What is the past and prophetic significance of “the third day”?

Exodus 19:1, 11, In the third month…the third day. 

In Exodus 19:1 we read that the Israelites arrived at Sinai in the third month, and according to Jewish tradition, a very significant event occurred on the third day of third month that was not only pivotal in the history of the Israelite people, but has profoundly influenced YHVH’s people, including you and me, to this very day. It was the giving of the ten commandments on Shavuot or the day of Pentecost. Now let’s connect some dots or put some pieces of the puzzle together to form a prophetic picture of an amazing biblical truth regarding the third day and explore the past, present and future implications of this.  

The biblical holy day of Shavuot, when YHVH gave the ten commandments to Israel and the world, was also when YHVH, for the first time in recorded biblical history, sounded the heavenly shofar—known as the first trumpet. Amazingly, this shofar event relates back to Abraham’s willingness to offer up Isaac as an offering to YHVH and to the ram that was caught in the thicket by his horns. 

While en route to the place where YHVH had instructed Abraham to offer up his only beloved son, he could see “the place” (Mount Moriah) afar off in three days (Gen 22:4). As we shall see later, this prophetically points to Messiah’s sacrificial death at the same location three millennia later. 

As we have just read, the Israelites were to be ready “on the third day” to receive the Written Torah thundered from the lips of the pre-incarnate Yeshua the Messiah (Acts 7:38; 1 Cor 10:4) at Mount Sinai. But the term the “third day” in Exodus chapter 19 also occurs in reference to Abraham and the akeidah or the binding of Isaac (Gen 22:1–18). What is the connection between these two events? Namely this. The near death of Isaac on Mount Moriah (Jerusalem) and YHVH providing Abraham a ram to sacrifice instead of his only beloved son prophetically pointed to the death of the Yeshua the Messiah the Redeemer at the same spot about 2,000 years later. Similarly, the Israelites, on the day of Pentecost when they received the ten commandments, were living out their own prophecy that also pointed to the same time when Messiah would come as the Living Torah culminating on the day of Pentecost or Shavuot, when he would write his Torah-laws on their hearts. Therefore, the “third day” reference for both Abraham and the Israelites had a similar relevance, for both were living in the second millennia B.C. or before the birth of Yeshua the Messiah, who was born near the beginning of the first century A.D. or in the third millennia, or on third day prophetically from both the time of Abraham and the Israelites.

Though a bit tangential to the subject of Shavuot, let’s look at another concept relating to the prophetic implications of the third day. As Yeshua, the Living Torah, came on the third day, so he will return on the third day after his first coming or in the third millennia after his first coming. That is, he came in the first millennium of our common era, and we have just passed into the third millennia of the same era and are now in the twenty-first century. According to biblical prophecy, Messiah will return in this third millennia, or third day as we read in Hosea.

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Did the Apostles believe in the eminent return of Messiah?

1 John 2:18, It is the last hour. This scripture passage along with others by Paul, James and John clearly indicates that the apostolic writers when writing these passages (i.e. prior to AD 70, the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple) viewed the second coming of Yeshua as imminent, and was not far off in the future. After all, the last question they asked Yeshua before his ascension to heaven was the matter that was the most pressing on their minds: “Will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel” (Acts 1:6). This proves what they were thinking; namely, that Yeshua was (hopefully) about to defeat the Romans and restore Israel to self rule. Of course, Yeshua didn’t give them a definitive time frame as to when he would fulfill biblical prophecy in this regard. So they were still left with the hope that his coming would be imminent, and that his kingdom would be established on earth. With his miraculous victory over death, their hopes would have been renewed in this regard. (On the apostles belief in the imminent return of Yeshua, see also 1 Cor 15:52; 1 Thess 4:14–15; Rom 13:11; 16:20; cp. Jas 5:7–9; 1 John 2:18; Acts 1:6; 1 Cor 10:11; Rev 1:1.) 

The imminence of Yeshua’s second coming may have been based on a misunderstanding of Yeshua’s own words in his Olivet Discourse where he talks about the events announcing his second coming falling on “this generation” (Matt 24:34, 36). From this passage, it’s not readily understood to which generation he is referring—that one, or another off in the future, or both. It appears that the apostles applied his words to their generation and, hence, their view that his return was imminent.

The apostles likely initially believed that Yeshua’s return was immediately imminent. After a few years when he hadn’t returned, they likely focused on what Yeshua meant by the term “this generation” (Matt 24:34, 36). The writer of Hebrews gives us a clue as to what a generation may have meant to them, namely, forty years (as in the wanderings of the children of Israel en route to the Promised Land, which was a prophetic picture of what the disciples were hoping for in Yeshua’s established kingdom rule on earth. So forty years from Yeshua’s crucifixion in AD 30 takes us to AD 70 when, in the disciples’ minds, Yeshua’s prophecies regarding the destruction of the temple were to occur. “Since the prophet Daniel spoke of a period of seven years to complete the events leading up to the coming of the Messiah, and Jesus himself referred to Daniel’s prophecy as a gauge to measure those events, the counting backwards seven years from 70 C.E. brings us to the crucial year of 63 C.E. for those events to begin happening (Beyond Acts, p. 58, by Paul Finch; also see ibid. pp. 54–61 and Restoring the Original Bible, pp. 223–281, by Ernest Martin).

The Beast (Rev 13:4)

The abomination that causes desolation (Matt 24:15)

The desolator (Dan 9:27)

The man of sin (or lawlessness), the son of perdition (2 Thess 2:3)

The little horn (Dan 7:8)

The Assyrian (Mic 5:5; Isa 10:5; 14:25)

Many antichrists. How does John define the spirit of antichrist? From 1 John 2:18–19, 22; 4:3; 2 John 7 we learn that the Antichrist and all spirits of antichrist have come out of the first century apostolic faith of the Jewish Christian community. From these passages we also learn that the spirit of antichrist denies that Yeshua is the Messiah (Savior and Redeemer of man), denies that Yeshua is part of the “Godhead,” that he is deity and is the Son of Elohim, and denies the incarnation of Yeshua. This is how the Bible defines the spirit of antichrist.

What should be our reaction when we encounter this demonic spirit of antichrist? The wise counsel of John in his second epistle sums up our firm conviction on this matter.

Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Messiah does not have Elohim. He who abides in the doctrine of Messiah has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds. (2 John 9–11)

What additionally can we learn about the person of the Antichrist and the spirit of antichrist from the four passages where antichrist is mentioned in John’s epistles?

From 1 John 2:18–19, 22; 4:3; 2 John 7 we learn that the Antichrist and all spirits of antichrist have come out of the first century apostolic faith of the Jewish Christian community. This eliminates some of the world’s large religions (e.g. Hinduism, Buddhism) as being contenders for the end times religious system of the Antichrist. That leaves paganized mainstream Christianity and Islam. From these passages we also learn that the spirit of antichrist denies that Yeshua is the Messiah (Savior and Redeemer of man), denies that Yeshua is part of the “Godhead,” is deity and is the Son of Elohim, and denies the incarnation of Yeshua. Only Islam fits this biblical description of an antichrist religion.

 

History Repeats Itself Again and Again—The Golden Calf, the Church and YOU

Exodus 32:1, Moses delayed coming. Moses is a prophetic picture of Yeshua. Moses’ descending from Mount Sinai is a prophetic picture of Yeshua descending from heaven to the earth the first and second time. When the people presumed that Moses delayed his coming, they fell to the temptation to syncretize with the heathen religious system around them by yielding to their baser nature giving in to the lusts of their flesh as expressed in golden calf worship. Heathen, man-made religious systems have lower moral and spiritual standards than those of YHVH. In many respects, the mainstream church has done the same thing as the ancient Israelites by acting as if Yeshua has delayed his second coming, and by conforming to some of the world’s standards and customs. This is a form of golden calf worship, which is a mixture of Torah-truth and pagan practices. Yeshua warned his disciples against this proclivity of humans to grow impatient and spiritually cold wile waiting for his return (Matt 24:48).

Exodus 32:2, Break off the golden earrings. The Christian people have generously given the mainstream church much gold and other wealth over the past 1900 years. In the mean time, with that wealth, the church system has constructed many huge religious monuments. These are monuments, in part, to the gods of materialism, and is a form of golden calf worship. Neither Yeshua nor his disciples needed vast sums of money, resources or monuments to spread the gospel message. What they lacked in material resources they made up with passion for the gospel message and with the anointing of YHVH to proclaim that gospel with miraculous power. What the mainstream church largely lacks in passion and the anointing to spread the gospel, they now, sadly, substituted with wealth and religious monuments.

The Golden Calf Incident: A Prophetic Picture of the Church

On Shavuot (the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost), at Mount Sinai, YHVH entered into a marriage covenant with the children of Israel, but they were not ready to live up to the terms of that covenant. Those terms, simply stated, involved the Israelites being faithful and obedient only to YHVH, Israel’s Elohim (God) and spiritual husband, and to follow his instruction in righteousness, the Torah. This Israel quickly demonstrated they were not Continue reading


 

Happy Yom Teruah! Happy Resurrection Day!

A Chronological Analysis of Scriptures on the Resurrection of the Dead

Gen 3:2–3, The question of what happens in the afterlife goes back to the very beginning of man’s tenure on this earth as we can see from Eve’s discussion with the serpent. Out of fear of death, Adam and Eve chose not to eat of the tree of knowledge, until the serpent tricked them to disobey YHVH and eat of it. The serpent lied to them by telling them that they could have immortal life and still violate Elohim’s commandments. Most men have believed this lie to this day.

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Job 14:12–15,  Job is likely the oldest book in the Bible, and we see that from early times until now, man has had a perennial interest in the afterlife. Job wonders what his fate will be when he dies. Will he die and that’s all there is, or is there an afterlife?

Job 19:25–27, Job came to a place in his life where he obtained a faith about his fate in the afterlife. He knew that it hinged on his faith in his Redeemer. Biblically speaking, what was the mission of the Redeemer (i.e., Yeshua the Messiah)? It was to redeem man from the sting of death brought on by sin.

Ps 16:9–10,  Though this is usually viewed as a messianic prophecy, it isn’t confined to this interpretation. Who are YHVH’s holy, kadosh or set apart ones? The Messiah fits this catergory, of course, but so also do YHVH’s saints. As the apostolic writers teach us, as Yeshua died and rose again, so the saints who are in Yeshua will die and rise again.

Ps 17:15, The term “awake” as in “awake from the sleep of death” is a Hebraism referring to the resurrection. David knew that YHVH created man in his own image for a purpose. If so, then why? It’s deductive reasoning. The creation of man wasn’t a pointless, dead-end endeavor on the Creator’s part. David knew the heart and character of YHVH well enough Continue reading


 

The Final Redemption of the 12 Tribes

Genesis 47:28, The Jewish sages recognize that this final portion of Genesis chronicles Jacob’s wish to reveal to his sons prophetic understandings pertaining to Israel’s long and numerous exiles, culminating in the final redemption (return of Israel from her exile in “Babylon” at the end of the age prior to the return of Messiah at which time the two houses of Israel will be reunited under Messiah Son of David). Jacob states this in 49:1 when he gives his prophecies relating to what will befall his sons “in the last days.” Prior to the establishment of the Messianic Age (Millennium) all Israel would go into a time of darkness, gloom and exile. The sages teach that this idea is implicated in the fact that the Torah scroll fails to place the customary nine spaces between the last word of the previous parashah and the first word of the present one. There is only a one space gap in Hebrew letters which predicts the “closing in” of Israel as they go into exile and captivity in Egypt.

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Here’s an excerpt from a larger, yet unpublished, article on the timing of the return of the 12 tribes to the land of Israel in the last days. This extract deals with the concept of redemption in Israel’s long history, and specifically with the final redemption of the last days.

I hope you enjoy this Shabbat-day study.

The Repeating Paradigm of Israel’s Redemption

Biblically, the concept of the return of exiled and scattered Israel (including Ephraim) to the land of Israel is tied to the idea of redemption. Biblically, the concept of redemption involves a stronger person (the redeemer) intervening on behalf of a weaker person (the enslaved, i.e., the one needing redemption), defeating the captor of the slave thus allowing the enslaved to go free.

The first biblical example of this process occurred when Elohim redeemed Israel out of Egypt. The biblical prophets compared this first exodus to a greater, or second exodus that is yet to occur in the future. In Jewish thought, the exodus out of Egypt is called the first redemption, yet the biblical prophets also speak of Israel going into captivity again — this time not to Egypt, but into the exile of the nations. From this place of exile and spiritual Continue reading


 

Matthew 24 and Revelation Synced

Integrating the End-Times Scenarios of the Olivet Prophecy and the Book of Revelation

The General Tribulation Period

Certain aspects of the prophetic scenario that Yeshua lays out in Matthew 24 were fulfilled in A.D. 70 with Jerusalem’s destruction. Discussing the events around A.D. 70 is beyond the scope of this work, so I’ll pass over this subject and focus on those prophecies that are clearly eschatological (i.e., those that deal with end-times events) in nature.

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The time period of the Olivet Prophecy started in the first century A.D. and continues until the second coming.

Matthew 24:4–8 describes conditions that existed on earth at A.D. 70, and that would continue and intensify up until the second coming. These include:

  • Religious deception — the spirit of Antimessiah. (John talks about this spirit in his first epistle, and says that it was active in his day, 1 John 2:18–19.)
  • Wars and rumors of wars.
  • Famines.
  • Pestilence.

These four conditions answer the disciples’ question about what would be the signs of the end times (Matt 24:3), and they also correlate one-to-one with the first four seals (commonly known as the four horsemen of the apocalypse) of Revelation 6.

Religious deception corresponds to the first horse (Rev 6:2).

Wars and rumors of wars corresponds to the second horse (Rev 6:3).

Famines corresponds to the third horse (Rev 6:5).

Pestilence corresponds to the fourth horse (Rev 6:7).

Next in Matthew 24 comes the martyrdom of the saints — something that has been happening since the death of Stephen in the Book of Acts to this present day (Matt 24:9–14). This martyrdom corresponds with the fifth seal of Revelation 6:9–11.

There are two groups of martyred saints: those who are killed before the end of the tribulation period and just before the beginning of the great tribulation, and those who are martyred afterwards. This second martyrdom completes the martyrdom of saints that has been going on over the ages (Rev 6:11lp).

The great end-times martyrdom of saints corresponds with the worldwide preaching of the gospel (Matt 24:14). This prophecy of Yeshua about the gospel being preached to all the world has only been fulfilled recently. Continue reading