Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Israel God's Timepiece

During the days of the Babylonian exile following the destruction of the first Temple built by King Solomon that was destroyed by the Neo-Babylonian Empire in 586 BCE, Jerusalem was conquered and part of the population of the Kingdom of Judah was taken into exile to Babylon. The writings of the prophets Isaiah and Ezekiel encouraged the people of Israel with a promise of a future gathering of the exiles to the land of Israel. Eventually they returned and built a second temple in Jerusalem.

The second Temple stood on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem between 516 BCE and 70 CE. It was originally a rather modest structure constructed by a number of Jewish exile groups returning to the Levant from Babylon under the Achaemenid-appointed governor Zerubbabel. However, during the reign of Herod the Great, the Second Temple was completely refurbished, and the original structure was totally overhauled into the large and magnificent edifices and facades that are more recognizable. Just as the Babylonians destroyed the First Temple, the Romans destroyed the Second Temple and Jerusalem in 70 AD as retaliation for an ongoing Jewish revolt. The Jews were scattered to the four corners of the earth and Israel ceased to exist as a nation for 2000 years.

The Lord God, knowing Israel's disobedient ways had long ago made a promise to Israel; "When all these things have happened to you, the blessings and the curses that I have set before you, if you call them to mind among all the nations where the Lord your God has driven you, and return to the Lord your God, and you and your children obey him with all your heart and with all your soul, just as I am commanding you today, then the Lord your God will restore your fortunes and have compassion on you, gathering you again from all the peoples among whom the Lord your God has scattered you. Even if you are exiled to the ends of the world, from there the Lord your God will gather you, and from there he will bring you back. The Lord your God will bring you into the land that your ancestors possessed, and you will possess it; he will make you more prosperous and numerous than your ancestors." (Deuteronomy 30:1-5)

The continual hope for a return of the Israelite exiles to the land has been in the hearts of Jews ever since the destruction of the Second Temple. On May 14,1948 Israel once again became a nation and the world witnessed the beginning of a bible prophesy being fulfilled as the gathering of the exiles in the land of Israel, became the core idea of the Zionist Movement and the core idea of Israel's Scroll of Independence.  Aliyah embodied by the idea of going up since the Holy Land is considered to be spiritually higher than all other land. The immigration of Jews to the land and the State of Israel, the "mass" wave of Aliyot, has been likened to the Exodus from Egypt.

The current political reality surrounding Jerusalem would make it seem that the fulfillment of yet another prophesy concerning the construction of a third temple on the Temple Mount would be an impossibility, however all things are possible with God.

Since 1987, when the Temple Movement began preparations for the rebuilding of the Third Temple, efforts to see this become a reality in the 21st century have been slowly progressing. The Orthodox Jews have revived the Sanhedrin, the religious body that supervised the halachic (legal) issues related to the Temple and who intend to see it rebuilt in a proper way. The Sanhedrin and the Temple Movement also hold reenactments of Temple ceremonies for the training of those who are from the priestly class known as Kohanim. This training involves special schooling on the duties of the priests, the use of ritual vessels created for use in the Third Temple, and practice on a newly constructed altar of burnt offering. This altar is unique because it was designed to be disassembled and quickly reassembled in its proper permanent location, because the people of Israel are required to build an altar exclusively on the site of the original altar on Mount Moriah, the Temple Mount. When the time is right, it will be re-assembled on the Mount in the Temple, enabling the sacrificial service to be resumed without delay. Jewish eschatology included a belief that the Second Temple would be replaced by a future Third Temple, Maimonides connected its materialization with the coming of the Messiah.

The coming of the Messiah:
As to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we beg you, brothers and sisters, not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as though from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord is already here. Let no one deceive you in any way; for that day will not come unless the rebellion comes first and the lawless one is revealed, the one destined for destruction. He opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, declaring himself to be God. Do you not remember that I told you these things when I was still with you? And you know what is now restraining him, so that he may be revealed when his time comes. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work, but only until the one who now restrains it is removed. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will destroy with the breath of his mouth, annihilating him by the manifestation of his coming. The coming of the lawless one is apparent in the working of Satan, who uses all power, signs, lying wonders, and every kind of wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion, leading them to believe what is false, so that all who have not believed the truth but took pleasure in unrighteousness will be condemned. (2 Thessalonians 2: 1-12) 

Jesus spoke of this; “So when you see the desolating sacrilege standing in the holy place, as was spoken of by the prophet Daniel, then those in Judea must flee to the mountains; the one on the housetop must not go down to take what is in the house; the one in the field must not turn back to get a coat. Woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing infants in those days! Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a sabbath. For at that time there will be great suffering, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. And if those days had not been cut short, no one would be saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short." (Matthew 24: 15-22) 

According to the book of Daniel the desolating sacrilege refers to the Anti-Christ who will appear in the Third Temple and declare himself to be none other than god himself. He will become manifest and remain in control for 1290 days, approximately 3.5 years until he is slain 45 days later at the triumphant return of Yeshua the Messiah, the One Christians know as Jesus the Christ, King of kings and Lord of lords.