Understanding the End-time Harvest

By R. Hunt – Sept. 27, 2015
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Most biblical scholars believe in the rapture and teach that someday Christ will come back suddenly to rescue His Church, before God unleashes His wrath upon the wicked unbelievers in this dark world.  This has been a common understanding for quite some time.  However, due to my recent discovery of the different rewards believers’ will receive when Christ returns, that understanding is now lacking knowledge of the different elements or parts that would unfold during a biblical harvest.  That basic understanding also assumes that the entire Church will be ready when the last trumpet sounds, which actually nullifies the need for believers’ to be watchful and ready for His unexpected coming, as Christ, Himself, repeatedly warned His followers to be.
 

John 12:23-25 (NIV) – Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. 24 Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. 25 Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life.”
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What did Christ mean in the passage above?  He was hinting that His death, burial and resurrection, like a seed planted in the spring (Passover, Unleavened Bread & First-fruits), will produce a harvest in the fall or in this case, the end-time harvest at the end of the age (Trumpets, Atonement & Tabernacles).  He is looking ahead to the resurrection of the righteous.  Those who love Him will hate their old life and crucify their flesh, exchanging the old for the new.  The harvest will begin when He returns in the clouds, but in order to fully grasp this, we must understand that this is only the first stage of the harvest.
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Back in the ancient days of the first century when the Temple was still standing in Jerusalem, there were three different parts to a harvest.  First, the reapers would gather the first-fruits of the crop and give them to the High Priest, so he could make a wave offering to the Lord.  Then they would harvest the main crop, however, they would not reap the rest of the entire field.  The reapers of the harvest were commanded to leave some of the gleanings (left-overs) and the corners for the poor and the strangers.
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Leviticus 23:10-11 (ESV) – “Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, When you come into the land that I give you and reap its harvest, you shall bring the sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest, 11 and he shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, so that you may be accepted.  On the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.”
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Christ was the first fruits of the dead or those that slept (1 Cor. 15:20).  However, His brother James mentioned another type or kind of first-fruits.  Could it be that there will be first fruits of the living as well?  I believe so.  James was referring to the resurrection or the end-time harvest.  Those who are ready when the Son of man appears will be taken, and this will be the beginning or the first-fruits of the harvest.  The harvest will come at the time of the end, but we need to mindful of the three different parts of a biblical harvest.
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James 1:18 (NIV) – 
He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.”
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After the first fruits are gathered, then comes the second phase of the harvest.  This is the main harvest of the crop and some believers, those who are not ready (lukewarm) will be left to enter into the hour of trial or temptation (Rev. 3:10), when they will be overcome by the beast (Rev.13:7).  These saints will be purified as they receive a little punishment for not being ready (Luke 12:46-48), but they will still have enough faith to become martyrs and enter back into the kingdom.  And they, too, will return with the Lord and reign on the earth with those who were ready (Rev. 20:4).  God will not unleash His wrath until the last martyr is killed (Rev. 6:9-11).
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1 Peter 4:17-18 (KJV)“For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? 18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?” 
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Daniel 11:33-35 (NIV)“Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. 34 When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. 35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.”
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The first two phases (first-fruits & main harvest) also represent the resurrection of the righteous, who are the saints that will return to reign with Christ in His millennial kingdom.  This resurrection begins when Christ comes in the clouds to gather His elect (chosen).  This will include the dead in Christ, which also includes dead Old Testament saints, and those who are ready among the living will be changed.  These will go to the wedding supper in heaven, while the lukewarm are entering the hour of trial to become martyrs.  The martyrs will also reign with Christ, and this resurrection will be complete when the last martyr is killed.
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Leviticus 23:22 (KJV)“And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger: I am the Lord your God.”
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After the martyrs are killed, then comes the third and final phase, which is the end of the harvest and/or the end of the age (second coming/Armageddon).  After all of the martyrs are killed the bride will then be ready (Rev. 19:7-8), and Christ will return to judge the nations or everyone that remains.  This is when the wheat and tares and/or sheep and goats come into the picture.  The weeds/goats will be collected and cast into the lake of fire.  Then the gleanings and the corners that were left for the poor and the strangers come into view, which represents the remnant of Israel (poor in spirit) and the strangers (Gentiles believers from the four corners of the earth) that were saved but will fall away.  These are the sheep that will be separated from the goats at the second coming.
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The sheep belong to Christ also, and as long as they don’t take the mark of the beast they will be saved.   These believers who fall away will receive the greater punishment, and will not enter back into the kingdom.  Instead these sheep will permanently lose their positions in the kingdom and become subjects in the millennial kingdom.  They will remain in their mortal bodies and re-populate the earth in the millennium, and they will be ruled over by the saints that return with Christ.  So here again, we see three parts included in the harvest (1) First-fruits (rapture); (2) main harvest (end-time martyrs); and (3) the gleanings and corners (sheep) that are left from among the nations at the end of the age.  The passage below shows the entire harvest.
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Revelation 11:18 (KJV)“And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them (goats) which destroy the earth.”[Emphasis added].
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This harvest is also seen in Matthew chapters 24 & 25.  The harvest begins with the gathering of the elect (chosen) in Matthew 24:29-31, and it will conclude several days later with the judgment of the nations [sheep and goats] at the second coming/Armageddon (Matthew 25:31-46).  We know that Christ has already fulfilled the spring feasts (Passover, Unleavened Bread, First-Fruits & Pentecost).  Therefore, the gathering of the end-time harvest will occur at the end of the year, when Christ returns to fulfill the fall feasts (Trumpets, Atonement & Tabernacles).
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Exodus 23:16 (NIV) –
Celebrate the Festival of Harvest with the firstfruits of the crops you sow in your field. “Celebrate the Festival of Ingathering at the end of the year, when you gather in your crops from the field.”
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Matthew 24:29-31 (KJV)“Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: 30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 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.”
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Many have debated a doctrine called, “Once saved-always saved” (OSAS).  Some scholars contend that our salvation is eternal, while others believe we can lose it.  I believe my discovery not only solves this problem, but it also solves the mysteries of Christ parables in Matthew 24 & 25 as well.  A believer can be cut-off from the kingdom of heaven without going to hell with the unbelievers.  If God said that He will save all that call on His name, then He must honor that promise because He cannot lie.  But He is still able to punish them.  The martyrs will receive a little punishment, but the sheep will be punished severely, and they represent the wood, hay and stubble whose works are all burned up, but they are still saved, yet only as one running through the flames.
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Revelation 22:12 (KJV) –
And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.”
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Matthew 13:33 (NKJV) – Another parable He spoke to them: “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened.”
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This three-part harvest will undoubtedly seem very strange to many at first, because it’s a new theory that challenges all of the others.  My view of Christ’ return actually goes much deeper than the traditional rapture theories, as my discovery in Christ’s parables introduces the missing puzzle pieces.  These parables are important and should never be ignored, as they relate to the different rewards believers will receive when Christ returns to render His judgment of our works (2 Cor. 5:10).  Unlike other theories, my theory does not get stuck at the end of Matthew 24 and just assume what the parables mean.  It continues all the way through to the end of the age in chapter 25, breaking these parables down.  Once you have the correct interpretation of all of the parables collectively, only then will they be compatible with your beliefs about Matthew 24.  They go hand in hand and should never be separated. 

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And finally, my view also incorporates how Christ will fulfill the fall feasts upon His return, just as He fulfilled the spring feasts in His first coming.  All of the fall feasts will play a part in the judgment seat of Christ, including the rapture, the hour of trial (Rev. 3:10) and then lastly, the judgment of the nations and God’s wrath.  Most scholars believe Matthew 24 is about the second coming and doom for the world, but this is incompatible with scripture and the parables that follow.  In order to align with scripture, Christ will actually render His judgment first to the house of God (1 Pet. 4:17-18, Rev. 11:18).  This will separate the cold, hot and the lukewarm believers.  The cold will fall away when persecution comes, which will leave the hot and lukewarm when then the Son of man appears (rapture).   He will gather His elect at that time, and then vomit the lukewarm out of his mouth (Rev. 3:15-16), when the lukewarm will enter the hour of trial (Rev. 3:10)…Two will be in the field, one will be taken, the other left…  The lukewarm will be martyred, and God will not judge the nations until the last martyr has been killed (Rev. 6:9-11).  Only then will the world see His second coming (judgment of the nations), and it won’t be a pretty sight (wrath).
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Thank you for visiting my blog.  Feel free to share this with friends and you can also leave a comment below as well.  My mission is to prepare as many as possible for the soon return of our Lord and Savior.  To God be the glory!

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2 Responses to Understanding the End-time Harvest

  1. Karen says:

    1 Thess 3:13; 4:1-2 would seem to go hand in hand with this reading as well.

    Liked by 1 person

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