Is the Rapture of the Church Really Found in the Bible? The Rapture Found in Old Testament Typology! Part 4
(ver 1.2) This is Part 4 in a series of advanced spiritual Bible lessons on the timely and important subject of “Is the Rapture of the Church a Bible Truth”. I know this teaching series has been a little different than what most other Bible teachers’ attempt, but I do not copy or imitate other Bible teachers. I would rather be led by the Spirit of God and teach the subjects with the content, direction and in the order for His purpose and plan. If you have not read this entire series from the beginning I would highly recommend that you go and start your study with “Part 1” and then continue in succession until today’s lesson. I have been building a firm doctrinal foundation for the Biblical subject of rapture. In doing this I have been moving through the scriptures in what appears to be a random order. However, if you are a spiritually mature Christian you should be able to see that I am taking them in the order that helps us understand how the subject has been distributed throughout the Bible by God. Rarely do we ever find God doing things in His Word in a manner that we expect and I will warn you up front that this lesson will demonstrate that it is no different.
Today God wants me to go in a completely new direction in this lesson series and talk about the subject of rapture hidden within the context of Old Testament typology. What is “Biblical Typology” you might ask immediately? Biblical Typology is simply an actual historical event containing real people doing real things that are recorded in the Old Testament which point us to a coming future New Testament spiritual reality truth. I believe that God through His wise word selection utilized very specific descriptions for many recorded O.T. Bible events and participants which all have direct relevance, application and meaning to what will occur again in a future context. God cleverly designed the Bible in ways so that people would not be able to see the complete truth unless it was spiritually revealed to them. It is important to understand this concept of hidden truth because God uses it throughout the written Word to require everyone to search diligently for Him and His truth. This method of concealing the truth allows everyone the right to not see the truth. This actually explains why many in the church today have not believed in the rapture because they have not searched for it and found it in the Bible.
I believe that this lesson will be one of the most important lessons that you have read on this subject. I can see how it will potentially reveal some new unexpected ways for many people to learn. I will probably teach several original aspects that you have never thought on before, but all that should mean to you is that you need to become a noble Acts 17:11 type of Christian to verify everything that I say using the Spirit of God inside of you and your own personal Bible so that you do not take my word for anything. Are you ready to learn something potentially brand new on the subject of rapture? This will be a very long Bible lesson with a lot of good information in it. I also believe that I need to do a basic introduction to the subjects to help you see where we are going to go in this lesson before we get there. I’ll start by teaching you about hidden spiritual messages found in the natural words of the Bible. I call this the Spiritualization of the Word of God. I will follow this part of the introduction with a brief discussion on “Extremism” and why we need a “Balanced” approach to Bible Study. Then I will introduce you to the subject of Biblical Typology to help you better understand what that is and why it is important for us to learn. In the introduction I will also introduce you to the concept of Rules Based Interpretation and how these are useful to Bible study. Finally in the remainder of the Bible study I will discuss a hidden rapture description given to us by God in the O.T. Let’s get into the Bible study.
THE SPIRITUALIZATION OF SCRIPTURE
Are the stories recorded in the Bible merely the natural thoughts and words of forty different human men? In this part of the introduction I would like to address a major point that will surely be raised by some people who read this lesson without any spiritual eyes to see what it says. Many Bible preachers today, claim that we should not try to spiritualize everything written in the Bible. When they say this, I wonder if they even know who or what their God is and who wrote the Bible. Is their God a mere human or an omnipotent Spirit? When they say things like this they are simply stating that we need to take the Bible literally as a natural historical message and they imply God is like any natural man writing words for all other natural men on the earth. This type of reasoning reduces God to the same type of writer as any ordinary book author. In proclaiming a literal only interpretation of the Bible they are stating that all of the words written on every page of the Bible all have a simplistic plain meaning that is obvious to every reader. These teachers have obviously not read the internet nor tried to understand why there are thousands of different Christian denominations in the world today. The existence of so many meanings and interpretations to the words written in the Bible proves beyond any doubt that the Bible is not plainly understood by anyone.
These types of literal only Bible teachers refuse to explore the Bible message using any allegorical applications, symbolical meanings, typological interpretations or other spiritual importance in order to understand a message from a Spiritual God and His purpose for giving it. Clearly these Bible teachers are narrowly focused on a different version of the truth than what I see revealed by God in the Bible. I can clearly see where both Jesus and the New Testament teach us that the Old Testament is a book full of hidden secrets called “mysteries” (G3466). This Greek word translated as “mystery” occurs in 27 different verses throughout the New Testament. Jesus spoke directly three times in the Gospels about the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of God in Matthew 13:11, Mark 4:11, and Luke 8:10. Close to 20 times in the New Testament God records a comment about certain O.T. mysteries and even tells us that many of these secrets have been hidden since the foundation of the world (Rom 16:25, 1 Cor 2:7, 1 Cor 4:1, Eph 3:3-9, Eph 6:19, Col 1:26). Go read these scriptures and learn what they say and then learn to apply them to every part of the O.T. Bible. The Greek word (G3466) translated as “mystery” in these verses means a literal “secret”. What is a secret? A secret is anything that was hidden or kept from your plain obvious view. Since the Bible contains literal readable plain text words in every book, where are these divine secrets hidden in them and how are they hidden? Do you see the important and relevant question that I am asking? Either God lied about the secrets in the Old Testament or we should rather more wisely know that God recorded the secrets in ways that keep them from our self-evident understanding.
In the book of John, Jesus makes a statement about the Old Testament that is mostly ignored by many Bible preachers, teachers and students. Read over this verse very closely and see what the Author of the Bible has to say directly about the words that were written to us in the Old Testament:
Joh 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
Jesus told these keepers of the written Holy Words of God that they needed to “search” their scriptures to find Him. How do you define “search”? To search meant for them to investigate, seek to find, pursue, examine, study, inspect, explore, dig deep in order to discover this Jesus. This statement makes finding Jesus conditional in the O.T. Search for Jesus you will find Him and don’t search for Him you will miss the most important reason for the words. Jesus was saying that at least some of these O.T. words were those that were recorded about Him. Have you ever done this search? Does God consider you a doer of the Word of God or just an ignorant hearer only? I have spent many hours doing nothing but looking for my Jesus on all of the pages of the Old Testament. Why because that is what Jesus told me to do. Within every verse that I read in the Old Testament, I devote a significant amount of time probing to find my Lord Jesus in some hidden form. Since Jesus is never mentioned anywhere by direct named reference in the Old Testament how do you seriously think that He can be found there in the words written mostly about somebody else doing something else? If Jesus could be found so easily within the surface text context, He would not have needed to tell these Jews or us that we were required to “search” for Him. Let’s let every word be established in the mouth of two or three witnesses:
Luk 24:44 And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.
Here again we have Jesus teaching us that Moses wrote prophetic words about Him. He claims there are specific prophecies that must be fulfilled from these Old Testament verses. I have to admit I have read the books of Moses in the Old Testament and if I did not know these verses were about Jesus I would have missed so much. Do you understand that Moses only wrote the first five books of the Old Testament and a few of the Psalms? Have you ever read these books, chapters and verses? Please show me in these words written down by Moses where Jesus is so plainly and clearly found! If you can find a literal Jesus mentioned anywhere there, then tell where it is found. Some say the “seed of the woman” mentioned in Genesis 3:16 is Jesus, but that is your poor reasoning and an assumption taken to an extreme. Nowhere is the name of Jesus mentioned to be the seed in this verse and you have to ASSUME by your faith or ignorance that it is talking about Him. That is just one popular example of people trying to say that Jesus is found in Moses’ words where there is no direct evidence. What I am asking you is if that type of interpretation is legal, why then is the use of spiritual Biblical Typology also equally legal? Do not misunderstand what I am saying I believe that Jesus is found in these books of the Bible, but I also believe that He is just not found in the literal obvious terms as many expect Him to be and we must utilize valid spiritual interpretation methods and rules in order to find Him.
It is important to notice that Jesus does not declare that everything written in the O.T. is only about Him, but He does conclusively say that He can be found there. So is Jesus a central theme of the O.T. or a needle in the hay stack concept in these books? Do you see what I am asking? Is Jesus an isolated O.T. occurrence or a prevalent central subject? I personally believe that Jesus is the central theme of the entire Bible from cover to cover and therefore He must be found in more than just a single verse in the book of Genesis and the other books of the O.T. Allow me give you the next verse in Luke to help you better understand the previous verse statement:
Luk 24:45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,
Did you see it? This verse explains why the disciples did not previously see Jesus in the writings of Moses before this event described in Luke. The reading of the Torah in the temple was a common occurrence and the disciples had heard the words before but never knew what they meant. This is why Jesus had to give them understanding of what was previously written by Moses in order for any of it to be comprehended that any of it was about Him. That literally means Jesus cannot be easily and obviously found by anyone just reading the plain text words without the Spirit of God helping them to understand what it says. Without the Spirit of God giving understanding it will never work out. God is so amazing to how He designed the Words in the Bible! I pray that you are beginning to see the wisdom of God in His Words.
Do you know what the name “Jesus” used in the English N.T. is equivalent to in the Hebrew O.T.? You do understand that Jesus was a natural born Hebrew and that He was given a Hebrew name? The name of Jesus is a transliteration of the Hebrew O.T. name Joshua or Yeshua. The Hebrew word for Jesus in Strong’s is H3091 and it literally means “Jehovah saved”. I believe that Jesus qualifies to possess this name, don’t you? There is a book of Joshua found in the O.T. but this book of the Bible is normally considered to be the story of a real historical man leading the children of Israel into the Promise Land. The name Joshua occurs in 197 verses of the O.T. and few if any of these verses can be considered a direct reference to the coming Jesus of the N.T. Therefore, the name of the N.T. Jesus is not directly found in the O.T. in relation to the N.T. man that said these words were written about Him. How then are we expected to find this N.T. Jesus mentioned there in the O.T. if there are no direct references to Him? That is the million dollar question that these modern Bible teachers do not consider when they try to tell me not to spiritualize the messages found in the O.T.
I have to conclude from this initial information and asking those questions that this means the Jesus of the N.T. can only be found by us using spiritual methods to locate Jesus in O.T. For example we can use spiritual names, titles or descriptions, Christophanies, allegories, typologies or symbolisms to list a few obvious spiritual interpretation methods that need to gain our focused attention when reading the O.T. Bible. These Biblical patterns are clearly established to be legitimate methods of Bible interpretation several times in the New Testament by God’s own revelation. Paul clearly used allegory, typology and even symbolism when describing the revelation that God had given to him about Jesus and of course Paul only had the Old Testament to base all of this new knowledge upon. Clearly spiritual things were concealed in the Old Testament but they have now been revealed in the New Testament for the benefit of the spiritual people of God. I strongly believe that God has concealed Jesus in the Old Testament so that God can reveal Jesus in the New Testament.
Always remember who the author of the Bible is when you are reading it. I personally believe that the entire Bible is the recorded inspired spoken words of a Holy God who is described to be a Spirit (John 4:24). God very clearly tells us that His ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts (Isa 55:8-9). But does that mean that He does not desire us to know or understand His ways or to think His thoughts? I cannot understand anyone who thinks that God’s desire is to keep them ignorant and in the dark. People who believe that would be projecting a direct slap in the face of the God who clearly said “whoever follows me shall not walk in darkness but have the light of life” (John 8:12). Why would God write you a huge book of divine wisdom if you were not supposed to understand any of it in the direct here and now? I am totally convinced that God’s desire is for us to learn what the Bible actually says and means. I have concluded that we need to learn how to see these natural words written on natural paper pages as really being a spiritual message written to a spiritual people from an all-knowing spiritual God. Come up higher and learn to see the Bible as God sees it.
AVOIDING EXTREMISM IN INTERPRETATION
I will end this part of the introduction with the subject of Biblical Extremism. Biblical extremism is the practice of taking any subject or isolated truth from the Bible to an overstated or exaggerated position of error. I recently spoke to one commenter on my Bible study that clearly was in the realm of extreme error. He disapproved of my teaching that the church is the revealed “Bride of Christ” because he isolated the established truths in the Bible that the Church is the “Body of Christ” taking them to an extreme. In his mind it was impossible for the Church to be both concurrently. I then tried to explain what God had shown to me in the Bible about how the church became the body of Christ by being His covenant bride and this message was rejected. What he was doing was taking one truth to an extreme and ignoring all of the other truths of the Bible becoming unbalanced in his theological view. That is called Biblical Truth Extremism and it is a clear example of error and closed mindedness. I run into this error more than any other that I am confronted with on my website teachings. Let me give you another recent example of the extremism error.
Another preacher man that I was discussing the subject of Divine Grace with recently was so spiritually blind that he did not realize that he had moved into the realm of extremism. He had made an exaggerated statement that Paul constantly was confronted with the “sin question” when teaching on the subject of God’s Divine Grace. In other words he applied his own experience to overemphasize Paul’s recorded Bible experience and thus he moved into the realm of doctrinal extremism and error. What am I saying? I am saying this nameless preacher on the internet instead of admitting that he was wrong claimed that he was right because Paul wrote “one time” in Romans 6 about the confrontation of the sin issue in opposition with the truth of Grace. This man was clearly a modern Grace Bible teacher who has taken the clear Bible truth of Grace and pushed it beyond the level of scriptural balance into the arena of extremism theology and error. I simply caught him in a direct lie and tried to nicely make a correction to his statement and he told me I was wrong. My primary point was that this man had exaggerated the truth to a level so far above the truth that he had changed this great truth of Grace to transform it into a lie. He took one chapter in Romans and said this was a “constantly” reality for Paul. One chapter or one verse does not make a sound Bible truth of doctrine! God clearly says in His Word for us to establish every truth in the mouths of two or three witnesses (Deu 19:15, Mat 18:16, 2 Cor 13:1). This Grace preacher has reduced the subjects of sin and repentance to be non-factors for either salvation or for the human continuance of eternal security. He totally missed what the Bible says in the New Testament on other subjects like repentance, forgiveness, judgment, holiness, and I could go on with others. Actually he has explained away many of these subjects so cleverly that he has deceived others into believing his extreme teaching.
Exalting any single truth or any single reference of the message of truth to be the only truth necessary to understand will always cause a position of error based upon individual unbalanced isolation. So what am I saying? Are we to take the extreme position that all scripture should be plainly and naturally interpreted or are we to take the antithesis extreme position that says all scripture should only be spiritually interpreted in order to be understood? I think neither extreme is valid and we need to become balanced in our theology beliefs somewhere in the middle realizing that God is smart enough to teach us multiple levels of truth both spiritual and natural in any single verse, chapter or book of the Bible. What I try to teach in my lessons is that we need to avoid falling into the ditches of extremism on either the right hand or the left hand when walking down the road of Bible study. Having said all of that let me introduce you to the subject of Biblical Spiritual Typology.
I just want to give you a quick introductory overview of the subject of Biblical Typology since this is one of the central themes in the rest of this lesson on rapture. First, understand that no Old Testament Typology is ever a completed design representation of anything revealed to be eternal or spiritual in the New Testament. Second understand that every hidden spiritual type mentioned in the Old Testament (and there are many of them) is not the actual real spiritual entity that it symbolically represents. Therefore I have just said that any O.T. type is neither the real spiritual entity nor the complete representation of anything spiritually real in the New Testament. Think of Biblical Typology to be like Jesus teaching the people using parables in the Gospels. I believe that these parable teaching concepts that Jesus utilized are completely identical in nature and application to the Biblical Typology concepts also found in the Old Testament. Jesus would stand up and teach the people using natural examples of real physically identifiable objects, people and events saying the Kingdom of Heaven (a spiritual reality) is like this or that and then tell what it was similar to using symbolic figures of speech that could be understood by the people that were listening. Nothing in the parable was the actual real spiritual subject being taught on, but everything in the parable had a symbolic meaning containing parallel characteristics and features that applied to the real spiritual subject and this information teaches us significantly about these spiritual things that are normally not seen by humans.
The concepts of Biblical Typology are often revealed in the terms of natural shadow models. Typology is like a simplified general recognizable shadowed patterned outline for a more complete complex real spiritual detailed image subject. Subjects found in typology are lacking many of the precise details of the actual eternal spiritual subject just like the natural shadow lacks the detail of the natural object producing it. If you can understand natural shadows you can understand Biblical Typology. For example, any physical object standing up on the face of the earth will cast a shadow upon the ground when the light of the sun is in its brightest angled unobstructed view. Analyze the source of objects needed to produce a shadow. First we need a bright light source like the sun. Of course in Biblical symbolism the Sun represents God. You then need a natural object to produce the shadow and this can represent Jesus who became flesh so that people could see God. Then when Jesus walked the face of the earth he would project a shadow on the ground and this is another interesting analogy. We can see that if the shadow represents the Type of Jesus found in the Old Testament that it would be a darkened outline of the more complex three-dimensional image of the Jesus that was standing between the Old Testament Jew and the Light of the fullness of God. Do you understand the pattern being taught? God is Light and without God we would not be able to see Jesus or who He is and this helps explain why the Jews did not recognize their Messiah when He was here.
One of the most interesting aspects about viewing any shadow projected on the ground is that it is always easily recognizable and identifiable to all those that know the original real object intimately but it is not recognizable to those that do not know the original. For example a teacher at the school where my young son attended, created a shadow cut out portrait of his silhouette. This picture contained only the outlined profile of his head, but yet I could look at it and I knew immediately who it was without anyone telling me. Because you didn’t know my son you would only know that it was a young boy, but you would have no clue to the identity or the name of the child by looking at the shadow picture only. What this experience taught me was that anyone that knows the original object that cast the shadow can recognize what or who it was that created it by only looking at the vague incomplete shadowy outline. That is exactly what occurs in the Old Testament Bible Typology arena when people read without knowing the real Jesus of the New Testament first they will just never understand how anyone can say that Jesus is found in these shadow words. It is only because I have come to know this New Covenant Jesus intimately that I can recognize the types that were hidden in the shadows of the Old Covenant. I pray that you are grasping these important concepts of types and shadows in the Old Testament because again God uses this method of concealment in so many selected O.T. examples. Let me define what a “type” represents in the Biblical context to be more precise.
TYPE: A real literal person, place, event or thing found in Old Testament Biblical history divinely designed by the omniscient God to be a prophetic shadow of the good things that Jesus would fulfill in the New Testament.
Can you understand this paraphrased definition for a Biblical “type”? This definition was directed and designed specifically for the one subject of Jesus but there are other spiritual N.T. subjects that are hidden in types found in the O.T. also. Perhaps you are struggling to understand where this is revealed, used or described in the New Testament? I will attempt to give you a couple of examples that will help to confirm this definition if you have some spiritual vision and some spiritual maturity to embrace and receive them. I will not attempt to do a complete teaching on the subject of Biblical Typology here in this introduction so pay close attention to what I do give you and then if you need to ask questions you can do that in a comment. Read this N.T. verse written about Biblical O.T. Typology:
Rom 5:14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.
The reason people do not understand this verse is about Biblical Typology is probably because they do not study the definitions of the Greek words selected and used by God. What God reveals in this verse is that what He wrote about the literal historical Adam in the Old Testament was a patterned “type” or “figure” of the coming Jesus that was to be revealed to us in the New Testament. Do you understand this and then do you remember what I have already taught you about typology? Clearly Adam is not Jesus by far. However, Adam still characterizes a basic shadowed incomplete form for the coming Jesus. What God is teaching us is that we should be able to read about Adam and see a pictured incomplete outline of the Lord Jesus. I really do not know how you can read this revelation given to Paul and not see it. It is literally right in front of your eyes. Perhaps we need to look up the definition of the main keyword in the Greek to see it more clearly. I’ll emphasize this one more time that Jesus was not Adam, but rather Adam was a simpler symbolic representation for Jesus lacking many of the finer spiritual details. Examine the Greek word that was translated as “figure” in the Strong’s dictionary and you will see the following definition that is critical to understand:
From G5180; a die (as struck), that is, (by implication) a stamp or scar; by analogy a shape, that is, a statue, (figuratively) style or resemblance; specifically a sampler (“type”), that is, a model (for imitation) or instance (for warning): – en- (ex-) ample, fashion, figure, form, manner, pattern, print.
Learn the key words presented in this definition and apply them to the comparison between Jesus and Adam. God says that Adam was a pattern, type, example and even a figure of the coming future Jesus. What does that say to you? Do you know what a printer’s “type” is in the natural? Maybe you are too modern to understand the old printing “type” press concept created by Guttenberg in 1440. This man revolutionized the older hand written word recording and distribution methods. Guttenberg reinvented what use to be an expensive time consuming laborious method of copying God’s Word into something more useful and cheap to produce. Because of Guttenberg what was rare for man to own soon became common for man to own. Guttenberg took what was out of the reach of every normal person and changed it into something within their reach. Clearly that was a God inspired idea to help man spread His written Word. If you did not know it already, Guttenberg invented the moveable “type” system of printing. Did you notice the repetition of the keyword “type”? Typology is the study of types. Moveable “type” was when the letters could be arranged in a specific configuration, ink applied to them, and then a piece of paper could be pressed on the type pattern to leave a lasting recurring impression that was a duplication of the original type pattern. Wow that process describes a God concept found in the Bible in Typology. This printing process could easily create hundreds and thousands of identical copies all from the originally created pattern.
What we are observing is that Adam is a Biblical Type reference point directing us to the coming Jesus and what He will accomplish and do for us in the spiritual realm. That means what Adam does is a prophecy for what Jesus will do in the spiritual realm. Adam is described to us in the first 4 chapters of Genesis primarily. God very clearly says in Romans 5:14 that you can find Jesus in these words if you are able to see Him. Adam as a pattern for the coming Jesus is by far not the only Typology hidden in Genesis or the rest of the Old Testament. I could take you through the O.T. and show you Jesus found in a type of Noah, in Abraham, in Isaac, in Jacob, in Joseph, in Moses, in Joshua and on and on I could go. In fact I am convinced that you can almost find a type of Jesus in every major story recorded but that will be another advanced subject for a different Bible study series. Let’s look at another N.T. reference to Biblical Typology found in the O.T.:
Col 2:16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:
Col 2:17 Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.
Read these two verses and observe closely what they are speaking of. These verses begin with a list of O.T. references and concepts concerning Holy days, Sabbaths and new moons. These are all subjects found in the written Laws of Moses. They describe instructions and actions given by the directions of God and performed by the people in obedience. Then notice what Paul writes about them. Paul says these were simply shadows (types) of the things to come in Christ. What we can observe very clearly is new hidden references to Jesus in the O.T. Nowhere in the O.T can you find that these represent anything about Christ yet that is what is revealed by God in these verses. That simply means these stated things were not Christ but rather designed by God to point the people to the Christ. Are you beginning to see the concepts of typology in the Word of God? If you do not yet understand the significance of hidden N.T. references in O.T. Biblical Typology I really do not know how to make it clearer in such a simple introduction to the subject. Let’s get into the subject of finding rapture in O.T. typology and see if this helps you to learn how to apply what you have learned so far and I will try to give you another example of O.T. Bible Typology described in the N.T. in the next section.
UNSTRUCTURED INTERPRETATION VERSUS RULES BASED INTERPRETATION
What I am going to do today is to utilize a little known law of Bible interpretation that I call the Law of First Mention to step back into a past reality to help us to see and learn about a coming future truth. Perhaps you have never heard of the Law of First Mention. I have found through repeated years of Bible study that using this Scriptural Law of Interpretation that God has placed certain specific hidden clues whenever an important subject is first mentioned in His Word. Practically every time a Bible subject is mentioned for the first time I have discovered important hints to understanding the whole subject in the rest of the Bible. Usually this first subject mention is found in the book of Genesis but today my subject that I am searching for occurs first in the book of Exodus. I am going to apply this law of first mention by searching for just one of the specific keywords referenced by God in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 and find out where it was initially mentioned by God in the Old Testament to help us see that this is a legitimate Bible study technique. In doing this I believe that I will locate, read and discover what God has hidden about the subject of rapture within recorded Old Testament typology. You might ask me “Seriously, you mean you can do that?” I think people not knowing how to study the Bible is one of the main reasons we have such mass confusion in the church today on subjects like rapture. I always try to teach you how I study the Bible when I give you my lessons. In doing this you gain much more insight than if I only teach what I discovered and not how I arrived at the conclusion.
Let’s stop and think about rules based interpretation of the Bible as opposed to having no structure or rules for the interpretation of the Bible. A no rule based approach could also be called a random approach to Bible study. In the context of Bible study are rules a positive or a negative influence? Randomness is associated with a realm of lacking intelligent design. For example in my picture at the beginning of this paragraph I have a bunch of random rocks which do not display any structure. At the end of this paragraph I have another picture of rocks that clearly are not random but have a designed patterned created by intelligence. Which picture is more like the Bible? Let me ask you about general life situations and see if these can be taken back to Bible study. Are rules of conduct and manners good or bad? If they are good then consider why we might want to learn and follow Bible study rules also? Are rules for driving positive or negative? Would a random approach to driving a car result in more safety or more accidents? I think you can quickly see that randomness is a state of confusion and promotes negative consequences. That is why I believe random Bible study does the same.
Some might ask me “Can’t we just go and read the Bible and see what it says?” I wish that was true but that is not how God wrote the Bible as we discovered when Jesus said you must “search” for Him in the Bible to find Him. Bible study without strict rules would be like us playing a sport without knowing the goal or purpose of the sport or having any specific applicable rules, referees or penalties. If you place no independent reviewable limitations or restrictions upon what is permissible in any sport then suddenly you can do whatever you like to, to whoever you like to, to achieve whatever result you want to see. This type of mentality would result in a“Hunger Games” Bible study approach to winning the truth game and that is what we are observing in the church today. That is why I use very strong rules of Bible interpretation with defined and clearly stated restrictive laws guiding us to what is permissible and what is illegal in determining the meaning. These defined rules can be verified independently of the viewed interpretation to confirm that they are being followed. Without any laws of interpretation there is nothing but disorder, chaos and randomness and where disorder rules any interpretation represents legal truth.
What are these Bible study laws of interpretation that I use? I guess I have touched on most of them in my many other Bible lessons, but there are always new readers that have not read every lesson yet so I need to repeat things constantly to teach everyone new. If you have read these rules already and understand them, please forgive me for being repetitive. Let me give you just an overview of some of these basic laws of interpretation that are good to learn, remember and follow:
- The Law of First Mention. The first time a subject is mentioned in the Bible God gives specific descriptions, clues and even hints to understanding the entire spiritual subject in the N.T. It is noteworthy to mention that sometimes the subject first mentioned is not the same exact English word being sought from the N.T. For example, the sun, moon and stars of Revelation 12:1 is usually thought to be first mentioned in Genesis 37:9, but they are all mentioned before that using other titles and descriptions in Genesis 1:16 and that knowledge changes the definition of their identity dramatically by the discovery and understanding of these concealed clues. What I am saying is that not every first mention is always easy to find.
- The Law of Last Mention. This law is very similar to the Law of First Mention in reverse. The last time a subject is mentioned in the Bible God gives specific descriptions, clues and hints to the conclusion of the spiritual subject in the N.T. For example, the mention of the bride of the Lamb in Revelation 21 and 22 gives us conclusive insight into the spiritual representation of this figure. So while Eve was the first mentioned bride, the last mentioned bride concludes the subject. Since we also already learned that Adam was a type of Jesus, then Eve must be a type of the bride of Jesus. So much to learn but not my subject today.
- The Law of Two or Three Witnesses. Taking any solitary isolated text you can make the Bible say whatever you like, but by God requiring the reader to find at least two different confirming subject texts from two different books of the Bible helps to eliminate the isolation truth error. This single rule of interpretation is one of the most important and widely ignored laws that cause so much of the error in churches.
- The Law of No Private Interpretation. God requires us to leave our feeble opinions out of every Bible interpretation. This literally means that God will interpret His own Words in the Bible. This also means you have to look, search and find these interpretations in order to understand the original verse being studied. Get into the habit of finding God’s commentary on the subjects and leave your weak opinions out of the discussion.
- The Law of Divine Definition. God’s divine definition of every word will always take precedence over man’s definitions. Finding this definition is always the challenge, but it is usually accomplished with keyword searches of the text. For example many times in the Bible God speaks of a coming day of the Lord. This could be an isolated event of one time occurrence or it could also be a time of duration that points us to a 1000 years of duration as defined by 2 Peter 3:8 and Psalm 90:4. We will definitely see in this lesson that this law will apply to our rapture study as a 1000 year time period.
- The Law of Indirect Antithesis Truth. For every stated direct truth in any verse an implied indirect antithesis truth not stated can be concluded. For example, the Bible says in 1 Corinthians 11:31 that if we judge ourselves, we would not be judged. By the law of Indirect Antithesis truth we could say legally “If we do not judge ourselves we will be judged”. Both statements are equally true.
- The Mathematical Law of Transitive Equality. This law of Bible interpretation uses a basic law of Algebra to teach truth. It states if A = B and B = C then A = C. I recently used this law in stating if God = Word (John 1:1) and God = Spirit (John 4:24) then Spirit = Word and Word = Spirit and both = God.
- The Law of Right and Wrong Seeking. God reveals a Bible interpretation law in Matthew 7:7 that whatever we seek will be what we will find. Therefore, know that if we seek error (intentionally or unintentionally) we will always find error. Conversely if we seek truth then we will always find truth. It matters greatly what you are searching for in the Bible. If you seek to prove abortion is legal in the Bible you will find information to justify this belief but that is not the truth. It is the Law of God that by His design you will always find whatever you look for in His word.
- The Law of Truth Dependence. Understand that many truths found in the Word of God are dependent upon the discovery of other greater truths first. For example the symbolic identity of the woman in Revelation 12 is a truth that is dependently based upon first understanding the identities of all of the other dependent symbols that she is described with. No true interpretation of the woman is possible without discovering God’s hierarchal truth structure of the sun, moon and stars first. That is the law of truth dependence.
- The Law of Freewill Choice. God has given to every human the right to be wrong. Thus the Bible was written in a manner that permits every human the right to believe whatever they desire to believe. Not knowing this truth will cause many people to choose poorly their beliefs from the Bible. The Law of Freewill Choice goes hand in hand with the Law of Right and Wrong Seeking.
- The Law of Spiritual Guidance. God says very clearly in His word that His Spirit will guide us into all truth (John 16:13). Ignoring the guidance of the Spirit of God will always result in your own individual private interpretations. Not listening to the Holy Spirit will always result in error.
- The Law of Revelation Knowledge. The Bible presents us with a paradox. God gives us plain text words but then requires us to receive His Spirit in order for Him to reveal them to us so that we can understand them correctly. The natural mind will always be enmity with the Spirit of God and the Bible. A spiritual mind will always be capable of receiving revelation truth from God. Every verse in the Bible can always be taken in two opposing ways; one is a natural view point and the other is a spiritual viewpoint. Which one do you believe is the ultimate truth? You see I have noticed that some preachers can teach sickness from the same verses that someone else preaches healing. How can two people see opposite truths from the same words?
That was just a simple sample introduction to finding and applying structured rules to your Bible study. Lacking any defined structure will consistently result in what I teach to be called the Random Human Chaos Understanding of the Bible. That simply means you can totally miss what God intended for you to know by doing it your own way and ignoring God’s ways. Since I am former computer programmer I understand rules based systems better than most. Every useful system is an entity with a design and every designed entity has rules. If you do not understand that the Bible is a book with design, structure and rules you are very ignorant that man can build something that God did not. That was a long introduction and I could spend a lot of time on the subject of structured versus random Bible study but that is not my primary subject today. So let’s move to rapture now and see what God teaches us about the subject in the O.T.
RAPTURE IN O.T. TYPOLOGY
The primary keyword that I am searching for today in the Old Testament is “trumpet”. If you recall we found the Lord Jesus descending in 1 Thessalonians 4:16 in unison with the sound of a trumpet coming out of heaven. Where, is the word “trumpet” first mentioned in the Bible and what does God reveal with this word’s usage in the context? Do these verses have anything to do with the rapture subject as I suspected? Since I have already done the Bible search, I will simply direct you to go to the book of Exodus and chapter 19. You may recall that the book of Exodus is the recorded story of God’s deliverance of the slave children of Israel from the oppressive nation of Egypt. We should also know from reading in 1 Corinthians 10:11 that this story was given to us by God to be a specific “type” (another typology) pattern for the church to learn from. How do I know that? It is simply because in this verse is found the exact same Greek word (G5179) that was translated as “figure” in the Adam to Jesus type pattern in Romans 5:14. But, here in 1 Corinthians 10:11 this same Greek word has been translated as the English word “examples”. “Examples” is just another synonymous term for “type”. What I am teaching you is that Jesus is not the only spiritual entity concealed within types in the Old Testament. 1 Corinthians 10:11 clearly teaches that natural Israel was a type of the spiritual church that we need to learn from as examples. What is an example? An example can simply be any model of the real. You see an architect might build a scale model of his designed building for the client to approve and this is his usage of an example type for the coming real. That is what God is saying to us that He is doing. However God is not looking for our approval, God is using this example type to teach us.
When taking a test in school some example questions may be given for you to see how to answer correctly. These examples are not the real test but are rather only patterns for the coming real to teach what is expected of you. Do you understand? Any example can also be either positive or negative and we can learn from either type. Some examples teach us what not to do and other examples teach us correct responses. I clearly believe that natural Israel teaches mostly negative examples for us not to follow but that is another subject entirely. Remember the introductory rules of Bible Typology? Natural Israel is not the church but only represents certain patterned characteristics for the church to apply or learn from. Maybe I need to just give you the complete verse and let you look at it for yourself:
1Co 10:11 Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. (NASB)
Let’s verify that the natural O.T. nation of Israel displays certain positive patterns that correspond with the N.T. church. What parallels exist within the written history of the nation of Israel that can be used as typologies for the coming New Testament church? Are there any specific parallels or common patterns with these two separate distinct entities? Let me give you a quick overview of some of the Biblical typologies that I believe are fairly obvious concerning the natural nation of Israel and the spiritual church of Jesus Christ:
- Israel was held in bondage for 430 years in Egypt until the deliverer was sent by God to set them free from their bondage.
- The people of the earth were held in bondage for 4030 years under the domination of the spiritual oppressor Satan until Jesus our spiritual deliverer was sent by God into the world to set us free.
- Moses the natural deliver was preserved from death by God as the evil ruler of Egypt killed every male child of Israel.
- Jesus the Deliverer of the world was preserved from the same type of death being sent by an angel to Egypt as the evil ruler ordered the deaths of every male child in Bethlehem.
- The Passover lamb is killed in Egypt and the blood spread upon the wooden doorpost to guard, protect and deliver the children of Israel from natural death.
- The Passover Lamb of God (Jesus Christ) is killed and His shed blood on the wooden cross delivers God’s children from our eternal spiritual death and destruction.
- The children of Israel after being freed from Egypt and Pharaoh were baptized by God when they went through the red sea and this same red sea eliminated the threat of the pursuing Egyptian army.
- The church of Jesus Christ has been baptized into Christ’s sea of red flowing blood and this flowing blood sea saved us while dooming our enemy Satan.
- The children of Israel were given water from a rock to drink in the wilderness to sustain them.
- The Church of Jesus Christ drinks the living water pouring from the mouth of the Chief Cornerstone Jesus Christ our eternal living spiritual rock.
- The children of Israel ate manna sent down from heaven in the wilderness.
- The Church of Jesus Christ eats the bread of life sent down from heaven which is the Word of God.
- The children of Israel take the Promised Land and possess it overcoming their enemies.
- The Church of Jesus Christ takes the promises of God by faith overcoming their spiritual enemy Satan.
- Moses the deliverer gives the children of Israel the law of commandments on Mt Sinai.
- Jesus Christ the deliverer of the church gives the church the law of the commandment of love.
- God establishes priests in Israel to offer sacrifices to their God.
- The church is comprised of spiritual priests unto God offering sacrifices of praise unto our God.
This is called God’s Biblical Typology using O.T. patterns found in the information given about a real natural people that teach us about a coming spiritual people. We could go into many other parallel patterns found in the Bible about the natural nation of Israel, Moses and Pharaoh representing the church, Jesus and Satan in types. I believe that this was a really good introduction to the subject of how God uses hidden Biblical typology in the Old Testament to teach us what will happen again in the New Testament. I pray that you can see it and receive it because it is essential that you understand what God says in His Word.
Ecc 1:9 That which has been is that which will be, And that which has been done is that which will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun.
This is what I call the Bible Law of Repeated Design Patterns being revealed. God clearly says what has been in the past is that which shall be again in the yet to come. There is definitely nothing new under the sun! God teaches us that O.T. types are the design patterns for what will occur again in the forthcoming events of the world. This is such an important part of God and the Bible that I cannot emphasize it enough. This law is why I am looking for rapture concepts to be hidden in the recorded types of the O.T. If we cannot find any previous rapture patterns in the O.T. it will not be possible for it to occur again in the N.T. If we can find rapture types hidden in the O.T. then we can be assured of the truth for what will soon reoccur for the church. Let’s continue to study Rapture.
Using Bible search software, do the search of the Bible for the keyword “trumpet”. Please do this to help verify everything that I teach is accurate. If I make any mistake, if I miss something, if I say it wrong, or even if I type it misspelled, tell me nicely and I will make the necessary correction. You should hopefully find the word “trumpet” in verse 13 of Exodus 19. This was the first mention of the keyword “trumpet” that I found in the KJV Bible search and here is what I found that this verse says:
Exo 19:13 There shall not an hand touch it, but he shall surely be stoned, or shot through; whether it be beast or man, it shall not live: when the trumpet soundeth long, they shall come up to the mount.
I think the Bible is so awesome. Did you notice the way that God writes this verse in the Bible? God orchestrates a real historical natural event that actually occurred but because of His designed purpose and precise word selection, these words can be taken both literally and spiritually as being both historical and prophetical typology simultaneously. We can use the order of mention and the phrasing to see the implied spiritual future application pattern. For example here in this verse, God says where I am now, no one living on the earth can come up or they will die. That has a lot of hidden meaning in it to me. We live DOWN here in a natural world on the earth apart from God’s throne UP in heaven. How can a natural man ascend into heaven without first experiencing death? It is just not possible for a natural man to visit God’s spiritual location by his own desire, effort, action or will. In fact for a Christian to depart and be with the Lord before the trumpet rapture event they must normally die. We of course have also already learned that there are the exceptions of Enoch and Elijah that did not die before they were taken by God. But those two were just further confirmation rapture patterns that we the living in the church can be taken identically. Let’s continue to move on to the last part of the verse for the beginning of the really good stuff about this hidden rapture pattern.
Right now I really only want to talk about three main subjects found in the last statement where God says the (1) “trumpet” will sound loud and then (2) “they” shall (3) “come up”. Remember according to 1 Corinthians 10:11 who the people called “they” are a “type” of. Then notice what happens first and then what the type of the church is instructed to do. Did you notice that this verse does not say who blows the trumpet? This is a very clever way of making a literal physical event a prophetic event description. Since no one directly is named as the trumpet blower the action can be performed by anyone natural or spiritual. You will also observe the obvious fact that “they” is another generic unnamed pronoun of non-specific assignment. In other words someone will blow a trumpet and then some unnamed people will “come up”. Now I can understand that God is speaking about natural people and natural acts of those people, but the words apply to two realms by explicit use of generalities. Many times what people read in the O.T. as God only speaking to a natural people is really God speaking more broadly to a greater coming people. I’m sure I will have some disagreement with that statement, but sorry I stand by it. Perhaps we need to look up the Hebrew word translated as “trumpet” to see the meaning and the definition from Strong’s. This information may help to confirm if we have found the correct named N.T. association found in 1 Thessalonians 4:16 for trumpet in the Greek:
Apparently from H2986; the blast of a horn (from its continuous sound); specifically the signal of the silver trumpets; hence the instrument itself and the festival thus introduced: – jubile, ram’s horn, trumpet.
In this definition we will read a strong matching definition for the Greek word G4536 that was translated into English as “trump” in 1 Thessalonians 4:16. Observing the Hebrew definition of the word from Strong’s it means “a blast of a horn as with a continuous sound”. It is also very interesting to see that God uses this trumpet sound to announce certain festivals. Let me help you with another Bible study fact detail. If you search the Hebrew word definitions in Strong you will find the word “trumpet” occurs in 10 different Hebrew words. What does that tell us? God specifically chose this word in the O.T. to be the first mention and that the other words are potentially not connected to this event description. However, I will also tell you that God uses another word in Exodus 19 that is also translated as the English word “trumpet”. For example, in verse 16 of Exodus 19 you will find the Hebrew word H7782 that is also translated as “trumpet”. Why does God use two different Hebrew words for basically the same type of noun object? Why are both words translated as the same English word trumpet? What is the difference between the trumpet in verse 13 and the trumpet in verse 16? Those are all great questions and if you are not asking these types of questions when you study the Bible you are not studying. I believe that God has a purpose for every specific word selected. I believe no word utilized is there by accident or chance. We still have a lot to learn.
It is extremely important to search the O.T. for every occurrence of this Hebrew word translated as trumpet in Exodus 19 to see how God used it for the subject context of the entire O.T. If you do this you will find that this Hebrew word is only selected for use by God in 25 verses of the Old Testament. Almost every other time this Hebrew word is selected by God, it is translated as the English word “Jubilee”. Pay very close attention that a Trumpet blast always begins the festival Jubilee. Do you know what a Jubilee was to the natural nation of Israel? God writes significant things about Jubilee in the Law book of Leviticus. To the natural Jew the time of Jubilee was a highly anticipated event. Uh oh! That sounds like the rapture to me! Jubilee occurred every 50 years by God’s design. During this time of celebration all debts were forgiven and the lands went back to the previous owner in the family. There are two key words found in the descriptions of Jubilee that applies to Biblical typology for the rapture of the church. These two key words are “inheritance” and “redeem”. Both words are predominate themes of the N.T. You may still scratch your head and wonder what could Jubilee, inheritance and redemption have to do with Rapture? That is where I will tell you that it has more to do with rapture than you can possibly imagine right now. Perhaps I’ll get to that part of the discussion later today, but if not I will make an effort to talk about Jubilee in a future Bible lesson on rapture. What I have concluded with this information is that this story given by God in Exodus 19 is the first example of Jubilee for the nation of Israel and you should remember that.
Looking back at Exodus 19:13 did you read it closely searching for the rapture parallels found in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17? Notice what God says to Moses who is a typed pattern of the N.T. deliverer, the Lord Jesus Christ; God says that a trumpet will blast long and then the people will come up. Did you notice where Moses was when he was told this statement? Was not Moses up on the mountain with God? I thought God just said no one could touch the mountain or they will die. You should be able to see more typology patterns that fit the rapture event here. Moses being a type of Jesus goes up into heaven alive in Acts 1. Let me stop at those words and explain the typology of the mount for you. The mountain represents the place of God in heaven symbolically. Moses goes up to talk to God and God gives instructions from the location of the symbolic heaven. We could easily get off on another side trip discussion about the symbolism of the mount but I will move on to the “come up” part of the verse.
The Hebrew word translated as “come up” is H5927. If you look up the word’s definition in Strong’s it literally means “to ascend”. Here we have one of the closely described synonymous terms that God taught us to look for in Lesson 1 for the Greek term “harpazo” where it was translated as “caught up” in 1 Thessalonians 4:17. To ascend up is the stated direct opposite of descending down. To “ascend up” can also be interchanged with the description of being “caught up”, “taken up”, etc. This verse is certainly not a completed match for what we read in 1 Thessalonians but it is a very good initial shadow outline for it. Remember what a type is? It is not the completed picture but rather just the outline of the detailed image casting the shadow giving enough information so that it is recognizable to those that know the original. Here in this single verse are 6 direct and indirect nouns and one verb that corresponded to the rapture information with pretty amazing accuracy. What were these nouns and verb, you might ask? Glad you asked here is a list of these important parallel types:
- God (In charge of the entire event)
- The Mount, the high location of God (a type of heaven)
- The trumpet blast (announcing the beginning of the event)
- Moses (a type of the Lord Jesus the deliverer already up in the clouds in heaven)
- The people (they) alive on the earth (a type of the living church) waiting to go up to be with the Lord
- The wilderness valley (the symbolic location for the church in the world today)
- Ascend Up (The living church rising up to meet God in the clouds)
Here are seven key parallel ingredients to the described rapture event in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 and this is just the first mention of the trumpet instrument that brought us to this chapter in Exodus. Do you see how these two separate scriptures were linked together by God? Do you understand why they are linked together? Probably not yet but hopefully very soon you will see it more clearly. Let’s examine the context of this verse more closely to see what else is hidden concerning the coming rapture. In doing this we will go up in the chapter to verse 1. But I will not include all of those verses in this lesson to shorten it slightly. Verse one describes Israel coming out of Egypt and traveling from there for a specific set time of 3 months. They come to the Mountain of Sinai and God wants to meet with Moses on the top of the mountain. I wonder why a mountain? God always does things by plan and purpose and nothing that God does is an accident. Moses goes up on the mountain to hear God speak and the next few verses are primarily God doing the speaking but notice that some or all of these words can be taken concurrently for the now present tense and a future prophetic tense to apply to someone else. What I am saying is that these words spoken by God apply to the natural situation right then with the children of Israel but they also apply to the future repeated events that will not occur for thousands of years from then concerning the church. Let’s begin to examine verse 5 to see what exactly God says:
Exo 19:5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine:
Here we have God speaking of the natural nation of Israel using terms that are very interesting. God tells them you are in covenant with me! God tells them to keep His commandments and obey His voice! Both of these were stated conditions for the covenant. Then God announces the benefits of the covenant arrangement and for fulfilling the conditions. God says you shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all other people. Do you understand fully what was just spoken? God states that you will be my people but all others will not be my people and that is a classic binary division of two opposing antithesis groups. That is very much like the concept that we discovered in the first three lessons on the subject of rapture. Those two groups that we have been learning about were those that are “IN-CHRIST” versus those that were “OUT-CHRIST”; those that were called the sheep versus those that were called the goats; those that were wheat versus those that were tares; those that were wise virgins versus those that were foolish virgins. Can you see the pattern agreement with what was revealed in the N.T.?
Here in this verse we also have a Hebrew word that is very noteworthy to comprehend. This word H5459 means “wealth” as in something shut up in a locker or a vault. This Hebrew word signifies a place or a state of protection for something that is very valuable to keep them from an enemy or a thief. Who do you recall that Jesus said is the thief in the Bible? In John 10:10 Jesus said “the thief (Satan) came to kill, steal and to destroy but I have come that you might have life”. I am not going to spend time explaining every word given by God in this verse. Just note the existence of three important parallels, the covenant, the conditions and the benefits because these are all types that apply to the church today. Let’s move to verse 6 and learn some new important details:
Exo 19:6 And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.
God continues to speak and says to the people that you will not only be my guarded treasure but “You shall be 1) a kingdom of priests and 2) a holy nation. God then tells Moses these are the words that you shall speak to the “children of Israel”. Who are these two mentioned types? We have Israel and we have his children. Who are these children and who is this Israel in Biblical typology? I do not have the time to elaborate on every spiritual application of the information given in the O.T. I will go over a few key details to help to get you thinking in a new spiritual way about this typological information being given. Naturally speaking, we know Jacob’s name was changed to Israel in Genesis 32:28. Here in this verse is the first mention of the name Israel and by the law of first mention God gives us certain clues that we need to learn from to understand the rest of the subject in the Bible. Go read this chapter again and see it for yourself. Then answer these two questions. Where did this name come from and whose name was it before it was given to Jacob? I’ll tell you directly that the Bible says the name Israel came from the angel sent by God up in heaven to wrestle with Jacob. Then I think we need to do some research study to see what this name means in the original Hebrew language. Read the definition from the Strong’s and see how it is defined:
From H8280 and H410; he will rule as God; Jisrael, a symbolical name of Jacob; also (typically) of his posterity: – Israel.
I want you to pay close attention to what Dr. Strong believed this name represented. He declared that first this name was a symbolical name given to Jacob. What does that tell you? That simply means the name Israel was not Jacob’s real name but rather belonged to someone else. It also connects us back into the Biblical Typology discussion directly as this name being a spiritual subject that was hidden in the natural O.T. typological references. Did you notice how Strong was led to include the word “typically” in the definition? I do not believe that was an accident. Typically or types is exactly what we are studying. Did you notice what the name means? According to the definition the name Israel means “He will rule as God”. Uh oh? Who can that be? Is that the natural man Jacob that will rule as God or someone else that was prophesied to come from Jacob? Since Jacob obviously died a natural death and has not been raised from the dead from what I have read in the Bible, I do not believe that natural Jacob qualifies to rule as God. Wow, this is going to get very deep here and I might just offend some immature Christians with the truth.
The Hebrew name “Israel” is comprised of two other Hebrew root words. One Hebrew root word is H8280 which means “to prevail” as a ruler prince. To prevail implies this subject has direct opposition and enemies to overcome. To prevail further implies victories and conquests over these enemies. The second Hebrew root word is H410 and this is the most important part of the name. It is a very common O.T. shortened form for the divine name of God. This Hebrew word “el” is used before other divine titles like “El Shaddai” (Almighty God), “El Elyon” (Supreme God) and “El Olam” (Everlasting God) which are all O.T. descriptive divine names for our God. Perhaps you have heard of some of these names? Ok, let’s take a quick review of the information that we have just learned about the name “Israel”:
- The name Israel came down from God in Heaven.
- The name Israel was given to a natural man named Jacob after he prevailed with the angel.
- The name Israel was called a symbolical name by Strong for the man Jacob.
- The name Israel literally means “He will rule as God”.
What we are observing here are some more O.T. Typologies that are pointing us to Jesus using these patterns. Let me help prove to you that the name “Israel” is God’s name that was given to a natural man named Jacob. Did you know I could prove that using the Bible? This is why so many Bible teachers today are so confused about what is written, they do not see what is plainly right in front of their eyes. Let me give you a few verses to help you see what I am trying to teach you:
2Ch 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name,
Isa 43:7 Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.
Jer 7:11 Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, even I have seen it, saith the LORD.
Jer 7:14 Therefore will I do unto this house, which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh.
Jer 32:34 “But they put their detestable things in the house which is called by My name, to defile it.
I could give you a few other verses but that is enough witnesses to the truth to establish it firmly in my mind. Can you read? God says 5 times these people are called by My name? What name do you think this is? I know for sure that it is the name “Israel” (He will rule as God) and it can be no other. Do you know how many times “Israel” is found in the O.T.? The name “Israel” is included in 2,228 verses of the O.T. Bible. There is no other name used that many times to describe any people. Jerusalem is found in only 626 verses. Judah is found in 754 verses. Can you think of any names in the O.T. of a natural people that will qualify for who God is calling by His name? Ok, let me help you out by connecting some more of the dots for you. Did you notice that I included Jeremiah 7:11 in my list of confirming verses? I did this on purpose because Jesus tells you directly who it is in Matthew 21:13. Jesus drives out the money changers with a whip from the temple in Jerusalem and He quotes a part of Jeremiah 7:11 to describe the event. Jesus said “My house shall be a house of prayer but you have made it a robber’s den”. What Jesus has just described are the people that are called by His name and this can only be the children of “Israel”. I do not want to spend any more time on this part of the lesson. You either are going to see it or you are going to close your eyes and reject it.
The natural children of Jacob were 12 sons and these were the founding natural fathers of the 12 tribes of natural Israel. Each generation had their own children and this continual cycle of generational propagation continued until Moses is speaking with God here in these verses in Exodus 19. Now is the time where we need to factor into the equation “how does this natural pattern typology information fit with any spiritual application of the greater prophesied truth of God?” Did any of these words just spoken by God in verse 6 even sound just a little bit familiar to you? Please let me list the key factors that were just given again in verse 6:
- The children of Israel (A natural family pattern of many generations descending from 12 brothers)
- A Kingdom of Priests
- A Holy Nation of People
I mean if you have ever read the N.T. you have come across all of these type descriptions even if you did not realize where they were mentioned first in the Bible. I’ll give you a hint, the Holy Spirit inspired Peter to write about all of these types to the church and this is what God reveals to us through His servant Peter:
1Pe 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
As you should be able to tell, Peter is not directly quoting the entire verse of Exodus 19:6. However Peter writes enough for us to know they are directly connected. If you look at the NASB version of the Bible you will discover this verse is mostly capitalized to indicate that it is a direct quote of Exodus 19:6. However, this verse is really more of a direct commentary explanation by God for what He was talking about and who God was speaking to prophetically in the original statement of Exodus 19:6. I will no doubt have some naysayers try to tell me this verse does not have anything to do with what God said to natural Israel but that is just spiritual blindness that causes people not to have the ability to make the proper connections. Look at what Peter says to the church. He said we are a “chosen generation”. Chosen simply means the “elect”. Uh oh, I thought natural Israel was the only ones ever called God’s elect? Not according to what God just revealed to the church here in the N.T. The Greek term G1085 translated as “generation” directed at the church in this verse simply means a group of related family members, relatives or kin. Did you know that you were in a new family now if you are a Christian? How does that term for the church compare with the typology we just found spoken to the children of natural Israel? I personally see so many parallels and repeated patterns here that it is amazing. The natural nation of Israel originates with one man having 12 natural sons. Does that compare to the church at all? What about Jacob being a type of Jesus Christ? Did Jesus ever have twelve spiritual sons? I’m not talking about natural sons, I am asking about the spiritual offspring. Did you ever wonder why Jesus chose exactly 12 disciples? I mean that has to have been for a very specific reason, do you not agree? Does God do anything casually? I believe Jesus choose twelve disciples to match with the 12 sons of Jacob in the natural.
Biblical typology is such a fascinating subject with so much hidden information that it is really astonishing. Why did Jesus knowing Judas was going to betray Him choose him to be a disciple? Did you know that Judas was also found in hidden O.T. typology? One tribe of natural Israel has been omitted from all mention of the 12 tribes of Israel in Revelation 7. In fact this omitted tribe of Israel has been replaced by just one son from another tribe. I do not have the time to attempt to explain what is happening here in this typology fully. Notice that in Acts 1 that Judas who killed himself was replaced by another. Who was that man that stepped into the vacant Judas position to take his place in the church? I believe that it was one of the spiritual sons of one of the other 11 faithful disciples. I can see every disciple mentioned to be chosen to fulfill a beginning initial role in the new family of God. These 12 men would go into the whole world to bring the Gospel of Jesus to increase and grow the spiritual family of God from every nation on the earth. Why, are Christians called brothers and sisters in the Lord? At least 30 times in his letters to the churches Paul refers to Gentile church members to be his brothers. Since Paul was a naturally born Jew Paul had to be speaking of spiritual kinship and not of the natural. This is simply because we are all spiritual family members in the same spiritual family of God. This spiritual reality simply parallels the natural reality of the nation of Israel who were also all brothers and sisters of the same 12 fathers. Let’s move on in this verse in 1 Peter so that I do not get into too much information.
After “Chosen Generation” Peter then mentions “we are a royal priesthood”. Here is where we get to the direct correlation to Exodus 19:6. Do you remember what God said for Moses to say? God says tell them “You are a Kingdom of Priests”. Royalty has to do with only kingdoms and thus we have more synonymous terms being linked directly together. Did you know that you were a priest in God’s spiritual family in the New Covenant? We do not offer animal sacrifices to God like the priests of natural Israel, but rather we do offer the sacrifice of praise of our lips to God (Heb 13:15). These are just two parallel truth realities that are imperative to learn about as Christians. Finally we get to the one for one relationship being called a “holy nation” the exact same phrase as was mentioned in Exodus 19:6. I want you to do a keyword search for the exact phrase “holy nation” in your Bible search program. This exact phrase only occurs in two verses and these verses are Exodus 19:6 and 1 Peter 2:9. Do you think that is a coincidence, chance occurrence or an accidental happenstance? If you do you are vastly deceived. The Bible linking such a precise phrase together in only two verses is God connecting them together to leave no doubt about what is being communicated about. God is saying very clearly that Exodus 19 is about my Church.
So far we have two very specific links to the church. Do you remember what they were? We have found the church by the law of first mention concerning the “trumpet” reference from 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17. Then we have the keyword matched “Holy Nation” reference from Exodus 19:6 only found repeated in 1 Peter 2:9. Let’s go back to Exodus and continue to study what God says to us. I’m going to skip down to verse 9 in Exodus 19 to move past some less important verses for this lesson discussion:
Exo 19:9 And the LORD said unto Moses, Lo, I come unto thee in a thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with thee, and believe thee for ever. And Moses told the words of the people unto the LORD.
Do you remember how many references I said there were concerning “clouds” in the New Testament? In several of those Jesus very specifically said that He would be coming in the clouds. I am not going to list those again but you can review the previous lessons and find the references. What I see in this verse is another connecting reference to a noun from 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17. The clouds being repeated here in this discourse is not an accident. We now have 7 repeated nouns and 1 repeated verb. I have been working up to this next verse for the entire lesson and here is some very key information for the timing of the rapture event.
Exo 19:10 And the LORD said unto Moses, Go unto the people, and sanctify them to day and to morrow, and let them wash their clothes,
God tells Moses the deliver (a type of Christ Jesus) to sanctify the people. What exactly is that and what does that statement even mean? Let’s begin with the definition of the Hebrew word from the Strong’s dictionary. According to Strong the Hebrew word H6942 means “to be, make, pronounce or observe as clean”. Therefore, sanctification is like a cleaning process. Perhaps you occasionally take a bath or a shower to make your body clean and if you do then you are sanctifying your body. This is really not that complicated but easily missed if we do not learn the application to what this means in the spiritual realm. Wow this is so interesting to me knowing what I know about the word of God and work of Christ Jesus in the New Testament. Are you beginning to see the hidden Jesus Christ in these verses? I could give you many New Testaments verses that apply to what is stated here but I am going to limit myself to only two verses to show how God has sanctified the church through Christ:
1Th 5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Here we have another very key verse of information that ties directly to our rapture subject study. This verse occurs in the chapter immediately following the previous chapter’s rapture event report to the church. Here God brings into the context discussion the subject of sanctification. Paul continuing to write to the church tells them that the God of peace will sanctify them wholly and wholly is defined to include their spirit, soul and body. What did sanctify mean? It meant to cleanse or make clean and this implies they were dirty in these three areas of their lives. The Bible is so awesome when you finally put the pieces of the puzzle together. God is saying I will make you clean but technically does not describe how this will occur. Some try to transfer responsibility of this cleaning as a God only type of work but that leaves out the human freewill right of choice and that would violate so many things found in the Bible so very plainly. Since sanctification is not the primary subject here I am not going to spend the time here to explain it. I simply want you to see the clear links that are being placed plainly in front of you for you to join them together. God is linking rapture to the sanctification part of the discussion and vice versa Let me show you one other very key scripture concerning sanctification and the church:
Eph 5:26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Here we have a verse that does not name the church directly but if you read the context you will find out the church is one of the primary subjects being discussed in this chapter. In verse 25 God says to husbands “Love your wives even as Christ loves the church and gave himself for her and then in verse 26 is the connecting link to the previous statement “that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of the water by the word”. I wasn’t going to get into the method of sanctification but I think I just did. What God is saying here is that Jesus has sanctified His bride the church by giving them His precious Holy Word to wash with. Here we have a paradox being presented that many readers will be puzzled with. I recently had one man tell me I was crazy for teaching people that the church was the wife of Christ because we are clearly described to be the body of Christ in many verses of the New Testament. To that man I will ask this simple question. If we the church, are the body of Christ why then is it necessary for Christ to give us a Word bath to cleanse His very own body? Uh oh? Is not the body of Christ already clean having been raised from the dead and exalted into heaven? You see because people do not think when they read the Bible they miss so much of what is being stated. The answer to why the church needs cleansing is found in Exodus 19 and several other verses. If you would like to learn more about this secret you can read my Bible lesson “How the Church became the Body of Christ”.
Let’s continue to look at Exodus 19:10. God says for the people to be cleansed and tells them to wash their clothes today and tomorrow. That was a stated cleaning duration of two days, was it not? Why did God pick exactly two days to tell them to prepare for the trumpet? Wow, we are now getting into the timing of the rapture event without even understanding what God has said to us fully. Approximately how long has it been since Jesus left the earth to go into heaven to wait for His time to return? It has been nearly 2000 years. No one knows for sure the exact time but it is very close to that number. Why is this number 2000 significant and how is it related to the 2 days mentioned in Exodus 19? It simply goes back to what I said earlier about God’s law of divine definition. It is important to interpret spiritual things using spiritual definitions or you will bet lost and confused. Do you remember how I said that God defined a “day” found in 2 Peter 3:8? God defines one day to Him to be equivalent to 1000 years and even 1000 years to be equal to exactly one day. What is needed here is for you to see that God says for His people to get ready by making themselves clean because in two days (2000 years) He was going to sound the trumpet and they were going to “come up”. These are hidden patterns in the Word of God that teach the general timing of the event. It is very scripturally in balance because Jesus said in Matthew 25:13 “Be sober and vigilant because no man knows the day or hour of the coming of the son of man”. But notice that Jesus did not say that we would not be able to discern the general season for the event. In general terms I know that the timing for His return is very soon, but I do not technically know for certain if it is this year or next or the next. Do you know the certainty of the calendar? There is really no way that I know of for us to ascertain the exact duration of time since the beginning of the church age. Therefore, it is foolish for anyone to attempt to set a specific date for this event.
Typology is not a perfect picture of anything spiritual. The chapter has only given us patterned clues for the outline and not the entire complete detailed picture. I’ve spent enough time on this chapter going over many of the specific outline qualities that point us primarily to the event described in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17. I believe that we have established the start of the proof necessary for the establishment of the pre-tribulation rapture event. We can conclude by typological references from Exodus that after two days of cleaning preparation represents two thousands years of the church age when the trumpet will be sounded and the people will come up. I think we have just established that within O.T typology there is a solid pattern match for a future rapture event being connected to the church. Thank you for taking the time to read this important Bible lesson on rapture. I pray that you gained some new insight from it on the subject of rapture that you did not know before. Until the next Bible lesson in this series, I thank you for sharing this information with everyone that you know! God Bless!
If you like to read the next lesson in the Rapture series please go to “Part 5” now.
Posted on December 27, 2012, in Bible Study, Rapture, Understanding and tagged Bible, Christianity, Church, Interpretation, Jesus, Prophecy, Rapture, Religion, Revelation. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.