And I will appoint my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.” They are “the two olive trees” and “the two lampstands”, and “they stand before the Lord of the earth.” 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. They have power to shut up the heavens so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying 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 11:3-6
I believe that the 2 witnesses are Israel and the Church, more specifically the Jews who come to Christ during the Great Tribulation and the true Gentile believers in Christ. Throughout the Scriptures, in both the Old and New Testaments, the Bible teaches that Israel is the olive tree. Revelation teaches that the Church is the lampstand. The two olive trees are the Jewish and Gentile believers in Christ (see Romans 11). The 2 lampstands are the Jewish Church and the Gentile Church (see Revelation 1:20). The olive trees and lampstands are one and the same, representing the same thing – God’s anointed and chosen people.The two witnesses, who are two lampstands (churches) and two olive trees (Gentile and Jewish converts to Jesus) are the anointed ones who prophesy and pronounce God’s judgment upon the nations during the 42 months prior to their death. Rev 12:17 “And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus.” The rest of her offspring are the Christians who are left-behind at the Rapture and those who accept Christ during the Great Tribulation.
The reason the remnant is most likely the same as the two witnesses, is because the time frame is the same, and because the remnant also ends up being killed by the beast in Rev. 13:7: “And it was given to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them; and authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation was given to him.” Revelation 11:7 “Now when they have finished their testimony, the beast that comes up from the Abyss will attack them, and overpower and kill them.” What the Lord is saying here is that the Church during the tribulation will receive a double portion of His anointing to do great signs and wonders and preach with authority like never before. This is the "fire" that comes out of their mouths. The Holy Spirit speaks through them and brings conviction with power when they preach. It devours demons and every enemy force. Any demonic force that would come against them will suffer great harm and suffer an even greater eternal punishment for attacking them. We know that demons are afraid of their coming judgment as they begged Christ to not send them to the Abyss before the appointed time. The Lord is warning the demonic forces that will be unleashed on the earth at this time to not harm His people. He is also warning people on the earth that whoever harms His anointed, chosen people will suffer the eternal fire of hell. These 2 witnesses (Jewish and Gentile believers) will be operating in the authority and anointing of Jesus in a powerful way. They will have authority even to speak to weather systems and cause rain to fall or stop as Elijah did.
No one can harm them. Even if they are killed for their faith, as Paul said, "Death, where is your victory? Where is your sting?" And again, "For me to live is Christ and to die is GAIN." Many WILL BE martyred for their faith, but there is no greater honor for all eternity than to be a martyr for Jesus, so it does not harm them AT ALL, only brings them incredible gain.
At the end of the 1260 days of testimony to the world, the people of the world are entirely sick of these 2 witnesses and their message and they are very happy that they are all killed or Raptured and their message has been silenced.
I believe the 1260 days should have started on May 2, 2013, and ended on the Day of Atonement in 2016. The 1335 days would have then ended on the first day of Hanukkah in 2016. May 2, 2013, was the true 7th day of Unleavened Bread on God's calendar and was the day that the Israelites crossed the Red Sea, and the day when the walls of Jericho fell and the people ascended, and was also the day that Peter escaped from prison when he was rescued by an angel. These 3 events all foreshadow the Rapture of the firstfruits Bride of Christ.
However, the Lord told us that unless He shortened the days of Tribulation, no flesh would be saved. Matthew 24:22 – “And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.” He also told us in Revelation 10:6 and Matthew 25 that the Bridegroom would be delayed. Revelation 10:6 - “And he swore by him who lives for ever and ever, who created the heavens and all that is in them, the earth and all that is in it, and the sea and all that is in it, and said, "There will be no more delay!” Matthew 25:5 – “As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept.”