I ACTUALLY STARTED THIS MESSAGE LAST SUNDAY, BUT TODAY I AM GOING TO START IT AGAIN AND WE WILL PRINT IT. THE WAY IT STANDS NOW, I BELIEVE THIS WILL FINISH OUT THE MESSAGE WE HAVE BEEN PRINTING FOR THE PAST 5 ISSUES: WE ARE JUST GIVING IT A DIFFERENT TITLE. WE WILL CALL IT, “CAN YOU SEE THE PICTURE?”
Can You See the Picture? That is our title, but it is also a question I am asking, because we are getting close to the time when all the bride should be getting this end time picture straight in their mind. We are dealing with the book of Revelation; and I first thought I would more or less bypass the first three chapters, what they pertained to and just get right to the last part that is to be fulfilled in our era of time. However going home on Sunday night that all changed, as I began to meditate on the various phases. For a long time it has been like this, when the Lord would deal with me concerning something, He would usually deal with me when I was at home, but going home Sunday night, it was like He was saying, You are going to have to do it all over again. I went to bed, but the next morning I realized I had to deal with these first three chapters and cover the church ages and what takes place in them. It is important, because first, What is this book we call the book of Revelation? It is really a letter. There are no other prophetic writings in the Bible like it. John was the one it was dictated to, when the Lord Jesus appeared to him in angelic form out there on the Isle of Patmos; and dictated to him word by word what we see written in the entire contents of this letter of revelation. Actually it starts out in the first chapter, telling us it is the revelation of Jesus Christ. (Rev 1:1) “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto Him, to show unto His servants things which must shortly come to pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John.” It is the revelation of Jesus Christ: Not in fleshly form, but in spiritual understanding and revelation. It has been carried through the centuries of time by Christians: It has been read by theologians, all kinds of doctors of Hebrew, Greek, and everything else, but without very much understanding. A lot of the traditional things in it we have believed, but not because it is me, it is the grace of God. When we begin to analyze this letter, see what all is in it, and begin to take these pictures of events and study them, knowing they actually deal with time, geographical settings, as well as domestic and political settings. These events are not placed just to please the fantasy of man’s thinking: They only belong one place in time; and that is to produce a strategic purpose for the Lord. Therefore I am going to deal with two words, which we will find in only one place in the book of Revelation: in the 7th chapter. We can read it, and I am going to point here on my chart, because this green line actually goes back to show why we have the cross. We have it pulled up here closer, because this is where Christendom started, 33 A.D. This other line runs all the way through time. When we come to the end of the book of Revelation, that is when it ends. Right here though, is where the seventieth week of Daniel starts, right here at this point. Here, is the middle of that seventieth week. We have this enlarged to help us understand the span of time involved. Over here, (pointing to chart) is the end of that week, and we know the Lord comes at the consummation of that week. He comes under the effects of the sixth seal, the seventh trumpet, and the seventh vial. All of that is the wrath of God being poured out upon unbelieving mankind. Notice, when we read the book of Revelation, in the 7th chapter, 9th verse, John was seeing all of that at the time of his writing. After he sees these seals being broken, then he saw this great multitude in heaven. My point is, he saw these before the throne of God at that precise time. John did not say he saw the Bride there: Actually, right here is the only place John ever saw the Bride, in the 19th chapter. Only by divine revelation, as the apostle Paul wrote it, do we place it here. (Right inside the beginning of the week) If we understand these events, this helps us understand why these doctors of divinity get all messed up trying to explain it. They have a traditional interpretation and sometimes, or most of the time they will not change their mind. When we see the Bride right there, they are clothed in fine linen clean and white, and we must remember that this is a body of people that is represented from every age of Christendom, right from the beginning, all the way to where the Church (which is the Bride) is finished up, (right here) and then taken to heaven. That has to fit the parable of Matthew 25: “The kingdom of heaven is like unto ten virgins.” Not over here, but right here, right now, when we meet this. That is the general picture of it in the last one hundred years.
WHITE ROBED SAINTS
For hundreds and hundreds of years, this great multitude John saw in chapter 7, has confused the doctors of divinity in denominations, simply because of one word: They have interpreted that word, to be those that come out of this period right here (in the week of Daniel). They are wrong in doing that, because those that come out of this tribulation period are seen in the 15th chapter of Revelation, standing on a sea of glass, and the very description reveals the period of time they come from. (Rev 15:2) “And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God. Yes. They have white robes, just like those in chapter 7 have, but why are they separated from them? If they all came out of the same period of time, they would not be separated. These are the things we have to look at. If we do not look at them, we are confused. Like I said earlier, We have been walking on the thin ice of hand-you-down tradition for so long now, a lot of things that seem so right, are not right at all. There is one important word that appears in this scripture and I am going to read it to you: It is in the 14th verse of the 7th chapter. In the 9th verse John had already seen the multitude referred to, “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, (now that is important) of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen. And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these (He could have said, Who are these?) which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, (This word “great” appears with tribulation in Revelation 2:22, and then in Revelation 7:14, but you find it no more in the entire 22 chapters of the book of Revelation, but the reference in 7:14, is the one we must look at until we see where it applies. It is important that we understand this.) and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” It was stated in verse 9, that this was a multitude that no man could number. They have come out of all nations. Remember that, because I am going to show you that those on the sea of glass do not necessarily come out of all nations of the world, because the fourth seal which was given to us back in 1963, goes back to the 6th chapter, when that fourth seal was opened, “And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see. And I looked, and behold a pale horse: (This is the gray horse that is riding right now.) and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. (In other words, it is a spiritual condition that he produces in the earth at large. It is not only spiritual death, but it leads to physical death. According to Isaiah, the whole world is shrouded in darkness.) And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth.” That is important. The fourth part of the earth does not represent the whole globe. The point is, This only applies wherever that beast is allowed to rule and crack the whip during that last three and one half years. We have to see that, in order to get the picture right. That is where those on the sea of glass come from: Yet this great multitude of chapter 7, came out of all nations, and not all at once: There has been different intervals of time when saints fell into the group that make up that great multitude. If we do not know the history of what has taken place through time, from the beginning right on through this period of time, then we lose sight of these things. Then we just accept what the translators, Dr. Scofield and all the rest of them, put in their foot notes and go merrily on down the road, believing in a traditional picture that makes no sense at all. My point is, the word great, as it is mentioned right there, did not say, the great tribulation, like so many are prone to quote it. It just says they came out of great tribulation; and we know from history, that there has been many periods of time in the history of time and the Church, that there has been uprisings through different nations that has produced times of great tribulation. We everyone know, Christianity is not running in full swing in the original nations where it started out. It is only here in the western hemisphere of this planet, that we see the greater part. Even though it is here, predominant, I can see it is fast closing out. I have to say, when God has sealed the last one that is to be in that Bride of Christ, then that angel that was seen in the seventh chapter flying from the east, is on his way home and there will never be another soul saved for the Bride of Christ. Neither will there be another tribulation saint saved, to stand in that terrible hour over here, because all that will stand there, are already established back here somewhere. All those that prove to be foolish virgins of the Gentiles, will go through this period of time referred to as great tribulation, and both Jews and Gentile foolish virgins will seal their testimony of faith in God in martyred, but that is only applicable on one fourth part of the earth. When you consider Communism that has influenced China and the whole eastern Orient in this hour, do not tell me Rome is going to dictate to China how many to slaughter because of their faith in God. Communism will tell the pope where to go, if he tries to dictate terms to them. You know Communism has never been subject to the dictates of Rome. That is why I say, We have to start looking at these scriptures and asking, What do they declare? What picture do they present to? Well, by the grace of God, I want to try and show you something about this period of time, how it is going to be a terrible tribulation period, but not of the magnitude that has been known in the past, back when those others were killed. I have the history of those periods of time when thousands were beheaded, burned at the stake, fed to the lions and so forth. No, it was not all over the world at the same time. It was like that in some places, but as time and the gospel began to fade from there, that condition would arise in another area of the earth. That is why we have to understand that time and conditions fluctuate, so that these people back here in chapter 7, are the product of many periods of great tribulation. When you look at all of it, you will see that it amounts to one terrible tribulation. I just want to say, Any human being that has to be tortured and slaughtered, and maybe totally dismembered, that is tribulation to him, or her. You have to be under a dictatorship for that to be brought about to fit the total picture. We want to try and show you, that this last three and one half years referred to as a time of tribulation, is not a tribulation period necessarily designed just to make life miserable for the saints. Yes, these are foolish virgins on this side, and Jews over here, that are going to be killed, but they will be killed shortly after this period begins. That is why their spirits are seen standing here on that sea of glass. God separates them from this other multitude because these stand out specifically: They only represent this last period of time, but these others are tribulation saints from all the eras of time from the beginning of Christendom straight through to this period of time right here at the end.
LOOKING BEYOND TRADITIONS
Let us go back to the book of Matthew. Jesus said certain things in Matthew 24, that for too long now, we preachers have absolutely looked back upon them as though they are more or less irrelevant to how we see this entire picture. That ought not to be, because, when we start dealing with the first Church Age, Jesus was speaking there, of conditions and things that were going to slowly begin to develop and then rise through time, things that would affect the growth of Christendom wherever it was represented. In Matthew 24, Jesus had just been speaking to the disciples of things pertaining to that hour they were living in. Notice verse 15, “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, (Too many times people have looked at this as though some great big object is built. It has nothing to do with anything like that at all. The two words put together speak of a time of excessive hatred, when there is a spirit sent forth by the devil to deprive a certain place of its inhabitants. That is what it all points to. That is why it says…) spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand (or existing) in the holy place, (against the holy temple) whoso readeth, let him understand.” Brothers and sisters: We have to do more than just learn to read the Bible correctly: We also have to study history, to understand the entire picture that is portrayed. A lot of Christians are not interested in history because it is a dull subject to them. I understand that to a certain degree, but when you are like that, it is easy for certain characters to come along and feed you strange food. That is how and why false revelations get such a hold on a lot of well-meaning people: They have no background of facts to counter them. We have doctors of divinity as well as other preachers today, all of which are supposedly preaching on prophecy; having the nerve to try and persuade their followers that the Bible does not show that there is to be a rapture, and therefore we all have to go through tribulation and face death. That is because they do not know how to read the scriptures. That is why I am constantly saying the book of Revelation is not for the denominational church world. Any carnal man can read the printed words, but it take a Holy Ghost filled person or persons to understand it is speaking to them. If what I am saying is the truth, and God has put it in my soul for the benefit of people, then I do not have to worry about who is going to believe it, because there is going to be a spirit in the heart of the people that it is meant for, that will allow them to see the picture. It is supposed to be that way. When we see in the book of Revelation, (This is the only prophetic scripture that is worded like that.) that the testimony of Jesus Christ in that day will be the spirit of prophecy, it is for those who have a spirit to understand. You do not read anything like that anywhere else in the epistles of Paul or in the Old Testament. That is why the last chapter of the book of Revelation is worded like this, The Spirit and the Bride say come. Well for a long time, if anybody would say, We are the Bride, they were saying that only from a theological standpoint. However this goes beyond a theological term, because it is from a revelatory term. They see themselves reflected in this letter because it is His personal letter of love to be dictated and interpreted at the ending of time, to a living element of people who will have the true testimony of Jesus Christ. That is because it is a revelation of Him, in their hearts. If it was important for the disciples of the first age to pay attention to what Jesus was saying, then it is just as important for you and me in this hour of time, to hear and understand what He is saying to us. When He was saying these words, “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place,” He was talking to that generation of disciples, He was not talking to this generation way down here. He was talking to them only, when He said, “Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains.” That has nothing to do with you and me. “Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house.” That was spoken only to those Jewish disciples of that day. “Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.” All of that was pertaining to the disciples that lived geographically throughout the Israeli area in that generation. Therefore I ask you, If He was concerned about that generation of Christians, to tell them how to watch for what was coming so they could escape it, why would anyone think He would show more love to them than He would to Christians here at the end of the age? Even though they had seen Him in the flesh and had heard these words spoken right from His mouth, is there any reason for us to doubt that He loves us just as much as He did them? Let us go on here, and pay attention to the wording. “And woe unto them that are with child, (That has nothing to do with the Christians of today.) and to them that give suck in those days! But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day.” I hope you everyone understand the point I am making. (We now come to another traditional scripture.) For then (Translators took that and jumped down here, because of the word great.) shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” But Bro. Jackson, it sounds like that has got to be pointing down here to the end time. It does not pertain to the end time. I have Jewish history here, that will tell you how and when it was fulfilled, and who it pertained to. Over here, when we come to this part, Jerusalem has already been in the process of being rebuilt; and the temple is built, and when we come down through here, after the tribulation is over, the temple and the city is still standing; and there has not been one stone turned upside down. Think of it saints, the only people that leave that area is the 144,000 and the woman element. Where will they hear the message that lets them know what to do and when to do it? Over here in the first half of the week of Daniel. Because of that, they are nowhere around when this tribulation period opens up. You have to think of this as an era of the wrath of God. What are these vials? It is God’s wrath, using nature to bring it about, because He is dealing with fallen mankind, sinners of the world, atheists, evolutionists and all such like. He is angry with them. He is no longer in the process of saving flesh that is left, because He has already used a miracle war to open the eyes of a mortal realm; and that is why the 144,000 servants of God are preaching the everlasting gospel to another element of the mortal realm of the world, in order that they be able to escape these things He is bringing upon unbelieving mankind. We have got to read it right in order to see the correct picture. It is a time of tribulation, but it is not a time of tribulation when God is saving human flesh out of mercy. Do you understand my point? Well let us go back here to what Jesus was saying to those of that first age. “For then shall be great tribulation, (When? You see an abomination that maketh desolate.) such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” That was an element of physical, Jewish people of that day that would be caught in that city when the Roman army was ready to lay it in ruins. You cannot deny it: That was a time of great tribulation. It was a time when the anger of Satan rose up in that Roman system and their army destroyed the city and the temple. I have this book, which is ancient history. The editor is Bloss, and it was printed in 1878. You do not get many historians today, that go into very many details of that which Jesus was speaking of, like some of those men did years ago. The men that wrote history back then, had a knowledge of the Bible and knew how to acquaint certain scriptures of the Bible with the events of the world. I have read histories written by different men: One has it that Jerusalem fell in 69 A.D. Another says it was 70 A.D. Right here in this one, it was in the spring of 70 A.D. that Titus prepared to launch an all out offensive against Jerusalem. The conflict had been going on for several months. Finally the walls were overcome and demolished. The Romans had fought for months and months: they had worked so hard. The history declares that for five miles back, in every direction, every tree was cut down, every house demolished. All that rubbish was brought against Jerusalem to build a big parapet of junk, to raise an artificial wall of dirt, junk, and rubbish, so that the Roman soldiers could be on top to shoot across the walls, and at the Jews that sat on the walls. At night, when they could throw all that over, it kept moving this wall closer and closer, and then they eventually succeeded to get this wall of dirt up against the walls of the city. Then they threw ladders across the gap and entered the city. They sat things on fire, they sat the temple on fire. The order of Vespasian at first was, Do not destroy the city, do not destroy the temple, we are here just to put down this Jewish revolt. However after so many months had gone by and the Jews fought so furiously, and killed so many Roman soldiers, the Roman soldiers finally became infuriated at the Jews. They got to where they did not listen to the commands, and just went on to demolish, tear down, torture and kill. When they finally came to the inner walls that go around the temple, and Titus said, Don’t hurt the temple, one Roman soldier was so angry he picked up a burning piece of wood and threw it over the wall. It landed in an area where it set some curtains on fire. In a short time the temple itself was on fire. When they saw the flames, then the Roman soldiers could not be held back: they broke through the walls into the temple. By this time, everything was on fire. What did Jesus say in Matthew 24, in the very beginning? The day will come when there will not be one stone in thee left upon another, but all shall be brought down. So when the fires had subsided and the gold and silver, and all the ornamentation had melted and poured onto the marble stones, the Roman soldiers took their spears and swords, pried the stones up and dug out the melted gold and silver. This fulfilled the very words of Jesus. It tells me here, that when the Jews finally surrendered, the city was in ruins, and the temple was demolished. Titus went around the city on the outside, looking at the extent of it. All through those months of hunger and starvation and fighting, a million Jews had perished. The living, threw dead bodies over the walls. It was estimated to be one million Jews that perished. It says that right here in this history. When things settled down, they separated what was left of them, and of the young and the healthiest, there were one hundred thousand left. They marched them toward Rome; and sold them on three slave markets. Some were sent to Cairo Egypt, some to Constantinople, the others to Rome. The only people they left in Jerusalem were the sick, the old, and the handicapped. The days of vengeance had been completed. Just a small element had been saved physically. I hope you understand the point? It was a period of great tribulation, but this scripture is not pointing over here to the end of time. How many realize that? When you begin to trace this through time, at the ending of time there is a tribulation period, but it has a different nature and affect that God has ordained. The only people God is concerned about, are those He has been getting out of denominations, those He could wake up and get that spirit of unbelief out of, that old spirit that has been denominating the world and perverting the word of God. He calls them out of that mess so they can start believing and trusting that there is a God that rules in the heavens, and that He will come out the Victor in the end. That is why the everlasting gospel has to be preached by the 144,000 Jews in that last three and one half years of time, to warn those that are to be spared. This will be another time of great tribulation, but we must remember that there have been many periods of great tribulation since the birth of Christianity. God will be using the elements of nature to begin to speak to mortal, unbelieving, hypocritical sinful mankind. Not only is this era climaxed by the battle of Armageddon, when He gathers them into a place, (In the Hebrew tongue it is called Armageddon.) a place referred to as His winepress, where the blood will flow to the bridle of the horse. You only see that in the book of Revelation, but it is coming for sure. Yes, it is a war, a war in which two hundred million men will be involved. Will God be interested in preserving human flesh in it? No. Because He knows there is an element He is after, and the rest can go as they will go. He is going to torment men with sores and boils, all kinds of plagues and pestilence. The world is all shaken today, because of the number of SARS it is now faced with, maybe over four thousand. It has the doctors all over the world perplexed. Well let them scratch their heads: This is in the hands of the Almighty. But Bro. Jackson, you ought to be concerned. Well I knew this was coming a long time ago. Did your doctors bother to tell people to change their lifestyle when AIDS broke out around the world? No. They did not want to offend anyone by being concerned about what they did in privacy. Where is that privacy now? They sure did not fail to warn the old timers that smoked long green tobacco through years gone by: they went to great lengths to pass laws, trying to get them to stop smoking, because it can cause cancer of the lungs. Please tell me what in the world they think AIDS is doing? Young babies are wandering the streets of African villages because the adults are dying like flies and leaving them to fend for themselves. Those babies are wandering around half naked, starving to death; and what can anyone do now? They too have AIDS. World leaders are responsible for it, but they have waited too long to get the thing under control now. Why did they not pass laws to change their lifestyle? Could it be, that many of those who had the opportunity to do so, are caught in the same trap? God is not mocked: He is still a God of righteousness; and He is still going to have the last word on all of this immorality, just like He did in the days of Noah, when evil and filthiness had been pushed to the limit. I do not agree with smoking: no Christian should, but neither do I agree with all these other hellish things that much of our society is caught up in. You just simply cannot call one thing sin and treat worse things as though there is nothing wrong with them. When people start interpreting things like that, they just put themselves in the middle of a dilemma they cannot back out of. Saints of God: we are shortly going to see the heavy hand of a mighty God take control of events man can no longer deal with. I can hardly wait!
REVIEWING MENS DISCREPANCIES
In this record of history I have been referring to, it says Jerusalem fell the 10th of August in 70 A.D. Well if you have a history that reads 69 A.D. for that event, I am not going to argue with you. I have to say, it is all in the historians, as to whether they can they get time in the proper chronology. Let us go back though, because we have to understand what Jesus meant by what He said, as the era of Christendom started out in 33 A.D.; and coming on through time. I am not going to read this entire thing, but it is important to notice how this thing breaks down. When the disciples came to Him over on the Mt. of Olives and said, Tell us when these things shall be, and what shall be the sign of thy coming and of the end of the world, the first thing Jesus said, was, Take heed that no man deceive you. Do you know, that has been the truth all through the ages, from the first age right up until now. Just as sure as there were true apostles and ministers of the first age, the devil produced the counterfeit, the negative; and it has remained so from then until now. In verse 5 it says, “For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; (I am anointed) and shall deceive many.” Many are mislead by deceptive words. It is how they use them. A man told me yesterday, that he met a man down at the mall who asked him, Would you happen to know a man by the name of William Branham. He said, Yes. Then the man said, Well I have met his son Joseph: he is the Messiah. The man went down through the mall celebrating. That is another deceptive spirit. Bro. William Branham fought against that when he preached the sermon, “The Bruised Serpent.” In the dream, he saw himself shoot that thing and it crawled back in the water. He thought it would die, but it did not die. Snakes are hard to kill. They lay around and recover. It is sad, but now that devilish thing is on one of his own sons, simply because he will sit and tolerate it. The best he could do, would be to make an open statement rebuking that spirit. That is a warning! Take heed, wake up, don’t give your ears to every Tom, Dick and Harry that comes down the road carrying a Bible or a book of sermons. Many shall come in my name saying, I am Christ, and shall deceive many. That has been true all down through time. Look at the epistles the apostle Paul wrote; and how many times he was rebuking certain characters for what they preached and taught. That carries straight on through to our day. Notice as we read this next verse, “And ye shall hear of wars and rumors of wars: (There have always been wars, armies fighting armies and so forth.) see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, (This marks a precise difference in our time structure, for nation shall rise against nation,) and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.” He is not referring back to 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, he is coming to the twentieth century. Bro. Jackson, can you prove that? He said, All these are the beginnings of sorrows. Daniel 12 said, And there shall be a time of trouble. Yes, it all consummates right here; and the coming of the Lord brings it all to an end. That is not necessarily where it all starts. It all starts back here within the last one hundred years, because the last one hundred years is the Laodicean Church Age. Let me read you something right here. The man that compiled this little book is a historian. He tells you what happened when time came into the era of WW2, and he looked at Matthew 24, and said, We are living in the last days. He could not stay away from the Bible. What did Jesus call this time? All these are the beginning of sorrows. He was not talking about from here to here (chart.) He was talking about, from here to the end. That is what He is talking about. You young people that have gone to school, you studied about the colonial era. Well at least we did know what was behind the colonial era. It all started way back in the early 1800’s, after the nations of Europe had fought and fought through centuries of time. They never got anywhere by it, because God would not allow one nation in Europe to dominate the whole continent. Therefore there have been wars and rumors of wars, but they did not bring the end time picture into view until now.
WHAT CONDITIONS LED UP TO WHERE WE ARE RIGHT NOW?
In the eighteenth century, the different nations all began to decide on a course of action: Britain went here, the Dutch went there, Belgium goes here, the French go here. Did you ever hear of French Morocco? The Spanish Moroccans? The Dutch East Indies? The sun never sets on a British flag? That is what was behind those various terms. The Germans also went to the Mediterranean. France went to equatorial Africa, the British to south Africa, to India, France and Vietnam. All these horns went to areas of the world and took a domain. I have witnessed the affect of some of what the colonial era has done. I am not saying the colonial era was all evil. I have rode some of the trains in India: I know what they are like. I want to point my finger to the man who went on the long fast and threatened to bring his life to an end, which eventually brought the downfall to the British empire in India. I want to say, Who built the railroads they have? I have been in India, from Bombay to Madras: That whole country of India is connected with a network of trains. When a train pulls out of the stations, there are poor Indians hanging onto those flat cars, which are their only means of transportation. Suppose the British had never got there? What would they be riding today? Think of it. I say, Give credit where credit is due. You miserable bunch of politicians and historians, the day will come when you will hang your head in shame, simply because you do not write history the way it really should be written. When WW2 was over, I heard a Belgian missionary say they went into the Congo of Africa, where they taught a lot of the natives. They built schools, they cut roads through the jungles, to educate some of those tribal people and try to Christianize them. However when they left, the jungle roads began to grow up and the people stopped using the schoolhouses. They turned them into chicken houses, or hog pens. I am not saying that to point an accusing finger: I believe in giving credit where credit is due. We have a bunch of educated people today, that if they had their way, they would say, Give America back to the Indians. Let them beat their drums and paint their faces and dance their war dances and burn their dead on brush piles, and turn America back into a devil possessed land. They believe in a great white spirit, yet turn around and cut each other’s throat. I have to say, I do not rejoice in ignorance: Give credit where people have been given an opportunity to wake up. Jesus said, When you hear of wars, nation rising against nation, kingdom against kingdom, famines, earthquakes in divers places, these are the beginnings of sorrows. When the twentieth century started, back in 1900, Russia was already in a revolution, and communism was on the march. From then until 1918 the land of Russia went through a tribulation period. Those that were true Christians were slaughtered without mercy. Their number is represented right there, at least some of them.(in the great multitude of Revelation, chapter 7.) Those that met the requirements of the Bride are represented in this other place here on our chart. You might say, Well Bro. Jackson, how do you distinguish between the two, what constitutes this and what constitutes that? That man, that woman, that met the bride requirements, those that lived long enough to develop their life into a fruitful one, so that their lives began to reflect the indwelling Christ from a revelatory standpoint, are separated from those who were slain in spiritual infancy. They were not just following someone’s traditions. They had a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. That is the best way you can look at this picture. Naturally there are those represented out of every age, right from the onset of early Christendom. Early Christendom was faced with martyrdom right from the beginning: Stephen was one of the deacons; and he was stoned to death. James was pushed off the tower at the temple. They were Jews, and they already knew something. I have to say, It was a Jewish, religious system that sent many of those early Christians to their death. They did not all die like that. Some lived right on through to 69 and 70 A.D. Those that did, had the revelation of what Jesus said in Matthew 24, which was, When you see this, then get out of here immediately. That is exactly how Saudi Arabia became a land so affected by Christianity, because, all through the second and third centuries, those people were influenced by early Christians that came out of Jerusalem. That is where most of them fled to. My point is, Early Christendom, started out with the traditional Jews persecuting them. Many of them were in this great multitude; and others among the bride. Those of the great multitude are arrayed in white robes; (which represent eternal life) and the others wind up in fine linen, clean and white; and as I said, In both groups, there are those representative of the different eras of Christendom, all the way from beginning to end. Bro. Jackson: I just do not understand: I thought all those who were martyred were going to be in the Bride. No. Brothers and sisters, you must pay more attention to our explanation of the two different elements of martyred saints. First, you must keep in mind, that the gospels written by Paul were all written with the understanding that spiritual growth is to produce what God looks at as the called out Church, the called out Church being the true Bride of Christ. Of course we all know, that not one thing was written, to suggest that the gospel will produce one category over here, and another category over there. Nevertheless, you and I have to have sense enough to realize God is the final judge; and He knows exactly what He is after, to rule the world with Jesus for one thousand years. He is merciful though: He gives life to all true believers, even though many of them never lived long enough to produce any fruit of the Spirit, which determines where they stand in the blessedness of eternal life. Coming out of that first age, and going into the different centuries, some of the believing people were not even allowed to live long enough to develop any fruit of the Holy Ghost, or to be led of Him: they were immediately slain in various ways. It is interesting to read of the many ways believers have been treated through almost two thousand years of Christianity. When I say interesting, I only use that term because of all the ways Satan has designed to try to outsmart the Great Creator. We are deceiving ourselves, if we close our eyes to reality; and just go on believing that all who say, I love Jesus: are going to be in the bride. I just have to say, Shame on anyone who claims to be in the bride and still believes that: You are walking on thin ice, because that is just tradition. The so-called Church is made up of people with many different beliefs about what being a Christian really is, so I say to every one who hears this, Do not try to convince me that every child is called to be a Christian when they are thirteen years of age. I grew up to have a knowledge about the Lord: I was raised in a household of Methodist thinkers, but my own idea was, I never want to be too religious. I thought, Just do not get too close to the Bible: it will cause you to go insane and do strange things. That is what I used to think, because of some of the things I had heard and read. When the Lord comes after you, He will eventually get you, because He knows exactly how to get your attention. That is the way with most of us, God has to get our attention first, in order to wake us up to reality, before we are able to break loose from our old ways. We just simply do not go seeking after God until He first gets our attention somehow.
METHODS OF MARTYRDOM
As those periods of persecution arose in different centuries of time, just think of the number of people that have just surrendered their heart to the Lord and not been allowed to live long enough to walk with the Lord before they were rounded up and put in prison, where they faced the lion’s den, or in many cases killed right on the spot. They were martyred in many ways, by being fed to wild beasts, burned in the fires, or beheaded. They never had a chance to live to develop their lives into anything fruitful. Can you not see God in His mercy? He certainly would not turn His face from them and cast them into hell, but neither are they eligible for the bride, because they have not met the requirements. We have to consider the seven parables of Matthew 13, which vindicate this revelation. Each parable overshadows an age. The first parable Jesus talked about was how the sower went forth to sow seed, and some fell by the wayside. Some fell among stony ground, and some among thorns. Then there were others that fell upon good soil. All this represents a different category of society. As we look at that, keep in mind, God has known how to show mercy, because He sees the heart of the person. I have to say, When the authorities came around to arrest many of those people, especially coming into the second age, they rounded them up by the hundreds and thousands, because the Roman empire at that time, thought, We are going to get rid of this new cult: It must be brought to an end. The first age did not have anywhere near the martyrdom that the second age had. In the writing of the anti-Nicene fathers, there was one episode where the Romans at that time, which really enjoyed putting on exhibitions, announced that on a certain day, we will feed so many to the lions. In that situation, were a lot of Jews as well as early Christians, so we must keep in mind, that in that category of Christians, there would have been older ones that had lived long enough to develop their lives into a spiritual walk with the Lord. On the other hand, there were younger ones, or those who have not served the Lord long enough to know anything about Him, so they had no opportunity to develop a godly, Christian walk with the Lord. Does this help you understand the difference between the white robed saints and the white linen saints? We are responsible for our own ignorance, (living in a time when truth is revealed) how we try to supervise this and bring it down to fit our own ideology. If you are going to walk with the Lord, you have to stop that forever. We cannot design our own Christian walk with the Lord: we have to be subject to His leading. The way He leads may not always be completely agreeable to our natural mind, but His way is always for the best. He knows what we need and what we need to do, better that we ourselves do, because He has foreknowledge; and we operate mostly by our senses, which in many instances has been trained by traditional teaching. Our old nature is not purged completely from us the day we give our heart to God: He works it out a little at a time. In another episode I have read of, the Romans turned the lions loose upon some saints standing in an arena; and as the lions were lunging toward them, (Keep in mind, and remember the four beast John described, that one had a face like unto an ox? Remember how Bro. William Branham described that? That is how the power of God came down upon the early Christians and put in them a willingness to submit themselves to be sacrificed. In other words, just like Stephen lying there with stones battering the life out of him. He had said, I see heaven opened and Jesus standing on the right hand of the Father. He no longer felt the pain, and his face lit up with a smile.) and the Roman spectators sat there in the bleachers watching, those Christians begin to sing, singing to the Lord as His glory was overshadowing them, giving them grace to die, as the animals were tearing limbs, muscles, nerves and everything from their bodies. Roman spectators sat there watching, but instead of hearing them scream, they heard them singing Glory, Hallelujah to the Lord! All of a sudden, out of the bleachers many of those spectators came running into the arena crying out, I want to die with them: I want to die like them. Therefore, around the world, wherever you are when you hear this, wake up to the reality that God is merciful. Sure, those pagans went into the arenas, and they too were ripped and torn to pieces, or they might have been set on fire and burned, but when the spirit left their body, it went into the presence of the Lord. I have to say, They are represented in that great multitude. Do not forget it. Those older ones, those that had lived long enough and developed something that was pleasing in the eyes of God, they are represented in that number that makes up the Bride of Christ, and they have come out of all ages of time in the Christian era. Remember though, the gospel has not always been present in every area of the earth at the same time. I am going to read something to put into this message, how this writer expressed it, as we came into the twentieth century, 1900, which was the beginning of Pentecost. The Laodicean Age started from there. Diplomatically, politically, and militarily, it has been the era of the breaking up of the colonial period. Guerilla warfare began to start up, as well as communism in Russia. Political men of the world begin to think differently. As their power and outreach began to crumble, nation after nation, one by one, began to come home. When WW1 started, which ended in 1918, it only introduced to the world the beginning of the time of sorrows. One lone dictator rose up, Kaiser Wilhelm, and plunged all of Europe into a conflict. It reached to Austria. When it ended in November 1918, they thought it was done forever. That old spirit just lay there and fermented. Then right in the same area where WW1 started, in 1933, Hitler came into his position. Six years later, he started the war that started that time of sorrows. I am going to read to you how this writer saw it.
“The voice of King George VI trembled with emotion when on September 3, 1939 he announced the declaration of war. A strange sensation swept over me (This was the writer) when I heard the king say, “This war cannot be compared to any conflict in past history when army met army on the battlefield. For the first time in man’s history, it is a war of nation against nation and kingdom against kingdom.” (King George said that.) Reaching for the Bible on my desk, I opened quickly to the passage where Christ described the events at the end of the age: And ye shall hear of wars and rumors of wars. (That has been through time, that was all through the Dark Ages) see that ye be not troubled, for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. Matt. 24:6-7.”
Now saints, I am going to show you that the last one hundred years has brought Matthew 24, right to your doorstep. I have got to read this, because a lot of Christian people do not have access to these things.
“I rose from my chair by the fireplace to throw another log on the fire, and I said to myself, “How little do my sons, sleeping peacefully in their rooms above, know of the horrors of WW2.” Over half the generation now living was not alive when WW2 came to its close. Few indeed care to glance at the calendar of yesterday with its vivid reminder of the awful expanse of WW2. (Here is the domain of time.)
September 1, 1939 Hitler invaded Poland.
September 3, 1939 Britain, Australia, New Zealand and France declared war on Germany.
September 6, 1939 South Africa declared war on Germany.
September 10, 1939 Canada declared war on Germany.
April 9, 1940 Germany invaded Norway and Denmark.
May 10, 1940 Germany invaded the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg.
June 10, 1940 Italy declared war on France and Britain.
June 11, 1940 France and Britain declared war on Italy.
June 22, 1941 Germany and Romania invaded Russia.
December 7, 1941 Britain declared war on Finland, Hungary and Romania.
December 7, 1941 Japan declared war on the United States, Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and South Africa.
December 8, 1941 United States, France, and Great Britain declared war on Japan.
December 11, 1941 Italy and Germany declared war against the United States.
December 11, 1941 the United States declared war against Italy and Germany.
December 13, 1941 Britain declared war on the Netherlands.
June 5, 1942 the United States declared war against Bulgaria, Hungary, and Romania.
December 25, 1942 Britain declared war on Thailand.
October 13, 1943 Italy declared war against Germany.
July 14, 1945 Italy declared war on Japan.
August 8, 1945 Russia declared war on Japan.”
It was nation against nation, kingdom against kingdom, government against government. You have had nothing but turmoil ever since. I remember in October 1945, the war against Japan was over. A second lieutenant blew his whistle one morning and we all assembled on a grassy knoll. He had a bunch of papers in his hand and said to us, These have just come from the State Department. He did not read the articles, he more or less gave us the jest of what was in them. He said, This is to declare that there has been a formation of the United Nations. It is believed by the leaders and founders that have formulated this body, that this is going to be an era of time when the nations of the world can become member of this body of nations, but function like the United States. The objective and purpose of this, it is believed, means that we have just fought the war that ends all wars. It was not long though, until war broke out in Korea, then in Vietnam. Then in Africa. It has been nothing but war somewhere ever since. In 1948, out of the mountains came Mao Tse Tung and Chou En Lei. When the Communist regime went in, in Russia, they butchered Christians by the millions. Again we must try to understand, that some of them wound up in this category; (Pointing to chart) and some of them wound up in that category. What you have to do, is understand how God is looking at the two categories. How many can see that by now? Then in 1948, when out of the mountains came Mao Tse Tung and Chou En Lei, again millions of Christians were slaughtered. During the 1950’s, I remember there was a church in Sellersburg that showed some slides of that. This missionary had just escaped from China. He said word had finally reached him, that when communism came in and began to settle in the different communities, and they rounded up the Christians to slay them, or to give them a chance to renounce their faith and belief in Jesus Christ, and many of those Chinese Christians, rather than deny their faith, had their tongue cut off, making it impossible to utter any words of renunciation concerning their faith in Christ. No matter how they were tortured, they could not utter a word, therefore they could not deny the Lord who had saved them. Let us settle it in our mind, that some of them went in that multitude right there (chart.), because to them in that era, that was great tribulation. Will you accept that? Some of them also wound up in that other group. God is the judge. The thing about it is, He has given us a letter to read; and it not only shows us where we are in time, it also enables us to understand some things that have been a great mystery to Christians in ages past. I want to take time to show you how we break down the first three chapters of this letter of Revelation. It deals with time and events from 33 A.D. right straight on through to the end, to the literal coming of Jesus Christ. We have just seen a war in Iraq that involved some of the most high technology of warfare that could ever be. Yes, it produced sort of a miracle war, but I am going to read to you what it cost the world in WW2. This was one of the largest masses of military equipment and men throughout the whole campaign of the European war.
“On June 6, 1944 my friend, Colonel Al Garr crossed the channel on D-Day morning. Ernest Hemingway was at his side in that assault craft. (He was a writer, that most of you have heard of.) Garr, a chief ordinance with the First Army, described the amazing sight.
1,000 planes and gliders
2,400 U.S. and British bombers
5,049 fighter planes
3,467 heavy bombers
1,645 light and medium bombers
2,316 transport aircraft (That is what dropped paratroopers.)
That was D-Day in Europe. The end of WW2, from both the enemy and the Allies, the total loss of life was sixteen million, nine hundred and thirty three thousand of the fighting forces. The total number of civilians killed by bombing was thirty four million three hundred and five thousand. These are the beginnings of sorrows. I have to say, I am thankful to God for His word. If we can see it in its right setting, it tears tradition all to pieces, does it not? I realize this, you are not going to get the church world to believe any of this, but I am glad we know what six seals contained. It points us back to what has already been, through five seals. Then it gives us the revelation of what that sixth seal is. Right there it is. (Pointing to the end of the last half of the seventieth week of Daniel on chart.) The sixth seal, the seventh trumpet and the seventh vial is all the wrath of God being poured out upon unbelieving mankind as Jesus returns to earth.
ENDEAVORING TO SET THE RECORD STRAIGHT
Since I have titled this subject, “Can You See the Picture?” I want to take every opportunity to add more detail to that picture. Therefore I ask you to open your Bible back to Matthew 24, once again, where Jesus has come to a point that many have misunderstood through the years. He had been explaining to the disciples of that hour, that when they see Jerusalem in certain circumstances, they should flee to the mountains. Luke 21, brings out certain words not found in Matthew, but we have been using Matthew’s account, so I will just refer to it. He said, “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:)” Then He tells them, Let them which be in Judaea, so on and so forth, flee to such and such a place. You are all familiar with His words, so let us look at that in this manner, Jesus knew that the day was coming, when Jerusalem would be compassed with a great army. It is prophesied in Deuteronomy 28. He knew that when that time came, that thousands of those Jews would perish. That is why, when He comes to the 21st verse, He said, For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” (I pray that everyone who would hear my voice, doctors of divinity, theologians from every denominational rank there is on this earth, which have taken this verse out of context and pointed it down here to the end of time, to the last three and one half years of that last week of Daniel’s prophecy, as the great tribulation He was speaking of, Please hear me! That word “great” is misused over and over again and again. Besides misapplying the word “GREAT,” you have even added “THE” in front of it, pinning it down to one specific time of great tribulation, which is as far from reality as anything could be. The term great tribulation, is used in Revelation 2:22, and the only other time it is used in the book of Revelation, is in chapter 7, but you will find no place where it says, “THE GREAT TRIBULATION.” Jesus just said there will be great tribulation; and He was speaking of a specific time in that very century. In the 7th chapter of Revelation, it merely says, These are they that came out of great tribulation, NOT THE GREAT TRIBULATION: Theologians have added the word THE, because you will not find it in the original scriptures. The other time it is used in relationship to prophecy is Matthew 24:21, where we have been reading. Jesus said, “For then shall be great tribulation.” You simply must understand that He did not say, “the” great tribulation, if you want to see the picture as it should be seen. When you use “the” you get specific, but when you use the word great, it can be anonymous: covering many different periods. We are going to prove by the grace of God, by the Bible and by history, that traditionalists through the years have taken this completely out of context of meaning, and put it down here in the last three and one half years of time before Christ returns. Even in Revelation 7:14-15, as I have stressed over and over again, you do not find anything that pins that great multitude that John saw, to any specific time: It just simply says, These are they that have come out of great tribulation, and it does not say “the” great tribulation. Nevertheless, no matter where you go, traditionalists have always said that they came out of this period over here, (in the week of Daniel). Well, if they came out of this period, why are these that really did come out of that particular period of great tribulation seen standing on a sea of glass at the end of that period? The multitude of chapter 7 are not seen on a sea of glass. There has to be an answer, you know. What is the purpose of separating them, some may ask? Let us go back to Matthew 24:21, where Jesus was talking to His disciples about a little short period and the disciples that, then, would hear the words He spoke. We can also go to Luke’s writing, where he picked up the same thing, and remember, Luke was not a disciple. He was one that came along and recorded things that Jesus was supposed to have said, as told by those who had followed Him. We can read from his observations. When he came to the same period of time we have been looking at in Matthew, this is how he worded it, (Luke 21:20) “And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. Then let them which are in Judaea (he records the same thing Matthew did) flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto. (Here is something I want you to notice.) For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.” Matthew never referred to that. He said, Then shall be great tribulation. Now we have to understand one thing, Are we going to go along with the educated traditionalists, or are we going to indulge in the available history and find out what Jesus meant? Actually when Jerusalem was besieged with Vespasian’s army, he started his march southward in 69 A.D. It carried over into 70 A.D., but at the death of Nero a Roman courier came looking for Vespasin. Actually the day the Roman courier was to arrive, the Jewish historian Josephus, that had been with the Jews that were fighting the Romans, decided just that particular morning as the Romans broke through the wall in his area, that he would surrender to the Romans. It is written in history that Josephus, as he was walking toward Vespasian, prophesied to him and said, O Vespasian, knowest thou not, that this day thou shalt be emperor in Rome, and thy son Titus shall step into thy position? (That is not the exact words he used: I am just telling you what it meant.) Vespasian thought Josephus was just flattering him, but shortly after the introduction was made, a Roman courier arrived on the scene to bring the news to Vespasin. When he communicated to Vespasian, the Roman commander, the word he received, was that Nero was dead and the Roman senate had sent word for Vespasian to return to Rome; and at that time the command was handed over to Titus, the son of Vespasin. Titus began to set three strategies in place, because the city had already been surrounded. I have no intention of repeating all the history I have gone through already, but we do want to nail this thing down, and prove to you by history, as well as the scriptures, that when Jesus said, Then shall be great tribulation, He was not pointing down through time to the last three and one half years of this era. He was pointing to a time when that city was surrounded by an army and faced destruction. The Jews fought the Romans furiously, but after so long the inhabitants in the city began to run out of supplies of every kind. By then, the Romans had built a great parapet, like I have already described, and the Jews had no way of escaping. Since there was no way they could sneak out and get new supplies, it was just a matter of time until they completely ran out of everything. As the supplies ran out, starvation was the next thing they had to face. It says in these histories, that they began to sell the few morsels of grain they had, at a tremendous high price. Finally the time came when there was no more morsels to be sold and things really got bad. I will read a portion of this history, that should help you better understand what we are dealing with. I have never read from any prophetic teacher that ever referred back to this period: They everyone are determined to put this out in the future, but let us go back two thousand years, to the time when Jerusalem was besieged. This was in the final days of the siege, just before the city fell. They described the state of the city as growing fearful.
READING FROM ANCIENT HISTORY
“The houses had now been turned into catacombs. The sewers and old dunghills were searched for food, and men ate the most loathsome things. What the filthiest brute would not eat, they eagerly devoured. They ate their belts, their shoes, the leather coverings of their shields. Some lived on scraps of old hay, the least quantity of which was sold for a large sum of money. But of all the most horrible, is the accredited fact that a woman, whose lineage, name, and residence are distinctly stated, was found to have roasted her young child and devoured one half of it. The robbers ,who roamed like mad dogs, smelled the flesh and broke into her house to plunder the food, where they found that she had been feeding on her offspring. Even the hardened ruffians turned and fled from this horror, which realized the prophet’s words spoken some thirteen centuries before as expressed in Deuteronomy 28.”
I am going to ask you to go back to Deuteronomy 28, with me, and we will read what it says. Remember, Luke said that all things that are written may be fulfilled. Deuteronomy 28, I will start with the 50th verse. “A nation of fierce countenance, which shall not regard the person of the old, nor show favour to the young: And He shall eat the fruit of thy cattle, and the fruit of thy land, until thou be destroyed: which also shall not leave thee either corn, wine, or oil, or the increase of thy kine, or flocks of thy sheep, until He have destroyed thee. (Moses wrote this some thirteen hundred years before it even happened.) And He shall besiege thee in all thy gates, until thy high and fenced walls come down, wherein thou trustedst, throughout all thy land: and He shall besiege thee in all thy gates throughout all thy land, which the Lord thy God hath given thee. And thou shalt eat the fruit of thine own body, the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters, which the Lord thy God hath given thee, in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee: So that the man that is tender among you, and very delicate, his eye shall be evil toward his brother, and toward the wife of his bosom, and toward the remnant of his children which he shall leave: So that he will not give to any of them of the flesh of his children whom he shall eat: because he hath nothing left him in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee in all thy gates. The tender and delicate woman among you, which would not adventure to set the sole of her foot upon the ground for delicateness and tenderness, her eye shall be evil toward the husband of her bosom, and toward her son, and toward her daughter, And toward her young one that cometh out from between her feet, and toward her children which she shall bear: for she shall eat them for want of all things secretly in the siege and straitness, wherewith thine enemy shall distress thee in thy gates.” I read in another Jewish history, that at that time some of the women that had babies, in order to survive themselves, they refused to give their own breast milk to their babies, and instead, milked their breast and devoured the milk themselves. Now tell me, as you add it all up, what does that tell you? Then shall be great tribulation. When? Not now, but in 69 and 70 A.D. That was a time of great tribulation, if there ever was one. One history said a million dead Jewish bodies were thrown over the walls, and a hundred thousand of the healthiest ones that were left alive, Titus took with him and sold them on the slave markets in Rome, Constantinople, and Cairo Egypt. From that, just look what God said He would do to them because of their disobedience. (Deu 28:63) And it shall come to pass, that as the LORD rejoiced over you to do you good, and to multiply you; so the LORD will rejoice over you to destroy you, and to bring you to nought; and ye shall be plucked from off the land whither thou goest to possess it. And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there thou shalt serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, even wood and stone. And among these nations shalt thou find no ease, neither shall the sole of thy foot have rest: but the LORD shall give thee there a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind.” I will stop there, but I believe you should be able to see from this, where those words of Jesus really apply. He said He would scatter them over the earth, so that the day would come, when they would say, I would to God it was evening, and when evening has come, then they will say, I would to God it was morning. They will fear both day and night. And they have lived for almost two thousand years fearing for the name they have. My point in bringing this out, is to try and settle it in our minds, that what Jesus said in Matthew 24:21 has nothing to do with the last three and one half years that is still ahead. That is only traditionalists that put it in the last week of Daniel. Even Dr. Scofield, in his footnotes, refers to it as the great tribulation. That is absolutely not the way it is worded, because in 70 A.D., those Jews faced great tribulation, the worst ever. Deuteronomy, which was written so long ago, was fulfilled to the letter. That is why Luke said, All things that are written shall be fulfilled.
GOD’S WORD IS ALWAYS ACCURATE
We just have to learn to read the scriptures the right way, and trust history to clear up a lot of what we do not clearly see. That is why, when Jesus said, “When you see the abomination that maketh desolate,” He was not talking about a building: He was not talking about an object, but a time of excessive hatred: against what? The Jews. Their enemies were seeking to deprive that place of its inhabitants. That is what the two words mean. That was literally fulfilled in 69 and 70 A.D. Now we can close the history on the past, because all that Deuteronomy had prophesied was fulfilled to the letter. We can dig into all kinds of histories and find different remnants of things that men have put together concerning that which Jesus spoke, but I will have to say one more time, The word “great” in there, definitely does not point ahead. That in the first part has already been fulfilled, so let us turn our attention to this hour of time. When John was shown what is recorded in the 7th chapter, the angel coming from the east, that points to the time when the gospel being preached among the Gentiles has reached its consummation. That angel that has watched over the dispensation of time through the centuries, where the gospel would linger in such and such places, is now returning home to the Jews, because God is cutting the Gentiles off. He is ready to go home to the Jews. That is why he saw that angel crying in the midst of the heavens, Hold back the winds, see thou hurt not the earth, nor the trees and so forth. It literally means, do not turn atomic weaponry loose. There has been wars, and will continue to be wars, but not an atomic war, because it has an affect on nature, that God does not want at that time. In other words, Hold back all of that until we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. That is pointing to the week of time just ahead of us. When John saw that, he saw that there were 144,000 Jewish men sealed with the Spirit of God; and they are men ordained to preach the everlasting gospel in the second half of the week of Daniel, to all the inhabitants of the earth. In chapter 12, he also saw a woman that had been dealt with for preservation. Therefore you must bring chapter 12, over in here where the two prophets are ministering in the streets of Jerusalem, because that is where she is going to receive her survival information. Therefore what you find described in chapters 7 & 8, is being accomplished by God using the two prophets that are described in chapter 11. Some disagree with moving these scriptures into the order of their fulfillment, rather than trying to understand them in their chronological order as they are recorded in the Bible. Revelation 19, shows you the Bride in heaven at the marriage supper. I have it right here, at the beginning of the week, because that is where the rapture takes place. The rapture does not take place over here at the end of the week, like you might think, because of the bride being shown in heaven in the 19th chapter. That chapter is divided, so that we then see Jesus sitting on the white horse and the armies of heaven, (which is His Bride) on white horses following Him back to earth. When the end of this period comes to a close, Remember, Jesus said, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days, (not six months later) Matthew 24:29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: Matthew 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.” You can find that in Isaiah 13, as well as Matthew 24, so it is vindicated, which is the day of the Lord you have heard people speak of. It is a day of wrath. That is when the wrath of God is poured out upon wicked mankind.
PAUL EMPHASIZED THINGS ABOUT THE RAPTURE
When John saw the Bride, she was already in heaven, but John did not see the rapture taking place. Paul talked about it in 2nd Thessalonians, chapter 2, because he had already said certain things in his first epistle to the Thessalonians, recorded in chapter 4. When he did, they all got the idea it was to be immediately, like, Well then the Lord is coming right now. When Paul heard that, he came back with the second letter, and in the 2nd chapter he said, (Verse 1) “ Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto Him, (the rapture, at His mystical coming) That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.” That is when Jesus comes as He described in Matthew 24. In that coming, the eyes of the world will not see Him, but the Bride of Christ will absolutely hear His voice and see Him. Not in His flesh, but in angelic form, and they will rise to meet Him in the air, for Paul said that day shall not come except, a certain condition comes upon the earth first, a falling away. Well the traditionalists have said, Oh yes, that is apostasy. Well there has been apostasy in the church world for the last fifty years and longer, but in the Aramic translation it speaks more accurately of that time, that there will come an open rebellion first. Modern man will rebel against the knowledge of the existence of God. It is in America even this moment, when we have politicians, educators, and world leaders giving the devil every advantage. America, the last Christian nation on the face of God’s great earth, has in the last fifty years, gradually become anti God. They have opened their doors to every kind of demon spirit the devil has turned loose upon our society. That is why in our schools, our educators do not any more mention the name of Jesus, simply because most people do not want to hear it. We don’t want to hear any of that in here. That spirit is hanging over the whole human race right now. To prove beyond the shadow of a doubt we are living just before the coming of the Lord, what happens when we do come to the end of this seven year period, and we see Jesus being revealed from the heavens. We see the beast and the false prophet, and the kings of the earth gathered together to make war against Him. Does that sound like they believe in God? It sounds more like they believe in the science and technology they have pursued, as though they are going to be able to hinder His return. Well they are not going to hinder it. He will return exactly as the Father foreordained the event to take place; and that is the end of the whole thing, because He is coming in wrath. He is angry, He is going to execute God’s wrath upon this earth. That starts right in this period right here, (at the closing of the week) as these vials are poured out. It is not like having a cup of coffee on a bright sun shiny morning. It is disaster, with nature going to pieces. Think about it. In that hour God is not even concerned about how much human flesh is destroyed, because through this period back here, He has already instructed the woman on where to go and hide, just as He told those early first century Christians what to do. They went to Saudi Arabia, and not one of them perished, except those that had already been martyred. The point is this, This is a tribulation period, but it is not for the godly people. It is a time when God will be showing His wrath and displeasure on educated, stupid doctors of divinity, educators of high learning, philosophers of science and all such like. When the Columbia space shuttle was on its way back to earth and disintegrated, they began to find remnants of human remains, not floating in space, but on the face of the ground. The Bible did not say, And space shall give up the dead, but rather, the earth shall give up the dead, the sea will give up the dead, so I am saying, that according to Paul’s revelation, the Bride will be in heaven with Jesus during that time of great tribulation, and remember also, The epistles written by Paul, were not written with the idea of producing one element as a Bride for Christ and another element that would be identified as white robed saints. The gospels and the epistles presented to human society God’s plan for reconciling lost mankind back into fellowship with their Creator. Some have walked in the way that was set before them and received the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Others who have believed God’s word receive white robes which signify eternal life, but they are not bride saints. (We have explained all of that.) You see them in the great multitude of chapter 7. God is merciful, and has made a way for all who would believe His word, but as we have learned, not all believers are going to be in the bride of Christ. Also, we have learned that this great multitude which John saw, are not the foolish virgins of Matthew 25.
A MULTITUDE OF TRIBULATION SAINTS
We need to get this thing straight in our mind, concerning saints that have come out of great tribulation. These John saw in chapter 7, are a multitude made up of people of all nations, and when John was asked, Who are these? He said back to the elder, Sir, thou knowest. That was his way of saying, It is impossible for me to know. He had seen that multitude and said no man could number them therein, out of every nation, tongue, kindred and so forth. They did not even come out of the three and one half year period at the end of the grace age. They have come from every walk of life and from every nation, right on through the centuries from the beginning of Christendom, straight through time. Right there, is the consummation of all of them. (At the end of that week.) It is time for the Lord Jesus to appear. Let us just take another good look at this great multitude. I want say, If I could lay here before me all the books of Christendom, I would have a huge stack of them. I have a great number, but I have never bought one of these books in my life: they have all be given to me. I just say this, God knew in advance, when He allowed the devil to almost take my life, just as same as said, I have a job for him to do and I will educate him myself. He has given me books on history, history, history and more history. History has always been an interesting subject to me, so I have spent much time studying them. As we look at that multitude, I intend to go back and start you out in the first age of Christendom. When we open up the book of Revelation, the first three chapters is all about the seven churches of Asia, which represent the seven church ages. The seven parables of Matthew 13 goes right along with that. All the gospels were written to fulfill the prophecy of Amos 9, God came to the heathen to take out of them a people for His name, a people that will bear His name and be identified with that name. We find that in the book of Acts. Peter was led to the house of Cornelius, and when he came back to Jerusalem, it was James that looked into the prophecies and said, Brethren, this is what the prophets say. Well for two thousand years now, God has been among us Gentiles, taking out of all nations a select element of people to become the Bride of Christ. We know that the Bride of Christ, in the end picture, is clothed in fine linen. That was typed in the Old Testament law era. When the tabernacle of old was set up, there was a certain area inside of it, and there were curtains that separated a square area of it. That was called the holy of holies. When you read the article in Leviticus, those curtains were of fine linen. They are a type of what God would be represented in. It was His Shekinah glory that overshadowed the box that held the covenant. It was placed inside this curtained place. This type proved that He will only dwell in the midst of a people that can be robed in fine linen, if you understand the point. That is why Paul’s writings are written with all the details. Another thing we need to keep in mind, is that God is a God of mercy and longsuffering grace. He is the One that has decided at what time will we hear the gospel, or accept Christ, and how long He is going to give us a chance to live. Therefore we can say this for sure, Though the traditionalists have said through the years, that these are they that came out of great tribulation, or “the” tribulation, what I want you to know, is that history proves the points we have been making. It tells where the gospel started, where it spread to next, and that it was not at the same place in full impact all at the same time. You everyone know that already. It started out in Israel, then gradually worked its way northward into Syria. Then it began to come to the Gentiles, but very slowly. Then as it advanced, by the time the Jewish people that first received it, and had been enjoying the benefits for around sixty years, God cut off that people as a whole, there in Jerusalem and the city lay desolate. He drove the rest of the Jews into dispersion. As He came to the Gentiles in full preeminence, it turned out that the Gentiles were left to preserve the gospel message and spread it to the world. The spreading of the gospel was very slow at certain periods through the centuries, as it moved from area to area. You will have to agree, it was not at the same point, and in the same way, in impact, to draw the affect it had at first. When 69 and 70 A.D. came, those Jewish Christians that were still alive, and that remembered the words of Jesus, fled to Saudi Arabia. History proves that from that time, all through the later part of the first century and even on into the second century, those Christian Jews had spread the gospel into Saudi Arabia, Christians were made out of them, even into Egypt, through Libya, through Tunesia, Algeria and Morocco. I have a map that shows with red dots, where the Christian centers were located in the second century, and how far Christendom had spread. Remember, that in the first age, the Jews that were Christians, many of them were slaughtered by the people of their own Judaistic background. By the time that was cut off, then it was pagan Rome. That is why in 1963, when Bro. William Branham was given the revelation of the four horsemen, and how that white horse rider had been riding during that time, it is scripturally proven he was riding there in the later days of the first church age. That is why, when Bro. William Branham read the description of that white horse and rider, it was white, the rider had a crown of gold, and had a bow, but he did not have any arrows. That meant he was a bluff. As you look at the epistles the apostle Paul wrote, he was constantly getting at those certain men that promoted circumcision, meat eating, this and that. It was hard to turn those Jews away from that tradition they had known for so long. Nevertheless, they kept on going. My point is, When we leave the first century and come on into the second century, then the devil’s representative is on a red horse. For two hundred years, that Roman, pagan empire slaughtered Christian people, including many Jews that were in dispersion. I have another Roman history that brings out a lot of that. Most every time there were Christians gathered by the pagan, Roman empire, there were Jewish people there also. They were either burned at the stake, fed to the lions, hung upside down, or tortured in some other gruesome way. Even in the second century, Polycarp had a dream one night, in which he saw his own pillow on fire. A few short hours later they came and arrested him. In the daytime they had the animals out. They used the animals to execute the Christians. However when they brought Polycarp before the officials, they said, We have already put the animals away, and the caretakers refused to go bring the animals out again. They said, Then how will we get rid of this man? Someone answered and said, We will build a fire and burn him. When they built a fire around Polycarp, he was tied to a stake and the wood would not burn. Finally they got the flames going hotter and hotter, but the more it burned the more frustrated they became, because Polycarp just stood there rejoicing. All the records of those early martyrs show one thing for sure, They did not die screaming in pain and begging for mercy. God gave them grace to bear it while rejoicing in His love, just as Stephen was stoned to death, and opened his eyes and smiled, he then said as his face lit up, I see Jesus standing on the right hand of the father. As they stoned him, Stephen, calling upon God, said, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.”The more rocks they threw, the more Stephen rejoiced. That makes the devil real angry, when he thinks you ought to scream for mercy and you only wind up rejoicing. When it looked like Polycarp was not even going to die, one man picked up a sword and pierced him in the side. His blood came out and almost put the fire out. That is what the histories declare. My point is, Do not ever think, that just because the gospel was written to produce white linen robed saints, that none of them were ever martyred. Some of the first ones were martyred.