Throughout the New Testament, as well as in some prophecies of the Old Testament, the Bible makes a transition from literal Israel to spiritual Israel. Hosea 2:23, Romans 2:28–29; Galatians 3:29; Romans 9-11
In Revelation 12:1-17, we find this transition from literal to spiritual Israel in the prophetic language of symbols. In verse 2, the symbolic woman is pregnant. Her child is Jesus who was born a Jew in the land of Judah. In verse 4 the dragon/Satan seeks to destroy the child Jesus when He is born. This was fulfilled by Herod: Matthew 2:13-16. In verse 5 the child is caught up to God in heaven, representing the resurrection of Christ.
As the prophecy progresses in verse 6, the woman no longer represents ethnic Israel but has now transitioned to spiritual Christian Israel: fleeing from persecution during the prophesied 42 months of the Great Tribulation. Verses 7-12 describes the victory gained over Satan by Jesus’ death on the Cross and how Satan and his angels are finally thrown down to the earth, 1260 days, three and a half years, the 42 month period before Jesus physically Returns.
Then, in verse 13 the woman is again brought to view, being persecuted by Satan. In verse 14 she is given wings of an eagle so as she can escape. Verses 6 and 14 present a major prophetic transition to God’s people. Both the woman and her place have changed from ethnic Israel in the Middle East to spiritual Israel and the new place God has prepared for her. Note that some Christians remain: verse 17 and Satan persecutes them. They are the ‘many’ that agreed to the 7 year treaty of peace with the Anti-Christ, Daniel 11:32a and do not go into exile: Zephaniah 14:2
It is important to understand three truths outlined in the prophecy and confirmed both in the New Testament and in the history of the church:
- After the death of Christ, the Israel of God, transitioned from literal Israel to spiritual Israel. From an ethnic people to all peoples. 1 Peter 2:9-10
- God’s faithful people: the woman, are moved from the holy Land to a place of safety on earth, given to her by God, to avoid the Great Tribulation.
- The new Israel of God: all true Christians, are the focal point of the New Testament and the inheritors of God’s promises to ancient Israel.
Thinking that God still has a plan to redeem ethnic Israel; the Jewish people, conflicts with many prophesies that say how Judah will be judged and only a remnant will survive. It is Christians, from every race, nation and language who are God’s true, righteous people. Galatians 6:16; the Overcomers [Israelites] of God.
Revelation 12 presents us with a prophetic outline of God’s Christian people in the symbolic form of a woman. In the first part of Revelation 12, the woman is the literal House of Judah located in Palestine, The latter part of the same prophecy makes use of the same symbols that took literal Israel on their journey to Canaan; to now describe the journey of the woman, the Christian Israelites of God, to a safe place on earth where they can worship Him in safety, until the 1260 days of the Great Tribulation have passed. Ref: James Rafferty
All of this speaks to how small our planet really is – and, indeed, always has been – a powerful reminder of how little real difference there is between us all. As Joseph T. Chang, Douglas L.T. Rhode, and Steve Olson observe in their 2004 paper on the Most Recent Common Ancestor, we’re all shockingly interrelated, and getting more so all the time:
“No matter the languages we speak or the color of our skin, we share ancestors who planted rice on the banks of the Yangtze, who first domesticated horses on the steppes of the Ukraine, who hunted giant sloths in the forests of North and South America, and who labored to build the Great Pyramid of Khufu. [And] within two thousand years, it is likely that everyone on earth will be descended from most of us.”
for there is only one resurrection of the just (Luke 14:14) – and it occurs on the “last day – just as JESUS repeatedly stated:
“This is the will of him that sent me, that everyone which sees the Son, and believes on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day” (John 6:40).
At the supposed Rapture, “the dead in Christ shall rise first” (I Thessalonians 4:16), so there is simply no Scripturally valid, sequential place to raise the dead, at any point before “the last day.”
The other gospel of the Rapture Cult masks the profound importance of the “Hour of Temptation” in the end times and we should not be deceived by the false theories and fables. 2 Corinthians 2:11, 2 Timothy 4:3-4
The fact is, the modern false prophets have erected a theological monstrosity via the media magnified characterization of the tribulation when, in fact, the Scriptures repeatedly warn the greatest threat faced by the final generation is deception, as opposed to persecution:
The disciples came unto him privately, saying…what shall be the SIGN of thy coming, and of the end of the world? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. Matthew 24:3-4