A Dirge (For A Friend That Fell)

Oh Troubler, why do you trouble us?

We had just talked to you, we thought you were doing better…

Why did you take your eyes off of Him who comes to us in the midst of every storm?

What did you see, when you gazed at the Babylonian garment?

 

What misery was so great that you were willing to sell out,

just to relieve it?

Did it work? Are you better now? Now,  we who love you are miserable?

Wouldn’t it be better to suffer than to sin?

Which is worse, suffering or sin? Which is the cause and which is the effect?

 

 

Achen,We don’t want to go on without you…

We are worried about you brother…

but we worry in all of our prayers for you …

Why did you let us down?

If one suffers don’t we all? If anyone of us sins, don’t we burn?

 

Now we remember

how painful it is to love someone,

to hope for something better,

We all hoped against hope for you, (We still do)

But this fall is an offense…a stumbling block and a burden…

 

Now we remember, how bitter death is

in all of it’s forms…

truly the wages of sin is death…

When you sin, we all die for we are one…if one suffers…all suffer

 

Troubler why did you trouble us?

What were you looking for when you went out from among us?

Admit it,

Did you think you could grab for yourself

some of the solace once found in the garden?

Were you going to crash by the flaming Cherubim and take for yourself?

 

I mourn for you my brother

I remember by the fire at the lake,The men of Christ gathered around you,

they prayed and sang hymns

as  you were born again

unto a living hope…

You called upon Jesus,

 

Remember that we told you once,

That the mercies of the Savior, are new every morning?

(Haven’t we sang that in song, time and again?)

That should you fall a thousand times, get back up,

Even in prison, or as they say ,(The ends of the earth)

“If you seek me, you shall find me, if you seek me with all of your heart”.

 

How could we disown you? (Never)

We are not ashamed of anyone who sins,

as long as they return…

We know, brother, none of us are far from defection,

Could it be that this trouble and pain is what it might take

to finally bring you to the One who has loved you Brother?

to Him who Has washed you of your sins in his own blood?

 

Troubler remember,

If God marked iniquities, who could stand,

but with Him there is forgiveness,

that He might be feared…

Troubler, All does not have to be a loss-

Just remember the thief on the cross!

 

 

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Behold The Messiah of Israel…miracle nation pt 28

And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The Branch; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the Lord:  Even he shall build the temple of the Lord; and he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and he shall be a priest upon his throne: and the counsel of peace shall be between them both.(Zechariah 6:12-13)

Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street.  A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law.( Isaiah 42:1-4)

“Behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD, “When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; And He will reign as king and act wisely And do justice and righteousness in the land.(Jeremiah 23:5)

Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the Branch.(Zechariah 3:8)

Before the LORD created the miracle nation, at the very beginning when men fell, He made a promise of salvation. He spoke to the serpent who had tempted the first couple, but in their hearing,

“I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed, He shall crush your head but you will bruise his heel”.(Genesis 3:15)

The LORD would send a “Seed of the woman” to undo Satan’s work, He would accomplish, but it would cost him pain and suffering.This “seed of the woman”(virgin born), would come through Shem, Torah, Abraham,Isaac and Jacob. As scripture develops so also does the description and predictions concerning this person.

He would be born in Bethlehem(Micah 5), He would come through the line of Judah,(Genesis 49:8-10), through the family of Jesse(Isaiah 11:1-5) and of the house of David(2 Samuel 7:12-15).

The prophets designated him as the Son of David, the King, The Servant of JAhweh, and the Messiah.

The Word Messiah mean “Anointed”, because the office of Priest and King was inaugurated by a public anointing with oil, to signify that this person was God’s chosen vessel, and upon Him was the Spirit.The Messiah would come as the ultimate Priest and King, as well as a Prophet.

Israel, by law had separation of King and Priest,(Where we get separation of church and state). Kings came from the line of Judah, and Priests were selected from the tribe of Levi.No King could take upon himself the office of a Priest, nor could Priests rule as King. But the prophecy of Zechariah  predicted that a man named “The branch” would have both offices combined in himself! The Messiah would be King and Priest.

The Branch (a Shoot of a tree) would build the true temple of the LORD, and reign as King and do wisely.In his days the Righteous would flourish. The word for “Branch” in Hebrew is usually TSamach,  but the one used in Isaiah is Netzer, “Shoot”. The word Nazareth means “Shoot” or Sprout.

Israel has cherished these and many, many other prophecies in scripture, waiting through all manner of trials and tribulations through dark and painful centuries, for the arrival of the Messiah who would inaugurate the age of Righteousness and Peace;

And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:  And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord; And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: 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.  And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins. The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.(Isaiah 11:1-6)

But there is a problem.

Scripture set prophetic time limits upon the arrival of the Messiah.

The Patriarch Jacob prophesied that Messiah, (Shiloh) would come before the “Scepter departs from Judah”. The Scepter, refers to the tribal identity, as well as to sovereign self rule, including the right to administer capitol punishment within the Tribe.

Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be in the neck of thine enemies; thy father’s children shall bow down before thee.  Judah is a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up?  The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. (Genesis 49:8-10)

But the right of Punishment was taken away from the tribe of Judah in 7 AD by a Roman administrator, as we have mentioned earlier. This is why Jesus was crucified by Romans and not stoned to death by the elders of the people of Judea.

Then said Pilate unto them, Take ye him, and judge him according to your law. The Jews therefore said unto him, It is not lawful for us to put any man to death:(John 18:311)

Furthermore in the destruction of the temple in 70AD, all tribal records which had copiously been preserved were destroyed by the Romans when they burned and overthrew the Temple. The Scepter has departed from Judah. Jews know they are Jews, but almost in entirety, none of them know what tribe they are from.

The Messiah had to have come between 7 AD and 70 Ad.

Daniel 9 confirms this, for the LORD showed Daniel that the Messiah would come and be “cup off” but not for himself but for the people, then the Temple would be destroyed. This happened in 70 AD. The Messiah has come already, but evidently wasn’t recognized or accepted by the miracle nation.

Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.  And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.(Daniel 9:25-26)

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How Long, Hosea?…miracle nation pt 37

 For I will be unto Ephraim as a lion, and as a young lion to the house of Judah: I, even I, will tear and go away; I will take away, and none shall rescue him.  I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early.  Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.  After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.(Hosea 5:14-6:2)

We have been looking at the words of the prophet Hosea, concerning the long term prospects of the miracle nation, Israel.

Hosea saw by the Holy Spirit, that Israel had played the harlot against her husband, Jahweh, the LORD. He also saw that because of her intractability she would have to go into exile for a long period of time.

He literally saw that there would be no nation, king, priest national symbol or identity,or temple for “many Days”.

But Hosea also saw that there would come a transition period, when Israel would “Return and seek the LORD her God and David her King”, in the last days.

For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim: Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and David their king; and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days.(Hosea 3:4-5)

Furthermore Hosea spoke in the name of God, in the first person, declaring ;

I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early.”(Hosea 5:15)

God would leave the Holy House in Jerusalem, and never return until Israel confessed her offense against him!

There is no chapter break in the Prophet Hosea, so chapter 6:1-2 just flow out of the previous declaration that God was leaving.

Hosea encourages Israel to return, and recognize that the sufferings of her history are directly due to the dealings of God. The long night of exile, pograms, holocausts, wandering, homelessness, and persecution are all what Moses warned would happen as a result of the curse of the broken law, and the refusal of the nation to repent. But after the evening, morning.

“After two days he will revive us…”

How long would this long exile last ? When will the resurrection of the chosen nation occur? The Prophet tells us that it will occur after two days.

The Apostle Peter told us to always be mindful of the words of the apostles and prophets of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Then he quoted one of those prophets, Moses.

Moses told us in Psalm 90, that “With the LORD, a day is as a thousand years and a thousand years are as a day…”

For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night.(Psalm 90:4)

But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.( 2 Peter 3:8)

Jesus came to this earth only two days ago, according to this reckoning. Adam and Eve lived 6 days ago, and the flood occurred four days ago, The earth is on the verge of the long awaited sabbath, :The day of the LORD”. And Israel must remain in exile, under gentile rule and without King for two thousand years, (Which is almost up!).

Jesus was thinking of this verse , from the perspective of the church, when Pharisees told him that “Herod is after you…”;

The same day there came certain of the Pharisees, saying unto him, Get thee out, and depart hence: for Herod will kill thee. And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.(Luke 13:31-32)

For ‘two days’, i.e. two thousand years, the church will perform cures and cast out Satan in Jesus ‘name, even though Herod(Caesar, the POPE, Mao, Stalin,Hitler, the Ayotullahs) are always after him! But we await the “Third day”, the Day of the LORD in which the church and Israel shall be completed.

From a Jewish perspective, for two days, is Israel, torn, bruised, exiled, wandering and persecuted, but on the third day she is resurrected and shall live in His sight forever!The time of gentile domination is almost over for we are at the end of the two thousand years, hallelujah!

As Paul the apostle tells us of Israel,

Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness?…  For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?…And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.(Romans 11:12,15,26-27)

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Israel, Acknowledge Thine Iniquity…miracle nation pt 36

For I will be unto Ephraim as a lion, and as a young lion to the house of Judah: I, even I, will tear and go away; I will take away, and none shall rescue him.  I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early. Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.  After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight. Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.(Hosea 5:14-6:3)

We have already seen that the prophet Hosea predicted that Israel would abide many days without King, Temple, priests, national symbols, political identity, nor idols.Furthermore ,Hosea the prophet told us that there would be a return of Israel,and a national return to the worship of Jehovah and of “David their King”.

When will it occur? The Prophet Hosea tells us this will occur ,”In the latter days”.

There was a seventy year captivity of Judah, they were carried away to Babylon, the temple was destroyed and the nation was looted of anyone of any earthly value. The Babylonians literally hauled off the Judean nobility,  artisans, Priests, warrior class, and anyone with skill at all, into slavery to Babylon. But the nation was restored and the temple was rebuilt, thus That wasn’t the fulfillment of Hosea 3:4-5.

Hosea 5-6 gives us an idea as to the length of time that Israel would remain in the desolate state prophesied in Hosea chapter 3.

First the LORD assures Ephraim and Judah,that though they would seemingly be torn apart and wounded by Assyrians, Babylonians, Greeks and Romans, really it is HE himself, the LORD of the covenant who is doing the wounding.The sufferings and scattering into exile to come are of Him, therefore there is no one whom they could successfully turn to to rescue them.

Then in the name of God, Hosea uttered one of the most amazing “first person ” prophecies in the entire scripture,

“I will go and return to the place, till they acknowledge their offenses…”

In what way could Jahweh ever “go” anywhere, seeing he is omni-present?

On;y in this sense; that in Jerusalem, the Most High God chose to descend and dwell in the Holy House of which he gave the Jews the pattern and Jahweh lived among them, animating the nation and drawing the ends of the earth there that Israel might by utterly unique, the one nation on earth in which God dwells among men.

What Hosea is prophesying is that Jahweh is leaving …He is going back to heaven.

Ezekiel saw it. He saw the departure of the cloud of glory, which lifted from the temple, and waited there above the temple, then moved to the mount of Olives, and waited there, (perhaps hoping for repentance?). Finally Ezekiel saw the cloud of glory lift up to heaven!

Then the glory of the Lord departed from off the threshold of the house, and stood over the cherubims. And the cherubims lifted up their wings, and mounted up from the earth in my sight: when they went out, the wheels also were beside them, and every one stood at the door of the east gate of the Lord’s house; and the glory of the God of Israel was over them above.  This is the living creature that I saw under the God of Israel by the river of Chebar; and I knew that they were the cherubim’s.(Ezekiel 10:18-20)

Jesus acted this scenario out in Matthew 23-24, in his last speech in the temple, when he announced to the Shepherds of the flock of Israel in his day, that all of the prophesied Judgements would come upon them, and that worse of all,

Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.(Matthew 23:38-39)

Jesus predicted that Israel would never see  him again until they come to an acknowledgement of him, as “He who comes in the name of the LORD”.

Where did Jesus go from there? He went to the same place Ezekiel saw the glory cloud go, to the mount of Olives.From the Mt of Olives, he ascended to heaven.

And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.  And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.  And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? (Matthew 24:1-3)

Hosea saw that the LORD would depart from dwelling in the midst of Israel, until Israel acknowledges her offense against Him.

I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence,

Hosea is only prophesying the same things Moses warned of in the covenant, That Israel would sin and become estranged from God, even scattered across the globe, until she confesses her national sin (Singular),

If they shall confess their iniquity, and the iniquity of their fathers, with their trespass which they trespassed against me, and that also they have walked contrary unto me;  And that I also have walked contrary unto them, and have brought them into the land of their enemies; if then their uncircumcised hearts be humbled, and they then accept of the punishment of their iniquity:  Then will I remember my covenant with Jacob, and also my covenant with Isaac, and also my covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land.(Leviticus 26:40-42)

Jeremiah also prophesies the confession of Israel’s national sin, as the condition of national restoration to blessing and priesthood;

Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say, Return, thou backsliding Israel, saith the Lord; and I will not cause mine anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith the Lord, and I will not keep anger for ever. Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed my voice, saith the Lord.  Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:(Jeremiah 3:12-14)

Hosea then gave a further detail, that it would be “in their affliction” that Israel would “Seek me early”. “Their affliction” is another name for a period of time called the Tribulation, or “great tribulation which the world has never seen before nor shall ever see again”, or it is called the “Time of Jacob’s trouble”. Evidently one of the reasons for this period of testing, is to bring Israel to repentance and the confession of her sin.

 

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What Hosea Saw…miracle nation pt 35

For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim: Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and David their king; and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days.(Hosea 3:4-5)

Hosea was one of the Hebrew Prophets who saw the short and long term future of the nation.What Hosea saw, was that Israel, the wife of Jahweh had become a harlot,faithless to her God, but seeking after foreign alliances and worship of idols.

Then said the Lord unto me, Go yet, love a woman beloved of her friend, yet an adulteress, according to the love of the Lord toward the children of Israel, who look to other gods, and love flagons of wine.  So I bought her to me for fifteen pieces of silver, and for an homer of barley, and an half homer of barley:  And I said unto her, Thou shalt abide for me many days; thou shalt not play the harlot, and thou shalt not be for another man: so will I also be for thee.(Hosea 3:1-3)

Furthermore He saw that Israel and Judah would not repent, they were intractable in their harlotries, and that the Kingdom was unsustainable, due to Israel’s violation of the covenant. She must go into exile, and ultimately be scattered unto all nations of the earth as Moses predicted she would.

Hosea saw a period of “many days” in which there would be no King, prince or temple, no sacrifice, (neither idols),no priests, worship or national symbols. In fact he saw the day when there would be no Israel!

At the time Hosea prophesied, there was all of the above, temple, Priestly system of sacrifice, national polity, symbols and identity. The idea that there would be a long period of time without those things was unthinkable. But Hosea is a prophet of the LORD.

Then Hosea saw an “Afterward” period.  The long time without the national identity and purpose would eventually end, and there would be a transition period. What marks the “Afterward”?

Hosea saw in his vision that the Afterward would commence when “the children of Israel return”.

In Hosea’s future, there would be a seventy year period of captivity in Babylon or Israel, but this isn’t what Hosea was prophesying here, because He prophesied that this return would occur in “the Latter days”.

Hosea saw Israel return from a much longer exile, and it would turn out to be a much,much vaster exile, as Moses said, she would be scattered across the face of the entire earth!

The Return would be twofold;

  • first there would be a physical return of the children of Israel, back to the land, in the last days.
  • But the second sense of return is moral and spiritual, for He prophesied that “Afterward shall the children of Israel return and seek the LORD Her God…”, in other words, Israel would make Teshuvah, seeking God again.

We currently live between the first “return” and the second “return” prophesied by Hosea, for the scripture has been fulfilled that after all of these years, (since 70 AD) Israel has been repopulated with Jews who have been returning to the land since May 1948 from the nations of the world, where they had been scattered.

The next step, still to come, is that they “seek the LORD their God and David their King,and enter into the fear of the LORD and his goodness. When will this occur? In the latter days.

To seek “David their King” is a reference to the Davidic covenant(see the appendix), in which God promised that a Son of David would rule on the throne of David forever, a reference to the Messiah, the Son of David. Israel will seek and worship the Messiah, after they repent and return to the land, in the last days.

We will look at more of the details of what Hosea saw…in the next article.

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Why I Changed My Message…

I changed my message today, in church. I had been going through a short series of messages on Psalm 1 and 2, “The One and The Many”, in which God showed me that these two Psalms are placed together and begin the Psalms for a reason. Psalm 1  emphasizes the individual, “Blessed is the man…”.

As Individuals we must go to God, know God and live before Him, and one day as individuals we will answer to God. The Psalm speaks of the individuals separation from the world, in his thoughts and inner life, due to his being “Planted by rivers of water…” i.e. being born again of the Spirit. The Psalm assumes that the prevailing opinions of the world, are “the counsel of the ungodly” but this individual has been separated from all of that, by the Word of God.

This morning I was going to adress Psalm 2, which by contrast, steps back and takes in the whole world, “Why do the Heathen Rage?”. “Why do the people imagine a vain thing?”, this Psalm speaks of the masses, and their confusion, due to being so badly mislead by their “Experts”, they hold to a “Vain Imagination”, which will bring upon them the wrath of God.

But I never  got that far this morning, because while we were worshipping, a group of young men, whom we in the church had been evangelizing through a basketball team we formed , named “The Defenders” came in among us.

I realized as we sing the familiar songs, hymns and Spiritual songs as we always do, in the church, that perhaps these young people had no idea why we should do so.

Our service was powerful and dynamic this morning, there was a prophecy, which was very edifying, and the Spirit of God was very evident.

Fully intending to do my exposition on Psalm 2, I felt the leading to give a mini-sermon n why we sing praises to God. I explained the theological truth that God doesn’t need our praises, HE knows who He is and has myriads of Angels to praise Him.

We need to Praise God, however. Why? Because our primal human problem, which lies at the root of all of our problems, is that we have tried to be God ourselves, making our own rules, deciding for ourselves what reality is, what our morality should be, and how our life should be lived.

I explained to the young people that what a Christian conversion is, is the repudiation of our own godhood, “I don’t want to be a “god” anymore” I want to accept God’s forgiveness, and humble myself to God and become a man under God, a worshipper.

But the spiritual plague of wanting to be “God” is so strong, that we constantly need to worship and adore the one above us, He who is Holy, we need to hear ourselves praising Him, and adoring his attributes, and re-asserting our own humble creature-hood. This is the meaning of the lifting of Holy Hands, and exalting him, we need Him we look up to heaven, from whence cometh our help.

But one thing leads to another, and before I knew it I was discussing the sure judgment coming upon all “pretender gods”. A terrible time of testing and then judgment is coming upon the world, and I saw (perhaps by the Spirit) how unready and mislead and distracted these young men were for it.

The urgency of this late hour seized upon my soul, and all I could do was try to reach them with the blessed gospel of the one who has “loved us and washed us from our sins in his own blood”.

Compassion came heavily upon me for these young people, of a different generation and outlook than my own. How can we reach them? How unique they are in history!

When I was young, I knew about God and Jesus and that God was above me. I was born and raised in a world that still gave outward respect to God and Christianity, I knew what it was to pray and ask for God’s help.We now have completely godless generations in America! This is the hellish world the leftist cultural revolution has left us.

I didn’t have technology that constantly distracted me, I wasn’t awash with the rebellion and disrespect that inculcates the young through entertainment, “education” and the general media.

What is going to come of these youth?

So I just gave way to the Spirit and tried only to tell these precious ones, the eternal gospel of the substitution of Jesus for our sins.

I know I will get back to the second Psalm, it is the WORD OF GOD after all and full of  prophetic application for our day. And when I do,(God willing) God will use it and perhaps even save souls through it, but this morning I caught a glimpse of the very severe urgency we must have for the salvation of souls.

Dear friends, give the gospel, everywhere you can, for the time is short!

 

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How It All Ends For Israel…miracle nation pt 34

And the ark of the Lord was in the country of the Philistines seven months.  And the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners, saying, What shall we do to the ark of the Lord? tell us wherewith we shall send it to his place.( 1 Samuel 6:1-2)

We have been seeing the story of the capture of the Ark of the covenant by the Philistines, in the book of Samuel. Not only did these events truly happen in Israel’s history, but they foretell the future history of both gentiles and Jews in their details.

  • Israel would endure foreign oppression on her own soil, and be unable to throw off the shackles of the gentiles, in her own self.
  • Her future would have many victories and defeats, but there would be two major defeats which would mark Israel’s experience.
  • The first defeat would see the destruction of the temple of the LORD by babylon and the plundering and enslaving of Israel, in Babylon for seventy years.
  • The second defeat would be worse- the Temple would be destroyed so thoroughly  that not one stone would be left upon another, and the nation of Israel would either be killed(1.5 million) or enslaved, scattered across the face of the earth, and the nation would cease to exist from 70 AD, to 1948 AD.
  • Shortly before the second defeat, the High Priest of Israel, seized the one person to whom the ARK of the covenant pointed, the Messiah, and turned him over to gentile powers.
  • Israel’s priestly system would end, the temple destroyed, the glory departed and the prophecy of Hosea 3 would be fulfilled;For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without seraphim:(Hosea 3:4)
  • The Gentiles also would suffer two defeats; first, by the preaching of the gospel and the resurrection of the one whom they thought they had slain, the Messiah, The pagan gods would be abandoned by millions as they accept the Messiah of Israel, believe in the Jewish scripture, and abandon their idolatry.
  • But as the Philistines propped up their prostrate god, so in the last days, the World will resurrect the former gods of paganism, and erect a universal paeanistic worship system.
  • In the end,The Messiah returns and smashes to powder the great humanistic idolatrous enterprise, and the earth is filled with the knowledge of God.(This corresponds to Dagon falling again and his head and hands broken).

All of these incidents were foretold by events which transpired in I Samuel 4-6.

But what is the last thing to happen to Israel? Will her two-fold defeat be the final story?

I Samuel 5-6 tell us, that the Ark spent time in among the gentiles,going from city to city, whilst Israel remained desolate of the throne of God. But eventually the Gentiles tire of having the ARK, for it brought Judgment wherever it went, just as the gospel, either brings blessing(if received) or judgment wherever it goes. All of the gentiles have had an opportunity to receive Jeshua Messiah,but we are now at the point where the Gentiles are repudiating Judeo/Christianity.\

And they laid the ark of the Lord upon the cart, and the coffer with the mice of gold and the images of their emerods. And the kine took the straight way to the way of Bethshemesh, and went along the highway, lowing as they went, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left; and the lords of the Philistines went after them unto the border of Bethshemesh.  And they of Bethshemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley: and they lifted up their eyes, and saw the ark, and rejoiced to see it. And the cart came into the field of Joshua, a Bethshemite, and stood there, where there was a great stone: and they clave the wood of the cart, and offered the kine a burnt offering unto the Lord.(I Samuel 6:11-14)

So they put the throne of God upon an Ox cart, and fashioned five sin offerings, (golden rats, and golden hemerroids) one for  each of the five LORDS and cities of the Philistines. The Golden RATS and Tumors were statements of guilt, trespass offerings, and admission that not only were they afflicted with rats and hemorrhoids, (and justly so), but that they, the Philistines are in fact, morally and spiritually as low as rats and Hemerroids.

The Oxen headed straight for Beth Shemesh, a city of priests in Israel. What good is a priest without a God? What good would it be to be a Priest without sacrifice or temple to perform the ministry of mercy? The Priests were in the fields, reaping crops when they looked up and beheld, The ARK was returning to them!

This is what happens to Israel in the end, HE comes back to them, He returns to re-instate them as a holy nation , a kingdom of priests, and to restore Israel to her high calling and ministry to the world.

And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.(Isaiah 25:9)

O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!  Behold, the Lord God will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.  He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.( Isaiah 40:9-11)

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