2. The booklet of John

2. Booklet of John.pdf

(Revelation 10: 9) 9 So I went to the angel and said to him, “Give me the little book.” And he said to me, “Take and eat it; and it will make your stomach bitter, but it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth.”
.                                 (All quotations from the New King James translation)


Christians, God’s people, have fallen away from their Creator en masse.
They are God’s children, who have sadly become godless and have become partakers of the way of life of this world with its love of pleasure and money (1 Timothy 6: 9-10).
But our loving Father in Heaven is not yet giving up on them.

In the previous article we talked about:
The Divine plagues, why these are necessary.
The sealed scroll with 7 seals, which only the Lamb can open.
Revelation chapter 10 verses 1-11; The little book that John had to eat to prophesy.

Theme: The apostate children of God

Imagine that your child has been deceived, made the wrong choices, is addicted to drugs, the Internet or gambling, or is doing bad things. Perhaps your child no longer has time for God and has come to believe that everything that lives came naturally, through evolution, and does not want to think about whether that is possible?
(See also: 6. Youth; How can you love the God of creation)

You as a parent see that and despite warnings and supplications, your child does not want to change. And you understand that it is a path to its own destruction. Parents become deeply sad of this, it keeps them awake and it feels like a stone in their stomach.
That, in short, is the message contained in John’s booklet.
Only now it concerns the children of God, and God is the one who deeply grieves about this.

2 Thessalonians 2:10) 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

John’s booklet also has a similarity with Jesus preaching to His people. Then the Jewish people, but now these are the Christians:

(Matthew 10: 5-6) 5 These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. 6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

The parallel of the booklet that John had to eat with the booklet that Ezekiel had to eat

Before the temple was measured, John had to eat a booklet (see Article 1).
The little book that John had to eat has the same effect as what is written in the book of Ezekiel. Ezekiel also had to eat a scroll for a purpose.
So let’s take the book of Ezekiel to understand this meaning:

(Ezekiel 3: 1-3) 1 Moreover He said to me, “Son of man, eat what you find; eat this scroll, and go, speak to the house of Israel.” 2 So I opened my mouth, and He caused me to eat that scroll. 3 And He said to me, “Son of man, feed your belly, and fill your stomach with this scroll that I give you.” So I ate, and it was in my mouth like honey in sweetness.

Ezekiel, a contemporary of Daniel, lived in exile in Babylon near the river Chebar (Ezekiel 1: 3). He was the son of Buzi, a Levitical Jewish priest.
After a stormy wind from the north (Ezekiel 1: 4), the heavens suddenly opened to him and he saw in vision the glory of God YHWH, Who sits on the throne.

.       bibliaprints

God Himself personally appears in the vision to Ezekiel to take care of His apostate people in exile:

(Ezekiel 1:26, 28) 26 And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man….28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking. (For the rainbow around the throne of God; see also Rev. 4: 3)

That by the person who ‘looked like a man’ (Ezek. 1:26) was meant “God” (see: man in the image of God – Gen. 1:27) is evident from Daniel’s vision where God is similarly depicted on His throne, however, the image is described slightly differently:

  • (Daniel 7: 9,13) 9 “I watched till thrones were put in place, And the Ancient of Days was seated; His garment was white as snow, And the hair of His head was like pure wool. His throne was a fiery flame, Its wheels a burning fire….13 “I was watching in the night visions, And behold, One like the Son of Man, Coming with the clouds of heaven! He came to the Ancient of Days, And they brought Him near before Him.

Although Ezekiel himself was in exile, he had to go and speak to his exiled people in Babylon. But he had to speak exactly God’s words. It reflects how the situation felt to God. His children, whom He wanted to give love and protection, had become apostate. God foresaw the plagues to come and the further perdition for them in a world of idolatry and wickedness.
YHWH wanted to protect them from this desolation. But the apostate people of God had to have the intention to leave their wicked way to return to their Creator:

 (Ezekiel 2: 1-5) 1 And He said to me, “Son of man, stand on your feet, and I will speak to you.” 2 Then the Spirit entered me when He spoke to me, and set me on my feet; and I heard Him who spoke to me. 3 And He said to me: “Son of man, I am sending you to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that has rebelled against Me; they and their fathers have transgressed against Me to this very day. 4 For they are impudent and stubborn children. I am sending you to them, and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ 5 As for them, whether they hear or whether they refuse–for they are a rebellious house–yet they will know that a prophet has been among them.

Ezekiel had to speak to the rebellious Jewish people, in those days God’s people, with God’s words based on lamentations, mourning and woes:

(Ezekiel 2: 6-10) 6 “And you, son of man, do not be afraid of them nor be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns are with you and you dwell among scorpions; do not be afraid of their words or dismayed by their looks, though they are a rebellious house. 7 You shall speak My words to them, whether they hear or whether they refuse, for they are rebellious. 8 But you, son of man, hear what I say to you. Do not be rebellious like that rebellious house; open your mouth and eat what I give you.” 9 Now when I looked, there was a hand stretched out to me; and behold, a scroll of a book was in it. 10 Then He spread it before me; and there was writing on the inside and on the outside, and written on it were lamentations and mourning and woe.

He was offered a scroll with writing on both sides.
The writing on the scrolls were usually written on one side, but in this case it was written inside and out. The message was extensive because their sins were also extensive. Now the time had come to repent to avoid tribulation and calamity.
In Ezekiel’s case, too, the booklet – just as it was the case with John – was not a literal booklet but was intended to be ‘the core thoughts of calamity’ for what he had to tell:

(Ezekiel 3: 1-4) 1 Moreover He said to me, “Son of man, eat what you find; eat this scroll, and go, speak to the house of Israel.” 2 So I opened my mouth, and He caused me to eat that scroll. 3 And He said to me, “Son of man, feed your belly, and fill your stomach with this scroll that I give you.” So I ate, and it was in my mouth like honey in sweetness. 4 Then He said to me: “Son of man, go to the house of Israel and speak with My words to them.

It contained a core thought (sweet) that meant hope and salvation to repentant Jews, but disaster to unrepentant Jews. For the house of Israel, though they were captives in those days, had a hard forehead and a stiff heart:

(Ezekiel 3: 7-9,11,14) 7 But the house of Israel will not listen to you, because they will not listen to Me; for all the house of Israel are impudent and hard-hearted. 8 Behold, I have made your face strong against their faces, and your forehead strong against their foreheads. 9 Like adamant stone, harder than flint, I have made your forehead …. 11 And go, get to the captives, to the children of your people, and speak to them and tell them, ‘Thus says the Lord God …. 14 So the Spirit lifted me up and took me away, and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the Lord was strong upon me.

It was bitter for Ezekiel to know what calamity would befall the Jewish people.
Even as exiles in Babylon, they were unrepentant and worshiped idols. Ezekiel had to portray the future siege of Jerusalem on a stone (Chap-4). By eating the scroll with lamentations, Ezekiel knew that it caused intense pain and sorrow to God.
Yet Ezekiel went on his way to warn the Jewish people in exile and persuade them to repent and return to YHWH.
Like the Jews (God’s people in those days), apostate Christians now need to be warned of calamity and return to their Father in repentance.
And like faithful Jews in their days as God’s people, faithful Christians today as God’s people must have complete confidence in our Heavenly Father. To prayerfully rely on God’s protection in the coming tribulation, for adequate food and for salvation:

  • (Matthew 7: 7-11) 7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 9 Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? 11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!

Now that the message of Ezekiel is clear, the message to John is also clear and we can move on to the meaning of measuring the temple.

Measuring the temple

Revelation 11 (verses 1-2)
John was given a measuring rod to measure the temple:

1 Then I was given a reed like a measuring rod. And the angel stood, saying, “Rise and measure the temple of God, the altar, and those who worship there.

In the inner court of the temple in Jerusalem was the temple building and in front of it the sacrificial altar. It was surrounded by a large outer court. The inner court was the court where the priests served. In the outer court of the temple (with Solomon’s colonnade on the east side) the Jews always gathered, and the non-Jews – the Gentiles – were also allowed to come there. The inner and outer court as example at the temple in Ezekiel’s vision (chap. 40-44):

.                     The temple of Ezekiel

The true dimensions of the literal temple were known, but the temple was no longer there during John’s vision.  That temple therefore did not have to be measured.
This measuring is meant symbolic and means that John had to make an inventory of those who worship God YHWH in the spiritual temple. So to make an inventory of faithful Christians. Since its destruction in 70 AD, Christians themselves form the temple of God:

  • (1 Corinthians 3:16) 16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
  • (2 Corinthians 6:16) 16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God….

Zechariah 2: 1-8 explains why this ‘measuring’ is so important and why it should be done.
Because also in the book of Zechariah, someone had to measure:

  • (Zechariah 2: 1-2, 5, 8) 1 Then I raised my eyes and looked, and behold, a man with a measuring line in his hand. 2 So I said, “Where are you going?” And he said to me, “To measure Jerusalem, to see what is its width and what is its length.”….5 For I,’ says the Lord, ‘will be a wall of fire all around her, and I will be the glory in her midst. …. 8…. for he who touches you touches the apple of His eye.

The measuring in Zechariah symbolizes the divine protection of God’s people in Jerusalem. In the case of John, measuring the temple means the ‘protection of the inner court‘ containing the temple building and the sacrificial altar. That means the protection of the saints and of the great multitude of Christians. Also of the great multitude is said, to serve after the rapture in the heavenly na’os as servants (for na’os; see explanation further in the article):

  • (Revelation 7: 9,14-15) 9 After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb… .14…. “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them.

Na’os (or naō) is Greek for the sacred rooms of the temple building itself, while the Greek word Hi´e · ron represents the entire temple complex including both courts and the sanctuary. So the great multitude is serving in heaven in the Na’os, in the sacred rooms.
But so does the great multitude now on earth as well. After Jesus ‘one-off’ sacrifice, the sacrificial altar (in the inner court) has become the altar of the ‘new’ recurring Christian sacrifice. That ‘sacrifice‘ has become the speaking of Jesus’ words and the further spiritual sacrifices offered by faithful Christians:

  • (Hebrews 13:15) 15 Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.
  • (1 Peter 2: 5) 5 you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

2 But exclude the courtyard outside the sanctuary. Don’t measure it, because it is given to the nations, and they will trample the holy city for 42 months. (CSB)

In the outer court, outside the sanctuary, are also to be found non-Jews or Gentiles. That outer court may not be measured for that reason.
The purpose of the measurement is to identify and protect the called, chosen and faithful. All those who have God’s seal:

  • (Revelation 9: 4) 4 They were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads.
  • (Revelation 17:14) 14 These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are called, chosen, and faithful.

For there will be a great Christian apostasy:

  • (Luke 8:13) 13 But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away.
  • (1 Timothy 4: 1) 1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons…. (see also 2 Thess. 2: 3)

And not only will there be a great Christian apostasy, but there also will be a number of fruitless Christians as well:

  • (Luke 13: 6-9) 6 He also spoke this parable: “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. 7 Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, ‘Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?’ 8 But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. 9 And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down.’

These are the ones who want to walk a middle way and will soon under pressure accept the mark of the beast (Rev. 14: 9-11). They reside among the enemies of God. However, faithful disciples of Jesus are the light of the world.
They are and will remain the salt of the earth, also under pressure:

  • (James 4: 4) 4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
  • (Matthew 5: 13-16) 13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. 14 You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

Unfaithful Christians, or adulterous Christians who worship idols, will be stricken from the book of life and drink the wine of the wrath of God:

  • (Revelation 16: 2) 2 So the first went and poured out his bowl upon the earth, and a foul and loathsome sore came upon the men who had the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image.
  • (Revelation 14:10) 10 he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.
  • (Matthew 7:21, 23) 21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven….. 23 And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!

According to Rev. 11: 2, the Gentiles will ‘trample the holy city‘ for forty-two months. Jerusalem was called the ‘holy city’ because God dwelt there in the temple. Since the temple is no longer there, Christians are each individually the temple of God (1 Cor. 3:16). So all Christians together now form the holy or exalted dwelling place of God. The Scripture in Rev. 11: 2 speaks specifically of trampling something that is ‘holy‘.  Not measuring the outer court was meant symbolically, after all, the physical temple was no longer there. Since the entire Scripture Rev. 11: 2 is meant to be symbolic, trampling ‘the holy city’, according to our research, means trampling the ‘worship of God’, trampling the Christian way of life.
This same theme of trampling is reflected in the double fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy in Luke 21: 5-24 (and also in Matt. 24: 1-22):

  • (Luke 21: 23-24) 23 But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! For there will be great distress in the land and wrath upon this people. 24 And they will fall by the edge of the sword, and be led away captive into all nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.

The first fulfillment was in 70 AD. with the destruction of Jerusalem with its temple.
The second fulfillment with the abomination of desolation (the mark) will be during the great tribulation in the last days.

Unbelievers will trample the holy city or worship of God for forty-two months or 3.5 years. That is the same time period as the duration of the two witnesses’ prophecy. The testimony of the two holy prophets will be for 42 months (of 30 days) or 1,260 days:

  • (Revelation 11: 3) 3 And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy one thousand two hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth.”

Also in Revelation 13: 5-7 we find support for a 42-month period of blasphemy and persecution of the holy prophets:

  • (Revelation 13: 5-7) 5 And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months. 6 Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. 7 It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them….

Still, once more a worldwide testimony will be performed soon.
But first there will have been a sweeping warning all over the earth (Rev 6: 12-17) by possibly a large debris field entering our atmosphere (see Article 1).
As first follows a testimony for the apostates of God’s people during 3.5 years by the 2 witnesses (Rev 11: 3). Then follows a testimony for the godless and for the idolatrous worshipers. They will not be spared and their behavior will be exposed. It is the same pattern of both length of time and choice of persons to preach to, just like during Jesus’ days of preaching to be saved:

  • (Mark 16:16) 16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.

Following, we will discuss in detail the two witnesses’ prophecy.

Resume:

The parallel of the booklet that John had to eat with the booklet that Ezekiel had to eat.
Ezekiel had to speak to the rebellious Jewish people, in those days God’s people, with God’s words based on lamentations, mourning and woes.
It was bitter for Ezekiel to know what calamity would befall the Jewish people.
Like the Jews (God’s people in those days), apostate Christians now need to be warned of calamity and return to their Father in repentance.
The purpose of the measurement is to identify and protect the called, chosen and faithful. All those who have God’s seal
The Gentiles will trample the Christian way of life for 42 months or 3.5 years.

In the next article: The Two Witnesses Prophecy (Rev 11: 3-13)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.