The Harvest at the End of the Age
The Seventh Seal is Opened
The Seventh Trumpet sounds
A Great Multitude appears in Heaven
Then God judges the Nations
Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. “Do you see all these things?” he asked. “Truly I tell you, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.”
As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”
Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.
“Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
“So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand—then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the housetop go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak. How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again.
“If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you ahead of time.
“So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather.
“Immediately after the distress of those days
“‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’
“Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.
“Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door. Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
“But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.
“Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
“Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of the servants in his household to give them their food at the proper time? It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns. Truly I tell you, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, ‘My master is staying away a long time,’ and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards. The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
The second coming of Christ will be a highly visible thing, it will not be easily missed
The sun will be darkened, the moon will not give it's light, stars will fall from the sky
We need to be vigilant and keep watch as nobody knows the day or the hour
It will follow the distress of those days - hence it will be post tribulation
All the nations of the Earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory
He will send his angels with a loud trumpet call and they will gather his elect from the four winds from one end of the heavens to the other
Two will be in the field, one will be taken, the other left....
In the next Chapter (Chapter 25), The parable of the ten virgins warns us that we must be ready at all times because we do not know the hour that the bridegroom will return
In the same chapter, it tells of how the master will reward his servants when he returns
And finally in chapter 25 it tells of how God will judge the ungodly nations who are left on earth after the rapture has taken place. God will separate the nations into the Sheep and the Goats according to how they treated God's people. The Sheep are those who were kind to 'the least of these brothers and sisters of mine' and the Goats were those who persecuted 'the least of these'
see also Mark 13:32-37, Luke 17:20-37, Luke 21:5-38
Matt 13:24-30, 36-43
Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.
“The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’
“‘An enemy did this,’ he replied.
“The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’
“‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’”
Then he left the crowd and went into the house. His disciples came to him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.”
He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man. The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the people of the evil one, and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels.
“As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears, let them hear.
The son of man will send out his angels and they will weed out of his Kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. (see parable of the weeds)
When Jesus comes, he will judge the Church first.
False christians will be gathered up and thrown into the fire.- See Revelation 14
The true believers will be raptured to be with Christ in the clouds where they will join dead believers who have already been resurrected (the first resurrection) see 1Thess 4:13-18
“Once again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish. When it was full, the fishermen pulled it up on the shore. Then they sat down and collected the good fish in baskets, but threw the bad away. This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. “Have you understood all these things?” Jesus asked.
The parable of the Net tells us how God will separate the wicked from the righteous in his kingdom.
The 'net' which represents the Gospel or the Church will catch both good and bad fish.
At the end of the age, the angels will separate the wicked from the righteous in God's kingdom.
Revelation 14:14-20 shows us how God will do this. There will be a harvest by one like the Son of Man and a Harvest by the angel in charge of the fire. After this, God pours out his wrath on the Nations who are left on Earth. The Harvest by the one like the Son of man is the rapture.
But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body will they come?” How foolish! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. When you sow, you do not plant the body that will be, but just a seed, perhaps of wheat or of something else. But God gives it a body as he has determined, and to each kind of seed he gives its own body. Not all flesh is the same: People have one kind of flesh, animals have another, birds another and fish another. There are also heavenly bodies and there are earthly bodies; but the splendor of the heavenly bodies is one kind, and the splendor of the earthly bodies is another. The sun has one kind of splendor, the moon another and the stars another; and star differs from star in splendor.
So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.
If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. The first man was of the dust of the earth; the second man is of heaven. As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the heavenly man, so also are those who are of heaven. And just as we have borne the image of the earthly man, so shall weg bear the image of the heavenly man.
I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
“Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.
The first resurrection (the resurrection of Godly people) and the rapture will occur in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye at the last trumpet (which is the seventh trumpet).
This first resurrection is for believers.
Many will be alive when Christ returns.
Those who are saved, believers, will be called up to meet Christ in the clouds (the rapture).
Those who remain on Earth will be the ungodly nations.
Christ will divide the nations into the Sheep and the Goats according to how they treated the 'least of these brothers and sisters of mine'.
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.
When Christ returns, Christians will be rewarded according to what they have done in the body. False Christians will be thrown into the fire.
Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.
The Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, the believers who are still alive and left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.
Those who are left till the coming of the Lord will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep.
Revelation 7:9 -8:1
After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying: “Amen! Praise and glory and wisdom and thanks and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!” Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes—who are they, and where did they come from?” I answered, “Sir, you know.” And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore,“they are before the throne of God and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence. ‘Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat down on them,’ nor any scorching heat. For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’ ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’ ” When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.
When the seventh seal is opened, a great multitude from every tribe people and nation appear in heaven. These are they who have come out of the Great Tribulation. They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
The Church will be persecuted for 1260 days and then the rapture will take place.
The great multitude appearing in heaven means that the rapture and the first resurrection have taken place.
The rapture and the first resurrection take place when the seventh seal is opened.
When the Lamb has finally finished opening the scroll, which is part of the Book of Life, the Sons of God will be revealed. When Christ comes, God resurrects the dead in Christ and transfigures those who are alive and left on Earth. This is the first resurrection and the rapture which occur at when the seventh seal is opened.
The rapture and the first resurrection are also firmly linked to the last trumpet and the second coming of Christ when Jesus comes to Redeem his people and judge the nations. (see below)
Also occurring when the seventh seal is opened is the 'sealing' of the 144000 Jews. The 144000 Jews are protected from God's Wrath which is about to be poured out upon the ungodly nations of the Earth who were not raptured to be with Christ when the seven trumpet sounds.
The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.” And the twenty-four elders, who were seated on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, saying: “We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, because you have taken your great power and have begun to reign. The nations were angry, and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead, and for rewarding your servants the prophets and your people who revere your name, both great and small—and for destroying those who destroy the earth.” Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm.
The 'seventh trumpet' is the 'last trumpet'
The rapture and the first resurrection are linked to the last trumpet
When the seventh angel sounds his trumpet 'the kingdom of this world becomes the kingdom of our Lord and he shall reign for ever and ever'. The 24 elders, seated on thrones before God, give thanks to the Lord God almighty who is and was, saying you have taken your great power and begun to reign.
The nations were angry for God's wrath has come.
The time for Judging the dead believers and rewarding the prophets and those who revere God's name has come
The seventh trumpet therefore includes the rapture, the first resurrection, the Judgment Seat of Christ, the Sheep and the Goat Judgment and the Battle of Armadeddon
I looked, and there before me was a white cloud, and seated on the cloud was one like a son of man with a crown of gold on his head and a sharp sickle in his hand. Then another angel came out of the temple and called in a loud voice to him who was sitting on the cloud, “Take your sickle and reap, because the time to reap has come, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.” So he who was seated on the cloud swung his sickle over the earth, and the earth was harvested.
Another angel came out of the temple in heaven, and he too had a sharp sickle. Still another angel, who had charge of the fire, came from the altar and called in a loud voice to him who had the sharp sickle, “Take your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of grapes from the earth’s vine, because its grapes are ripe.” The angel swung his sickle on the earth, gathered its grapes and threw them into the great winepress of God’s wrath. They were trampled in the winepress outside the city, and blood flowed out of the press, rising as high as the horses’ bridles for a distance of 1,600 stadia.
When the last trumpet sounds, Christ will appear in the clouds with a crown of gold on his head and a sharp sickle in his hands. The time to reap has come. It is time to harvest for the earth is ripe. Christ swings his sickle over the earth and the earth is Harvested. This is the rapture of the Church at the last trumpet.
But there is another harvest, this time by the angels in charge of the fire. The angel swung his sickle on the earth and gathered it's grapes which were ripe and threw them into the great wine press of God's wrath.
This is not a picture of how God judges the nations but more a picture of how God deals with false Christians in the Church. The nations, the godless, also called pagans are still on earth and God is about to pour his wrath out upon them in the following chapters of revelation. The battle of Armageddon is about to happen.
I saw in heaven another great and marvelous sign: seven angels with the seven last plagues—last, because with them God’s wrath is completed. And I saw what looked like a sea of glass glowing with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast and its image and over the number of its name. They held harps given them by God and sang the song of God’s servant Moses and of the Lamb:
“Great and marvelous are your deeds, Lord God Almighty.
Just and true are your ways, King of the nations.
Who will not fear you, Lord, and bring glory to your name?
For you alone are holy.
All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.”
After the harvest of the Earth in revelation Chapter 14, those who had been victorious over the beast and it's image and the number of his name appear in heaven. They are standing besides a glass sea and are singing a song. The nations are left on earth and are about to suffer the seven last plagues.
After this I heard what sounded like the roar of a great multitude in heaven shouting:
“Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God, for true and just are his judgments.
He has condemned the great prostitute who corrupted the earth by her adulteries.
He has avenged on her the blood of his servants.”
And again they shouted: “Hallelujah!
The smoke from her goes up for ever and ever.”
The twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God, who was seated on the throne. And they cried: “Amen, Hallelujah!”
Then a voice came from the throne, saying:
“Praise our God, all you his servants, you who fear him, both great and small!”
Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting: “Hallelujah!
For our Lord God Almighty reigns.
Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory!
For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.
Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.”
(Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people.)
The Great Multitude in heaven are those who had been raptured or resurrected at the seventh (last) trumpet.
They are rejoicing that God has condemned the great prostitute and avenged the blood of his servants.
The time for the wedding of the Lamb has come and his bride has made herself ready.
In the next passage, Christ leads an army of believers on white horses to strike down the nations who are still on earth.
I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Coming out of his mouth is a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. “He will rule them with an iron scepter.”He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: king of kings and lord of lords.
And I saw an angel standing in the sun, who cried in a loud voice to all the birds flying in midair, “Come, gather together for the great supper of God, so that you may eat the flesh of kings, generals, and the mighty, of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, great and small.”
Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies gathered together to wage war against the rider on the horse and his army. But the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who had performed the signs on its behalf. With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped its image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. The rest were killed with the sword coming out of the mouth of the rider on the horse, and all the birds gorged themselves on their flesh.
The beast and the false prophet were captured and thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulphur.
The nations were killed with the sword coming out of the mouth of the rider on the horse.
When the Millennium is over, the godless nations will be raised for judgment (the second resurrection).
The book of life will be opened but this time it will be a different chapter (for the Nations).
Those who worshipped the beast will not be in the Lamb's book of life.
Those who are not condemned at the Great White Throne will become the nations in Eternity.