“The Incredible Rescue”
What in the World Is God Doing?
Viewer Screen: What in the World Is God Doing?
An assessment of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) quarterly report is presented in this publication:
Viewer Screen: Analysis of IAEA Iran Verification and Monitoring Report: February 2021, David Albright, Sarah Burkhard, and Andrea Stricker (Institute for Science and International Security)
This article reveals that “Iran’s estimated breakout time is 3.1 months,” which means that, if Iran decided today to create a nuclear bomb, it could have one in three months!
In addition, the article goes on to say, “Iran now has enough weapon-grade uranium for a second nuclear weapon, where the second one would be produced more quickly than the first.”
Israel understands this threat and knows that Iran plans to use nuclear means to eliminate the state of Israel. This is why I believe Israel will preemptively launch an attack on Iran. I also believe that the Green Movement (the vast underground movement that opposes the current, oppressive, Iranian government) will use the resulting chaos of an Israeli strike to overthrow the Iranian regime. This, in turn, will open up the Middle East toward the Dan 9:27 treaty between Israel and ten national leaders.
I believe that, at the moment that treaty is confirmed, the rapture will occur, and the seven-year Tribulation period will begin.
God has been arranging the actors on the stage to prepare for His end-times production. In fact, we may be closer than we realize to the pulling back of the curtain to reveal God’s prophetic fulfillment. So, keep looking up!
This is: “What in the World Is God Doing?”
What in the Word Is God Saying?
Viewer Screen: “The Incredible Rescue”
In his commentary on the book of Daniel, Donald Campbell cites an interview between Billy Graham and the Konrad Adenauer, then chancellor of Germany, in which Mr. Adenauer asked Mr. Graham a series of questions:
“Do you believe Jesus Christ rose from the dead?”
Graham: “Yes, sir, I do.”
“Do you believe he ascended and is in heaven now?”
“Yes, sir, I do.”
“Some say Jesus Christ will return and reign on this earth. Do you believe that?”
“Yes, sir, I do.”
After a brief pause, Mr. Adenauer said, “So do I. If He doesn’t, there is no hope for this world!”
There is no greater demonstration of the truth of Chancellor Adenauer’s declaration than the Tribulation period. But the good news is that Jesus guarantees He will return to this earth to establish His kingdom.
During the final week leading up to His crucifixion, Jesus led His disciples up to the Mount of Olives, where they asked Him:
Viewer Screen “What will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” (Mt 24:3)
In answer to this question, Jesus gave His famous discourse on events occurring during the final seven years leading up to His return to the earth, the period we call the Tribulation period.
Viewer Screen: In Mt 24:29-31, Jesus describes His return to the earth, “ ‘immediately after the tribulation of those days’ ” (Mt 24:29).
“The Tribulation of those days” is a phrase referencing the persecution Jewish believers will experience during the second half of the Tribulation period.
Viewer Screen: At the very end of the Tribulation, cataclysmic events will occur, such as the “ ‘darkening of the sun and moon,’ ” “ ‘the shaking of the heavens,’ ” and “ ‘stars falling from the sky’ ” (Mt 24:29).
In verse 30 of Mt 24, Jesus describes scenes from two OT passages connected with His return.
Viewer Screen: “ ‘Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky [heaven], and then all the tribes of the land [earth] will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky [heaven] with power and great glory’ ” (Mat 24:30).
One of those, “the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky [heaven],” is found in Dan 7:13–14. There we find that following “His coming with the clouds of the sky / heaven,” the Son of Man, Jesus, will receive the kingdom to rule over the earth.
The other citation stems from Zech 12, and is referenced by this phrase:
Viewer Screen: “ ‘. . . all the tribes of the land [Israel] will mourn’ ” (Mt 24:30b).
This describes Jesus’ return to the earth.
This mourning will occur at the very end of the Tribulation period by Jews who will have recently believed in Jesus Christ. They will demonstrate repentance from the association with their ancestry who participated in the crucifixion of the Christ. Thus, they will mourn just before Jesus returns to the earth.
Then they will call out to the Lord:
Viewer Screen: “ ‘. . . They will call on My name, and I will answer them. . . .’ ” (Zech 13:9).
The context of this verse tells us they will call upon the Lord for deliverance, and He will answer by sending Jesus to deliver them from their enemies.
At that time, Jerusalem will be in need of deliverance because it will be overrun by the armies of the nations who are gathered to war against Jesus. In anticipation of His return, they will overflow Jerusalem and take the city into captivity. Zechariah describes these armies breaking into houses and stealing their contents, raping Jewish women, etc.
Though the city is ravaged, God will protect certain faithful Jewish followers of Jesus to remain alive in Jerusalem in order to cry out for the Messiah to return and deliver his people.
The answer to this cry for help is presented in Zech 14:3–4a:
Viewer Screen: “ ‘Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east’ ” (Zech 14:3-4a).
The Lord’s answer will be to send Jesus to the Mount of Olives to physically deliver the Jews from their enemies. When He returns, He will come as a warrior, to “fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle.”
Verses 4 and 5 of Zech 14 present the way of escape for the remnant:
Viewer Screen: “ ‘And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, from east to west, making a very large valley; half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south. Then you shall flee through My mountain valley, for the mountain valley shall reach to Azal. Yes, you shall flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Thus the Lord my God will come, and all the saints with You’ ” (Zech 14:4b-5).
At Jesus’ return, the Lord will provide an escape route for the remnant by creating a powerful earthquake to split the Mount of Olives in two. The Jews of Jerusalem will then escape their enemies via the massive valley produced by the quake.
These verses also show us that when Jesus returns, He will not come alone. All of the saints will come with him.
“All the saints” represents everyone who has believed in Jesus for eternal life from the time of Adam onward. Following Jesus’ return, we learn this from Zech 14:9:
Viewer Screen: “And the Lord shall be King over all the earth” (Zech 14:9).
Jesus will then “be King over all the earth.” Then, two verses later, we learn about the fate of Jerusalem:
Viewer Screen: “The people shall dwell in it; and no longer shall there be utter destruction, but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited” (Zech 14:11).
Thus, Jesus will successfully deliver Jerusalem, which will dwell in peace from that point on. Yet, God will bring judgment upon those who sought to bring devastation upon Jerusalem:
Viewer Screen: “And this shall be the plague with which the Lord will strike all the people who fought against Jerusalem: their flesh shall dissolve while they stand on their feet, their eyes shall dissolve in their sockets, and their tongues shall dissolve in their mouths” (Zech 14:12).
God’s judgment is pictured by the same verb, dissolve, used three times—once for the body as a whole (“their flesh”) and once each for a different body part (“eyes” and “tongues”). Though this kind of decay and putrefaction would naturally occur over time with corpses, this judgment will occur with such swift suddenness that the victims will still be standing upon their feet when their bodies are dissolved.
This will be the scene at the time of this judgment:
Viewer Screen: “It shall come to pass in that day that a great panic from the Lord will be among them. . . . Judah also will fight at Jerusalem. And the wealth of all the surrounding nations shall be gathered together: Gold, silver, and apparel in great abundance. Such also shall be the plague on the horse and the mule, on the camel and the donkey, and on all the cattle that will be in those camps” (Zech 14:13-15).
One might think Jesus would be the lone battler against the armies of the nations. But, surprisingly, the Jews will participate in battling for the deliverance of Jerusalem, as we see in this statement: “Judah also will fight at Jerusalem.” Not only will Jesus do battle, but so will the surviving Jews in southern Israel.
God will not only bring physical judgment upon the armies who ravish Jerusalem, but also upon their animals. In addition, God will gather their wealth from them, thus, bringing complete destruction upon the enemies of His people and of His beloved city, Jerusalem.
Elsewhere, in Rev 19, we see another picture of the return of Jesus to judge his enemies:
Viewer Screen: “Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war” (Rev 19:11).
Take note of the various images of judgment are portrayed in the context of Jesus’ return in Rev 19:
Viewer Screen: “And He . . . was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, . . . He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, . . . Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations” (Rev 19:11-15).
These verses portray the following images of judgment: “judges,” “makes war,” “eyes . . . like a flame of fire,” and “a sharp sword [proceeding from His mouth to] strike the nations.” This latter representation shows that He will destroy a massive amount of His enemies by simply speaking a word! After all, the One who was able to speak the universe into existence out of nothing can certainly take life by a single command.
We also see Jesus depicted wearing “a robe dipped in blood.” In this context, this image portrays the blood of His enemies He will shed at His return. Connected with this image, Rev 19:15 describes:
Viewer Screen: “He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God” (Rev 19:15).
This reflection stems from Isaiah 63:1–6. “The winepress” is a simile for judgment. As the juice of grapes being trampled splatters the clothing of the one working in the winepress, so the trampling of His enemies in judgment will be such that their blood will splatter His garments.
In Revelation 14:20, also in the context of the return of Jesus in judgment, we are presented with this similar picture:
Viewer Screen: “And the winepress was trampled outside the city [Jerusalem], and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs [approximately 180 miles]” (Rev 14:20).
This presents a graphic picture of the judgment that will occur at Jesus’ return—blood flowing for one hundred and eighty miles up to the horses’ bridles—a picture of unimaginable slaughter!
The depiction of slaughter continues as we return to Rev 19, specifically, verses 17–19:
Viewer Screen: “Then I saw an angel . . . , saying to all the birds that fly in the midst of the eky [heaven], ‘Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great.’ And I saw the Beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army” (Rev 19:17-19).
Here the Lord invites carrion-eating birds to feast upon a massive number of corpses. Notice that this invitation is given as “the Beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies [are] gathered together to make war against” the Lord Jesus.
Because this battle is so incredibly important, it is also portrayed in the OT, particularly in Ezekiel 39. Take note, especially, of verse 4, as the Lord addresses His enemies:
Viewer Screen: “ ‘I will give you to birds of prey of every sort and to the beasts of the field to be devoured’ ” (Ezek 39:4).
Here the Lord warns “Gog,” the leader of an army from various nations, that his troops will suffer massive casualties, and their corpses will be fed to the birds of prey. Both the number of casualties and the resulting feeding from the corpses by the birds of prey remind us of what we saw in Rev 19 at the return of Jesus.
Following the defeat of all who come against Israel at the return of Jesus, Ezekiel 39 drives home the destruction of the weaponry and the burying of the bodies.
Viewer Screen: “Then those who dwell in the cities of Israel will go out and set on fire and burn the weapons, . . . and they will make fires with them for seven years. . . . . . . there they will bury Gog and all his multitude. . . . For seven months the house of Israel will be burying them, in order to cleanse the land” (Ezek 39:9-13).
Verses 9–13 reveal there will be such slaughter of those who gather to war against Jesus at His return that Israel will be burying bodies for seven months! In addition, the Israelites will be destroying the weapons of their enemies for seven years! These numbers communicate the vastness of the number of troops and weaponry arranged against Jesus at His return! Even against such incredible odds, the Jews will deal the nations an overwhelming defeat!
Let’s return to Rev 19 where we learn this:
Viewer Screen: “Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse. And all the birds were filled with their flesh” (Rev 19:20-21).
God’s two fervent enemies, the Beast and the False Prophet, will be captured and cast alive into the lake of fire! In addition, 100 percent of the troops assembled against Israel and Jesus at His return will be destroyed. There will be no survivors from the millions who gather to wage war against Him!
But, the return of Jesus to the earth is not just about the Lord’s complete judgment of the armies gathered against Jesus; His return is really about preparing for the establishment of God’s kingdom upon the earth. The Lord’s judgment of His enemies is just part of that preparation.
There are important lessons to be gleaned regarding the return of Jesus. First, God will vindicate His people. Since the Lord will be victorious over His enemies, His people are on the winning side. Believers who have been persecuted by unbelievers will be raised up over their enemies at the return of Jesus.
Second, God will judge the enemies of His people; He will right wrongdoing. Our sense of justice will be completely fulfilled from that point on—forever!
Third, the Lord will bring trouble those who bring trouble against Israel. Historically, God has eventually judged all who have opposed and persecuted the Jews. A perusal of the Old Testament will demonstrate the veracity of this statement. From Amalek to Assyria to Babylon, God has judged those nations that have come against Israel. A case could also be presented that this pattern has continued to the present day.
It will be no different in the future. The Lord will judge the Beast and his False Prophet who persecute the Jews during the Tribulation period, as well as the nations who gather against Jerusalem.
Fourth, God will fulfill His promises. For example, when Israel turns to the Lord by crying out to Jesus for deliverance, Jesus will, in fact, return—to deliver Israel and to establish God’s kingdom upon the earth, just as He has promised. We can depend on God to fulfill His promises.
Finally, God will answer prayer for the peace of Jerusalem. He shows the importance of praying for Jerusalem in verses such as Psa 122:6 and Isa 62:18. God not only promises He will answer that prayer, He also guarantees blessing for believers who pray in that way.
As we have seen, when the majority of Jews cry out for the return of Jesus to deliver them, Jesus will return in deliverance and judgment. His return to the earth will be seven years to the day following the rapture of the Church.
The question before us is: How close are we to the sudden occurrence of the rapture of the Church and the inception of the seven-year tribulation period? Though it can tempting to think that day will be some far-off future occurrence, might we be much closer to these dramatic prophetic events than we think? Join us next time on End Times Today when we examine the closeness of Jesus’ return in our broadcast entitled, “How Soon?”
Questions / Answers
Q Who are the “they” of Rev 12:6? – Don DenHartog, Virginia
Good question, Don. Let’s look at that verse before answering:
Viewer Screen: “Then the woman [Israel] fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days” (Rev 12:6).
The one thousand two hundred and sixty days refer to the Great Tribulation, the period in which Jews who believe in Jesus during the first half of the Tribulation are on the run to flee for their lives. I believe the “they” in this verse are those who are gathered to the right of Jesus in the judgment of the nations following His return to the earth (Mt 25:31-46). Let’s glance at part of that passage:
Viewer Screen: “ ‘When the Son of Man comes in His glory, . . . He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations [Gentiles] will be gathered before Him, . . . Then the King will say to those on His right hand [Gentile believers], “Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you . . . : for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; . . . I was naked and you clothed Me; . . . .” . . . “Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.” ’ ” (Mt 25:31-40).
In this judgment, Gentile believers are rewarded for feeding, giving drink to, clothing, etc. “the least of these My brethren.” “My brethren” is a reference to those who are Jesus’ physical AND spiritual brethren—Jews during the Great Tribulation who believe in Him for eternal life. Following “the abomination of desolation,” when the Beast of Revelation abominates the temple of God, these Jews will be on the run to save their lives. They will have nothing but the clothes on their backs; and, over the three and a half years before Jesus returns to the earth, they will need people to provide for their needs.
While on the run, these Jews will encounter Gentiles who are open to the gospel and will evangelize them. Then, these Gentiles who believe in Jesus will provide for their needs throughout the 1,260 days prior to the return of Jesus to the earth.
Thank you, Don, for that good question. And, to our viewing audience, thank YOU for joining us here on End Times Today. See you next time.