Revelation Chapter 11
The Seventh Trumpet
As explained by Brother Frank Shallieu in The Keys of Revelation
VERSE 19 “Then the temple of God was opened in heaven, and the ark of His covenant was seen in His temple. And there were lightnings, noises, thundering’s, an earthquake, and great hail.”
Before Verse 19 is considered in depth, a review is in order. Verses 15 to 17 describe the primary event to occur during the sounding of the seventh trumpet, namely, the reign of Jehovah and His Christ. Verse 18 indicates the trouble and the blessing incidental to the assumption of that power. Verse 19 is not sequential in fulfillment to the previous four verses, but sums up the matter by providing a new slant or outlook . . . that none of the events just described (excluding the blowing of the seventh trumpet itself) can or will happen until the Bride class is complete.
Attention Directed to the Crucifixion Scene
“And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament.”
This event obviously alludes to the time when the veil of the Temple was rent, thus exposing, to those in the Holy, the Ark of the Covenant in the Most Holy. The fact that this setting of the open veil in Verse 19 occurs during the sounding of the seventh trumpet suggests that at the close of the Gospel Age, there will be a spiritual fulfillment of this former event. A time will come when those remaining in the “holy” condition (those begotten of the spirit, in covenant relationship, i.e., the great company class) will become aware that the wise virgin class have gone beyond the veil and that those still here in the flesh are, at most, the foolish virgins.
The Gospel account is as follows:
“Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the spirit [Greek pneuma]. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in [Greek eis, see Verse 53] twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks were rent; [and the graves were opened—omit] and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, and came out of the graves after his resurrection [and went—omit] into [Greek eis, or in] the holy city; [and—omit] they appeared [Greek emphanizo—were made manifest, passive voice] unto many” (Matt. 27:50–53 Sinaitic MS).
It is to be noted that this awakening from the tomb occurred in the interval between Jesus’ death and his resurrection. If the reader were to place himself or herself in the situation of those risen disciples back there, it would not be difficult to see how they erroneously considered themselves to be resurrected instead of being merely resuscitated from death.
Having no concept of time while lying unconscious in the tomb, they would joyously come forth thinking they had entered the Kingdom. But—alas! —imagine their confusion of mind and appalling perplexity to be informed by others—or possibly even witnessing for themselves—that Jesus was nailed to the Cross! How could they suddenly adjust to so rude and so startling a circumstance? To whom could they attribute their own rising from the tomb? For what purpose were they raised? Had they entered a real world or was this a realm of fantasy?
It is no wonder, then, that until things were sorted out in their muddled minds, they could not intelligibly do anything but probably stayed inconspicuously out of sight. However, when Jesus (the first to truly rise from death) appeared to his other followers and certified the reality of his resurrection, then these risen disciples burst forth with unbounded joy and unleashed enthusiasm and entered the capital, proclaiming, “Jesus is risen! Look what happened to us! We were dead and now we are alive!”
Of course, many friends and relatives would be able to verify the prior death and burial of these dear ones. Moreover, this fact would be seared into the minds of their children and their children’s children. The authenticity of the darkening of the sun; the earthquake and rending of the veil; the testimony of the awakened ones including that of Lazarus, who had been raised earlier—all these strange signs and wonders could not be discounted.
Could such supposed imaginations be fraudulently introduced into the Gospels . . . and yet escape detection and exposure?
The very fact that Matthew’s Gospel was circulated at an early date and his testimony was passed by without vehement disclaimers by the living contemporary priesthood, who were so opposed to the teachings of Jesus, not only is prima facie evidence but merits de facto cognition of the validity of the happenings recorded.
The “saints” who were revived seem to have been followers of Jesus who expired prior to his crucifixion. Their awakening afforded them renewed opportunity to run the race, earlier proffered, of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus, which they could not have legally entered until Pentecost. Their unique experience of rising shortly after the death of Jesus was no doubt providentially arranged by God to aptly symbolize the future resurrection of the Ancient Worthies (Psa. 106:16; Heb. 12:23) after the death of The Christ (the remainder of the body) at the end of the Gospel Age. Specifically, their resurrection is expected to occur at the climax of Jacob’s Trouble, when they will be brought forth from death and appear before men in bodily form (Jer. 30:7–9; Dan. 12:1,2; Psa. 119:62).
First, however, all true Christians (all those who have been begotten of the spirit, and who have entered into covenant relationship with the Father through sacrifice Psa 50:5;Rom 12:1), regardless of rank (regardless of whether or not they belong to the “Little Flock”, the “Lords goat” class or the “great company”, the “scape goat” class), MUST DIE and enter into their reward so that the ransom merit of Jesus, the atoning blood of redemption, (which was applied to all these in covenant relationship) can be released and applied on behalf of the world (Heb. 11:39, 40).
Verse 19, therefore, directs attention to the circumstances surrounding Jesus’ crucifixion. After the death of the last members of the Very Elect—that is, the last members of The Christ in the strictest sense of that term—then will come the Time of Trouble . . . with earthquake, lightnings, thundering’s, and great hail. This future scene is spiritually reminiscent of the First Advent parting of the veil of the Most Holy in the Temple, which exposed to view the Ark in the innermost chamber.
Continued with next post.
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