HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?

 

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Okay. So, just a reminder that the word used for the snatching away of the people of God, His true Church is rapture RAPIO [Latin] or HARPAZO [Greek].

  1. Jesus simply desires for us to return home to His Father’s house for the bridal house is ready  and so also is the banquet! Everything is ready and the bride needs to ready herself for her bridegroom as the wedding of the Lamb nears! This would explain harpazo as ‘the eagerly desiring to claim the object of ones love and affection for oneself and thus eagerly take it up and back to oneself!?’

    Do not let your hearts be troubled (distressed, agitated). You believe in and adhere to and trust in and rely on God; believe in and adhere to and trust in and rely also on Me. In My Father’s house there are many dwelling places (homes). If it were not so, I would have told you; for I am going away to prepare a place for you. And when (if) I go and make ready a place for you, I will come back again and will take you to Myself, that where I am you may be alsoJohn 14:1-3 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC) This is the eagerly desiring to return and claim the object of ones love! Below I have added the generally accepted view of the Jewish wedding protocols in Bible times Jewish culture.

    Although various sources describing the practice of Jewish marriage at the time of Christ differ in the details, there is general agreement concerning its major elements. Unlike Western marriage practices, the Jewish marriage has a greater degree of formalism involving numerous steps:

    Jewish marriage included a number of steps: first, betrothal (which involved the prospective groom’s traveling from his father’s house to the home of the prospective bride, paying the purchase price, and thus establishing the marriage covenant); second, the groom’s returning to his father’s house (which meant remaining separate from his bride for 12 months, during which time he prepared the living accommodations for his wife in his father’s house); third, the groom’s coming for his bride at a time not known exactly to her; fourth, his return with her to the groom’s father’s house to consummate the marriage and to celebrate the wedding feast for the next seven days (during which the bride remained closeted in her bridal chamber). 

    So, First, the father of the groom made the arrangements for the marriage and paid the bride price. The timing of the arrangement varied. Sometimes it occurred when both children were small, and at other times it was a year before the marriage itself. Often the bride and groom did not even meet until their wedding day. The second step, which occurred a year or more after the first step, was the fetching of the bride. The bridegroom would go to the home of the bride in order to bring her to his home. In connection with this step, two other things should be noted. First, it was the father of the groom who determined the timing. [THUS NO ONE KNOWS THE DAY OR THE HOUR, NOT EVEN THE SON (THE BRIDEGROOM!) ONLY THE FATHER KNOWS THE DAY AND HOUR WHEN EVERYTHING IS READY! Second, prior to the groom’s leaving to fetch the bride, HE must already have a place prepared for her as their abode. This was followed by the third step, the wedding ceremony, to which a few would be invited. Prior to the wedding ceremony, the bride underwent a ritual immersion for ritual cleansing. The fourth step, the marriage feast, would follow and could last for as many as seven days. Many more people would be invited to the feast than were to the marriage ceremony. In the Marriage of the Lamb all four of these steps of the Jewish wedding ceremony are evident.

The major steps of the Jewish wedding analogy are summarized below with related Scriptures:

Steps in a Jewish Wedding
Step Description Scriptures
Marriage Covenant The father pays for the bride and establishes the marriage covenant. Acts Acts 20:28; 1Cor. 1Cor. 6:19-201Cor. 11:25 Eph. Eph. 5:25-27
Bridal Chamber Prepared The son returns to his father’s house and prepares the bridal chamber. John John 6:62John 14:2; Acts Acts 1:9-11
Bride Fetched At a time determined by the father (Mtt. Mat. 24:36), the groom fetches the bride to bring her to his father’s house. “Although the bride was expecting her groom to come for her, she did not know the time of his coming. As a result, the groom’s arrival was preceded by a shout, which forewarned the bride to be prepared for his coming.”3 John John 14:3; 1Th. 1Th. 4:13-18
Bride Cleansed The bride undergoes ritual cleansing prior to the wedding ceremony. 1Cor. 1Cor. 3:12-15; Rev. Rev. 19:7-8+
Wedding Ceremony The private wedding ceremony. Rev. Rev. 19:7+
Consummation In the privacy of the bridal chamber the bride and groom consummate the marriage. Rev. Rev. 19:7+
Marriage Feast The celebratory marriage feast to which many are invited. Mtt. Mat. 22:1-14Mat. 25:1-13; Luke Luke 12:36

At the time of our writing, the first step in the wedding has already taken place. The marriage covenant was established at the First Coming of Christ. Whenever a person places their faith in Jesus Christ, they enter into this covenant (the New Covenant) and become part of His bride [Church or Body!] Since the ascension of Jesus following His resurrection, He has been at His Father’s house preparing the bridal chamber:

Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions (μοναι [monai] , (dwelling places); 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 receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. (John John 14:1-3)

More of this next time.

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HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?

18:7:18

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Okay, so I want to continue to delve deeper into the word HARPAZO! What does it really mean and why did the apostle Paul choose this word or better still, why did Holy Spirit inspire him to use it? So, just a reminder that the word used for the snatching away of the people of God, His true Church is rapture RAPIO [Latin] or HARPAZO [Greek].

Harpazo [the original use in Greek] means to literally snatch away forcefully. So I asked the question: ‘why would our loving and gentle God have to snatch us away in a forceful manner from this earth?’

I immediately Got this picture of a father and his small child walking up the high street which was obviously to me an ‘all through traffic’ road! As the pair walked along, a massive juggernaut came into view and at the same time the little child spotted a toy shop! The child moved to the kerbside as the juggernaut came closer. The father saw the juggernaut and at the same time saw his child getting ready to cross the road and he knew the child would be hit by the truck, so he reaches out, grabs the child by his collar and “Forcefully” snatches him away from the danger of death and destruction! It is to snatch away or out of the way or out of harms way! It is also to eagerly claim for oneself an object of love, desire or something you care about. What does that tell you? [Sellah], go ponder that!

And so, I thought and thought till my thinker was sore, what on earth could happen to cause Christ to return in the air and snatch us forcefully away to be with Him for evermore? [A bit of the Grinch rhyme there!] And I came up with 3 major things! You may come up with more?

  1. Jesus simply desires for us to return home to His Father’s house for the bridal house is ready  and so also is the banquet! Everything is ready and the bride needs to ready herself for her bridegroom as the wedding of the Lamb nears! This would explain harpazo as ‘the eagerly desiring to claim the object of ones love and affection for oneself and thus eagerly take it up and back to oneself!?’
  2. The rider on the red horse has ridden out and world war 3 commences! This would obviously include nuclear warheads going up and fired upon all the nations of the world! As the warheads are about to hit, would not Jesus come to rescue us “snatch us up and out” away from the maelstrom? I think so!
  3. There are massive cosmological, meteorological and seismological events on the horizon that are about to impact our solar system and planet! These will initially decimate possibly 1/3rd of the earth, its resources and population for starters. As these systems are about to clash into one tumultuous event, ‘zap’ we’re snatched up and away from it or taken out of it just as Noah was and lot was!

So, I’ll look more deeply into these 3 possible case scenarios over the next week. Be blessed and be at peace.

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HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?

16.7.2017

HARPAZO

 

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Okay, so I want to delve deeper into the word HARPAZO! What does it really mean and why did the apostle Paul choose this word or better still, why did Holy Spirit inspire him to use it? Again, some will jump on the fact that the word ‘rapture’ is incorrect! However, in the Latin as in the Greek, it means the same thing RAPIO [Latin] or HARPAZO [Greek]. I’ll post on that another time, but if you want to, go check it out yourself!

  • to seize, carry off by force
  • to seize on, claim for one’s self eagerly
  • to snatch out or away forcefully

Harpazo (har-pad’-zo) is the Greek word which the New Testament translators have rendered as “caught up”“I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knows;) such a one was caught up [Greek, harpazo] to the Third Heaven” (2Corinthians 12:2). “Rapture” is taken from an obsolete French word, which means “abduction” or “to carry off”. Though Greek scholars may refrain from using “rapture” to translate “harpazo”, it is not a wresting of Scripture for the honest Christian to see the connection between the two.

Regarding the term rapture and its use in theology the following should answer your questions. It is taken from Ryrie’s Basic Theology.

Our modern understanding of rapture appears to have little or no connection with the eschatological event. However, the word is properly used of that event. Rapture is a state or experience of being carried away. The English word comes from a Latin word, rapio, which means to seize or snatch in relation to an ecstasy of spirit or the actual removal from one place to another. In other words, it means to be carried away in spirit or in body. The Rapture of the church means the carrying away of the church from earth to heaven.

The Greek word ‘harpazo’ from which this term “rapture” is derived, appears in 1 Thessalonians 4:17, translated “caught up.” The Latin translation of this verse used the word rapturo. The Greek word it translates is harpazo, which means to snatch or take away. Elsewhere it is used to describe how the Spirit caught up Philip near Gaza and brought him to Caesarea (Acts 8:39) and to describe Paul’s experience of being caught up into the third heaven (2 Cor. 12:2-4). Thus there can be no doubt that the word is used in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 to indicate the actual removal of people from earth to heaven.

Now, I want to leave you with a thought that I’ll pick up on next time!

WHAT “ON EARTH” HAPPENS TO CAUSE GOD TO HAVE TO FORCEFULLY SNATCH US [His true Church] UP AND OFF THE EARTH? I’ll be looking at one or two possible case scenarios on that one.

 

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HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?

12.7.17

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The  Greek word ‘HARPAZO’ is very interesting and controversial. It is defined as rapture in the Latin script and once you start using that word, well,  some people [Christians] get a little upset, especially if you say I’m a pretrib rapturist! Did I say I was a pretrib rapturist? Sorry, I mean I’m a pretrib HAPAZO-IST!

WHAT IS HARPAZO? The above image spells it out as it is! I often picture a little child who has wondered onto a highway or train line and a great juggernaut or locomotive is coming towards the child and you have to violently snatch the child out of the way!

Now we know that God is a loving God, so He would have to have a very good reason for snatching/seizing or carrying off by force the object of His love, His Church/body of called out ones/Ecclesia. [but more of that next time!]

Now I really like the above image, however; whoever did it, didn’t quite get it right as the word used in Revelation 4:1 is not HARPAZO, but ANABAINO, which has a similar meaning but it doesn’t imply the snatching up! Nevertheless it does imply a taking up into heaven! So here are the English from Greek meanings of anabaino, and I’ll leave it with yourselves to draw your own conclusions and interpretations:

ARISE, ASCEND, CLIMB UP, COME, ENTER, GO, RISE, SPRING.

However, very interestingly [and very rarely touched upon] until very recently is the fact that the word HARPAZO is used in Revelation 12:5 in relation to the Great Sign in heaven. The child is SNATCHED UP [harpazo]. Even more interesting is the view of many that this Great Sign will appear in our skies on September 23rd 2017!  [FIG 1] GO FISH!!

[FIG 1]

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HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?

11.7.2017

BEHOLD HE COMES.

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2 Events! It is clear to me from scripture that there are 2 separate returns of Christ! In the air and to the earth.

IN THE AIR: For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a loud cry of summons, with the shout of an archangel, and with the blast of the trumpet of God. And those who have departed this life in Christ will rise first. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

Vs 17 AMPLIFIED Then we, the living ones who remain [on the earth], shall simultaneously be caught up along with [the resurrected dead] in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so always (through the eternity of the eternities) we shall be with the Lord!  

The Bible describes how Jesus will come again to receive believers into heaven and this called the [harpazo] rapture. Verse 14 of this passage says, “even those asleep in Christ will Jesus take to heaven.” So verse 16 says, the dead in Christ shall rise first into heaven. Verse 17 says, “Those alive and who remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet Jesus in the air and so to be ever with the Lord. So the rapture instantly transforms us in  a moment in the twinkling of an eye [1 Corinthians 15:51, 52]. And we ascend to heaven just as Christ did!

TO THE EARTH: In My Father’s house there are many dwelling places (homes). If it were not so, I would have told you; for I am going away to prepare a place for you. And when (if) I go and make ready a place for you, I will come back again and will take you to Myself, that where I am you may be also. John 14:2-3

And when He had said this, even as they were looking [at Him], He was caught up, and a cloud received and carried Him away out of their sight. And while they were gazing intently into heaven as He went, behold, two men [dressed] in white robes suddenly stood beside them, Who said, Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing into heaven? This same Jesus, Who was caught away and lifted up from among you into heaven, will return in [just] the same way in which you saw Him go into heaven. Acts 1:9-11

On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south. Zechariah 14:4

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So I believe Christ will return at the Second Coming 7 years after Rapture and we will return with Him in our glorified bodies.  Zechariah 14:5 says, “the Lord my God shall come and all the angels with Him.”Revelation 19:11-21 describes the Lord’s return in detail saying, “the heavenly army will follow Christ verse 14. So the tribulation period ends when Jesus Returns on earth with His armies of heaven at the Second Coming and He will be Victorious in the battle of Armageddon. Jesus and the armies of heaven made up of angels and the saints dressed in white linen symbolize holiness, will fight against the antiChrist, a deceptive evil figure in the Bible who appears on the Earth before Jesus returns. So antiChrist will be influenced by satan and his fallen angels. Christ will destroy them at His appearing and thus Jesus, His saints and the holy angels will emerge victorious from the battle. That is a very compressed look at this subject.

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HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?

9.7.2017

THE GREAT ESCAPE:

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I have already alluded to the deliverance of God’s people from His wrath to come because Jesus already bore God’s wrath for us and therefore being as the tribulation period is the dispensation of God’s wrath upon the Godless world at that time and it is the time for Jacob’s trouble, we therefore must be removed out-of-the-way of the coming onslaught! So let’s look at the scripture proofs and some thoughts on this. 

For God’s [holy] wrath and indignation are revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who in their wickedness repress and hinder the truth and make it inoperative. Romans 1:18

Let no one delude and deceive you with empty excuses and groundless arguments [for these sins], for through these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of rebellion and disobedience. Ephesians 5:6

Therefore, since we are now justified (acquitted, made righteous, and brought into right relationship with God) by Christ’s blood, how much more [certain is it that] we shall be saved by Him from the indignation and wrath of God. Romans 5:9

And [how you] look forward to and await the coming of His Son from heaven, Whom He raised from the dead—Jesus, Who personally rescues and delivers us out of and from the wrath [bringing punishment] which is coming [upon the impenitent] and draws us to Himself  investing us with all the privileges and rewards of the new life in Christ, the Messiah].      1 Thessalonians 1:10

For God has not appointed us to [incur His] wrath [He did not select us to condemn us], but [that we might] obtain [His] salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) 1 Thessalonians 1:10

Also, let us remember that Noah and his family escaped the wrath to come [Gen 7:13-17]. So too did Lot and some of his family. [Gen 19:16-22] and finally, my thought is that because we’re called Ambassadors of Christ [We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.] [2 Corinthians 5:20] As ambassadors, when the King of Kings comes to deal with the Godless nations, the first thing the King does is remove His Ambassadors from their Embassy on that foreign soil! [DO THE MATH!]!

ARE YOU RAPTURE READY???

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HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?

7.7.17

SOUND THE ALARM

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Okay, so I am going to round off the teaching on the rapture with a few thoughts for the next few posts!

THE PREACHING OF THE GOSPEL: The preaching of the gospel:  And He said to them, Go into all the world and preach and publish openly the good news (the Gospel) to every creature [of the whole human race]. [Mark 16:15] But you will receive power and ability when the Holy Spirit comes upon you; and you will be My witnesses [to tell people about Me] both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and even to the ends of the earth.” [Acts 1:8] The New Testament is very clear in its doctrine as to who preaches the Good News after Jesus has ascended and who empowers them to do it. It is the Church from the day of Pentecost! So, look at these 3 verses then:  And I will grant the power of prophecy to My two witnesses for 1,260 (42 months; three and one-half years), dressed in sackcloth. [Rev 11:3]

The Jewishness of this chapter, and especially the ministry of these two witnesses, must be seen within the larger context of God’s promises to restore Israel. In an important parallel passage, the apostle Paul anguishes over Israel’s need of the gospel: 

Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. . . . How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? . . . For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: “The Deliverer will come out of Zion, and He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob.” (Rom. 10&11) These two witnesses are among the “beautiful feet” which preach the gospel of peace to Israel. Their ministry involves the entire earth, but takes place in Jerusalem and has all the markings of  Old covenant Jewish prophets.

“Then I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000 from all the tribes of Israel” (Rev 7:4), nothing in the passage leads to interpreting the 144,000 as anything but a literal number of Jews—12,000 taken from every tribe of the “sons of Israel.” The New Testament offers no clear cut text replacing Israel here with the church This passage is extremely JEWISH in context!. These Jews are “sealed,” which means they have the special protection of God from all of the divine judgments and from the Antichrist to perform their mission during the tribulation period (see Rev 6:17), in which people will wonder who can stand from the wrath to come). The tribulation period is a future seven-year period of time in which God will enact divine judgment against those who reject Him and will complete His plan of salvation for the nation of Israel. All of this is according to God’s revelation to the prophet Daniel (Dan 9:24-27). The 144,000 Jews are a sort of “first fruits” (Rev 14:4) of a redeemed Israel which has been previously prophesied (Zecheriah 12:10; Rom 11:15-27), and their mission seems to be to evangelize the post-rapture world and proclaim the gospel during the tribulation period. As a result of their ministry, millions—“a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language” (Rev 7:9)—will come to faith in Christ.

And I saw another angel flying through the sky, carrying the eternal Good News to proclaim to the people who belong to this world–to every nation, tribe, language, and people. [Rev 14:6] My point is this: If the gospel is to be preached by the Church only, then why are 2 Jewish prophets, 144000 sealed Jews and even an angel preaching the gospel? Surely IF the Church goes through the Tribulation period, it will still be the Church’s ministry to preach the Good News!?  Here we see 2 Jewish prophets preaching the gospel! 144000 Jews preaching the Gospel! And God Himself, so earnest for people to receive His Christ/Messiah that He even sends an angel to preach the gospel before the reapers arrive so He can get more saved!

No, for me, at least I believe what we see here is the fulfillment of Romans 10/11! The True Olive branch [the Jews] who were cut off from the True Olive Tree [Messiah] when they [the Jews] cut off their Messiah at the Cross and were replaced by [the Gentile Church]; they are now grafted back into the True Olive tree because the time of the Gentile Church is over, and they [the Ecclesia] have been removed through the harpazo to heaven so that Israel can pay back the 7 years they owe God when they go through the Tribulation period [the time of Jacob’s trouble] and a large number of them receive their Messiah and preach to all the earth during that 7 year period.

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