The Latter Rain/Reign



When and what is the latter reign/rain? Is it truly something we should look forward to be a part of? It is hard to truly pin down what the Latter Rain is, because there are so many opinions of it. But here is one generic definition:
 
http://latter-rain.com/

The Latter Rain is God's great end-time ministry. The Latter Rain is the Restoration of the Church and the Harvest of souls, the gathering together of His people to be God's Kingdom on earth. The Latter Rain is the promise given to us in the last days for the outpouring of the Holy Ghost. 

Some folks who follow the latter reign beliefs, believe in the manifest sons of God doctrine, and have formed a latter rain movement, believing the church will become united, will become powerful, and will manifest great miracles. I am not going to get into the different beliefs. Many what I would call good Christians simply believe in a 2nd extra strong work of the Holy Spirit and desire to be a part of it.

But I ask you, isn't the church a transitional work, and that we are actually looking forward to another city or nation?

Heb:11:
9: By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:
10: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
16: But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.


13:14: For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.

Doesn't scripture also give us a blessed hope to look forward to?

Ti 2:13: Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ

Heb:6:19: Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil


Doesn't Jesus Himself tell us where to put our treasures?

Mt:6:20: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
21: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also


I am not saying to neglect the church, dislike it, nor to not seek after the things of God. But our heart and hope should be heavenward, not movementward, chasing after manifestations of God. We must be cautious we are not looking to a 2nd powerful work of God, just to get involved in the power.

Luke 10:
17: And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.
19: Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
20: Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.


We should be seeking God and His kingdom 1st. And then we can covet spiritual things.

Math 22:
36: Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
37: Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38: This is the first and great commandment.

Mt:6:33: But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

1Cor:12:31: But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.


So are there any scriptures about this latter rain? Yes, there are.

Joel 2:
23: Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month.

Zech. 10:
1: Ask ye of the LORD rain in the time of the latter rain; so the LORD shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.


So many are looking forward to this latter rain. And as I have shared, perhaps it shouldn't be something we should look forward to. But does the scripture say more? Yes, lets continue in Zech 10:

2: For the idols have spoken vanity, and the diviners have seen a lie, and have told false dreams; they comfort in vain: therefore they went their way as a flock, they were troubled, because there was no shepherd.
3: Mine anger was kindled against the shepherds, and I punished the goats: for the LORD of hosts hath visited his flock the house of Judah...


These verses are what I am saying, folks are following a false vision. They are misunderstanding the prophecy of Joel and what Peter had to say about the end times and the Holy Spirit. Solomon warned us about such things:

Ecc 1:  
9: The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.  
10: Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new?  it hath been already of old time, which was before us.  
11: There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.
  

You see this latter reign, is not the 1st to be prophesied about. Israel was promised a latter rain as well. They have returned as a nation after being absent for thousands of years. Many who study prophecy are familiar with the prophesied years of Israel. But some may not know of this. I will go over some of this now.

http://www.raptureready.com/resource/wilson/w21.htm

DANIEL'S 70th WEEK 
Read carefully Daniel 9:20-27. One of the more important time periods in prophecy is commonly referred to by students of prophecy as "Daniel's 70th Week." ...

The King James translation simply says, "70 weeks." The literal translation is "70-7's." Since in Daniel 9:1, 2, we find Daniel concerned with 70 years, this context requires "70-7's" to be 70-7's of years, which is 490 years. 
Gabriel here is making known to Daniel that with the 70 years of captivity completed, God still shall deal with Israel for a period of 490 years. The 490 years, in our Scripture passage for this study, are divided into three periods: 

First: 7-7's (49 years), in which time the city of Jerusalem shall be reconstructed (Nehemiah 2)...

Second: After this comes a period of 62-7's (434 years), which is from the restoration of the city unto the cutting off of the Messiah. This takes place after the 49 years, which makes a total of 483 years. With the cutting off of the Messiah (crucifixion), God sets Israel aside and begins to call out of the Gentiles a people for His Name. This leaves: 

Third: 1-7 (7 years), which is still future. God still has 7 years of dealing with the children of Israel as a nation back in their land, the temple rebuilt, the priesthood and services reinaugurated.... This comes after the fulness of the Gentiles is come in, ...and the beginning of the Tribulation period (7 years)...

Another good page on this is here:

 http://www.preceptaustin.org/daniel_924-27.htm 

I am not going to defend this theology here, they do an awesome job at the link above. My point here, is that Israel gets a latter rain, after they were cut off and had rejected Christ. Thus the latter reign of the church will come at such a time. Remember what Zechariah said:

Zech. 10:
1: Ask ye of the LORD rain in the time of the latter rain; so the LORD shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.
2: ... therefore they went their way as a flock, they were troubled, because there was no shepherd
3: Mine anger was kindled against the shepherds, and I punished the goats: for the LORD of hosts hath visited his flock the house of Judah...


You see "they were troubled", "Mine anger was kindled against the shepherds, and I punished the goats", "for the LORD of hosts hath visited his flock"?

This is what is going to happen before the latter rain. There must be a purging of the church before this happens. Those who preach the latter rain often preach about how the church is corrupt or divided. If so, how can the latter rain come without a purging. Does not scripture say:

1 Pet 4:17: 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?

The writer of Hebrews speaks of this event.

Heb 12:
25: See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:
26: Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.
27: And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.
28: Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear

Please note what verse 25 says "See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven".

So what happens to a christian who refuses to listen to Christ? Who turns away from Him. Is not this, what the Israelites did, when they were cut off? And then waited many years for their latter reign to come? And what is this escape that the writer speaks of, for those that do listen? This escape cannot mean escape from persecution in the last days. As scripture says otherwise:

Rev 6:  
9: And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:  
11 And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.  

Rev 13: 
4: ... Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? 
7: And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them...
 

Is this the same escape that Jesus promised through John in Revelation?

Rev 3: 10: Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. 

Interesting, Hebrews says to not refuse Him who speaks, Jesus says to keep His word, both speak of escape, but in Revelation we now learn what the escape is from. It's from the hour of temptation. But let's not guess what that is, because Jesus further defines this hour:

Rev 2:22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds.  

Here Jesus is speaking to the church, and those in the church, as well as those outside the church, who have not listened to Him. Therefore we can see what brings about the Latter Rain. 

Jesus is going to remove the faithful christians and leave the unfaithful in the tribulation. But how do the unfaithful christians become faithful, to become those involved in the latter rain?

These people can be prophetically characterized by those who didn't cross the Jordan for their promised inheritance. 2 1/2 tribes of Israel claimed their inheritance on the side of Jordan without crossing over into the promised land. Reuben was one of these. Gad is another son/tribe. What we know of Gad was they had a large herd of cattle as Reuben did. We also know this:  

Gen:49:19: Gad, a troop shall overcome him: but he shall overcome at the last. 

Let's read more about these people.

Math 20: MKJV  
8 So when evening had come, the lord of the vineyard said to his steward, Call the laborers and pay them their wage, beginning from the last to the first.  
10 But when the first came, they supposed that they would received more; and they also each one received a denarius.   11 And receiving it they murmured against the master of the house,  
12 saying, These last have worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden and heat of the day.  
13 But he answered one of them and said, Friend, I do you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius?  
14 Take yours, and go; I will give to this last one the same as to you.  
16 So the last shall be first, and the first last, for many are called, but few are chosen.
  

Here we see the laborers who responded first, think they will receive a greater reward. Many christians who have crossed over Jordan are judgmental of those believers who have not crossed over or have crossed over later (see the parable of the lost son too). We also see from this parable that the late comers will be rewarded first. Why is this? Because they will be on the earth during the tribulation and will be found faithful. So much faithful, their faith and works will out weight those who escaped.  

Rev 14:13 And I heard a voice from Heaven saying to me, Write, Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on. Yes, says the Spirit, they shall rest from their labors, and their works follow them.

So some of these christians left behind will overcome and be the persecuted tribulation saints and some martyred, others will become those prophesied in the great apostasy. I speak about them here:

 The Great Apostasy 

As you can see, being a part of the Latter Rain, is not something to look forward to. It will be a time of great persecution. Sure they will get great rewards, even heavenly ones, but just as Jesus said: 

Math 20:
13 But he answered one of them and said, Friend, I do you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius?  
14 Take yours, and go...


I am not dismissing or despising the latter rain, it will indeed be a powerful time for the church. But the church will not have power over the nations. But the anti-christ will have power over the saints.

Rev 13: 
4: ... Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? 
7: And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them... 

The power the church will have, will be within itself. They will probably have protection against the judgments of God on the earth, and will probably be powerful witnesses with the 2 prophets and the 144,000. But they will not have full protection against the beast. They may have some power to help hide each other from the beast and to feed themselves. Similar to the communal life style the church had at the beginning like in Acts.

If anyone is looking for a great future spiritual harvest, it will occur after the tribulation during the 1000 year reign of Christ.


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Links of interest:

 Believing vs. Being Born Again 

 Walking in the Spirit 

 Interpreting Scripture: How to understand the Bible 

 The Rapture 

 Are You Prepared for the Blessed Hope? 

 Oil & the Holy Spirit: The 2 Anointings 

 The 2 & a Half Tribes that didn't Cross Over 

 The Great Apostasy 

 Prophecy 

 Babylon's Authority is Ordained to Come


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