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SPECIAL PROPHECY UPDATE NUMBER 117B
April 28, 2003
A Laodicean Messenger’s Warning of Three Woes
The Greek word translated as “angel” in the book of Revelation can be translated with equal validity as “messenger,” depending on context. In fact, it is translated as “messenger” in the two following Scriptures.
II Corinthians 8:23 – Whether any do enquire of Titus, he is my partner and fellowhelper concerning you: or our brethren be enquired of, they are the MESSENGERS of the CHURCHES, and the glory of Christ.
Philippians 2:25 – Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellow soldier, but YOUR MESSENGER, and he that ministered to my wants.
In both cases, the local church or local churches sent them out, and they are identified as “messengers.”
I have long believed that the “angel” of each of the seven churches in the second and third chapters of Revelation is not a heavenly angel, but a church messenger associated with the message proclaimed to, or by, the church. Believing this, I suspect there are two last day warnings issued by the last day churches in associated with what is known as the rapture. The word “ouranos” is translated as “heaven” throughout the entire New Testament. However, there are three heavens, and the same word is used for all three. The first heaven is our atmosphere, the second is the vast realm of space where the constellations exist, and the third is the dwelling place of God. The first “messenger” is sending a message from the first heaven through atmospheric airwaves of earth’s communication media, and it is a warning from God’s churches to all earth’s inhabitants that three terrible woes are about to come on the planet. The warning details that the blowing of the fifth, sixth, and seven trumpets will soon occur, and then the description of the horrible events associated with the three woes are expounded. The fifth trumpet is the first woe, the sixth is the second, and the seventh is the third.
Revelation 8:13 – And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!
The first messenger carries the message of the last churches of this age in the form of a final warning before the rapture when the seventh angel sounds to begin the third woe. The three angels are heavenly angels, but I believe the first angel is the messenger of the last day churches. The first woe is the next verse following Revelation 8:13.
Woe Number One – Revelation 9:1 – And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.
Woe Number Two – Revelation 9:12,13 – One woe is past; and, behold, there come two woes more hereafter.  And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God,
Woe Number Three – Revelation 11:14,15 – The second woe is past; and, behold, the third woe cometh quickly.  And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
The third woe finishes the mystery that Paul announced in I Corinthians.
I Corinthians 15:51,52 – Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,  In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
Revelation 10:7 – But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
I Thessalonians 4:16,17– For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
I Thessalonians 5:3,4 – For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.  But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
It is true that we cannot know, as an absolute certainty, when the seventh trumpet will sound, but we are not the children of darkness, and should at least know what will soon follow the first four trumpets. I believe local churches will finally get off their duff when the tribulation events begin to occur in an unmistakable manner, and will start to present to people the gospel of our coming Lord. We are not appointed to the seven vials of God’s wrath, which follow the rapture on the seventh trump, but we are going to get a taste of tribulation before we are whisked off this den of worldly sin.
I Thessalonians 5:9 – For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
I look for a lot of witnessing by virtually all church members when they see the Lord is not coming until the seventh trump. They should be doing it now, but they will most assuredly be jolted into doing it then. I believe a vast number of men and women will obtain salvation before the sounding of the seventh trump.
It is not by accident that the second church messenger’s proclamation also comes from heaven, and it also precedes the rapture. Lord willing, I will cover this messenger in the next Prophecy Update.