THE GREAT DESTRUCTION OF ISRAEL AND JERUSALEM
As we start today we will continue with some further thoughts about the Millennium Temple and Israel. We had reviewed the fact that there have been three previous temples of interest. Also, we had noted that the Temple of the tribulation will be rebuilt during the first three and one-half years of the Antichrist (2 Thessalonians 2:4; Revelation 11:1-2). In addition, we saw that the temple of the millennium and the temple of our Lord are future (Acts 15:16; Ezekiel chapters 40-43).
Remember, God has to judge the Jews just as He has to judge all the ungodly and evil of this world. God has no favorites and shows no partiality. All the ungodly and evil are to be judged in the last days including the ungodly and evil of the Jews. Therefore, the Jews with their temple and their city will be trodden underfoot by the Antichrist just as so many others will be.
NOTE: Any person who does not approach God THROUGH the Lord Jesus Christ is worshipping a false god. There is ONLY ONE TRUE AND LIVING GOD and that is the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. A worshipper may be a Jew or a Gentile — it does not matter – he must worship God the Father THROUGH the Lord Jesus Christ or else his worship is false (Ephesians 1:1-6). This is the reason God marks the Jewish temple and worship for destruction. He is judging and condemning all false worship. Once the temple is destroyed in the end time — very, very soon – the self-righteous spirit of the Jews will be broken and they will turn to the Lord Jesus Christ and many thousands will be saved. But until they do, the unbelieving Jews are marked for judgment just as all other unbelievers are.
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).
“This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:8-9).
“He answered and said unto them,’ Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me’ ” (Mark 7:6).
“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;” (I Timothy 2:5).
“They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate” (Titus 1:16).
“But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises” (Hebrews 8:6).
“For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:” (Hebrews 9:24).
“And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance” (Hebrews 9:15).
“And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel” (Hebrews 12:24).
“My little children, these things write I unto you that ye sin not. If any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (I John 2:1).
(Revelation 11:2) Now let’s consider Israel and the Jewish temple along with the Gentile Court, Jerusalem and Gentiles. There is the trampling underfoot or destruction of Jerusalem and the Jews for three and one-half years. Let’s review several points.
- The court of the Gentiles and the city of Jerusalem are not measured or marked for judgment. The court of the Gentiles was the outside courtyard of the temple. The temple was divided into four courts, all surrounding a center building or shrine called the Holy Place or Holy of holies.
The courts moving out away from the Holy Place were…
- the court of the priests (where the altar of the burnt offering stood),
- the court of Israel or of Jewish men, and
- the court of the women.
*These were the inner courts, the temple proper, the worship center for Jews only.
*No Gentile was ever allowed within these court barriers.
- Surrounding these courts for Jewish worshippers was a huge outer court, the court of the Gentiles. This was the only court where the proselytes and interested persons were allowed to enter.
NOTE: Why would the Gentile court and the city of Jerusalem not be measured for judgment? Because they will already be under the Antichrist and his government. The government of Israel and other governments of the world will have already submitted to the rule of the Antichrist. There will already be a one world government.
This will not be the case with Jewish worshippers, nor with the true Christian believers, nor some other strong worshippers of other religions.
NOTE: The Antichrist will have a problem securing the loyalty of people all around the world who have strong faith. Strong Jewish worshippers will do what they have always done–refuse to buckle under to any Gentile ruler.
This passage, Revelation 11 verses one and two, is a prophecy: the temple will be destroyed, and Jewish worshippers will be persecuted. The Antichrist is going to attack them with a vengeance never before seen in the history of the world. Of course, as has already been seen, he is going to attack Christian believers (Revelation 7:9) and all other persons of strong faith (2 Thessalonians 2:4; Revelation 13:1-18; Matthew 24:15; Daniel 11:40-45; 12:7).
- Forty-two months (three and one-half years) is the set time that the Antichrist and his terrible persecutions will be unleashed upon the world.
- This will be the time that the holy city will be oppressed: forty-two months (Revelation 11:2).
- This will be the time that the TWO WITNESSES will bear testimony to Israel and to the world: a thousand two hundred and sixty days (Revelation 11:3).
- This will be the time that the woman in the wilderness will be preserved: a thousand two hundred and sixty-days (Revelation 12:6, 14).
- This will be the time that the beast will be allowed to blaspheme God: forty-two months (Revelation 13:5).
- Scripture teaches that the Antichrist will rule for a seven year period. Both Christ and Daniel say this. Christ says that the Abomination of desolation (the Antichrist) will launch the worst tribulation the world has ever known (Matthew 24:15, 21).
In His own words, the signs that occur up until the abomination of desolation are called “the beginning of sorrows” (MATTHEW 24:8); AND THE TRIALS AFTER THE ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION TAKES PLACE ARE CALLED ” THE GREAT TRIBULATION,” TRIBULATIONS SO GREAT THAT THEY ARE UNPARALLELED IN HUMAN HISTORY (Matthew 24:21). Daniel also gives a division of time just as Christ does.
“And he [the prince] shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause…the overspreading of abominations” (Daniel 9:27).
“In the midst of the week” (Daniel’s seventieth week) definitely points to a period of time (one week) that is divided into two parts.
Note these factors:
A. Daniel was dealing with the “seventieth week,” the END of his seventy-week prophecy. Two facts tell us that Daniel was also dealing with the END TIME just as Christ was:
- the fact that Christ was dealing with the end of Jerusalem and the end of the world and
- the fact that Christ said He was elaborating on Daniel’s prophecy.
B. Daniel said that what begins the second half of his seventieth week is “the abomination of desolation” or the prince who causes “abominable idols” (H.C. LEUPOLD. (6)
EXPOSITION OF DANIEL, Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1969, p. 434).
The Words of Christ should be carefully noted: “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet…” (Matthew 24:15). Christ was about to elaborate and explain in more detail what Daniel prophesied. Thus, Christ explained that the first half of Daniel’s week would consist of signs which were “the beginning of sorrows” (Matthew 24:8; Matthew 24:5-14), and the last half of Daniel’s week would consist of unparalleled trials of “The Great Tribulation.”
NOTE: The second half of the week would be launched by “the abomination of desolation standing in the Holy Place” (Matthew 24:15, 21).
Another matter that needs to be looked at is the time frame of the end time (the seventieth week) as predicted by Christ and Daniel.
Scripture refers to the length in these words (see Revelation 11:2; 12:6).
“Time, times, and half a time” (Daniel 7:25; 12:7).
“1260 days” (Revelation 12:6).
“42 months” (Revelation 11:2; 13:5-6).
Based upon the days and months given in the Book of Revelation, if Daniel’s time equals one year, then his words, “Time [1 year], times [2 years], and half a time [1/2] year]” are equal to 3 1/2 years. Daniel stated that the abomination of desolation shall be executed “in the midst of the week,” that is, after three and one-half years It is assumed that Christ’s words “the beginning of sorrows” (that is, the first half of the week) are also three and one-half years. Thus, in combining the two periods of time (3 1/2 each), the length of the last days or end time is said to be a literal seven years. Based upon the words of Revelation the prophecy of Christ can be charted as follows.
The following chart is adapted from The Preachers Outline & Sermon Bible, Revelation page 147:
THE END OF THE WORLD
Seeing the Sign of the Seeing the
Abomination of Desolation Son of Man coming
In the Middle of the Time of Tears (Matthew 24:29-30
3 1/2 years 3 1/2 years
Signs which are Unparalleled trials of “His angels…gather
“The beginning of “The great tribulation” “together His
Sorrows” (Mt. 24:8) (Mt. 24:21) (Mt. 24:31)
4. In summary, all this points to a period of three and one-half years of great satanic power in the world. Particular emphasis is laid upon the final days of the Antichrist, a period known as THE GREAT TRIBULATION. It is in the last three and one-half years of his rule that the Antichrist will launch the worst tribulation the world has ever known. In the present passage he will trample underfoot the Jewish people and create a holocaust such as the world has never seen (Matthew 24:15).
NOTE: God judges sin and unbelief. He always judges the ungodly and evil, even if they are religious and declare that they are righteous. This is what God is doing in the end time: judging the idolaters, sorcerers, murderers, immoral, and thieves of the world. This is the reason God is going to judge Israel in the end time. They are as guilty as all other people of the world. But note: there is a limit to the judgment. It will last only three and one-half years. God will stop the judgment and have mercy upon all those will turn to Him for mercy.
“O LORD, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O LORD, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy” (Habakkuk 3:2).
Consider that it will be seen in the next passage that God uses the suffering of the Jewish people to ripen them for the gospel and the glorification of His name. This persecution is but the first step to prepare them for the coming salvation.
Note the words “the Gentiles” (Revelation 11:2). This refers to what is called the “times of the Gentiles.” In order to have a complete picture, note these facts:
- The “times of the Gentiles was launched with the Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar (2 Chronicles 36:1-31).
- The “times of the Gentiles” will end at the climax of human history when Jesus Christ returns in great glory and power and destroys the Antichrist and his government and followers (Revelation 19:11-21; Luke 21:24).
If you are reading this in the great tribulation and would like to avoid what is coming please turn to John 3:16 and Romans 10:9-13 and seriously consider God’s truth of salvation. Follow the truth of salvation and accept God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Savior.
Reject all sin and disobedience to God’s Word. Ask the Holy Spirit to teach you the truth of God’s eternal Word and live in the power and strength of God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 6:10-20). Walk, live under the control of the Holy Spirit and you will not fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16).
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