2020 Just Keeps Rolling Along With ‘HIGH WATCH PERIODS and CONVERGING OF SIGNS; Date Speculation Vs. Being Watchful of the Time and Season. The Fig Tree, the Festivals, and the Doctrine of Imminence.
By Unsealed.org (another watchman).
Posted: 23 Sep 2020 09:07 PM PDT
Greetings brothers and sisters! I hope that your eyes are remaining fixed on the sky. This journey can be wearying, but it will be forever worth it. When the day finally comes, all of the waiting and watching and longing will be eternally vindicated. Watching for the Lord is not without pain (Rev. 10:10). Some are not able to bear this burden—all of the inward groaning (Rm. 8:24–26), doubts, and continual scoffing from those who are wed to this world (2 Pt. 3:3–13; 1 Cor. 7:31; 1 Jn. 2:17–29) take their toll. But we cannot be shaken. Yet for those whom God has given the ability to bear it, it is worth more than all the treasure in the world.
There is a certain temptation to think we must somehow balance our hope in the world to come with our hopes and plans for this present world. And this may even seem wise, tempered, and spiritual. But God is calling us away from this world, because everything in it is passing away. Every hope placed here is a misplaced hope (Mt. 6:19–21; Lk. 12:34; 18:22). God has promised and God is faithful. Faith isn’t always easy, but it is simple. Our faith is in Christ who is coming super-imminently to rescue us, heal us, and glorify us.
He’s coming soon—not because I say so, but because He says so (Rev. 1:3; 22:6–7, 12, 20). Are you believing those who say He delays His coming (Mt. 24:48–51; 2 Pt. 3:3–13; Rev. 3:3), or are you believing Him? There are those who say His coming is delayed for a long time, but there are also those who say it’s delayed in the short-term. Many are comfortable with the signs converging, but they aren’t as comfortable with the signs having already converged. On their journey to the Red Sea the Israelites barely uttered a word against God’s plan, but once their back was up against the water, with Pharaoh’s chariots closing in, they immediately began questioning all the signs and wonders they had just witnessed when God had brought them out (Ex. 14:10–14). Likewise, we have just witnessed the most apocalyptic year in any of our lifetimes, with clear signs of impending global economic collapse, global government, the mark of the beast, and worldwide threats of persecution against believers, and many are tempted to take their eyes off God’s throne—instead looking at the waves beneath their feet.
The One who promised is faithful. We have only to be still (Ex. 14:13–14), for the battle belongs to the Lord (1 Sam. 17:47).
Setting your hope here is such a powerful allure in this final generation given that we live at the most prosperous and technologically-advanced time in the history of the world. We can buy anything we want, eat anything we want, go anywhere we want, and do anything we want. We even have retirement accounts, so that we can alleviate some of the curse of the Fall—a privilege previous generations never had. This is all an illusion, because this most prosperous of generations happens to be the very generation that will experience a total loss of it all. Our generation has stored up treasure on earth more than any other generation, but is not rich toward God (cf. Lk. 12:16–21).
In this article I want to circle back on several recurring topics that have been stumbling blocks to some, specifically The Parable of the Fig Tree, the festivals, and the doctrine of imminency. I hope that this will be encouraging and clarifying, especially considering how late the hour is.
Revisiting the Fig Tree
I firmly believe that Jesus’ Parable of the Fig Tree is a clear reference to the nation of Israel and its historic reestablishment in 1948 for several key reasons:
1. The nation of Israel is unequivocally compared to a fig tree and the Israelites are alluded to as figs in numerous passages (e.g., Jer. 24:5; Hos. 9:10; Jl. 1:6–7; 1 Kgs. 4:25; Mt. 21:18-20; Mk. 11:12–14; Lk. 3:7–9; 13:6–9; Jn. 1:47–49).
Some post-tribulation proponents such as Irvin Baxter believe that Israel is instead compared to the olive tree based on Romans 11. There is Scriptural warrant for this (e.g., Jer. 11:16–17), however, this argument can’t be sustained. First of all, Israel is compared to many different things: a fig tree, a vine, an olive tree, a firstborn son, a wife, etc. This objection is a clear example of straining out a gnat, but swallowing a camel (a.k.a. missing the forest for the trees—pun intended). It’s like arguing that the male child in Revelation 12 can’t represent the Church because the Church can only be the bride. Well, no, in fact the Church is likened to many things: the united olive tree of natural and wild shoots (Rm. 11), a temple (Eph. 2:19–22; 1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19), one new man (Eph. 2:14–16), the collective body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:27), and even the singular offspring of Abraham (Gal. 3:29), which perfectly fits with the male child concept in Revelation 12:5.
Secondly, Paul explicitly connects the olive tree with Christ Himself. Christ is the olive tree and the Jews are the natural branches. The Jews aren’t the tree itself. The wild olive shoots—the Gentiles—are not grafted into Israel, but are grafted into Christ.
The identity of Israel as the fig tree is a clear teaching of Scripture.
2. Extra-biblical sources, such as the 2nd century Apocalypse of Peter, leave no doubt that the fig tree was regarded as a symbol of Israel around the time of Christ:
And I, Peter, answered and said unto him: Interpret unto me concerning the fig tree, whereby we shall perceive it; for throughout all its days doth the fig tree send forth shoots, and every year it bringeth forth its fruit for its master. What then meaneth the parable of the fig tree? We know it not.
And the Master (Lord) answered and said unto me: Understandest thou not that the fig tree is the house of Israel? Even as a man that planted a fig tree in his garden, and it brought forth no fruit. And he sought the fruit thereof many years and when he found it not, he said to the keeper of his garden: Root up this fig tree that it make not our ground to be unfruitful. And the gardener said unto God: (Suffer us) to rid it of weeds and dig the ground round about it and water it. If then it bear not fruit, we will straightway remove its roots out of the garden and plant another in place of it. Hast thou not understood that the fig tree is the house of Israel? Verily I say unto thee, when the twigs thereof have sprouted forth in the last days, then shall feigned Christs come and awake expectation saying: I am the Christ, that am now come into the world. And when they (Israel) shall perceive the wickedness of their deeds they shall turn away after them and deny him [whom our fathers did praise], even the first Christ whom they crucified and therein sinned a great sin. But this deceiver is not the Christ. (source)
3. Jesus had already cursed a fig tree, which withered, representing the unfruitfulness of Israel when He came for His first inspection. His cursing of the fig tree in Matthew 21:18–20 served as the backdrop for His prophetic parable just three chapters later (Mt. 24:29–34). Sure enough, what was left of Israel withered, or you might say was cut down, in 70 AD when the Roman armies under Titus Vespasian destroyed the Second Temple and the city of Jerusalem and dispersed the Jews. Thus the second regathering of the Jews and the reestablishment of the nation of Israel in 1948 naturally represent the regrowth of the fig tree and its “putting forth leaves.” The Apocalypse of Peter even says as much: “when the twigs thereof have sprouted forth in the last days, then shall feigned Christs come…” Did you catch that? Having already established that the fig tree represents Israel, the author goes on to say that Jesus’ Parable of the Fig Tree in the Olivet Discourse will occur in the last days, prefacing events that transpire during, or perhaps shortly before, the Tribulation (such as the appearance of false Christs).
Now I want to switch gears a bit and discuss where things become more speculative, namely in regards to how long the end-times fig tree generation will last before all things are fulfilled. According to the Lord Jesus, all things, including Christ’s return, will transpire within one generation. I presently believe Psalm 90:10 provides the best estimate of the length of a generation, as it seems to be the only generic definition of the length of a generation provided in the Bible (70 to 80 years). However, I’ve been careful never to put God in a box. Jesus doesn’t explicitly mention Psalm 90:10 in the Olivet Discourse. If God determines that this final generation shall last 83 or 84 years, who will argue with Him? His ways are higher than our ways.
All that to be said, we don’t make this connection between Matthew 24 and Psalm 90:10 arbitrarily. For starters, life expectancy itself is a hint that Psalm 90:10 is pretty close, if not right on the mark. It was only this past decade, for the first time since the age of the patriarchs, that global life expectancy exceeded 70 years. To put that another way: simultaneous with the incredible convergence of prophetic signs, it has only been in the last 10 years that global life expectancy reached the range of 70 to 80 years—and just in time for the final ramp up to the Tribulation (e.g., the blood moons, Revelation 12 Sign, mark of the beast technology, Third Temple preparation, Jewish Nation-State Law, Abraham Accords, and so forth).
Secondly, this year, already as crazy and pregnant with prophetic significance as it is, happened to show forth an amazing connection to the fig tree parable: the fig tree is Israel and Psalm 90:10 says a generation is 70 to 80 years—the two leaders of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu and Reuven Rivlin, were 70 and 80 years old, respectively, up until September 9th. Rivlin turned 81 just a week before the Abraham Accords were signed.
Thirdly, Matthew 1:17 tells us that 42 generations transpired between Abraham and Christ. That would average out to approximately 47–50 years per generation. Granted, life expectancy was significantly shorter for most of that period than it is now, but these much shorter generations cast doubt on suggestions of 90, 100, or even 120-year-long generations pertaining to the fig tree.
Fourthly, I have studied several population tables for the U.S. and Israel and only about seven percent of either population is over 72 years in age (the nation of Israel is 72 now). By approximately 2027 that seven percent who were present at the rebirth of Israel will be halved. By 2037 it will be about one-half of a percent. And that’s not even factoring in the Tribulation itself and how many will die during the catastrophic events that transpire during it. It’s also not factoring in COVID-19, which is primarily targeting the elderly. We’re on overtime. By what we can see, even being as generous as possible, Christ’s return to earth in the mid-2030s and the commencement of the Tribulation in the middle or end of this present decade seem to be a hard and fast limit to the 1948 generation, and no wonder, since scholarship universally regards the crucifixion of Jesus as occurring in one of the years AD 30 through AD 33—approaching precisely two millennia ago.
To strengthen the case regarding Psalm 90, the passage happens to contain a number of prophetic, end-of-the-age themes. For starters, the significance of Psalm 90 applies to all generations (Ps. 90:1). Second, the apostle Peter pulls his language of the Lord’s patience preceding the Tribulation from this very psalm (2 Pt. 3:8–10; cf. Ps. 90:4). Third, the psalm contains language of new growth similar to Jesus’ fig tree parable (Ps. 90:5–6). Fourth, Psalm 90:10 itself is wrapped in language about the coming wrath of God and His judgment of sin, which makes v. 10 that much more relevant to the end of the age (Ps. 90:7–9, 11). Fifth, v. 10 contains a possible allusion to the rapture event (“…and we fly away.”) It could very well be that the Church flies away early in the 70 to 80 year range and Israel doesn’t fly away until the middle or end (cf. Rev. 12:6, 14). Sixth, the psalm ends with the prophetic hope that Moses and the Israelites had of finally receiving God’s promises—a fulfillment that will not occur until the establishment of Christ’s Kingdom on earth (Ps. 90:13–17).
A Note on the Festivals and Date Speculation
One thing I’ve learned while studying Scripture is never say never. Ok, I’m being a bit facetious here! We have to draw the line on essential doctrines. I will never preach a false gospel. I will never worship a false god. But the essentials aside, I’ve found that many students of the Bible say “that’s not scriptural” and seconds later are rebutted with Scripture. Take for instance “no one knows the day or hour.” It’s the ultimate and most-used shutdown for any discussion of end-times prophecy or date speculation, but the way in which it is used ignores a plethora of other Scriptures that paint a different picture (e.g., Dan. 12:4; Mt. 24:48–51; 1 Thess. 5:4; Heb. 10:25; Rev. 1:1, 19; 3:3; 22:10).
For starters, “no one knows” isn’t even a literal translation of the text. Jesus spoke in perfect tense, which is completed action (i.e., “no one has known”), yet most translations insist on disregarding this in favor of the present tense.
Secondly, eventually everyone will know once the day and hour have come, and Jesus, having been glorified post-Ascension, already knows. Therefore it isn’t possible to reconcile with Scripture the view that οἶδεν represents a perpetual inability to know. The fact that Edgar Whisenant got it wrong in 1988, or Harold Camping in 2011, is irrelevant. Once the date is known it will be known for eternity future. Scoffers only get this present dispensation to scoff, just as those in Noah’s day only scoffed until the Flood came.
Thirdly, “no one knows” is used to stifle genuine speculation that otherwise strengthens the Church with a strong sense of urgency and mission. It is used as a blanket be-all-end-all argument without regard for the whole counsel of Scripture, or even regard for what Jesus was contextually referring to. The immediately preceding verse is the passing away of heaven and earth, an event that occurs at least 1,000 years after the millennial reign of Christ. But Jesus’ words “no one has known” seem to more appropriately conclude His description of the events during the Tribulation itself and His second advent (vv. 1–35), not the rapture, which isn’t described until after He said “no one has known” (see vv. 37–44). Note: some believe that the rapture is not referred to in any part of Matthew 24, whereas others teach that Jesus alluded to it beginning in verse 37. Either way you slice it, linking the rapture to “no one knows” is a contextually-weak argument from silence.
Fourthly, the greatest irony of the misuse of these words is that Jesus concludes this very passage with this parable:
Who, then, is the servant, faithful and wise, whom his lord set over his household, to give them the nourishment in season? Blessed that servant, whom his lord, having come, will find doing so; truly I say to you that he will set him over all his substance. And if that evil servant may say in his heart, My lord delays to come, and may begin to beat the fellow-servants, and to eat and to drink with the drunken, the lord of that servant will arrive in a day when he does not expect, and in an hour of which he does not know, and will cut him off, and will appoint his portion with the hypocrites; there will be the weeping and the gnashing of the teeth. (Mt. 24:45–51, LSV)
Would Jesus tell His disciples that they could never know the day or hour when He was coming for them and then immediately, in the same discourse, tell them that it’s the evil servant who will not know the day or hour? It just doesn’t fit. These are not difficult puzzle pieces to fit together… Jesus made clear that no one had known, up to that point, when Tribulation events, His second advent, and the passing away of heaven and earth would occur. And then He made clear that when He actually does come for His disciples, His wise and faithful servants would be aware of the time because they would be watching (e.g., Mt. 24:42; 25:13; Mk. 13:35; Lk. 12:37–39; 21:36; 1 Thess. 5:2–4).
This is where wisdom is entailed. We all have access to the same revealed word of God. No one has special insight that isn’t already rooted in Scripture. I am calling for believers to walk a fine line that hasn’t readily been walked before. I’m exhorting all of us to live in the tension and urgency of knowing, yet not knowing. Of seeing the day, but not being certain of it, and maybe even having a strong sense of the day or hour, but not holding that date speculation up above criticism. Date speculation isn’t an exercise in being proved right or finding out for certain. It’s a Holy Spirit-driven group effort of constantly scanning the horizon for the next target that seems to best fit with Scripture, because we are getting closer. Much closer in fact. If brother Paul could write the following exhortation nearly 2,000 years ago—before the rebirth of Israel, before the United Nations, before the Revelation 12 Sign, and globally mandated vaccinations, and the Third Temple in waiting, and the gospel having been preached to all nations, and everything else that has converged to this very season within just the last few years—then who are we to live with any less urgency?
And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. (Rm. 13:11–12, NIV)
Actively watching (i.e., humbly speculating on how things are really playing out) isn’t a bad thing. To the contrary, it’s a scriptural command. Let’s not pull back or get burned out. Let’s press on, understanding how late the hour is. This isn’t semantics. The hour really is late. We’re on the precipice of everything that was prophesied to occur in the Day of the Lord and ours is the only generation that can live with such imminent certainty. It is shocking that we are the ones to live during the final watch.
As we continue watching, a topic that always manages to turn into a debate (and shouldn’t) is whether our Redeemer will come for us on a biblical festival or on any old day. Please don’t fight, brothers and sisters. The only time you should take up your spiritual sword is when defending the essentials. Otherwise, stand united and stand firm. We’re in the same trenches together. As beloved brother JD Farag mentioned in his recent prophecy update, the world will know we are Christians by our love. Not by our intellect. And definitely not by our ability to debate. If you find yourself trolling, causing strife, quarreling, and putting people on defense, check yourself. You may have the Spirit, but you aren’t being led by Him. Wherever the Spirit goes there is life, abundant joy, goodness, temperance, humility, and reconciliation. God’s people turn the other cheek, shake the dust, and move on. But the Devil’s children fight incessantly. They have no ability to control themselves, show respect, or agree to disagree. They can’t move on. The Spirit of God brings self control, but the spirit of lawlessness makes one a slave—like a dog returning to his vomit or a fly fluttering toward the bug zapper. We’re all a slave, either to sin or the Spirit. Sin puts you at enmity with everyone and everything around you, but the Spirit is a kind and gracious Master. He sets you free.
So will the Lord Jesus take us home on a feast day? I think it makes a lot of sense that He would. God is a God of order and He seems to do things in an orderly way. However, I have such a sense of urgency I wouldn’t dare say He has to or that this is certain. He ascended on a regular old day, but even that had a certain pattern to it being 40 days—a period of testing—after He rose from the grave. As I say so often, let’s never put God in a box. He doesn’t fit. But let’s also not ignore what He has revealed through Scripture, pattern, and prophecy.
I have learned to maintain a certain level of peace and comfort while looking for the next target because the signs have converged to such an extent that it is obviously right around the corner even if a particular day doesn’t turn out to be the Day. But living with such urgency can definitely cause distress when you set your heart on something that doesn’t pan out. We must all balance the urgency of actively watching with keeping our faith solely in our Rescuer, and not forgetting the thousands of things He has clearly shown us these past several years. He isn’t leading you astray dear friends. The One who promised is faithful. Like the magi of old, we saw the signs a few years ago and set out together to find the King. Now we see Jerusalem just on the horizon. We’re so close brothers and sisters.
On the immediate horizon we have the Day of Atonement, the first day of Tabernacles, Hoshana Rabbah, Shemini Atzeret, and everything in between. Some are very excited about Yom Kippur, whereas I have my sights more focused on the last day of Sukkot and Shemini Atzeret. At this time everything still seems to be moving forward at breakneck speed (another country may normalize with Israel within 48 hours) and the third-day birthday parallel still fits beautifully, this being the third year since the Revelation 12 Sign and the third year of an end-times Cyrus figure in the person of Donald Trump (cf. Dan. 10:1).
Warning; ‘Do not mock, discredit or deny these people or their message.’ Really? Do you think that ALL these people, got together to collaborate on the SAME MESSAGE? Watch the WHOLE video.
If these ‘messages’ don’t resonate with you, then you are spiritually dead.
‘Wake UP!’ We are at the last nano-second of time, considering the length of eternity.
John 13:19 Now I tell you before it come, that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am he.
John 14:29 And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe.
Luke 21:31 So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.
Mark 13:29 So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors.
Luke 21:28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.
Revelation 1:1 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John:
‘Increasing Like Labor Pains.’ ‘Fearful Sights.’ ‘Perilous Times.’ ‘Men’s hearts failing with fear.’ Great Convergence of Signs.’ REDEMPTION IMMINENT.
In His Service,
Night Watchman Ministries
Make Your Decision for Christ NOW!!!!!!! Time is Up!!!!!!!
Jesus Christ’s Offer of Salvation:
The ABCs of Salvation through Jesus Christ (the Lamb)
A. Admit/Acknowledge/Accept that you are sinner. Ask God’s forgiveness and repent of your sins.
. . . “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23).
. . . “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.” (Romans 3:10).
. . . “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” (1 John 1:8).
B. Believe Jesus is Lord. Believe that Jesus Christ is who He claimed to be; that He was both fully God and fully man and that we are saved through His death, burial, and resurrection. Put your trust in Him as your only hope of salvation. Become a son or daughter of God by receiving Christ.
. . . “That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. (John 3:15-17). For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13).
C. Call upon His name, Confess with your heart and with your lips that Jesus is your Lord and Savior.
. . . “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:9-10).
. . . “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (John 1:8-10).
. . . “And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. (John 2:2).
. . . “In this was manifested the love of god toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.” (1 John 4:9, 14-15).
. . . “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” (Romans 5:8-10).
. . . “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23).
. . . “Jesus saith unto them, I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6).
. . . “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth.” (Romans 1:16).
. . . “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts: 4:12).
. . . “Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth for there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (1 Timothy 2:4-6).
. . . “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 5:9).
. . . “But as many as received him, to them gave the power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” (John 1:12).
True Church / Bride of Christ Spared from God’s Wrath:
Romans 5:8-10. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.”
Romans 12:19. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 1:10. And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.
1 Thessalonians 5:9. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
Romans 8:35. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
Jeremiah 30:7. Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble, but he shall be saved out of it.
Revelation 3:10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
Categories: Dreams and Visions