After my conversation with my friend Charlie the other day, I thought I’d better go through the first chapter of Joel again, to refresh my memory with the context of chapter 2.
Every time I go through, even familiar portions of Scripture, I am so frequently taken aback by things I missed before, sometimes even things I did see, but didn’t fully understand the significance of them.
There is a debate among many Christians, as to whether the Temple must be rebuilt in Jerusalem, before the beginning of the Tribulation, or not, or whether it will be rebuilt at all, before the Lord’s return. As far as I can remember Charlie does not think it will be rebuilt until the Lord returns.
He may have Zechariah 6:12 in mind;
And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD.
It is certain that Jesus will rebuild the Temple when He returns, but it already was built twice by sinful hands, so why wouldn’t it be built by men again, before the Tribulation commences? All these Scriptures indicate that this is the case.
I came across the following “game changer” as I was reading chapter 1 of Joel;
Gird yourselves, and lament, ye priests: howl, ye ministers of the altar: come, lie all night in sackcloth, ye ministers of my God: for the meat offering and the drink offering is withholden from the house of your God. Sanctify ye a fast, call a solemn assembly, gather the elders and all the inhabitants of the land into the house of the LORD your God, and cry unto the LORD, Alas for the day! for the day of the LORD is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come. Joel 1:13-15
Think about what this is saying. How is it possible for there to be ministers at the altar, and for there to be a solemn assembly in the House of the Lord, without there being a Temple in Jerusalem? It is simply not possible! The Temple is The House of The Lord!
So, what this passage is telling us is that there will be a Temple in Jerusalem shortly before the Day of the Lord commences.
This fact does away with the idea that the rapture of the believers is, and always has been, imminent. No, the rapture, the great snatch, will not be imminent until the signs are all in place, and among them is the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem, and the recommencing of the sacrificial system.
This also means that what Paul said to the Thessalonians is to be taken literally;
Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4
No doubt this is a reference to the Abomination of Desolation spoken of by Daniel (Dan. 9:27, 11:31), and Jesus (Matthew 24:15). Revelation 13 also elaborates on the same theme; that the false prophet will set up an idol to the Beast, in the Temple, which will speak, and cause humanity to worship him.
Amillennialists twist Scripture here by saying that “since the believer’s body is now the Temple of God, this is a reference to the pope sitting at the head of the Church”. While it is true that the pope is AN antichrist, he is not THE Antichrist. When you twist Scripture this way, you can make it say just about anything, and this is exactly what Amillennialism does! This is why no one thought up Amillennialism until Augustine came along; It took an exceptionally creative mind to come up with this philosophy!
I am concerned that, one day soon, someone is going to destroy the city of Rome, along with the Pope, and a European Union leader, and Amillennialists will then feel comfortable in uniting with the remaining Catholic congregations! At that point they will be ready to crown the Antichrist, all because of an erroneous eschatology!
Augustine’s theology, and eschatology, is very dangerous!
Let’s take a look at Daniel for a moment;
And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. Daniel 9:26-27
I have heard some Christians say that the person who caused the sacrifice and the oblation to cease was Jesus Christ Himself, because He finished sacrifice with His own sacrifice on the cross. Thus the person who confirmed the covenant in verse 27, must also be Jesus Christ! (I suspect that the person I was speaking with is an Amillennialist)
Jesus is the person who instituted sacrifices in the Garden of Eden, and He will use them throughout the millennial reign, as an object lesson. Sacrifices will be just as valuable then as they ever were!
(Note: Sacrifices never saved, but always pointed to the one true sacrifice of the Lord Himself. Those who say that Jesus did away with Sacrifices, on the cross, are implying that Sacrifices did save up to that point.)
This idea does away with the plain-sense understanding of Scripture. In verse 27 the “he” is referring back to the prince of “the people of the prince that shall come” from the previous verse, and is a reference to the Antichrist. The “week” referred to here is the last seven years that God has allotted to Israel to “put away iniquity”, from verse 24. The person who confirms the covenant for seven years, breaks his word in the middle. This could not be Jesus Christ because He never broke His word!
This philosophy will ultimately fall into the hands of the Beast, who would benefit from an interpretation that muddies the waters, and ultimately turns Jesus Christ into the Antichrist!
Daniel 11:31 reiterates the fact that these prophecies are indeed concerning the literal physical Temple in Jerusalem;
And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.
The “sanctuary” here is a reference to the sanctuary of the Temple, and “the abomination that maketh desolate” is the placing of an idol to the Antichrist in the physical Temple, which we have already discussed.
No, in order for all of the bible’s End Times prophecies to be fulfilled, the Temple must be rebuilt before the Day of the Lord, the Tribulation, commences. The Jews are ready to rebuild, and I expect them to commence shortly, perhaps immediately after the Psalm 83 war.
1492-3: Exodus of Jews from Spain
1948-50: Reclaiming the Land
1967-8: Reclaiming the City*
2014-16: Reclaiming the Temple?
Four Blood Moon Tetrads
* Luke 21:24
Where did the Jews go after they left Spain? Did they go back and reestablish Israel in the Holy land?
1948-50; yes they got some of the land back, but the truth is that many of them were already on the land, some as early as the late 1800s. Today Israel still does not have all the land that God has promissed them. The eclipses in those years have nothing to do with the reestablishment of Israel.
Jerusalem has been trodden down by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles have come to an end. Yes indeed, but it has nothing to do with an eclipse. The associated sign was the reclamation of the city. Obviously the times of the Gentiles has been winding down, but I am not sure it is quite over just yet. Why did Israel give back control of the Temple Mount back to the Muslims?
I am pretty sure the Temple will be rebuilt after the Arab attack of Psalm 83. Will that coincide with an eclipse? Maybe, but I don’t think the eclipse is fulfilment of the blood moon prophecies. I believe the Arabs are working very hard to put together that confederacy, but will they achieve it in 2015-2016? What if it happens in 2017? Will you then say that it was because of the “blood moons” of 2014-2015?
I don’t agree with the writer you cited above regarding the nation turning to Jesus at the end of the Tribulation. The ones who are saved will turn to Him in the mid point of the Tribulation and will flee to the wilderness under His protection. When they see Him they will mourn for Him, but that does not mean that this is the point when they turn to Him. They will have turned to Him some time earlier, but will mourn when they finally see Him, after all that they have gone through.
Altogether you have not proven that an eclipse is a blood moon. The dissapearance of the stars, and the darkening of the sun must accompany it, or it is not the event that Scripture has in view. Sorry.
” The dissapearance of the stars”…
Sorry Dan but that’s not what Joel 2:31 and Acts 2:20 say!
A major solar eclipse will occur on Mar 20th next yr., splitting
the Tetrad, (two sets of lunar eclipses/ blood moons).
Dan, whenever I tell you that I’m confused by your posts, it usually gets thrown back in my lap as being my fault. So be it, but I’m very confused at this point. You seem to be agreeing with me that the invasion of Israel in Joel 1 and 2 is the Gog-Magog invasion of Ezekiel 38-39. So, you now assert that a “tribulation” temple will soon be built. I doubt that, but that’s another issue. Let’s look at a passage from Ezekiel 39:
“7 “My holy name I will make known in the midst of My people Israel; and I will not let My holy name be profaned anymore. And the nations will know that I am the Lord, the Holy One in Israel.
8 Behold, it is coming and it shall be done,” declares the Lord God. “That is the day of which I have spoken.”
Did you get that, God says that after Gog-Magog, “I will not let My holy name be profaned anymore.” Well, is that not an obvious problem for your interpretation, when we look at Revelation 13:
“3 I saw one of his heads as if it had been slain, and his fatal wound was healed. And the whole earth was amazed and followed after the beast;
4 they worshiped the dragon because he gave his authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who is able to wage war with him?”
5 There was given to him a mouth speaking arrogant words and blasphemies, and authority to act for forty-two months was given to him.
6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemies against God, to blaspheme His name and His tabernacle, that is, those who dwell in heaven.”
How do we account for “And he opened his mouth in blasphemies against God, to blaspheme His name and His tabernacle” for 42 months of the tribulation period, after, in your opinion, the Gog-Magog invasion of Ezekiel 38-39?
Now, just to summarize very briefly, Joel (describing Gog-Magog) describes a functioning temple and priesthood and the land of Israel being like the Garden of Eden. We KNOW that this describes Israel in the Millennial Kingdom, but it is PURE CONJECTURE to posit that this will EVER be a valid description of premillennial Israel .
Just keeping it real, I have to wonder, when someone decides to peddle their interpretations of Scripture in a book, to what degree is their objectivity on the subjects covered compromised if not done away with completely. And just to be clear, believe me, I’m not just talking about you. There are LOTS of folks out there that this could apply to.
Hopefully still your friend,
I have LOTS of questions about assertions in your book. Do you have any preference as to where I would post those, or would you just as soon not hear them? And that might have a bearing on a review of the book on Amazon, I don’t know at this point.
Dan, I forgot to ask you something. I read with particular interest the chapter in your book titled “The Case Against Jordan”. My question is, have you ever been to Jordan? To me, you made it sound as if you had, yet you made statements that very clearly told me you haven’t. My wife and I were there in 2008 and saw the country from Aqaba to Amman, and naturally including Petra. Just curious.