The two witnesses mentioned in the book of Revelation that will be clothed in sackcloth are not figurative witnesses, but two literal prophets that will eventually die in Jerusalem.
And I will appoint my two witnesses, and they will prophesy… clothed in sackcloth…Revelation 11:3
…these two prophets…Revelation 11:10
Their bodies will lie in the public square of the great city, which is figuratively called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Master was crucified.Revelation 11:8
Note: On the left is a picture of the material that could be used for “sackcloth” today, which can be jute or hemp, although jute is more rigid. Sackcloth was a sack used to store things inside it, perhaps food, which the men of God in antiquity poked holes in to then wear it in times of mourning, which is extremely uncomfortable and itchy to wear. In ancient times it was made of goat hair. The two witnesses will be clothed in sackcloth.
Which is why there is a distinction between the “1,260 days” they prophesy and the “42 months” that Jerusalem is trampled. Because although both times equal 3 and 1/2 years, one time is expressed prophetically as 42 months, which was 1,260 literal years, just as time is expressed prophetically in the book of Daniel, whereas the other time is expressed literally as 1,260 days, which is 3 and 1/2 literal years. Which is how long they will prophesy. And the reason they are mentioned after the 6th trumpet of Revelation and before the 7th trumpet of Revelation is because they will be killed between the 6th and 7th trumpet blasts. Therefore they will die in the morning of the 6th trumpet blast, which is halfway through the 6th day. For “days” according to the Torah begin in the evening around 6:00 pm, hence, “there was evening and morning, day one”. And each trumpet will be blasted in the beginning of each day each evening for 7 days.
But exclude the outer court; do not measure it, because it has been given to the Gentiles. They will trample on the set-apart city for 42 months.Revelation 11:2
The sixth angel sounded his trumpet, and I heard a voice coming from the four horns of the golden altar that is before God. It said to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” And the four angels who had been kept ready for this very hour and day and month and year were released to kill a third of mankind.Revelation 9:13-15
And I will appoint my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days…Revelation 11:3
And the seventh angel trumped. And there were great voice in the heaven, saying, “the kingdom of the world is become of our Master, and of his Mashiach, and he shall reign into the aeons of the aeons”.Revelation 11:15
And since we know the 7 trumpets of Revelation are associated with the second coming of the Mashiach, for the Mashiach will fulfill the autumn appointed times of the Torah in his second coming just as he fulfilled the spring appointed times of the Torah in his first coming, which will begin to be blasted in Tishri 1 in accordance to the appointed time of the trumpet blasts of the Torah, then we know they die in the morning of Tishri 6. And we also know the time of their resurrection. For they will be resurrected 3 and 1/2 days later at the Day of Atonement of the Torah, which happens in Tishri 10, which is when the first resurrection of the dead happens at the second coming of the Mashiach. Which is the “last trumpet” Paul spoke of after the seven trumpets happens, for the Greek word translated as “trumpet” can also refer to another type of wind instrument, a shofar. And therefore the “last trumpet” mentioned by Paul is the one of the shofar yovel, which is the horn of a ram. And all who participate in this first resurrection will be gathered by angels and taken up into the clouds of the air, to meet the Mashiach in the air, which includes the two prophets. Which is why it is written concerning them, “come up here, and they went up to heaven in a cloud”.
For the Master himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God…1 Thessalonians 4:16
“Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven… with a loud trumpet call…Matthew 24:30-31
On the first day of the seventh new moon you shall have a set-apart convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work. It is a day for you to blast the trumpetsNumbers 29:1
Speak to the people of Israel, saying, In the seventh new moon, on the first day of the new moon, you shall have a shabbath-rest, a memorial proclaimed with blast of trumpets, a set-apart convocation.Leviticus 23:24
But after the three and a half days the airflow of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and terror struck those who saw them. Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here.” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, while their enemies looked on.Revelation 11:11-12
The tenth day of this seventh new moon is the Day of Atonement. Hold a set-apart convocation and lower yourselves, and present an offering by fire to Yehovah. Do not do any work on that day, because it is the Day of Atonement, when atonement is made for you before Yehovah your God.Leviticus 23:27-28
On the tenth day of this seventh new moon you shall have a set-apart convocation and lower yourselves. You shall do no work,Numbers 29:7
Then have the shofar sounded everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh new moon; on the Day of Atonement sound the shofar throughout your land. Set apart the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be yovel for you; each of you is to return to your family property and to your own clan. The fiftieth year shall be yovel for you; do not sow and do not reap what grows of itself or harvest the untended vines.Leviticus 25:9-11
Behold, I speak a mystery to you; we shall not all indeed sleep, but all shall be changed, in an instant, in the blink of an eye, at the last trumpet. For it shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For it is necessary this corruption to put on incorruptibility, and this mortal to put on immortality. But whenever this corruptible should have put on incorruptibility, and this mortal should have put on immortality, then shall come to pass the word having been written, Death was swallowed down in victory.1 Corinthians 15:51-54
In that day Yehovah will thresh from the flowing Euphrates to the Wadi of Egypt, and you, Israel, will be gathered up one by one. And in that day a great shofar will be blown…Isaiah 27:12-13
And then he will send out the angels and gather his chosen from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.Mark 13:27
For the Master himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in the Mashiach will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Master in the air, and so we will always be with the Master.1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
He will raise a banner for the nations and gather the exiles of Israel; he will assemble the scattered people of Judah from the four quarters of the earth.Isaiah 11:12
And since we know the time of their death, then we also know the time they begin to prophesy, in the spring, 1,260 days before their death during the 7 trumpets of Revelation at the second coming of the Mashiach in the autumn. For the 7 trumpets of Revelation happens a few days after the second coming of the Mashiach, which is why his coming happens at the end of the 6th seal of Revelation, to then open the 7th seal of Revelation, which are the 7 trumpets. Which implies these two prophets are the forerunners of the second coming of the Mashiach, with power just as the Mashiach returns with great power, just as John the Baptist was the forerunner of the first coming of the Mashiach, with humility just as the Mashiach first came with humility. And the two witnesses are the last warning to the entire world before the second coming. Which is also why they die at the last day before the 7th trumpet blast, for they serve as a warning to the entire world before the Mashiach begins to rule the earth at the 7th trumpet blast. And the reason why they will wear sackcloth is to symbolize the mourning associated with the wrath and destruction of the second coming of the Mashiach that will kill most of the population of the earth 3 and 1/2 years after they begin prophesying.
I watched as he opened the sixth seal… The heavens receded like a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and everyone else, both slave and free, hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains. They called to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can withstand it?”Revelation 6:12-17
When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them.Revelation 8:1-2
the voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Master, make his paths straight,’” John appeared, baptizing in the wilderness and proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.Mark 1:3-4
…and they have power to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want.Revelation 11:6
And because of the torment they will bring against the world with their plagues, they will be hated by the world. And the world will celebrate their eventual death. And many will seek to kill them during the appointed time of their prophesying, yet with fire they will kill anyone who tries to harm them. And they will shut the heavens so that it doesn’t rain during their time of their prophesying, which will in turn cause drought, which will in turn cause famine.
If anyone tries to harm them, fire comes from their mouths and devours their enemies. This is how anyone who wants to harm them must die.Revelation 11:5
They have power to shut up the heavens so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying…Revelation 11:6
For three and a half days some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations will gaze at their dead bodies and refuse to let them be placed in a tomb, and those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them and make merry and exchange gifts, because these two prophets had been a torment to those who dwell on the earth.Revelation 11:9-10
And they are also figuratively called the “two olives” in the book of Revelation, which are the two olive branches of the two olives in the book of Zechariah.
These are the two olives…Revelation 11:4
Then I said to him, “What are these two olive trees on the right and the left of the menorah?” And a second time I answered and said to him, “What are these two olive branches, which pour out the oil through the two golden pipes?” He said to me, “Do you not know what these are?” I said, “No, my lord.” Then he said, “These are the two anointed ones…Zechariah 4:12-14
And the two olives symbolize two peoples under two different covenants. The first olive tree are the Hebrews, then the second olive tree are the Gentiles. Which is why Paul speaks of the cultivated olive tree and the wild olive tree in relation to Hebrews and Gentiles.
For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree. Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written, “The Deliverer will come from Zion, he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”;Romans 11:24-26
Which implies that each olive branch in Zechariah, which symbolize the same two prophets in Revelation, attached to each olive tree, means that one prophet will be a Hebrew, bearing the sign of the old covenant of Abraham in the flesh, which is the circumcision of the flesh, implying he will be circumcised. And the other prophet will be a Gentile, bearing the sign of the new covenant of the Mashiach, which is the circumcision of the heart, implying he will be uncircumcised.
This is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your offspring after you: Every male among you shall be circumcised. You shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskins, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and you.Genesis 17:10-11
for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.Matthew 26:28
In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.Hebrews 8:13
For neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation.Galatians 6:15
For neither circumcision counts for anything nor uncircumcision, but keeping the commandments of God.1 Corinthians 7:19
And these two prophets are also called the “two lampstands”, which relate to the 7 lampstands in the book of Revelation. Which then relates to the menorah of God commanded to be made in the Torah, which was a menorah with 7 lampstands.
These are… the two lampstands…Revelation 11:4
Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking to me, and on turning I saw seven golden lampstandsRevelation 1:12
You shall make a menorah of pure gold. The menorah shall be made of hammered work: its base, its stem, its cups, its calyxes, and its flowers shall be of one piece with it. And there shall be six branches going out of its sides, three branches of the menorah out of one side of it and three branches of the menorah out of the other side of it… You shall make seven lamps for it. And the lamps shall be set up so as to give light on the space in front of it.Exodus 25:31-37
Which symbolize 7 assemblies of God. Which are not just any assemblies, but 7 very specific and small assemblies on the earth that are the only assemblies that belong to God, from the first coming of the Mashiach all the way to his second coming. Which is why at the time the visions in the book of Revelation were given to John, the 7 assemblies that existed at that time on the earth were the ones in Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.
…the seven lampstands are the seven assemblies.Revelation 1:20
saying, “Write what you see in a book and send it to the seven assemblies, to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.”Revelation 1:11
And at that time, apart from these 7 assemblies, there existed no other assemblies that truly belonged to God, even though by that time various other assemblies of believers were emerging. Such as an assembly in Rome that eventually became the false Roman Catholic Church, which is now centered in Vatican City.
Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.1 John 2:18-19
And throughout the time from the first coming of the Mashiach to his second coming, as one assembly fades away, another one emerges somewhere on the earth. Which is why the assembly that existed in Jerusalem was not among the 7 assemblies in the book of Revelation, because by the time the visions of the book of Revelation were given to John, the assembly in Jerusalem had already faded away, and another one emerged in its place. And that is how the small “remnant” that is chosen on the earth are organized out of the many that are called are, in 7 small assemblies in 7 distinct cities. And the 7 lampstands of Revelation, which is the menorah of God in the Torah, are also the same menorah with seven lampstands in Zechariah.
When they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the assembly and the apostles and elders, to whom they reported everything God had done through them.Acts 15:4
And he said to me, “What do you see?” I said, “I see, and behold, a menorah all of gold, with a bowl on the top, and seven lamps upon it, with seven pipes to the seven lamps, which are on top. And there are two olive trees by it, one on the right of the bowl and the other on its left.”Zechariah 4:2-3
For many are called, but few are chosen.Matthew 22:14
Which is then given oil by the two olive trees that drip oil on one bowl. And then the oil goes to each lampstand through 7 pipes, so that the 7 lampstands may then shine their light to the world using the oil. Which symbolizes the few who receive the anointing of God in each of these 7 assemblies, which is the airflow of God, through two different covenants and through two different peoples, the Hebrews and the Gentiles. And that “light” is the good works of those who have been set apart by the set-apart airflow of God.
And a second time I answered and said to him, “What are these two branches of the olive trees, which are beside two golden pipes from which the golden oil is poured out?”Zechariah 4:12
Then he said to me, “This is the word of Yehovah to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my airflow, says Yehovah of armies.Zechariah 4:6
But you have been anointed by the the set-apart one, and you all have knowledge.1 John 2:20
But the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie—just as it has taught you, abide in him.1 John 2:27
But the Helper, the set-apart airflow, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.John 14:26
You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.Matthew 5:14-16
You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? So, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.Matthew 7:16-18
Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good works and glorify God on the day of visitation.1 Peter 2:12
who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.Titus 2:14
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.Galatians 6:9
They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share,1 Timothy 6:18
Yet in accordance to Zechariah, the two branches are nearest to two golden pipes, on the far left and on the far right, for two lampstands. Which implies each of the two prophets will establish one assembly. Which is why they are also called the “two lampstands” in the book of Revelation. Which will also be two perfect assemblies, just as the assemblies in the book of Revelation, where only two out of the seven assemblies were perfect. And just as each assembly was in one distinct city, so it will be with these two prophets, they will begin prophesying from two distinct cities on the earth separately, and then will eventually make their way to Jerusalem, which is where they will die. And this is a very important hidden detail that many will not expect, for they think the two prophets will immediately appear in Jerusalem once they begin prophesying, which will not be so, which is one reason why many will not recognize them.
“And to the angel of the assembly in Smyrna write: ‘The words of the first and the last, who died and came to life. “‘I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich) and the slander of those who say that they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. He who has an ear, let him hear what the airflow says to the assemblies. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.’Revelation 2:8-11
“And to the angel of the assembly in Philadelphia write: ‘The words of the set-apart one, the true one, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, who shuts and no one opens. “‘I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut. I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie—behold, I will make them come and bow down before your feet, and they will learn that I have loved you. Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. I am coming soon. Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown. The one who conquers, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God. Never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down from my God out of heaven, and my own new name. He who has an ear, let him hear what the airflow says to the assemblies.’Revelation 3:7-13
Yet their voice will also be heard by the other 5 assemblies that will be somewhere on the earth, for their prophesying will be heard all over the world. Which is also why the context of the the two visions in Zechariah and Revelation is “the whole earth”.
…who stand by the Master of the whole earth.Zechariah 4:14
…that stand before the Master of the earth.Revelation 11:4
But even so, many believers in the world will also refuse to believe these are men of God and will not recognize them and will reject their word, because they will also teach many things contrary to the lies many believers have been taught. Since the entire world has been deceived by the great prostitute of Vatican City in the city of seven mountains of Rome. And the inhabitants of the world are figuratively drunk through her many false teachings. And rather than believe what these prophets will say, and so be warned and repent, they will harden their hearts, and hate them, and desire their death. Just as it was in former times, when Jerusalem killed the prophets that were sent to them, including Yeshuah, who they did not recognize as the Mashiach. Although it was obvious through prophecy he was the Mashiach. And because the entire world will approve killing them and will celebrate their death, the entire world will become guilty of shedding the blood of the set-apart ones of God, which is why eventually shortly after their death God will turn the all the seas and rivers of the world into blood to give the entire world blood to drink in vengeance. For those who approve of murder are just as guilty as those who commit it.
But I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but did to him whatever they pleased. So also the Son of Man will certainly suffer at their hands. Then the disciples understood that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist.Matthew 17:12-13
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!Matthew 23:37
None of the rulers of this aeon understood this, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Master of glory.1 Corinthians 2:8
There was again a division among the Jews because of these words. Many of them said, “He has a demon, and is insane; why listen to him?”John 10:19-20
And on her forehead was written a name of mystery: Babylon the great, mother of prostitutes and of the abominations of the earth… This calls for a mind with wisdom: the seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman is seatedRevelation 17:5-9
with whom the kings of the earth have committed sexual immorality, and with the wine of whose sexual immorality the dwellers on earth have become drunk.Revelation 17:2
Though they know righteous decree of God that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.Romans 1:32
The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became like the blood of a corpse, and every living thing died that was in the sea.Revelation 16:3
The third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of water, and they became blood.Revelation 16:4
And I heard the angel in charge of the waters say, “Righteous are you, O set-apart one, who is and who was, for you brought these judgments. For they have shed the blood of the set-apart ones and prophets, and you have given them blood to drink. It is what they deserve!” And I heard the altar saying, “Yes, Master God the Almighty, true and righteous are your judgments!”Revelation 16:5-7
And they will be killed by the final formation of the “United States of Europe”, which is the beast the rises out of the Abyss. For that is the eighth and final head of the first beast of Revelation. And the prostitute of Babylon rides this first beast. And she is Vatican City, dominating the all the kings of the earth through money, which is why she is called “prostitute”, for a prostitute sells herself for money.
Now when they have finished their testimony, the beast that comes up from the Abyss will attack them, and overpower and kill them.Revelation 11:7
The beast who once was, and now is not, is an eighth king. He belongs to the seven and is going to his destruction.Revelation 17:11
The beast, which you saw, once was, now is not, and yet will come up out of the Abyss and go to its destruction. The inhabitants of the earth whose names have not been written in the book of life from the creation of the world will be astonished when they see the beast, because it once was, now is not, and yet will come.Revelation 17:8
And the woman that you saw is the great city that has dominion over the kings of the earth.Revelation 17:18
And before the 8th and final kingdom were the Byzantines as the seventh kingdom. And the Romans as the sixth kingdom. And the Greeks as the fifth kingdom. And the Medo-Persians as the fourth kingdom. And the Babylonians as the third kingdom. And the Assyrians as the second kingdom. And the first kingdom, who were the first to come against the people of God, the Egyptians. Which is why five kings had already fallen when the vision was given to John, for at the time the vision was given, the Romans, which were the sixth kingdom, were in authority, with the previous five kingdoms already fallen.
And there are seven kings, the five fallen, the one is, the other not yet is come…Revelation 17:10
And these two prophets will be two men that will be born in last generation that will exist at the second coming of the Mashiach. For just as John the Baptist fulfilled the prophecy regarding the “Elijah who was to come” figuratively, as a man born in his generation to fulfill that role he was anointed for, and not as the literal Elijah that came to the earth, so will these two prophets fulfill the prophecy of the two witnesses of Revelation as two men who will be born in the last generation and anointed to fulfill those two roles shortly before the second coming of the Mashiach. And since we know the expected second coming of the Mashiach will be around 2026 AD, which will be around 6000 YB, in accordance to the exact calculations of the age of the earth that can be found in this other bible study What Year the Second Coming Will Be, the Millennial Shabbath of the Year 6000 YB, Yovels, and the 1290+1335 Days of Daniel, then the two prophets will appear around 2023 AD, in the spring, which is the Year 5996 YB.
Note: I recommend reading this bible study, which gives a precise timeline of when we can expect the two witnesses appear, along with many other great tribulation events, and also the second coming of Yeshuah.