The Two Witnesses of
Revelation 11. Who are these two prophets? What do they have to say?
Why are they called the two witnesses? How will their message be
proclaimed? And is there any special significance to the fact that
they're headquartered in Jerusalem?
God's Church has often wondered
about these things, but we ALL need to know the answers to these vital
questions, especially since the two witnesses will soon make their
debut upon the world stage!
Even as the United Europe, the German-EU, is being
raised up before our very eyes, just as Herbert
W. Armstrong said it
would, isn't it reasonable that God is raising up the two witnesses who
will testify against it?
And even as God's Church is approaching the
end of their great commission (Herbert
W. Armstrong took the Gospel
around the world, the Church
of God must warn the world), isn't it only
reasonable that the two witnesses should be beginning theirs? (John
Didn't Isaiah foresee this very event when he
prophesied of the
"night when no man can work," but assures us of two whom God would
simultaneously raise up to impart their light? (Isaiah 60:1-2).
appears that the full power and glory of Elijah's office isn't to be
fulfilled until AFTER God's Church has been removed to "her place" and
a double portion of God's Spirit is transferred to our successor -- the two
witnesses! (Revelation 12:14; 2 Kings 2:9).
states that He shall station watchmen in Jerusalem. Why? For the
purpose of comforting His captive Church and Israelite people. How will
they be comforted? By the ASSURANCE that our God will come and save us
and avenge us of our enemies (Isaiah 62:6-7; 40:1; 35:3-4)! The
specific commission and anointing of the two witnesses is clearly
recorded in Isaiah 61:1-2.
Remember your Roots
4:5-6 further reveals that they are to PREPARE THE NATION of Israel for
the Coming of our King, by a baptism of repentance that will prepare
them to receive the Holy Spirit (which is to be poured out at Christ's
return). That national preparation is only possible if Israel's heart
is turned back to the heart of our fathers (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob),
and then, in turn, our hearts must be turned back to the GOD of our
fathers and His TRUE religion.
Presently there's a "generation
gap" between the fathers and us because the true religion demands
obedience to the Law of God. Abraham recognizes only the obedient as
his legal heirs (Genesis 18:19; John 8:39; Galatians 3:29). And since
we're a rebellious nation and people (Isaiah 30:9), Abraham refuses to
acknowledge us (Isaiah 63:16; Hosea 5:7; 6:7).
If Israel dares to
reject this necessary "family reunion" that would direct us to our
Heavenly Father, God will be forced to destroy all rebellious life from
off the face of the earth. Why? Because Israel is God's national
firstborn and the law demands death to stubborn sons (Deuteronomy
21:18-21; Malachi 4:6)!
God realizes that if Israel
can't be saved,
then no nation can. The continued existence of Israel is vital to the
survival of ALL nations, because Israel
is the national salt as the
Church of God is the spiritual salt!
of the COVENANT that God entered into with Abraham, Israel is the
racial elect, and for our fathers' sakes God has always left us a
REMNANT, ordained some survivors, to keep His Promise alive (Matthew
24:22; Isaiah 1:9). We are to return to our fathers and their true
religion and remember the Covenant (2 Chronicles 30:6; I Kings
18:36-37; Isaiah 51:1-3). This is the commission of the two witnesses.
That Covenant reveals Christ as Lord and Savior, Priest and King - not
just one or the other. He is to save us from men and deliver us from
sin (Luke 2:68-69)!
Israel's National Deliverer
important to note that God's Message throughout the ages has always
been affected by events and conditions. The early apostles preached the
Gospel, but placed special emphasis on proving that Jesus is the
prophesied Messiah - because that was the issue of their day. Herbert
W. Armstrong has preached the Gospel, but with a special emphasis on
Christ's necessary intervention to save us from total annihilation -
because the burning question of human survival hangs in the balance!
God's two witnesses will proclaim the Gospel, but will place special
emphasis on the fact that Christ is ISRAEL'S NATIONAL MESSIAH and is
coming to SAVE them specifically.
Why? Because the ancient
Covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Isn't it interesting that
Jesus came to confirm the Covenant during Judah's oppression; the time
when fear and doubt would seek to undermine faith in God's Contract
(Luke 2:38)? The true Gospel is going to become very relevant and
personal to every captive Israelite, because that GOOD NEWS assures
Israel's deliverance and vengeance on their enemies (Isaiah 35:4)! That
"Strong Hand from Someplace" that Mr. Armstrong spoke of so often, will
wrest the world from the clutches of the Roman eagle!
spearhead of the message of the two witnesses will be directed to
Israel, but will also include the Gentiles. Presently God's Work,
following an established pattern, witnesses predominately to the
nations of Israel, though including the Gentiles to a lesser degree.
God sends His prophets to Israel, but often they also address the
Gentiles with a warning message, never leaving them without a witness.
the Book of Revelation will be utilized to identify the Beast and False
Prophet, but basically "Babylon" will be warned by the two witnesses
when Israel's offered vengeance and deliverance - indicting Europe of
sin, warning them to repent or suffer the consequences. Europe must
restrain their brute force or be imprisoned and destroyed! Some
precious Europeans will fear God and respond like the Hebrew midwives
and certain of Pharaoh's servants.
There are also the
shining examples of those who protected the Jews from Hitler's Nazis.
(I'm especially thankful for the Polish family of Jan Bulski who hid my
"kibbutz mother," Miriam Weiss.
She had originally been in the Warsaw Ghetto until a place was found
for her. Sorrowfully, Miriam's mother had to remain behind (and was
sent to Treblinka where she died), but she was so happy for her
daughter to escape). God readily accepts the righteous Gentiles.
Conditions for Release
will quickly repent, expecting instant liberation, but the two
witnesses will then have to explain the Covenant STIPULATIONS FOR OUR
The Covenant stipulations are: First, confess and
forsake our sins and traditions of men, as the CAUSE of our national
distress. Second, we must accept the corrective punishment for our sins
(Leviticus 26:40-42). Israel will quickly submit to these stipulations,
desiring deliverance, but will be aghast to discover themselves still
enslaved (Proverbs 1:28-31)! Their initial confused reaction will be to
question the Message of Vengeance/Deliverance. At Israel's critical
juncture, crying, "Haven't we straightened up? Isn't God going to
forgive us? Have we been forsaken after all?" The two witnesses will
then impart an even greater insight and depth of understanding of the
Covenant conditions. How? By instructing Israel how they must ACCEPT
THE CORRECTIVE PUNISHMENT! And as for their words, "God has forsaken
us," God hasn't forsaken them. THEY HAVE FORSAKEN GOD!
must reap the whirlwind that they've sown to realize the evil of their
way. We must understand that we are RESPONSIBLE for all the suffering
and misery we'll experience in captivity (Jeremiah 4:18). Israel WILL
be forgiven, but "I will correct you in measure, and will not leave you
altogether unpunished" (Jeremiah 30:11). Israel must accept the fact
that they're not going to be delivered overnight, and that to accept
the corrective punishment means to actually receive it—UNTIL the
appointed Time when God will hear and intervene on our behalf (Isaiah
We may be comforted in that there IS a PURPOSE being
worked our here below! And of Israel it is written: "You are My
servant, O Israel, in whom I will be glorified" (Isaiah 49:3). Israel
will fulfill her call, by the power of God's Holy Spirit, but first she
must confess and forsake her sins, and in true humility accept the
corrective punishment incurred by them - then will God come with His
Vengeance/Deliverance! It's certain!
God will never forsake His
People Israel, though Israel will temporarily feel that He has. But God
will disperse such fears and embrace His Elect (Isaiah 49:15). Though
God will definitely allow us to suffer for our sins, God suffers when
we suffer because He really does love and pity us (Isaiah 63:9). When
we're in the thick of it - the Time of Jacob's Trouble - He'll be there
for us (Genesis 22:13; Matthew 27:29).
Our Faithful God
promises that He'll never leave or forsake us, but as IMMANUEL will
ever be aware of us, even saying: "I WILL BE WITH YOU..." as He
promised our fathers who whom's sake we're beloved. "Therefore, FEAR
NOT...neither be dismayed...for lo, I WILL SAVE YOU..." (Jeremiah
Delay isn't Denial
will, as a responsible Father, send corrective punishment. But
understanding that it's for our ultimate good, we're not to despise it
or get bitter towards God. God wants to insure our minds are indelibly
impressed with the understanding of WHY the Great Tribulation will
occur, and how we're to accept the correction with hope and not
despair. We have to remember that the "Time of Jacob's Trouble" is
TEMPORARY, and that there is a purpose for it all (Ezekiel 14:23).
as surely as the bad news Herbert W. Armstrong foretold will come true,
so also will the GOOD NEWS he announced come to pass!
hear our prayers and accept our heartfelt prayers, in accordance to the
Covenant (2 Chronicles 7:14). But "In an acceptable time I have heard
you, and in a day of salvation have I helped you..." (Isaiah 49:8).
Yes, the two witnesses are even "to proclaim the acceptable year of the
LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God..." (Isaiah 61:2). We must
never forget that DELAY ISN'T DENIAL (Micah 7:7-10).
come to understand that any delay is to enable us to prepare to meet
our God (Amos 4:12). We will be given sufficient time to demonstrate
our change of heart. Before ancient Israel entered into the Old
Covenant, they were given two days to sanctify themselves for the third
day when God would appear. Apparently, modern Israel and Judah are also
given "two days" to prepare themselves for the New Covenant (Hosea
6:1-2). We know for sure that Christ is to intervene in world affairs
around the third year of our captivity!
Therefore, while bearing
the "indignation" of the Eternal, in acceptance of the corrective
punishment, we're to repent and prepare for Christ's coming! Israel
will await salvation, knowing that when their captivity's time has
expired and the prophecies been fulfilled, God Almighty will begin His
process of deliverance!
Faith and Patience
the PURPOSE of the apparent delay in their deliverance, Israel will be
comforted and wait with hope on the Lord. Israel must develop and
exercise FAITH AND PATIENCE! We're to have faith in God's promise of
Vengeance/Deliverance, and quietly await it in patience. We're to
persevere in hope, comforted by our understanding, possess peace
knowing that deliverance is sure, and joy in that our prayers have been
heard! Truly, the two witnesses are instrumental in comforting Israel,
imparting insight into the necessary steps of repentance, and
encouraging Jacob to "hang in there!"
It's only those who endure
to the end, who refuse to give up, who never surrender, who will be
saved; but "blessed are all they that wait for Him" (Isaiah 30:18). God
will accept the humble and contrite spirit that a conquered and
repentant Israel will have, and will revive their heart lest they fall
into despair beyond repair. God will heal and forgive Jacob: "I will
lead him also and will restore comforts unto him and his mourners"
We must have faith in God's deliverance
and patiently await it. "If any man have an ear, let him hear...here is
the faith and patience of the saints" (Revelation 13:9-10). "And it
shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for Him,
and He will save us; this is the LORD; we have waited for Him, we will
be glad and rejoice in His salvation!" (Isaiah 25:9). "Nevertheless,
when the Son of man comes, will He find faith on the earth?"(Lk.
Israel will understand that delay isn't denial, but
enables preparation for salvation (2 Peter 3:9), but Europe will be
condemned for their misinterpretation of it as a justification for
their atrocities (Jeremiah 50:7)! The delay isn't only for Israel, it's
also an opportunity for Europe to repent! Europe is not condemned
because they unite. Europe MUST unite! Europe is not condemned because
they attack and conquer the nations of Israel. Europe is condemned
because of their pride and excessive punishment of Israel!
will deliver Israel - because of our sins - into the hands of our
European enemies. Europe is intended to deliver the corrective
punishment necessary to jolt Israel to her spiritual senses. Instead
Europe will attribute their awesome military conquests to themselves
and their politico-religious system!
Europe, drunk on their
success, will then no longer be utilized by God to correct Israel in
measure (Jeremiah 30:11), but by SATAN who seeks to destroy Israel
(Isa. 47:6)! That explains why Christ will assist Judah in their revolt
against an authority no longer constituted by God (Zechariah 12:5). God
intends for Israel to be punished (Zechariah 1:15), but evil Europe,
oblivious to their own sins (2 Chronicles 28:10), will execute cruel
and unusual punishment!
Europe's leaders state their "historical
obligation" to unite Europe. Apparently their grasp of history and
destiny isn't as great as they like to imagine. The same Europe who
effectively wields history to support their state will undermine it by
ignoring Biblical examples! The Roman restoration is bound to
deteriorate! The Bible is replete with warnings to the Gentiles not to
abuse what God delivers into their hands (Dan. 5:22-23). God decries
Europe's ignorance of Biblical history and takes them to task for
forgetting their ordained purpose (Isaiah 47:7; Deuteronomy 32:29)!
Plagues and Protection
will taunt Israel, saying, "Where is your God?" The irony of the
blasphemous taunt is that it reveals the effectiveness of the two
witnesses' message, because Israel is trusting in God for deliverance,
and it furthers the penetration of it! When the prison guards mock our
message of comfort it will arouse the Eternal to intervene for HIS
Name's Sake (Joel 2:17; Micah 7:10)!
Even as God poured out His
plagues on Egypt, revealing Himself as far above all, so also will God
pour out His plagues on Europe to reveal Himself as the Most High God!
When God overthrows Europe's counterfeit kingdom, the pinnacle of human
success, it will identify HIM alone as the ETERNAL (1 Kgs. 18:39)! When
Messiah deposes the Beast and False Prophet, history's most powerful
beings, that leaves the Great God, the God of Heaven as GOD ALONE
God wants all mankind to come to know Him.
Remember Abraham is the father of many nations. God's salvation will
ultimately include Egypt and Assyria with Israel (Isaiah 19:23-25).
God's Temple is to be a House of Prayer for ALL nations.
God only offered His Holy Spirit to select individuals. They became the
foundation of God's Church. Then God offered His Holy Spirit to a
collective group who became His Church. We're numbered among those
chosen few who will assist Christ when He rules. This expanding
principle reveals that Israel will become the first NATION to receive
God's Holy Spirit. We've all been trained to teach others later. Israel
is simply to become God's Instrument, serving as a "light to all
Unfortunately, some captive Israelites' faith will be
shaken by their mocking guards. We must not be blinded by the sight of
Europe's apparent success! Europe will have conquered her enemies and
become a very prosperous kingdom - all of which they will attribute to
their idolatrous religious system. God will remind Israel of His
purpose and exhort them to fear God and not man. Europe will soon be
defeated by Israel's Messiah (Isaiah 10:24-25; 37:23; 51:7)! Others
will follow after false messiahs offering salvation before the
appointed time (Isaiah 51:14; Luke 17:22-24). When the Day of the Lord
has truly arrived, GOD will avenge and deliver His People Israel!
Europe will have fulfilled the iniquity of Babylon and incurred the
just wrath, plagues and indignation of the Eternal for His physical and
spiritual people and Temple (Jeremiah 51:11, 35, 62; Revelation 6:10).
God will have previously warned Israel and Europe about His "seven last
plagues." God extends His offer of protection to repentant Israelites
AND Gentiles alike (Revelation 7:4,9,14).
will station the two witnesses in Jerusalem (on and around the Temple
Mount) to direct Israel's attention there (Revelation 11:3; Jeremiah
51:50). Why? Because Jerusalem and the true Gospel are inseparable! The
GOOD NEWS of our imminent Vengeance/Deliverance will be announced from
the future capital of God's One World Government, because the Messiah
will reign from the Throne of His father David!
be the first to be liberated when Christ descends upon the Mount of
Olives, enabling the historic site of David's Throne to be secured -
then shall all Israel be saved when the Messiah goes forth from Zion!
Christ will be proclaimed King (Isaiah 52:7). Jerusalem's redemption
from Gentile occupation is Israel's comfort, because when the Messiah
reigns in the City of our God, Israel's deliverance will have arrived!
The two witnesses are witnesses in advance, by faith, of the Day when
"the LORD shall bring again Zion" (Isaiah 52:8-9; 62:6-7). As watchmen
they await its fulfillment, though already ANNOUNCING IT as fact
(Isaiah 40:1- 2; Romans 4:17). They herald the imminent Zionist
Movement of ALL Israel, under Shiloh (Genesis 49:10), back to the Land
of Zion and Jerusalem! They will prophesy the RESTORATION OF ISRAEL and
assure Jerusalem of future glory, promising the Temple shall be built
(Isaiah 44:26-28; Ezekiel 40-48). These two prophets, in "the spirit of
Elijah," must IDENTIFY MESSIAH TO JUDAH AND INTRODUCE HIM TO ISRAEL!
When are the Two Witnesses Resurrected?
time to understand what the Bible teaches on this subject. Many have
carelessly assumed that their resurrection -- to occur three and one
half days after their death takes place at the same time as Christ's
coming. THAT IS WRONG! Such a teaching contradicts the clear scripture:
"But of that day and hour knows no man, no, not the angels which are in
heaven, neither the Son, but the Father" (Mark 13:32; Acts 1:7). All we
would have to do is count three and one half days after they've been
martyred and we would know the day and practically the hour! Besides
the Scripture plainly states immediately following their resurrection:
"The second woe is past and the third woe comes quickly" (Revelation
11:14). The third woe is simultaneous with Jesus' coming and the
pouring out of the 7 last plagues in His presence.
witnesses will be restored to human life after three and one half days,
corresponding to their three and one half years of ministry, as a SIGN
that Israel - who'll be as good as dead - will also be resurrected!
There is life after Babylon! Then "air transportation" will be provided
for them just like it was for Enoch and Elijah - who flew the friendly
skies of the first heaven. The two witnesses will be transferred to
another location on earth, undoubtedly united with the brethren in "her
place", to await the imminent return of Christ!
is informed that she will supervise the Gentiles who will rebuild the
ruins (Isaiah 61:4-6,9). God promised Abraham to be our God and give us
the Land of Israel (not Ishmael) as our inheritance. (Satan seeks to
erase Israel's name off the map by calling it "Palestine"!
[Psalm 83:4]). God promises to restore that Land to us again (Ezekiel
11:17), and expresses jealousy for it to support only Israel (Jeremiah
10:25). God promises to remember us and our land when we repent
(Leviticus 26:42; 2 Chronicles 7:14). The land will have enjoyed its
Sabbaths during our exile, but after our return we will respect the
land and it will become a virtual Eden! (Ezekiel 36:35).
Land and lives of Israel, both seemingly barren and desolate, shall
blossom as the rose by the refreshing waters of God's Holy Spirit.
That's the MIRACLE that will glorify God's Power before all nations!
Christ returns, Israel will be transformed into a formidable force.
We're to assist in the punishment of our enemies (Isaiah 11:12-14;
41:15-16; Micah 4:12-13; 5:9; Habakkuk 3:12; Daniel 2:35; Psalms
149:6-9). Victory is certain during our great trek Home, following
Shiloh's command. Captive Israel will be assured of a Homeland of rest
and peace, of quiet living without fear and terror (Isaiah 32:18).
be God who will have arranged for our "family reunion" with Abraham,
Isaac and Jacob. Blessed be God who will have respect for His Covenant
and save us a remnant. And blessed be God who will mightily anoint two
men, two witnesses, with the sacred oil of His Holy Spirit to
illuminate Israel from Jerusalem with love!