"...PROVE ALL THINGS; HOLD FAST TO
THAT WHICH IS GOOD..." 1TH 5:21
'CP' denotes 'Compare Passage'
NEW TESTAMENT PROPHECIES AWAITING FULFILMENT
The purpose of this study is to examine the many New Testament prophecies awaiting fulfilment before, during, and after the Tribulation, during and after the Millennium, and in the New Earth. In this section of the study we will examine prophecies awaiting fulfilment before the Tribulation. The first of these is presently being fulfilled, and will continue so until Christ comes again to take the church back to Heaven with Him (CP 1Ti 4:1). This prophecy predicts that some Christians will defect from the faith in the latter times and apostatise. Throughout scripture the Holy Spirit repeatedly warns of believers departing from the faith (CP Mt 24:4-12; Ac 20:29-30; He 3:12-13; 6:4-6; 10:26-31). In the latter times in 1Ti 4:1 refers to the entire period of time subsequent to the time Paul wrote this epistle to Timothy until the rapture. Next in this section we will examine Paul's prophecy that predicts the completion of the church (CP Eph 4:11-13). V 12-13 comprise the prophecy, but V 11 has been included to better understand how the prophecy will come to pass. Christ gave the ministry offices of V 11 to the church to bring it to maturity and complete in Him "… unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the fullness of Christ." This prophecy is also presently being fulfilled, and will continue to be until the rapture, after which it will be completely fulfilled when Christ presents the church to Himself, blameless and without spot or blemish (CP 1Cor 1:7-8; Eph 5:27; Col 1:21-22; 1Th 5:23).
Another New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment before the Tribulation, and one which the majority of Christians await the fulfilment of with eager anticipation, is that which predicts the coming again of Christ to take all the saints of God, Old Testament and New Testament alike, both living and dead, back to Heaven with Him. Dead saints will be raised up to life and given incorruptible bodies, while the saints still living at that time will be given immortal bodies. Together they will be bodily translated to Heaven to be with Jesus forever (CP Jn 14:1-3; 1Cor 15:51-58; 1Th 4:13-18). This prophecy will be fulfilled at the first resurrection (CP Rev 20:6). In the fulfilment of this prophecy another will also be fulfilled which predicts that the church is the restrainer of lawlessness in the earth (CP 2Th 2:1-7). A falling away in V 3 (KJV), from the Greek word apostasia, in this context means a departure. It does not mean a rebellion, or refer to a great apostasy by the church before the rapture and the revelation of Antichrist, as so many believe. The he who now letteth, who will let until he be taken out of the way, is the church. Letteth means to suppress, restrain, hinder, withhold, this makes the church the restrainer of lawlessness in the earth. When the church is removed from the earth - taken out of the way - Antichrist will be revealed. (For more detailed teachings on this subject see author's comments on 2Th 1:7-10, 2Th 2:1-3, 2Th 2:6-8 and 2Th 9-12 in his book A Question and Answer Study on the New Testament). The first resurrection also fulfils the prophecy that predicts final salvation (CP 1Pe 1:5). Only those destined for final salvation will be a part of the first resurrection (CP Rev 20:6). The first resurrection fulfils also the prophecy that predicts the day of the lord (CP 1Cor 1:8; 2Cor 1:14; Php 1:6; 1Th 5:1-8; 2Th 2:2).
Still yet another New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment before the Tribulation which will also be fulfilled with the church is "taken out of the way", is Paul's prophecy predicting that God will send strong delusion to all who remain on earth after the rapture, who have heard the Gospel and rejected it, so that from then on they will only ever believe a lie, and be damned for eternity (CP 2Th 2:7-12). After the rapture salvation will no longer be available to those who have already heard the Gospel and rejected it. They will be damned eternally if they do not repent and accept Christ while the church is still here. This includes our own immediate family members, relatives and friends who we love dearly, as well as professing Christians not truly committed to Christ, and those who are backslidden. Show them this scripture and explain what it means; that the rapture can happen at any moment, for there are no prophecies left to be fulfilled before it takes place (CP Php 3:20-21; Tit 2:13 with Jn 14:1-3; 1Cor 15:51-58; 1Th 4:13-18). After the church is gone from the earth salvation will only be available to those who have never had an adequate opportunity to hear the Gospel and accept Christ as Saviour.
Another New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment before the Tribulation predicts the glorification of the saints (CP Ro 8:17-25). This prophecy will also be fulfilled in the rapture. The saints will be glorified when they go to Heaven to be with Jesus (CP Ro 5:2; 8:16-18; 1Cor 15:42-43; Col 3:4). Next in this section is the prophecy that predicts the Judgement Seat of Christ (CP Ro 14:10-12; 1Cor 3:13-15; 2Cor 5:10; Ga 6:9; Col 3:24). This prophecy will be fulfilled in Heaven after the first resurrection. Every believer will have to stand before Christ to give an account of themselves to God for everything they have ever done as a Christian, whether it be good or bad (CP Ecc 12:14 with 1Cor 3:11-13; 2Cor 5:10). In the fulfilment of this prophecy others that predict believers will receive rewards in Heaven will also be fulfilled (CP Mt 5:11-12; 19:30; 20:16, 23; Mk 10:31, 40; Lu 6:22-23; 14:14; Ga 6:9; Rev 22:12). Every believer's earthly works will be examined and openly revealed in their true reality at the Judgement Seat of Christ. Everything believers have ever done during the course of their Christian life - their every thought, their every word, their every deed, their secret acts, their character, their attitudes, their motives, their ministry and their works, will be revealed at the Judgement Seat of Christ (CP Ecc 12:14; Ro 14:10-13; 1Cor 3:11-15; 4:5; 2Cor 5:10; Eph 6:1-9; Col 3:16 - 4:1; Jas 1:2-4, 12, 19, 21; 2:1-4, 9; 1Pe 1:3-7, 17; Rev 22:7, 11-12). Believers' bad deeds, when repented of and confessed during their earthly life, are forgiven in relation to earthly punishment, but they will still be taken into account when being judged for recompense by Christ at the Judgement Seat of Christ. Christ will judge every believer's earthly works, and how those works stand or fall will determine the believer's position in God's Eternal Kingdom. The Judgement Seat of Christ does not determine punishment, but rewards or loss of rewards in Heaven.
In this next section of the study here we will examine New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment during the Tribulation (CP Rev 4:1 - 5:14. The things which must be hereafter in 4:1, refers to all the events that are prophesied to occur after the church is raptured to Heaven. They are all described in Rev Ch 4-22. The first is the prophetic revelation of the raptured church in Heaven in 4:4, represented by the twenty four elders seated round about the Throne of God. They identify themselves in 5:9 as the church, redeemed to God by His blood from out of every tribe, language, people, and nation in the earth (CP 4:4 with 5:9 and 1:5-6; 1Pe 1:19). In Rev 5 we see Jesus prophetically as the Lamb of God who gave Himself to die on the cross to redeem fallen man to God, is the only one qualified to open the Book of Judgements, loose the seven seals, and execute the judgements, which will form part of the Tribulation (CP Rev 6:1-2). The opening of the first seal reveals Antichrist, symbolised by the rider on the white horse who went forth conquering and to conquer. He was given a crown because he had brought peace and prosperity to the earth. He has a bow but no arrows, which depicts him as a benevolent dictator. We know he brought peace to the earth in V 2 because after the opening of the second seal in V 4, he is given the power to take it away (CP Rev 6:3-4).
The opening of the first seal and the revelation of Antichrist in 6:2 is synonymous with the first half of Daniel's seventieth week, which was prophesied in the Old Testament. It represents the last seven years of this age when Antichrist will be revealed and the Tribulation comes upon the earth. Antichrist rises up at the start of this period and enters into a seven years peace treaty with Israel which he breaks after three and a half years, and then makes war with Israel (CP Dan 7:7-8, 20-21, 24-25; 8:8-14, 23-25; 11:36-45 with 9:24-27; Rev 12:7-9, 13-17). These scriptures reveal the emergence of Antichrist at the start of Daniel's seventieth week as the little horn among the other ten horns. He rises to power as the eleventh king among the other ten kings through the empowering of Satan (CP Dan 8:24 with Rev 13:1-8). This prophecy will be fulfilled after the church is raptured to Heaven in the first resurrection (CP 2Th 2:7-9). The opening of the second seal in Rev 6:3, and the revelation of the rider on the red horse who was given a great sword, and the events that follow in Rev 6:4, signals the onset of the Great Tribulation in the middle of Antichrist's seven years peace treaty with Israel. This is synonymous with the second half of Daniel's seventieth week (CP Rev 6:3-4 with Dan 7:25, 9:27; 11:36-39; 12:1; Mt 24:6-7, 15-22).
We learn from those scriptures that the Great Tribulation will last the second three and a half years of Antichrist's seven years reign. For the first three and a half years Antichrist will be a benevolent dictator, not yet the enemy of God. He becomes God's enemy at the end of the first three and a half years when he breaks his peace treaty with Israel and sets up the "abomination of desolation" in the temple (CP Mt 24:15-22 also Mk 13:14-20 with Dan 9:27, 11:31, 36-37; 12:11). Abomination of desolation refers to the image that Antichrist will set up in the temple of himself as God, which people will be forced to worship or be killed (CP 2Th 2:3-4; Rev 13:1-6, 11-15). The opening of the third seal reveals famine personified as a rider on a black horse. The exorbitant price of grain and the scales for weighing it in his hands symbolises the scarcity of food and the economic hardship the world will suffer during Antichrist's reign (CP Rev 6:5-6; Mt 24:5-8 with Eze 4:16-17). It is not known what the command not to hurt the oil and the wine means.
The opening of the fourth seal reveals death and hell personified as two horsemen. Together with the previous two horsemen - the one given the great sword to take peace from the earth at the opening of the second seal, and famine, with the beasts of the earth, they will kill a quarter of the earth's population. There will be an intensification of war, famine, pestilence, evil beasts, and death (CP Rev 6:7-8 with Lev 26:22; Eze 5:16-17; 14:21; 33:27-29). The four horsemen that will be involved symbolically in these judgements are known in Christendom as "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse". In the opening of the fifth seal next, we are given a prophetic revelation of the multitude of saints who will be martyred during the Tribulation (CP Mt 24:9 with Rev 6:9-11; 7:9-17). The saints martyred during the tribulation will be beheaded for their witness to Christ (CP Rev 13:7-8, 15-17; 14:13; 15:2-4; 20:4). The cry of the Tribulation saints for God to avenge their blood in Rev 6:10 is not for personal vengeance, but for the vindication of God's justice - that the wicked who have rejected God and killed His saints, will receive divine justice (CP Ro 12:19 with Rev 18:1-2, 5, 7, 15-16, 20; 19:2).
At the opening of the sixth seal next, for the first time since the seals were loosed, the outpouring of God's judgement upon sinners is revealed (CP Rev 6:12-17). Sinners would rather be crushed to death by mountains and rocks than endure God's judgement, which will be so cataclysmic it will cause the sky to recede as if it were a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island will be moved from their positions. We come now to the opening of the seventh seal (CP Rev 8:1-6). The opening of the seventh seal reveals seven trumpet judgements about to be unleashed upon the earth. We will look at them shortly, but first let us look at the hundred and forty four thousand Jews who the prophecy predicts will be sealed with the Seal of God in their foreheads to ensure their safety during the trumpet judgements in the first three and a half years of the Tribulation (CP Rev 7:1-8; 8:1-2 with 9:4). The significance of the hundred and forty four thousand is that they will be the first fruits out of the Tribulation of a new redeemed Israel and will be raptured to Heaven in the middle of the Tribulation (CP Rev 14:1-5).
Now let us go back to the opening of the seventh seal and the seven trumpet judgements about to be unleashed upon the earth (CP Rev 8:1-6). V 4 here teaches that these trumpet judgements are in response to the prayers of the saints (CP 5:8 and 6:9-11). Many in the church see the trumpet judgements as symbolic, not literal, but they are literal judgements, as scriptures clearly prove. The first will be hail and fire mingled with blood which will be cast upon the earth, burning up a third of the trees and all green grass (CP 8:7). The second undoubtedly refers to a huge meteorite which will be cast into the sea, contaminating a third of it, turning it into blood and killing a third of all the sea creatures, as well as destroying a third of the ships (CP 8:8-9). The third trumpet judgement will be a great star called Wormwood which will fall from Heaven upon a third part of the rivers and freshwater streams and springs on earth, killing many because the waters will be made bitter (CP 8:10-11). The fourth trumpet judgement will smite the sun and moon and
stars causing darkness to fall upon a third part of the day and night (CP 8:12). After the fourth trumpet judgement an angel (KJV), will warn the inhabitants of earth of the terrible things they must still suffer when the three remaining trumpets are sounded (CP 8:13).
In the fifth trumpet judgement, synonymous with the first woe, an angel of God will loose hordes of demon locusts upon the earth, which will inflict pain like scorpion bites upon earth's inhabitants for a period of five months. The pain will be so terrible those inflicted will want to die, but cannot. The only ones the demon locusts cannot touch are the hundred and forty four thousand Jews with the Seal of God in their foreheads (CP 9:1-12). In the sixth trumpet judgement, synonymous with the second woe, four fallen angels will be released from being bound in the Euphrates River, who will have been held in readiness for this exact time. They will lead two hundred million demon horsemen in killing a third of earth's inhabitants then still living. Those not killed still will not repent however, underlining the reason why God will judge the earth and its inhabitants, as Revelation foretells (CP 9:13-21). The seventh trumpet judgement synonymous with the third woe, will involve all the events of the second three and a half years of the Tribulation, leading up to Christ's second coming (CP 10:7). The mystery of God which he has declared to the prophets that will be fulfilled in the seventh trumpet judgement, synonymous with the third woe, is the casting down of Satan out of Heaven to earth (CP 11:14; 12:7-12).
Satan will be cast down to earth in the middle of the Tribulation. That is when Antichrist will break his peace treaty with Israel, and empowered by Satan, will make war on Israel. Christ will send His two witnesses to earth, who will prophesy for the remaining half of the Tribulation and then be killed. God will take them up to Heaven, and as they are being taken up a great earthquake will destroy the tenth part of Jerusalem, killing seven thousand of its inhabitants. This will cause the remaining Jews to glorify God and be saved (CP 11:1-13). Christ's two witnesses will be Enoch and Elijah, neither of whom have yet died, which they have to do to conform to scripture (CP He 9:27). They will be killed by the beast out of the bottomless pit, or abyss. It is not relevant to this study who this beast is, so we will not take it any further. The temple of God that John prophetically measures in Rev 11:1-2 does not yet exist. However, it will be rebuilt before the commencement of the seven years reign of antichrist. He will desecrate it in the middle of his reign when he will break his peace treaty with Israel and place an image of himself as God in the temple, forcing people to worship it or be killed (CP Dan 7:25; 8:9-14; 9:27; 12:7-12; Mt 24:15-21; 2Th 2:3-4; Rev 13:11-15). During the second three and a half years of the Tribulation Antichrist will make war on Israel until God purges the nation of every rebel. Altogether two thirds of Israel will perish in the Tribulation (CP Eze 20:33-38; Zech 13:8-9; Mal 3:1-6). The Gentile nations under antichrist will invade Israel and trample Jerusalem underfoot. The Jews will be led away captive into all nations, fulfilling both Old and New Testament prophecies (CP Dan 11:40-45; 12:1; Mt 24:15-22; Lu 21:20-24; Rev 11:1-2; 12:13-17).
As the seventh trumpet sounds God's seventh judgement upon the earth, synonymous with the third woe - the casting down of Satan out of Heaven to the earth - loud voices in Heaven will declare that the kingdoms of this world now belong to God and Christ, who will reign over them for ever and ever (CP Rev 11:14-19). Although God is Sovereign over the kingdoms of the world after Satan is cast out of Heaven, it will still be three and a half years before He actually takes possession of the earth because the Tribulation has to run its predetermined course first. Until then, Satan is the prince, or god of this world (CP Jn 12:31; 14:30; 2Cor 4:3-4; Eph 2:1-2). In Rev 11:16 the raptured church in Heaven prophesies how at Christ's second coming hostile nations will be overcome by God's wrath; how the prophets and saints are to be rewarded, and how the ungodly and wicked dead will be destroyed. The temple of God being opened to reveal the Ark of the Covenant in Rev 11:19 signifies God's redeeming purpose in the midst of judgement (CP Rev 11:16, 19 with Psa 21:9; Isa 26:20-21; 30:27-28; 2Th 1:7-9).
(CP Rev 12:1-5). Here we have a prophetic insight of Israel, symbolised by the woman who gives birth to a man child. Israel is depicted many times in scripture as a woman in travail giving birth (CP Isa 26:16-18; 54:1-6; 66:7-12; Hos 1:2-11; Mic 4:10; 5:2-3). The twelve stars represent the twelve tribes of Israel. The great red dragon is Satan (CP Job 41; Psa 74:14; 91:13; Isa 27:1; Rev 13:2-4; 16:13; 20:2). After he is cast out of Heaven, Satan and Antichrist together will make war on Israel in the second three and a half years of the Tribulation (CP Dan 7:7-8, 21, 24-25; 8:24-25; 2Th 2:8-9; Rev 6:4; 12:4, 7-17; 13:1-8). Having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns on his heads, symbolises Satan's domination of seven past world kingdoms and ten future world kingdoms, which he will dominate through his empowering of Antichrist. The general consensus among Bible commentators is that the man child the woman gave birth to in Rev 12:5 who will rule all nations with a "rod of iron", and who was caught up to God and His Throne is Jesus (CP Rev 12:5). This view however looks back on the past, whereas everything revealed to John, of which he prophesies from Rev 4:1 onward, is future (CP Rev 1:19; 4:1). Clearly, all the events of Revelation from ch 4 onward refer to the future, not the past. Thus the man child cannot represent Jesus in the past, but something that will be fulfilled in the future - during the Tribulation - because in accord with the prophecy, the woman will give birth during the Tribulation. The only thing caught up to God - translated to Heaven - during the Tribulation according to scripture, which the man child could possibly represent, are the hundred and forty four thousand Jews with the Seal of God in their foreheads - the first fruits out of the Tribulation of a new redeemed Israel (CP Isa 66:7-8; Jer 30:6-9; Dan 12:1; Rev 7:1-8; 14:1-5 with Ro 9:27; 11:1-5).
Those scriptures all point to the man child as representing the hundred and forty four thousand Jews - they are before the Throne of God in Rev 14:3, just as the man child was caught up unto God and His Throne in Rev 12:5. Man child in Isa 66:7 is referred to as her children in 66:8. In Jer 30 the man child - he - in V 7, is called they in V 9. Daniel prophesied in Dan 12:1 that every Jew whose name is written in the Book of Life will be delivered in the middle of the Tribulation after Satan is cast down out of Heaven to the earth. This is what happened to the man child in Rev 12:5 (CP Dan 12:1 with Rev 12:5). We know that the names of the hundred and forty four thousand are written in the Book of Life because they are sealed with the Seal of God - the name of God - in their foreheads (CP Rev 7:1-4; 14:1). When Satan is cast down out of Heaven to the earth he will cause antichrist to break his seven years peace treaty with Israel and will empower him to make war on Israel. However, Israel will be able to flee to a place of refuge which God has prepared for her to escape Satan's wrath during the last three and a half years of the Tribulation (CP Rev 12:1-17). The two wings of a great eagle in Rev 12:14 symbolises how God will sustain Israel during her three and a half years in the wilderness. This symbolism has its origin in the Exodus of the children of Israel from Egypt (CP Ex 19:4; De 32:11-12; Isa 63:9).
The water as a flood which the dragon casts out of his mouth after the woman refers to the armies of Antichrist. This symbolism of armies is used by both Jeremiah and Daniel in the Old Testament (CP Jer 46:7-8; 47:1-4; Dan 9:26-27; 11:21-26, 40). The remnant of the woman's seed who the dragon will make war with, are Jews who will not flee with the others into the wilderness. They obviously will get saved after the hundred and forty four thousand are raptured. The name of the place in the wilderness to which the woman will flee is Petra, or Sela, as it is also called, in Moab (CP Isa 16: 1-5). Next, we are given prophetic insight into the real nature of Antichrist. He is symbolised by a beast rising up out of the sea, combining all the evil features of other cruel oppressors of Israel (CP Rev 13:1-8). It is generally agreed among Bible scholars that the leopard typifies Greece, the bear, Medo-Persia, and the lion, Babylon. These were all violent and cruel oppressors of Israel during the Old Testament period before the Romans conquered Israel, and being depicted in the beast, means that antichrist will combine all their evil features (CP V 2).
The sea out of which Antichrist rises symbolises humanity - peoples, nations, multitudes and tongues; inhabitants of the earth (CP Dan 7:2-3; Rev 17:1, 15). Antichrist is a human being who will rise to power from among other human beings. He is not a supernatural being as so many Christians suppose, but will be empowered to do signs and wonders and work miracles, by both Satan and the one John calls the false prophet, symbolised by another beast rising up out of the earth (CP Rev 13:11-15 and 19:20). Many inhabitants of the earth at that time will think that Antichrist died of his head wound in Rev 13:3 and that God brought him back to life, thus duplicating Christ's death and resurrection, and attesting to Antichrist's deity. But the healing will be effected by Satan and the false prophet to deceive people into worshipping Antichrist's image, believing him to be God (CP Dan 8:23-24; 2Th 2:7-10; Rev 13:1-8). The false prophet is also a human being like Antichrist. (Earth in Rev 13:11, like sea in 13:1, is used symbolically of peoples. It is also the same Greek word as world in 13:3, which symbolises the inhabitants of the earth). He will enable the image of Antichrist, which will be set up in the temple - the abomination of desolation - to talk as God. He will cause people to worship the image, and will behead those who refuse (CP Rev 13:12-15 with Mt 24:15; 2Th 2:3-4 and Rev 20:4).
The false prophet will also cause people to receive the mark of Antichrist, called the mark of the beast, in order to be able to buy and sell. All who take the mark though or worship the beast, will be destroyed by God (CP Rev 13:16-17 with 14:9-13). Tribulation saints will be exhorted to persevere in faith in spite of persecution (CP Rev 13:10; 14:12-13 with 12:11). Those who are martyred for their testimony during the Tribulation will be especially blessed they will be released from all pain and suffering and go to be with Jesus (CP Rev 6:9-11; 7:9-17; 15:2; 20:4). The next part of John's prophecy that will be fulfilled during the Tribulation are the seven last plagues or the seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, by which name they are also referred (CP Rev 15:1, 6 - 16:1-12, 17-21). This will be the final outpouring of God's wrath upon the earth and its inhabitants, and bring finality to the Tribulation. The significance of no one being able to enter the temple in Rev 15:8 is that nothing can stop this outpouring of God's wrath. Note that the sixth plague in Rev 16:12 will cause the River Euphrates to dry up. God has predestined that to happen to enable the armies of the kings of the confederation of Gentile nations aligned with Antichrist to cross over on dry land to fight Christ at the battle of Armageddon (CP 16:12).
During the time between the sixth and seventh plague judgements, Satan will send three demon spirits throughout all the other kingdoms of the world. They will work miracles to induce their kings, who are not under the control of Antichrist, to cooperate with him with their armies, to fight Christ at Armageddon (CP Rev 16:13-16 with Psa 2:1-3). The part of John's prophecy predicting Satan sending these spirits throughout all the other kingdoms of the world will be fulfilled during the Tribulation, but the battle of Armageddon itself will not be fulfilled until after the Tribulation. We will examine that part of the prophecy in the next section of this study. In the meantime, the seventh and last plague judgement on the earth will be the most powerful and devastating earthquake in the history of the world. It will split Jerusalem into three parts, destroy Babylon, the capital of Antichrist's kingdom, and radically alter the earth's topography. Every mountain and island will be moved from their positions. This will be followed by an equally devastating hailstorm, with hailstones each weighing about forty kilograms bombarding the earth and killing people. Men will blaspheme God because of the devastating effect of the hailstorm (CP 16:17-21). The assertion "it is done" in V 17 means that the outpouring of God's wrath upon the earth is now complete. This signals the end of the Tribulation and presages Christ's second coming. All told, two thirds of Israel will perish in the Tribulation (CP Zech 13:8-9).
Next in scripture we are given a prophetic revelation of a Great Whore with the name MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH, symbolising a vast apostate religious system existing at that time, which will be destroyed by Antichrist in the middle of the Tribulation (CP Rev 17:1-17).
MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATION OF THE EARTH, symbolises a vast apostate religious system having its origins in the religious rites and mysteries of ancient Babylon (CP V 18). This apostate religious system will be immensely wealthy and will have dominion over kings and kingdoms, political leaders and nations, and people throughout the earth, symbolised by the many waters upon which the Great Whore sits (CP 17:1-2, 15). This apostate religious system, in league with Antichrist, will be responsible for shedding the blood of countless believers for their witness to Christ in the first three and a half years of the Tribulation (CP Rev 16:4-6 with 6:9-11; 17:6; 19:1-2). The scarlet-coloured beast upon which the woman sits, full of names of blasphemy, as we learned previously, symbolises Antichrist, although, as revealed in Rev 17, there is more to the beast than that, but it is not relevant to this study, so we will not pursue it.
Antichrist will turn on the apostate religious system midway through the Tribulation in order to set up the image of himself to be worshipped as God in the temple - the abomination of desolation - and the ten kings of the ten future kingdoms, will destroy the apostate religious system. This was also prophesied by Daniel in the Old Testament (CP Dan 7:7-8, 21, 24-25; 8:8-12, 23-25; 9:27; 11:31, 36-39 with Mt 24:15; Rev 13:1-8; 17:12-13, 16-17; 19:1-2). The names of blasphemy the scarlet-coloured beast was full of, refers to Antichrist's self-deification (CP Dan 7:25; 11:36-37; 2Th 2:3-4; Rev 13:5-6). The next part of John's prophecy that will be fulfilled during the Tribulation predicts the fall of Babylon, the capital of Antichrist's kingdom (CP Rev 18:1-3). Babylon will be destroyed by the great earthquake under the last vial judgement at the end of the Tribulation, prior to Christ's second coming. Its fall was also prophesied in the Old Testament by Isaiah and Jeremiah (CP Isa 13:19-22; 47:1-5; Jer 51:6-8 with Rev 14:8; 16:17-21; 18:4-10, 17). It should be noted here that Babylon does not presently exist in the form ascribed to it in Rev 18. However, for the prophecy to be fulfilled, it will be rebuilt before it is destroyed again, according to scripture (CP Zech 5:5-11). Wickedness will be built a house in Shinar refers to the rebuilding of Babylon. Shinar is the land in which it will be situated (CP Gen 10:10). The wind in the women's wings, and having wings like the wings of a stork in Zech 5:9-11, symbolises the speed with which Babylon will be rebuilt and restored to its former glory. Babylon has been partly rebuilt where it previously stood, in the land once part of Assyria, that is now modern Iraq. Antichrist will rise up from Assyria, and Babylon will be his seat of government (CP Isa 10:27; 14:24-27; 30:27-31; 31:4-9; Dan 11:36-45; Mic 5:3-6 with Isa 14:3-6 and Rev 17:18).
With Babylon destroyed and the Tribulation brought to an end in the seventh and last vial judgement, we will now examine New Testament prophecies awaiting fulfilment after the Tribulation, before the Millennium. The first is the prophecy that predicts the harvest of the earth being reaped (CP Rev 14:14-16). This is not a harvest of the Tribulation saints as many suppose, but a harvest of judgement (CP V 17-20 also Joel 3:9-16 with Jer 25:30-33; 46:9-10; Hos 6:11; Zeph 3:8; Zech 14:1-7). Those scriptures all predict the battle of Armageddon and Christ's final dealing with all who inhabit the earth. Armageddon is the great winepress of the wrath of God (CP Rev 19:15). For a more detailed teaching on this subject see author's study on Armageddon, Judgement of the Nations, Christ's Millennial Reign and the Eternal Kingdom in his book Advanced Studies in the Christian Faith (volume 2). Next in this section we will examine the prophecy predicting the end of this world, or age (CP Mt 13:30, 36-43, 48-49; 1Pe 4:7; Rev 22:10). This prophecy will be fulfilled at Christ's second advent (CP Mt 24:29-31; Mk 13:24-27).
Another New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment after the Tribulation prior to the Millennium, predicts the Judgement of the Nations (CP Mt 25:31-46). This was also prophesied by Joel in the Old Testament (CP Joel 3:2, 12). This teaches that the prophecy will be fulfilled after the battle of Armageddon, when Christ will judge the Gentile nations to determine who of them will go into the Eternal Kingdom (CP Zech 14:16 with Mt 25:34-40). Lastly in this section, we will examine John's prophecy that predicts the binding of Satan. This will be fulfilled when Christ defeats both Satan and Antichrist together with the false prophet and the armies of the confederation of Gentile nations supporting Antichrist, at the battle of Armageddon (CP Rev 19:11 - 20:3).
Now we come to New Testament prophecies awaiting fulfilment during the Millennium - the thousand years reign of Christ. First we will examine those that predict the Millennium (CP Mt 19:28; Lu 22:29-30; 1Cor 6:2-3; 15:25-26; Eph 1:10, 13-14; 2Ti 2:11-12; 4:1, 18; 2Pe 1:10-11; Rev 20:4). The prophecy predicting Christ's millennial reign is found in every one of those scriptures in one form or another. It will be fulfilled after the battle of Armageddon and the Judgement of the Nations (CP Mt 19:28). In this prophecy awaiting fulfilment in the Millennium, Christ promises the apostles that they will sit on thrones and judge the twelve tribes of Israel in the Eternal Kingdom (CP Also Lu 22:28-30). Other New Testament prophecies awaiting fulfilment too at this time, predict the saints inheriting the Kingdom (CP Mt 5:3, 10; 8:11; Lu 6:20; He 12:25-28); the meek inheriting the earth (CP Mt 5:5 also Psa 37:11); the saints receiving an eternal inheritance (CP 1Pe 1:4), and the saints inheriting eternal life (CP Mt 19:29; Mk 10:29-30; Lu 18:29-30; 1Jn 2:17). These prophecies will all be fulfilled in Christ's Eternal Kingdom, as also will His prophecy of the Lord's supper continuing throughout eternity (CP Mt 26:29; Mk 14:25; Lu 22:16-20).
Another New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment in the Millennium is that which predicts the restitution of all things (CP Ac 3:21). The restitution of all things means that in the millennial reign of Christ all things in God's original purpose for His creation will be completely restored to what God intended them to be before Adam fell. The earth will be delivered from the curse under which it now exists because of Adam's sin. It will be restored to normal fertility and productivity. There will be no more famines - fruitful seasons will be without interruptions. Waste places will be restored to usefulness; deserts will blossom again (CP Gen 3:17-18 with Rev 22:3 and Isa 4:1-2; 30:23-25; 32:15; 35:1-2, 7; 41:17-19; 43:19-20; 49:8-11; 51:3; 55:12-13; 61: 4-5; Eze 34:23-31; 36:8-12, 29-30, 33-38; 47:1-12; Joel 2:18-19, 21-27; 3:18; Amos 9:11-15; Zech 8:12; 14:8). There will be no more sorrow or mourning, neither tears. No one will ever die again. There will be no more crying or pain, nor will anyone hunger again. Neither will sun nor heat ever affect anyone again (CP Rev 7:16-17; 21:3-5). There will be no more sin and sickness in the earth (CP Isa 33:20-24). The natural people living on earth will be healed by the Tree of Life (CP Rev 22:2). There will be no more poverty - material blessings will fill the earth; every one will prosper (CP Isa 60:5-17; 62:8-9; 65:21-23; Mic 4:4; Zech 3:10). World wide peace will prevail in the earth (CP Isa 2:1-4; 9:6-7; 11:10; 19:23; 26:12; 32:18; 54:14; 57:19; 60:18; 66:12; Mic 4:1-3; Zech 14:9-11). Formerly wild animals will be tame - children will play with once highly venomous snakes (CP Isa 11:6-9; Eze 34:25, 28). Animals will no longer attack and kill human beings, nor each other (CP Isa 65:25).
Next we will examine prophecies awaiting fulfilment after the Millennium. The first of these is John's prophecy foretelling Satan being loosed after being bound in chains in the bottomless pit during the thousand years of the Millennium, and his final rebellion, defeat, and doom (CP Rev 20:7-10). The fulfilment of this prophecy will also fulfil Paul's prophecy predicting Satan's doom (CP Ro 16:20). The next prophecy in this section which will be examined here predicts the second resurrection - the resurrection of the wicked dead (CP Rev 20:4-6). V 5 here teaches that the wicked dead will be resurrected after the thousand years reign of Christ with the saints from the first resurrection. They will be judged and cast into the Lake of Fire at the Great White Throne Judgement (CP Rev 20:11-15; 21:8). The Lake of Fire will be the final destination of the wicked - a place of eternal torment for everyone whose name is not found written in the Book of Life (CP Mt 8:11-12; 13:41-43, 50; 18:8-9; 25:41-46; Mk 9:42-50; 12:38-40; Lu 3:16-17; 12:4-5; Rev 14:9-11; 19:20; 20:1-10, 15; 21:7-8 see also Isa 66:22-24).
The Great White Throne Judgement is prophesied in one form or another right throughout the New Testament (CP Mt 3:10; 7:21-23; 10:15, 26-28; 11:20-24; 12:36-37, 41-42; 15:13; Mk 4:22; 6:11; Lu 3:9, 17; 6:24-26; 8:16-18; 10:10-15; 11:31-32; 12:4-5, 10; 13:3, 5, 23-30; 20:46-47; Jn 12:48; Ac 17:31; 1Cor 3:17; 4:5; 6:9-10; Ga 5:19-21; 6:7-8; Col 3:25; He 6:4-6; 10:26-29; 1Pe 4:7; 2Pe 2:9, 20-22; 3:7; Rev 20: 11-15). In the fulfilment of the Great White Throne Judgement prophecy, prophecies predicting that there will be degrees of punishment for the wicked, will also be fulfilled (CP Mt 10:13-15; 11:20-24; 12:41-42; 16:27; Mk 6:11; Lu 10:10-15; 11:31-32; 12:47-48; 20:46-47; He 10:29; Jas 3:1; Rev 2:18-23). Just as there will be degrees of rewards in Heaven for the saints (CP 1Cor 3:13-15), so there will be degrees of punishment in the Lake of Fire for the wicked. Contemporaneous with the fulfilment of the Great White Throne Judgement prophecy, the prophecy predicting the renovation of Heaven and earth will also be fulfilled (CP 2Pe 3:7, 10-13 with Rev 20:11; 21:1). In the context of 2Pe 3:7, 10-13, it means that Heaven and earth will be loosed from their present corrupt state into a new state purified by fire and made new as to character (CP Psa 102:25-26; Isa 65:17; 66:22 with Ro 8:21-23; He 1:10-12; 12:25-27).
Another prophecy awaiting fulfilment after the Millennium is that which predicts that at the end of Christ's millennial reign, when all the enemies of God have been defeated - even death - and cast into the lake of Fire at the Great White Throne Judgement, Christ will hand the Kingdom over to God (CP 1Cor 15:24-28, 55; Rev 20:14). Together Christ and God will reign over the Kingdom in the New Earth for all eternity (CP Dan 7:13-14; Rev 21:1-3, 22-23; 22:3-5). In the fulfilment of this prophecy, others predicting the Eternal Kingdom of Christ will also be fulfilled (CP Rev 11:15 with Psa 45:6; 146:10, Isa 9:6-7; Dan 7:27; Mic 4:7; Lu 1:31-33; He 1:8). Another prophecy, which predicts the saints being made eternal kings and priests, will also be fulfilled at this time (CP Rev 1:6; 2:26-27; 3:21; 5:10; 20:4-6; 22:5 with Dan 7:18, 27).
In this last section of the study now we will examine prophecies awaiting fulfilment after the Great White Throne Judgement, in the New Earth. The first of these will be the prophecy which predicts New Jerusalem as both God and Christ's seat of government in the New Earth (CP Rev 21:1-3, 9-27 with He 10:16; 13:14). New Jerusalem will be the home of all the saints of God - Old Testament and New Testament alike - from Abel to the very last soul saved in the Tribulation (CP Rev 21:24-27 with Jn 14:1-3; He 11:1-2, 13-16; 12:22-23; Rev 3:12 also Isa 2:1-4; Mic 4:1-4). It should be noted here that New Jerusalem is a literal city, twelve thousand furlongs - fifteen hundred miles - long, wide, and high, with a wall measuring a hundred and forty four cubits - over two hundred feet, or sixty five metres - high, surrounding it. The city is made of pure gold, which is transparent like clear glass, and the street of the city is the same. The city has twelve gates, each one a pearl. There will be no temple as an object of worship in the city - God and Jesus will be the objects of worship. The city will have no need of the sun and moon. It will be illuminated by the radiating glory of God and Jesus will be its light. This will also fulfil Rev 22:5 (CP 22:5). The city gates of New Jerusalem will never be shut, because it will always be perfectly secure; there will never be any darkness there. It will be the capital of God in the New Earth throughout eternity, and the eternal home of all the saints of God, from Abel to the very last soul saved in the Tribulation. They will all live in New Jerusalem forever (CP Rev 21:9-27). Rev 22:4 will also be fulfilled at this time (CP 22:4).
The next New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment in the New Earth which we will examine here, is that which predicts that Christ will make the saints pillars in the temple of God in the New Earth; that He will write the name of God upon them; the name of the City of God, New Jerusalem; and His own new name. The temple of God will be built by Christ to fulfil this prophecy, which will also fulfil the prophecy by Zechariah in the Old Testament (CP Rev 3:11-12 with Zech 6:12-13). Next, we are given a prophetic insight of the River of Water of Life proceeding from the Throne of God and of Christ in New Jerusalem, and the Tree of Life growing in the middle of the street,
and on either side of the river which Christ promises the saints to give them to eat of (CP Rev 2:7; 22:1-2, 14). The River of Water of Life is not called that because it will be the medium of life, but because it will bring life to everything along its course. This was also prophesied by Ezekiel and Zechariah in the Old Testament (CP 22:2 with Eze 47:9-12; Zech 14:8). The River of Water of Life flowing from God's throne was also prophesied by King David (CP Psa 47:4). Clearly this is a literal river. It is not symbolic of the blessings of God, or the continual flow of eternal life, as some teach.
The Tree of Life is also literal. It will bear twelve kinds of fruit - a different fruit for each month of the year - and will be such a prolific bearer the fruit will never be all used up. This also was prophesied by Ezekiel (CP Rev 22:2 with Eze 47:7, 12). The fruit will be for both the redeemed of God who will live in New Jerusalem, and the natural people who will live in the New Earth (CP rev 2:7; 22:2, 14). The leaves of the tree will be for the preservation of life of the
natural people. It should be noted here that the New Earth will be inhabited throughout eternity by natural people, which will also fulfil that part of John's prophecy in Rev 22:2 where he refers to them as the nations (CP V 2 with Isa 2:1-3; 66:22-23; Dan 7:13-14, 27; Mic 4:1-5; Zech 14:16; Mt 25:31-40, 46b; Rev 11:15). Every one of those scriptures is a prophecy. They will all be fulfilled in the New Earth. Another New Testament prophecy awaiting fulfilment in the New Earth which we will examine here is by Paul, who predicts that the church will continue eternally along with eternal generations of natural people throughout the ages to come (CP Eph 3:21). The church will be an eternal witness in the New Earth to God's unmatched grace (CP Ro 11:36).
This study is now complete. In bringing it to a close it should be noted that the study is not exhaustive. There are still other New Testament prophecies awaiting fulfilment in the ages to come, but those included here are the most prominent, and will suffice for the purpose of this teaching.