Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Damascus will be destroyed: A prophecy getting closer to fulfillment with each day

The Arab Spring finally burst into full bloom for Syria in April 2011, in Clock Tower Square. Protesters were fired upon with live ammunition, leaving about 50 people dead. The protests never stopped, and have turned into a full blown revolution against President Bashar al-Assad. He brutally squashes any uprisings with bloody crackdowns, yet they continued. The death toll rose throughout the spring and summer. Ally Turkey, alarmed at hosting a growing influx of refugees across the border, tried to bring diplomatic pressure to bear on Assad, to no avail. The UN sent an assessment team to the country in August and also Obama said Assad must go in that same month. Still Syria ignored the world's consternation. In September the bloodshed showed no signs of abating, and in early October a resolution condemning Syria's response to the uprising was presented to the UN Security Council. It was vetoed by China and Russia. Finally in early November, the Arab League, of which Syria is a member, denounced Assad's handling of the uprising and suspended Syria's membership in the Muslim organization.

Finally even the Arab League's brotherhood had had enough. After Syria defied the US, the UN, and fellow allies, and the Arab Brotherhood called Syria on the carpet. The Arab League knows that if Syria keeps this up, the West WILL militarily intervene, likely using NATO, and the Arab brothers do not want that. They are more than aggravated with Assad. The kicked Syria out of the Arab League.

Arab League suspension of Syria brings military intervention closer
Syria brutal regime at tipping point

So, stunded by even his brothers' defection from his camp,  Assad said he had a change of heart. Unfortunately that change of heart didn't stick because the next day, we awoke to news that an additional 70 people had been killed in the protests. And this time, Syria hopes they will have sheltering wing under which to take refuge: Russia.

"The latest carnage included 12 suspected army deserters as mass demonstrations spread throughout the country, testing how much more blood Assad can shed. He is in a do-or-die battle, vowing not to be the next Qaddafi or Mubarak but crowding himself into a tight corner as the Arab League turns against him by suspending Damascus from the organization ... Syrian officials are in Moscow to try to shore up support from Moscow after Jordan’s King Abdullah said Monday, “If I were in his [Assad’s] shoes, I would step down.” He later denied that he was calling for Assad to quit."

Russia plays prominently in the last days prophecies, allying with Iran and Turkey to attack Israel in the prophesied battle of Gog-Magog that Ezekiel 38-39 depicts. Syria also plays a prominent role in unfulfilled prophecy. Isaiah 17:1 says that, "The burden against Damascus.“ Behold, Damascus will cease from being a city, And it will be a ruinous heap."

Notice the language in that prophecy. It is passive tense. It does not say that Israel wipes out the city. It does not say which enemy destroys the city. It does not say that God destroys the city. We do not know who or how the city ceases.  We don't know how it will happen or from whom. Only that it will. We only know the result. In other prophecies God says who will do what, and how. Not this time.

We all assume Israel will do the deed but it really could be anyone, even God as He smote Sodom and Gomorrah. It could be NATO. It could be Turkey. It could happen as rebels get a hold of chemical weapons of mass destruction and unleash - accidentally or on purpose - a holocaust that destroys the city. The Syrian bio-weapon threat is huge and growing and quite worrisome now that stability has vanished from the region. It could be that rebels with Libyan weapons that had gone missing from Libya make an attack and things get out of hand. No matter, the fact is, as Damascus becomes increasingly belligerent and the Middle East hotbed that is the epicenter of last days prophecies climbs over the horizon and hurtles toward us, we are closer than ever to that final obliteration of the city of 6 million Isaiah prophesied 2700 years ago. Keep one eye on the news, and the other eye looking UP!

12 comments:

  1. If Israel bombs Iran's nuclear capabilities and Russia allies with Iran, do you think this would be the beginning of the tribulation? I thought 7 years of peace had to happen first, then Russia comes down with China to attack Isreal. I'm a bit confused about the timeline.

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Anonymous,

    Ezekiel's battle of chapters 38-39, which happen after Israel is in the land and before the millennium in the chronology of surrounding chapters, I beleive occur at the outset of the Tribulation. The verses in both chapters show many times that God is the savior of Israel and everyone knows it. He says that His holy name will not be profaned anymore, which indicates to me that Israel will be back in covenant with God. We know at some point Israel gets back to basics in their Old Covenant because they have a temple and they perform sacrifices. I believe it is the battle of Ez 38-39 that sparks the return to covenant.

    I believe that it is Israel's relief at being supernaturally saved by God that they clamor for the temple and the treaty mentioned in Daniel makes a provision for that Temple. I think after the Ezekiel battle that the treaty is conformed, Israel gets up their temple,sacrifices begin, and three and a half years later the antichrist rips it up and begins the GREAT tribulation.

    The 7 years is of tribulation, not of peace. A treaty is confirmed (Dan 9:27) but halfway into the 7 year peace treaty the antichrist tears it up. (Dan 9:27 again, also Matthew 24:15).

    Rev 16:12 refers to the King of the East marching down to Armageddon, which is at the very end of the Tribulation.

    If you look at the participants of the battles, Gog is mentioned in both but they are not the same battle because others who are mentioned in one are not mentioned in the other. The participants are not the same and therefore are not the same battle.

    I personally believe that the alliance of Russia and Iran in their attack against Israel is at the beginning of the tribulation and therefore we will not be here.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you...

    So if I understand this correctly, there is 3 and a half years of peace, then Armageddon for 3 and a half years- correct?

    Does the rapture occur BEFORE the 3 and a half years of peace? What sparks the rapture?

    And again thank you for helping me (and I'm sure others) understand!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Per Israel being in "covenant relationship" with God again during the tribulation and making sacrifices:
    "11 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (that done in the body by the hands of men)— 12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.
    14 For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, 15 by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, 16 and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. 17 He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit." Ephesians 2 see also Galatians 1:13-17 ; Gal 2:15,16 ; Gal 2:21 " 21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” Galatians 3:6 Consider Abraham: “He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.” 7 Understand, then, that those who believe are children of Abraham. 8 The Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.” 9 So those who have faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith. 10 All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.” 11 Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, “The righteous will live by faith.” 12 The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, “The man who does these things will live by them.” 13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” 14 He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit. 19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
    Gal 1:6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— 7 which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned! 9 As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!"

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi Anonymous,

    The antichrist confirms a treaty that ushers in three and a half years of peace for the Jews. There will not be peace overall though. Rev 6:4 shows that peace will be taken from the earth, and Matthew 24:6 Jesus says there will be wars and rumors of wars.

    Armageddon does not take three and a half years. It is one battle, actually not even a battle. The armies assembled at Megiddo try to fight Jesus when He comes in glory (Rev 19:17-21) are slain with a word. Armageddon takes a second.

    The judgment period is 7 years. The Lord has 6 things in mind to do for that period of time: Daniel 9:24
    Seventy weeks[a] are determined
    For your people and for your holy city,
    To finish the transgression,
    To make an end of[b] sins,
    To make reconciliation for iniquity,
    To bring in everlasting righteousness,
    To seal up vision and prophecy,
    And to anoint the Most Holy.

    What triggers the rapture is a number. Jesus has a certain number in mind for His church, and when that number is reached, we go. No one knows what that number is, or how close we are to it. The rapture is a sign-less event. It will simply happen. That is why we have to be ready. (Romans 11:25: "I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers and sisters, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in, ")

    Tha rapture occurs before the judgment period. Paul said we are not appointed to wrath, (1 Thess 5:9) and the tribulation is wrath beginning with the first judgment seals unleashed (Rev 6:17). Colossians 2:12-14: says our sins are nailed to the cross, forgotten (Heb 8:12) and Daniel 9:24 says that Jesus will to atone for wickedness...so His work in the Tribulation does not apply to us. We will be gone.

    So pray for that number to be filled, witness to the truth of the Gospel and live as light and salt, so that others may believe. You never know who will be the last Christian of the Church age to enter in before the number is reached!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you, again!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Anonymous of 8:23, you made a really long answer to what I think you are saying, which is that the Jews will not resume sacrifices. They will. You are forgetting that there is the church in the new covenant, and there is the Israelites in the old covenant. They are separate and distinct. The old covenant stopped short of the 490 year decree from Artaxerxes to Nehemiah by 7 years. Dan 9:24-27 has the timeline. 483 years "and then Messiah would be cut off". The Jews still have to finish that last 7 years. Else God is a liar and we know that is not true!

    Jack Kelley explains
    Animal sacrifice will resume after the rapture when Daniel’s 70th week begins. We know this because the Abomination of Desolation will cause them to stop in the middle of the week (Daniel 9:27). Then when the Millennium begins they’ll be resumed again and will continue through out the 1000 years (Ezekiel 45:13-17, Ezekiel 46:13-15). Even after Israel receives the New Covenant these sacrifices will continue year after year. In all of human history, only the Church is exempt from offering them. "

    "Animal sacrifice will resume after the rapture when Daniel’s 70th week begins. We know this because the Abomination of Desolation will cause them to stop in the middle of the week (Daniel 9:27). Then when the Millennium begins they’ll be resumed again and will continue through out the 1000 years (Ezekiel 45:13-17, Ezekiel 46:13-15). Even after Israel receives the New Covenant these sacrifices will continue year after year. In all of human history, only the Church is exempt from offering them.

    more here on the subject
    http://gracethrufaith.com/ask-a-bible-teacher/resuming-animal-sacrifice/

    and here
    http://gracethrufaith.com/ask-a-bible-teacher/are-there-still-seven-years-left-in-daniels-70-weeks-prophecy/

    ReplyDelete
  8. Wow....I know this is wrong but I almost don't want it to happen but it will because well, God gave us free will and man has chosen to reject God and embrace sin. This is the result. Destruction and loss of lives. It will be a very scary day and the world (especially the middle east) will not be the same after it happens, no matter who causes it.

    I pray that people in that area of the world will come to know Jesus before it is too late.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Anonymous,

    I feel the same. What a tragedy...rejecting Jesus. Many millions will die, and in the first part of the Tribulation a quarter of the earth's population will die. Billions!

    I think of Damascus as Sodom. Sodom and Gomorrah were part of the five cities of the plain. God destroyed four of them (Admah and Zeboiim, not only Sodom and Gomorrah) that day. Deut 29:23. Zoar was the only city spared, the one that the angel told Lot to run to. Some estimate the combined populations of the five cities were around 260,000.

    The five cities were going along, bustling, doing their thing in a vibrant economy and a wild trade in sin. And one day the cities were wiped out. Sin has a heavy, heavy price. It is as it should be, but to think of the death toll of the Tribulation is staggering. All those lives, wasted, when they could have been saved if they had uttered one name: JESUS.

    ReplyDelete
  10. the phrase "wars and rumors of wars" is coming to mind right now...

    ReplyDelete
  11. is the end coming soon

    ReplyDelete
  12. sparkle, the end could come at any time, through death or rapture. The question is not "is the end coming soon," but "am I ready?"

    ReplyDelete

The LORD is Creator and Commander of the animal kingdom

The Lord in His power directs every atom, every person, every angel, every demon, and every animal on earth (and in heaven). He created all ...