The Fall Feasts of 2017, Revelation 12 and the Rapture
By Jesse Wanskasmith
March 15th, 2017
In the last issue of The Mountain, I wrote about ‘The Sign of Revelation 12 Occurring in the Skies Above Us.’ This article delves into what some have long understood to be the pre-tribulation Rapture in Revelation 12:5 and how the heavenly sign is just one sign of many that mark the Fall Feasts of 2017 as something extraordinary. Much of this information has been lost to the Church including the importance of the Fall Feasts and how Old Testament law relates to what God has planned for End-Times. Be courageous and read on!
Acts 2:19 (Interlinear) And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke.
What is the Rapture?
The Rapture is a removal of True Righteous Believers from Earth by God to preserve these Christians from Satan’s wrath during the Great Tribulation (Rev 12:12). It is an unscheduled undisclosed event when Jesus comes half-way to Earth to meet his Church in the air.
1 Thes 4:15 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. 17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. 18 So encourage each other with these words.
We are told in 1st Corinthians that “in the blink of an eye” we will be transformed from our earthly bodies to our heavenly bodies and be brought up into Heaven.
1 Cor 15:50 What I am saying, dear brothers and sisters, is that our physical bodies cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. These dying bodies cannot inherit what will last forever. 51 But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will all be transformed! 52 It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed. 53 For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies.
Dr. Mike Svigel, an associate professor of Theological Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, in a 2013 interview on My Digital Seminary, commented on the Revelation 12:5 “Snatched up” reference, “The word in Revelation 12:5 is the word for “rapture,” harpazo, and always means a sudden removal, a snatching. In contrast, for the ascension of Christ, the New Testament uses terms such as “to be lifted up,” epairo (Acts 1:9), “to ascend,” anabaino (John 20:17; Ephesians 4:8-10) and “to take up,” analambano (Mark 16:19; Luke 1:11). These are neutral terms meaning a removal from one place to another.
John 14:3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.
Does God plan to have his children live through the Tribulation?
John 3:18 There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son.
This is hard question to address as it has many interpretations that often divide the Church. Some ministries such as Morning Star ministries are preparing for coming hard times, but are we truly being called to prepare for the judgements described in Revelation? Of all the recorded dreams and prophetic warnings received by believers, the vast majority of them have NOT called for individuals to prepare large quantities of food, shelter, backup power or cords of wood to survive some upcoming global cataclysm. Christian faith has an added value of spiritual protection and God has plans to keep his followers from enduring this judgement as long as they keep the narrow path toward him. Let’s examine this in detail.
There are two trains of thought regarding the Rapture that are discussed here:
- The Church will live through part or all of the Tribulation and that Righteous believers will be Raptured sometime after it begins. During this time, a supernatural protection will be granted to those (Rev 7:3). This is the ‘Preservation Through’ theory.
- That Righteous Believers will be “snatched away” prior to the Anti-Christ global authority. This is the ‘Rescue-From’ theory. 1st Thes 1:10 and Jer 30:7 both support the argument that God will offer a protection in some form or another from these judgements.
1 Thes 1:10 (NLT) And they speak of how you are looking forward to the coming of God’s Son from heaven—Jesus, whom God raised from the dead. He is the one who has rescued us from the terrors of the coming judgment.
1 Thes 1:10 (Last sentence, direct translation) Deliver [Rhoumai #4506] us [Hemas #2248] of separation of a part from the whole [Apo #575] anger, wrath, indignation [Orge #3709].
Jeremiah 30:7 (Interlinear) Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.
The Jeremiah verse talks about deliverance from this time of Jacobs Trouble. The word saved means Yasha` “to be liberated, be saved, be delivered”, Strongs word #3467.
Dr. Mike Svigel, commented on the judgement in 1st Thes and if that applies to pre-tribulationists theology, “I see a lot of strength in passages that promise rescue from coming wrath tied to the coming of Christ (1 Thes 1:9-10) and in the context of the Rapture (1 Thes 5:9), but also in the promise of being kept from the hour of testing in Revelation 3:10 and Peter’s reminder that, based on God’s past pattern of rescuing his righteous from judgment prior to pouring out his wrath (in the cases of Noah and Lot), He will rescue the godly from trial (2 Peter 2:6).”
It’s important to note that the Tribulation includes wrath attributed to both Satan and God and that both maybe present at any given time. McHyde identifies in a 2010 article, “Would God Allow His Bride to Go Through the Great Tribulation” that after only the 7th Trumpet is when, “God’s wrath picks up where Satan’s wrath let off.” Citing Revelation 15:1 and 1 Cor 15:52, McHyde makes the claim that only immediately prior to God’s wrath, will the Rapture come.
1 Thes 5:9 (HCSB) For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ
Rev 12:12 (interlinear) Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.
Revelation 11:18 (NLT) The nations were filled with wrath, but now the time of your wrath has come. It is time to judge the dead and reward your servants the prophets, as well as your holy people, and all who fear your name, from the least to the greatest. It is time to destroy all who have caused destruction on the earth.
Is Yom HaKeseh, ‘The Hidden Day’ This September 21st and 22nd, 2017?
Prinsloo, McHyde (Know The Future, 8th Edition), Svigel, and others propose, in a rather plausible interpretation, that the Fall Feasts will mark the end of the Church age. That, God, as planned, would remove the Righteous believers on one of the upcoming Feast days. Yom HaKeseh, as the Feast of Trumpets is known, means “the hidden day.” The root of the word means “conceal, cover, or hide,” as identified by T.W. Tramm in ‘The Hidden Day,” a 2015 paper on the significance of the Fall Feasts. Prinsloo discusses some pretty starting associations that many don’t understand,
“When we look at the description given in Revelation 12 the specific alignment of stars occurs on September 23rd of 2017. What makes this date incredibly important and relevant with regards to the Feast days is the fact that the woman in travail sign marks and concludes on the very day after the Feast of Trumpets. Why is this so important? It is of paramount importance as Israel’s prophetic clock will be restarted as soon as the Church age comes to an end. Based on Yeshuah and Paul’s pointers to this time, we know that God will remove his church from the earth on one of the two days that make up the Feasts of Trumpets. The fact that the sign of Revelation 12 falls on the very day following this Feast, would signal the first day after the Church age has concluded and God’s focus shifting back to Israel. This matches a correct restart of Israel’s prophetic clock with 7 years starting to count down from this day. This will also be the very day for Israel’s counterfeit messiah to step onto the scene as this is the first day in which Satan would be given back full authority over the world for a period of seven years.”
Dr. Mike Svigel also commented on the Revelation 12 scripture, stating: “However, my persuasion to the pre-tribulational rapture came as a result of an exegesis [critical explanation or interpretation of a text, especially of scripture] of the symbol of the catching up of the male child in Revelation 12:5—a consideration almost entirely lost (or dismissively ignored) in the discussion of the rapture. In fact, the earliest advocates of a pre-tribulational rapture (John Nelson Darby, William Kelly, William Blackstone, H.A. Ironside, etc.) pointed to this passage as decisive exegetical evidence for a pre-seven-year rapture of the church.
“Revelation 12:5 has the male child being suddenly snatched away from the dragon, who wants to devour the child. The ascension of Christ was gradual (Acts 1:10), not sudden. Also, Revelation 12:5 is a context of “rescue” from the threat of the dragon. The word “rapture,” harpazo, is appropriately used in the New Testament for a rescue in Acts 23:10 and Jude 23. In His ascension to heaven, Christ was not rescued, but ascended victoriously and was no danger from the devil or anybody else.”
What Svigel is arguing is that The Revelation 12:5 ‘harpazo’ reference is an appropriate interpretation of an event that, by happenstance, occurs on the Feast day of Yom HaKeseh, the only Fall feast day for one does not know the day or the hour of its occurrence.
Mat 24:36 (NLT) However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.
We were told to Look Out for the Feasts and More Signs in the Sky
It should be of no coincidence that Torah law observance today would coincide with God’s perfection – from signs in the sky to the fulfillment of prophetic events. God’s got an unfathomable number of ordained events working in tandem to achieve his will, and to God, nothing is unexpected. Prinsloo brings together the connection many Christians are obvious to – that God planned this all down to the second:
The first part of the annual cycle that Jesus fulfilled is Passover. Most Christians realize that Jesus died at the day and hour of the Passover sacrifice, to become our Passover Lamb. Yet they don’t realize that Passover is just the beginning of seven annual prophetic rehearsals in the Torah. This ignorance exists because Christians focus on the New Testament, largely ignoring the Old Testament. They believe that the Old Testament is obsolete and teaches the “legalism” that Judaism is known for. This is not true, as Judaism is its own man-made religion that breaks the Torah as Jesus pointed out (Jn 7:19)! They understand it as the source of the “Jewish Holy Days” rather than “God’s Feast Days” as the Bible calls them.
McHyde goes on to claim that these patterns point to the Fall Feasts as which ‘Yeshuah will return.’ I’m sure you have heard of the 4 total lunar eclipses & blood Moons that occurred between 2014 and 2015. These, by happenstance (or Godly planning), occurred in succession each on Jewish Feast Days. This has only occurred 8 times since Jesus. McHyde describes additional signs in the sky, ”What made the most recent series even more unique are 2 solar eclipses that also fell on Jewish Feast Days during this series of eclipses. This is the only [4 blood moon] series that had lunar and solar eclipses all occurring on Jewish Feast Days. This should tell us that a special notice had been served by God to his people Israel, but also to the world.”
Gen 1:14 (NLT) Then God said, “Let lights appear in the sky to separate the day from the night. Let them be signs to mark the seasons, days, and years.
Joe 2:31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.
The Feast of Trumpets and The Last Trump
More astonishing biblical evidence that the timing of all these things are ordained, is that the Jewish new year is marked by the blowing of the Shofar, a trumpet, just as it was said to occur in 1 Corinthians 15:52.
1Cor 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
Prinsloo’s interpretation of the Feasts also agrees on the strange coinciding timing: “When we look at the order in which the first 4 Feasts were fulfilled; we notice a sequential order. This also matched the order in which they were given by God to Israel. So the next Feast to be expected would be that of Trumpets or Yom Teruah [The Fall Feasts of 2017 which this article is referring to]. An interesting fact about this specific Feast is that it starts the Jewish New Year of years in which Israel is instructed to blow trumpets. This Feast is celebrated over a two-day period during [when] the determination of which day would be the first day of the year is traditionally made by two witnesses who would then report their observation of the first sliver of the new moon to the Sanhedrin. The Sanhedrin would then declare on which of the two days, the first day of the month falls and subsequently inform the people of Israel about this. Another important fact is that the Feast of Trumpets stands as being the only Feast Day of which no man knows the day or the hour as it falls on one of two possible days. It could only be determined by the decree from the Sanhedrin [The Jewish authority in Israel] declaring that the New Moon had been spotted. This Feast is also singled out as a point in time to which both the Church of God as well as Israel should be watching for and that it will be a day of ‘announcement’.”
If Jesus fulfilled the Passover feasts at crucifixion and a heavenly body passed between the Earth and the sun causing 3 hours of total darkness, as a sign, again we are faced with an incoming sign in the sky and biblical timing. Jesus completed his work at the end of the Spring Feasts, beginning the time of the Gentiles. Now right before our eyes, a series of 4 blood moons have marked this time; the completion of the Revelation 12 sign will complete on September 23rd; a once in 6000-year occurrence, marking the Fall Feasts of 2017, something only the Heavenly Father could have placed into motion.
Caution is in Order
Both McHyde and Tramm (Thoughts on the Revelation 12 Sign, October 2016) urge caution with setting the date of the Rapture to one of two days – that it is not scriptural. Tramm identified three reasons the Revelation 12 sign concurrent completion on the Feast of Trumpets does not automatically equate to an imminent Rapture event:
1- The tradition of blowing the trumpets on Yom Teruah is a “tradition instituted and perpetuated by the rabbis.”
2- The rapture can be interpreted as occurring any day prior to the end of the tribulation and not just on the Feast of Trumpets, citing Chuck Missler, Gary Stearman, and Jack Langford.
3- Jesus’s warnings regarding Christians in End Times is to “keep watch” and “be ready” (Mat 24:42-44). That, if the Rapture was to occur in a two-day window once a year, Christians may not keep watch or have their oil lamps full for a day they can easily (they assume) prepare for.
There is also scriptural support that the 21st and 22nd of September may not be the Rapture. In 2 Peter that when Christians are mocked for claiming Christ was about to return and then that day came and went without a Rapture event.
2 Peter 3:3 (NLT) Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires. 4 They will say, “What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the world was first created.”
The word ‘promise’ is Epaggelia; Strongs word #1860 meaning ‘announcement’ or ‘the act of promising’.
Will we be worthy to escape these things?
If there is a pre-tribulation rapture on its way, whoa to those that remain without a relationship with Christ. To be at that stage in your relationship and to have to face these new realities described in through-out the book of Revelation and having to comprehend why they were left behind – I couldn’t imagine.
Luk 21:36 (KJV) Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape ALL these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
Dan 33:11 (NLT) Wise leaders will give instruction to many, but these teachers will die by fire and sword, or they will be jailed and robbed. 34 During these persecutions, little help will arrive, and many who join them will not be sincere. 35 And some of the wise will fall victim to persecution. In this way, they will be refined and cleansed and made pure until the time of the end, for the appointed time is still to come.
So, while all these things occur around us, we are ultimately waiting for his return. Although, we shouldn’t need to wait for Christ to transform our lives or remove those spiritual blinders. Allow him to release the shackles we have allowed Satan to place on our lives and listen when he calls us into service in his army. Will you be an approved worker? How will you respond when asked about the great commission? Will you be ready when your Lord and Savior calls your name? Will you be proud of what you did in the midst of the scoffers and scorn? September 23rd, 2017 is only a few months from now. Whether there is a Rapture that day should not direct your choices, only that we are coming even closer to this period known as the Tribulation. Of no comfort to the many, this carefully orchestrated plan is occurring all around us – an unstoppable series of events that must occur, just like God said it would happen.