From Russia to Iran, Iraq, Syria, Europe, the Vatican and Israel. The Bible in the News is reviewed for 2012. We have witnessed the fact that, “The Most High rules in the kingdom of Men, and gives it to whomsoever he will”.
The year that has just gone by has seen the political chess pieces moving into position for the Great Day of God Almighty in accordance with Bible Prophecy. We have witnessed the fact that, “The Most High rules in the kingdom of Men, and gives it to whomsoever he will”.
This week we will consider a summary of some of the events of the past year.
The Autocrat of Russia
Early this year, Russia voted to re-install Vladimir Putin as its President for another six year term. His autocratic style, re-imposed on Russia through legislation is a perfect fit for the job assigned to him by the prophets of rebuilding the image empire spoken of by Daniel the Prophet. 167 years ago John Thomas looked forward to the rise of Russia, as a precursor to Christ’s return, when he wrote:
The ground upon which I wish success, yea, speedy success, to Russia, is, the full assurance that Christ will not “appear to them that look for him” until Russia leads the nations of the Babylonian world against Jerusalem to battle. Before Russia can do this, she must become a mishmar, or imperial protector, to the iron and brass powers. The success of Russia in establishing this Protectorate is devoutly to be desired, as an event eminently proximate to the end. (John Thomas)
Upon being elected Putin stated:
The world has seen Russia risen anew…. We are now entering a new stage in our national development… These coming years will be crucial for shaping Russia’s future in the decades to come….
That is an understatement.
The Assembly of the Image
Since Putin’s election, Russia has been reasserting itself on the world stage and strengthening its ties with the nations of the latter day alliance. Ezekiel 38 describes Gog, the prince of Rosh, as being a guard to the confederacy it is to preside over. Ezekiel indicates these nations include the areas of Russia (Rosh), Moscow (Meshech), Tobolsk (Tubal), Persia (Iran), Ethiopia, Libya, Gomer (Europe), Togarmah (Turkey and the Caucasus area), and many other people with them. The prophet Daniel indicates the area involved in this confederacy includes the former Assyrio-Babylonian Empire (including Syria & Iraq), The Medo Persian Empire (Iran and the Persian dominions), the Greek Empire (extending to the border of India), and the Roman Empire. All of these together encompasses a geographical area from the straits of Gibraltar to the borders of India.
As the Arab Spring has swept across much of the Middle East, Libya and Egypt have both seen their governments fall. Bashar Assad of Syria has been stubbornly holding on to power in the midst of a civil war that has cost 60,000 lives. While Russia stood back when Egypt and Libya fell, they asserted a “guardianship” over Syria in an attempt to block the West’s desire to topple Assad’s government. While Assad’s government may still fall, Russia has positioned itself as the protector of the Syrian “right to self determination without outside influence”. Putin has recently courted the Syrian opposition. Russia blocked several UN Security Council motions aimed at Syria, protecting it from International Law. Syria is part of the Northern Alliance having been part of the Assyrio-Babylonian Empire, the Persian Empire, the Greek Empire, and the Roman Empire. See Bible in the News reports from February 3, 2012
This year also saw Iraq turn its back on the Western Alliance (Biblically described as the King of the South in Daniel 11), and look to Russia as its ally, as reported in Bible in the News, October 12, 2012). Iraq signed a $4.2 billion deal with Russia to supply arms. News agencies reported “For Russia, it is a demonstration of its presence in the Middle East arms markets. For Iraq, it is proof that Baghdad is not a toy dog of Washington.” This strategic move by Iraq away from Western influence and into the Arms of Russia was to be expected, as it forms part of the “latter day image” that is being assembled and will be “broken in pieces together” (Daniel 2:35).
Sudan (part of ancient Ethiopia)
This year also witnessed an Israeli airstrike against a Sudan arms factory (Reported on Bible in the News, October 26, 2012). Sudan is a geographical area covered by ancient Ethiopia. It has been a source of rockets for Hamas over the past few years. This is one of the Gog’s allies, described in Daniel 11:
“The Libyans and the Cushites (Sudan & Ethiopia) will follow at his heel” (v43 JPS Version).
This year Sudan’s allegiance was visibly uncovered and shown to be in accordance with the prophecies of Ezekiel and Daniel.
We have also witnessed the strengthening of ties between Russia and Iran. Several times Russia has moved to “guard” Iran from Western hostilities, and from the prying eyes of international agencies who want to investigate Iran’s nuclear projects. Iran remains a belligerent power hostile to Israel (see Bible in the News reports from February 3, April 21, August 31, 2012). We continue to see Iran rattle it’s saber, prepare it army and nestle up to Russia.
A Great Army
Ezekiel also describes a Great Army when he states:
“all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armor, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords… all of them with shield and helmet” (Ezekiel 38:4-5).
Daniel adds to this picture,
“the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships…” (Dan 11:40).
This year saw the building up of Russia’s military forces, with defense contracts being made for the purchase of 100 warships, four helicopter carriers, eight nuclear submarines, and scores of fighter aircraft, helicopters and so on. (As Reported in The Bible in the News, Jan 7, 2012).
News reports spoke of Arms deals between Russia and its client states including Iran, Syria, Iraq, Libya and many others. The building up of the military might by the Gogian confederacy is an ongoing phenomenon at a time when America is cutting its own military forces in the region.
The Last Beast Phase
Meanwhile in Europe, the debt crisis has given Germany the green light to assert its dominion again in reforming the Beast system. The scriptures clearly indicate Germany as being a key player in European politics in the time of the end, as is indicated by the development of the beasts in the book of Revelation. The Holy Roman Empire, described as the Beast of the Earth, was one of the phases through which Europe would evolve. The last phase is described in chapters 17 and 18 of Revelation and depicts the European system as a beast with 10 horns:
And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. (Revelation 17:12–13)
The debt crisis has enabled the European system to establish greater control over the participating nations. Remember the words of The UK Telegraph as reported in The Bible in the News, August 17, 2012:
"German newspaper Handelsblatt reports today that the European Commission will next month propose giving the European Central Bank supervision over all of the eurozone's major banks."
To save their economic skins, nation states of ceded greater amounts of sovereignty to the Euroepan Union System. The worlds eyes have been constantly focused on Greece whose future, and the future of the Eurozone, are recorded in Bible prophecy and have been discussed in The Bible in the News, June 22, 2012.
The world’s politicians and media are echoing the words of Revelation in their rhetoric as they convince each other to give over power to the beast. Remember the words of Fredrick Forsyth who warned of the new Reich in Europe (as reported in The Bible in the News July 6, 2012):
Chancellor Angela Merkel… told David Cameron: “We must step by step cede responsibilities to Europe….” Stripped from EU jargon to layman’s language, it means: “We must step by step hand national government over to Brussels.…” The final and real meaning of what the lady said is: “We must step by step abolish the nation/state.”
This is nothing more than the nations agreeing to give their power and strength to the beast.
The Bible in the News reported in September, 2012 on the speech of José Barroso, President of the European Commission, where he stated the dire need for political union to solve economic problems:
“What I demand and what I present to you today is a Decisive Deal for Europe... This decisive deal requires the completion of a deep and genuine economic union, based on a political union...”
The countries of Europe are fulfilling the words of Revelation 17:17, albeit out of desperation:
For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.
The Woman on the Beast
We also witnessed the puppet master of Europe working her behind the scenes magic. Revelation 17 and 18 depict the Vatican as the woman who sits atop the beast, the Great Whore whom all the kings of the earth desire to commit fornication with.
The Bible in the News reported on the Vatican’s political activities as she poisons the nations with the wine of her fornication. The Pope’s visit to Latin American was reported in the March 31st Bible in the News.
The June 29th Bible in the News, reported the Vatican putting its fingers in the Israel’s pot, pushing for the Church of the Nativity to gain UN Heritage Status in “Palestine”, while priests and nuns protested with Vatican flags in Bethlehem.
On August 31, 2012, The Bible in the News also reported on the Vatican’s call for a New World Order, and the reforming of the United Nations, a project which included an invitation of UN Secretary Ban Ki-Moon to the Vatican to discuss the Pope’s suggested reforms. These reforms are intended to wrestle power away from the Western powers and put it in the hands of the Vatican.
Against My People Israel
The prophets Ezekiel, Daniel, Zechariah, Joel and others all speak of a gathering of the nations “against my people Israel”. This year has seen the rapid growth of anti-Semitism, anti-Zionism and anti-Israel sentiment all over the world. Israel is constantly under attack and is held to an entirely different set of values that the rest of the world. The world media is completely biased against Israel, as reported November 16, 2012 in The Bible in the News.
The ugly head of anti-Semitism was revealed in France when a Jewish elementary school was attacked earlier last year and Jewish children and teachers were murdered.
Anti-Israeli sentiments have been seen all year as rockets have rained down upon Israel, as reported in the March 16th Bible in the News. This culminated in the November bombardment of Israel by Hamas, and Israel’s aerial response, which almost turned into a ground war, as reported in the November 16 and 30th Bible in the News.
The Israel’s ties to the land were under attack with riots on the Temple Mount protesting Jewish prayers in October. This year saw the expulsion of Jews from Hebron, the burial place of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – under mounting international pressure.
The bias against Israel and international hatred culminated in the United Nations Vote, November 29, 2012, which granted the Palestinians observer state status in the United Nations. This vote legitimized the Palestinian State, in the eyes of many nations, without dealing with the fundamental issue of the recognition of Israel’s right to exist.
Yet this year also saw Canada take its place as a young lion fulfilling its role as a protector of Israel, as described in Ezekiel 38:13. America also stood by Israel, defending its right to “defend itself” against the bombardment of Hamas. Both Canada and the United States voted against the UN proposal to recognize Palestine. Australia and the UK abstained… not having yet found their spines to fulfill the Biblical roles outlined for them.
Well, what will 2013 bring? We pray it is the speedy return of the Lord Jesus Christ. All the signs indicate our Lord is at the door.
The main exhortation we can glean from witnessing The Bible in the News this year is to watch and prepare. God has given us his prophetic word to prepare us for his son’s imminent return.
“For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,” (1 Thessalonians 5:2–9)
John Thomas, a student of the Biblical word, wrote 167 years ago:
As the Lord has also revealed what is to come to pass in these latter days, it is both our duty and privilege to make ourselves acquainted with it, that our faith may grow and be strengthened; that our affections be detached from the fleeting present, and set more firmly on things to come; that our minds may be fortified against error; and that we may be prepared to meet the Lord as those who have kept their garments, and shall not be put to shame. It is our own fault if we are not “light in the Lord”. He has plainly set before us what is happening in our day, and what is yet to occur. (Elpis Israel)
Watching with you, this has been Jonathan Bowen. Join us next week for The Bible in the News, if our Lord remains away.