Welcome to the June 12, 2009 edition of Bible in the News. This is Glenn Abel with you. Hardly a week goes by without some major Anti-Semitic attack, but this week, it hit close to home, in Washington DC.
Attack at Holocaust Museum in Washington DC
On Wednesday, an 88-year-old man entered the Holocaust memorial museum in Washington DC, armed with a rifle, and opened fire on the security guards, killing one, before being critically wounded by another.
The gunman, James von Brunn was a known white supremacist and Holocaust denier, who in typical fashion blames the Jews for the world’s problems. A letter found in his car railed against Jews: “The Holocaust is a lie. Obama was created by Jews. Obama does what Jew owners tell him to do. Jews captured America’s money. Jews control the mass media...”
Several thousand visitors were in the museum at the time, and thankfully, none were injured. We have frequented this museum over the years, as it is less than 2 hrs from our home, in Virginia, and so it is a reminder of just how widespread anti-Semitism is. This man clearly has held his beliefs for some time, but with even Israel’s traditional allies publicly criticizing them, anti-Semitic groups gain in legitimacy.
Such is the case now, but it will not always be so. For the Holy scriptures prophesy of a time when:“... it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you.” (Zechariah 8:23)
As Christ himself stated: “salvation is of the Jews.” (John 4:22)
It is interesting that this week, the Prime Minister of Israel was criticized as a racist for referring to the state of Israel as a “Jewish state”. How could it be anything else? It was Jacob who as a “prince” had “power with God”Genesis 32:28: “And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.”
And it was in the West Bank area of Bethel that God confirmed Jacob’s name changed to Israel, and among other things, promised him:Genesis 35:12: “And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.”
Today, Iranians head for the polls to elect their new President. It has long been assumed that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the incumbent President would be easily re-elected, but one of his opponents, Mir Hossein Mousavi has pulled close in recent days.
Mousavi, who is seen as a “moderate”, has pledged to improve relations with other nations, which have been strained by the theatrics of Ahmadinejad, and his Holocaust denying, anti-Zionist rhetoric. On Thursday, Ahmadinejad brushed aside the results of polls showing a very tight race as Nazi era propaganda by “Zionist entities”. However, some pollsters have predicted a Mousayi win - as long as the election is “fair” - which might be a tall order!
It is important to remember that the real power in Iran belongs to the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khameni - no matter who wins the Presidency, they will need to satisfy his demands, and implement his policies first and foremost.
It is also important to recall the words of the scriptures, for they predict that Iran - or “Persia” will be part of the anti-Semitic confederacy that comes against the Jews in the land of Israel, in the latter days:Ezekiel 38:5: “Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet”.
Scriptures do not identify these nations as being the major players at Armageddon, but instead they are depicted as coming along, under the protection of the Russian leadership :Ezekiel 38:7: “Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them.”
We certainly see this situation today, as Iran has been aligned with Russia, and Russia has continually “protected”, and wielded considerable influence over Iran.
Libya rebuilding ties with Italy
Alongside “Persia”, Ezekiel 38:5 mentions another “bit” player - “Libya”, as joining this confederacy in the latter days.
Daniel 11:43 predicts that “the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps”, or will “follow at his heels” (NASB), that is of the later-day King of the North.The Libya of Daniel’s day, called “Phut” in the Hebrew, were descendants of Ham (Genesis 10:6) who migrated into the northern parts of Africa, including modern Libya.
And so, we note that this week, the Libyan leader Mummar Gadhafi made his first visit to Italy, where he has been given the “red-carpet” treatment by Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, who said that relations with Libya had entered a new era.
From 1912 to 1951, Libya was under the colonial jurisdiction of Italy, and since Gadhafi’s 1969 coup, Libya had relations with the Soviet Union, but was a continual thorn in the side of western nations, by supporting terrorists, including the late Yasser Arafat, as well as persecution of Jews and denouncements against Israel.
In recent years, Libya has taken steps leading to improved relationship with Europe and the West, especially with Italy, but the words of Jeremiah 13:23 come to mind:Jeremiah 13:23: “Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.”
Gadhafi, who thrives on controversy and incendiary speeches, took the opportunity of being on the world stage to criticize the US, as well as his own Italian hosts. He also offered to meet with some of the Jews he previously persecuted after the 6 day war in 1967, but the only date proposed just “happened” to be the Sabbath, making it impossible for observant Jews to attend.
Like Iran, Libya is continuing the path of political alignment and anti-Semitism predicted by the Scriptures, as the God of Israel gathers the nations “to the battle of that great day of God Almighty” (Revelation 16:14)
Most High Rules in the Kingdom of Men
As we see the prophetic word coming alive before our eyes, we remember the words of Daniel 4:17:Daniel 4:17: “This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men.”
The world agonizes over elections, rulers, and regimes, but servants of God patiently wait for the fast approaching time when these words will be uttered with loud voices:“...The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.” (Revelation 11:15)
Join us again next week, God willing, for another edition of Bible in the News.