Millions of Christians are being told that all they need is a relationship with Jesus. Many will even do many wonderful works in His name, but He will say, “I never knew you.”1 How should we understand this?
The Greek word in this text for “know” is ginosko. It’s the same word when Joseph didn’t know Mary until after Christ was born. It’s an intimate knowledge as in marriage or a covenant relationship. After Israel made a covenant with God, He said, “I am married to you.”2
This is how we must marry the Bridegroom. Paul included Israel’s history of the exodus which included their making a covenant when he wrote, “all these things happened to them as examples…ends of the ages.”3 Israel even experienced the ‘midnight cry’ of Matthew 25:6 when God ‘executed judgment’ on Egypt at Passover and He took Israel to Sinai for a covenant to be His kingdom and His bride.
it was a type of Judgment day when the trumpet waxed loud and the mountain shook. This is how the book of Revelation begins—with an earthquake encoded first as a loud trumpet, but also in four other ways!
1. John heard “a loud voice as of a trumpet saying, saying, “I am Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last.” This is the basis of the Rule of First Use, that where a word [like trumpet] is first found [Exodus 19, Sinai] it often has a context or meaning to consider for end-times because Christ is the Word, also First and the Last.
2. Five verses later, an earthquake is encoded as the sound of many waters. With no chapter divisions in the original text, we find the sea roaring as the immediate context of Isaiah’s call to be a prophet in his 6th chapter. And at the sound of many waters, John was also called to be a prophet. It was also an earthquake for Isaiah—the posts of the door moved and the house was filled with smoke as the censor probably tipped over.
Readiness for what’s coming could mean God’s call to us to be His messengers like Isaiah. “Your sons and daughters shall prophesy.” This promise in Joel 2:28 is preceded by an earthquake in verse 10 as the day of the Lord—the end-time apocalyptic period–begins.
3. Joel 3:16 says, “The Lord also will roar…the heavens and earth will shake.” The Lord is the Lion of Judah in Revelation 5:5, and when John heard a lion’s roar in the 10th chapter, we should think of an earthquake that precedes the seven thunders, even as an earthquake precedes the seven trumpets, shown in Revelation 8:5.
4. The earthquake is encoded as a ‘knock’ for Laodicea, a church that ended in an earthquake circa 63 AD. Maybe we can see it as type and antitype. The earthquake will draw the seven churches to a close for an end-time movement in which we are either part of the pure woman or the harlot in Revelation 12 or 17 respectively.
5. The earthquake is also encoded as thunder in Revelation 6 where John says it is one of the four creatures saying ‘come and see.’ A look at verses 3,5 and 7 shows the 2nd, 3rd and 4th creatures, so John was hearing the first creature. In Revelation 4:7, it’s a lion. The ‘thunder’ is the lion’s roar, an earthquake as shown above, #3.
6. An earthquake is the “sudden destruction” that comes “when they say ‘Peace and safety,”–it’s when “the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night.”4 But it’s also like “labor pains upon a pregnant woman.” We should understand this as another reference to when Egypt birthed God’s “firstborn.” Firstborn implies another event that is foretold in Isaiah 11:11 and it’s about the “remnant.”
7. The earthquake is encoded as the goodman’s house that gets broken because he doesn’t know when to watch for the thief. But in the above example, “the day of the Lord” comes as a thief and Paul said to ‘watch.’ Christ also said He would come as a thief if we don’t ‘watch.’5 All three of these ‘thief’ passages imply the need to watch. What does ‘watch’ mean?
Most Christians seem to think ‘watch’ means to be aware, and if they watched the evening news, they think they are aware, but this is not the meaning of the Greek word, gregoreo. It means to be awake, and that’s how Christ used it. Watch with Me…could you not [be awake] one hour?’
It would be unfair for Christ to say, ‘Be awake’ if there were no clues for when He meant it. We can’t be awake every night, but Passover was the only night in the year it was commanded. Israel.was to eat the lamb and leave nothing till morning. We should do this spiritually.
“It would be well for us to spend a thoughtful hour each day in contemplation of the life of Christ. We should take it point by point and let the imagination grasp each scene, especially the closing ones.”6 Most Christians fail to do so.
Instead of a ritual communion weekly, monthly or quarterly, why not once a year on the night that Christ sweat blood for us? We should review the closing scenes, thanking Him for taking our beating–the pain and shame of being nailed naked to the cross for us and pray that for His sake, God will pass over us in any judgment that may come.
The disciples were familiar with their heritage. They understood Passover as a time of judgment when Christ gave seven short parables and three times He told them that they didn’t know the day or hour. What did He mean?
The Greek word, eido, means be aware, consider understand. He was saying, You don’t understand, and each time He said it, He gave an example that fit a provision in Numbers 9:10,11, for Passover a month later, “as the days of Noah,” when the Flood came with Passover timing, but in the 2nd spring month.
The second time Christ said, You don’t know, He cited the goodman and the only Old Testament passage with “goodman” (KJV) is Proverbs 7:19,20. The goodman is on a long journey and won’t be back till the full moon (yom kece). Passover comes on a full moon, but a long journey means 2nd Passover in Num 9:10,11.
Israelites didn’t travel in winter, and if they took a long trip in spring and couldn’t get back to Jerusalem for Passover, they were to keep it in the 2nd month. This fact fits the third time Christ said, You don’t know, when He bridged His last two parables by saying to watch [a clue for Passover] ‘for the kingdom of heaven is as a man traveling to a far country.’ This puts the timing for the 10 virgins and the talents at 2nd Passover.
Furthermore, the evil servant that begins to smite his fellow servants has the same timing, because “Then shall the kingdom of heaven be like ten virgins.” That’s five parables with 2nd Passover timing that we have overlooked, and the other two two parables between Matthew 24:32 and 25:31 also support the timing as 2nd Passover, like the fig tree when summer is nigh. Summer is not nigh in April, but it is in May.
Even “two in the field” supports 2nd Passover. Two are not in the field at first Passover because there’s no work in the field until a sheaf of barley is presented to the Lord in a wave offering.
Because those seven events support 2nd Passover timing, five being specific for it, we may understand them, not as seven independent events like wars or earthquakes, but as one event with seven aspects as follows:
1. “Learn a parable of the fig tree” was about the Jewish nation in Matthew 21. With many leaves, the fig tree and the Jewish nation offered promise of fruit, but a close look revealed none and it quickly withered in the last week of Christ’s life, symbolic of end-times for us? America was blessed by God and to many people, it offers promise, but if Christ’s parable is for our time, we should not be surprised to see golden dreams turning brown.
2. “As the days of Noah,” there was widespread loss of life and property. The comng earthquake may be bigger than we expect. Ellen White had a vision of an earthquake while visiting Loma Linda. “Buildings, great and small, were falling to the ground…Many lives were blotted out…It seemed that the Judgment day had come.”7
Adventist pioneers gave a message of impending judgment in 1844, based on Daniel 7:9,10 where ‘the judgment was set and the books were opened,’ but they overlooked the ‘great words’ of the little horn, held to be the papacy by Protestant reformers, and a mouth speaking great things in the verse before and after.
In 1844, the pope had no great words. Napoleon took the pope prisoner and he died in exile. But last fall the pope came to the UN General Assembly with ‘great words,’ and it was on the Day of Atonement—the missing ingredient from 1844.
Pioneers had a ‘Great Disappointment’ (Google) but the Angel told John, You must prophesy again.” If we are the people foretold in that passage, we must give the same messages that they gave again—a message of impending judgment and ‘the Bridegroom comes.’
Adventism has many issues threatening to divide us when we could be unified by these two messages that could prepare us for what’s coming, and without our giving them, millions may be unprepared.
The wedding parables teach a sudden event beyond which there is no time to prepare. The man without a wedding garment couldn’t slip into the bathroom and be back in a minute. The foolish women heard the same words as in our opening paragraph, “I know you not…”
The wedding parables show that destiny is suddenly decided. The man without a wedding garment was thrown into outer darkness. This should concern us for the last lukewarm church that is said to be ‘naked.’ The wise women are virgins—they are probably the 144,000 virgins in Revelation 14:4 because the Bible explains itself and this is the only passage that helps us understand—it’s those who are ready for ‘sudden.’
All three wedding parables have Passover imagery. The “feast” that we, as the king’s servants, should be inviting others to, is the feast of betrothal. God got an ignorant bride at Sinai that worshiped a calf 40 days later. This must not happen to Christ. God wants us to understand more before we make a covenant.
The wedding parable in Luke 12 shows we must be watching [awake at Passover] that when He ‘knocks’ (earthquake, #4 above) we may open to Him ‘immedately.’ This is because the Feast of Unleavened Bread begins at Passover, but it’s not about crackers. When Christ warned us to beware the leaven of the Pharisees in Matthew 16. Church leaders have made the Bread light—Christ was citing their doctrines.
Before Christ comes, “Elias must first come and restore all things” and the context of his coming is seen as the statutes and judgments of the law that Christ said would not pass till heaven and earth pass.8
If we think about it, communion with unleavened bread means union with Christ in His Word. Marriage is union with Christ by covenant, and that covenant must also be based on His Word. So they have a similar meaning. The Feast of Unleavened Bread was seven days, and Bible weddings took a week.9 Because they have similar meaning and same time frame, we could conclude that they coincide for us.
Bible covenants were linked with sevens. The word, covenant, is found seven times in Genesis 9 where God made a covenant with Noah. Abraham gave Abimelech seven ewes in a covenant. God gave Israel seven holy convocations. We should be prepared to accept seven topics that have a seven-fold emphasis like the statutes and judgments in Ezekiel 20:11-24 where they are also linked to sabbaths.
Those seven topics are beyond the scope of this article, but we should be prepared as Luke 12:36,37 shows. If we are watching for Christ’s ‘knock,’ we may open to Him immediately and He promises to gird Himself (as He did at the Last Supper—Passover timing) and make us sit down to eat and will serve us.
If we are ‘so doing’ when He knocks, “He will make [us] ruler over all that He has,” but if we fail to prepare, we will be beaten with many stripes—to whom much is given (in His promise), much is required.A
The appointed times given to the Jews were considered mikvah—rehearsals. For more than a thousand years, they rehearsed, but when the Lamb of God died at Passover, they failed to see the meaning.
We don’t have a thousand years for rehearsal. If Christ does’t ‘knock’ for us this spring, we just had a good spiritual exercise by considering what He bore for us. But if this is the year for end-times to begin, our seeking Him by celebrating His supper with time for watching and prayer would be well-timed. Five ‘when-then’ events last year, including the pope’s visit, Iran’s Nuke Treaty and Joel 2:31 point to 2016.
Paul wrote, Don’t let anyone judge you for keeping these holy days, they are a shadow of things to come.B This means they aren’t all fulfilled, which is why Paul kept them with Greek believers in Philippi and Corinth, and he said to follow him as he followed Christ.C
If Christ were to knock with an earthquake and we are open, we may hear His call to prophetic office as Isaiah and John. If He does not specify it to us, the book of Deuteronomy is the book of the covenant that Josiah read to Israel when they, after many years of apostasy, renewed their covenant. It is also what Ezra read to Israelites who returned when they signed and sealed to the covenant in Nehemiah 9:38.
Further information regarding what may be coming can be considered at http://TheBridegroomComes.com
1Matthew 7:23; New King James unless specified
6Desire of Ages, p 83
7Testimonies for the Church, Vol 9, p 92,93
8Matthew 17:11; Malachi 4:4,5, Matthew 5:18
9Leviticus 23:6; Genesis 29:27
CActs 20:6; 1Corinthians 5:8; 11:1