Pro and Con 313

Uploaded 5-3-99, PM

Note: I had another scare. Last night, even after restarting twice, it looked like I had lost all 378 emails in my Inbox. Couldn't get incoming email, either. This morning, I went online to see if I could get my email. Netscape didn't want to do anything, had a watch (WAIT) showing. Ed watched the screen for me for about 5 minutes. Finally, he yelled that it came back. Thank you Lord.

Incoming Email

> This made me realize that it is hard to contact people offline. I only had a few PO
> addresses. I need my email.

How true.

BTW, I was just watching JR Church's prophecy show on TV. He and Gary Stearman didn't use your name but read from your website: Why I think the Rapture will be Pentecost, Sivan 7, 5759, Saturday, May 22, 1999
They went on to say they both are expecting the Lord anytime but seemed to think springtime was the arrival season of our Lord Jesus. Also that we are in the ripe season when one studies Matthew 24.

Hope all is well. We are holding fast, although I am starting to feel like the gardener who pleads for just one more year to tend to the dying tree. As I have grown in the Lord and lean on Him more, the possibilites seem more abundant. I am such a babe at having Jesus as Lord of my life ( 6.5 yrs.). God is good, and His will be done!

National Day of Prayer May 6, 1999, we will be praying and interceding for families. Is 2 weeks enough time for our prayer to be answered? Don't expect an answer, just thinking outloud. Thanks for your unselfish sharing of God's gift to you. In His Love

Incoming Email

I have heard it mentioned many times about the "Counting of the Omer"

Could you please explain to me what that exactly means. God Bless

My reply

The Jews refer to the countdown of the seven weeks (49 days) from the Feast of Firstfruits to the day before Pentecost the counting of the omer. The 50th day is Pentecost. Maybe someone with a Jewish background can explain why they call this the counting of the omer better than I can.

An omer is a dry measure, about 5.1 pints, and was the portion of manna (bread of Heaven, type of Christ) assigned to each person for his daily food in the wilderness. Ex. 16:36 explains that "an omer is the tenth part of an ephah."

An ephah is the largest measure for wheat, about three pecks and three pints. It is used in Zech 5:5-11 to represent the world church. Verse 6 says, "What is it? And he said, This is an ephah that goeth forth. He said moreover, This is their resemblance through all the earth." This is the passage that pictures the moving of the world church to Babylon, "To build it an house in the land of Shinar, and it shall be established, and set there upon her own base." This base, or foundation, is the Tower of Babel (Gen. 11:2).

The suggestion that the omer represents one tenth of the world church is very interesting. I keep wondering if that could mean that one tenth would be chosen as the Bride of Christ. May 22, Pentecost, is the Sabbath. Ex. 16:26 says, "Six days ye shall gather it (an omer of manna); but on the seventh day, which is the sabbath, IN IT THERE SHALL BE NONE." I think the 6000th year of man's test since Adam was cast out of the garden ended last Sept. 21, Tishri 1, 5759. We have entered another millennium. Do the six days ye shall gather it tie in with the 6000 years? Will the Rapture take us out of here on the Sabbath? Lots of food for thought here.

The Hebrew word "omer" is translated in the KJV as an omer 6 times and as a sheaf 8 times. It means a heap, a sheaf, from the root "amar, to heap, TO GATHER GRAIN, bind sheaves, to chastise (as if piling blows). Since we are wheat, gathering grain brings the Rapture to mind. Even to chastise makes me think of the Laodiceans who will be left behind.

In Lev. 23:10, the "sheaf" of the firstfruits of your harvest represents Christ and "sheaf" is "omer" in the Hebrew. It was to be waved before the Lord on the Feast of Firstfruits. Christ was the Firstfruits. The omer of manna represented Him. The "sheaf" (omer) here represents Him. He is the head of the Body of Christ. Figuratively, we are well on our way to imagining that the countdown of the omer to Pentecost applies to the Bride of Christ. It seems that little by little, our thinking is guided in this path.

Boaz, the kinsman redeemer type of Christ took Ruth to be his bride on Pentecost. Boaz gave Ruth six measures of grain that night, and then arranged the wedding later. Doesn't this suggest that we were engaged to Christ in the 6000th year and the actual wedding will come later?

Lev. 23:15-17 is talking about Pentecost. It says, "And ye shall COUNT unto you from the morrow (Josephus Ant, III,X,5,6: Nisan 16) after the sabbath (Nisan 15, the Feast of Unleavened Bread), from the day that ye brought the sheaf ("omer") of the wave-offering (Nisan 16, Resurrection Day); seven sabbaths shall be complete: Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a NEW meat-offering unto the LORD. Ye shall BRING OUT OF YOUR HABITATIONS two wave-loaves of two tenth deals: they shall be of FINE flour; they shall be BAKEN with leaven; they are THE FIRSTFRUITS unto the LORD."

Ex. 23:16,19 says of "the feast of harvest." which is Pentecost, "The FIRST of the firstfruits of thy land thou shalt bring into the house of the LORD thy God." Are we the FIRST of the firstfruits of the land?

Josephus said, "When a week of weeks has passed over AFTER this sacrifice [Feast of Firstfruits], (which weeks contain forty and nine days,) on the fiftieth day, which is Pentecost...they bring to God a loaf, made of wheat flour, of two tenth deals, with leaven." These 49 days are what the Jews refer to as counting the omer.

It is interesting that the two wave-loaves are made with FINE wheat flour and leaven, which stands for evil, but they are BAKED. The heat of the oven (i.e., testing during this year?) stops the growth of leaven. Those two loaves probably represent the Jews that are part of the church and the Gentiles that are part of the church. I think they will be waved before the Lord and taken to Heaven on Pentecost. However, Lev. 23:22 says, "when ye reap the HARVEST of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance." This sounds like the Laodiceans that are left behind.

Pentecost was to be "an holy convocation" (Lev. 23:21). Convocation means rehearsal. The plot thickens. Neh. 10:35,36 is also talking about Pentecost. It says, "And to bring the firstfruits of our ground (wheat), and the firstfruits of all fruit of all trees (including Israel, the fig tree), year by year, UNTO THE HOUSE OF THE LORD: ALSO THE FIRSTBORN OF OUR SONS." If Pentecost wasn't a rehearsal for the Rapture, why do we have all these clues that point that way?

Incoming Email

You answered my question (thank you) and asked me some in return, which I'll endevour to answer to the best of my ability:

> I don't know why you are looking forward to the Second Advent when you think you are
> facing the Tribulation first. Wouldn't you rather put it off awhile? You may have
> to be a martyr.

I'm looking forward to the return of the Lord even though I know some bad stuff will happen before then....

But that's just one side of the picture--the bad stuff. God has been speaking very strongly to the church in recent years that there are some wonderful things in store for us as well. Wide scale revival is coming. A huge harvest of souls is approaching. God is preparing the church to be the pure spotless bride she is called to be, and when she's ready, He's promised to release new levels of authority and power to the church, the likes of which haven't been seen since the days of the apostles....

> 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."...

First, lets look at the context. In the preceeding two verses it says, "Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and THAT DAY will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth." (Luke 21:34,35) Which day does Jesus refer to by "that day"? It's clear from verse 25 onwards that "that day" refers to the day he returns "with power and great glory", ie the second coming. His warning is therefore to Christians who will be living on earth at the time he returns.

...I believe the rapture and the second coming are one and the same event. This is the obvious interpretation of Matt 24. Matt 24:30 clearly refers to the second coming, at which time the rapture takes place (v 31)....

Getting back to Luke 21:36. "Watch therefore." Why? Because when "these things" are taking place there will be much deception. The word "strength" is a word that means "be counted worthy". In other words, "strength" will be needed to remain strong because there will be temptation to defect. I agree that "all these things" probably refers to the events of the Tribulation. The word for "escape" does indeed mean "to vanish", "to escape out of". However, the preposition "EK" may be understood to mean "out of the midst of" instead of being kept from entirely. Picture a circle and an arrow proceeding out from the center of that circle and reaching beyond the circumference. That's what the preposition "Ek" means. If the idea of being kept from altogether were intended, the preposition "apo" would have been used.

Jesus' warning therefore means that we should stay alert and pray that we don't fall prey to deception, temptations and other dangers that will be prevalent during the Tribulation, and that we will be delivered from the midst of those troubles....

> Pre-Wrath people end up watching for the Antichrist. I am watching for Christ.

I hold to the pre-wrath position, but I'm not "watching for the Antichrist". I keep an eye on current events, but by God's grace I'll always be much more focussed on Christ than I will be on the Antichrist. Besides, that argument is a red herring. The real issue is what does the Bible teach, not who are we watching for....

...(The Tribulation is not the same as the period of God's wrath--a significant point that escapes many pre-tribbers.)

> Luke 12:45,46 says, "But and if that servant (i.e., a believer) say in his heart, MY
> LORD delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to
> eat and drink, and to be drunken; 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, as the Laodiceans, Rev. 3:16), and will appoint him his portion
> with the unbelievers." Mt. 24:51 adds, "And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his
> portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."
>
> If there was only a Pre-Wrath Rapture, what portion with the unbelievers
> and hypocrites could be assigned to believers after that Rapture? :-)

I don't pretend to have a complete understanding of every parable that Jesus ever told, but I suspect that the servant in this parable is a Christian in name only. (Faith without works is dead.) The place to which he is assigned is possibly hell, or else he will be excluded from the (pre-wrath) rapture and will instead suffer the outpouring of God's wrath on a wicked and unbelieving world....

> The Pre-Trib Rapture takes place (Rev. 4:1) before the first seal is broken (Rev. 6).

I don't see any mention of a rapture in Rev 4:1. Is it possible you're trying to read something into this verse that simply isn't there? The most obvious meaning is that John was called to heaven so he could see the events in the subsequent visions from a heavenly perspective. "Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this."

> The Pre-Wrath Rapture takes place (Rev. 7:14) between the sixth (Rev. 6:12) and
> seventh seals (Rev. 8)....On that day, there is no time for the believers to be
> assigned a portion with the unbelievers.

Maybe, maybe not. False "Christians" could simply be excluded from the rapture....

> To me, the Pre-Wrath-Only-Rapture position is indefensible. The first
> group is seen in Heaven in Rev. 5:9.

The four living creatures and the 24 elders are in heaven, and they sing about a group from every tribe, language, people and nation who will reign as kings and priests on the earth. There is nothing to suggest that that group is in heaven at the time of the song.

> The second group is seen in Heaven in 7:14. The first group do not have to wash their
> robes in the blood of Christ. They have already done that. The second group have to do
> that before they too are taken to Heaven. The first group are the wise virgins with
> enough oil of the Holy Spirit. The second group do not have enough oil. They will get
> it when they wash their robes in the blood of the Lamb. Agape, Marilyn

Blessings

My reply

> Wide scale revival is coming. A huge harvest of souls is approaching. God is
> preparing the church to be the pure spotless bride she is called to be, and when
> she's ready, He's promised to release new levels of authority and power to the
> church, the likes of which haven't been seen since the days of the apostles.

If the Pre-Trib Rapture is the Bride, she had better be ready now. The huge harvest during the Tribulation is of those that have to wash their robes in the blood of Christ. The Philadelphians, before whom the open door is set, have already confessed their sins and Jesus mentions no words of condemnation against them. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit in Joel 2:27,28 is "afterward," after the Lord is "in the midst of Israel," after the Second Advent...

> THAT DAY will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who
> live on the face of the whole earth." (Luke 21:34,35) Which day does Jesus refer to
> by "that day"? It's clear from verse 25 onwards that "that day" refers to the day
> he returns "with power and great glory", ie the second coming.

"Alas for THE DAY! for THE DAY OF THE LORD is at hand, and as a DESTRUCTION from the Almighty shall it come" (Joel 2:15). The day referred to often in the OT as "THAT DAY" is the first day of the millennial Day of the Lord. Amos 5:18 says, "Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light." This is not the day of the Second Advent. The day of the Second Advent is not a dark day. Zech. 14:5-7 says, the light shall not be clear, nor dark."

Zeph. 1:718 says, "the day of the LORD is at hand: for the LORD hath prepared a sacrifice, he hath bid his guests. And it shall come to pass in the day of the LORD'S sacrifice, that I will punish the princes, and the king's children, and all such as are clothed with strange apparel...And it shall come to pass in THAT DAY, saith the LORD, that there shall be the noise of a cry from the fish gate, and an howling from the second, and a great crashing from the hills....The great day of the LORD is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the LORD: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. THAT DAY is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of...thick darkness. A day of the trumpet and alarm...in the day of the LORD'S wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land."

"And in THAT DAY will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. In THAT DAY, saith the LORD, I will smite every horse with astonishment...In THAT DAY will I make to governors of Judah like an hearth of fire among the wood...In THAT DAY shall the LORD defend in inhabitants of Jerusalem...in THAT DAY...I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem" (Zech. 12:3-9).

> I believe the rapture and the second coming are one and the same event. This
> is the obvious interpretation of Matt 24. Matt 24:30 clearly refers to the
> second coming, at which time the rapture takes place (v 31).

Since the unwise servants are appointed a portion with the unbelievers (Lu. 12:46), the Rapture and the Second Coming CANNOT be the same event. Some time has to go by between the two events. Mt. 24:30 is truly "THAT DAY." It is the first day of the Millennium, the day when the heavens are rolled away like a scroll and men see the Sign of the Son of Man after the sixth seal is broken (Rev. 6:14). That is not the day of the Second Advent. The Sign of the Son of Man is seen on "THAT DAY." The seven trumpet judgments are cast on Earth that day, after the seventh seal is broken. Seven Jewish months follow in which the Jews cleanse the land of the dead bodies, so the Lord can return in glory (Ezek. 39:12)....

> This passage teaches that we're not destined for God's WRATH--it does
> not teach that we'll be exempt from the Tribulation.

The Philadelphians will be kept "FROM" the Tribulation trial that will come upon the whole world. The Laodiceans will be appointed their portion (2300 days) with the unbelievers during the Tribulation.

> The Tribulation is not the same as the period of God's wrath

True. The Tribulation is seven years. God's Wrath will be poured out on ONE DAY, THAT DAY, of that seven years--the 2300th day.

> I don't see any mention of a rapture in Rev 4:1. Is it possible you're trying to read
> something into this verse that simply isn't there? The most obvious meaning is that
> John was called to heaven so he could see the events in the subsequent visions from a
> heavenly perspective.

I do see mention of the Rapture in Rev. 4:1. John was an actor in Jesus' dramatic production. He is one that is going to literally be one of the participants in the first Rapture. When he was called up to Heaven, it showed when we would be called up with him.

> > If there was only a Pre-Wrath Rapture, what portion with the unbelievers
> > and hypocrites could be assigned to believers after that Rapture? :-)

> I don't pretend to have a complete understanding of every parable that Jesus
> ever told, but I suspect that the servant in this parable is a Christian in name only.
> (Faith without works is dead.) The place to which he is assigne is possibly hell

You are trying to weasel out when you are trapped. Lu. 12 43-46 says, "And the Lord said, Who then is that FAITHFUL AND WISE STEWARD (a believer), whom HIS LORD shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season (today)? Blessed is that servant, whom HIS LORD when he cometh (at the Pre-Trib Rapture) shall find so doing. Of a truth I say unto you, that he (the Lord) will make him (the faithful and wise steward) ruler over all that he hath. But and if THAT SERVANT (the same believer) say in his heart, MY LORD (i.e., he is a believer) delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken; The lord of THAT SERVANT (believer) will come in a day when he (the believer) looketh not for him, and at an hour when he (the believer) is not aware, and will cut HIM (the believer) in sunder (lit., cut him off, as the Laodiceans), and will appoint him (the believer) his portion with the unbelievers." This is a contrast between the believer and unbeliever. They are not the same thing. There is no in between. We are either believers or unbelievers. And, no believer can be assigned to hell.

> > On that day, there is no time for the believers to be assigned a portion
> > with the unbelievers.

> Maybe, maybe not. False "Christians" could simply be excluded from the rapture.

There is no such thing as a false Christian. One is either a believer or he is not a believer. No believer can be excluded from the Pre-Wrath Rapture. We are not appointed to wrath.

> > To me, the Pre-Wrath-Only-Rapture position is indefensible. The first
> > group is seen in Heaven in Rev. 5:9.

> The four living creatures and the 24 elders are in heaven, and they sing about a group
> from every tribe, language, people and nation who will reign as kings and priests on the
> earth. There is nothing to suggest that that group is in heaven at the time of the song.

Yes there is. In Rev. 4:1,2, both John and the other 23 elders are in Heaven.

The door "was opened IN HEAVEN." Christ said, "COME UP HITHER." The "throne was set IN HEAVEN." "And round about the throne were four and twenty seats (thrones): and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders" (Rev. 4:4). The elders represent the whole assembly of the saved, as the priests on duty represented all the priests. We are believer priests. John was not there in Heaven alone. He is only one elder. The other 23 were there also. They had all just been caught up (harpazo, Raptured, I Thess. 4:13-18) through the open door set before the Philadelphians (Rev. 3:8; 4:1).

Rev. 5:8-10 continues the heavenly scene. It says, "And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints. And they (the elders) sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us (the 24 elders, i.e., the 12 patriarchs of the 12 tribes plus the 12 apostles, including John himself) to God by thy blood OUT OF EVERY KINDRED, AND TONGUE, AND PEOPLE, AND NATION; And hast made us (OUT OF EVERY KINDRED, AND TONGUE, AND PEOPLE, AND NATION) unto our God kings and priests." Here you can see that the 24 elders were all Jews, but they represent those out of all kindred and nations. They represent the Bride of Christ. John 3:29 says, "He that hath the BRIDE ("disciples," John 3:22) is the BRIDEGROOM." John is a member of the Bride of Christ. The Bride of Christ is called to heaven before the Tribulation starts in Rev. 6.

As Eve was taken out of the body of Adam, so is the Bride of Christ taken out of the Body of Christ. As Eve was taken out prior to their being cast out of the Garden of Eden, the Bride of Christ will be taken out of the Body of Christ before Tribulation begins. However, a deep sleep came upon Adam when Eve was taken out of his body. Today, a deep sleep is on the Laodiceans. While they are asleep, the Bride of Christ will be taken out of the body of believers.

Believers that think the Pre-Trib Rapture can't happen, wake up before it is too late. Jesus says, "anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent" (Rev. 3:18,19).

The very next verse shows them before a closed door. Time has run out.

"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches" (Rev. 3:13).

Incoming Email

Terrific web site.

I am sure you have been asked this many times, but does your time line take into account the 230 year error in the Jewish calendar?

My reply

Thanks.

Yes, there are actually 283 BJE (before Jewish era) years. I have a chart on Pro and Con 303 on this.

Incoming Email

FWD: Sherry (3 Feb) 5Doves ...Shem was 98 when he entered the ark and was 99 WHEN THE DOOR OPENED!... Jesus was 33 yrs. when He resurrected...Jerusalem was reunited in 1967....add 1967 (counted as the 1st yr.) + 33 years = 1999 AGAIN !!!

My reply

Shem, in the line that produced the body of Christ, means "who is put or placed." Oh wow! Thanks Sherry.

Incoming Email

Just got a phone call from Rockford, IL. In church Sunday, through speaking in tongues with their lead pastor interpreting, this "word of the Lord" came through. What has been hidden will be brought to the light. What you think nobody knows will be revealed to many and exposed. You need to bury your sins in my blood, as you're marching towards exposure.

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Updated 5-3-99