The Open Scroll - The Twenty-First Day of the Seventh Month

The Twenty-First Day of the Seventh Month

By Bob Schlenker  (Prints about 7 pages)

The book of Haggai is a fascinating book of prophecy! The traditional view of this prophet's message is that it's an account of the call of the prophet Haggai for the rebuilding of Solomon's temple and that its schedule is set to the Sacred calendar. In a quest for understanding the message's most relevant application today, an inquiry into the deeper hidden levels of interpretation reveals an application in which it is neither! Ironically, the calendar is inverted, fully 180 degrees out of synch with the calendar cycle traditionally accepted for the book, and the temple, instead of one made of stone, is one made without hands! I believe Haggai prophesied about the rebuilding of the particular temple which is the indwelling of the Lord with his people. It will soon need to be "rebuilt" after Y'shua's Bride, the living stones of this present time, have been carried away to heaven!

What we will discover as the hidden truths come to light is a very cleverly constructed prophecy about the commissioning of the 144,000, an exciting parallel to that which has been previously exposited from the pages of Genesis chapter 45. Most intriguing, perhaps, are the time elements brought forth. The calendar date for the event named in Haggai is the very same date specified in each study of this type within these pages of The Open Scroll. The 21st day of the seventh month of the civil calendar is Nisan 21. The year is given as the second year of Darius. (Hag. 1:1) The year by our reckoning was 520 B.C., thoroughly documented by Stephen Jones in Secrets of Time. (pp. 82-85) Stephen has also documented that many of the significant events of that period are related to the present day by a precise 2520 year interval. Counting 2520 years (remember, when crossing over from B.C. to A.D. there is no 0 year) from the year that prophecy was given, we arrive at the year 2001, identifying it as the antitypical "second year of Darius." The 21st day of the seventh month (Nisan) in our year 2001 is the very day and year brought to our attention by many similar kinds of studies. If I am interpreting these prophetic revelations correctly, the appointed day and year for the Bride Theft and sealing of the 144k has been revealed and documented in numerous ways.

If you would, please read the book of Haggai in its entirety before you continue here. Yes, both chapters. Ready? OK, I'll set the stage for you with the following fictional scenario. From the perspective of one of the 144,000:
Here we are in Jerusalem on the last day of Pesach. It has been an incredibly confusing week. Eight days ago, some great miracles began to happen surrounding a great man who is anointed with power and authority. The people are saying many things about him, that he is the promised Messiah. Our relics have been brought forth and now all Israel is celebrating because the altar is dedicated today. Even the whole world is celebrating because of the peace and the promise of a bright future which now looks within reach. We have been torn, we have struggled with the decision about this man's identity because it did not feel right. We have not deserved to have peace come to us, our people have greatly sinned against the Lord. We have continued in prayer about this, that our God would have mercy upon us. We have not agreed with those Gentiles in the past who said that their Jesus was really the Jewish Messiah, but their plight felt so familiar, we identified with them as some of them suffer persecution as if they were the people of God. We personally know this suffering because it is not easy to settle this land among those who hate us so intensely. When we heard the voice of those who were suffering, we understood that Messiah must come twice and that this man was only a great impostor and a deceiver from ha'satan. The God of our Fathers has provided for us to know that the one known as Jesus is the Lord whom we should honor and that he is fully Messiah. A great light has dawned upon us which stands out so vividly against the thick darkness of this day. Y'shua is his name! Baruch haba b'shem Adonai! We know this is so and we have now seen our brothers in this faith be taken away from us as Eliyahu was taken up before Elisha. Whatever shall we do!

Behold, the answer comes from the eternal: Haggai 2:1-9
On the twenty-first day of the seventh month, the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai: 2 "Speak to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, to Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people. Ask them, 3 'Who of you is left who saw this house in its former glory? How does it look to you now? Does it not seem to you like nothing? 4 But now be strong, O Zerubbabel,' declares the LORD. 'Be strong, O Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest. Be strong, all you people of the land,' declares the LORD, 'and work. For I am with you,' declares the LORD Almighty. 5 'This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt. And my Spirit remains among you. Do not fear.' 6 "This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land. 7 I will shake all nations, and the desired of all nations will come, and I will fill this house with glory,' says the LORD Almighty. 8 'The silver is mine and the gold is mine,' declares the LORD Almighty. 9 'The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,' says the LORD Almighty. 'And in this place I will grant peace,' declares the LORD Almighty.
Do you hear the comforting words? O, glorious day! When the question in verse 3 is asked, "Who of you is left who saw this house in its former glory?" the appropriate reply will come: "All of us." The house is the church, the temple, the body of believers in Y'shua. The former glory refers to that which was prior to the departure of the Bride. The glory of the house will be so diminished that it will seem to them as nothing, as though the glory had departed from the house, but it has not. "My Spirit remains among you," comes forth as the word of encouragement. "I will fill this house with glory." 'The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house..." come the promises. This is encouragement so that they may do according to the one word directive - "work"! Work to build the house. This is the commissioning of the 144,000. Through their work, the Lord will add living stone upon living stone and bring this phase of His plan of redemption to its glorious conclusion. The precious metals (silver and gold) refer to the people of Israel who will be purified in the fires of tribulation. [The name Zerubbabel means "melted by Babylon." Babylon is the Beast system that's likened to a smelting furnace in which metals are purified. An item so valuable as a signet ring would be made of the most pure gold]

As in the account of Matthew 10:5ff of the 12 who were sent out, these 12,000 from each tribe will find of the peace to be granted in that place just as Matthew 10:13 declares:
 If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you.
Now, let me begin to address the chronology of the book more specifically. Rather than being named in the Hebrew biblical narrative, the months are often referred to by their number. Nisan is always numbered either as the first month on the Sacred Jewish calendar or the seventh month on the Civil. When a month is mentioned in the Bible by number only, its name can be determined by examining the context to find direction as to which calendar cycle is in use. Often, a reference to one or more of the Festivals is found. The seventh month referred to in Haggai is commonly believed to be Tishri, according to the Sacred cycle. I would not think to argue this point with the historians, but on the basis of the evidence I will present within these pages in regard to future application, no sane person would doubt that the ambiguity resulting from the author's failure to state the names of the calendar months has allowed for the interpretation of the seventh month as being that of Nisan.

Beyond that, further ambiguity exists in regard to clues in the text which would help us establish the proper calendar system used because no direct and indisputable references to the Feasts are provided. This peculiar feature is especially noteworthy because the very name of the prophet Haggai means "my feasts." However, it can be seen that even on the surface level of the text allusion is made to the Spring Festivals and a harvest event in a number of noteworthy ways.

In verse 6, the harvest harpazo is seen in the shaking of the creation. Insight into this allusion is found in the book of Hebrews, a text written for specific application when the 144,000 minister in the earth. Consider Hebrews 12:22-29:
But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, 23 to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the judge of all men, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect, 24 to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel. 25 See to it that you do not refuse him who speaks. If they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, how much less will we, if we turn away from him who warns us from heaven? 26 At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, "Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.  [ a quote from Haggai 2:6: "This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land."] 27 The words "once more" indicate the removing ...
{ [Strong's # 3331. metathesis, met-ath'-es-is; from 3346; transposition, i.e. transferal (to heaven), disestablish-ment (of a law):--change, removing, translation.] This Greek word appears also in Hebrews 11:5: "By faith Enoch was taken from this life, (the KJV renders it as "translated") so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God."  }
...of what can be shaken—that is, created things—so that what cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29 for our "God is a consuming fire."
It says "once more" because the Bride had just been metathesis - transferred to the heavenly realm! The Bridegroom Y'shua had just stolen them away! They were the created things that were transferred from this realm, or, "shaken." This shaking is what results when God, who by nature is a consuming fire, is manifest. There will be no wood, hay or stubble passed through the fire! Those "Hebrews" who will minister, and many to whom they minister, will receive a kingdom that will not be shaken. It will be the land of promise on earth. As the Lord said (as recorded in Matthew 6:10) "Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven." Observe the earth/heaven aspects of that passage in Hebrews closely for more insight. Haggai is clearly a companion message to Hebrews.

In verse 5 of Haggai 2, the situation addressed is associated with what was covenanted with them when they came out of Egypt, an allusion to the exodus. [Further allusion is made to the exodus in Haggai in verse 22 of chapter 2 . re. Exodus 14:24-28 and 15:1.]

The exodus was a type of the harpazo as God's people crossed over the sea in ranks of five in perfect wholeness. Verse 5a reads: "This is what I covenanted ( karath) with you when you came out of Egypt. ( yatsa' mitsrayim)..." This expression is not associated with Sukkot but rather with Shavuot, (Pentecost - identifying the Pentecost age) and more particularly, Pesach (Passover) and Hag HaMatzot (Feast of Unleavened Bread). Read about what was covenanted in Exodus 12:42-13:16 as the two concurrent Festivals of Pesach and Hag HaMatzot were instituted.

In Hebraic thought, the mention of a portion imports the whole [just as Jesus' few words on the cross brought the whole of Psalm 22 vividly to the minds of those who heard them] so that this seemingly vague reference really is inherently rich in specific meaning. It explains exactly what was going on to those who need so desperately to understand. It reveals that they had just witnessed an event foreshadowed in the first Hag HaMatzot and the crossing of the Red Sea, and yet, beyond even that there is more! The same key Hebrew words noted in Haggai 2:5 are found in II Chronicles 5:10:
There was nothing in the ark except the two tablets that Moses had placed in it at Horeb, where the LORD made a covenant (karath) with the Israelites after they came out of Egypt. (yatsa' mitsrayim)
Let's continue our investigation by following the pointing neon sign to what happened at Horeb. In understanding what happened at the mountain of God, the reason for the plight of the Jews for the last 2000 years comes into full view illuminating with what would seem to be a blinding light their present predicament. It will be all too obvious that the failure of the Jews to keep the 10 commandments and the Mosaic law, including the Sabbath year and Jubilee laws has been the reason for the curse which had come upon them.

I'm going to present the first three occurrences of the word "Horeb," which means "a waster." In so doing, the greater import of the phrase used in Haggai 2:5 should become evident.

The first occurrence is Exodus 3:1-2:
Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the desert and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up.
Horeb is identified as the mountain of God and is the place where Moses was confronted by Him. The second occurrence is Exodus 17:6:
 I will stand there before you by the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will come out of it for the people to drink." So Moses did this in the sight of the elders of Israel.
The rock at Horeb represents the Messiah, Y'shua, who was stuck once on Calvary as foretold originally in Genesis 3:15. This prophecy and its integrity was of such importance that, later, when Moses in anger struck the rock twice, Moses was punished by being denied entry into the promised land with Joshua and Caleb. Y'shua would only be struck once! The verse which follows the above verse describes the response of the children of Israel to the rock which was struck, indicating continued rejection of the Messiah following his crucifixion. Exodus 17:7:
 And he called the name of the place Massah, and Meribah, because of the chiding of the children of Israel, and because they tempted the LORD, saying, Is the LORD among us, or not?
Consider now what happened from Mount Horeb onward according to the record of Exodus 33:3-7, the third occurrence of the word "Horeb."
Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey; but I will not go up among you, or I would consume [Recall from Hebrews 12 the context in which He is a consuming fire] you on the way, for you are a stiff-necked people." 4 When the people heard these harsh words, they mourned, and no one put on ornaments. 5 For the LORD had said to Moses, "Say to the Israelites, 'You are a stiff-necked people; if for a single moment I should go up among you, I would consume you. So now take off your ornaments, and I will decide what to do to you.'" 6 Therefore the Israelites stripped themselves of their ornaments, from Mount Horeb onward. 7 Now Moses used to take the tent and pitch it outside the camp, far off from the camp; he called it the tent of meeting. And everyone who sought the LORD would go out to the tent of meeting, which was outside the camp.
From Mount Horeb onward, the Israelites were stripped of their ornaments and those seeking the Lord had to go outside the camp to Moses' tent, the tent of meeting. This indicates the plight of the Jewish people since they rejected the rock at Horeb. To be stripped of their ornaments is a pretty obvious figure. Israel was humbled. For the people to have to leave the camp of Israel to meet with the Lord symbolizes this present era of Gentile Christianity. [We are Moses' tent of meeting. Isn't that ironic how Moses, the very epitome of a Jew is used as a type of Gentile Christianity? The laws brought through Moses were meant to lead those who adhere to them to the Messiah. (Galatians 3:24) But this is the way of prideful man, who is always led to worship a sign instead of that to which it points.

Now we have a sense of why this mountain of God is called Horeb. Its meaning as "a waster" is apparent. One meaning of "waste" is that of a desert, a barren and uncultivated region. This is certainly descriptive of that physical mountain in the area of their wilderness wandering, but as "a waster", "Horeb" is an active agent in wasting. Israel's encounter with God at the mountain caused a great wasting to occur because she was presented with the Messiah and chose to reject him. Take a look at Romans 9:32-33! To waste is to lay waste; a waster causes desolation. Consider our Lord's words from Matthew 23:37-39:
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! 38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. 39 For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.
The Greek word for "desolate" is Strong's #2048. eremos, er'-ay-mos; of uncert. affin.; lonesome, i.e. (by impl.) waste (usually as a noun, G5561 being implied):--desert, desolate, solitary, wilderness.

Do you see how this relates to what was covenanted with them when they came out of Egypt? I believe that what we have just learned about what happened at Horeb, along with the vivid fulfillment of Hag HaMatzot and the crossing is the import of the little phrase "This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt." Can you imagine the impact that this realization will have upon those who remain behind once the Bride is ingathered?

 The ELS Encodings

What I'm about to share with you supports my view of the prophetic calendar used in Haggai. I will be drawing heavily upon the notes of author and Messianic Pastor Yacov Rambsel. I have felt confident that I have understood the meaning of Haggai's prophetic narrative in the first nine verses of Chapter 2 for some time now, but I haven't been able to offer authoritative documentation of the crucial time element until now. A couple of months ago I had asked Yacov specifically about any codes in Haggai he noted which may relate to the calendar cycle, month names, etc. and, most interestingly, his insights have been largely in this vein as I discovered when he graciously forwarded to me some of his study notes. I am very appreciative!
In the second year of King Darius, on the first day of the sixth month, the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest. Haggai 1:1
"Starting with the first letter in the 14th word, counting every 51st letter (3x17), spells, "Enoch." This name should be familiar because we earlier followed the trail of the shaking and removing to Enoch as a type of the church as it is metathesis. The name "Enoch" means "dedication." It's the root word for chanukkah, the Festival name which celebrates the dedication of the temple. This festival originated following the desecration of the temple rebuilt under Ezra and Zerubbabel by the precursor to the anti-Messiah Antiochus Epiphanes. Upon the successful reclaiming of the land under the Maccabees, Hanukkah was instituted and associated with a special menorah acknowledging an alleged miracle. In gematria, the name chanukkah has the value 89, as does the phrase "the prophet, Haggai. A further association between Haggai and Hanukkah is usually drawn because the final dated prophecies of the prophet's book occurred on the 24th day of the ninth month. On the Sacred calendar, this is the month Kislev, in which month the Festival of Hanukkah begins on the 25th. This winter Festival appears in the New Testament in John 10:22-30 and depicts Jesus talking about some things which seem to bear relation to the messages Haggai brought forth on the 24th of the ninth month.

What significance might this day have? Well, the word of the Lord came twice, the first message appearing to signify a beginning and the second, a conclusion. It would appear to suggest what will happen as the Lord continues to follow the trend of inspiring great programs in precisely annual blocks of time. So, how is this winter festival Hanukkah to be understood in relation to Haggai's messages? I could only speculate at this point. Now that you've been introduced to the prophetic level, study it yourself.

The word chanukkah is not only the name which has been given to the festival but a word that occurs in the Hebrew text 8 times in 7 verses. The first occurrence is Numbers 7:10:
When the altar was anointed, the leaders brought their offerings for its dedication and presented them before the altar.
If you do a study on the word for "altar," you will find that the number 12 appears frequently. For example, in Ezekiel 43:16:
The altar hearth is square, twelve cubits long and twelve cubits wide.
Of course, the area of the altar hearth is easily noted as 12x12=144. Is this a familiar number? See also Exodus 24:4, Numbers 7:84, and especially I Kings 18:31-32 for insight into what was accomplished by means of this altar! The various parts and furnishings of the temple, altar, foundation, menorah, courts, the ark, etc. each relate specifically to people. Yes, all are the temple, but all don't have the same function or glory. Whenever you find mention of a wall, column, altar stones... there is a deeper level on which the spiritual realities are designated. There is great value in being able to minutely discern these things. Reading the scriptures in vague generalities denies access to the deeper truths given to be understood in these last days.

I believe that when the 144,000 are sealed, this is, in "sanctuary vocabulary," the dedication of the altar. It seems quite appropriate to me that there would be a synchronization of the spiritual and the physical dedication of the altar in days to come. True sacrifice and offering, however, would be made on only one of them.

There is a Psalm specifically designated as the "chanukkah for the house." Psalm 30. When you understand the messages of Haggai, you will have insight into the meaning of  this Psalm. It is a record we are becoming familiar with, cryptic scenario by cryptic scenario.

Now, let's look into another ELS insight from Haggai: 1:1.  Beginning in that same 14th word as the above insight but with the second letter, counting every 204th letter (204 = 4 x 51 or 12x17) spells yoar mara chag, meaning "the Nile (River) bitter feast." In the land of the Nile, Egypt, the Israelites were to eat bitter herbs on the night before they left their homes. According to Exodus 12:8:
That same night they are to eat the meat roasted over the fire, along with bitter herbs, and bread made without yeast.
Could the reference to Hag HaMatzot be more clear?

The common denominator of the two sequences above is the number 17. Note that it was on the 17th of Nisan that Y'shua arose from the dead. The number 17 is one of the numbers associated with resurrection.

Now, an ELS insight into Haggai 1:14:
So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of the whole remnant of the people. They came and began to work on the house of the LORD Almighty, their God,
In that verse, at an interval of 169 (beginning with the fourth to last heh) appears the phrase haikal shai, which means, "the temple is a gift," or, "the gift of the temple." But that's not all! If you continue the sequence you will find Yonah, "Jonah." Jonah means "dove." As the dove symbolizes the holy spirit, it is quite appropriate that it is found encoded in this verse in which the spirit of those listed is stirred up. And it is more interesting that it occurs directly connected with the phrase "the gift of the temple." The spirit is the gift of the temple under study, isn't it? haikal shai yonah. Hallelujah!

Here's another ELS insight: Haggai 1:15:
In the four and twentieth day of the sixth month, in the second year of Darius the king.
Beginning in that verse, a very interesting phenomenon occurs. Thirteen letters appear at an interval of 13. (This number 13 was the subject of an extensive study in The Open Scroll. It is the number of the day on the calendar month Nisan/Aviv which signifies the revealing of the lawless one.) These comprise four Hebrew words: Shaish (the number six), Lilah (night), Aviv (which is the month also called by the name Nisan), and Gah'ash (to shake, quake violently, storm). Yacov Rambsel draws the connection to the final season of our Lord's earthly ministry.

The first word in the 13 letter string was Shaish - six. As our Lord hung on the cross from the third hour to the ninth, the duration was six hours. It was also at about the sixth hour that darkness came over the whole land thus making it as night. [Luke 23:44-45] Here, then, is the second word in the string: Lilah - night. The third word in the 13 letter string is Aviv, the name of the month in which this occurred. The final word, Gah'ash is then the effect Y'shua's death had upon the earth. Matthew 27:50-54 records the following:
And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. 51 At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook and the rocks split. 52 The tombs broke open and the bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs, and after Jesus' resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many people. 54 When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, "Surely he was the Son of God!"
Very closely related to this word gah'ash is the word ra'ash (translated "shake") which appears in verse 6 of Haggai 2. These words appear together in Psalm 18 and in its very similar companion, II Samuel 22:8. Consider verses 7-10 of the latter passage.
In my distress I called to the LORD; I called out to my God. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came to his ears. 8 "The earth trembled (gah'ash) and quaked (ra'ash), the foundations of the heavens shook; they trembled (gah'ash) because he was angry. 9 Smoke rose from his nostrils; consuming fire came from his mouth, burning coals blazed out of it. 10 He parted the heavens and came down; dark clouds were under his feet.
There's a shaking on its way. Heavens and Earth will be shaken and what can be shaken will be removed. That coming Nisan 21 patterned after that one almost 2520 years ago will find the glory of this house greatly diminished, the Bride having departed. Further shaking will come, and the Lord will part the heavens.

In conclusion, if I thought the times and seasons weren't important, I never would have had a clue about the meaning of this cleverly constructed prophecy. The dates are crucial elements in discovering the mysteries of Bible prophecy. The commissioning of the 144,000 at the removal of the Bride on Nisan 21 is the way the scenario plays over and over and over. If what has been written to date in The Open Scroll hasn't yet gotten your attention, perhaps this article will speak more clearly to you about this time in which we live. Please, consider this: Our time here in the Lord's harvest field is short. If there ever was a time to sell out to the Lord, this is it! It is most urgent that we adapt a lifestyle of obedience to our loving Master, a lifestyle of service and holiness. I do hope that this study provides more than mere academic stimulation. If you have yet to dedicate your most precious resources to prepare for the kingdom to come, may I encourage you to do so. I hear its worth it. Watch and pray.