Christ said, "I have foretold you all things" (Mark 13:23)
One of my favorite scriptures is Song of Solomon 2:10-14. It paints a beautiful picture of the Rapture of the Church when flowers are unfurling their blooms like tiny upside-down umbrellas and birds are singing for the sheer joy of being alive in the spring.
The Lord teaches by types and likenesses. Solomon was a son of David, a good type of Christ, the Son of David. In this scripture, Christ is the beloved Son who comes "leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hills." He addresses his loving bride, the Bride of Christ, those of the Church that have a love relationship with him and are to be taken to Heaven when the Rapture takes place. As this passage begins, we hear her saying,
The voice of my beloved! behold, he cometh leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hills...My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle (literally, turtledove) is heard in our land; The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. O my dove, that art in the clefts of the rock, in the secret places of the stairs.
The word "places" is not in the original. This is why it is in italics in the King James Version. The word was supplied by the translators, who did not understand the full significance of the passage. This scripture is talking about the secret of the stairs.
"Rise up," it says, similar to the "Come up hither" of Revelation 4:1. Both are referring to the Rapture, when we will meet Christ in the air. These stairs remind us of Jacob's ladder. He "dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to Heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And, behold the LORD stood above it" (Genesis 28:12).
In the Song of Solomon, if you have an ear to hear, you will be able to hear the overtones if you listen carefully. The Lord is the bridegroom. "Rise up," he says, "my love, my fair one, (his Bride is his love) and come away (it is the Rapture). For, lo, the winter is past (it is spring), the rain is over and gone;" (the latter rain of Nisan, our March 28 through April 26, is over).
The former and latter rains are such definite seasons in Israel that they are listed on their calendars that list the feasts and times of harvest. The former rain starts Tishri 1, in the fall, the latter rain on Nisan 1 in the spring. This is of tremendous import for according to Hosea 5:3, the Lord "shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth," but more about that later.
At the time of the Rapture, "The flowers appear on the Earth (i.e., April showers bring May flowers, so it is May, and May 31, 1998 is the only time Pentecost falls on Sunday before the 40 years of probation end); the time of the singing of birds is come (it is spring, when we will sing 'a new song' as we fly like birds up to heaven), and the voice of the turtle (tor, turtledove, a migratory bird that returns suddenly in the spring and is a symbol of the Spirit of God) is heard in our land; The fig tree (Israel) putteth forth her green figs (the fruit of Israel is not quite ripe when the Rapture takes place), and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell (it is the time of the firstripe grapes, i.e., Siven on the Jewish calendar)
"Arise, my love, my fair one and come away (the Rapture). O my dove (one sealed with the Spirit of God until the day of Redemption), that art in the clefts of the rock (i.e., in Christ, for 'that Rock was Christ'), in the secret of the stairs." If we truly believe in Christ and trust him as our Saviour, we are "in Christ." We are in the clefts of the Rock. When he is ready to take the Body of Christ to Heaven, all those joined firmly to him will go.
Do you agree that the Rapture is actually the secret of the stairs. Like Jacob's ladder, the top of the stairs reaches to heaven, angels ascend and descend on it and the Lord stands above it. The Rapture is when we will go through a great door in heaven to stand before our Lord Jesus Christ. Revelation 4:1 says,
behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter. And immediately I was in the spirit: and behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.
Just look at the exciting date clues our loving God has given us. It is not dreary winter, but beautiful spring, and after the latter rain, every sprig is coming to life with lush foliage. Spring is appropriate for the Rapture is also a time of resurrection. The green figs enable us to place the Rapture between the end of the latter rain (April 26) and when the early figs ripen, in some years the end of May, in others early June. Pentecost is Sivan 6 (May 31 in 1998) after the rains are over and there are birds, green figs and May flowers.
The Lord's timing is perfect. A beautiful spring day makes us want to fly when we hear the voice of the turtledove, ie., the Lord, for the Lord himself shall descend with a shout.
As you study Scripture, you will find other parallels. For instance, after leaving Egypt on the Passover in the first month, when Moses sent them to spy out the promised land, it was the "time of the firstripe grapes. So they went up" (shadow of the Rapture), "and searched the land." The Septuagint says it was "the days of spring, the forerunners of the grape." In Israel, grapes begin to ripen in Sivan, so it looks like we will go up to search our promised land in the Jewish month of Sivan.
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© 1996, 1997 Marilyn J. Agee