"> Where Are We In God's Master Plan - Part 1

 

 

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Where Are We In Godís Master Plan?

Part 1

 

Today we hear concerns about threats all over the world, Muslim terrorists, the Chinese military and economic threat, the loss of US control of the Panama Canal, the rising military, economic and foreign policy independence of the European Union, open hostility toward Israel by the European Union, growing antisemitism, nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction in India and Pakistan; missile threats against the Republic of China (Taiwan); the give-away of major parts of historic Israeli covenant land including Gaza, Judea and Samaria (the so-called West Bank); Iranian illegal nuclear development and its threats to destroy Israel, Europe, and the U.S.; North Korean missiles over Japan; a North Korean nuclear threat to Japan, South Korea, other US interests in the western Pacific, along with their denial of their sales to terrorists; illegal Mexican incursion across our southern border; violation of constitutional provisions; large increase of non-Judaic/Christian religions; the further decline of our moral values....The list lengthens daily. Many religious leaders relate these events to the end-time wars and the end of Godís blessings of protection and liberty on America. Are these fulfillments of the Mat 24:6 "wars and rumors of wars" prophecy and other prophecies specified to happen in the end times? We think so.

 

The intent of this sermon is to relate current events to the prophesied end-time wars and events described in your Bible. These events form an significant part of Godís 7000-year Master Plan.

 

As we enter the second half of 2010, letís review some of the horrific events of the past months. It is a period filled with tragedies, sufferings, death and political intrigue. We saw millions of people in southern Asia whose lives were devastated by one of the worst tsunamis in history. The death toll reached a staggering 230,000 victims. We saw Russia and China supporting a nuclear Iran as the UN attempted to vote sanctions against Iran for their illegal nuclear weapons development. We see China and the Arabs putting economic pressure on the US dollar. We saw China conducting cyber attacks on US military intelligence. We saw Hamas rocketing Israeli cities from the Gaza strip which, under US pressure, Israel gave to the so-called Palestinians for promises of peace. We saw a Chinese submarine interrupt US Navy exercises. We saw a Chinese missile destroy a satellite, thereby threatening an important military tool. We saw Iran let off the hook by questionable National Intelligence Estimates announcements. We saw the US State Department and Defense Department at odds over whether Iran is a friend or foe. We saw the assassination of Benazer Bhutto who encouraged a bridge between the US and Muslims. Some say the assassination was caused by US micro-management. The desecration of Jewish homes, synagogues and businesses in Gaza was witnessed on television by the whole world! Gentiles across the globe saw multitudes of Jews praying, hoping and crying out for God's intervention. Then they watched them being pushed from their homes and onto buses while still holding in their hands their prayer books. They prayed and called upon the Name of God.

Yet God did answer their anguished and fervent cry and prayers. Less than a week after this horrible expulsion, the U.S. suffered one of its worst hurricane disasters in history when Katrina hit New Orleans and surroundings. Four weeks later, Wilma struck Florida. Who knows what else must follow for God to make His message clear to the U.S. administration, to the President and the Secretary of State, that by their policy against Israeli Jews and His covenant land, while at the same time accommodating the Canaanites and the rest of Islam, that they and even the government of Israel are on a disastrous collision course with God almighty, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob!

And if what we have already seen is what had to happen to the United States, seemingly by the will of God, what then will happen to the leaders in Israel who share responsibility?

In London, Muslim terrorists struck the subway system killing 52 commuters and injuring more than 700 in the worst attack in London since World War II.

Amazingly appropriate therefore are the words in the book of Job when it says in Job 37:9-13:

From the chamber of the south comes the whirlwind. He scatters His bright clouds and they swirl about, being turned by His guidance, that they may do whatever He commands them on the face of the whole earth. He causes it to come, whether for correction, or for His land, or for mercy.

Does the NT warn us about such tragedies? Christ gave us a lesson when he said in Luke 13:5 in reference to the killing of 18 persons when the tower in Siloam fell upon them: "Unless you repent you will all likewise perish." The falling of the tower may have been an accident but the recent so-called "natural" disasters very likely were not. But Christ is telling those who will listen that tragedies are a wake-up call to repent. And with the example of seemingly accepted but very sinful practices of the City of New Orleans and elsewhere, there is much to repent about.

The present intensification of natural and man-made disasters should be seen as clear signs of God's final warning to mankind of the impending divine judgment of modern mankind. These disasters tell us that, as in the experience of ancient nations, God will not allow human rebellion and wickedness to continue much longer. As He told Abraham in Gen 15:16:

"But in the fourth generation they shall return here, for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet complete."

And just as the Israelites were destined to come and destroy the sinful Amorites, so Christ will soon come to bring an end to the horrendous sins of this world.

(Rom 8:19-22 NASB) For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. {20} For the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope {21} that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. {22} For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.

(2 Pet 3:11-12 NASB) Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, {12} looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God,

Let's now address the subject of God's plan: The six thousand years of man's rule, followed by the 1000 years under Christ, Mashiach in Hebrew. Do you know where such a plan is described in the Bible? The answer is that you have to look at the statements in two chapters, Revelation 20 and Hebrews 4, to find it. The 1000 year term of Christ's Kingdom ruled by Christ and His Saints is richly described in Rev. 20:1-6 (NKJV):

Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. {2} He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is <the> Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; {3} and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while. {4} And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then <I saw> the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus [Yeshua in Hebrew] and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received <his> mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. {5} But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This <is> the first resurrection. {6} Blessed and holy <is> he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.

Thrones implies royalty. To continue on the subject of royalty, letís read Rev 1:1-6.

(NKJV) {1} The Revelation of Jesus Christ [ Yeshua ha Mashiach in Hebrew], which God gave Him to show His servants--things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John, {2} who bore witness to the word of God, and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, to all things that he saw. {3} Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near. {4} John, to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne, {5} and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, {6} and has made us kings and priests [part of the order of Melchizedek] to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever.

And Rev 5:10 And have made us kings and priests to our God; And we shall reign on the earth." [Notice: Not in heaven!]

"Millennium", of course, means 1000 years. From the foregoing, it is clear that the saints will rule in Christ's kingdom for a thousand years.

In Hebrews 4, Paul describes the Sabbath day rest and God's rest. When researching this chapter, one must be very careful to differentiate between the two meanings of the word translated "rest." One is G2663 in Strong's Concordance and means God's rest, i.e. the millennium; the other is G2664 and G4520 which mean the weekly Sabbath. Let's read Hebrews 4:1-11 (NKJV):

Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest [the millennium G2663], let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. {2} For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard <it>. {3} For we who have believed do enter that rest [2663], as He has said: "So I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest [2663],' " although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. {4} For He has spoken in a certain place of the seventh <day> in this way: "And God rested [2664] on the seventh day from all His works"; {5} and again in this <place>: "They shall not enter My rest [2663]." {6} Since therefore it remains that some <must> enter it, and those to whom it was first preached did not enter because of disobedience, {7} again He designates a certain day, saying in David, "Today," after such a long time, as it has been said: "Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts." {8} For if Joshua had given them rest [G2664-Sabbath], then He would not afterward have spoken of another day. {9} There remains therefore a rest [4520 - Sabbath] for the people of God. {10} For he who has entered His rest [2663- Godís rest] has himself also ceased [G2664-Sabbath] from his works as God <did> from His. {11} Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest [2663], lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience.

We have two sets of scriptures which describe Christ's kingdom. Revelation describes the length of the saints rest with Christ in His kingdom. Hebrews compares the kingdom with the weekly Sabbath. Verse 10 states that keeping the weekly Sabbath is prerequisite to entering the kingdom. Paul's comparison is clear, but we need to look at a scripture comparing a day with a thousand years. One scripture that seems to say that is 2 Peter 3:8.

But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day <is> as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

For the 7000-year plan to be valid, each day of the week must represent 1000 years.

 

SO, WHEN IS THE 6000TH YEAR?

Some feel that 1946 was a year of jubilee. That would make 1996 another jubilee year since it occurred fifty years later. The year before, 1945, marked the surrender of Japan and Germany and the end of World War II. 1945 was followed by fifty years of relative peace. "But", some may ask, "What about Korea and Viet Nam?" Well, according to the administrations at the time, they were both described as "police actions." Of course, that was because the administrations wanted to be able to stop the action when it was politically advantageous to do so and a declared war doesn't have that flexibility. Beside that, they were not world wars. But to assume that 1996, fifty years later, was therefore a year of jubilee and therefore the 6000th year since creation may seem to be conjecture, but as we shall see not necessarily incorrect.

In 1996 there were two red eclipses, one on Passover night, the other on the night of the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot). Could God have been telling us something? Was 1996 the 2000th anniversary of Johnís and Christís birth? It certainly was by many chronologies. See our article, "The Dates of the Birth and Death of the Messiah" for a discussion of the year He was born and the relevance of these two observances with His and Johnís birth and Christís death.

In 1996 Israel celebrated Jerusalem 3000. It was believed to be the 3000th year since King David. Of course, one of its purposes was to demonstrate to the PLO and the world that Jerusalem had been the Jewish capitol for the past 3000 years, a fact present administrations in both Israel and the world seem to have forgotten. Was it a year of jubilee? It could very well have been.

Considering events since the land for peace discussions between the PLO and Israel began and events in other Israelitish countries where Gentiles are rising up against Israelites, have we been seeing another period of upheaval starting in the spring of 1997, the year after the theoretical jubilee of 1996-7? Many events have occurred and are occurring which would support the view of such an upheaval. Former Prime Minister Sharon, in office since 2001, has been in a coma for the last few years. His replacement, PM Ohlmert, was determined to exchange land for peace promises. However present Prime Minister Netanyahu is opposed to exchanging land for promises of peace.

Many believing Israelis claim Israel is now living in Godís time of redemption, a time when God becomes increasingly involved in human events. Does this indicate we are now in the seventh millennium, and have been since 1996? Does a nuclear Iranian threat prove this? Do the end time events we see occurring today confirm it?

(Mat 24:6 NKJV) "And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

Daniel 12 briefly describes the troubles at the end times. Letís start in verse 1:

Dan 12:1-4 (NKJV) "At that time Michael shall stand up, The great prince [an arch-angel] who stands watch over the sons of your people; And there shall be a time of trouble, Such as never was since there was a nation, Even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, Every one who is found written in the book. [The Saints] {2} And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, Some to everlasting life, Some to shame and everlasting contempt. {3} Those who are wise shall shine Like the brightness of the firmament, And those who turn many to righteousness Like the stars forever and ever. {4} "But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase."

Verse 1 describes this period as the most troubling time in all history. The most troubling time in all history is also described in the book of Revelation as the tribulation. But it is also in this time that Godís people, the Saints, (those written in the book of life) will be delivered. Verse 4 also describes this time as one in which there will be much travel and increased knowledge.

If 1996-7 was the 6000th year, where then does the last 3-1/2 years of Christ's seven year ministry fit in? We know that Christ preached for 3-1/2 years when He, as the Messiah, was on earth 2000 years ago. Many feel that the last 3-1/2 years of His ministry will occur at the beginning of the 7th millennium. Has Christ been ministering to his chosen people these last few years? Or will He minister to His people for 3-1/2 years of the seventh millennium before He returns? Letís read Daniel 12:7,9 for the probable answer.

Dan 12:7,9 (NKJV) {7} Then I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand to heaven, and swore by Him who lives forever, that it shall be for a time, times, and half a time; and when the power of the holy people has been completely shattered, all these things shall be finished. . . . {9} And he said, "Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.

We need a few words of explanation here. Verse 9 states that we wonít fully understand until the time of the end when the power (or strength) of the holy people comes to an end. Who are the holy people? Are they the Saints or the Jews? I donít believe most Jews in these last days are so holy. Most are secular today. The vast majority of religious Jews in America are very liberal concerning Godís law. But even in Israel, observant Jews are often misled by their various traditions. Saints, however, as I explained in a sermon titled "The Sons of God", are by definition holy. Verse 7 also states that the length of this very troubling time, after which the power or strength of His people will be shattered, will be for time (one year), times (two years) and half a time (one half year) for a total of 3-1/2 years. The question is: When do these 3-1/2 years begin?

The word "shatter" or "scatter" in verse 7 comes from the Hebrew word "yad." It is described in Strongís Concordance, number 5310 and basically means a loss of power. It also seems to describe a period of persecution.

Revelation 6:9-11 gives us some insight of this persecution as well as an explanation of why the time of Christís return has seemed at times to be dragging on. Letís read these verses from the Complete Jewish Bible.

Rev 6:9-11 (CJB) When the Lamb broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been put to death for proclaiming the Word of God, that is for bearing witness [the Saints].{10} They cried out in a loud voice, "Sovereign Ruler, HaKadosh, the True One, how long will it be before you judge the people living on earth and avenge our blood?" {11} Each of them was given a white robe; and they were told to wait a little longer, until the full number of their fellow-servants would be reached, of their brothers who would be killed, just as they had been (by decapitation).

Rev 20:4 gives us more detail.

(Rev 20:4 NKJV) And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

Notice their cause of death. Does this ring a bell regarding pictures of martyrdom weíve seen from Muslim Iraq and Indonesia on the evening news? Christ described this period of persecution and martyrdom in Matt 24:9, a chapter in which He describes events of the last days.

Matt 24:9-10 (NKJV) Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name's sake. {10} And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.

Even now we see animosity between various groups and people, even those who call themselves Christian. Back to the question of when the millennium starts. Does the tribulation occur at the beginning of the millennium as part of the straightening out of this evil world? We must keep Zech 14:16-19 in mind. Let's read it.

(KJV) {16} And it shall come to pass, <that> every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. {17} And it shall be, <that> whoso will not come up of <all> the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. {18} And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that <have> no <rain>; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. {19} This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.

Not all the world will be obedient to Christ in the Millennium, at least in the beginning of it, but at that time Christ will punish human kind if we don't obey His instructions. The 6000 years of human rule will be over. Christ will be head of the new world order rather than the world envisioned by the beast and antichrist as described in Revelation.

 

THE YEAR OF THE CREATION OF ADAM

Many believe that the birth of the Messiah in 4 BC occurred in the 4000th year since creation. That would mark the creation as occurring in 4004 BC. Is the 4004 BC creation date correct? The most logical chronology is the Ussher calculation, because the list of major events determining this date correspond with the Hebrew text. It is also the date used in the margin of older English language bibles. Another calculation, the Hale calculation, sets creation 1400 years earlier. If that is the case, the seventh millennium is over! Most recent chronologies find themselves bogged down in archaeological conclusions which tend to confirm the statements of pagan societies but reject Hebrew text. Most modern chronologies conclude that the creation date is much older than 4004 BC. The bottom line is that any creation date older than 4004 BC puts us way into the seventh millennium now. If we accept a 7000 year plan of God, any creation date older than 4004 BC is illogical.

It seems likely, considering there seems to be so little time left until the end of year 6000, if it hasnít occurred already, that beginning early in the 7th millennium God will directly intervene in human affairs. As we have already pointed out, current events would indicate He may have begun already. Mankind has pretty well had his way in controlling events these last 6000 years. Except for major events, God has left man alone to do his own thing. We are soon, if not already, going to see man's plans overridden by God. That will undoubtedly result in blessings (but initially persecution) for those dedicated to God, and anguish and terror among those determined to reject God's way (Mat 13:42, 50). But the world has not lived under God's government before, at least not since Adam. We do not know exactly how things will be done. It'll be a new experience.

 

DID THE BRITISH UNDERSTAND THE SIGNIFICANCE OF 1997?

Here is another event which may point to our proximity to the seventh millennium.

The summer of 1997 marked the year when Britain returned the Crown Colony of Hong Kong to Chinese sovereignty. What could this possibly have to do with the Millennium? In 1842 the Treaty of Nanking gave the island of Hong Kong to Britain in perpetuity. In 1898 Britain obtained nearby Kowloon, the Stonecutter Islands, and a mainland area called New Territories under a 99-year lease from China. That lease expired in 1997. In September 1984 Britain agreed to return the entire Crown Colony of Hong Kong to Chinese sovereignty in 1997. Why would Britain, back in 1898, designate 1997 as the year when they would no longer be interested in these areas? Did they understand about when the seventh millennium would begin? Were the British, at that time, so understanding of Biblical events and times that they could agree to such a date with the pagan Chinese, knowing that Christ's Kingdom would begin to be in control of all the nations of this world about then anyway? Remember that the old English Bible, with which most were familiar, shows creation in 4004 BC. The point is that the British of a hundred and twelve years ago seemed to have understood the significance of many Biblical events. Perhaps they felt confident that 1997 or soon thereafter would begin the new millennium.

British interest in and understanding of the Bible really began with the completion of the KJV of the Bible in 1611. It was read at churches, at home, and everywhere. Its words kindled a startling enthusiasm for truth, justice, mercy and God. A new conception of life superceded the old. A new moral and religious impulse spread through every class. The whole nation became one big church. By the time Queen Victoria came to the throne at the age of eighteen in 1829, the Bible was very familiar and respected to almost every British citizen. When a Nigerian prince came to visit the country, one day asked Queen Victoria (whom it is fashionable to denigrate today) for the secret of Britainís greatness, she ordered a courtier to fetch the Bible. Handing it to him, she said emphatically, "This is the secret of Britainís greatness." Queen Victoria died in 1901 at the age of ninety.

 

OTHER SUPPORTING PROPHECIES

But if the millennium has started or is to start in such a short time, how do other prophecies fit into this short time-frame? We might consider the unfulfilled prophesy of Isa 17:1, for instance:

The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from <being> a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap.

Syria is importing and developing poison-gas-carrying missiles as we speak. Russia is providing antiaircraft to Iran to protect their nuclear bomb making facilities while Iran vows to destroy Israel and ultimately the United States. Some, including Israel, claim Iraqís weapons of mass destruction were taken to Syria before America invaded Iraq. Prior to the death of Hafez al-Assad, Syria was also negotiating with Israel for an exchange of the strategic Golan Heights for a peace treaty. The Golan Heights not only protect Israel from invasion from Syria, but also control access to Israelís major water source, Lake Kinneret, commonly called the Sea of Galilee. If you are interested in reading of Israelís history in the Golan Heights, refer to the name Bashan in your Bible. That is its Biblical name. Is the total destruction of Damascus, that we just read about, the result of a retaliatory nuclear attack from Israel for the gassing or other unconventional weapons attack of a major Israeli city by Syria, or Syrian invasion of Israel from Lebanon or an abandoned Golan Heights? Would these actions bring foreign nations such as the EU, Russia, the US, and/or the UN into the area to stop escalation?

Does this and other prophecies, like the king of the north/king of the south war referred to in Daniel 11, all happen before or at the beginning of the tribulation? I think it will. Matthew 24 seems to say it will. When commenting on the Middle East, former French President Chirac and other European leaders have certainly indicated their dislike for Israel, their liking for the Palestinians and Saddam Hussein, (perhaps due to their illegal trading practices during the oil for food program in Iraq), and their desire for European intervention into the Palestinian problem. We even saw the British government and monarchy hosting the dictator of Syria while refusing to meet with the Israeli Foreign Minister. The United Nations itself has a long history of wishing Israel did not exist, evidenced lately by their public display of a map of the Middle East with no Israel, just Palestine. We can certainly see the groundwork of prophetic events taking shape.

One might ask, "How about the Middle East peace initiatives promoted so strongly by the United States?" The US State Department not only supports a Palestinian homeland on God-given Israeli land but is pushing the so-called Palestinians and Israel to sign land for promised peace agreements. Immediately after Israelís retreat from Gaza, the U.S. State Department told Israel she must give away more land. It has also encouraged supplying the PA security forces with money, guns and equipment and has demanded or promoted the destruction of Israeli settlements. America is currently pushing this via the very dangerous Bush Road Map agreement. This is at least the seventh agreement promoted by the US which supports the exchange of God-given Israeli land for promises of peace. The previous six include the Rogers Plan, the Vance Plan, the Reagan Plan, the Mitchell Plan, the Tenet Plan, and the Saudi Plan which became the Bush Road Map Plan. Would the US agree to give away Manhattan to make peace with the terrorists after 9-11? Should the US pull out of Iraq because of the terrorist decapitation of Nicholas Berg and others? Every withdrawal of Israeli forces is followed by a new attacks on Israel by Muslim groups wanting the total destruction of all Jews worldwide plus the elimination of the nation of Israel. The word Palestine was the Roman name for the land of Israel. The so-called Palestinians originated in other Arab nations, not Israel. There never was an Arab nation called Palestine. They are imposters. What does the Bible say about ownership of this land?

(Gen 13:14-15 NKJV) And the LORD said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him: "Lift your eyes now and look from the place where you are; northward, southward, eastward, and westward; {15} "for all the land which you see I give to you and your descendants forever.

(Zec 12:3 KJV) And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it.

Now, granted, Jerusalem is not the same as all the land given to Abrahamís descendants, but Jerusalem is certainly being discussed in the on-going negotiations with the so-called Palestinians and the United States has certainly been very involved in these negotiations, even to supporting territorial independence for the so-called Palestinians within the land originally given to Israel and the division of Jerusalem between Israel and the Palestinians. Enormous US and European Union (EU) pressure is being quietly applied to the Israeli government to give away the land which God gave to Abram and his descendants. Former Israeli Prime Minister Sharon denied that he favored the division of Jerusalem by claiming the Road Map states Jerusalem will be united under Israeli control. Actions of the Ohlmert government indicated otherwise. The Road Map promoted by the Quartet (US, EU, Russia, and UN), another example of the one sided foreign policy of most nations, including the United States, states that the final status of Jerusalem will be negotiated. Various planning sessions have included representatives of the United States, the United Nations, Saudi Arabia, the European Union, Egypt, Jordan, and the Palestinian Authority. Notice who seems to be missing? Israel. In early June 2003 and many times since, Israel was told, by President Bush and Secretary of State Rice, to give up land to the so-called Palestinians in exchange for their promise to end terrorism, but their terrorism continues long after the land was transferred. The President doesnít seem to know or care that Islam promotes lying if lying supports Islamic victory - a Koranic principle. The Oslo agreement was also based on the belief the Palestinians and other Islamic countries wanted peace. They donít. They want all the land of Israel. In other words, the Jews must give up their own covenant land needed for their own security while the terrorist nature of their enemy must be overlooked. Why? Because the Palestinians donít have their own country west of the Jordan River? Because they come from a society where violence is accepted in our multi-cultural world? Because all the victims are just Jews? Because the US State Department labels Jewish settlements as illegal settlements? By whose laws are they illegal? Certainly not Godís laws and certainly not according to the Bible.

We just read in Zec 12:3 that "all that burden themselves with Jerusalem shall be cut in pieces even if all the countries of the world are gathered against it." Major countries of the world are gathered against Jerusalem. Are there any indications that they are beginning to be cut in pieces? Let me provide you a scenario which seems to indicate that is beginning to happen.

One very big domestic problem for the United States is the huge flood of illegal Mexican and other immigrants to the United States. The total number is currently estimated to be about twelve to twenty million. At the same time, there is an organization, AZTLAN, in Mexico, which advocates the return of the southwestern United States to Mexico. Many Mexican-Americans support this return. Recent demonstrations where they booed the National Anthem and flew American flags upside down demonstrate their true allegiance. The organization "La Raza" (which means "the race") is supportive of AZTLAN and political actions which support Mexican Americans.

How did Mexico originally lose their territory to the United States? After the acquisition of the Oregon Territory from Britain, the U.S. spanned the entire width of the North American continent. Americans began to feel that they were destined to own even more of North America. A spirit of destiny called Americaís "Manifest Destiny" swept the nation. The "manifest" part came from an attitude that Americaís land destiny was Providential. It occurred in the same era as the growth of the British Empire. It was not unlike the Israeliteís spirit of destiny regarding the land of Canaan after their forty-year delay in the wilderness.

At that time, Mexico owned Texas but encouraged Americans to settle the area to increase its economy. So Americans came ... by the thousands. By the early 1840s there were 30,000 Americans in Texas but only 3500 Mexicans. Soon the Texans pressured Washington to annex Texas. By 1850, the U.S. had agreed to do so. So Texas was won by immigrant settlers.

Then, American eyes looked at the rest of the southwest, an area which now includes California, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, and parts of Colorado and Kansas. After Mexico sent her army into what is now Texas to reinforce her borders, the Mexican/American war broke out. The Mexicans lost the war and the southwest. But statements by the Mexican government, including former President Vincente Fox, indicate Mexico does not accept the U.S. claim to its border with Mexico.

If this was truly Manifest Destiny, then the Eternal gave this area to America, just as He gave the land of the Canaanites to the Israelites. Now the earlier owners of both the land of Canaan and the American southwest are attempting to take their land back.

We just read Zec 12:3.... all that burden themselves with it (Jerusalem)shall be cut in pieces ...Numbers 24:9 tells us "blessed is he that blesses you (Israel) and cursed is he that curses you." Is the U.S. being threatened with the loss of a huge part of its territory, just as Israel is, because of its support of Israelís enemies in their attempt to take away Israelís covenant land? Does "cut in pieces" also describe the loss of land? Do the political wars in the U.S. and Israel weaken our resolve? Does corruption in all levels of government result in destruction?

Are present day efforts to remove Godís name and Word from Americaís currency, pledge of allegiance, schools and courthouses a sign of Americaís rejection of God? Is Americaís present day rejection of God and His instructions resulting in His withdrawal of Americaís "Manifest Destiny?"

Recent history has shown that following every US move or statement supporting Israelís give-away of land, the US has suffered some type of punishment. What punishments? The 9-11 terror attacks, hurricanes, earthquakes, tropical storms, the destruction of large areas of New Orleans and vicinity with its resultant dislocation or death of many citizens, the largest fires in western US history, the impeachment of President Clinton, the first anthrax case in 25 years, the loss of personal freedoms due to increased national security, preventive precautions of which are generating more and more exotic personal identification systems. Some Bible students see this as fulfilling the Rev 13:16 prophecy about limitations on buying and selling. We could go on and on. Most of these calamities occurred within 24 hours of a statement by a US president or his staff which applied pressure on Israel to parcel out her land, negotiate a cease-fire agreement between Israelis and Palestinians, or made major statements pertaining to Godís covenant land. When Godís covenant land in Israel is put at risk by US action, land and property in the US seems to become at risk at almost the same time. Are these calamities a warning from the Eternal?

One of the current signs of the end is the increase of nihilism, the destruction of moral fiber in the United States and Israel. Recent examples include public pressure to legalize homosexual marriages and judicial decisions to remove public displays of the Ten Commandments. The rejection of Biblical standards may also be reflected in the loss of control of the Panama Canal by the United States, and potentially the Golan Heights, Jerusalem, and parts of greater Israel by Israel. We will see later in Deuteronomy 28 how these events are related, but letís first turn to Gen 22:15-18 to see why these nations were blessed with these strategic places in the first place.

(Gen 22:15-18 NKJV) Then the Angel of the LORD called to Abraham a second time out of heaven, {16} and said: "By Myself I have sworn, says the LORD, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son; {17} "blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. {18} "In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice."

But how can we know that the United States was among the recipients of Godís promises of national greatness to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? There are many indications of that in the Bible, and that is a study in itself, but one is found in Genesis 49. Verse 1 sets the stage.

(Gen 49:1 NKJV) And Jacob called his sons and said, "Gather together, that I may tell you what shall befall you in the last days:

So here we see a prediction or prophecy from Jacob describing the descendants of his sons in the last days. Now we need to ask the question: Where are the descendants of these sons of Jacob today? Are they all part of the modern nation of Israel? No, they were not so even in the time of Christ. Letís read James 1:1 for proof of that.

(James 1:1 NKJV) James, a bond-servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad: Greetings.

Yes the twelve tribes were and are scattered abroad, that is, not in what was the ancient land of Israel. Where are they today? Most of the rest of Genesis 49 gives us a description of these tribes or nations today. From that description and from othersí research we can roughly identify where they might be today, in these last days. As I said, this is a study in itself, but letís read verses 22-26 which describe what I believe includes the United States and Great Britain today.

(Gen 49:22-26 NKJV) "Joseph is a fruitful bough, A fruitful bough by a well; His branches run over the wall. {23} The archers have bitterly grieved him, Shot at him and hated him. {24} But his bow remained in strength, And the arms of his hands were made strong By the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob (From there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel), {25} By the God of your father who will help you, And by the Almighty who will bless you With blessings of heaven above, Blessings of the deep that lies beneath, Blessings of the breasts and of the womb. {26} The blessings of your father Have excelled the blessings of my ancestors, Up to the utmost bound of the everlasting hills. They shall be on the head of Joseph, And on the crown of the head of him who was separate from his brothers.

Does this make the United States and Britain better than other countries? No. It makes them more blessed than other countries. Does this mean Americans and Britain have earned these blessings? No. It means that these blessings have flowed to these countries because of the obedience of Abraham and the blessings promised to him. So, if this is true, why does the United States and Britain seem to be losing their blessings today? Letís turn to Deuteronomy 28 to find out.

Verses 1-14 describe the blessings of obedience to be available to all the tribes of Israel, including Joseph, and Judah (which is the Jewish nation of Israel today).

(Deu 28:1-14 NKJV) "Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the LORD your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. {2} "And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the LORD your God (and part of that obedience is to honor Godís name): {3} "Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country. {4} "Blessed shall be the fruit of your body, the produce of your ground and the increase of your herds, the increase of your cattle and the offspring of your flocks. {5} "Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. {6} "Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out. {7} "The LORD will cause your enemies who rise against you to be defeated before your face; they shall come out against you one way and flee before you seven ways. {8} "The LORD will command the blessing on you in your storehouses and in all to which you set your hand, and He will bless you in the land which the LORD your God is giving you. {9} "The LORD will establish you as a holy people to Himself, just as He has sworn to you, if you keep the commandments of the LORD your God and walk in His ways. {10} "Then all peoples of the earth shall see that you are called by the name of the LORD, and they shall be afraid of you. {11} "And the LORD will grant you plenty of goods, in the fruit of your body, in the increase of your livestock, and in the produce of your ground, in the land of which the LORD swore to your fathers to give you. {12} "The LORD will open to you His good treasure, the heavens, to give the rain to your land in its season, and to bless all the work of your hand. You shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow. {13} "And the LORD will make you the head and not the tail; you shall be above only, and not be beneath, if you heed the commandments of the LORD your God, which I command you today, and are careful to observe them. {14} "So you shall not turn aside from any of the words which I command you this day, to the right or the left, to go after other gods to serve them.

But what if we do not obey God as instructed? Daniel explained the causes of Godís punishments upon Israel in Danielís time. Letís read of it in Daniel 9:4-15:

(Dan 9:4-15 NASB) And I prayed to the LORD my God and confessed and said, "Alas, O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and loving kindness for those who love Him and keep His commandments, {5} we have sinned, committed iniquity, acted wickedly, and rebelled, even turning aside from Thy commandments and ordinances. {6} "Moreover, we have not listened to Thy servants the prophets, who spoke in Thy name to our kings, our princes, our fathers, and all the people of the land. {7} "Righteousness belongs to Thee, O Lord, but to us open shame, as it is this day-- to the men of Judah, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and all Israel, those who are nearby and those who are far away in all the countries to which Thou hast driven them, because of their unfaithful deeds which they have committed against Thee. {8} "Open shame belongs to us, O Lord, to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, because we have sinned against Thee. {9} "To the Lord our God belong compassion and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against Him; {10} nor have we obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in His teachings which He set before us through His servants the prophets. {11} "Indeed all Israel has transgressed Thy law and turned aside, not obeying Thy voice; so the curse has been poured out on us, along with the oath which is written in the law of Moses the servant of God, for we have sinned against Him. {12} "Thus He has confirmed His words which He had spoken against us and against our rulers who ruled us, to bring on us great calamity; for under the whole heaven there has not been done anything like what was done to Jerusalem. {13} "As it is written in the law of Moses, all this calamity has come on us; yet we have not sought the favor of the LORD our God by turning from our iniquity and giving attention to Thy truth. {14} "Therefore, the LORD has kept the calamity in store and brought it on us; for the LORD our God is righteous with respect to all His deeds which He has done, but we have not obeyed His voice. {15} "And now, O Lord our God, who hast brought Thy people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand and hast made a name for Thyself, as it is this day-- we have sinned, we have been wicked.

Notice again what Daniel said in verse 11:

"Indeed all Israel has transgressed Thy law and turned aside, not obeying Thy voice; so the curse has been poured out on us, along with the oath which is written in the law of Moses the servant of God, for we have sinned against Him.

Was Daniel 9:11 a prediction of the 9-11 attack by Muslim terrorists on New York and Washington DC? Daniel was talking about ALL Israel, not just Judah and the Jews.

There are many scriptures which describe the punishments God will impose for disobedience and dishonor. Please turn to Lev 18.

(Lev 18:20 NKJV) 'Moreover you shall not lie carnally with your neighbor's wife, to defile yourself with her. . . . (verses 27-28 NKJV) '(for all these abominations the men of the land have done, who were before you, and thus the land is defiled), {28} 'lest the land vomit you out also when you defile it, as it vomited out the nations that were before you.

So one curse for a very common sin these days is to be removed from our land. Another is described in Ezek 5:12.

(Ezek 5:12 NKJV) 'One-third of you shall die of the pestilence, and be consumed with famine in your midst; and one-third shall fall by the sword all around you; and I will scatter another third to all the winds, and I will draw out a sword after them.

Letís turn back to Deut 28. Verses 15-68 describe the curses for disobedience. We will not read all these but letís just read verse 52. For a spine-chilling picture, read all these verses.

(Deu 28:52 NKJV) "They shall besiege you at all your gates until your high and fortified walls, in which you trust, come down throughout all your land; and they shall besiege you at all your gates throughout all your land which the LORD your God has given you.

Could our high walls in which we trust be our isolation? Could they be prominent buildings or structures in our cities? Could the security fences Israel and America are building be included?

Do we see evidence of an attack on our "gates" today? What were some of these gates? Let me list a few for you: England controls the entrance to the Baltic Sea. Gibralter controls the entrance to the Mediterranean. The Suez canal controls European access to the Middle and Far East. South Africa controls the sea routes around the south of Africa. Ceylon provides a naval base to control traffic across the Indian Ocean. Singapore controls access through the straights of Malacca. Hong Kong can control the South China Sea. The Philippines can control the sea routes through the western Pacific. The Falkland Islands can control the sea routes around South America. And then thereís Panama.

All these gates were once controlled, owned, by the United States and Britain. All but Gibralter, which is claimed by Spain, and the Falkland Islands, which is claimed by Argentina, have been lost today.

The Panama Canal is a military and commercial choke point for the United States just as the Golan Heights is a military and water resource choke point for Israel. Both are vital and both are now threatened. Now you may ask, why would the Panamanians close the canal to American shipping, both military and commercial? The Panamanian government has no army but is neighbor to terrorists operating in Columbia and southern Panama. The American government is finally becoming aware of the canalís vulnerability to terrorism and Americaís vulnerability to missiles fired from Panama. But more than that, Panama has given Red China a long term lease for land at both ends of the canal. Weíll begin by discussing Red Chinaís relations with the United States and the rest of the world in Part 2 of this sermon hopefully the next time I speak.

 

Sermon given by Wayne Bedwell

10 July 2010

 

Copyright 2010, Wayne Bedwell

 

 

 

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