Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 3 * PART 3 * BOOK 64
BUT GOD! – (Kingdom of God) – Part 3
Okay, once again it’s good to see everybody back from the break. We’re going to go right back into our study concerning the Kingdom, because of some questions that just came up at break-time. That’s the way I teach. I’m not on a format. I don’t have to go by a set script, thank goodness! That would kill me, you know that, if I would have to go by a script and end at a certain place. So, if that happened, they’d carry me out on a stretcher. So, anyhow, we’re going to come back and address some questions from break-time.
Again, for those of you joining us on television, we always have to thank you for your financial help, because, after all, bills have to be paid. We thank you for your prayers and your letters. My, our mail is so thrilling, over and over. Sometimes it’s just a couple of sentences long. In fact, one the other day, I wish I’d have brought it along. It was from a gentleman, and he said, “Les, thanks to you and your program I now have come to know the Lord.” That’s all that the letter said, but that’s all you need, see? Over and over we see this.
I just noticed my lovely, little wife on the screen, and that’s the other thing that amazes me, we never mention her. She never says a word on this program, and yet every single letter says, “Dear Les and Iris,” and I appreciate that all of you out there recognize that she’s a part of the ministry. Even though she doesn’t want the limelight, we couldn’t do it without her!
Okay, we’re going to continue our study on the Kingdom of Heaven coming on earth. The question that came up over our coffee break was – “Well who are the people that will be coming into the Kingdom, and where are they going to come from?” Well, it’s a good question, because, after all, we teach that the Church, the Body of Christ, is going to be raptured. By the time the Kingdom is set up, we will be long gone! We’ve already been gathered up into the heavenlies even before the Tribulation begins.
So, who’s going to be on earth for Christ to rule and reign over? Well, let’s go back to Matthew 24. We’re going to have to set our “But God and But Now’s” at abeyance for a while, we’ll pick them up later. This is totally unrehearsed. I wasn’t figuring on this. Matthew 24 starting at verse 15 and if you’ve got a red-letter edition, it’s red. Jesus is speaking during His earthly ministry. As I said in the last program, this chapter is all Tribulation ground. All right, verse 15 and remember whom He’s talking to. He’s still talking to the Twelve, to the Disciples as they came back to Him in verse 3 and said, “tell us when shall these things be?”
“When ye (Jews, because he’s talking to the Twelve. They’re Jews. He’s not including Gentiles in here at all.) therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place,…” Now, what do we have to do? You’ve got to go back to Daniel. What is he talking about?
Go back to Daniel, but keep your hand in Matthew. Daniel chapter 9 and here is that 490-year prophecy on the nation of Israel, broken down by weeks of years. By the time we get down to verse 26, we’ve got 483 of the 490 years fulfilled. And remember that the 490-year prophecy began with the instructions to Nehemiah to go and rebuild the city wall. Not the Temple. Ezra did that about 70-80 years earlier. But then Nehemiah’s instruction was to rebuild the city wall and the gates; in other words, the city in general. All right, that was the trigger date for this prophecy. Verse 24, we might as well look at the whole thing.
“Seventy weeks (490 years) are determined (according to God’s providence) upon thy people (Israel) and upon thy holy city, (Jerusalem) to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, (That’s the work of the cross.) and to bring in everlasting righteousness, (That’s the Kingdom. But we’re going to see that it didn’t come in at the end of the 490 years, it’s going to wait 2000 years.) and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.” Which, of course, is the Messiah, Christ, or God the Son. Now verse 25. Daniel is going to break this prophecy down.
“Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem (The one I just referred to in Nehemiah.) unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks,…” Or, that’s 49 years, which actually took the Jewish people up to a little over or under 400 BC, at which time they now dedicated Ezra’s rebuilt temple.
Now again, we’ve got to understand that Nebuchadnezzar’s armies destroyed Solomon’s Temple. It was nothing but ashes and rocks. Ezra comes back with a small number of Jews, 44,000, and they begin to rebuild the temple. Now, with the wherewithal that they had in antiquity, that took awhile. So, at the end of this first 49 years, they now have enough of a temple rebuilt that they can dedicate it. All right, so that’s the end of the first seven weeks.
“And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah shall be cut off,…” So, that was 483 years total. From the decree to rebuild the walls in Jerusalem until the Messiah would be cut off, or crucified, would be 483 years. Four hundred and eighty three years. I’ve got to repeat it until you can’t forget it. But, the whole prophecy was how much? Four hundred and ninety. Now, you got to have a little bit of arithmetic here. Four hundred and eighty three from four hundred and ninety leaves seven years that have to be accounted for, and it’s going to be after the crucifixion, and it is still future.
All right, now we know that most of Old Testament Scripture and most of the four Gospel’s and everything make it sound like it would all come right shortly after. There was nothing to indicate that there would be the 2000-year parenthetical period of time that we’re in right now. They had no idea it would be that long. All right, so let’s continue on with Daniel’s prophecy. After the 490 years are completed –
“…shall Messiah be cut off (or be crucified) but not for himself: (We know that from our New Testament. He didn’t die for His own sin; He died for ours. Now, here comes the key of prophecy.) and the people of the prince that shall come…” Now, that’s the reference to the anti-Christ. The small letter ‘p’ is the anti-Christ. He will come out of the empire that destroyed and crucified the Christ, which was what? The Roman Empire.
“…and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary;…” Now remember, Daniel is writing 500 years before it all happens. This is Old Testament prophecy, now. That after these 483 years, Christ would be cut off, or crucified, and then the people of the prince that shall come will destroy the city, which Rome did in 70 AD.
“…and the end therefore shall be with a flood, and unto the end wars and desolations are determined.” And of course, that was all part and parcel of the final seven years, which we pick up in verse 27. Now, here come those final seven years.
“And he (This prince that shall come, the anti-Christ that the world is getting ready for, even today.) shall confirm (or make) the covenant (or treaty) with many for one week….”Now, for years I used to think this was just a reference to Israel. But no, you don’t make a treaty with one nation. If you’re going to bring peace to the Middle East, you have to involve all the nations in the Middle East. And that’s what this guy’s going to do. He’s going to come in and with the power of the Sovereign God Himself, he’s going to bring about a seven-year peace treaty in the Middle East. That’s why all the world is looking for peace in the Middle East. Bush can’t do it. Blair can’t do it. The United Nations can’t do it. Europe can’t do it. It’s going to take this man, under God’s Sovereign direction, to bring about a Middle Eastern peace. It’s going to be such a peace that Israel will have permission to rebuild a temple.
Now, it’s not going to be of gold and silver like Solomon’s. I think it will probably be rather makeshift. Probably pre-fabbed or whatever, they’re going to set that thing up overnight. But it’s going to be a temple. It’ll be functional, and they’ll re-institute temple worship, sacrifices, and everything. All right, so he will make a treaty with the whole Middle East for seven years. There is the final seven years of the 490.
“…and in the midst of the week (Or, in the middle of those seven years – that’s why the book of Revelation divides it into three-and-a-half and three-and-a-half. Matthew also divides it three-and-a-half and three-and-a-half, and this is what Jesus is referring to.) in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease,…” Now, whenever I teach this verse, this is what I have to say. How can you stop something that has never started?’ So, they’re going to have to have a temple rebuilt. They’re going to re-institute temple worship. Israel is going to go back under the Judaistic system that was on the scene when Christ was here. They will reestablish temple worship. But in the middle of the seven years, this man, this prince that shall come, or what we call the anti-Christ, will come in and cause the sacrifice and the oblation to stop. Then reading on in verse 27.
“…and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, (Which is a horrible word in Scripture.) he (the anti-Christ) shall make it (This temple that Israel has built.) desolate, (No longer usable. And it’s going to remain desolate.) even until the consummation, (That is, of the seven years and all.) and that determined (in prophecy) shall be poured upon the desolator.” Which, of course, is the anti-Christ when he finally meets his doom.
All right, now let’s go back to Matthew 24 because this is what Jesus was referring to. Matthew 24 verse 15 again, so He says that when you see this man, this demonic individual, come into the temple that’s been rebuilt and reestablished in Jerusalem, which will be at the middle of the seven years, certain things must occur. Jesus speaks of what Daniel the prophet said, and when you see that happen — now verse 16.
“Then (Now, this is the warning to Jews who will be living in the area of Jerusalem at the midpoint of the Tribulation.) let them which be in Judea (Which, of course, is the area around Jerusalem.) flee into the mountains: 17. Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take anything out of his house:” Now, many of you have heard me teach this before. This, I think, is a reference probably to the wealthier, retired people of Jerusalem and Judea.
If you’ve been to Israel lately, like we have, there are some beautiful, beautiful condominiums and apartment places that could certainly fill the bill. But what’s the admonition? Don’t stop to take something out of your house. Time is of the essence. You get down, and you hit the road, and you get out of Jerusalem and head for the mountains. Now, I think most Bible teachers, scholars, and so forth are looking at the ancient city of Petra, down there in the Jordanian desert, as the place to which Israel will flee. I won’t argue the point. It could very well be, but it doesn’t have to be, because it doesn’t designate it. But anyway, they’re going to flee.
Now then, verse 18, we have to always reconcile the time in which these things are written with language today. Now, at the time of Christ, 90% of Jewish people were farmers and herders and so forth. It was an agrarian society. So, He uses that kind of language, “Let him who is in the field” — farming, fruit growing and what have you. Today it would be the technology people. The engineers and the chemists and so forth, the bankers and the business people, because they are no longer agrarian. They are now a western-type civilization.
“Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. (You won’t have time. Don’t go back home to get an extra set of clothes. Get out of Jerusalem.) 19. And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!” Now, we’re picking up the female element, the young mothers. We’re thinking primarily of the working class as being the men. Now, what I like to point out is that here you have a complete cross-section of Jewish society. You’ve got the older, wealthier people. You’ve got the working class. You’ve got the stay-at-home moms and their kids and whatever. It’s a whole cross-section of society. All right, then verse 20, Jesus continues on.
“But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, (Now, you remember that this past winter they’ve had 12-14 inches of snow – two or three different times. How would you like to be walking out, carrying a baby, in 14 inches of snow in the hills and valleys of Jerusalem? So, Jesus makes mention of that. Pray that won’t be the case.) neither on the Sabbath day:”Which indicates what? They’ll be back under the Law of Judaism, which mandated that they couldn’t walk about three-quarters of a mile. So, all this fits the scenario that Israel will be back under the Judaistic system that was prevalent at the time of Christ. All right, now verse 21, starting with this midpoint of the seven years until the end.
“For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, (That’s beyond human comprehension. But then Jesus even looks ahead of His day and time.) no, nor ever shall be.” Now of course, the average person at Christ’s time had no idea that this would be 2000 years out into the future. But Jesus knew. He knew that this Age of Grace was going to be opened up and that Israel would go into 1900 years of dispersion. But to prove prophecy and to prove that Scripture knows what it’s talking about, Israel is back in the land tonight. Against all odds! They should have never survived those 1900 years. They should have never been able to come back and reestablish a nation and their Hebrew language. But this Book said they would, and since the Book said they would, they did! This is proof positive of our Bible; that it is the Word of God.
All right, now this escaping remnant of Jews, whom God is going to protect out in the mountains or wherever He takes them, according to Revelation chapter 12. Now, we’ve got to go look at this, otherwise you’re depending on what I tell you, and I don’t want anybody to do that. Revelation 12, we pick up this escaping remnant, now, as John reveals it. Revelation chapter 12 and we’ll jump in at verse 5 for sake of time. Always remember that “the woman” in Revelation 12 is the symbolic picture of Israel. The woman is Israel. Doesn’t fit in any other way.
“And she (the woman) brought forth a man-child, (That’s a reference to Christ being born in Bethlehem.) who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron:…” When He becomes King over the earthly Kingdom. In other words, there’ll be no monkey-business in His Kingdom. It’s going to be a benevolent Kingdom, but there will be no room for corruption or disobedience or anything like that. It’s going to be an absolute, holy, righteous government.
“…and her child (the woman’s child, Jesus of Nazareth) was caught up unto God, (That’s a reference to His ascension.) and to his throne.” Now verse 6. We jump back again to the middle of the Tribulation that we just saw in Matthew 24.
“And the woman (Not the whole Nation, just the remnant remember. One-third if you want to go by the Old Testament. One third of Israel will be the remnant.) fled into the wilderness, (And in that wilderness environment–) where she hath a place prepared of God,…” Now, we’ve got the supernatural involved here again. So, this remnant of Israel will have God’s Sovereign protection like they did when Moses led them out of Egypt, even in this wilderness experience.
“…she hath a place prepared of God, that they (the Godhead, the Triune God) should feed her there a thousand two hundred and three score days,” Which is three-and-a-half years. So, here we have not only Daniel speaking of it, and Jesus confirming it, but John the Revelator also fills in the details, that this escaping remnant will be protected by a Sovereign God. He’ll feed her there. They’ll have the same scenario as Israel in the wilderness for forty years. Their clothes won’t wear out. Their shoes won’t wear out. God will feed them. God will protect them. All the horrors of the Tribulation will not touch them for three-and-a-half years.
All right, now come across the page and you find the same thing in verse 14, a repeat of the exodus from Egypt. Oh, it’s thousands of years later, but it’s almost an identical repetition. Now, verse 14.
“And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished (or taken care of) for a time, (one year) andtimes, (plural, two years for a total of three) and half a time, (Three-and-a-half years and God’s going to protect her.) from the face of the serpent.” All right, now I just mentioned that it’s a repetition of Exodus. Now hold your hand in Revelation. Come back with me to Exodus.
Exodus chapter 19, all the way back to the beginning of your Bible. Here, Israel is just fresh out of Egypt. They’re gathered around Mount Sinai, which would be in the same direction that Petra is today. Now, Moses has gone up into the mountain.
“And Moses went up unto God, (in the mountain) and the LORD (Now, that’s the other term for God the Son in the Old Testament. We’re dealing again with Jesus the Christ.) called unto him out of the mountain, saying, Thus shalt thou say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel:” Now ,look at this next verse, remembering what you just read in Revelation as to what is still future.
“Ye have seen what I did to the Egyptians, (Drowned them, of course, in the Red Sea.) and how I bare you on (What?) eagles’ wings, (Well, they didn’t fly. But it was as if they supernaturally were guided out of Egypt and all the way down to Mount Sinai. But the terminology was “eagles’ wings.” A reference, of course, to God’s Sovereignty) and brought you unto myself.” All right, flip back to Revelation again. You’ve got the same language. Verse 14 again:
“And to the woman (this escaping remnant of Israel) were given two wings of a great eagle, (Just like they did coming out of Egypt) that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place,…” Of protection. Now verse 15, the anti-Christ is going to send a military force after them, to destroy them, because Satan has now in-dwelt the man anti-Christ, and Satan hates anything pertaining to Israel. So, he can’t stand these few million Jews escaping.
“And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman,…” Now, I interpret that to mean a military force. Just like Pharaoh did after Israel in Exodus, the anti-Christ is going to send a force after these Jews here in Revelation.
“…that he might cause her (the remnant) to be carried away of the flood.” Or, to be destroyed. But now verse 16, God intervenes, just like He did at the Red Sea with Pharaoh.
“And the earth (instead of the water) helped the woman, (this escaping remnant of Jews) and the earth opened her mouth,…” Now, this isn’t the first time this happened in Scripture, either. You remember it happened back in the Old Testament with the sons of Korah, while they were standing there making a big bruhaha with Moses, the earth opened up and in they went. All right, now you’ve got a repetition of that.
“…and swallowed up the flood (This military exercise. Whether it’s a battalion or a regiment or whatever, it’ll open up and swallow this military that has followed Israel to destroy them.) which the dragon cast out of his mouth.” By a simple command, he gave the order go destroy those Jews. But, it all fell into the open chasm of the earth and they were swallowed up. All right, now we’ve got to take verse 17, and then that will set the stage for our next half-hour program.
“And the dragon (The anti-Christ, in-dwelt by Satan up there at Jerusalem.) was wroth (angry) with the woman, (or this escaping remnant) and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, ….” Now, we’ve got two remnants in Revelation, you remember. The escaping remnant of men, women, and children, and the other remnant is the 144,000 Jewish evangelist who have, what does it say?
“…which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” They are adherents to Judaism and temple worship. What are they doing? They are the world’s evangelists for those seven years of Tribulation.