Friday, September 16, 2016

The LORD's coming and the clouds - Part #2 - in the New Testament.

Dear in Christ,

This is the second article in this series. Please ensure that you have read the first part, before proceeding any further.

While reading the caption of this post, you may be reminded of Mat 24:30 or 1Th 4:17. We will certainly examine those passages in the next post. In this post we will consider a few passages that mention the coming of the Lord in/with clouds, of which some have not captured popular attention.

The members of the Sanhedrin to see Christ coming in the clouds!

During the days that Jesus started his earthly ministry, Annas and (his son-in-law) Caiaphas were the high priests (Luk 3:2). Caiaphas died in 36 AD. Though Annas was deposed by the procurator Gratus, he remained as one of the nation's most influential political and social individuals, Annas had 5 sons who served as priests and high priests till 63 AD. Keeping this background in mind, let us continue reading.
Mat 26:62 And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee?
Mat 26:63 But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.
Mat 26:64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou[G4771] hast said: nevertheless I say unto you[G5213], Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.
Please note the distinct Greek words translated as "thou" and "you". The word "thou" (you, singular) is used in addressing the high priest, whereas, the word "you" is addressed to the Sanhedrin (council in Mat 26:59).
Mat 26:59 Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council[G4892], sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death;
Neuter of a presumed derivative of a compound of G4862 and the base of G1476; a joint session, that is, (specifically) the Jewish Sanhedrim; by analogy a subordinate tribunal: - council.

On Thou and You in Mat 26:64.

Though thou, thee, and thy are equivalents of you and your in Modern English, they are used to address individuals, showing them respect. In oriental languages we won't talk about a woman as "she", we will say "they". The same is the case with kings, emperors and other respectable dignitaries. In grammar this type of usage is called The Royal We or Pluralis Majestatis.)

There are no Sanhedrin since the 4th century AD. So, if the members of the Sanhedrin have to see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven:
  • Either they have to raised from death (resurrected) before the coming of the Son of Man.
  • Or, the Son of Man has to come even while they are physically alive.
Please note the order of resurrection:
1Co 15:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.
Is there a way to prove that the Sanhedrin and the members of the Jewish clergy belong to "they that are Christ's"? Where does the Bible say that those who killed Jesus (1Th 2:15) and those who instigated the killing are of Christ?

As we examine the scriptures, it becomes obvious that even the saints in Christ would be raised from death only after the coming of Jesus Christ, there is not even an outside chance that the killers of Jesus would be raised before his coming, so that they can see his coming.

Dear in Christ, there are no third options. Unless one can prove that sinners and murderers would be raised before the coming of Christ, the coming has to happen even while those sinners are alive in flesh and blood.

Coming in the clouds in the book of Revelation.

Rev 1:7 (KJV) Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds[G5443] of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.
Rev 1:7 (ESV)  Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen. Rev 1:7 (YLT)  Lo, he doth come with the clouds, and see him shall every eye, even those who did pierce him, and wail because of him shall all the tribes of the land. Yes! Amen! 
Many tend to interpret they also which pierced him as sinners in general, but that is not the truth. There is an irrefutable prophecy that those who pierce Jesus Christ were Jews or the children of Israel.
Zec 12:10 And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.
One may argue that it was a Roman soldier who pierced the side of Jesus, that doesn't absolve Jews as the instigators and precipitators of the heinous deed. Another toothless argument is that the descendants of those who pierced Jesus would see him coming.

Kindreds = Tribes.

The Greek word translated as kindreds in Rev 1:7 (KJV) is; φυλή, G5443 in Strong's. This word means tribe. There is no scriptural way one can associate the word tribe with anyone other than the children of Israel. As you may have expected, the most frequent usage of this word occurs in:
Rev 7:5 Of the tribe[G5443] of Juda were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Reuben were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Gad were sealed twelve thousand.
Rev 7:6 Of the tribe[G5443] of Aser were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Nepthalim were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Manasses were sealed twelve thousand.
Rev 7:7 Of the tribe[G5443] of Simeon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Levi were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Issachar were sealed twelve thousand.
Rev 7:8 Of the tribe[G5443] of Zabulon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Joseph were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe[G5443] of Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand.
One of the questions that can be asked about this passage (Rev 1:7) could be: Is it unlikely that the passage is talking about the present occupants of the land of Palestine? The answer is: the present occupants of the land are not the descendants of Jacob, who was a descendant of Shem, one of the three sons of Noah. Most of the present occupants of the land of Palestine are Ashkenazi Jews, who are the descendants of Ashkenaz, one of the descendants of Japheth, another son of Noah.

As in the case of the members of the Sanhedrin and the Jewish clergy, the coming of Christ has happen either while those who pierced Jesus are yet alive or they should raised from death before the coming of Christ (which is scripturally impossible).

Coming in the clouds of Mat 24:30

There is not much difference between the coming in the clouds of Rev 1:7 and Mat 24:30 and hence we won't be repeating the details. (Please note that unlike Rev 1:7, this passage correctly renders the Greek word denoted by G5443 as tribes.)
Mat 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes[G5443] of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
The next verse makes it plain that the resurrection of the dead happens after the coming of Christ:
Mat 24:31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. 
The raising of the dead or gathering of the elect happens after Christ has come and after the the tribes of the earth mourning. So, those who mourn at the coming of Christ are neither the elect, nor those who are raised from death.

Unless one can prove that the coming of Christ in Mat 24:30 is entirely different from that of Rev 1:7, the coming of Christ had to happen while the Jewish Sanhedrin, Jewish clergy, the people who pierced Christ and the tribes of Israel existed in Jerusalem (Zec 12:10).

In Christ,
Tomsan Kattackal

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