Chuck Missler Revelation Session 16 Ch-10 11 The Two Witnesses
Okay while we are in session 16 of the book of Revelation and we are going to review tonight chapters 10 and 11 which includes the temple and the two witnesses in several topics but just to remind us where we are in the book the book of Revelation well first of all I like to always open by reminding you that’s the only book of the Bible that has the audacity to say read me I’m special it’s the only book of the Bible it says pronounces a special blessing on the reader of that particular book no other book does that it also in the first chapter at the end of first chapter has an outline it gives you the outline of the book John is told write the things which thou hast seen which by then he has seen a vision of Christ in the earlier part of that chapter and the things which are which will be the following two chapters and the things which shall be Hereafter now chapter 1 the from from 12 on had a vision of Jesus Christ that he describes that’s what he had seen then he’s told to write the things which are and there are seven letters and seven churches which constitute the next two chapters that are the most important part of the book and so obviously we’re not going to review it again here but I highlight if you’re just getting into this for some reason I encourage you if you don’t do anything else you really want a master chapters 2 and 3 it’s the part of the book that relates to each one of us and as full of surprises and the things which shall be Hereafter meted out on the things that follow after the churches from chapter 4 on we believe chapter 4 on is a prophetic in fact in fact chapter 4 through 19 is an expansion of a specific seven-year period we’ll be talking about tonight so we are obviously in the third of those three sections and in chapter 4 verse 1 John says after this I looked and behold after this was the word is meted out in the Greek here after after this I looked me whole the door was open in heaven and so on and we believe that this is in effect echoing the rapture his harp on so he’s caught up into heaven and he actually experiences he’s this isn’t a a vision thing that sort of imaginary or symbolic he’s actually there he hears he sees things are explained to him as they happen he’s actually transported forward in time to the rapture period and very very vivid language and everything in the book is rendered into signs and those signs are explained somewhere else in the Bible there’s no more telling proof of the integrity of design of the 66 books we call the Bible than to discover that every detail in this book is explained or anticipated and somewhere else in those books so but we’re obviously in the third part the part hereafter we noticed as we’ve gone through the book what we call the hepatic structures kept Attic just a Sevenfold structure because we have the seven sealed book that Jesus opens and each time he opens a seal it brings forth a number of things and we notice in these groups of seven there’s always six and then a parenthesis sort of a catch your breath kind of passage and then it moves on and so and as you went through the six seals we had chapter seven which dealt with a whole different issue before it went to the seventh seal when you got to the seventh seal it introduced seven trumpets and there again between chapters trumpets trumpets judgment six and trumpet judgment seven again we are in a parenthesis time the parenthesis is five chapters long 10 11 12 13 14 we’re going to take two of those and we’ll discover that the seventh trumpet when it does blow will introduce seven bowls and even the seven bowls have a little one verse parenthesis in there but the pattern is clearly manifest the architecture of this book and but we’re going to focus tonight on two of the five chapters that make up this central parenthesis we’re at the center of the book actually interestingly enough and so that’s just a quick snapshot of where we are so we’re in chap we’re going to chapter 10 and 11 chapter 10 is going to introduce an angel with a little book we’re going to encounter these mysterious seven thunders and then we’ll get to chapter 11 so that’s our first section tonight the little book in Revelation 10 understand this is a parenthetical part chapters 10 11 12 and 13 14 our interlude if you will they will be followed by the seventh trumpet that will usher in the seven bowls of Wrath we’re going to encounter this mighty angel very controversial personage we’ll talk about the different views of this and he has a little book and just what is the little book there’s many different speculations most people scholars seem to feel it is the scroll we’ve been talking about it’s now been unsealed and it’s it’s it’s reduced by being unsealed and he and John is instructed to digest it in effect and so we’ll go through the passage and then the seven thunders are going to utter their voices it’s very strange because John was about to write what the thunders said and then it’s forbidden to has bothered me since I was a teenager why did he even mention it he has launched 19 centuries of speculation as to what the seven thunders uttered because we know they uttered something but he was forbidden to in a very stranger this is not a sealed book Book of Daniel was sealed till the time at the end you may recall revelations distinctiveness unsealed it’s open except for this peculiar little thing and I’ll give you some conjectures as to what that might be about but let’s just jump in Revelation chapter 10 verse 1 I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven clothed with a cloud and a rainbow was upon his head and his face was as it were the Sun and as feet as pillars of fire we’re going to see very quickly that these allusions are very christ-like these are the same allusions that we saw in chapter 1 and other places describing Jesus Christ many many commentators infer from that that this mighty angel is in fact Jesus Christ there are some problems with that view that’s why some scholars don’t buy that he’s obviously a very very key angel he obviously is in a very very key role here but in the Greek when it says I saw another mighty angel in the Greek you’ve got two words for another olives or heteros if I want another pencil exactly like the one I have I use the word olives if I want another pencil of a different kind I use hetero see in English you can’t discern that but in the Greek the word for another there’s one of two you want another exactly like it or something totally different that’s the way it works the word here in another is olives meaning another of the same kind another mighty angel implies this angel isn’t largely largely like the other angels we’ve encountered you follow me that’s an argument that this in another direction so we’ll explore this a little bit this is the third appearance in the book of a distinctive a special distinctive messenger one was holding back the judgments for a special work of grace in Chapter seven before the seven the 12 tribes were sealed there was a messenger of the Covenant pouring out fire of judgment in chapter eight verse five and here we have one that seems to be in some respects somewhat argue in the role of a prophet priest and King and if so that argument leads to the those that believe that this is actually an allusion of Jesus Christ because Jesus Christ in the Old Testament it sometimes appears as with the title the angel of the Lord as well disappear that never happens in the New Testament however and the more conservative you are the more you could argue that this is an angel it’s not Jesus Christ himself but there are people it mentions the clouds and we could go through all kinds of passages from Exodus all the way through Revelation chapter 1 where the clouds are associated with the with the with the Christ he has a rainbow which of course is echo of chapter 4 of Revelation as well as Psalm 89 and other passages and his face as the Sun is an echo of Revelation chapter 1 and also Matthew 17 the Transfiguration these are all familiar idioms that we tend to associate with Jesus Christ his feet as fire or shining brass is the same idiom it’s used in Revelation chapter 1 so these allusions clearly linked our thinking to Jesus Christ but was this it was this Christ or a very special representative acting on behalf is a big debate among scholars and we’ll discover the verse three that he roars like a lion and there again there’s a whole bevy of references including Revelation chapter 5 where that’s associated of course with Christ and so Jesus does appear in the Old Testament as angel Lord and some people would argue that there this is an echo of that and it may be there’s no big doctrinal issue that emerges one way or the other by the way if you see this as Christ or another illusion of Christ okay if you don’t that’s it’s clearly someone acting in some respects on his behalf now the other speculation is that some commentators have they speak it could be a very very powerful key angel and there are two candidates that come to mind one would be Gabriel whose name means strength of God many people don’t realize that’s what his name means and Gabriel is always and all his name delusions of the scripture always on always on the same job description he’s always on an Annunciation of the Messiah in some four old and new Testament the other speculation perhaps even one can be a pretty good case for it is Michael whose name means who is like God and he’s the only Archangel there’s only one Archangel by the way and we find that we look at Daniel 10 and 12 and so forth and you find Michael fighting with Satan over the body of Moses and Jude 9 and these weird things some people favor him that this may be an allusion to Gabriel bit we’ll leave that unresolved in any case this mighty angel had in his hand a little book open and he set his right foot upon the sea and his left foot on the earth and he cried with a loud voice as when a lion roars and when he’d cried seven thunders uttered their voices terrific and when the seven thunders had uttered their voices John says I was about to write and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered and write them not I wish he would just struck the paragraph then but he indicates so this has led to volumes I’ve got volumes of speculations where people try to guess as to what the seven thunders said which is pretty silly because if God want us to know what he said he would have said so okay so there is and by the way if you look at Psalm 29 it does make seven allusions to the voice of God curious linkage you won’t learn anything from that particularly I don’t think or would have expanded it for the course but I’ll you put in your notes you can look at it on your own there is a bizarre application of this that I have to share with you there are certain seminaries that militantly teach against the idea of the gifts of the Spirit the whole area of spiritual gifts is an area of a lot of controversy because it suffers from its enthusiasts as well as its detractors because there’s a lot of people that get overly enthusiastic about certain aspects others try to argue that they’re not the gifts of the Spirit or not for today the most controversial of the gifts of course being the gift of tongues well they’re one of the seminaries that has aggressively teaches that the gifts are not for today argue that the gifts were only until the cannon was complete when the cannon was complete those gifts were no longer necessary that’s their argument the tragedy of that is all you have to find is one or two valid examples of gift and you shred that doctrinal position so that doesn’t mean that everything that masquerades as spiritual gifts are but I won’t get into that here tonight the point is I once at a conference challenged those that particular school of thought by pointing out that the seven thunders in Revelation were given because you cannot build any doctrine on the basis that the Canon is complete I believe the Canon is complete don’t misunderstand me but it’s incomplete in that there’s a piece of it that won’t be complete until those seven thunders and I recorded why is that there I argued they thought I was being facetious at first and I offer I do believe in the spiritual gifts – flippancy but but I was making the case because you because of this verse 4 verse 4 of chapter 10 you cannot build a doctrinal argument that the Canon is complete because I can argue it’s incomplete not in the sense that’s incomplete and a manuscript sense incomplete until the seven thunders are recorded and and I you may think that’s a little elliptical but I’ll leave it you can do with that what you like let’s move on verse will get on verse five and six we’re making progress here and the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven and swear by him that liveth for ever and ever who created heaven and the things that are therein that therein are and the earth and the things that therein are and the sea and the things which are therein that there should be delay no longer time no longer in your King James with the real concept there there’ll be no more delay is what it’s really saying and now this alone would argue for those that believe that this is a very powerful angel it’s not Christ himself because he’s apparently swearing by Christ but there are cases where God will swear by himself his examples of that too so it’s not a tight thing God put himself under oath when he made his covenant with Abraham in and that’s eluded to in Hebrews chapter 6 13 through 20 he swore by himself when he declared his son to be high priest that’s in Hebrews 7 and when he promised David that Christ would come from his family which is alluded to an Acts chapter 2 you notice each one of those illusions are from the New Testament interestingly enough but reflecting on the old so so God can’t swear by himself but one would think that the tone of this is one that this angel is very very powerful but like probably the number two guy or whatever but anyway that but he’s saying it be done they delay no longer you remember when we were in the book here in Chapter five and six and so on where the martyrs under the off were pleading let’s get on with it revenge’s remember well be patient guys be patient no not any longer now we’re going we’re moving to the big climax here if you if you want to hold to the view that that angel is Christ you could argue that God puts himself under oath and in when he means covered with Abraham when he cleared his son to be high priests and Hebrew allude to in Hebrews seven and promised David that the Christ would come from his family in acts two and it’s not time no longer delay you know it isn’t that your wristwatch no works anymore it be time no longer in the sense that there’s no more delay is what that really means and what it also means in effect as you put this whole thing in perspective that the time of for repentance is now over they’ve had their chance and it’s interesting that you’re going to discover the Lord Jesus is now going to pray for the world it’s a shock to realize when you study John 17 that the famous prayer in that intimate prayer that Jesus does not pray for the world he prays for his own in the world he makes that distinction but now he’s going to pray for the world and there is no evidence ever that the that Jesus prayed for the world in its evil state and Psalm 2 tells you the whole story if you want to get in the background of that let’s move on to verse 7 but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel when he should members now see we’ve had six angels and this is a parenthesis from the sixth trumpet judgments the seventh angel with the seventh trumpet what he saw but but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel when he shall begin to sound the mystery of God should be finished as he hath declared to his servants the prophets the mystery of God this opens up a whole canopies there are mysteries in the scripture and you can make a fruitful study of chasing each one of these down the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven are alluded to in Matthew 13 the kingdom in mark 4 the mystery of Israel’s blindness Paul talks about Romans very important to understand that because that Israel’s blindness will be relieved after that the at the rapture the rapture itself is a mystery at first Corinthians fifth deals with it the mystery of is his will is described in Ephesians the mystery of Christ in the church Ephesians 5 and a mystery of the gospel in Ephesians and Colossians may speak of the mystery of the gospel now you realize that some of these aren’t crisp and exclusive some of them may overlap and what they really have in mind you’ve probably figured I’ve contrived here to have a seven flip fold list wrong I’ve got 14 mystery of iniquity is perhaps the most mysterious of them all the mystery of iniquity has already work we’re told second Thessalonians 2 the mysteries of God in Christ and Colossians 2 the mystery of faith first Timothy 3 mystery of godliness first Timothy 3 the mystery of the Seven Stars and golden lampstands we saw in chapter one that Jesus explained before that chapter ended it predicts giving us a clue as to how these signs are to be how the scripture will interpret them for you the mystery of Babylon the great revelation 17 also allude as the harlot and also in revelation 17 so these are just a list of these I don’t really see them as crisp enough to make a tight outline each one’s worth exploring but the they over in my at least my perceptions they overlap in the sense of that they’re not as distinctive as you’d like to to make it a tight model if you will but let’s keep moving you can go into all of those but it really just raises doctrinal issues you need to join and be sure and do a serious study with verse 8 continuing the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again and said go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth and I went unto the angel and said unto him give me the little book he said unto me take it and eat it up and it shall make thy belly bitter but it shall be in my mouth sweet as honey and so what is this book most scholars seem to think it’s really the book that we’ve just unsealed that’s in front and what he’s the seals have been loosed and only Christ was able to take it to open the seals but now the seals are open and we have him and we have Christ in the posture of a Conqueror taking possession of that which he purchased and we went through that whole title in Chapter five he’s claiming the whole world who is the god of this world Satan but that’s all changing now because the usurper is going to be dispossessed remember the book of Joshua is a preamble or of my foreshadowing model the book of Revelation where we have yahushua who is dispossessing land of juicer purrs on behalf of his people and the parallels between the architecture the book of Joshua and the architecture of the book of Revelation are astonishing and and we’ll see we’ll see that come up again here shortly but any case so you went to the angel said of them give me the little book and he said let me take it and eat it up see what we are to do is not just read your Bible you need to assimilate it there is a totally different kind of use of your scripture there’s an expositional study kind of thing and that’s we’re typically doing here where we you go through the exegesis which is what does it really say the translational issues that we’re there are some from there you go to exposition okay what does it mean but that’s all head knowledge that’s quite a different thing to assimilate it to take a psalm and reread it 10 20 times you’ll discover that what comes out of that is a depth of understanding and insight that goes far beyond just the head knowledge that’s part of what we’re seeing here and so we have the meat of the word you know God’s Word is often compared to food bread in Matthew milk in 1st Peter to the meat of the word in 1st Corinthians 3 honey and so assimilation is essential that’s really what John is ordered to do and it’s something that you and I need to emulate and that we could spend more time on that but I want to get through the material let’s keep moving here and I took the little book out of the Angels hand and ate it up and it was in my mouth sweet as honey and as soon as I had eaten it my belly was bitter and he said unto me thou must prophesy again before many peoples and nations and tongues and kings I can remember years ago when I was consulting I had an engagement in North Africa in Algeria I was going to be out in the desert for a few weeks so I took with me a my Bible of course and I outstanding commentary and book of Revelation as we decided being heading and not knowing I was going to have a lot of private time ago about repour into it and I remember that so vividly because on the one hand was very exciting to read start to discover how it all ties together and to see the thing unfold and to sense a that sense of urgency that we are indeed approaching the end time on the one hand on the other hand as you really get mature in your perceptions here you begin to realize the futility and the emptiness of this world as we know it and it’s interesting the the peril is there at first is very exciting and very sweet as honey and same time as you really understand the need for repentance and the the tragic mess that the world is propelling itself into it’s sobering but in case angel says to John thou must prophesy again before many peoples and nations and tongues and kings we’re going to go shortly into the to witness to the the two witnesses and one of the speculations I don’t happen to hold to but I’ll share with you because some people do hold it they argue that one of the two witnesses John the writer and they hang their view on verse 11 here angel says thou must prophesy again implying that John has a second career to prophesy again I don’t hold that view and you’ll see why I don’t but I want to share it with you because the it’s a just in by way of disclosure what I do what I do think is happening here is I think I think we’re going to see the same material amplified going through thou shall prophesy again that was we’re going to continue in the rest of the book here so we’re going to now shift to chapter 11 that was chapter 10 chapter 11 has two topics that really constitute the body of our study tonight the temple and the two witnesses and so we discover in chapter 11 the first two verses talk about the temple and the fact that the outer court of the temple will be committed to the Gentiles for 42 months and then we’re going to discover when we get to the next part of this chapter the two witness are going to witnesses are going to be empowered in a very special way for 1260 days and if you recognize at months or 30 days long you realize that those are two equivalent periods of time and we’ll talk more about that as we get there so raptor 11 verse 1 john says and there was given me a reed like unto a rod and this isn’t like a measuring stuck to what this is given me a reed like unto a rod and the angel and the angel stood saying rise and measure the temple of God and the altar and them that worship therein so he’s to measure this that’s a term used throughout the Old Testament a number of different places it’s a shavette a staff that’s for measuring in Psalm 64 in Jeremiah 10 and other places as usually measure the measurements usually made in anticipation of a chastisement forthcoming but and judgment does always begin at the house of God so we have this coming and focus here the next verse he says he says measure the temp of God the altar oh by the way the word temple there is now so that is the temple proper not the word contrary word that would be the general temple area it’s the temple proper is what he’s talking about measure the nose of God and the altar and them that worship therein but the court which is without the temple outside no words leave it out in fact the term actually is cast it out exclude it and measure it not for it is given unto the Gentiles and the Holy City shall they tread under foot forty and two months now the holy city of course is what city the Vatican Rome okay Jerusalem obviously you bet and there we got the 42 months leaving at us here you know it’s interesting I think most of you realize that when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem they lost the temple started the Diaspora the Jews were scattered around the world started 19th centuries of dispersion in 1967 with the Six Day War one of the things that occurred is Rosella or is that they regain portions of the old city and the prophecy books line the shelves saying that from quoting Luke that Jerusem we trodden down by the Gentiles until the times the Gentiles be fulfilled and dozens of prophecy buffs argued Wow the times the Gentiles over because Jerusalem’s now in in Israel’s hands and some of my early tapes are probably guilty of the same myopia if you will but the city is still being trodden underfoot by the Gentiles that time times the Gentile starts with Nebuchadnezzar and finishes at the end of the tribulation under the thumb of the Antichrist and so if you go to if you go to Jerusalem and try to go the Temple Mount you’re shocked to discover it’s in Muslim hands the Gentiles are controlling the most sacred part of that visa real estate today so the times the Gentiles has not expired yet it’s still in fact it’s going to reach its climactic period but in any case here is a specific illusion that the outer Court of the temple that’s here described is given unto the Gentiles for 42 months they’re trampling now you’ve probably noticed that what I’ll call these half week designations anyway if you recall our study of 73 of Daniel that seven-year period is divided into two halves each half of that’s that week of years in Daniel gets its definition in some places it’s called a half is called 1260 days revelation 11 and also 12 that illusion occur it’s 42 months in revelation 11 and also in Revelation 13 13 and we also have a phrase you’ll run into in Daniel 7 and 12 and you little will write into it in Revelation 12 again time times and the dividing of time and in the English it sounds kind of strange because you and I are used to having singular and plural we’re not used to what’s called a dual some languages Aramaic being one of them others have what you call call a dual you can have single singular obviously one a plural is more than one in some languages there’s a middle one called a dual the only place we have it in English is with the word both if I told you had all my friends over last night both of them you know I only have two friends that’s it that’s an example of a dual it turns out that time is singular times here is a dual so time times the dividing of time is a literary way of saying three and a half and it’s another allusion to the half you have this strange period of time this seven-year period called the 70th week of Daniel is the most documented period of time in the old and in the New Testament and it’s very specific the Holy Spirit’s done everything but lay it out in microseconds but it’s it’s interesting how it is probably the linkage that ties all these prophecies together to talk about the first half of the second half because in the middle of that seven-year period occurs a key milestone event an event that Jesus Christ Himself designated to his disciples as the key to understanding endtime prophecy and that’s all by way of review of seventy Daniel but this duel is used of years if you find this duel used in Daniel 4 and other places ok the temple this is it’s generally a wreckin so-called Herod’s temples the rebuilding of the temple is a big topic how do we know the temple is going to be rebuilt well Jesus Paul and John all make reference to it Jesus highlights in his confidential briefing to his four disciples about a second coming he identifies the the the desecration of this temple as the pivotal event in prophecy so we know it will be standing at that time in the middle of the seventh week of daniel paul also details what’s going to happen in that strange time in 2nd Thessalonians 2 and of course John is making reference to it here the temple of gods let’s not confuse ourselves that term is used of this portable sanctuary called the tabernacle that we’re all familiar with from the book of X’s on all through the wilderness wanderings they had this strange portable sanctuary that the Levites dealt with but you finally get to the time of David and Solomon where Solomon is given the opportunity to build the permanent one the tabernacle is replaced by a permanent temple David wanted to build it but God wouldn’t let him so he says that’s ok I’ll pay the bills so David assembled the resources and Solomon build it and God appears to Solomon tells him what he wants so it’s all it’s a it’s a temple that’s never been matched even Herod with all his grandiose things didn’t match Solomon’s Temple that of course finally leads to the Babylonian captivity where Nebuchadnezzar takes them captives and then some 19 years later finally gets fed up with their the difficulties in keeping them under control he finally levels the city of Jerusalem and destroys the temple and so that starts a 70 year captivity that when the Persians conquered the Babylonians and Cyrus gets finds this letter written to him in the Book of Isaiah he releases them gives them financial sense to go home and rebuild their temple and in the book of Ezra they begin have a lot of troubles following through but they finally do build it under the leadership of zerubabbel and he’s in the Messianic line he’s not a king he’s under Persian domination but he is the leader that builds a temple that’s very modest in fact so modest those that were children and saw the Solomon’s Temple they wept because was such a mediocre rendering compared to Solomon’s but as the years go by finally Herod in an attempt to popularize himself he remodels it you and I would tend to call solemn as the first temples rebels a second you’d call Herod’s the third but that’s not the way that the Jews talk about it that’s not the way the scholars talk about it they regard Herod’s temple as simply in the expansion and remodeling of Zerubbabel temple so they call Herod’s temple the second temple you follow me it’s just a nomenclature but I want to confuse you but the temple we’re talking about you would call the third temple don’t confuse the temple we’re about to talk about with a Millennial temple that will occur when Jesus returns and that’s described in the last nine chapters the Book of Ezekiel among other places and we’ll talk more about that when we get to Revelation 20 but the place and then there’s after the millennium after this thousand year reign there won’t be a temple that will be a direct experience with God in heaven there will be no temple there strangely because God will be dwelling with us but anyway that’s the temple we’re dealing with here in this in chapter 11 is what you what’s commonly called the third temple it’s the temple that the Jews are aspiring to but they’re in for a shock because the destiny of this temple is that it’s going to be desecrated by the Antichrist and when he gets taken care of and the Lord returns there’ll be a whole nother thing and we’ll talk about that when get later in the book of Revelation the temple Institute in Jerusalem is fabricating the devii elements for the coming temple and they’ve built about at least 63 of 104 103 implements that they feel they need there are several hundred young men in training and by the way these implements aren’t just designed as art pieces they are designed to be actually used in worship in the in the in the temple but they’re aspiring – now let’s talk a little bit about this Temple Mount this is an aerial photograph looking north looking even looking southeast from the air and the Western Wall it’s not the Wailing Wall its bet that’s opposite nomenclature they call it the Western Wall in the Kotel the Dome of the rock that gives Jerusalem its characteristics skyline a Moslems building not it’s not a mosque buy though it’s not the mosque of Omar it wasn’t built by Omar and it’s not a mosque but that’s that’s technicalities the al-aqsa mosque is the principal mosque and we’ll talk about these things here in a minute in fact if it’ll make more sense if we look at an aerial view north is at the top in this view and we have the the traditional view that’s still embraced by its official position of the rabbi’s in Israel it’s also the official position of the temple Institute is the temple stood where the Dome of the rock stands that’s the tradition they put together a number of things they also believe that’s where Abraham offered Isaac there’s reasons why they were overlooking the fact that I believe that was further to the north but that’s neither here nor there that’s there that’s the traditional view and it’s the end they believe that the Dome Iraq was deliberately placed there to obscure the Jewish presence and there’s a whole background I want to take the time here I can tell you candidly people who take scientific or archaeological interest in this area think there’s alternatives to that view perhaps the most popular one some years ago was dr.
Asher Kaufman’s writings about the northern conjecture for a number of reasons that I won’t bore you with for well partly because of a line up with the Golden Gate and certain aspects of the Mount of Olives and certain rock outcroppings dr. Kaufman he’s actually a physics professor Hebrew University B’s quite an expert on the background of the temple if you read his book is published in Hebrew except for one page in which Chuck Smith and I are given credit for having finances early research but in any case his conjecture created quite a stir some 15 20 years ago and it first emerged if for no other reason than if he is correct the Dome of the rock would be in the outer Court the court of the Gentiles and that would seem to fit the Revelation chapter 11 the model if you will and dr.
Kaufman is a good friend and we appreciate his friendship but I have to tell you candidly we’ve come across something else that intrigues us even more there are some problems with either of those views if you try to build a three-dimensional model of the Temple Mount and in that model incorporate what we think we know from the major documents the Tanakh the Old Testament the deceptive the Mishnah the writings of josephus among others and as you do that you run into some problems because there’s there were there’s places were Agrippa King Agrippa from his palace could look down in the Asura the Asura is that part of the temple where they did the sacrifices and he could see him there well if you try to build that it turns out you can’t do it topographically because there wasn’t a building his palace wasn’t that high to see over the it just doesn’t work it turns out a similar problem occurs with the Romans surveillance of the Asura the Romans had a place where they could watch it the Jews didn’t like that they appealed to Nero and Nero did give him permission to build a partition so the Romans couldn’t watch but the point is when you try to reconcile that three-dimensional model it doesn’t work because the topography doesn’t work right there’s also a water aqueduct that fed the temple and to make a long story short if the temple stood where the Dome of the rock stands it would be 21 meters too high to be fed by the aqueduct the bedrock goes drops going southwards so where you have the temple too high for these things you’ve got to lower it somehow that means you got to move it south so that it starts to work follow me and so there’s also a critical moat that the the moat would the place that they think that most people think is the Antonia fortress would be we put the moat between it in the temple and and obviously this makes sense can Antonio fortress was built to protect Jerusalem from the north the moat would be on the north side of the fortress the fortress was adjacent the Temple Mount would when you cut through all of that there is a belief by some scholars that the the the TOA fortress actually was where the Dome of the rock stands today the temple itself was further to the south and there’s an issue with the holy gates elevation I will go to that here but Tuvia sagiv is an architect in tel in tel aviv his among other things quite well known for really having pioneered taking a good second look at the archaeological presumptions here and a very bright young man and we’ve had a Adam speak our honor trips only when we organized the temple Institute temple of truce and temple conferences we did that in the past we can probably do it again on this coming year but one of the things that to be noticed he knows that Dome of the rock the Alcott’s fountain in the al-aqsa mosque are on a centerline now to an architect that implies a plan that caused him do some research he investigated how the Romans built you need a little bit background history first of all the fall of Jerusalem was in 70 AD when the temple was destroyed about 132 AD some 60 years later Bar Kokhba has his famous revolt where he throws off the yoke of the twelfth Legion they something they never recovered from it takes the Romans at three years to get their act together but they finally regained Jerusalem and by then Hadrian has decided that they can no longer rule this unruly place as long as there’s any Jewish presence in Jerusalem so he orders the city of Jerusalem plowed under the temple was destroyed in 70 AD the city wasn’t but in 135 ad they plow the entire city under and they build a Roman city on top of it called ila Capitolina which is named after Adrienne’s middle name and whatever and it’s built over the city ruins we also know from the records that they built a temple to Jupiter over the site of the Jewish temple say well great what does a temple of Jupiter looks like well and also they put in a cordon did Jerome’s commentary in Isaiah there’s an equestrian statue of Hadrian was put right in the middle over the Holy of Holies those are the records well turns out there is a Jupiter temple at Baalbek Lebanon in fact it was built by the same guy at about the same time as the temple of Jupiter was built in Jerusalem the one at Baalbek is is you’re able to analyze it and study it this will mean more if I show you an aerial view of it the way the Romans in the 1st and 2nd century built their temples they would start with a rectangular Basilica temple proper across the courtyard they’d build a polygon sometimes a hexagon sometimes an octagon sometimes a circle and in that courtyard between the two they would put the center a key statue in other ornamentation that’s their basic architectural model if you take this floor plan of the temple built by anti Antonius Pius in Baalbek and you you take it and you lay it on top of the Temple Mount it fits perfectly the al-aqsa mosque has been rebuilt six times in its history because of earthquake damage so it doesn’t fit exactly the dimensions but it’s close obviously the Dome of the rock is an octagon not a hexagon but other than that they fit but nicely if this inference is correct what it implies is that the Romans built a temple to Jupiter over the Jewish temple that that would be about the second century when you get to the 6th 7th century and the Muslims overrun Jerusalem they convert oh excuse me in the mean time the 3rd century the world converts to Christianity so these things get converted to Christian use when the Muslims overrun them they convert them to Muslim use and rebuild on the foundations the structures that are there today it’s interesting that the if the temp the equestrian statue to Hadrian was over the Holy of Holies the likely place it would be is right in the middle of that courtyard what’s in the middle of that courtyard the all-cause fountain you’ve been there you know there’s a fountain that they can wash it and so forth what’s interesting about that is the fear of every Jew is they would not want to inadvertently walk over the location of the Holy of Holies they don’t know that it’s there but they couldn’t anyway because of the fountain the other way follow me the dream of every Jew in the over the 19-year centuries has been to get as close as he could to the Holy of Holies well that the the the Western Wall is as close as they can get they’re closer than they realized because they thought they think it was further north no it’s actually right across from there so the architecture all of this is by Antoninus Pius the same guy did both of them in the Hadrian statue over the Holy of Holies appears to be there so that’s this is one conjecture but it holds it holds a lot of merit so there’s three conjectures the southern conjecture that would be exemplified by the current writings of Tuvia sagiv it’s not a new idea it’s been there’s lots of architects in the through the centuries that have inferred this for several reasons there’s of course the traditional view that is still the official view in Israel today and of course there’s the northern conjecture Brasher Kaufman we will not know until we can get at that to do serious archaeological study which it is but the Muslims with bulldozers and trucks are destroying everything they can find that would imply any Jewish presence to the Temple Mount 18,000 tons of artifacts have been put on the on the dump by the I will get about all here anyway if you take a thermograph an infrared photograph of the eastern wall a thermograph is energized by heat release and so he gives you clues as to what’s what structures lies underneath and there’s interesting there is a gate that would line up with the Alcott’s fountain that is that might be the real Golden Gate rather than the traditional one bear in mind that walls the 15th century Turkish wall it what we’re seeing is hidden behind it so there’s lots of opportunity here for research as the opportunity might present itself it turns out the bedrock drops so much that you can actually rebuild the temple in a modest modest form without touching the Temple Mount by putting them underneath because the rock drop set this is very fanciful it obviously isn’t going to please either the Jews or the Muslims but it is a creative proposal it dramatizes the elevational issues that you’re dealing with and we have briefings on all this too if you want to get into it more seriously well let’s get to the other meat of this chapter and that’s the two witnesses we saw the temple measured in chapter 2 the first two verses and now we have the two which they are empowered these two strange witnesses I’m part for 1260 days verse 3 of chapter 11 I will give power unto my two witnesses and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days clothed in sackcloth boy I want to remind you that Joshua when he entered took led his war against the nations of Canaan his predecessor Moses sent in 12 spies remember Joshua only sent in two remember they were called spies but I think all he does get Rahab saved so I want to call them witnesses so I’m that parallel I’ll to look at when you study the book of Joshua but my two witnesses why two witnesses well because the scripture always requires two witnesses for a thing to be established that was the that’s in the Torah that’s in the law and it’s interesting that there’s always two angels at the transfiguration at the resurrection at the tomb and at the ascension but check your Bible they’re not ageless they’re two men there were two men that morning by the tomb we assume they’re angels but we’re jumping to conclusions there are two men that were there when the clothed in white that went at the Ascension and I’m going to suggest the possibility that the same two men are here in this episode I give power to my boy these guys now they have a ministry they have the kind of tools in the ministry you’d really like to have we’ll get into that here in a minute clothed in sackcloth this is a Ministry of repentance we’ve got a Ministry of grace it’s a Ministry of repentance but by the way my two witnesses in the English you don’t quite get the impact what it says in the Greek is the the two witnesses of mine and there are cases in the Greek where the V isn’t an incidental article it’s a form of emphasis intense emphasis what this implies in the Greek that these are two witnesses that you previously know about they’re important they’re significant the two witness of mine and what it really says a subtlety that will come important as you try to wrestle with who are they well first of all they’re identified historically for us and were in verse four these are the two olive trees and the two lampstands standing before the god of the earth the olive trees are the trees of oil if you recall this is all an illusion from Zechariah 4 it’s a very clear historical allusion zerubabbel and Joshua were the two guys that reestablished Israel after the captivity zerubabbel was the leader the governor if you will and Joshua is the priest and the two of them teamed up to reestablish Israel and they’re talked about in Zechariah four in fact they’re modeled as a menorah that is fed by pipes that come from olive trees to olive trees in other words it’s a vision but the point is the olive tree the oil from the olive trees goes directly into a bowl which feeds the menorah it’s a the the imagery there is trying to convey that they have a continual filling of the Holy Spirit that’s what that’s talking about there and that’s what is idiomatically here so historically the allusion is disruptive on Joshua the real question is what is it prophetically and obviously in that passage Zechariah chapter 4 the idiom idioms they’re talk about being continuously filled by the Holy Spirit but let’s take a look at the peculiar powers that these two guys have if any man will hurt them fire proceedeth out of their mouth and devoureth their enemies and if any man will hurt them he must in this manner be killed you know there’s times when you’re facing a hostile audience you really would like to have some of those powers you don’t agree hop you know you got a problem what I said zap you know it’s interesting that John and James wanted to do that and Jesus rebuked them you may recall in Luke but here they have that power and look at more specifically these have the power to shut heaven that it rain not in the days of the prophecy they have power over waters to turn them to blood and to smite the earth with all plagues as often as they will as of and if you saw the movie Bruce Almighty but it sort of comes to mind here I know this is these there are four specific powers who do they remind you of Moses indeed yeah and Elijah both let’s talk a little bit about entities in John chapter 1 John the bat down the Baptist was creating such a stir that the temple sent an inquiry team over to Jericho that’s 20 miles away by the way they had such a crowd drawn from Jerusalem for his meetings in Bethabara and join in in on the Jordan River that they had to check it out and when they they said are you them and as they inquire who John who are you you could tell they point out there’s three different possibilities they were expecting are you the Messiah no I’m not I’m here to prepare his way are you Elijah no I’m not or Moses now you’ll discover these three there was an atmosphere expectation because the book of Malachi makes reference to the fact that that the Messiah was coming Malachi also points out that Elijah would come in fact that is celebrated at every Passover if you go to a Jewish home there’s always they knock at the door to see if anyone’s there and they also have an empty chair for Elijah so they’re expecting him to a head of the Messiah also Deuteronomy 18 implies that the Prophet the person they call the prophet of Moses but these three they inquire of John the Baptist are you this are you this area this – no he’s not and he gives his answer but the points you can understand the expectation there John the Baptist said he is not the the any of these he’s just he’s a forerunner and that’s all in John 1 it’s also Matthew 11 and 17 John the Baptist was not Elijah he could have been had they accepted him that’s a whole that’s a strange line of reasoning from remark the Jesus made but John the Baptist did not turn the hearts of the children as Malachi had predicted nor rushar in the great and dreadful day and so forth these are things yet to happen and let’s talk about identities there are two ministries in the Old Testament that are unfinished that were not finished Moses blew it here he was in Egypt 40 years then he was on the run for having killed an Egyptian then he’s in Midian for 40 years then he goes back and does the exodus thing and then he wanders with these this in tirage for 40 years in the wilderness he’s 120 years old and these are an unruly stiff neck Bunch but Moses is told to do certain things he previously had struck they needed water he prayed the Lord to strike the strike the rock which he did water came great years later there again without water and the Lord says speak to the rock and Moses by now is so frustrated with some other thing he went and struck them he did the way did the last time and God calls him to the side and says you didn’t you met you haven’t represented me accurately you let them think I’m mad at them I’m mad at them so because he didn’t do it the way God said you don’t get to go in the Promised Land 120 years of commitment doesn’t matter you’ll get to see it from the hill but you’re gonna die before they go in and he accepts that but it’s quite a shock when you stand back and look that all over but Moses ministry I’m going to suggest to you was unfinished another one is Elijah he was caught up in a world wind these are the two for lots of reasons that I suspect don’t take my word for it I’m just explaining why we why we hold the view we have that the two witnesses are Moses and Elijah literally in fact I think they had a staff meeting with the Lord about a second coming we call it the mount transfer duration and in Matthew 17 Peter James and John are with Jesus on the Mount and Moses and Elijah show up and Peter is so impressed for the whole episode that in his letters Peter first Peter second Peter he makes reference to this and he makes an allusion that they were discussing the second coming his death and return so I that’s why should probably staff meeting in quotes it’s my thing and but in 1st Peter 1 and 2nd Peter 1 Peter gives a hint as to what that was really all about but the unique powers Elijah is in his ministry one of the things he did is call down fire from heaven remember Mount Carmel and that whole dramatic scene there were several occasions where he did that he also shut heaven and then and it’s interesting that in the scripture you know that he brought rain after a three and a half year drought what you don’t learn from the Old Testament but you learn from the New Testament because in Luke 4 and also James 5 it makes reference to the fact it was Elijah that shut the heavens and so he shut the heavens and he also then brought rain and the duration of their drought was three and a half years interesting because that’s the same duration involved with the to witness situation you see the pattern this leads to something else by the way there are two different harmonics about prophecy most of us think of prophecy from the Greek model prediction fulfillment a prediction fulfillment that’s our mindset for prophecy that’s not the Jewish mindset Mishnah ik mindset is that prophecy is pattern they they lean heavily on the patterns that occur and it’s interesting to see these patterns emerge Moses of course turned water into blood in Exodus 7 all of us I think are familiar with that and all kinds of plagues and Exodus 8 through 12 you’re familiar with that these are the four powers that these two witnesses have and I submit that they are distinctives of Elijah and Moses ministry and it’s probably the most powerful are of the arguments here what are the alternatives a lot of people like to think maybe one of the two witnesses elijah is easy everybody seems to agree that elijah is one of them for all the obvious reasons but a lot of people think it must be enoch and the reason they believe that is because Enoch and Elijah were the two guys that didn’t die and they quote Hebrews as appointed two men once to die and after this judgment they miss apply that verse the once to die thing is simply a rebuttal to reincarnation there are a number of people that died twice Lazarus died twice he died he was rose knee later later they killed him Jairus daughter died twice the widow of maine’s son and so forth so the ones to die is we in Hebrews is is not a sufficient argument that you know I don’t think is Enoch first of all he neck wasn’t Jewish the witnesses are Jewish it sucks a lot of Jewish friends that they think everybody is Jewish but that from Abraham on no this is Enoch let’s not go down that path in is Enoch a model of the rapture he’s taken out before the judge before the flood he was born in the end also translated on his birthday and on the Feast of Shevat Feast of Pentecost and so there’s a whole thing you can get into there if you want to other people think it’s John the Apostle and the writer of the book of Revelation because that verse in chapter 10 you will prophesy again say well he maybe he’s one of the two witnesses I don’t think so because he’s the writer he’s not he’s not he’s a writer not a participant and then of course John the Baptist is another view but he said he’s not so anyway that’s all that so there’s the two witnesses they’re in power for 1260 days they call down fire from heaven and and they can also shut heaven with new rain for three and a half years turn water into blood and smite the earth through plagues and obviously the first two are Elijah’s uniques distinctives and the last two are Moses unique distinctives I think that to me the patterns pretty clear the two witnesses it’s interesting that there are always two witnesses there were two witnesses at the Transfiguration Moses and Elijah in this case there were two men at the resurrection at the garden tomb Luke 24 I would not be surprised if they were also were Moses and Elijah although the script doesn’t say that just as there are two men wrapped in white and there are two witnesses at the Ascension in Acts chapter one and it wouldn’t surprise me if the two men in all three cases were the same but here’s the part I like in verse seven and when they shall have finished their testimony the Beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them and shall overcome them and kill them this is the first mention in the book of Revelation of the beast that rises out of the bottomless pit the Antichrist as we tend to call him it’s interesting that he’s going to successfully kill them it’s interesting that they are invulnerable as until their ministry is finished no one can touch them until their till they finish their mission do you know who else that is true of you you as long as God has a purpose you’re protected interesting think about that when they shall have finished their testimony then the Beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them and shall overcome them and kill them it’s interesting that Matthew 16 promises that the church will not be overcome prevail same word this demonstrates that they’re not part of what we call the ecclesia of the church but any aircraft will kill them and we’ll talk more about that one gets chapter 13 and Philip and theirs and their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city which is spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt where also our Lord was crucified so the Antichrist is going to kill them and their dead bodies are going to lie in the street for three and a half days it turns out of that great city which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt now those speaking in spiritual idioms their Sodom in terms of immorality and Egypt in terms of idolatry but so that you don’t misunderstand he adds a phrase to clarify what he’s talking about where also our Lord was crucified where was the Lord crucified in Jerusalem that’s where they’re going to be killed and that’s where this can take place and we could go through examples that’s nothing the Sodom reference to Jerusalem is in isaiah 1 and 3 and jeremiah 23 and doodriver 32 anas EEO uses four different illusions of calling Jerusalem like Egypt and they of the people and Kindred’s and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and a half and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put into graves and they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them and make merry and shall send gifts one to another because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth here again I want to highlight your phrases here the earth dwellers there are two kinds of people on the planet Earth those who are pilgrims whose real home is heaven and those who are dwellers of the earth it doesn’t just mean they happen to be they are dwelling in the earth that’s a distinctive phrase used throughout the book of Revelation they that dwell upon the earth and they’re going to they’re going to rejoice they are so upset with these two prophets who have been ministering for three-and-a-half years and now they’re killed they don’t even bury them I guess this is a CNN exclusive you get to you tune in and watch watch it on internet or whatever there they are and everybody in the earth this is the only rejoicing in the book of Revelation by the world the world is celebrating that these two troublemakers are finally done in and man here comes the exclusive okay that’s just a summary okay and after three days and a half the spirit of life from God entered in unto them and they stood upon their feet the great fear fell upon them which saw them go I can imagine can you imagine that scene and it’s not when the rapture occurs it will occur in the twinkling of eye quick sudden but not when Jesus rose it was slow slowly they went he saw a slow and I think the same thing here they stand first of all that’s got a rattle the cameraman and great fear fell upon them which saw them I’m reminded the phrase in Daniel 5 where their knees smote one against another and they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them come up hither and they ascended up to heaven in a cloud and their enemies beheld them can you imagine that scene I don’t know what kind of sense of humor Moses and Elijah have but on the way up I could imagine all kinds of things they might say watch for the sequel guys man in the same hour there was a great earthquake at a tenth part of the city fell and in the earthquake there were slain of men seven thousand and the remnant were affrighted and gave glory to the God of heaven the second will was passed behold the third woe cometh quickly that verse 14 hit you between the eyes because you by now forgotten that all of this was an insert between whoa – Andrew or three or between trumpets six and seven we’re going to pick that up now but this has all been sort of parenthetical explanatory discursive here but a tenth part of the city that’s typically the tenth part belongs to the Lord and slaying of seven thousand I find that kind of interesting I’m not sure there’s a linkage here but I remembered Elijah was all pouting in his big pout and God says there’s seven thousand as well you don’t know about seven thousand again leaders and so forth so there may be there may be some parallelism there I’ll leave that up to you to sort through if you like so again we have the Sept attic structure we’ve been looking at we’ve had the three woes and this parenthetical passage that we’re part of I’m not finished with the parenthetical part passage yet but is between trumpet six and trumpet seven if you will and the trumpet seven will lead when we get to it to the seven bowls and they’ll also have their little parenthesis they’re finishing up this chapter the seventh angel sounded and there were great voices in heaven saying the kingdom of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ and he shall reign forever and ever this is a place where the authorized version has a subtle difference from the King James and the King James is wrong it’s singular the term there in the Greek is actually a singular term the kingdom of this world it’s Satan’s Kingdom we’re talking about singular small point but for what it’s worth and the four and twenty elders which sat before God on their seats or Thrones fell upon their faces and worshipped God saying we give thee thanks O Lord God Almighty which art and wast not to come because thou has taken to thee thy great power and hast reigned it may shock you to realize that God hasn’t rained he sort of he’s in control and he intervenes from time to time in the number of ways we wish he did more often but not in the sense of reigning and this is what is being ushered in here and so the and the hash grained is is a mistranslation thou hast begun terrain is more accurate translation it’s an aggressive first Erised active indicative for those of you taking notes but the it indicates that it’s something that’s now begun and the nations were angry and thy wrath has come and the time of the Dead that they should be judged that thou should us give reward unto thy servants the prophets and to the Saints and them that fear thy name small and great and should us destroy them which destroy the earth this is a wrap-up phrase giving you the table of contents sort of of what’s coming this doesn’t all happen in this verse it’s a layout of what’s coming in the chapters that follow why are the nations angry because they want to have their own way not God’s Way and all that’s in Psalm 2 and so forth they want to cast off all restraint and God’s going to let him do that they want utopia God’s going to give it to him and see where it leads and the result of their utopia will be revelation 17 and 18 as we get into that and their anger is going to lead to Armageddon it’s hard for us to imagine the nations taking up arms against God that’s what Psalm 2 read Psalm 2 so the the Trinity talked about it among themselves very interesting interesting passion and God’s anger is he’s not dispassionate he’s not this man he’s angry he hates sin and he’s kneeling and then we get this last verse the temple of God was opened in heaven and there was seen in his temple the Ark of his Testament there were lightnings and voices and thunderings and an earthquake and great hail don’t let this verse confuse you the Ark of the Covenant has always been in heaven what was on the earth was a replica was a replica that was made after the pattern that Moses was shown on the mountain that’s in Hebrews 9 23 that’s the Ark of the Covenant and the Ark of the Covenant is in heaven what is going to be on the earth will be the mercy seat I’ll be I believe it’s going to be the throne from which he rules that gets into a whole nother discussion I encourage you to dig into that if you’re want you know want to learn about that the seat of Mercy is a briefing package it makes a distinction between the our covenant and this what we think of as the lid the mercy seat and we believe that it’s very possible that is that is being controlled by the Ethiopians and will be presented as a gift to the Messiah on design when the time comes they don’t even realize that but the real issue is the mercy seat not the Ark of the Covenant but there are 7 great openings by the way just I’m just putting this on you prove that you can never list all the 7s because you think you have yours always another there are 7 great openings in the book door open in heaven chapter 4 the seals were open in chapter 6 the abyss opened in chapter 9 the temple of God opened chapter 11 the tabernacle testimony will be open in chapter 15 heaven is open in chapter 19 the books of the judgment are open in chapter 20 and how many are there they’re good guess okay okay so for your next session this is important read chapter 12 more than once it’s one of the most important strategic summaries in the Bible not just in the book of Revelation and as you do that your challenge is to figure out who is the woman in Chapter 12 and most commentators have it wrong you’ll see why now say most many commentators ever and how does this chapter affect our perspectives today how will this chapter the thing as you read it think about it how does it impact our perceptions our prejudice our perspectives today and that’s your challenge for next time let’s Stanford closing word of Prayer let’s borrow hearts father we just thank you for who you are and we thank you father you’ve provided us this opportunity to know you to get to know your son Jesus Christ we pray father that you would just help us to grow and grace the knowledge of him help us to understand the extremes that you’ve gone to that we might live and that we might be spared these dark things coming we thank you Father you have provided a remedy for our sinfulness you’ve provided an eligibility that we could never earn for ourselves we thank you father for that gift of grace but we also thank you for your word father and we thank you for this little book that we too need to assimilate to digest so that we too can prophesy again to many tongues people and Nations father we would pray that through your Holy Spirit you would illuminate that path before us that you would help us understand specifically what you’d have of each of us in the days that remain that we might be more responsive to your will that we might be more fruitful stewards of the opportunities before us but that in all these things that we might grow in grace and the knowledge of Lord and Savior and that we might be pleasing in your sight as we commit ourselves this night without any reservation whatsoever we commit ourselves into your hands in the name of Yeshua our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ amen you
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