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Sunday, September 8, 2013

Armageddon, Setting the Hook

              Armageddon, Setting the Hook

    Is America about to get sucked into the Middle East in a way we can't get out of.  There has been a lot of discussion on the matter lately and it has made me start searching the things I know the Bible says.  So here is what I see the Bible saying and the Left Behind scenario is not part of it.  The Bible lays out what is coming pretty clear.
      Sometimes when you get a thought at 4:00 AM that is somewhat of a revelation and can’t go back to sleep the best thing you can do is simply get up and make a note and hope you can then go back to sleep.  That does not always work because sometimes the thought unleashes a torrent of other thoughts.

      To clear your mind of the thoughts sometimes you have to put them all on paper to get them out of your mind.  It is the only way to get them out of your mind so you can finish your night’s sleep.  Sometimes it is so you do not lose them.  When you are at an age where senility is diminishing your ability to recall information is another reason.

      Events in the news about the situation in Syria triggered a memory from my youth.  The churches I grew up in always said Gog and Magog meant the area occupied by Russia today.  It reminded me of the saying in the Book of Ezekiel which describes what is commonly called the battle of Armageddon.  Chapters 34 and 35 both talk about it, but the part that hooked me was the reference to Persia, Ethiopia and Libya.

      In Biblical days Persia extended all the ways to India.  At least that is what my Smith’s Bible Dictionary says.  That means it included the lands of what is today called Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran.   I also know that Somalia adjoins and may have been part of Ethiopia in those days and finally it mentions Libya.  So what does that matter?   It talks of putting hooks in the jaws to draw the Armies to this great battle.  Both America and Russia have been involved in all three areas in the last sixty years or so.

Ezekiel Chapter 38
1And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, 2Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him,  3And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: 4And 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: 5Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet

14Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say unto Gog, Thus saith the Lord GOD; In that day when my people of Israel dwelleth safely, shalt thou not know it? 15And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts, thou, and many people with thee, all of them riding upon horses, a great company, and a mighty army: 16And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land; it shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against my land, that the heathen may know me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes

      That is a pretty good description of how America got drug into Afghanistan, Libya and now maybe even Syria.  Oh and don’t forget Somalia and the events that led up to the Black Hawk Down story.  The question is are we simply seeing the stage set for the battle of Armageddon.

      Isaiah gives a vivid description of what it is to be like at the time of the end in Chapter 30.  He especially mentions a couple things that could be applied to this day and age.  Verse 25 talks of the Towers falling and great destruction.  The significance of this is that in verse 26 he talks about the moon being as bright as the sun.  He also talks about the sun being seven times brighter.

       So why is this significant?  I like to let the Bible explain the Bible and one of the only places the sun, the moon and the stars are mentioned together is in Joseph’s dream.  Based on that, when I see the moon being as bright as the sun, it means women being equal to men.  Then in the end of that verse the sun being seven times brighter means an increase in knowledge. Which agrees with the prophecy of Daniel 12:1-4 makes it pretty clear.

              1And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. 2And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. (Definitely end time stuff here) 3And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.  4But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.

     Backing up a little bit.  Ezekiel 38 also talks about a land called Tarshish.  It is a place that is not clearly defined in the Bible, but they were a people who made their living on the seas hauling goods and merchandise.  Items they are described as carrying on their ships are peacocks which come from India and tin which came from the area of what is now Spain.  In my college days I read a book entitled America B.C. by Barry Fell which describes finding archaeological evidence that ships from Tarshish and other countries came to the new world before the time of Christ.  Many scholars argued and questioned his discoveries because it was not his regular field of study. 

       Questioning findings of lay people is not uncommon.  The man who discovered and proclaimed the field of plate tectonics in 1912, which is now accepted, was never recognized during his own lifetime.  The reason being he was a trained meteorologist  and did not have the academic background to support his claims which he put forth in his book of  The Origens of the Continents and Oceans in 1915.  Alfred Wegeler died in Greenland while doing research in his field. 

       The reason these books fascinated me is that there had to be some explanation as to how people got to the New World and Australia after the great flood of the Bible, but then I discovered the Bible said in Genesis 10:25 that the earth was not divided till after the flood.  Good enough for me.

         Getting back on track I will let the first chapter of Zephaniah speak for itself.  It describes what the end times will be like and how God will pour out his wrath on mankind.  The Bible gives a lot of writing to the issue of the end time.  People who read the Bible and believe God will be prepared and know what is coming.  The Bible tells us so.  The third chapter also has some hard things to say.  I could put all the verse in this writing but it would make it to long for a blog.  If you read it from the source maybe you will believe it and start studying  the Bible to get to really know the Lord.
      In the media today it sure sounds as if America is getting sucked into the whole Middle East thing.  Russia is against us, as is China which makes the whole situation even scarier.   The real problem is that there is a time coming that is worse than the battle of Armageddon.  The last part of Ezekiel 38 makes that all clear.

17Thus saith the Lord GOD; Art thou he of whom I have spoken in old time by my servants the prophets of Israel, which prophesied in those days many years that I would bring thee against them?  18And it shall come to pass at the same time when Gog shall come against the land of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, that my fury shall come up in my face. 19For in my jealousy and in the fire of my wrath have I spoken, Surely in that day there shall be a great shaking in the land of Israel; 20So that the fishes of the sea, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the field, and all creeping things that creep upon the earth, and all the men that are upon the face of the earth, shall shake at my presence, and the mountains shall be thrown down, and the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground.  21And I will call for a sword against him throughout all my mountains, saith the Lord GOD: every man’s sword shall be against his brother. 22And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him, and upon his bands, and upon the many people that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone. 23Thus will I magnify myself, and sanctify myself; and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am the LORD.

      There will come a point when most men will be looking forward to being delivered from the things going on in this world.  In Matthew, Christ makes clear that there will be a period of tribulation and that those who are to be delivered from the earth will not be delivered until after a period of “Great Tribulation.”  So if we are about to enter into a period that brings us up to the Rapture and the Great Tribulation we should start to see the fulfillment of one last prophecy from the Bible that could not have been fulfilled till the time we now live in.

       In Revelation Chapter 11 it talks about the two witnesses to the end time.  They will testify for three and a half years.  They will be delivering their testimony and can’t be killed till they finish it.  When they do finish their testimony they shall be killed and lay in the street for three and a half days.  It says the world shall celebrate their death and exchange presents and the whole world shall see them lying in the street.  That is something that could not have happened until this day and age.  Jesus makes it clear that most of mankind will go through a portion of the Tribulation and then his people will be delivered.  So those who buy into the Left Behind view of the end times are in for a rude awakening.  Not because I say so, but because the Bible says so.

     My goal is not to terrify but to open some people’s eyes as to what the Bible says about what is coming in the end times and show from the Bible itself that we may be at a time where it is all going to come to pass.  If it does we need to be right with the Lord and forget about the worldly things than mean nothing and prepare those we care about to get right so they are with us for all eternity.

         One of the last events prophesied in the Bible is in Revelations 16:17-21

17And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done. 18And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great. 19And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath. 20And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. 21And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent:( a talent is about seventy pounds) and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great.

            If you think this can't happen and think that the Tsunami and the Japanese earthquakes were big,  You might read my blog of 24 July 2012 and see what a lay person says on the situation.  I already showed what two lay people got right and got no respect for.  Hope this at least gets some people thinking.
You can't avoid it, or escape it, but you can make you peace with God and at least know where you will be when it is all over.

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