The latter rain name comes from Joel 2:23, “Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for He hath given you the former rain moderately, and He will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month.” The “latter rain” in this verse is interpreted as an outpouring of the Holy Spirit. The “latter rain” (the end-times outpouring) would be greater than the “former rain.”
But what is the purpose of this baptism of the Spirit’s power? Soon after planting, a seasonal rain provided moisture for germination and initial growth. This was called the “early rain.” Later, near the time for harvest, another copious watering was referred to as the “latter rain.”
Biblical writers use these terms to describe the visitation of the Holy Spirit upon the church in a dispensational sense. The “early rain” came at Pentecost to give power to the witness of the gospel. Another outpouring is coming at earth’s final soul harvest before the second coming of Christ.
Some may assume that the purpose of such an end-time bestowal of spiritual blessing is to provide victory over sin, before the translation. But this is not so. The truth is that no one will receive the “latter rain” who does not already have the victory over sin through the “early rain.”
Each Christian experiences his own Pentecost at the time of his conversion. Under the power of that spiritual baptism, strength is available for complete victory. As we consider the purpose of the “latter rain” it becomes even more clear why separation from sin is required under the early rain or conversion work.
Jesus said, “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 Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8). So, the out pouring of the Holy Spirit in the form of the “Latter rain” will be simply to qualify the saints for witnessing.
In His service,
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