Christian Churches of God
The Messages of Revelation 14
(Edition 2.0 19981114-20080514)
The messages of the four angels of Revelation 14 are important to the lead-up to the coming of the Messiah. They hold great significance for the message, direction and thrust of the Church in the Last Days.
The Messages of Revelation 14
Revelation 14 has four explicit messages, which relate to the coming of the Messiah and the activities of the Church under the direction of God through Jesus Christ and the spiritual servants God has given to him.
A fifth message concerns the wrath of God at His return.
The first section involves the 144,000 who appear on Mount Zion.
Revelation 14:1-7 Then I looked, and lo, on Mount Zion stood the Lamb, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads. 2And I heard a voice from heaven like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder; the voice I heard was like the sound of harpers playing on their harps, 3and they sing a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and before the elders. No one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from the earth. 4It is these who have not defiled themselves with women, for they are chaste; it is these who follow the Lamb wherever he goes; these have been redeemed from mankind as first fruits for God and the Lamb, 5and in their mouth no lie was found, for they are spotless. 6Then I saw another angel flying in midheaven, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those who dwell on earth, to every nation and tribe and tongue and people; 7and he said with a loud voice, "Fear God and give him glory, for the hour of his judgment has come; and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the fountains of water." (RSV)
This message is twofold. It refers to the 144,000 taken out and given to Messiah and these stand with him on Mount Zion. At first glance it looks as though they are all with him at one time and that this point refers to the end time in Jerusalem. The time-frame actually involves the sequence of time from the commencement of the prophecy in Isaiah 61:1-2 in 27 CE and the end at the second advent or coming of Messiah.
Isaiah 61:1-2 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good tidings to the afflicted; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; 2to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; (RSV)
From the text of the KJV we see that this is termed the Acceptable Year of the Lord, which is a reference to the Jubilee. This prophecy was actually fulfilled in 27 CE after the temptation in the wilderness, following on from Christ’s baptism.
Luke 4:16-21 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up; and he went to the synagogue, as his custom was, on the sabbath day. And he stood up to read; 17and there was given to him the book of the prophet Isaiah. He opened the book and found the place where it was written, 18"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, 19to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord." 20And he closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant, and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21And he began to say to them, "Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing." (RSV)
In this text he spoke also from Isaiah 58:6, which was a compound of the two texts. (All the texts omit the words to heal the broken hearted found in the KJV; cf. The Companion Bible fn. to text.)
From this point, in fulfilling prophecy, he also declared the Jubilee. This text concerning the Acceptable Year of the Lord is a direct reference to the Jubilee (cf. Lev. 25:8-17). There is also a question in these texts of Judgment, which carries through to the texts in Rev. 16:7; 18:10; 19:2).
We have seen that the Jubilee system can be identified from Scripture, from two Old Testament texts also. The first is in Ezekiel 1:1 where the thirtieth year is placed as the fifth year of Jehoiakin’s captivity. This text is a little confusing as we are dealing with an Adar 2 and thus the year can be mistaken easily.
The second reference is found in the reading of the law with Ezra and Nehemiah. To understand the text and time-frame correctly, the history of the reconstruction of the Temple must be understood and the reading placed in the correct year. This entire matter has been examined in the papers: The Sign of Jonah and the History of the Reconstruction of the Temple (No. 013); The Meaning of Ezekiel's Vision (No. 108); and Reading the Law with Ezra and Nehemiah (No. 250).
These timings when placed in context of 27 CE show that this was indeed the Jubilee and Christ was fulfilling the prophecy of Isaiah 61.
However, the passage in Revelation 14:7 refers to the section in Isaiah that Christ did not quote and goes on to the time of the end. In understanding the terms and the actions of the text, we need to look at what Christ said and the texts of the OT from which he drew his examples.
Luke 4:22-30 And all spoke well of him, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth; and they said, "Is not this Joseph's son?" 23And he said to them, "Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, `Physician, heal yourself; what we have heard you did at Caper'na-um, do here also in your own country.'" 24And he said, "Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his own country. 25But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Eli'jah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when there came a great famine over all the land; 26and Eli'jah was sent to none of them but only to Zar'ephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. 27And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Eli'sha; and none of them was cleansed, but only Na'aman the Syrian." 28When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. 29And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. 30But passing through the midst of them he went away. (RSV)
They were angry because in these two examples he was showing that Christ was declaring salvation to be of the Gentiles. Both examples refer to the Church as we will see. The first example refers to the Sidonian woman blessed by Elijah. The second refers to the leper Naaman, the Syrian, who was healed by Elisha by faith.
2Kings 5:1-27 Na'aman, commander of the army of the king of Syria, was a great man with his master and in high favor, because by him the LORD had given victory to Syria. He was a mighty man of valor, but he was a leper. 2Now the Syrians on one of their raids had carried off a little maid from the land of Israel, and she waited on Na'aman's wife. 3She said to her mistress, "Would that my lord were with the prophet who is in Sama'ria! He would cure him of his leprosy." 4So Na'aman went in and told his lord, "Thus and so spoke the maiden from the land of Israel." 5And the king of Syria said, "Go now, and I will send a letter to the king of Israel."So he went, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold, and ten festal garments. 6And he brought the letter to the king of Israel, which read, "When this letter reaches you, know that I have sent to you Na'aman my servant, that you may cure him of his leprosy." 7And when the king of Israel read the letter, he rent his clothes and said, "Am I God, to kill and to make alive, that this man sends word to me to cure a man of his leprosy? Only consider, and see how he is seeking a quarrel with me." 8But when Eli'sha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes, he sent to the king, saying, "Why have you rent your clothes? Let him come now to me, that he may know that there is a prophet in Israel."
There was little faith in Israel and the king considered that this was being used by Syria as a pretext for war.
9So Na'aman came with his horses and chariots, and halted at the door of Eli'sha's house. 10And Eli'sha sent a messenger to him, saying, "Go and wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored, and you shall be clean." 11But Na'aman was angry, and went away, saying, "Behold, I thought that he would surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and wave his hand over the place, and cure the leper. 12Are not Aba'na and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Could I not wash in them, and be clean?" So he turned and went away in a rage.
Most people consider they are more important than others and the simple things are beneath them. Naaman expected a dramatic challenge because he saw his affliction in that way. The solution for the cleansing of all men was simple, and lay in the healing waters of Israel in the baptism of the Spirit of God through Messiah.
13But his servants came near and said to him, "My father, if the prophet had commanded you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much rather, then, when he says to you, `Wash, and be clean'?" 14So he went down and dipped himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God; and his flesh was restored like the flesh of a little child, and he was clean. 15Then he returned to the man of God, he and all his company, and he came and stood before him; and he said, "Behold, I know that there is no God in all the earth but in Israel; so accept now a present from your servant." 16But he said, "As the LORD lives, whom I serve, I will receive none." And he urged him to take it, but he refused. 17Then Na'aman said, "If not, I pray you, let there be given to your servant two mules' burden of earth; for henceforth your servant will not offer burnt offering or sacrifice to any god but the LORD. 18In this matter may the LORD pardon your servant: when my master goes into the house of Rimmon to worship there, leaning on my arm, and I bow myself in the house of Rimmon, when I bow myself in the house of Rimmon, the LORD pardon your servant in this matter." 19He said to him, "Go in peace."
Many of us, as slaves of this world’s system, are required to be placed in situations that we would not be in of our own volition.
But when Na'aman had gone from him a short distance, 20Geha'zi, the servant of Eli'sha the man of God, said, "See, my master has spared this Na'aman the Syrian, in not accepting from his hand what he brought. As the LORD lives, I will run after him, and get something from him." 21So Geha'zi followed Na'aman. And when Na'aman saw some one running after him, he alighted from the chariot to meet him, and said, "Is all well?" 22And he said, "All is well. My master has sent me to say, `There have just now come to me from the hill country of E'phraim two young men of the sons of the prophets; pray, give them a talent of silver and two festal garments.'" 23And Na'aman said, "Be pleased to accept two talents." And he urged him, and tied up two talents of silver in two bags, with two festal garments, and laid them upon two of his servants; and they carried them before Geha'zi. 24And when he came to the hill, he took them from their hand, and put them in the house; and he sent the men away, and they departed. 25He went in, and stood before his master, and Eli'sha said to him, "Where have you been, Geha'zi?" And he said, "Your servant went nowhere." 26But he said to him, "Did I not go with you in spirit when the man turned from his chariot to meet you? Was it a time to accept money and garments, olive orchards and vineyards, sheep and oxen, menservants and maidservants? 27Therefore the leprosy of Na'aman shall cleave to you, and to your descendants for ever." So he went out from his presence a leper, as white as snow. (RSV)
The story of Naaman refers to the salvation of the Gentiles under the Church. The baptism of the seven times refers to the power of baptism given under the seven churches and the seven spirits of God. The fact that Naaman took the soil home, so that he would have some of Israel and the Holy Mountain on which to pray, referred to the concept of the dispersal and Zion becoming the right of the Gentiles in the dispersion, by faith, as the Temple of God.
Gehazi was punished because he tried to make a profit out of that which was given as a pearl without price. He was given the affliction of the person who was healed. Simon Magus also tried to profit from the power of the Holy Spirit, as it was given to the Church, and he was removed. The new priesthood replaces the old.
In order to properly understand this text and hence the text in Revelation 14:1ff., we need to go to Hebrews 12:1-29.
Hebrews 12:1-29 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, 2looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the [stake], despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. 4In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5And have you forgotten the exhortation which addresses you as sons? -- "My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor lose courage when you are punished by him. 6For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives." 7It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9Besides this, we have had earthly fathers to discipline us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? 10For they disciplined us for a short time at their pleasure, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. 11For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant; later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. 12Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, 13and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. 14Strive for peace with all men, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. 15See to it that no one fail to obtain the grace of God; that no "root of bitterness" spring up and cause trouble, and by it the many become defiled; 16that no one be immoral or irreligious like Esau, who sold his birthright for a single meal. 17For you know that afterward, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no chance to repent, though he sought it with tears. 18For you have not come to what may be touched, a blazing fire, and darkness, and gloom, and a tempest, 19and the sound of a trumpet, and a voice whose words made the hearers entreat that no further messages be spoken to them. 20For they could not endure the order that was given, "If even a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned." 21Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, "I tremble with fear." 22But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, 23and to the assembly of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven, and to a judge who is God of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, 24and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks more graciously than the blood of Abel. 25See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less shall we escape if we reject him who warns from heaven. 26His voice then shook the earth; but now he has promised, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heaven." 27This phrase, "Yet once more," indicates the removal of what is shaken, as of what has been made, in order that what cannot be shaken may remain. 28Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe; 29for our God is a consuming fire. (RSV)
From verse 22, we see that from the conversion and the first-century Church, the Gentiles were brought to the Mountain and the City of God. Hence, they were placed within the City and on the Holy Mountain from the time of their conversion. The Mountain is a spiritual edifice on which the elect stand, over the two thousand years of their calling out. The 144,000 are comprised of a core leadership. The 144,000 are comprised of a council of 72 (cf. the Hebdomekonta[duo] of the text in Lk. 10:1,17). This was the seventy plus two of the Council. The Sanhedrin in Israel was replaced by the Sanhedrin of the Church from their ordination by Christ, and in power of the Spirit from Pentecost. They had power over the demons from their ordination. From Pentecost, the Sons of Sceva, as sons of the High Priest, had no power at all in relation to the fallen Host (Acts 19:14ff.).
These 72 represent the major sacrifices of the prophetic year as 52 Sabbaths, New Moons, and Feast sacrifices, plus the Wave Sheaf.
The Great Multitude of Revelation 7:9ff. are represented by the daily sacrifice, but no man can number them.
The messages of Revelation 14 are the responsibility of the 144,000. The messages given to the 144,000 go for the period of the seven eras of the seven churches given in Revelation chapters 2 and 3. The two thousand years cover the forty Jubilees from 27 CE to 2027 CE.
The First Angel’s Message is the eternal Gospel and that is given out over the period until the time of the end. At the end the finalisation of the Message of Isaiah 61:1-2 is given (cf. Rev. 14:1-7).
Revelation 14:1-7 Then I looked, and lo, on Mount Zion stood the Lamb, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads. 2And I heard a voice from heaven like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder; the voice I heard was like the sound of harpers playing on their harps, 3and they sing a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and before the elders. No one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from the earth. 4It is these who have not defiled themselves with women, for they are chaste; it is these who follow the Lamb wherever he goes; these have been redeemed from mankind as first fruits for God and the Lamb, 5and in their mouth no lie was found, for they are spotless. 6Then I saw another angel flying in midheaven, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those who dwell on earth, to every nation and tribe and tongue and people; 7and he said with a loud voice, "Fear God and give him glory, for the hour of his judgment has come; and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the fountains of water."
The prophecy was spoken by Messiah and stopped at Isaiah 61:2, halfway through the text, because the end of the prophecy occurs at the end of the age.
Isaiah 61:2-7 to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; 3to grant to those who mourn in Zion -- to give them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he may be glorified. 4They shall build up the ancient ruins, they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations. 5Aliens shall stand and feed your flocks, foreigners shall be your plowmen and vinedressers; 6but you shall be called the priests of the LORD, men shall speak of you as the ministers of our God; you shall eat the wealth of the nations, and in their riches you shall glory. 7Instead of your shame you shall have a double portion, instead of dishonor you shall rejoice in your lot; therefore in your land you shall possess a double portion; yours shall be everlasting joy. (RSV)
To understand this sequence we need to proceed to the Second Angel’s Message.
The Second Angel’s Message
The Second Angel’s Message follows the First Angel’s Message. It is the result of the correct execution of the First Angel’s Message that the Second Angel’s Message is able to be given with sure success. At the final sealing of the 144,000, the Earth is able to be hurt.
The full story of how this is to occur is detailed in other texts in Revelation and elsewhere.
The entire Babylonian system is to fall in the Last Days before the final end.
Revelation 14:8 Another angel, a second, followed, saying, "Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who made all nations drink the wine of her impure passion." (RSV)
This is the great Whore who rides the nations and is mentioned in Revelation 17. She is destroyed by the union of the ten kings that receive power for one hour with the Beast, in the Last Days (Rev. 17:12-18).
This prophetic hour is a very short period of time. It may be literally the twenty-fourth part of the prophetic year-day – i.e. two weeks. Or it may be a period less than the year. It is, however, a short period of time when all these prophecies and powers come together. The destructive power of these systems is incredible. Given the damage done in WWII in six years, what could be done in nuclear war in one year?
To understand what is happening we must go to the story of Gideon. Gideon stood against the system of Baal and was an iconoclast, as the system will be in the Last Days.
Judges 6:32-40 Therefore on that day he was called Jerubba'al, that is to say, "Let Ba'al contend against him," because he pulled down his altar. 33Then all the Mid'ianites and the Amal'ekites and the people of the East came together, and crossing the Jordan they encamped in the Valley of Jezreel. 34But the Spirit of the LORD took possession of Gideon; and he sounded the trumpet, and the Abiez'rites were called out to follow him. 35And he sent messengers throughout all Manas'seh; and they too were called out to follow him. And he sent messengers to Asher, Zeb'ulun, and Naph'tali; and they went up to meet them. 36Then Gideon said to God, "If thou wilt deliver Israel by my hand, as thou hast said, 37behold, I am laying a fleece of wool on the threshing floor; if there is dew on the fleece alone, and it is dry on all the ground, then I shall know that thou wilt deliver Israel by my hand, as thou hast said." 38And it was so. When he rose early next morning and squeezed the fleece, he wrung enough dew from the fleece to fill a bowl with water. 39Then Gideon said to God, "Let not thy anger burn against me, let me speak but this once; pray, let me make trial only this once with the fleece; pray, let it be dry only on the fleece, and on all the ground let there be dew." 40And God did so that night; for it was dry on the fleece only, and on all the ground there was dew. (RSV)
Gideon, or Jerubbaal, threw down the altar of Baal and was given the commandment to test or prove the will of the Lord.
With the Host, he also gathered those of Asher and Zebulun and Napthali. This also relates to the Last Days and the roles of these tribes in that process. Out of these tribes were selected the ones that could be used of God.
Judges 7:1-25 Then Jerubba'al (that is, Gideon) and all the people who were with him rose early and encamped beside the spring of Harod; and the camp of Mid'ian was north of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the valley. 2The LORD said to Gideon, "The people with you are too many for me to give the Mid'ianites into their hand, lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, `My own hand has delivered me.' 3Now therefore proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, `Whoever is fearful and trembling, let him return home.'" And Gideon tested them; twenty-two thousand returned, and ten thousand remained. 4And the LORD said to Gideon, "The people are still too many; take them down to the water and I will test them for you there; and he of whom I say to you, `This man shall go with you,' shall go with you; and any of whom I say to you, `This man shall not go with you,' shall not go." 5So he brought the people down to the water; and the LORD said to Gideon, "Every one that laps the water with his tongue, as a dog laps, you shall set by himself; likewise every one that kneels down to drink." 6And the number of those that lapped, putting their hands to their mouths, was three hundred men; but all the rest of the people knelt down to drink water. 7And the LORD said to Gideon, "With the three hundred men that lapped I will deliver you, and give the Mid'ianites into your hand; and let all the others go every man to his home." 8So he took the jars of the people from their hands, and their trumpets; and he sent all the rest of Israel every man to his tent, but retained the three hundred men; and the camp of Mid'ian was below him in the valley.
From this selection, the reduction of the multitude was made. This was done so that the victory should not be by might nor power but by my spirit said the Lord of Hosts (Zech. 4:6).
The test was to see the discernment in the Holy Spirit. The waters symbolised the power of the Holy Spirit stemming from God, through Jesus Christ. The way they took of it showed a discernment, which indicated a knowledge of the One True God and Jesus Christ whom He sent (Jn. 17:3).
The three companies were formed from a group that had been selected from a group that had already been reduced, in that not all of Israel was called. The ones who reported for duty were called. Thirty-two thousand reported for duty and in accordance with the Law under Deuteronomy 20 those who were afraid went home. Ten thousand were left. These were then given the drink test. Only 300 remained.
The odds involved here were from 4 to 1. They were increased against them to 13 to 1, and then to 450 to 1.
The final odds are the exact number of the priests of Baal at Jezebel’s table, under their system, where Elijah had to face them alone (1Kgs. 18:19). Elijah also faced the four hundred prophets of the groves. The odds are of significance, however, because it is the great Whore that is overthrown in the Last Days.
This spirit of Elijah runs through the entire Church system in its fight against the false religious system over the two thousand years. Only in the Last Days does it succeed, and then not fully of its own doing.
9That same night the LORD said to him, "Arise, go down against the camp; for I have given it into your hand. 10But if you fear to go down, go down to the camp with Purah your servant; 11and you shall hear what they say, and afterward your hands shall be strengthened to go down against the camp." Then he went down with Purah his servant to the outposts of the armed men that were in the camp. 12And the Mid'ianites and the Amal'ekites and all the people of the East lay along the valley like locusts for multitude; and their camels were without number, as the sand which is upon the seashore for multitude. 13When Gideon came, behold, a man was telling a dream to his comrade; and he said, "Behold, I dreamed a dream; and lo, a cake of barley bread tumbled into the camp of Mid'ian, and came to the tent, and struck it so that it fell, and turned it upside down, so that the tent lay flat." 14And his comrade answered, "This is no other than the sword of Gideon the son of Jo'ash, a man of Israel; into his hand God has given Mid'ian and all the host."
This prophecy was given by God into the hand of the enemy and they became totally dismayed by it. Gideon heard it, so that he could be encouraged, while the enemy was discouraged.
15 When Gideon heard the telling of the dream and its interpretation, he worshiped; and he returned to the camp of Israel, and said, "Arise; for the LORD has given the host of Mid'ian into your hand." 16And he divided the three hundred men into three companies, and put trumpets into the hands of all of them and empty jars, with torches inside the jars. 17And he said to them, "Look at me, and do likewise; when I come to the outskirts of the camp, do as I do. 18When I blow the trumpet, I and all who are with me, then blow the trumpets also on every side of all the camp, and shout, `For the LORD and for Gideon.'" 19So Gideon and the hundred men who were with him came to the outskirts of the camp at the beginning of the middle watch, when they had just set the watch; and they blew the trumpets and smashed the jars that were in their hands. 20And the three companies blew the trumpets and broke the jars, holding in their left hands the torches, and in their right hands the trumpets to blow; and they cried, "A sword for the LORD and for Gideon!" 21They stood every man in his place round about the camp, and all the army ran; they cried out and fled. 22When they blew the three hundred trumpets, the LORD set every man's sword against his fellow and against all the army; and the army fled as far as Beth-shit'tah toward Zer'erah, as far as the border of A'bel-meho'lah, by Tabbath. 23And the men of Israel were called out from Naph'tali and from Asher and from all Manas'seh, and they pursued after Mid'ian.
With three hundred men carefully placed in three companies, Gideon achieved the element of surprise. Under cover of night God threw fear into their hearts of those in the camp, and caused them to slaughter one another.
Then Ephraim was called as a group to deal with them and they resented being left out of it. However, another prophecy indicates that Dan/Ephraim also play a part in this activity of the warning of the last days (Jer. 4:15; cf. the paper The Warning of the Last Days (No. 044)).
24And Gideon sent messengers throughout all the hill country of E'phraim, saying, "Come down against the Mid'ianites and seize the waters against them, as far as Beth-bar'ah, and also the Jordan." So all the men of E'phraim were called out, and they seized the waters as far as Beth-bar'ah, and also the Jordan. 25And they took the two princes of Mid'ian, Oreb and Zeeb; they killed Oreb at the rock of Oreb, and Zeeb they killed at the wine press of Zeeb, as they pursued Mid'ian; and they brought the heads of Oreb and Zeeb to Gideon beyond the Jordan. (RSV)
Thus the system of Baal in the end days is overthrown. But who are the priests of Baal in the end days? It is easy to tell them from the biblical text.
They are the black-cassocked priests. It has been their identifying dress for millennia.
Zephaniah 1:4 "I will stretch out my hand against Judah, and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off from this place the remnant of Ba'al and the name of the idolatrous priests; (RSV)
It is easier to see in the KJV.
Zephaniah 1:4 I will also stretch out mine hand upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place, and the name of the Chemarims with the priests; (KJV)
Who or what are the Chemarim? The word is left untranslated in the KJV, and rendered idolatrous priests in the RSV, because it means literally the black-cassocked ones; and the translators of the KJV were all part of the black-cassocked priest system, so they deliberately left it untranslated. Bullinger has a note to that effect in the notes in The Companion Bible. The texts in Hosea 10:3ff. is also left untranslated, as is the text in 2Kings 23:5.
Hosea 10:3-5 For now they shall say, We have no king, because we feared not the LORD; what then should a king do to us? 4They have spoken words, swearing falsely in making a covenant: thus judgment springeth up as hemlock in the furrows of the field. 5The inhabitants of Samaria shall fear because of the calves of Bethaven: for the people thereof shall mourn over it, and the priests thereof that rejoiced on it, for the glory thereof, because it is departed from it. (KJV)
The term priests in verse 5 is actually the Kemarim or Chemarim, meaning the black-cassocked ones. The term was always understood to mean priests of Baal, as only they wore black cassocks.
2Kings 23:5 And he put down the idolatrous priests, whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah, and in the places round about Jerusalem; them also that burned incense unto Baal, to the sun, and to the moon, and to the planets, and to all the host of heaven. (KJV)
Idolatrous priests here are the same Kemarim as elsewhere. They are rendered as idolatrous priests to cover up the fact of the matter. The priests of the One True God, Eloah, never wore a black cassock. They always wore white.
The black-casssocked ones have been trying to control Jerusalem since David entered it in 1005 BCE and are still there trying.
In the Last Days the black-cassocked priests of the Whore will be destroyed, and removed from the face of the Earth before the system of Messiah takes effect, and it will be done by the Beast system that she tried to control.
It is the task of the Church to deliver the First Angel’s Message and expose this system in the Last Days in the Second Angel’s Message (cf. Rev. chs. 17 and 18).
The Third Angel’s Message
Revelation 14:9-20 And another angel, a third, followed them, saying with a loud voice, "If any one worships the beast and its image, and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand, 10he also shall drink the wine of God's wrath, poured unmixed into the cup of his anger, and he shall be tormented with fire and sulphur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. 11And the smoke of their torment goes up for ever and ever; and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name." 12Here is a call for the endurance of the saints, those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. 13And I heard a voice from heaven saying, "Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord henceforth." "Blessed indeed," says the Spirit, "that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them!"
The injunction here is that the Beast will set up a system that makes clear distinction between God and His system and the Satanic system of the Beast. The major part of the world appears to go along with this system.
The endurance of the saints is called for, and the distinctive mark of the saints is the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. Christ’s faith was that he loved not his life unto death. So also are the elect to be persecuted for this last time. This final stand of the empire of the Beast is a traumatic world-shattering event.
14Then I looked, and lo, a white cloud, and seated on the cloud one like a son of man, with a golden crown on his head, and a sharp sickle in his hand. 15And another angel came out of the temple, calling with a loud voice to him who sat upon the cloud, "Put in your sickle, and reap, for the hour to reap has come, for the harvest of the earth is fully ripe." 16So he who sat upon the cloud swung his sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped. 17And another angel came out of the temple in heaven, and he too had a sharp sickle. 18Then another angel came out from the altar, the angel who has power over fire, and he called with a loud voice to him who had the sharp sickle, "Put in your sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for its grapes are ripe." 19So the angel swung his sickle on the earth and gathered the vintage of the earth, and threw it into the great wine press of the wrath of God; 20and the wine press was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the wine press, as high as a horse's bridle, for one thousand six hundred stadia. (RSV)
These two actions show the reaping of the Son of Man, which is the last harvest, and then the harvest of the winepress of the wrath of God.
They are two distinct actions under two distinct messages and beings. They are under the direction of God, which indicates two specific time-related events carried by two messengers at separate times.
Thus the system in the Last Days is unfolded through the fourfold sequence, which completes the Mysteries of God.
The First Angel’s Message is the everlasting Gospel and as such it does not change, and has the same structure from Christ and the Apostles. Thus it cannot be the mainstream system, because the entire system is based upon syncretic or innovative doctrines of the Councils of the Church.
The Second Angel’s Message brings down the Babylonian system. That message builds on the final work of the eternal Gospel in the First Angel’s Message.
The Third Angel’s Message gives warning of and to the system of the Beast, which destroys the Whore.
The Fourth and Fifth Angels’ Messages
The Fourth Angel’s Message is of two parts, the first being the harvest of (the one like unto) the Son of Man.
The second part or Fifth Angel’s Message is the winepress of the wrath of God.
With these five sequences the Millennium will be ushered in for the 1,000-year reign of Christ.
See also the papers: