Saturday, March 26, 2011

Micah 4

Another end times reference to Babylon is found in Micah 4. This chapter is all about the last days and Israel. In previous postings, some of the Scriptures had led to the supposition that at least some of the American people are going to rescue the Israeli people after the abomination of desolation. This would seem to be in defiance of the leader of the country who, if interpretation is correct, has just sided against her (Ezekiel 21) and is the cause of the temple being desecrated. This chapter states that people will go out of Israel to Babylon to be delivered. Then the Lord will redeem them from there. The chronology of this chapter is strange in that it seems to work backward from the millennium to the time when Israel has to flee the land.

Verse 1- 2 “But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it. And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.”

This passage is speaking of that time after the wrath of God has passed in the last days. The mountain of the Lord will be raised higher than the other mountains. Isaiah 2:2 “And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD'S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.” These verses are saying almost exactly the same thing. The Lord's house (temple) will be established in the highest mountain and people will be coming to it to learn the ways of the Lord. This is obviously speaking of the millennium when the Lord reigns and people come to Jerusalem to learn His ways. The law (notice it is the LAW, not just the message of grace) will go forth out of Jerusalem from the Lord.

Verse 3-5 “And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the Lord of hosts hath spoken it. For all people will walk every one in the name of his god, and we will walk in the name of the Lord our God for ever and ever.”

Yeshua will be the judge during that day. He will exercise judgment daily. Jeremiah 23:5 “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.” Isaiah 11:4 “But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.” He will judge nations near and far. All of the weapons will be needed no longer as there will be no more war. So they will turn their weapons into farming implements. Every man will be raising his own food, and everyone will dwell in the security that they are safe, for God has promised this. The next verse seems to be a contradiction to all the verses about the millennium, which say that everyone will worship the Lord. It really is not. Rather, in Hebrew this phrase is grammatically a comparison. It is more of a now vs. then type of statement. Now everyone will walk in the name of their gods, but then “we,” the people of the millennium, will walk in the name of the Lord God.

Verse 6-8 “In that day, saith the Lord, will I assemble her that halteth, and I will gather her that is driven out, and her that I have afflicted; And I will make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation: and the Lord shall reign over them in mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever. And thou, O tower of the flock, the strong hold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem.”

Now we see how the passages are working backward. God is here referring to when He will gather Israel back from the lands from where she was driven in affliction during the tribulation. He will make her remnant into a strong nation, one in which the Lord will reign over them from Mount Zion forever. The phrase "tower of the flock" can have several meanings. The more literal ones can refer to the Migdal Eder or Tower of Ader which was near Bethlehem. This was where the shepherds saw the angels announcing the birth of the Savior. Some scholars see this as a prophecy of the Messiah. Another interpretation sees this as the stronghold or “Ophel,” a fortified area touching on the eastern porch of the temple. It is the eastern gate through which it is said the Messiah will return. Spiritually, no matter to which it refers literally, it is referring to Yeshua, who is the tower or stronghold of the flock, or believers. The first dominion or kingdom shall finally come to both the Messiah and Israel. The kingdom which has been promised to them for several millennia.

Verse 9-10 - “Now why doest thou cry out aloud? Is there no king in thee? Is thy counsellor perished? For pangs have taken thee as a woman in travail. Be in pain, and labour to bring forth, O daughter of Zion, like a woman in travail: for now shalt thou go forth out of the city, and thou shalt dwell in the field, and thou shalt go even to Babylon; there shalt thou be delivered; there the Lord shall redeem thee from the hand of thine enemies.”

Now the chapter moves backward again in time to the tribulation. Israel is crying out as she is overrun, killed, and scattered yet once again. God asks where is the king (government) in whom she trusted? Where are the councilors, who adviced peace agreements with her neighbors? Have they perished? As is the reference point for this kind of tribulation, God compares it to a woman in labor giving birth. Instead of just calling Israel, Zion, she is again referred to as the “daughter of Zion.” Just as the phrase “daughter of Babylon” refers to the future Babylon who is the offspring of the original, so the “daughter” of Zion is present day Israel, which is an offspring of the ancient nation. She is laboring to bring forth the nation that God wants her to be. A nation under Him. She will go forth out of the city (actually the entire country) when the abomination of desolation occurs, after having been brought back as a nation in 1948. She will dwell in the fields and wilderness wherever she runs, places such as Edom, Moab, and Ammon. She will also go forth to Babylon. Now as we have seen that this chapter is definitely about the last days, we know that she will be taken to modern Babylon, which again, we surmise is America given the descriptions throughout Scripture. There she will be delivered from the hand of the beast. Now we know for certain that this is not speaking of the original Babylonian captivity, for she was not sent to Babylon at that time to be delivered from the oppressor (that Babylon was her oppressor), but to be punished for her sins. Here we are told she is being delivered by going to Babylon. There she will be redeemed from the hand of her enemies. In other words, brought safely away from and protected from her enemies. This clearly is not speaking of the original captivity. As her enemies completely surround her, this seems to be more evidence that Babylon is not modern day Iraq, as some think may be, but America who is an ocean away from her enemies.

Verse 11-13 “Now also many nations are gathered against thee, that say, Let her be defiled, and let our eye look upon Zion. But they know not the thoughts of the Lord, neither understand they his counsel: for he shall gather them as the sheaves into the floor. Arise and thresh, O daughter of Zion: for I will make thine horn iron, and I will make thy hoofs brass: and thou shalt beat in pieces many people: and I will consecrate their gain unto the Lord, and their substance unto the Lord of the whole earth.”

Nations will be gathered against Israel. These nations are looking for the annihilation of Israel, so that they may possess Jerusalem. As we are told in Zechariah 12:3 “And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it.” However, they do not know the Lord nor His word, or they would know that they will not win. He has said that He will gather them together in the place called Armageddon to destroy them. He has also told us in other verses, which we recently covered in another Bible passage, that Israel will plunder her neighbors. Zechariah 12:8-11 “In that day shall the Lord defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the Lord before them. And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon.” Revelation 16:15 “And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.” Even the most feeble of the children of Israel will be given supernatural strength to fight against these nations. All of the plunder that Israel gains from the fight will be dedicated to the Lord.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Ezekiel 21 Part 2 Verses 18-32

Verse 18- 20 “The word of the Lord came unto me again, saying, Also, thou son of man, appoint thee two ways, that the sword of the king of Babylon may come: both twain shall come forth out of one land: and choose thou a place, choose it at the head of the way to the city. Appoint a way, that the sword may come to Rabbath of the Ammonites, and to Judah in Jerusalem the defenced.”

The Lord gives Ezekiel another prophecy. This time God chooses a different way to refer to the sword. Before it was just the sword, or the sword in the hand of the slayer. Now God gets specific that there will be a sword in the hand of the king of Babylon. This is the only time in the chapter that He refers to the sword as the sword of the king of Babylon. Why the difference? I believe it is because this prophecy has two fulfillments, and the difference in reference is so that we can distinguish between the two. When referred to as just the sword, I believe it is a reference for both the first fulfillment as being in the hand of Babylon, but for the second fulfillment, I believe it is referring to the beast. The specificity of saying the sword of the king of Babylon makes it agree with the first fulfillment, but it would cause a hitch in the interpretation of the sword being the beast in the second fulfillment. Therefore it forces upon us the interpretation in the second fulfillment that this particular sword comes from the future king of Babylon and that this verse finds its second fulfillment in America, not in the beast as do the other references to the sword. With that in mind we can look at both prophecies and see what occurred and what will occur.

It says that two choices will come forth out of Babylon. Two paths lie before the king as to whom he will go to destroy. He has to make this decision at the crossroads where there is no turning back. One path leads to Rabbath of the Ammonites, which in modern day is in Jordan, and the second path is to Jerusalem, which it says is not defenseless.(Israel does have a good military.) From history we know that both the Ammonites and Judah were enemies of Babylon, which is why a choice was made. In that case, the king chose to destroy Jerusalem. In the modern fulfillment, there will come a time when the president will have to choose between siding with Israel against her enemies, which in this case is Jordan specifically, or taking up arms against Israel. The next few verses will tell us the outcome of that decision.

Verses 21-23 “For the king of Babylon stood at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination: he made his arrows bright, he consulted with images, he looked in the liver. At his right hand was the divination for Jerusalem, to appoint captains, to open the mouth in the slaughter, to lift up the voice with shouting, to appoint battering rams against the gates, to cast a mount, and to build a fort. And it shall be unto them as a false divination in their sight, to them that have sworn oaths: but he will call to remembrance the iniquity, that they may be taken.”

As the king of Babylon stands faced with the decision of which way to go, he uses divination. The ancient king's answer was to turn to Jerusalem. The Jews that had sworn oaths to the king did not worry and thought it a false divination that would come to nothing, as their false prophets were telling them that everything was going to be all right. Ezekiel was the only one telling the truth. But the king justifies this by saying they had once breached the covenant, so they have this coming. The second way to interpret their iniquity is that Judah has also breached the covenant with God, and He will bring this into remembrance by the sword that He is sending.

Now to know that the ancient king made this decision based on divination is not a surprise, but for a modern president to do that would seem to be. Actually it is not a stretch at all. The White House has been known to use astrology and there have been practitioners of witchcraft in office. For the president to be a follower of Satanic rituals is not a stretch at all in this day and age. Many of the elected officials now come right out and say that they are pagan worshipers. Our highest government officials already participate in the pagan ritual at the Bohemian Grove which offers a sacrifice on a yearly basis to (I believe it is) Molech. I have my suspicions that it is actually a human sacrifice. So this prophecy is not a stretch of credulity at all for our modern age. The divination tells him to go against Israel and to slaughter the inhabitants. Those who have sworn oaths (possibly the military in this case) believe this is a false divination, or really bad decision. Also Israel may make a peace covenant that makes them think they are safe, just as the first time around. And they would not think that we would ever do that to them. But again God will call to remembrance their iniquity in making any pact with the countries surrounding them, and forsaking their covenant with Him.

Verses 24 “Therefore thus saith the Lord God; Because ye have made your iniquity to be remembered, in that your transgressions are discovered, so that in all your doings your sins do appear; because, I say, that ye are come to remembrance, ye shall be taken with the hand.”

Now we see that indeed, it is their iniquity against God that He allows this destruction to come upon them. Yet still, the “king” chooses through his communication with Satanic channels to go against Jerusalem, and he will not be held guiltless for doing so, even though God is using him as His tool. Here is where we see why in earlier passages in Jeremiah it seemed that God was blaming America for the destruction of the Temple. It is because when faced with the choice, the leader will choose against Israel.

Verse 25-27 “And thou, profane wicked prince of Israel, whose day is come, when iniquity shall have an end, Thus saith the Lord God; Remove the diadem, and take off the crown: this shall not be the same: exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high. I will overturn, overturn, overturn, it: and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is: and I will give it him.”

Originally this was meant for Zedekiah, who was the last king of Judah. God has never allowed another king (although Rome appointed one, he was not a Jew) and will not until Yeshua returns. However in modern Israel we do have leaders who act in the capacity of king as the rulers. According to this passage, whoever is in leadership in Israel is not a believer in God. There is a distinct difference in Israel between those who are religious and those who are not. The leaders generally tend to not be religious in the sense of truly believing the Messiah is coming. We know from previous studies in Daniel and Revelation that God is going to bring an end to the iniquity in Israel, and then all Israel will be saved. God tells the leader to take off the crown, or come down from the position, as things are about to change. Those who have been abased will be exalted, and those who in their haughtiness were exalted will be abased. That is what God tells us in the New Testament. Matthew 19:30, “But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first..” God will overturn everything that has been going on in Israel to get ready to set up His kingdom. He says here that “it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is, and I will give it him.” This is clearly speaking of Yeshua, who is the only rightful King of Israel. So we see that indeed this is speaking of the end times, as when the Temple is destroyed during the tribulation, all of Israel will either flee or be killed, and there will be no Israel until Yeshua returns as King.

Verse 28-29 "And thou, son of man, prophesy and say, Thus saith the Lord God concerning the Ammonites, and concerning their reproach; even say thou, The sword, the sword is drawn: for the slaughter it is furbished, to consume because of the glittering: Whiles they see vanity unto thee, whiles they divine a lie unto thee, to bring thee upon the necks of them that are slain, of the wicked, whose day is come, when their iniquity shall have an end.”

Again Ezekiel is told to start another prophecy. This one is concerning the Ammonites who were located in what is modern Jordan. When Jerusalem was destroyed, the Ammonites mocked and jeered. Their diviners had told them that they were safe. But God is informing them that the sword is now drawn for them. That while their seers and prophets are giving them false prophecies (vanities) and lies, it will bring them to the same state as the Jews which have been slain. It will come upon their wicked necks also, as their day has also come, and God will bring their iniquity to an end also. That is what happened historically five years after Jerusalem was destroyed. As for the future, we are told in Daniel that the land that escapes out of the hand of the beast when he initially sets off to conquer is the land of Jordan. Daniel 12:41 “He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon.” It has always been surmised that the reason for this is because Scripture indicates (Isaiah 16:4, 63:1) that the children of Israel flee to Edom and Moab, which is in Jordan, when the beast desecrates the Temple. So initially it seems that Jordan will escape this wrath, but Scripture also indicates that in the end, God is going to punish them for their mockery of Israel's destruction. Jeremiah 49:2, 17 “Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will cause an alarm of war to be heard in Rabbah of the Ammonites; and it shall be a desolate heap, and her daughters shall be burned with fire: then shall Israel be heir unto them that were his heirs, saith the Lord.......Also Edom shall be a desolation: every one that goeth by it shall be astonished, and shall hiss at all the plagues thereof.” This is even though it has been harboring Israel's refugees. The Israelites will be a part of this destruction. Isaiah 11:14 “But they (Israel) shall fly upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west; they shall spoil them (Edom and Moab); and the children of Ammon shall obey them.” This passage is referring to the time after Yeshua returns and brings His people back into Israel at the end of the 70th week of Daniel.

Verse 30- 32 “Shall I cause it to return into his sheath? I will judge thee in the place where thou wast created, in the land of thy nativity. And I will pour out mine indignation upon thee, I will blow against thee in the fire of my wrath, and deliver thee into the hand of brutish men, and skilful to destroy. Thou shalt be for fuel to the fire; thy blood shall be in the midst of the land; thou shalt be no more remembered: for I the Lord have spoken it.”

Now we come to it. The really interesting part. God asks if he is going to put his “sword” back in the sheath for another day. We already know the answer to that from verse 5 where God tells us He will not return the sword to its sheath. He is going to judge the slayer who has been wielding this sword. And where is He going to judge and punish him? In Ammon (Jordan). Here is where the really interesting part comes, and I have never realized this until now. It says that Ammon is the birthplace of this slayer. Maybe that is why Edom, Moab, and Ammon are excluded from the beast's conquering. Is it possible he hails from Jordan? That Jordan is his home? Quite honestly I think that is the last country over there from which people are expecting the beast to come. But would not that be the perfect place then, in Satan's eyes? The place that we would least suspect? God is going to pour out his wrath on this nation, but also on this man. And it is going to be with fire. He is going to deliver the slayer to brutish men. Men who are very skilled at torturing and taking a life. This word “brutish” is very bizarre in that the Hebrew meaning is in the context of kindling and burning (which we see with the mention of fire and that he will be fuel for it), but also it contains a meaning of eating. I have some speculations as to what this may really indicate, but I do not want to go there right now. His blood will be in the midst of the land, but in any event, he will be remembered no more. God has spoken.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Ezekiel 21 Part 1 Verses 1-17

I have in earlier posts on Babylon shown that God holds Babylon (America) responsible for the destruction of the Tribulation Temple. This chapter in Ezekiel may hold the key to why that is. In chapter 20 God tells Israel how in spite of the fact that they were idol worshipers in Egypt, He brought them out for His name sake. Then in the wilderness, when they turned on Him again, He punished that generation in the hopes that the children would follow His statutes. They did not, but still He brought them into the promised land for His name sake. Then in the land they again turned from God. He is tired of them doing this, so He is going to punish them. Chapter 21 is a prophecy about Israel, but it tells what Babylon will do to her.

Verse 1- 2 “And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, Son of man, set thy face toward Jerusalem, and drop thy word toward the holy places, and prophesy against the land of Israel.”

Ezekiel is told to face Jerusalem and aim words directly at the holy places.

Verse 3-5 “And say to the land of Israel, Thus saith the Lord; Behold, I am against thee, and will draw forth my sword out of his sheath, and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked. Seeing then that I will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked, therefore shall my sword go forth out of his sheath against all flesh from the south to the north. That all flesh may know that I the Lord have drawn forth my sword out of his sheath: it shall not return any more.”

God tells Israel that He is against them, and that He is bringing a sword (which He will give to a particular person) against them to destroy them. Not only the wicked, but the righteous also. Nobody is safe from this attack. It will come against everyone from the northern to the southern borders. He is doing this that everyone would know that He is doing this. And He is not putting His sword away afterward. I believe the reason He is not putting this sword away, is that after all is done, He is going to destroy the sword. I believe that this is ultimately speaking of the sword of the beast of Revelation.

Verse 6- 7 “Sigh therefore, thou son of man, with the breaking of thy loins; and with bitterness sigh before their eyes. And it shall be, when they say unto thee, Wherefore sighest thou? That thou shalt answer, For the tidings; because it cometh: and every heart shall melt, and all hands shall be feeble, and every spirit shall faint, and all knees shall be weak as water: behold, it cometh, and shall be brought to pass, saith the Lord God.”

God tells Ezekiel to mourn over this prophecy in the site of the people. The result being that people would ask him why he was so upset. Then he was to tell them that he is groaning over what is about to fall upon the people. That at its coming every heart would completely fall apart both mentally and physically as it would be so horrible and frightening. And God is guaranteeing that it will come to pass. Now while the captivity of Israel by ancient Babylon probably did evoke this response, note the similarity of the response to what we read about the Day of the Lord. We are told that then every heart would melt and hands would faint. Isaiah 13:6-7 “Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man's heart shall melt.”

Verse 8-11 “Again the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, Son of man, prophesy, and say, Thus saith the Lord; Say, A sword, a sword is sharpened, and also furbished: it is sharpened to make a sore slaughter, it is furbished that it may glitter: should we then make mirth? It contemneth the rod of my son, as every tree. And he hath given it to be furbished, that it may be handled: this sword is sharpened, and it is furbished, to give it into the hand of the slayer.”

God tells Ezekiel to prophesy again, this time about the sword. This sword has been sharpened and polished so that it will be able to do a thorough job of killing. It is so polished that it glitters. It will shine as it cuts through the land. Should people then be indulging in all the frivolity of life with this on the horizon? This sword will even mock “the rod of my son” as every tree. This sword will mock Judah, from whom the rod of Jesse springs, and the wielder of this sword, the slayer into whose hand it has been given will even mock Yeshua, the Son of God and His kingdom, just as he does every other nation. We read about this mocking of the Son of God in both Daniel and Revelation. Daniel 7:25 “And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. ” Revelation 13:5 “And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.”

Verse 12-13 “Cry and howl, son of man: for it shall be upon my people, it shall be upon all the princes of Israel: terrors by reason of the sword shall be upon my people: smite therefore upon thy thigh. Because it is a trial, and what if the sword contemn even the rod? It shall be no more, saith the Lord God.”

Again we see the same words used as for the Day of the Lord, Isaiah 13:6 “Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty.” We know that the Day of the Lord will come upon all people. It will come upon Israel as well as the rest of the world. The slayer, (beast) will kill all of God's people, both Jew and Christian alike. Why? Because it is a trial, or in other words, tribulation, in fact the tribulation. How do we know this is speaking of the beast and the tribulation? Because the sword mocks (that is the meaning of contemn) even the rod itself. We know that the rod is the rod of Jesse or Yeshua. Because it does this, the sword will be no more after it has done its dirty deed, just as pointed out in verse 5. We know from Revelation what happens to the beast when God's wrath is poured out. Daniel 7:26 “But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end.” Revelation 18:20 “And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.”

Verse 14-15“Thou therefore, son of man, prophesy, and smite thine hands together, and let the sword be doubled the third time, the sword of the slain: it is the sword of the great men that are slain, which entereth into their privy chambers. I have set the point of the sword against all their gates, that their heart may faint, and their ruins be multiplied: ah! It is made bright, it is wrapped up for the slaughter.”

God tells Ezekiel to clap his hands together and pronounce that the sword will be doubled yet a third time. In the original fulfillment, there were three times that Babylon came against Judah. First King Zedekiah was taken away, then they came and burned the city and temple, and the last time they took the remnant of Jews back to Babylon. There were three waves. As for the future reference, it could just mean that the violence is so great (and we know it will be) that it is three times doubled from what they experienced the first time. Or it could mean that there will be three waves of persecution. I have not seen three times outlined in Scripture anywhere yet, but that may be because there is much Scripture to yet cover. In any event, it will be really bad. This sword even slays the great men of the land who are hiding out in their places of refuge. God has set this sword to destroy them to turn them back to Him. Their hearts will faint for fear, the country will be nothing but ruins after the sword comes through. God has prepared this sword of His for the slaughter of His people, to rid the land of the rebellious and unbelieving. We know that there will be a remnant saved from Israel. Isaiah 10:20-22 “And it shall come to pass in that day, that the remnant of Israel, and such as are escaped of the house of Jacob, shall no more again stay upon him that smote them; but shall stay upon the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. The remnant shall return, even the remnant of Jacob, unto the mighty God. For though thy people Israel be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant of them shall return: the consumption decreed shall overflow with righteousness.”

Verse 16 -17 “Go thee one way or other, either on the right hand, or on the left, whithersoever thy face is set. I will also smite mine hands together, and I will cause my fury to rest: I the Lord have said it.”

They can run any way they want, it won't matter. God is clapping His hands together to signal that this is a done deal. When this is accomplished, only then will His wrath against Israel be done. The Lord God has spoken.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Jeremiah 51:57-64

Verse 57 – 64 “And I will make drunk her princes, and her wise men, her captains, and her rulers, and her mighty men: and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith the King, whose name is the LORD of hosts. Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly broken, and her high gates shall be burned with fire; and the people shall labour in vain, and the folk in the fire, and they shall be weary. The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Maaseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah into Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. And this Seraiah was a quiet prince. So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written against Babylon. And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, When thou comest to Babylon, and shalt see, and shalt read all these words; Then shalt thou say, O LORD, thou hast spoken against this place, to cut it off, that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever. And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of Euphrates: And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.”

God declares that he will make drunk, all of the men of any kind of power in Babylon. While this may mean that he has them partying and actually drunk, as they do not think they can possibly be overthrown, just as ancient Babylon was literally partying and getting drunk when they were overthrown by Persia, it also has the sense of them behaving as if they were drunk, reeling from the shock and awe of what is happening to them. They will sleep a perpetual sleep, in other words, death. Her walls will be broken. The walls of an ancient city were the means of keeping an invader out. They were her first line of defense. Babylon will lose her first line of defense. The walls that surround her (all the waters) will not pose an obstacle to her enemy. They will breach the “walls” of her defense and easily get in to defeat her. We already have had our walls breached. The enemy has been infiltrating and setting up camp (literally) within our walls. We do not keep them out, in the name of political correctness, and it is this lax attitude which will destroy us. Her high gates will burn with fire. Actually all of her will burn with fire. People will try to stop what is going on and fight against it, but in vain.

Now the passage returns to the time when it was written and Jeremiah tells how he gave these words to Seraiah to take with him when he went with Zedekiah to Babylon. Seraiah was charged with reading the words to Babylon and telling them the prophecies about Babylon's demise. Then he is to take the book, bind a stone to it and cast it into the Euphrates as a picture demonstration of Babylon's future. Just as the book sinks never to rise, so Babylon will never rise from the evil that God has planned against her. We see that God does reference Babylon here as being a woman, even though He earlier called her by the name Bel, which is said to be another name for Baal, who is thought of as a masculine god. Bel is the goddess of Babylon's name. Possibly Baal originally was a female god, or maybe she is Baal's wife. It appears that through various pagan cultures, it is a god/goddess duo that reign – Osiris/Isis, Shiva/Kali, Nimrod/Semiramis, etc. While this prophecy was aimed at ancient Babylon, we see that it is also aimed at Bel, who still exists. It may be that Baal is the demon who inhabited all of the heads (kings of the nations [mountains]) on the beast that she rides in Revelation and he is presently imprisoned, which is why this is addressed solely to her. Possibly it is he who comes from the abyss to inhabit the beast in Revelation. She has been riding that beast all along. They have been a pair. He now hates her and seeks to destroy her. Possibly because she has been free, while he has been imprisoned. Naturally this is just a hypothesis based on the commonality of myths and hinted at by the Bible, but not verifiable by facts. Babylon is yet to be punished to the extent outlined in this book of Jeremiah, and God has promised that everything He has prophesied against her will happen.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Harold Camping and His May 21, 2011 Rapture

To my readers,

With so much media attention around Harold Camping's message that the rapture is going to occur on May 21, 2011, and his putting billboards announcing this around the country, I felt I needed to at least acknowledge what is going on, given this is an end times blog. Rather than post the article in the middle of my study of Babylon though, I preferred to put it where it rightfully belongs, on my "Conundrums and Controversy" blog, as it most certainly qualifies as controversy. If you would like to see what I have to say about Camping's theology and prediction, please click on the website listed below to read the article on Harold Camping.

Bible Conundrums and Controversies

Part two, the aftermath of May 21 can be found at Harold Camping Fails and Tries Again With October 21, 2011


Jeremiah 51:50-56

Verse 50-51 “Ye that have escaped the sword, go away, stand not still: remember the LORD afar off, and let Jerusalem come into your mind. We are confounded, because we have heard reproach: shame hath covered our faces: for strangers are come into the sanctuaries of the LORD's house.”

It mentions those who have escaped the sword. As already discussed and seen in the Scriptures, it will be the Muslims who come against the land. They come literally with sword in hand to behead people. This is their means of execution. This is why in Revelation it is those who were beheaded for their witness that are seen coming out of the tribulation. Revelation 20:4 “And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshiped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.” Those who have escaped are to leave Babylon and think of Jerusalem. As mentioned in an earlier passage, God wants those who survive to go to Jerusalem. That will be His point of return and He wants His people there. The people are ashamed, for they know the Lord's house has been desecrated. They let it happen a second time, because they were not listening to the Lord.

Verse 52 – 56 “Wherefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will do judgment upon her graven images: and through all her land the wounded shall groan. Though Babylon should mount up to heaven, and though she should fortify the height of her strength, yet from me shall spoilers come unto her, saith the LORD. A sound of a cry cometh from Babylon, and great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans:Because the LORD hath spoiled Babylon, and destroyed out of her the great voice; when her waves do roar like great waters, a noise of their voice is uttered: Because the spoiler is come upon her, even upon Babylon, and her mighty men are taken, every one of their bows is broken: for the LORD God of recompences shall surely requite.”

God again mentioned Babylon's graven images. She is a nation of intense idolatry. Throughout the length and breadth of the land her wounded will be groaning in death. Now we see a reference that clearly is for our time. Though she should go up to heaven (outer space) and fortify her strength (put up military satellites) yet God will send people to spoil or plunder and destroy her. There will be a great outcry when Babylon is taken. The destruction will be very, very great, in fact permanent. He destroys her great voice. Indeed, America has a loud voice in the world, although her voice may be dimming as time goes by. Even the waves surrounding Babylon are roaring. The rulers and military men are taken. Their weapons are useless, because God is taking vengeance upon her to recompense her for what she has done to Him, His temple, and His people.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Jeremiah 51:44-49

Verse 44-46 “And I will punish Bel in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his mouth that which he hath swallowed up: and the nations shall not flow together any more unto him: yea, the wall of Babylon shall fall. My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and deliver ye every man his soul from the fierce anger of the LORD. And lest your heart faint, and ye fear for the rumour that shall be heard in the land; a rumour shall both come one year, and after that in another year shall come a rumour, and violence in the land, ruler against ruler.”

God is going to punish Bel. Bel is Baal, the god of Babylon. Lest people think this is merely an imaginary entity, it must be realized that the fallen angels and demons posed as gods. They draw strength from people's worship. No more will people run to the god of Babylon to worship at his or rather her feet. For Babylon appears to be a woman, according to Revelation. God now warns His people who live in Babylon to get out of her before His wrath hits her. One of the reasons I am not as concerned, as many are about the possible destruction of this country by China or others at this time, is because of these prophecies. It is not that there may not be terrorist attacks, there already have been. And times will definitely get tough in every way, especially for Christians during the tribulation. Many will die. But the kind of devastation that is worried about will not come until God has pulled His people out of her, and I do not believe He is doing that yet. It says that there will be rumors year after year, and even violence in the land as people, even rulers, go after each other. This will continue to happen, but it is not the final destruction of the country yet. That is left for the end, after God has allowed her to do her worst.

Verse 47- 49 “Therefore, behold, the days come, that I will do judgment upon the graven images of Babylon: and her whole land shall be confounded, and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her. Then the heaven and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for Babylon: for the spoilers shall come unto her from the north, saith the LORD. As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth.”

God is going to pour out his wrath on all the graven images of Babylon. Nowadays, people do not worship graven images quite as much as they used to (although there are denominations and religions where icons are still bowed down to – we know who they are), but in the sense of idols, there are many different ones we can see that God will destroy: money, material possessions, idolatry of movie stars, sports people, even political figures. All of these things are idols which will be destroyed. The whole country will be confounded or confused as to what is going on. People will be being killed by the millions. The frightening thing for any American who is not a Christian who may read this is that unless you are a true believer, or one of the children of Israel that has been chosen to survive, you will not. Of course anyone who bears the mark of the beast will not survive long after that anyhow, so it really does not matter much. Babylon's destroyers will come “from the north”. We have discussed that before. And as she has caused Israel to be slain, so shall she be. We have also heard this many times before. It is also mentioned that heaven and earth shall sing for the destruction of Babylon. We see that in Revelation 19:1-6 “And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God: For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever. And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia. And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.”