Monday, August 11, 2014

The Mission of The Two Witnesses

I shall leave the issue their identities to a future post.

First and foremost, to me their clearly in the first half of The Week. Their 3 and a Half year ministry is linked to The Temple during a period when the "outer court" is given to the Gentiles.
"And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.  But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months."
During the second half, after the Abomination of Desolation occurs and the Jews flee to Edom the entire Temple will be under Gentile control.

Those who think The Antichrist will be a Jewish Messianic claimant may insist even after the Abomination. But the literal meaning of Gentile isn't even the point here, it ties to Luke and Paul's talk of "The Times of The Gentiles" which ends at the Rapture, so if your Mid-Trib this period must be the first half of the 70th Week.

But more importantly, the key thing to me is God approves of what's going on in The Temple here, and disapproves of the Outer Court (where I believe the Al-Agsa Mosque and the Dome of The Rock will still be standing). Many Christians love to take from all Paul's talk in Hebrews about the Sacrificial system being fulfilled in Yeshua a little to far and assume it's outright a Sin now to engage in The Temple system.   But in Acts it's pointed out how Paul took part in The Temple system the last time he came to Jerusalem, and the Jerusalem Church lead by James and the other half brothers of Jesus took part in it also. And because of my understanding of the 70 weeks that I explain in the 30 A.D. dissertation I think the Third Temple will at first have more divine approval then the Second Temple did during that 40 year period.

The restoration of the Mosaic/Solominic Temple System will naturally require a person or persons to hold the office of The Prophet. But like the true Prophets of Ancient Israel their message won't be popular while the False Prophets will be.

The wording of the last verse of Daniel 9 is difficult, but because it is probably referring to a Wing of the Temple some insist that the Antichrist's actual Image will be in this Outter court. Daniel 9 doesn't say "Abomination of Desolation", I believe it's linked but still has something different in mind. I think it could mean in the Outer Court is the place where the Beast's false resurrection happens, and then from there he will march towards the Holy Place, this fits well with my understanding of Daniel 11:45. Either way once the Abomination happens the Temple itself is desecrated and the offerings aren't being made. I'm sorry but there is no way this fit the Second Half.

Another reason is Elijah's return must be BEFORE the great and terrible day of The LORD.

This also means The Temple is already built when their ministry begins, so Perry Stone and others insistence that they will lead to it's rebuilding is false. I believe they'll be be preaching what Paul teaches in Hebrews, that the Temple sacrifices are no longer needed because Jesus paid the price for all Sin. And so they'll be hated like Stephen was in Acts 6:13
"And set up false witnesses, which said, This man ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy place, and the law"

The witnesses are false because I'm sure they misrepresented what Stephen said just as the false witnesses against Jesus did, but to me this still hints at why Stephen's enemies were bothered by his preaching. So likewise they will think the Witnesses are against The Temple just like those Jews thought Stephen was.

Timing of their Death and Resurrection.

I believe the Beast's resurrection and when he performs the Abomination of Desolation will probably be the same day.  And same with the killing of The Witnesses.  The only way their execution could be sooner is if it's the Second beast rather then the first who kills them.

If their blamed for the execution of The Antichrist that could fit certain false prophecies (with The False Prophet pretending to be Jesus playing the Messiah Ben-David role of Rabbinic Jewish Eschatology, or Isa of Islamic.  And The Antichrist as Messiah Ben-David of the Mahdi).  And I do believe both Beast "ascend out of the Bottomless Pit".  Since I view Revelation 19 saying their cast alive into the Lake of Fire as meaning both are early partakers of the Second resurrection.  I will make posts in The Future on The False Prophet.

But I also feel it's probable that this time period people are celebrating the deaths of the Witnesses is what Paul meant by "For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them" when discussing more abut the Rapture in 1 Thessalonians 5.

The Witnesses and The Antichrist

You may be thinking if you follow this blog regularly. "You have said elsewhere that we won't know for certain who The Antichrist is during the first half.   And that there may be Decoy Antichrists.  How can that be the case if The Witnesses a active then?"  I'll present a few potential answers, some conflict with each but other will overlap.

1.  I don't think their job will be to clarify every disputed issue of Bible interpretation.  They will be preaching The Gospel, that Jesus was The Messiah, and that God's Wrath is coming.

At least some of those decoy Antichrists I do think are personages in Bible Prophecy, or linked to Bible Prophecies.  And sometimes confused with The Antichrist.  So anytime the Witnesses confirm Bible Prophecy has been fulfilled it could, it could only reinforce certain incorrect conclusions to those who are listening to them.

2. We know they'll be unpopular, and I'm not so certain most Christians will believe them anymore then The World.  Some are devoted to a Second Half of the final Week ministry view and may convince themselves these false just because the timing didn't suit their preconceived notions.

3. There could very well be counterfeit witnesses leading people to false conclusions.  I for one will certainly evaluate what they say against Scripture before deciding to follow any.

4. This is the most controversial.  But I wouldn't rule out the possibility that the personage who turns out to be The Antichrist might be someone they supported at first.  I've said elsewhere that he may claim (or be claimed by his supporters) to be messiah Ben-Joseph.  If you look at some of the Biblical figures who can serve as type of The Antichrist that were also Northern Kingdom leaders/rulers, and thus might lend themselves to that.

Jeroboam was originally anointed by a legit Prophet of God, but then he turned away.  Jehu too was anointed on God's orders and seemed good at first, but he still followed after the Sins of Jeroboam.  Even Saul could fit being Anointed by Samuel.  Solomon a Davidic King, but he too in-spite of being anointed by Nathan became a type of the Antichrist, being linked to the number 666.  Because of my views on Eternal Security I have no doubt that Saul and Solomon are among the saved in-spite the ways they might narratively resemble The Antichrist in the latter parts of their reigns.

I certainly do not think The Antichrist will be born a Demon Seed like in The Omen and many other works of fiction about him.  So if he hasn't done anything majorly Evil yet at 3 years into the 70th Week.  I don't think it would be right for The Witnesses to condemn him for what he hasn't done yet.

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