transfig02I received the following question:

Where does the next occurrence of Elijah fit in?  Jesus says in Matt 17:11 [NASB].

And He answered and said, “Elijah is coming and will restore all things;

And Malachi says in Mal 4:5-6 [NASB].

“Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that I will not come and smite the land with a curse.”

So we know these things:
1) Elijah will restore all things (i.e. he is a principle actor in the restoration)
2) He will come prior to the return of Christ
3) The restoration he will bring will prevent the wrath of God

So where does he fit in?

He can’t come right after the Second Coming of the Spirit – for all things will already be restored. He can’t come during the Revolt against the kingdom – for the Revolt is a time of rebellion not of renewal He can’t come during or after the Second Coming of Christ – for it clearly says he must come before that time.

So will he be coming just prior to the Great Ingathering?  Or are we missing something.  I have some ideas as found in the book of Joel. I’ll talk more on this later.

I do not think you are correct that he cannot come after the Second Coming of the Spirit. When the Spirit is poured out on all flesh, one of the great results of that is that all men turn toward God and rightly consider what He is doing. Yet this does not cause all things to be restored. Israel is led back to their land, but that does not make all the things that make up Israel automatically reappear. There are many, many things in Israel that need to be restored. The lineages need to be restored so every Israelite can trace his line back to one of the twelve sons of Israel. The twelve tribes and their leadership councils need to be restored. The Levitical and Aaronic priesthood need to be restored, and the sons of Zadok identified. The temple needs to be rebuilt, and the proper worship that needs to go on there must be restored. The house and line of David need to be restored and set back up. The judges need to be restored as at the first. The city of Jerusalem needs to be restored as the place where God places His name. The feasts need to be restored, both as to their time and their proper observance. The Jewish calendar needs to be restored to God’s standards. And so on and so on.

The pouring out of the Spirit and the return to the land is just the beginning. Getting Israel out of their graves and back into their land is simply a start. The work of restoration that will have to go on at that point is tremendous. But God will easily be able to accomplish this. And He will do it through the ministration of Elijah, whom He will send back from heaven to accomplish this purpose.