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Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society.  Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. © Copyright 2010 - 2017   All rights reserved. Daniel 11 Explained (condensed ‘one page’ commentary) ‘Matthew 24’ Explained (must match Revelation) The ‘Seals’ Explained (Revelation timeline revealed) Seven Churches Explained (Past & Present Church Prophecy) Note: ‘Sitemap’ shows a complete list of all pages (by category). ‘Homepage’ gives 3 simple steps + timelines + summary. Current Events from Daniel 11 (matching the Middle East) The Abomination (Daniel 11:31) done Recent Events ISIS - Saudi - Turkey (Daniel 11: 24-27) Final Events to the Abomination (Daniel 11: 28-30) Shiites re-take Persia + America’s Role Begins (Daniel 11: 21-23) soon done done Revelation 12 Prophecy – September 23/24, 2017 Introduction   Many people have either asked or told me about the Revelation 12 sign so I feel compelled to write about it, so people will know that I’m aware of it.  I’ve probably known about it for about a year.  At first, I was skeptical because I don’t like to set dates, especially ones based on astronomy and far in the future.  Plus, Revelation 12:5 seemed to be talking about Jesus’ birth, not the rapture.  However, since several events in Daniel 11 occurred during the second-half of 2016, fulfilling all the verses prior to the abomination in verse 31, and the time for the Rev-12 sign has grown closer, I’m not as skeptical as I once was.  I recently read Revelation 12 several more times, carefully weighing the pros and cons of each verse, and I reached an agreement that the planetary arrangement on September 23/24, 2017 is indeed the sign in Revelation 12.  That doesn’t mean the rapture will happen on that exact day but there’s no reason it couldn’t.  It’s just one more prophecy from the Bible that will be fulfilled, which is always exciting because they don’t happen every day.    Jesus said that all prophecies in the Bible will eventually be fulfilled (Matt 5:18) but the biggest question is whether a particular prophecy will take place before, during, or after the rapture.  That’s why the Revelation 12 sign has gotten a lot of publicity: because it has the potential to be close to the rapture.  Before I discuss ‘how close’, let me explain the scriptures and why Revelation 12 could be describing the rapture.  Part 1: Convincing a skeptic (like me) Revelation 12: 1-6 1 A great and wondrous sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. 2 She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. 3 Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads. 4 His tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that he might devour her child the moment it was born. 5 She gave birth to a son, a male child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne. 6 The woman fled into the desert to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days.   In brief, Scottie Clark discovered the alignment of the sun, moon, planets, and constellations that will take place on September 23/24, 2017, which could match the description in verses 1 & 2.  He used an astronomy simulation program called Stellarium, which can be downloaded for free, at the link provided.  After I tried the program, I saw how rare and unusual the alignment is.  It involves Jupiter staying in the hip-quadrant of Virgo, from earth’s perspective, for about 38 weeks, the same gestation period as a human fetus.  Then, exiting the quadrant just as Mercury, Venus, and Mars align perfectly above Virgo’s head, adding to the nine stars of Leo to make a crown of twelve, just as the sun and moon are in the right position.  It could be coincidental but the odds of all those things happening at the same time is astronomical. (pun intended)  Like I said, I would still be skeptical if the other verses of Daniel 11 hadn’t been fulfiled, leading to the abomination, but they were.   Verse 3 is very similar to Revelation 13:1, except the ‘beast’ has 10 crowns on his horns, as opposed to the dragon having 7 crowns on his heads.  The Bible doesn’t make mistakes so there must be a reason.  In general, I think the difference is that verse 3 is before the rapture, because the woman in verse 4 hasn’t given birth yet.  Revelation 13 is clearly after the rapture because that’s when the dragon will give the beast his power and authority for 42 months (Rev 13:2 & 5), matching the 1260 days that the two witnesses will prophesy in Jerusalem (Rev 11:3), which is also after the rapture.     Verse 5 is the one that seems to indicate Jesus’ birth, rather than the rapture, but I try to be open-minded and consider all the evidence.  On the surface, the verse seems to reference Jesus because the child will “rule the nations with an iron scepter”, which is exactly what Jesus begins to do in Revelation 19:15.  Scottie Clark gets around that comparison by using Revelation 2:26-27, below.  Revelation 2:26-27 26 To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give      authority over the nations -  27 'He will rule them with an iron scepter; he will dash them to pieces like pottery'       - just as I have received authority from my Father.   The above is an exert from Jesus’ message to the Church in Thyatira, which is the 4th church out of seven, in Revelation 2 & 3.  If you read all the churches, you will see that they all have a phrase, towards the end, which says, “To him who overcomes”, so I can accept that the word of encouragement that follows each time could apply to all the churches in general.  However, I remained skeptical because the first part of verse 27, above, is an exact quote from Psalms 2:9, which is inserted into the other sentence (between dashes) to reinforce that Jesus had indeed been granted authority from His Father, as prophesied by David.  In other words, the key phrase about “ruling with an iron scepter” is from Psalms, which is still talking about Jesus.  Yet, verse 26 would suggest that Jesus is willing to share His authority with members of the Church who overcome.    Note: According to Scottie, the Greek word that is interpreted “snatched up”, in verse 5, is the same word that is interpreted “gather”, in Matthew 24:31, which describes the rapture.  That is somewhat convincing but not entirely.  To me, it still seemed like a toss-up, between Revelation 19 and Revelation 2, about Jesus’ birth, until I recently stumbled across this passage, from Isaiah 66, which drastically tilted the scales.  Isaiah 66: 7-8 7 "Before she goes into labor, she gives birth; before the pains come upon her, she delivers a son. 8 Who has ever heard of such a thing?  Who has ever seen such things?  Can a country be born in a day or a nation be brought forth in a moment?  Yet no sooner is Zion in labor than she gives birth to her children.    The above prophecy from Isaiah convinced me that Revelation 12 is referring to the rapture, rather than Jesus’ birth, because it clearly refers to Zion (Israel) as a woman giving birth to a son.  Then, that son is referenced as a country or nation that is brought forth in a moment, which is the rapture that happens in the twinkling of an eye.  That sudden event produces a great multitude in heaven, from every nation, who are God’s children. (Rev 7:9-17)  In this particular case, the labor pains come upon her after the birth because they are symbolic of the post-rapture, which will be dreadful for the Jews who are left behind. (Matt 24:19-21)     Note: In the same instant, 144,000 Jews will be ‘sealed’ by God (Rev 7:1-8) so they are part of His children also, but they must stay on earth because they didn’t believe in Jesus as their Messiah.  Yet, Israel and the 144,000 will be somewhat protected by the two witnesses, while they are prophesying for 1260 days (Rev 11), which corresponds to the same length of time in Revelation 12:6 (after the birth).  Those selected as the 144,000 will not be fooled by the false prophet (Matt 24:24) so they will not accept the mark of the beast (Rev 13:16), which will cause them to be martyred. (Rev 14:19)  That will happen before the bowl plagues (Rev 16), thus cutting their days of tribulation short. (Matt 24:22)  Those Jews who are martyred will live again and be priests for Jesus, during His 1000-year reign. (Rev 20:4-6)  Part 2: The Rest of Revelation 12   The rest of Revelation 12 elaborates on the distressful time, after the rapture, which most people call the tribulation.  Note: The “great tribulation” (Rev 7:14) is ‘past-tense’ and refers to the Seals, in Revelation 6, which span between the resurrection and the rapture.  The rapture is “pre-tribulation” because Seals 1-5 are done.  The 6th Seal is the rapture, which makes sense because the multitude is in heaven between the 6th and 7th Seals.  The Trumpets in Revelation 8 can’t start until the 7th Seal is done.  The period that people call the tribulation is really the events during the Trumpet and Bowl plagues. (Rev 8+)  That time is especially bad because Satan is hurled to earth and his fury is aroused because he knows his time is short, as noted in verse 12, below.  Here is the full text, with some observations afterwards.  Revelation 12: 7-17 7 And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. 8 But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.  9 The great dragon was hurled down-that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. 10 Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ.  For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down. 11 They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. 12 Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them!  But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short." 13 When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14 The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the desert, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent's reach. 15 Then from his mouth the serpent spewed water like a river, to overtake the woman and sweep her away with the torrent. 16 But the earth helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. 17 Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring-those who obey God's commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus.   Another thing that seems to confirm that Revelation 12 backs up and starts at the rapture (same as with the two witnesses in Rev 11) is that verse 10 sounds very similar to the great multitude, after the rapture, in Revelation 7, below.  Granted, the words are not exact but Salvation, God, and Christ are mentioned in the same order and context.  Please compare: Revelation 7:10 And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”    *Verse 12 is interesting because it further proves the concept of ‘pre-tribulation’ by mentioning those in heaven, who are rejoicing, while those on earth are in peril.    Verse 14 is essentially the same as verse 6 because 1260 days is the same as 3.5 years.    Verses 15-16 could describe the tsunami that happens at the rapture, caused by the earthquake of the 6th Seal, when Judea is directed to run immediately for the mountains. (Matt 24:15-18)  Or, it could be some other flood-type event, in which God intervenes to lessen the severity.  Whatever the case, it happens during the first-half of tribulation because verse 17 refers to the 144,000 Jews, who are still on earth but now hold to the testimony of Jesus, whom they saw in the sky, during the rapture, while they were hiding in the mountains. (Revelation 6:15-17)  Part 3: Will the rapture actually happen on September 23/24?   No one can answer the question above, except God, but one problem I have with the rapture happening on that exact day is that the moon will just be exhibiting a small sliver of itself because the date is near a ‘new moon’.  Granted, God could turn a small sliver of the moon blood red or He could illuminate the moon in some other way.  I mean, if God could stop the sun from setting and extend the day so Joshua could finish a battle, then God can do anything He chooses with the stars and planets.  Therefore, the rapture could be virtually any day that God chooses, including September 23/24, but He’s not restricted to that time.    On the contrary, there’s reason to believe that God would choose a day closer to a full moon because He’s done that in the past.  For example, God specifically chose the evening of the 14th (lunar calendar) for the original Passover (Exodus 12:6-12), causing the Israelites to be freed from Egypt on the 15th.  That is by definition a full moon because lunar months average 29.5 days, thus 14/15th is half-way between.  Likewise, Jesus was crucified on the morning after Passover supper, which would still be the 14th (days are evening to evening) and He arose on the 16th.  (Forgive me if my numbering is off.)  Plus, the great flood in Noah’s day started on the 17th (Genesis 7:11), when the moon would still be pretty full.  My point is: three of the biggest events in the Bible: flood, Exodus, & crucifixion/resurrection all happened on or near a full moon, so it stands to reason that the rapture could follow that pattern, especially when the moon plays a role by turning blood-red.    By coincidence, the next full moon after the planetary alignment would be October 4/5, which is the start of Sukkot, an 8-day holiday of Jewish celebration.  The Jewish holiday that the alignment falls closest to is Rosh Hashanah, on September 20/22, which starts a 10-day period of reflection and repentance, until Yom Kippur on September 29/30, but that time is not meant to be a joyous occasion.  The reason I mention this is the following verse.  Amos 8: 9-10 9 "In that day," declares the Sovereign LORD, "I will make the sun go down at noon  and darken the earth in broad daylight. 10 I will turn your religious feasts into mourning and all your singing into weeping.    If the above verse is referring to the rapture, for which ‘darkening the sun’ is one of the signs in Matthew 24:29, then Sukkot would be a more appropriate choice than Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur.  Like I said, Sukkot starts on a full moon but lasts 8-days so the rapture is still not pinpointed exactly, which I would never try to do anyway.  As for the planetary alignment fulfilling Revelation 12:5, the child is “snatched up” after the woman gives birth, but it doesn’t say immediately.  In God’s concept of time, a couple of weeks could be very quick.    Personally, I say ‘sooner the better’ (because I’m tired of earth) but God could choose to wait until the full moon on Sukkot, or choose a different time entirely.  I’m not trying to be wishy-washy; I think this is indeed an exciting time to watch but I don’t want people to lose hope if it takes a little longer.  In that respect, another reason that I’m leaning towards Sukkot, two weeks after the Rev-12 sign, is that this phenomenon has gotten a lot of publicity.  Subsequently, atheists and skeptics will have a field-day if it passes without results.  Many people who are not sincere will give-up and go back to their normal lives, without God, which sounds a lot like the five foolish virgins who didn’t bring enough oil to wait the whole duration.  Of course, the foolish 50-percent got left behind because they didn’t really know Jesus. (Matthew 25:1-13)  In other words, a lot of people who are watching this astrological sign, to see what happens, don’t really know Jesus.  I’m not trying to judge; I just think parables are like prophecies, so they’re bound to happen, good or bad.  Unfortunately, this website doesn’t get enough publicity to make a big difference in the percentages.  Part 4: Why do I keep saying September 23/24, when others just say September 23?   Notice that the verse in Amos 8 says, "I will make the sun go down at noon and darken the earth in broad daylight.”  Then, it mentions ‘religious feasts’, so it must be talking about Jerusalem time.  Here’s another passage from Isaiah 13 that is related.  Isaiah 13:9-11 9 See, the day of the LORD is coming --a cruel day, with wrath and fierce anger— to make the land desolate and destroy the sinners within it. 10 The stars of heaven and their constellations will not show their light.   The rising sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light. 11 I will punish the world for its evil, the wicked for their sins.  I will put an end to the arrogance of the haughty and will humble the pride of the ruthless.   The above passage says that the “rising sun” will be darkened, so together with Amos, the rapture will happen from ‘morning to noon’, in Jerusalem, rather than afternoon to evening.  As I illustrate in the video (that few probably watch), the moon first takes position below Virgo’s feet, as seen from Jerusalem, in the evening.  ‘If’ the rapture was going to happen during the sign, then it would probably wait until the next ‘morning to noon’, when the sun was still rising, which would be September 24th, in Jerusalem.  Of course, a person should add or subtract to get their local-time-zone, so it could be September 23rd in some parts of the world.  Yet, as I said in part 3, it may not happen on that particular day, so it doesn’t matter anyway.  Just the same, when the rapture does happen, it will likely be when the sun is rising in Jerusalem, not setting, so it will probably be ‘late-evening to night’ in the West.    Here’s a video that I made to show how to use Stellarium and view the Revelation 12 sign.  It also explains why the planets move like they do in the program.     running time = 30 min.
Related Page:  Proof of Rapture (simple but concrete proof of ‘pre-tribulation’ rapture)