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When James cited Amos 9:11-12 in defense of his decision, he deliberately changed the words “In that day I will raise up" to "After this I will return". Is James rendering of "After this I will return" in reference to the Second Coming and subsequent 1000 year reign (thus establishing fallen tent of David)? Dispensationalist author John Walvoord wrote:

He states, in effect, that it was God’s purpose to bless the Gentiles as well as Israel, but in their order. God was to visit the Gentiles first, “to take out of them a people for his name.” James goes on to say that this is entirely in keeping with the prophets, for they had stated that the period of Jewish blessing and triumph should be after the Gentile period: “After these things I will return, And I will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen.” Instead of identifying the period of Gentile conversion with the rebuilding of the tabernacle of David, it is carefully distinguished by the first (Gentile blessing), and after this, referring to Israel’s coming glory. The passage instead of identifying God’s purpose for the church and for the nation, Israel, established a specific time order. Israel’s blessing will not come until “I return,” ... That it could not refer either to the Incarnation or to the coming of the Spirit at Pentecost is evident in that neither are “return’s.” The passage under consideration constitutes, then, an important guide in determining the purpose of God. God will first conclude His work for the Gentiles in the period of Israel’s dispersion; then He will return to bring in the promised blessings for Israel. It is needless to say that this confirms the interpretation that Christ is not now on the throne of David bringing blessing to Israel as the prophets predicted, but He is rather on His Father’s throne waiting for the coming earthly kingdom and interceding for His own who form the church.

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  • @ wilberteric - Walvoord is merely presenting Scofield's interpretation of Acts (Amos) in line with the Dispensational approach. But the question must be asked, for clarification, "If Jesus is not on His/David's throne, but is sitting on His Father's throne, where is the Father sitting?" Does it not seem more hermeneutically deductive to allows as how that Jesus is sitting on His own throne...at the right hand of God! (All the other scriptures picture Jesus at the right hand of God...not usurping the Father's throne!)
    – ray grant
    Commented May 20 at 20:39

7 Answers 7

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James was neither quoting nor even paraphrasing the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible (LXX), but appears to have changed the wording of the Scripture based on statements made by the Apostle Paul. That is, the Apostle Paul received exclusive divine revelation concerning the current era (the Church), which Paul terms "the mystery." That is, he defines this mystery as follows:

Ephesians 3:1-7 (NASB)
1 For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles— 2 if indeed you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace which was given to me for you; 3 that by revelation there was made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before in brief. 4 By referring to this, when you read you can understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which in other generations was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed to His holy apostles and prophets in the Spirit; 6 to be specific, that the Gentiles are fellow heirs and fellow members of the body, and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel, 7 of which I was made a minister, according to the gift of God’s grace which was given to me according to the working of His power.

At no time in the Hebrew Bible were Jews and Gentiles ever to be "equal" with one another in covenant relationship. After Paul had received this exclusive divine revelation, he then approached Peter, James, and John concerning this mystery.

Galatians 2:1-2 (NASB)
1 Then after an interval of fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titus along also. 2 It was because of a revelation that I went up; and I submitted to them the gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but I did so in private to those who were of reputation, for fear that I might be running, or had run, in vain.

These events described in Galatians appear to have occurred in Acts Chapter 15, when Paul made direct contact with the Jerusalem church concerning the debate concerning the relationship between Christian Jews and Christian Gentiles. Therefore, later IN THE SAME CHAPTER James then mentions "after these things" (Acts 15:16), which would appear to be to the church age or "the mystery" which the Apostle Paul had just revealed to them there in the Jerusalem council as already noted from Galatians 2:1-2.

In another passage, the Apostle Paul tells the Corinthian Gentile church that the end of this mystery period also is called a "mystery" (1 Cor 15:51-53), which further suggests that the current era is an intercalation of time not formerly revealed to others except to the Apostle Paul alone. That is, if the end of the current era is the rapture (termed a "mystery" by Paul in 1 Cor 15:51-53), then the subsequent events that follow would appear to point toward the consummation of the fulfillment of apocalyptic predictive prophecy in the Hebrew Bible, the Gospels, and the Book of Revelation. It was therefore this consummation to which James was alluding that would follow the rapture of "the mystery" church age. That is, "after these things of the church age..."

In this regard, then, Jesus is "not yet" sitting on the throne of David; however, he is "already" qualified and able to do so at any moment (pending the consummation of the present church age).

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  • "That is, the Apostle Paul received exclusive divine revelation ..." So you would maintain that all of Divine Revelation was not completed in the Incarnation, Death, and Resurrection of Christ?
    – user15733
    Commented Nov 22, 2016 at 18:49
  • @Joseph-Your erroneous first sentence sets the stage for the rest of your Answer. At no time in the Hebrew Bible were Jews and Gentiles ever to be equal with one another in covenant relationship. (?) Read Galatians 3:7-9 about the Abrahamic Covenant! It was not just for Jews, but the whole world. (Read Isaiah 2:2-3, Amos 9:11-12) LXX, God was concerned with "all nations," and the Jews were just a "schoolmaster to lead us all to Christ."
    – ray grant
    Commented Aug 12, 2023 at 22:51
  • @raygrant - Your answer sounds like the Old Testament had allowed for participation in the Abrahamic Covenant without the requirement for circumcision.
    – Joseph
    Commented Aug 23, 2023 at 14:08
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What James said here at this Jerusalem Council is of massive significance to both Jews and Gentile believers in Jesus as the risen King of God's Kingdom. Understanding how the gathered Christians understood both current events and future events as predicted by Jesus should clear the question up. So, first, what did the Christians listening to James have cleared up for them, with his argument and quote?

He summed up what the apostles Peter and Paul had said about how God was turning his attention to the Gentiles, to save them, to bless them with the same outpouring of the Holy Spirit they had received. The phrase, "to take out of [the Gentiles] a people for his name" (vs. 14), takes an Old Testament concept of the people of Israel belonging to God and applies it to new Gentile believers - they too are the true 'Israel of God'. "The words of the prophets agree with this" he pointed out (vs. 15) and quoted Amos 9:11-12 as proof, which gives rise to the question, "Is James' rendering of "After this I will return" in reference to the Second Coming and subsequent 1000 year reign (thus establishing fallen tent of David)?"

Please note that neither Amos nor James make any reference to any 1,000 year reign of anybody. They do link together two powerful truths - God promises to first restore David's fallen tent, rebuilding its ruins, and that Gentiles will seek the Lord in that connection. Now, James and all his audience understood that prophecy to have started being fulfilled withe the resurrection and exaltation of Christ. They knew Christ to be the seed of David, and that they were his people. James was showing, by quoting Amos, that through the Davidic Christ, Gentiles would be incorporated into this restored remnant of men. But note how there is no time-period (let alone limit) imposed on this rebuilt kingdom ('tent') of David.

The noted change, "After this I will return", certainly shows the Christian understanding that their now-glorified King was going to return to do that restoration, and that such a restoration would include both Jews and Gentiles seeking the Lord. This is what was now beginning to happen - many Jews and Gentiles were seeking the Lord, and the excitement was in now seeing the Gentiles turn in faith.

There is a legitimate question as to what grounds James had for changing the original Hebrew of Amos, "In that day I will raise up", to "After this I will return" (to restore, rebuild). Here is one explanation:

"The text quoted is almost exactly that of the LXX, whereas in the Masoretic (Hebrew) text the first promise refers to a restored Israel, and the second to Israel's possession of Edom and all the nations. To be sure, the Masoretic text would still have been an appropriate quotation for James to use, understanding Edom as an example of the nations to be 'possessed' or embraced by the true Israel. But which text was James using?

Critics argue that, being the Hebrew leader of the Hebrew church, he would never have used the Greek LXX. Perhaps not. On the other hand, 'like all the Galileans he would be bilingual' (Neil, p. 173), and the proceedings of the Council are likely to have been in Greek. If, however, he was speaking in Aramaic, then probably he was using a Hebrew text different from the Masoretic, which presumably lay behind the LXX translation, and which, in a form almost identical to the LXX wording, the Qumran community seem to have known." The Message of Acts, pp. 247-8, John Stott, IVP 2000 reprint.

Whichever translation James had in mind, none of them, and nothing said at that Jerusalem Council, mentioned any time-period with regard to the rule of Christ. Bear in mind that the last book of the Bible would not be written for more than 30 years, and that is the only place where "a thousand years" is mentioned, in highly symbolic context. Distorted thinking may arise if we, in the twenty-first century, impose "millennial rule" views on to the text of James' discourse here. What is unarguably true is that all those present expected Christ to spectacularly return in glory, but he had already been 'raised up', at his incarnation, had come, had been identified, and now he was glorified in heaven, from whence he would return to complete the prophecies about the Kingdom of God. The 'restoration of David's fallen tent' had commenced with the ministry, death and resurrection of Christ. Nothing would now stop its completion, the coming in of Gentiles proof that the restoration was continuing, as it continues to this very day.

So, my answer is to the main part of the question, Is James' rendering of "After this I will return" in reference to the Second Coming? and it is a simple "Yes, it is."

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James only changed the words "In that day..." to "After this I will return...".

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The reason is quite strict forward. Amos prophesy referred to the return of the exile. James adapted the wording referred to the 1st coming of Jesus. It does not referred to the 2nd coming of Christ, for the David's fallen tent had to be restored before His 2nd coming.

Acts 15:1-21 described the Council at Jerusalem, the apostles and elders met to hearing a controversial question that raised by the converted Pharisees. Paul and Barnabas plead on behalf of the gentiles against it.

5 Then some of the believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees stood up and said, “The Gentiles must be circumcised and required to keep the law of Moses.” (Acts 15:5 NIV)

After hearing the testimony of Paul and Barnabas, as well as Peter's previous testimony of his encounter with Cornelius (Acts ch10), James concluded in the Council the acceptance of the gentiles was in agreement to Amos 9:11-12. Therefore the Council should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who were turning to God. (Acts 15:19)

'David's fallen tent' is likely referred to the priesthood worship, enforced by the law, was fallen. On its ruin, the Lord will raise Jesus who is the son of David to lead the Church, restoring a new way of worship for the rest of mankind, and all the Gentiles who seek the Lord will join the Jews to become one.

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  • @VincentWong-Fantastic answer! Allow me to add that "David's tent" refers to the tent David erected to house the Ark of the Covenant, noted by its exuberant worship with praise and instruments! (2 Samuel 6:17, 7:1-2, 1 Chronicles 15:1. 16:1). It was not Moses tabernacle, nor any Temple. (Solomon's Temple had not been built.) And therefore, its restoration would have nothing to do with an alleged "Jewish Temple, with a "Wall of Separation." Rather, as Paul, Peter, and James agreed, Jew AND Gentile from every nation would worship together with exuberant worship and praise!
    – ray grant
    Commented Aug 12, 2023 at 21:47
  • @raygrant - your Jewish knowledge enlighten me. Commented Aug 13, 2023 at 1:26
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William M. Schniedewind (Society and the Promise to David, pages 63-64) says that Amos 9:11 has been widely analysed and is regarded as a post-Exilic addition. Acts 15:16 is no doubt original to Acts but is as much a reference to the Second Temple destruction in 70 CE as it is a citation of Amos 9:11. At the time of writing, the author was aware of the second destruction but, decades earlier, James had not been.

A reference to the destruction of 70 CE could hardly have been spoken by James in the 40s or 50s - it is an authorial gloss. Also, if we regard the Epistle of James as having been written by James himself, there is not a hint of eschatology in the epistle. If James could not have spoken the words of Acts 15:16, the question is whether the author of Acts intended this to refer to a Second Coming and 1000 year reign. Jacob Jervell (The Theology of the Acts of the Apostles, pages 22-23) says that the reference to rebuilding the tabernacle should be read as describing the missionary work to the Gentiles. Notice that it forms part of the speech that James gave when he agreed to the missionary work to be undertaken.

The gospel authors did anticipate the return of Jesus, with Mark chapter 13 even suggesting that this would be during the lifetimes of some who had heard Jesus. The author of Luke-Acts is anxious that the gentiles be reached before Jesus returns.

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  • 2
    If Amos 9:11 is a post-Exilic addition the choice of word is inconsistent with the conclusions reached by Schniedewind and others. The Hebrew סֻכַּ֥ת (Amos 9:11) is never used to describe either the Temple or the Tabernacle. The word means tent or booth as in the Feast of Booths or a temporary shelter for people of livestock. There is no sound exegesis that connects what is written to the destruction of the first Temple by the Babylonians. Commented May 10, 2016 at 19:21
  • @RevelationLad Thank U for the advice on this - I have edited accordingly. But why is the reverential reference to 'the tabernacle of David' which will be raised up and rebuilt as in the days of old? What else was the redactor thinking of, if not the First Temple? Commented May 10, 2016 at 21:05
  • @DickHarfield-The redactor (sic) was referring to the "tent" David erected to house the Ark of the Covenant--- BEFORE any physical Temple was ever built--- which was marked by exuberant worship and praise with instruments. (2 Samuel 6:17, 7:1-2, 1 Chronicles 15:1, 16:1) It was not a Temple with a "Wall of separation" to keep the Gentiles out, as was erected in the physical Temple. (Ephesians 2:1-22) But as Amos prophesied, the restored "tent" represented inclusion so that the remnant of men, and all the nations upon whom My name is called, may earnestly seek Me, declares the Lord.
    – ray grant
    Commented Aug 12, 2023 at 22:36
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James was not the one to supply that reading. He is not modifying the text and then claiming "it is written". His LXX must have read differently from the versions we have. If he changed it and asserted that he was simply quoting it and appealing to its authority then he is a fraud, no? It is possible though that he is conflating the verse with another related verse though I know not which off the top of my head.

Walvoord's point about him referencing a still future enthronement is spot on. The messiah is "the lord's anointed one" which refers to his being that designated and promised descendant of David to be king of Israel forever:

Luk_1:32  He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:

Jesus' eternal destiny is to rule Israel forever as king:

Luk 1:33  And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

It is only during this period called "the times of the gentiles/nations" that Jesus' reign has been temporarily extended so that he "rules in the midst of his enemies with a rod of iron":

Psa_2:9  Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.

Rev_2:27  And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.

Rev_12:5  And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

Rev_19:15  And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

Notice that God promises to temporarily "send out" the messiah's influence and rule unwilling peoples:

Psa 110:1  A Psalm of David. The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.  Psa 110:2  The LORD shall send the rod of thy strength out of Zion: rule thou in the midst of thine enemies.  Psa 110:3  Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: thou hast the dew of thy youth.  Psa 110:4  The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.  Psa 110:5  The Lord at thy right hand shall strike through kings in the day of his wrath.  Psa 110:6  He shall judge among the heathen, he shall fill the places with the dead bodies; he shall wound the heads over many countries.  Psa 110:7  He shall drink of the brook in the way: therefore shall he lift up the head.

However, once he has subdued the nations (via the harrowing curses and plagues in Revelation) he will rebuild the temple, restore the nation of Israel and Israel will become one of the subject nations and God himself will once again be KURIOS over all the world:

1Co 15:24  Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.  1Co 15:25  For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.  1Co 15:26  The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.  1Co 15:27  For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.  1Co 15:28  And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.

So James' more accurate LXX reveals that God's "turning away" from Israel is only temporary for God will "return" to the Israel program after the "Church Age" in which we find ourselves.

Now:

Messiah's rule is from God's right hand from which he serves as KURIOS as God places the hostile nations under his feet via demoralizing acts of divine terrorism.

When God "returns" to the Israel program:

The temple will be rebuilt and Jesus will rule Israel among a willing people (Psalm 110:3). God will rule the world over all the nations of the earth (including Israel) as king of kings (with Jesus being one of the subject kings).

KJV unless otherwise noted

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I have always understood that the "After this" in Acts 15:16 is a reference to the calling out of the Gentiles. After this "I will return." Who will return? Jesus Christ, obviously.

In Romans 9, 10 and 11, Paul basically nails down the fact that God is not yet finished with Israel, as proponents of Replacement Theology like to proclaim.

Romans 11:25 says:

For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.

This clearly says that the 'blindness' will eventually be removed. The "fullness of the Gentiles" is that group of people that God, in his foreknowledge, has predestinated to be in the Church. It's clear that the Kingdom has been postponed and we thus had the "calling out of the church" (a "mystery" [ref. Ephesians 3:3-6]).

The "After this" in verse 16 of Acts 15 is therefore referring to the fullness of the Gentiles, and after this occurs, the blindness is removed from Israel and then the return of Christ. Of course, there is only a "remnant" that is promised in this age.

In any event, the other comments here were excellent, and far more eloquent, but I felt the need to chime-in here and offer some thoughts on this particular verse, because I heard a teacher the other day say that he was entirely baffled by it, which led me into all types of circular studies, etc.

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Bible Versions Just as it is today, with all our versions (e.g. NIV, KJV, NKJV, NLV, NEB, ESV, etc.) so there were many versions of the O.T. in the first century. The Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit several Hebrew versions, as well as different versions of the LXX. Which version James quoted from--or if he was merely paraphrasing as preachers are wont to do--is not something that can be determined.

James answered and said, Men and brethren, hearken to me. Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for His name. And to this agree the word of the prophets, as it is written: "After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up so that the residue of men might seek after the Lord and all the Gentiles, upon whom My name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things." Acts 15:13-18, KJV)

In that day I will restore David's fallen tent. I will repair its broken places, restore its ruins, and build it as it used to be, so that they may possess the remnant of Edom, and all the nations that bear My name, declares the Lord, who will do these things. (Amos 9:11-12, NIV)

In that day I will raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen and will rebuild the ruins of it, and will set up the parts thereof that have been broken down, and will build it up as in the ancient days; that the remnant of men , and all the nations (gentiles) upon whom my name is called may earnestly seek me, saith the Lord who does all these things. (Amos 9:11-12, LXX, Zondervan, 1970)

Notes by Translators The Hebrew consonants for "adam" (man) and "Edom" are the same in unpointed text. Thus the LXX made its version/ interpretation: "residue of men." (F.F. Bruce, Acts of the Apostles, p. 298)

"In that Day" (O.T. usage) was interpreted by the rabbis of the Jewish Talmud as referring to the Days of Messiah. Which, along with their other scriptural interpretations referring to Messiah, were fulfilled at the First Coming of Christ. (e.g. Born in Bethlehem, descendent of David, etc.)

Dispensational Interpretation The OP has already quoted John Walvoord's interpretation of the phrase in question: After this I will return. Walvoord saw a prophetic layout of eschatology concerning the future of the Jewish people in this passage. (See Walvoord, The Church in Prophecy, p.116) This is basically a repeat of the outline in the Scofield Reference Bible. (pp. 1169-1170, 1917 edition) Here is a summary of that:

Dispensationally, this is the most important passage in the N.T. It gives the divine purpose for this age, and for the beginning of the next.

(1) The taking out from among the Gentiles of a people for His name, the distinctive work of the present, or church age...
(2) "After this (viz. the out-calling) I will return". James quotes from Amos 9:11,12. The verses which follow in Amos describe the final regathering of Israel...
(3) "And I will build again the Tabernacle of David," i.e. reestablish the Davidic rule over Israel...
(4) "That the residue of men (Israelites) may seek after the Lord."
(5) "And all the Gentiles, etc...

Context The normal exposition of scripture is governed by the principle of "Context". The time zone, the setting, the motives, the personnel, etc. Here in the fifteenth chapter the time is the middle of the first century. The location is Jerusalem. The people are Church folk, believing Pharisees, fishermen, tax collector, Peter, Paul, etc. The reason for the gathering was to hold a council and deal with the matter of new "ethnic", non-jewish believers, and any supposed Jewish religious requirements they may be obligated to observe.

After an accounting of the successful missionary journeys of Paul and Barnabas, where a large number of Gentiles were saved, James spoke up and quoted a prophecy from Amos. It is important to see that James prefaced his quoting with the acknowledgment of the "taking out of a people from the Gentiles." (v. 13) "The Gentiles" were the main theme that had to be dealt with...not the Jewish believers. The quotation was used to substantiate the legitimacy of Gentiles in the new fledgling Church! Nothing more.

James was NOT laying out a preview of eschatology, but was dealing with the "present" argument over ethnics' role in the Church in relation to Jewish observances. This is the context that cannot be overlooked.

But did Scofield, Walvoord, and other Dispensationalists, follow the basic rules of hermeneutics? No! In their exposition they lumped James preface with Amos's quotation. They blend James's statement about Gentiles with an alleged application for Jewish prophecies. They jump out of the very reason for James' quoting, and delve into Jewish eschatology! They ignore: God did visit the Gentiles...and to this agree the word of the prophets... The whole purpose of the quote was to confirm the Gentile acceptance into the Church!

This was also prophesied by Isaiah (2:1-3), and by God to Abraham, "in thy seed all nations would be blessed" (Gal 3:6-10). And there was no mistaking, Jew and Gentile were to be ONE BODY (Ephesians 2:14-15).

Notice Scofield's abuse of "the residue of men" (KJV; "remnant of men" NIV). He wrote that this referred to Israelites; but the word is anthropos (Gk.) He is reading into the text what is not there. This was a blatant effort to introduce the eschatology of John Darby where it did not exist. (eisegesis) Note also that "David's tent" was to be restored. This had direct reference to the tent David erected to house the Ark of the Covenant, and it was marked by an abundance of exuberant worship with instruments! (2 Samuel 6:17, 7:1-2, 1 Chron. 15:1, 16:1) This mention in Amos had absolutely nothing to do with the erection of any Temple, neither Solomon's, nor an alleged future Temple in a millennium.

After this I will return must be considered in light of the in that day verbage of Amos in the O.T. looking forward to the first coming of Messiah. And be considered in regard to the main purpose of the Council gathering, and the very reason James used it: the subject of ethnic believers (gentiles Christians) having equal status with Jews, but without all the Mosaic legalism. (See Ephesians 2:11-22, "one Body", 1 Peter 2:4-10) Concerning this passage marked by "after this I will return," Mr. Carver commented:

Scofield says, "Dispensationally, this is the most important passage in the N.T." (note on Acts 15:13) Then, instead of exegeting the quotation from Amos, he uses the introductory statement of James as a springboard to project the prophecy of Amos to a future age. This is forced exegesis. No lawyer, grammarian, logician, or junior high school student could possibly arrive at this conclusion unless he had first been steeped in the old Jewish expectations, or those of modern Premillennialism or Dispensationalism. The views of the latter two largely coincide with the Jewish expectations, the major difference being that the anticipated political kingdom has been projected to the Second Coming rather than the first coming of Christ. (Mr. Carver, When Jesus Comes, p. 30)

After this I will return is, in no way, a "reference to to the Second coming and subsequent 1000 year reign," as is asked on this posting. The "restored tent of David" is not a future physical Temple (no Temple had been built by David), but as the Apostles noted, the Early Church was to be a place of exuberant worship with instruments for Jew and Gentile.

Simeon has described to us how God at first showed His concern by taking from the Gentiles a people for Himself. The word of the prophets are in agreement with this... (Acts 15:14-15)

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