Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Beast or Antichrist in the Old Testament Pt.4

We have been looking at the various names by which the beast is called. There is not a lot in the next few chapters presented, but as He is mentioned and there is other interesting information, we will take a look at them. The first is another mention of “the Assyrian” in Isaiah 31.

Verse 1-5 “Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses,and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the Lord! Yet he also is wise, and will bring evil, and will not call back his words: but will arise against the house of the evildoers, and against the help of them that work iniquity. Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their horses flesh, and not spirit. When the Lord shall stretch out his hand, both he that helpeth shall fall, and he that is holpen shall fall down, and they all shall fail together. For thus hath the Lord spoken unto me, Like as the lion and the young lion roaring on his prey, when a multitude of shepherds is called forth against him, he will not be afraid of their voice, nor abase himself for the noise of them: so shall the Lord of hosts come down to fight for mount Zion, and for the hill thereof.”

Here we find a passage that tells us how Israel seek “Egypt's” help. It tells how it will not do them any good, as the “Egyptians” are just men, not God, and that both they and the Israelites will fall. It is the Lord who will come down and fight for Mount Zion. He will defend and deliver Jerusalem. Because we find in the prophecies that the land mentioned is not always the land meant in the second fulfillment, that it could be “spiritual Egypt” in this case, it is difficult to know for certain who is being referred to here. In the Scriptures, we find that Egypt is not on antichrist's side, as he goes after them to destroy them. (Daniel 11:42-43). At the moment to think of Egypt being on Israel's side is clearly not something one would consider, as the people want the peace treaty revoked, if it has not been already. From this, if taken literally, it appears that they side with Israel, and that some of the Jews flee to Egypt during the tribulation. In Isaiah 52, which I will cover in a moment says this in verse 4 “For thus saith the Lord God, My people went down aforetime into Egypt to sojourn there; and the Assyrian oppressed them without cause.” Here we see another reference to the Assyrian, and we will see when that chapter is covered shortly that it is referring to the end times. The question is, is it truly Egypt that is meant, or is it spiritual Egypt, just as America is today spiritual Babylon?

Isaiah 31:6-9 “Turn ye unto him from whom the children of Israel have deeply revolted. For in that day every man shall cast away his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which your own hands have made unto you for a sin. Then shall the Assyrian fall with the sword, not of a mighty man; and the sword, not of a mean man, shall devour him: but he shall flee from the sword, and his young men shall be discomfited. And he shall pass over to his strong hold for fear, and his princes shall be afraid of the ensign, saith the Lord, whose fire is in Zion, and his furnace in Jerusalem.”

God warns Israel to turn back to God, from whom they have turned, instead of looking for human help in the day of distress, when the nations will come against them. Notice the idols of gold and silver being thrown away. We saw that men cast away their idols of gold and silver on the Day of the Lord (Isaiah 2). This gives us a time frame, as the Day of the Lord is toward the end of Daniel's 70th week. The beast falls by a sword, but not the sword of a mighty or mean man. We know from Daniel and Revelation that it is the Lord who defeats the beast. He tries to flee from the Lord to his own refuge, and his minions will be afraid of the signs of the Lord's coming after them, but the Lord will prevail as he burns His enemies in His Holy Land.

Here we see the beast again referred to as “the Assyrian.” There is not much other identifying characteristics except that he does have a fortress type of refuge or something akin to a palace or place where someone who aspires to be the world leader would live.

Now on to chapter 52. While this chapter only contains one little reference to the beast, the chapter is very informative and deserves to be studied.

Verses 1-6 “Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Shake thyself from the dust; arise, and sit down, O Jerusalem: loose thyself from the bands of thy neck, O captive daughter of Zion. For thus saith the Lord, Ye have sold yourselves for nought; and ye shall be redeemed without money. For thus saith the Lord God, My people went down aforetime into Egypt to sojourn there; and the Assyrian oppressed them without cause. Now therefore, what have I here, saith the Lord, that my people is taken away for nought? They that rule over them make them to howl, saith the Lord; and my name continually every day is blasphemed. Therefore my people shall know my name: therefore they shall know in that day that I am he that doth speak: behold it is I.”

In the first verse we are told that the holy city of Jerusalem will no more see the uncircumcised (spiritually definitely and physically possibly) and unclean (definitely spiritually and again possibly meaning ceremonially unclean) come into her. She is also told to put on her beautiful garments. This clearly is a reference to the end of times and the millennium when this will be the condition of Jerusalem. She is told to shake the dust off and take the bands of her captivity off. She is finally free from having the infidels (to borrow a Muslim term) rule over her. She is told that she sold herself (making peace treaties with all her enemies) for nothing, as she will be redeemed without money or having to pay a price (in today's case – land). She will be redeemed by the Lord. Again there is the verse that mentions that she has gone down into Egypt. As from the context the time frame concerns the end times, it is clear that there must be some Jews who run to “Egypt” whomever that may refer to spiritually. As we know the beast (again called the Assyrian) does go down into Egypt and oppresses everyone there, it may possibly fit that it is Egypt. God then asks what is going on? Have his people gone down there for nothing? Those there only give them tribulation and make them howl, and for what purpose? The purpose is then made clear. They will know the Lord's name (Yeshua) and know that it is He who is God, and who is speaking to them. Yeshua is as much the “I am” as is the Father. He is also a part of the Godhead. Again, we know that it is only at the end when He returns that Israel realizes who He is. So we see another clear identifier as to the time frame of this passage.

Verses 7-10 “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth! Thy watchmen shall lift up the voice; with the voice together shall they sing: for they shall see eye to eye, when the Lord shall bring again Zion. Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem: for the Lord hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem. The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.”

This is a famous verse that is much quoted. It is about the Lord's first coming and the bringing of the gospel message. That is what the word “gospel” means, “good news.” But there is more than His first coming in these verses. The Lord shall bring Zion back. He shall redeem Jerusalem and comfort His people. That is about the Lord's Second Coming. Jerusalem will have been laid waste by the nations and the destroyer, but she will rejoice in the return of her Savior. The Lord will bare His arm against the nations. To bare one's arm is to roll up your sleeves for a good fight. At that time the entire world will see the salvation of the Lord.

Verses 11-12 “Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of her; be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the Lord. For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the Lord will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rereward.”(this word is not a typo of the word “reward”, the word means rearguard or the guard of your backside).

In spite of the mention of Egypt, this section (chapters 40-66) of the book of Isaiah was originally written to foretell the Babylonian captivity, so in that context all the literal first fulfillment passages would be addressing this situation. We have been looking at it from the second future fulfillment position, which is about the end times. Therefore, the countries mentioned may be spiritually referring to another land. In the context of this chapter it is strange, as Babylon is not mentioned even though these chapters address that captivity. It is Egypt that is mentioned. So the question comes, is it talking about Babylon (America) or Egypt? Whichever country it is (and we know that the Jews do come to America to escape the beast), they are told to depart from the country. We do know from previous Scriptures that they are told to come out of Babylon at the end before she is destroyed.

So they are to depart out of “Egypt” or in the case of the fact that it is addressing the Babylonian captivity, to come out of Babylon, and not to touch any “unclean” thing. They are to separate themselves from anything that is spiritually and physically unclean. As the time of this departure will be at a time when the world will be suffering under terrible cataclysms, there will probably be a lot of diseased and dying people, as well as spiritually unclean people around them. They are to keep their distance from them. This is very important because of the following. Now comes an interesting phrase. They bear the vessels of the Lord. This is very important. Right now in Israel, the Temple Institute and the Temple Mount Faithful have been preparing everything for the third temple. From what I have read, all of the temple vessels and accoutrements have been made. This includes not only the candlesticks, bowls, and things like that, but musical instruments, clothing, etc. An altar for sacrifice has been built according to the Law, and there is a foundation stone hewn according to the Law that is dragged up to the Temple Mount several times a year at feast times to try to lay the cornerstone of the new temple. The priests have all been found and trained (Kohanin or Cohens – meaning descendents of Aaron who can be priests. Just being a Levite does not suffice). I understand a red heifer has now been born and may be ready to prepare for the ashes. I hear the temple is pre-fab for easy and quick construction, so there appears to be nothing in the way except permission to build it. Apparently as these vessels and such take a long time to make (they've been at it for years) and they will be needed immediately in the millennial temple, God will see fit to preserve them by removing them from the temple in the tribulation diaspora when they flee. They are to bring them back at the time of the regathering after the tribulation. But this time, unlike when they had to flee for their lives, they will not go back in haste or by flight. They will be following the Lord as He LEADS them back to Jerusalem. And He will also be behind them. One is reminded of the pillar of fire and the cloud that led them out of Egypt. This time Yeshua will be in front, and the Holy Spirit will be in the rear protecting them front and back.

Verses 13-15 “Behold, my servant shall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high. As many were astonied at thee, his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men; So shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider.”

God says that His Servant (Yeshua) will deal wisely with all. He will be exalted and praised, as He should have been right from the start. Many will be taken by surprise. Now we see a prophecy that was fulfilled at His first coming. His face was so marred more than any other man. We know from Scripture that Christ was not a comely (handsome) man to begin with. Isaiah 53:2 “For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.” But now we see that His face is terribly marred. This is from the horrible beating that He received at the time of the crucifixion. Whether those marks still remain as do the nail prints in His hand I do not know. But this tells us that His torture was great at that time. And his form (body) also. His skin was torn off His body right down to the bone. Now it says that the kings will shut their mouths at their astonishment, for what they have not known about Him they shall see with their own eyes and what they haven't heard about Him they will now be forced to consider as truth.

No comments:

Post a Comment