Christ’s Bride, Apostasy, and the Great Crowd

Some may wonder why these subjects are put together in the same chapter. Understanding these subjects first will help many to understand many prophesies for our day including many illustrations as told by Jesus. Believe it or not, these do go together, from a certain point of view. It also will help to review the page on How God’s kingdom will be as it was in ancient times, 24 elders, and white robes

Here is the simple explanation: (scriptural references and further detail are given later)

  1. Christ’s “Bride” is made up of two groups of 144,000 humans for a total of 288,000 that have been “bought from the earth” and are from all nations. Twelve groups (Tribes) of 24,000 each.

Only after the two groups of 144,000 are accepted by Jehovah to rule with Jesus, does “New Jerusalem” “come down out of heaven.” I believe that this is a literal number, for multiple reasons.

  1. There is a point in time in which both groups are examined by Jehovah at the same time.

The first group is from long ago when they were persecuted in the first and possibly the second century. These ones worshiped correctly, for the most part. Thus their worship was “straight” or “measurable” by Jehovah and they are accepted. They make up the part of the symbolic temple, altar, and people in it that are measurable in Revelation 11:1.

The second group is living today and their worship is “crooked” and “not to be measured” by Jehovah. Thus they are rejected by him. They are apostates and false prophets in Jehovah’s eyes. But for most, they do not even realize it. They have fallen asleep, spiritually. That is because these ones professing to be followers of Christ and/or Jehovah follow human thinking rather then the scriptures. This group is “given to the nations” and they are abandoned by Jehovah. They suffer completely and greatly. Many no longer profess to be worshipers of Jehovah or even perhaps Jesus. There is a great cleansing that lasts about 3.5 years. Then those ones who have endured and have been “whitened” are accepted by Jehovah to be the second part of the “Bride of Christ.” Then both groups serve as one to Jehovah and Jesus. This straightening or cleansing work is so important that if it was not accomplished, “the earth would be devoted to destruction.”

  1. When both groups become one, they will serve with Jesus as kings and priests over the earth. It will be a time of great rejoicing for the lovers of righteousness because there will be no tolerance of the wicked oppressing the righteous ones. Sickness will be gone. Ones dead will be resurrected. When both groups join as the Bride of Christ, they are illustrated as a perfect city with continuous worship. It is now worthy to be measured! (Revelation 21) Contrast that with Revelation 11:2 where they were not to be measured and were thrown to the nations. A cleansing (straightening) work had been done.
  2. The “Great crowd” are not part of the “Bride” class but will still be invited to live right into the 1,000 year blessed reign of Christ. Others who oppose Christ or Jehovah will perish.


Concerning the number 288,000:

1 Chronicles 27:1 Speaks of a total of 288,000 who were to minister to the king. Twenty four thousand in each 12 divisions – One division for each month. (24,000 * 12 = 288,000) Certainly we know that David was Jehovah’s appointed king. So it can be reasoned that those who were ministering to David were also ministering to Jehovah by supporting Jehovah’s decisions. This is a literal number of people used in the past in the King’s service.

Some question whether this is a literal number or not, in Revelation. I lean to the literal in this instance for many reasons – Of which many are on this page. Also, it must be acknowledged that although Revelation was written in signs, some numbers in Revelation are literal. Such as the “seven congregations” or the “four” horsemen or the “four living creatures” or the “seven seals.” There are others and I realize that there are many interpretations of Revelation. But the important point is how does an interpretation fit in with other passages of scripture? They need to be tested out and they need to fit.

Some believe that this number is symbolic because the names of the tribes mentioned in Revelation do not match the literal 12 tribes. But that is not reason to believe that they are not literal. This is where truth can hurt some people. Remember what Jesus said about sons of the kingdom not allowed into the kingdom? Recall also what he said concerning people from the East and West reclining at the table with him in the kingdom. (Matthew 8:11-12; Luke 13:28-29) Therefore, it should not be surprising that some of the names have been replaced. Consider also at Revelation 5:9-10 where kings of the kingdom are from every nation.

The first 144,000 is mentioned in different parts of Revelation and other books. It is also mentioned in illustrations but I will bring those out later. Here are some passages which identify this first group:

i.Revelation 6:9-11

  1. Here we see that these ones have died. (vs.9)
  2. A white robe was given them. (vs.11)
  3. They were told to rest a little while longer, until “the number was also filled also of their fellow slaves and their brothers who were about to be killed as they also had been.”
  4. So this group by being given white robes were already accepted by Jehovah to be worthy to rule with his Son. They had conquered by being put fully to the test. Their worship was straight – It could be measured. Compare this with Zechariah 3:1-7; 14:2 (“half of the city”); and the “ephah” mentioned at Zechariah 5:6-11.

iii.Another illustration would be Revelation 11:1. Here they are represented and able to be “measured” because their worship was straight. Contrast with vs. 2.

iv.Revelation 14:4 speaks of this group as the “firstfruits.”

  1. Revelation 20:4b speaks of them as “those executed with the ax.”

vi.1 Corinthians 15:23 speaks of them as “the firstfruits.” vii.1 Thessalonians 4:16 speaks of them as “dead in union with Christ” and that they would rise first.

viii.This first group is taken “away from the face of the   serpent” for 3.5 years. So they are not persecuted by it.   Revelation 12:14

The second 144,000 are identified in:

i.Revelation 7:3-8

  1. It is interesting that it tells us that they have been sealed but it does not say that they have died like their brothers in Revelation 6:11

ii.Zechariah 14:2c “And half of the city must go forth into the exile”

iii.Zechariah 5:6-11 The wicked “woman” is not accepted but thrown back. This is a very interesting verse and it is translated many different ways. I favor the NWT but without the interjected word “[back].” It is also important to note that the term “midst” here does not mean in the middle but it can mean next to. The “ephah” is mentioned above and it could represent the first group.

iv.Revelation 15:2 as “the glassy sea mingled with fire.” They were victorious against the wild beast and had just been fully tested. Because this testing just happened, it is like they were freshly refined or “mingled with fire.” This passage also mentions the first group as the “glassy sea” but it is not mingled with fire. Translations render this passage multiple ways but it does appear to talk about two separate “seas.” Of course, much of this is speculation. The “sea” could represent God’s spirit too, or something else. This is not critical to identify but it can be interesting to speculate about it.

v.Revelation 11:2 as the courtyard that is not to be measured but to be given to the nations for 1,260 days. (vs.2,3) This is part of the “holy city” but it is not accepted nor measured. Its worship is crooked. It is rejected by Jehovah. This is in stark contrast to the part of the city mentioned in verse 1. This city is to become the New Jerusalem but half of it needs to be whitened. A cleansing work is needed.

vi.Revelation 11:3-12 There are many renderings of this passage of the two witnesses. I am going to interject thoughts here because I find it difficult to explain verse 12 without explaining the previous verses. Basically, the “two witnesses” represent both groups but from two different time periods. They are also known as the two flocks of one fold at John 10:14-16. Both groups “conquer” Satan’s “system” and serve as an everlasting witness that they proved faithful to Jehovah and his Son Jesus. And all the nations will know that because of the faithful course of “Christ’s Bride” and Jehovah’s mercy, Jehovah does not destroy “all flesh.” { Compare Isaiah 12:1,2; 14:1-7; 25:6-9. Matthew 10:18; Luke 21:12,13; Revelation 3:21; 12:17b. Compare also Revelation 11:4 with Zechariah 4:11-14; Genesis 31:43-53 (especially vs.53 – Notice “pillar” and “bear witness”); Joshua 4:4-24 (especially verses 20-24) and Revelation 11:11 with Hosea 6:1-3. Compare Malachi 4:5,6 and Matthew 24:22 with the principle at Genesis 18:20-32 where if there were “enough” righteous men in Sodom and Gomorrah they would not have been destroyed.}

Both groups straighten their worship and have their sins forgiven and are approved by Jehovah. However, upon initial inspection, only the first group is prepared. The second group is not prepared and is given to the nations because their worship needs to be “straightened” (“purified”, “whitened”, “whitened”, “cleansed”) so it is “measurable.” Compare Revelation 11:1,2 with Revelation 21:9-22 where now nothing is “thrown out” but everything is measurable; Daniel 11:31-35; 12:7,11; Hosea 3:4,5. Jesus also has a covenant with them. (Luke 22:28-30) And it is important for them to live up to it. I believe that the “Moses” represented those in the first century (and possibly the second) who conquered when Rome was persecuting Jesus’ followers. The “Elijah” would represent those today who straighten their worship and expose false religion. In this case, I do not believe that they (as a group) will see death as their brothers did as mentioned in Revelation 6:11. Although it does say that they are “killed” for three and a half days. Jonah was “killed” symbolically in the big fish for three days. But Revelation 11:11,12 shows that these ones would be observed by the nations to have God’s backing after their “being put to death” and that their enemies would hear a loud voice from heaven say “Come on up here” and they go “up.” Exactly how this happens, we will see. Recount how Elisha saw Elijah leave (“taken from” him) in the “fiery war chariot.” (2 Kings 2:9-12) But it might be more exciting then that – Such as changing in form in a “twinkling of an eye!” It is at this time that they join their brothers somehow and then the “Bride” is complete! – Compare Ezekiel 37 where the “dry bones” represent the “witnesses” of Revelation being “killed.” For our day, it is mentioned in Revelation 11:9. Notice too (in Ezekiel 37) where God causes them to come to life – Compare Revelation 11:11. Notice the account of two sticks (In Ezekiel) becoming one just after the dry bones (spiritual Israel) come to life (verses 1-14) in verses 15-20. These two sticks represent the two witnesses from two different time periods finally coming together. This coming together is also mentioned as “two nations” and “two kingdoms” in verse 22. And notice in verse 24; Jehovah’s servant “David” to be king over them. I find it interesting too how Jehovah’s “tabernacle” will be over them.(verse 27) And interesting how verse 28 mentions how “the nations will have to know that I, Jehovah, am sanctifying Israel when my sanctuary comes to be in the midst of them to time indefinite.” So these actions bear witness to the nations and Jehovah’s “sanctuary comes to be in the midst of them to time indefinite.” Compare Revelation 21:2-3.

Is this the “Elijah” that Jesus spoke of as “Elijah, indeed, is coming and will restore all things” in Matthew 17:1-13? When Jesus spoke this, in verse 11, John the Baptist had already been killed. Although in the following verses he does talk about John the Baptist.  In this case, in Revelation 11, it is mostly referring to works of similar nature of Elijah. Elijah was jealous for Jehovah because Jehovah’s people had turned aside. He also took the lead in exposing false worshipers. So from a group action, I can say yes. Is there another individual who could act as an Elijah to turn Jehovah’s people to straighten their ways? It is an interesting question. The original Elijah of old was not of the priestly class. Time will tell. Compare Malachi 4:5,6.

vii.Revelation 14:12 Here the “holy ones” need to keep unblemished from the wild beast. They need to endure. Their brothers have already died and had been fully put to the test so this passage is not talking about them.

viii.Revelation 20:4c “and those who had worshiped neither  the wild beast nor its image and who had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand.” Again, their brothers who had already been fully tested are in heaven at this time (Revelation 6:11)

  1. I find this interesting because where their brothers were spoken as killed by the ax, these ones are fully tested not necessarily to death but they needed to avoid contamination from the wild beast.
  2. What might this “mark” be? Well, the beast is from Satan’s system. So, it could entail any form of support of a false doctrine or other opposition to Jehovah. In any case, it is extremely important to straighten one’s worship so that one is not “disapproved somehow.” (2 Corinthians 13:5) Also, Daniel 11:32 brings out that those who know their God will prevail.

ix.Daniel 11:35 This is about a cleansing and a whitening of  God’s people. This time period is about 3.5 years before Jesus stands up. (Daniel 12:1,7) If they were worshiping God properly, there would be no reason for a cleansing or whitening.

Compare Malachi 4:5,6 where God states that if the straightening work was not done, the earth would be devoted to destruction. So, we should expect crookedness in worship toward Jehovah today. And this gives us even more reason to make sure that our own worship is straight and to help others. (2 Corinthians 13:5, Mark 12:30,31)

x.Isaiah 9:13-17 God speaks of his people as “all apostates” xi.Jeremiah 25:27-31 God speaks of starting with cleansing his temple before cleansing the nations.

xii. Many more references on the my website. Review the Hebrew scriptures and look through the highlights.

xiii.1 Corinthians 15:23(NWT) “afterward those who belong to the Christ during his presence.” (WEB): 23 But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, then those who are Christ’s, at his coming. See the page What happens when Jesus comes?

xiv.1 Thessalonians 4:17 “We the living who are surviving will, together with them, be caught away in the clouds to meet the lord in the air..” The first group is talked about in the verse 16.

This entire group is taken from two different time periods, as 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 (NIV) helps to show. The time periods are identified in Daniel as separate instances where the king of the north conquers the old city of Jerusalem. In each instance, the king that represents the king of the north is different. and “ruins” or “profanes the sanctuary, the fortress.”

  1. The first time period can be identified as when the king of the north of the first century (who fulfilled the destruction of Jerusalem) stumbles and falls and is not found. He is also mentioned as “broken, but not in anger nor in warfare.” (Daniel 11:19,20) Compare Daniel 9:26; Daniel 8:25 – These passages are all of Rome. Which is represented by a “horn” of Greece which is the “hairy he-goat” in Daniel 8:5-12. Here Rome destroys the temple in the first century. So, the first group is persecuted by Rome. This would not include a time period where Rome did not persecute Christians.
  2. The second time period can be identified by the end of the king of the north for our day. It is abrupt and definite. Compare Daniel 7:24-26 and Daniel 11:44,45. But the king of the north still persecutes God’s people for a minimum of 3.5 years.

Compare Daniel 11:30b-35 and Daniel 7:25 with Daniel 12:7; Revelation 11:2,3. This time period is also identified as “the wild beast that ascends out of the abyss that will make war with them and conquer them.” (Revelation 11:7; Daniel 12:7) Satan’s king of the north is ready to actively persecute God’s people today. As mentioned, the term “God’s people” does not mean that their worship is acceptable to Jehovah. (See the chapter on illustrations by Jesus) However, I find it interesting that Satan would still persecute those ones who are not serving God acceptably. Perhaps it is because of God’s promise to Abraham and the thought that they could still turn to God and be readily accepted by him. Perhaps Satan himself does not know for sure who will be accepted by Jehovah and he does not want to take chances. But we should be careful not to underestimate a spiritual creature that has most likely been in existence for billions of Earth years and is “higher” then humans.

  1. The king of the north’s attitude is described as giving glory to the “god of fortresses” and “over everyone he will magnify himself.” (Daniel 11:3638) A country does not have to be the biggest in order to accomplish this. But it seems that this “king of the north” gives more attention (not necessarily money) to military might then the king of the south. And possibly more attention to military might then the “rights” of his people. The king of the north also is just part of Satan’s authoritative system so other countries can be part of the king of the north and king of the south. Their actions, especially during the approximate 3.5 year tribulation period will show who is on what side. But it is for certain that at a minimum, one of the kings of the north will cause Israel to lose part – if not all of the old city of Jerusalem in our day that they captured back in June 1967
  2. The two time periods which the king of the north persecutes God’s people are still of the same world-wide system under Satan’s authority. See the page concerning Who is Satan?

Some of the benefits of their rulership over the earth:

Revelation 5:9-10 shows us that Jesus “bought persons for God out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and you made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth.”

  1. Revelation 21 Shows New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven. It also shows how tears, death, pain, and outcries will be done away with! This chapter shows us that all of the city can be measured. None of it is thrown out! (Contrast with Revelation 11:1,2) It also has a symbolic temple (Revelation 21:22) and its light does not cease. (Jehovah’s knowledge)
  2. Daniel 12:2 Resurrection of those “asleep in the ground.”
  3. Isaiah 25:6-9 Death being done away with.
  4. Isaiah 35 No drought. Blind will see. Deaf will hear. Speechless one will cry out in gladness! This will be accomplished literally and figuratively.
  5. Isaiah 65:17-25 Paradise conditions. No tolerance of the wicked.

The Great crowd who are not of the “Bride class.” What about them?

  1. They will enjoy blessings under the kingdom rule. See above blessings.
  2. They are given a chance to repent and show submission to Christ before he starts judging.
  3. Psalms 2:1-12   Notice how the kings are given a chance to “kiss” the Son? Thus showing submission.
  4. Revelation 11:13 “The rest became frightened and gave glory to the God of heaven.” These were not God’s people but now they have a great change of heart from what they have seen. It reminds me of the book of Jonah where the city of Nineveh was told that they were going to be destroyed in 40 days. But from the king on down, they all began to put faith in God and repented and so Jehovah changed his mind and spared them. (Jonah 3)

iii The “great crowd” mentioned at Revelation 7:9-12. This is a different group then of the 144,000 “Bride group” mentioned in verses 3-8 or of the total 288,000 as the complete “Bride.” Some attempt to say that these two groups (the 144,000 and the “great crowd”) are the same. But that is incorrect! They claim that verses 13-17 are talking about the great crowd rendering sacred service in his temple. And in so doing, they have to be of a priestly class. But I disagree.

  1. One could say that it could be talking about the 144,000 because once they were tested fully as their brothers were they received “white robes” too. But I lean toward this “great crowd” as being a separate group that also worships God. Because at verse 12, they need to be led to “fountains of waters of life.” Also, the temple will not exist literally. Revelation 21:22 states that there is not a temple in it (New Jerusalem) but that Jesus and Jehovah are the temple. Compare also what Jesus said to the “woman at the well.” (John 4:19-26) Jesus stated that the hour is coming in which ones would neither worship on that mountain or in Jerusalem but that “God is a spirit and those worshiping him must worship with spirit and truth.” (vs.24)
  2. So what about rendering sacred service? Well, how does one render sacred service to Satan today? They can do it by a simple form of opposition to Jehovah. It could be through false worship or practicing wickedness. So the inverse would be true. One can render sacred service to Jehovah simply by upholding his ways and/or teaching others about him. Is it a sacred thing for a father to teach his children about God? I would think so. See comments for Revelation 15:2-4.
  3. Revelation 15:2-4 We see that those who had been victorious from the beast and their brothers who had already been tested (I believe pictured by the “glassy seas”) singing saying “For all the nations will come and worship before you..”
  4. These ones who are mentioned as those who “will come and worship before you” are not of these two groups in unity that are singing. Because they are already worshiping. So it shows that ones not of the “Bride” can worship also.
  5. See the part concerning white robes, for more information

i.Joseph and Mary went in the temple to present Jesus to Jehovah, was that not a form of worship? (Luke 2:22-35)

ii.Jesus mentions that the temple “will be called a house of prayer for all the nations.” (Mark 11:15-17)

  1. Isaiah 55:4,5 “Look! As a witness to the national groups I have given him, as a leader and commander to the national groups. (5) Look! A nation that you do not know you will call, and those of a nation who have not known you will run even to you” This passage shows that all nations will be blessed by Jehovah’s arrangement.

Ones who oppose Jesus’ reign will perish.

Revelation 19:11-21 This is Jesus warring against any who oppose him. It is a great war. However, it is good to remember that there will be survivors:

i.Psalms 2:12 states that “Happy are those taking refuge in him” (God’s Son)

ii.Isaiah 45:20-25 Shows that all those “from the nations” and “all YOU at the ends of the earth” who turn to Jehovah will be saved.

This 288,000 of the “Bride of Christ” are from all nations. They are not all Jewish, as some claim.

  1. Revelation 5:9,10 shows us that Jesus “bought persons for God out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and you made  them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth.”
  2. This offer of a covenant was made to the Jews who were Jesus’ disciples as noted in Luke 22:28-30. (It is different from the “new covenant” in verse 20 which was for forgiveness of sins) In this account it also speaks of the 12 tribes of Israel. So one might conclude that it is literal. However, scriptures show that the “alien resident” could become just like a natural Jew such as Ezekiel 47:21-23; “And YOU must apportion this land to yourselves, to the twelve tribes of Israel. (22) And it must occur that YOU should allot it for inheritance to yourselves and to the alien residents who are residing as aliens in your midst, who have become father to sons in the midst of YOU. And they must become to YOU like a native among the sons of Israel. With YOU people they will fall [by lot] into an inheritance in the midst of the tribes of Israel. (23) And it must occur that in the tribe with which the alien resident has taken up residence as an alien, there is where YOU should give his inheritance..”
  3. Romans 11:25,26 “That a dulling of sensibilities has happened in part to Israel until the full number of people of the nations has come in (26) and in this manner all Israel will be saved..”
  4. Isaiah 56:1-7 “(3) And let not the foreigner that has joined himself to Jehovah say, ‘Without doubt Jehovah will divide me off from his people.’ Neither let the eunuch say, ‘Look! I am a dry tree.’ (4) For this is what Jehovah has said to the eunuchs that keep my sabbaths and that have chosen what I have delighted in and that are laying hold of my covenant: (5) ‘I will even give to them in my house and within my walls a monument and a name, something better then sons and daughters. A name to time indefinite I shall give them, one that will not be cut off. (6) And the foreigners that have joined themselves to Jehovah to minister to him and to love the name of Jehovah, in order to become servants to him, all those keeping the sabbath in order not to profane it and laying hold of my covenant, (7) I will also bring them to my holy mountain and make them rejoice inside my house of prayer. Their whole burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be for acceptance upon my altar. For my own house will be called even a house of prayer for all the peoples.”

i.It is interesting how this can be applied to the nations and his servants who minister to him. Compare 1 Chronicles 27:1 where there are 288,000 who are assigned to minister to the king. Although there were only 288,000 assigned to do this, the rest of the nation still received blessings.

ii.The “sabbaths” and “holy mountain” are symbolic but refer to working righteousness in the earth. The kingdom of God is illustrated in Daniel 2:35 as a “mountain” that fills “the whole earth.” This “kingdom of God” is also shown in Daniel 2:44 as subduing all other kingdoms and “will stand to times indefinite.”

  1. Amos 9:11,12 “In that day I shall raise up the booth of David that is fallen and I shall certainly repair their breeches. And its ruins I shall raise up, and I shall certainly build it up as in the days of long ago, (12) to the end that they may take possession of what is left remaining of Edom, and all the nations upon whom my name has been called..”
  2. Daniel 9:27 This covenant that was discontinued is apparently the Abrahamic covenant where Jehovah favored Israel as his nation. See scriptures below.
  3. Acts 10:30-48 Cornelius (a Gentile, non-Israelite, of “the nations”) has a vision. (vs.30-33) Peter states: “For a certainty I perceive that God s not partial, but in every nation the man that fears him and works righteousness is acceptable to him.” Talking about Jesus, Peter states that Jesus is “Lord of all” (vs 36) and that “everyone putting faith in him gets forgiveness of sins through his name.” And in verses 44-48 we see that even those who were not circumcised received the free gift of the holy spirit.”

i.Although this “acceptance by God” can be for everyone, it   shows that it is for those who will reign with Jesus too.   ii.The bible does not say positively if Cornelius or those hearing the word (vs.44-45) were not circumcised – But it strongly implies it. This can be deduced by the fact that there is made specific mention of those faithful ones who came with Peter as being circumcised. Circumcision is an issue here. But now the free gift of God’s spirit is shown to be given to the nations. Many of which did not circumcise back then or even today.

iii.Job is an excellent example of one who was considered righteous by Jehovah and yet he was not an Israelite nor is it mentioned that he was circumcised. (Job 1:1-8) He was from the East, an Oriental from the land of Uz (Arabia today). He was most likely not of dark skin color because at Job 30:30 he mentions how his skin turned black from his affliction. (Thank you Everett) The only reasons that I bring these thoughts up is because some falsely teach that only those of dark skin color and/or are circumcised are considered righteous by God.

  1. Acts 15:14-18 “God for the first time turned his attention to the nations to take out of them a people for his name..” It then refers to Amos 9:11,12 and possibly Isaiah 45:20-25.
  2. Some feel that faith is directly connected to human DNA (genes) and so some might conclude that the Jews have the greatest faith. Or that just because one is Jewish, they automatically will have the best of God’s blessings. Well, I respectfully disagree.

i.Job was not an Israelite yet his faith in God was great. He was fully tested by Satan yet he maintained his integrity to Jehovah. He was considered Jehovah’s servant and upright.   (Job 1:8; 2:3)

ii.We also have the example of Jesus becoming amazed about  the faith of an “army officer” who was most likely Roman. Jesus stated; “I tell YOU the truth, with no one in Israel have I found so great a faith. (11) But I tell YOU that many from eastern parts and western parts will come and recline at the table with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of the heavens; (12) whereas the sons of the kingdom will be thrown into the darkness outside. There is where [their] weeping and gnashing of [their] teeth will be…” (Matthew 8:10-13)

iii.Daniel 12:7 talks of the “finishing of the power of the holy people to pieces” just before Jesus stands up (Daniel 12:1) So, who would this be?

  1. Although Daniel refers to God’s people undergoing tribulation by the king of the north and the wild beast, we know that in 70 CE when Jerusalem was destroyed, any followers of Christ were not in Jerusalem. Because they would have listened to him and would have “fled to the mountains.” But the followers of Christ were still persecuted by the “beast.” Some were killed. I believe it could be the same for some living today. We will see a sign regarding Jerusalem (the old city) being taken from Israel by the king of the north but we will see the same ”beast” persecuting those who will claim to be Christ’s brothers to reign with him.
  2. So, is this dashing of the power of the holy ones talking about the natural Jews or spiritual? Actually, I see no reason that it can not be both. It was that way in the first century so it can be that way for our near future. I think many will be confused. For a certainty it will include the ones who straighten their worship and undergo “sackcloth” for the 3.5 years. (Revelation 11:3) But Daniel does state that those who know their God will prevail. (Daniel 11:32) Jesus prevailed. He conquered. He was fully tested and maintained his integrity to Jehovah. It is also possible for literal Israel to get the old city of Jerusalem back for a short while too, after losing it. But if it did, it most likely would be very, very short. And then they would find themselves having to submit to Jesus. That would be a sight to see.
  3. Some claim that because they use Almighty God’s name “Jehovah” (or other) that they are specially in line for his blessings such as ruling with his Son. Although it is proper and a good thing to use his name, I disagree with the thought that just because one uses it, it identifies them as being a true worshiper of him.

i.Isaiah 48:1,2 “You who are swearing by the name of Jehovah and who make mention even of the God of Israel, not in truth and not in righteousness. (2) For they have called themselves as being from the holy city, and upon the God of Israel they have supported themselves, Jehovah of armies being his name.”

ii.1 John 3:10 “The children of God and the children of the Devil are evident by this fact: Everyone who does not carry on righteousness does not originate with God, neither does he who does not love his brother.” Although this does not talk about the use of God’s name, it still shows that one can use his name and carry on unrighteousness.

iii. Matthew 23:33 “Serpents, offspring of vipers..” Jesus likened those scribes and Pharisees to these. And these were the religious leaders of Israel!

  1. Matthew 8:10-13 – See above
  2. Isaiah 66:2,5 “To this one, then, I shall look, to the one afflicted and contrite in spirit and trembling at my word… (5) Hear the word of Jehovah, YOU men who are trembling at his word: ‘YOUR brothers that are hating YOU, that are excluding YOU by reason of my name, said, “May Jehovah be glorified!” He must also appear with rejoicing on YOUR part, and they are the ones that will be put to shame.”
  3. This is a very interesting passage. Ones who do not “tremble” at God’s word hate and “exclude” those who do tremble (to show great respect) at it. Yet, both groups use his name.
  4. This can be a very encouraging passage for those who do show respect of Jehovah’s word. Because it shows that God will show his rejoicing toward those who properly tremble at his word! What a blessing! But the others are put to shame. I believe that the main fulfillment of this prophesy is when Jesus takes his stand to judge the earth. Although it will happen a bit before that too. Compare Daniel 12:3 where “the ones having insight will shine like the brightness of the expanse; and those who are bring the many to righteousness, like the stars to time indefinite, even forever.”
  5. Those who straighten or whiten their worship show that deep respect for God’s word and the sanctification of his name. (Matthew 6:9-13)

vi.Matthew 25:31-46 Shows an illustration where there are two groups that have the opportunity to help Christ’s brothers. Both groups call Jesus “Lord.” Yet, only one group is viewed as “righteous” and they go into “everlasting life.” The other group departs “into everlasting cutting-off.”

Jesus comes in Jehovah’s name. So, the principle applies the same to those who use Jesus’ name. (Luke 19:36-40)