Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | May 6, 2019

Some Bible Mysteries

A Gap for Israel Temporarily Filled by the Church

Recently we observed the entrance of the Lord Jesus Christ into Jerusalem with our observance of Palm Sunday followed by an observance of the crucifixion and resurrection of the Lord on the following Good Friday and Easter Sunday. These events climaxed our Lord’s First Advent and were precise fulfillment’s of Biblical prophecy and represented a significant change in God’s dealing with mankind.

The prophet Daniel revealed a remarkable change that would come to Israel as their third and last period of 490 years, given to them by God, was interrupted by a mysterious gap in time known as the Church Age, the Age of Grace. This is where we are now, at year 1,986 and counting; only God knows how long this age will continue.

Israel was temporarily set aside on March 30, 33A.D. at the time of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem, while the Church Age did not commence until Pentecost, May 25, 33 A.D. This leaves an unspecified gap of 56 days between the two prophetic eras. There had been an estimated gap of 161 years between the end of the second period of 490 years, which ended with the Babylonian captivity, and the beginning of the final period of 490 years which had prophetically been divided into two parts; a longer period of 483 years, which closed on March 30, 33A.D. and a shorter period of 7 years which is yet future and known as the Tribulation.

The Coming End of the Church Age

At a time of God’s choosing, the church will be called home by an event known as the rapture of the church thereby closing the Church Age. I suspect there will be another gap between the end of the Church Age, and the resumption of Israel’s last 7 years. There are a number of prophetic events awaiting fulfillment which I believe will be fulfilled in a gap between the end of the Church Age and the beginning of Israel’s last 7 years. I have written more on that in a four-part series that starts with “What’s Going to Happen Next, Part 1”

In part 2 of that series I concluded there is likely a gap of at least 5 years between the end of the Church Age and the recommencement of the last 7 years given to Israel to account for all the prophetic events still to be fulfilled.

The Seven Years of Tribulation for Israel

The last 7 years given to Israel, which commence with the signing of the agreement with the Antichrist, will be a time of severe testing for Israel and the entire world; Jesus told his disciples in Matthew 24:22:

22 And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened.

The seven years of the Tribulation are remarkably well documented in the Bible and are divided into two 3 1/2 year periods of 1,260 days each. Keep in mind the prophetic year in the Bible is composed of 30 day months and 360 day years. Three and one-half years would equal 1,260 days.

This time of testing will end with the Second Advent of the Lord Jesus Christ who returns as King of kings and Lord of lords and brings this terrible time of judgment to a close.

The Gap at the End of the Tribulation

In Daniel 12:11-12 it is written:

11 “And from the time that the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred and ninety days. 12 Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the one thousand three hundred and thirty-five days.

We read of an additional 30 days, followed by another addition of 45 days with blessings promised to those who wait for the total one thousand three hundred and thirty-five days. The Bible never explains what these days are for, but there has been a great deal of speculation. One can easily imagine the chaos that will have taken place during the “Great Tribulation” the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation.

The next phase will be the beginning of the Millennium and perfect environment; it is easy to believe that the Lord Jesus Christ will be busy preparing the earth for his 1,000 year reign. I speculate the earth will be experiencing a massive overhaul to restore it to environmental perfection.

Only those who have received Christ as Savior will enter the Millennial Kingdom; those mortal souls who survived the Tribulation but rejected the Lord will have been cast into the Lake of Fire along with the False Prophet and the Antichrist.

In Revelation 20:1-3 we read:

20 Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while.

By the time this phase of God’s judgment is over, those rejecting Christ will be disposed of into the Lake of Fire excepting Satan who is cast into the “bottomless pit” for 1,000 years. After the second battle of Gog and Magog, Satan will join them in the Lake of Fire along with all those who have rejected Jesus Christ as Savior during the Millennium.

Next time we will conclude with the Millennium and the New Heaven and Earth.

 

 


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