Monday, December 29, 2008


J. Grant Swank, Jr.

Jesus predicted that prior to His Second Coming there would be an increase in wars and rumors of wars. Read Matthew 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21 for detail.

The reason?

Because Satan knows that his time is short before the return of the Prince of Peace, Christ. Therefore, demonic forces use the brief time frame to bring exceptional angst to the world public, knowing that when Christ returns as King of Kings there will be a millennial reign of goodwill.

Further, the increased warfare in the Middle East is particularly significant in that it is at the "navel of the planet" where the human race began. Adam and Eve were created by God in Eden. The Bible states the rivers flowing in that geography. That detail points to the larger circle we refer to as the "Middle East."

Coming near the close of the Church Age, we realize that humanity has now come full circle - starting with the first couple we now come close to the rule of the Son of God.

The warring has always been. In Eden Satan as a serpent began the conflict by testing the consciences of Adam and Eve. Their free wills defied Creator God in favor of the evil one. That resulted in what theologians call "The Fall." Nature fell. Supernature fell. In that fall eventuated disease and death.

Creator God had hoped for a human race that would inhabit the planet forever - no disease, no death. However, consequences of the First Parents' disobedience brought to the fore both.. We have to deal with them until this very moment and on into the future.

Even during the millennial reign of Christ, there will be disease and death for His earthly rule will not bring in the full bliss of heaven. The New Heaven and New Earth still awaits the close of the millennium. At that close, the final White Throne Judgment will consign the damned to the Bottomless Pit and Lake of Fire and Brimstone forever. It will also welcome the redeemed of all time into the Father's everlasting domain where no sin can enter.

Now we are experiencing via the daily news biblical prophesy unfolding. It is unnerving. But it is also calming to the believer in that the latter knows that all prophecy must in fact be seen through to the very letter. God is God.

God's Word will unfold according to His time and method. In that, the Christian finds his peace and hope.

Again, it is most significant that the wars and rumors of wars not only envelop the entire planet but in particular the Middle East. Biblical terms such as Nazareth, Bethlehem, Jerusalem, and Galilee that once were relegated to the Sunday school lessons are now on the lips of the most secular. In other words, whether they want it or not, all thinking persons are forced to take in the specifics related to God's turf - the Holy Land. And more particularly God's Holy City - Jerusalem.

One of the most fascinating details impinging on all this trouble in the Middle East has to do with the next temple to be constructed. It has to be built upon the original site of King Solomon's temple. Nowhere else will do. And it will have to usher in the minutia of that temple's priestly regalia, furnishings, and ritual. There are religious Jews now planning on that minutia to the last detail.

The problem is that if Jews think they are going to establish that temple on Jerusalem's Temple Mount, they will have to deal with the people who hate them the most - the Muslims. Further, the second holiest site to Islam, the Dome of the Rock, is placed squarely in the yard of Solomon's original temple.

Can the two edifices stand alongside one another? How will Jews ever put foot on the Temple Mount to construct their Holy Place and Holy of Holies now that Muslim guards threaten their lives?

Christians into biblical prophecy answer these difficult questions by stating with God nothing is impossible. Of course, that is true.

Therefore, the faithful leave the future unfolding of deity's predictions to God alone. He has made ways where there have been no ways. Biblical information reminds the believer that God's thoughts are above our thoughts.

Therefore, His eternal mind has already laid in place the manner by which the next temple will find its fruition.

There are so many specifics related to the present Middle East tension, that is, specifics already pronounced in Holy Scripture. Biblical prophecy is one of the most alluring studies anyone can explore. All the more so when placing the Bible alongside today's daily newscasts.

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