A lot is said in certain Protestant circles about the former and latter rains mentioned several times in Scripture when it comes to prophetic movements of the Ruach (Spirit) and I have been asked to give our position on this subject. Let's begin by keeping it simple, literal and plain (p'shat).
"And it shall be that if you earnestly obey My commandments which I command you today, to love Yahweh your Elohim and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, then I will give you the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, your new wine, and your oil" (Deut.11:13-14, NKJV).
Seasonal rainful - yôreh and môreh ("former rains") and malqôs ("latter rain") - are quite simply a reference to the onset and termination of the rainy season in the Holy Land (Dt.11:14; Job 29:23; Hos.6:3; Joel 2:23; Zech.10:1ff; Jas.5:7). Rain is associated with the cool season (Song 2:2) and dryness with summer (Ps.32:4). During the preliminary period of mid-September to mid-October, the moist Mediterranean Sea air encountering the very hot dry air from the land surface causes thunderstorms and the irregular distribution of rainfal (Amos 4:7). The onset of the effective rains usually begins in mid- or late-October, but may be delayed until even January. These "former rains", so earnestly longed for by farmers, cause a fall in temperature so that convectional currents are eliminated and the damp atmosphere produces a brilliance in the sky, described by Elihu:
The cool, rainy season is the pastoral setting described by the psalmist (Ps.65:12-13). Between April and early May (the first month of Aviv - Joel 2:23), the "latter rains" describe the last showers at the close of the rainy season (Amos 4:7). As there appear to have been no major climate changes in this part of the world in recorded history, apart from the occasional drout sent by Yahweh because of sin (recorded in Scripture), we can assume that the former and latter rains have always come and gone as they do today.
"Even now men cannot look at the light when it is bright in the skies, when the wind has passed and cleared them" (Job 37:21, NKJV).
Is there any prophetic significance to these rains in terms of Yahweh sending special endowments of the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) as some pentecostals and others claim to find some sort of prophecy for? Is there any connection between the passages of Scripture we have mentioned and the so-called 'latter rain movement'? Is there any connection between these passages and the claimed 'awakening' which began after the Second World War started by Billy Graham, Oral Roberts, Jack Coe and William Branham? As far as I can see, none whatsoever.
For one thing, the "latter" in "latter rain" cannot prophetically have anything to do with any later 'outpouring of the Spirit' because the "latter rain" falls not at the end of the prophetic season of Yahweh's festivals but at the beginning - in the First Month of Aviv at the beginning of the cycle, beginning with Pesach, Chag haMatazah and Yom haBikkuruim. Likewise, the "former rain" commences around the end of the prophetic cycle of festivals, namely, the autumn or fall festivals of Yom Teruah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot. The pentecostals, searching for some 'prophetic explanation' of their revival (whether you believe it was a true or false one or not is immaterial at this stage), saw the words "latter" and "rain", linked it to 'end times' and to spiritual outpouring, respectively, and probably made some word associations (e.g. with "latter days" - e.g. Micah 4:1). They assumed the "former rain" must have had something to do with Pentecost. However, the Feast of Pentecost or Shavu'ot is in the summer and isn't part of either "rain". The Pentecostals not only got everything back to front but because they do not understand the Creation Calendar don't realise that Pentecost isn't linked to either of these "rains".
Revivals and genuine outpourings of the Ruach have been going on for centuries ever since the Reformation and did not begin with Graham & Co. It could be argued that these were "former rains" occurring in the "latter days". However, the "latter days" began with the new Testament Messianic Community which rather breaks down any division of "former" and "latter" revivals unless you consider what happened at Mount Sinai as the oiginal "revival" and what happened at Pentecost and since as the later ones. This is all guess work, however. I personally can find no connection between pentecostal-type 'revival' and "rain" in Scripture.
What does rain symbolise in Scripture? Yah'shua said:
This is not the rain of revival but the rain of GRACE - the undeserved loving kindness of Elohim - which, like the sun, is shed on the good and the evil - the just and the unjust - alike, to be utilised by both for whatever purpose they choose until the day of judgment. These rains are given only for the harvest:
"But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust" (Matt.5:44-45, NKJV)
If these rains have a spiritual meaning (which I believe they must do in some way) then they can only be seasonal - they are not 'raining down' every day of the year. If these are spiritual anointings then they can only pertain to the seasons to which they have been assigned. And since Yahweh has aligned His spiritual festivals with the Israelite agricultural season, then these blessings or anointings can only be associated with the festivals. In other words, these are blessings for those who honour Yahweh and observe the annual festivals!
"They do not say in their heart, 'Let us now fear Yahweh our Elohim, who gives rain, both the former and the latter, in its season. He reserves for us the appointed weeks of the harvest" (Jer.5:24, NKJV).
When do these two rains actually occur? Plumb in the middle of the the spring ("latter rain" = First Coming/Resurrection) and autumn ("former rain" = Second Coming(/Resurrection) festivals. Though the same blessings fall on everyone, irrespective of who they are or what they do, and though both the good and the evil use these blessings to harvest, only the good use them to bring a harvest to eternal life - the evil harvest only in this life and then the blessings are lost - permanently. We can use Yahweh's grace to aid us on the road that leads to eternal life or we can consume them on our lusts along the road that leads to eternal destruction.
For some years now I have been teaching, as Yahweh has revealed to me line upon line and precept upon precept, that we have been commanded to assemble during the festivals to receive these divine bestowals of the Ruach to enable us to continue working our our salvation with a view to giving glory to Yahweh. How do we do that? By seeking the perfection or completion He has commanded us to:
In conclusion, I have to say that the 'Latter Rain Movement' has got nothing to do with the "latter rain" mentioned in Scripture. Attempts to equate the work of Billy Graham (whom we now know to in any case had strong ties with the Catholic Church and the Illuminati) and others with some hidden prophecy in Scripture are misleading at best and deceptive at worst. The former and latter rains are shed upon everybody in this world, the saved and unsaved alike - the only difference between them is that the saved give Yahweh the credit, investing His blessings in their lives to His glory, whereas the unsaved consume it upon their lusts for their own selfish and destructive ends.
"He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect" (Matt.5:45-48, NKJV).
Comments from Readers
And we see that Baal-Peor relationship has always hindered the people of Redeemed Yisrael, (though multitudes of them don't even understand that yet), in what we find out about those such as Billy Graham, John Hagee, and many others even from the greatest to the least.
The redeemed people need to declare a divorce from being tied to the wicked of this world but they first must see that Redeemed Kingdom, the King on the Throne, and understand being 'spiritual' is not living in a future or facade of a brain imagination but really does encompass what we think of as not spiritual + a reality most do not normally see nor understand.
And we can learn to operate in that kind of spiritual from putting our pants on one leg at a time like anyone else to awesome things grounded in the Being of our Father as He is only good and His commandments are so good for us to 'eat' and love and desire above anything else for that is our Yahushua. If we think about it the only true reality is where we divorce 'Babylon' and seek out our Father YHWH Yahushua with all of our heart, soul, mind, being. And we can come to know that in Him we live and move and have our Being, for He is our Light, and that within so close even in our mouth.
When our Father speaks through us even in our very mouth, (Pey), nothing can stand in our way for He will go before us to battle for us and we will be amazed at how foolish we all have been (speaking generally).
Hosea 14. Are we there yet?
And that whole scattering told of throughout the scriptures is the understanding of those of Ephraim today who are of Joseph and of Jacob, as all of the tribes, but we all have become Yisrael the Redeemed as anyone else who has grabbed ahold of the Tzit-Tzit of our great Master and savior to experience His remission of sin and to walk in His path of Life where we go on a great scripture journey front to back while He holds us by the hand. Loving our Father and the commandments given that our Master is Being perfectly and He is that righteousness we put on, a garment of pure Light and Love where it is impossible to be condemned in that remission of sin if we remain in the Way of Yahushua who only spoke as our Father who never changed one 'jot' or 'tittle' of any of His Being, His commandments or of anything that is holding together the Heavens and the Earth.
We become in line with the very elements of what is holding them together if we think about it that way. Everything is spinning such as down to the smallest atom making up every element there is. And if atoms stood still there would be nothing but empty space. The spin by great energies make things appear 'solid' as that is the world we live in and everything we know.
Mankind apart from YHWH show their true nature by destroying everything they can even in learning more about the creation, and even to release that pure energy in nuclear explosions where the atoms are ripped apart.
It is no wonder YHWH declares that the very earth will spew out mankind because of sin, even showing dis-harmony down to the very elements making up our body, and not becoming totally in harmony with everything, our fellow man and ultimately and foremost with YHWH by the way He has made.
Now we see those who are playing with fire, (maybe not just man/woman but what are they inhabited by... or have been mingled with as in seed of their parents...), are playing with technology that will ultimately bring an end to all of this rebellion for YHWH will not let them destroy the entire earth. But few will remain in this body after YHWH gets through cleansing everything.
Our Master is the being of everything made to the light of all Mankind as that is YHWH our Father. That understood that YHWH made everything by His Yahushua, that YHWH is all, that Yahushua is made for man as our Living Shabbat who delivers us from our sin and dis-harmony from the very creation as it is held together to the very 'jot' and 'tittle' and we see One/Echad as we become One/Echad as well with YHWH and that we will one day put off this vile body for a new one.
So I don't know a better word than spiritual to describe the total Being, living and moving and having our being, but maybe there is a better word or one could be made up to get away from what most think of as some fantasy world of the mind but instead to describe our living and moving and having our being from waking in the morning to going to sleep at night. We all in this flesh go through the same things but what is it when we also go through those things aware of a greater reality all around about us? Not that we are anything but come to realize our status, of humility, of how low we have become in the end of this scattering, to desire nothing of Babylon, to only have Hope in the kingdom to come for this scattering is real and we long to return to that place from where our forefathers fell but in a better state being Redeemed to be like our Yahushua face to face as He is.
Sad that we see the Baal-Peor relationship in the leaders of the 'redeemed' who are following others more than they are following the true shepherd. The leaders will be held accountable, greater than the followers. But as in Jeremiah 5 & 6, don't the followers love to have it that way as well? They speak of the redeemer in their mouth but their hearts are far away from Him for they presume the commandments of our Father are done away or not for this time.
If we understand the repentance of the scattered in the end, we come to love the commandments of our Father and our Master Yahushua for they are one in the same and wonderful because that is our righteousness in what Yahushua has done. So we come to say and to know that the commandments of our Father are so good and we know our sin by them so we understand what we confess in greater ways as we get to know what Yahushua has done for us out of His great Love and Mercy flowing from the throne room of heaven even at this moment.
Times of refreshing and those are in the Moadim/Feasts. And we know that mountain top and the valley and our Father opens our understanding to have a great desire for His Moadim for they are made for us to celebrate our Yahushua on the mountain top. Isn't He truly good and kind and loving to all who say unconditional Yes! and desire to be where He has planned for us to be!
So a good analysis of the former/latter rain and in one way that has been from year to year in the Moadim as the continual has not stopped flowing from where Yahushua is. And it is exciting in the end of this scattering to come to understand and that our redemption is drawing nigh! Regathering, and restoration is not that long away I feel. (RDR, 1 March 2010)