The Throne Room…Rev 4-7 pt 4

And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold.(Revelation 4:2-5)

After hearing the heavenly voice commanding him to “Come up here”, the apostle John has been translated from “the things that are…” , through the “door opened into heaven“, into the very throne room of God.

What did he see there?

* A Throne was set…The first thing John sees in heaven is a Throne. It is God who rules, not Caesar or Pharoah, Bush or Putin. The heavenly court is a throne room, the living God is an absolute Sovereign.

The churches, besieged and harassed by their enemies, and seemingly powerless and vulnerable in this world, can take comfort knowing that at the ultimate center of reality is a Throne, fixed in heaven.

…I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation:And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?(Daniel 4:34-35)

* A figure sitting on the Throne who is indescribable! “He that sat on the throne to look upon was like Jasper and like Sardine stone”.

What did he look like? Jasper is a blood-red stone, Sardine is like a diamond, a clear stone. What kind of description is that? This person, seated on the throne is indescribable!

The blood-red Sardius Stone was the first in the series of stones on the Priest’s breastplate, representing the firstborn, Reuben and does indeed speak of blood sacrifice. The last stone, the clear Jasper, represents Benjamin, and stands for victory.

The name Reuben means “Behold a Son”, and the name Benjamin translates, “The Son of my Right Hand”. The colors point to Jesus in his first and second comings.

* The Rainbow around the Throne. God’s throne is surrounded by a complete Rainbow. The obvious connection is the covenant sign of mercy after the flood. Green is the color that stands for renewed life.

There are many terrifying, awesome, Holy and destructive Judgments rightly coming to the inhabitants of the earth, but we can be assured that the One who sits upon the throne, sees everything through the prism of His mercy.

* Twenty Four Elders- Remember the stained and weak churches, seemingly helpless on this earth, with no recourse when her enemies lied about her, stole from and persecuted her? The ‘despised and rejected’ weak and powerless Ones, witnesses to truth in a hostile world?

That is just one way to look at the church, but here is the heavenly perspective of the same people. They are immaculately dressed, there is no stain, they have access, not to Caesar, but the magnificent throne set in heaven! This is the heavenly view of God’s people.

These are King/Priests, dignified, and powerful in their access to heaven. They too sit on thrones and when their prayers are later gathered up into a censor in heaven, powerful things happen on earth!

Twelve is the number that represents the people of God, 12 Sons of Israel, 12 Apostles of Jesus. Two is the number for witness, “By the mouth of two or three witnesses…”. Twenty four, 12×2, is the number for the whole people of God.

All of them will be there, God himself will see to that. They will gladly worship Jesus, casting their crowns of reward before Him, acknowledging His love, and the price He paid to make them fit for this place.

There they stand, immaculate, crowned with glory and Honor, and in a place of privilege. They all know well, that they deserve none of the pleasures they have been given.

They were once idolaters, sinners, they hated God himself and in many cases persecuted the followers of the lamb. Some of them were drowning in their own swamp of lust, sin, failure and strife, until the Saviour reached out a hand to rescue them.

They fall down in utter worship, and amazed adoration, praising and singing of him who bought them and gave them the victory.

O victory in Jesus,
My Savior, forever.
He sought me and bought me
With His redeeming blood;
He loved me ere I knew Him
And all my love is due Him,
He plunged me to victory,
Beneath the cleansing flood.

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Come Up Here…Rev 4-7 pt 3

After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter. And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.(Revelation 4:1-2)

The revelation given to the apostle John,begins with “the things that are…”. That would be the temporal situation of the church; despised and rejected like her Lord, struggling with temptation, persecution, false doctrine, false prophets, moral defeat, lethargy, compromise, and yes some evangelism and faithful witness even unto death.

But the vision of chapter four takes us completely out of that realm , and into the heavenly throne room of God himself, through “the door opened in heaven”. John actually experienced this, as a Revelation of Jesus to we his servants.

The door open in heaven is a message from God, for Jesus himself is the “open door’, only by Him do we sinners gain access into God’s holy heaven. Jesus said in John 10, “I am the door“, and in John 14 ,”No one comes to the Father but by Me“.

Access to all that is holy, beautiful, and eternally satisfying, was shut and barred to us , the children of Adam , because by our sin we had fallen, and forfeited the right to it. God himself barred the way to the tree of Life, deploying the flaming, holy, and terrible Cherubim, lest we eat in a fallen state and remain locked in our fallenness forever.

Man could not “draw near” to God, He could not go to heaven, for nothing sinful, false, evil, or rebellious could ever be allowed to disrupt the Holy beauty and harmony of God’s heaven.

The door to heaven was closed to sinful man! Since man could never get to God, God came down to man! God descended to us in humility, to save us from our sins. Jesus is God manifested in the flesh, God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself…”.

And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.(John 3;13)

In the vision given to John , the heavenly voice calls him (and us) up, and through the open door into heaven , with perhaps the simplest and yet most encouraging gospel message yet, “Come up Here”.

God would bring us to himself, therefore His word to us is “Come…”.”Let Him that is athirst, Come and drink…Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden…”

He calls us “up”, for He would bring us to something higher, and purer than where we are coming from, morally, spiritually, and even physically. We have to recognize that we have fallen, and that He alone can raise us up, for His salvation is nothing less than resurrection from the dead.

But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 2:4-6)

Finally “Here” , “Come up Here”, because Heaven is a real place, it is a “better country” and a “city whose builder and maker is God”. Jesus went ahead of us to “prepare a place for us”. The preparation involved giving His life as a sacrifice of Love to God for us, that He might make us fit for that holy place.

As an aside, Hell is a real place too. It was created not for man for “the devil and his angels”, but unrepentant man will indeed go there. It is a place of torment, consciousness, memory,feeling, recognition of others, and profound remorse, and regret.

But the Gospel of God is that the door in heaven is now open, and through Jesus there is welcome from Heaven to earth, a call to that which is higher, purer and more beautiful than anything this world has to Offer, “Come up Here” saith the Lord!

Let Him who has ears to hear, hear what the Spirit is saying!

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The Things Which Are… Revelation 4-7 pt 2

Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter (Revelation 1;19)

The instruction given to the apostle John, by the Lord Jesus Christ, was threefold, “write the things which you have seen”, that is the vision of Jesus Christ, standing among the lampstands, in glory, as described in Revelation 1.

Second he was to write the things which are, that is the condition of the churches, in this world, as described in the seven letters to the churches. From the vantage point of the things that are, the sight of the churches in this evil age is sad, and perhaps discouraging.

* The Church at Ephesus has much to commend it, for it puts a premium on discernment, not just accepting false prophets, prophecies, apostles, or teachings. But the church is on the verge of going out of existence, because it has “lost its first love”.

* The church in Smyrna is faithful and true, but suffers persecution, and consequently extreme poverty. Furthermore there are enemies who claim to be God’s people, who are able to lie with impunity about the church in Smyrna, and she is powerless to refute the lies.

* The church in Pergamos also suffers persecution, there are individual bright lights among them, such as Antipas who was burned alive in a bronze bull rather than renounce Christ. But the church is afflicted with a perverse antinomianism, she tolerates members who fornicate and accommodate idolatrous practices.

*The church in Thyatira- in spite of her many good works and outreach, has allowed a false prophetess to corrupt the body with her false prophecies, and false teachings which have brought members of the church into fornication and accommodation to idolatry. The Lord threatens to “Kill her and her children”, if they won’t repent.

* Sardis is a church that lives in the past glories, she is presently asleep, dull to God’s voice, unaware of her own need. The church is on the verge of death, the Lord would waken her again, he warns her he is coming as a Thief!

*Philadelphia is an exception, there is no rebuke for her, she is told that she has “a little strength”, and to be ready for the “open door”. Those who have lied about her, and persecuted her with impunity, are destined to openly acknowledge that it is she, who is “loved” of God.

* Finally Laodicea, of whom so much is written of lately. She is Lukewarm, and so abominable to God, that he threatens to vomit her out of His mouth! ironically this church has the highest self-esteem, in spite of its worldliness, accommodation, and self-sufficiency.

This is the church that Jesus portrays himself as being outside of, “knocking at the door” of her heart. bidding her open up to Him, that He might be allowed to “Sup with them”. Imagine! The very One who loved us and washed us from our sin in his blood, yet outside knocking on the door, asking to be let in!

This is the temporary state of the church, the “things that are”. She stands on this earth in the stained and spotted garments, in all of her oft failing strength, and alienated affections from her Lord, examined by the Saviour, certainly weighed in the balances and all too oft found wanting, by the One whose penetrating “eyes are as a fire”.

Yet the last word to her is certainly not that He shall “spew her out of his mouth”, for He stands ever ready to renew her strength, to “come in and sup” with her again, and by his attributes to make up for all that is lacking in her.

Thus He introduces himself in each case, highlighting the attribute in Him that meets the need, He is the One who holds the churches in His hand, out of His mouth goes a sharp two edged sword, His eyes are a flame of fire, and feet like bronze, He is the one with the sevenfold Spirit of God, each attribute adequate to meet the need of the “things which are”, in the churches.

Actually in each case, the last word is an encouragement for the church to overcome, by and through the risen One. Lovelessness, lethargy, compromise with the world and sexual immorality, all are to be seen as implacable enemies to overcome.

From the vantage point of the “things that are” the church doesn’t look all-powerful, she doesn’t command the respect of her enemies, her resources are neither political, nor financial, in fact her enemies seem to be able to persecute and lie about her with impunity. Her failures are prominently put on display by the world.

Her services are not wildly attracting the throngs of passers-by, the truth is, “there is no (worldly) beauty for anyone to desire her…” and like her Lord, “she is despised and rejected of men…”. Her power is Truth. She sets a modest table, that doesn’t appeal to jaded tastes. The nobodies of this world are who she attracts.

The church does have a rival, in “the things that are”. She is a bride to be, but she is rivaled by a gaudy harlot, which pretends to be the Bride, and attracts great crowds to her own profane show of worship. the Harlot prostitutes everything precious, and blasphemes the name of God in the name of God, and always persecutes the true Bride. The World does regard her because she shares the values of this fallen world.

But there is another way of looking at the church, a different vantage point. John can only see it after hearing the command “Come Up here!”…

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The Revelation Is Blessed…Rev 4-7 pt 1

The revelation from Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, 2 who testifies to everything he saw—that is, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. 3 Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.(Revelation 1:1-3)

The Book of Revelation is unique to all of the other books of the Bible, because it pronounces a specific blessing on those who read and those who hear the reading of the prophecy, providing they take the word to heart. Obviously there is a blessing on all of the scripture, but there is a specific blessing in reading revelation.

Here is why I believe there is such a blessing;

*Because It is the “Revelation of Jesus Christ”, not merely the end times events, the anti christ, the beasts, the plagues and woes befalling the world , but the vision given to John the apostle is an unveiling of Jesus Christ himself as the glorified Lord of history and eternity.

All of the Scripture are in fact a Revelation of Jesus Messiah. The Law, Prophets, History and Wisdom literature of the Tanakh cannot truly be understood without appreciating this fact.“In the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy Will, O my God, your law is in my heart…”(Psalm 40)

From the very beginning , in the promise of “the seed of the woman” ,who would come to undo the primal curse and redeem the Sons of Adam and Eve, by “crushing the serpent’s head” and in the process he would suffer the “bruising of his heel”, the gospel of the Messiah was being preached. In all of Israel’s long history, in her worship, her temple with its sacrifices and in her Kings, Priests and Prophets, Jesus was being foretold, and taught of.

Obviously the New Testament is a Revelation of Jesus. The Gospels reveal that God was “manifested in the flesh”, in the person of Jesus Christ. Behold the mystery of Christ crucified, a paradox, for “Christ” is power, yet “crucified” is weakness, “Christ” is divine acceptance and “crucified” is Divine rejection, and finally “Christ” is Salvation, yet “crucified” is wrath and Judgment.

But the Revelation is of Jesus glorified.

I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone like a son of man,[d] dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. The hair on his head was white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, and coming out of his mouth was a sharp, double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance. When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.(Revelation 1:12-17)

* Because the Revelation strips away the veneer that covers the world. Too many christians are enamored of the world, as never before ours is a worldly “vanity fair”. Because of the prevalence of media, entertainment and distraction, people literally “Love the World” and the things in the world, even many christians. It all looks so good.

Revelation 18 presents “Mystery Babylon as a great shopping mall.All the things a person can desire are available to man, in a descending order of expense, the highest value being Gold, and silver and at the bottom of the scale, “the souls of men”. Everything is available to everybody, 24-7, it is a merchant’s dream, the long-awaited everlasting, shiny, high tech, streamlined, easy credit, universal shopping experience. There is something for everyone!

But the vision John received strips away the veneer, to reveal the spiritual reality,

… Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.(Revelation 18:2)

The habitation of demons? The hold of foul spirits? The cage containing unclean and hateful birds? Such is the spiritual reality of the World, the true nature of the system which would gratify men’s desires at the expense of the Spirit.

The World is designed to make men forget their deepest need, ie reconciliation to God. It is hostile to God and Christ, and would overcome the curse without repentance. The Revelation of Jesus to John, makes this all plain to see, stripping away the facade.

* Because the Apocalypse takes us to heaven. Often times we hear adages and maxims that pass for conventional wisdom, and seem almost “scriptural”, when in fact upon thoughtful examination, they are wrong!

One saying that particularly peeves me, is “He’s so heavenly minded, he’s no earthly good”. It ranks right up there with “pie in the sky”, as a scornful dismissal of something exceedingly precious, and holy, that is the contemplation of heaven.

The truth is, the only people who ever truly did any “earthly good”, were the heavenly minded ones. Those who were pilgrims and strangers, inspired by the Bible and it’s promise of a “better country ” and of a “city, whose builder and maker is God”, are the ones who built hospitals, Universities, ended slavery, and performed countless other merciful reliefs for this sin sick world.

The vision of the Revelation of Jesus, takes us into the very throne room of heaven itself, many times, and that is a blessing in and of itself. We need to see above the earthly horizon, in order to be whole, we must maintain the heavenly hope.

Only those nurtured on the hope of heaven, will be enabled able to resist the “artificial heaven on earth”, the godless Utopia which comes to a head in the last hour, only to be crushed at the Parousia of our blessed Saviour Jesus Christ.

In our next article we will follow John into the throne room of God…

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That Other Eschatology…

Evidently, the murderous Islamic terror organization, ISIS, is media savvy. Why not? They are one of the richest and most successful terror enterprises in the world. So it should be no surprise that ISIS has produced Picture-15.pnga modern glossy magazine to promote it’s nefarious doctrines.

The magazine is named Dabiq. The name doesn’t usually ring a bell with most Westerners but instantly stirs the passions of devout Sunni Muslims because of a prophecy within Islam which states that the last apocalyptic battle will take place between the Mujahadeen and the western Crusaders at the tiny city of Dabiq, in Syria.This will bring about the end of days.

Joel Rosenburg has written an excellent article, “Three Reasons the Next President ,,,Should carefully study the latests issue of Isis magazine Dabiq” in which he lays out the basics of the Dabiq prophecy and the reasons why many see ISIS as the fulfillment of part of it.

Islam preaches the return of Jesus also, only this Islamic “Jesus” is coming to  back to “Break the Cross”, i.e. destroy Christianity and to vindicate Islam.

According to the Hadiths, The Koran and the Sunnah, as well as the latest issue of Dabiq magazine,

“When the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, returns in the end days to battle the Antichrist — the false messiah — and his army, of the myths he will debunk once and for all are those of his crucifixion and divinity. This will be when he [Jesus] breaks the cross….” 

Islam is a heresy of course, its  a Christian heresy which borrowed heavily from apostate Jewish and Gnostic Christian sources.

‘Issa’, the “Jesus” of Islam, did not die on the cross. He is the son of ‘Mary’, Miriam, the sister of Moses, and who is coming again to help Muslims destroy Christians and Jews.

Popular Christian Heretic Rick Warren actually prayed in the name of ‘Issa’ at Obama’s presidential inauguration ceremony, confirming his status as a false teacher and denier of Jesus.

President Obama dabbled in prophecy recently when he boldly proclaimed at the U.N. that “The future doesn’t belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam…”.

The Apostles warned us that in the end there would be false prophets, false prophecies, Anti-Christs, Pseudo Jesus figures , false ‘Words’, and every other possible form of substitute for the Truth, in order to deceive and demoralize the whole world.We are even warned of the advent of a false ‘holy Spirit’ to inspire the false prophets and their congregations.

Sunni Islam is trying to establish a false “Kingdom of God” on earth , called the Caliphate. The Caliphate is the central ruling authority of Sunni Islam(75 percent of the world’s 1.7 billion Muslims). In 2014, when Abu Bakr Bhagdadi climbed up into a historic pulpit in Mosul (Biblical Ninevah), apocalyptic anticipation swept through the Muslim world.

This attempt to revive the Caliphate is why ISIS is far more formdable and dangerous to world stability than Al Queda ever was.Tens of thousands of Muslims from around the world are swearing their ‘Bayat”, the “pledge of allegiance to the Prince of the Faithful’ which all Sunni are expected to make the moment the Caliphate becomes a viable entity again.

Sunni’s expect something to hap-en soon, in accordance with their own (errant) eschatology.

The SHiites are expecting the arrival of the Mahdi, the “Twelth Imam” who will emerge out of a sacred well in Iran and lead the Shiite world on to victory over Jews, Christians, Idolaters and the hated Sunnis. The Obama administration poured fuel on that fire of expectation recently when He authorized a transfer payment of 150 billion US Dollars to Iran. Shiites (rightly) feel something monumental is on the way.

Ironically, the Christian world, the stewards of the only true eschatology, seems uninterested in end times events at the moment. Most of the confessing Christian world subscribes to an errant theology which blinds them to the prophecies she holds in her hands, rendering them unable to see or comment on current events breaking out at a breath taking pace all around her.

I speak of “Replacement theology” which blinds the church to the central place Israel holds in the entire eschatological scheme.

The great tragedy of our day is that at a time when people all around the world are seeing a Divine hand writing on the wall, they need an interpretation to know what is actually being said. That is the task of the church but how few even know themselves the riches of insight into current events, which they hold in their own hands? The least Christian in any church which actually preaches prophecy on any decent level, knows more about the world and its problems than all of the pundits put together!

But who will listen to us?

There was a little city, and few men within it; and there came a great king against it, and besieged it, and built great bulwarks against it: Now there was found in it a poor wise man, and he by his wisdom delivered the city; yet no man remembered that same poor man.  Then said I, Wisdom is better than strength: nevertheless the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard.  The words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry of him that ruleth among fools.  Wisdom is better than weapons of war: but one sinner destroyeth much good.(Ecclesiastes 9:14-18)

We know the way out, and we know who has and could again “Save the city” but who will ever listen to us?

 

 

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Tish Ba’ Av; Israel’s National Day of Sorrow

How hath the LORD covered the daughter of Zion with a cloud in his anger, and cast down from heaven unto the earth the beauty of Israel, and remembered not his footstool in the day of his anger!

The LORD hath swallowed up all the habitations of Jacob, and hath not pitied: he hath thrown down in his wrath the strong holds of the daughter of Judah; he hath brought them down to the ground: he hath polluted the kingdom and the princes thereof.

He hath cut off in his fierce anger all the horn of Israel: he hath drawn back his right hand from before the enemy, and he burned against Jacob like a flaming fire, which devoureth round about.

He hath bent his bow like an enemy: he stood with his right hand as an adversary, and slew all that were pleasant to the eye in the tabernacle of the daughter of Zion: he poured out his fury like fire.

The LORD was as an enemy: he hath swallowed up Israel, he hath swallowed up all her palaces: he hath destroyed his strong holds, and hath increased in the daughter of Judah mourning and lamentation. (Lamentations 2:1-5)

For al of Israel, a solemn day commences at sundown, Saturday ,August 13,  till sundown the 14th of August.  It is called Tish B’Av (the ninth of the month of Av) in the Jewish calendar. The day is marked by fasting, mourning and solemn prayers by pious Jews around the world, in commemoration of both the Babylonian destruction of the Temple, in 586 BC, and the Roman destruction of the Temple on the same calendar day in 70 AD.

Not only had those two horrors occurred on that day, but there have been many,many other incredibly horribly occurrences which concern the Jewish people,on this same calendar day through history.

Incredibly , it was on the ninth of Av that;

* The Sages tell us that the 10 Spies discouraged Israel from occupying the Land God gave them, resulting in the forty years wandering in the wilderness.

* 586 BC, Nebuchadnezzar fulfilled the prediction of Jeremiah, destroying the Temple in Jerusalem, killing one hundred thousand Jews, and carrying hundreds of thousands of others off, into Babylonian captivity.

* 70 AD, Titus fulfilled the predictions of Jesus, surrounding the city of Jerusalem, imposing a siege and finally on the day of TishB’Av, destroying the Temple, not leaving One stone upon another.

Two and a half million Jews were killed in this war, by famine, disease, infighting and One million Jews were killed in that war, much of the nation was exiled, and 100,000 Jews sold to Roman slave markets.

* On this date in 135 AD, Tish B’Av, the Bar Cochba revolt was crushed, killing over 100,000 Jews.

* 133 AD, Turnus Rufus plows site of the Temple. The Romans then built on the Holy Site the pagan city of Aelia Capitolina .

*1095 AD, On TishB’Av of that year was the date Pope Urban II called the first crusade, which resulted in the killing of more than ten thousand JEws, and the obliteration of Jewish communities in Germany.

* On TishB’AV 1290, all Jews were expelled from England , property was confiscated and killings of Jews occurred.

* In 1492 on the same date, TishB’Av, all Jews were expelled from Spain, by order of the “Holy order” of the Inquisition. There were forced conversions, family separations, pogroms, and much loss of property.

*In 1914, on Tish B’Av , Britain and Russia declare war on Germany. First World War begins. The First World War led to the Second World War and the Holocaust. Over 400 pogroms immediately following the war in Hungary, Ukraine, Poland and Russia.All but one-third of world Jewry would perish.

*On TishB’Av 1941, Hermann Göring ordered SS general Reinhard Heydrich to make all the necessary preparations for the Final Solution.

*TishB’AV, saw the 1942 mass deportation of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto to the Treblinka concentration camp begin.

* On TishB’Av 1994, the deadly bombing the building of the AMIA (the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, Argentina) which killed 86 people and wounded some 300 others.

* On TishB’Av 2004, at the Democratic National Convention, Barak Obama was catapulted from relative obscurity to national fame, after giving a speech which electrified the convention. He would go on to become the most avid anti Israel president in American history.

There are many many other calamities that have befallen Israel upon this tragic day. I believe there are several conclusions we can glean from the uncanny circumstances of the day.

* TishB’Av points to the veracity of the Word of God. Moses warned that should Israel break faith with God, That they would be scattered across the Gentile world,

And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; …And among these nations shalt thou find no ease, neither shall the sole of thy foot have rest: but the LORD shall give thee there a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind:…(Deuteronomy 28:64-65)

Our God is faithful in Judgement as well as in His promises of mercy.

* Yet in spite of these terrors and calamities, God in mercy has kept his covenant to keep the Jewish people,

This is what the LORD says,

he who appoints the sun
to shine by day,
who decrees the moon and stars
to shine by night,
who stirs up the sea
so that its waves roar—
the LORD Almighty is his name:
“Only if these decrees vanish from my sight,”
declares the LORD,
“will Israel ever cease
being a nation before me.”(Jeremiah 31:34-35)

The Sun, moon and stars would have to perish before God will alow the Jewish people to perish!

* Our God is a merciful Saviour, who will again turn His attention to the Jewish people in Love and mercy-

“At that time,” declares the LORD, “I will be the God of all the families of Israel, and they will be my people.”

This is what the LORD says:

“The people who survive the sword
will find favor in the wilderness;
I will come to give rest to Israel.”

The LORD appeared to us in the past,[a] saying:

“I have loved you with an everlasting love;
I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.
I will build you up again,
and you, Virgin Israel, will be rebuilt.
Again you will take up your timbrels
and go out to dance with the joyful.
Again you will plant vineyards
on the hills of Samaria;
the farmers will plant them
and enjoy their fruit.
There will be a day when watchmen cry out
on the hills of Ephraim,
‘Come, let us go up to Zion,
to the LORD our God.’”(Jeremiah 31)

We can see by the signs of the times that the Biblical prophecies are being lined up for fulfillment, and the time spoken of in Psalm 102 has come-

Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come.

For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, and favour the dust thereof.

So the heathen shall fear the name of the LORD, and all the kings of the earth thy glory.

When the LORD shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory.

He will regard the prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer.

This shall be written for the generation to come: and the people which shall be created shall praise the LORD.(Psalm 102:11-16)

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The Importance Of Turkey … Turkey

And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,  Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him,  And say, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal:  And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords:  Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet:  Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people with thee.  Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them. After many days thou shalt be visited: in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people, against the mountains of Israel, which have been always waste: but it is brought forth out of the nations, and they shall dwell safely all of them.(Ezekiel 38:1-8)

The world is looking with horror on the brutal aftermath of the recent  attempted “coup” in Turkey. Scenes of frightened young ‘soldiers” who happened to have been used in the attempt to overthrow President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, cringe before the angry supporters of Erdogan, who have been allowed to beat them at will in the street.

One photo shows a gymnasium crowded with half naked soldiers, bound hand and foot  and literally piled on top of one another, as they await whatever fate the victorious Erdogan has planned for them.

What happened and what is the significance of it in the light of Bible Prophecy?

Turkey is of vast importance in the world, having the largest army in Europe and is a NATO member. Until recently it was a fairly secular state, with a Muslim population but the extreme elements of Islam were kept at bay by the strict constitution enacted by Ataturk, the founder of the modern Turkish state.

Though it is a Muslim nation at present, in the earliest centuries of the New Testament church, it was in the Turkish region that the gospel first flourished beyond the borders of Judea and Samaria.

The apostles took the gospel to what then was refered to as the Roman province of Asia, within decades of the resurrection of Jesus. Paul taught there for two years as recorded in Acts 19.The original letters of the Apocalypse were addressed to churches in Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and to Laodicea, all in modern-day Turkey.

The epistles to Thessalonica, Galatians, I John, I and II Timothy and Revelation all originally addressed greek speaking converts in what is now called Turkey. Eventually the Roman Emperor Constantine, in the 4th century, built a city on the Dardanelles strait, Constantinople, as the eastern capital of the Roman Empire.

For the next thousand years, the Christianity that Constantine officially legalized, became the religion of the Byzantine empire, which extended over the middle east, a swath of eastern Europe and all of Turkey.

But with the rise and expansion of Islam, bit, by bit, Byzantium fell to the Muslims over the next eight centuries, slowly and steadily until in 1452 Constantinople fell to the Muslim invaders. The Turkish empire which replaced it, became known as the Ottoman empire, a Sunni Muslim empire which held sway for five centuries, but which collapsed as an outcome of World War 1, the Turks having been on the losing side.

We have to go back a bit and remember that until World War 1 Turkey was the seat of the five hundred year Ottoman Empire, and also of something Sunni Muslims refer to as the Caliphate, which is a centralizing Sunni authority.

Turkey chose the wrong side in the war, they allied with Germany. After the allied victory, the Ottoman Empire was dismantled and the Middle East was divided into new countries, protectorates and mandates governed by France and England under the Sykes Picot treaty. significantly to us, Israel was taken from the Turks and put under the British mandate.

Turkey remained an indépendant nation although its vast empire was stripped and divided among the victors under the Sykes Pichot treaty.

Gamal Mustafa  aka Ataturk  began a series of radical reforms, pushing Sunni Islam out of a dominant position and crafting a secular yet Muslim state.*

Ataturk also dismantled the centuries old Caliphate in 1922 , to the utter dismay and humiliation of the Sunni world. Most of the modern Sunni Jihad is an attempt to restore this “Caliphate”, i.e. the central ruling Sunni authority, under the “Prince of the faithful” which all Sunnis are required to swear “Bayat” to, i.e. pledge allegiance and engage in Jihad under his command.Isis was an attempt to restore the Caliphate but most of Sunni Islam regards Turkey as the proper abode of the Caliphate.

The Turkish Army was given the custody of the secularity of the Turkish state, closed guarding against Islamic extremism, and intervening several times , overthrowing other coups and always restoring the nation to the democratically elected leaders. Thus Turkey became a modern, progressive State with close relationships with the West in the Cold War and with Israel until recently.

But when Turkey was rejected for membership in the European Union, moods eventually shifted and Erdogan’s Islamist party steadily gained power. The coup, to the extent that it was real, was an attempt by the military to take back the nation from the corruption and increasing Islamization of Turkey.There are some who believe that the coup was doomed from the start, and used for the aggrandizement of Erdogan,like Hitler’s Reichstag fire.

Of course Obama and the US State department were on the side of the Islamists,(they always are), and now Turkey is even more entrenched on the disastrous path of any nation possessed by Islamists and the demons who drive them.

We must also remember that none less than Jesus himself located Satan’s throne in Pergamum, which is in Turkey, in his letter to the church at Pergamum,

And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges;  I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth.(Revelation 2:12-13)

Turkey is the region where Magog, Togarmah, Meshec,Tubal and Gomer hail from. They are slated to participate in the disastrous Gog invasion of Israel.

Zechariah 9 also prophesies that the Sons of Javan(lit) , translated Greece, but Turkey was once the main Greek landmass, would fight the sons of Israel,

When I have bent Judah for me, filled the bow with Ephraim, and raised up thy sons, O Zion, against thy sons, O Greece, and made thee as the sword of a mighty man.  And the Lord shall be seen over them, and his arrow shall go forth as the lightning: and the Lord God shall blow the trumpet, and shall go with whirlwinds of the south.(Zechariah 9:13-14)

President Erdogan is a very strange man. He gives speeches to crowds under a spell of wild adulation, but often he is speaking through a hologram! He opened an international airport called Saladin, because Saladin was the last conqueror of Jerusalem. He is Sunni but has Sufistic tendencies, the mystical Islam,. Male secular reporters who have interviewed him have come away erotically in love with him.He is also a cruel and cunning man who would make a great candidate for Anti-Christ. We will see…

We are seeing the fulfillment of prophecy before our very eyes. We are also seeing blind complacency, even many Christian people have no idea what is happening around them, but major, prophetic and earth shaking event are occurring, to be proclaimed and interpreted by all who “Have ears to hear”.

 

* (Attarurk also committed one of the first mass genocides of the twentieth century, purging Turkish soil of Armenians, killing a million and a half of them, and driving the other two million out of the land).

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