FEAST OF TRUMPETS BIBLE STUDY
Lev. 23:24 "Speak to the children of Israel, saying: 'In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have a Sabbath rest, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, a holy convocation.”
This is the fourth annual Sabbath of God and the fourth step in God’s master plan, called the Feast of Trumpets. This Commanded festival symbolizes the return of Christ and also signifies several other events that are to occur in that time frame.
In this Bible study we will see that the Old Testament Feast of Trumpets given to ancient Israel pointed to significant future events, and was to be kept by the Church of God today as well. (For a calendar that reveals these Holy Day dates, please see the back of our article—PARALLELS-Calendar—which also gives the leap years of a 19 year cycle that shows where we are in the current time-cycle.) All of the Festivals given by the God of the ancient Israelites were not only to be kept by them in their time (in the kingdom family of Israel) but also pointed to a future step toward salvation for all of mankind, starting with the first fruits. They will be added to the Kingdom Family of God at the return of Christ in the 1st resurrection.
Jesus went about all Galilee, the holy land and to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, (Matt.15:24) preaching the Gospel of the future coming Kingdom of God. Then He became our Passover, (1Cor.5:7-last part) shedding His own blood to redeem us from Satan and reconcile us with God. (Rom.5:10) The COG can now have the help in beginning to come out of sin, which began by God sending the Holy Spirit (Acts1:4-5 & 2:1-4) on the Day of Pentecost in 31 AD. When Christ returns very soon now to this earth, He will bring forth the kingdom Family by resurrection, to rule on earth using the Laws and Government of God, for a thousand years. (Rev.5:9-10 & Ch.20:4) The Feast of Trumpets points to that triumphant return, with many other events to occur as fulfillment of many Bible prophesies, at that time. We will see some of those events in this Bible study. It is recommended that you use your own Bible to look up the Scriptures and become more familiar with your Bible and what it teaches. This study will have questions and answers plus comments. I will also be using the New King James translation unless otherwise noted, so let us get started.
What IS the FEAST OF TRUMPETS, other than something the Jews did in the Old Testament?
The festival of the blowing of trumpets is called “Rosh Hashanah” on most calendars today, and begins at the sunset starting the 1st day of the seventh month, on the Hebrew or Jewish calendar. As was stated in the introduction, this was a Festival that all Israel kept and not just the Jews. (Lev.23:4, 24) It was a commanded Feast of the LORD, nothing that any man came up with and it was an assembly and a Sabbath rest for all Israel, given by the God who became Jesus Christ! (1Cor.10:4 & Ps.95:1) It being the first day of the seventh month and a commanded assembly—trumpets were to be blown. Trumpets were blown on the first day of the new month when offerings were made (Num.10:10 & 28:11) but this was different—it is also an annual Sabbath and a HIGH Day. There is great symbolic meaning in the Feast of Trumpets for the true COG, as it pictures the supernatural intervention of Christ returning to earth with a loud shout and the last trumpet sounding!
Is there any Scripture that tells us that there is to be an actual trumpet sound at Christ’s return?
Actually there are several Scriptures that deal with this subject, but we will look at two easy to understand passages here, in answer to this question. We will see others later on in this study. First, notice Matt 24:30-31 "Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 "And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
The second is 1Thes 4:16 “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.”
This shows us that as Christ returns, there will be a supernatural shout by the voice of at least one of the archangels and the blowing of a trumpet and the resurrection of saints or the dead in Christ will happen at that moment. But at the same time, those who are alive will rise and also be changed into spirit as well, as 1Cor.15:51-52 also shows.
As we go through this study we will see this second question answered more thoroughly, and we also need to keep in mind that there are those false prophets today who claim Christ will come in secret, or that there is a “secret rapture” whisking away the saints to heaven. Some are also teaching falsely that Christ will resurrect the saints on the day of Pentecost, which is not at this trumpet sound! Christ is not returning to earth in secret, as we clearly see above, nor is He coming to gather the saints together to go back to heaven for a prolonged period and then come again. Christ is returning to stop the annihilation of humanity by crushing the existing governments of man and Satan, to immediately set up a different world ruling government—God’s Government—here on earth. The day of the Lord leads up to and includes the Last trumpet sounding, signifying the Feast of Trumpets!
Where does it say that Christ will return at the last trumpet?
Even though some in the COG ministry have stated differently in some seminars and written studies, they seem to have forgotten this Biblical teaching, but it has been around for a long time as we are about to see. Notice this passage that was given as part of the answer to the previous question. We will read this from the RSV translation; 1Cor. 15:51-52 “Lo! I tell you a mystery. (Which is “hidden truth”!) We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, (WHEN?) 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.”
This Scripture ties into some other Scriptures, and the prophetic events of the book of Revelation and Daniel, which we will see as we go through this study, but it does show that Paul was inspired to write it is at the LAST Trumpet that the resurrection occurs and we will see another passage later that shows Christ taking over the kingdoms of this world at that time also.
How many trumpet blasts are given in Scripture, if this is the last one?
There are many different trumpet blasts. But for the time frame of Christ’s return, at the end of the “Day of the Lord” (Approx.1 year long and immediately following the great tribulation, making a total of 3 & ½ years) and at the opening of the seventh seal, there are seven angels with seven trumpets that will sound. (Rev.8:1—thru chapter 9) Six of those sounds, as one after another terrible events occur then we find in Rev.11:15 that it is the seventh trumpet, or last trumpet that signals the crushing of the kingdoms of this world with the intervention of Christ and the establishing of the Kingdom of God! We will see more about these last seven trumpet blasts a little later in the study, but we must remember that this is symbolic language. The Feast of Trumpets symbolically pictures this time frame more than any other festival of God.
But doesn’t 1Thes 4:17 show that Christians will go off to heaven for some time with Christ? Isn’t this the rapture, as some religions teach?
Those who teach this by using this verse are actually distorting the meaning and contradicting other Scriptures. No man has gone into heaven for any length of time but Christ. (Acts 2:29, 34 & John 3:13)
V. 17 says “Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.”
The first thing to notice here is that this verse is a part of the context of the verse given in the second questions answer. These who are alive and are changed to spirit are the same ones seen in the 1Cor.15 passage given above. We need to also note that it says we (the saints—true Christians alive at the time of fulfillment.) will always be with the Lord. Where is the Lord going to be at that time and very soon afterward? Does He go back to heaven? Zech 14:3-4 gives us the answer; “Then the LORD will go forth and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. 4 And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, from east to west, making a very large valley; half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south.”
Christ is coming to do battle with the wicked of this world and to subdue them, as noted above, to save mankind from utter destruction. He will then proceed to set up the Kingdom of God, the ruling Family of God known now as the saints and the dead in Christ. They are also known as first fruits and the bride of Christ. (2Cor11:1-3 & Rev.14:1-5) These are the 144,000 first fruits which will stand with Christ on mount Zion right after His return, the only number given for the first fruits!
There have been teachings by some in the COG that has indicated that there are far more in the first resurrection than 144,000. Are you saying this teaching is incorrect?
We all must be willing to continue to grow in grace and knowledge, as Scripture shows. (2Pet.3:18) This automatically requires us to be willing to correct or clarify past or present teachings. This study is based on what the Scripture actually says. It is true that others in the past have taught a different understanding of certain Scriptures and they still do today. However, we are using the same Scriptures they used, and find no place where Scripture says others are sealed. We have to rely on the clear Scriptures to help us understand unclear ones. Notice that one verse they use does not say others are included in the first resurrection, as it only deals with Spiritual Israel and those to be sealed: Rev 7:4 “And I heard the number of those who were sealed. One hundred and forty-four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel were sealed:” (The context changes with verse 9, to the great multitude and does not ever say they are sealed nor in the first resurrection.)
The faithful of yesterday and today are all spiritual Israel and first fruits, the only ones to be made spirit at the first resurrection and this number matches that of Rev.14:1-5. Those dead in Christ have the spiritual depth of character and have already “washed their robes” in the blood of the Lamb before this time of the tribulation. Those still alive are the “woman” that had been taken to her place of safety, as they are the zealous and have been led by the Holy Spirit, which is the seal of God, as other clear Scriptures show! (2Cor.1:22, Eph.1:13 & ch.4:30)
When checking the 14th chapter of Revelation, verses 1-5, we also find this same 144,000 standing alone with Christ on Mount Zion. We can also note that they are the only ones singing the new song, they are also the only ones said to have been redeemed and called first fruits at that time! This does not include the innumerable multitude that comes out of the tribulation. The apostle Paul is talking about the COG as those who have the “first fruits” of the Spirit. (Rom.8:23) Once again, it is only the COG being referred to in Heb.12:22-24 that have come to Mount Zion.
COMMENT: I am well aware of the past teaching on this subject, but also have found no Scriptural evidence of any others sealed or redeemed and made spirit at Christ’s return, other than the 144,000. Without any Scriptural support, this would then only be an “assumption”—and assumptions are always subject to being in error when new understanding is found. Because of what we have just stated here and above—to avoid any confusion to those longtime COG members who are doing this Bible study— we will quote a statement from an old Bible study Lesson that was put into print after the death of HWA, lesson #28 of the AMBASSADOR COLLEGE BIBLE CORRESPONDENCE COURSE, page 9. (However, this is not the only piece of literature this teaching has been found in, as these same statements have been found in older lessons, put there by editors that departed or were put out of the COG during the “liberal” years.)
The questions previous to this comment below, indicated in that lesson that the great multitude would also be sealed for eternal life and protected from some of the future “time of world turmoil”, and this is their comment afterwards, emphasis ours:
“The 144,000, as well as the great innumerable multitude from all nations referred to in verse 9, repent of their old sinful ways and turn to Almighty God in personal surrender---These multitudes will receive eternal life, and serve God day and night in His temple (verse 15).”
The next question in that lesson and later comments indicate again that they will be sealed, and then protected from the trumpet plagues. However, verse 15 does not say this multitude is sealed or that they receive eternal life at that time. There is NO verse in that context or anywhere else that shows this multitude is made spirit at the same time as the first fruits. As we have stated, this has only been assumed to mean the “multitudes” would receive eternal life together with the first fruits. When other texts of Scripture are checked, and compared with this, then this multitude from all nations (not just Spiritual Israel—as the 144,000 are) appear to still be human survivors and live over into the Kingdom as such, which we will have to cover separately and at a later date.
What are some more meanings for “Trumpets”?
There were many uses for the trumpet blasts in the physical kingdom of Israel. For some examples, Exodus 19 shows that there were different trumpet sounds, some loud and some long, V. 13, 16 and19 and chapter 20:18. Lev. 25:9 shows us that there was a trumpet sound on the Day of Atonement in the Jubilee year. Trumpets were sounded for the fall of Jericho in the book of Joshua, chapter six, which gives us some parallels with end-time events. There were trumpets sounded for war (Num.10:8-9) and Ps.81:3, as well as other passages shows that there was a blowing of the trumpet for each new moon, or the beginning of the month and festivals, as we have already seen. 1Chron.15:24 show the trumpets being blown before the Ark of God and other Scriptures show the priests had a duty for the blowing of trumpets for various reasons. There was a distinct trumpet sound for war. (1Cor. 14:8) They also blew a trumpet sometimes when a king was crowned, which also would apply to Christ coming as King of Kings to take over the rule of this earth. At that same trumpet sound is when the angels are sent out to gather together the Elect of God from all over the earth, and the two witnesses are raised from the dead! (Matt.24:31—Rev.11:11-12)
But it was also the duty of the designated watchman in ancient Israel to blow the trumpet and sound a warning, which also goes out today to those whom God is warning. Ezekiel was set as a watchman by God, who was to warn Israel of impending disasters to come on them as a nation, but Israel was already in captivity. (Ezek.1:1-2) These prophesies were for the future and Ezekiel recorded them in a book to be preserved—now Scripture—to show a later day watchman to come and he would, as an apostle of Jesus Christ, restore this truth to the COG and initiate this final warning message for modern day Israel.
What other Scriptures do we look to for proof of this “watchman”?
Ezek 33:7 "So you, son of man: I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore you shall hear a word from My mouth and warn them for Me.” (See also the verses leading up to V.7, which indicate one “Watchman” to initiate and start to proclaim this warning message.) Ezekiel was given this information to record for a later day watchman to use to warn a modern day Israel who had received the blessings of greatness promised to Abraham. This 33rd chapter is one of those warnings that had started going out to modern day Israel by Herbert Armstrong before the mid-20th century, and continued to be proclaimed by him until his death in 1986. There are other passages in Ezekiel that deal with this same warning. Now, in this era of Laodicea, there are several watchmen in the COG who are continuing the job of preaching the Gospel and this warning and depending on the quality of truth and zeal in their messages, many are still part of the COG today in this last generation time frame. (Check our booklets section for the book titled “AMERICA & BRITAIN IN PROPHECY” by Raymond F. McNair, to understand the identity of modern day Israel.)
Where does it mention in the Bible that there is more than one watchman to be proclaiming these end time prophetic events?
Isa 52:7-8 “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who proclaims peace, who brings glad tidings of good things, who proclaims salvation, who says to Zion, "Your God reigns!" 8 Your watchmen shall lift up their voices, with their voices they shall sing together; for they shall see eye to eye when the LORD brings back Zion.”
(These verses clearly indicate more than one watchman in the end time frame leading up to Christ’s return, which we are now in, and these watchmen of God’s Church will continue to cry out a warning until Christ returns and sets up His Kingdom, or “brings back Zion”. However, we also see something else in this verse that is quite shocking when considering; it says they shall see “eye to eye” which is certainly not happening now or the COG would not be so scattered and divided up! This will have to be corrected before Christ returns and those who are at odds with various points of truth and the way God has laid out in Scripture for the COG to function better get a grip and repent! Rev.3:19)
Isa 62:6 “I have set watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they shall never hold their peace day or night. You who make mention of the LORD, do not keep silent, (yet there are those today who claim to be the COG and to preach the Gospel—yet they are “silent” because they have no voice that can be heard preaching the Gospel!)
Jer 31:6 “For there shall be a day when the watchmen will cry on Mount Ephraim, 'Arise, and let us go up to Zion, to the LORD our God.” (The entire COG has their part in supporting and getting this job done, but sad to say, many have let down and become lukewarm, and may end up in the tribulation unless they repent in time. Rev.3:19)
What is to be the job of these “watchmen”?
The “watchmen” of today in the COG, are to continue to do the job of the original 20th century watchman. We find this duty clarified by Isaiah the prophet. Isa 58:1 "Cry aloud, spare not; lift up your voice like a trumpet; tell My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.”
(I believe that this is a dual prophecy that is to go to the nations of Israelite descent, (Jacob) but also to the modern day COG, after the restoring of truth in the early 20th century, because this time frame of Laodicea today is very lukewarm. The COG in the early 20th century was at the point of death, (Rev.3:1) then came the restoring in Philadelphia and the proclamation of the true Gospel. Today, the COG is in a very “lukewarm” state and unless this lukewarm-ness is repented of in time, it will cause those lukewarm and slumbering to be separated from the Church body, “spewed out” and the “woman” (true COG) that is actually still doing the work will be taken to her place of protection. (Matt.25:1-13, Rev.3:14-21 & Rev.12:14-17) Many that became liberal under HWA and still lukewarm early in Laodicea, and have now become somewhat dishonest with Scripture and/or rebellious to true doctrine and right government may already be separated from the body. Only God knows for sure those who are His. 2Tim.2:19)
Why do Some COG groups claim that everyone in Laodicea will go through the tribulation? Is that what the Scriptures actually reveal?
No, that is not what the Scriptures reveal, as the answer and Scriptures given above indicate, but to clarify our statement above, we will spend some time on this and give further explanation, to avoid confusion. It is only the “lukewarm” and those who think they “have need of nothing” that are “vomited or spewed out” during Laodicea. Many in the COG today still have this same misunderstanding of what the Scriptures reveal. This is partly because of a misunderstanding of the wording of this verse in Rev 3:10 "Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you (true Philadelphians and zealous) from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.” (We must remember, this is only talking to those who kept the command to persevere in the COG during the 6th era, and the seventh era is a separate time frame still ahead of that time.)
Comment: Many in the COG, under the leadership of HWA had determined that this verse meant that the Philadelphian era would be on the scene just prior to the tribulation and Christ’s return, Laodicea having not yet come, and Philadelphia would be the only ones to go to a place of protection from the great tribulation. However, the wording of the verse says nothing of anyone being taken anywhere or that those of the COG are given flight to “her place” during Philadelphia; it just says they will be kept from the hour (or time period) of trial. There is more than one way this can happen, and again—this is another one of those “assumptions” without solid Scriptural backing, and is easy to misunderstand if we are not diligent. Remember, we are to live by EVERY WORD of God, as Christ told us! (Luke 4:4 & Matt.4:4) Herbert Armstrong himself said this about assuming things; “I have learned, in a lifetime now in its 92nd year, that errors all too frequently arise from a false premise, carelessly assumed.” (Emphasis mine) He was very much right about that and that is the problem here! Actually, when you reflect on every word of these verses and contemplate that this is a letter to the Churches of God with one more era to come, it reveals the opposite of what was “assumed”.
The Philadelphian era is the sixth era and would have a short period to wait for Christ to return, (most would die and be in their graves) and would be kept from this hour of trial which “shall COME” on those who “Dwell ON” the earth not those who rest IN IT!! These Scriptures do not say that the tribulation would even come in their time frame—and it does not—they are kept from the “hour” or time of it—the most severe trials would come in the last part of the last era, those who “dwell” on the earth, at the end of the age! Only those few true Philadelphians in spirit still alive in the seventh era and still zealous would actually “go” to a place of safety. (Rev.12:14)
Rev.3:11 (RSV) “I am coming soon; (Which indicates a little span of time yet) hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown.” If Philadelphia was immediately taken away to safety, why would their crowns be in danger in a place of safety and away from the presence of Satan? Considering this alone indicates some time yet to go for those who are alive. On the other side, where would Laodicea be able to have “works” in the tribulation while fleeing from persecution? Is it not their lukewarm “works” that get them into trouble? This era does not spend all of its time in tribulation, when you come to understand it, because we are in it now and have been for over 20 years, and the tribulation is still ahead.
Now, with this in mind and the proper meaning and wording of this verse, the fact that Christ indicates by the last letter to the “churches” that there would be another time frame ahead of Philadelphia that would also have time for “works”, how could this all fit the way it has been explained before? Those still living of the Philadelphian time frame, the remnant that have not died would need to “hold fast” through the seventh era because of watering down and lukewarm compromises that were to come until Christ returns. (or until they die, Matt.24:13) The majority of those living from the Philadelphian era of the COG will most likely be dead in their graves before the tribulation comes, and many have already died since HWA. (Isa.57:1) This is very important to understand for the true COG today, because even many of Philadelphia’s time frame became lukewarm and let down, as HWA warned against.
It is the Church of GOD, the faithful “Woman” as a Spiritual organism that is taken to safety, (Rev.12:14 & 17:14) but without the lukewarm doctrinal compromisers, those of dead works or immoral character or even those who have lost their first love and not repented by that time. The COG throughout time has some of all of these 7 characteristics but each phase of time brings out the predominate characteristics of that time frame, or era and this cannot be repeated enough! Many in the COG today need to repent of getting off track on Scriptural government, doctrinal twists and wrong turns with truthful matters, and other brotherly love aspects that are being watered down and some are even resorting to lying and dishonesty, showing they are not being led by the Holy Spirit. Philadelphia is over and we are almost 30 years into Laodicea, which is why we are so scattered and need to repent. (Rev.3:19) But it is not just the members, as the responsibility of these problems lay on the shoulders of the leadership, or the ministry! We all have to determine where we are and who we are, and if lukewarm watering down compromisers, get busy repenting and getting back on track with the Biblical teaching of the true COG, before it is too late! When Christ returns and the seventh angels sounds it may be too late to be a first fruit!
The seven trumpet blasts of Revelation.
Christ will intervene in world affairs in order to stop human and other life forms from total annihilation, but there will still be tremendous loss of life and great destruction to occur even before the Day of the Lord. This is part of what the “Ezekiel” warning brings to us. Satan the devil will try to destroy as much as he can, but he especially hates all Israel and will even deceive the Beast power with his great false church, into coming against them to destroy them. This is the time leading up to and beginning of the great tribulation! (Matt.24:15-21 & Rev.6:5-11) The Beast, perhaps after seeing this great deceptive harlot church for what it is, will then turn on her and burn her with fire! (Rev.17:12-18) But before that takes place and just prior to the start of the tribulation, this “Beast” power of Rev.13:1-4, and then the second “Beast”, (V.11) or the head of this great false church called the “image of the beast” and the “harlot” in Scripture, will be exerting rule over the earth, possibly through the European union as a super state of several nations. A covenant or treaty will be made by this beast power with the Jews or the tiny state of Israel and others in the middle east, which will begin the last week of Daniel’s 70 weeks prophecy. (See Dan.9:26-27 and our SEVENTY WEEKS PROPHECY Bible study.) I also recommend that those doing this study should also read the booklet The image of the beast in order to get a better idea of what this is and who this is talking about, if you do not already know.)
These seven trumpet blasts are all contained in the seventh seal. When the seventh seal is opened, these seven trumpets come in stages each called a trumpet. Some of these are also plagues, as Rev.9:20 reveals. Remember though, that much of this is given as symbols and people have gotten off track by trying to interpret these things without proper Scriptural backing. The fifth seal seems to indicate the beginning of the great tribulation and the heavenly signs or sixth seal occurs toward the end of two and one half years and right before the day of the Lord begins. (Matt.24:29 & Rev.6:12) We also find some of the end time prophecy of Daniel coming into play at this point.
How do we know that Daniel’s prophesies and the mention of these is for the end time?
It is very easy to determine the context of these events is the “end time” when we consider what is said in the conclusion of the book! See Dan 12:7-9—printed here is verse 9; And he said, "Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.” Many of Daniels prophesies tie directly to the time frame of end time prophetic fulfillments that bring us right up to the great tribulation, which is the same time frame as the final fulfillment of the seven seals and then the seven trumpet blasts. Daniel also prophesies about the king of the north and the king of the south, which are both also yet future and will have their part to play in ushering in the great tribulation. Looking ahead of this, we see at the end of the sixth seal it is declared; Rev 6:12, 16-17 V.12 “I looked when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood.” 16--“and said to the mountains and rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!
(The Lamb here is a reference to the returning Messiah, as the Day of the Lord begins with the opening of the seventh seal.) 17 "For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?"
No time like this has ever been recorded to have come on mankind before. The day of the Lord comes on the heels of the great tribulation, also a time like the world has never seen before. (Matt.24:21)
Rev 8:1-2 “When He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. 2 And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and to them were given seven trumpets.” Here we see the seventh seal opened and inside it contains these seven trumpet blasts that are about to occur. V.6 “So the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound.” Nothing like what is recorded here has been recorded anywhere else in Scripture for any other time frame but the end of this age! Daniel also records that during this terrible time the saints will again be martyred, brought on by this great false church and the second beast of Rev.13! (Dan.7:25-27)
So will the earth be destroyed by all these trumpet blasts?
Not completely, and that is why God the Father sends Christ when He does, in order to save mankind from self destruction with nuclear weapons, under the influence of Satan the devil. Mankind will be warring against one another when Christ intervenes, killing millions upon millions of human beings. But most likely this destruction will start with America and Britain and other Israelite nations being destroyed and going into captivity. (Ezek.5:12-13) The heavenly signs and the knowledge of the returning Christ and the day of the Lord will get mankind’s attention! There is to be this great display of powerful and terrible supernatural events and the first 4 trumpets sound before mankind then turns to the last destructive implements of war that could destroy all life! If God did not cut short the days of the end time, all life would be destroyed on earth, but it is for the elect’s sake that humanity is spared and Christ intervenes. We see this in Matt 24:22 "And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake those days will be shortened.” (Matt.24:22 from the James Moffatt translation adds in the phrase “not a soul would be saved alive”)
So what happens when these trumpets begin to sound?
As anyone who reads through the eighth chapter of Revelation can see, terrible things are going to come on this earth affecting those evil and wicked who dwell on the earth! V. 6-12, Fire and hail, mingled with blood, trees and grass being burned up, something like a huge burning asteroid hitting the ocean, turning it to blood, rivers and drinking water being turned bitter and people dying from drinking it, and the sun and moon going dark etc. Then the fifth angel sounds his trumpet blast and it gets even worse, with the last efforts of war as the bottomless pit is opened!
How could it get any worse than this?
The last three trumpet blast are considered “woes” to come on the earth and mankind. Rev 8:13 “And I looked, and I heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, "Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the remaining blasts of the trumpet of the three angels who are about to sound!"
The 9th chapter shows the results of the 5th trumpet blast and what it means for the inhabitants of the earth who are not protected and who have taken the mark of the beast. As war rages between the nations gathered for battle, Satan the devil and his demons become much more actively involved. Rev 9:11 “And they had as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, but in Greek he has the name Apollyon.”
(Strong’s word definition shows this to be the destroyer, or Satan the devil, the ruler of death and darkness! Satan took control of mankind in the Garden of Eden through the tree of death!) It is through these last 3 trumpet blast or woes, that Satan uses every resource he is allowed, in order to try and completely destroy mankind! It is the sixth trumpet blast that kills another third of mankind! (Rev.9:13-19)
Is this enough to bring mankind then left alive to repentance and obedience to God?
Rev 9:20-21 says; “But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk. 21 And they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.”
One reason that mankind in general do not repent at this time is because they have already, before this point, taken the mark of the beast and are steeped in the deceptions and teachings of the “image of the beast” and are under the authority of Satan the devil! (Rev. 13:4&12) God has to grant repentance and He will not grant them repentance at this time because of their deliberate rebellion, (2Tim.2:25-26) so they will remain in the grasp of Satan and be destroyed. (Again, please read the booklet at the link given above, or go to our booklets page and look for “The image of the Beast”.) These people will be destroyed along with the beast and false prophet when the armies fight against Christ. (Rev.19:19-21)
Where do we see any armies try to fight Christ?
As we saw in the answer to the fifth question, Christ touches His feet down on the Mount of Olives in Zech 14:3-4, to do battle with the nations. We also see Christ returning to earth on a white horse and the holy angels with Him, beginning with Verse 11 of Revelation 19, which would be immediately before what we see in Zechariah! We see, as we read through this chapter of Rev.19 that with Christ is an army of heaven also on white horses. Then later in the chapter we see this verse; V.19 “And I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army.” (Matt.24:30-31-Matt.25:31 & Mark 13:27)
This chapter is also where we see the conclusion of the wicked being destroyed and Satan and his evil false prophet being cast into the lake of fire; Rev 19:20 “Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone.” When Christ returns and begins to take over control of the earth, at the sounding of the seventh trumpet, (Rev.11:15-19) the kingdoms of this world cease and the kingdom of God is established at that time. We see that there are some “inset” chapters. (12, 13 & 14) These contain more details that fill in some more background and reveal other things—events that are also happening throughout the time frame of the fulfillment of all these prophetic events, such as the information about the two witnesses, the true COG and then details of the first fruits and also people being warned against the image of the beast and it’s mark—then we come back to where these events pick back up at the return of Christ and the sounding of the seventh trumpet. Rev 15:1 “Then I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvelous: seven angels having the seven last plagues, for in them the wrath of God is complete.” These seven last plagues are all poured out in a very short time frame, and they will not affect anyone who has not taken the mark of the beast.
So to summarize;
what we have seen in this study, we started out by explaining that the Feast of Trumpets is—besides a Festival of the true COG and to be kept by all true Christians today—actually a Feast of the Lord, as well as all the seven annual Festivals and annual Holy Days, or Sabbaths. It pictures the return of Christ and His intervention in world affairs at the last or seventh trumpet, to save mankind. We have explored some of the misinformation the COG has had in the past about who will be protected and sealed, how many are actually made Spirit according to Scripture, and that the dead in Christ as well as those first fruits alive in a place of safety at that time will be made spirit when they rise to meet Christ.
We have seen Scripture indicates this time frame being that of Laodicea and no longer Philadelphia and that all of Laodicea does not have to go through the tribulation, as many have also falsely believed. God, in His infinite mercy has provided this era and those who have succumbed to watering down truth and becoming lukewarm with enough time to come to grips with its problems and repent, getting back on track with where it once was, if all involved will only listen. Rev 3:21 "To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. 22 "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches."
We have also exposed those who seem to be leaning toward becoming false prophets and trying to deceive the elect with all of these “other” theories and wrong teachings about Christ coming at a different time than is symbolized by the festival of trumpets! (Eph.5:8-14) Not one Scripture is found that would legitimately indicate Christ coming on Pentecost, as some small independents and other organizations are now beginning to teach! These must see their error and repent and it is our (the True COG members) hope that they do.
We have also come to see the connection of end time events with some of Daniel’s prophesies, and how they also point to this time frame of the return of Christ, plus the job of God’s servants and watchmen who continue the Ezekiel warning message and preach the Gospel. The Feast of Trumpets and its coming time frame reveals many things to us if we are willing to take the time and search them out of Scripture. The seventh seal begins the seven trumpet blasts and that last trumpet signals the resurrection and the COG first fruits being gathered together to meet Christ in the air. That last trumpet blast also begins the seven last plagues, which at some point after this the beast and false prophet will be cast into the lake of fire. After that is all accomplished then Satan will be bound and sealed into the bottomless pit for one thousand years! (Rev.20:1-3)
The kingdom of God will then get under way, with Christ and the saints, now His Bride, ruling over mankind with the Government of God and Laws of God. Those still in rejection of God’s form of Government and His ways obviously will not be there! Those in the physical who have lived through and came out of the tribulation will then repopulate the earth and this may include many that were left behind to go through the tribulation as the offspring of the COG! (Rev.12:17 & Rev. 7:9-17) This concludes this study on the Feast of Trumpets. We hope you have found this compatible with the Scriptural content given here-in, and if not then please let us know where and why.
This statement is quoted from HWA’s conclusion of these events and is word for word as he wrote it in 1952. “And so, as this 7th Trumpet is blown, the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of Christ, who then reigns (Rev.11:15). So Christ comes at the LAST TRUMP. (1 Cor.15:52; 1 Thes.4:16)”
As the COG continues to grow in understanding, that will also be revealed to its members who cling to truth and are guided by the Holy Spirit.
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(Editor for TCOGMSO)