Anticipated Prophetic Events: Delayed 1-3 Years?

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The signs in the anticipated prophetic events section of my “End of the Age: 2020?” commentary did not take place in my hypothesized time frame.  Had my basic assumptions been correct, it seems that those events should have occurred during Passover week: April 10-18, 2017.

My hypothesis was that the European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI) was the 7-year agreement of Daniel 9:27a, which appeared to confirm and strengthen a prior covenant: the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP).  These accords involved many nations, including Israel.

The following two events, prophesied by Jesus, presumably will make international news soon after they happen at the beginning of the Great Tribulation period:

  • armies surrounding or attacking Jerusalem, and
  • people fleeing out of the region of Judea to the mountains (Luke 21:20,21).

Since those and other anticipated prophetic events did not take place in 2017, it may be that the European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI) is not the prophesied 7-year agreement of Daniel 9:27a.  In that case, I do believe that there will be a 7-year agreement, fulfilling this prophecy, at some point in the future.

However, there may yet be a another possibility.  Conceivably, the final half of Daniel’s prophecied 70th Week could begin in 2018, 2019 or 2020, rather than in 2017.  If so, the end of the age and Jesus’ return to earth to rule and reign, being delayed 1-3 years, would take place in 2021, 2022 or 2023.  An explanation is in order.

final 7 years

First, consider the prophesied 70 weeks of years, described by the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel (Daniel 9:24).  It is assumed by most of those who study the Bible that the final (70th) week of those prophesied 70 weeks of years will be the final 7 years of this age, prior to Jesus’ return.  I continue to believe this to be true.

Another common assumption, though, has been that the final (70th) week of the prophesied 70 weeks of years is equivalent to the week of 7-years that begins with the confirmation of a covenant (Daniel 9:27a).  But what if the latter is not necessarily the case?  That is, perhaps it is possible that the following two 7-year periods are not identical, even though they may overlap:

  1. the 7-year span of the God-ordained 70th Week, which constitutes the final 7 years of the 70 weeks of years spoken about by God’s messenger Gabriel; and
  2. the 7-year span of the man-ordained agreement, which confirms a prior man-made covenant.

Many, or maybe most, would consider this speculation to be implausible and improbable.  Yet, it is a fact that Satan counterfeits countless things of God to mislead people and to throw them off-track.  Thus, it seems reasonable to contemplate the possibility that Satan might try to confuse the timing of the final 7 years of this age so that it would be less likely for people to know when this time period is taking place.

Presumably, it is the satanically-inspired Antichrist, or man of lawlesssness (2 Thessalonians 2:3), who is the one that confirms a covenant with many for a week of 7 years (Daniel 9:24).  Perhaps this would be done with the intent of counterfeiting the actual timing of the prophesied 70th Week of years, which are the final 7 years of this age.

middle vs. midst

Now, in most Bible versions, Daniel 9:27 states that it is in the middle of the period launched by the 7-year agreement when sacrifice and offering will be put to an end:

He will confirm a covenant with many for one “seven,” but in the middle of that “seven” he will put an end to sacrifice and offering.  And one who causes desolation will place abominations on a wing until the end that is decreed is poured out on him. (Daniel 9:27—NIV)

Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; but in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering.  And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, even until the consummation, which is determined, is poured out on the desolate. (Daniel 9:27—NKJV)
However, there are versions stating that it is in the midst of the 7-year agreement period when this occurs:
And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. (Daniel 9:27—KJV)

And he shall confirm a brit [covenant] with rabbim [the many] for one heptad [week of seven years]; and in the midst of the heptad he shall cause the zevach [sacrifice] and the minchah [gift offering] to cease, and on the kenaf [wing or overspreading] of the abominations is one making desolate, even until the complete destruction, a destruction that is decreed, shall be poured out upon the Shomem [Desolator, Destroyer]. (Daniel 9:27—OJB)
So what if “midst” is the more accurate translation?  It would seem to leave open the possibility that the sacrifice and offering being stopped could be sometime within the 7-year agreement period but not necessarily in the exact middle (or middle year) of that period.

Thus, it remains possible that the European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI) is the 7-year agreement of Daniel 9:27a.  If so, since none of the anticipated prophetic events took place during Passover week of 2017, then perhaps they might occur in one of the remaining years spanned by the ENI agreement.

dates in upcoming years

In my significant dates section, I noted how I am convinced that the return of Jesus back to earth will take place on a Yom Kippur = Day of Atonement.  I also noted how I believe that the second half of the 70th Week will be 1,260 days (Revelation 11:3) + 3˝ days (11:9,11) = 1,263˝ days (rounding up to 1,264 days) in length.

Yom Kippur Minus 1,263˝ Days
Yom KippurMinus 1,263˝ DaysDatesDuring Passover Week?
September 16, 2021
October 5, 2022
September 25, 2023
– 1,263˝ Days =
– 1,263˝ Days =
– 1,263˝ Days =
April 2-3, 2018
April 21-22, 2019
April 10-11, 2020
Yes: March 30-April 7, 2018
Yes: April 19-27, 2019
Yes: April 8-16, 2020

I feel very strongly that the anticipated prophetic events, initiating the Great Tribulation period, will take place during Passover week.  In the chart above, it can be seen in each of the remaining years while the European Neighbourhood Instrument is in effect—2018, 2019 & 2020—that the events commencing the final 3˝ years of this age potentially could begin in one of those years.

season of Teshuvah

Teshuvah, meaning “return” or “repentance,” is a 40-day season each year on the Hebrew calendar.  It begins on Av 30 (at sunset following Av 29), thirty days before Rosh haShanah begins on Tishri 1 (at sunset following Elul 29), and ends on Yom Kippur (Tishri 10).  This probably was the period of forty days and forty nights when Jesus was tempted in the desert by the devil, yet He resisted every temptation (Matthew 4:1-11).

During the month of Elul, one is to examine one’s life, to repent and turn from one’s sins, and to restore broken relationships with others and with God, knowing that the “Day of Judgment” (Rosh haShanah) is approaching.  On each day of Elul, a shofar (horn or trumpet) is blown, reminding everyone to repent because Rosh haShanah is drawing near.

Psalm 27, and often Ezekiel 33:1-7, are read.  Psalm 27 states that the Lord is our “salvation” when our “enemies attack” us, “sheltering” us and keeping us “safe” in the “day of trouble” (Psalm 27:1,2,5).  Ezekiel 33:1-7 concerns the trumpet blowing to “warn the people” of the “...sword coming against the land...” (33:3).  For whoever does not heed the warning and loses his life, “...his blood will be on his own head” (that is, it is his own fault) because “If he had taken warning, he would have saved himself” (33:4,5).

In 2017, a significant total solar eclipse, with the zone of totality observable only in the United States, took place on Av 29 (August 21).  On that day, the 40-day season of Teshuvah began at sunset.  It very well may have been a warning not only to the U.S. but to all the nations of the world that a sincere repentance is expected by God—or else judgment will result.

total solar eclipse: August 21, 2017

Total solar eclipse across the United States on August 21, 2017On August 21, 2017, a total solar eclipse crossed the entire United States, from Oregon to South Carolina.  The U.S. was the only country that was on the eclipse’s path of totality, which was seen by observers in 12 states (and maybe a tiny portion of 2 other states).

The last total eclipse that crossed the U.S., from coast to coast, was in 1918.  However, the August 21, 2017 eclipse was the first total eclipse that was exclusive only to the U.S. in the nation’s history.  These two videos provide more information:

Everything You Need To Know
about the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse

(video length = 1˝ minute)
     2017 Total Solar
Eclipse in the U.S.

(video length = 48 seconds)

sign of Jonah

Jesus spoke about the sign of the prophet Jonah.  Just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish or whale, Jesus said that He would be three days and three nights in the grave (Jonah 1:17; Matthew 12:39,40).

Interestingly, ancient cuneiform tablets, discovered in the 19th century, describe events in ancient Nineveh.  One event was the Bur-Sagale total eclipse, which has been verified by NASA as taking place in 763 B.C.

Evidently, the eclipse passed directly over Nineveh not long before Jonah arrived.  This very likely was a primary reason why the people of Nineveh were ready and willing to repent when God sent Jonah there to warn them that they had only forty days left to repent (Jonah 3:1-10).

Possible cancellation of the United StatesIt very well could be, then, that the total solar eclipse on August 21, 2017, was a warning sign to America—which presently is an extremely divided nation—to repent during the 40-day season of Teshuvah...or else.  Realistically, though, it is difficult to imagine that such a massive, coast-to-coast repentance would take place and that the majority of the people in the United States would unite and turn exclusively to the one, true God.

Ancient Israel is an example to all the nations of the world, including the USA.  The Israelites gradually began transgressing against God’s covenantal laws and embracing and worhiping gods, other than the one, true God.  God’s compassion and mercy lasted for awhile; His desire was for the people to repent and turn back to Him.

Balance scales of God's mercy and judgmentHowever, when they did not, then His harsh judgment fell upon them (Daniel 9:9-12; Jeremiah 15:6,7).  This actually applies to all nations, not just Israel (Jeremiah 18:7-12; Hebrews 10:26,27).  God’s mercy gradually wanes, and eventually it is out-weighed by His severe judgment.

Following the total solar eclipse that “sliced America in half,” further stark warnings seem to have occurred, perhaps portending the beginning of God’s pronounced judgment on the U.S. and other nations, such as Mexico.  Possible warnings may include the following disasters, all of which took place or commenced within a month of the solar eclipse of August 21:

  • Aug. 25: Hurricane Harvey made landful in Texas as a Category 4 storm.  It caused catastrophic damage to eastern portions of the state along the Gulf Coast.
  • Sep. 6: Huge wildfires in CA, OR, WA, ID, MT, NV, UT, WY and CO were raging.  They lasted for several weeks and caused catastrophic damage.  They culminated in the October 2017 Northern California wildfires, burning throughout most of October and including the Napa Sonoma fires in the famed wine country of No. CA.
  • Sep. 7: The Chiapas earthquake, with Magnitude 8.2, struck off the southern coast of Mexico.  It generated a tsunami with waves of 5 feet 9 inches (1.75 meters) above tide level.  It was the strongest earthquake recorded in Mexico in a century, as well as the strongest earthquake in the world so far in 2017.
  • Sep. 7: Hurricane Irma pummeled the Caribbean Islands as a Category 5 storm.  It caused extensive and widespread devastation.
  • Sep. 10: Hurricane Irma made two landfalls in Florida, as a Category 4 and 3 storm.  Moving northward along the west coast, it caused catastrophic damage to much of the state.
  • Sep. 19: The Central Mexico earthquake, with Magnitude 7.1, struck southeast of Mexico City.  It caused considerable destruction in the Mexican states of Puebla and Morelos and in the Greater Mexico City area, where more than 40 buildings collapsed.
  • Sep. 19: Hurricane Maria roared across the Caribbean island of Dominica as a Category 5 storm.  It caused catastrophic damage throughout the entire island.
  • Sep. 20: Hurricane Maria made a direct hit on Puerto Rico as a Category 4 storm.  It caused catastrophic devastation across the island, which may never fully recover.

At a minimum, the U.S. might become proccupied with enough problems and hardships to prevent it from aiding and protecting Israel in an upcoming attack.  Furthermore, commencing the “ten days of awe” that complete the season of Teshuvah, it seems that God prepared yet another amazing sign in the sky on September 23, 2017—potentially another manifest warning by God.

sign in the sky: September 23, 2017

Constellations Virgo and Leo
Constellations Virgo and Leo
On September 23, 2017, there was a combination of two constellations, stars, planets, the sun and the moon, and other signs in the sky that many believe represented the first few verses of Revelation 12:

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.  She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. (Revelation 12:1,2)
The 9 stars of Leo (the lion) plus the 3 planets Venus, Mars and Mercury appeared to form the 12 stars above the head of Virgo (the woman, representing Israel).  From our perspective on earth, the sun appeared to be near her head with the new moon near her feet.

Also, from our perspective, the planet Jupiter was in retrograde motion.  It appeared to be moving around the “womb” of Virgo (the virgin), for nine months, as if “she” were pregnant.

There are many “cyclical” prophecies in the Bible, meaning that God can cause prophecies to have mutiple fulfillments, on different levels.  So, among other things, Virgo could represent Israel and also the virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus (Matthew 1:20-23).  Leo could represent Judah (Genesis 49:9), the son of Jacob/Israel, and also Judah’s descendant Jesus, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah (Revelation 5:5).

red dragon

The prophecy describes another sign to appear:

Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads.  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. (Revelation 12:3,4)
In the time of Jesus, Satan looked for ways to kill Jesus.  Eventually, he influenced Judas to betray Jesus.  Then Jesus was interrogated, humiliated, flogged and crucified.  It seemed that Satan had won.

However, after three days, Jesus was resurrected from the dead on the Feast of Firstfruits and then taken up to heaven forty days later.  He was the first of many who, having placed their faith in Him, eventually will be caught up to be with Jesus in heaven.

Red dragon between the legs of Virgo, perhaps a binary star solar system
Red dragon between the legs of Virgo, perhaps Nihiru or Planet X
Evidently, there appeared to be something between the “legs” of Virgo on September 23, 2017.  Some have said it was a binary solar system that could be viewed only with an infrared telescope.  The two stars in the system seemed to resemble the two eyes on the face of a fiery red dragon.

Others have said it was Nibiru or Planet X which, allegedly, it is a large planet with a very long elliptical orbit around the sun.  They claim that at some point, allegedly, it will pass near the earth—or even crash into the earth—causing untold destruction.

It should be noted that Revelation 12:3,4 (shown above) is not the same event as Revelation 12:7-9:

And there was war in heaven.  Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back.  But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.  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. (Revelation 12:7-9)
In the first passage (Revelation 12:3,4), it is Satan (the “red dragon”) who sweeps a third of his “stars” or evil angels out of the sky or heaven and flings them to the earth.  Presumably, they will have an exceedingly and profoundly negative effect on the earth and influence on people everywhere for an unspecified period of time.

If  the United States—the main protector of Israel—were to be preoccupied with or have its attention diverted toward natural, human-caused and/or socioeconomic disasters, that could open the door for Israel to be attacked by its enemies.  Then Jerusalem could be surrounded by armies, and people could flee (perhaps to a mountainous desert area like Petra), thus fulfilling Luke 21:20,21 and Revelation 12:6 and commencing the final 1,260 days = 3˝ years of this age.

In the second passage (Revelation 12:7-9), Satan will battle with the archangel Michael.  Satan himself, along with the remainder of his evil angels, will be hurled to the earth.  A warning is given to the earth and to the sea because the devil, filled with fury, knows that his time is short (Revelation 12:12).

For 3˝ years, they will wreak immeasurable and unprecedented havoc upon the earth.  Most of this will take place during the Great Tribulation period and will continue into the day of vengeance period, culminating with Jesus’ physical return to earth to rule and reign.

snatched up

Next, in the prophetic vision, we see this:

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. (Revelation 12:5)
A common belief always has been that the “son, a male child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter” (Psalm 2:9; Revelation 19:15) was Jesus, who “was snatched up to God and to his throne” after His resurrection.  However, since this prophecy was written decades after Jesus’ death and resurrection, it also seems to describe something yet to come.

Thus, this would seem to indicate that another “child” of the woman will be “snatched up to heaven” at some point after the sign of the woman appears in the sky.  Indeed, believers in Jesus have been grafted into the “olive root” of Israel (Romans 11:17).  Those who overcome the temptations, enticements and seductions of world, and who submit to the will of God, will be given authority to “rule the nations with an iron scepter,” along with Jesus:

To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations—“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. (Revelation 2:26,27)
If those being snatched up to heaven are believers in Jesus who have learned to overcome the world and its temptations, we might wonder when this would happen.  Many believe that this points to a Pre-Tribulation Rapture.  Personally, I do not believe in a Pre-Tribulation Rapture, as explained in my Rapture commentary and in my Rapture Questions and Responses section.

Presumably, if a third of the Satan’s “stars” (or his evil angels) are flung to earth (Revelation 12:4a), they would spend some time disrupting people’s lives and trying to tempt people, including believers in Jesus, to stray away from God.  It seems plausible that they might do this until Passover week the following year because of what we see a couple of verses later in the prophecy:

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. (Revelation 12:6)
This represents a remnant of Israelis escaping Judea and Jerusalem and fleeing into the desert, where they will be taken care of by God for “a time, times and half a time” (Revelation 12:14), which is the final 3˝ years or 1,260 days of this age.  This equates to Jesus’ warning to flee to the mountains (Matthew 24:16; Mark 13:14; Luke 21:21), which is one of the anticipated prophetic events.  Some feel that the people will flee to Petra, a mountainous desert location in Jordan, just prior to the onset of the Great Tribulation.

Perhaps being “snatched up to heaven” (Revelation 12:5b) could be in a Mid-Tribulation Rapture, as it seems to take place just prior to the fleeing of the woman into the desert to be taken care of by God for 1,260 days (12:6).

It is possible, then, that the latter could take place for a remnant of “firstfruits” believers, perhaps on the Feast of Firstfruits = Resurrection Sunday (Easter), during the next Passover week to come: March 30 to April 7, 2018.  If so, these and other anticipated prophetic events would be expected to take place at the beginning of the Great Tribulation period:

  • armies surrounding and/or attacking Jerusalem, and
  • people fleeing out of the region of Judea to the mountains (Luke 21:20,21).

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