The word here in the LATIN VULGATE is rapiemur, which is where people get the English word “rapture” from. It also means to ‘quickly snatch away.’ The Hebrew word here, from Aramaic, means the same, and it is: “Khataf”. But we’ll get to the Hebrew later. Nevertheless, those who deny the existence of a ‘rapture’ are deliberately sticking their heads in the sand, ignoring the SURFACE of, the PLAIN meaning of the text. This verse is not wrapped in some great vision. It is Sha’ul speaking very plainly about our future.
So, is ‘rapture’ in the Bible? Most definitely. And not only in this verse.
It is also in the Hitgalut, in chapter 12:
“And she brought forth a male child, who was to shepherd all the nations with a rod of iron; and her child was CAUGHT UP to Elohim, and to His throne.”
Now, one thing to understand here, is that this verse is part of a VISION, so we must understand that this is part of something bigger than just one verse. But, we see here that the ‘child’ is the Shepherd of all nations, which is clearly a reference to Yeshua.
But wait! THIS verse is in the Hitgalut, and concerning things that take place ‘hereafter,’ according to Yeshua Himself! [Hit 1:19, write “the things which shall be hereafter”, 4:1-2, “I will show you what must come to pass (in the future)].
Yeshua indeed was ‘caught up’ to heaven, in Acts chapter 1. But, this was NOT immediately after His physical birth, as is expressed in this vision, and HaSatan was nowhere around threatening His life when he ascended, according to the text in Acts. His physical life can NO LONGER be threatened, because He is now immortal, resurrected from the dead. But in this chapter, Hit 12, this is happening in the future, and is a ‘sign’, and part of that sign is a ‘woman’ in the sky, clothed in the sun, with the moon at her feet, giving birth to a son, and a serpent nearby to steal/destroy him [the little child] if he can…….
Most people do not realize that this is telling us a lot: That the ‘child’ is a product of ISRAEL, because this is the SAME vision Yosef had in Genesis concerning himself and his family, the sons of ISRAEL. There, Yosef saw 11 stars, and they were the stars of his brothers! Here, we have 12 stars, to include Yosef’s. All the tribes of Yisra’el. Giving birth to one son. Most gentile/western believers struggle with the concept of ONE MAN representing the redeemed of Yisra’el. That is another topic, indeed, but it is necessary to mention here that Elohim ALWAYS considers ISRAEL as His ‘son’. [See Shemot 4]. This vision of a woman giving birth, however, happens also to match the constellation configuration that occurs periodically in the fall on Yom Teru’ah, the fifth Mo’ed of G-d. Virgo sits low in the horizon; the sun is behind her and the moon is at her feet. A serpent is nearby [another constellation], and JUPITER comes from between her knees, as if ‘she’ is giving birth. And when that ‘birth’ happens, the little boy is ‘snatched up’/’raptured’ into heaven INTO SAFETY from the serpent. [Jupiter goes into retrograde].
So, here, we learn the PURPOSE of the ‘catching away:’ PROTECTION FROM THE ATTACK OF THE SERPENT.
We also learn the TIMING of it: YOM TERU’AH, the fifth Mo’ed of Elohim, at the beginning of the fall harvest season. “Harvest”. This ‘sign’ appears in the heavens precisely on Yom Teru’ah, the first day of the fall season, biblically.
It is fitting to note here that Yeshua came and did a certain portion of his ministry the first time. We believe He shows us, by His life and ministry, how to interpret prophetic scriptures. Kefa tells us this about prophecy:
“knowing this first, that not every prophetic writing is made clear in its own book.” Kefa Bet 1:20.
So, how do we know ‘how’ to interpret Nevu’ah, “prophecy”?
Yeshua gives us a big hint, when he stands in His synagogue in His hometown to read from Yesha-Yahu, because it was His turn to read:
He starts reading in Yesha-Yahu 61:
“The Ru’akh of Adonai יהוה is upon me; because of this He has anointed me to preach HaB’sorah to the poor; and He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, and to proclaim release to the captives and sight to the blind; to strengthen with forgiveness those who are oppressed, and to preach the acceptable year of יהוה .”
Here, Yeshua breaks a verse in half, stopping in mid-sentence, not reading the following phrase:
“and the day of vengeance of Eloheinu [our God]”.
Through much study, one can recognize that this is the setting of the model for interpreting the prophetic nature of the seven feasts .
The first four feasts represent the first part of these Yesha-Yahu verses, where good news [b’sorah] is declared to the humble, people are healed, people’s eyes are opened to this ‘B’sorah’, they are set free from their sin and oppression, all done by the Anointed Messiah.
Pesakh, when Yeshua was arrested and executed, after having done all of the above.
Matzot, when Yeshua, who was now dead, was buried.
Reishit Omer, [firstfruits], when Yeshua rose from the dead
Shavu’ot, when Yeshua sent His Ru’akh to us, after having ascended [with witnesses seeing His ascent] to stand at the Right Hand of the Father.
Since then, Yeshua has been gone, but His anointed ministry has continued.
The phrase that He read at His Synagogue, He broke deliberately, and what He read that day, He’s been doing ever since…
What happens when He returns?
The Day of the Vengeance of Eloheinu!
Yom Teru’ah is the very next ‘Mo’ed’ [appointed time] of יהוה after Shavu’ot, when we read in VaYikra [Lev] 23. It is known as “Yom HaDin,” the Day of Judgment. It is a mysterious day that is not explained at all in VaYikra, or anywhere else. It is a “Sod.” A Bible ‘mystery’. It is the day the Khodesh [renewed crescent moon] is sighted, and the Shofar is blasted amidst great SHOUTING. It is the day the wicked are punished, giving them a chance to do teshuva before they are judged. Everyone on earth at that point, during the seven year “Et Ketz”, “Tzara” [tribulation], is forced to make a decision: follow Elohim and His Messiah, or follow HaSatan, the false Messiah. This is the GREAT deception that Elohim will FORCE on mankind. On the yearly calendar of the feasts, this day is followed immediately by seven “Terrible Days”, when the Kohen Gadol goes into an inner room WITH HIS BRIDE, and a spare bride waiting in the wings, to prepare for Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, the Great Shofar. Yom Kippur is followed by Sukkot, seven days and an eighth, when all the world comes to ‘Dwell in booths’ in Jerusalem. Details on all of this will come later. It is pointed out here to show the BREAK in the feasts we’ve had for 2,000 years. The NEXT thing on the prophetic agenda is Yom Teru’ah! This ‘break’ is why Yeshua stopped reading in mid-verse.
So, as stated before, we learn the TIMING of a ‘catching away’ in our first scripture: YOM TERU’AH, the fifth Mo’ed of Elohim, at the beginning of fall harvest season. “Harvest”. A day of SHOUTS and BLASTS on the Last Shofar!
This idea is supported elsewhere, too.
In our first verse [Tess 4], above, we saw that THE REMNANT [a small person? A ‘newborn’ person who is part of Israel? Jupiter, one of many stars] is ‘caught up’ just after Adoneinu, Yeshua HaMashiakh, leaves heaven and comes near to earth and SHOUTS! Himself, along with the Messenger blowing the SHOFAR of Elohim. Yom Teru’ah is the ‘Day of the Shout/Blast’, as that is what ‘yom teru’ah’ actually means in Hebrew. We see a shout and a blast here in our verse [Tes 4]. And then people coming back from the dead [birth] and along with others, all of them being ‘caught up’ to meet Him IN THE AIR. “And so shall we be with Him forever….” How so? RESURRECTED/TRANSFORMED…. The final ‘birth’. A very SMALL remnant.
We also see Yokhanan himself ‘shouted at’ and blasted at with a shofar, when He goes to heaven to look back down on earth and see the end things:
He was to write what he ‘had seen,’ which was the vision of Yeshua among the Menorahs; those are the things which ‘are,’ the seven letters of direct messages to seven congregations at the end of the first century; then he is to write the things that will be hereafter, which is clearly the seven year ‘tribulation’ predicted by Dani’el HaNavi. And after receiving the seven letters, suddenly, he sees a GATE opened in Heaven. He hears the voice ‘like a shofar’ which said, “COME UP HERE!”
“Behold, a gate was open in heaven; and the first voice which I heard was like a shofar talking with me, which said, “Come up here! And I will show you things which must COME TO PASS.”
“Aleh Henah!” Ascend to here! And THEN he will see things that must in the future happen, including Rev 12, where someone else ‘comes up here.’
So, Yokhanan may have actually spiritually participated in the events of Thess 4:17 and Hit 12:1-2, [and other scriptures] in order to see what is happening in our near future! The same elements are there: the shout, the shofar, and the ascent. He adds another element: OPEN GATES. In the Heikhal [Temple] in the times of Messiah and the Shlikhim, the Gates of the Heikhal would open miraculously on YOM TERUAH! This is recorded by the historian, Josephus. So those who desired to make pilgrimage first could come into the Heikhal to worship. The King of Yisra’el would be there. This is also traditionally when the king of Yisra’el is to marry.
Another scripture in the Brit Khadashah also supports all of this:
“Now this I say, my brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit Malkhut HaElohim; neither does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a SOD [mystery]: we shall not all die, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the LAST SHOFAR; for that shofar shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your sting? O She’ol, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the Torah. But thanks be to Elohim, who has given us the victory through Adoneinu Yeshua HaMashiakh.”
Our inheritance is THE KINGDOM.
We cannot be physically in the Kingdom if we are in FLESH AND BLOOD. One must understand that this is talking about RESURRECTION, which is the hope of our faith. We will be new flesh and no blood, flesh and BONE, just as Yeshua was after His resurrection, with our lives sustained by G-d Himself, Bless His Name.
To explain this happening, Sha’ul tells us that he wants to show us a SOD.
A ‘Sod’ is a MYSTERY in the TORAH! Yom Teru’ah itself is a mystery! All the other Mo’edim are explained in VaYikra 23, their purpose is stated, but NOT this one! For thousands of years, Jews have studied the scriptures on four levels: Peshat, Remez, D’resh, and Sod. Sha’ul is writing very plainly about something that was ‘hidden’ until Messiah came: THE NATZAL! The Resurrection and catching away!
Some people will NOT DIE! They will be changed in the blink of an eye. AT THE LAST SHOFAR!!! Sha’ul states this very plainly, and it cannot be denied. Again, the only true debate must be about the TIMING of a “catching away,” and not about the possibility/probability of it, since it is plainly stated on the surface of the text, in two places [here and in Tess 4], that certain people WILL be ‘caught up.’
So, not only do we have the same elements already, but, we have the day of the year AFFIRMED! The “Last Shofar” in ancient times, in the Heikhal, was YOM TERU’AH! There were three cyclical shofars in the Heikhal: The First Shofar, blown on Shavu’ot at the early ingathering of grains; the Last Shofar, blown on Yom Teru’ah when the later ingathering of summer grapes begins, and the GREAT SHOFAR blown on Yom Kippur, when all harvesting ceases, and Yisra’el fasts to afflict the soul and seek atonement, IN THE MIDST OF HARVEST, since Yom Kippur is the Judgment of the Damned.
When this Last Shofar sounds, according to Sha’ul, the dead “In Messiah” will rise first, and then ‘we shall be changed,’ or, bodies that could die now become bodies that cannot die. As 1 Tess 4 tells us that this same Shofar raises the dead and then THE REMNANT, those who are CHANGED, ascend to be with Adoneinu, we can see that this resurrection is followed by the ‘catching away,’ on the SAME DAY. In a MOMENT.
Did Yeshua ‘reveal’ this mystery? Might His words not be where Sha’ul got it, having already studied Torah his whole life, yet having his blinders lifted by Messiah Himself and being re-taught by Messiah Himself? [Gal 1:15-19]
Yeshua did teach on this subject, and this information was transmitted to Sha’ul:
“But concerning that day and that hour, no man knows, not even the Messengers of heaven, but The Father alone. Just as in the days of No’akh, so will be the coming of The Son of Man. For as the people before the flood were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day No’akh entered into the ark, and they knew nothing until the flood came and carried them all away; such will be the coming of The Son of Man. Then, two men will be in the field, one will be taken away and the other forsaken. Two women will be grinding at the handmill, one will be taken and the other forsaken. “Be alert, therefore, for you do not know at what hour your Adon will come. But know this much, that if the Adon of the house knew at what watch of the night the thief comes, he would keep awake and would not let his house be plundered. For this reason, you also be ready, for Ben HaAdam will come at an hour when you do not expect him. Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom his Adon has appointed over his household, to give them food in due time? Blessed is that servant, when his Adon comes and finds him so doing. Truly I say to you, he will appoint him over all that he has. But if a bad servant should say in his heart, ‘Adonai will delay his coming,’ and he begins to beat his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with drunkards, the Adon of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect, and at an hour that he does not know. And he will severely scourge him, and give him a portion like that of the hypocrites; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
In this passage, Yeshua had just given a summary of ALL end time events, including what He called the ‘Great Tribulation.’ ; then, He explains when it all STARTS, in our passage above. He summarized the events LEADING UP TO the Natzal, the Great Tribulation and the final judgment, then He takes us back to the beginning of “Et Ketz,” the seven year ‘time of the end,’ which also goes by other names. This Et Ketz begins with Yom Teru’ah, and Yeshua explains this quite at length. Most people get confused, because He says before this that the ‘GREAT SHOFAR’ will sound, and they will gather His chosen ones from the four winds, from one end of the universe to the other…, and they realize, correctly, that that phrase is describing the ‘end of the end’ when He puts His foot down. This is indeed the end of Et Ketz. Most do NOT realize that the Great Shofar, “Shofar HaGadol”, is the THIRD Shofar of the yearly Shofar cycle in the Heikhal, BLOWN ON YOM KIPPUR, SEVEN DAYS after Yom Teruah! This is NOT the “Last Shofar” Sha’ul specifically mentioned! [tricky, to be explained later]. He will INDEED GATHER all his chosen ones on that GREAT day, the day of the Great Shofar: those who come BACK with HIM to RULE with Him, and those who came to obey Him through the Great Tribulation, to be ruled by Him AND His co-rulers during His Millennial reign on earth.
But in our passage above, Matti 24:36, we see Him STARTING OVER and explaining when it all, Et Ketz, BEGINS!
“No man knows” that day and that hour….
This, too, is a direct reference to YOM TERUAH. Yom Teru’ah is a 48 hour day, because it is the beginning of the year for tracking time in the Heikhal. The Crescent NEW MOON MUST BE SEEN in order to set apart and declare the new year. So, the ‘day’ and the ‘hour’ are UNKNOWN until they happen! Even today, ONLY THE FATHER knows when the Khodesh of Yom Teru’ah will be seen, because He can HIDE it with clouds if He wants! But, in this passage, Yeshua says that when it is THAT DAY, people will be ‘eating and drinking’ and marrying and giving in marriage, just like in No’akh’s day: 8 people, a tiny REMNANT, got into an ark, and the flood came and killed the rest. The language is tricky here, and the imagery also can be, but, if we keep Yom Teru’ah in mind, and what Sha’ul showed us, we can understand this. But, clearly, here, Yeshua is saying that some people will be taken, and the others left.
Some people like to say that those ‘taken’ are the bad ones, and that bad things happen to them, and that those ‘left’ are the good ones and are safe. But, that gets problematic from the Aramaic texts, and against the backdrop of the next paragraph, and the next chapter. Here, the Aramaic/Hebrew actually does mean ‘forsaken.’ But, just looking into the next paragraph we can see that someone is going to be the victim of a thief, figuratively. Who’s the thief?
YESHUA! To rob houses of what? PEOPLE! If one gives his household food in due time, he doesn’t have to worry about being forsaken! He will be APPOINTED over all the MASTER has! Remember, to be in the kingdom is to be resurrected at the Last Shofar! The ones who are forsaken are also the ones who are ‘scourged’ and given a portion like that of the hypocrites….He is the ADON of them all! But he ‘leaves’ some, to go through what comes next! TRIBULATION.
The next chapter also relates this same idea, and ADDS Yom Teru’ah imagery to the narrative:
He explains that 10 virgins are all together, and all fall asleep. Then they wake up, but only five have oil. Virgins represent those who have been ‘purified’; they are all ‘believers’. Only 5 go to the wedding. The others are FORSAKEN! LEFT OUT OF THE WEDDING! [Remember the Tess passage here] After the bridegroom came HALF WAY [we will meet Him in the air], sent his two friends [Messengers] ahead with a SHOUT [Teru’ah, Yom Teru’ah, the LAST SHOFAR], The 5 virgins with oil GO TO MEET THE GROOM [in the air]. Jewish tradition tells us where they go: back to HIS HOUSE! The one He built FOR HER. In a Jewish wedding of the first century, the couple are betrothed for up to 2 years, while the groom builds a house and prepares their bridal chamber, where they will consummate their marriage. ONLY the Father can say when the house is ready, and then he instructs his son to go fetch his bride, THAT NIGHT. She KNOWS it’s almost time, because she can see the house, so she gets her friends together to WATCH for the coming of the groom.
Yeshua comforted His Talmidim on the night of Pesakh with these words:
“In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I GO to prepare a PLACE for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will COME AGAIN AND TAKE YOU WITH ME, so that where I am you may be also.”
Yeshua is affectively ‘betrothing’ believers to Himself that night. He is using wedding words to describe His coming back to TAKE us with Him! This event is a WEDDING, and, as stated before, Yom Teru’ah is the Day of the Wedding of the King. It is also the day of the Coronation of the King. “Those who were READY entered with him into the wedding chamber…and the door was locked….” FOR SECURITY/SAFETY.
Yokhanan Markos, in Chapter 13, gives a more brief version of Yeshua’s teaching of end things. And he finishes there this way:
“But concerning that day and that hour, no man knows, not even the Messengers of heaven, neither The Son, except The Father. Watch, be alert, and pray; for you do not know when the time is. It is just like a man who went on a journey, and left his house and gave authority to his servants and to each man his work, and he commanded the porter to keep awake. Be alert therefore, for you do not know when the owner of the house will come, in the evening or at midnight or at the cock-crow or in the morning. He might come suddenly and find you asleep. What I say to you I say to all of you: Be alert.”
He is again alluding to Yom Teru’ah, the Day that No Man Knows. Be alert [ready]. “He might come suddenly and find you asleep….” Like the ten in Matti 25.
Luka also gives a couple of accounts of Yeshua’s teaching on the last days. His first is very brief, and echoes part of Matti’s. He gives the same No’akh analogy, but then proves that those ‘forsaken’ are those who are destroyed, as he follows that with Lot, where lot is ‘taken out,’ and the rest of the city is destroyed.
“And again, just as it happened in the days of Lot; they were eating and drinking, and buying and selling, and planting and building; But in the day when Lot went out of S’dom, יהוה sent down a rain of fire and sulfur from Heaven, and destroyed them all. Such will it be in the day when The Son of Man appears. In that day, he who is on the roof, with his clothes in the house, will not come down to take them; and he who is in the field will not turn back. Just remember Lot’s wife. He who desires to save his life shall lose it; and he who loses his life shall save it. I say to you that in that very night two will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other forsaken. And two women will be grinding together; one will be taken and the other forsaken. Two will be in the field; one will be taken and the other forsaken.” They answered, saying to him, “Adoneinu, to what place?” He said to them, “Wherever the Body is, there will the eagles gather.” [Luka 17]
That last sentence throws off some. Some English versions, sourced from the Greek, have a mistranslation, which says, ‘where the carcass is, there will the ‘vultures’ gather.’ But, the Aramaic does not say carcass, nor ‘vultures,’ but ‘guf’ and ‘nesharim’: [a guf is a living body, discussed later] Nesharim: EAGLES! And, it reads, ‘Heikhan Sh’HaGuf,’ and the ‘Guf’ is the ancient Jewish idea of ONE BODY made up of many souls! The Body of Mashiakh!
“They that wait upon יהוה shall renew their strength; they shall soar in the air as Nesharim!”
Luka gives another account of Yeshua teaching on the end days.
In chapter 21, after Yeshua starts from the time of the Shlikhim and covers all the way to His return to earth to destroy the wicked, [verses 8-28], and then, just as in Matti, He regroups and tells them something very compelling.
“But take heed to yourselves that your hearts may not become heavy by extravagance and drunkenness and the worries of this world, and that day come suddenly upon you. For like a downpour [Day of Vengeance] it will entrap all those who dwell on the face of all the earth [forsaken]. Therefore keep WATCH ALWAYS [like the 10, like those who ‘mount up’], and pray that you may be worthy to ESCAPE [deliver yourself] from all these things which are to happen, and that you may stand BEFORE THE SON OF MAN.”
What does ‘standing before the Son of Man’ mean? Yom Teru’ah is the Judgment of the Righteous! Yom Teru’ah is the day when the sheep ‘pass under the rod’ for selection as the tenth part offering. Each tenth sheep is marked with a rod dipped in scarlet for selection as the offering, and they through the gate.
This is an analogy of the ancient way of determining who the “Tzadikim” are. The RIGHTEOUS. It is the RIGHTEOUS who are judged and REWARDED on Yom Teru’ah. In ancient Yisra’el, those who hungered for the “Khag” of Sukkot went up early to Yerushalayim, on Yom Teru’ah, when the gates were opened and the shofar was blown. They RACED to become the witnesses of the Khodesh to affirm the time. They ‘waited’ with great expectation for it. But, most of Yisra’el would linger, only coming up for Sukkot, 15 days later, perhaps concerned about being away from business for too long. This seems to be the same themes Yeshua is alluding to with his several ‘parables’ about this time.
Also, Hitgalut 4 shows us STANDING BEFORE THE SON OF MAN.
But, the most important portion in this whole Luka 21 passage is Yeshua ENCOURAGING us: PRAY the you may be WORTHY to ESCAPE ALL of these things…..
Is this perhaps why Sha’ul said of THE REMNANT, “comfort one another with THESE words”?
“Then we who are alive AND are THE REMNANT shall be CAUGHT UP together with them in the clouds to meet Adoneinu IN THE AIR; and so [resurrected/transformed] shall we ever be with Adoneinu.”
Yokhanan’s account has Yeshua alluding to these things at the Pesakh Seder. We have already discussed His ‘wedding language’ concerning going away to build a house to which to bring us. But Yeshua didn’t let the analogy fall off there.
Then His Talmidim said to one another, “What is this that He said to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see me; and again a little while, and you will see me;’ and, ‘because I am going to My Father?’” And they said, “What is this that He said, ‘A little while?’ We cannot understand what He talks about.” Yeshua knew that they desired to ask Him, and He said to them, “Are you inquiring among yourselves concerning this that I told you, ‘a little while, and you will not see me; and again a little while, and you will see me?’ Amein, Amein, I say to you, that you will weep and wail, and yet the world will rejoice; and you will be sad, but your sadness will be changed into gladness. When a woman is in labor, she is troubled because her day has arrived; but when she has given birth to a son, she no longer remembers her troubles because of the joy that a male child is born into the world. So you also are troubled; but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no man will take away from you.”
Does this not sound much like the woman giving birth in the Hitgalut? Yeshua, here, is talking to Yisra’el; 12 MEN who would bring the B’sorah to the world, through much LABOR. He is telling them they will see Him again, and relates that meeting to the joy of BIRTH.
There is an allusion here to the ancient idea of the “Birthpangs of Messiah,” which we will cover later.
Again, the only possible debate concerning a possible ‘rapture’ is not whether there is one, but what is the TIMING of it, and also, perhaps, WHO IS THE REMNANT?
So, back to our verse in Tess Alef Perek Dalet, and pick up in the previous verse, and also follow up with the next chapter to help nail down the timing:
“For if we believe that Yeshua died and rose again, even so those who have died in Yeshua, Elohim will bring with Him. “For this we say to you by the very word of Adoneinu, that we who are alive and are the remnant until the coming of Adoneinu shall not precede those who are dead. For Adoneinu Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout and the voice of the Chief Messenger and with the shofar of Elohim; and those who died in Mashiakh will rise first. Then we who are alive and are the remnant shall be CAUGHT UP together with them in the clouds to meet Adoneinu IN THE AIR; and so shall we ever be with Adoneinu. Therefore, comfort one another, with these words.”
“But of the times and seasons, my brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly well that the day of Adoneinu comes like a thief in the night. For when they shall say, “Peace and tranquility,” then sudden destruction will come upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But you, my brethren, are not in darkness that that day shall overtake you as a thief. You are all the children of light, and the children of the day; and you are not the children of the night, nor the children of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others, but let us watch and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep in the night; and those who are drunk are drunk in the night. But let us who are the children of the day be alert, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet put on the hope of salvation. For Elohim has not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain LIFE through Adoneinu Yeshua HaMashiakh, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we shall live together with Him. Therefore comfort one another and edify one another, even as also you do.”
Sha’ul is proving several things by this previous text. He is proving that he had taught the congregation(s) about the ‘timing’ of the coming of Messiah again. And the nature of it, that it catches SOME people off guard, but NOT others. It comes like a ‘thief in the night.’ This echoes Yeshua’s teaching on the same subject. It shows that sudden destruction comes on someone, as travail upon a woman with child. This also alludes to the concept in the Tanakh of “The Birthpangs of Messiah”. It says that some will not escape. BUT, that those people who are NOT in darkness, but who watch and are sober, awake, are NOT APPOINTED TO SUFFER WRATH. These people are in stark contrast to ‘they’ upon whom sudden destruction comes. The ‘wake or sleep’ is the same two groups of people in the previous chapter, “dead in Messiah” = sleep, “who are the remnant”, ‘awake.’ Both will ‘live together with Him. Sha’ul is echoing his words in his previous chapter.
In the next letter to this same congregation, Sha’ul helps further to shore up the timing of these events.
“Now we beseech you, my brethren, concerning the coming of Adoneinu Yeshua HaMashiakh [Halfway, to meet us IN THE AIR] and concerning our gathering together with Him [as described in his former letter to the same congregation], that you let not your minds be hastily excited or troubled, neither by word nor by a spirit nor by an epistle supposedly from us, stating that the Day of Adoneinu is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means; for that day shall not come unless it is preceded by a departure. And then the man of sin will be revealed as Ben HaAbadon, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called “god,” or that is worshiped; so that even in the Heikhal HaElohim, he sits as Elohim, and shows himself, as though he were Elohim. Do you not remember that when I was with you I told you these things? And now you know what has prevented him [man of sin] from being revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity is already at work, until that which now hinders is taken out of the midst of them. Then shall the Wicked One be exposed, that one whom Adoneinu Yeshua shall consume with the breath of His mouth, and shall destroy with the revelation of His coming, even he whose coming is due to the working of HaSatan, with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceitfulness of unrighteousness in those who perish, because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved thereby. For this reason Elohim shall send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie, that all who did not believe in the truth, but preferred unrighteousness, might be condemned.”
“That day shall NOT come unless it is preceded by A DEPARTURE”
Most translations have some form of ‘apostacy’ here. Even in the ancient greek, however, the word ‘apostao’ meant simply ‘to depart,’ ‘to leave,’ ‘to exit.’ It did NOT take on the overtones of ‘heresy’ until much later, which caused it to be later rendered ‘falling away.’ But, the Aramaic word here is מָרוֹדוּתָא maroduta, and gets translated into Hebrew as ‘rebellion.’ But, this is an unusual word, and is not rendered here as ‘rebellion’ is usually rendered in Aramaic, even though it shares the same root. If the greek and Aramaic texts are translated from one or the other [and we believe Aramaic came first and greek was translated from them], then there is something amiss either way concerning the translation of this word. “Apostao” does not turn easily into ‘rebellion,’ if the translation went from Greek to Aramaic, especially given its ancient definition. And ‘maroduta,’ IF it does mean ‘rebellion,’ should have been rendered into greek as rebellion, and not ‘departure,’ much less the later ‘heresy’ or ‘falling away.’ The greek word for ‘rebellion’ is antarsía, not apostao. Something is amiss. The usual rendering in Aramaic of ‘rebellion’ is mara, marar, mar, marad. NOT ‘maroduta.’ This word seems to escape most dictionaries of ancient Aramaic, which suggest this form fell out of use. Further, the Aramaic word for rebellion in the Tanakh is sarvanut, mirad, and satya. Maroduta does have the root marad in it, but it is heavily modified, unlike in any other text, “OT” or “NT.”
But, even IF this word does mean ‘rebellion,’ [which is suspect at this point], this cannot mean a ‘falling away,’ because there has been a ‘falling away’ from His Truth for nearly 2,000 years! WHATEVER this is is supposed to immediately precede the revelation of the Son of Perdition. Let’s see if context explains this maraduta any better?
“For the ‘mystery of iniquity’ is ALREADY at work [the spirit that will eventually embody the Sheker HaMashiakh, the Son of Perdition], UNTIL that which NOW hinders is TAKEN OUT of the midst of THEM”.
Might this be the ‘departure’ previously mentioned?
This sentence seems further to explain the ‘departure’ and the immediate revelation of the mystery of iniquity that follows. “THEN” [after SOMETHING [remnant] SOMEONE [righteous] is TAKEN OUT OF THE WAY. A ‘rebellion’ would seem to be the people of the Son of Perdition who would rebel, and it seems THEY would need still to be there for/with him. What or whom is ‘taken out of the midst of them”?
Remember, “knowing this first, that not every prophetic writing is made clear in its own book.” Kefa Bet 1:20 The converse of this statement is that prophetic writings explain EACH OTHER. Yeshua said in several places that some will be ‘taken out’. Consider, his ratio was 1:1, meaning, 1 is taken and the other is left. This fits the ‘midst of them’ idea. The righteous will be among the unrighteous when this happens. Right now, it is we who live in the Ruakh and keep the commandments that are standing in the way of the spirit of Sheker HaMashiakh. That is our job! ONLY AFTER WE have departed can the Son of Perdition be revealed! His last sentence makes this clear: that all who did not believe in the truth, but preferred unrighteousness, might be condemned.
So, the timing of all of this is before the man of sin is revealed. He is clearly revealed as soon as the Tribulation starts, as he makes a contract with Yisra’el for 7 years. So, this event must happen first. This fits in the narrative of the Mo’edim as a model for the complete ministry of Yeshua, and the next Mo’ed in line being Yom Teru’ah.
It is worth repeating here that Yom Teru’ah precedes the seven “Days of terror” in ancient Jewish apocalyptical works. These seven days fall between Yom Teru’ah and Yom Kippur. They prefigure the ‘tribulation,’ the ‘Time of Jacob’s trouble,’ perfectly. In the Heikhal, the kohen Gadol goes into a chamber with His wife, for SEVEN DAYS, during the ‘days of terror,’ and does not come out until Yom Kippur. This is alluding to Yeshua taking His bride to Himself, returning to earth on Yom Kippur to judge the wicked. We will revisit this when we get into the Tanakh scriptures that support ALL of this.
So, Elohim brings those who have died in Yeshua WITH Yeshua, to RISE from the dead! Their neshama, their spiritual being, has been in the bosom of Avraham, and now they are returning with Yeshua, and their BODIES are rising from the dead. The Remnant is those ALIVE at that moment who are IN MESSIAH. These are NOT ALL believers, but these are they who have the Confession/Testimony of Yeshua AND keep the commandments!
In Hebrew, the word here for ‘The Remnant is “הַנִּשְׁאָרִים”.
If you know Hebrew at all, you can see how very much like Nesharim, EAGLES, this word is! Here is the word “eagles” from Luka 17:37: הַנְּשָׁרִים
This word NISHarim [remaining/remnant] is Nesharim [eagles] with an Alef in it! And an Alef represents ELOHIM! “Elohim will bring them, [‘eagles’] with Him!” [see verse above]
But, we must have a practical, peshat [plain meaning] , biblical definition of ‘remnant.’
In the Tanakh, the remnant has ALWAYS been those in Yisra’el who are FAITHFUL to His Torah, His WAY, those who trust in His Salvation, always.
“Except יהוה Tzeva’ot had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as S’dom, we should have been like unto Amorah.” Yesha-Yahu 1:9
Sha’ul explains to us that this ‘remnant’ is made up of those Jews who looked for His Tzedaka and Salvation, totally trusting in Him and obeying Him.
Rom 9:27 “Yesha-Yahu also preached concerning the B’nei Yisra’el, “Though the number of the children of Yisra’el should be as the sand of the sea, only a remnant shall be saved.”
And Yokhanan says of the remnant: “and he went to make war with the remnant of her children, who keep the mitzvot of Elohim AND have the testimony of Yeshua.”
There are many who ‘believe’ and are genuinely saved, but who do NOT keep the Mitzvot of Elohim, the simple, plain, undeniable behaviors He expects of us that are so easy to do, much less the difficult things of the Torah. That remnant is no different and is part of the former remnant. The few IN ISRAEL who OBEY, and not just believe, have ALWAYS been His remnant, just as Sha’ul said. Just as any who are alive now, should Messiah come back tomorrow, would be ‘caught up TOGETHER’ with them to be the remnant that escapes. In this passage [Rev 12], the ‘infant’ has already been caught up, but the WOMAN of Yisra’el still remains, and her ‘seed’ are pursued by the ‘dragon,’ that slant serpent, HaSatan. These are people who become obedient believers DURING the tribulation through JEWISH WITNESSES.
The REMNANT is ALWAYS a VERY SMALL number, spoken about HUNDREDS of times in the Tanakh, always ESCAPING JUDGMENT! This is a spiritual precept, a precedent. In this passage [Rev12], the remnant is made up of those saved DURING the tribulation, as Elohim says He ALWAYS reserves a remnant for Himself, including during the darkest hours of human history. And for the remnant, there is always a ‘natzal,’ a ‘pelat’, a ‘lakakh’ [snatching away/deliverance, ‘rescue, ‘taking out’].
The FIRST ‘Remnant’ was No’akh and his family:
וַיִּשָּׁאֶר אַךְ-נֹחַ וַאֲשֶׁר אִתּוֹ, בַּתֵּבָה.
This is a verb form of the word ‘remnant’, or ‘to be a remnant’.
A ‘remnant’ is something ‘saved for later.’ It is a small part of a larger portion that is pulled OUT and saved for later use. This is also the root of ‘se’or,’ for the lump of dough that is pulled out of a batch of dough, and set aside to make the NEXT batch of dough! THAT is what a remnant is.
Without the first letter, vav וַ , this would read, ‘will remain’ or ‘will become a remnant.’ The vav inverts the tense.
No’akh will be a remnant with the vav.
So, in this case, the remnant escaped the judgment. It is interesting to note here that No’akh and family sat in the safety of the ark for SEVEN DAYS before the waters of the flood came. And they rode the waters of the flood, ABOVE the danger. Similarly, if the natzal is a true thing, those who enter the Kheder of Messiah will be ‘safe,’ and at the end come back with the vessel of salvation. The small remnant is ‘set aside’, ‘saved for later,’ to come to earth to ‘leaven it’ with GOOD leaven!
So, No’akh sets a precedent: before Elohim judges[with punishment] the earth, HE TAKES THE RIGHTEOUS OUT OF IT.
“No’akh matza khen b’einei יהוה … No’akh was in his generations a Tzadik, and whole-hearted; No’akh walked with Elohim.”
A Tzadik is one who obeys the Torah.
Another person ‘walked with Elohim’. Khanokh. And Elohim TOOK him. And that one named his son, ‘His death will bring.’ And Metuselah died RIGHT BEFORE THE FLOOD. So, we actually have a natzal TWICE before the flood: Khanokh, and No’akh and his family.
Yeshua said that in the last days it would be like it was in the days of No’akh. MOST people were going about their lives, unconcerned about the unrighteousness around them. But No’akh was obedient, and built a place where the righteous could go to escape.
Yeshua is doing the same, as we speak. He has gone to prepare a place for us, and HE said that He would come and get us, and take us to where He is, where, in His Father’s house, there are many ‘khederim’ [rooms]. [Yokhanan 13] We, too, are building something, according to Ya’akov in Ma’asei 15.
It is worth noting here, that in Yesha-Yahu 26 we see a clear allusion to those ‘khederim’.
Yesha-Yahu 26 begins with a very interesting phrase that sets the timing of the events described:
“In that day shall this song be sung in the land of Yehudah :’We have a strong city; walls and bulwarks does He appoint for Yeshua[h]’. Open the gates, that the righteous nation that keeps faithfulness may enter in. The mind stayed on You, You keep in perfect shalom; because it trusts in You. Trust in יהוה forever, for in Yah is יהוה , an everlasting Rock. For He has brought down them that dwell on high, the lofty city, laying it low, laying it low even to the ground, bringing it even to the dust. The foot shall tread it down, even the feet of the poor, and the steps of the needy. The way of the just is straight; You, Most Upright, make plain the path of HaTzadik. Yes, in the way of Your judgments, O ,יהוה have we waited for You; to Your Name and to Your memorial is the desire of our soul. With my soul have I desired You in the night; yes, with my spirit within me have I sought You earnestly; for when Your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world learn tzedaka. Let favor be shown to the wicked, yet will he not learn tzedaka; in the land of uprightness will he deal wrongfully, and will not behold the majesty of “יהוה ” ,יהוה Your hand was lifted up, yet they see not; they shall see with shame Your zeal for the people; yes, fire shall devour Your adversaries. ,יהוה You will establish shalom for us; for You have indeed wrought all our works for us. O יהוה our Elohim, other lords beside You have had dominion over us; but by You only do we make mention of Your Name. The dead live not, the shades rise not; to that end have You punished and destroyed them, and made all their memory to perish. You have gotten Yourself honor with the nations, O יהוה , yes, exceedingly great honor with the nations; You are honored unto the farthest ends of the earth.” ” יהוה , in trouble have they sought You, silently they poured out a prayer when Your chastening was upon them. Like a woman with child, that draws near the time of her delivery, is in pain and cries out in her pangs; so have we been at Your presence, O יהוה , We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have given birth to wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the land; neither are the inhabitants of the world come to life. Your dead shall live, my dead bodies shall arise. Awake! And sing, you that dwell in the dust! For Your dew is as the dew of light, and the earth shall bring to life the shades.” “Go, my people, come into your khederim, and shut your doors about you; hide yourself for a little moment, until the indignation passes. For, behold, יהוה comes forth out of His place to visit upon the inhabitants of the earth their iniquity; the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.”
You may remember that the GATES are opened on Yom Teru’ah [Hitgalut 4]. In this passage, we suddenly see that Yom Teru’ah is associated with the RISING OF THE DEAD! With Yisra’el GIVING BIRTH. With someone GOING INTO THEIR CHAMBERS. And they are told they will stay there until ‘indignation’ passes, equating that to יהוה coming out to visit iniquity upon the inhabitants of the earth. This is a very, very clear picture that someone is going to enter the Jerusalem above to be safely hidden away from tribulation, on Yom Teru’ah! The next chapter describes that seven year period of ‘trouble’ very vividly, and shows when it ENDS:
“And it shall come to pass in that day, that יהוה will knock off [His fruit] from the flood of the River unto the Brook of Mitzrayim, and you shall be gathered one by one, O B’nei Yisra’el.” “And it shall come to pass in that day, that The Great Shofar shall blast; and they shall come that were lost in the land of Ashur, and they that were dispersed in the land of Mitzrayim; and they shall worship יהוה in Har HaKodesh at Yerushalayim.”
The beginning of chapter 27 describes the great tribulation, summarizing things that Yokhanan details, concerning the ‘dragon/serpent,’ etc., that occur during the tribulation. At the END of this is when the GREAT shofar of Yom Kippur will blast, and THEN NATURAL Yisra’el [the VINE planted in the earth, learned from earlier parts of Yesha-Yahu that this is natural Yisra’el.] is gathered to Yerushalayim. This is what Yeshua is summarizing in Matti 24.
What makes this even more compelling, is that Yo’el seems to close off the sequence concerning the ‘kheder’.
“Blast the shofar in Tzion, set apart a fast, call a solemn assembly; gather the people, set apart the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that nurse at the breast; let the bridegroom go forth from his kheder, and the bride out of her khuppah.”
The fast that is also called a ‘solemn assembly’ is Yom Kippur.
“But on the tenth day of this seventh khodesh is Yom HaKippurim; there shall be a Mikra Kodesh unto you, and you shall afflict your souls”
The biblical definition of afflicting the soul is fasting.
So, we have the blast of a shofar, and a call to fast, all in the midst of the discussion about “Yom יהוה .” In Jewish eschatology, that day, Yom יהוה , is Yom Kippur. Yo’el tells us here that the bridegroom comes of the ‘kheder’ and the bride out of her ‘khuppah’. The khuppah is IN the kheder! She comes out of the khuppah behind the bridegroom at the blast of the Shofar, at the beginning of Yom Kippur, to get ready for the offerings that were to be made in the morning. [Biblical days begin at evening] This is the imagery invoked by the customs in the Heikhal, where the Kohen Gadol has gone into a ‘secret chamber’ for the seven ‘terrible days’ between Yom Teru’ah and Yom Kippur. Both of these days [Yom Teru’ah is a 48 hour day, actually two days] and the seven days [the days between Yom Teruah and Yom Kippur] are combined to be the ‘Days of Awe’, or ‘Terrible Days’, ending on Yom Kippur. Yo’el shows us other language that indicates this is Yom Kippur when the Bride and Groom come forth:
“Before them the earth quakes, the heavens tremble; the sun and the moon are become black, and the stars withdraw their shining. And יהוה utters His voice before His army; for His camp is very great, for he is mighty that executes His Davar; for great is Yom יהוה , and very terrible; and who can abide it?”
So, one can see that “The Day of the VENGEANCE of Eloheinu,” where Yeshua left off, is this day. Which must be AFTER the former days [we will see that just later], where the B’sorah is declared, people are freed, healed, and given sight.
The DAY of יהוה , or Yom יהוה , is actually a 1,000 year period, and has been thought so in Yisra’el since BEFORE Messiah came to earth. It is the last 1,000 year period of 7,000 years allotted for the world. A “world week”. It begins when the Shofar of Yom Teru’ah blasts, and ends 1,000 years later on Yom Kippur. But, each year, Yom Kippur ‘represents’ Yom יהוה , and the days leading up to it are therefore ‘terrible’ or ‘aweful’ days, days filled with awe and fear. These days are preceded by 30 days that lead up to Yom Teru’ah, called “Teshuvah”, or repentance, in preparation for the Judgments of Yom Teru’ah and Yom Kippur. Yom Teru’ah is the judgment of the Tzadikim, the Righteous Ones, and Yom Kippur is the judgment of the wicked, Avalim.
Kolossim 3:3 returning WITH Him.
When Mashi’akh, who is our life, shall appear, then shall you also appear with Him in glory.
The Tanakh is replete with imagery and allusion to this day, called Yom Teru’ah, when there will be the blast of the Last Shofar of Elohim, when the dead will rise, and when judgment will BEGIN, with the judgment of the righteous, and the judgment of the damned. This article was taught in a study at our synagogue, with additional information. Please feel free to view the video series at the link below.