, , ,

 “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered. Daniel 12:1

How does the end time action of the Archangel Michael, the guardian of Israel, result is an unparalleled time of great distress?

And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. Revelation 12:7-9

During the time of the Great Tribulation Satan and his demonic hoards no longer will travel in the heavenly realms but will be totally excluded from heaven and will be cast down to earth.

The Archangel Michael is the protector of the nation of Israel (Daniel’s people). Mid-tribulation, Satan is cast to earth and will vent his rage against the people of God. All hell will break loose. Those from the nation of Israel who are written in the Book of Life will be delivered through the time of great distress as through a refiner’s fire.

In the whole land,” declares the LORD, “two-thirds will be struck down and perish; yet one-third will be left in it. This third I will bring into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people, and they will say, ‘The LORD is our God.’” Zechariah 13:8-9

Two-thirds is a fraction which is equivalent to .666 when written in decimals. During the horror of the holocaust, six million Jews were tortured and put to death. The total population of Jews during World War Two was about eighteen million people. During WWII, about one-third of all Jews in the world were killed. The holocaust will pale in comparison to the time of Jacob’s trouble when two-thirds of Jews worldwide will perish.

There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then…

How awful that day will be! None will be like it. It will be a time of trouble for Jacob, but he will be saved out of it. Jeremiah 30:7

Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:
“Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down.  They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. Therefore rejoice you heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short.
Revelation 12:10-12

 Having been finally and totally cast from heaven, Satan is filled with fury because he knows that his time is short.

“See, it is I who created the blacksmith who fans the coals into flame and forges a weapon fit for its work. And it is I who created the destroyer to work havoc…” Isaiah 54:16

Do not forget that God is sovereign and in total control. Although in the natural there is great persecution of both Israel and the church, God is using the baptism of fire to purify his people. They (the saints) overcame him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb (Christ’s atonement) and by the word of their testimony (they demonstrated their faith) by their willingness to suffer a martyr’s death. Jesus said, All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved (Matthew 10:22). A pre-tribulation Rapture is a concept that serves to circumvent the purposes of God and denies God’s sovereignty. John baptized with water, but Jesus came to baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire (Matthew 3:11-12). Death is swallowed up in victory (1Corinthians 15:54). If indeed we are in Christ, we will stand firm to the end.

Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. Daniel 12:2

And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. Revelation 20:4-6

The resurrection of the righteous takes place before the Millennium (the 1,000 year reign of Christ on earth).

And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”Genesis 2:15-17 KJV

Adam was warned by God that he would surely die for the sin of disobedience in the day that he would eat from the fruit of the “tree of knowledge of good and evil.”

Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.  Isaiah 59:1-2

Surely Adam did die spiritually in the very day that he disobeyed God. His iniquities separated him from the LORD and the man and the woman were cast out of paradise. Yet, Adam did not die a physical death until he lived 930 years, “and then he died” (Gen 5:5).

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. 2Peter 3:8

The length of our days is seventy years- or eighty, if we have the strength. Psalm 90:10

Not only did Adam die spiritually in the very day he disobeyed God, but he also died physically within one lifetime (70 years) short of a thousand years (1,000 years – 70 years = 930 years).

 Peter answered him, “We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?” Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. Matthew 19:27-29

I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. Revelation 20:4

Jesus promised his disciples that at the renewal of all things, all those who have left family or possessions for His sake would receive a hundred-fold as much and inherit eternal life. The Garden of Eden was shut off to mankind and eventually destroyed in the worldwide flood of Noah’s day. Even the oldest person ever to live, Methuselah who lived for 969 years, died short of a thousand years. But when the Lord returns, He will set up His kingdom on earth and we, who are born-again from above, will reign with Him. At that time:

The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. Isaiah11:6-7

During the Millennial Reign of Christ, the holy mountain of the LORD will be the location of the renewed Garden of Eden. For a thousand years, Nation will not take up sword against nation (Isaiah 2:4), because the Prince of Peace will rule with a rod of iron from Zion (Psalm 2:6, 9). For a thousand years, the sovereign LORD declares that Jerusalem, which has been the location of over fifty wars, will finally be a “city of peace.”

I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more. “Never again will there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years; he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere youth; he who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed. They will build houses and dwell in them; they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. Isaiah 65:19-21

For a thousand years, the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea (Isaiah 11:9b). For a thousand years, the elect will receive a hundred-fold blessing as we rule and reign with Christ.

Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:11-15

Among the books that were opened (the words and deeds of each individual) as well as the Old and New Testament, was the Book of Life. There will be some at the White Throne judgment who will be spared from the Lake of Fire. The second resurrection, for the most part, will unite disembodied, spiritually dead souls with transformed immortal bodies. They will be ushered into the presence of God to be judged for degree of punishment. They have been resurrected to life (spiritually alive/no longer separated from God), only to be cast from his presence for eternity. They will suffer the second death as they are cast into the Lake of Fire. They will go from the glory of his presence to eternal separation and great torment.

Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. But you, Daniel, roll up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge.” Daniel 12:3-4

During the time of the greatest spiritual darkness and the worst persecution of the saints in history, there will be those who are wise and will share the gospel and receive great eternal reward.

Daniel was commanded to roll up and seal the words of the scroll to the time of the end. So when did the last days begin and the scroll would be unsealed?

According to Acts 2:14-17, the last days began at Pentecost:

Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. These men are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

“‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.

The last days began after the crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension of Christ, when the Holy Spirit was poured out at Pentecost. John, the last surviving original apostle, was commanded to write down the contents of the visions that he had witnessed while he was in the Spirit. The prophetic, symbolic visions that were sealed in Daniel’s day concerned the last days of this evil age which began at Pentecost and culminate with the Great Tribulation and the return of Christ to rule on earth.

Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” Revelation 5:5

Then I, Daniel, looked, and there before me stood two others, one on this bank of the river and one on the opposite bank. One of them said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, “How long will it be before these astonishing things are fulfilled?”

The man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, lifted his right hand and his left hand toward heaven, and I heard him swear by him who lives forever, saying, “It will be for a time, times and half a time. When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed.” Daniel 12:5-7

Both the Book of Daniel and the Book of Revelation speak of a period of three and a half years (time – one year, times – two years and half a time – ½ year: 1 + 2 + ½ = 3½ years) in which the Antichrist will successfully wage war against the saints. This is during the second half of the Great Tribulation.

I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?”

He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand. Daniel 12:8-10

The fires of persecution will purify the bride of Christ and prepare the survivors of the twelve tribes of Israel to look to the One they have pierced as Savior and Lord.

The rest of mankind who were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood—idols that cannot see or hear or walk. Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts. Revelation 9:20-21

But the wicked will continue to be wicked.

“From the time that the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that causes desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days. Blessed is the one who waits for and reaches the end of the 1,335 days. Daniel 12:11-12

We have two significant time periods in Daniel 12:11–12, which extend past the time of the return of Christ to the earth. The first is 1,290 days, counted from the day daily sacrifice in the temple is abolished, that is, thirty days after the 1,260 days (three and one half years). This thirty-day month, added to the 1,260 days, brings us from Nisan 10 to the tenth day of the eighth month, Heshvan, which falls thirty days after the Day of Atonement.

So what might the thirty-day period between the 1,260th day and 1,290th day imply?

And when the whole community learned that Aaron had died, the entire house of Israel mourned for him for thirty days. Numbers 20:29

On that day the weeping in Jerusalem will be great, like the weeping of Hadad Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo. The land will mourn, each clan by itself, with their wives by themselves… Zechariah 12:11–12a

The Israelites grieved for Moses in the plains of Moab for thirty days, until the time of weeping and mourning was over. Deuteronomy 34:8

Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be! Amen. Revelation 1:7

When Israel’s first high priest, Aaron, died, the entire nation mourned him for thirty days. When Moses the deliverer died, there was again great weeping and mourning for thirty days. On the day of the rapture, the Lord comes with the clouds (souls of those who died in Christ) and there is mourning, and Israel will grieve bitterly for their Messiah whom they have pierced.

Unlike the people of the gentile nations, who will not repent of their immorality (Revelation 9:21), Israel will come to mourn in such a way that, as individuals change their minds regarding Christ, salvation is ushered in (see Romans 11:25–26; 2 Corinthians 7:10). When the Lord returns to the earth to redeem Israel, the great weeping and mourning will be like the sorrow for righteous King Josiah after Pharaoh’s archers mortally wounded him in battle on the plain of Megiddo. (See 2 Chronicles 35:20–27; this is the place where Armageddon will be fought!) I believe the nation will grieve and mourn for Christ, the “One they have pierced,” for a thirty-day period, beginning 1,260 days after sacrifices and offerings are abolished by Antichrist.

And what of the remaining forty-five-day period? What is the 1,335th day? The Lord declared to King David that Messiah would issue from David’s line and that Messiah’s kingdom would be established eternally (2 Samuel 7:13–16). Before Jesus takes His rightful place on His throne in Jerusalem, His temple must be sanctified and rededicated to Him. I believe the temple cleansing will be completed as the 1,335 days of Daniel 12 are completed.

The Hebrew calendar consists of months that are thirty days in length. The 1,290 days would be completed three and one-half years plus one month after the midpoint of the seven year tribulation period. The 1,335 days are completed forty-five days after the 1,290 days end (1,335 days – 1,290 days = 45 days).

If the 1,290-day period ends on the seventh day of Heshvan, the twenty-fifth day of the ninth month, Kislev, is the 1,335th day.

Any Israelite surviving the tribulation and after will be extremely blessed to reach the end of 1,335 days—the Feast of Dedication (Chanukah)! This commemoration is also known as the Festival of Lights (of God, the Light of the world) and is a time of cleansing for the temple in Jerusalem.

“As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance.” Daniel 12:13

Daniel had been receiving insight into the future by the visions recorded in the previous chapters. He sought for clearer knowledge and was told that the scroll, which was a record of end time events, was sealed and closed. But during that long interval Daniel would “rest.” In the grave, his body would quietly and calmly “sleep in the dust of the earth.” He would not participate in the tribulation of the last days. Instead, he would participate in the resurrection of the righteous and was assured that he would receive his inheritance in the kingdom of God.