At the end of our last installment in the Book of Revelation, I promised to
tell you where in Israel the
will be located. So let's get started
with a little review.
According to Prophecies in Daniel 9:27, Matt 24:15
and 2 Thes 2:4, a Temple
will exist in Israel
at the beginning of the Great Tribulation. This is confirmed
in Revelation 11:1 by having John measure a Temple and count the worshippers there
shortly before the Tribulation begins.
He's told to omit the outer court because it's been given over to the
Gentiles. Its location is the "Holy City"
which will be trampled on by the Gentiles for 42 months, the length of the
Great Tribulation. Chapter 11 also
introduces the 2 witnesses who preach in the "Great City"
and are ultimately killed there, their bodies left lying in the street. The Great City
is identified as the place where the Lord was crucified: Jerusalem. It's been trampled on by the
Gentiles for 2000 years. Are the Holy City and the Great City
the same or different?
According to Zechariah 14:6-9, on the day of the Lord's return an
earthquake will split the Mt. of Olives in two along an East-West line that creates a
great valley through the center of Jerusalem.
Immediately a river will fill the valley creating a waterway from the
Mediterranean to the Dead Sea. If the Lord
returns to the same area of the Mt. of
Olives from which He left, as
suggested by Acts 1:11, the earthquake creating this East-West
valley will destroy the current Temple
mount and anything that may be standing upon it.
Ezekiel 47:1-12 describes a great river flowing from under
the south side of the Temple and then eastward
to the Dead Sea during a period of time that
most scholars believe has not occurred yet. Revelation 22:1-2
confirms this. If as it appears, Ezekiel, Zechariah, and Revelation all
describe the same river, then an interesting scenario begins to emerge.
This scenario requires a Temple to be present
on the day the Lord returns, but since the current Temple
mount will have been destroyed by the earthquake mentioned above, this Temple must be somewhere
else. The river originates under the Temple and
flows from its south side in a southerly direction before heading East and
West, so the Temple
must be north of the newly created valley.
Where Are The 12 Tribes?
Plotting the land grants for the 12 tribes given in the 48th chapter of
Ezekiel on a map of Israel
places the precincts of the Holy City somewhat north of the current City of Jerusalem. This new
location is the ancient City of Shiloh,
where the Tabernacle stood for nearly 400 years after the Israelites first
conquered the Land. This is the Holy
City and its name is
Jehovah Shammah according to the last verse in
Ezekiel. The Hebrew translates "the LORD is here."
If my interpretation is accurate, this location would meet all the
requirements for the Temple
mentioned in the above references. The current Temple
Mount in Jerusalem would not.
According to Ezekiel 44:6-9, this Temple will have been defiled in a way never
seen in history, therefore at a time yet future to us. A foreigner un-circumsized in heart (neither Christian) and flesh (nor
Jewish) will have been given charge of the sanctuary while offering sacrifices.
If we understand the chronology of Ezekiel, this will have taken place after
both the 1948 re-gathering prophesied in 36-37 and the
national wake-up call prophesied in 38-39 but before the Millennial Kingdom begins. The only event we know
of that fits the time frame is the Great Tribulation. This is confirmed by
Paul's prophecy of 2 Thes. 2:4 where the anti-Christ sets himself up in the Temple proclaiming
himself to be god.
Here then is a rough outline of events. Following Israel's return to God after the
battle of Ezekiel 38-39, the Jewish people will re-establish
their covenant (Old not New) with Him. This will require a return to Levitical practices and so a Temple will be built. This is the Temple spoken of in
Daniel and Revelation. Following instructions given by Ezekiel and needing to
avoid the enormous problems a Jerusalem
Temple would create in the Moslem world, this Temple will be
located north of Jerusalem in Shiloh.
It will be defiled in the middle of the last 7 years as outlined in Daniel
9:24-27, Ezekiel 44:6-9, Matt 24:15
and 2 Thes 2:4 kicking off the Great
Tribulation, but it won't be destroyed.
will be the source of the living water that begins flowing on the day the Lord
returns (Zech 14:8). After a cleansing and re-dedication
similar to the one memorialized in the Feast of Hanukkah, it will be used
during the Millennium. It's purpose will be to recall the Lord's work at the cross
and provide the perspective for children born during the Kingdom Age to choose
15:14-16 confirms that after the Lord has chosen a people from among
the gentiles for Himself (the church) He will return and re-build David's
fallen Tabernacle (the Temple).
This is the Third
Temple, so vividly
described in Ezekiel 40-48.
Now let's get back to Revelation.
The Seventh Trumpet
The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were
loud voices in heaven, which said: "The kingdom of the world has become
the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and
And the twenty-four elders, who were seated on their
thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, saying: "We
give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, because you
have taken your great power and have begun to reign. The nations were angry;
and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead, and for
rewarding your servants the prophets and your saints and those who reverence
your name, both small and great— and for destroying those who destroy the
earth." (Rev. 11:15-18)
One of the names for God is an expansion of the great "I AM" declaration of Exodus
3:14. Remember, Moses wanted to know
God's name in case the Israelites asked him when he went to Egypt to
deliver them from slavery. God replied,
"Tell them that I AM has sent you." John has used this name earlier,
translated as "the One who is, and who was, and who is to come." (Rev. 1:4) Notice how the "who is to come"
part has been left out of this passage. That's because with the 7th
Trumpet the future has arrived. The Lord
has taken up the Kingdom that He bought and paid for at the cross, and is now
set to claim it. (Some translations put the "is to come" phrase back
into verse 17, but it's not there in the Greek text.)
Then God's temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen
the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a great hailstorm.
(Rev. 11:19) More of
God's signature warnings of impending judgment. In Heaven the Great Tribulation has begun,
and the first order of business is to get the enemy out of there.
A great and wondrous sign appeared in heaven: a woman
clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars
on her head. She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give
birth. (Rev. 12:1-2) The fact that John identifies her as a sign
means the woman's not real but stands for something else. And the something else is Israel. We get hints of this from Genesis 37:9-10
where Joseph dreams that his family are the sun, the
moon and 11 stars, he being the 12th one. And as we'll see in a moment, this woman is
about to give birth to the Messiah, which makes it impossible for her to be the
church, as some insist. The Church is the virgin Bride of Christ, not
His pregnant mother.
Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red
dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads. His tail
swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The
dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that he
might devour her child the moment it was born. She gave birth to a son, a male
child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. And her child was
snatched up to God and to his throne. The woman fled into the desert to a place
prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days. (Rev.
12:3-6) This sign's an easy one. The
dragon is the one who led a rebellion in Heaven that resulted in 1/3 of the
angelic host joining with him. He tried
to destroy the Messiah, but God resurrected Him and took Him to Heaven. When they see that the dragon is coming back
to destroy them, Israel heeds the Lord's warning from Matt. 24:15 and
escapes into the Jordanian desert where the Lord had prepared a hiding place for
them, while He spends 3 ½ years getting the Earth ready for His return.
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. (Rev. 13:7-9) Satan's on the run now. No longer allowed in heaven, he's been cast
to earth as foretold in Isaiah 14:12 and Ezekiel 28:17. Some incorrectly teach that this happened
long ago, at Satan's judgment. But as Job
1:6-7 and verse 10 below clearly explain, Satan's had access to heaven all
along. He was divested of his titles and
of his prominent position at his judgment, but until now he's been allowed to
come and go. And when he does, he
whispers his accusations against you and I in God's
ear. Whenever I think of this, I take
comfort from the fact that our Lord Jesus is whispering in God's other ear,
making intercession for us. (Romans 8:34)
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
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."
(Rev. 13:10-12) Notice that as the Lord had done in Rev. 3:10
John distinguished between those who dwell in Heaven and the Earth dwellers.
It's not just due to our different physical locations, but is an indication of
the state of our hearts. For the Church
in Heaven Satan's impending defeat is greeted with rejoicing, but on Earth it's
a time of great woe because the war's come home to them. Another
hint of the pre-trib rapture.
The Kingdom that Satan lost at his rebellion and judgment, and later stole
back from the man to whom it had been given (Adam) has become the battleground
for the most incredible contest in history.
Spiritual forces on both sides line up unseen behind their human
counterparts. They'll battle to the
death for control of Planet Earth. Will
the usurper who has put it to the torch and sword, laying waste to the very
thing he's fighting for, finally prevail?
Or will the Kinsman Redeemer, whose shed blood has legally redeemed what
Adam had lost so long ago, carry the day?
We'll soon see, but first there's one last troublesome detail to
handle. Ever since the beginning, Satan
has been trying to wipe out every trace of God's people, for they hold the
power to call forth the Redeemer.
When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the
woman who had given birth to the male child. The woman was given the two wings
of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the
desert, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out
of the serpent's reach. Then from his mouth the serpent spewed water like a
river, to overtake the woman and sweep her away with the torrent. But the earth
helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that the dragon
had spewed out of his mouth. Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went
off to make war against the rest of her offspring—those who obey God's
commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus. (Rev. 13:13-17)
After His rejection and death, the Lord went back to Heaven, where He had come
from. He vowed to stay there until His
people acknowledged their sin. He knew
that things would have to get pretty rough before they'd humble themselves
enough to call Him back, but that eventually they would. (Hosea 5:15-6:2)
In the meantime, if Satan can wipe them out, there won't be anyone left to
And so it's been. Using the Moslems,
the Christians, the Spaniards, the Russians, the Germans, the Italians, the
English, and now the Moslems again Satan has been obsessed with ridding the
world of its Jewry. He knows that if he
can accomplish this before they wake up and call on the Name of Jesus, he's
When he brings Gog and Magog
in a sneak attack, he will almost succeed, but God will intervene and save
them. Astonishingly this will turn them
back to Him, but still blinded to their Messiah. Here Satan's using a torrent
of water, like God had used against his hybrid warriors 5000 years earlier, but
the Earth cooperates with its Creator and swallows up the water. The Jews are
safe once again. Furious, Satan turns on
the Tribulation Saints. More next time.