There are tens of thousands of Jews alive today who may well be among the 144,000 Jewish witnesses to the Lord Jesus Christ in the seven year Great Tribulation Period!
Some religious groups, like the Jehovah’s Witnesses Watch Tower Organization, believe that the Prophecy of Revelation 7:4-8 refer to them, but this cannot be! It is important to use the Bible and to be discerning on our times in order to separate fact from fiction.
The passage in Revelation clearly refers to members of the twelve tribes of Israel. All of Revelation after chapter 3 through to chapter 19 refers to the happenings on the earth and in heaven during the seven-year Great Tribulation period. The Jehovah’s Witnesses, like so many other religious groups, believe in the false teaching of Replacement Theology, where they make Israel to be a reference to their group. Some denominations believe in Replacement theology and thus say that Israel is a reference to the Church. But the Bible never says this and always keeps Israel and the Church distinct in God’s unfolding plan.
God made an unconditional covenant with Israel to Abraham back in Genesis 12:1-3 and never rescinded it. Revelation 4:1-3 indicates that the Church will be raptured to heaven after the conclusion of the Church Age. We are likely near the end of the Church Age now since all indications are that we are living in the era of the apostate, “luke-warm,” Church of Laodicea. (Revelation 3:1-21)
After the Church is taken to heaven then there will be only two main groups left on the earth: the Jews and the Gentiles. With the witnessing Church gone, and the great confusion that will result from the sudden disappearance of perhaps millions of born-again Christians, the Antichrist will arise and will tell a big lie. He will explain why “the hateful” Christians are gone. Many will believe his lie and worship him!
It will be a fearful and confusing time, but he will seem to bring peace. He will have the authority to confirm a seven year covenant with Israel. (Daniel 9:27) God’s heavy judgments will also have commenced on the earth as a warning to the earth not to follow the Antichrist (I believe we are seeing the beginnings of this even today [Romans 8:22]).
During the first half of this seven year period, God will seal a special number of Jews, 12,ooo from each tribe of Israel. The text is very clear about this numbering and sealing of these 144,000 Jewish preachers! The results of their ministry will be the salvation of an innumerable multitude. (Revelation 7:9-17) The Tribulation will bring a great revival! Perhaps millions will be saved, and the Antichrist will not be able to stop them from preaching for a time. He will kill many who do come to believe in Jesus Christ, but not all!
Indeed unusual things are happening today perhaps as warnings as to what is about to come upon the earth. There are reports from different countries of unexplained noises of soldiers moving! There is the present situation of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 which is presently a puzzlement to the entire world! Jesus did say that the End Times would involve “fearful sights and great signs from heaven.” (Luke 21:11) Of course, there are the ever-present reports of UFOs, which involve many hoaxes, yet still it would seem, as the Bible indicates will happen, the skies are portending events to come.
What a joy to born-again Christians who believe their Bibles! The Church will be taken up at any time our Lord returns. Then, the 144,000 Jewish preachers will proclaim the gospel on earth, along with the two witnesses of Revelation 11. There are many cults and even Christian groups who are misinterpreting the clear teachings of the Bible on the coming again of the Lord. Yet, even this environment is predicted by the prophetic Scriptures! I believe we are right near the time of the coming of the Lord. Are you watching? “Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.” (Matthew 25:13)