The Tetrad: The Coming 4 Blood Moons – FINAL INSTALLMENT

 

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The Tetrad: The Coming 4 Blood Moons

Part 7

FINAL INSTALLMENT IN THIS SERIES

 

 

Part 7

 

THE BURDEN OF DAMASCUS – ISAIAH 17

One of the questions that comes up in discussing the Ezekiel 38 scenario is where is Syria? Here is a country that is still in a declared state of war with Israel – yet they are not mentioned in this attack.  Why is this? A possible clue is found in the prophecy of Isaiah:

“An oracle concerning Damascus. Behold, Damascus will cease to be a city and will become a heap of ruins”. (Isaiah 17:1)

The Damascus of the Bible is still recognizable today as the well-known capital city of Syria. Appropriately enough, it even has the famous distinction of being considered the world’s oldest continuously inhabited city.  This prophecy is clearly yet to happen.

At present the Muslim world is very much in the midst of a civil war between Shiite and Sunni factions. Although this conflict has been going on for centuries the main conflict at this time is centered in Syria. On the side of Bashar al-Assad and the current government of Syria is Iran, Hezbollah (primarily from Lebanon) and large portions of Iraqi Shiites. On the rebel side is primarily Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states as well as Turkey and the terrorist group Al-Qaeda. However within each of these groups is their own philosophical differences which led to Al-Qaeda recently assassinating one of the leaders of the main rebel group – it’s supposed ally. Al-Qaeda has its own vision of turning Syria into an Islamic state and for reasons such as this most of the West has refused to arm the rebel side.

One of the central concerns in this conflict for Israel and the West is the potential for either the use of chemical weapons or their seizure by terrorist related groups. Israel has already launched limited covert attacks three times in Syria after what it regards as sophisticated weapons were transferred to Hezbollah. Syria has threatened that any further strikes would be met with retaliation – thus Israel and Syria could be involved in a conflict that results in the destruction of Damascus. For Israel to attack Damascus in such a way that it would cease to become a city is incredibly severe. While Israel could certainly launch a nuclear strike on Syria one must wonder under what conditions would it do so.

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Damascus is certainly on its way to becoming a city of ruins thanks to the civil war however another possibility that would make it uninhabitable would be the release of chemical weapons. Saddam became desperate enough during his war with the Kurds that he did not hesitate to use them. Thus far there has been no wide scale use of such weapons in Syria but that could change if Basshar feels on the verge of losing power. Another possibility is that one of the rebel factions such as Al Qaeda get their hands on such weapons. The US is currently preparing a military response should one of the terrorist groups obtain these:

“The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, told a Senate panel on Thursday, July 18th that he has military options for Syria — should the president ever give the order. That order might come if Assad’s chemical weapon stockpiles are in danger of falling into the wrong hands”.

The conflict in Syria also could very easily spread into a regional war drawing in many other countries. Lebanon is already seeing signs of this. With so many different players involved in this conflict the potential for it to spiral out of control are enormous.  Such events would no doubt draw in Israel and such a conflict might not only see the fulfillment of Isaiah 17 but also Psalm 83 which many see as the prophecy of a war that pits all of Israel’s next door neighbors against Israel, and from which Israel will emerge victorious. Interestingly enough all the nations mentioned in Psalm 83 are absent from Ezekiel 38 which gives us a clue that this battle happens before Ezekiel 38. Some believe the war mentioned in Psalm 83 is actually one of the driving forces behind the Ezekiel 38 invasion as they retaliate against Israel for her victory over their Muslim brethren.

With most of Israel’s surrounding nations defeated or destroyed from Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38 it is possible that they are now ready to sign a peace treaty that would allow the Jews to rebuild their temple.


DANIEL’S FINAL PEACE TREATY – A FALSE PEACE

 

Earlier in this report we looked at the importance of Daniel’s 70 weeks timetable for understanding the events surrounding the arrival of Messiah. We examined how Jesus fulfilled Daniel’s prophecy of “the Messiah, the Prince” perfectly by riding into Jerusalem on a donkey on Psalm Sunday, April 6, 32 AD. We also saw in our section on the Feasts of the Lord how this time frame corresponded perfectly with also fulfilling the requirements for Jesus to be our Passover lamb.

We also discovered the how Jesus predicted the fall of Jerusalem and that no stone would be left upon another in the temple of Jerusalem in connection with Daniel’s prophecy of the ruler of the people who will come. It is at this point in Daniel’s vision that we now have a gap in time between the destruction of Jerusalem and “the people of the ruler who will come“. This gap has been going on for almost 2,000 years. Is it possible that the timing of the Blood Moon Tetrad is an indication that this gap is just about over?

When the next part of Daniel’s verse is fulfilled we will have once again started God’s countdown of the final 7 or period of 70 weeks that completes the 70th week of Daniel’s timeframe. For this reason our understanding of the next verse of Daniel is so important.

He will confirm a covenant with many for one `seven.’ In the middle of the `seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing [of the temple] he will set up an abomination  that  causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.” (Daniel 9:27)

Who is this “He” referred to by Daniel? He is commonly called the “Antichrist” because he opposes and counterfeits all that Christ represents. Daniel gives us some very big clues as to how we can identify this individual:

From the previous verse we know that he will come from what once was the Roman Empire. However the Roman Empire was very vast and included parts of North Africa and the Middle East, not just Europe. This has developed several lines of thinking in regards to the coming Empire of Antichrist. Some have argued that he will be from literal Rome itself – or modern day Italy. Others believe this is a reference to a greater Europe encompassing what was once the Roman Empire. This certainly does seem to be taking place before our eyes with the creation of a European Superstate and its partnership with the Mediterranean Union. The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership today comprises 44 members: 28 European Union member states, and 15 partner countries (Albania, Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Mauritania, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Tunisia and Turkey)

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Many leaders in Europe now want to see Europe further integrated which is evidenced by recent statements from EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso who stated that fiscal union in the Eurozone will lead to “intensified political union” for all 28 member  states.  French  President Francois Hollande has echoed Mr Barroso’s comments and is calling for an “economic government” for the Eurozone and “political union” in Europe within two years, which interestingly enough would be in the Blood Moon time period of 2014-2015. EU Elections are also scheduled during this time which opens the door to new European leadership.

Another popular and growing view is that the actual Roman legions that were involved in the sacking of Jerusalem were not primary European but Syrian conscripts and Arab mercenaries. Researcher and author Joel Richardson makes the following argument:

Before the Roman Empire became an empire, it was called the Roman Republic. In the early days of the Republic, as it was evolving into the Roman Empire (primarily before the turn of 1st century) the majority of the soldiers (called legionnaires) recruited to serve in the Roman armies (legions) were Italians from Rome and the nearby regions. However, as the Empire expanded quite dramatically, it became next to impossible to man the entire Empire with soldiers only from Italy. There were just not enough Italian men to spread all over the vast Roman Empire, which included all of Europe, Northern Africa and a large swath of the Middle East. Thus at the beginning of the first century, Emperor Augustus made a series of sweeping reforms that led to dramatic changes in the ethnic make-up of the Roman armies. After Augustus’ reforms, the only portion of the Roman army that continued to consist largely of Italians from Rome proper was the Praetorian Guard; an elite military unit whose job was to specifically guard the Emperor and the tents of the Generals. But after Augustus’ reforms, the rest of the army was increasingly composed of anything but Italian soldiers. Instead, they were composed of what were known as “provincials” or citizens who lived in the provinces—the outer fringes of the Empire, away from the capital of Rome. The “provincialization” of the army was true for all of the Roman legions of this time period, but it was most clearly and markedly the case with regard to the Eastern legions that were used to attack Jerusalem. Both ancient historical records as well as modern scholarship clearly confirm this.

Publius Cornelius Tacitus was both a senator and a historian of the Roman Empire that wrote extensively concerning the specific period that we are now examining. The surviving portions of his two major works—the Annals and the Histories—have become a vital source of information from this period of the Roman Empire. Speaking of the Roman attack of Jerusalem, Tacitus details the specific legions and the peoples that primarily composed the attacking army:

Titus Caesar… found in Judaea three legions, the 5th, the 10th, and the 15th… To these he added the 12th from Syria, and some men belonging to the 18th and 3rd, whom he had withdrawn from Alexandria. This force was accompanied… by a strong contingent of Arabs, who hated the Jews with the usual hatred of neighbors… —Tacitus The History New Ed edition Book 5.1 Editor: Moses Hadas, Translators: Alfred Church, William Brodribb (Modern Library; New York, 2003)

There are several important bits of information that we can gain from this reference. First, we learn that the Roman legions had been stationed in Judea, Syria and Egypt. Secondly, we learn that beyond the Roman legions, there was also “a strong contingent of Arabs, who hated the Jews” who accompanied the soldiers. Sadly, little has changed since the first century regarding the general regional hatred of the Jewish people. In fact, it was precisely this ancient hatred that was the driving factor in the unfolding of events that led to the destruction of the Temple.

The perspective that Richardson provides is an important one as it opens the possibility to the Antichrist having an Islamic connection to the Middle East. As the Arab world recovers from the “Arab Spring” some wonder if it is now ripe for a single Muslim leader to unite the Muslim world and bring an end to the Shiite/Sunni civil war.  A united Muslim world would no doubt turn their attention back to Israel.

While the exact geographical origins of the Antichrist are still an issue for debate the key indicator to his identity in these verses are the actions he will take. The main action identifying this ruler is that he “confirms a covenant with many…” There is some discussion as to whether this ruler initiates a new treaty of his own making or perhaps “confirms” one that is already in place. The language in the text would seem to allow for both possibilities.  However it has been the practice of most recent agreements in the Middle East to “confirm” prior agreements and either add to them or to reconfirm them in the context of a new agreement which will usually have a new name.

Along with this process it has also become the norm for outside countries to become guarantors of agreements so this model of an outside party guaranteeing or “confirming” a treaty is almost expected. While peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians have been frozen for the past three years – recent developments have marked a dramatic change. According to reports coming out July 19th, The US president is now preparing to send letters of understanding to both Israel and the Palestinians that will allow for the basis of future peace talks thanks to John Kerry’s 6th visit to the Middle East in as many weeks:

In this exclusive report, DEBKAfile discloses for the first time details of the formula for which Kerry obtained the consent of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and, after an unscheduled side trip Friday to Ramallah, of Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas as well. According to the Kerry formula, the forthcoming negotiations would focus on attaining an interim peace accord – without determining final borders – for establishing a Palestinian state in broad areas of the West Bank from which Israeli would withdraw.Those areas would be subject to trilateral US-Israeli-Palestinian consensus on security arrangements and require some Jewish settlements to be removed. Initial negotiations will start next week in Washington behind closed doors. Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and the prime minister’s adviser Yakov Molcho will represent Israel and senior negotiator Saeb Erekat, the Palestinian side. A third US team will report to John Kerry. It was also agreed, according to this exclusive DEBKAfile report, that the negotiating process would last no less than nine months up until March 2014, during which Israel agreed to an undeclared partial standstill on construction in Judea and Samaria outside the settlement blocs – except for building to accommodate natural growth.

The freeze would not apply to the West Bank settlement blocs or Jerusalem. The Palestinian leader dropped his stipulation for a total construction freeze. He also promised not to carry out his threat to push anti-Israeli measures through UN and other international institutions during the talks. The US Secretary also persuaded Abbas Friday to waive his ultimatum for peace talks to be based on 1967 borders. Instead, President Barack Obama will send him a letter affirming US recognition that the object of the negotiations is to establish a Palestinian state as the national home of the Palestinian people whose borders will be based on 1967 lines. Obama will send another letter to Netanyahu affirming that the negotiations must lead to the recognition of the state of Israel as the national home of the Jewish people, whose future borders will be based on the 1967 lines while also accommodating Israel’s security needs and its realistic demographic circumstances.

What is interesting about this arrangement is that the time frame of March 2014 has been given as the starting point to start providing proof that these negations are going to produce what is now being called in the news “Final-Treaty Negations”. There is clearly an expectation that this is it – this is the last chance to reach an accord or their will be continued conflict. This time frame certainly lines up with the blood moon tetrad time frame to begin on April 2nd of 2014. It seems this 2014 time frame will either lead to a treaty – possibly the treaty of Dan 9:27 or the failure to reach an agreement resulting in war between the Palestinians and many surrounding countries in the Psalm 83 war and/or subsequent Gog/Magog war of Ezekiel 38.  Both scenarios are plausible.

While the focus of the current peace process has been Israel and the Palestinians the true dream of any politician is that Israel would sign a peace agreement with the entire Arab world. There are expectations that any agreement with the Palestinians will also open doors to subsequent treaties with the rest of the Arab world. Or alternatively that one treaty might be signed to include Israel, the Palestinians and the Arab world all as one package. This would seem to line up with scripture in that the treaty in Daniel 9:27 is described as a treaty with “many” implying more than 1-2 parties.

While this may seem a far off dream Saudi Arabia has led the Arab world in pushing for what it calls the Arab Peace Initiative. This proposal is for peace between Israel and the entire Arab world – not just the Palestinians. (34) The Palestinian Authority strongly supports the plan and Mahmoud Abbas officially asked U.S. President Barack Obama to adopt it as part of his Middle East policy. George Mitchell, then the United States special envoy to the Middle East, announced in March 2009 that President Barack Obama’s administration intends to “incorporate” the initiative into its Middle East policy. (35) To date Israel has resisted such a plan because it calls for a withdrawal from the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Should a politician be able to bring the two sides to reach an agreement, there would perhaps be no bigger feat in the history of modern politics.

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Yitzhak Rabin, Bill Clinton, Yasser Arafat

 

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Binyamin Netanyahu, Barack Hussein Obama, Mahmoud Abbas

 

Most scholars presume that such a treaty will also grant the right to rebuild the Jewish temple and bring about the renewal of animal sacrifices since in the middle of the 7 year period the Antichrist puts a stop to them. This is not necessarily a requirement of the treaty but we know for sure the temple will already be build by this middle period of the 7 years.  Preparations for such a temple are well underway.

 

 

REBUILDING  THE TEMPLE & THE ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION

 

One of the greatest signs that we are approaching the time spoken of by Daniel the prophet is the modern day movement to rebuild the Jewish temple. This movement has grown in recent years and a new poll commissioned by the Joint Forum of Temple Mount Organizations was released July 13th, 2013 showing that “30 percent of Jews are now in favor of rebuilding the temple”.  While this is not yet a majority of the population it shows a strengthening of public perception that the temple is an important part of Jewish life.

The last few years have seen changing attitudes to the Temple Mount among the national religious and ultra-Orthodox sectors. There are currently dozens of movements working to change the status quo at the holy site. Some are reconstructing ceremonial objects used in the Temple in the past, while others are making practical preparations for its rebuilding, including a renewal of animal sacrifice. Others deal in political lobbying and in encouraging Jews to visit the Mount.

One of the most significant developments to help move forward the rebuilding of the temple was the re- establishment of the Sanhedrin. On October 13, 2004, the Sanhedrin, the highest tribunal of the Jewish state and religion, was re-inaugurated by a group of 71 rabbis in Tiberias after 1,600 years of absence. If the efforts to rebuild the temple are to go forward it would need a religious body to oversee such a development. Until 2004 there was no such body. The rabbis behind the Sanhedrin’s reconstitution claim that, like the State of Israel, the new Sanhedrin is a work-in-progress. They see it as an institution that, once established, will reach the stature and authority that it once had. Currently the majority of Israeli’s are secular in nature but the outbreak of war could be a motivating factor for its population to return to the God it once worshipped.

It is under the direction of the re-established Sanhedrin, that design plans have been commissioned for a rebuilt temple. The plans for such a temple have been posted by the Temple Institute online as a virtual tour of what they believe it should look like both inside and out. The video link is provided in our separate report page listing recommended videos.

Some of the Rabbi’s who sit in the Sanhedrin are also part of the Temple Institute. The Institute is currently preparing articles to be used in the new Temple and can be viewed at their headquarters in Jerusalem. With much expense ($20 million has been donated so far) and based on extensive research, they have fashioned priestly garments, the high priest’s golden crown costing $30,000, the high priest’s breastplate with its 12 precious stones inscribed with the names of the tribes of Israel, a copper laver, an incense altar, silver trumpets, gold- and silver-plated shofars, harps, and many other things.

Of special interest is the large menorah that has been fashioned from 95 pounds of pure gold, valued at $2 million. In December 2007 the menorah was moved to an outside location on the Western Wall Plaza across from the Temple Mount. Prior to that it had stood in the old Roman Cardo. The plan is to move the menorah ever closer to the Temple Mount itself and ultimately to place it in the Third Temple. The Temple Institute compared the 2007 dedication of the menorah in its new location to the dedication of the Arch of Titus in Rome 1,900 years ago. Then, the menorah was moving away from the Temple, whereas today it is moving back toward the Temple.

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Perhaps the most interesting discovery in recent years has been the Cohen Gene, in which a common set of genetic markers has been discovered for the line of Aaron (brother of Moses), in which DNA tests can now be conducted to determine his heirs, a requirement for serving in the temple.(39) It has often been joked that if you want to know if a Jew is qualified to serve in the temple you look to see if he is wearing “levi jeans” (only those from the tribe of Levi can serve in the temple) The Temple Institute is also introducing an aggressive program across Israel known as the Temple Treaty to encourage young Israelis to become educated and involved in the re-establishment of the Temple.

To compliment the Temple Treaty program they have opened up a specific school to help prepare for service in the rebuilt temple which will include an exact replica of the temple:

Jews in the town of Mitzpe Yericho are taking practical steps to prepare for the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem, by preparing descendents of Cohanim (priests) and Levites for service. At the Mitzpe Yericho school, Temple priest hopefuls learn exactly how to conduct the daily Temple service and offer the required sacrifices. The school will include an exact replica of the Temple. The latest addition to the replica was the area in which priests offered wine and water libations. “Today is really a historical event for the Jewish people,” organizer Levi Chazan said as another part of the school was completed. “It is the beginning of the work for the Third Temple.”

Taking advantage of social media, The Temple Institute has also produced a video for youtube that is getting tremendous attention entitled “The Children Are Ready”, depicting children building a model of the Third Temple on an Israeli beach (available in our recommended video links). This is a very creative way to reach a younger generation of Israeli’s to explore their roots to the temple.

One of the major obstacles to moving forward with such a rebuilding is determining the proper location for its rebuilding. There is general consensus among scholars that it needs to be rebuilt upon the Temple Mount. However there is a rather large problem with building on the temple mount which is clearly visible in many of the images of Jerusalem – “The Dome Of The Rock”.

The Dome of the Rock was built by the Umayyad caliph Abd al-Malik from 688 to 691 AD. It was not intended to be a mosque, but a shrine for pilgrims. According to tradition, the Dome of the Rock was built over a sacred stone to commemorate Muhammad’s ascension into heaven after his night journey to Jerusalem (Qur’an 17). However, the sacred rock over which the Dome of the Rock is  built was considered holy before the arrival of Islam. Jews believed, and still believe, the rock to be the very place where Abraham prepared to sacrifice Isaac.

But there seems to have been more to it than this, since the Dome of the Ascension was later built nearby. According to the Oxford Archaeological Guide to the Holy Land, “Abd al-Malik’s purpose was more complex and subtle.” He wished to erect a beautiful Muslim building that could compete with the majestic churches of Christendom and would be a symbolic statement to both Jews and Christians of the superiority of the new faith of Islam. “His building spoke to Jews by its location, to Christians by its interior decoration.”

The view for many decades was that the Dome must be destroyed in order to make way for the rebuilding of the temple. Some people took this view to the extreme and tried to foolishly push God’s timetable along by trying to destroy it. In 1969 a tourist from Australia named Denis Michael Rohan started a fire in the building hoping that by burning down al-Aqsa Mosque he would hasten the Second Coming of Jesus, making way for the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple on the Temple Mount. In the 1980s, Ben Shoshan and Yehuda Etzion, both members of the Gush Emunim Underground, plotted to blow up the al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock. Etzion believed that blowing up the two mosques would cause a spiritual awakening in Israel, and would solve all the problems of the Jewish people. They also hoped the Third Temple of Jerusalem would be built on the location of the mosque. While it is certainly possible that God may allow the circumstances to have the Dome removed there has been growing evidence that another location may be the place where such a temple will be rebuilt and not touch the Dome of the Rock.

In 1969 there was some Arab construction work going on around the Dome of the Rock. A man by the name of Dr. Ze’ev Yeivin (now deputy director of the Department of Antiquities) happened upon this Arab constructions site and made some drawings of an exposed ancient wall near the Dome of the Rock. You cannot have archaeological digs up there today so this was a very important find.

In the Early 70′s a man named Asher Kaufman published a very interesting theory based on this find and other extensive findings from past archaeologists and records left by the British studies from a 100 years ago, Kaufman concluded that the site of the Temple was at the northwest corner. He is convinced that the original temple stood 322 feet north of the Arab Dome of the Rock. If you look at the current temple mount site, there is a little flat rock outcropping called the “Dome of the Spirits“. Dr. Kaufman believes this is where the “Holy of Holies” was located in Solomon’s temple.

If the temple were to be built upon this open part of the Temple Mount, the east-west axis of the Dome of the Spirits would line up exactly with the ancient Eastern Gate. When the original Temple existed, if you were standing on the Mount of Olives you could look directly over the valley and see the Easten gate. There is a very interesting statement in the Book of Ezekiel, regarding this Easter Gate:


 “Then he brought me back the way of the gate of the outward sanctuary which looketh toward the east; and it was shut. Then said the Lord unto me; This gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter in by it; because the Lord, the God of Israel, hath entered in by it, therefore it shall be shut. ” (Ezekiel 44:1-2)

 

The Eastern Gate is the most important and impressive gate in Jerusalem and the only visible entrance to the city of Jerusalem from the East. This oldest of all the gates to the city was the only gate not rebuilt by the Islamic leader Suleiman the Magnificent in AD 1539-42. Legends abound as to why Suleiman closed the Gate. The most believable one is that while the walls were being rebuilt, a rumor swept Jerusalem that the Messiah was coming. Suleiman called together some Jewish rabbis and asked them to tell him about the Messiah. They described the Messiah as a great military leader who would be sent by God from the east. He would enter the Eastern Gate and liberate the city from foreign control.

Suleiman then decided to put an end to Jewish hopes by ordering the Eastern Gate sealed. He also put a Muslim cemetery in front of the Gate, believing that no Jewish holy man would defile himself by walking through a Muslim cemetery. It has remained closed now for 1,200 years.

When Jesus came the first time, He rode a humble donkey from the Mount of Olives down into the Kidron Valley and up to the Eastern Gate where He entered the Temple Mount. As He made that ride, the Valley of Kidron was filled with thousands of admirers who waved palm branches and chanted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” Within a few days that same fickle crowd was shouting, “Crucify Him!”

We are told in Revelation 19 that when Jesus returns He will come as a victorious military conqueror, riding through the air on a supernatural white horse. In Isaiah 61 we are told that He will come from the east, and in Zechariah 14 we are told that he will touch ground on the Mount of Olives. History appears to be repeating itself except that this time Jesus will come through the Eastern Gate as our conquering King. One further scriptural evidence for the location of the Temple being rebuilt in the Northern section and not touching the Dome of the Rock is found in the Book of Revelation:

“I was given a reed like a measuring rod and was told, “Go and measure the temple of God and the alter, and count the worshipers there. But exclude the outer court; do not measure it, because it has been given to the Gentiles.” (Revelation 11:1-2)

Why would the outer court be give to the Gentiles? (non-Jews). Some believe this reference makes perfect sense if the Dome of the Rock is still standing when the Jewish temple is rebuilt.

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While we are from the political or social conditions today that would ever allow for the Temple to be built beside the Dome of the Rock the scriptures indicate we are in for some very dramatic changes in the Middle East. We know the temple will be rebuilt – the exact conditions for it to be rebuilt will be revealed in time.  Interestingly enough it has been estimated that such a temple today would take no more than 1- 2 years to build. Such a timeframe would fit within the 7 year treaty of Daniel’s 70 weeks. It needs to be rebuilt by the midpoint – 3.5 years later as this is when it will be desecrated by what is known as the Abomination of Desolation.

 

THE ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION

 

The phrase “abomination of desolation” refers to Matthew 24:15: “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand.” This is referring to Daniel 9:27, “He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’ In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing [of the temple] he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.” In 167 B.C. a Greek ruler by the name of Antiochus Epiphanies set up an altar to Zeus over the altar of burnt offerings in the Jewish temple in Jerusalem. He also sacrificed a pig on the altar in the Temple in Jerusalem. This event is commonly known as the abomination of desolation.

In Matthew 24:15, Jesus was speaking some 200 years after the abomination of desolation described above had already occurred. So, Jesus must have been prophesying that some time in the future another abomination of desolation would occur in a Jewish temple in Jerusalem. This is another example of the patterns that repeat in prophecy that we have studied earlier. This final “Abomination  of Desolation” needs to be understood by its past context in order to make sense for a future understanding.

Jesus is clearly referring to the Antichrist who will do something very similar to what Antiochus Epiphanies did. This is confirmed by the fact that some of what Daniel prophesied in Daniel 9:27 did not occur in 167 B.C. with Antiochus Epiphanies. Antiochus did not confirm a covenant with Israel for seven years. It is the Antichrist who, in the end times, will establish a covenant with Israel for seven years and then break it by doing something similar to the abomination of desolation in the Jewish temple in Jerusalem.

Revelation 13 gives us some insight as to what this might be when it describes an image of the beast being created that was able to speak. Anyone who does not worship this image of the beast is to be put to death. Turning the temple of the living God into a place of worship for the Antichrist would certainly be an “abomination.” Some have speculated that Revelation may have been given us  a preview of holographic technology. Holographic technology is being used more and more to show either a pre- recorded image or even people live so that they can essentially be in many locations at once. The images are so lifelike that some have even been used at rock concerts to bring people back from the dead to perform.

Hologram of rapper Tupac Shakar performing at the April 2012 Coachella Music Festival. Tupac Shakar was shot and killed in 1994.

Those in attendance of the concert called the holographic performance “dazzling,” “riveting,” and “like Tupac was back from the dead.”

 

Is it possible this image in Revelation 13 which speaks and will be seen by the whole world is the Antichrist in the rebuilt temple beamed to the world through holographic imaging?

Jesus gives a warning to the Jews who see this happen in Matthew 24:15-21, “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel–let the reader understand– then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak… For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now – and never to be equaled again.” These words of Jesus serve as both an affirmation of the legitimacy of Daniel’s prophecy but also serve as a warning. This begins the period of “Great Tribulation” in which the Jews are told to explicitly to flee Jerusalem, for at this point the Antichrist will have authority to persecute all who resist him (at least for a time) Revelation reveals this time of great persecution will last 3.5 years and will climax with the defeat of Antichrist and the return of Christ. Thus draws to a close the final 7 year period of 70 weeks that Daniel prophesized two thousand years ago.

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CONCLUSION – LESSONS FROM HAROLD CAMPING

There was no rapture on May 21, 2012 at 6pm, as Harold Camping had famously predicted there would be. However, Camping and his believers were right to believe that God will return one day and draw his children to Him, and to share with unbelievers about Jesus second coming. An important lesson to learn from the May 21 event is that no one should put their faith in a person, especially when they think they have God all figured out. The purpose of this report is not  to demonstrate that we have it all figured out, but to stimulate your faith and your thinking to study these important topics. Harold Camping would later admit to his error with this important statement: “God will end time in His time, not ours”.

As we study the Blood Moon topic and other related prophetic events, it is important to recognize that we must work from a core set of doctrinal beliefs. Without those core beliefs in who Jesus is and what He did for us, the study of prophecy will matter very little in your eternal destiny. The underlying message of Bible prophecy is that God is in control. The nations are subject to the will of God, not the will of man, and God will preserve His people through trouble. By revealing the specifics of His plans (prophecy), God prepares and encourages His people for the future. Prophecy should not scare us, it should give us confidence in the future and hope that He has promised us through Jesus Christ.

 

SOURCES:

 

http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=2012.htm

 

http://www.harrisinteractive.com/vault/Harris_Poll_2009_12_15.pdf

 

Chuck Missler, A Message from Outside Time, Koinonia House: http://khouse.org/articles/2013/1123

 

Science Speaks, by Peter W. Stoner. 1968 by the Moody Bible Institute of Chicago – On-Line Edition: http://sciencespeaks.dstoner.net/Christ_of_Prophecy.html#c9

 

Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews, Book 11, chap. 8, sec. 5, William Whiston translation, 1981

 

James Strong, John R. Kohlenberger III and James A. Swanson, Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible , Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2001, 1570.

 

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