Replacement Theology and the Time of the End
Translation by the New King’s James Version
By Robert D. Mock M.D.
July 4, 2001
The Apocalypse of the New Testament Writers
The Jewish apocalyptic writers envisioned a total break between two ages – the present age and the age to come. (Ibid. 66)
During the era between the return of the Jews from exile under Ezra and Nehemiah until the time of Jesus, the revelation of God was given to the Jewish authors of the Hasiddim, and the Essenes of Qumran. In the century and a half before Jesus, apocalyptic writers transformed the Jewish concept of the end of the world and laid the foundation for the writers of the New Testament authors, ideas, which were fully developed by John the Revelator in the Book of Revelation. To these writers, the end of times would involve a total destruction of this world, human history and the whole earth. There would be a total break in history between this world and the world to come, the New Earth.
These authors wrote book under the names of famous leaders of the ancient Hebrews: Enoch, Noah, Moses and Ezra. Whether these writing were reflective of ancient documents in the hands of the writer-compilers by these more ancient authors, were not known. What is known is that these writers had significant influence in the authors of the New Testament.
It was these anonymous writers in the Book of Enoch who coined the following famous quotes and phrases found in the New Testament terminology and affirmed in the Christian canon. With the knowledge that the Essenes at Qumran and the manuscripts found in the Dead Sea Scrolls had one of the largest collections of Enochian fragments more than any Old Testament books except the book of Isaiah, we can now safely assume that the “scriptures” that the Jesus and the apostles referred to also included the Book of Enoch.
1. In My Fathers house are many mansions; John 14:2; Enoch 39:4.
2. Ancient of days: Dan 7:9; Enoch 47:3.
3. Another book was opened, which is the book of life: Rev 20:11; Enoch 47:3
4. And the sea gave up the dead, which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: Rev 20:13; Enoch 50:1.
5. And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: Rev 21:1; Enoch 92:17.
6. According to his good pleasure: Eph 1:9; Enoch 48:4.
7. Woe unto you who are Rich: Luke 6:24; Enoch 93:7.
8. Look for new heavens and a new earth: II Pet 3:13; Enoch 45:4.
9. Vengeance of God upon the rich
10. The Righteous shall become angels in heaven - Matt. 22:30; Enoch 50:4.
11. Ministers of Satan, and seduced those who dwell upon the earth
12. Lord of lords, and King of kings: Matt. 5:5: Enoch 9:3.
13. Cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness , to be reserved unto judgment.: II Peter 2:4; Enoch 10: 6-17.
14. Dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto: I Tim. 6:16; Enoch 14:23.
15. And the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands,: Rev. 5:11; Enoch 14:24.
16. They sacrifice to devils, and not to God: I Cor 10:20; Enoch 19:2.
17. To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of Life: Rev 22:2; Enoch 24:9.
18. Father of spirits; Heb 12:9; Enoch 37:1,2;38:2,4,6.
19. It had been good for that man if he had not been born.: Matt 26:24; Enoch 38:2.
20. The elect angels: I Tim 5:21; Enoch 39:1.
21. He hath put down the mighty from their seats: Luke 1:52; Enoch 46:4.
22. Well of water springing up into everlasting life: John 4:14; Enoch 48:1.
23. The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels: II Thess 1:7; Enoch 60:13.
24. The Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth: II Thess 2:8; Enoch 61:4.
25. They shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory: Matt 24:30; Rev 6:15; Enoch 61: 7-9.
26. God is no respecter of persons: Act 10:34; Rom 2:1;Eph 6:9; Col 3:25; Enoch 62:11.
27. Furnace of fire, everlasting fire, lake of fire: Matt 13:42; Matt 25:41; Rev 20:10; Enoch 66:5-7.
28. Committed all judgment unto the Son: John 5:22; Enoch 68:39
29. Those days shall be shortened: Matt 24:29; Enoch 79:3.
30. I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: Rev 9:1; Enoch 85:1.
31. Behold your house is left unto you desolate: Luke 13:35;Enoch 88:92.
32. And the books were opened: Rev 20:12; Enoch 89:29.
33. The New Jerusalem: Rev 3:12; Heb 12:22; Enoch 89:39.
34. Clothed in white raiment: Rev 3:5; Enoch 89:41.
35. Double-minded man: James 1:8; Enoch 90:5.
36. Children of Light: Eph 5:8; I Thess. 5:5; John 12:36; Luke 16:8; Enoch 105:25.
37. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne: Rev 3:21; Matt. 19:28; Enoch 105:26.
Jesus, during his ministry on earth used several spiritual concepts not found in any other Hebrew writing except the intertestament writings like the Book of Enoch. These concepts are the Coming Kingdom and the Judgment of the wicked.
It was Jude, the brother to Christ, who explicitly discusses the contents of the Book of Enoch when he wrote
“There are certain men in unawares who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God in lasciviousnes…. Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.” Jude 4, 12-13
Jude’s entire epistle was based around the Enochian theme and even quotes directly and refers to Enoch by name when he said,
Jude 14-15 - “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
In fact, it is Jon Paulien, who stated, “It is interesting to note that the earliest exponent of the apocalyptic view of the end portrayed it as the work of Enoch, who lived before the Flood.” (Ibid 71) It was this book, the Book of Enoch, in which more manuscript pieces were found in the archives of Qumran than any other extra canon inter-testament works and commentaries.
These Jewish apocalyptic writers brought with their writing two strong contrasting views of apocalyptic writings;
“First, was a strong sense of pessimism. The forces of evil have come so strong on the earth that the old world with its geography and history can no longer be transformed. A cosmic act of destruction is needed. The second point, and related to it, is there is a clean break between the present age and its history, and the future age; between good and evil, misery and blessedness. The old must be brought fully to an end before the new can come.” (Ibid 69)
This world view is found in the following writings.
“The Most High has made not one world but two.” (4Ezra 7:50 quoted in Ibid.65)
4Ezra 7:112-115, quoted in Ibid 65-66 - “This present world is not the end; the full glory does not abide in it; therefore those who were strong prayed for the weak. But the day of judgment will be the end of this age and the beginning of the immortal age to come, in which corruption has passed away, sinful indulgence has come to an end, unbelief has been cut off, and righteousness has increased and truth has appeared. Therefore no one will then be able to have mercy on him who has been condemned in the judgment, or to harm him who is victorious.”
The model for the Jewish apocalyptic total break between these two ages, according to the inter-testament authors is found in the Noachian flood story. (4 Ezra 3:8-11, 1 Enoch 10:1-18; 1 Sibylline Oracles.125-282, etc)
The old world must end before a new world is created. This is seen in the oracle in 4 Sibylline Oracles, which states,
4 Sibylline Oracles 171-192. quoted in Ibid 66-67) - “But if you do not obey me, evil-minded ones, but love impiety, and receive all these things with evil ears, there will be fire throughout the whole world, and a very great sign with sword and trumpet at the rising of the sun. The whole world will hear a bellowing noise and mighty sound. He will burn the whole earth, and will destroy the whole race of men and all cities and rivers at once, and the sea. He will destroy everything by fire, and it will be the unspeakable fire even as he kindled it, God himself will again fashion the bones and ashes of men and he will raise up mortals again as they were before. And then there will be a judgment over which God himself will preside, judging the world again. As many as sinned by impiety, these will a mound of earth cover, and broad Tartarus and the repulsive recesses of Gehenna. But as many as are pious, they will live on earth again when God gives spirit and life and favor to these pious ones. Then they will all see themselves beholding the delightful and pleasant light of the sun. Oh most blessed, whatever man will live to that time.”
Let us compare the 4th Book of the Sibylline Oracles with our commentary on Revelation 20-21.
“But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. (Rev. 20:7 part) – end of the millennium.
Revelation 19:15 - “Out of his (Messiah’s) mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. He will rule them with an iron scepter.
Once again, if Jesus, the Messiah will come with a sharp sword, heralded by the 7th Trumpet of God and arriving as a flash of lightning from the east (rising of the sun) to the west, whom will he rule with the iron scepter? Yet the following verse in context with the entire chapter of Isaiah 11, suggest that that there will be a time in which the whole earth will be destroyed, yet compared to Revelation, it will be after the millennium.
Revelation 20:11 - “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.”
Revelation 20:12 - “And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened.
If ‘earth and sky’ disappear from the presence of God, are these mortals transported alive in a rapture to the throne of God, or do they die and are resurrected to this awesome event. If the first resurrection occurred before the thousand years (Rev. 20: 5), then this must be a second resurrection, but not a second rapture.
Revelation 21:12 - “And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened.”
If they are dead, but standing, then the wicked and the righteous ones living in the millennial kingdom will be judged. How? According to their works, or “what he had done as recorded in the books.” (Rev. 20: 12)
Revelation 21:14 - “Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire.” (Rev. 20:14)
Revelation 12:1 - “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth.” (Rev. 21:1)
Then we come to this fascinating account of the end in the book of 4 Ezra:
4Ezra 7:26-34 quoted Ibid 67-68 - “For behold, the time will come, when the signs which I have foretold to you will come to pass; the city which now is not seen shall appear, and the land which now is hidden shall be disclosed. And everyone who has been delivered from the evils that I have foretold shall see my wonders. For my son the Messiah shall be revealed with those who are with him and those who remain shall rejoice four hundred years. And after these years my son the Messiah shall die, and all who draw human breath. And the world shall be turned back to primeval silence for seven days, as it was at the first beginning; so that no one roused, and that which is corruptible shall perish. And the earth shall give up those who are asleep in it; and the chambers shall give up the souls, which have been committed to them. And the Most High shall be revealed upon the seat of judgment, and compassion shall pass away, and patience shall be withdrawn, but judgment alone shall remain, truth shall stand and faithfulness shall grow strong.”
Let us now compare these passages in 4 Ezra with Zechariah and Revelation 20-21.
Are we now seeing the millennial restoration of Eden and a Jerusalem with an Ezekiel Temple built on the foundation of a new topography in the Land of Israel after the massive earthquake and cataclysmic rift changes in the Mount of Olives with a river cascading out of the southern part of the Temple going east to the Dead (not renewed) Sea and west to the Mediterranean Sea.
Jesus, the Zion of David, the King of Kings and now Lord of Lords will present Himself to His people and:
Zechariah 12:10 - ‘they will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son.
Revelation 19:11,13-15 - “Then I saw heaven wide open, and there before me was a white horse whose rider is called Faithful and True (Yeshua). With justice he judges and make war….and His name is the Word of God (John 1:1) The armies of heaven were following, riding on white horses, and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations (not all people). He will rule them with an iron scepter.
Zechariah 14:16 - “Then the survivors from all the nations that have attacked Jerusalem (Armageddon) will go up year after year to worship the King, the Lord Almighty, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles (Succot)”
Revelation 20:4,6 - “They came to life (martyred saints at the second coming of Jesus) and reigned with Christ a thousand years. ….The second death (immortal and will not die after the millennium) has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years.”
Revelation 20:11-12 - “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.
Before the final judgment before the Great White Throne, the earth and the heavens will vanish and disappear. Will our three dimensional world dematerialize? Will the four worlds of creation be restored to only Three Worlds of Creation? How long is the time while the earth and heaven flee from the presence of the Almighty One and the judgment when the ‘dead’ stand before the throne of God? Seven days literal or prophetic?
Satan will be thrown into the Lake of Fire before the earth and sky vanish from the presence of Great White Throne, yet death and Hades will not be destroyed until afterwards. The Lake of Fire must be inter-dimensional. On the other hand, it appears for the three dimensional world to disappear, all the inhabitances, including the righteous ones in the ‘city He loves’, Jerusalem will die.
Adventists presently believe that the New Jerusalem comes down at the end of the Millennium. Will the New Jerusalem flee also from the presence of God and re-materialize? According to Revelation, when the Great White Throne judgment is completed, death and Hades are thrown into the Lake of Fire, before the new heaven and the new earth are created and the New Jerusalem descend from the throne of God. Do we expect the immortal saints to die again? I doubt that, or they would not be immortal.
Will Jesus, as King of kings and the messiah also die again? This is a new concept yet it is not against a literal reading of Revelation.
Revelation 20:12,14 parts - “The dead were judged according to what they had done (by their works) as recorded in the books (book of life and death.) … 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 20:13 - “The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them.”
Revelation 20:11 - “Then I saw the Great White Throne and Him who was seated on it.”
About 150 AD, the Book of Enoch was written or compiled. Within this fascinating
book is a vision of ten (10) great ‘weeks’ or world eras, which appear to be a thousand years between each era. The seventh week of the ten weeks, seems to describe the end of the millennium is described as such:
1 Enoch 91:15-17 quoted in Ibid. 68-69 - “Then, after this matter, on the tenth week in the seventh part, there shall be the eternal judgment; and it shall be executed by the angels of the eternal heaven – the great (Judgment) which emanates from all of the angels. The first heaven shall depart and pass away; a new heaven shall appear; and all the powers of heaven shall shine forever sevenfold. Then after that there shall be many weeks without number forever; it shall be (a time) of goodness and righteousness, and sin shall no more be heard of forever.”
When we compare this passage with Revelation, we see the following.
If each week is 100 years, and each part 1000 years, then this passage would occur during year 7900 and 8000 or approximately close to the 8000 bench date for the end of the millennium.
Revelation 20:11-12 - “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.
The Archangels follow the decrees of the Almighty. They each represent an emanation from the lower seven Sefirot attributes of the World of the Divine. If God does the judging, it is reasonable the Angels execute the judgment. Remember the 7 Trumpet plagues (judgments) and the 7 Vial plagues (judgments) executed by mighty angels in Revelation.
The Book of Enoch from at least 150 B.C., pictures accurately the role of the Archangels in the Sefirot of the World of the Divine. They are each representations of separate emanations from God.
Revelation 20:11 - “Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no
place for them.”
Revelation 21:1 - “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea.”
With the addition of the progressive revelation of the inter-testament writers, we can now see the unfolding of the conceptual thought process within the Hebrew-Judaic culture about the end of times. There is every indication that the principles and models of all the Old Testament models of the end times including the Inter-testament and the Messianic apocalypse were included and imbedded within the framework of Jesus’ Olivet sermon on the End of Times, and John’s literal portrayal of the literal historical portrayal of how the End of Times would unfold.
Whereas Paulien suggested that the apocalyptic vision of the Jews suggesting that God’s intervention in three dimensional space with the arrival of the Messiah, would be delusional, because the Messianic Age of 400 years (or any other variation) did not occur in literal time and space. Obviously, there was no break in historical time either. Even so, Revelation, at the second coming of Jesus and before the 1000 years, does not support a complete break with literal historical time.
The historical documentation about the growth and development of the Jerusalem Nazorean Church under the leadership of James (Jacob) the Just, the brother of Jesus reveals that the center of ‘The Way’, the followers of Jesus, and the central Mother Church of the new embryonic Christian Gentile Church in Antioch was truly a Hebrew-Judaic, Torah observing, Temple worshipping, Festival observing believers in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
When James the Just was killed by stoning on the Temple courts and clubbed with a fuller’s club in 62 A.D., the central figure that united all the various factions in the Jewish social culture disappeared. According to Josephus, James was the central figure uniting the social core of Judaism. With James dead, the social fabric of Jewish culture began to rip apart and the end of Jewish national identity centering on the Temple of God on the Temple Mount began to disintegrate.
With the death of James the Just, Simeon ben Culpus (son of Cleophas) was nominated as the leaders of the Jerusalem Nazorean Synagogue (Church). According to Hegesippus, Simon was recognized as the first cousin of Jesus and Jacob (James), as his father Cleophas was the brother of Joseph, the father of Jesus. The hierarchy of the Jerusalem Nazorean Synagogue (Church) fled Jerusalem prior to the fall of the city and continued its leadership well into the era of Hadrian, after the destruction of the last vestige of Jewish Zealot resistance under Simon bar Kochba at Mosada.
If we are to consider seriously that idea that God abrogated his relationship with His Chosen People, the remnant of the Hebrew Judaic faith, the Jews with the stoning of Stephen, then our theology has a serious difference with the historical reality of the growth and development of the Christian Church.
Orthodox Roman theology with the ideology of “Replacement Theology with Spiritual Israel” came into existence after the fall of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. With the central base of spiritual authority gone in Jerusalem, other gentile Christian centers began to jockey to replace this center of authority. Over the centuries, the Roman gentile Church made its ascendancy with the theological corruptions that were associated with it as it sought to replace every vestige of Hebrew-Judaic philosophy.
Up to the time of Christ, we now have the following models on the End of Times as portrayed beautifully in Dr. Paulien’s book, What the Bible says about the End-Time. Let us review these models.
The story of Noah and the Flood is intimately associated with the story of Creation. In creation, the Spirit/Wind (Ruach –Heb., see Gen 1:2 and John 3:8) separated the waters from above the earth and from the water stored below the earth (Gen. 1:6-7) and made a distinction between the sea from the dry land. (Gen. 1:9-10)
In the Flood of Noah, this process of creation is reversed where the waters above the earth came down, and the waters under the earth came up and flooded the whole surface of the earth. “The Flood is described,” according to Paulien,
“as the reversal of Creation, as God removed the distinction that made like on earth possible.”…. “The end in the Flood story was the physical destruction of the planet and its subsequent physical restoration. Through the Flood the old world had given way to a new one. After the Flood the ecosystem was functioning again. God’s covenant with the human race was restored. Noah became a second Adam to that new creation. (Ibid 45,46)
So here are the principle features of the Noachian model:
As stated by Dr. Paulien, “Into that cursed world came a man named Abram (later Abraham). In that context God spoke to Abram: “Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” (Gen 12:1-3)
As Noah was a remnant of the anti-diluvian world before the Flood, so Abraham was a remnant of the world before human powers and agencies of man sought to assault God at the Tower of Babel.
Paulien continues, Moses’ view of the end was of a gradual, or “evolutionary” progress. The end would come not suddenly, “with a shout and the sound of a trumpet,” but in bits and pieces. As Israel obeyed, God would gradually restore Canaan until it became like the garden of the Lord. Through blessing, God would gradually undo he curse. The end would come within history. …Paradise could be restored.
Deuteronomy portrays a national view of the end. The nation is addressed as a whole. There is not concept of a remnant….” (Ibid. 52)
The prophetic view of the end of times came with the realization that Israel, as a national whole was doing a poor job of obeying the commands of the Lord. They were not Torah observant. The prophets envisioned a ‘triple transformation of reality” that would occur.
“The end that the prophets envisioned would come within history and geography, as they understood it…., it would begin with a sudden mighty intervention of God, usually described in the context of the exile…and God’s mighty intervention would precipitate the eschatological war, the last battle of earth’s history. Not only would God break into history to radically transform human society, human nature, and the natural world, but he would also clear the way for His people on earth through a great final war against their enemies. That war and its results would help set in motion the blessed end that Israel as a whole might have gained gradually by obedience, but did not.” (Ibid. 56)
“The apocalyptic view of the end clearly goes beyond that of the Old Testament. It is more than just a transformation of the earth, of its people, and society. There is a clear and distinct break between the present age and the heavenly age to follow. The old must be totally obliterated before the new can come.” (Ibid 67)
“The Jewish apocalyptic view of the end is characterized by two things that are in strong contrast with the prophetic eschatology. First, we find a strong sense of pessimism. The forces of evil have become so strong on the earth that the old world with its geography and history can no longer be transformed. A cosmic act of destruction is needed. The second point, and related to it, is that there is a clean break between the present age and its history, and the future age; between good and evil, misery and blessedness. The old must be brought fully to an end before the new can come.” (Ibid)
Dr. Paulien suggests that the incomplete pictures of the end of time as found in the Old and Inter Testaments era, we would find a completeness in the portrayal of the end times with the ministry and message of Jesus.
Let us look at the Olivet sermon. Bear in mind the context of this event. Jesus was speaking to Torah believing Jews, who lived and believed in all the principles of the Hebraic philosophy and theological way of life. His disciples then asked, “Tell us,” they said, ‘when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” In Matthew 24, we see the response of Jesus. Here is a quick summary.
Immediate after the distress of those days. (Time of Satan’s Wrath, the time of trouble), we will now see the Time of God’s wrath (Trumpet and Vial Plagues). (Matt. 24:29-
Jesus in his ministry was aware and spoke of the coming of one age and the passing of another age, as a process of time. In the Great Commission in Matthew 28:19,20, he states, “Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Dr. Paulien is correct in stating that, “The New Testament view of the end exhibits a consistent dynamic between the present and the future, the ‘now’ and the ‘not yet.” In another sense, however, the end is not yet – the old age is still here. (Ibid. 78)
Jesus in the Temple of the Lord, was confronted about his healing the man, surrounded by five magnificent colonnades, at the Pool of Bethesda near the Sheep’s Gate. It was here he gave a visual picture of two states of existence, on the Kingdom of God and the other a life in the flesh, when he stated,
John 5:24-25 - “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life (moved to a different state of existence). I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.”
It was Paul, (the great Pharisee, Rabbi Saul) who struggled with the here life and age and the after life and age. Paul was very well immersed in the concept of redemption by the Prophets and sought to purify and keep holy the religion of the Jews. When he was confronted on the road to Damascus with Jesus as an inter-dimensional being, he then began to realize that there was an alternate level of existence. Heaven was a lot closer than he expected. It was the Apostle Paul, according to Dr. Paulien, who came to the conclusion that ‘with the first advent of Christ, the new age had broken into or overlapped the old. The two ages would continue to exist side by side until the Second Advent, when the old age would finally be destroyed. Christians, therefore, live in two worlds at once. (Ibid. 77)
“It was the conviction of the New Testament writer that with the coming of the Messiah all the Jewish new age expectation is fulfilled to those who are in Jesus. It is not a fiction. Those who are in Christ get a real taste, a ‘down payment’, on the heavenly inheritance while still living in the real (three dimensional) world’ To taste the powers of the age to come is to set in motion a restlessness that remains until this mortal is swallowed up in immortality. (I Cor. 15:51-54) But one who has truly tasted the life of heaven will have no desire to remain in the old age, but will instead long for the redemption that is yet to come. (Rom 8:18-25) “ (Ibid. 79) Stated well, Paulien affirms, ‘the New Testament is not a Western book. It reflects the mind-set of Hebrew logic, in which opposite realities can both be true.” (Ibid. 80)
God) or is worshiped,(vs.4)
Principles Features of End Times according to Paul and the New Testament writers.
At this junction, Dr. Paulien takes a juncture that I feel misinterprets the real Biblical philosophy , at least according to the literal message of Revelation. To Dr. Paulien, “If the end has come in Christ and if all God’s promises to Israel are available in Christ, then the concept of Israel must be redefined. Anyone who is in relationship with Christ is as much ‘the seed of Abraham” as if he or she were related to Abraham by blood (Gal 3:29),
Galations 3:29 - “If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. (by adoption, which does not negate the heirs according to genetic birth.)
that which Old Testament Israel never accomplished, to be a blessing to the world.” (Gen. 12:3, Isa. 49:3-6).
Genesis 12:3 - “I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” - Gen. 12:3
Isaiah 49:3-6 - “He said to me, ‘You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will display my splendor.’ But I said, ‘I have labored to no purpose; I have spent my strength in vain and for nothing. Yet what is due me is in the Lord’s hand, and my reward is with my God. And now the Lord says, he who formed me in the womb to be his servant to bring Jacob back to him and gather Israel to himself, for I am honored in the eyes of the Lord and my God has been my strength. He says: ‘It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. I will make you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth.” - Isa. 49:3-6
“New Testament Israel would accomplish because of its relation to Christ” (cf. Luke 2:32, and Acts 13:46,47)
Luke 2:30-32 - Simeon at Jesus’ birth - “For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.”
Acts 13:46-47 - “Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly: ‘We had to speak the word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles. For this is what the Lord has commanded us: “I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.”
Let us analyze these texts carefully. To Israel, (Isa. 49:3-6) God said, ‘you are my servant, in whom I will display my splendor’….and ‘I will make you as a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth.” When will then be? It had to be future date to the time of the Prophet Isaiah.
Simeon, as revealed by God, stated that Jesus was to be “a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” (Luke 2:30-32). Yes, Jesus was to stand in place of Israel. Was it not Jesus, who stated over and over, “I have come to the ‘lost sheep of the tribe of Israel”
What is of interest, Jesus did not focus any of his ministry to the House of Judah. Outside of going to the festivals, as a Torah abiding Hebrew, and going to Jerusalem during his last Passover to complete his mission which ended in his death on the cross, Jesus spent all of his three and a half years of ministry in the land of the House of Israel, ministering to the remnant of the House of Israel, in Samaria, to the mixed multitude from the House of Israel, to Decapolis and other areas outside of Judea. Yes, he did minister to the Gentiles and for the ‘glory’ of his ‘people, Israel”. (Luke 2: 30-32).
In Pisidium Antioch, Paul, who was half Jew and half Roman Gentile, along with Barnabus, who was a Jewish Cypriot, spoke to the people of Pisidium, addressing them,
Acts 13:46-47 - “Men of Israel and you Gentiles who worship God, listen to me! (vs 16) Many of these Jews became followers of Jesus, yet non-believing Jews the next week provoked the following statement, “We had to speak the word of God to you (Jews) first. Since you (non-believing Jews) reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles. For this is what the Lord has commanded us: “I have made you (Paul and Barnabus) a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.”
The question needs to be asked, Was God speaking to the Gentile Christians to be the ‘light’, or was He speaking to Paul and Barnabus as to what their commission was to be? It is my opinion, this does not refer to “Spiritual Israelites”, but was specific to Paul and Barnabus. For what reason is it important that we, ‘Gentile Christians’ need to think we are ‘someone’, who we are not, in order to feel important or spiritually blessed? The Apostle of Paul speaks eloquently about the “Adopted sons of God” as an inclusive feature in the family of God.
The family of God includes House of Judah, the House of Israel
and the adopted sons of the Gentiles.
Romans 9;3-5 (NEB) - ‘brothers, my natural kinsfolk, They are Israelites: they were made God’s sons (‘adoption of God’s sons NIB); theirs is the splendor of the divine presence, theirs the covenants, the law, the temple worship, and the promises. Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them, in natural descent, sprang the Messiah. May God, supreme above all be blessed forever! Amen.
Yes, Israel was made God’s ‘first born son’ (Exodus 4:22) Yes, even this was by adoption for the Lord said, “I will adopt you as my people, and I will become your God.” (Exodus 6:7) It was Israel and not Spiritual Gentile Israel that the Lord said,
Deuteronomy 7:6 - “you are a people holy to the Lord your God; the Lord your God chose you out of all nations on earth to be his special possession.”
It would appear the Lord is trying to say something. Israel was God’s first adopted son. Israel was chosen as God’s ‘special possession’. Yet being chosen by God is not the same as being the only ones saved. In fact, there is no suggestion that we must become one of the tribes of Israel (Natural Branches) to be saved, neither does it suggest that the Houses of Judah and Israel must become gentile (Grafted branches) to be saved. Truly salvation by God, comes from where we are. Yet, there are requirements to become adopted sons of God. The Children of Israel were given all the requirements:
Romans 9:3-5 - “Theirs is the adoption as sons; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the Law (Mosaic Law), the Temple worship, and the promises (promise of a future nation ruled by a Messiah ben David in a renewed land of Eden) Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God (We will later learn that Jesus is the Keter (Crown) over the all the Worlds of Creation) over all, forever praised! Amen.”
It was Jesus, the Word made flesh, the Torah in flesh, the most complete physical representation of the Sefirot capable of being brought to our three dimensional world and put in flesh, who showed us the “Way”. Jesus lived a Hebrew life, practiced the true spirit of the covenants, and not only followed the letter of the Law, showed His brethren the true spirit of the Law. He was the fulfillment of the types and anti-type of the Temple liturgy and the festivals of the Hebrews. He also turned time forward (moved out of time) and prophetically showed a portrayal of the End of Times, the same prophetic picture established in the festivals on Mount Sinai.
Searching for a Model of the Time of the End inclusive of the House of Judah, the House of Israel (Joseph/Ephraim) and Gentiles as adopted, or grafted, sons of God.
Let us first reframe our initial assumptions.
Let us now review all of these different models before trying to blend them together in an “Inclusive” rather than an “Exclusive” Time of the End model.
Principle features of the Noachian model:
Jesus and the Time of the End.
Principle features of Jesus’ portrayal of the time of the end.
Immediate after the distress of those days. (Time of Satan’s Wrath, the time of trouble), we will now see the Time of God’s wrath. (Matt. 24:29-
Principles Features of the time of the end according to Paul and the New Testament writers.
The early believers in the Great Awakening were literal believers and students of Biblical interpretation. The End of Time was a ‘Present Truth’ experience. As they struggled with the events of the world in their era, they anchored into real life experiences that was present in their ‘modern’ historical experiences, the Lisbon earthquake, the falling of the stars, the moon turning to blood. All of these events occurred within 35 years of the time that they were studying and searching the scriptures. The Land of Israel and the nation of Israel was not even considered in their minds in reference to the End of Time geopolitics, because there was not any consideration of a Jewish return to the Land of Israel. Israel was a nomadic wasteland outside of all political or religious concern.
Yet, it is of interest, the early Millerites appealed to the Karitite Jews to help in their understanding of the Hebrew understanding of the Festival of the Day of Atonement, which the Millerites felt represented in a future application to the Second Coming of Jesus. Their dating of October 23, 1844, was dependent upon an understanding of the beginning the Jewish Lunar Calendar based on the ripening of the barley and the sighting of the New Moon before the first month of Abib could begin. That year, 1844, the ripening of the barley was delayed a month and therefore the usual September dating for the Day of Atonement was delayed until the month of October.
The early believers of the Advent movement appeared to have a greater respect and understanding of the Jewish festivals and their application than we do today. Consider the fact that the Millerites referenced the Day of Atonement as a type of the still future second coming of Jesus and the casting of Satan into the Abyss in comparison with the casting into the wilderness pit the goat which carried the sins of the camp of Israel.
Consider also, the next feast, the Feast of Tabernacles, Succot, is stated to have millennial applications (most Adventists claim it to be New Earth and post millennial applications) to the day when Jesus will come and dwell ‘tabernacle’ with his people.
It could be fair to say that in its early embryonic days, Seventh-day Adventists were closer akin to their spiritual forefathers, the New Testament church than modern Seventh-day Adventists are today. Why? Today, we have a great tendency to spiritualize our theological interpretations of the Bible and to become apologetics for the Institutional Church rather than apologetics for Jesus the Christ, the fullest revelation of His Father, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. With the charges of being a cult and not a Christian religion, there has in recent years been a tendency to drift back towards the philosophical foundation of Orthodox Roman Christianity as opposed to the Hebrew-Judaic foundation of the Apostolic Jerusalem Church.
Let us make one assumption, God will honor his word and as such all models on the end of times are pieces and fragments of the whole picture. With this conclusion, neither the New Testament nor the Old Testament supercede each other. The only aspect of a conditional prophecy is that the generation to which it was originally made would not benefit in the blessings of God.
The Israelites as being a “chosen people’ suggest that they have a special role, but exclusive rights to salvation is not a part of being chosen. Since they were given rights to the Land, the place of creation, the garden and the Temple of God, suggests that at this spot on earth, God anchors the Sefirot of all creations unto literal earth. The Children of Israel were to guard, protect and keep this land sacred and hallowed. It will be their role in the millennial kingdom, under the rulership of Jesus, to restore the sacredness of the land and the sacredness of Torah.
With all of these models, we now can reach a composite model of the time of the end, when the final Drama of the Ages while be fulfilled as the final act in the Great Controversy between Christ and Satan and Jesus returns as King of kings and Lord of lords in the final days before the millennium. I invite you to click on the Panorama of the Conflict of the Ages below.