The Woman who went into the Wilderness
The Book of Revelation describes the war between Satan and the Bride of Christ, who John described as a Woman who flew “into the wilderness for time, times, and half a time away from the presence of the serpent.”
This Woman was first described by King Solomon, almost 1,000 years before the birth of Christ.
King Solomon as “the Son of David,” represented the future Christ.
His Song of Songs, is an ancient and celebrated love story, in which he plays the part of a Bridegroom, who romances His bride.
At one time, his Book was nearly removed from the Old Testament, because many Jews thought that it had no spiritual value. But of course, they did not understand that his Book was actually a prophecy of the relationship between Christ and His Church.
The Song of Songs
In Chapter Three, Solomon’s Bride leaves the City, which the Apostle John called “the Great City” to go out in the wilderness to find her lover.
There she finds Him,
Who is this coming out of the wilderness
Like pillars of smoke,
Perfumed with myrrh and frankincense
Song of Songs 3:6
John described New Jerusalem as the Woman who went “in the wilderness to be nourished for 1,260 days.”
The meaning of “in the wilderness” were know only to God, after the place of His sanctuary was cast to the ground. New Jerusalem had become as “a spring shut-up.”
A garden enclosed is my sister, my Spouse
A spring shut up, A fountain sealed.
Song of Songs 4:12
But she would be nurtured in the wilderness.
Awake, O North,
And come, O south!
Blow upon my garden,
that its spices may flow out.
Song of Songs 4:16
In Chapter Five, the watchmen of “the Great City” beat the Bride, and took her veil away, and so John tells us “the voice of Bride and Bridegroom shall not be heard in you anymore” (Revelation 18:23).
In Chapter Six, the other virgins beg the Bride to come out of the wilderness,
But she replies,
What would you see in the Shulamite
As it were, the dance of two camps?
Song of Songs 6:13
The dance of two army camps was a prophecy of the war of the end time Sanctified Church, and the kingdom of the beast, the false Church, that holds Satan’s teachings.
In the last Chapter, the Bride comes out of the wilderness, and is finally visible to all.
Who is this coming out of the wilderness,
Leaning upon her beloved?
Song of Songs 8:5
The false Church is called “the sister who has no breasts” (Song of Songs 8:8). Meaning that she lacks the milk of the Word of God to nourish her children.
So her brothers reply, “we will enclose her with boards of cedar”(Song of Songs 8:9).1
This is the story of the Woman in the Wilderness, but the meaning of “time, times and half a time” will come from the Book of Daniel.
The Prophecy of the Messiah’s Coming
More than six hundred years before Christ, the prophet Daniel was taken into captivity, in Babylon where God gave him “understanding in all visions and dreams.”
The Book of Daniel makes many prophecies about future dates, and kings that have shocked the greatest of skeptics for thousands of years.
From his prophecy of the Messiah’s coming, we will learn that days are actually years in Daniel’s prophecies. But this should not be a surprise, because the Hebrew word for “days” often has the meaning of years (Genesis 41:1; 2 Samuel 13:23, 14:28; Jeremiah 28:3; 2Chronicles 21:5).
In Chapter 9, we learn that Israel was taken into Captivity for 70 years because of its sin. But “seventy weeks,” or “seventy sevens” will be required to put an end to sin and iniquity. In other words, it will take seven times longer to “end sin and iniquity.”
Daniel 9, verse 25, says,
Know therefore and understand,
that from the going forth of the command
To restore and rebuild Jerusalem
Until the Messiah the Prince
There shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks;
The street shall be built again, and the wall,
Even in troublesome times.
The command to restore and rebuild the streets of Jerusalem, came from King Artaxerxes, and was recorded in Ezra Chapter 7, as in the “fifth month of the seventh year of the king” (Ezra 7:9, cf Ezra 4:21).
Daniel’s Days are actually Years
Sir Isaac Newton, who discovered the law of gravity, made a study of this date, and wrote 457 BC in the margin of his 1707 King James Bible.
Adding 69 weeks, or 483 days as years, to the year 457 BC, we come to 27 AD, when Christ was anointed in His baptism 2
Daniel said that after 69 weeks, the Messiah will be cut off in the middle of the next week, that is after 3 ½ years.
From Daniel’s prophecy of the Messiah’s coming, we understand that his prophetic weeks and days are years. In fact, in the next Chapter, Daniel made a point to tell us that he fasted for “3 weeks of days,” emphasizing that these days, were real days.
The death of the Messiah after 3 1/2 years is actually our first hint of the meaning of “time, times and half a time.” For just as Christ taught the Gospel in three and a half years, Satan will corrupt it, in three and a half years, but the days will be years!
The Prophecy of Time, Times and Half a Time
In Chapter 7, verse 25, we read, “he shall wear out the saints of the most High, and they shall be given into his hands for time, times and half a time.”
In the final Chapter of Daniel, we learn that the saints will be in his hand for EXACTLY “time, times and half a time.”
Here, one Angel asks another, “how long shall the fulfillment of these wonders be?”
“then I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand, and his left hand to heaven, and swore by Him who lives forever, that it shall be for time, times and half a time…” (Daniel 12:6-7)
In 135 AD, Justin Martyr told us that the Jews of his day, believed that time, times and half a time, meant, Time plus Two Times, plus a half a Time3, and they estimated this would be at least 350 years; being 100 years, plus 200 years, plus 50 years; which was longer than any previous kingdom had ever ruled.
But no one in Justin Martyr’s day could imagine that “time, times and half a time” was actually 3 ½ years in days as years!
But with history behind them, all eighteenth-century Protestant Christians understood that “time, times and half a time” was a period of 1260 years that began when the saints came under the power of the Bishop of Rome.
Just as Jesus Christ brought us the true Gospel in 3 ½ years, the Antichrist would corrupt the Gospel over 3 ½ years, in days as years!!
In 1754, Bishop Thomas Newton explained,
A time, all agree, signifies a year; and a time, and times, and the dividing of time, or half a time, are three years and a half; and the ancient Jewish year, consisting of twelve months, and each month of thirty days, a time, and times, and half a time, or three years and a half, are reckoned in the Revelation 11:2-3; Revelation 12:6; Revelation 12:14, as equivalent to forty-two months, or twelve hundred and sixty days; and a day, in the style of the prophets, is a year; and it is confessed that the seventy weeks, in Daniel 9, are weeks of years, and consequently twelve hundred and sixty days are twelve hundred and sixty years. So long antichrist, or the little horn, will continue: but from what point of time the commencement of these twelve hundred and sixty years is to be dated, is not easy to determine. It should seem that they are to be computed from the full establishment of the power of the pope, and no less is implied in the expression, given into his hand. Now the power of the pope, as a horn, or temporal prince, it hath been shown, was established in the eighth century…4
So when did it begin?
The only uncertainty for the Protestants was the beginning of the “time, times, and half a time,” as Bishop Newton said, “from what point of time the commencement of these twelve hundred and sixty years is to be dated, is not easy to determine.”
Most Protestants, like Bishop Newton, reasoned that the 1,260 years began when the Bishop of Rome gained full status as a “temporal prince.”
But Catholics disagreed with the Protestant’s view of the Pope. They cite letters of excommunication that the Bishop of Rome wrote to the churches of Asia, in 193 AD, as proof that the Primacy of the Bishop of Rome began much earlier.
This earlier date also agrees with the belief of Justin Martyr, regarding the coming of the Antichrist.
Justin Martyr wrote, “he whom Daniel foretells would have dominion for a time, and times, and a half, is even already at the door, about to speak blasphemous and daring things against the Most High”3.
Justin lived in the final days of the Apostolic Church, and probably had some insight from the Apostles themselves, who said, “this is the last hour” (2 John 1:28).
We are going to find out that the letters of excommunication written by the Bishop of Rome in 193 AD, were indeed the start of the time, times and half a time. With these letters, the Bishop of Rome committed the sin that caused desolation.
It began by the Abomination of Desolation
The start of the time, times and half a times was determined by an event that escaped the attention of both Protestants, and Catholics – the abomination of desolation.
In the last Chapter of Daniel, we read that the Angel “raised his right hand and his left and swore by Him who lives forever, that it would be for time, times and half a time, until all these things were accomplished” (Daniel 12:7).
Then in verse 11, we read, “from the time, the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be 1290 days.”
In the Jewish lunar calendar, leap months are required, and there are 43 months in 3 ½ years. 1290 days is simply 43 months of 30 days.
The sin that caused desolation, and the taking away of the daily sacrifice, was described in Daniel 8:11, “he shall exalt himself as high as the Captain of the Armies, and by him the daily sacrifices were taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down.”
When the Bishop of Rome wrote the letters of excommunication to the Churches of Asia, he exalted himself as high as Captain of the Armies, as high as Christ. The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of truth, was taken from the Church, and the place of his sanctuary was cast to the ground.
How do we know that the place of his sanctuary was really cast down?
The sanctuary of God’s Church, is the dwelling place of His Spirit. The Spirit of God is the spirit of Truth.
In order for the Church to receive the Spirit of truth, it must obey the commandments of Christ, and the teachings of the Apostles. It must make Christ the Lord of the Church.
When the Bishop of Rome made himself the Lord of the Church, the Spirit of God was taken away.
The Spirit of God was first received on the Day of Pentecost, as evidenced by speaking in tongues. Until the time of Irenaeus, in 180 AD, only those who received the Holy Spirit, as evidenced by speaking in tongues, were believed to have been made perfect in their salvation.
Irenaeus explained this in the Church’s last testimony of receiving the Holy Spirit,
For this reason, does the apostle declare, “we speak wisdom among them that are perfect” (1 Corinthians 2:6), terming those persons perfect who have received the Spirit of God, and who through the Spirit of God do speak in all languages, as he used himself also to speak. In like manner we do also hear many brethren in the Church, who possess prophetic gifts, and who through the Spirit speak all kinds of languages…6
After Irenaeus wrote this testimony in his Book “Against Heresies,” a false experience of speaking in tongues came through a cult called Montanism.
The mainstream Church believed the Montanists were possessed by evil spirits. Its founders, Montanus and Maximillia, were each said to have “died a different death, a mind-destroying spirit, driving each to a separate suicide.”7
The Apostle Paul told us that the coming of the lawless one would be “with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders” (2 Thessalonians 2:9).
Easter Sunday was only one of many new doctrines that were enforced by the Bishop of Rome. As Daniel said, “he shall cast truth to the ground.” Most of the new teachings of the Church, including the change in the method of baptism, Sunday rest, and the Trinity doctrine, came from the Montanists, and their chief spokesman Tertullian, who was the father of Latin Christianity.
It was for exactly time, times and half a time
Daniel told us that the saints would be given into his hand for exactly time, times and half a time.
3 ½ years, in days as years is exactly 1278 days, being 365.25 days a year, times 3 1/2 years.
Daniel followed the months of the Jewish lunar calendar to give us 1290 days, in 3 ½ years; this was 43 months of 30 days.
But the Book of Revelation used the solar calendar of the Romans, to give us 42 months of 30 days, which was 1,260 days.
The exact number of 1,278 days lies between the 1,290 days and the 1,260 days.
These 1278 days began when the Bishop of Rome exalted himself as high as Christ in 193 AD, and they ended in 1471, when the Moravian Church escaped from his hand.
We know that the time must be exactly 1278 years, because the Angel “raised his right hand and his left and swore by Him who lives forever, that it would be for time, times and half a time, until all these things were accomplished.”
And God made sure that these dates were clearly recorded for us.
The date of 193 AD, and the excommunication of the Churches of Asia was established by two significant counsels, and is recorded in the Library of Congress, as well as the Library of the Vatican. The freedom of the Moravians in 1471 AD, came by the deaths of King George Prodebrady and Rokycana, the Archbishop. The year, and the day, of their deaths are a matter of Bohemian history.
But there is even greater proof of the Angel’s prophecy.
Daniel said, “blessed is he who waits and comes to 1335 days” (Daniel 12:12).
This 1335 days, less the 1290 days he mentioned, is 45 days.
Exactly 45 years after the Moravians escaped from the Pope, Martin Luther began his reformation, which according to the Lutheran church began in 1516 AD, when he first publicly challenged the Papacy.
- Zechariah described her as “wickedness,” a woman who was thrust into a basket, covered by lead, Zechariah 5:8 ↩
- According to Luke 3:1, this was in the 15th year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius. According to Suetonius, Tiberius was declared to be a co-precept with Augustus, his father, in 12 AD, after his return from Germania… ↩
- Dialogue with Tryphos, 32 ↩
- Bishop Thomas Newton, 1754 AD, Dissertations on the Prophecies which have been remarkably fulfilled. ↩
- Dialogue with Tryphos, 32 ↩
- Against Heresies, Book 5, Chapter 6, paragraph 1 ↩
- Eusebius, Church History, 5:16 ↩