Daily Archives: 08/19/2014

When will the Old Testament saints be resurrected?

WHEN WILL THE OLD TESTAMENT SAINTS BE RESURRECTED?

by Shawn Brasseaux

When will the Old Testament saints be resurrected? Will that resurrection include those saved before the Dispensation of Grace? Let us be Bereans and search the Scriptures to see what they say about this topic (Acts 17:10-11).

Whenever I use the term “Old Testament saints” in this study, I am referring to every person who was saved outside of the ministry of the Apostle Paul. Technically, for the sake of simplicity, we can include in the term “Old Testament saints” those who will be saved after our dispensation as well (all the saints from the seven-year Tribulation), since they too are part of the prophetic program that began in the “Old Testament” Scriptures. Another term we can use is “Israel’s kingdom saints.” The reason why we lump all the believers in the prophetic program together is because the Bible calls their resurrection “the first resurrection” (Revelation 20:5-6).

Everything that is in the Holy Bible that is outside of our “mystery program” (the Dispensation of Grace and the Apostle Paul’s ministry) is what Scripture calls the “prophetic program” (contrast Acts 3:21 with Romans 16:25-26). The goal of the prophetic program is to have redeemed Israel fulfilling God’s will in the earth (Exodus 19:3-6; Psalm 24:1; Matthew 5:5; Revelation 5:10; Revelation 11:15)—that is what we call the Millennial Reign of Jesus Christ, or the 1,000-year kingdom, or what the Bible calls “the kingdom of heaven,” et cetera.

Notice what Jesus Christ said in Matthew 25:34 in reference to His earthly kingdom: “Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” The promise of God’s earthly kingdom goes all the way back to Adam when God first placed man on the Earth (Acts 3:21) and it continues with Israel (Genesis 12 onward until we come to Paul, and everything after our dispensation): everyone justified before God from Adam all the way up to those saved outside of Paul’s ministry in the book of Acts, they have an earthly hope. The oldest Bible book, Job, makes it clear in Job 19:25-27 that these saints had a hope, not to die and go to heaven [our hope], but a hope to be raised again and go into that earthly kingdom. Job 19:25-27: “[25] For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: [26] And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: [27] Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.”

All who will be saved after our Dispensation of Grace, they too have an earthly hope: our Dispensation interrupts Israel’s prophetic and earthly program. Thus, all people saved unto eternal life outside of our Dispensation of Grace, outside of Paul’s ministry, they will all be resurrected together, for they all need go into the earthly kingdom that God promised them. They need to be resurrected after Jesus Christ comes back at His Second Coming, but before He initiates His kingdom on Earth. After the Rapture (when the Church the Body of Christ is taken into heaven), and after the seven-year Tribulation, Jesus Christ will return to Earth (Revelation 19:11-21).

It is here on the Bible timeline that Revelation 20:4-6 will be fulfilled: “[4] And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. [5] But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. [6] Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.” Note the believing Jews slain during the Tribulation, are clearly referenced in verse 4. This is the “Old Testament saints’ resurrection,” the resurrection of Israel’s kingdom saints, and it will occur just after Jesus Christ returns to Earth at His Second Coming. Notice how verse 6 speaks of Israel’s ministry as a kingdom of priests (Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 61:6; 1 Peter 2:8; Revelation 1:6; Revelation 5:10).

According to Jesus Christ, Israel’s patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob will be resurrected to enter and reign in their kingdom; obviously, their resurrection would be before the 1,000 years begin. Matthew 8:11: “And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.”

Please understand that Israel’s 12 apostles also need to be resurrected before the Millennial Kingdom can begin, for they will sit on 12 thrones judging Israel’s 12 tribes in her kingdom: “[27] Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore? [28] And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. [29] And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name’s sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. [30] But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first” (Matthew 19:27-30). Mark records similar statements in Mark 10:28-31, which see.

Daniel 12:11-13 provides more info about the timeframe of the Old Testament saints’ resurrection: “[11] And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. [12] Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days. [13] But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.

Usually, the seven-year Tribulation, Daniel’s 70th week, is divided into 3 1/2 years and 3 1/2 years, or 42 months and 42 months, or 1260 days and 1260 days (see Revelation 11:2-3, Revelation 12:6, Revelation 13:5, et cetera). According to Daniel 12:12 above, from the time the Antichrist defiles Israel’s newly-rebuilt temple to one important event associated with Christ’s coming is 1290 days. Notice this is 30 days past the often-used figure of 1260 days. Daniel chapter 12 also speaks of 1335 days, or 75 days past the 1260 days. At this time, we cannot be sure what the 30-day mark and 75-day mark actually signify, but there is a “window of time” involved with Jesus’ Second Coming and the Old Testament saints’ resurrection. According to Daniel 12:12 (quoted above), it seems like the Old Testament saints will be resurrected approximately a month or two after Jesus Christ returns. Verse 13 leads me to conclude that they will be resurrected at the very end of those days listed, and that would be the 75-day mark, or 1335 days after the Antichrist defiled the temple. Generally speaking, the Old Testament saints, such as Daniel, will be resurrected after the seven-year Tribulation, after Jesus Christ returns to Earth at His Second Coming.

CONCLUSION

“When will the Old Testament saints be resurrected?” They will be resurrected within a month or two after Jesus Christ’s Second Coming to end the seven-year Tribulation and establish His literal, physical, visible earthly kingdom. “Will that resurrection include those saved before the Dispensation of Grace?” Yes, the Old Testament resurrection will include all those saved before our Dispensation of Grace and all those saved after our Dispensation of Grace, too. That would be all saints from Adam to those saved under Peter and 11’s ministry in early Acts, as well as all believers martyred during the seven-year Tribulation. They will all be resurrected to enter and enjoy Jesus Christ’s literal, physical, visible, earthly kingdom. Remember, none of these events have anything to do with us!

Also see:
» Who will accompany Jesus at His Second Coming?
» What will the Millennial Reign of Jesus Christ be like? (LINK TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE)
» Why does Israel have 12 apostles?

Who will accompany Jesus at His Second Coming?

WHO WILL ACCOMPANY JESUS AT HIS SECOND COMING?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Will we (the Church the Body of Christ) return to Earth with Jesus Christ at His Second Coming, as commonly assumed? If not, who are those who accompany Him? Rather than repeating what others believe and teach, we need to look at the Holy Scriptures for ourselves to see what they actually say. If we are going to be Bible believers, we are going to have to look at God’s Word; otherwise, it is not faith, “for faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God” (Romans 10:17).

The Apostle John most clearly identified Jesus Christ’s literal, physical, and visible return to Earth to conclude the seven-year Tribulation in Revelation chapter 19. We read the following in that chapter: “[11] And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. [12] His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. [13] And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. [14] And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.”

Verse 14 is assumed to be a reference to members of the Church the Body of Christ. After all, it is believed that these individuals wearing white and clean fine linen are Christians. Verses 7-9 lead many to that conclusion: “[7] Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. [8] And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. [9] And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.”

While Revelation 19:14 is often assumed to be referring to us (the Church the Body of Christ), Jesus Christ provides the correct interpretation regarding who will accompany Him at His Second Coming:

  • “When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory” (Matthew 25:31).
  • “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his holy angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works” (Matthew 16:27).
  • “Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels(Mark 8:38).
  • “For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels (Luke 9:26).

The creatures described that accompany Jesus Christ are angels, not us: angels wear white clothes (Mark 16:5; Acts 1:10). Are we going to believe the words of the Lord Jesus when He says that angels will accompany Him, or will we continue to believe church tradition that the Body of Christ will accompany Him at His Second Coming?

In fact, the little book of Jude identifies that those returning to Earth with Jesus at His Second Coming are not angels. Jude writes: “[14] And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, [15] To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” Could Enoch have been prophesying about the Body of Christ nearly 5,000 years ago? Of course not, because God kept the Body of Christ secret from the Old Testament prophets (Romans 16:25-26; Ephesians 3:1-11; Colossians 1:24-27). Obviously, Jude and Enoch are referring to angels (the word “saints” simply means, “holy ones,” and this term is not exclusive of humans—in Deuteronomy 33:2, which Moses wrote about Christ’s Second Coming, angels are called “saints”).

In Revelation 19, we have two sets of creatures wearing white, and they cannot be confused with one another, and they cannot be confused with us either:

  1. Verse 14: “And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.” As we have already proven from the Scriptures, the Lord Jesus identified these individuals following Him, as angels. Either we believe Him or we do not. Angels are God’s armies in heaven. This is never the language used in the Bible to describe Christians.
  2. Verses 7-8 say: “[7] Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. [8] And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.” These creatures here—collectively called “she”—are believers, but they are on the earth, and they are identified as the Lamb’s wife. Jesus Christ, of course, is the Lamb, and the context is Him returning for the nation Israel. The Lamb’s wife is Israel’s believing remnant, her little flock, the Messianic Jews who physically survived the seven-year Tribulation period. These Jews will be looking up in the clouds to see Jesus returning (Zechariah 12:10; Zechariah 13:6; Luke 21:25-28; Revelation 1:7). Verses 7-8 and verse 14 of Revelation 19 are not to be combined as if they refer to the same group of individuals.

HOW WE RELATE TO JESUS CHRIST’S SECOND COMING

The Apostle Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon, never explicitly state that we come back to Earth. Thus, I prefer to believe the Holy Spirit through Paul than believe the words of any preacher or teacher, any day (what I was taught for years about this doctrine was wrong, and I have no problem discarding error and embracing God’s truth when I see it in His Word). The Church the Body of Christ does not accompany Jesus Christ at His Second Coming; Paul would have said it if we did. In fact, our Apostle Paul will not be allowed to enter Israel’s earthly kingdom (he blasphemed the Holy Spirit in Israel’s program, Matthew 12:31-32, and cannot enter that kingdom). Paul and all other members of the Body of Christ are saved unto heaven, not earth. We have glorified bodies “eternal in the heavens (2 Corinthians 5:1)—that is our realm of influence. Our realm is the heavenly places (Ephesians 1:20-23). To have us ruling on the Earth means there would be no one to rule in heaven in the places of the fallen angels God removed in Revelation 12:7-10.

Despite what church tradition says, we the Church the Body of Christ have no relation whatsoever to Christ’s Second Coming. It is very dangerous to confuse the nation Israel with the Church the Body of Christ. We are to, “Study to shew ourselves approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15). If we are to understand the Bible, we must separate the dispensations from each other. We cannot combine passages that have no relation to one another, mixing Israel’s verses and program with our verses and program, et cetera. This will only lead to heartache and confusion (this is why Christendom is in such a doctrinal mess!).

At the rapture (which could happen at any moment), and before the seven-year Tribulation begins, God will secretly and instantly will remove from earth all people who have trusted exclusively in Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour, those who have relied completely on Christ’s dying for their sins, His burial, and His resurrection for their justification (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). Paul described the rapture in two main passages: 1 Corinthians 15:51-58 and 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.

If God will one day remove us (the Body of Christ) from the earth, would it make any sense for us to return to Earth at His Second Coming? No, it does not, for we the Church the Body of Christ belong in the heavenly places (2 Corinthians 5:1; Ephesians 1:3; Ephesians 2:6,7; Colossians 3:1; 2 Timothy 4:18), just as the nation Israel is God’s earthly people (Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 11:1ff.; Zechariah 8:20-23; Revelation 5:10). Again, God will give us glorified bodies “eternal in the heavens” (2 Corinthians 5:1-5): our glorified bodies will not be meant to function on earth. We are God’s heavenly people. Our rightful place is heaven. Israel is God’s earthly people, which is why Israel will inherit the earthly kingdom. We as members of the Church the Body of Christ have no reason to come back to Earth with Jesus Christ at His Second Coming. We have a heavenly hope, not an earthly hope.

At His Second Coming, Jesus Christ will be coming for Israel: we have no relation to that event. Jesus Christ’s Second Coming is to rescue Israel from the Antichrist and her other enemies. When we understand dispensational Bible study, we see that we have nothing to do with God’s dealings with Israel. Beginning at the rapture and down through the ages of eternity future, we, the Body of Christ, will function in heaven. We will have no need to ever return to earth: earth will be Israel’s territory. Again, Israel is God’s earthly people (Exodus 19:5-6; Psalm 37:9; Matthew 5:5; Revelation 5:10); we the Church the Body are His heavenly people (2 Corinthians 5:1; Ephesians 1:3; Ephesians 2:6-7; 2 Timothy 4:18).

CONCLUSION

Jesus Christ clearly identified these creatures returning with Him at His Second Coming, as angels (these are the creatures in white of Revelation 19:14). They are not Christians. There will be some believing Jews waiting on the Earth to receive Jesus Christ as their Messiah King at His Second Coming (these are the creatures in white of Revelation 19:7-8). Israel’s believing remnant will be on the Earth at Christ’s Second Coming, and they will watch Him come back in the clouds (Zechariah 12:10; Zechariah 13:6; Luke 21:25-28; Revelation 1:7). These angels will gather Israel’s believing remnant on Earth (see Matthew 24:30-31). Since Revelation 19:14 calls them “the armies of heaven,” these angels will obviously fight Satan’s armies on earth when Jesus Christ returns.

What about the Old Testament saints’ resurrection? Please see our study below.

Also see:

» Who is “the Bride of Christ?” (LINK TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE)
» What is “the Marriage Supper of the Lamb?” (LINK TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE)
» When will the Old Testament saints be resurrected?