The Open Scroll - Passing Through the Iron Gate
Passing Through the Iron Gate

By Bob Schlenker,  5/18/99 (Prints about 10 pages)
Special thanks to Patti Iorillo and Barb Fuess, who gave generously of their time to help review and edit this update.

The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.  Deuteronomy 29:29
Hidden right under our noses in the book of Acts is a prophetic revelation you could hardly have imagined, it's just too fantastic to be true - but it is! Disguised as a story about a jail break, this remarkable view of the Bride's escape from the bondage of this earthly realm had lain hidden in the shadows of typology until the Lamplighter shined His glorious light upon it.
No one lights a lamp and hides it in a jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, he puts it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. 17 For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open. 18 Therefore consider carefully how you listen. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken from him.  Luke 8:16-18
Although the Lamplighter's light upon this remarkable view of the theft of the Bride remains yet far too dim for most people to discern its truthfulness, his grace is being poured out upon many in these last days. All I can do in this article is to walk you through the technical aspects, the rest is up to the Lord. Have you come in to see the light? Listen carefully, and act upon what you hear.  He who has eyes to see, let him see, and ears to hear, let him hear.

When I saw the deeper meaning of this jail break, I knew instantly what I had found because I was led there knowing what to look for. My eyes were at that time opening wider. I had been a student at the Lord's feet for some time, learning how to listen and develop a hearing ear. Through his personal curriculum for my life I had come to learn lessons about how to interpret the deep mysteries of the Bible. Typology, celestial signs, Jewish Feast days. architectural structure, and various other fundamental aspects of the language of prophecy were becoming familiar. The point of contact with the understanding of the prophetic level of scripture was becoming clear - chronology. When something of the timing is known and the nature of the event is already understood, the prophetic gems lying in the shadows reveal their sparkling beauty. When I came to this passage knowing what to look for, it became known to me as the gem it is, providing a sure confirmation of what I had already learned - the positioning of the Bride theft relative to the 70th week, the Famine week.

Acts chapter 12 is the record of Peter’s miraculous release from prison. This story is inserted into the book of Acts as a kind of parenthetical insertion, bracketed plainly for our attention by the last two verses of chapter 11, and by chapter 12 verse 25. You'll see what I mean if you take some time to read through the context. Without chapter 12 verses 1-24, which contain absolutely no reference to Saul, Barnabas or their mission, the surrounding context would flow quite smoothly. But as it is written, there is an awkward break in the literary flow. Here are the "bracket" verses.
The disciples, each according to his ability, decided to provide help for the brothers living in Judea. {30} This they did, sending their gift to the elders by Barnabas and Saul.  Acts 11:29-30

When Barnabas and Saul had finished their mission, they returned from Jerusalem, taking with them John, also called Mark.  Acts 12:25
Seems odd, doesn’t it? You could assume, and it's probably true, that the events within the parenthesis happened during the time Paul and Barnabas were away on this mission, but notice that there is no narrative that suggests such an explanation or any other. Why is this written in this way? God sometimes marks out sections in the Bible parenthetically for our special attention. When we recognize a parenthetical insertion, we should ask, "why has God inserted this here"? God always leaves clues in the context and the answer to the question reveals a deeper level of truth! I think of this parenthetical insertion like a picture in a frame. If Acts 12:1-24 is the picture, the frame is the surrounding context. Framing serves an important function, it enhances the impact and meaning of the artwork framed. Let me begin this prophetic exposition by "framing" the picture.

Chapters 10 and 11 verify that Gentiles have indeed been "grafted in" as members of the Body of Christ. Following this event, the outreach among the Gentiles expanded. Acts 11:26 states that the believers were called "Christians first in Antioch" and appears to wrap up the establishment of the Christian Church. Acts 11:27 and 28 begin a detailed portrayal of the last days of this period.
During this time some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. {28} One of them, named Agabus, stood up and through the Spirit predicted that a severe famine would spread over the entire Roman world. (This happened during the reign of Claudius.)
In the last days of this present age, there is a seven year period of time commonly referred to as the seventieth week of Daniel. These are last seven years before Jesus begins his reign from his throne in Zion and conclude with the campaign of Armageddon, the focal time of the book of Revelation. The severe famine in Acts 11:28 compares to the Famine week of Genesis 41, where there is an extensive foreshadowing in type. The Famines not only represent a of lack of physical food (Rev. 6:6-8) but of spiritual understanding. Notice that this famine in Acts 11 was predicted by a prophet, so it's the subject of prophecy, just like the Famine week in Joseph's day! Observe that this famine was to spread over the entire Roman world. Nebuchadnezzar’s metallic image in Daniel chapter 2 reveals that the political condition of the last days will be as a revived Roman Empire. Such is the end time Famine, okay?

The meanings of the proper names in the Bible play a significant role in interpreting the prophetic messages where they are found, so we can glean further insight from knowing that this famine occurred during the reign of Claudius. Claudius means "whining." Webster’s Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary defines "whining" as "the utterance of a high-pitched plaintive or distressed cry." "Plaintive" means "expressive of suffering or woe." The interpreted meaning of the reign of Claudius is the reign of "high-pitched cries of distress, expressing suffering and woe"! And that is about as good a characterization of the Famine week as you’ll find! The prophet’s name, Agabus, means "a grasshopper." As the one delivering the prophecy about the upcoming famine, our attention is automatically turned to the role grasshoppers, or locusts play in the end times. (See Jeremiah 51:14, Joel 1:4, 2:25, Revelation 9) Agabus came down from Jerusalem (peace peace) to Antioch (driven against). You see, judgment will be falling upon the world at this time. Where once there had been relative peace, the entire Roman world will be driven against by the disruptive forces of the spirit realm.
It was about this time that King Herod arrested some who belonged to the church, intending to persecute them.  Acts 12:1
Herod (Herod Agrippa I) symbolically represents the lawless one, the one some would call the "antichrist."  An excerpt taken from the latter part of the chapter affords a window of insight into Herod as a type of this world ruler.
Then Herod went from Judea to Caesarea and stayed there a while. {20} He had been quarreling with the people of Tyre and Sidon; they now joined together and sought an audience with him. Having secured the support of Blastus (meaning: a sprout), a trusted personal servant of the king, they asked for peace, because they depended on the king’s country for their food supply.Acts 12:19b-20
Since Herod had control over the food supply, he was able to exert his authority. During the end-time famine, the Beast of Revelation will wield this power.
He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, {17} so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name.   Revelation 13:16-17
People will become completely dependent upon the "Beast" for provision. If there's no buying or selling without the mark, how will one access the Beast's food supply? Consider what’s said about Herod in the verses that immediately follow in Acts 12. They parallel descriptions given in 2 Thessalonians 2 and in Revelation 13.
On the appointed day Herod, wearing his royal robes, sat on his throne and delivered a public address to the people. {22} They shouted, "This is the voice of a god, not of a man." {23} Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died.   Acts 12:21-23
The name "Herod" means "heroic." Webster’s defines a hero as 1a)- a mythological or legendary figure often of divine descent endowed with great strength or ability 1b)- an illustrious warrior; and 2b)- the central figure in an event or period. The Beast fits each of these three definitions. Listen to what the prophet Daniel said about the end-time leader and see if he sounds heroic to you.
Because of rebellion, the host of the saints and the daily sacrifice were given over to it. It prospered in everything it did, and truth was thrown to the ground.   Daniel 8:12

In the latter part of their reign, when rebels have become completely wicked, a stern-faced king, a master of intrigue, will arise. {24} He will become very strong, but not by his own power. He will cause astounding devastation and will succeed in whatever he does. He will destroy the mighty men and the holy people. {25} He will cause deceit to prosper, and he will consider himself superior. When they feel secure, he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes. Yet he will be destroyed, but not by human power.  Daniel 8:23-25
What a hero! A regular Nimrod kind of guy! Let’s return to Acts 12 and consider Herod's role in this perspective.
He had James, the brother of John, put to death with the sword. {3} When he saw that this pleased the Jews, he proceeded to seize Peter also. This happened during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Acts 12:2
This portrays persecution and martyrdom in the last days under the Beast. Obviously, James represents some who will be martyred upon "Herod's" unveiling. (The name James means the same as Jacob. Jacob is the Hebrew form and James, the Greek.) Peter is symbolic of the church, more specifically here, the Bride. Knowing that Peter is a type of the church gives us an important code word in the vocabulary of prophetic language. This knowledge has been instrumental in the opening of many similar prophecies. Since the time I learned the vocabulary of Acts 12's scenario, I have added many, many more words to the list!

Some of you might be saying to yourselves, "Wait a minute. Is this guy saying that the church will suffer under the lawless one? I thought we were all going to be outta here before then!" If this is you, please be patient, hang in there and consider what I'm about to show you in this amazing prophetic drama. Then, I'd like to recommend a pair of articles I've written about The Sign for the Church. Okay? Notice that we are told when this happened - during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Let's continue.
After arresting him, he put him in prison, handing him over to be guarded by four squads of four soldiers each. Herod intended to bring him out for public trial after the Passover. {5} So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him.  Acts 12:4-5
So, Peter is imprisoned and guarded by four squads of four soldiers each, not just 16 soldiers but specifically four quaternion. We should recognize the use of the number 4 here since it is used twice. "Four" signifies the world. Here is the prophetic interpretation. The church symbolized by Peter is imprisoned in the world, yet remaining in a physical body within the physical realm. The situation is when the lawless one has been revealed and is persecuting the church.

Notice that Herod intended to keep him in prison until after the Passover. Don't miss this because the feast has been named twice! The Feasts of Passover (Pesach) and Unleavened Bread (Hag HaMatzot) synonymously describe the time in which this was taking place.
The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance.  Acts 12:6
The date revealed is Nisan 21, the last day of Passover. Keep it in mind, for now, I'll address it again later. Did you know that there are several different Greek word that might have been used for "sleeping"?  The one used, koimao, is the one that also refers to the state of death, like in the following familiar verses.
Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed--  1 Corinthians 15:51

Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 1 Thessalonians 4:13
Did you happen to notice the double mention of the number two, between two soldiers, bound with two chains? Like I noted earlier with the double mention of the number four, the number two is brought to our special attention for an important reason. How are we imprisoned in this realm? What specifically binds us? Two things; sin and death. They will continue to bind the saint until such time as  the dead are raised and the living are changed! Romans chapters 6-8 are very clear about this. Romans 8:2 declares: because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death

Although this was and is accomplished for us in Christ, it's clear that the fullness of this freedom is yet future. It is not yet manifest because we still sin, and we still die. We are still bound with two chains between two soldiers.
What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? {25} Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.  Romans 7:24-25

But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life. {23} For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. {7:1} Do you not know, brothers—for I am speaking to men who know the law [What law? THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH, think about it!] --that the law has authority over a man only as long as he lives?  Romans 6:22-7:1
Hallelujah! Once the body is dead, the law of sin and death no longer has authority over man. This was proven true in Jesus at his death and resurrection!
Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. {24} For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? {25} But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. Romans 8:23-25
We now have the firstfruits of the Spirit and are waiting patiently for the redemption of our bodies when we’re released from the law of sin and death. If we’ve already been released, why then is it yet our hope?
Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed-- {52} in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. {53} For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.  1 Corinthians 15:51-53
Now, pay very close attention to the time sequence here as we continue the passage!
When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: "Death has been swallowed up in victory." {55} "Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law."  1 Corinthians 15:54-56
When will the law of sin and death, the two chains which continue to bind the Christian, no longer have authority over us? When the dead are raised and the living changed, at the redemption of our bodies! This is our hope!

Let’s return once again to the Acts drama.
Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. "Quick, get up!" he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. {8} Then the angel said to him, "Put on your clothes and sandals. And Peter did so. "Wrap your cloak around you and follow me," the angel told him.  Acts 12:7-8
This section is rich! When the angel suddenly appeared, a light shone in the cell. This alludes to the illumination of the Temple ceremony during the Feast of Ingathering (Sukkot), the Feast which pictures the final ingathering. This has the same meaning as the "joy of the pouring out of the water" ceremony about which Jesus spoke.
On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.   John 7:37
This invitation was made on the last day of Sukkot as a prophecy about the final ingathering appointed for that day in the distant future, the last resurrection. The light shining in the cell alludes to resurrection.

After the angel appeared, Peter was struck on the side, which woke him up. Pleura, the Greek word for "side" is used elsewhere in only one other context. It was Y'shua's pleura that was pierced at his crucifixion. The other mentions of this word for "side" relate to identifying him in his resurrected body as the one who had been pierced to convince others of the reality of his resurrection. Acts 12 is the only other place this word is found, identifying Peter with Y'shua in this account in his death and resurrection!

Just like the word used for "sleep" in Acts 12:6 refers to the state of the dead, the word for "woke" refers to the resurrection of the dead! This word is found about 15 times in 1 Corinthians 15 alone!  Could the Lord be trying to tell us something about the meaning of this parenthetically inserted chapter by his selection of words here? I'm thinking, yeah!

After Peter woke up, the angel of the Lord said, "Quick, get up"! How quick? Does the phrase "in the twinkling of an eye" come to mind? Could this be the voice of the Lord or maybe that of the archangel?
in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.  1 Corinthians 15:52

For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.  1 Thessalonians 4:16
At the sound of the angel’s voice, the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. Is this not the church being set free in resurrection, released from the authority of the law of sin and death? After that happened, the angel told Peter to put on his clothes and sandals, to wrap his cloak (very likely his tallit) around himself and to follow him. The angel didn’t clothe Peter - he was directed to clothe himself! These are not just Peter's old clothes we're reading about here. These are something else altogether! These garments are the required attire to enable Peter to follow the angel.
For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.  1 Corinthians 15:53
Continuing the record again in Acts 12:9.
Peter followed him out of the prison, but he had no idea that what the angel was doing was really happening; he thought he was seeing a vision.
Oh, what a vision it is, dear friend! Peter and his angelic escort are leaving the prison. As Elijah was taken to heaven (in another type of the Bride theft) with an angelic escort, so is Peter.

Now we’ve come to the verse which led to this scenario:
They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him.  Acts 12:10
When Peter and the angel came to the iron gate leading to the city, I believe that they came to heaven’s very door. They passed through from the worldly realm into the heavenly. This is an impassable barrier, a closed "iron gate" for anyone without a spiritual body. The city (Jerusalem) is symbolic of the heavenly city into which the Bride will enter. Peter and the angel pass through the iron gate, which had opened by itself. Passing through the iron gate is something I long to do, friend, how about you? John the revelator saw such an thing himself.
After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, "Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this." Revelation 4:1
This kind of door is exclusive. Certain requirements must be met.
But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.  Matthew 25:10

Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to. 25 Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, you will stand outside knocking and pleading, 'Sir, open the door for us.' "But he will answer, 'I don't know you or where you come from.'  Luke 13:24-25
Peter was qualified to pass through the iron gate, the narrow iron gate. He had been faithful and did not deny the Lord even to save his own life, which was most assuredly at risk.
Then Peter came to himself and said, "Now I know without a doubt that the Lord sent his angel and rescued me from Herod’s clutches and from everything the Jewish people were anticipating.  Acts 12:11
What a tremendous prophetic treasure has been hidden in the book of Acts! I get a thrill every time I read through this passage. How the Lord can hide and then disclose such awesome truth through a brief story like that is just amazing! What an incredible spiritual work! Every detail in the record is historically accurate, I have no doubt; Peter was granted a miracle prison break. The Lord orchestrated such an event for Peter's benefit as well as the early church, who I'm sure was quite glad to receive him once again as the account shows, but the record was perfectly recorded for our benefit at the close of this age to expose details about this very special resurrection - to his glory! Isn't God good to us!

Now,  to address the secret chronology. As I mentioned briefly at the start of this article, I stumbled onto this prophetic scenario knowing what to look for. I had come to the place in the Lord's curriculum that I realized the "pre-trib rapture" theory I had always subscribed to was just not valid. I wanted badly to know at what point relative to the seven year Famine week the "rapture" would occur, so I asked the Lord to show me. So he did! Not every question I ask gets such an answer, but I'm very grateful this one did. There's a sequence to learning (and unlearning) that usually has to occur, so the Lord opened my eyes to see Jacob's son Joseph as Y'shua in his first and second advent, and Benjamin his brother as the church. When the light turned on the prophetic scenario in Genesis 45, I noted with wide-eyed excitement that this was a fore view of the sealing of the 144,000 and their commissioning. I understood that Benjamin played a significant role in this most awesome event. He he was present with the Lord and bore testimony to the verity of Joseph's words, being a crucial witness. Verse 6 caught my attention, standing out from the page as though it were alive.
For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will not be plowing and reaping. Genesis 45:6
If you understand the harvest allegory, there is a great deal of meaning in the activities mentioned. At this point in the Famine week, Joseph revealed his identity to his brothers. At this point, too, Benjamin, as a type of the church was participating as a special witness, live and in person.  So, as I considered this profound discovery, a verse came to mind from the gospel of Luke.
It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the second or third watch of the night.  Luke 12:38
Wow, what if the master of these servants who are ready really does come in the second or third watch of the night? Given my exposure to Genesis 45:6, could a watch in the night equate to a year in the Famine week? I decided to investigate the possibility that there might be other cryptic references to shed more light on the matter. Using a concordance, I found that the word for "watch" was phulake. (
Strongs #5438. phulake, foo-lak-ay'; from G5442; a guarding or (concr. guard), the act, the person; fig. the place, the condition, or (spec.) the time (as a division of day or night), lit. or fig.:--cage, hold, (im-) prison (-ment), ward, watch.) I searched for the occurrences of this word where the words for "second" or "third" were found.

I came directly to Acts 12:10, and as I looked for a "rapture" scenario or the sealing and commissioning of the 144k, I found both!
They passed the first and second guards (phulake) and came to the irongate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him.  Acts 12:10
Hallelujah! They passed the first and second years in the Famine week and came to the iron gate leading to the New Jerusalem. The appointed time for this event relative to the Famine week was now confirmed. Passing through the iron gate is a code expression for this glorious resurrection, and what a colorful way to describe the event.

So, the hidden chronology of this mysterious scenario informs us about the timing of the event relative to the Famine week. In whole numbers, this resurrection is appointed to occur after 2 years and with five of the seven remaining. Remember the other time reference that was given? The time this dramatic scenario was playing out was during Hag HaMatzot. Peter's release came on the night before Herod was to bring him out for trial, after Pesah had ended. (See verses 4,6) Did you know that the Hebrew gematria value of the word for Passover is 148, and that the 148th chapter of the New Testament (Infinity Code principle variation) is 1 Corinthians 15? Interesting, isn't it! Now, why would there be a resurrection on the last day of this feast?

This day is a full festival day, a yom tov. On the calendar it is Nisan 21. If you know about how the Feasts are cryptic windows into the Redeemer's appointment book, you understand the significance of observing things that were done and said on the Feast days. Those things recorded in the scriptures are very important to note, as well as what is done according to the traditions of the Jews. From the scriptural record, there is some data to be farmed from other places in addition to this one in Acts 12, (like in Haggai, for example), but I'm not going to address those here. I will however take a brief look at the traditions of the Jews. You may want to study some materials on Jewish customs, like The Jewish Holidays, A Guide and Commentary, by Michael Strassfeld.

To understand the last day of the feast, we need to get a good idea of what the whole festival is about. Jews understand that the primary theme of Pesah is liberation. For this reason, it is also called the season of our liberation, zeman heiruteinu. Yet another name for it is the holiday of spring, hag ha-aviv. To quote Michael Strassfeld (p. 6) from the above mentioned book, "The watchwords of both spring and Pesah are rebirth and hope. Thus, the spirit of renewed optimism aroused by the sights and smells of spring are reinforced in a Jewish context by Passover with its trumpeting of the possiblities of liberation." The feast has its foundation in the exodus, when God delivered Israel out of bondage in Egypt across the Red Sea. Just as Israel was delivered from bondage in Egypt and led to miraculously cross the Red Sea, so Peter was delivered from bondage in prison and led to a miraculous passage through the iron gate. To quote Michael Strassfeld once again, (p. 27) "The seventh day, according to tradition, marks the crossing of the Red Sea by the Israelites. Some people, particularly Hasidim, follow the custom of pouring water on the floor and singing and dancing to commemorate the crossing of the sea."  When the time for the antitypical yet future crossing of the sea has passed,  those symbolized by Peter in Acts 12 will be rejoicing at the realization of having passed through the iron gate! Hallelujah! In another tradition foreshadowing that resurrection from the dead, on the last day of Pesah, the yizkor is recited, the memorial prayer for the dead. Yes, my friend, when the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob remembers the dead, they rise!

I wanted to mention before I wrap up this article that, until I understood about the separation of the church and the Bride theft, I thought this was "The Rapture," the harpazo or catching away of the church all together as one. But it is not. Pesah, you must understand, is also a harvest festival. The appropriate grain will be harvested and gathered into the Lord's barn - the crop that ripens early. Barley is the grain harvested at Pesah, not wheat. The wheat harvest is Shavuot - Pentecost.

After learning about the deeper meaning of phulake, a little study with my Septuagint led me to discover that this word is also found in a very important verse in the Psalms.
For a thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night. Psalm 90 verse 4
Based upon the seven-day model of creation, the heavens and earth time will abide a total of seven thousand years, modeled after the seven days in which they were created. Each thousand of the seven thousand years represents a day. The first six are "work" days and the seventh is a "rest" day, a Shabbat. So, what does this have to do with "watches in the night"? Historically, the dark portion of a day has never been divided into seven parts. In ancient times, the night was divided into three watches, and in Roman times, four, but in prophetic language, there are seven watches in the night. These compare to the seven days of creation and the seven millennial days.  See The Master Overlay of Weeks for more detail. These watches are neither 24 hour days, nor thousand year days, but days that are a year in duration. As a note of interest, there is encoded in this verse a phrase which means "the great seven," "rav sheva." Psalm 90:4 has a key of seven that binds these great sevens or weeks together. When I refer to the time most people know as the seventieth week of Daniel, I often use the phrase "Famine" week because that's the terminology used in the prominent typology of Genesis 42ff. I also refer to it as the Watches in the Night, and now you know why!

Did you ever consider the book of Lamentations as a description of how it would be during the time of great tribulation and distress? The following sure sounds like the "reign of Claudius" to me!
Arise, cry out in the night, as the watches of the night begin; pour out your heart like water in the presence of the Lord. Lift up your hands to him for the lives of your children, who faint from hunger at the head of every street.  Lamentations 2:19
This message makes me grieve for those who still refuse to obey the Lord! As I write this update, we are now about half way into the first year. Signs in abundance have been given to warn us to turn from our wicked ways, but who can even hear them? But some, now, have ears to hear. Do you? To you act upon what the Lord has given you, or are you the kind of person who just listens and never acts. One day soon, it is going to really matter what we did with what we heard. Make this day count, my friend.
Proceed to the continuation: Peter is at the Door! - The Bride and the Commission of the 144k