1 Thessalonians 4:15-17



1 Thessalonians 4:15-17

15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

These verses could explain a post-tribulation event where the Lord returns for His church. If the event were to happen after the tribulation, this passage would line up with the book of Matthew:

Matthew 24:29-31

29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

In both passages, the Lord Jesus Christ is described as being in the clouds. What are your thoughts?

In Greek, the word "clouds" is synonymous with the words "crowd" or "many people".

Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses ... (Hebrews 12:1)

I think the sequence of events is this:

No one builds the Third Temple in accordance with the prophesy of Ezekiel, so there comes a global crisis, political, economic, religious, there comes "great tribulation." As said, "the great tribulation" can stop only for the sake of the "elect." Therefore, when Ezekiel's Temple begins to be built, the great tribulation ceases: the elect will gather near the Third Temple. And these elect are many, the crowd, the "cloud". In these elect ones there is (in spirit) Jesus Christ, all the saints who died in former ages. The moment when the Eastern Gate of the Third Temple will be closed is the moment of Rapture of the Church. From now on, the Messiah will appear on Earth: Israel. First - those who entered the Eastern Gate, then - those (natural Jews), who took in their environment entered.

Interesting. I am really intrigued about the synonymous meaning between the word clouds and the clouds of witnesses in Hebrews 12:1. This is my first time hearing this concept, but my understanding is that clouds in the verses I provided are in fact referring to actual clouds. I can be wrong however. ;)

Can you explain what you mean by, "no one builds the Third Temple in accordance with the prophesy of Ezekiel"? Are you claiming that the temple will not built in accordance to the Old Testament, so therefore Christ must return? I can't tell from your wordage, but it almost sounds as though you are saying that the temple is build more than once, and each time never in accordance to the prophecies of Ezekiel Temple?

In the study of the Holy Scriptures, I proceed from the following, we consider it a good principle to explain the phenomena by the simplest hypothesis possible. They say that if we understand the Great Flood literally, then the main miracle would not be the Great Flood, but the fact that God hid from us all the traces of this flood.

Therefore, when I will read in the first chapter of Genesis, that the Spirit of God moved on the face of the waters, then I immediately recall the Revelation of John, where there is an explanation:

The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues. (Revelation 17:15)

And when I read about trees, I remember that in the Scriptures with the trees, the righteous and the wicked can be compared. Therefore, when I read how God allowed Adam to give names to beasts, and then offered these animals as helpers for Adam, I guess that these "beasts" are not biological beasts, but certain qualities of character. "Lion" is "courage", "wolf" is "predation", "hare" is "cowardice", "ox" is "love of work", "donkey" is "obstinacy", "snake" is "cunning" or "wisdom". However, Adam's assistant was not the beasts, but the "wife", that is, the opinion of the surrounding people. Because in the Bible "wife" is an image of the people's environment, the image of society. Each person in his actions relies on the opinion of others, follows the general trend. When in mankind there appeared a tendency to live at the expense of cunning, from the fruits of the tree of knowledge (which God forbade to use), then Man acted "like all".

Accordingly, if we move from the first days of mankind in the last days, in the Revelation of John, it is easy to understand that 144,000 are not the ones who did not sleep with women, but those who did not follow the majority, as Adam did.

I think that today everyone understands that giant cosmic objects, stars, can not fall on the planet Earth. Therefore, if we understand that the Holy Scriptures are encrypted by God in such a way that the keys to this cipher are contained in this very Scripture, we will easily find that the "stars" are "wise men" or "teachers of humanity":

And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever. (Daniel 12:3)

All right, now about Ezekiel's Temple. Of course, nobody built this Temple, and apparently, no one is going to build. Because, firstly, this Temple should not be built in Jerusalem, because in the prophecy of Ezekiel this is written directly:

In the visions of God brought he me into the land of Israel, and set me upon a very high mountain, by which [was] as the frame of a city on the south. (Ezekiel 40:2)

In this verse it is said three times that the Temple should not be built in Jerusalem.

1. Ezekiel, the priest, did not recognize this place: neither the Temple Mount, nor the Mount of Olives, nor the stream of Kedron.
2. In Jerusalem there are no mountains at all, especially "high mountains", there are hills.
3. The First and Second Temples were built not on the southern slope of the mountain, but on the north-eastern slope of the Zion Hill.

Do I have to write about what is there secondly, thirdly, and so on? The Second Temple is completely different from the Temple, which is described in the prophecy of Ezekiel.

I am quote sure the word clouds in 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 and Matthew 24:29-31 are of a literal meaning in nature.

Andrew,

Do you have other scriptures that would support a synonymous meaning between the word clouds and "crowd" or "many people"? This is an interesting topic and I would like to keep an open mind about this concept, if nothing else, for the sake of learning.

thedrumchannell,

Me comes to mind Ezekiel 38:9 :

Thou shalt ascend and come like a storm, thou shalt be like a cloud to cover the land, thou, and all thy bands, and many people with thee.

By definition, hills are mountains, which also means there are mountains in Jerusalem. The mountains of Jerusalem are Mount Zion, the Mount of Olives, Mount Herzl, Har Hotzvim, Har HaMenuchot, Mount Scopus, and the Temple Mount.

I am not convinced that the third temple should not be constructed in Jerusalem. What are your thoughts?

There is also Matthew 26:64 that might indicate that clouds is synonymous with "crowd" or "many people"?

Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

Andrew,

What are your thoughts on the timing of the rapture and how would your interpretation tie in with the third temple? Do you believe that we will go through the tribulation period as believers in Christ?

Also, I appreciate your explanation on the 144,000 from Revelation. This is a topic that I wish I understood a little better than I do.