on this program and I spoke fluent Russian the entire time. Gary Fisher: There is another dynamic being mentioned here and those , from the 12 tribes of Israel can bring to mind something that God has operated in the past.
What happens in the enterprise of preaching the Word of God when the Holy Spirit falls entirely on a Jewish person?
Where would we be without the Apostle Paul? Or some of the other Jewish prophets. When the Holy Spirit gets involved in the Jewish person then the enterprise of reaching people goes into a hyper gear.
There is going to , of these guys. Reagan: Well that reminds me of a conversation I had one time with Zola Levitt who has gone on to be with the Lord now but he was the leading Messianic Jew here in the United States.
Who do you think they are going to be? Nathan Jones: Well there are a few candidates obviously. Most people say Elijah because Elijah was the forerunner of Christ, all though I think Jesus pretty much cleared up that Elijah the forerunner really was John the Baptist.
It talks about possibly Moses that he might have been raptured, but we read in Joel that he did die, so he is iffy. Enoch was raptured from the earth so we have 2 guys in the Old Testament Elijah and Enoch who were both raptured.
One represents Israel, Elijah, and one Enoch he was a Gentile, before there were even Jews so he could represent that. Another theory is that it is just 2 people who are alive at that time period who are gifted like the , and have a special ministry.
They have the ability to shut up the rain, they can call down fire. Reagan: Yeah, it is like a Christmas in the middle of the Tribulation, people exchange gifts they are so happy over the killing of these two guys who have been the conscious of the world during this horrible time.
Reagan: Well, the Jews believe that too, you know when they hold the Passover meal they always have an extra chair for Elijah the prophet because they know he is going to come back in the end times.
Reagan: Ok, let me ask you this question another area of great mystery is the number which people are going to have on their hand or their forehead in order to buy or sell.
Why ? What is the symbolism of that? Dennis Pollock: Well the one clue that is given is John describes it as the number of a man.
Paul said that the Antichrist will show himself in the Temple of God, that he is God. So basically what you have is a man acting as God, Satan inhabiting him.
Satan has always wanted really 2 things, one is power, and the other is worship. And in the Antichrist he will have it, he will have power for a very brief time over the whole world.
And he will have worship and he will force that worship on all apart from those who put their faith in Christ will give him that worship. Reagan: So the Antichrist will be a type of the Messiah.
Reagan: The false prophet will be a type of the Holy Spirit. Reagan: Welcome back to Christ in Prophecy and our forum on the book of Revelation. Fellas, is there anything in the Book of Revelation that you do not understand?
To me one of the simple things that I would love to know what it really means to reign with Christ. Dennis Pollock: A lot of times when people talk about our eternity their idea is you go to Heaven and you sing non-stop forever.
And I have to be honest Dave that sounds a little boring to me. I mean, I love worship, I enjoy worship praising the Lord, but really?
But just what does that mean? Who will we reign over? Will there be other worlds that will involved? There are so many questions.
Gary Fisher: No, absolutely not. And I take great comfort in that because the Bible says that we are looking through a glass darkly. Gary Fisher: But one of the things that fascinates me in the book of Revelation is in chapter 22 where it says the tree of life is placed there in Jerusalem.
Gary Fisher: Been placed there at the end of the Millennium and it says that the leaves on the trees are for the healing of the nations.
Wait a minute I thought the healing of the nations has already taken place. Gary Fisher: And it talks about dogs outside and all that kind of stuff.
But somehow modern writers seem to know. Though the seven churches of Asia could be affected by the events which are described in symbols they could not have identified the exact place, the exact incident or the exact time these things would be.
Is this a contradiction of the self-sufficiency of the Bible? Not at all. It was not necessary nor was it the purpose of the book of Revelation to have the seven churches of Asia or anyone know the actual time, place, action and result of each event.
The point is that Revelation may not be a listing of specific, onetime events which are now recorded in history. There are some things which are obvious, evident and supported by the text of the Bible such as the historical description of the righteous on the earth in Revelation 12 and final judgment in Revelation But not all things in Revelation are prophetic of a specific event in time which could be understood.
They are lessons with a purpose. If you cannot know the specifics from the Biblical text then you certainly cannot know it from an outside source.
What the seven churches of Asia could easily understand are the main lessons. That is what prepared them and prepares us completely. Let us consider that if the seven churches of Asia could not have known the secrets of every detail in Revelation then neither can we.
There will be no more scripture to explain what we cannot know from Revelation. What we have is it. There is no more. The words found in Isaiah foretells the birth of the Messiah.
From this prophecy Isaiah could not have known. One could have gone to Micah 5 for the where. Micah was contemporary to Isaiah.
Revelation 1 Then the fifth angel sounded: And I saw a star fallen from heaven to the earth. To him was given the key to the bottomless pit.
And to them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. Their torment was like the torment of a scorpion when it strikes a man.
On their heads were crowns of something like gold, and their faces were like the faces of men. Their power was to hurt men five months.
Behold, still two more woes are coming after these things. This is a mystery and it is meant to be a mystery.
There really is no way to accurately fit this into one historical event on the earth. The seven churches of Asia could not have known what this represented beyond the lesson.
We may very well be wasting our time if we set ourselves to guessing the historical events which Revelation may or may not be representing.
We could be dabbling into a dangerous and pointless hobby while missing the message and certainly not enhancing the message. Let us play a small game as a way of illustrating the point.
We will call this The Game of Beneficial Conjecture. I have to ask the question I do not mean to insult anyone : what advantage is it to have come to a conclusion that the fifth trumpet Revelation must mean the Visigoth invasion of Rome in A.
How does this add to the lesson? The seven churches of Asia could not have known this as they read the book for the first time or even the fiftieth time.
Yet the book was written to them and was completely useful and valuable to them. Now in our game let us change the supposition: The fifth trumpet now describes the Plague of Justinian in A.
So let us look at the results with this change. How has the meaning benefited for our advantage to where we can gathering more from the lesson?
Nothing was actually added. It did not help. Let us change our conclusion radically: The fifth trumpet of Revelation 9 represents the rise and recognition of AIDS in the twentieth century.
How did this help the seven churches of Asia to know this? Why would Christ prepare them for this? How does this little fact help us beyond the text of Revelation 9?
How was the lesson expanded, enlightened and benefited? It is not. The lesson simply is not helped.
The only thing that could come out of this is that the one speculating is seen as insightful, scholarly and impressive to admirers and possibly expand their fan base and book sales.
In all three cases in our game nothing was added that was of any real value. There are plenty of prophecies in the Bible that require no speculation.
Most people would never be convinced by speculation as well-meaning as it may be. There are many scriptures where we are given the prophecy and then latter the fulfillment in time.
What we see in our game is that in all three cases Revelation 9 is conveniently fitted with any available historical event yet none of them benefit the original lesson of the text.