Rapture of the Church in 2019 and second coming of Jesus in 2022
In Daniel 9 : 25, God tells Daniel, thru Gabriel, that from the word to return and build Jerusalem to Messiah Prince (Jesus) there would be two periods : one of 7 weeks (7 shemitta cycles adding up to 49 years) another of 62 weeks (shemitta cycles adding up to 434 years). The reason the 69 weeks are divided into two periods is that there will be two comings of Messiah Prince.
In Daniel 9 : 26 He indicates that the 434 year period (62 weeks) was already fulfilled in Jesus’ First Coming, when He died and rose. That still leaves the 49-year (7-shemitta) period to be fulfilled.
There have only been two decrees to return and build Jerusalem: the first took place in 445 B.C. and the second took place on April 1, 1969.
If we count 7 shemitta cycles of 49 years from the first shemitta cycle after 1969 (when the second decree was given), the second coming of Christ could take place in the year 2022. The Rapture must occur approximately 3½ years prior to the end of the tribulation, which would be, at best, in spring 2019.
For a more detailed explanation, read below :
The Jubilee (Yovel) is part of the Hebrew Holiness Code which appears in Leviticus, chapters 17-26. While most Messianic Jews and Christians today see the prophetic significance of the Feasts mentioned in Leviticus 23, little if anything is said about the prophetic significance of the Yovel.
The original Hebrew text did not contain chapter divisions, verse numbers, or even punctuation marks. Those were added much later, at the discretion of translators. Hence, Leviticus was not divided into chapters 23, 24, 25, etc. It was all one long, continuous text. Consequently, if we ascribe prophetic significance to the Feasts in Leviticus 23, the heretofore neglected Jubilee, mentioned in Leviticus 25, must also have prophetic significance.
The Jubilee year would be counted from the time Israel (all 12 tribes) had entered the Promised Land (Leviticus 25 : 2). Because the 12 tribes are not presently in the land, Israel has not observed the laws of Jubilee for many centuries. Maimonides (Rabbi Moshé ben Maimon) correctly taught that it would be the Messiah who would restore the Jubilee (Isaiah 61 : 1-2; Luke 4 : 18-19). The Jubilee was the year following 7 cycles of Sabbatical years (shmita), or 49 years. Hence, every 50th year was Jubilee.
The biblical requirements for Jubilee were/are :
1. The land must lie fallow.
2. Compulsory return of all property to the original owners, or their heirs.
3. All loans (debts) in Israel were cancelled.
4. Slaves were set free.
5. The ram's horn (shofar) would be blown on Yom Kippur of the 49th year, preceding the Jubilee (50th) year, proclaiming liberty throughout the land.
So, what is the prophetic significance of Jubilee ? As we shall see, Messiah will restore the Jubilee in His Second Coming.
HISTORY OF JERUSALEM
Prophecy gurus repeat (ad nauseam) that Israel is "God's prophetic time clock". They are wrong. His prophetic time clock is Jerusalem. Eschatology is inextricably linked to what happens in and to Jerusalem (Jeremiah 3 : 17; Daniel 9 : 24-27; Joel chapter 2; Zechariah chapters 12, 13 and 14; Luke 21 : 24).
In the 70 weeks prophecy given to Daniel, God predicted Jerusalem would be rebuilt, destroyed again, and rebuilt again. Scripture must always be taken in context. Modern Jerusalem didn't even exist when that prophecy was given. So it doesn't figure into the equation.
The Jerusalem that existed when the prophecy was given, in the 6th century B.C., is mostly what is known today as "the Jewish Quarter". It's also called "Zion" in the Scriptures. God's on record saying He loves that particular portion of Israel, more than any other part thereof (Psalms 87 : 2-6). It was pretty much shaped like a square and consisted of the lower part of Mount Moriah, where the temples once stood, and the hill of Zion, directly west from there. The rest of what we call Jerusalem, even the rest of the Old City, came much later.
As foretold in Daniel 9 : 27 and Matthew 24 : 2, Jerusalem was completely destroyed in 70 A.D. It was leveled to the ground. Not one stone was left upon another, just as Jesus predicted (Luke 19 : 41-44). Sixty years later, in 130 A.D., Roman Emperor Hadrian, felt "sympathetic" toward Jews -- some of which had managed to return and were living there in deplorable conditions -- and decided to rebuild the city. However, Hadrian didn't understand the Bible, or Judaism at all: he decided to build a pagan city and even changed its name to Aelia Capitolina. Talk about "gentile trampling" (Luke 21 : 24) ! Adding insult to injury, he proposed building a temple to Jupiter at the site of the first and second temples. To top it all off, he forbade circumcision which he viewed as "mutilation". This resulted in the Second Jewish Revolt, led by self-professed "messiah" Bar Kochba, and caused a permanent rift between Jewish believers in the real Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth, and Jews who believed in the false messiah Bar Kochba. That rift remains to this very day. After that revolt ended, Jews were banned from living in, or even visiting Jerusalem, except on Tisha B'av which marks the anniversary of the destruction of both the first and second temples. Most of what is known today as the Old City, with the notable exception of the Jewish Quarter, was built by Hadrian. There are some structures, mostly churches, chapels, or mosques, that were added later by Emperor Constantine, Crusaders, and the Ottoman Empire. There are also a few buildings that were built by European nations in the 18th, 19th and 20th century. The present walls were built by Suleiman the Magnificent in the 16th century A.D. They extend much further north than in Daniel's Jerusalem, and leave out the southern portion thereof.
None of the above was part of 6th century B.C. Jerusalem. Consequently, none of it qualifies as "restoring and building" Jerusalem, in the biblical context of the 70 weeks. Hadrian built a pagan city, and changed the name, which in God's eyes is an abomination. The rest didn't build the city at all, just added a few structures here and there.
The Jewish Quarter, which is prophetic Jerusalem, was destroyed in 1948 during the Arab-Israeli conflict. It remained desolate until Jews recovered East Jerusalem, 19 years later, during the 6-Day War.
Its reconstruction began in June 1969 in the aftermath of the Six-Day war, after evacuating all Arabs, and today some 2,300 Jewish families reside there.
All this was prophesied in the Scriptures.
It behooves all Christians to know Jerusalem's history. It's impossible to understand the end times without it.
The prophecy of the 70 weeks, given in Daniel 9 : 24-27 is the single most important, most accurate, timeline in history. It is so precise that people really need to be pathologically biased in order to misunderstand it.
It's so awesomely fulfilled in Jesus Christ that unbelieving critics have made the false claim that it wasn't written by Daniel, but by an anonymous author, at a much later date, after Jesus appeared, died and rose from the dead.
Only problem with their false theory is that, in the second century B.C., when the Hebrew Bible was translated into koine Greek, the same Book of Daniel we have in our Bibles today, in its entirety (including the 70 weeks prophecy), was included in the Septuagint. That is undisputed.
Jews offer a different excuse. They claim (falsely, of course) that the "anointed prince" (mashiach nagid) is Cyrus, king of Persia. While it's true that God refers to Cyrus in Isaiah 45 : 1 as His "anointed", there are a couple of problems with that view :
The prophecy states that "Messiah Prince" (mashiach nagid) was cut off (killed) after 62 sabbatical "weeks", which is 434 years. Unless they want to argue that Cyrus lived 500 years, it doesn't hold water.
In their blindness, they say this refers to two anointed princes, Cyrus, who issued the decree to rebuild the temple 7 weeks (49 years) after the Babylonian captivity (that claim is highly debatable), and that the second prince who died after 62 weeks (434 years) is Alexander Jannaeus, a cruel king of Judea during the Hasmonean dynasty. That's ridiculous. To think that God would send Gabriel to deliver a special message about that is absurd. It also contradicts the text, which says the command is to rebuild the city, not the temple. It also says that the 49 years come after that decree, not before. These facts alone completely debunk, and rip their theory to shreds.
There are two princes mentioned in this passage "Messiah Prince" (Jesus) and "the prince that shall come" (Titus) who would destroy the city and temple, period. If the Jews' perspective were true, you need three princes : Cyrus, Alexander Jannaeus, and Titus. Moreover, in the previous verse (Daniel 9 : 24) Gabriel specifies that the 70 weeks are to "put an end to sin", and bring in everlasting righteousness. Are they even remotely suggesting that Cyrus's decree and Alexander Jannaeus's death accomplished that ? Get real !
Their last desperate pretext is that the Hebrew definite article ha, referring to the Messiah does not appear in the text. That in no way indicates that Jesus wasn't and isn't the fulfillment of this prophecy. The definite article doesn't appear in verse 26 either, where it refers to Titus as another prince that would come. Does that mean Titus wasn't a specific prince than came and destroyed the city and the temple, in 70 A.D., precisely as predicted ?
Take off the blinders, Jewish friends ! Even Maimonides admitted that this prophecy was about the Messiah. In context, it couldn't be anyone else.
No one else can bring everlasting righteousness.
No one else can put an end to sin.
No one else can seal the vision and prophecy.
And, No one else can put an end to the desolations (plural) of Jerusalem (Daniel 9 : 2).
Gabriel told Daniel there would be 70 sabbatical weeks (shemittas) in which:
Jerusalem would be rebuilt. It was.
Messiah would appear. He did.
Messiah would be killed. He was.
Messiah would confirm the covenant. He did.
Then another prince would come who'd destroy (yet again) the city and the temple. It happened.
The temple site would remain desolate until "the time of the end". It has !
This was prophecy when Gabriel told Daniel. These things are now history.
YEAR OF THE RAPTURE
According to the Word of God, the Rapture should happen sometime in the very near future.
In the latter, Jesus states that Jerusalem will fall to Gentiles, and will be continuously trampled by Gentiles, until the "times of the Gentiles" are fulfilled. After their "times" are fulfilled, there will be signs in the sun moon and stars, distress of nations with perplexity, the seas and waves reverberating, men dying of terror, the powers of heaven shaken. And then shall they see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
In verse 32 Jesus adds that this generation, (in context, the generation after Jerusalem is recovered by Jews, and is no longer trampled by Gentiles) will not pass away without all these things happening. We are that generation, without a doubt.
Jerusalem returned to the Jews on June 7, 1967 during the Six-Day War. This happened after 2,030 years of continuous Gentile trampling, just as Jesus predicted.
Since this happened 51 years ago, and a biblical generation is 40 years or somewhat over, we know His return must be very, very, very near.
The 70 weeks of Daniel chapter 9 gives us the timeline for Jesus' First and Second Comings !
Verse 25 says "from the commandment to restore and build Jerusalem to Moschiach Nagid (Messiah Prince) there will be 7 weeks, and 62 weeks". With the benefit of hindsight we know, beyond any doubt, they were sabbatical "weeks" (shemittas) of 7 years each.
He said there would be two periods from the commandment to restore and build Jerusalem to Messiah Prince: one would be 7 shemitta weeks of 49 years, the other would be 62 shemitta weeks of 434 years, totaling 69 weeks or 483 years.
The first decree to restore and build Jerusalem was given by Artaxerxes Longanimus of Persia in the 20th year of his reign, which was March of 445 B.C. (Nehemiah 2 : 1). From that time, there would be 69 (7+62) sabbatical weeks (shemittas, of 7 years each) until Messiah would appear.
69 sabbatical weeks = 483 years.
483 years from 445 B.C. takes us to 33 A.D (38 A.D. minus 5 "surplus" years, since Jewish religious hierarchy took off 5 years from the B.C. calendar on purpose in a desperate attempt to confuse the time of Jesus' birth and ministry and make it appear as though He did not fulfill this marvelous prophecy). Keep reading for more details.
The autumn of 33 A.D. is when Jesus the Messiah began His public ministry (Luke 3 : 1, Luke 3 : 21) in precise fulfillment of this prophecy. He died and rose from the dead 3½ years later in the spring of 37 A.D.
Daniel 9 : 26 specifies that it's after the final 62-week period of this prophecy that Messiah would be killed. Therefore, the 62-week portion of the 69 weeks has been completely fulfilled, since Jesus already died, rose, and won't be dying any more (Romans 6 : 9).
That still leaves the first 7 weeks of the timeline.
Although the 7 weeks are included in the countdown to Jesus' first coming which culminated in His death and Resurrection, Daniel 9 : 26 goes out of its way to tell us it's after the 62 week portion that Messiah's death would occur. Therefore, there's likewise a significant event (His Second Coming) that must happen after the 7-week period.
The 70 weeks, in fact, must end with His Second Coming (Daniel 9 : 24).
Messiah Prince would confirm the covenant by dying for our sins after the final 62-week period of the 69 weeks, "in the middle of" the (70th) week (Daniel 9 : 27). That happened, right on cue, 3½ years later, right in the middle of the 70th week, on Passover, Aviv 15, 37 A.D., when Jesus was crucified, then resurrected.
So, this part of the timeline, which pointed to Jesus First Coming, already took place exactly as predicted. In the middle of the 70th week (Daniel 9 : 27), at 69½ weeks, Jesus died and rose, thereby confirming the eternal Abrahamic-Davidic covenant (Galatians 3 : 17).
That leaves half a week (3½ years) of the 70 weeks, still in our "future", which will be the 3½ years of tribulation, and the reign of Antichrist. The 3½ years of the tribulation will complete the 70th week, which must end with the Second Coming.
Because the last half of Daniel's 70th week begins with the reign of Antichrist and ends with the return of Christ, the 70 weeks timeline is not complete - and cannot end without - the Second Coming.
It stands to reason, therefore, that if Gabriel gave Daniel the exact year of His First Coming, he'd also give him the exact year of His Second Coming. He did. It's been in the Bible for 2,500 years. Praise Jesus for evermore !
Why are the 69 weeks that led to the first appearance of Messiah divided into two sections? Why divide them into two periods of 7 weeks and 62 weeks, respectively? Why not simply say "69 weeks" ?
For years I've read and heard all the speculation about how the 7 weeks (49 years) marked the time it took Nehemiah to rebuild the city. Baloney ! There's no historic evidence of that anywhere. The temple had already been rebuilt, and it took them only 52 days to rebuild the wall (Nehemiah 6 : 15). Why would it take all those years to rebuild the tiny, tiny, tiny city inside those walls ? Even if Israeli builders had all suffered from acute rheumatoid arthritis, it wouldn't have taken anywhere close to 49 years : 1-3 years tops. Matter of fact, Nehemiah 13 : 6 clearly says that 12 years later Nehemiah had already returned to Artaxerxes in Susa, and by then Jerusalem had been rebuilt, repopulated, and Nehemiah had been governor several years. So, this Scripture proves that there's no way the 49 years can be the time it took to rebuild Jerusalem.
To be fair, God did tell Daniel these things would be "sealed" until the time of the end. In other words, they wouldn't be understood until our time.
The other conjectural view is that 49 years is the time that elapsed between the commandment by Cyrus to rebuild the temple (not the city) in 535 B.C. and the decree of Artaxerxes to rebuild the city in 445 B.C. There are two problems with that theory :
1) There's no way to get 49 years between those two dates, which are 90 years apart.
2) the 70 weeks prophecy doesn't mention any decree to rebuild the temple, only to rebuild the city.
So what's the answer ?
The reason there's a division of two distinct time periods in the "69 weeks" is that there will be two comings of Messiah Prince.
Keeping in mind that the original Hebrew text contained no paragraphs and no punctuation marks, but was all one long, continuous text : "From the word (dabar) to return (lehashiv) and build Jerusalem to Messiah Prince shall be 7 weeks".
For this prophecy to be true, there must be a 7-shemitta week (49 year) period from an order to restore and build Jerusalem to Messiah Prince. There have been only two decrees in history to "return and rebuild" Jerusalem.
The first was Artaxerxes' decree in 445 B.C., mentioned above.
The second decree came on April 1, 1969, shortly after the Jews recovered Jerusalem in the Six-Day war, after 2,030 years on uninterrupted Gentile trampling. On April 1, 1969 (14 Aviv, Passover Eve), the Knesset voted to restore and rebuild Jerusalem, i.e., "bring the Jewish Quarter to life again", which led to the actual reconstruction of the Quarter. The Knesset act created the Company for the Reconstruction and Development of the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem", a/k/a Jewish Quarter Development Company. The JQDC is also in charge of all building projects in the Old City.
What we presently call "the Jewish Quarter", plus the Southern part of Mt. Moriah, is the Jerusalem that existed at the time that prophecy was given. It's the Jerusalem Daniel knew as a youth, before being deported to Babylon, the one he loved and was interceding for when he received the message from Gabriel. Other portions of the Old City were added much later.
The second temple, which occupied Southern Mount Moriah, had already been rebuilt by 516 B.C. Therefore, the only "Jerusalem", existing at that time (5th century B.C.), that remained in need to be rebuilt is what we presently know as the "Jewish Quarter". Hence, it's the "Jerusalem" to which the 70 weeks prophecy applies.
The Jewish Quarter was decimated during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Jews were besieged, evicted en masse, denied access, their property confiscated, their synagogues desecrated, their homes turned to rubble. The Jordanian commander who led the operation boasted to his superiors "For the first time in 1,000 years, not a single Jew remains in the Jewish Quarter. Not a single building remains intact. This makes the Jews' return here impossible". Guess again, Bubba.
The reason there's a division in the "69 weeks" is that it reveals the timing of both the First and Second Comings of our Lord. Praise His lovely Name ! God always reveals the end from the beginning.
Daniel 9 : 26 is careful to point out that it's after the last 62-week portion, during His First Coming, that Messiah would be killed. If the 62-week portion led to His first coming, the 7-week portion must lead us to His Second Coming.
The question is when did the first shemitta begin following the order given in 1969 to "return and build" ?
7 shemitta weeks (49 years) is the time that will transpire from the first shemitta year following the second decree to rebuild Jerusalem (1969) to His second coming.
Shemittas are 7-year cycles that begin and end on Sukkot (Deuteronomy 31 : 10), Therefore, the possibilities for the fulfillment of this awesome prophecy are finite :
If the first shemitta after the “word” was given ran from 1970-1971, then first seven is 1977-1978, second seven 1984-1985, third seven 1991-1992, fourth seven 1998-99, fifth seven 2005-2006, sixth seven 2012-2013, and seventh seven 2019-2020.
If the first shemitta ran from 1970-1971, the Second Coming would be in 2019 and the Rapture would have occured 3½ years earlier, in the spring (Aviv) of 2016.
If the first shemitta ran from 1971-72 then add a year to the previous “sevens”, and so on :
|1970 - 1971||2016||2019|
|1971 - 1972||2017||2020|
|1972 - 1973||2018||2021|
|1973 - 1974||2019||2022|
|1974 - 1975||2020||2023|
|1975 - 1976||2021||2024|
|1976 - 1977||2022||2025|
|1977 - 1978||2023||2026|
The Knesset vote to "restore and rebuild Jerusalem" came on Passover Eve, 4/1/69. However the actual command (dabar, word) to return and build came in June 1967. Within days of recovering Jerusalem, as early as June 19, 1967, Arabs were being evicted from the Jewish Quarter and rubble was being removed to clear the streets and provide access. Within days, basic living conditions (water, sewage, electricity, broken windows, and doors) were being restored and Jews were moving in.
The "word" had been given, from the top, to "return and build".
Prime Minister Levi Eshkol's government, with the backing of the Knesset, extended Israeli law, jurisdiction, and administration to the eastern part of Jerusalem, including the Rova, on June 27, 1967. By October 10, 1967 - Plans for the reconstruction of the Jewish quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem had been presented to Mayor Teddy Kollek and to the Jerusalem Planning Board.
These are documented, historical facts.
The work was supervised by a team of Jewish architects, in coordination with a team of archeologists, so as not to disturb any valuable archeological evidence. Before actual construction could begin, what was left of decimated structures had to be bulldozed, and all the ensuing debris, plus the existing rubble, had to be cleared. They also had to decide which sites were "safe" to build on, and which sites would be designated for archeological digs.
So, the word to "return and build" was given in 1967, while the Knesset vote approving major reconstruction began in 1969.
Whether we count from 1967 or from 1969 the first shemitta year following these decrees will be the same, since shemittas take place every 7 years.
7 shemitta cycles from 1967-1969 take us to Jesus' second coming which takes place at the Battle of Armageddon. When Armageddon is over, the Judgment of Nations will be completed, the tribulation will officially end, and the trumpet shall sound (7th trumpet in Revelation, Revelation 10 : 6-7; Revelation 11 : 15) proclaiming the Lord's Jubilee, which is the 50th year.
According to Leviticus chapter 25, Jews were to count 7 sabbatical weeks of 49 years (the exact terminology used in Daniel 9 : 25) and then the 50th year would be the Year of Jubilee, when liberty would be proclaimed throughout the land, everyone returned to his property, all debt was cancelled, even slaves were set free.
It matches perfectly with the 70 weeks chronology :
Jesus, our Jubilee, will return 7 shemitta cycles or weeks (49 years) after the 1967 order to rebuild Jerusalem, defeat Antichrist, save all Israel, restore the 12 tribes to their former possessions in Eretz Israel and proclaim liberty not only in the Holy Land, but throughout all the earth.
We know that Jesus' ministry began on a shemitta year, and ended with His Crucifixion, Resurrection and Ascension in the "middle of" a shemitta cycle (Daniel 9 : 25; Daniel 9 : 27). The countdown, therefore, begins with the first shemitta cycle after the 1969 order to return and build. The tribulation begins in the middle of that shemitta cycle, 3½ years prior to the end of the last shemitta (70th week).
There's a 7-year period that precedes the Millennium. Contrary to conventional teaching, that 7 year period is not all tribulation. The first 3½ years consist of "birthpangs", described by Jesus in Matthew 24 : 4-8, followed by, and ending with, the 3½-year tribulation (Daniel 12 : 7).
The Antichrist must begin his reign 42-months prior to the Second Coming (Daniel 7 : 25; Revelation 13 : 5). This means that the Rapture of the Church could take place, at best, in the spring of 2019.
Little did Jordanians know, back in 1948, when they destroyed the Jewish Quarter, thinking their act would prevent Jews from ever returning, that they were paving the way for the fulfillment of this great prophecy. Is God amazing, or what ?
Little did the Israelis know when they recovered the Old City in 1967, or the Knesset when they voted on April 1, 1969, or when major reconstruction began in June 1969, that they were fulfilling Daniel's 70 weeks prophecy and paving the way for the return of Him, whom they rejected.
Jeremiah predicted this portion of Jerusalem would be rebuilt and never again destroyed (Jeremiah 31 : 38-40).
This rebuilding project was also foretold is Psalms 102 : 16 : "when the Lord shall build up Zion, He shall appear in His glory".
A gazillon "Amens",
Come Lord Jesus !
Irrefutable evidence on the Rapture of the Church in 2019 and Second Coming of Jesus in 2022, read : "The Time of the End has arrived !"
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