The Latter Rain
God often uses timeless concepts such as sowing of seeds, rain, harvest, etc to explain spiritual things.
Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth. My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass: Because I will publish the name of the Lord: ascribe ye greatness unto our God.
- Deuteronomy 32:1-3 (KJV)
In the following verse God uses the concept of rain to explain what will happen during the harvest at the end times.
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. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
- James 5:7-8 (KJV)
The rain is symbolic for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
We will never know when this happens.
And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
- Acts 1:7-8 (KJV)
The early rain is sometimes also referred to as the former rain.
Here's what Ellen White says:
In the East the former rain falls at the sowing time. It is necessary in order that the seed may germinate. Under the influence of the fertilising showers the tender shoot springs up. The latter rain, falling near the close of the season, ripens the grain and prepares it for the sickle. The Lord employs these operations of nature to represent the work of the Holy Spirit.
- Ellen White, Testimonies to Ministers, page 506
- By Norman21 / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0
The early rain took place when God poured out the Holy Spirit on the apostles 2,000 years ago.
The following verses (from the book of Joel) were spoken by Peter (one of the apostles) shortly after God had poured out the Holy Spirit on them.
But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; and they shall prophesy. I will show wonders in heaven above and signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
- Acts 2:16-21 (KJV)
Note that it says "on all flesh". This refers to the people that have actually responded to the former rain.
The prophecy of Joel refers to both the early, and the latter rain. It's a double fulfillment in other words.
Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, 2,000 years ago, Christianity spread like wildfire, and thousands upon thousands were saved.
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
- Acts 2:41 (KJV)
And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.
- Acts 5:42 (KJV)
The Holy Spirit will help us "connect the dots", but that will only work if the "dots" were already there (the early rain).
The Holy Spirit will also make us bold.
So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.
- Hebrews 13:6 (KJV)
The above will also happen in the last days. God will pour out the Holy Spirit, and God's people all over the world will work side by side in complete union. Many will receive the truth, and will be saved.
The Latter Rain message will help reveal the character of God (testimonies), and also the importance of keeping the True Sabbath.
The last rays of merciful light, the last message of mercy to be given to the world, is a revelation of His character of love. The children of God are to manifest His glory. In their own life and character they are to reveal what the grace of God has done for them.
- Ellen White, Christ Object Lessons, p. 415/416
The Latter Rain is sometimes also called "the times of refreshing".
Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.
- Acts 3:19 (KJV)
I heard those clothed with the armor speak forth the truth with great power. It had effect.... I asked what had made this great change. An angel answered, "It is the latter rain, the refreshing from the presence of the Lord, the loud cry of the third angel."
- Ellen White, Early Writings, p. 271
The Latter Rain prepares us for the difficult time ahead.
It's nearly time for the harvest, and then the wheat will be separated from the chaff.
- By CSIRO / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 3.0
Are you ready?
Fore more information check out this article.