The Bible clearly teaches of two times that Jesus will return to the earth and two times that the earth will be harvested, with neither time being before the tribulation begins.
THE TWO RETURNS OF JESUS
Return #1-Revelation 14:1
And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Zion, and with him a hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.
In this scripture, John sees Jesus (the Lamb) standing on Mt. Zion. He has the 144,000 with Him. This appearance will be in the midst of the tribulation because the 144,000 are Jews who are given the mark of God in chapter 7, verse 3, of Revelation after the sixth seal is opened. The tribulation begins when the first seal is opened, so therefore, the 144,000 have already received the seal and have been redeemed from the earth (Revelation 14:3) and are now returning with Jesus to Mt. Zion.
Return #2-Zechariah 14:3-4
3 Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.4 And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.
Jesus will return on the Mt. of Olives in this scripture to do battle. This is the battle of Armageddon which can be found in Revelation 19.
THE TWO HARVESTS OF THE EARTH
Harvest #1-Revelation 13:14-20
14 And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle.15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe.16 And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped17And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle.18 And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.19 And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God.20 And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.
At this harvest of the earth, the saved are reaped first in verse 16. We know this because the ones that are reaped last in verse 19 are thrown into the “winepress of the wrath of God”. This harvest occurs in the same time span as when Jesus returns to the earth on Mt. Zion and the seventh trumpet is blown, which is right before the bowls are fixing to be poured out that contains God’s wrath. The Bible tells us plainly in Revelation 11:18 (which is at the time of the seventh trumpet), Revelation 15:1(KJV) and Revelation 16:1(KJV) that God’s wrath is in the bowls (or vials, according to which version of the Bible you have).
Harvest #2-Matthew 13:24-19
24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.26 But when the blade was sprung up and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
Jesus gives an explanation of this parable in verses 36-43 of that same chapter:
36 Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.37 He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; 38 The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.43 Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.
Jesus tells us that this harvest is at the end of the world (vs. 39 and 40). The unsaved are harvested first in this harvest and are cast into a furnace of fire (vs. 42). Then the saved will be in the kingdom of the Father!
In conclusion, there are definitely going to be two returns of Jesus to the earth and two harvests. The harvest in Revelation is in the same time span as the return of Jesus on to Mt. Zion. Joel 2:32 also ties these two events together:
32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call.”
Joel tells us that at one point the Lord will provide deliverance on Mt. Zion for those that He calls. And when the Lord does return to gather us unto Him, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 tells us that He will return with a shout to call the dead and the living to Him:
16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first.17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord
In both the Joel and the 1 Thessalonians scriptures, Jesus is calling out to the remnant that He will deliver.
To summarize, during the Revelation harvest, the saved are harvested first and the unsaved are thrown to where the wrath of God is, but at the harvest Jesus teaches us about, the unsaved are harvested first and thrown directly into the fiery furnace, and the saved will be in the Kingdom of the Father.
I pray everyone reading this will be in the kingdom of the Father. Please ask Jesus to become your Lord and Savior if you have not, confessing that you are a sinner, repenting of your sins, and asking forgiveness. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Light, and NOONE gets to the Father but by Him!