From April 30th to May 21st, sirens pierced the ears and hearts of Israeli Jews.

Sirens to announce the arrival of personnel and equipment to fight fires all over Israel. Fires in businesses, homes, cars, busses, and fields of crops. Lit mostly by rampaging Arab Israelis but also by non-citizen Palestinians … from fire kites hurled from the Gaza Strip.

Ambulance sirens to prepare for emergency treatment and transfer of the wounded and dying. And to transport the dead for burial.

Police and military sirens to clear the way for Israel’s men and woman in uniform; to rescue and defend; to stem the tide of lawlessness and violence rampant throughout Israel.

Air raid sirens to give Israeli civilians a few precious seconds to seek shelter from thousands of mortars and missiles launched by Hamas of the Gaza Strip into Israel. Hoping that Israel’s Iron Dome air defense system would blow the rockets from the sky before they destroyed property and people.

When you combine the turmoil of an Israeli government following the country’s 4th election (March 23, 2021) in two years (under the helm of what many consider to be Israel’s greatest Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu—in terms of national and international accomplishments for Israel) but still unable to form a majority coalition of 61 seats in the Knesset, with the tragedy on Mount Meron (April 30th) followed recently by terror inflicted on Israelis via indiscriminate firing of over 4,000 missiles from Gaza into Israel (beginning on May 10th); preceded by tens of thousands of Arabs rioting in several towns, including Jerusalem (earlier in May); an argument could be made that Israel’s resolve and resiliency have not been tested like this since the 50-day war between Israel and Hamas in 2014.

Some would say not since the Palestinian intifada of 2001. Others might even compare the inner turmoil—political, social, and (most of all) religious division among Israelis—combined with the Mt. Meron tragedy in which 45 men and boys were crushed to death during what was supposed to be one of the most jubilant religious celebrations among Orthodox Jews; plus, the recent Palestinian terrorism uprising to constitute the most difficult time in Israel’s 73-year history since the Yom Kippur War of 1973.

(Israelis light candles for the 45 victims killed in a stampede at Mount Meron during the Lag B’ Omer celebrations)

It is mind-boggling in scope and should give serious cause for Israelis and Jews worldwide to pause; to ponder their perplexing past, perilous present, and portentous future of the reborn state of Israel.

In fact the whole world would do well to carefully consider its imminent destiny and take heed of these three tenses of Israel’s existence in the context of the three main subjects of Biblical prophecy and its fulfillment: (1) The Promised Land of Israel given to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in perpetuity; (2) The New Covenant foretold by Jeremiah to replace the Old Covenant of Law, that would (has for 2,000 years and counting) bring redemption to all who believe and receive God’s Son (Messiah); (3) The Jewish Messiah Jesus of Nazareth who would implement that Covenant of Grace for Jew and Gentile alike. To then return to establish the Kingdom of God in Jerusalem from which he will rule and reign for a thousand years. After rescuing Israel from annihilation at the hands of Antichrist and the world from self-destruction during the Great Tribulation soon to come.

Listen Up … Look Up!

It is time for God’s chosen people—religious, secular, leaders, and common folk alike to—individually and collectively, nationally (the state of Israel) and internationally (Jews worldwide)—heed the passionate warning of the only true and living God, the God of Israel’s ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob:

“Listen to me, O my people, while I give you stern warnings. O Israel, if you would only listen to me!” (Psalm 81:8).

It is time for Israel and Jews worldwide, especially the observant among them (Ultra-Orthodox, Orthodox, Conservative, Reformed) to realize that thousands of Messianic Jews all over the world (who have believed and received Jesus as the Son of God—the Messiah foretold in the Jewish Scriptures) have indeed listened to the God of Israel. They have heeded the Lord’s precious promises, powerful prophecies, and stern warnings given to his prophets, who practiced, preached, and prophesied precisely what God told them to do and speak.

Prophets such as Amos who declared: “Indeed, the Sovereign Lord never does anything until he reveals his plans to his servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7).

Like King David who unequivocally proclaimed in one of the Messianic prophecies in Scripture that the God of Israel has a Son, who is the Messiah: “For the Lord declares, ‘I have placed my chosen king on the throne in Jerusalem, on my holy mountain.’ The king proclaims the Lord’s decree…” (Psalm 2:6-7a).

Then the king speaks: ‘The Lord said to me, ‘You are my son. Today I have become your Father. Only ask, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance, the whole earth as your possession. You will break them with an iron rod and smash them like clay pots.’

“Now then, you kings act wisely! Be warned you rulers of the earth! Serve the Lord with reverent fear; and rejoice with trembling. Submit to God’s royal son, or he will become angry, and you will be destroyed in the midst of all your activities—for his anger flares up in an instant. But what joy for all who take refuge in him” (Psalms 2:7b-12).

King David also wrote: “The Lord (God the Father) said to my Lord (God the Son), ‘Sit in the place of honor at my right hand until I humble your enemies, making them a footstool under your feet.’ The Lord will extend your powerful kingdom from Jerusalem; you will rule over your enemies” (Psalm 110:1-2, parenthesis mine).

In Psalm 22, David presents stunning specifics of Messiah’s suffering and death before, during, and after his crucifixion hundreds of years before the Romans perfected this cruel torture and death. With Jesus of Nazareth fulfilling every one of these prophecies in startling detail. 

Whether religious or secular, all Jews need to seriously consider the extraordinary evidence that Jesus explicitly fulfilled Isaiah’s shocking portrait of a (the) suffering Messiah in Isaiah 53. Such as: “But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed. All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the Lord laid on him the sins of us all” (Isaiah 53:5-6).

Just hours before he was falsely arrested, illegally tried, unjustly condemned to die, and ruthlessly nailed to a cross, we read what Jesus said to his disciples (and all who would believe in him): “After supper he took another cup of wine and said, ‘This cup is the new covenant between God and his people—an agreement confirmed with my blood, which is poured out as a sacrifice for you’” (Luke 22:20).

Then in the profound book of Hebrews (New Testament), the Jewish author summarizes so great a salvation purchased by Jesus Christ with the highest price ever paid, through the (once for all) greatest sacrifice ever made … the blood and life of the Son of God. Beginning with:

“Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. And now in these final days (when the new covenant had begun), he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he created the universe. The Son radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God, and he sustains everything by the mighty power of his command. When he had cleansed us from our sins, he sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God in heaven” (Hebrews 1:1-3, parenthesis mine).

Not long before his death, burial, and resurrection, Jesus provided more startling features of the last days of the end times. In the context of those predictions and the many end times prophecies found in the Old Testament, he uttered these words intended first and foremost to his Jewish disciples and the nation of Israel: 

Great Expectations for Messiah

This heading was the title of an Eye of Prophecy article (posted 8-8-15). Here is an excerpt from the beginning of that article, in italics:

Jews all over the world, especially observant Jews in Israel, are becoming exponentially excited over Israel’s redemption. They see this restoration as both physical—rescue from and protection against their enemies—and spiritual … individual and national return to God through renewal of the sacrificial system lost to them when the second Temple was destroyed. No matter what form this revival takes and no matter whether a Jew is religious or secular, there is one prevailing and passionate premise: Messiah will make all these things happen upon his glorious appearance.

For most Jews this will be the first arrival of Messiah. For born-again believers, Gentiles and Messianic Jews alike, this will be the majestic return of Jesus Christ.

Two Eye of Prophecy articles entitled Look Up, Redemption is Near (Part I & II) were recently published on 7-11-15 and 7-18-15, respectively. In these articles, we looked discerningly at twelve unmistakable signs of the 20th & 21st centuries showing that Biblical end-times prophecy has been and is being fulfilled in one generation alone. In the second article, these signs were itemized for quick reference. They are as follows:

  1. Rebirth of Israel as a Sovereign Nation, 1948
  2. Recapture of Jerusalem in the June 1967 Six-Day War
  3. Jerusalem, a Heavy Burden to the Nations
  4. The 3rd Rebuilt Temple
  5. Israel’s Phenomenal Agricultural Accomplishments
  6. Modern-Day Alignment of God/Magog Nations against Israel
  7. National and Ethnic Wars in the 20th & 21st Centuries
  8. Amazing Increase of Natural Disasters
  9. Moral & Spiritual Decline & Intense Persecution of Christians
  10. False Messiahs & Prophets
  11. Unequaled Increase in Quantity and Speed of Transportation and Information
  12. Unprecedented Spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the World 

…The time of Messiah is near, so very near. Why can we say that? Because the last time that Israel and even surrounding Gentile nations were so zealous about the arrival of Messiah, that’s exactly what happened! Jesus Christ appeared on the scene of history fulfilling dozens of Biblical prophecies that he was, in fact, the Messiah … with an abundance of documentation, the greatest proof of which was his resurrection from the grave!

It has been nearly six years since Great Expectations for Messiah was posted. Based upon observations of pivotal events, both positive and negative, going on in Israel and the world at large (including op-ed articles from both Messianic Jews and non-Messianic Jewish sources), it is becoming evident that the anticipation for Messiah’s return is waning.

The following is an excerpt from a recent Eye of Prophecy article, Reexamination of Messiah’s Imminent Return & The Omega Generation (published 1-16-21). In italics:

Just How Imminent is the Imminent Return of Messiah?

That is the title of an Eye of Prophecy article posted over three years ago (11-18-17).

In the 20th & 21st centuries, there have been and still are an abundance of flashpoint signs to signal that the return of Messiah Jesus is more imminent than ever. There are also patterns, parallels, and principles plus correlations (including certain numbers) in Scripture that strongly suggest that we are in the last days of the end times.

I then went on to write:

However, because it has been nearly 2,000 years (close to 1,988 years) since Jesus ascended to heaven, we need to reexamine the question posed earlier that Peter said would be in the form of mockery from unbelievers in the last days (and it certainly is): “What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again?”

In other words, repeating: Just How Imminent is the Imminent Return of Christ?

Or in stronger terms: Is his return imminent at all? Could it be hundreds of years from now? Might it not even be in this Third A.D. Millennium?

It’s not just the skepticism, sarcasm, and scorn coming from many unbelievers. That’s to be expected; in fact, the Apostle Peter prophesied of such. Unfortunately, in the last few years some disillusionment has developed concerning the Second Coming of Jesus Christ even among believers. There is a growing concern that the imminent return of Christ is anything but that.

Instead, the Second Coming appears more indefinite than ever.

I believe there are two reasons (sources) for this concern that is causing varying degrees of complacency and/or pessimism in the hearts and lives of some Christians.

(1) From Without: This is particularly true of American Christians in the context of the current state of our Union. Or should I say: the (deplorable) state of our disunion within these (dis)United States of America. Not since the Civil War (blue vs. gray) have we been so divided (blue vs. red). Violent radicals on both sides (liberals and conservatives) have crossed the lines of democratic decency, of moral accountability, of law and order which is (should be) the heart of a republic. Some say that we have irretrievably breached the middle ground of cooperation in this country and are holding tight to ground on opposite sides of an unbridgeable gulf between left and right, democrat and republican.

*Note: No need to quote the 2nd reason, as only the first reason applies to today’s article.

A Challenge Based on a Premise

For Jews even half-way interested in the Messiah, the ardent anticipation for his arrival also seems to be diminishing within Israel and the global Jewish community. Much like the United States and most of the world, Israelis and Diaspora Jews are becoming increasingly polarized, particularly in their politics. Expressed mostly through the deepening divisions between observant/religious (called Haredim in Hebrew … especially the Orthodox) Jews/Israelis and secular Jews.

Challenge: This week’s Part I article (Turmoil in Israel) includes a respectful but also robust challenge to Israelis and to Jews throughout the world (whether religious or secular). To compellingly consider that the recent developments in Israel should be a wake-up call to look up for divine guidance in general. And for their returning Messiah in particular. The challenge will continue with Part II (Tragedy in Israel) & Part III (Terror in Israel) of this trilogy, as will the rolling premise.

Premise: The current (internal) turmoil produced in part by Israel’s political system and sometimes dysfunctional government, the tragedy of the recent Meron disaster, and the terror caused by the latest war between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas terrorist organization contain precedents, parallels, and patterns of 1st Century Israel, before and/or after the (first) arrival of Israel’s Messiah—Jesus of Nazareth. Consequently, these recent events are preparing and even precipitating the return of both Christ (Jesus) and Antichrist (Nero).

Turmoil in Israel

Webster’s Dictionary defines turmoil as: “an utterly confused or extremely agitated state or condition.”

In addition to confusion and agitation, some of the lighter synonyms of turmoil: turbulence, unrest, disorder, commotion.

Some of the heavier synonyms: chaos, mayhem, havoc, upheaval.

The greater percentage of the 7.7 million Israeli Jews and 1.8 million Israeli Arabs seem to be somewhere between the lighter and heavier meanings of turmoil. With a smaller percentage on either end of the scale, i.e., just slightly confused/agitated (at the very least, frustrated) or tremendously disturbed over the turbulence in the Israeli government for the past two years or so.

Politics in a democracy (governed by a parliament or a congress) is both a reflection and an expression of society and its diversity of religious beliefs, ideologies, and economics.

Principally through Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s skilled leadership (with support from the United States—primarily from former President Trump), Israelis have seen some significant accomplishments in the past few years. Such as moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to its rightful (mandated by the Jewish Embassy Act of 1995 that passed the U.S. Senate and House with a large margin) location in Israel’s eternal capital, Jerusalem. And the Abraham Accords last year resulting in unprecedented diplomatic relations between Israel and a few Arab (Muslim) countries like the United Arab Emirates. Plus, a pre-pandemic booming economy that has already experienced a resurgence.

For the past two years, however, a dark political election cloud has hovered tenaciously and tempestuously over Israel. Creating an atmosphere of uncertainty, confusion, and agitation … with varying degrees of turmoil. Thereby, testing the overall optimistic attitude of Israeli Jews.

In my opinion, Israel’s parliamentary coalition government as contained in 120 members of the Knesset, is one of the finest in the world. At least it used to be. But when the kind of acute tribal polarization that has enveloped the entire world (especially in the United States) found its way into Israeli politics … well, four elections in two years without forming a majority coalition tells the whole story.

The first of these elections that failed to reach a majority coalition (61 seats in the Knesset) took place in April 2019.

Since then, the same kind of pattern has developed; the only difference is that some of the parties and party leaders have changed and/or changed allegiance—partially or completely. Something like: Party leader A formerly aligned with B is now with C who swore never to affiliate with either A or B.

That and the seemingly irrational movement (considering all his accomplishments for the State of Israel) to oust Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister. Which more than any other platform or purpose, is making strange bedfellows of the political parties and their leaders.

(Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu … for now?)

The following is an excerpt from Eye of Prophecy article, Israel’s Government in Limbo … Unprecedented! (Posted 7-6-19) to summarize what happen to that election, including the party leader “culprit” primarily responsible for preventing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from establishing a majority Knesset coalition led by his Likud party (the largest … still is). In italics:

For the first time since Israel was reborn as a sovereign Jewish State in 1948 and following unscheduled mid-term elections just three months ago, the Israeli Knesset failed to establish a majority coalition.

Nonetheless, despite the (sometimes) perplexing parliamentary paradigm of Israel’s government and election process, it truly is one of the most democratic systems in the world. Reason: It combines the best of pure democracy and a representative republic by giving voice to many more platforms than those nations which have just two parties, or even three or four.

When Israelis participate in national elections they vote for a party, not for an individual.

Parties that garner the minimum number of votes required (which also determines the number of Knesset representatives) then decide which of their associates will serve in the Knesset. The ruling coalition, which can consist of several blocs, must have a minimum of 61 of the 120 Knesset seats. Israel’s Prime Minister is the recognized leader of the largest party of the majority coalition. In this case, it would have been a reelected Benjamin Netanyahu.

You may not know about this situation in Israel. Or, if you do, you may not be familiar with the details, some of which will be provided in the context of today’s focus: the prophetic destiny of Israel’s national redemption and restoration. And how that destiny will determine the fate of the entire world.

I then quoted an excerpt from a previous Eye of Prophecy article, The Jewish Dichotomy In & Outside Israel (posted 6-20-18). As follows from that article:

In much larger geographic and demographic nations like the United States of America (population 327 million) you would expect a wide range of political, social, economic, cultural, and religious diversity. But with only 7.7 million Jewish citizens of Israel (7.7 is the current population to match the posting date of this week’s article) and only 14+ million Jews on the planet you would anticipate fewer differences and certainly not such dramatic dichotomies within Israel nor among Jews throughout the world.

At the same time, both Israelis and Jews outside of Israel are an extraordinary example of a cohesive dichotomy (an oxymoron) unparalleled on Planet Earth.

Nevertheless, differences between Jews themselves can be troublesome, especially when the Jews as a people and Israel as a nation have so many adversaries….

Though there is significant solidarity of Jews within and outside of Israel, there are three basic Jewish dichotomies.

I went on to identify those dichotomies, with the most noticeable difference between secular and observant Jews….

Then later in that article, a summary pinpointing the principal cause for the failure to form a coalition government (Knesset) for the first time in Israel’s history. As follows:

By the time of the extended deadline, the Likud party and its supporting factions could muster only 60 seats—a deadlock. Consequently, the 21st Knesset voted to dissolve itself and schedule another snap election on September 17, 2019.

Why did that happen?

Answer: Even though there were smaller parties supporting Likud (35 seats) with a total of 30 additional would-be Knesset representatives, it took just one party and its leader to dissolve the new Knesset, an unparalleled event in Israel’s modern history. The party: Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel is our Home). Its leader: Avigdor Lieberman.

… In principle, both Lieberman and his party had agreed to back the Likud. As a result of the April 9th election, his party was reduced from six to five Knesset members; still resulting in a convincing mandate of 65 seats for the majority coalition. Yet, they reversed their support after the election.

This abrupt turnaround came with an ultimatum imposed by Lieberman, summarized in this quote from a June 4, 2019, Associate Press article reposted in the online news source World Israel News: “After appearing to win April 9 elections, Netanyahu was blocked from forming a government coalition by his political ally turned rival Avigdor Lieberman, who insisted on passing legislation that would require young ultra-Orthodox men to be drafted into the military like everyone else.”

This issue of observant Jews serving in the IDF has been controversial for years; it is one of the two main platforms of Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu party….

Lieberman further dug in his heels when he learned that Bezalel Smotrich of the United Right Party (ultra-Orthodox) was being considered as the next Justice Minister. Said Lieberman:

“To my sorrow, the State of Israel is going to elections (again in the same year). We are natural partners (but only under his terms) in a right-wing government; we won’t be partners in a halachic government. The Likud failed in this work of building a coalition (thanks to Lieberman’s rigid and impatient position) … and they and the Haredim are to blame for Israel going to elections” (emphasis added, parenthesis mine).

(*Note: Haredim is a term applied to observant Jews, particularly the Orthodox … in contrast to secular Jews, who far outnumber their religious kindred. Halachic is a Hebrew expression from the root word, halacha. Which means, “the way” or the “way of walking” or path. …In short, it’s the idea of an entire community or even a nation—as a whole, majority—following the instructions of the Lord in all areas of life … including politics.

(A gathering of Orthodox Jews in Israel, comprising about 13% of the total Israeli population)

I then wrote in that article:

Although not nearly reason enough to join the Likud-led conservative coalition, liberal Jewish politicians also adamantly oppose any thought that Judaism would be the (a) governing base for the State of Israel. Said left-wing Meretz party member Tamar Zandberg, “It is clear that there cannot be a justice minister serving in Israel who wants to establish a theocracy.”

Which is, in fact, what ultra-Orthodox Knesset Member Bezalel Smotrich proposed when he said: “The State of Israel will be run, God willing, as it was run during the days of King David and King Solomon—according to Torah law.”

Although Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is passionately patriotic about Israel and gives considerable weight to Jewish tradition and the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) that he often reads; he, too, does not favor what would be tantamount to an Israeli version of a State Church or Church (Synagogue) State. Said Netanyahu in a terse response to Smotrich: “The State of Israel will not be a halachic state.”

That portion of the article concluded with:

It’s nothing short of amazing that Israel’s dichotomy between secular and observant Jews is, in unparalleled fashion, the overriding reason that this mid-term election (April) did not result in a new government… Of all the variables that could have blocked Netanyahu’s Likud-led government from being reinstated (renewed), it was Lieberman’s party withdrawal from the conservative bloc that reduced the majority from 65 seats to a deadlock of 60 seats. Moreover, this withdrawal was driven by fear that the Israeli government would be heavily influenced, if not dominated, by the religious minority.

That election was just a little over two years ago. Three more mid-term elections (most recently March 23, 2021) have resulted in an ongoing non-majority deadlock. With (points of) disagreements far outweighing agreements constituting the main reason for this governmental stalemate in Israel.

Prophetic Correlation of the 20th / 21st Century Reborn State of Israel with 1st Century Israel

First to state the obvious which, nevertheless, bears pertinent historical and profound prophetic importance, particularly in the context of so many other signs that we are living in the last days of the end times that will see the return of both Christ and Antichrist. The obvious—but most significant of all the signs of the end times is the rebirth of the Jewish Nation-State of Israel (1948). Then the liberation and reunification of Jerusalem during Israel’s stunning victory in the Six-Day War of 1967.

Significant for any number of reasons as found in Scripture, including the Biblical/historical evidence that many of God’s plans involving his chosen people (Jews) and their Promised Land (Israel) and/or sovereign intervention in human affairs come in sets of two.

Please see Eye of Prophecy article: Significant Sets of Twos in The Bible (posted 3-30-19).

Although there are more, I identified ten (10) sets in that article. Some of the sets complement each other such as the already mentioned birth and rebirth of the Sovereign State of Israel.

Other sets of two are in sharp contract. For example, Christ Jesus vs his antithesis, Antichrist (Nero).

Some sets are a combination of correlation and contrast. For example: The New Covenant of Grace (implemented by/through Jesus) completing but also replacing the Old Covenant of the Law (given to/through Moses).

Let’s review the premise of this week’s post, which will continue (the Lord willing) with Part II (the tragedy of the Meron disaster in Israel) and Part III (the terror generated by massive Arab rioting and even more so by thousands of Hamas missiles fired into Israel from Gaza).

Premise: The current (internal) turmoil produced in part by Israel’s political system and sometimes dysfunctional government, the tragedy of the recent Meron disaster, and the terror caused by the latest war between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas terrorist organization contain precedents, parallels, and patterns of 1st Century Israel, before and/or after the (first) arrival of Israel’s Messiah—Jesus of Nazareth. Consequently, these recent events are preparing and even precipitating the return of both Christ (Jesus) and Antichrist (Nero).

As indicated, the turmoil produced by the unprecedented instability and uncertainty (past two years) of Israel’s government which, in turn, has been caused by the harsh and unrelenting ideological, societal, and political divisions between blocs of the 13 current parties that make up a partially dysfunctional Knesset bears striking resemblance to what happened in 1st Century Israel. The First Century AD was/is of great prophetic significance to the Jews and to/for Israel … indeed, for all mankind.

Plus, there is a Biblically prophetic “ring” (relevancy) between 1st century and 21st century … a divine multiplied connection regarding several monumental events in the past, present, and still future fulfillment of prophecy. If for no other reason than the two numbers of great prominence in the Bible are considered divine … three and seven. Multiplying these two numbers equals 21. Also, 1 x 21 is still 21.

Several rabbis and Jewish scholars not necessarily religious have attributed the Jewish rebellion instigated primarily by the activist party called Zealots against Rome in A.D. 66 to sectarian divisions within Israel. Not just secular versus observant, but also sharp disputes between the main religious groups: Samaritans, Sadducees, Pharisees, and Essenes. In addition to thousands of Romans in Israel—mostly military, there was also a group called the Herodians—lackeys of Rome, often alienating their own people, the Jews.

These competing and often conflicting factions were already in existence when time itself was changed by the birth of Jesus Christ (B.C. to A.D.). And became more antagonistic one toward the other during Jesus’s life and ministry. The animosity of these groups intensified that much more after Jesus rose from the dead and ascended back to heaven.

And, of course, there were thousands upon thousands of Jesus followers, at first called The Way, then later called Christians. However, Christians were already under severe persecution by both Jews and the Romans (under Nero). They had no part, whatsoever, in the Jewish revolt against the mighty Roman empire.

Which led to a massive invasion of Israel led by Roman General Vespasian, and finished by his son, Titus—both of whom were handpicked by Emperor Nero to crush the rebellion. The campaign ended in August of A.D. 70 with the destruction of Jerusalem; utter demolition of the 2nd Temple (9th of Av on the Jewish calendar … exact day of the month/year when Solomon’s Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 B.C.); slaughter of over a million Jews; and the beginning of a world-wide dispersion of Jews—their 2nd exile after Babylon.

[*Note: as of today’s posting, of this article, it appears that Israel will soon have a new prime minister and a coalition majority … albeit it a very shaky one that might not survive the year. When Naftali Bennett leader of the Yamina party in Israel announced last Sunday that he was entering a coalition with Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid (and other parties) to form a majority coalition “unity” government (also called “the change bloc” … meaning anyone other than Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister), he made this startling statement: “Two-thousand years ago, we lost a Jewish nation here because of infighting. That’s not happening again. Not on my watch.”

Though Bennett is as guilty as anyone of this “infighting” and though he is reneging on several prior promises and though (just my opinion) he is not nearly as qualified as Netanyahu to lead Israel (Prime Minister), his statement does fit with the premise regarding the correlation … parallels and patterns between 1st century and 21st century Israel.]


Naturally, there were differences in that 1st century Israel was occupied and controlled by the Roman Empire. With, however, much autonomy granted by the Romans to Israel’s religious and secular rulers and leaders. Although nearly all Jews despised the heavy taxes imposed on them by the Romans, it was this tribal unity (mentality) which generated disunity that made the Jewish revolt possible.

Yet, the Old Testament is replete with end times prophecies of God’s sovereignty in the return of his people to the reborn sovereign state of Israel. Hundreds of prophecies, some of which state that once this (begins to) happen, they will never again be expelled from the Promised Land. That the Holy City Jerusalem will forever be the undivided centerpiece (capital) of the Holy Land of Israel.

*Note: For a broader perspective (ultimate reason) for these monumental events in the 1st century involving destruction of the 2nd Temple, the 2nd Jewish exile, followed 2,000 years later by the 2nd return of Jews to the reborn state of Israel, please refer to Eye of Prophecy articles: Where is the Temple, Part I, II, & III (published 11/29, 12-6, 12-13-14). Also, God’s New Covenant with Israel … Minus the Temple, Part I & II (Sept. 2018).

Moreover, the geopolitical differences between 1st century and 21st century Israel by no means invalidates the earlier stated premise of precedents, parallels, and patterns experienced during both times of Israel’s epic saga.

Rather, the prophetic correlation that the sectarian divisions of Israel in the years just before, during, and some 30 years or so after the time of Christ Jesus, saw his First Advent (arrival). With contemporary conditions (especially in Israel) contributing to and shaping the world for the magnificent return of Messiah Jesus at the end of the Great Tribulation.

The 1st century also experienced the initial arrival of Antichrist … Nero; the ruler/king predicted in Daniel 7 and Daniel 9, whose armies would destroy Jerusalem and the Temple. That same ruler who would make a seven-year treaty with Israel … yet to happen. Who would obviously have to return in bodily form to do that. Which is exactly what Revelation 17:7-8 tells us … a reappearance from the Abyss.

Please see my 2nd book, Out of the Abyss and/or any number of the Eye of Prophecy articles in the category of Antichrist for what I believe is compelling, even conclusive evidence: the Roman Emperor Nero is the ruler introduced in Daniel, the man of lawlessness cited by Paul in II Thessalonians, and the beast of Revelation … the Antichrist.

Things to Ponder

Both God the Father and God the Son (Messiah Jesus) are referred to as Alpha and Omega in Scripture. Said Jesus to John as recorded early in the book of Revelation:

In the context of more revelatory disclosures later given to John in Revelation about the Antichrist beast/king including the fact that he lived and died before John even saw these visions and would return from the Abyss (during the outset of the Tribulation), I’m convinced that Jesus’s Alpha & Omega title is not only referring to his eternal existence … everlasting to everlasting. This designation also applies to the divine order of things beginning in the 1st century and culminating (soon) in the 21st century. As follows:

Christ (Jesus) was born at the turn of the 1st century A.D. Indeed, the keeping of time was changed from B.C. to A.D., a profound transition from the Old Testament (Covenant) to the New Testament (Covenant). Antichrist (Nero) was born in A.D. 37, just a few years after Jesus arose from the grave and ascended to heaven.

Thus, Messiah Jesus is the FIRST.

Antichrist will reappear soon after the Rapture at the beginning of the Tribulation. Then Christ will return about 7 years later to end the horrific reign of Satan, Nero, and the False Prophet at the final battle of Armageddon.

Messiah Jesus is, therefore, the LAST (He will have the final say).

“Jesus told him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me’” (John 14:6).