REVIEWING THE FALL HOLY DAYS OF GOD: (listen)
Greetings brethren and friends, I hope your fall Holy Days have started off well. I am beginning this quick and short bible study, as we are already past the festival of Trumpets for 2018 and are now looking for the Day of Atonement. We have begun the fall Holy Day season and Atonement, a day of fasting, is next in the plan of God. However, with all of the division and sometimes utter confusion that is now going on in the many COG groups of Laodicea over one thing after another, (as well as some points of biblical truth on the Holy Days themselves) I feel I am being prompted to do this study, so I have some questions for you to start thinking about.
Are we all even ready for the fall Holy Days and understand what they picture, if we cannot even agree with Scripture on them? Sometimes little details can become Hugh for some—like mountains—if we are confused about where to place them. Do we remember that every festival has a definite start point and that they are all separate? Do we remember there are seven annual Holy Days and seven festivals and they are not all the same thing? Some of this confusion stems from people interpreting for themselves what the Scriptures say, as well as getting confused on what HWA taught about them.
However, this study is only about the fall Holy Days and what they picture, step by step in the plan, according to Scripture. Here is an example of where I am going with this; does the Kingdom of God and the millennial (or 1000 year) rule start at the same time? Some are confused on these points. Another point; Does the 1000 year rule even last a full thousand years, seems to now be the thinking, teaching and discussion of some. This I have heard with my own ears from a few sources and some personal discussion. So when does the Kingdom start, also the 1000 year rule and does the release of Satan occur in the end of the 1000 years just before it is over or is it after? We will answer those questions and more in just a few minutes from Scripture, with this review.
With the Feast of Trumpets (The first day of the seventh month on the Hebrew calendar) just a few days past now, which started the fall Holy Day season, my purpose with this review is to simply remind you listeners of what the fall Holy Days picture, step by step as they are presented in Scripture. You may have already heard some things hard to grasp this season, when comparing that to Scripture, so I will read from the book of Revelation and elsewhere, plus give other passages to look at, which tell us about these definite start points. We will not see every detail, because there are many, but enough to know what the Scriptures teach and they do not contradict each other, EVER.
Sometimes today, in the scattered COG realm, people are left wondering if God really means what He says and says what He means in particular passages. WHY does this happen?? Because many explain these things differently, depending on where you attend, and may tell you something different than just a reading of the Scriptures reveal. Is God consistent, is what we must ask ourselves, saying what He means and meaning what He says? James 1:17 tells us that “with (God) there is no variation or shadow of turning”.
So, if He does not mean that with everything given, then what can we put faith in and how can we even believe the bible? Christ said in His prayer to the Father; “Sanctify them by your truth, (Talking to His disciples) your Word is truth” (John 17:17) So we must believe in God’s Word and are not set apart by what men teach of themselves and in certain organizations, deviating or going off into speculation from Scriptural revelation. We can rely on God, as He cannot lie, (Titus1:2) and we are to obey God rather than men. (Acts 5:29) So let’s answer the question as we begin to review the recorded events;
When does the Kingdom come?
Christ’s return brings the resurrection of the saints, as we all should know, meeting Him in the air. (Acts 1:9-11, Rev.1:7, 1Thess. 4:16-17 & 1Cor.15:52) and that is the beginning of the kingdom—Rev.11:15—as He returns when the last Trumpet is blown. Let us read that last verse from the ASV; Rev 11:15 “And the seventh angel sounded; (Blew his Trumpet) and there followed great voices in heaven, and they said, the kingdom of the world is become (the kingdom) of our Lord, and of his Christ: and he shall reign for ever and ever.” That is the beginning of the Kingdom being set up, the Family of God now having been born and joined with Christ. The NIV says this in V.17 "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.” Here the KJ & NKJ have added in the phrase “who is to come” and that is dismissed, because at this point in time He is already come with the angels blowing of the seventh trumpet.
But now to another question;
Is that the beginning of the 1000 year or millennium rule also?
NOT YET! We see from other passages, such as –Matt.13:41 & 49, for example— something that happens before the 1000 years begin, but after the Kingdom is established. Read these in your bible. At this point we need to recall the time frame between this event and the binding of Satan, or Atonement. The seven last plagues are also being poured out, which are contained in the seventh trumpet and begin to be opened after it has sounded Christs return. Other Scriptures reveal this is to occur. Note Rev.15:1 for example. (Read that in your bible)
So, moving on; after that takes place, Atonement comes and Satan is bound, but let us read a little about that now. Rev 20:1-2 “Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; NKJV (See the article Binding Satan for more)
This is where the 1000 year rule or millennium starts.
Let us be clear, the kingdom of God starts before this, as Christ returns and we have seen. What did HWA say on this; “This is the first resurrection,” refers to the resurrection of the righteous dead in Christ just before the 1000 years.” (Old CC. lesson 39)
Then the last plagues are poured out as Christ subdues the nations. They are contained within the seventh trumpet. Many Scriptures reveal this, but now the 1000 year rule has begun with Satan being bound. That is the point. God’s Word says he is put away for a thousand years. Let us notice something about that. V.3 says; “he (the angel) cast him (Satan) into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. (NIV says “until the thousand years were ended.” ASV says; “should be finished”—so going on, but after these things he must be released for a little while.” NKJ and others say a short time or little season. The point I want to emphasis here is that it is after the 1000 years have ended, before Satan is loosed.
Let us note; Rev 20:4—KJV says; “I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.” This typifies the festival of tabernacles and its seven days.
Vines expository dictionary says this is from “chilioi” NT:5507, (meaning) "a thousand," and the Hebrew dictionary of biblical words has the same meaning, so is that really a full thousand years? Let us notice this in connection with this time frame; 2 Peter 3:8 which says “But, beloved, do not forget (yet that is exactly what some are doing) so do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” Now what about any day of the week, especially the weekly Sabbath, which is a day as a type of the 1000 year rule—the feast of tabernacles—which begins with Satan being bound? Does that end before the thousand years has ended, as some are now indicating? Is the devil loosed in the end of the millennium before it is over? Some are now saying he is—but again, what about that and what do the Scriptures reveal? As we all should know, the Sabbath goes from sunset to sunset—it is not over until the day is over. And according to what we have just read, that would be 1000 years. The beginning of the Great white throne judgement is after Satan is loosed and then put away, so when is that? Do the 1000 years end before this release according to Scripture?
Is there a little bit of time after the 1000 years end and before the judgement starts?
What did HWA teach on this point? Notice again from the old C.C. and lesson 39, emphasis mine; “This resurrection-after the 1000 years are finished-is the second resurrection in time order.” (Here the lesson talks of the 2nd resurrection specifically, being after the 1000 years, but now note what is said next;)
3. “Just after the 1000 years are over, does Satan, loosed from the prison of restraint where he has been kept during the Millennium, go out to do just as he has always done?”
HWA Taught what the Scriptures reveal on this. The 1000 years are over before Satan is released. Let us just read on in verse 7; Rev 20:7 in the NIV says; “When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison” Other translation use the word finished or expired, for the 1000 years, which all come from this one Greek word; teleo, meaning to end or finish. The word EXPIRE (from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright (c)1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers) says; “In Rev 20:7, the KJV "are expired" translates the verb teleo, "to finish".” That is what the ASV translation has for this and Strong’s definition has this same word teleo NT:5055 meaning; “to end, ie. complete, execute, conclude, discharge” (Biblesoft's New Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright (c) 1994, Biblesoft and International Bible Translators, Inc.)
So there is no doubt in my mind, this is the same as HWA once taught; Satan being loosed is not a part of that 1000 year time! I hope that bit of falsehood has not lodged in your mind that the devil is released earlier than what the Scriptures say. When the 1000 years have ended, something else is about to begin however, and that is Satan being loosed for that little season. You can read of what happens at this point and in this “little season”; V.8-10 in your own bible. He is then put away, and now we are ready for the next and final step in God’s plan. 7000 years have now passed since the creation of mankind in the Garden of Eden.
NOW THE JUDGMENT!
Immediately after that event is done begins the Great white throne judgement, which is the Eighth day mentioned in Lev.23: 36 & 39. (See the Booklet on this website by that same title for more about that.)
Are we really ready then? If we do as the Bereans did (Acts 17:11) and prove all things (1Thess.5:21) shows from Scripture, holding fast to truth and being COMITTED to TRUTH in belief, then we will be. Rev.19:7 tell us the Spiritual Organism—the elect—Christ’s wife, will have made herself/themselves ready. No one can do that my friends and still be in disagreement with the word of God on the time element taught from Scripture for each fall festival—or any festival for that matter. God has definitely set a time frame for His creation to have salvation and all we have to do is believe what He says about it.
So in conclusion:
I have obviously left out a lot of details, on each of these Holy Days; but we have seen in this review that the Kingdom of God begins with the return of Christ and the resurrection of the saints at the last Trump. Immediately after that the seven last plagues are poured out, Christ removes all things that offend from His kingdom—then we come to the time for the devil to be bound, pictured by the Day of Atonement. That starts the 1000 year rule by Christ and the saints. The devil stays bound for the entire 1000 years, portrayed by the feast of Tabernacles and stated several times as being a thousand years. When that is over then Satan is released for a little season. After that, he is put away for good and then the great white throne judgement begins, (Called the Last Great Day in most of the COG) typifying the Eighth Day and last festival of the yearly cycle.
I hope everyone has safe travel and a joyous fall Holy Day season this year. Let us remember these clear points and not get off track with other ideas, as some are now allowing to happen to them. This year may be a turning point for many, so may we all hold fast to what the Scriptures reveal and strive to get back on track with God, wherever we attend all through the coming years ahead.