Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.(Psalm 2:1-4)
One of the amazing characteristics of our age is that earth shattering prophetic events are occurring before the eyes of the whole world, almost everyday. People see these events,through our abundance of information sources, but they numbly go about their daily life, unable to see the significance of it all.
Jesus himself pointed out this seeming paradox, when in the same sermon he warned on the one hand,
And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.(Luke 21:25-26)
Frightening events are happening, all of the institutions men depend on crumbling around them, problems so profound that world leaders and experts see no answers to them.But on the other hand;
And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.(Luke 21:34-35)
How is it that both of these conditions can exist simultaneously? How could such earth shattering events occur, that have the hearts of thinking people failing for fear, yet at the same time Jesus has to warn people not to be apathetic and be dragged down by the mundane cares of this world?
Yet we are living it!
Currently another staggering event is occurring in Europe , which will change the very nature and composition of Europe, at the very root of our Western civilization.This event has vast prophetic implications, and is an indicator of the nearness of the time of Judgment coming upon all of the earth.
I speak of the so- called “Syrian Refugee” crisis.
This event has been the catalyst for hundreds of thousands of Middle Eastern, North African, and black African men (and some women and children of the same) to pour into Europe via Italy, Turkey and Greece on leaky boats captained by human smugglers for exorbitant rates.
Some of those boats have capsized on the way, drowning hundreds of unfortunate people, in spite of massive rescue efforts by Italian and other European Navies.
This is the largest movement of refugees since World War 2.
I want to explain it as simply as possible, unpacking some of the complexities of this mega shift, then I will try to show the prophetic aspect of it. I hope this helps.
First of all, It is indeed partially a Syrian refugee crisis. Syria has suffered a horrific civil war since 2011, which has cost 250,000 Syrian lives, wounded and maimed millions and is destroying entire villages ,towns and cities.
The war is an extension of the Obama administration foreign policy,the so- called “Arab Spring” which has swept the Levant, pulling the rug out from underneath admittedly harsh dictators, such as Kaddafi of Libya and Mubarak of Egypt, in the name of “democratic “reform.
These former dictators, and even further back, to Saddam Hussein and the Shah of Iran, were harsh by western standards, but they were not radical Islamists. They had to be harsh because they held back forces which were even more savage than they were. Saddam Hussein and Hosni Mubarak were not radical Muslims as much as pragmatic realists.For example , neither of them had a policy of persecuting Christians.
Starting in Tunisia, and working over Northern Africa through Egypt, the Arab Spring toppled the old pragmatic leaders who held back the forces of Salafism,(Radical Islam) , often having to suppress them brutally. These people actually were quite a bit of help in the “War on Terror” because they knew more than anyone the danger of letting the Islamic genie (Demon) out of the bottle.
Thanks to Obama and the leadership of England,France, and the EU, these leaders have been taken out of the way, and much of the Levant is seething with anti western fervor.It is as though the Middle East was a bottle of Champaigne, and they have shaken it and loosed the cork. Out shoot forces so radical and powerful, they will never be subdued again, until the Messiah comes to destroy them!
These demons have been knocking at the door in Syria for some time now.The situation in Syria is this; The ruling family, are the Assads. They belong to a sect in Islam called the Alawites, which is a minority sect, an offshoot of the Shiite brand of Islam.
There are still quite a few middle eastern Christians in Syria and they support Bashir Assad. So also do the Shiites of the region, and the Iranians (Also Shiites). The nation of Russia is also a supporter of Bashir Assad, and currently there are crack Russian combat units shoring up Assad’s defenses.
The Assad regime is under attack by Syrian Sunni Arab militia’s, heavily funded by the Saudi’s, and the other oil rich Sunni nations. The USA also trained and funded many of these supposedly “moderate” Sunni groups, foolishly arming them with our finest weapons and vehicles in an effort to unseat Assad.
Thus the civil war in Syria is part of the Sunni-Shiite war which has been ongoing for 1,400 years, and it is also a proxy war between Western powers and Russia and Iran.
Another aspect which is important to realize is that after the US and her coalition partners “liberated” Iraq and spent many lives and billions in treasure to re-build the Iraqi army, and equipped it with the finest western made gear, Obama was elected, and hastily withdrew from Iraq, declaring victory and leaving the fledgling nation to fend for itself .
Those Sunni militia’s which were trained and equipped by the West, but which couldn’t easily oust Assad, realized that there was a vacuum left in Iraq, so they turned the money and equipment we gave them, against the Iraqi army and carved out an area in Syria and Iraq the size of Indiana, naming it the Ilamic State of Iraq and Syria(ISIS) or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant(ISIL) .
Immediately ISIS seized the oil rich banking capital, Mosul, (which is ancient Ninevah), and robbed the banks of the Gold and oil revenue, thus becoming not just one of the richest terror organizations in the world, but one of the richest organizations in the world!
The Iraqi army, trained and equipped by the USA, but abandoned prematurely, folded before the inferior numbers fielded by ISIS, partly out of cowardice, but also partly because of Sunni loyalty.
Now ISIS is using it’s wealth and influence (Muslims are pouring in from around the world )to participate in the rape, pillage and murder, instigated by ISIS. Syria is a nightmare war zone, and more than four million Syrians have fled its borders, swelling hastily constructed tent cities in Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, and everywhere else where they would be welcomed.
I will mention two more things about ISIS before I conclude this part of my Syrian refugee primer.
Isis announced that it was the restorer of the Sunni Caliphate. The Caliphate is an ancient Sunni institution, which is a centralized governing authority, led by an appointed Caliph, “the prince of the faithful”. To him all Sunnis pledge allegiance and as long as he lives, he is the head of the world wide Jihad, which is the war against all infidels.
The last Caliphate was in Turkey, but was disbanded in 1922, because the Turks were on the wrong side of World War 1 , and the Ottoman Empire came under the mandates of Britain and France.
Another aspect of ISIS is a specific , ominous threat uttered against Europe by ISIS head, and presumed Caliph Al Bhagdadi, to swamp Europe with 500,00 Muslim refugees, knowing that Europe would take them in and support them.
Last night I gave a sermon encapsulating as much as I knew to simplify this crisis, it here-The Refugee crisis and Prophecy.
Look for part 2 tomorrow-