Continued 2 Interpretation:
Are You Rapture-Ready?
The terminus of our chariot ride will be the staging area in front of the gates of heaven. Jeannette said that when this vision occurred, she felt that she had been transported to a space outside of heaven although she did not know from where she came. Since she represents believers everywhere who are raptured, she saw all the gates at once. Whether all believers will be at the same gate of heavenly Zion is not clear from this vision. But it seems reasonable that since the city of God has four sides and each side has three gates, believers will be split up to stand before the various gates, perhaps the one nearest their mansion. Heavenly Zion is huge – foursquare from 1200 to 1500 miles cubed, spherical, or pyramidal shaped [Revelation 21:16] – and everyone need not crowd in through one portal.
The point of this message is that whichever gate a believer winds up in front of, it is going to be as beautiful and spectacular as all the other gates. Jeannette saw twelve gates at once because that is how many entrances the Bible says there are to the city of God [21:21]. Seeing them all with one swoop of the eye enlarged the glamour and magnificence of the city’s portals to her. The Spirit wants us to know that all the gates are similarly beautiful regardless of which side of the city they are on.
Seeing and hearing them open simultaneously indicates that all who are raptured will receive a simultaneous welcome from every quarter of heavenly Zion regardless of which side of the city they enter. What an extravaganza our welcoming is going to be!
We are told in Scripture that these gates are only open to people who have been made righteous.
We see in the above that the gates leading to the Lord are gates of righteousness. Although the King James translates verses 19 and 20 correctly, it does not show the intense yearning that is embedded in the Scripture. Jewish rabbis teach that there is in the words open to me a passionate plea of the righteous person to have more intimacy with God. He wants to ascend to new heights of devotion. Having climbed as high as possible, the righteous seeker is calling for the gate to be opened that leads directly into the Lord’s presence [v.20 above]. It is the righteous man’s response to God’s longing call to people to open their hearts to Him. Jewish tradition says that the Lord speaks thusly:
Does not this rabbinic interpretation correspond to what Jeannette saw? She was overwhelmed by the “loud shaking boom that shook the ground” when the gates opened. This speaks of their massiveness likewise to Jewish understanding.
Jewish rabbis say that the gates represent whatever good deeds a person does. One is a gate for people who righteously feed the hungry; another for those who give drink for thirsty people; another for persons who clothe the naked, etc. The more righteous deeds one does, the more gates that will be open to him. This is Hebrew Old Testament works theology, which was suitable for the Age of Israel since no one was born again and made righteous before Christ came.
The Spirit has shown me, however, that the opening of the gates in Jeannette’s vision is not dependent upon what one does, but upon who one is. Perhaps the New Living Translation gets across the point of the verses better:
Notice that the verse discloses who it is that can enter into these gates to come into the presence of the Lord. Only the righteous are permitted to go through them. In the Old Testament, people worked to be righteous, but now there is …no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus [Romans 8:1], for we are no longer …under the law, but under grace [6:14].
Do you remember that Jeannette was asked if she believed in the Lord Jesus Christ before she was told to follow the angel? Her affirmative answer is what qualified her to go with him because only people who believe Jesus is Lord and have received Him as their Savior are made righteous. Jesus took our place, being made sin for us, so that …we might be made the righteousness of God in him [2 Corinthians 5:21].
It is our righteous condition that qualifies us to enter into the gates, not our righteous deeds. We were born righteous when we were regenerated at our salvation experience. And since we are the body of Christ and share King Jesus’ righteousness, we were born of royal lineage. Righteousness is a state of being, which means you cannot get out of that condition no matter what you do.
Nevertheless, what you do until you die physically determines whether or not you will reign in life on earth. Our good deeds are the timber with which our mansion inside the city is built and determines how magnificent it will be. They do not open the gates for us however. It is because we wear a robe of righteousness which has been given to us by Jesus that guarantees that the massive gates of heaven will open to us. Praise God for His mercy that our own apparel does not make us decorous enough to enter the city. Even though we may fail to fulfill our foreordained destiny on earth, if we take Jesus as our Savior, we can make it into heaven.
It is Jesus’ robe of righteousness, with which He has furnished us, that makes us worthy to set foot in the palace. Without this robe nobody enters the gates of heaven. In sharing His robe with us, we become members of His royal family [Revelation 1:6;].
The twelve kings coming out of the gates in Jeannette’s dream depict friends, relatives, and even strangers who have gone on before us coming out to greet and usher us into our new home. They signify how breathtaking will be our robes of splendor and jeweled scepters for ruling – the rewards for loving service to our beloved Jesus. These heavenly beings in royal dress with crowns on their heads represent believers in Jesus Christ of Nazareth who have been made unto God kings and priests [Revelation 5:10].
What a sight!
Jesus gave us a parable about a king who made a wedding supper for his son and called for the invited guests to come. Some who had agreed to come declined at the last minute for trivial reasons. This insulted the king who had prepared a splendidly sumptuous supper. Regrettably, these people will not partake of the king’s fair in other matters later on to their eternal consternation.
But the point of the story is that one guest who accepted the invitation came into the dining hall wearing his own clothes and not those provided him by the king. Protocol dictated that each guest wear a wedding garment provided by the king, which would not defile his immaculate spotless dwelling place. That wedding garment is Jesus’ robe of righteousness which has been provided for anyone who wants to enter heaven. No one goes through the gates of heaven without that robe of righteousness, and this rule of decorum has been published throughout the kingdom.
The king did not give him opportunity to change clothes or make excuses either because Matthew 22:12 says that he was speechless. The Greek word for ‘speechless’ is a word that means ‘muzzled’ or ‘gagged’. Why was he muzzled? It was because he didn’t have on the right clothes to participate in the gala event. When an invitation specifies the proper dress, guests should not go contrarily.
For instance, when President George Bush entertained the Queen of England, he and his wife held a white tie dinner party in honor of her. In his seven years of office, never had he held a white tie dinner as I heard reported on the news. President Bush is a laid back man who tries not to be pretentious. But because of who it was, he agreed to hold a white tie dinner in respect and admiration of the Queen. On the invitation sent to the guests it specified the dress – white tie required. So anyone who defiantly came without white tie would have been stopped at the door of the White House and refused entrance to the party.
It costs nothing to go to the Creator King’s wedding supper except one’s total devotion to His Son’s Lordship because Jesus’ robe is not for sale. It is offered free to anyone who will take Him as their substitute for sin. The interloper at the King’s dinner party knew this, which is why the King asked how he even got inside the door. The man had obstinately refused to accept the king’s offer of the right attire in order to attend the wedding. Whether through neglect or indifference to the mandatory dress, he declined the offer of a free robe of righteousness and contemptuously refused to wear what the king had provided.
This man, my friends, represents all those in the last day who perish for lack of desire to find out about the Creator’s plans and agenda for His creation. Note that he was speechless because he was without excuse as all people who perish will be. All it takes is a desire to know God, just “an opening as tiny as a pinpoint” as noted by the rabbis, and then He will abundantly provide all the information a person needs to get “the massive gates of heaven to open” – namely, a robe of righteousness. And God Himself does it all. Listen to how Isaiah puts it:
In the Scripture above, God Himself clothes me with salvation by covering me with Jesus’ robe of righteousness. Why would anyone refuse the king’s garments? Is there anyone else who could make them more brilliant and luxurious?
Isaiah said that the garment of salvation is the robe of righteousness, and we learn from Isaiah and Jeannette both that it will be decorated and adorned with ornaments and jewelry. She saw the kings’ garments in her dream as gorgeously woven tapestry and garnished exquisitely with inlaid jewels. Their crowns and scepters were no less lavish than their garments as they sparkled with embedded stones. The resplendent beautiful colors flashing from the pearly gates embellished with gems overwhelmed her when the brilliant light streaming from inside the city momentarily blinded her as the gates opened. And from her description of what she saw, nothing was left that could be desired. This is reminiscent of what Paul said about our heavenly abode…
Paul ought to know since he was caught up to heavenly Jerusalem [2 Corinthians 12:2,3]. Like Paul, Jeannette could not tell if she was in her body or out of it when she encountered the angel who took her to the magnificent city gates. Reread her account of heaven’s gates and soak up the euphoric description of what is waiting for us. Note the warm welcoming reception as we rendezvous at the staging area in front of the gates of New Jerusalem.
John explains in the last revelation given to him by Jesus that this city is the bride of Christ.
How can a city be a bride? It is because it is a city of mansions each of which belongs to a member of the bride of Christ and prepared by Jesus for His followers as He so states in the gospel of John:
Preparation of a home for a bride by the bridegroom before marriage consummation was customary in Jesus’ day. It could take as long as a year or more. Only the Father of the Bridegroom knew when the addition to his house was ready for his Son’s marriage consummation.
This ritual procedure for Jewish marriages was ordained as a norm in Israel’s culture to foreshadow what Jesus would be doing during the period of intercalation (an insertion in a calendar) known as the Age of Grace before He sets up His Kingdom after His cutoff at the cross [Daniel 9:26]. So, for 2,000 years Jesus has been following His Father’s ordained Hebraic custom for marriages. By this time there is a plethora of mansions in New Jerusalem, and according to Jeannette’s vision, the gates of the city are opened, and the wedding chambers are ready for occupancy.
Nothing like this reception has ever taken place before. That’s because never before has a flesh and bone man sat at the right hand of privilege beside the throne of God. And since this Son of Man is the Son of God, nothing is to be spared for His earthly bride’s welcome home in heavenly Zion. From the vision’s depiction, there will be an ultra extravagant greeting to salute the final transport load of the bride of Christ the likes of which Solomon nor the Queen of England has not seen.
city defies description, and the breathtaking gates Jeannette saw
testifies to its magnificence and spendor. Notwithstanding the
showy appurtenances and dazzling paraphernalia signaling the enormous
wealth of the saints’ inheritance, I yearn to bow down at the feet
of Jesus and hear Him say, “Well done my beloved.” ….
“Heaven is opened unto you.” I esteem the words of His mouth
more than all the wealth of the city. Just knowing that I fought a good
fight and pleased the Lord will be the greatest reward of all.
The reason I have not elaborated upon the meaning of each one of the twelve gates is because the Spirit shows me it would do nothing to make one rapture-ready. The import of this couplet is to trumpet the sound that this year could be the eventful year of the rapture since it is a Jewish Sabbatical year and the world stage is set for the final act before establishment of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. God normally acts in accord with His Biblically revealed meaning of times, seasons, and numbers, and the time is ripe for the finish of Daniel’s 70-week prophecy (see Daniel's prophecy on this website) .
As the time approaches when the covenant with death will be signed, every one of us ought to keep our eyes on the skies. Jesus said,
The Middle East is the barometer, and the international Annapolis Conference begun last November, 2007 in Annapolis, Maryland USA is the thermostat. As the pressure increases for Israel to give up land for peace, the rapture draws nigh. President Bush is determined to leave office leaving a legacy of having been instrumental in working the will of the leaders of Palestine and Israel for a peaceful solution to their intransigency for compromise, so he and Secretary of State Rice are pressuring Israel to give up land for peace – precious holy land in Jerusalem and the West Bank. The ruling party of Israel seems oblivious to Scripture and is enthusiastically acquiescing to the west’s advice to give up God’s precious soil to His sworn enemy of radical Islamism. Little does President Bush realize he is working the will of God as he carries the pen and ink to the table in the final act of the Age of Grace. Israel’s covenant with death is imminent.
Only God is able to intervene and stop this madness of making a covenant with death. Yet we know that this prophecy will surely come to pass because it was embedded in the annals of divine decrees before the foundation of the world. If this is the time God has chosen for the fulfillment of this prophetic event, then our stellar ride to heaven is about to start. Therefore, rejoice and be glad because we will soon see the streets of gold.
Remember that we are not looking for the Antichrist as mid- and post-tribulationists are. We have learned that he cannot appear until that which hinders him is gone in the rapture [2 Thessalonians 2:6-8], namely the true church of born again believers who have the Holy Spirit indwelling them. After they depart with the power that holds the wicked one in check, God will allow satan to fully empower the Antichrist, and the final act of the Age of Israel will commence as per Daniel’s 70-week prophecy [Daniel 9:24-27].
Our desire here at Whitestones Ministries is that everyone who reads this message about our impending departure takes steps to stay prepared. Repentance is the first step to preparedness. Once you have repented and taken sin out of the way, sit back and enjoy the ride. Satan cannot hold people in bondage who are in Christ Jesus because there is… no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit [Romans 8:1]. Having made the decision to change your ways and walk after the Spirit, rest in your newly found forgiveness and freedom.
The blood of Jesus is powerful enough to forgive any sin no matter how heinous, so confess it and turn away from it. If you fall, get up and move on. Keep the devil on the run by saying, rejoice not against me O mine enemy, for when I fall, I shall arise….[Micah 6:8]. None of us are perfect, and we all err in different ways. The key is not to let the devil keep you down when you fall. He’s counting on you giving up the fight against him. We are in a fight of faith to the finish because we are in the devil’s cosmic system at present. But that will soon end.
Anyone who stays rapture-ready for departure to heaven can rest in the assurance that they have overcome the devil’s last ditch terrorizing effort to control the world. Satan’s temporary parole will end in seven short years and he knows it. Earthly Jerusalem will be assaulted by the armies of the world, and many misguided Christians will join in with the heathen to hurl insult and blasphemies at the Jewish nation and its capitol according to Revelation chapter seventeen.
But alas! We who are looking upward for the coming of Jesus will be hidden from these evil happenings that are coming to fruition. This vision of the “Gates Of Heaven” given in the visitation of the Lord to Jeannette should excite rapture-ready believers to relax and rejoice in our Bridegroom Savior, for the Holy Spirit witnesses to me that we are on the threshold of the rapture, even at its very gates – pun intended.
So let’s …bless the Lord with all that is within us … [Psalms 103:1], for we can readily see that the things of this world are not to be compared to the copious extravagance seen in the “Gates Of Heaven” vision. Keep sending up timber to furnish your heavenly mansion as you rest in the finished work of Christ. See you at the pearly gates……………………
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Tuesday, September 10, 2013 8:53 PM