Thursday, May 31, 2007

Beyond Babylon: Europe's Rise and Fall - Chapter 7 - "Elijah's Key Role"

"And may our eyes behold Thy return to Zion in mercy" (Jewish daily prayer). A great drama is about to be played out! The stage is Jerusalem. The setting is Israel. God's spotlight will be shining upon His two star witnesses. All eyes will be riveted upon the events about to occur: GOD'S GOING TO RECLAIM JERUSALEM AS HIS OWN!

Israel's about to host the greatest showdown on earth! A spiritual conflict of interests will create such a scene in Jerusalem that the whole world will watch! Zion will be an arena of prophets and sorcerers, warriors and kings! The forces of good and evil are set to duel: the sons of light will battle the sons of darkness, and truth will confront error head-on!

Satan knows his days are numbered and Europe's his last stand. This will be it for Rome. The final conflict is going to suck every nation into its black hole! The twisted fate of the Vatican and Europe will unravel before all; their counterfeit kingdom will come apart at the seams!

Prior to Europe's invasion and occupation of the State of Israel, God will have stationed two men, especially trained for this mission, in Jerusalem. They're to serve notice that Jerusalem and Israel belong to GOD! These two men are witnesses that God will again choose Jerusalem. They won't rest until Zion fulfills her calling (Isa. 62:6-7). They can foresee the future so clearly, it's as good as done for them (Rom. 4:17). Since they know for sure what's going to happen, they can give an accurate forecast!

Priest and King: Israel's Twin Pillars

Why are there two of them? For several reasons: God's Law requires two or three witnesses to testify before the judge can pass sentence; they're Israel's eyes, to enlighten and help them see what's going on; and THEY REPRESENT GOD'S CHURCH AND STATE.

The prophet Zechariah first mentions these two. He saw them portrayed as two olive trees, standing next to a golden Menorah, one on each side. When he questioned God's angel as to what this all meant, he was told: "These are the two anointed ones, who stand beside the Lord of the whole earth" (Zech. 4:14).

It's understood that the Menorah represents Israel - who's yet to become a "light to all nations." Today Israel's national symbol is this very candlestick with its two olive branches.

Ancient Israel only had two anointed positions: Priest and King. They were anointed with olive oil, symbolic of God's Holy Spirit, before taking office (Ex.30:30). It was a simple gesture asking for God's merciful guidance, and a humble request for Heaven's inspiration (1 Sam. 16:13).

God reveals that His men are going to be on active duty for three and a half years. Their mission coincides with Jerusalem's Gentile occupation. They'll witness the atrocities committed against our people, and fast and pray. Therefore, the formal dinners and black-tie days are gone. God's prophets will be in mourning and wearing black: burlap!

Revelation 11:4 declares: "These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands standing before the God of the earth." They stand at attention before God, ready and willing to carry out His every command. They're filled with the Holy Spirit and share their LIGHT of understanding with captive Israel (Zech. 4:12). They'll give it all they've got, emptying themselves, to try and impart God's VISION and spiritual insight.

Obviously, they're testifying against Europe's crimes against humanity, because the Beast wants them dead! They warn Europe their Day of reckoning is near and thereby encourage Israel to never fear!

Elijah's Coming!

The prophet Malachi assures us: "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and dreadful day of the LORD. And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the earth with a curse" (Malachi 4:5-6).

Who in the Bible is most prominent before the return of Jesus Christ? In the Old Testament we find "Elijah." In the New Testament we're introduced to the "Two Witnesses." They're both just before the awesome DAY OF THE LORD - the time when God directly intervenes with the SEVEN LAST PLAGUES!

Elijah (whose name means, "my God is Yah/God") lived when Israel was wrapped up in Baal worship. He blasted their "Lord" as worthless and exposed Israel's most popular ministers as pagan! He went all out to reconcile the nation with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and encouraged Israel to return to the COVENANT GOD of our fathers.

Elijah's famous for his contest on Mount Carmel. He challenged the vast majority of Israel's ministers, representing Baal, to take him on. Elijah represented "My God Yah" - the true God of Israel. He allowed them to go first in this attempt to see which God would ANSWER BY FIRE.

Baal's ministers got all hot and bothered, worked themselves up into a bloody frenzy and made a lot of stupid noise to attract their god's attention - to no avail. Meanwhile, acting "rude and intolerant," Elijah mocked their ignorance and questioned their faith! Finally these "holy rollers" wore themselves out and gave up. The silence of their god's response was deafening.

The very first kibbutz I served as a volunteer on was Kibbutz Ramat Yohanan. It's situated in such a place that you're able to enjoy a commanding view of Mount Carmel (when the smoke from Haifa's refineries aren't blocking it!). It was an excellent prop, a perfect backdrop, to illustrate the point I made regularly: God's true ministers are rare individuals - usually they're only one against many - but they're not afraid to tackle the errors of traditional Christianity and Judaism.

A Patriotic Prophet

Appropriately, when Elijah's turn came to call upon Israel's God, it was the time for the evening sacrifice. He refused to use Baal's altar since he didn't believe all religions were created equal, but instead took the time to repair the broken down altar of the LORD. They probably didn't understand, saying, "Why do you have to make things more difficult?"

Elijah built God's altar with twelve stones, signifying the twelve tribes of Israel, and had a big trench dug around it. Then he put the wood in place and cut up the steaks, arranging them on the altar. Then he had four huge barrels of water dumped on everything; and then again, and again! Twelve barrels in all, of precious water (remember they were experiencing a horrible drought!), drenching the meat and the wood, and running down into the trench.

"And it came to pass, at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near and said, 'YHVH God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that You are God in Israel and I am Your servant, and that I have done all these things at Your word. Hear me, O YHVH, hear me, that this people may know that You are the LORD God, and that You have turned their hearts back to You again.' Then the fire of the YHVH fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench. Now when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, 'The YHVH, He is God! The YHVH, He is God (1 Kgs. 18:20-39)!"

Elijah ended the circus careers of sweaty preachers! He put a stop to their ridiculous antics and closed down their religious tents! Israel's quick conversion resulted in the arrest and "baptism" of their former ministers down by the riverside: Elijah finished off the whole pack of liars!

Notice: Elijah's prayer mentioned ISRAEL'S ROOTS and acknowledged our faithful forefathers. It declared that the whole purpose behind God's dramatic display was to prove He's serious about taking us back. God made the first move, now Israel's change of heart was necessary to truly restore their relationship. Repentance results in reconciliation.

God sent the fire, forgave Israel, and further demonstrated His love by sending rain upon their thirsty earth - something their new age/nature gods hadn't been able to do! Israel cleaned up their act and got rid of their error - for awhile. Elijah had temporarily checked the growth of Baal's cult, and worked hard to keep Israel weaned from their addiction to deception. After fulfilling his purpose, air transportation was provided to a private location. God removed him from public view and office, transferring his authority to Elisha, a man out in the "field" - NOT from headquarters or the ministry (the school of the prophets)!

Elijah: Past, Present and Future

Jesus acknowledged John the Baptist as a forerunner of "Elijah," preparing the way for Christ's first coming (Mat. 11:14). That fact reveals Malachi's prophecy about "Elijah" wasn't about his literal person, as further explained by the angel Gabriel (Luke 1:17). Therefore we also shouldn't expect the original Elijah to prepare for Christ's Second Coming!

Elijah's been long dead and buried and awaits his resurrection. He lived out his life in the place that God had prepared for him; though he even sent a letter to King Jehoram to explain the spiritual significance of Judah's deteriorating situation (2 Chron. 21:12). And that was after he went to "heaven!" Jehoram's father, Jehoshaphat, had been king during Elijah's ministry.

What's to occur right before Christ's coming? A modern version of pharaoh and his magicians against Moses and Aaron! It's to take place before a world court! Egypt held Israel hostage and the GOD of the Hebrews demanded their immediate release. Both sets of individuals claimed to represent God and His truth; they met face to face - but they didn't see eye to eye!

Israel's two representatives will present their case from Jerusalem. They’ll confront Europe's pope and emperor with the facts and hold them personally responsible for Europe's atrocities. God's Two Witnesses will take the stand and testify against Europe's cruel and unusual punishment inflicted upon our people. They'll charge the Beast and False Prophet with murder, treason, and extortion!

Israel's two anointed positions were priest and king. The priest tribe was Levi and the scepter tribe was Judah. Therefore, one of Israel's representatives will hail from the Royal House of David (Judah), and the other will join him, as an assistant, from Aaron's line (Levi). Both will be deeply converted individuals from God's one and only true Church. They represent God's Church and State, like Moses and Aaron, against Satan's counterfeit Church and State!

"Elijah" will vigorously oppose Europe's evil empire and speak out against its corrupt system of government and religion! He'll denounce those Israelite nations in Europe who will have merged their markets with Babylon's daughter. Ahab (pagan Israelites) and Jezebel (the Catholic Church) will have to contend with Elijah again! Elijah's successor was promised a double portion of God's Holy Spirit: it'll be shared between the Two Witnesses!

Restoring Truth

Herbert W. Armstrong came and restored 18 glorious truths to God's Church (that had been lost throughout the centuries); he boldly stood against traditional Christianity's error and rebuilt the altar of the LORD (that had fallen into disrepair by shameful neglect); he restored our Israelite roots and responsibility (Isa. 49:6); he prophesied before world leaders about German domination of European unification and Christ's return to save us from its nuclear holocaust; he energetically brought God's Church back on track, making sure that it measured up to Biblical standards; and he died, full of faith and wisdom, leaving a lasting impression on those who continue the quest for God's Kingdom (Rev. 10:11; 11:1).

Jesus said: "Indeed, Elijah is coming first and will restore all things" (Mat. 17:11). He spoke in the future tense. Then He explained that John the Baptist had already fulfilled Malachi's prophecy, as far as Christ's first coming was concerned. But Christ's Second Coming is near and "Elijah" must help prepare for it! Herbert W. Armstrong has fulfilled that RESTORATION ROLE for God's Church! We're now about to witness its final fulfillment!

God's about to empower His two prophets (who are one in mind and spirit) with the greatest anointing mankind's ever seen! They're to help RESTORE THE NATION - not just the Church - to Israel's God. They're going to be made invincible, so they can tell it like it is! They’ll speak the plain truth before Israel's captive audience and powerfully deliver God's Message to Europe: "LET MY PEOPLE GO!"

After Elijah's workday was over, Elisha continued doing Elijah's unfinished job - he didn't start some new work (1 Kgs. 19:15-16). He followed through on various assignments God had given Elijah (who wasn't able to complete them). The Two Witnesses will carry on in Mr. Armstrong's tradition and honor his legacy, like Mr. Gerald Flurry and the Philadelphia Church of God do today (since the Worldwide Church of God has become the Synagogue of Satan, having turned their back on God’s truth for popular error).

Offering Encouragement

Elijah's to appear just before the "coming of the great and dreadful Day of the LORD." Isaiah 60:1 encourages them to "RISE AND SHINE!" (That Scripture always reminds me of my Grandpa Hoover. Whenever my sisters and I would stay at our grandparents' farm in Risingsun, Ohio, Grandpa would wake us up early with his "rise and shine" call!).

Israel's bright young men are to help spread some COMFORT and CHEER; our captive American, British, and Jewish brethren will need all the encouragement they can get! They'll need someone to help them look past their misery and see the light of Day again. How? By proclaiming "the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God" (Isa. 61:1-2).

Our HOPE lies in Europe's repentance or destruction! God wants us to have HOPE and not despair; FAITH and not fear! The roles will soon be reversed and the tables turned (Isa. 40:4-5). God's not a liar: CHRIST will come and save us!

Showing the Way Out

But what must we do to be saved? There are three requirements for NATIONAL DELIVERANCE: 1) Confess and forsake our traditional ways; 2) Admit we're only reaping what we've sown; that God's left us because we've left Him; and 3) Accept our responsibility and corrective punishment (Lev. 26:40-41).

We have only ourselves to blame for our predicament (Jer. 4:18). We've played with fire and got burnt - what did we expect? We've broken God's laws and got caught; what are we complaining about (Lam. 3:39)? But now what are we going to do about it? It's "better to light a candle than to curse the darkness."

"Let us search out and examine our ways, and turn back to the LORD..." (Lam. 3:40). We've got to come to terms with ourselves and face reality. We didn't listen to God's representatives warning us what was about to happen - and now it's happened! Hopefully, we won't make the same mistake twice. God's men will be telling us how to get out of the mess we've gotten ourselves into! We'd better take their legal counsel.

Religious Lies

False prophets will say we've been conquered because we'd gotten away from traditional Christianity! They'll try to confuse the situation (Lam. 2:14). We need to stay away from their lies and condemn their delusion! We're going to lose the next war because of IDOLATRY and IMMORALITY! Counterfeit Christianity - with its PAGAN HOLIDAYS AND OBSERVANCES - is immoral to God! When puny men try and put Sunday and Easter before God's seventh day Sabbath and Passover, they're making an idol out of human traditions!

The old line that "Christmas is for kids" is dead wrong! NOTHING justifies living a lie! (1 John. 2:21). It's pagan no matter how you try and disguise it, and God forbids His people to have anything to do with customs and holidays stolen from false religions (Deut. 12:30-32)!

God's Holy Days

God gave us seven Holy Days (the number of completion) for the whole family! We can celebrate and worship God together and be happy knowing that we're portraying His Purpose for mankind: PASSOVER represents Christ's sacrifice as the Lamb of God; the FESTIVAL OF UNLEAVENED BREAD celebrates Christ's resurrection and ascension to Heaven (where He's actively serving as our High Priest, putting sin out of our lives); PENTECOST celebrates the founding of God's Church, the internalization of God's Law by His Holy Spirit, and the fact that the "chosen few" are God's first pickings; the FEAST OF TRUMPETS heralds Israel's reunion at the coming of our King (during a time of war); YOM KIPPUR or the DAY OF ATONEMENT offers us the hope of national reconciliation with God and Satan's banishment; the FEAST OF TABERNACLES rejoices in God's offer of eternal life (for the first time since Adam) to all mankind, and celebrates, in advance, the abundance we'll enjoy under Messiah's Administration; the LAST GREAT DAY portrays mankind's mass resurrection and first chance for salvation (Lev. 23)! Why aren't you familiar with these days? Blame your minister!

Pagan Holidays

Pagan holidays that God hates aren't "for the children!" How can they be? When you go through the terrible HOLOCAUST that's coming (because of our idolatry and immorality), you'll understand we've SACRIFICED OUR CHILDREN in its flames!

If we're going to be saved out of "Jacob's trouble," we've got to think like God does and see things His way (Isa. 59:7-9). Mankind had better stop arguing with God! It's going to get us deported and killed! We need to hate the lies of Easter, Sunday, Christmas, and all the other religious bull we've heard and fallen for! We need to stay out of those corner bars (with crosses and steeples) that put us in a Biblical blackout! That hard liquor makes us forget what God says we're supposed to do, or gets us to the numb point where we don't even care!

Delay Isn't Denial

We will sober up! Prophecy reveals we'll quickly repent and expect to be saved overnight (Hos. 5:15). We'll admit that we've been wrong, that we've been a nation of drunks and whores, that we've loved religious lies and hated the truth - but we're still NOT going to get rescued as soon as we'd like!

God says because He's called us on many different occasions, and we've refused to answer; we’ve broken the olive branch every time He's extended it; we've flatly rejected what He’s advised us to do, and didn't want to be told we weren't living right - laughing at God's people as old-fashioned, and making fun of them for believing the Bible and thinking they're crazy for warning about Europe instead of taking them seriously: "I also will laugh at your calamity, I will mock when your terror comes... When distress and anguish come upon you. Then they will call upon me, but I WILL NOT ANSWER; they will seek me diligently, but they will not find me" (Prov. 1:24-33).

Who likes a fair-weather friend? Who's willing to play second fiddle to anyone or anything in a right relationship? Does God want us to only look Him up when we're short on cash or need to get out of jail? Is God impressed with our attention when all our distractions have been stripped away? When we can finally hear Him and listen to what He has to say because we no longer own a loud stereo or television set (because our homes have been blown up or looted)? CONCENTRATION CAMPS will help us to learn to THINK again!

Ignorance ISN'T bliss! It's hell! Instead of hating God's truth and despising its instruction, we should hate those wrong ways that only invite disaster! We should despise those deceitful "lifestyle choices" that'll leave you dead! Why self-destruct? The brain-dead need to get a life, and those stupid fools who are so laid back had better sit up and take notice!

God's going to give us an opportunity to live (or die) with our decisions. Delay is not denial. ("I believe with perfect faith in the Messiah's coming. And even if He be delayed, I will await Him."). We'll be given plenty of time to think things over. That's why God isn't going to save us immediately. He's going to let us get sick of ourselves and tired of sin's bitter consequences (Ezek. 36:31). We've tasted the forbidden fruit - now we'll have to endure its horrible aftertaste!

But God will hear and forgive us - He's just making a point by taking His time (since we didn't give Him the time of day!). When we held our historic congress at Mount Sinai, founding Israel as God's nation, laying the groundwork for our constitution by hearing out God's 10 commandments, we were only given two days advance notice to prepare for it (Ex. 19:10-11). We cleaned up our act, washed our clothes, and abstained from sex. We thought we were ready, but we weren't prepared for what happened next!

On the third day, as previously scheduled, God made His grand entrance. Israel had front-row seats for the most spectacular LASER EXHIBITION! The shocking display of SOUND and VISION stunned the audience! Smoke, fireworks, an incredible overture - it was too overwhelming! There was a near stampede for the exits (Ex. 20:18)! ALL Israel heard God's deep voice and could feel the vibrations from His words. Talk about shaking in your sandals! Never had any assembled nation heard GOD give the main address (Deut. 4:33)!

God's going to speak to us again, after He's rescued us from Europe (Ezek.20: 35). But we're given two years to prepare for Christ's coming (Amos 4:12). Within the third year of our three and a half-year sentence, God will begin to dramatically intervene! That'll be the year of our jubilee! "Come, and let us return to the LORD; For He has torn, but He will heal us; He has stricken, but He will bind us up. After two days He will revive us; on the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His sight" (Hos. 6:1-2).

It appears we'll repent within the first six months of our captivity. After two years the "Day of the LORD" will begin. That's when God gets directly involved! The time we've been waiting for and told to expect will have arrived (Isa. 61:2)!

Heavenly Signs

As our CREATOR, God's going to dispatch the forces of nature to bring His Message home! "And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; men's hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken" (Luke. 21: 25-26).

God's going to revive us after two years! The Two Witnesses will foretell these startling events, but when we see them with our own eyes, we'll know for sure God hasn't forgotten or forsaken us (Luke. 21:28)! It'll be like a breath of fresh air for those who understand what's going on, but a nightmare for those who still don't get it!

When Earth's equilibrium's off and nature appears to have gone off the deep end; terrifying tidal waves crash into cities, batter our coastlands and sweep away towns; unbelievable earthquakes strike that make today's troubles seem like mere tremors; droughts occur that suck out every ounce of moisture from the air; and on and on with NO RELIEF in sight - people are going to break! Some will be literally scared to death!

We need to WAKE UP and realize this is all symptomatic of our sick condition! Earth reflects our relationship with Heaven. The reason we experience upset weather is because there's a SPIRITUAL UPHEAVAL in our lives! These bizarre acts of creation warn us we're out of sync with the Scriptures!

Christ will uplift our spirits during the day of the LORD, and He'll return within the third year of Israel's ordeal! Europe's prophesied to walk all over us for three and a half years, but then they'll fall to pieces: God's going to smash their toes, shatter their illusions, and blow them all away (Dan. 2:35)!

Why Jerusalem's Special

Why are the Two Witnesses stationed in Jerusalem? Because it's the historic site of David's throne and they deliver a message about GOVERNMENT (Isa. 9:7). Israel's representatives will proclaim the coming of our KING - from His future capital! God's called Jerusalem to become the "City of the Great King." No other city bears that distinction. That's why Rome's False Prophet is going to try and steal that honor before Christ comes! He'll attempt to preempt Jesus in His own City! How? By inducting Europe's Merovingian "Messiah" into Jesus' holy office upon the Temple Mount! (Mat. 24:15). It's all one big counterfeit! (Ps. 2:6). Satan attempted to seize God's Throne, now he's after Jesus' Seat! Jerusalem is "the throne of the LORD" (Jer. 3:17).

The Vatican is Satan's chief instrument to accomplish his diabolical purpose to wrest Jerusalem from the Jews, and the Catholic Church often works behind the scenes (1 Kgs 21:25). She uses her evil influence to persuade politicians to do her bidding. The Babylonian whore is about to take Europe for another wild ride (Rev. 17:7)! The Gentiles will temporarily occupy Jerusalem, further proving the inspiration of the New Testament to the Jews, but Elijah will counter Ahab/Europe's claim to Zion, pushed forward by the Vatican/Jezebel. Europe will eventually be encouraged to throw the wicked witch down and feed her to the dogs (2 Kgs. 9:33-37; Rev. 17:16)!

The UN has already stationed troops in Hebron. (David ruled there for 7 1/2 years before going up to Jerusalem). By that act, Israel's sacrificed their sovereignty. It's opened the floodgates for the UN to swamp the Holy Land! It's no coincidence that Jericho - the first city ancient Israel conquered - has been the first territory Judah surrendered!

UN Resolution 181, perversely passed in 1947, calls for Jerusalem to become "an international city," including 100 square miles around Jerusalem. As Israel's "peace process" deteriorates, as it must, we’re sure to see this vile resolution brought up again as Europe's final solution. The world will demand its enforcement - pushed by the hypocritical pope pleading for a "peaceful" resolution. That evil resolution prepares the way for a "GOVERNOR OF JERUSALEM." Expect Europe to fill that vacant seat with their counterfeit Christ! Jesus prophesied this very thing (Luke 21:20)! In fact, the German ambassador to Israel let it be known that Germany considers Jerusalem a "corpus separatum" (separate body), utilizing the Latin language from their accursed resolution! The bloodthirsty German-Catholic cabal intends to rip the heart out of Israel: Jerusalem!

Israel's Liberator

Moses and Aaron reassured Israel that God was going to set them free. They explained it was all because of GOD'S PROMISE TO ABRAHAM. Jacob's deliverance was based upon God's agreement with our fathers. It was only a matter of time!

Elijah's going to remind us that GOD - not Europe - is Master of the universe (Isa. 52:7). Jesus will save His damsel from distress. Christ will land on the Mount of Olives, liberate Jerusalem, and secure Israel's release from Europe's prison, because He's faithful to His followers!

God isn't going to let us rot in jail! Christ is coming on a RESCUE MISSION! The Two Witnesses foresee it as "mission accomplished!" They're on watch-duty and stand guard, ready to sing for joy, because they know we're as good as saved! They're on the lookout for Christ's return, announce His approach, and tell us when it’s getting nearer (Isa. 52:8-10).

God said He'd send an apostle to the Middle East (Isa. 41:27). Whom God sends man can't return! (Remember it appeared that Moses was a "goner" in the Wilderness and Jesus was crucified: but God sent Moses back to Egypt with signs and wonders and raised Jesus from the dead with great honor and glory). Such an inspiring individual will spread the GOOD NEWS of God's advancing army! We're about to be liberated! INDEPENDENCE DAY is on its way (Isa. 61:2)! We'll hear from actual eyewitness accounts!

Elijah Introduces the Messiah

The chief spokesman, between Israel's two key witnesses, will be an envoy from the House of David. This "Elijah" will herald Messiah to the Jews (Isa. 40:9). He'll be like an angel, God's messenger, revealing Israel's true God and leading us to repentance (Zech. 12:8). ELIJAH MUST IDENTIFY THE MESSIAH TO JUDAH, AND INTRODUCE HIM TO ISRAEL!

Jesus clearly stated He'd never come back to Jerusalem until we have a CHANGE OF HEART (Mat. 23:39). But God will soon return in all His glory! "Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion! For behold, I am coming and I will dwell in your midst, says the LORD" (Zech. 1:10). That means Judah is going to repent!

The Jewish Homeland has been restored. Jerusalem has been reunited. But the same group mentality that cried out for Christ's blood is still entrenched in Jerusalem. Too many religious people are afraid to think for themselves and declare their independence from proud and stubborn men. However, they must, if and whenever necessary, if they want to be free to obey God as the prophets and holy people always have.

On Israel's Parliament building every Hanukkah are the words: THOSE DAYS, THESE DAYS. It's in reference to God's powerful miracles in the past and a prayer for more of the same today. Israel's in for a big surprise: we're going to see GREATER MIRACLES!

After seeing Elijah's MIRACLES and hearing his MESSAGE about our conquering King, the Jew's long-awaited repentance will become reality! God's Spirit will convince them that the Two Witnesses are the Elijah to come! Israel's priests and politicians will fall to their knees and worship God's Son and Israel's Firstborn! The Jewish establishment, for the first time, will publicly acknowledge Christ (Zech. 12:9-14)!

What will serve as the catalyst for Israel's conversion? Elijah's death and resurrection! Jesus purposely allowed Lazarus to die so He could resurrect him as a SIGN. It served as an advance notice of Christ's death and resurrection.

Elijah's Evidence

God gives us four SIGNS (the four elements) to prove the Two Witnesses are "Elijah!" They'll serve for the same length of time as Elijah (three and a half years), and also represent the true CREATOR GOD of nature: they'll be able to control the weather (I Kgs 17:1)! The whole Earth will be affected when they forbid it water! It'll only rain at their word (Rev. 11:6).

When Elijah's life was endangered by the military, He called down fire from the sky (2 Kgs 1:14). God struck his enemies dead! If any armed forces threaten Israel's reporters, before they've completed their assignment, God authorizes them to use whatever firepower they deem necessary (Rev. 11:5). All they have to do is speak God's Word and their rivals will be reduced to nothing! (Jer. 5:14).

Mind you, Pharaoh's magicians were able to duplicate Moses' and Aaron's first few miracles. The pope's going to be given Satan's power to work lying signs and wonders. He'll counterfeit Elijah's fire from the sky for starters (Rev. 13:13). But he can only go so far. But how will you know who's who? Any miracles must agree with the Bible's message. It has to confirm with - not contradict – the Scriptures. You had better get to know your Bible!

Elijah was finally taken away - by means of air transportation. He utilized the earth, wind, fire, and water to demonstrate his contact with our Creator. After Israel's two key witnesses finish giving their testimony, they'll get assassinated! Europe's going to see to their cold-blooded murder (Rev. 11:7). Then they'll add insult to injury by denying permission to bury them. Their dead bodies will be left in the streets, and shown around the world, while everyone celebrates the bloody occasion (Rev. 11:8-10)!

But the party’s over after three and a half days: the people's cheers will turn to shrieks of fear! They won't be able to believe their eyes! God's two prophets (who plagued the pagans) will come back to LIFE! They'll stand up in front of everybody and get taken up in a cloud, vanishing into thin air! A gigantic earthquake will shake the people up even more. It'll bring seven thousand to their graves, and many others to their senses (Rev. 11:11-13).

Why will the Two Witnesses be dead three and a half days? Because it correlates to their three and a half year ministry to Prisoners of War. Unless God intervenes, Israel will be as good as dead! But Christ - who is our Resurrection - will bring us back to life! He'll revive us! These special-agents' death and resurrection, will give the "living dead" (serving their three and a half year sentence) more confidence in an "afterlife." There is hope beyond Babylon! Europe will rise and fall!

Relying on God

The GOOD NEWS of the KINGDOM OF GOD is going to become increasingly relevant to every Israelite! Appropriately, Israel's national anthem is Ha-Tikvah (the Hope). Christ's coming and His return to Jerusalem is our only HOPE! Our survival is in our Savior's hands! But we're GUARANTEED DELIVERANCE - because God's faithful to Abraham!

The future seat of GOD'S GOVERNMENT is Jerusalem (Jer. 3:17). It's from Jerusalem that Messiah will save us from our enemies, send plagues on Europe, destroy Rome, oversee the ingathering of our exiles, and direct Israel's restoration. The Anointed One will glorify the "City of David" with His Presence, and make it famous worldwide (Ezek.48: 35)!

Moses sustained Israel's hope for freedom BASED ON GOD'S PROMISE TO ABRAHAM; the Two Witnesses will encourage us to put our trust in Heaven's mercy! God stands by His Word. Once we've fulfilled God's conditions for deliverance, we can rest assured of national salvation. But we've got to change, accept responsibility, and do our jail time - then we can expect to get out!

God's liable by His own law, and obligated by His deep and abiding love for our fathers (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob), to REMEMBER US in prison. In spite of ourselves, God won't leave us stranded in Europe's dungeon (Lev. 26:44). God's Name's at stake here, as well as mankind's survival (Ezek. 36:22). His Word of honor's on the line (Isa. 48:9).

God encourages us to confess and forsake our sins, accept our responsibility, and endure our punishment (Lev. 26:40-41). In case we need any help in knowing how to repent, or what God expects of us, we have the prophet Daniel's prayer for an example.

Examples to Follow

Daniel was given an inspired understanding of Jeremiah's prophecies. His eyes were opened to the revelation that his nation was to suffer exile for 70 years (we've got to endure 3 1/2 years). Once he knew this, he went to God about it. It wasn't a sleepy-time prayer or a quick mumbling of some memorized mantra. Daniel fasted and poured out his heart in mourning for the plight of his people.

Daniel praised God's greatness, and made mention of how good and wonderful, how faithful and true, God's been to all those who love Him - and how rotten and undeserving we've been of God's mercy! He didn't attempt to deny how Judah had gone from bad to worse, and that they'd ignored all the warning signs, and didn't pay attention to God's message taught by the prophets. He didn't leave anybody out - everybody was guilty! The preachers and politicians, the young and the old, the high and the low, all were far-removed from God. Daniel admitted "We the People" caused our own problems, and got ourselves into trouble; he realized our nation collapsed from within before it fell from without. We're a broken people because we've broken God's commandments!

Everything God said would happen did! Moses, history, and the Bible warned us! But we've refused to listen or feel ashamed, and we've refused to return to God; consequently, our polluted lives were scattered (like so much litter) throughout enemy territory. We'll be considered the scum of the earth, the refuse of the nations (Jer. 6:30)! We've brought this disaster down upon ourselves.

But God, you're the POWERFUL GOD who saved us from Egypt! (Egypt was the superpower then). Save us by that same power from our sins! Forgive us and let us go home again! We're the butt of jokes and the object of our enemies' scorn, so at least for Your Name's sake (that we're associated with), step in and save us (Dan. 9:2-19)! Hosanna in the Highest! We've made a mess out of our lives, ruined our health, and have wrecked our homeland, leaving it in shambles....

Ezra, the priest, prayed: "O my God, I am too ashamed and humiliated to lift up my face to You, my God; for our iniquities have risen higher than our heads, and our guilt has grown up to the heavens...". They weren't only up to their necks in deep trouble; they were in over their heads!

And despite everything that's happened to us, because we've lived a life of crime and are guilty on so many accounts, refusing to learn our lesson, God's still punished us far less than we deserve! He could of given us the maximum penalty - but we wouldn't be around to tell about it (Ezra 9:6, 13).

God's Patience

God's been more than patient. He's put up with us for years! We've lost the reason for our freedom; forgetting obedience to God is liberty. Our endless pursuit of pleasure defeats the purpose for our national existence. We need to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness!

We're a nation adrift. We've let go of our Biblical anchor and are about to run into Europe's rocks and sink! "However, You are just in all that has befallen us; For You have dealt faithfully, but we have done wickedly. Neither our kings nor our princes, our priests nor our fathers, have kept your law, nor heeded your commandments and Your testimonies, with which You testified against them. For they have not served You in their kingdom, or in the many good things that You gave them, or in the large and rich land which You set before them; nor did they turn from their wicked works" (Neh. 9:33-35).

What ever happened to gratitude? Haven't we enjoyed the good things in life that other nations only dream about? Hasn't our soil been rich and our lives productive? Who stops complaining long enough to count their blessings? What about THANKSGIVING DAY? (Two of my ancestors, John and Priscilla Alden, were on the Mayflower).

Instead of using our natural resources to glorify God, we've spent them on ourselves. We've put "special interests" before national security. God's been faithful to give us promised lands, but we haven't responded in kind (living appreciative lives), but have taken everything for granted! We're indebted to Europe and Japan, rather than devoted to God!

WAR is God's last resort. We usually don't listen when there's sunshine and peace! Since God is patient, He warns us and begins to turn up the volume. If we still play deaf, God increases the intensity to get our attention (Lev. 26:23-24)). THUNDER WARNS OF THE GATHERING STORM (Rev. 10:3)!

Spiritual Masochists

When SUPERNATURAL DISASTERS strike, God's representatives assist us in understanding what's going on. They offer advice in how we can take proper precautions to AVOID FURTHER INCIDENTS. They let God's message sink in and hit home, they don't just give money to patch things up! What will it take for us to WAKE UP? More suffering and misery? Why demand war and deprivation? Why require the loss of our land, liberties and loved ones? What do we have to go through before we'll change? Why be so hardheaded? We're about to have our skulls cracked!

You don't have to be a prophet to know that we've broken God's law and that punishment is coming. King Josiah discovered this fact and simply BELIEVED WHAT HE READ IN THE BIBLE! The prophetess Huldah confirmed his Biblical conclusions. He then did all that he could to help save the nation by presenting these PRINCIPLES OF PROPHECY to the political and religious leaders, and encouraged all the people to return to God (2 Kgs. 22; 23:1-3). We must do the same! There’s precious little time left!

"Why should you be stricken again? (It's revolting! We're insane!). The whole head (government) is sick, and the whole heart (national morale) faints. From the sole of the foot even to the head, there is no soundness in it, but wounds and bruises and putrefying sores; they have not been closed or bound up, or soothed with ointment. Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire (LA riots); strangers (militant minorities; terrorists) devour your land in your presence; and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers" (Isa. 1:5-7).

We're going to die from our idolatry and immorality! We've lost our national code of conduct, the Ten Commandments, and have forgotten our Israelite identity. We're the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, but WE'VE BEEN ACTING LIKE GENTILE BASTARDS! (Isa. 63:16).

We're wallowing in the mire of immorality and drowning in our babies' blood! Our government's corrupt, our preachers are impure and our land's filthy! WE LACK A NATIONAL PURPOSE and energy! We're spiritually bankrupt and our national health care's a mess! The ministers haven't explained the cause for our national crisis and they've miserably failed to reveal our Israelite identity or restore our health (Ezek. 34:4)!

The Coming Crash

Traditional Christianity's left God's light to wander in their darkness. They've driven people away from our Biblical God! They've left our children hungry and searching for truth in eastern religions. We've disobeyed God to rely on men, and we've put our trust in financial securities (Isa. 2:5-9). Neither will save us! OUR BANKS ARE GOING TO COLLAPSE, AND OUR ARMY WON'T BE ABLE TO MUSTER ANY STRENGTH! This national demoralization (we've only just begun to experience) will result in DEMOBILIZATION! We're going down in FLAMING DEFEAT (Ezek. 7:14)!

The prophet Isaiah had two sons with symbolic names (Isa. 7:3, 8:1,18). They serve their purpose by warning us of two major events about to take place: 1) OUR DESTRUCTION'S IMMINENT; THE BLITZKRIEG'S ABOUT TO BEGIN! (Maher-shalalhash-baz). And 2) OUR HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS WILL BE BROUGHT HOME AGAIN (Shear-yashuv). Throughout our ordeal, God will be with us (Immanuel). God promises that He won't let David's House get totally demolished or Israel destroyed! (Isa. 7:14; Lev. 26:44).

We can repent now, or later - after we've gone through indescribable hell! These things are going to happen; these prophesied events will occur! WHY don't we believe God? Why not CHOOSE LIFE? Why insist on learning the hard way? WE DON'T HAVE TO DIE!

Our Ultimate Restoration

Regardless, God will finally get through to us: the American, British, and Jewish peoples will be set free! We'll be saved from our sins and delivered from men! Christ's our Lord and Savior, our High Priest and Conquering King!

The Beast and False Prophet will be grabbed by the scruff of their necks and thrown into the lake of fire (Rev. 19:20)! Europe will fall to pieces, Rome will be left in ruins, and we'll head for home with mixed emotions: crying for joy, as well as upset with ourselves over former sins (Jer. 50:4)!

When all Israel repents, it'll save the whole world (Malachi 4:6)! If God couldn't redeem His firstborn, with our excellent heritage and environment, He’d be justified in destroying us (Deut. 21:18-21). But Elijah will help reconcile us to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and secure our relationship with Israel's God.

All the earth will finally recognize GOD MOST HIGH! When Christ demolishes Europe's Tower of Babel, the pinnacle of human success, it'll reveal Him as the greatest (Dan. 4:34)! With the demise of Europe's super-pope and dictator, the true KING OF KINGS and His servants will stand out (Dan. 2:47; 7:22).

Europe's tyranny will come to an end! It'll seem like an eternity, but it'll only last for three and a half years. Although humanly it'll be next to impossible, we've got to try and put everything in perspective and keep our faith in focus. Yes, "Do not rejoice over me, my enemy; when I fall, I will arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD will be a light to me (hope and confidence). I will bear the indignation of the LORD (accept His punishment), because I have sinned against Him (confession), until He pleads my case and executes justice for me (faith and patience). He will bring me forth to the light; I will see His righteousness" (Micah 7:8-9).

Our National Duty

Our entire nation needs to kneel before God! We need to FAST AND PRAY like we've never prayed before! Hopefully, it's not too late! Forget everything else: it's all going to end anyway! Spend quality time with the only One that can save us. Read and believe the Bible; grieve and cry over the catastrophe that's coming!

Let the young and old, the preachers and rabbis, the laymembers and ordinary citizens, our presidents and prime ministers beg: "SPARE YOUR PEOPLE, O LORD, and do not give Your heritage to reproach, that the nations should rule over them. Why should they say among the peoples, 'Where is their God?' (Joel 2:17)."

God will have compassion on us again! He's DEDICATED to our cause (Jer. 50:34). He holds us close to His heart and says we're always on His mind (Isa. 49:16). He knows we can only take so much (Isa. 57:16). Jacob's God will subdue our sins and defeat our enemies, once and for all (Micah 7:18-20)!

However, we need to exercise the FAITH AND PATIENCE of Abraham, and know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that God wants to see us happy and free, enjoying His mercy and truth. We should be totally convinced God has our best interest at heart, and is more than capable of bringing everything together in Himself (Rom. 4:21; 2 Cor. 5:18).

One Nation Under God

Zechariah (John the Baptist's father) knew Mary was pregnant with Israel's Messiah. He declared God's plan and praised His faithfulness, getting to the bottom-line of the Bible with this inspired summary: "As He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets, who have been since the world began, (what?) that we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us, (why?) to perform the mercy promised to our fathers and to remember His holy covenant, the oath which He swore to our father Abraham: to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve Him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our life" (Luke 1:70-75).

ABRAHAM'S GOD WILL BE OUR GOD AND WE'LL BE HIS PEOPLE! The American, British and Jewish peoples will be free at last! God will grant amnesty, and pour out His Holy Spirit (Ezek. 39:29). David's dynasty and the Levitical priesthood will be restored in Jerusalem as the twin pillars of our United Kingdom - One Nation under God (Ezek. 37:22).

Believe it or not, these bittersweet prophecies will come true (Isa. 46:10). With blood, sweat, and tears, I've finished this labor of love. I've presented my case before the nations (Micah 6:1). I've reported the bad news with the good news (Rev. 10:10).

THE LONG NIGHT WILL END! Christ is going to return to Jerusalem! He's coming with His entourage of glorified saints (come, Lord Jesus!) and will rule with them forever (Dan. 7:27). At long last, THE GODS WILL DWELL AMONG MEN (John 10:34)!

Beyond Babylon

David Ben-Ariel

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