26 And He said, "The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, 27 and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. 28 For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. 29 But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the SICKLE, because the harvest has come."
12 Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
13 And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.
14 And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp SICKLE.
15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy SICKLE, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe.
16 And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his SICKLE on the earth; and the earth was reaped.
17 And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp SICKLE.
18 And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp SICKLE, saying, Thrust in thy sharp SICKLE, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.
19 And the angel thrust in his SICKLE into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God.
20 And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.
At harvest time, TWO SICKLES:
a SICKLE that catches up the harvest of the grain, the righteous, the just
another SICKLE that mows down with wrath the tares, the wicked, the unjust.
What is interesting is this: they BOTH are harvested with a "sickle." Was the rapture-harvest of the Righteous their mass martyrdom's in the persecutions associated with the Roman-Jewish War?
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.
Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. 8 Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
Kurt Simmons wrote: "It also occurs in other eschatological passages to describe the harvest of the saints into the kingdom of God (Matt. 3:12; 13:30). These passages teach that the gathering or harvest was not by rapture, but by martyrdom under Nero and the beast. As each saint died, Christ was there to meet him in the air. If this was true of the martyrs, may it not also be true of every believer? In II Cor. 5:10, Paul said to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. Read together with I Thess. 4:17, the result is clear: as we die we are each caught up to meet the Lord in the air “and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”
The Sword & The Plow Vol. X, No. 3 – April 2008
Newsletter of the Bimillennial Preterist Association