Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 1 * PART 3 * BOOK 77
CONNECTING THE DOTS OF SCRIPTURE – PART 39
Genesis – Revelation (The Tribulation)
Good to see everybody back again from another coffee break. For those of you joining us on television, if you’re ever in the Eastern Oklahoma area and it’s the first part of the month, call us. Maybe you can come in for a taping. We’ve got folks here today from Tennessee, Kansas, and my kids are down from Wisconsin. We just know that people love to come in and spend an afternoon with us.
All right, we’re going to go right back to where we left off. We’re talking about bringing in the Tribulation—that final seven years. By the time the Tribulation begins, the Church is gone, and we have the appearance of the anti-Christ who signs the seven year peace treaty.
We saw from Revelation chapter 6 verse 1 that the anti-Christ is going to make his appearance. We were looking at the word “seal” in the last lesson, like sealing an envelope or sealing a document. Then I took you back to Revelation chapter 5. That’s where we’re going to pick up again this half hour—in Revelation 5. We’re going to pick up this seal, or these seals, that are on this scroll that is really a symbolic mortgage.
That’s why I took you back. How did Satan end up holding the mortgage on planet earth? Well, because the curse fell as soon as Adam fell, and Satan has been the god of this world for 6,000 years. I showed you the evidence of it. Paul said it is the god of this world who keeps people blind.
I showed you how Satan offered to Jesus all the kingdoms of this world—because under this present economy, he is the god of this world. But never forget, God is Sovereign. He’s still above Satan. But He’s been letting him have free reign for these last 6,000 years. But his day is coming. God is going to pay off his mortgage with all the horrors and the wrath of God in that final seven year period. That’s the whole purpose of it, along with chastising His Covenant People. So, back to Revelation chapter 5, picking up the symbolism of a mortgage. We might as well start over in verse 1.
“And I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll written within and on the backside, and sealed with seven seals. (Picture them as they go down the line of that scroll.) 2. And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the scroll, and to loose (take off) the seals thereof (off of that mortgage)?”
“And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the scroll, neither to look thereon. (They were not qualified. They did not have the wherewithal to even consider paying off this mortgage.) 4. And I wept much, (John says) because no man was found worthy to open and to read the scroll, neither to look thereon. 5. And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the scroll, and to loose the seven seals thereof.”
Now as I’m reading, I’m thinking, naturally. I’ve got to bring you back to Daniel chapter 7. Again, I always do this only to show how beautifully Scripture fits with Scripture. It’s not just some boondoggle that men have put together. It’s not some story around the campfire like they try to tell us. But this is the Divinely Inspired, Intrinsic, Word of God.
“I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man (The word Son is capitalized, so it’s a reference to Christ.) came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, (Which would be another title for God the Father.) and they brought him (That is God the Son.) before him (the Father).”
“And there was given unto him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” Now, when you come back to Revelation, this is the beginning of the end of time as we know it. But it’s the beginning of the beginning of the eternal.
So now we have to go through those seven years of wrath and vexation to lift the curse and to pay off Satan’s mortgage—now verse 6 of Revelation chapter 5.
“And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four creatures, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb (See, there’s the same term again that we’ve seen before—the Lamb of God, God the Son.) as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. 7. And he (God the Son) came and took the scroll (this mortgage) out of the right hand of him who sat upon the throne.”
Now of course, when we taught the Book of Ruth, we made the comparison how it was the same way back in antiquity when a piece of ground was mortgaged. It had to be the next of kin who could pay off the mortgage. It couldn’t be a stranger, because it had to stay in the family. We have the same thing here. God the Son comes forward having all the requirements. He has the power to pay off Satan’s mortgage and to pay off the curse on planet earth.
Now, if you come over to chapter 11 in Revelation, I maintain, and I realize there are probably hundreds of books written on the Book of Revelation. And I don’t suppose any two of them would agree on every detail, so I don’t expect everyone to agree with me. But I’m going to teach it the way I see it. I feel that while the anti-Christ is signing this seven year treaty in one part of Jerusalem, across town there’s another totally different scenario, but I think on the exact same day—the opening day of the seven years. While the anti-Christ and the leaders of the Arab world and Israel are putting together their seven year treaty, in another part of Jerusalem we have this scenario—the appearance of the two witnesses. I’ll show you in a little bit why I put it at the opening day.
“And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy (or speak forth or preach or proclaim) a thousand two hundred and sixty days. (That has to be from the opening day to the mid-point that Jesus talked about in Matthew 24, for a total of 3½ years.) clothed in sackcloth. 4. These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.” Now, a lot of people name them. I don’t even try. I’m not going to stick my neck out, because the Bible doesn’t tell us who they are, even though there seemingly are some clues. But since the Bible doesn’t name them, I’m not going to. We’re just going to leave it as two Jewish witnesses.
Yes, it could be Moses and Elijah. It could be Elijah and Enoch or any two of those three according to the details. But I’m not going to stick my neck out. I’m just going to leave it as two witnesses. And they’re going to speak forth for the first three-and-a-half years. Now verse 4 again:
“These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth. (But He’s also the God of everything.) 5. And if any man would hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.”
Now I’m going to repeat again. As soon as we start this seven year period of time, right from the opening bell, we’re in the realm of the supernatural. Don’t forget that. To sign that treaty is going to be a supernatural power of God to get all the parties to agree. Otherwise, it would never happen. These two witnesses are going to appear supernaturally. If it is two of these three characters in the Old Testament, then all the more reason to accept the supernatural, but whatever. Don’t ever lose sight of these things, because these seven years are going to be way beyond the norm.
“These (two, whoever they are) have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: (Now that’s why some scholars feel it’s Elijah, because that’s what he did. He caused a drought of three years in Israel’s history. And then the other one is like unto Moses.) and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and (They’re going to have power–) to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.” Now, that’s the horrors of those opening three-and-a-half years.
They’re not going to be like a Sunday school picnic, as I mentioned I think in the last taping. You’ve got to remember, those first three-and-a-half years, even though they are nothing compared to the last three-and-a-half years, yet it’s going to be an awful period of time. One fourth of the world’s population will be gone by the middle of these seven years. Now that’s 1.75 billion people! That’s a lot of human flesh. One point seven five billion will be gone by the middle of these seven years.
“And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, (In other words, this is the appearance of Satan in the empowered anti-Christ.) and shall overcome them, and (finally) kill them.” That’s at the end of the three-and-a-half years.
“And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, (That’s another term for Jerusalem.) where also our Lord was crucified. 9. And they of the people and kindreds and tongues (or languages) and nations (in other words, globally, from one end of the globe to the other) shall see their dead bodies three days and a half,…”
Now you know, when we first came in with satellite television I thought, well now, that’s total fulfillment of this. But now one of my kids or grandkids the other day said, “Oh, Grandpa, it’s one thing better. Now what has everybody got? Cell phones.” And you know what I read the other day? I read a lot, you all know that. Fifty percent of the world’s population already owns their own cell phone. In other words, that is almost three and a half billion cell phones out there.
I was in the airport the other day, and it just boggled my mind. Everybody in that airport was talking on their cell phone. Well, I have to wonder. Who keeps the lines from getting crossed, but seemingly they never do. But, you see, the technology is all here to fulfill this Book. Without the technology, this wouldn’t mean anything to us. But now we know what it is. Everyone is going to see these two bodies lying on the streets of Jerusalem whatever time of the day it may be.
“…and shall not permit their dead bodies to be put in graves. 10. And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry,…” They’re going to be so glad that these two prophets are dead, because what do you suppose the devil’s message is going to be? All of our problems are because of these two guys. If it weren’t for all their preaching, we wouldn’t have all this turmoil. We wouldn’t have all these plagues. So when the earth hears that they’re dead, they’re going to celebrate just like Christmas, and they’ll send each other gifts. But they won’t be put in the grave. That again, is a God-thing, because they’re going to rise from the dead at the end of three-and-a-half days—verse 11.
“And after three days and a half the Spirit of life from God (the supernatural) entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them who saw them. (Well, that, naturally, would turn their attitude, wouldn’t it?) 12. And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.” Nothing they could do. I mean, they’re gone. All right, now this brings us up to the middle of the seven years, or the end of 1,260 days—now verse 13.
“And the same hour (at this very point in the middle of the Tribulation) there was a great earthquake, (in the area of Jerusalem) and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: (Which, again, is a pretty good size number for a city the size of Jerusalem.) and the (What’s the word?) remnant (Now lock that one in. Underline it. Highlight it.) were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven.”
Now, from what we’ve seen in the first half hour this afternoon, what is this remnant representative of? It’s the one third of Israel that we saw back there in Jeremiah and Zechariah that will survive these last seven years. We can chase them down again in a minute. But for now, underline the word “remnant,” this one third of Israel.
Now most of you, I think, realize that the population of Jews in the world, the whole world—America, Russia, Canada, you name it—are fifteen million. How many are in Israel tonight? Five million. Now, this is strictly speculation! Does that mean that God already has pretty close to His five million for the one third? I don’t know, but it sure is tantalizing to think about. That we may be that close. That already that one third is in Israel.
Now, keep your hand in Revelation. I think I’ll be back. I’m not sure. Come back with me to Isaiah chapter 1 verse 9. I’m bringing you back here for the sake of one word.
“Except (or unless) the LORD of hosts (Which again is God the Son, or Jehovah, as Israel understood.) had left unto us (the nation of Israel) a very small (What?) remnant,…” Now goodness sakes, when did Isaiah hold forth? Well, about 700 B.C., about 300 years after King David. And how many, percentage-wise, of Israel were still righteous and believers? Only a small remnant. Now, you can put the percentage on it. Two percent. Three percent. Four, that’s all. And it’s always been this way.
All right, you come all the way up to Matthew 7 verse 13. Now, I may have used this not too long ago, and I’ll probably use it again not too far into the future. Because this is what we have to understand—this is where we are. We’re not going to see multitudes. We’re not going to see tsunamis of people become believers. It’s not going to happen, because God has never had more than the small percentage, a remnant. All right, Matthew 7 verse 13, verses that you know. You learned them back in Sunday school.
“Enter ye in at the straight gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be who go in thereat: (That is in the wide gate.) 14. Because straight is the gate, and narrow is the way, that leadeth unto life, (eternal life) and few there be that find it.”
Again, what’s the word for the few? The remnant! God has always, all the way up through history including the Church Age, had His remnant. Not the masses. The remnant. And we can see it more and more today as our denominations are going more and more liberal and getting further and further away from the Truth. But God is going to keep His remnant!!
Now, have you got your hand in Revelation, yet? Flip back to it a minute. Just for a minute, then we’re going to go up to Matthew—so if you’ve got Matthew, goodness sakes, keep it. We’re coming right back to Matthew. But go back to Revelation 11 where we just left off in verse 13. This is at the very mid-point after the 1,260 days of the preaching of these two witnesses who have been put to death, been raised back, and called up to Glory.
“And the same hour (that same mid-point) there was a great earthquake,…(there in Jerusalem)…the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven.” Who are they leaving out? Jesus Christ.
Now most, at least of Americans and the Western Civilization, do they believe in God? Most? Sure. Yeah, they believe in God. They have some concept of God, anyway. But is that what they need for salvation? Well, of course not. You don’t get saved by believing in God. You have to have a relationship with God the Son, Jesus the Christ. You get that by believing in your heart that Jesus died for your sins, was buried, and rose again, as we see in I Corinthians 15:1-4. It is the same way here. I look at this escaping remnant. They’re going to flee from Jerusalem, now, as a result of the earthquake in particular. But they’re going to flee in unbelief. But God in His grace and mercy is going to keep His thumb on them.
Now come back with me to Matthew 24. I don’t know if I’ll have time to finish all of this in this half hour. Otherwise, it will just go on into the next program. But now Matthew 24 again, where we were earlier this afternoon. Jesus is speaking to the Twelve. All of this is with regard to the Tribulation as it pertains to the Nation of Israel. Now don’t forget about that remnant.
“When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)” Now again, just for a quick review. I won’t make you go back there. What did Daniel 9 say? That in the middle of that week, in the middle of the seven years, the anti-Christ is going to go into that Temple that Israel has enjoyed for three-and-a-half years, and he’s going to defile it.
He’s just utterly going to shut it down. He’s going to turn on the Nation of Israel like no persecutor has ever done. Hitler will be nothing but a Sunday school figure comparatively. The anti-Christ is going to bring in all the hatred at his command upon the Nation of Israel. So, consequently, God is going to spare His remnant, as we saw in the first half hour. That remnant is what? One third. One third of Israel will be supernaturally taken out of the city to a place of safety. All right, now Jesus tells about it Himself.
“Then let them who be in Judea (that’s Jerusalem) flee into the mountains: (Now there’s a lot of speculation of what mountains, but whatever. They’re going to flee Jerusalem.) 17. Let him who is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:” Well, now again, just use a little imagination. Here you’ve got somebody that’s got a lot of beautiful things. My, when he realizes that it’s time to flee, the inclination will be to take something with him. But the Scripture says, don’t you do it. You haven’t got time. He says, don’t even think about taking something along.
“Neither let him who is in the field return back to take his clothes.” Now you’ve heard me qualify this. At the time of Christ, Israel was an agricultural nation. They were probably 95% rural and agrarian. They had their flocks and their orchards and their fields and so forth.
Today, of course, Israel is cosmopolitan, and it’s urban. Very few percentage-wise are in agriculture. So the segment of society we’re talking about today will be all the professional people—the business people of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem and Haifa and what have you. All right, so let them who are of the working class, those who are still out there making their living—“Neither let him in the field return back to take his clothes.” In other words, time is of the essence, isn’t it? All right, now we come over to the female side of the population.
“And woe unto them who are with child, (Repeat the word woe. Woe–) and to them that are nursing in those days! (Carrying their little ones. And then horror of horrors–) 20. But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day:” Now even this last winter, you know, Israel had some pretty nasty weather.
They had a lot of snow, and they had cold miserable days. Well, pray that it won’t be in that kind of a weather situation, and also that it’s not on the Sabbath day. Well, why? Well, because they’re back under the Law.
Now of course, an Orthodox Jew today still holds the Sabbath. But Israel in general could care less. But on this particular event, they’re going to be all practitioners of Temple worship once again. They have been now for three-and-one-half years. So the Lord says, hope and pray that it won’t be on a Sabbath day, so that they’ll be free to go to their place of safety. All right, now then verse 21:
“For then (from that point on to the end) shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” In other words, it’s going to be beyond our human comprehension.
Now, I’ve shown you verses over and over. I think I’ve got time. One of the most graphic, of course, is back in Jeremiah. We used it several times lately. But let me use it again, if I may. Jeremiah 25 and that will take us to the end of the half hour. This is just an inkling of the end of those three-and-a-half years. I’m going to have to read rather quickly.
“A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth;…” And you’ve heard me say it. I think this is nuclear. All these hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of hydrogen bombs that are stockpiled around the world will finally come into play. They’re not back there for nothing. They’re not being collected just to be collecting. They are going to be used.
“A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth; for the LORD hath a controversy with the nations, He will plead with all flesh; he will give them that are wicked to the sword, (that is death) saith the LORD. 32. Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind (Which is another indication of nuclear force.) shall be raised up from the borders of the earth.” Now verse 33, if this isn’t graphic, I don’t know what is.
“And the slain of the LORD shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung (trash) upon the ground.”