It’s been over a year since I wrote part 2, but ever since I wrote part 2 I’ve been praying about how and when to write part 3. Then today, as I as reading Hosea 2, I saw it.
The parallels between Revelation 12 and Exodus 16-19 are strong, but I’d never seen them before. It took reading through Hosea 2 to see this.
Okay, let me unpack this. I hope I do it well!
Revelation 12:6 “The woman fled into the wilderness to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days.”
The Israelites were led into the wilderness, this woman fled into the wilderness, but God had prepared a place for her, and God was going before them. In both instances, His will was to provide for them.
In Exodus, God provided manna, quail, water that had been bitter turned sweet, water from springs, even water from a rock.
In Exodus 19:, God had this to say to the Israelites:
I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself.
Revelation 12:14 has this peculiarly parallel verse:
The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness
But it’s not the same. In the first instance, God bears them on eagles’ wings and brings them to Himself. In the second instance the woman has the eagle’s wings.
Follow me for a second here, and if, after you’ve read through it, you disagree with me, I’d love to hear your point of view. But this is what I felt the Lord was showing me.
In Exodus, God was manifesting Himself to the Israelites with outward signs. If the woman in Revelation 12 is a picture of the Church, then in the last days God will be manifesting Himself through His people. Which is why she has the wings and can fly. It’s the Lord through her.
The Man-child (Jesus) is taken up to heaven, but she is not. She’s in the wilderness for 1,260 days, the amount of time discussed in other places as being the duration of the Great Tribulation.
Later this week we’ll be celebrating the Feast of the Tabernacles. There are 5 commanded feasts (plus one fast) the Israelites kept. There are three feast in the spring:
Pesach (Passover), Waving of the Sheaves (First Fruits), and Shavout (Pentecost, Feast of Weeks).
These feasts were fulfilled in Christ’s first coming. He was the Passover Lamb and the First Born of the dead (the First Fruit). Shavout was fulfilled in the coming of the Holy Spirit. It was originally meant to celebrate the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai. Now we have the Law written in our hearts.
The other two feasts, the fall feasts, the Feast of Trumpets and the Feast of Tabernacles, are pictures of the end of the age, the End Times. God gave these feasts so we would practice and be prepared for when the time came. The Feast of Trumpets is about marshaling and preparing, being alert, awaiting the coming of the Bridegroom, and bringing food to the Lord (maybe so it can be distributed like the five loaves and 2 fish were?). We’re not told many specifics about the Feast of Trumpets, but we are told specifics about the Feast of Tabernacles. It was to remind us of how God protected people in the wilderness and provided for them every step of the way. For seven days, people were to dwell in booths. Temporary dwellings. This was to remind them of how the Israelites lived in tents or booths in the desert between slavery and the Promise Land.
I know that after we give our lives to the Lord we live as aliens on the earth, and this feast is a picture of that. But what if it’s also a picture of how life will be for the Church at the end of the age? What if we’re to be in the desert, in temporary dwellings, and the Feast of Tabernacles, or Feast of Booths, is rehearsal for that?
Heaven is paradise, not a desert. So why is the woman brought into the desert? What if we’re not raptured out of here beforehand but are presented before the world as witnesses of His glory? Protected by His glory. Faithful witnesses, just like Jesus was. Jesus, who “tabernacled among us” (John 1:14).
The literal translation of Psalm 84:1 is: “How lovely are your dwelling places,” or “How lovely are your tabernacles.” And the Psalm goes on:
5 Blessed are those whose strength is in you,
whose hearts are set on pilgrimage.
6 As they pass through the Valley of Baka [desert region, literally 'valley of weeping'],
they make it a place of springs;
the autumn rains also cover it with pools.
7 They go from strength to strength,
till each appears before God in Zion.
In this world we will have trouble, but take heart–Jesus has overcome the world! And He is coming back for us.
Many have very strong thoughts on this subject; I do like to hear them.
All I ask is you keep it friendly