WHEN IS JESUS COMING BACK?
GOD IS A GOD OF NUMBERS
We as believers so yearn and long for Christ to come back and take us to heaven. I have people ask me this question: “When is Jesus coming back.” I will deal with this and give you my thoughts on the subject. First, there is something very important that I want to share with you which will help to explain and give you more insight into the season of Christ’s return. When we do a study of biblical numbers, we find that it is one of the great confirmations that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God, because we can find these themes and patterns going through all 66 books of the Bible.
One of the greatest proofs that the Bible is true is the number system that we find within the Bible. The Bible reveals God to be a God of numbers. Speaking of the Lord, the Psalmist said, “He counts the numbers of the stars; He calls them all by name (Psalm 147:4).” We have Jesus saying to His disciples, “… the very hairs of your head are all numbered (Matthew 10:30).”
Apparently from what I read it appears that God attaches a meaning to almost every Bible number such as the number for sin, salvation, rebellion, bondage, death, eternal life, redemption, etc. The Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras said, “Number is the principle of all things, and the organization in the universe is in harmonic system of numerical ratios.” Numerical laws and mathematical precision come from the mind of God. He put the signs of numbers in the universe. Numbers are everywhere and part of everything. God loves numbers. In fact, He has a book in the Old Testament called Numbers.
Did you ever stop to think why David had five stones to kill the giant Goliath? Why the ark was 300 cubits? Why there were 12 sons of Jacob and 12 apostles? Why Jesus was tempted for 40 days, or why the Israelites were in the desert for 40 years after fleeing Egypt? All these things take on a new and wonderful meaning when we understand the spiritual value of Bible numbers.
SOME COMMON BIBLE NUMBERS
Because of space constraints I will skip through a lot of numbers and only deal with a few numbers and even at that make the comments very short because there is no way I can deal with all the numbers in the Bible in this posting because my main theme is to show you the season of Christ’s return – the rapture. So, now, with that in mind let us look at some of the common numbers of the Bible to see that God is a God of numbers.
(1) Number Two – Two is the number of competent testimony in the Bible. “In the mouth of two witnesses shall every word be established (Matt.18:16).” The Lord gave Moses two tablets of the law (Deu. 9:15). Jesus sent forth His disciples two by two to preach and to heal (Mark 6:7). During the tribulation period, God will send two last witnesses to the earth (Rev. 11:3-12). From the general use of the number two, we can conclude that it speaks for the last number by which effectual witness is given.
(2) Number Six – The number for man. Man was created on the sixth day. God told the Israelites to work six days and to rest on the seventh (Exodus 35:2). God gave the Israelites six years to sow and to gather (Lev. 25:3). There were six cities of refuge (Num. 35:13). A bondservant was to serve six years (Deu. 15:18). The number “666” is given as a number of the beast (Rev. 13:18), and in the original Greek it says that this is the number of mankind. This trinity of sixes symbolizes the final attempt on the part of man to bring in a world government without Christ; but with all of this, man falls short of seven.
(3) Number Seven – The number of completion or perfection. The focus of today’s posting and it will be discussed more in detail later.
(4) Number Ten – Ten in the Bible is symbolic of testing. The 10 Commandments were the special test that God gave to Israel. God told a church at Smyrna that they would be tested for 10 days with severe persecution (Rev. 2:10). The parable of the 10 pounds illustrates how the Lord will test our service when He returns.
(5) Number Twelve – Israel is represented by the number 12. There were 12 tribes of the Children of Israel. There were 12 apostles that came out of Israel. The sun-clothed woman of Revelation 12 (who represents Israel) is a crown of 12 stars. In Matthew 19:28, Jesus told His apostles that they would one day sit upon 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel. The tabernacle, which was God’s dwelling place among the Children of Israel was 12 cubits wide (Ex. 25:8). The 144,000 witnesses of Revelation 7:4-8 are from the 12 tribes of Israel. We could go on and on, but these Scriptures should be sufficient to show that 12 is Israel’s number.
(6) Number Forty – The number 40 refers to prohibition and divine testing. Israel wandered 40 years in the wilderness. For 40 years they were tested before they got to the Promised Land. Goliath paraded 40 days before Israel crying, “Give me a man to fight with.” Moses was at Mount Sinai 40 days and 40 nights receiving the law (Ex. 24:18) and came down only to find Israel worshiping a golden calf. Thus, Israel fell under 40 days of testing. Christ was tempted by the devil for 40 days. So, the number 40 in Scripture typifies divine testing, and in some instances, discipline.
I can see that I’ll be running out of space so I think I will stop here and continue on to answer the question: “When Is Jesus Coming Back?” But as we have seen, the study of Bible numbers is truly a thrilling subject and perhaps later, if there is interest, I could do a posting on this subject alone.
Now that we have seen that God is a God of numbers I specifically want to focus in on the number for completion or perfection the number 7 or 7000 (in the case of humanity’s completion). I believe this will help us to identify the approximate time of Christ’s coming back for His church – the rapture. Christ’s coming for His body of believers, the church, and taking it back to heaven to be with Him. “The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up (raptured) together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord (1 Thess. 4:16-17).”
SABBATH PRINCIPLE 6 + 1 = 7 day week
From what we will be reading we will see that the number seven plays an integral role in Scripture, nature, and history. This divine number is always closely linked to completion, perfection, judgement, blessings, favor, victory, and rest. This number is found more times in the Bible than any other number. In fact, the number 7 occurs well over 400 times in the Bible. It is found 54 times in the book of Revelation alone, mainly because Revelation is the book that ushers in God’s seventh day Sabbath rest for the earth and its inhabitants. “They shall beat their swords into plowshares, And their spears into pruning hooks; Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, Neither shall they learn war anymore (Isaiah 2:4).”
The Sabbath principle, God resting on the seventh day, I believe reflects God’s plan of 6000 years for man to rule the earth and the final 1000-year Sabbath in which Christ Himself shall rule. Perhaps you are not familiar with the concept of a millennial Sabbath. The concept is based on the Sabbath God declared as a day of rest. As early as Genesis 2:2-3, God declared: “By the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on the seventh day He rested from all His work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it He rested from all the work of creating that He had done.” The Old Testament teaches it as six days of “labor” followed by a day of “rest.” In like manner, the nation of Israel was required to work six days in the week and rest on the seventh. In likewise manner God ordained a Sabbath for the land, in which, after six years of cultivation, they were to allow it to lie fallow for a year of rest – a sabbatical year. Slaves served for six years and were freed on the seventh year (Exodus 21:2). Do you see the pattern that’s being established by the God of numbers? Now, if there are groups of seven of days, weeks, and years, what about millennia? This all starts to make sense. The Bible’s millennial Sabbath is the seventh 1000-year period from the entrance of sin and spiritual death upon the human family going back to our grandparents – Adam and Eve. We can use the same pattern to say that we will have 6000 years of labor +1000 years of Christ’s rule which equals 7000 – the completion of humanity. Then we are transitioned to the Eternal State; the New Jerusalem – a New Heaven and a New Earth.
Yes, I think that the creation week gave us that pattern of six days followed by a day of Sabbath rest. Look, why did God take 6 days to create the world when He could have just snapped His fingers and it would have been done? God could have just as easily created the earth in 1 day, 3 days, 8 days, or any other number of days but instead He chose to create the earth in 6 days and rest on the 7th day. I also think the apostle Peter undoubtedly understood that the 7-day week is a pattern that applies to time on a far grander scale when he said: “But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day (2 Peter 3:8).” Is this the way of stating that just as God created the world in 6 days, so man would rule 6 days or 6000 years? It makes perfect sense to me! Why? Because of what we have seen and that is that God is a God of numbers – the pattern or cycle of sevens. It is logical to conclude that the 6 days of creation typify 6000 years of man’s government on earth.
BIBLICAL “HINTS” OF THE 7000 YEAR PLAN
Early Christian writers such as Barnabas, who was with Paul the apostle in Laconia wrote this: “Of the Sabbath He speaketh in the beginning of the creation; And God made the works of His hands in six days, and He ended on the seventh day, and rested on it, and He hollowed it (15:3).”
“Give heed, children, what this meaneth; He ended in six days. He meaneth this, that in 6000 years the Lord shall bring all things to an end; for the day with Him signifyeth a thousand years; and this He himself beareth me witness, saying; Behold, the day of the Lord shall be as a thousand years. Therefore, children in six days that is in 6000 years, everything shall come to an end (15:4).”
Does this sound rational? It sounds rational to me; that God would allow mankind 6000 years to see the error of his ways and then God would intervene on His most Holy Sabbath (Millennial Sabbath) and bring an end to this present world. Even though the Epistle of Barnabas is not considered canon and not part of the inspired Scripture; however, it was valued by the early church fathers for its insights into Jewish theology. Barnabas taught it in the first century A.D. Irenaeus taught it in the second century, Dommmodianus in the third century, and in the fourth century Lactanius wrote that, “The world must conclude in its present state through 6 ages, that is, 6000 years… At the end of the 6000 year all wickedness must be abolished from the earth, and righteousness reign for a thousand years… (The Epitome of the Divine Institutes, Chapter 70).
Furthermore, God’s number 6 represents mankind and rebellion (6000 years of man’s self-rule). The number 7 represents perfection/completion (the Millennium). The number eight represents new beginnings – The New Heavens and the New Earth that we see in Revelation 21 and 22. Could it be that God is trying to show us something here?? There are many pictures, shadows, and types in the Bible that would seem to confirm this 7000-year time pattern.
WE ARE NEARING THE END OF MAN’S ALLOTTED 6000 YEARS
How long a period of time has God allotted to mankind to learn the fundamental lesson that he is unable to rule himself and the world in peace? I believe the pattern established and that God has allotted 6000 years for man’s self-rule. For mankind to go his own way – the way he chose by eating of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. For mankind to try his own governments, philosophies, value systems, religions, and forms of education. We have had nearly 6000 years of human struggle and slavery under the rulership of Satan. I believe mankind has been given 6000 years of “labor” under the rule of Satan and sin’s penalties, but then there will be the 1000-year period of “rest” under the glorious rule of Jesus Christ. Incredibly, we are very near the end of the fulfilment of this period of time. We are in the “last-days” just before the return of Jesus Christ to establish the Kingdom of God on earth, ushering in the 1000-year millennium of peace (rest) on earth, but before that happens Christ will come for His bride, the church, and snatch us up and take us to heaven to be with Him before the tribulation period starts.
Most of us are familiar with the Bible chronology that shows approximately 4000 years before the time of Christ and approximately another 2000 years since then, indicating that we are approaching 6000 years of biblically recorded human history. From all the biblical and historical evidence, we have to conclude that 6000 years of human self-rule, which were allotted to man are almost over. Man’s “week” is nearly over, and God’s great “Sabbath” rest (the Millennium) will soon be here (after the rapture and the tribulation period). This means that the return of Jesus Christ is near to restore the Kingdom and Government of God here on earth.
COMPLICATIONS AND CALCULATIONS
Speaking of the rapture, Scripture makes it clear that we can know when that time is near, the season of His coming, but we cannot know when that time is – the day or the hour. We know it’s near, but we don’t know when it’s going to exactly happen. As I have shown you, we can see a pattern in His Word. God is a God of numbers. God keeps a perfect order in the way He does things. According to the pattern, six days you work and one day you rest. And the day with the Lord being like a thousand years we can see that we are nearing the end of 6000 years of man’s self-rule on earth.
Once we know about the 6000 years of man’s self-rule, the immediate desire is to know when creation was so that we can add 6000 years to it and figure out when Jesus is coming back. No, it’s not that simple. That is not an easy task and an effort in futility as there are a number of variables. There are the Julian, Gregorian calendars, and various Hebrew calendars based on either lunar or solar years. And then we have to ask when did God’s clock start ticking on man’s allotted 6000-years of self-rule? Was it when Adam and Eve were created or was it when they disobeyed God? Was it when Adam and Eve were sent out from the garden of Eden? You see there is no way of knowing. The Bible does not state how long Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden, so estimating this is problematic. Mistakes are made when we try to interpret God’s timing on man’s calendar. God does everything on His timing and His timing is always perfect and His timing was written from the very beginning.
6000 +1000 = 7000
According to Scripture we will not know the day or the hour of the Rapture, but Jesus said that we should be able to discern the times we are living in. The Bible has much to say about the times of the end of this age. The Bible speaks more about this period of time than any other period in human history. Our age is filled with many disturbing signs indicating that the age of man’s 6000-year government on earth is drawing to a close.
I believe that God is a God of numbers and the number 7 or in this case 7000 is very significant. We have 6000 years of man’s government on earth + 1000 years of Christ’s government on earth = 7000 years. Then we are transitioned into the Eternal State – a New Heaven and a New Earth to be with our Lord and Savior for all eternity.
RAPTURE – JESUS IS COMING SOON
Yes, we’re getting very close when Christ Jesus will be coming back for His bride, the church – His body of believers worldwide. And it’s going to happen in an instant, in the twinkling of an eye. The Old Testament prophets didn’t know anything about the Rapture or for that matter the Church. It was a mystery revealed in the New Testament. Paul said, “Listen! I am telling you a mystery: we will not all fall asleep, but we will be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed (1 Cor. 15:51-52.” Jesus is coming like a thief in the night to take His bride, the church, out of this world.
The Rapture is also described in 1 Thessalonians 4: “The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an Archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be CAUGHT UP together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord (v 16-17).”
Before the rapture comes, I do expect things to get much worse both financially and economically. Technologically, we are still not there for the Antichrist to take over the whole world once we are raptured but it’s getting close. Before that time comes, I do expect a worldwide economic meltdown and a total reset of the world’s financial system, and an introduction to some type of digital/crypto currency (cashless society) to set the stage and type of environment for the entrance of the Antichrist. The vast majority of people are going to be absolutely blindsided by what is coming – socially, politically, and economically. What I see coming down the pike will be far worse than anything we’ve seen in our lifetime, our parent’s lifetime or our grandparent’s lifetime, and there is nothing that governments can do to stop it. You can’t tinker with destiny. Because of the coming worldwide upheaval and economic meltdown, the Antichrist will come on the scene after the rapture, and he will be Mr. Fix-It. He will have the answers to the horrendous social, economic, and financial problems facing mankind, and the world’s masses will follow him and readily enthrone him in their hearts as this world’s savior. Scripture tells us that because of his charisma people will flock to him. He’s going to make Hitler look like a choirboy.
All the events we see occurring today are preparatory for the coming tribulation period and can be tracked as stage setting. God is setting the stage for the tribulation and the entrance of the Antichrist to come onto the world stage. The stage is being set for a great drama once we, the church, is CAUGHT UP and taken to heaven. The major actors are being assembled and waiting for their moment in history. The main stage props are being put in place. All the necessary historical developments have for the most part taken place. No further prophecies need to be fulfilled before the rapture and the start to the tribulation period. The prophetic play is about to begin. Someday soon the heavens will open “with a shout, with the voice of an Archangel, and with the trumpet of God and we shall be CAUGHT UP together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and thus we shall always be with the Lord (1Thess. 4:16-17).”
Personally, I suspect the years 2022 to 2028 to give us a good indication as to the start of this economic meltdown or to be in the midst of it. I have looked at and studied this subject going back many years and in the back of my mind believed that Jesus would return for His church no later than 2034. Now, according to Scripture, we don’t know the day or the hour of Christ’s coming but if I had to choose a multiyear timeframe for the rapture it would be 2028 to 2034. That is just my personal opinion from what I understand.
In closing, I am going to let you in on a little secret: I Know Exactly When Jesus Is Coming Back – When You Least Expect Him.
– We are told by Jesus that we must know the seasons of the prophecies and the end times. When you study the Bible, you will discover that God has appointed certain seasons or times in which He fulfils certain aspects of His purpose here on earth. The end time or end of the age is a very definite and appointed season.
Jesus once criticized the Jewish religious leaders and called them hypocrites for not being able to discern the signs of the times and what they were going through prophetically at the time in which they lived and for not knowing the time of His first coming (Luke 12:54-56). They failed to analyse the time they were living in even though the signs were all around them. It’s the same as today. Might we be deserving of that same criticism if we do not note the important signs of our times.
– SIGNS UNIQUE TO OUR GENERATION SUCH AS:
1.– Israel being back in their homeland after 1900 years. (Ezekiel 39:28; Isaiah 11:12)
2. – The nation Israel would be born in one day. (Isaiah 66:8)
3. – The Jews in control Jerusalem after 2500 years. (Luke 21:24-28)
4. – Jerusalem would be rebuilt on its own ruins. (Jeremiah 30:18; Zechariah 12:6)
5. – All surrounding nations would be united against Israel. (Psalm 83:4-8; Zechariah 12:2)
6. – Israel with an exceedingly great army. (Ezekiel 37:10)
7. – Russia becoming a military power (Gog and Magog). Ezekiel 38
8. – An increase in travel and knowledge. (Daniel 12:4)
9. – The rise of a United Europe. (Daniel 2, 7; Revelation: 17)
10. – Israel becoming the fruit basket of Europe from once a desolate wasteland. (Isaiah 27:6, 35:1-2; Ezekiel 36:34-36)
11. – God’s promise to make Jerusalem “a heavy stone, a burden for the world.” (Zechariah 12:2-3)
12. – Rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem – plans are in the works. (Daniel 9:27, 12:11)
13.– Mankind would be capable of destroying all life. (Matthew 24:21-22)
14.– The use of nuclear weapons anticipated. (Zechariah 14:12)
15.– Global communications foreseen. (Revelation 11:9-10)
16.– There will be a move towards a global government. (Daniel 2:40-44, 7:23; Revelation 13:7-8)
17.– A global economic system will exist (Revelation 13:16-17). Coming very shortly.
18.– Mark of the Beast technology – the technology is almost here – we will be going into a cashless society shortly. In the tribulation you would not be able to buy or sell without receiving the Mark of the Beast (Revelation 13:16).
19.– There would be a move towards a one world religion – Today’s Parliament of the World’s Religions (Revelation 13:8, 12; and chapter 17).
20. – #1. The convergence of end time signs. The number one sign is not a single sign, but the convergence of all the signs Jesus, Moses, and the Old Testament prophets said to look for. Jesus said, “When you see all these things occur, look up. For your salvation is near (Luke 21:28).” In other words, the convergence of all the signs Jesus spoke of is what we should be looking for when determining the times of the end.
There are many more end time prophecies. In fact, I had a hard time deciding which ones I wanted to include from a list of over 100. Only our generation has witnessed the coming together of everyone of these events (signs).
I wanted to bring URGENCY to this message of the unique end times that we are living in. Christ coming for His bride, the church, is very near, and we should make every effort possible to bring in lost souls (family, friends, and relatives) by witnessing to them. Prophecy and the end times is one of the greatest witnessing tools that the Lord has given us. The greatest opportunity to witness in our lifetime – don’t squander it.
F/B – Signs Of Our Times
www.Understanding The Signs Of Our Times.com
Transforming Power; The Work of God on Behalf of Man
Lian Muan Kim
Koinonia Baptist Seminary, Yangon