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In That Day
A Future Day, Seen throughout the Prophets
“In that day I will raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old.
That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the Lord that doeth this.
Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed, and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt.
And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and shall inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them.
And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the Lord God” (Amos 9:11-15).
The expression, “in that day” (Amos 9:11), is used numerous times throughout both the major and minor Prophets. And, it would go without saying, “that day” could only reference a future day set in contrast to the day in which the Prophet wrote and used this expression.
But what future day, or possibly what different future days, did the prophets have in mind through the use of this expression? And that, of course, is ALWAYS to be determined by the context each time that the expression is used.
However, observing the context each time, one will find, more often than not, a particular, singular usage. In this respect, one will find that this expression is usually seen peculiarly related to ONLY ONE THING AND ONE TIME, not many different things and times. The Prophets, continually, used this expression to reference events pertaining to Israel and the nations beyond Man’s 6,000-year Day, at the beginning of and during the Lord’s 1,000-year Day.
And this can easily be shown numerous places in the Prophets, beginning with Isaiah, where this expression appears far more times than in any other book.
Man’s Day, The Lord’s Day
Certain distinctions between Man’s Day and the Lord’s Day (the Day of the Lord) need to be established to properly understand what day and/or time is being referenced by the expression, “in that day.” And one of the best ways to do this is to deal with the septenary structure of Scripture.
God has an affinity for numbers, and He established and set forth a septenary structure for His Word at the beginning — in the first thirty-four verses of Genesis (1:1-2:3). Accordingly, this septenary structure forms a foundational base for everything which God revealed from that point forward, throughout all of the Old Testament.
And the New Testament, in complete conformity to the Old Testament, forming commentary on the Old Testament, begins exactly the same way (provided one recognizes that the Gospel of John should begin the New Testament, not Matthew’s gospel). John’s gospel not only begins the same way Genesis begins, showing a septenary structure, but it also parallels Genesis throughout (the types in Genesis paralleling the signs in John).
In the preceding respect, the same septenary structure opening Genesis (1:1-2:3) is seen opening John (1:1-2:11).
(For more information on the preceding, refer to the author’s book, Moses and John.)
Attention has been called to this septenary structure beginning both Testaments in order to show the foundational basis for the length of both Man’s Day and the Lord’s Day. And this, in turn, as previously alluded to, will form a foundational basis to properly understand and deal with the expression, “in that day,” as seen throughout the Prophets.
“Six” is man’s number, and “seven” is God’s number. Exactly as foreshadowed in the foundational framework in the opening thirty-four verses of Genesis (“six” having to do with events during Man’s Day, “seven” having to do with events during the Lord’s Day), or the parallel section in John’s gospel (dealing with that foreshadowed in Genesis), God is again taking the same numerical time for the same completed purpose — the restoration of a subsequent ruined creation, ruined man, followed by a day of rest.
The ruined creation in Genesis was restored for man over six days time (man’s number), with God resting on the seventh day (God’s number). Then, the preceding restoration, set perfect in the beginning, foreshadowed how God would subsequently restore ruined man, a subsequent ruined creation. And this was/is all carried out through an established, unchangeable pattern concerning how God restores a ruined creation, set forth in this manner at a time preceding man’s creation and ruin.
Then, the opening two chapters of John’s gospel, dealing more specifically with ruined man (e.g., John 1:29, 36), cover the same septenary structure and end at the same place — with man, on the seventh day, restored and realizing the purpose for his creation, six days earlier, 6,000 years earlier.
Thus, each day in the restoration of the material creation in Genesis, followed by a day of rest, foreshadows 1,000-year days in the restoration of man (six days, 6,000 years, forming Man’s Day), followed by a 1,000-year day of rest (the Lord’s Day, the Messianic Era).
The whole of Scripture, accordingly, is built on this framework — Man’s Day lasting for six days, 6,000 years, and the Lord’s Day lasting for one day, 1,000 years (cf. II Peter 3:3-8). And, exactly as seen in the foundational type in Genesis, the two NEVER, NEVER, overlap one another in Scripture — i.e., Man’s Day NEVER continues into any part of the Lord’s Day; NOR is the Lord’s Day EVER dealt with back in any part of Man’s Day.
The six and seven days ARE NOT dealt with that way in the opening verses of Genesis, the opening verses of John, or anyplace else in Scripture. Events occurring on the sixth day have no part in events about to occur on the seventh day; nor do events occurring on the seventh day have any part in events which previously occurred on the sixth day.
ALL THINGS foreshadowed by the foundational type MUST be in complete keeping with ALL THINGS previously established in the foundational type.
In this respect, contrary to much popular thought among Bible teachers — teaching that the Lord’s Day (which, as will be shown, is the time referenced by “that day” in numerous texts) begins at a time during the last seven years of Man’s Day (Daniel’s Seventieth Week, the Tribulation), continuing from that point throughout the Tribulation and the ensuing Millennium — the Lord’s Day DOES NOT, IT CANNOT, begin until after Man’s Day has run its course.
The Lord’s Day can begin ONLY AFTER six days, ONLY AFTER 6,000 years, ONLY AFTER the Tribulation. This is the way matters are set forth anyplace in Scripture where the subject is dealt with.
The Prophets — “In That Day”
A great deal of error in Biblical studies can be avoided if one knows and understands the simple basics set forth in the first part of this study. And this would be even more so the case when studying how different Prophets use the expression, “in that day.” In the Prophets, this expression, when used relative to a future end-time having to do with Israel and the nations, INVARIABLY refers to events occurring in the future Lord’s Day. “That day,” used in this respect, can NEVER have anything to do with events occurring during Man’s Day (e.g., with events occurring either today or during the Tribulation, the last seven years of Man’s Day).
Note a scattering of references pertaining to “that day”:
One would normally begin with Isaiah in this respect, but before going to Isaiah and working forward through a number of the Prophets, note a few things out of the small three-chapter Book of Zephaniah.
In this small book, there are twenty-two references to this future time. As well, in this book, “in that day” is consistently used as a reference to “the day of the Lord” (cf. Zeph. 1:9-14; 2:2, 3; 3:11, 16-20).
With this connection between “that day” and “the Lord’s Day,” note a number of corresponding references in Isaiah.
Isaiah 2:1-4 references the millennial Kingdom, beyond Man’s Day, in the Lord’s Day. And three subsequent verses in this chapter (vv. 11, 17, 20) use the expression, “in that day,” referring back to the time depicted in these opening four verses.
Then note the subsequent usage of this same expression a number of places throughout Isaiah, all, contextually, referring to conditions immediately preceding or during the millennial kingdom, in the Lord’s Day, exactly as in chapter two (Isa. 4:1, 2; 11:10, 11; 12:1, 4; 19:16, 18, 19, 21, 23, 24; 24:21; 25:9; 27:1, 2, 12, 13; 28:5; 29:18; 31:7; 52:6).
Then note the same thing seen in a number of the other Prophets (Jer. 30:8; Ezek. 38:14, 18; 39:8, 11; Hosea 2:16, 18, 21; Joel 3:18; Amos 9:11; Zech. 2:11; 3:10).
“That day” in the preceding passages, references a time beyond Man’s Day, in “the Lord’s Day,” during which concluding events and judgments surrounding Israel and the nations will occur. And these events and judgments will occur following Christ’s return and lead into His millennial reign. This is the reason why the expression, “in that day,” in some Scriptures refers to a time of judgment and in other Scriptures to a time of peace and rest.
The latter follows the former, but the former, of necessity, must occur first.
Christians — “In That Day”
Numerous Bible teachers today, it seems, are quick to look at current events and attempt to relate them to Biblical prophecy, particularly events pertaining to Israel and the nations emanating out of Israeli statehood almost seventy years ago, May 14, 1948.
They view events pertaining to Israel, the nation’s land, and the surrounding Gentile nations during these past seventy years and attempt to align certain events with different Old Testament prophecies having to do with God regathering His people back to their land. And the closing five verses of Amos are often referenced in this respect.
These verses from Amos tell of a time (“in that day” [v. 11]) when God will regather His people back to their land, NEVER to be uprooted again. But to relate these verses, or really any other verses dealing with Israel’s restoration, to what has been occurring in the Middle East since the spring of 1948 is completely out of line with any Scripture dealing with the subject.
The Jews in the land today (some 6,000,000, about two-fifths of world Jewry) have sought to emancipate themselves apart from their Messiah, leaving an unhealed people in an unhealed land (a house left “desolate” [cf. Dan. 9:27; Matt. 12:43-45; 23:37-39]), in unbelief, before repentance. And, according to the clear teaching of Scripture, these Jews will be uprooted from their land in the middle of the Tribulation, their cities destroyed, and they will either be slain or driven back out among the nations where God will then deal with them, along with the remainder of world Jewry, relative to repentance (cf. Lev. 26:31-33; Isa. 6:11-13; Dan. 9:26; Matt. 24:15ff; Luke 21:20ff; Rev. 12:6, 14).
Beyond that, all of this has happened and will happen BEFORE “that day,” seen in Amos 9:11-15 or any other place in Scripture where the subject is dealt with.
In God’s septenary arrangement of His Word, established perfect in the beginning, a person simply CANNOT place events of one day in those of another day.