By Greg Turner

Have you considered the following: “For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man”? Seems obvious or is it? Have you ever considered the following: “Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month. And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with wine and oil.” (Joel 2:23-24)? Peter referenced Joel 2:28 in his first “sermon” showing that what had happened to him and others on that day of Pentecost in 30AD as the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Notice that these rains were to occur twice – the “former” rains and the “latter” rains.

The former rains are spoken of in past tense, whereas, the latter rains are future tense and greater than the former and latter (spring and fall rains of Israel) put together. In other words there will be another pouring out of the Holy Spirit like the one that occurred on Pentecost 30AD, but will be much larger. One could say it will be seen like lightning is from the east to the west. It will be very bright and seen by all – that is the works of the Spirit. When will this occur? A peculiar word was added to the KJV and NKJV bibles at the end of verse 23 – “month”. God would not have added it if it were not important. Other translations like the NIV leave it out. Yet, Hosea adds a piece to the puzzle. Hosea says “After two days He will revive us; On the third day He will raise us up, That we may live in His sight. Let us know, Let us pursue the knowledge of the Lord. His going forth is established as the morning; He will come to us like the rain, Like the latter and former rain to the earth” (Hosea 6:2-3). So Joel says that this will happen in the first month and Hosea says it will happen after two days – on the third day. Peter 2:3-8 says “With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day”. So putting these together we can see that after two thousand years the latter rains are going to come in the first month or beginning as other translations show.

Now these things all happened once before – the former rains! The church system of that time, being run by the scribes and pharisaical priesthood completely missed it. The Messiah that they WERE looking for came and they missed Him – killing Him like so many other prophets before Him. They missed the WHOLE pouring out of the Spirit and they killed the apostles and all who followed them or scattered them to the winds.

The question for us today is will the churches miss him again? They are all looking for “the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matt. 24:30). Guess what. It is all over when that occurs. That is a later event. These events have many things occurring between the “lightning” event and the “Son of man coming” event. John was the last apostle to die around 95AD and at that point we see the “the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky” (Matt. 24:29). This is talking about the body of Christ as is clearly stated in Rev 12:1. The great light of the former rains was darkened and so too will it happen again where the coming is like “lightning” – very short and bright – and then the church will be put down again. After this then the shakings will happen (or in parallel) which are the 7 trumpets and then Christ will come in glory at the 7th trump (I Cor. 15:52; Rev. 10:7, 11:15). Notice “But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets”. When the 7th angel sounds it is “finished”. Many other things will happen on earth after that as shown in Revelation, but those who are going to be with Christ are finished at that point and will meet Him in the clouds (I Thess. 4:17; Matt. 24:28,31).

Don’t believe these things? Neither did the Jews when Christ appeared unto them in 26-30AD and they missed Him. The time of visitation is now (Is. 10:3; Jer. 8:12, 10:15, 11:23; Hos. 9:7; Luke 19:44; I Peter 2:12) for the 6000 years allotted to man’s rule of the earth is over. Christ will come as a thief in the night (I Thess. 5:1-5) to judge His people then He shall come to judge the rest of the earth at the 7th trump. His people hear His voice (John 10:16). Will you see Him and hear Him during the visitation or later when He appears?

In His name,
Greg Turner


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