Welcome to EBible Fellowship’s Sunday afternoon Bible study. Let us turn to the Book of Jonah. I was thinking this would be a Book that we can go slowly through as we meet at the “Day in the Word” every other month. It says in Jonah 1:1-3:
Now the word of JEHOVAH came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of JEHOVAH, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of JEHOVAH.
I will stop reading there. Why would we want to take a look at the Book of Jonah? The reason is because God sent Jonah to Nineveh two times. Of course, there are more reasons to look at the Book of Jonah, but in our situation today where we are living at the time of the end and at a time when God’s salvation program has given way to His judgment program, we want to find out as much as we can concerning the day in which we live. That is why we are doing the Bible study in the Book of Genesis and why we are going through the Book of Daniel. It is because this information God has given all relates to our time now at the end of the world.
God sent Jonah to Nineveh, as it said in Jonah 1:1:
Now the word of JEHOVAH came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it…
Historically, we know that Jonah fled to Tarshish. Then God sent a storm into the sea that forced the mariners to toss Jonah into the sea and God prepared the whale to swallow Jonah and Jonah spent three days and three nights in the belly of the whale. So this is a Book where we can spend some time looking at that statement where Jesus said, “For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” It will give us an opportunity to look closely at the atonement that the Lord Jesus performed and it will also give us an opportunity to look into the second sending forth of Jonah, as it says in Jonah 3:1-2:
And the word of JEHOVAH came unto Jonah the second time, saying, Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee.
God sent Jonah twice to the same place, Nineveh. Then we know, historically, that the Ninevites heard the warning and repented. God spared the city and they did not die.
Who knows what the name “Jonah” means? It means “dove.” It is the same Hebrew word, Strong’s #3124, and “dove” is Strong’s #3123. It is also translated as “pigeon.” In Leviticus, chapter 5 we read of pigeons that God permits the poor to bring for their offering. It says in Leviticus 5:7:
And if he be not able to bring a lamb, then he shall bring for his trespass, which he hath committed, two turtledoves, or two young pigeons, unto JEHOVAH; one for a sin offering, and the other for a burnt offering.
These two pigeons or doves are always used to make an “atonement.” It says in Leviticus 5:10:
And he shall offer the second for a burnt offering, according to the manner: and the priest shall make an atonement for him for his sin which he hath sinned, and it shall be forgiven him.
In Leviticus 12 we also read of pigeons. It says in Leviticus 12:6-7:
And when the days of her purifying are fulfilled, for a son, or for a daughter, she shall bring a lamb of the first year for a burnt offering, and a young pigeon, or a turtledove, for a sin offering, unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, unto the priest: Who shall offer it before JEHOVAH, and make an atonement for her…
Several times in the Book of Leviticus you will see two young “pigeons” used in connection with the atonement, so the pigeon or dove, which is Jonah’s name, has relationship to the atonement. It was not the Day of Atonement, but it is a sacrifice or offering that is made, but every sacrifice or offering pictures the atonement that the Lord Jesus Christ made for His people as He paid for the sins of His elect at the foundation of the world.
Jonah identifies with the atonement because of his name. He also identifies with the Holy Spirit. It says in Matthew 3:16:
And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
The Spirit of God is likened to a “dove.” It is the Holy Spirit, eternal God, and one of the three Persons of the Godhead.
It says in Mark 1:9-10:
And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan. And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:
We could also go to the Book of Luke and I think it is also in the Gospel of John where we see this account of the Spirit of God “like a dove.” That is how God assigns spiritual meaning in the Bible. Oftentimes, He will say that something is “like” something else: “The kingdom of heaven is like,” for example. The Holy Spirit is likened to a “dove” and that is Jonah’s name.
Jonah was “sent.” He was sent to Nineveh, as it said, “Now the word of JEHOVAH came unto Jonah,” or the Word of JEHVOAH came unto the “dove” or “Holy Spirit” and God said, “Arise, go to Nineveh.” He said this not just once, but twice. The first time the situation developed where Jonah was cast into the sea and we know that pictured Christ under the wrath of God and the first coming of the Lord Jesus. The second time it represents a different situation. God sending Jonah is just like God sending the Holy Spirit. Did God send the Holy Spirit into the world? Yes, we know that from Acts, chapter 2 that the Holy Spirit was poured out. How many times has God sent the Holy Spirit into the world? God officially sent the Holy Spirit into the world in 33AD on the Day of Pentecost and that began the church age. The church was commissioned at that time and the Holy Spirit went forth over the 1,955 years of the church age. Then came the end of the church. Another way of referring to the end of the church age is to say it was the end of the Holy Spirit working in the congregations because the Spirit had worked in the midst of the churches to bless the Word of God to His elect that were being drawn by Him into the churches and God saved people over the course of that almost 2,000 years. Then the Holy Spirit stopped working because God’s timetable decreed the end of the church age. Then came a spiritual famine, a grievous time of 2,300 evening mornings wherein virtually no one was being saved. No one at all was being saved within the churches and virtually no one in the world was saved either for that first six years and four months of the Great Tribulation.
Then in September 1994 came a second outpouring of the Holy Spirit, which basically means that God had determined another season in which to save people again. God saved through His Holy Spirit and this was a second sending forth of the Holy Spirit and this is why it says in Isaiah 11:11:
And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left…
The Lord set His hand again (His will) a second time to recover the remnant, the elect. That was the time that related to the second part of the Great Tribulation, the outpouring of the Latter Rain.
So, Jonah is really a picture of God the Holy Spirit being poured out two times, so we can learn about each of these outpourings of the Holy Spirit as we take a closer look at this prophet.
By the way, concerning Jonah himself, in 2Kings, chapter 14 we read a little bit about him. It says in 2Kings 14:23-25:
In the fifteenth year of Amaziah the son of Joash king of Judah Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel began to reign in Samaria, and reigned forty and one years. And he did that which was evil in the sight of JEHOVAH: he departed not from all the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin. He restored the coast of Israel from the entering of Hamath unto the sea of the plain, according to the word of JEHOVAH God of Israel, which he spake by the hand of his servant Jonah, the son of Amittai, the prophet, which was of Gathhepher.
By the way, the duration of the reign of Joash was from 792BC to 751BC. All the historical record of Jonah took place somewhere within that period of time. It also said here that Jonah was “the son of Amittai,” just as it says in Jonah 1:1: “Now the word of JEHOVAH came unto Jonah the son of Amittai,” and the word “Amittai” is an interesting word. It is Strong’s #573 which is from Strong’s #571, which is the word for “truth.” So Jonah (the dove) is the son of Amittai (the truth). We can see how that relates to the Holy Spirit because it says in John 16:13:
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
The Spirit of truth is the Holy Spirit or the Comforter. It says in John 14:26:
But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
The Holy Spirit or the Comforter will guide God’s people into all truth that God reserved or kept in store for His people. At some point before the end of the world takes place, God will have measured out the portion of all truth He wanted His people to know and the Holy Spirit will guide the elect of God into understanding and knowing all truth. We have already been guided into a significant increase in truth that was revealed at the time of the end. Robert read that verse in Daniel, chapter 12 where it says that knowledge will increase. God has unsealed His Word, the Bible, and much understanding has come forth concerning the Biblical calendar of history and the end of the church age, as well as doctrines like the fact that we are saved by the “faith of Christ” and not by our own faith. We have much more understanding of the atonement and how Jesus did all that work from the foundation of the world. God has opened up a great amount of truth concerning the Great Tribulation and the spiritual judgment that took place, and so forth, and it was all done through the Holy Spirit.
The word “guide” that was used in John 16:13 is also used in Acts. In Acts, chapter 8, there is an account of the Ethiopian eunuch who was traveling along and reading the Book of Isaiah. He was a child of God or, certainly, one of God’s elect, and he was a great man. He had many responsibilities, but his focus was on the Word of God. He is reading the Word and it says in Acts 8:29:
Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
The Holy Spirit was directing Philip to go to this chariot. More than likely, Philip did not know what to expect, but he went. It says in Acts 8:30:
And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
The eunuch was reading aloud and that is really a good habit to get into because it can be helpful to read aloud. This man was in his chariot and reading the Word of God and Philip heard him reading. The eunuch reacted to Philips question in Acts 8:31:
And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
He said, “How can I understand, except some man guide me?” That goes completely against the recent movement where people have been saying, “No teachers, but just the Bible. I do not want any teacher and I do not want any man to instruct me – just the Bible.” Of course, God can reveal truth to an individual through reading the Bible, but it was the Holy Spirit that guided Philip to go to an individual that lacked understanding and who probably would not have understood much more than he did unless “some man guide me.” Actually, the Holy Spirit is the “man” that guides into all truth, so the Holy Spirit is going to guide the Ethiopian eunuch into truth, but it is the Holy Spirit that had determined to do so through Philip. Philip is not the “man” to guide him. The Holy Spirit is that “man,” but Philip is a tool that the Holy Spirit used to help the Ethiopian eunuch along in his understanding.
Then it says in Acts 8:32-35:
The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth. And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man? Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
Then the Ethiopian eunuch began to understand Isaiah, chapter 53. He began to realize that this Scripture was not speaking of some man, but speaking of the Messiah and he began to comprehend. Who led the eunuch into understanding and who guided him into truth? It was the Holy Spirit, but how did the Spirit accomplish it? It was through using another man. It is just like Jesus feeding the multitude of 5,000 people. They had a few loaves and a couple of fish and He broke the “bread” and gave it to the disciples and then He gave the disciples to the multitude and the disciples were the ones God used in each of the groups of fifty. They gave out the “bread” and it just kept multiplying and everyone was fed. Each one in the groups of fifty saw their particular disciple that was assigned to their group. Jesus could have been way off in the distance, but each individual just saw a disciple breaking bread within their group, but it was Christ feeding the multitude through using frail individuals with feet of clay. That is how God has determined to do it. It says in 1Corinthians 2:13:
Which things also we speak…
It is things that “we” speak. I normally read the entire verse, but let us just skip down to the word “but” and it says, “but which the Holy Ghost teacheth.” If we leave out some of that middle information, we can follow the train of thought: “We speak…but the Holy Ghost teacheth.” This is what it says in John 14:26:
But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things…
The Holy Ghost personally and directly will teach you. We speak. You know, you are hearing my voice and my words and we heard Robert speaking a little earlier. We are just men and we speak. It is how it has been since God established the sending forth of the Gospel into the world all throughout the church age – it was just men. After the church age, it has not changed. There are just men and we speak, but the Holy Ghost teaches, comparing Spiritual things with Spiritual. That, of course, is essential. It is very important because that is the methodology that allows the Holy Ghost to teach, as we carefully look up each word and allow the Bible to be its own dictionary and to define its own terms. Then the Holy Spirit is teaching and not the man that is speaking. When a pastor or elder or anybody says, “This is what this verse means to me,” or they say, “This is what Calvin said about this or this is what Luther commented on this Scripture.” They inform us of what the Reformers had to say, but that is not the Holy Ghost teaching. We have to allow the Bible to be its own dictionary and then the Holy Ghost does teach.
Let us go back to Jonah 1:2:
Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.
Again, God is commanding the Holy Spirit to go forth to Nineveh. Nineveh is a picture of the world and he is to go and proclaim the Word of God that God will give him and this identifies with the first outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the first coming of Christ which took place in 7BC. The year 7BC was a Jubilee Year and it was ushered in on the Day of Atonement, the tenth day of the Hebrew seventh month, every 50 years. The first day of the seventh month, every 50 years, was when the trumpet sounded and signaled the Jubilee and, yet, the tenth day was the Day of Atonement when all the captives were to be set free. It says in Leviticus 25:8-10:
And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubile to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land. And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: it shall be a jubile unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family. A jubile shall that fiftieth year be unto you…
That verse is written on the Liberty Bell in downtown Philadelphia. Proclaim Liberty to the captives. It comes from Leviticus 25 and it has to do with setting sinners free from their bondage to sin and to Satan.
Christ is the essence of the Jubilee because His atoning work set the sinners free and paid for the sin of all the elect. So, when Christ entered into the world He identified with the Jubilee and He was born in a Jubilee Year, but is that the time that God poured out His Holy Spirit? We normally think of the year 33AD on the Day of Pentecost as the time of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, but, actually, it began with the birth of Christ, if we look at Luke 1:35:
And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
God is speaking to Mary and telling her that the Holy Ghost will come upon her and the Lord Jesus will be conceived and born. It says in Matthew 1:18:
Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.
Christ’s birth has everything to do with the Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit, as seen with the dove or Jonah. It was true in Christ’s birth and throughout His ministry, as it says Luke 4:1:
And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,
He was directed by the Spirit and, again, and again, the things that Jesus did were all related to the Holy Spirit. It also says in Luke 4:17-19:
And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
This is very similar to Leviticus 25 and its language of the Jubilee, a time that the captives are set free, so Christ is preaching “deliverance to the captives.” He is the essence of the Jubilee and the Holy Spirit did come in a glorious way when Jesus was born and all through His life and ministry and the time of the cross. Then followed Pentecost fifty days later and God officially poured out the Holy Spirit to begin the church age, but it was all connected. Let me say it this way: God would not pour out the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost if Jesus had not been born and if Jesus had not gone about His three and one half years of ministry and if He had not gone to the cross. It was all associated and connected with one another – in order to pour out the Holy Spirit to evangelize the earth and establish churches in the nations of the world Jesus had to come and live His life on earth, and so forth. The pouring out of the Holy Spirit really covers the span from 7BC to 33AD. Then on Pentecost Day in 33AD three thousand were saved on that day and that began the church age and we would go almost two millennium until the church age came to a close.
I think this is all significant because when we look at the Book of Jonah, chapter 1 we find circumstances on the ship were such that the mariners were forced to throw Jonah overboard. Then in chapter 2 he is in the belly of the whale and we know this experience identifies with the atoning work of Christ. Then in chapter 3 God sends Jonah a second time and this relates to the second outpouring of the Holy Spirit at the end of the world, so where does the church age come in? Where is the outpouring of the Holy Spirit the first time in the Book of Jonah, if Jonah or the “dove” represent the Holy Spirit? It is in the fact that Jonah went to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord and we will talk about that a little later on. It is in the circumstances of being cast out into the sea and being three days and three nights in the whale’s belly that all relate to the Holy Spirit. When we read of Jonah in the whale’s belly it specifically ties into the cross. Christ’s suffering began on Thursday evening, to Friday evening, to Saturday evening in the tomb and on Sunday morning, the third day, Christ resurrected. Jonah, chapter 2 does bring us to 33AD and Jonah, chapter 1 brings us to 7BC, so it spans 40 calendar years and 39 actual years from the birth of Christ in the Jubilee year to the cross in 33AD. That would be the point of the official beginning of the church age. Then in Jonah, chapter 3 there is the second outpouring of the Holy Spirit and we will see later on how that relates to 1994.
Actually, let us look at that right now. As we go through Jonah, we will spend more time (Lord willing) going through these details, but in Jonah 3 with the second outpouring of the Holy Spirit I would just like to look at the similarities between 7BC and 1994. From 7BC to 33AD there were 40 calendar years and 39 actual years. From 1994 to 2033 there are 40 inclusive years and 39 calendar years. Actually, the timeline from the years 1988, 1994 and 2033 match up perfectly with 13BC, 7BC and 33AD. It is exact. All you have to do is go 2,000 years into the future and you see that what happened with the first coming of Christ and the first Jubilee or first outpouring of the Holy Spirit identifies with 1988, 1994 and 2033. It matches exactly and I said this before, but there will not be another time when the dates line up like this for another thousand years because it was at the 11,000th year of earth’s history in 13BC and then it was 2,300 evening mornings to 7BC and then 40 years to 33AD. Then in 1988 it was the 13,000 year of earth’s history, followed by 2,300 evening mornings to 1994 and then the year 2033 is situated in the exact spot as 33AD was in relation to the first coming of Christ in 7BC. In 100 years from now, it will not be the same, nor 500 years from now. You do not get this particular alignment of dates until you go another thousand years because then you would have an even thousand like 14,000, and so forth, so this particular relationship in time with the first coming of Christ and this point in time will not happen again for a very long period of history, if God were to continue this earth. Who thinks God will continue this earth for another thousand years? Am I all by myself here? [Laughter] Can you imagine how incredibly evil this earth would be by then? It is just mindboggling.
The Bible points to two particular periods of history: 11,000 years and 13,000 years. The first coming of Christ focuses on 11,000 years and the second coming of Christ focuses on 13,000 years. It is interesting that you do not find the numbers 14 or 15 or 16, but the number 13 keeps coming into view when the Bible focuses on the time of the end. For instance, it says in Genesis 45:1:
Then Joseph could not refrain himself before all them that stood by him; and he cried, Cause every man to go out from me. And there stood no man with him, while Joseph made himself known unto his brethren.
Joseph is a type of Christ and this is in the midst of a time of “great tribulation,” and these very words are used in Acts, chapter 7 to describe this seven-year famine. Notice that Joseph is making himself known to his brethren and he says in Genesis 45:6:
For these two years hath the famine been in the land: and yet there are five years, in the which there shall neither be earing nor harvest.
The first two years Jacob and his family remained in the land of Canaan where there was a grievous famine, but Joseph was in Egypt. God had richly blessed him through the interpreting of Pharaoh’s dream and they were able to make provision for the coming famine by storing up much corn, so the people in Egypt were doing well. Egypt is a picture of the world and Canaan is a picture of the corporate church. In other words, when the Great Tribulation began, the churches were in a grievous and afflicted situation, but then there came the dividing point in the Great Tribulation and Joseph, a type of Christ, made himself known to his brethren. The Bible says in Daniel, chapter 12 that at the time of the end knowledge would be increased and Joseph made himself known to his brethren and through the knowledge he shares with them they are going to leave Canaan, which represents the churches, and go to Egypt, which represents the world. Notice it says in Genesis 45:25:
And they went up out of Egypt, and came into the land of Canaan unto Jacob their father,
When the brethren went back to Canaan after Joseph had revealed himself to them, they told Jacob in Genesis 45:26-27:
And told him, saying, Joseph is yet alive, and he is governor over all the land of Egypt. And Jacob's heart fainted, for he believed them not. And they told him all the words of Joseph, which he had said unto them: and when he saw the wagons which Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of Jacob their father revived:
The spirit of Joseph their father revived? When? His Spirit “revived” after two years, with five years of famine being left. After the first part of the Great Tribulation comes the second part (the greater part) of the Great Tribulation and the spirit revived. The word “revived” is the same word used in Psalm 19 where it says, “Quicken me according to thy word.” It means to bring to life. Of course, Jacob was alive. Historically, we know that he greatly saddened and in mourning even to that day because of the loss of his son Joseph. But at this point in the midst of this awful famine, Jacob heard the news because Joseph had made himself known and Jacob “revived” in his soul. It is like he is joyful and happy again, but it is really a picture of the work of the Holy Spirit. Remember I mentioned that in 33AD during the first outpouring of the Holy Spirit the Holy Spirit worked within the churches, as represented by the land of Canaan, for 1,955 years and then God ended the church age and began the Great Tribulation and the Holy Spirit ceased to work for 2,300 evening mornings. It identifies with the first two years of the famine.
Then on September 7, 1994 God began to evangelize the earth a second time with a second outpouring of the Holy Spirit that revived the souls of the elect (Jacob). It says of the character of those days in Matthew 24 that if it continued, the elect could not be saved, but for the elect’s sake He shortened the days. If Joseph’s brethren had continued to live in the land of Canaan for the whole seven years, they would have perished and Jacob would have perished. But for the elect’s sake, God shortened the days for them and they only suffered the first part of the seven-year famine, although the famine continued in the land of Canaan. For those that had gone into Egypt, it was a different story. There was food and they were nourished and well taken care of and there was blessing. That is the picture.
It says in Habakkuk 3:2:
O JEHOVAH, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O JEHOVAH, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy.
What is God’s work? It is that, “Ye believe.” The word “revive” is the same word we saw in regard to Jacob. This word “midst” is not a word that means “half.” It is translated as “among” in other places. It says, “In the midst of the years make known,” and what did Joseph do when he came to his brethren? He made himself known. Then it said, “In wrath remember mercy,” and that is exactly what God did in the midst of the Great Tribulation. He made Himself known. It was about 2001 that we started learning about the Great Tribulation and the fact that 100% of the churches were apostate. Up to that point, there had always been a hope that there was still a faithful church out there. The people of God kept searching for a faithful congregation somewhere in the world and that is what we did in the 90s as we went from church to church and then we learned in 2001 that it applied to 100% of the churches. It was a complete judgment on the churches. We could not stay in the “land,” spiritually speaking. Everyone must go into captivity and if any refused they were under the wrath of God. The judgment on the churches was a pouring out of the wrath of God and, yet, in the midst of the years He made Himself known to His people and He revived His saving work outside of the churches and congregations. It was like the situation in Egypt where there was still “bread” and God began to save the great multitude and this relates to the second outpouring of the Holy Spirit. If we go to Revelation, chapter 11 we will find that the 2,300 evening mornings cannot be moved. Recently some people are trying to move it and they say, “Well, we began to learn about the end of the church age in 2001 so the Great Tribulation did not begin in 1988, but it began in 1994 and then it went to 2000-2001.” Then they try to shift the period and say that the Great Tribulation goes to 2017 or 2018.
This cannot be done for a couple of very big reasons. The first reason is that it renders 1988, the 13,000th year of earth’s history, as meaningless and no longer a sign post that the time of the end has come and all those many verses in the Bible that point to the number “13” are sort of pushed to the side. Secondly, because of what we read in Revelation in regard to the “two witnesses,” which was the witness of God within the churches and congregations. We should not think of it as people, but it has relationship to people, but it was God’s Spirit witnessing in the churches and congregations because all the churches had the Bible during the church age and the Bible says, “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God,” and people became saved. When God ended the church age the “two witnesses,” the Law and the Prophets, as represented by Moses and Elijah, fell dead. In other words, after the beginning of the Great Tribulation, the Bible could be read to the congregations, but there was no Spirit to revive the listeners, so the hearing of the Bible had no effect. It says in Revelation 11:7-11:
And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified. And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth. And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them.
Jacob’s spirit revived. It said in Habakkuk, “Revive thy work in the midst of the years.” Here, the two witnesses lie dead in the streets and then it mentions “three days and an half.” Whenever God mentions “three and one half,” it must always be understood from the context because it can have different meanings. Here, the “three days and one half” must point to the first part of the Great Tribulation. It would relate to the two years of famine. It would relate to the 2,300 evening mornings of the Great Tribulation wherein virtually no one saved. Why was no one saved? The Holy Spirit had stopped His work. The first outpouring of the Holy Spirit was complete. It is a pattern we see in the Bible: there is famine, then pouring out and famine, and then more pouring out. The three and one half years of Jesus’ ministry was a time of spiritual famine and then there was the pouring out of the Spirit on the day of Pentecost. Then we have the three and one half days that the two witnesses lie dead in the streets during the first part of the Great Tribulation and, yet, God had a plan to revive His people by pouring out His Holy Spirit a second time. Joseph made himself known to His people. God opened up information to His people: the church age is over and you must flee Judaea and go to the mountains. Outside of the churches and congregations God began to evangelize the earth a second time: “The Spirit of life from God entered into them and they stood upon their feet.” When we allow the Bible to define its own terms, God will tell us what it means to “stand upon our feet,” as related by the Apostle Paul in Acts 26:15-18:
And I said, Who art thou, Lord? And he said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest. But rise, and stand upon thy feet: for I have appeared unto thee for this purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both of these things which thou hast seen, and of those things in the which I will appear unto thee; Delivering thee from the people, and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee, To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.
To stand upon the feet means to be sent. When the two witnesses stand upon their feet, they are sent and the Holy Spirit of life entered into them and they were sent with the Gospel. It was the second outpouring of the Holy Spirit. It is what Jonah, chapter 3 is all about and we will wait to discuss it further until we get to that point, but we can see how the “dove” or “Jonah” or the “Holy Spirit” are related to two outpourings of the Holy Spirit, both of which tie in with Jubilee years, 7BC and 1994AD. In 1994, after 2,300 evening mornings, September 7, 1994 was the first day of the Hebrew seventh month, the day that the trumpet blew to signal the Jubilee Year. What is the great significance of a Jubilee Year? It is to set the captives free and to bring deliverance and salvation. That is what the two witnesses did after the three and one half days.
So, you can see the problem if anyone shifts the timeline. It is not just the shift from 1988 to 1994. That is problem #1, but problem #2 is that now you have the beginning of the Great Tribulation, according to this scenario, starting in the 1994 Jubilee Year and, yet, the first part was the grievous part. The first part was when virtually no one was being saved and when the brethren are still in the land of Canaan or the two witnesses are lying dead in the streets. No – it cannot be. The year 1994 locks in because it was a Jubilee Year and it ties in exactly with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the work of salvation, the preaching of deliverance to the captives.
We are going to have to stop, but, Lord willing, we will pick up in verse 3 next time and we will see how Jonah rising up to flee to Tarshish from the presence of JEHOVAH is a key phrase. It is related to the fall of man into sin in Genesis, chapter 3. After Adam and Eve sinned they hid themselves from the presence of JEHOVAH. In verse 3 God tells us that twice. At the end of the verse it says that "Jonah went down into the ship to go with them to flee from the presence of JEHOVAH". Unsaved mankind goes in that direction – away from God. When Jesus entered into the world and became a human being He went with them from the presence of JEHOVAH and it just meant that He was a man walking amongst men, but mankind is in rebellion against God.
Well, let us stop here and we will close with a word of prayer.