“So the angel that communed with me said unto me, Cry thou saying, Thus saith the LORD of Hosts; I am jealous for Jerusalem and for Zion with a great jealousy. And I am sore displeased with the heathen that are at ease; for I was but a little displeased, and they helped forward the affliction. Therefore thus saith the LORD; I am returned to Jerusalem with mercies; my house shall be built in it, saith the LORD of hosts, and a line shall be stretched forth upon Jerusalem” Zech. 1:14-16.
The LORD God speaking to Zechariah prophesies of the temple that would be built again after Israel would return from the seventy years of captivity in Babylon, where they were held in exile. God kept His promise and allowed then to return not as a free nation, but under the control and auspice of Gentile nations. Time marched on with them under the rule of Babylon, then Persia, then Greece and then Rome, at which time Jesus the Redeemer came. Gentile times would have been over if they would have believed in their Messiah, but they rejected Him. For this reason, although the political times of the Gentiles continued and are still going on today, spiritually, God turned to the Gentiles to take out a people for His name sake. (Acts 15:14-18).
A good explanation of God’s dealings with Israel is found in Romans 9,10 & 11. False teachers today declare that God has set Israel aside forever and that the blessings once prophesied to be Israel’s are now the Gentiles. Romans 11:1 & 2 states, “I say then, Has God cast away His people? God forbid...God hath not cast away His people which He foreknew.” The Scripture is plain that God will return to Israel and deal with them again and they will be reinstated into their special place.
In our lifetime we have seen God miraculously call the Children of Israel out of nations through out the world to come back to the land. Thousands have come, and of course the greatest miracle is that in 1948 the nation of Israel was re-established as a full-fledged nation recognized by the United Nation. Israelites who have come back to the land, have relearned Hebrew as the official language of their country. This has never ever happened in history before, that a lost language would be restored, with a nation which was displaced for almost two thousand years. However, many in the nation don’t even believe in God. God has some work to do. He has a plan to bring them to their senses. There is a terrible time yet to come, which will bring them to their knees in recognition of the Lord Jesus Christ. They will enter the tribulation that is coming upon the world with a false hope in a world leader who seems to have all the answers to their problems (Antichrist). He will make a covenant with them for seven years, but will break that covenant (Daniel 9:27) and begin to persecute them. The end will finally come with the revelation of Jesus Christ coming in the clouds of glory. All who are left of the nation of Israel will believe in Christ and accept Him as their Messiah. How we should “pray for the peace of Jerusalem.”
IRAN NUCLEAR TALKS - Talks by the Security Council Permanent members have been going on in Geneva, Switzerland to try to get Iran to give up their designs to continue to develop a nuclear bomb. Iran declares that they will not give up developing its nuclear energy program and demands; that it has the right to have a peaceful program for domestic use. Secretary of State John Kerry of U.S.A., the European Union, Russia, Britain, and Germany attended the meetings along with Iran. They came to a temporary agreement, which after 6 months will end in more talks. The sanctions will continue against Iran, but they made modest concessions such as “recognition of Iran’s right for uranium enrichment (supposedly for peaceful purposes), with no manufacturing of any new centrifuges. It halts all major new work at the Arak reactor, a source of plutonium which can be used for a bomb, it opens up facilities to inspectors, Inspections will be carried out to verify that Iran is complying with the rules of “no enrichment of uranium to bomb quality.”
Israel is against this agreement and feels that Iran is just stalling for time and that there has not been a change in their desire to destroy Israel. Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel says, “Israel is ready to act alone to stop Iran from getting a nuclear bomb.” Saudi Arabia and the gulf states are shocked that the U.S. would negotiate a deal with minimal consulting, and apparently ignoring their vital national concerns.
Iran is a nation (in Bible times known as Persia), along with Russia, Germany and Turkey spoken of in Ezekiel 38-39 concerning the war that these will try to perpetrate against Israel in the end time. Iran has threatened to “blow Israel off the face of the map.” They have made major threats against the U.S.A. and also, Russia has made inroads in several areas of the Middle East recently. They have taken the initiative concerning Syria’s chemical weapons, offering help to Syria to get these destroyed. Also, recently they have been in negotiations between Russia and Turkey.
It seems that the scene is being set for these nations mentioned in Ezekiel to come together against Israel. We know what the Scripture says. They will be destroyed upon the mountains of Israel (Ezekiel 39:2). It reads, “And I will turn thee back, and leave but a sixth part of thee, and I will cause thee to come up from the north parts and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel. It appears that after the Antichrist makes the Covenant with Israel, there will be a time of peace on the earth (Dan. 9:27). The time in Revelation 6:1-2, when the White Horse rider comes out with a bow, but no arrows, shows this period of peace, actually false peace. Then, a Red Horse rider comes out (vs. 3,4) taking peace from the earth. This may be the war of Ezekiel 38-39. Before the declared peace, the overcomers of the Church Age will be taken to heaven in the rapture (I Thess. 4:13-18). We very well could be that close to that glorious time.
WEIRD WEATHER & NATURAL DISASTER - In the year 2012 there were 270 tornadoes, but now in 2013 there have been 903 reported. There has been 73 fatalities in the U.S., 31 in Bangladesh, 24 in China, and 3 in Turkey accredited to Tornadoes this year.
Beside all this we recently have had the largest Typhoon ever recorded in the world in the Philippines. It is believed that around 6,000 persons have died so far. Thousand are homeless there, and much suffering. Indonesia also suffered from the same typhoon. In India’s east coast two separate cyclones hit the area causing evacuation of 100,000 people.
Earthquakes and volcanos have always been closely related. Some say they are the fuse that ignites volcanos. Areas of the earth where earthquakes are prevalent, are most usually the same areas where volcanoes abound. Both occur in the boundaries of tectonic plates, which make up the earth’s surface. Recently they are increasing exponentially in magnitude worldwide. Some are trying to blame this on Climate Change. I believe that it is due to the end of the age as the Lord warned us of these events and to be ready. Jesus warned the world in Matthew 24 that there would be signs in the end time such as these.
There are approximately 1,500 active volcanoes around the world at the present time, but recently many have began to erupt in different places sort of unexpectedly. Seven different volcanos started erupting within a few days of each other. Mount Etna in Italy appears to be growing in intensity, and is a potential disaster waiting to happen. Off the coast of Japan a new volcano is creating a new island. In Mexico the Colima volcano blew its top after a period of relative calm, while in Guatemala the “Fire Mountain” erupted sending up a moderate ash cloud which fell over nearby towns. Shock waves traveled over 6 miles away causing doors and windows to rattle, but no damage so far. Another volcano in Guatemala called Vanuatu is causing ash to build up on farm land, which is causing great concern. And Indonesia’s Sinabung volcano started erupting recently, and Karymsky Volcano in central Russia. There are many more which have been erupting for some time.
All these happenings are signs of the soon coming of Christ. I hope that you are watching and waiting for His return at anytime. “And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly, and I pray God your whole spirit, and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He that calleth you Who also will do it” (I Thess. 5:23-24). Be watching and waiting!