John the Baptist had the prophetic calling to make the world ready for the birth of the Messiah, or what we could call His “First Coming.” The way John made the world ready was to preach a message of repentance, which would:
Make ready a people prepared for the Lord (Luke 1:17).
This prophetic calling also pertains to the Second Coming of Yeshua. John’s anointing (the same as the anointing of Elijah) is to continue in these end times to “restore all things” (Matthew 17:11) to prepare us for that Second Coming. To prepare the world for Yeshua’s return means to prepare a group of people for that return. The fullest description of the Second Coming in the New Covenant is Revelation 19:11-21. The last prophetic event that must take place before the Second Coming is:
The Bride has made herself ready (Revelation 19:7).
The “Bride” here means the group of people here upon the earth in whom all spiritual things have been restored in order to be ready for Yeshua’s return. John the Baptist’s prophecy of “a people made ready” is the same as John the Beloved’s vision that “the bride has made herself ready.”
The “Bride” may be referred to as the Ecclesia, the Kehila, the true Church, the greater house of Israel, the international community of faith, or the Body of Messiah. It is pictured as a glorified woman in Revelation 12. It is comprised of the remnant of Israel numbering at least 144,000 along with the
remnant of every nation of the world – a group so large that no one can number it (Revelation 7).
When the Bride is ready, Yeshua will return. The readiness of the Bride is the key condition for that return. God does not work so much by a calendar of arbitrary dates as He does by the readiness of His people on the earth to cooperate with His plan. The fullness of times is determined by the fullness of the people to be ready.
(Note: God does have a date in mind, but He determined that date by His foreknowledge – looking into the future to know when the people will be ready, or how much time would be needed for the people to be made ready. God’s date is His date for finishing his preparation process for the people. It’s like a graduation date – the important thing is not the date, but the finishing of the education process. There is a paradox here. If you are cooperating with the Lord, He will do everything to ensure that you are “complete” by the time Yeshua returns – Philippians 1:6. However, if you are rebelling against Him, then that “final exam” day will come whether you are ready or not.)
There are 5 major qualities that must be developed for the Bride to be fully “ready.” They are: Glorified, Unified, Purified, Grafted in to Israel, and Harvesting the World.
Just as the Church started with the fullness of the fire of Pentecost (Shavuot), so must the end-times people of God be filled with the same fire. God promised not to pour out His Spirit on 120 Messianic Jews in Jerusalem alone, but on “all flesh” in all the world (Joel 2:28). The glory of the Lord will fill the
people who live in this world as the waters cover the oceans.
Yeshua prayed for all His disciples – past, present and future – to be united with Him and with one another (John 17). This is not just an issue of unity, but of the final result of universal love. When we all really love one another, there will be no divisions.
The problem with man from the beginning has been sin and Satan. When these two elements are purged from our midst, we will be ready to re-establish the Garden of Eden on the earth. We do not have to perfect our flesh, but we do have to repent fully of our sins, and perfect our hearts before the Lord.
4 Grafted in to Israel
According to Romans 11, the international community of faith is to be grafted into Israel. There is no reason for any Christian to try to become a Jew. However, all Christians should see themselves as spiritually connected to Israel – the ancient covenant nation and its modern remnant. We become co-citizens (Ephesians 2) and co-partners (Ephesians 3) in the kingdom of God.
5 Harvesting the World (through Evangelism)
The great commission has never changed. It is not optional. We have to finish the mandate that Yeshua gave us. He will not return until every nation has had a chance to receive forgiveness of sins by hearing the gospel (Matthew 24:14). The end times is the time of the great harvest (Matthew 13, Revelation 14).
The calling of the prophets today is the same as it always was: to prepare a people ready to meet the Lord (Amos 4:12).
Let’s get ready.