Two Halves of the Covenant
The church more commonly refers to the Time of the Gentiles as the Church Age. The three and a half years of Christ’s ministry and the three and a half years of the Great Consummation are two parts of a single covenant spanning seven years and being fulfilled during the Church Age. The Great Consummation represents the second half of that two-part covenant and is yet to be fulfilled.
And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. (Daniel 9:27 KJV)
The salvation covenant for the Body of Christ means the inclusion of all races, creeds and nationalities, including the nation of Israel. Salvation is the primary purpose for the new covenant or New Testament with the Great Consummation being the great completion or great finale of that covenant for the Time of the Gentiles. There is much more to the Great Consummation than might appear upon a cursory inspection. In the vastness of this prophecy, the attendance of the Body of Christ is required in order to finish the task and complete the prophecies pertinent to the conclusion of the Church Age. It is not possible for all the prophecies to be correctly fulfilled without the Body of Christ being in attendance and here on earth during the Tribulation Period. At the end of the tribulation portion of the Great Consummation, the Body of Christ will be raptured and the judgment portion of the covenant will commence. Only through this process can the covenant be completed.
The nation of Israel will eventually receive deliverance and its heavenly reward. However, scripturally speaking, they cannot receive their reward or deliverance until the conclusion of the Time of the Gentiles. Accordingly, the Time of the Gentiles will not come to its conclusion until the Wrath of God has been fulfilled; only then will the nation of Israel receive deliverance through their expected Messiah (Romans 11:25–29).
The Time of the Gentiles began when Jesus left the House of Israel (Matthew 13:1) where He stopped speaking plainly to the Hebrews and began teaching in parables to the rest of the world. The Time of the Gentiles orchestrated to bring the possibility of salvation to every man, woman, and child began at this time (John 3:16). Indeed, the Time of the Gentiles is the very purpose for the New Testament with the words New Testament meaning “new covenant.” Israel will be, according to Luke 21:24, overwhelmed by secular forces until the Church Age is completed. The Church Age ends with the Battle of Armageddon and thus begins the Millennial Reign.
Many believers have heard or read varying interpretations of “the” Great Tribulation. Similarly, there is confusion regarding the Rapture, the Second Coming of Christ, and the Battle of Armageddon. Most Christians mistakenly believe the Great Tribulation is the Wrath of God spanning seven years. On the surface, this teaching appears doctrinally sound. However, when placed under the scrutiny of scripture, these misinterpretations are easily disproven (see The Day of the Lord chart in “This Side of the Whirlwind” page 252). The main reason for these fallacies is a lack of information. God literally withheld certain facets of the End Times message until the Latter Days were taking place (Daniel 8:26, 12:4 and 9; Revelation 10:1–11).
Another example of Latter Days misinterpretations can be found in the rationalization of the A-millennial viewpoint, which holds to the idea the millennium is purely symbolic. According to A-millennialism, after Christ’s ministry, death, and ascension, the world entered a millennial age where Christ rules in the hearts of Christians, thus beginning the Church Age. The A-millennial perspective states that since Israel rejected their Messiah, God transferred their promises to the church. Supposedly God is finished with Israel, and the Body of Christ now takes Israel’s place. This is a misinterpretation.
Preterism, another doctrine similar to A-millennialism, differs slightly in perspective by assuming many centuries ago, near the time of Christ, all prophecies relating to the End Times were fulfilled, causing the world to enter the Millennial Reign. From a Preteristic viewpoint, the world entered the millennium nearly two thousand years ago and will continue in the Millennial Reign until the time Christ returns. Scholars who embrace this doctrine assert the state of Israel continued on its appointed course in accordance with God’s ultimate plans. Preterism maintains the prophetic events relating to the Latter Days have already been fulfilled, including the prophetic elements of the Great Tribulation. Based on their doctrine, Christ need only return for the Battle of Armageddon and the restoration of the nation of Israel in order to finish the Millennial Reign. Respectively, Preteristic Christians believe they are currently living in a modified millennium rather than in the Time of the Gentiles or the Church Age. The A-Millennialists, on the other hand, view the physical and literal one-thousand-year Millennial Reign of Christ to be just another name for the Church Age or the Time of the Gentiles.
The Preterists and A-Millennialists ignore certain scenarios and prophecies within the Bible. They do not seem to understand God withheld sealed revelation knowledge on the End Times and therefore their doctrines are incomplete – failing to realize their perceptions are also incomplete. What they saw as the fulfillment of prophecy fails to take into account the prophecies must be fulfilled along scriptural and prophetic guidelines. Their scholars also failed to consider some End Times prophecies must be collectively fulfilled during specific segments of time, as with Daniel 9:24–27. Many of the prophecies in question (those validated during the Great Consummation) are yet to be fulfilled.
Events in history mirroring the fulfillment of End Times prophecies are foreshadowing and have always remained incomplete until now. The prophecies in question are to be fulfilled over a relatively short period of time in conjunction with prophetic guidelines. Some End Times prophecies require multiple prophecies to coincide and be considered collectively for the prophecy to be valid. End Times prophecies must be fulfilled within the prophecy’s guidelines and time frame and by specific individuals and in specific locations. Many misinterpretations of prophecy are the result of ignoring these and similar directives.
For example, in approximately 168 BC, Antiochus Epiphanes attacked Israel and subsequently erected a statue to himself in Jerusalem’s temple. Some scholars at that time mistakenly believed this act was the fulfillment of the Abomination of Desolation prophecy spoken of in the book of Daniel. Prophecies with designated time frames must be fulfilled within stated parameters, such as those found in Daniel 9:24–27 (the verses scholars commonly call “the Seventy Weeks of Daniel”). When Antiochus Epiphanes erected this statue, it appeared to the religious community at large to be the fulfillment of the Abomination of Desolation. However, according to prophecy guidelines, the Abomination of Desolation is unveiled at the beginning of a three and a half year period of judgment. Historically, this event did not take place according to prophetic mandates.
The complex standards required to satisfy these End Times prophecies can be found in the scriptures referring to the Seventy Weeks of Daniel. The prophecy requires an individual of Hebrew descent in the city of Jerusalem to fulfill six edicts during the three segments of time spanning 490 years. Obviously, such a task requires more than the appearance of a few scattered circumstances to satisfy prophecy or announce the Second Coming of Christ. It takes all related prophecies or factors being fulfilled in the appropriate time frame and span of time to validate certain prophecies. Additionally, all prophecies must be fulfilled during the appropriate periods by the appropriate individuals. As is demonstrated in “This Side of the Whirlwind” fulfillment of prophecy is no small feat. In order for an event to be the infamous Abomination of Desolation, the Beast, spoken of in the prophecy must also shatter the power of God’s holy people and institute the Mark of the Beast. Furthermore, to accomplish these tasks every man, woman, and child must be tagged by “The Mark” spoken of in a prophecy, prohibiting individuals from buying or selling life’s necessities. There has been no such technology or event to date that corresponds with the fulfillment of this prophecy. Prior to1950, such technology did not exist. Today however, technology for the Mark of the Beast currently exists and is being openly purchased by individuals and utilized by governments and corporations.
We will continue next time with The 70th Week 5.
The acquire your copy of This Side of the Whirlwind simply look on line at one of the following retailers: http://bookstore.westbowpress.com/Products/SKU-001016204/This-Side-of-the-Whirlwind.aspx,
Or if you would like to leave a question or comment: