The two witnesses in the Old Covenant time
John alludes to Moses and Elijah as an example of power given to the witnesses. God gave the power to the two witnesses to ensure that His plan for humankind will not fail. The Enemy, Satan, went beyond the imaginable to frustrate God’s plan for humanity. However, he has not been successful in his attempt to destroy the remnant in Judah who remained faithful to God. The central to the message proclaimed by God’s witnesses has been that God is in charge and the Sovereign; therefore, He will accomplish His plan for humanity. Moses performed great miracles to impress upon Egypt’s rulers that One and Only God wants His people to be free. Elijah demonstrated on the mount Carmel that there is One God only, who is Sovereign. “They have the power to shut up heavens so it will not rain. They have the power to turn the waters into blood. Revelation 11:6. Elijah shut up the heavens, and Moses turned the waters of Egypt into the blood. These two witnesses demonstrated that One and Only God is in charge.
The two notable witnesses in the old Covenant time were the earthly temple with its priesthood and the prophets. The annual Day of Atonement service pointed to the dreadful day of the Lord. It is the day on which Jesus was nailed to the cross at Golgotha. The temple building served as God’s dwelling place among His people. Exodus 25:8. Arrangement of temple furnishings pointed to the Savior of the World, on the cross at Golgotha. The curtain represented the body of Jesus Christ as it hanged on the cross at Golgotha. Hebrews 10:19. With its furnishing, the entire building testified to the body of Jesus Christ, where God is with us forever. John 2:18 – 21. The symbolic removal of sin on the Day of Atonement pointed to when the Messiah would take away the people’s sin forever by suffering the second death on the cross.
During the Babylonian exile, the witness to the actual day of atonement did not function. The Babylonian empire destroyed the temple. Jeremiah 52:12 – 13. The annual witness, the Day of Atonement, has not been performed for seventy years. However, God promised through the prophet Jeremiah that people would return and rebuild the temple. Jeremiah 29:10. The Persian King Cyrus authorized Judah’s people to return to Jerusalem, build the temple, and resume the sacrifices. Ezra 1:1 – 4. Zerubbabel, a descendant of David, became the Governor of Judea. Joshua, a descendant of Arron, became the high priest. These two joined in the temple’s rebuilding, symbolizing Jesus Christ, High Priest, and the King. High priest Joshua was given a crown as a symbol pointing to the coming Messiah. As High Priest, the Messiah connected humankind to God permanently. As the King of kings, Jesus Christ rules his people in righteousness.
The Two Witnesses continued in the next blog.