And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. 4 These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth. 5 And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed. 6 These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will. 7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them. 8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified. 9 And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. 10 And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth. 11 And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them. 12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them. 13 And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven. Rev 11:3-13 (KJV)
This will be the first clue that this is all true. The opening of the seven seals will be mostly unnoticed on earth at first. The Earth has seen enigmatic leaders before, war, famine, plague…
But the Two Witnesses will be hard to explain. Two men, both probably very aged, will appear in Jerusalem. They will be unkillable at first, and will preach of judgment, and speak boldly of Jesus Christ. You’ll see them work miracles. And they will be around for 3.5 Hebrew Years (1,260 days).
There’s no denying that the time of their ministry is the same as half of the tribulation. If they appeared at the opening of the First Seal, then they would die, and ascend, during the space between the seventh trumpet judgment, and the first Vial judgment.
This is a good way to keep a chart of how long things have gone. When the Two witnesses appear, they are there after the first Seal. When they die, it will be after the seventh trumpet.
There was lots of good natured debate about who the two witnesses are. Most are agreed the first is Elijah the Prophet, Eliyahu Ha’Navi is what the Jews call him.
The second witness is the object of discussion. A vocal minority claim he will be Enoch, the seventh from Adam (Yes, that Adam). Moses. Yes, that Moses. Moshe Rabbeinu is what Jews call him, Moses our Rabbi.
They do seem to be doing the kinds of miracles done by Moses (turning water to blood, smiting the earth with plagues, hail &fire, etc) and Elijah (calling down fire, and stopping the rain). Both Moses and Elijah visited Jesus Christ on earth at the Mount of Transfiguration. And the Book of Malachi says
Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord: Mal 4:5 (KJV)
Thus, this will be a literal return of Elijah the Prophet, and Moses.
As you see from above, their ministry will not be boring! If anyone attempts to kill them, they will breathe fire on the person, and kill him.
The two witnesses will be killed finally, as I said earlier, after the Seventh Trumpet. They will lie dead publicly for three days, then ascend physically to heaven.
The Antichrist is going to have a hard time explaining that.
Now, I do recognize that some teachers insist these will be two new men, with the power and authority of Elijah and Moses. It’s possible! However, I think in view of who these men are, it will have more weight and authority if it is the actual Moses and Elijah who preach to the Jews!