23 January, 2014
Those who persecute God’s people the most tend to be those who believe they are His people or formerly were. We are approaching a rarely occurring phenomena when there will be four blood moon eclipses that are predicted to correspond with some of the feast days of the LORD. When things like this occur, students of eschatology make a lot of noise and people, particularly believers, take certain
interest. Rabbinically, lunar eclipses are said to be a sign indicating God’s judgment on His people whereas solar eclipses are said to indicate God’s judgment on the nations. Jesus speaks of this on this wise:
9 Then will they deliver you up to be afflicted, and will kill you: and you will be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.
10 And then will many be offended, and will betray one another, and will hate one another.
11 And many false prophets will rise, and will deceive many.
12 And because iniquity will abound, the love of many will wax cold.
13 But he that will endure unto the end, the same will be saved.
14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then will the end come.
Many picture governments doing horrendous things to the people of God but let us not forget who delivered up Jesus to the Romans and compelled them to crucify the Lord, who delivered up Paul and the other apostles, who lead the Spanish inquisition and the crusades, and who, today, speaks with the most hatred towards believers. It is, with few exceptions, fellow believers. As Jesus says:
16:1 These things have I spoken unto you, that you should not be offended.
2 They shall put you out of the synagogues: yes, the time comes, that whosoever kills you will think that he does God service.
3 And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me.
There are many who look forward to the end of days with excitement and anticipation. I’ve noticed that, without exception, in the eye of the beholder all the bad things that will happen are going to happen to some else. What does Yahweh say in this regard?
18 Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! To what end is it for you? The day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.
What is going to happen and why are believers going to be hated of all nations? If persecution tends to come from fellow or former believers, what is going to compel them to be so cruel and act without love, mercy, and grace?
Zion is about to be born and the eyes of Judah are about to be opened wide to who the Messiah is. But what happens first? A divorce is coming, one brought about by our own making. When Jesus says, “And because iniquity will abound, the love of many will grow cold,” He isn’t referring to unbelievers but to believers. Iniquity is when a person knows that what they are doing is sin but instead of turning from it they twist everything around them to justify it. And who has love but the people of God who are supposed to love Him with all their heart, being and might, and their fellow as themselves? As Isaiah says:
1 Thus says the LORD, Where is the bill of your mother’s divorcement, whom I have put away? or which of my creditors is it to whom I have sold you? Behold, for your iniquities have you sold yourselves, and for your transgressions is your mother put away.
Believers are bringing about their own divorcement by selling themselves out to sin. This is to what Paul is referring in 2 Thess 2:3 when he declares a great falling away or more properly, according to the Greek, a divorce. This will cause many in the Body to be offended and betray one another (Matt 24:10).
When will these the things occur? It seems to me that it may be in our near future. Perhaps you have heard of the blood moon tetrads that are forthcoming. The moon represents the Bride of Messiah and ideally is supposed to shine forth His light as the moon does the sun. Every month a woman goes through a time of purging to renew her uterus in preparation to receive a seed to produce life. Thus can range from mild to so traumatic it feigns contractions. What holds the greatest sway is the blood which flows forth during this time. If the blood is cold, it will become stagnate or goes into a stasis state and gets trapped causing great pain. However if the blood is warm and flows freely, it will be able to flow forth with little incident.
What does this have to do with anything? It points us to various prophesies such as Isaiah 4.
3 And it will come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remains in Jerusalem, will be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem:
4 When the Lord will have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and will have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.
An example of this is Sodom and Gomorrah. Before God decided to destroy them and the surrounding cities, He sent messengers to judge and see if the accusations against those cities were true, one of which was that men were intimate with their wives during their menstruation. The messengers found it to be so and hence commenced the purging with only three escaping: Lot, who was considered righteous, and his two daughters.
If what Jesus tells us in Matt 24 comes to pass during this time and the love of many believers grows cold, this menstrual cycle will be one of great pain and travail. It will be a time of tribulation such as the world and the LORD’s people have never known. When we think of God pouring out His Spirit, we think of Acts and the wonders that came about with it. We look forward to Him pouring out His Spirit again in the last days but something we overlook is that part of that outpouring will be judgment and purging. As Joel says:
28 And it will come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions:
29 And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.
30 And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
31 The sun will be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.
32 And it will come to pass, that whosoever will call on the name of the LORD will be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem will be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD will call.
This set of verses parallels Isaiah 4. The only way a person will be delivered is if he calls upon the name of the LORD. All other means of salvation are futile. It is only after this judgment and purging that the survivors in Mt. Zion and in Jerusalem or in the nation of Israel and the Greater Israel in all the nations will find refuges. As Isaiah continues:
5 And the LORD will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night: for upon all the glory will be a defense.
6 And there will be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.
Why is the LORD doing all this? What does Jesus tell us?
13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then will the end come.
It is so the gospel will be preached in the entire world for a witness unto all the nations. As Isaiah declares:
19 And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them unto the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, that draw the bow, to Tubal, and Javan, to the isles afar off, that have not heard my fame, neither have seen my glory; and they will declare my glory among the Gentiles.
20 And they shall bring all your brethren for an offering unto the LORD out of all nations upon horses, and in chariots, and in litters, and upon mules, and upon swift beasts, to my holy mountain Jerusalem, says the LORD, as the children of Israel bring an offering in a clean vessel into the house of the LORD.
When God poured out His Spirit the first time, it was to empower those who were His to go into the world and fulfill the Great Commission. When He pours His Spirit out again in the last days, it is to bring that commission to its fullness or conclusion. The disciples wondered before Jesus’s ascension, “Are you going to restore the House of Israel at this time?” The House of Israel cannot be gathered into His barn until they are first harvested. The last days is going to be the season of the greatest harvest. It is when God is going to show that He has fulfilled His promise to Abraham to make his descendants as the dusts and sand of the earth.
So what, then, is this judgment and purging?
42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
44 Therefore you also be ready: for in such an hour as you don’t think the Son of man comes.
45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord has made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?
46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he comes will find so doing.
47 Verily I say unto you, That he will make him ruler over all his goods.
48 But and if that evil servant will say in his heart, My lord delays his coming;
49 And will begin to smite his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;
50 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looks not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,
51 And will cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
The good servant is the one who is doing the work that the Master gave him to do. The same is also the servant who is likened unto the goodman who watches and not the servant who’s standing there looking out the window, the wise virgins, and the servants who did right by their Master with the talent of gold He gave them.
Being a good servant requires more than simply obeying the commandments, statues, and ordinances; they are the house rules that are expected to be followed by every servant. Being a good servant requires more than sharing the gospel; the Master expects every servant to invite others in, feed them, clothe them, and meet their needs. What is the personal work that the Master has given you to do? Are you doing it? Then you are the same as the good servant who is watching for His master to return and won’t be caught by surprise. The servant who doesn’t obey the house rules will be punished but still remains a servant (Luke 12:47-48). The servant who doesn’t feed, clothe, and visit the least of these will be cast out because the Master doesn’t know him (Matt 25:41-46). The servant who isn’t about his Master’s business and buries his talent of gold will also be cast out (Matt 25:24-30). Everything we have is a gift from the Master. He has given some of us much and of the same will require much. Every servant’s needs are met by the Master. Everything beyond that, the blessings, are the abundance He gives us to do the work He has called us to do and meet the needs of others. If we keep these blessings to ourselves, we are burying the talent of gold He has given us in the dirt.
Historically, a tetrad (four) of blood moons has been a time great travail for God’s people. Historically, God’s people (as a whole) tend to be confronted by and fall into the hands of their enemies when they are living in sin. When judgment comes, it always begins with His people starting with those who have been given the most responsibility. If at any time in history there has been a greater need to turn to the LORD in repentance, it is today. As He tells us in Isaiah:
24 Therefore says the Lord, the LORD of hosts, the mighty One of Israel, Ah, I will ease myself of my adversaries, and avenge myself of my enemies:
25 And I will turn my hand upon you, and purely purge away your dross, and take away all your tin:
26 And I will restore your judges as at the first, and your counselors as at the beginning: afterward you will be called, The city of righteousness, the faithful city.
27 Zion will be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness.
28 And the destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners will be together, and they that forsake the LORD will be consumed.
Judges, in the book of Judges, are most often thought of in regards to how they delivered the people of Israel from their enemies. But their greater task was to lead His people to repentance. If we are living in sin, iniquity, and transgression, God is under no obligation to deliver us nor have we the right to expect Him to no matter how many promises we claim. Of all the people that were delivered from Egypt, only two entered into Yahweh’s rest. If we think we are as righteous as they, we are sorely mistaken. Our hearts are not undivided like Caleb’s nor have we made Yahweh our salvation. It is time to stop serving God only when it is convenient but also when inconvenient. It is time to stop relying on our works to save us and fully put our trust in God.
Again, I implore you, seek God in repentance, do the work He has tasked you with, do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God.