The Coming Prince…Daniel 8 pt 7

And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.  And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.  And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.  And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days.  And I Daniel fainted, and was sick certain days; afterward I rose up, and did the king’s business; and I was astonished at the vision, but none understood it.(Daniel 8:23-27)

Daniel 8 is a prediction for the end of times. The Prophecy concerns the fate of Persia (Iran), and  coming developments regarding a Greco-Western power which will lead to the rise of the Anti-Christ.

There have been many tyrants and Anti-Christs through the centuries, such as Antiochus Epiphanes, the Caesars who demanded worship as Gods, the Popes of the Catholic church who persecuted Christians and took to themselves the worship and titles belonging to God alone, such as “Holy Father”. There have been many modern Anti-Christs; Hitler, Stalin and Mao, Ceucescu, Pol Pot and the Kim il Sungs of Korea.

But the final man of sin will be unique.

This King  will understand “Dark sayings”, that is He will understand the deep mysteries of the Kingdom of God, including the prophecies of God.One of the stated reasons for studying the Proverbs of Solomon  is that the disciple might understand “Dark sayings”.

Proverbs 1:6 “To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.”

Dark sayings are the Words God grants to Prophets, such as Moses, and are put to music in Psalms .

“With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the LORD shall he behold : wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?”Numbers 12:8 

“I will incline mine ear to a parable: I will open my dark saying upon the harp.”Psalm 49:4

“I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old:”Psalm 78:2

The coming “King of a fierce countenance” will have this attribute, He will have the knowledge that those who seek God are given. Can you imagine the capacity for deception this will allow ? Satan himself quoted scripture to Jesus, evidently the church and Israel will be subjected to a similar test.

The King of Tyre is a type of this “wise one”,

Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord God; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.(Ezekiel 28:12)

Thus shall his power be mighty, for His coming is after the working of Satan, with all lysing signs and wonders. But ultimately all of his power and wisdom is what the Most High allows him to have, and those only for a brief season, that height make war on the Saints and wear them down and overcome them.

And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.(Revelation 13:7)

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.(Daniel 7:25)

This Prince shall be granted success over his rivals, political enemies and shall be seen as a victor in  war for a limited time.

But he will also be skilled in the art of diplomacy, and shall destroy many, “By Peace”. This isn’t really hard to imagine, because we are witnessing the destruction and forced  transformation of much of the once powerful western world, because of the new emphasis on “Peace”. Western nations tie their militaries’ hands behind their own backs in the name of Peace.

By holding back and fighting “police actions” instead of all out total war against vicious regimes such as Iran, Iraq and the Taliban, we stretch our wars out for 15 expensive, inconclusive years.Our own State department and President is already wreaking much destruction by “Peace”. It would actually be much more merciful to our enemies if we were just allowed to take the gloves off and trounce them, thoroughly , as we did the Japanese and the Germans in 1945.

We will see just what the scripture is teaching us about when it warns that the final Prince will destroy many with Peace.

We will also see how plainly this coming leader will stand up to repudiate the Prince of Princes, the real High Priest in heaven, the LORD Messiah Jeshua.

He will distinguish himself by his bold statements against the Most High, the Saints and against God himself,

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. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven and it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.(Revelation 13:4-7)

This evil Prince will not be assassinated, nor will he be able to commit suicide as Antiochus IV Epiphanies was reported to have done. God himself shall deal with him.

And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.  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.  And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.(Revelation 19:19-21)

 

 

 

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When The Transgressors are Come to the full…Daniel 8 pt 6

And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.  And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.  And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.  And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days. And I Daniel fainted, and was sick certain days; afterward I rose up, and did the king’s business; and I was astonished at the vision, but none understood it.(Daniel 8:23-27)

The vision of Daniel 8 is a vision for the very end of days, a time described as being “When the Transgressors are come to the full…”. In the near future of Daniel, the prophecy came to partial fulfillment when the apostasy of Israel was so severe, the office of the High Priest was sold, the high priest took on a Greek name, and the holy nation became hellenized, embracing greek culture, the worship of the male body, the acceptance of homosexuality, the repudiation of the law and the prophets by all but a few pious ones, and the persecution of the remnant.

It was when this transgression came to its head that the LORD allowed Antiochus Epiphanes to partially subjugate and persecute Israel, even to the point of all0wing him to desecrate the Holy Place in the Temple of God.

But those horrifying days were only a partial fulfillment, the ultimate fulfillment of these scriptures is soon to commence.

How much further can the world descend, in this the closing of the Christian era? Is there anything left to blaspheme? What comes after the widespread promotion of abortion and homosexuality? How much further can the confessing church of Jesus descend, embracing homosexuals,Muslims and even atheists as “seekers” and in some cases as ministers?

Has our own transgression yet come to the full?

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.  For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,  Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,  Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;  Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.( 2 Timothy 3:1-5)

We currently live in the days of Noah, a time of unprecedented violence, pornography, rebellion against all authority, (see Charlotte, Baltimore, Malmo, Damascus, London, etc). People rioting and assaulting random strangers actually feel justified in their violence as they protest in the streets! Muslims actually believe that they are doing God’s service when they kill innocent people in cities all over the world.

Our leaders in the West ignore maimings, rapes, knife attacks and even bombings of their own population by Muslims, as they open the gates to the Barbarian invaders and cover up any unfavorable stories which cast light on their policies. After a weekend of such Mayhem here in America, Obama only doubles down on his pledge to bring in more than a hundred thousand more of these potential terrorists!

These are the days of Lot, a time when Homosexuals are so emboldened they actually have “Gay pride days” marching down the streets of major cities across the Western world. Incredibly, many “straight people” actually bring their families and little children down to see these appalling spectacles. The “Gays” are vicious, vengeful destroying any who speak out against them.Homosexuality and other perversions are actually encoded in Western law now!

Even after the exposure that Planned parenthood was selling body parts of defenseless babies, in some cases preserving them alive as they performed hideous abortions on them, so that a heart, liver or brain could be preserved, our leaders have only doubled down making sure Planned Parenthood’s abortion mills are well funded with taxpayer money, and her critics are silenced.

Our own President’s response to the horrifying revelation, was a public “God Bless you Planned Parenthood! You are not going to be closed as long as I am around!”.

What I am saying is what Daniel was saying…The AntiChrist will be revealed in a time when the Transgressors have come to the full…when the cup of iniquity has filled, and the time has come to Judge the World for her sins.

Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned. And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.(Revelation 11 :17-18)

 

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The Emergence of The Little Horn… Daniel 8 pt 5

Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.  And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land. And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them.  Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of the sanctuary was cast down.  And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.( Daniel 8:8-12)

Daniel’s vision of the Ram and the Goat correctly predicted events which would happen two hundred  plus years after his death, but the Angel that interpreted Daniel’s vision, told him that the vision was for the latter times.

And I heard a man’s voice between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision.  So he came near where I stood: and when he came, I was afraid, and fell upon my face: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision.  Now as he was speaking with me, I was in a deep sleep on my face toward the ground: but he touched me, and set me upright.  And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.(Daniel 8:16-19)

The chosen nation,Israel,  is still suffering “the indignation” the long exile and period of subjugation by Gentile powers, the “time of the Gentiles ” that Jesus referred to in Luke 21,

And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.(Luke 21:34)

The immediate fulfillment of the dream came about in the third century BC, when the Persian Empire,(The Ram) prospered and expanded, until with speed and ferocity, in three crucial engagements, the Macedonians under Alexander the Great (The Shaggy goat) toppled the Persian empire and conquered his way from the Levant all the way to the edges of India, in a period of 11 years.

But Alexander, (the horn of the goat) died suddenly, and having no heirs his Empire was carved up and divided among his four top Generals. Eventually, out of the Greek part of the Empire, a General arose who distinguished himself for his hatred of the God of the Jews. His name was Antiochus the 7th, also called “Epiphanes”, (Light from above).

This Emporer had possession of the Holy land.He sought to Hellenize* it, banning circumcision, the sabbath, and tried to destroy the scrolls of the Bible. He set up a Gymnasium in Jerusalem, and forced some men to undergo “reverse circumcision” , and actually killed any parents who circumcized their own children.

This man exalted himself above the “Prince of the Host” (the High Priest of Israel), forbidding sacrifices and he even desecrated the Holy Place of the Temple of God , sacrificing a swine on the Altar.

My point is that since Daniel 8 is a vision for the Latter times and the time of the “end of the indignation”, there must yet be a recapitulation of all of this.

Persia (Iran) is currently flexing its muscles, having taken Iraq, entered into Syria to support Bashir Assad, developing a Nuclear weapons program, projecting Naval power against the United States in the Persian Gulf, and has sent terror squads across the globe. For decades now Iran/Persia has been able to do “what she wills” and no one has seriously stopped her.

But some power from the West will soon come and destroy Iran, swiftly, fiercely and unexpectedly. This power will have to do with the Euro-Greek world, perhaps Turkey or Greece itself or perhaps a coalition of people’s from the former Greek world.

This western power will also be broken into “four horns”, (powers) but the “one little horn” will become prominent. In his success, he will be magnified by many , even worshipped.(“Who is like the Beast, who is able to make war with Him”?)

I believe personally that some Western Prince will deal with all of Islam, Sunni and Shiite, and that the civilized world, weary of Islam and its constant predations, will rejoice when he takes off the gloves and smites them soundly. The little horn will seemingly make peace in the Holy Land and confirm a covenant which will allow Israel to resume animal sacrifices.

But as in the case of his predecessor, Antiochus Epiphanes, the little horn will enter the place of Jewish worship, cut off the sacrifices and proclaim himself to be God. This is what will start the great tribulation and the “time of Jacob’s trouble”. As Antiochus resisted “the prince of the covenant” , the little horn will actually dare to resist the “Great High Priest”, none less than the King Messiah, Jesus himself.

 

  • Hellenize- means to impose Greek language and culture and force conformity to it upon populations.

** Gymnasium- A Greek school for the whole man, which emphasized Philosophy , athletics and was rife with homosexuality. Gymnazo means to train nude.

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The Swift, and Angry Western Goat…Daniel 8 pt 4

And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.  And he came to the ram that had two horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power.  And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand.  Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.(Daniel 8:5-8)

We have been examining Daniel’s vision, recorded in chapter 8, concerning the future of Persia (Iran) in the end times. Persia is seen as an aggressive Ram, pushing successfully in three different directions, north, west and south. No one is able to resist the Ram, and by its pushing the Ram had become great.The Ram has two horns, one taller than the other.

But suddenly from the West, and at great speed, across(the face of the whole earth) comes an angry, soft Goat, with one horn. The Goat was enraged with the Ram, and smashed into him, breaking the Ram’s horns(Power) and throwing the Ram to the ground, trampling upon him. No one was able to deliver the Ram out of the hands of the Goat, such is the future of Iran.

The Goat comes from the West. The identity of the Goat in Daniel’s near future has become evident by subsequent events in history. The Persian Empire was an undisputed world power until the rise of Alexander the Great in Macedonia.

The swiftness of Alexander’s conquests and the fury of assault upon the mighty Persian Empire by the relatively small army led by Alexander, resembles the vision of the Goat in Daniel 8, roughly two hundred years earlier.In three decisive battles Alexander toppled the behemoth Persian army and navy.

Alexander the Great was shown a passage of Daniel, from two centuries earlier, and he acknowledged that he was the subject of the prophecy.The historian Josephus reported that as Alexander conquered his way through the Levant, he saw in a dream the High Priest of Israel in all of his holy array. As the Army of Alexander approached Jerusalem, the High Priest himself was given a dream instructing him to dress in Priestly garments and go forth to greet Alexander;

Now Alexander, when he had taken Gaza, made haste to go up to Jerusalem; and Jaddus the high-priest, when he heard that, was in an agony, and under terror, as not knowing how he should meet the Macedonians, since the king was displeased at his foregoing disobedience. He therefore ordained that the people should make supplications, and should join with him in offering sacrifice to God, whom he besought to protect that nation, and to deliver them from the perils that were coming upon them; whereupon God warned him in a dream, which came upon him after he had offered sacrifice, that he should take courage, and adorn the city, and open the gates; that the rest should appear in white garments, but that he and the priests should meet the king in the habits proper to their order, without the dread of any ill consequences, which the providence of God would prevent. Upon which, when he rose from his sleep, he greatly rejoiced, and declared to all the warning he had received from God. According to which dream he acted entirely, and so waited for the coming of the king.

And when Jaddus understood that Alexander was not far from the city, he went out in procession, with the priests and the multitude of the citizens. …And when the Phoenicians and the Samarians that followed him thought they should have liberty to plunder the city, and torment the high-priest to death, which the king’s displeasure fairly promised them, the very reverse of it happened; for Alexander, when he saw the multitude at a distance, in white garments, while the priests stood clothed with fine linen, and the high-priest in purple and scarlet clothing, with his mitre on his head, having the golden plate whereon the name of God was engraved, he approached by himself, and adored that name, and first saluted the high-priest.(Flavius Jospehus Jewish antiquities 11.317-345)

The Phoenician, Samaritan, and Syrian generals accompanying  Alexander, preparing to loot and plunder Jerusalem,  were stunned that he (Alexander) should dismount and adore the God of the High Priest in Jerusalem!

It was when Alexander met the High Priest of Israel, on foot and not as a conqueror but as a worshipper, that the book of Daniel was shown to him, containing prophecies of Alexander’s exploits.

The kings of Syria and the rest were surprised at what Alexander had done, and supposed him disordered in his mind. However, Parmenion alone went up to him, and asked him how it came to pass that, when all others adored him, he should adore the high-priest of the Jews? To whom he replied, ‘I did not adore him, but that God who has honored him with his highpriesthood; for I saw this very person in a dream, in this very habit, when I was at Dion in Macedonia, who, when I was considering with myself how I might obtain the dominion of Asia, exhorted me to make no delay, but boldly to pass over the sea thither, for that he would conduct my army, and would give me the dominion over the Persians; whence it is that, having seen no other in that habit, and now seeing this person in it, and remembering that vision, and the exhortation which I had in my dream, I believe that I bring this army under the Divine conduct, and shall therewith conquer Darius, and destroy the power of the Persians, and that all things will succeed according to what is in my own mind.’
And when he had said this to Parmenion, and had given the high-priest his right hand, the priests ran along by him, and he came into the city. And when he went up into the temple, he offered sacrifice to God, according to the high-priest’s direction, and magnificently treated both the high-priest and the priests. And when the Book of Daniel was showed him wherein Daniel declared that one of the Greeks should destroy the empire of the Persians, he supposed that himself was the person intended.  And as he was then glad, he dismissed the multitude for the present.(Flavius Josephus, Jewish Antiquities,  11.317-345)

Alexander the great certainly fit the partial bill as the subject of the prophecy of Daniel 8,  but we must remember that ultimately this vision is for the latter times. The exploits of Alexander are merely a foreshadowing of the final fulfillment of this vision, in some sense another  Western Power, (Greek) must “fly over the face of the earth” and trample the Persian (Iranian) Ram into the ground.

There are few possibilities that I know of as to the identity of the Goat, which will attack and trample Persia (Iran) in the last days.

Turkey, which lies to the west of Iran is a possible fulfillment of the Goat in the vision. Turkey was at one time Asia minor and was at the heart of the classical Grecian world until the Turks swept in in the seventh century.  The Greek peoples  in the eastern European Union is also to the west of Iran.

Or perhaps it will be the a coalition of Western nations in general, who will finally deal with the all too long tolerated threat that is Iran, in a decisive way. There is a tremendous amount of animosity growing in European and Western populations, towards Muslims in general and a nuclear Iran in particular.

Sooner or later one of these entities or perhaps a coalition of these will be allowed by the Most High God to attack and trample on the Shiite hegemony which has since the 1980’s, terrorized the West, exported death and mayhem, oppressed her own people, taken over Iraq, infiltrated South America, openly threatened to obliterate Israel, with seeming impunity.

The Goat (Whoever he is)  and the great single horn on the goat, (whoever he is) will then triumph,  but only briefly, before he too is shattered, and out of the pieces shall arise a little horn of incredibly evil significance.

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The Wild Persian Ram…Daniel 8 pt 3

In the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first. And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai.  Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last. I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.(Daniel 8:1-4)

In his vision, given whilst Daniel was still a minister in the government of Babylon, Daniel saw himself in the palace of Shushan, which at that time was on the eastern edge of the Babylonian empire, but was soon to become the capitol and residence of the Medo Persian King Darius, who would supplant the Babylonians.

Daniel saw a Ram, with two horns, one higher than the other. The Ram was wild, powerful and rambunctious, pushing west, northward and southward. Nothing could stop him, the Ram was successful in everything he did, and grew mighty.

The Ram with two pointed horns was considered a guardian Spirit by the Persians, and the Medo Persian Kings would wear Ram’s Head helmets into battle.

In the immediate future, Daniel’s prophecy was fulfilled in his own life. Persia grew in power and influence and overtook Babylon on the fateful night of “the hand writing on the Wall” in Daniel 5. The cryptic message from God’s own hand, was fulfilled within 24 hours,

And this is the writing that was written, Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin.  This is the interpretation of the thing: Mene; God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it. Tekel; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.  Peres; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians… In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain.  And Darius the Median took the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old.(Daniel 5:25:31)

Persia became a great power and did indeed spread to the west, North and Southward. Under Cyrus the Great (one of the truly great men of history) Persia conquered (Lydia, Ionia, Thrace, and Macedonia); in the West,  and to the North (Caspians of the Caucasus Range and the Scythians east of the Caspian Sea and the Oxus Valley to the Aral Sea); and to the South (Babylon and Egypt).

But this vision is for the last days, so what do we see Persia (Iran) doing lately? Have we seen her expand and grow as a military power? Does she have ambitions to become a dominant regional and even a world power?  Daniel 8 warns us that Persia would be an aggressive Ram, which is seemingly untamable.

In our lifetime we have seen the transformation of Iran from the Western and Israel friendly modern nation, she once was, into the Shariah dominated ,Hostile Shiite led nation of fanatics.

Iran (Persia) is the world’s leading state sponsor of terror and has paid very little price for her forty year state of war against the West, hijacking planes of Westerners, Promoting Shariah, setting up terror cells across the globe , kidnapping American diplomats, slaughtering 240 US marines in Lebanon, interfering with Lebanese and Syrian politics, and fomenting terror as far west as Venzuela, Argentina and Columbia.

Currently the  Ayatollahs are emboldened by our feckless leadership to develop a Nuclear program, harass US warships, attack and humiliate US and British sailors, and to brutally supress her own citizens, who have seen what Shariah has to offer and want nothing more of it. No one stops Iran, she seems to do what she pleases and pays little consequence for her actions.

The Ram is going wild again, The Satanic prince of Persia is now moving across the earth, as Daniel would see in a later vision;

Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words.  But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia. Now I am come to make thee understand what shall befall thy people in the latter days: for yet the vision is for many days (Daniel 10:12-14)

Flush with the 150 billion dollars US that President Obama has released to Iran, and with the untold secret billions Obama sent to Iran in Cash bills on pallets, and flexing her muscles with the status of having shown the world that she has stood up to the “Great Satan” and prevailed time and again, Iran is feeling that her time has come to become the regional power and the head of Islam.

Iran believes that the twelfth IMAM is almost here and that she has an apocalyptic destiny, to bring about the end of days. She is adamant that Iran is the one destined to wipe out Israel, she openly proclaims it and at the beginning of the humiliating(for the US) nuclear deals concluded by Kerry and Obama, Iran made clear that the destruction of Israel which she has openly vowed, is “non-negotiable”. The US negotiators didn’t let that point stop them.

The Saudi’s are frightened, because as the Sunni guardians of the Grand Mosque in Mecca and Medina, they fear a Nuclear armed Shiite Iran.

The recent argument between Saudis and Iran over the 1000 plus Iranian pilgrims trampled to death at the Haj in Mecca, has resulted in open calls among Shiites to forsake Mecca and make their Haj to Karbala. In Shiite theology Mecca is destroyed before the last day.The Sunni Shiite rift in Islam will soon openly rupture, plunging the Muslim world and all who touch it into cataclysmic war.

Another factor that portends a soon move by Iran, is the demographic crisis which has mysteriously gripped Iran. Iranian birthrates have recently been in free fall, dropping  from the typical 6 children per family, to somewhere below replacement rates

But after the war with Iraq, which killed between 500,000 and one million Iranian men, Iran’s high birthrate was viewed as a liability. In 1993, the government enacted a “family-planning” law that not only encouraged the use of birth control but also eliminated maternity leave after three children.

The results were unprecedented: In seven years, Iran’s birthrate had dropped to less than replacement level, two births per woman. Iran’s population, which doubled between 1968 and 1988, was now growing at less than 1 percent per year.

Not surprisingly, family-planning groups and other anti-natalists hailed the results as a triumph. But, as the Asia Times columnist who writes under the pen name “Spengler” has pointed out, a better term would be pyrrhic victory.

Like China, Iran’s plunging birthrate has produced a rapidly aging society. By the middle of this century, a third of all Iranians will be “elderly dependents,” nearly the same ratio as in the West.

This means fewer and fewer working-age Iranians to support its elderly pensioners. To make matters worse, there are signs that Iran’s oil reserves are dwindling. By some estimates, Iran will no longer be exporting oil by 2020.

According to Spengler, it’s against this background of a looming crisis that we must understand Iran’s belligerence. In the West, an unfavorable ratio of workers-to-retirees can place “uncomfortable burdens on taxpayers.” But in places like Iran, it can destabilize the society and threaten the regime itself. This is especially so when you consider another demographic fact: Ethnic Iranians are a bare majority within Iran.

The Ram is going to have to do something quickly if anything at all.

 

 

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Elam and Shusan…Daniel 8 pt 2

 

In the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first.  And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai. (Daniel 8:1-2)

In Daniel’s  vision, the Prophet sees himself at “Shushan in the Palace” in Elam, by the river Ulai.

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This is interesting in itself, because the vision tales place while Daniel was yet a minister of Babylon. Shushan at that time was on the very eastern edge of the Babylonian Empire, but would soon become the capitol of the Medo Persian Empire which Daniel had predicted would overtake Babylon.

At Shushan the Medo Persian ruler Darius had built a palace, the ruins of which remain to this day. The Palace features prominently in the book of Esther, as the home of Xerxes,(Ahasuerus) and his bride Esther. All of the drama with Haman, Esther, Mordechai and the King took place at Shushan and around and in that Palace.

Darius left a written record of this palace, on an inscribed tablet found in the vicinity of Shushan,

“This palace which I built at Susa, from afar its ornamentation was brought. Darius the King says: At Susa a very excellent work was ordered, a very excellent work was brought to completion.”

Nehemiah also served the Persian King as cupbearer in the very same palace, at Shushan,

Nehemiah 1:1 And it came to pass in the month Chisleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the palace (Nehemiah 1:1)

 The throne of his kingdom, which was in Shushan the palace(Esther 1:2)

 When the king’s order and edict had been proclaimed, many girls were brought to the citadel of Susa and put under the care of Hegai. (Esther 2:8)

But all of that came after Daniel’s vision, and would come about as a result of the Persian Empire succeeding Babylon, exactly as Daniel had earlier prophesied in Daniel 2 and Daniel 7.

Tradition says that Daniel is buried in Shushan, and there is an ancient mausoleum there that is revered as being Daniel’s resting place.

The vision also  takes place in Elam, which was an eastern province of the Babylonian Empire. Elam is now a province of  Iran, in fact Elam is the place where the modern Iranian Nuclear program is located.Elamites are considered to be Persians.

Jeremiah predicted that Elam’s military prowess would be broken by the hand of God himself in the last days, but that He will then “restore the fortunes” of Elam.

“This is what the Lord Almighty says: “See, I will break the bow of Elam, the mainstay of their might. I will bring against Elam the four winds from the four quarters of the heavens; I will scatter them to the four winds, and there will not be a nation where Elam’s exiles do not go. I will shatter Elam before their foes, before those who seek their lives; I will bring disaster upon them, even my fierce anger,”declarestheLord. “I will pursue them with the sword until I have made an end of them. I will set my throne in Elam and

destroy her king and officials,” declares the Lord. “Yet I will restore the fortunes of Elam in days to come,” declares the Lord.” Jeremiah 49:35-39

Isaiah predicted also that Elamites and Medes together would bring judgment upon what we now know of as Saudi Arabia.(Isaiah 21).

The Medes are an ancient people, usually associated with the Persians, which have survived to this day. They are currently known as the Kurds and Yazidis. Numbering at 30 million,  they are the world’s largest people group denied a homeland. In the aftermath of World War 1 the victorious allies neglected to give the Kurds a homeland, dividing them between Syria,Turkey,Iran and Iraq.

Daniel’s vision is of the future, at the time of it, there was no dominant Medo Persian Empire, Shushan was part of Babylon, and there was no Royal Palace(Citadel) at Shushan, Darius was yet to build it.

But the vision of Daniel 8 is seen from that Palace, for in the vision Daniel is there.

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A New Insight (for me)…Daniel 8 pt 1

And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai . Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last.  I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.  And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.  And he came to the ram that had two horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power.  And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand.  Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.( Daniel 8:2-6)

I believe that the study of prophecy is very similar to painting pictures with “paint by number”. At first, you fill in numbers with various colors and can’t make out what the picture actually is. Eventually as you keep laboring, the picture begins to emerge , and the details become more evident and clear.

When I began the Christian life, I knew one thing about Eschatology, Jesus was coming back! As I made scripture my life’s study, details began to emerge;the prophesied rebirth of the Jewish State,Israel, the worldwide siege around Jerusalem and Judea (the West Bank), the whole world will turn on Israel, the role of Islam in endgame events, the role of the United Nations also, …etc. .

Sometimes the clear vision of end times events is held up because of faulty teaching, almost like getting the wrong color in the wrong number. I have found that we must be ever open to scripture and not cling too tightly to our previous understanding of prophecy.

The picture is beginning to emerge, though of course I do not have all of the details, but those who have ears to hear are beginning to see the vision of the Parousia and the events leading to it.

For years I have pored over the prophecies of Daniel, as Jesus told us we should in Matthew 24:15, but I must confess that something has been pointed out to me, by a teacher named Joel Richardson, which I have never seen before. I don’t necessarily agree with all of Joel’s conclusions, but I have to admit that he is right about the point I am about to go into.

The great insight which may seem small to some of you, (but is radical to me) is that the vision of Daniel 8 is for the end times.

So he came near where I stood: and when he came, I was afraid, and fell upon my face: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision.(Daniel 8:17)

And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.(Daniel 8:19)

I had been taught, and have taught(correctly) that Daniel 8 was a prediction of the rise of the Medo-Persian Empire(the Ram) and the Greek Empire of Alexander the Great,(The Goat). Daniel predicted these things in the 6th century BC and everything he said was fulfilled in the fourth century BC.  This vision is in line with Daniel’s interpretation of King Nebuchadnezzar’s vision in Daniel 2, giving more details of the Persian and Greek periods.

But what I didn’t notice is the repetitious angelic announcement that this vision would be fulfilled in the “time of the end”, the last days of the “indignation” the time of Israel’s subjection to Gentile powers.

There is a prophetic law of dual fulfillment, so I believe I was right about the earlier fulfillment of the vision, but I missed the fact that this clear vision is for the “time of the end”, and is a very significant insight into the near future of two major World Powers which have arisen in prominence  very recently, Persia(Iran) and Greece (Turkey).

We need to consider this very carefully…

 

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