Pro and Con 294

Uploaded 3-29-99, PM

Note: http://www.tribulation.com/rapture.htm has a good point about the Rapture being all at once. Lu. 17:34-36: working in field = morning, grinding = afternoon, and sleeping = night. This takes care of the three major time zones.

Incoming Email

Re: David Gant (Jim Bramlett)
A few people have candidly asked me if David Gant is "still standing by his story." David is the fellow I discovered in 1993 who had had an incredible experience while lost in an underwater Tennessee River cave in 1992. While there and near death, David said the Lord spoke to him so clearly and said, "I want you to go and get your family ready to meet Me." Then He said, "Go tell the whole world that I am coming back for my children before the year 2000." Below is a summary of his story.

I have remained in periodic contact with David. To him, it is not a matter of standing by or not standing by the story. He says he is only reporting what he heard and what he was commanded to say, and there is no way he can say anything else. He believes with all his heart that he heard from God.

Did he? We will soon find out. Of course, I cannot prove that he did. My job has been that of an investigator and reporter. Yet I would not report such an incident if it did not ring true to me.

It rings true because of the circumstances in which it happened, and the accompanying salvation experience, with God's presence and peace, all totally out of character for David, a self-descibed rough character at that time.

It rings true because "the message" was totally out of character with the event, and not even something David was thinking about.

It rings true because of the accompanying supernatural elements, such as the vision that came true in detail.

It rings true because of the effect the salvation experience has had on David's life.

It rings true because I spoke with his mother who told me that when everyone thought David had drowned and was already dead, the Lord spoke to her and said he would be found safe, and she suddenly had a perfect peace.

It rings true because of the seemingly supernatural way the story has been propelled worldwide, with little effort by David, just like David reported he was told.

It now rings true because of the various things pointing to 1999, including some excellent scholarly interpretation of God's Word.

David's story gives us more reason to hope. For me, I choose to believe that David heard from God.

If it proves true, no person who has read the account can say he was caught by surprise. If it proves not true, the faithful will move on, undaunted, unashamed, and keep watching, as Jesus commanded, guilty only of deeply desiring to be with our Lord in Paradise. I believe He likes that!

Jim

/////
This story is about David Gant of Bryant, Alabama, a logging company owner. I have talked with both David, his wife and his mother personally and am totally convinced of his credibility. His story of being trapped in an underwater cave for 20 hours, then miraculously rescued, received international secular news coverage in August of 1992. But virtually all the media ignored and omitted the most significant part of the story -- how God actually visited David in that cave, saved and cleansed his soul, then gave him a startling message to tell the world! Here is a summary of David's 20-hour ordeal and divine encounter.

David Gant got lost while scuba diving with two friends, looking for catfish, in underwater caves in the Tennessee River during the night of August 15-16, 1992. His two friends got out safely. David's air supply was very limited, but he found a small, 18-inch high air pocket and clung to a stalactite for 14 hours, trusting in his own ability to somehow get out. Finally, he decided he was going to die and he prayed for the Lord to save his soul. He had been brought up in the church but had turned from God at about age 15. At this writing, David is age 34.

At the very moment his prayer was finished, the presence of God strongly came into the cave with him and he began to sense what felt like a hand go down into his heart and center of his being. The hand withdrew full of the evil that was within him. David said as it came out he has never felt better, cleaner and happier in his whole life. He was ecstatic with joy. The hand did it again, and his feeling doubled. Then again. Then the Lord actually turned him over and baptized him in the same water! David knew that God had saved him, and was so joyful and peaceful that he asked the Lord to take him and not leave him in this world.

Instead, the Lord spoke to him very clearly and said: "I want you to go and get your family ready to meet Me." Then he said, "Go tell the whole world that I am coming back for my children before the year 2000" (emphasis supplied). The message was clear and without question. David says that he asked, "How can I tell anyone? I'm stuck in this underwater cave?" David said the Lord told him it would be taken care of.

The Lord then gave David a vision of his rescue -- being found, coming out in a boat, finding a crowd of hundreds on shore waiting for him, giving his testimony. Six hours later, David was rescued, just like as it was detailed in the vision. And as in the vision, David told the crowd about what God had done, and His "message." David's life has totally changed. In obedience, David has shared this message in many churches, meetings, on radio and TV, and through worldwide distribution via the Internet and this article.

Incoming Email

> Mr. Agee, I am a believer. I also try to browse many of these bible prophecy web
> sites as I can find. I'm all for what you are trying to do BUT.... I do not
> believe you should be date setting the rapture.

***You have a right to your own opinion, just as I do mine. I saw a rectangle of light on Jer. 50:2. It said to publish and conceal not. I am doing what I think the Lord wants me to do. Should I listen to Him or to you?

> Our church just did a special on date setters. Mabye someone will be right,
> maybe yourself.

***That's right. Jesus commanded us to watch, and I am watching. Be certain that you are ready, for the Rapture just may happen next Pentecost.

> In this day and age Christians are frowned upon more and more.

***That's a sign we are living in the end of the age.

> What happens when you set your May date for the Rapture and nothing happens? Then all
> the none believers who may have been close to accepting the Lord or just watching your
> every move, see that you are wrong. Where will there Faith lead them after this?

***I was wrong last Pentecost, and I can be wrong again, but I honestly don't think so. I'll give you some reasons below.

***Nonbelievers don't care what date someone expects for they don't believe in Christ in the first place. Ones that follow my Web site know that no matter what happens, my faith cannot be broken. I just keep right on believing and obeying the Lord's command to watch. I search the Scriptures and strive to understand them completely, and have been doing this since before 1960.

> This would become being a false Prophet would it not?

***I am not a false prophet because I say over and over that I am not a prophet, that this is just what I think.

> Also I noticed how you said to turn a few versus around. Actually you just took words
> out to make you opinion sound correct. The Bible says let no man take from or add to the
> words of the Bible. I may be out of bounds here. But I just felt this was very wrong.

***If you look carefully, you will see that where there are quotation marks, I have quoted Scripture correctly. The rest is my opinion. Whether you are out of bounds or not is between you and the Lord. I am just sharing what I think, and the main thrust of what I have to say is to get ready now and stay ready, the Rapture cannot be far off any way you cut it.

***By the way, I am a 70-year old woman.
---
WHY I THINK THE RAPTURE WILL BE PENTECOST, May 21, 1999

I thought the Rapture would be Pentecost, 1998, but I forgot that Queen Esther was purified 12 months before being taken to the king (Esth. 2:12). I didn't take into consideration that the Hebrew engagement was 12 months to prove the bride a virgin. I also did not pay enough attention to Mt. 25:5: "While the bridegroom TARRIED."

However, there were good reasons to think it would be in 1998.

From the Sign of the End of the Age, the Six-Day War of 1967, when Israel grew leaves (Sinai, Gaza Strip, Golan Heights and West Bank) and fulfilled the Fig Tree Parable of Mt. 24:32-34, to 2007 is one 40-year generation. On the Jewish Calendar, it would be 5728 + 40 = 5768. The first day of 5768 is the Feast of Trumpets, Sept. 13, 2007. Counting back, by Jewish inclusive reckoning, from that day the 2300 days (Dan. 8:14) of the shortened Tribulation places the beginning of the Seventieth Week of Daniel on the very appropriate Feast of Weeks in 2001. This 2300-day count does not come out this way in any other such period before the 40 years of probation are over. It cannot be slid forward or backward one year.

The final Jewish year must be a leap year for there are seven months (Eze. 39:12) between the Day of God's Wrath on the Feast of Trumpets to the Second Advent on the first day of the Regnal Year, Nisan 1 (Eze. 21:17,20). The year 5768 is a leap year.

The modern parallels point to 1998. Since Noah went into the Ark when 600 years old, and I think 1998 was the 6000th year, I assumed it was the Rapture. These are the only blocks of years in the 400's mentioned in the Bible, except for the 434 that is added to 49 to make the 483 years in Dan. 9. Added to the year Martin Luther tacked his theses to the church door in Wittenberg, Germany gives the following results. The first three events have come true right on schedule. Why didn't the Rapture take place in 1998?

5278 (1517) + 400--------Acts 7:7 = 5678 (1917/1918) the modern Exodus began
5278 (1517) + 430------Ex. 12:41 = 5708 (1947/1948) Israel declared her Independence
5278 (1517) + 450-Acts 13:20,21 = 5728 (1967/1968) Israel grew leaves in the Six-Day War
5278 (1517) + 480----I Kings 6:1 = 5758 (1997/1998) 6000th year since Adam left the Garden
5278 (1517) + 483------Dan. 9:26 = 5761 (2000/2001) Beginning of Tribulation
5278 (1517) + 490------Dan. 9:24 = 5768 (2007/2008) Day of God's Wrath, Second Advent

The seven good years and the seven bad years. The Oslo Accords were signed Sept. 13, 1993 and ratified in Israel 3 days later, on Tishri 1, 5754.
Sept. 13, 1993 plus 7 good years = 2000 + 7 bad years = Sept. 13, 2007.
Tishri 1, 5754 + 7 + 7 = Tishri 1, 5768-----which is our Sept. 13, 2007.
That both end on Sept. 13, 2007 is too good to be by accident. It smacks of God's planning, just as "summer is nigh" (in the fig tree parable, Mt. 24:32) fits the Six-Day War that started June 5. We are wheat (Mt. 13:30). We know that when Joseph was in Egypt, the wheat was taken up in the seven good years. Therefore, the Rapture seems to be either in 1999 or 2000. We are close any way you figure it. We are living in the end of the age.

Revelation is written as if the Rapture is at hand. It is "at hand" in 1:3 and 22:10. Jesus signs off saying, "Surely I come quickly." He comes quickly at the Rapture (Rev. 2:5). In Rev. 17:12, the ten kings "have received no kingdom as yet." As the Tribulation begins in Rev. 13:1, all ten kings are wearing crowns. This shows that there is a gap between the Rapture and the beginning of the Tribulation.

The year 5758 (1997/1998) seems to be the 6000th year of man's test being mortal and knowing both good and evil. The year 5759 (1998/1999) would be the 6001st year.

The parable of the barren fig tree in Lu. 13:6-9 mentions four years in which the Lord checks for fruit on the fig tree (Israel) before saying to chop it down (in the Tribulation). Those years seem to be 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2001.

Why do these clues point to 1998, when the Rapture did not take place in 1998?

The Rapture is as the days of Noah (Mt. 24:37). Noah went into the Ark when he was 600 years old, but the Lord told him to "Go forth" (Gen. 8:16) about one solar year later, when he was 601. This seems to suggest the Rapture will take place in the 6001st year.

Job 7:17,18 says, "What is man, that thou shouldest magnify him: and that thou shouldest set thine heart upon him? And that THOU SHOULDEST VISIT HIM EVERY MORNING, and try him every moment?" This ties in with Hos. 6:3: "his going forth is prepared AS THE MORNING (the Rapture in the 6001st year, as the new millennium dawns?); AND he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter (Second Advent) and former rain (First Advent) unto the earth."

Job 7:1 says, "IS there not an APPOINTED TIME to man upon earth? are not his days also like the days of an hireling?" Ex. 21:2 says, "If thou buy an Hebrew servant, SIX YEARS shall he serve: and IN THE SEVENTH he shall GO OUT free for nothing."

Since a day can be "as a thousand years" (2 Pet. 3:8), this seems to suggest that the 6000 years of man's test being mortal and knowing both good and evil would have to be complete. Then after the next millennium had started in the 6001st year, the Rapture would take place.

The Jewish year 5758 (1997/1998) means "the SEASON of Noah." The Hebrew letters for 58 spell Noah. Noah went into the Ark when he was 600 years old and heard "GO FORTH" when he was 601. This may indicate that the Rapture will be in 1999, the 6001st year. I worked many years on Old Testament Bible Chronology and think the 6000th year was completed Sept. 21, 1998. the following Pentecost will be May 21, 1999, exactly eight months later on our calendar and about eight months on the Jewish calendar.

Of the Transfiguration, Lu. 9:27,28 says, "I tell you of a truth, there be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the kingdom of God. And IT CAME TO PASS ABOUT AN EIGHT DAYS after these sayings, he took Peter and John and James, and WENT UP into a mountain" (i.e., Heaven). Mt. 17:1 has "and bringeth them UP INTO AN HIGH MOUNTAIN APART." This seems to be a picture of the Rapture AFTER 6000 years, in the 6001st year.

Everything fits Mt. 25:1-10. It says, "THEN ('in due SEASON,' Mt. 24:45, which started in 5758, 'the SEASON of Noah') shall the kingdom of HEAVEN be likened unto ten virgins (believers), which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom" (Christ). That fits last Pentecost. "And five of them were wise, and five were foolish." That fits the Philadelphians and Laodiceans. "They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil (extra supply of the Holy Spirit) with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels (bodies) with their lamps (the earnest of the Holy Spirit that seals us). While the bridegroom TARRIED, they all slumbered and slept. And at MIDNIGHT there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; GO YE (as the "Go forth" in Noah's day) out to meet him. Then all those virgins AROSE, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out (lit., going out). But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom (Christ) CAME; and they that were READY went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut."

We have to be "READY." If not, "The lord of that SERVANT will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder (lit., cut him off), and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers" (during the Tribulation, which will be shortened (Mt. 24:22) for that elect's sake) (Lu. 13:46). Those will be caught up in the Pre-Wrath Rapture (Rev. 7:14) between the breaking of the sixth (Rev. 6:12) and seventh seals (Rev. 8:1). I think it will be on the Feast of Trumpets, Sept. 13, 2007.

In Mark 4:22,23, Jesus said, "For there is NOTHING hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad (that includes the date of the Rapture). If any man have ears to hear, let him hear." Five verses later, he said, "For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn ('siton,' grain, especially wheat) in the ear. But WHEN THE FRUIT IS BROUGHT FORTH, IMMEDIATELY he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come."

We are wheat. When is wheat planted in Israel? in the fall. When is it harvested? the following spring--starting at Pentecost. "WHEN THE FRUIT IS BROUGHT FORTH, IMMEDIATELY he putteth in the sickle, because THE HARVEST IS COME."

The Song of Solomon 2:10-13 tells us what season the Rapture will be in. It says, "My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away (i.e., the Rapture. For, lo, the winter is past, the rain (i.e., latter rain of Nisan) is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth (April showers bring May flowers); the time of the singing of birds is come (spring), and the voice of the turtle (lit., turtledove, i.e., the Holy Spirit) is heard in our land; The fig tree putteth forth her GREEN FIGS, and the vines with the TENDER GRAPE (i.e., the firstripe grapes) give a good smell, ARISE, my love, my fair one, and COME AWAY."

The time slot when there are green figs and firstripe grapes is a narrow one. It has to be at the end of May or early June. The only feast that fits this time slot is Pentecost, which particularly belongs to the Church. In 30 AD, the Spirit of Christ came to fill the Church. In 1999, I think that Christ will come to get those that are filled with the Spirit of Christ.

Things happened to Israel as examples to us upon whom the ends of the ages is come. I Cor. 10:11 12 says, "Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition upon whom the ends of the world (lit, ages) are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall."

Israel was given the chance to go up EARLY into the Promised Land, when they spied out the land. It was at the time of the firstripe grapes. Now, we are to be given a chance to go up EARLY to our Promised Land at the time of the firstripe grapes.

Only Joshua and Caleb believed God. The Israelites had to go through chastisement before entering the Promised Land. It will be the same for the Laodiceans today. They will be left behind for chastisement (Rev. 3:19) during the shortened Tribulation, before they can enter our Promised Land (Heaven).

Luke 21:36 says, "WATCH ye therefore, and PRAY ALWAYS, that ye may be ACCOUNTED WORTHY to ESCAPE ALL THESE THINGS (the Tribulation) that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man."

"Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling" (II Thess. 1:11).

You have "an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation READY TO BE REVEALED IN THE LAST TIME (kairos, due season, fixed time). Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season (oligos, puny, BRIEF DURATION OF TIME), if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the TRIAL OF YOUR FAITH, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at THE APPEARING OF JESUS CHRIST (at the Rapture): Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory....Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST (at the Rapture, the 'blessed hope')...Be ye holy; for I am holy....Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently" (I Peter 1:4-22).

In Scripture, a "time" can represent a year, as in Rev. 12:14. What if the above contains a clue that the date of the Rapture is "READY TO BE REVEALED IN THE LAST TIME," or year? The "TRIAL OF YOUR FAITH" fits our being sifted as wheat. "THE APPEARING OF JESUS CHRIST" and "THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST" both represent the Rapture.

The last book in the Bible, THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST 1:3 says, "Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time (kairos, due season, fixed time, i.e., of the Rapture) is AT HAND." In Jesus' messages to the churches, he mentioned several times that they should repent. Let us repent, confess our sins (I John 1:9) and get ready to meet our Bridegroom, the wonderful Lord Jesus Christ. Time is short.

Pentecost, May 21, 1999, is on Friday. That fits for Eve (the bride) was taken out of the body of Adam (type of Christ, the second Adam) on Friday. Agape

His reply

I see nothing wrong in the way you have come to these conclusions. You are very knowledgeable. My faith would not fall if the Rapture did not happen as you say either. I am a believer in the Rapture. But I have always tried to keep it simple. No man knows the day nor the hour, not even the angels in Heaven. Maybe God does give clues? My main concern was not that I thought you being a false prophet. Just that we should be examples for all nonbelievers. If one is wrong about the time set of the Rapture, is that being an example? Would that give the nonbelievers Faith to believe in Jesus? That was my main concern. But I do applaud you for your research on this. I think it is very interesting. If I had the experience and wisdom you do on this I myself may have tried to figure this out as well. And yes the main thing is we should all be ready no matter what. Thank you for writing back so soon.

My reply

> No man knows the day nor the hour

That "knows" ("knoweth" in the KJV) is present tense. Jesus did not say that no man would ever know. He told us to watch. Recognizing the Sign of the End of the Age made figuring dates possible. All the clues are in the Bible. Mark 13:23 says, "But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you ALL things."

> Just that we should be examples for all nonbelievers.

Our godly lives are examples for nonbelievers. There are not many of them listening. The Christians who are coming up against Christ's judgment of who is worthy to go in the first Rapture and who gets left behind until the second Rapture need to know why it is so imperative that they get ready--and they are listening. My Web site has over 277,000 hits since I put a counter on. It is a place where we all interact and share the insight the Lord has given us in various areas. No one person knows it all. We all learn more by corresponding with each other.

> If one is wrong about the time set of the Rapture, is that being an example?

To err is human. None of us are perfect. We learn by our mistakes. How did you learn to read, skate or ride a bike? Jesus said to watch. I would rather be wrong than to not watch. I am trying as hard as I can to understand Scripture. We can choose to never try to skate and thus not risk failure, or we can take our mistakes in stride, keep the faith and keep trying. Soon, we will be able to at least stay on our feet. Once that happens, we can learn a few tricks.

> Would that give the nonbelievers Faith to believe in Jesus?

I think the first Rapture will be seen. Psalm 40:1-3 says, "I WAITED patiently for the LORD; and he inclined (bent down) unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit (out of the Earth), out of the miry clay (our bodies of clay), and set my feet upon a rock (the heavenly planet), and established my goings. And he hath put a new song (sung after the Rapture in Revelation 5:9) in my mouth, even praise unto our God: MANY SHALL SEE IT, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD." That should bring in a harvest of souls. Whether we are right or wrong about the date, they will pay attention to what we have said about the Saviour. The date will be history.

> I do applaud you for your research on this. I think it is very interesting.

Thanks. I have worked as hard as I can on it since before 1960.

I am hoping for that blessed hope to become reality come Pentecost. It is interesting that in 66 AD, on Nisan 8, at 3 AM, "so brilliant a light shone around the altar and the inner temple that it seemed to be broad daylight; and this continued for the space of half an hour" (Josephus, War, VI.290). After that, the light removed itself from the site of the Temple. At Passover, "the eastern gate of the inner court at the sixth hour of the night (midnight) opened of its own accord. This gate was of brass and very large and heavy, seeing that when it was closed each evening it took twenty men to shut it. It had bolts sunk to a great depth into a threshold made of a solid block of stone" (Josephus, War, VI.293-295). Then on the following "Pentecost, the priests on entering the inner court of the temple at nightfall, as their custom was in the accomplishment of their ministrations, stated that they first became aware of a commotion and a roar, and after that the voice of a great multitude saying 'We are departing hence'" (Josephus, War, VI.299).

If the Rapture happens next Pentecost, won't the voice of a great multitude say, "WE ARE DEPARTING?" That was in 66 AD before Jerusalem and the temple were burned in 70 AD. The Rapture would be before the Tribulation. Jesus said he "will keep thee from the hour of temptation (pierasmou, adversity, trouble, trial), which shall come upon all the world, to try (peirasai) them that dwell upon the earth" (Rev. 3:10).

In Lu. 8:17,18, the Lord says, "Nothing (including the time of the Rapture) is secret, that shall not be made manifest: neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad. Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have."

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Updated 3-29-99