The Mountains of Israel & The Apocalyptic Armageddon.
"Blessed is He that Watcheth!"
Thursday, August 07, 2008
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Welcome to another edition of the Bible in the News. This is Paul Billington who is once again trying to impress all of you out there with the significance of what is happening upon the mountains of Israel today, and more specifically among the people who dwell there in the so-called Jewish "settlements."
We have said it before, and I will say it again now: If you rely on the main-stream media for your information about this area which they call the West Bank, you are going to get a distorted picture and one which will paint the Jewish settlers as religious fanatics who have moved in to "occupy" Palestinian lands. Having visited this area earlier this year--places like Hebron, Shiloh, Elon Moreh, Shechem--I think I could demonstrate that the Biblical culture that has emerged among the Jewish settlers is far preferable to the violent terrorist culture for which the Palestinians are known. The Religious Zionists love their Land and genuinely long for peace, which is something hard to claim for Fatah, Hamas or Hezbollah!
Be that as it may, my purpose here is not to make a party political broadcast on behalf of Jewish settlers who are dwelling upon the mountains of Israel. I shall avoid that temptation and simply draw attention to some facts which seem to escape the notice of the media, of political leaders, religious leaders and even of the government of Israel itself.
The first fact is what I call the Israel Fact. What I mean by that is simply this: the Bible foretold, in clear and unmistakable language that the Jews would return again to their ancient homeland. This is an undeniable fact. For example, look at the well Known passage in Isaiah 11:11,12.
"And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth."
There are literally dozens of passages that speak of this, and the stubborn unbelief of the modern world doesn't erase the fact that this was foretold thousands of years ago, and that it has come to pass during the last century.
But there is more to it than that. Look at Ezekiel 34:13,14 which we have also referred to on this programme before:
"And I will bring them out from the people, and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land, and feed them upon the mountains of Israel by the rivers, and in all the inhabited places of the country. I will feed them in a good pasture, and upon the high mountains of Israel shall their fold be: there shall they lie in a good fold, and in a fat pasture shall they feed upon the mountains of Israel."
Jews on the mountains of Israel? Well, argue the rights and wrongs of it all you like--the fact is, they are there--and they are there in considerable numbers. Let me quote a line from a Jerusalem Post column just this week. Larry Derfner under the headline "Quicksand in Yesha" writes:
"Even if the Palestinians were ready to give up terror, which they're not, Israel is not about to uproot the 50,000-100,000 settlers necessary to make room for a Palestinian state. Bottom line: Israel is staying in the West Bank indefinitely."
The rest of the world doesn't like this fact--they want to impose what they call a two-state solution on the people of the area. They have been wanting that for a long time now, but it hasn't happened. The Palestinians (whoever they are) have shown themselves incapable of establishing a stable and responsible state. Look at the Gaza Strip from which Israel "disengaged" a few years ago. As soon as Israel left, chaos took over. The Palestinians couldn't make it work!
Israel cannot repeat that mistake in the West Bank. The Olmert government of Israel would withdraw from the mountains of Israel if they could--but they simply cannot do it. The world knows this, but refuses to recognise the fact. Only this week the British Government had to cave in to left-wing pro-Arab lobbying. The Government of the UK wanted to build up a relationship with the settlers, but had to abandon the policy. A report on Israel National News explained this; it said:
"A spokesman for the (British) embassy replied, 'In a way, it's very important for us to hear from them what's going on in the settlements.' Last September, British Ambassador Tom Phillips began a campaign to build ties with Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria. British officials explained that the embassy had not changed its political stance regarding Jewish communities in Yesha, but wanted to build a relationship with local Jewish leaders."
But this policy of appeasement will not accomplish anything. The Jewish settlers are there to stay. They will stay on the mountains of Israel until a multi-national force is assembled under the leadership of Ezekiel's "Gog," and comes down to forcibly evict God's people from the Promised Land.
This situation was foreseen as long ago as 1866 when John Thomas wrote about it in his exposition of the Apocalypse. Those who have access to this work will find the relevant comments in Eureka Volume 2, pages 85-87--in the earlier editions (It is Section 3, entitled 'Sealed up with Seven Seals'--about half way through this section). In explaining the sixth vial he points out that the policies and machinations of the frog-like spirits will bring the nations "into position for conflict with Jesus and his brethren..." who, "leading the tribes of Israel" will form the little stone that smites the Image of Daniel chapter 2.
The growing hostility of the nations of the world against Israel that we see today is preparing the ground for this conflict. It is being impelled by the spirit of democracy, of "Liberty, Equality and Humanism" and will form an ideological challenge to biblical Zionism and the Theocracy of Messiah.
We are now very close to that time when many in Israel will own their true Messiah (see Hosea 3:5). When this happens the forces of Antichrist--that is so-called Christendom--will lead the nations of the world against this new Jewish Messiah. over 140 years ago John Thomas wrote of this in Eureka. He said,
"...the peoples will associate themselves against Israel, in whose midst Immanuel" will be... "He will cause them to come up from the north parts, and bring them upon the mountains of Israel, which are the apocalyptic 'Armageddon"--Ezek. 38:9; 39:2,4."
So what we are witnessing upon the mountains of Israel today, is a situation that will develop in such a way so as to antagonize Christendom, that is the so-called Christian world.
But before that matures, the Messiah will have come and called away all those who are constitutionally in him.
So let us keep watching!
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Printed: Thursday, August 07, 2008
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