Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 8

Ezek 8.1-18 tells us months after Ezekiel’s call, the kivod (glory) of Yehovah appeared to him a second time. This is another Maaseh Merkavah vision where concepts are described in human terms. Ezekiel is taken to Jerusalem in the spirit to the Temple courts. He is shown the idolatry of Israel and why judgment was coming. After this vision he comes back to the Chebar River (a canal) and he announces what he has seen, The visions of Ezek 8-11 apply to Jerusalem and the remnant of Judah under Zedekiah, not the exiloes.

v 1…And it came about in the sixth year, on the fifth day of the sixth month (about 14 months since the first vision in Ezek 1), as I was sitting (this word does not necessarily signify “sitting” because it is also used for “living, staying” in the house, or he was not lying on his side at the time) in my house (where Ezekiel had shut himself in obedience to 3.24) with the elders of Judah sitting before me (during the time of lying on his right or left side; they came to consult him), that the hand of the Lord God fell on me there.

v 2…Then I looked, and behold, a likeness as the appearance of a man (literally “fire”), from his loins and downward was the appearance of fire and from his loins upward the appearance of brightness (chasmal- the same terms as the appearance of God in Ezek 1.27).

v 3…And he stretched out the form of a hand and took me by a lock (Hebrew “tzitzit”) of my head; and the spirit lifted me up between earth and heaven (a term meaning judgment) and brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem, to the door of the north gate (the Shaar Ha Korban or the sacrifice gate). Idols were placed there to be worshiped going in and out), where the seat of the idol of jealousy, which provokes jealousy was (probably of Baal or Asherah. This is a picture of the Abomination of Desolation that will be placed there, in addition to the holy place, during the birth-pains. It is possible that a crucifix, which we believe is the Abomination of Desolation, will be placed there, but a smaller version of the one in the Temple. It will be placed by the sacrifice gate to show that “all sacrifices of the Temple has been done away with because of the death of “Jesus” on the cross).

v 4…And behold (take note), the glory (kivod) of the God of Israel (in contrast to the idol) was there like the appearance which I saw in the plain (3.22-23).

v 5…Then he said to me, “Son of man (when “ben adam” is used it is because Ezekiel represents the people), raise your eyes, now, toward the north.” So I raised my eyes toward the north (the Shaar Ha Korban or the sacrifice gate), and behold, to the north of the altar gate (probably the same as the sacrifice gate because the sacrificial animals were taken through this gate to the altar) was this idol of jealousy at the entrance (this idol causes the jealousy of Yehovah, and the Abomination of Desolation will do the same during the birth-pains).

v 6…And he said to me, “Son of man, do you see (taken an interest) what they are doing, the great abominations (notice this is called an abomination) which the house of Israel are committing here, that I should be far from my sanctuary (his house of kedusah to forsake it)? But yet you will see greater abominations (Israel is practicing idol worship not only in the Temple, but throughout the land, both privately and publically-8.5-7, 8.13).”

v 7…Then he brought me to the entrance of the court (the “aazarah” on the north side), and when I looked, behold a hole in the wall (in one of the chambers of the priests and Levites).

v 8…And he said to me, “Son of man (ben adam), now dig (to make the hole larger) through the wall.” So I dug through the wall, and behold, an entrance (a door by which he could go into the chamber and take a good look).

v 9…And he said to me, “Go in and see the wicked abominations that they are committing here.”

v 10…So I entered and looked, and behold, every form of creeping things and beasts and detestable things (of unclean creatures), with all the idols of the house of Israel, were carved on the wall all around (like today’s icons and pictures where people worship).

v11…And standing in front of them were seventy elders of the house of Israel (this is not a “sanhedrin” because there was no continuous sanhedriF formed until after the Babylonian exile, about the first century BC. This number is given to represent the whole nation-Exo 24.1; Num 11.16, 24.25. These elders were appointed to guard against idolatry), with Yaazaniah (Yehovah hears), the son of Shaphan (the leader and possibly related to the Shaphan in 2 Kings 22.3; Jer 29.3, 36.10, 39.14) standing among them, each man with his censor in his hand, and the fragrance of the cloud of incense rising.

v 12…Then he said to me, “Son of man (ben adam), do you see what the elders of the house of Israel are committing in the dark (in secret), each man in the room of his carved images? For they say, ‘The Lord (Yehovah) does not see us; the Lord (Yehovah) has forsaken the land (withdrawn his Shekinah/presence and help; they did not believe that he was omnipresent or omniscient).’ ‘

v 13…And he said to me, “Yet you will see greater abominations which they are committing (if this is not bad enough, worse is coming)”

v 14…And he brought me to the entrance of the gate of the Lord’s house which was towards the north (that led into the northern wall of the Heichal), and behold, women were sitting there weepeing for Tammuz (only mention of Tammuz in the Tanak. This worship came from Babylon; they mourned over the god’s death and looked forward to his “resurrection”).

v 15…And he said to me, “Do you see, son of man? Yet you shall see still greater abominations than this (how could it be worse).

v 16…Then he brought me into the inner court (between the altar and the entrance to the Temple building, moving from the northern side to the east) of the Lord’s house. And behold, at the entrance to the house of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, about twenty-five men with their backs to the Temple of the Lord and their faces to the east (the twenty-four leaders of the twenty-four courses, plus the high priest most likely. This number represents the priests, just like the “seventy” in v 11 represents the people) and they were prostrating themselves eastward towards the sun (Moses warned about this in Deut 4.19 and 17.3. During Sukkot, this abomination was remembered after the exile by saying in a ceremony, “Our fathers who were in this place stood with their backs towards the east, and they worshiped the sun towards the east. But as for us, our eyes are turned toward the Lord”-Mishnah, tractate Sukkot).

v 17…And he said to me, “Do you see, son of man? Is it too light a thing (no big deal) for the house of Judah commit the abominations which they have committed here, that they have filled the land with violence and provoked me repeatedly? For behold, they are putting the twig to their nose (an unknown idiom, or something that means “adding fuel to the fire”-whatever it was, it was something that irritated Yehovah).

v 18…Therefore, I indeed shall deal in wrath (being provoked). My eye will have no pity nor shall I spare; and though they cry in my ears with a loud voice (in prayer), yet I shall not listen to them.”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 7

Ezek 7.1-27 is a prophecy about the destruction of the Jewish people coming very soon. It describes those judgments and the affliction that comes with it upon the people. This judgment is near and coming very suddenly with no mercy.

v 1…Moreover (in addition to), the word of the Lord came to me saying,

v 2…”And you, son of man (“ben adam”as Ezekiel represents the people), thus says the Lord (Adonai) God (Yehovah) to the land of Israel, ‘An end (of Yehovah’s patience)! The end is coming on the four corners of the land.

v 3…Now the end (repeated for emphasis) is upon you (the people), I will send my anger against you, I shall judge you according to your ways, and I shall bring all your abominations upon you.

v 4…For my eye will have no pity on you, nor shall I spare you, but I shall bring your ways upon you (a recompense), and your abominations will be among you, then you will know that I am the Lord (it will be obvious that Yehovah brought this about).’ “

v 5…”Thus says the Lord God (Adonai Yehovah), ‘A disaster (evil) unique (like none before) disaster (evil), behold (take note), is coming!

v 6…An end is coming; the end has come! It has awakened (watches) against you; behold, it has come (the end of their evil ways)!

v 7…Your doom has come to you (encircled you), O inhabitant (dweller) of the land. The time has come, the day is near-tumult rather than joyful shouting on the mountains (like when the harvest is gathered).

v 8…Now I will shortly pour out my wrath on you (his punishment), judge you according to your ways (which was not God’s ways) and bring on you all your abominations (repeats v 3 to show the certainty of it).

v 9…And my eye will show you no pity (not spare), I will repay you according to your ways (not God’s), while your abominations are in your midst; then you will know that I, the Lord (Yehovah), do the smiting.

v 10…Behold, the day! Behold, it is coming! Your doom has gone forth; the rod has budded, arrogance has blossomed (both terms refer to Nebuchadnezzar).

v 11…The violence (to the Jewish people) has grown into a rod of wickedness (they abused the needy, widow and orphans so God is sending the Babylonians to carry out the punishment upon them). None of them shall remain, none of their multitude, none of their wealth, nor anything eminent among them (nothing will be left of the people).

v 12…The time has come, the day has arrived. Let not the buyer rejoice nor the seller mourn (they both are going to lose in any case); for wrath is against all their multitude (falls equally on all of them).

v 13…Indeed, the seller will not regain what he has sold as long as they both shall live (at the year of Jubilee or the Yovel in Lev 25.13-17 because he will be in exile). For the vision regarding all their multitude will not be averted; nor will any of them maintain his life by iniquity (Israel will be deprived of its possession, and the wicked will not proper due to his sin).

v 14…They have blown the trumpet (for war) and made everything ready, but no one is going to the battle (their courage has been taken away by Yehovah); for my wrath is against all their multitude (Yehovah is against them anyway-Lev 26.17).

v 15…The sword is outside (the city), and the plague and the famine within (the city). He who is in the field will die by the sword (of Babylon); famine and the plague will also consume those in the city (Yehovah’s wrath penetrates everywhere).

v 16…Even when their survivors escape, they will be on the mountains like doves of the valleys (in a low state, hiding in the rocks and holes), all of them mourning, each over his own iniquity (that they have committed against Yehovah; they were overwhelmed with terror, shame and affliction).

v 17…All hands will hang limp, and all knees will become like water (entire loss of strength, their hearts melting like water).

v 18…And they will gird themselves with sackcloth (as a token of mourning) and shuddering (horror) will overwhelm them (of the enemy); and shame will be on all faces, and baldness on all their heads (a forbidden mourning practice-Deut 14.1).

v 19…And they shall fling their silver into the streets (being of no use) and their gold shall become an abhorrent thing (these cannot deliver them, and this may also be a reference to their idols who could not save them); their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord (this will also happen in the birth-pains). They cannot satisfy their appetite, nor can they fill their stomachs (can’t eat silver and gold) for their iniquity has become an occasion for stumbling (they used it for evil, not good).

v 20…And they transformed the beauty of his ornaments (the silver, gold, jewelry and treasure) into pride, and they made images of their abominations (idols) and their detestable things with it; therefore I will make it an abhorrent thing to them (these possessions will be “niddah” and it is cast away as filth).

v 21…And I shall give it into the hands of the foreigners (give possession of it) as plunder and the wicked of the earth (Babylon) as spoil, and they will profane it.

v 22…I shall also turn my face from them (withdraw his protection), and they (Babylon) will profane my secret place (the Temple treasures). Then robbers will enter (where the treasures were) and profane it (the Temple, instead of considering what purpose these things were given to them; they will squander the treasures in contempt).

v 23…Make the chain (the fetters needed to take those who have escaped famine, disease and the sword into exile), for the land is full of bloody crimes (Hebrew “mishpat dammim” or “of bloody judgments”). And the city (Jerusalem) is full of violence.

v 24…Therefore (as a result), I shall bring the worst (evil ones) of the nations and they will possess their houses. I shall also make the pride of the strong ones cease (put an end to the pride of Israel; their strength or anything they base their power on), and their holy place will be profaned (they based their strength on the fact that they had the Temple and they lived on the land promised to them by Yehovah; they thought nothing was going to happen-Jer 7.1-15).

v 25…When the anguish comes (a cutting off has come) they will seek peace (with the Babylonians), but there will be none.

v 26…Disaster will come upon disaster (stroke upon stroke) and rumor will be added to rumor (alarming reports of the enemy); then they will seek a vision (for escape) from a prophet, but the law (Torah) will be lost from the priest and counsel from the elders (the spiritual counselors will have no revelation of what to do; we also have an example of where the concept of the “Tanak” comes from here. The Torah is with the priest, prophecy from the prophets, or Nevi’im, and the writings, or Ketuvim, are from the elders, making “Tanak”).

v 27…The king will mourn, the prince will be clothed with horror and the hands of the people of the land (or “am ha eretz”), will tremble (all ranks will sink into despair, fear and mourning). According to their conduct (their way), and by their judgments (in the same measure they measured out to others) I shall judge them. And they shall know I am the Lord.”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 6

Ezek 6.1-14 is a scathing rebuke of idolatry, idolatrous places and idol worshipers. Several parts of the land are signified by the mountains, hills, ravines and valleys on which the Babylonian sword will come. The destruction is described and the promise of a remnant. Ezekiel laments about what is going to happen to the people. In the end, they will know the Lord and understand his anger against them for their idolatry.

v 1…And the word of the Lord (Yehovah) came to me saying,

v 2…”Son of man (“ben adam” signifying how Ezekiel represents the people), set your face (not to fear even though you will prophecy against family and friends, etc) toward the mountains of Israel (the whole land, not just Jerusalem), and prophesy against them,

v 3…and say, ‘Mountains of Israel (where idolatry happened, its shrines), listen to the word of the Lord (Adonai) God (Yehovah) to the mountains, the hills, ravines and the valleys: Behold, I myself am going to bring a sword on you, and I will destroy your high places (bamot).

v 4…So your altars will become desolate, and your incense altars will be smashed; and I will make your slain fall in front of their idols (people seeking help from their idol; Yehovah will have them killed before their false gods to show how useless they were).

v 5…I shall lay the dead bodies of the sons of Israel in front of their idols (to mock their idols and to show they had no power to save them or resurrect the dead). And I shall scatter your bones around your altars (defiling them-2 Kings 23.14).

v 6…In all your dwellings, cities will become waste (idolatry was there, too) and the high places will be desolate, that your altars may become waste and become guilty, your idols may be broken and brought to an end, your incense altars may be cut down, and your works (the idols themselves, the work of their hands) may be blotted out (abolished).

v 7…And the slain will fall among you (death on every side), and you will know that I am Yehovah (it will be obvious that he brought this about).

v 8…However, (and yet), I shall leave a remnant (in Babylon and wherever he sends them), for you will have those who escaped the sword among the nations when you are scattered among the countries (Egypt, Ammon, Moab, Assyria,etc).

v 9…Then those of you who escape will remember me among the nations to which they will be carried captive (the affliction got their attention), how I have been hurt (Yehovah was crushed by what they did) by their adulterous hearts which turned away from me by their eyes, which played the harlot after their idols (spiritual adultery); and they will loathe themselves in their own sight for the evils which they have committed, for all their abominations.

v 10…Then they will know that I am the Lord (Yehovah); I have not said in vain that I would inflict this disaster on them (it was proof that Yehovah has spoken),”

v 11…”Thus says the Lord God (Adonai Yehovah) ‘Clap your hands, stamp your foot (to express anguish and sorrow) and say, “Alas, because of all the evil abominations of the house of Israel, which will fall by the sword, famine and plague!

v 12…He who is afar off (flees to the wilderness or other countries) will die by the plague, and he who is near (around or near to the city) shall fall by the sword (within reach of the Babylonians), and he who remains (in the city) and is besieged will die by the famine. Thus I shall spend my wrath on them (fully carried out).

v 13…Then you will know that I am the Lord (Yehovah) when their slain are among their idols around their altars, on every high hill, on all the tops of the mountains, under every green tree, and under every leafy oak-the places where they offered soothing aroma to all their idols.

v 14…So throughout all their habitations I shall stretch out my hand against them and make the land more desolate and waste than the wilderness towards Diblah (whose whereabouts is unknown); thus they will know that I am the Lord (proof that Yehovah had spoken).”

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 5

Ezek 5.1-17 continues on with the same theme as the previous chapter and has more object lessons about the destruction of Jerusalem and why these lessons were used. These afflictions were understood by the people as instruction and rebuke, hopefully paving the way for a change in direction.

v 1…”As for you, son of man (Ezekiel represents the people when this is used), take a sword (the Torah in judgment), take and use it as a barber’s razor on your head and beard. Take the scales for weighing and divide the hair (each hair was an individual in Judah; dividing the hair shows that not all will suffer the same fate; this is also a sign of mourning).

v 2…One third you shall burn in the fire at the center of the city, when the days of the siege are completed (died of pestilence and famine in the city and the bodies burned). Then you shall take a third and strike it with the sword all around the city (die by the sword of the enemy), and one third you shall scatter to the wind (those that fled), and I will unsheathe a sword behind them (to destroy them-Jer 42.16).

v 3…Take also a few in number (a remnant will survive and be protected) from them and bind them in the edges (kanaf or corners where the tzitzit were) of your robe.

v 4…And take again some of them and throw them into the fire (some were spared but not repentant, like in the Gedaliah incident-Jer 41.1-3); from it a fire will spread to all the house of Israel (after Gedaliah was murdered Nebuzaradan came and there was a third deportation and further judgments).

v 5…Thus says the Lord God, ‘This is Jerusalem. I have set her at the center of the nations (as chief among them to be a light; to teach the world about their creator) with nations around her (Deut 4.6-7).

v 6…But she has rebelled against my ordinances (in the Torah) more wickedly than the nations and against my statutes (in the Torah) more than the lands which surround her; for they have rejected my ordinances and have not walked in my statutes.’

v 7…Therefore, thus says the Lord, God (Adonai Yehovah), ‘Because you have more turmoil (in sins) than the nations which surround you, and have not walked in my statutes, nor observed my ordinances, nor observed the ordinances of the nations which surround you (the sense is “you did not even walk according to the law and light of natural law and decency, which the non-Jews had and followed-Rom 2.12; even the good things they did they did not do).’

v 8…Therefore, says the Lord (Adonai) God (Yehovah), ‘Behold, I, even I, (too), am against you, and I will execute judgments among you in the sight of the nations.

v 9…And because of all your abominations , I will do among what I have not done and the like which I will never do again (Israel would never again be the nation of God in its own land, with the Shekinah dwelling in the Temple and God speaking directly to his people with the Urim V’ Thummim and between the wings of the Keruvim on the Ark. It had great potential and value to the world. Even after the return, Israel was only a shadow of its former self. No future fall would ever be as painful or have such catastrophic losses as this fall).

v 10…Therefore, fathers will eat their sons among you, and sons will eat their fathers (Lev 26.19); for I will execute judgments on you (famine, sword ,disease), and scatter all your remnant to every wind (exile-Lev 26.33).

v 11…So as I live,’ declares the Lord, ‘surely because you have defiled my sanctuary (Temple) with your abominations (idolatry, like Manasseh did in 2 Kings 21.3, etc.), therefore I will withdraw (my favor), and my eye shall have no pity and I will not spare (no mercy).

v 12… One third of you will die by plague or be consumed by famine among you (now he speaks plainly about v 2), one third will fall by the sword around you (as Babylon takes the city), and one third I will scatter to every wind (exiled to every direction), and I will unsheathe a sword behind them (especially those that went and fled to Egypt).

v 13…Thus my anger will be spent (completed) and I will satisfy my wrath on them and I will be appeased (consoled, my justice being vindicated), then they will know that I, the Lord (Yehovah), have spoken in my zeal when I have spent my wrath upon them (by their destruction).

v 14…Moreover (in addition) I will make you a desolation and a reproach (an embarrassment) in the presence of the nations which surround you, in the sight of all who pass by (who will see what happened and taunt you).

v 15…So it will be a reproach, a reviling, a warning (instruction) and an object of horror (astonishment) to the nations who surround you, when I execute judgments against you in anger, wrath and raging rebukes. I, the Lord (Yehovah), have spoken.

v 16…When I send the deadly arrows of famine (that bring on famine like hail, rain, mice, locust, mildew, etc.), which shall be for (their) destruction, and which I will send to destroy you: and I will increase the famine upon you, and will break the staff of bread (yours).

v 17…Moreover, I will send on you famine and wild beasts, and they will bereave you; plague and bloodshed also will pass through you, and I will bring the sword on you. I, the Lord (Yehovah) have spoken (this is Yehovah “signing off” on their fate and there is no turning back. The same fate awaits those in the birth-pains or “tribulation” who have rejected a Torah-based faith in Yeshua).'”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 4

Ezek 4.1-17 contains a prophecy about the siege of Jerusalem by the Babylonians and a famine that coincided with it. Ezekiel will portray this siege by acting out the scenario using object lessons as commanded by Yehovah.

v 1…Now you, son of man, get yourself a brick (tile), place it before you, and inscribe a city on it, Jerusalem.

v 2…Then lay siege against it (form instruments against it), build a siege wall, raise a ramp, pitch camps, and place battering rams against it all around.

v 3…Then get yourself an iron plate (Chaldeans are like iron and their resolve also) and set it up as an iron wall between you (as the besieger) and the city, and set your face towards it (firm in purpose) so that it is a sign to the house of Israel (that Jerusalem is going to be under siege).

v 4…As for you, lie down on your left side (head to the west symbolizing Samaria and the northern tribes) and lay the iniquity of the house of Israel on it; you shall bear their iniquity for the number of days that you lie on it (not for atonement but to show what was the cause of their exile).

v 5…For I have assigned you a number of days corresponding to the years of their iniquity, three hundred and ninety days (from the revolt of Rehoboam to the destruction of Jerusalem), thus you shall bear the iniquity of the house of Israel.

v 6…When you have completed these, you shall lie down a second time, but on your right side (head to the west facing south) and bear the iniquity of the house of Judah forty days, a day for a year. I have set it for you, a day for a year There are many theories about the significance of this time, but it probably refers to the thirteenth year of Josiah’s reign, when Jeremiah began to prophesy, to the end of the reign of Zedekiah and the destruction of Jerusalem).

v 7…Then you shall set your face toward the siege of Jerusalem with your arm bared (as he lays down, his arm ready for action), and prophesy against it (by these actions).

v 8…Now, behold (take note), I will put ropes on you so that you cannot turn from one side to the other, until you have completed the days of your siege (the Jewish people will not escape the siege and and will receive no relief).

v 9…But as for you, take wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet and spelt, put them in one vessel and make them into bread for yourself (a reduced in quality bread); you shall eat it according to the number of the days that you lie on your side , three hundred and ninety days (only the three hundred and ninety days are mentioned indicating the exile of all the tribes, not of the siege of Jerusalem that only affected Judah).

v 10…And your food which you eat shall be twenty shekels a day by weight (about 8 oz of flour yielding 12 oz of bread); you shall eat it from time to time (into portions over 24 hours).

v 11…And the water you drink will be the sixth part of a him (less than a pint) by measure; you shall drink it from time to time (into portions over 24 hours).\v 12…And you shall eat it as barley cake, having baked it in their sight over human dung (giving the bread a loathsome taste, by which it is defiled-Ezek 4.13. This was done when wood was scarce).

v 13…And Yehovah said, “Thus shall the sons of Israel eat their bread: unclean among the nations where I shall banish them” (this is symbolic of the defilements they will contract living among the nations).

v 14…But I said, “Ah, Lord God! Behold, I have never been defiled; for from my youth until now I have never eaten what died of itself or was torn by beasts, nor has any unclean meat ever entered my mouth (this is what distinguished Israel from all the other nations).

v 15…Then he said to me, “See, I shall give you cow’s dung in place of the human dung over which you will prepare your bread” (to spare Ezekiel from feeling guilty about it).

v 16…Moreover, he said to me, “Son of man, behold, I am going to break the staff of bread in Jerusalem, and they will eat bread by weight and with anxiety, and drink water by measure and in horror (the same thing that happened to Israel will happen to Judah-rationing),

v 17…because bread and water will be scarce; and they will be appalled (look with want, grieved) with one another, and consume (waste) away in their iniquity (this was a judicial judgment).”

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 3

Ezek 3.1-27 continues with the account of the commission and his preparation. It will tell us to whom he was sent and what follows. Ezekiel must consume the content of the scroll he has been given before he can communicate it.

v 1…Then he said to me, “Son of man, eat (consume it now that it is in front of you) what you find; eat this scroll (study is not casual but repeated as this command is repeated, and go, speak to the house of Israel (teaching them).”

v 2…So I opened my mouth and he fed me this scroll.

v 3…And he said to me, “Son of man, feed your stomach and fill your body with this scroll (the word of God) which I am giving you.” Then I ate it, and it was sweet as honey in my mouth (because it was the word of God-Psa 119.103; Prov 24.13.

v 4…Then he said to me, “Son of man, go to the house of Israel and speak with my words to them (not his own words or opinions),

v 5…For you are not being sent to a people of unintelligible speech or a difficult language, but to the house of Israel (his own family and people),

v 6…nor to many peoples of unintelligible speech or difficult language, whose words you cannot understand. But I have sent you (as a shaliach) to them who should listen to you (but won’t);

v 7…yet the house of Israel will not be willing to listen to you, since they are not willing to listen to me. Surely the whole house of Israel is stubborn and obstinate (they will put up a strong front against you).

v 8…Behold, (take note of), I have made your face as hard as their faces (undaunted in resolve, a strong personality), and your forehead as hard as their forehead (a parallelism).

v 9…Like emery (shamir), harder than flint (a rock) I have made your forehead (the seat of the intellect). Do not be afraid of them or dismayed before them, though they are a rebellious house.”

v 10…Moreover he said unto me, “Son of man, take into your heart all my words which I shall speak to you and listen closely.

v 11…And go to the exiles, to the sons of your people, and speak to them and tell them, whether they listen or not, ‘Thus says the Lord God (Yehovah Adonai).'”

v 12…Then the Spirit (ruach) lifted me up (this concludes the Maaseh Merkavah vision), and I heard a great rolling sound behind me, “Blessed be the glory of the Lord (the name Yehovah is written with full vowels in the Aleppo Codex here-the second time is in Ezek 28.22) in his place.”

v 13…And I heard the sound of the wings of the living beings (chaiyot) touching one another (Hebrew “kissed, a woman to her sister” denoting affection and agreement), and the sound of the wheels (ophanim) beside them, even a rumbling sound (a great rushing sound like in Acts 2).

v 14…So the Spirit lifted me up (to start his mission) and took me away, and I went embittered (knowing his message was going to be rejected) in the rage of my spirit (ruach) and the hand of the Lord (Yehovah) was strong on me (enabling him to fulfill his calling. If the Lord calls us to something, he will do this for us, too).

v 15…Then I came to the exiles who lived beside the river (canal) Chebar at Tel-Aviv (mound of green ears, a main city of the exiles), and I sat there seven days where they were living, being appalled among them (at their sad condition and at the powerful things he had to say to them).

v 16…Now it came about at the end of seven days that the word of the Lord (Yehovah) came to me, saying,

v 17…”Son of man, I have appointed (made you) a watchman (to give warning, to see ahead; this ability comes from God and a shepherd did this-Isa 40.11) unto the house of Israel; wherever you hear a word from my mouth, warn them from me (as a “shaliach” or agent of Yehovah he was to repeat exactly every word that he was told to say. No errors were allowed. That’s why if a so-called prophet said anything that did not come to pass or was not true, he was not sent by God. This rules out any so-called prophet today).

v 18…When I say to the wicked (rasha which is like Nabal in 1 Sam 25. There are three categories people are in. The righteous or tzaddikim by faith, then the ordinary sinners or chatai). But the wicked are the rashim), “You shall die” (not just bodily but spiritually for eternity) and you do not warn him or speak out to warn the wicked from his wicked way that he may live, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand (he will answer to Yehovah for his negligence).

v 19…Yet if you have warned the wicked and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered yourself (having done your part).

v 20…Again, when a righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits iniquity (this is not to be understood as a truly righteous one, but one outwardly towards other people), and I place an obstacle before him (that reveals who he really is, in appearance as a righteous one), he shall die (the second death); since you have not warned him (of his sins), he shall die in his sin, and his righteous deeds which he has done (as defined by the Torah) shall not be remembered (will not save him, no account of them taken), but his blood will I require at your hand (answer for his negligence).

v 21…However, if you have warned the righteous man that the righteous should not sin, and he does not sin (the warning moved him to follow the Torah), he shall live because he took warning; and you have delivered yourself (in 1 John 3.4-12 we have four different words for ‘sin” and understanding these differences will help us understand those verses, but also Ezek 3.18-21. The Greek word “amarteaon” means sins or sinful acts, offense or sin. The base verb, amartano means to miss the mark, to sin, with indication of the result that it doesn’t lead to death. This and the next three definitions are taken from the classic Greek lexicon by Walter Bauer, augmented by William F. Arndt, F.W. Gingrich and Frederick Danker, a Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, London, England: The University of Chicago Press, 1979, p 42, section 5. The Greek word amarteas or amarteah, is the sin nature, the Adamic nature, the conditions of sinful man. The action itself as well as its results; every departure from the way of righteousness. In John’s writings, this word is used as a condition or characteristic iniquity of man’s condition. In Paul’s letters men serve it in Rom 6.6, are slaves in Rom 6.17, 20 and it dwells in man. In Hebrews as well as the Old Testament, sin appears as the power that deceives men and leads them to destruction. The Greek word amartanay or amartanain means to direct a sin against someone. It is used as a special condition or offense directed towards God. The Greek word amartano is a great sin or special sins that lead to death).

v 22…And the hand of the Lord (Yehovah) was on me there (At Tel-Aviv-a fresh impulse of the purpose of God), and he said to me, “Get up, go out to the plain (in the valley below Tel-Aviv) and there I will speak to you.”

v 23…So I got up and went out to the plain; and behold (he took note of), the glory (kivod/weight) of the Lord (Yehovah) was standing there, like the glory (kivod/weight) which I saw by the river (canal) Chebar, and I fell on my face (overcome by the weight of the vision).

v 24…Then the Spirit (ruach) entered me (gave him a fresh impulse on the purposes of God) and made me stand on my feet, and he spoke with me and said to me, “Go, shut yourself up in your house.

v 25…As for you, son of man, they (the people) will put ropes on you and bind you with them, so that you cannot go out among them (to converse or prophesy-this was to signify to them that Judah will not be able to go out of Jerusalem when they are under siege by the Babylonians. In truth, the people are obstinate and will not listen to Ezekiel, and they will not accept the fact that Jerusalem and the Temple will be destroyed. They only knew that Yehovah intervened in the past. The false prophets were going to drown out Ezekiel’s words, so he is going to communicate to them through his actions about the terror and destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, and the coming exile).

v 26…Moreover, I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be dumb (no more words-Gen 6.3) and cannot be a man who rebukes them, for they are a rebellious house.

v 27…But when I speak to you, I will open your mouth (loose your tongue), and you will say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ He who hears, let him hear (perceive the truth); and he who refuses, let him refuse (to perceive the truth), for they are a rebellious house.”

Now before we leave Ezek 1 through Ezek 3 and the Merkavah visions, let’s clear up a big misconception that is out there about these chapters. For decades these chapters have been used by UFO and alien researchers to show that the Bible “refers to UFOs and aliens.” But these chapters have nothing to do with that. These chapters are visions of God and the “chariot” of Yehovah called the Massseh Merkavah or “work of the chariot/throne.” A “chariot of God” is how God’s glory is displayed in creation. So, what is the truth about UFOs and aliens?

We live in an “evolutionistic society” or world view that says everything evolved. That makes everything easy to understand and explain. Just look at the movies out there like Star Wars, Close Encounters and Star Trek for instance. They do not put forth the Biblical view of the universe or even think in that direction. Let’s look for aliens in Gen 1.1-31.

Now, are you going to believe what the Torah says, or are you going to fall prey to saying, “It doesn’t mean what it says.” It says the God made “the heavens” where the sun and the moon are. He also made the earth on the first day, which we believe would be Tishri 1 on the Jewish civil calendar. Then in Gen 1.16 it says, “V’et kokavim” or “and the stars.” This is the billions and billions of galaxies that we know of, and the ones we cannot even see yet, etc. Yehovah devotes two Hebrew words to all these galaxies, and yet he talks about every inch of this planet like the mountains, seas, plains, valleys, dirt, water, sky, clouds and on and on. Job talks about how he laid the foundation of the earth.

Yehovah makes a distinction in all of this. He minimizes the vast universe to two words in Hebrew, and maximizes the earth and devotes many verses to it. That is the account in Genesis. In Col 1.15 it says the Messiah Yeshua is the image of the invisible God. He is the only God that has ever been seen when he had a body. He is the first born (bekor) of every creature. This means he is the head and sum of all that is, like the word “summit” of a mountain. Yeshua is the creator of Gen 1, as seen in Col 1.16, the majority of which we can’t even see yet, or is invisible. The Bible knew that 3500 years ago when Moses wrote down what Yehovah told him to write. The Scriptures say the earth “hangs on nothing in Job 26.7; is circular in Isa 38.8. Science only found that out for sure a few years ago by pictures, well after these verses were written. everything was created by him and for him, even the good and bad angels.

Col 1.17 says he is before all things, and by him all things consist. Humans are made from the earth, not the stars. earth is the center of the universe because God’s throne is there, and Jerusalem is the center of the center, and the Temple and the Holy of Holies the is the center of the center of the center.-Isa 45.18. 2 Pet 3.5 talks about the creation, and it has the same cosmology as Moses. The universe, or heavens, was created with two words. The Bible never says, “All the planets and people groups, suns, etc.”

Did you know about the concept called the Anthropic Principles? There are dozens of precise measurements in the universe that make man’s life on earth possible. For example, if the sun was any closer to earth we would burn up. If it was farther away we would freeze. It is exactly where it needs to be to support life on earth. If the earth was tilted in a different way the weather would be different. The speed of the rotation of the earth is exactly the way it should be to sustain life. That is just a few examples. These principles are fine tuned for human life, and evolutionists and some scientists can’t explain why the universe has the properties it has. But we can explain it in one word, Yehovah!

There is no other place that can meet all the anthropic principles and qualifiers. 2 Pet 3.6 says that there was a great flood, and that same world is reserved for a future judgment. In 2 Pet 3.7 he adds that the cosmos, or the heavens and earth, are waiting for that judgment, in other words, mankind is waiting. There are no higher intelligences or room in the Scriptures for other life forms. If they exist, Yehovah says nothing about them.

The plan of redemption is about mankind. The angels watch over mankind, and there is no room for aliens in the Scriptures. Many people get their theology from the “white spaces” between the words and insert their own beliefs. Moses, Paul, and Peter believed that man was the center of the universe in the plans of God. God is not limited to our four dimensions, he is above all that. He sees it all going on at the same time. Time is a creation of God and it does not impact God at all-2 Pet 3.8. The day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night and the elements will melt, or change, with fervent heat, including the heavens.

If there is other life forms out there they have a short life expectancy. Only mankind is redeemed by Messiah. Only Yehovah, the angels and mankind will survive-3 Pet 3.11. Then we have a new heaven and a new earth-2 Pet 3.12-13. The redeemed will inhabit the earth in a redeemed universe. Until then, we shall have the curse that has existed since Adam-Rev 21-22. Rom 8.19-22 says, “All creation” eagerly awaits this time when all is redeemed. Yeshua came to die for mankind, and only once-Heb 7.27, 9.26-28, 10.10. If all creation now suffers under a curse, than any life outside of the earth in the universe suffers. If moral beings exist elsewhere, they suffer again when everything changes in 2 Pet 3.10. If they have never sinned, it would be unjust for God to punish them. If they have sinned and Messiah only died for mankind, then they are left in their own sin.

What about the non-moral and non-emotional life on other planets? If all creation groans until the Olam Haba, what purpose would God have in creating them to suffer on other planets? There is extra-terrestrial life out there but it isn’t what many suppose. A natural or supernatural explanation are the only two choices we have to explain aliens or UFOs).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 2

Ezek 2.1-10 contains Ezekiel’s commission and instructions to prophesy. In contrast to the glory of God and his angelic beings, Ezekiel is called a “ben adam” or a “human being.” He must be empowered by God to do what he is being called to do.

v 1…Then he (the being on the throne in chapter 1) said to me, “Son of man (Hebrew “ben adam” meaning weak, human; he is a representative of man who will speak to all men), stand on your feet (he was on his face, but is now commanded to rise) that I may speak with you (so pay attention).

v 2…And as he spoke to me the spirit (that was in the chaiyot) entered me (inspired and empowered him) and set me on my feet (by spirit power); and I heard him speaking to me (literally means “he was addressing himself to me” or “he spoke to himself. The Ruach Ha Kodesh helps us understand what he says-see “Yechezkel” by Mesorah Publications, p. 89).

v 3…Then he said to me, “Son of man (ben adam), I am sending you (he is a “shaliach”) to the sons of Israel (who were captives in Babylon), to a rebellious people (Hebrew “Goyim” or like the nations) who have rebelled against me; they and their fathers have transgressed against me to this very day (the fathers sinned, and they followed their example).

v 4…And I am sending you to them who are stubborn and obstinate children; and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God (Adonai Yehovah).’

v 5…As for them, whether they listen or not-for they are a rebellious house-they will know that a prophet has been among them (no excuses).

v 6…And you, son of man, neither fear them nor fear their words, though thistles and thorns (wicked people who cause trouble-2 Cor 12.6) are with you and you sit on scorpions (people with poisonous stings), neither fear their words nor be dismayed at their presence (looks), for they are a rebellious house.

v 7…But you shall speak my words to them whether they listen or not, for they are rebellious (personified).

v 8…Now you, son of man, listen to what I am speaking to you; do not be rebellious like that rebellious house. Open your mouth and eat what I am giving you (to make it a part of you; have a complete identification with the contents).”

v 9…Then I looked, behold, a hand was extended to me; and lo, a scroll was in it (symbolic of what he was to say; his prophecy).

v 10…When he spread it out before me, it was written on the front and back (he was going to have a lot to say); and written on it were lamentations, mourning and woe (afflictions, chastisement, and punishments that was to come on Israel and other nations).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 1

The book of Ezekiel has always been named after Ezekiel, who is not mentioned anywhere else in Scripture. His Hebrew name is “Yechezkel” meaning “God has strengthened.” He was taken captive to Babylon about 597 BC along with ten thousand other Jews when he was about 25 years old. His ministry began around 592 BC and he was a contemporary of Jeremiah, both having priestly backgrounds. This makes Ezekiel familiar with the Temple, kedusha and the services. He lives with his wife in Tel Aviv on the banks of the river Chebar, probably southeast of Babylon. He dates his prophecies and they are written chronologically, and his last dated word was in 571 BC. Once in Babylon after the second deportation, Ezekiel is in exile and lives more like a colonist than a captive. He is able to farm and even have his own house. But false prophets are everywhere and they are telling the exiles that they will be returning back to the land very soon. Ezekiel tells them that Jerusalem and the Temple are going to be destroyed and their exile will be prolonged. That crushes any hope for a swift rescue. That’s why his latter prophecies related to a future restoration and the blessings of the messianic kingdom, and his earlier prophecies dealt with the coming disaster in Judah. The Kivod (glory) and the Shekinah (presence) are major themes in Ezekiel. Another theme is God’s malakim (angels) carrying out his will. He also stresses how each individual is accountable for following the Torah, and their own sins.

Ezekiel writes the book to show Judah that they must be judged for their rebellion against Yehovah and to encourage the remnant of Judah through the prophecies given that there will be a glorious future and that Yehovah has not rejected them forever. It also brings out the dominance of the kivod of Yehovah and other attributes. Yehovah will express his own interests by saying, “For my name’s sake” or “You shall know that I am the Lord.” All of his actions in judgment and blessing come out of the concept of kedusha, or “holiness.” This is defined as the setting apart of something or someone for the service of God by formal and legal restrictions and limitations. The kedusha of time is marked by limits on man’s activities concerning work and construction. His judgment and blessing are also for the sake of his kivod (glory).

Ezek 1.1-28 explains what is called the “Maaseh Merkavah” or the “Work of the Chariot” which is the heavenly throne. A chariot is the means by which God’s glory is displayed in creation. There are descriptions of God as a “chariot” in 2 Kings 19.15; Psa 18.10, 80.1, 99.1; 2 Sam 22.11. This vision in Ezek 1 explains how Yehovah, who we can’t see, is able to reveal himself to us. His “storm wind” or “chariot” is coming. Will you die or be driven crazy like the rabbis of old, or will we bow down before the radiant man and receive his instruction and be filled with the Ruach Ha Kodesh. The merkavah vision sets the atmosphere for all of Ezekiel’s prophecies and exhortations, which have the purpose of assuring Israel that God has a destiny for them through the exile and the Shekinah will return.

v 1…Now it came about in the thirtieth year (of Ezekiel or some era that cannot be determined), on the fifth day of the fourth month (Tammuz), while I was by the river Chebar (meaning “abundant delta” and a large irrigation canal of the Euphrates) among the exiles, the heavens were opened (this is an idiom meaning “a deeper revelation of God is coming”-Matt 27.51; Mark 1.10; Rev 4.1-see the teaching on this website called “The Veil of the Temple was Torn” for more information on this concept) and I saw visions of God (in a human form; “visions” is plural meaning there were many components to it. The term “Marot Elohim” means it was a blurred or “double vision.” This was not at a level of a “clear mirror” like with Moses in Num 12.8, but like in 1 Cor 13.12. Biblical study and research can drive you crazy because it is not exact and we see through a glass darkly).

v 2…On the fifth of the month (Tammuz) in the (which was) fifth year of Yehoiachin’s exile (same as Yeconiah or Coniah, and was held 37 years after he was taken),

v 3…The word (davar) of the Lord (Yehovah) came expressly (“hiyoh hiyah” or “had come” or “had been”) to Ezekiel (Yechezkel) the priest, son of Buzi (“my shame”-God sends the son of “my shame” to strengthen the exiles. Ezekiel was a kohen of the house of Zadok. His contemporary was Jeremiah from the house of Abiathar. God sends a son of Zadok with the exiles, and a son of the banished priests Abiathar stays in the land to be critical of the priesthood in Jerusalem through Jeremiah) in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and there the hand of the Lord (‘Yad Yehovah” is used frequently in Ezekiel and it also is a term for the Messiah. Elijah sees a “hand” on Mount Carmel and a judgment of rain fell on Ahab-1 Kings 18.44) came upon him.

v 4…And as I looked, behold (take note), a storm wind (judgment-Jer 23.19, 25.32) was coming from the north (the direction of judgment; God will bring the enemies of Jerusalem and Judah from that direction), a great cloud with fire flashing forth continually and a bright light around it and in its midst something like a glowing metal (glowing metal is the Hebrew “chasmal” and a compound of “chash mal” or “silent speaking” or still small voice. It is a prophetic idiom meaning beyond comprehension or no words. The color is not known but in English it is given a color bronze, but there is more to this. If we saw the throne of God could we describe it? Not even Paul could describe it-2 Cor 12.1-4) in the midst of the fire (in the Maaseh Merkavah vision we have supernatural concepts that cannot be understood literally, nor are most even capable at glimpsing their inner meaning. However, a good Hebraic study of the book of Revelation can give us insight into Ezekiel),

v 5…and within it there were figures resembling four (universal) living beings (“chaiyot”) and bearers of the the merkavah that bore Yehovah; a type of angel-Rev 4.6). And this was their appearance; they had human form (likeness of a man or “da’moot Adam”-most likely Keruvim-Ezek 10.1-22)

v 6…Each of them had four faces and four wings (similar to the Seraphim in Isa 6, but they had six wings, with two covering their face, speaking of humility. Here the chaiyot are under the throne and they carry out Yehovah’s commands. The “face” speaks of intelligence and the “wings” speak of speed in fulfilling God’s will. These keruvim had four wings-Ezek 10.1-22).

v 7…And their legs were straight (in proper position) and their feet like a calf’s hoof (rounded) and they gleamed like burnished bronze (purity of God’s essence and justice).

v 8…Under their wings (hidden) on their four sides were human hands (denoting action and work to do, sometimes hidden). As for the faces and wings of the four of them,

v 9…their wings touched one another (Hebrew “a woman to her sister” meaning harmony and affection), their faces did not turn when they moved (each chaiyot had faces on every side so there was no need to turn around; no path of error).

v 10…As for the form (likeness) of their faces each had the face of a man (alludes to Yeshua as the Son of Man as seen in the book of Luke), all four had the face of a lion (Yeshua as the King as seen in Matthew) on the right and the face of an ox (Yeshua as the servant in Mark) on the left, and all four had the face of an eagle (Yeshua as the Son of God from Heaven as seen in John in the rear. All four of these denote a “king”. Man is king of all creation, the lion is king of beasts, the ox is king of the tame animals and the eagle is king of all birds).

v 11…Thus were their faces; and their wings were spread out above, each had two touching another and two covering their bodies (literally “parted from above the joining of their wings”-though God’s movements on earth may seem conflicting and confusing, yet if one looks to heaven it all works together).

v 12…And each went straight forward (with directness), wherever the spirit (impulse, purpose) was about to go, they would go, without turning as they went (by the spirit dwelling in the creature).

v 13…In the midst of the living beings (chaiyot) there was something that looked like (in general) burning coals of fire, like torches darting back and forth (flickering) among the living beings (chaiyot). The first was bright and lightning was flashing from the fire (this conveys God’s glory or kivod, and wrath in a threatening aspect seemingly towards Judah).

v 14…And the living beings ran to and fro like bolts of lightning (this is spiritual movement in spiritual space and it does not relate to measurable distance as in physical movement. “Near” means “similar to” and “far” means “different or opposite” for instance).

v 15…Now as I looked at the living beings, behold (take note), there was one wheel (Hebrew “ophan” and alludes to the complicated revolutions of his will and purpose) on earth beside the living beings (wheels of the merkavah/chariot).

v 16…The appearance of the wheels (ophanim) and their workmanship (shape) was like sparkling beryl (clear fire), and all four of them had the same form (likeness), their appearance and workmanship being as if one wheel were within another (one set crosswise, like in a gyroscope).

v 17…Whenever they moved they moved in any of their four directions without turning as they moved (went).

v 18…As for their rims they were lofty (for visibility) and awesome, and the rims of all four were full of eyes (omniscience of Yehovah) round about (full visibility).

v 18…And whenever the living beings (chaiyot) moved, the wheels (ophanim) moved with them (in close relation with them). And whenever the living beings rose from the earth, the wheels rose also (the ophanim are bound with the chaiyot in one purpose or spirit.

v 19…Whenever the spirit (purpose, impulse) was about to go, they (chaiyot) would go in that direction and the wheels (ophanim) rose close beside them, for the spirit (purpose, impulse) of the living beings (chaiyot) was in the wheels (ophanim).

v 21…Whenever those went, these went; and whenever those stop still, these stood still.

v 22…Now over the heads of the living beings there was something like an expanse (a firmament, like in Gen 1), like the awesome gleam of crystal extended over their heads.

v 23…And under the expanse their wings were stretched out (above or aloft) one toward another; each one also had two wings covering their bodies on the one side and on the other (in modesty/humility).

v 24…I also heard the sound of their wings, like the sound of abundant waters as they went (moved), like the voice of the Almighty (Shaddai), a sound of tumult, like the sound of an army camp (company); whenever they stood still, they dropped their wings (reverential rest).

v 25…And there came a voice from above the expanse that was over their heads; whenever they stood still, they dropped their wings (as commanded)

Ezek 1.26-28 now describes the throne of Yehovah.

v 26…Now above the expanse that was over their heads there was something resembling as throne like sapphire in appearance, and on that which resembled the appearance of a man (Yehovah appears in human form at times, alluding to Yeshua-John 14.9; Col 2.9).

v 27…Then I noticed from the appearance of his loins and upward something like glowing metal (chashmal or an amber color-see verse 4 notes) that looked like fire all around within it, and from the appearance of his loins (Dan 10.6; Matt 17.2; Rev 1.15) and downward I saw something like fire; and there was a radiance around him (a fiery, shining light).

v 28…As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day (denoting a brilliance), so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory (kivod) of the Lord (Yehovah). And when I saw it, I fell on my face and heard a voice speaking (containing Ezekiel’s commission as a prophet in the following chapter. One thing must be said here before we go on. Since no man has “seen God” at least to the time of Yeshua in John 1.18, Ezekiel is not seeing him in this vision. Notice he is using words and descriptions such as “like the voice” or “something resembling” or an “appearance like” and so on. The vision of the “chariot” or throne shows a heavenly or spiritual sphere. The chaiyot, ophanim or keruvim are angels carrying out the spirit, impulse or purposes of God. No specification is given as to what that purpose is. Here we have an example of the relationship between spiritual light or the will of God; spiritual mass or the angels carrying out that will; the resulting spiritual energy or the effect of their actions on creation and man, all done in spiritual time).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Lamentations-Chapter 5

Lam 5.1-22 tells us about the many afflictions and problems facing the Jewish people by Babylon. In a spiritual sense, “Babylon” is still doing this with God’s people. Judah should have listened before all this calamity came upon them. This chapter does utilize the Hebrew alphabet again in an acrostic form as in the previous chapters. The exiles pray that Yehovah will show them favor once again and bless them.

v 1…Remember (zakar), O Lord (Yehovah), what has befallen us (the evils, the ruin as a nation); look, and see our reproach (disgrace).

v 2…Our inheritance (the land, property, houses, etc.) has been turned over to strangers (zarim), our houses to aliens (nakrim or foreigners).

v 3…We have become orphans without a father, our mothers are like widows (many men have died).

v 4…We have to pay for our drinking water (but it was rightfully theirs), our wood comes to us at a price (they had to buy their necessities from their victors).

v 5…Our pursuers are at our necks (continually in bondage), we are worn out, there is no rest for us (like in Egypt).

v 6…We have submitted to Egypt and Assyria to get enough bread.

v 7…Our fathers sinned, and are no more; it is we who have borne their iniquities (this is not saying they were innocent, they were guilty, too, because they followed their fathers sins and were as guilty).

v 8…Slaves rule over us (the Chaldean servants had power and authority over them); there is no one to deliver us from their hand (they went from “head to tail”-Deut 28.13).

v 9…We get our bread at the risk of our lives because of the sword in the wilderness (this refers to the gathering of a scanty harvest in a country devastated by war in spite of predatory Bedouins – Deut 28.28).

v 10…Our skin has become as hot as an oven (fever produces by hunger), because of the burning heat of famine.

v 11…They ravished the women in Zion, the virgins in the cities of Judah.

v 12…Princes were hung (suspended) by their hands (tortured); elders were not respected (mocked).

v 13…Young men worked at the grinding mill (the hand-mill was carried from one place to another to grind, and it was heavy); and youths stumbled under loads of wood (for a fire to bake bread for the Chaldean soldiers).

v 14…Elders are gone from the gate (no assembly, no public meetings). young men from their music (no entertainment).

v 15…The joy of our hearts has ceased, our dancing has turned into mourning (joy is gone-Psa 137.1-4).

v 16…The crown (the honorable position of the people) has fallen from our head (glory has departed); woe to us, for we have sinned.

v 17…Because of this our heart is faint (sick); because of these things our eyes are dim (sorrow expressed in tears).

v 18…Because of Mount Zion (where the Temple stood) which lies desolate, foxes prowl in it (because it is in ruins).

v 19…Thou, O Lord (Yehovah), dost rule (remain) forever; thy throne (in heaven) is from generation to generation (even if his earthly throne was thrown down-they were finally forced to acknowledge this).

v 20…Why dost thou forget us forever; why dost thou forsake us so long (this is stated as a possibility, but in reality it would never happen)?

v 21…restore us to thee, O Lord, that we may be restored; renew our days as of old (to enjoy the same peace and good things as in the past),

v 22…unless thou hast utterly rejected us, and are exceedingly angry with us (but that is not the case, this prayer for mercy is the assurance that hope was alive in the middle of affliction, and they will trust in Yehovah’s mercy according to his promises).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Lamentations-Chapter 4

Lam 4.1-22 is again written in acrostic form with each verse beginning with the next successive letter in the Hebrew alphabet. Jeremiah writes about the destruction of the Temple, Jerusalem, and the people because of their sins. But there is hope that that this destruction will stop, Zion will be preserved, and what will happen to their now triumphant enemies.

v 1…How (“eichah”) dark the gold (of the Temple-1 Kings 6.21; and the people-1 Pet 2.5) has become; how the pure gold has become changed! The sacred (kodesh) stones are poured out (the stones of the Temple, but it also alludes to the people) at the corner of every street.

v 2…The precious sons of Zion (all inhabitants), weighed against (comparable) fine gold (once precious), how they are regarded as earthen jars (now of little value), the work of a potters hands (and shattered because of sin)!

v 3…Even jackals offer the breast, they nurse their young; but the daughter of my people (Jewish women) has become cruel like ostriches in the wilderness (indifferent to their offspring).

v 4…The tongue of the infant cleaves to the roof of its mouth because of thirst (no nourishment); the little ones ask for bread but no one breaks it for them (none to distribute).

v 5…Those who ate delicacies are desolate in the streets (reduced to nothing); those reared in scarlet (tola-Psa 22.10; Isa 1.18) embrace ash pits (to find something to eat).

v 6…For the iniquity of the daughter of my people is greater than the sin of Sodom (no prophets were sent to Sodom to warn it over and over again), which was overthrown as in a moment, and no hands stayed on her (like the Chaldeans who afflicted the Jews for a long time; this made things worse).

v 7…Her Nazarites (consecrated ones, meaning the princes and rulers) were purer than snow; they were whiter than milk (held in high esteem); they were more ruddy in body than rubies (had a healthy glow), their polishing (shape) was like lapis lazuli (sapphires; all of this together means that the princes at one time were beautiful in form).

v 8…Their appearance (now) is blacker than soot (coal), they are not recognized in the streets (because they look different); their skin is shriveled on their bones (excessive weight loss), it is withered, it has become wood (no moisture).

v 9…Better are those slain with the sword than those slain with hunger; for they pine away, being stricken for lack of the fruits of the field.

v 10…The hands of compassionate women (formerly tender) boiled their own children; they became food for them because of the destruction of the daughter of my people (during the siege-Deut 28.57).

v 11…The Lord has accomplished his wrath; he has poured out his fierce anger (a parallelism); and he has kindled a fire in Zion which has consumed its foundations (total destruction of Jerusalem, proving Yehovah is a holy and righteous God who punishes sinners).

v 12…The kings of the earth did not believe (prior to this), nor did any of the inhabitants of the world, that the foe and the enemy could enter the gates of Jerusalem (it had been taken by Pharaoh Shishak and King Yoash of Israel in 1 Kings 14 and 2 Kings 14, but it had been refortified to such a degree that it looked impregnable and protected by Yehovah)

v 13…Because of the sins of her prophets (false ones) and the iniquities of her priests (the false teachers); who have shed in her midst the blood of the righteous (like in Jer 26.7-8, 6.13, 23.11, 27.10 and Ezek 22.25).

v 14…They wandered, blind in the streets (blind leaders of the blind); they were defiled with blood so that no one could touch their garments (for fear of ritual impurity; they had killed so many a person would become unclean by touching them).

v 15…”Depart! Depart!” they (the people of the city said to the prophets and priests) cried of themselves. “Depart, depart, do not touch!” So they fled and wandered; they among the nations said, “They shall not continue to dwell among us (they did not want them).”

v 16…The presence (face) of the Lord has scattered them (in 586 BC and later in 70 AD); he will not continue to regard them (look with mercy). They (enemies) did not honor (lift up their faces) the priests, they did not favor the elders (no compassion on them).

v 17…Yet our eyes failed; looking for help was useless. In our watching we have watched for a nation (Egypt) that could not save.

v 18…They (Babylon) hunted our steps so that we could not walk in our streets; our end drew near, our days were finished (as a nation; they realized God had forsaken them, the city and the Temple).

v 19…Our pursuers were swifter (with their cavalry) than the eagles of the sky (Deut 28.49). They chased us on the mountains; they waited in ambush for us in the wilderness (b’midbar-where Zedekiah was captured).

v 20…The breath of our nostrils, the Lord’s anointed (King Zedekiah), was captured in their pits, of whom we had said, “Under his shadow we shall live among the nations (live safe under his protection).”

v 21…Rejoice and be glad, O daughter of Edom, that dwells in the land of Uz (Job 1.1, 4.1; Gen 36.8-11, 40-42; Gen 46.13; Jer 49.7-22; Oba 1-2; Ezek 25.12-14; Amos 1.11-12. In Jewish rabbinics, Edom was a code word for Rome eventually, especially after 70 AD-Psa 137-7. Christianity became the religion of Rome, so Edom became a word for Christianity also), but the cup (God’s punishment) will come around to you as well, you will become drunk and make yourself naked (filled with shame).

v 22…The punishment of your iniquities has been completed, O daughter of Zion (that generation will now experience mercy); he will exile you no longer. He will punish your iniquity, O daughter of Edom; he will expose your sins (Edom rejoiced when Jerusalem fell; Rome rejoiced when Jerusalem fell, and Christianity comes out of Rome and have been rejoicing over the fall of Israel and has taught that the “church” has replaced Israel, with all the blessings going to Christianity now, but all of that is false doctrine and is being exposed).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, The Temple, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Lamentations-Chapter 3

Lam 3.1-66 is arranged in an acrostic form in Hebrew, with each Hebrew letter containing three verses. For example, Lam 3.1-3 begins with the letter “aleph” in Hebrew. Lam 3.4-6 begins with “beit” and so on. That is why there are 66 verses. This chapter continues with lamentations, only Jeremiah discusses his own distress and sufferings. Keep in mind that this has allusions to the Messiah and his sufferings. In this Jeremiah identifies with his nation. Even the righteous experience the “rod of his wrath.”

v 1…I am the man who has seen affliction because of the rod of his wrath (in this he is like the nation).

v 2…He has driven me (led) and made me walk in darkness (calamity) and not in light (Yehovah’s mercy seemed to be absent).

v 3…Surely against me he has turned his hand repeatedly all day (because of their idolatrous sins).

v 4…He has caused my flesh and my skin to waste away (emaciated, withered), he has broken my bones (he was weak).

v 5…He has besieged and encompassed me with bitterness and hardship (it closes in around him).

v 6…In dark places (as if in a grave-Psa 143.3) he has made me dwell, like those who have long been dead (no return to this life).

v 7…He has walled me in so that I cannot go out (a prisoner); he has made my chain heavy (in a confined space, in seclusion).

v 8…Even when I cry out and call for help, he shuts out my prayer (from reaching his ear-Prov 1.28).

v 9…He has blocked my ways with hewn stone (huge obstacles in his life), he has made my path crooked (can’t proceed).

v 10…He is to me like a bear lying in wait, like a lion in secret places).

v 11…He has turned aside my ways (to deviate) and torn me to pieces (to pluck or pull to pieces-Yehovah is using Babylon to accomplish this). He has made me desolate.

v 12…He bent his bow and set me as a target for the arrow (Job 16.12).

v 13…He made the arrows (sons) of his quiver to enter into my inward parts (kidneys, the land, the city, Temple and people).

v 14…I have become a laughingstock to all my people (the wicked around him), the mocking song all the day long-Jer 20.7).

v 15…He has filled me with bitterness (bitter afflictions instead of food), he has made me drink with wormwood (same as bitterness).

v 16…And he has broken my teeth with gravel (gritty bread); he has made me cower in the dust (humiliation).

v 17…And my soul (nefesh) has been rejected from peace; I have forgotten prosperity (Hebrew “tovah” or good; prosperity in the Tanak does not necessarily mean monetary or material only. Prosperity and every word for it means spiritual prosperity, dealing with our relationship with the Lord).

v 18…So I say, “My strength has perished, and my hope from the Lord.”

v 19…Remember (zekar) my affliction and my wandering, the wormwood and bitterness (his sufferings just discussed).

v 20…Surely my soul (nafesh) remembers and is bowed down within me (a heavy heart-from 3.20-31 it gives us the core message of hope in the chiastic structure which is found in this book).

v 21…This I (Jeremiah) recall to my mind (Hebrew “lev” or heart) therefore I have hope (God does remember his people in what he has done and will do).

v 22…It is by the Lord’s lovingkindness that we are not destroyed, for his mercies (how a mother feels for her children) never fail.

v 23…They are new every morning, great is thy faithfulness (emunataycha and related to the word for faith).

v 24…”The Lord is my portion (inheritance),” says my soul (Psa 16.5, 73.26, 142.6), “therefore I have hope in him.”

v 25…The Lord is good to those who wait (serve) for him (trusting in what he has said and promised), to the person who seeks him (looking to him alone for deliverance).

v 26…It is good that he waits silently (when in affliction; be tranquil and rest in his will) for the salvation of the Lord (will come in due time).

v 27…It is good for a man that he should bear the yoke in his youth (of sufferings and chastisement when he has the vigor and strength).

v 28…Let him sit alone and be silent (bear it knowing it is for his own good) since he (Yehovah) has laid it on him.

v 29…Let him put his mouth in the dust (in humble submission), perhaps there is hope (that God will terminate his chastening).

v 30…Let him give his cheek to the smiter (submit to endure injustice); let him be filled with reproach (bear the insults of men).

v 31…For the Lord will not reject forever (Psa 77.8).

v 32…For if he causes grief, then he will have compassion according to his abundant lovingkindness (it outweighs affliction; Exo 20.5-6 says that God will visit the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the “third and fourth generations of those who hate me.” But his mercy extends to “the thousands (at least 2000) to those who love me.” This alludes to the fact that God’s mercy is 500 times greater than his judgment =the fourth divided into at least 2000 equals 500).

v 33…For he does not afflict willingly (from the heart, but only when they refuse to yield to his direction so he can bless them), or grieve the sons of men.

v 34…To crush under his feet all the prisoners of the earth (those who don’t repent),

v 35…To deprive a man of justice in the presence of the most high (he does not like injustice),

v 36…to defraud a man in his lawsuit-of these things the Lord does not approve.

v 37…Who is there who speaks and it comes to pass, unless the Lord has commanded (nothing happens without his permission)?

v 38…Is it not from the mouth of the most high (as supreme ruler-its the Lord not your confession-Amos 3.6-7; Eccl 7.14) that both good and evil go forth (Deut 32.39; Gen 38.7; Job 12.23-35; Isa 53.10; Jer 43.11, 44.27; Isa 45.7. Man cannot confess something into existence)?

v 39…Why should any living mortal or any man, offer complaint in view of his sins (like saying, “It’s not fair.” We should not complain about the suffering that comes upon us, but we should mourn over our sins).

v 40…Let us examine and probe our ways, and let us return to the Lord (instead of complaining-Hos 6.1; Hag 1.7).

v 41…We lift up our heart (motives, desires) and hands (deeds) toward God in heaven (with no hypocrisy).

v 42…We have transgressed and rebelled, thou has not pardoned (because they were afflicted).

v 43…Thou hast covered thyself with anger and pursued us (with fresh anger); thou hast slain and has not spared (no pity or compassion).

v 44…Thou hast covered thyself with a cloud so that no prayer can pass through (he has hidden his face and will not hear).

v 45…Mere offscouring and refuse thou hast made us in the midst of the people (his desire was that they would be first among the peoples).

v 46…All our enemies have opened their mouths against us (like lions to devour them).

v 47…Panic and pitfall have befallen us, devastation and destruction (being hunted they fall into a prepared pit).

v 48…My eyes run down with streams of water (a steady flow) because of the destruction of the daughter of my people (Jer 9.1).

v 49…My eyes pour down unceasingly, without stopping (because of grief).

v 50…Until the Lord looks down and sees from heaven (with pity and ends their misery).

v 51…My eyes bring pain to my soul because of all the daughters of my city (their condition being deplorable).

v 52…My enemies (Jeremiah’s) without cause hunted me down like a bird (that is helpless);

v 53…They have silenced me in the pit (Jer 38) and have placed a stone on me.

v 54…Waters flowed over my head; I said, “I am cut off (abandoned, removed from God’s comfort)!”

v 55…I called on thy name, O Lord, out of the lowest pit (that could become his grave).

v 56…Thou hast heard my voice, “Do not hide thine ear from my prayer for relief, from my cry for help.”

v 57…Thou didst draw near when I called on thee; thou didst say, “Do not fear (assured of rescue)!”

v 58…O Lord, thou didst plead my soul’s cause; thou hast redeemed my life (out of the pit).

v 59…O Lord, thou hast seen my oppression (what was done to him); judge my case (right the wrongs, let his enemies see that his case is just, and they are wrong).

v 60…Thou hast seen all their vengeance (in them); all their schemes against me (their plots).

v 61…Thou hast heard their reproach (their spiteful words and hate), O lord, all their schemes against me.

v 62…The lips of my assailants and their whispering are against me all day long.

v 63…Look at their sitting and their rising; I am their mocking song (the object of their music and gossip).

v 64…Thou wilt recompense them, O Lord, according to the work of their hands (that they deserve).

v 65…Thou wilt give them hardness (dullness) of heart, the curse will be on them (it will be their portion).

v 66…Thou wilt pursue them in anger and destroy them from under the heavens of the Lord (the whole universe is under Yehovah’s authority).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Lamentations-Chapter 2

Lam 2.1-22 is also written in order according to the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. This chapter gives new and even more bitter lamentations about the destruction of Judah and Jerusalem because of their sins.

v 1…How (“eichah”) the Lord has covered the daughter of Zion with a cloud of his anger (once had the presence of God, but now anger)! He has cast from heaven to earth the glory of Israel (now in degradation), and he has not remembered his footstool (Ark-1 Chr 28.2) in the days of his anger (alludes to the Day of the Lord in the future allso).

v 2…The Lord has swallowed up; he has not spared all the inhabitants of Jacob (drowned completely). In his wrath he has thrown down the strongholds of the daughter of Judah; he has brought them down to the ground (destroyed them); he has profaned (polluted, defiled) the kingdom and its princes (because they dishonored it by their Torah-less-ness).

v 3…In fierce anger he has cut off all the strength (power) of Israel; he has drawn back his right arm from before the enemy (withdraw his assistance). And he has burned in Jacob like a flaming fire consuming round about.

v 4…He has bent his bow like an enemy (against Judah, to fight against them), he has set his right hand like an adversary and slain all that were pleasant to the eye (all that was dear); in the tent (Israel’s dwellings) of the daughter of Zion he has poured out his wrath like fire.

v 5…The Lord has become like an enemy (and not a protector of shield). He has swallowed up Israel; he has swallowed up all its palaces; he has destroyed its strongholds (forts) and multiplied in the daughters of Judah (praise) mourning and moaning (went from praise to lamentation).

v 6…And he (using Nebuchadnezzar) has violently treated his tabernacle (sukkah or Temple) like a garden shack; he has destroyed his appointed meeting place (Temple); the Lord has caused to be forgotten the appointed feast (moedim) and sabbath in Zion (all public services forgotten because they could not keep them anymore without a Temple, holy things or priesthood), and he has despised king and priest in the indignation of his anger.

v 7…The Lord has rejected his altar, he has abandoned his sanctuary (“mikdash” or “house of kedusha”); he has delivered into the hand of the enemy the walls of her palaces (of the Temple building). They have made noise in the house of the Lord as in the day of the appointed feast (the enemy raises a cry of jubilance and triumph as if they has come into the Temple for a festival).

v 8…The Lord determined (executed a decree) to destroy the wall of the daughter of Zion. He has stretched out a line (to show what was designated for destruction), he has not restrained his hand from destroying (he carried out the destruction of these buildings with the same precision as the builder who put them up); he has caused rampart and wall to lament (over this); they have languished together.

v 9…Her gates have sunk into the ground (buried under rubble), her king and her princes are among the nations (into captivity); the law (Torah) is no more (because the priests, Temple and Jerusalem was destroyed); also her prophets find no vision from the Lord (no more word from him).

v 10…The elders of the daughter of Zion sit on the ground, they are silent (in sorrow), they have thrown dust on their heads; they have girded themselves in sackcloth. The virgins of Jerusalem have bowed their heads to the ground (in misery).

v 11…My eyes fail because of tears (Jeremiah’s), my spirit (“me’ay” or bowels) is greatly troubled, my heart (“k’vedi” or liver) is poured out on the ground (this is a parallelism in Hebrew. Bowels is translated as spirit and liver is translated as heart in the NASB. We refer you to a teaching on this website called “Heart, Mind, Soul, and Spirit in Hebrew Thought” and you will see that these terms are used synonymously in the Scriptures), because of the destruction of the daughter of my people; when little ones and infants faint in the streets of the city (due to starvation).

v 12…,They say to their mothers, “Where is grain and wine?” as they faint like a wounded man in the streets of the city, as their life is poured out on their mother’s bosom (die in her arms).

v 13…How shall I admonish you (bring comfort to you)? To what shall I compare you, O daughter of Jerusalem (to encourage them)? To what shall I liken you as I comfort you, O virgin daughter of Zion (no comparison could be made, this had never been seen before, their case was like no other)? For your ruin (breach) is as vast as the sea (the waters come through the breach that there was no defense); who can heal you (not man)?

v 14…Your prophets (not God’s) have seen for you false and foolish visions (Jer 23.30-40); and they have not exposed your iniquity (did not confront sin) so as to restore you from captivity (to avoid it), but they have seen for you false and misleading oracles (prophecies…today’s false teachers are just like them).

v 15…All who pass along the way (travelers) clap their hands (rejoicing) at you; they hiss and shake their heads (in scorn and derision) at the daughter of Jerusalem, “Is this the city of which they said, ‘The perfection of beauty, a joy to all the earth (the beauty of Jerusalem and the Temple was well known among the nations, as the queen of Sheba once attested to)’?”

v 16…All your enemies (haters) have opened their mouths wide against you; they hiss and gnash their teeth. They say, “We have swallowed her up (gone)! Surely this is the day for which we waited (looked for eagerly); we have reached it, we have seen it (but the destruction of Jerusalem was not because of man, it was from God. In this verse, the letter “peh” is before the “ayin” in the acrostic because Jeremiah spoke with his mouth (peh) about the 70 year captivity-the letter “ayin” is the number 70 in Hebrew).”

v 17…The Lord has done what he purposed, he has accomplished his word which he commanded from the days of old (Lev 26.17; Deut 28.20). He has thrown down without sparing (pity), and he has caused the enemy to rejoice over you; he has exalted the might of your adversaries (increased their kingdom, might and power).

v 18…Their heart cried out to the Lord, “O wall of the daughter of Zion, let your tears run down like a river day and night, give yourself no relief; let not the daughter of your eye (bay ayin) have rest (the eye be still).

v 19…Arise, cry aloud (lament) in the night at the beginning of the night watches; pour out your heart like water before the presence of the Lord; lift up your hands to him (a gesture in prayer) for the life of your little ones who are faint because of hunger at the head of every street.

v 20…See, O Lord, and look (consider)! With whom hast thou dealt thus (your own people, called by your name; remember the standing they once had)? Should women eat their offspring (part of the curse-Deut 28.49-57; Lev 26.29), the little ones who were born healthy? Should priest and prophet be slain in the sanctuary of the Lord (with no regard to their office)?

v 21…On the ground in the streets lie young and old (from the sword, famine, etc), my virgins and my young men have fallen by the sword (of the Chaldeans). Thou hast slain them in the day of thine anger (alludes to the Day of the Lord also), thou hast slaughtered, not sparing (no pity).

v 22…Thou didst call as in the day of an appointed feast my terrors on every side (they came at the calling of God just like the people came for the festivals); and there was no one who escaped or survived (in the city and Judah; they died or were carried captive) in the days of the Lord’s anger. Those whom I bore and reared, my enemy annihilated them.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Lamentations-Chapter 1

The book of Lamentations gets its name from the Latin Vulgate and it carries the concept of “loud cries of sorrow.” The Hebrew name of the book is “Eichah” (“How”) and this word is used in Lam 1.1, 2.1, 4.1. No other book deals with lamentations as a theme for a whole book. It is like a funeral dirge for the city, the Temple and the people. This book can also be read on Yom Ha Shoah because all of this happened during the Holocaust.

The author is not named but most scholars believe it was Jeremiah, who was an eye witness to the destruction around 586 BC. Many internal witnesses point to Jeremiah as the author, such as he saw what happened; the language, style and sentiment in the prophecies of Jeremiah is the same and both books attribute Jerusalem’s fall to Judah’s sin, and Jeremiah will often speak as if he is Jerusalem lamenting what has happened to her. This is the historical level.

In the eschatological level, there are many things that we will look at. This book is seen as a prophecy of the Messiah, and Jeremiah is seen as the Messiah “weeping” over the city at what is called Jeremiah’s Grotto and very near to the site of Yeshua’s crucifixion. This book deals with the destruction of Jerusalem during the birth-pains as well.

Spiritually, Yeshua is the “temple and the city” (Ecc 9.14-16) and it was destroyed, but on the third day it was raised back up. In the Messianic Kingdom or “third day” Jerusalem will be raised up (Hos 6.1-3). Yeshua, like Jeremiah, weeps over the city before its destruction the second time in Luke 19.41 and John 11.35. This was expected to be done by the Messiah when he would come based on 2 Sam 15.30. This book is also read on the ninth of Av, a day that remembers the destruction of the Temple by the Babylonians and later the Romans.

This book is written in a chiastic structure. Chapter 1 is gloom; Chapter 2 is gloom; Chapter 3.20-31 there is hope; Chapter 3.38-66 is gloom again; Chapter 4 is gloom and Chapter 5 is gloom. We can most identify with Chapter 1 ,2, 4 and 5, but we must keep in mind that the core message is not “gloom” but that our only hope is in Yehovah. The chapters of this book are also written in an acrostic form and arranged according to the Hebrew alphabet in successive verses from aleph to tav, beginning with Chapter 1.

v 1…”How (“eichah” and the name of the book; homiletically the same word as in Gen 3.9 and vowelized as “aychah” or “where are you” in a Hebrew word play) lonely sits (as a mourner) the city (Jerusalem will be personified as a close friend or relative that has died, it is also the symbolic state of every unbeliever) that was full of people. She has become like a widow (her king taken and Yehovah has departed but only temporary. She is like a widow, not actually a widow) who was once great among the nations (they subdued the Philistines, the Moabites, Syrians and Edomites and they paid tribute to Israel)! She who was a princess among the provinces has become a forced laborer (a tribute payer).

v 2…She weeps bitterly at night (can’t sleep) and her tears are on her cheeks (so many tears they can’t dry); she has none to comfort her among her lovers (the nations with which she had alliances, especially Egypt, Edom, Moab, Ammon and Phoenicia-Jer 27.3); her friends (allies) have dealt treacherously with her; they have become her enemies (Psa 137.7; Ezek 25.3, 6; Jer 40.14).

v 3…Judah has gone into exile under affliction, and under harsh servitude (because this is what she did to others); she dwells among the nations (in Babylon) but she has found no rest; all her pursuers have overtaken her in the midst of distress (no escape).

v 4…The roads of Zion are in mourning (no travelers anymore on the roads once filled with joy) because no one comes to the appointed feasts (in Jerusalem at the Temple). All her gates are desolate; her priests are groaning (no Temple or worship), her virgins (who sang at the festivals) are afflicted (in grief); and she herself is bitter.

v 5…Her adversaries have become her masters (fulfilling Deut 28.44), her enemies prosper (in wealth and riches while Judah was in distress); for the Lord has caused her grief because of the multitude of her transgressions; her little ones have gone away as captives before the adversary (driven out like a flock of sheep).

v 6…And all her majesty (the kingdom, Temple, priesthood, palaces, etc.) has departed from the daughter of Zion; her princes have become like bucks that have found no pasture (destitute, no heart, fearful); and they have fled without strength before the pursuer (no spirit to oppose the enemy and they were taken captive).

v 7…In the days of her affliction and homelessness Jerusalem remembers all her precious things (her freedom, worship, Torah, Temple, altars, Ark, etc.) that were from the days of old when her people fell into the hand of the adversary (Chaldeans), and no one helped her (her allies in whom she trusted). The adversaries saw her, they mocked at her ruin (“mishbateh” or cessation, annihilation).

v 8…Jerusalem sinned greatly (idolatry in particular, but her sins were many), therefore she has become an unclean thing (like her idols). All who honored her despise her (her allies neglect her now) because they have seen her nakedness (she was stripped of all good things); even she herself groans and turns away (in shame).

v 9…Her uncleanness was in her skirts (alludes to a menstruous woman); she did not consider her future (what the behavior would bring upon her); therefore she has fallen astonishingly (from a higher estate to a low one); she has no comforter (to help her), “See, O Lord, my affliction, for the enemy has magnified himself (against Yehovah, his people, his city, his Temple, and magnified their own power)!”

v 10…The adversary (foe) has stretched out his hand over all her precious things (especially in the Temple, city, and the congregation), for she has seen the nations enter her sanctuary, the one whom thou didst command that they should not enter into, thy congregation (Deut 23.1-3-Moabites and Ammonites in the Chaldean army in taking Jerusalem).

v 11…All her people groan seeking bread (starving during the siege and after); they have given their precious things for food to restore (relieve) their lives (souls) themselves (to keep from fainting and falling out). “See, O Lord, and look, for I am despised (look with pity on us, have compassion and consider our state).”

v 12…It is nothing to all you who pass this way (they saw but did not show sympathy)? Look and see if there is any pain (sorrow) like my pain which was severely dealt out to me, which the Lord inflicted on the day of his fierce anger (a term for the birth-pains-their misery was so unusual that anyone seeing it would conclude that Yehovah’s hand was in it).

v 13…From on high he sent fire into my bones (judgment), and it prevailed; he has spread a net for my feet; he has turned me back; he has made me desolate, faint all day long (the land and cities were devastated and would continue for 70 years).

v 14…The yoke of my transgressions is bound; by his hand they are knit together; they have come upon my neck (her punishment is laid on her by Yehovah himself like a heavy yoke); he has made my strength fail (by its weight); the Lord has given me into the hands of those against whom I am not able to stand.

v 15…The Lord has rejected all my strong men (Judah’s army could not stand against Babylon); he has called an appointed time (moed) against me to crush my young men (Yehovah has called a divine appointment against her); the Lord has trodden as in a wine press the virgin daughter of Judah (Babylon crushed Judah).

v 16…For these things I weep; my eyes run down with water; because far from me is a comforter (Hebrew “menachem” and this is a term for the Messiah and the Ruach Ha Kodesh-Isa 40.1. It has the same numerical value as “tzemach” or branch, another term for the Messiah, and it is considered a manifestation of Yehovah-Luke 2.25; John 14.26; Isa 54.11), one who restores my soul; my children are desolate because the enemy (hater) has prevailed.”

v 17…Zion stretches out her hands; there is no one to comfort her (imploring mercy for her-even Yehovah has departed-Jer 4.31); the Lord has commanded concerning Jacob that the ones round about him should be his adversaries; Jerusalem has become an unclean thing (Hebrew “niddah”) among them (like a menstruous woman).

v 18…The Lord is righteous (in his judgment here); for I have rebelled against his command (the Torah; confession is too late); hear now, all people, and behold my pain (sorrow); my virgins and my young men have gone into captivity.

v 19…I called to my lovers (allies for help) but they deceived me (didn’t meet their obligations to her); my priests and my elders perished in the city, while they sought for food to restore their strength themselves.

v 20…See, O Lord, for I am in distress (but its too late); my spirit (“me’ay” or bowels) is greatly troubled; my heart (lev) is overturned within me, for I have been very rebellious. In the street the sword slays, in the house it is like death (famine).

v 21…They (her allies or those near to her) have heard that I groan; there is no one to comfort me (no one offered help); all my enemies (haters) have heard of my calamity; they are glad that thou has done it (like Edom was-Lam 4.21). O that thou would bring the day which thou hast proclaimed, that they may become like me (eschatologically this alludes to the birth-pains).

v 22…Let all their wickedness come before thee; and deal with them as thou has dealt with me for all my transgressions (such prayers are lawful if the foe is an enemy of Yehovah. There are no personal feelings, but God’s glory is sought, the welfare of the people is at stake and God’s promises to them); for my groans are many, and my heart is faint.”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Jeremiah-Chapter 52

Jer 52.1-34 tells us about the siege of Jerusalem and eventual destruction and the cause, which was the wicked reign of King Zedekiah, and his fate is discussed. It also mentions the liberation of Yehoiachin from imprisonment.

v 1…Zedekiah (whose name was Mattaniah and was placed on the throne by Nebuchadnezzar in place of his brother’s son Yehoiachin) was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem; and his mother’s name was Hamutal (shadow of his heart) the daughter of Jeremiah of LIbnah (in Judah, the mother of the king was queen, and she was called the “Givorah” or great lady).

v 2…He did evil in the sight of the Lord like all that Yehoiakim had done (his older brother who reigned after Josiah and before Yehoiachin).

v 3…For through the anger of the Lord this came about in Jerusalem and Judah until he cast them out from his presence (the land, the Temple, Jerusalem, the people, etc). And Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon (because of Judah’s sins, God allowed Zedekaih to rebel against Nebuchadnezar so that Babylon would come against Judah. (Zedekiah believed the false prophets and sided with Egypt against Babylon).

v 4…Now it came about in the ninth year of his reign, on the tenth day of the tenth month (Tevet 10), that Nebeuchadnezzar king of Babylon came, he and all his army, against Jerusalem, camped against it, and built a siege wall against it (ten is the number of judgment).

v 5…So the city was under siege until the eleventh year of King Zedekiah (about 18 months, from the tenth day of the tenth month to the ninth day of the fourth month in his eleventh year).

v 6…On the ninth day of the fourth month (Tammuz) the famine was so severe in the city that there was no food for the people of the land (the common people-the famine was before this time, but now worse-Jer 38.9).

7…Then the city was broken into (by a breach), and all the men of war fled and went forth from the city by night (Ezek 12.12) by way of the gate between the two walls which was by the king’s garden, though the Chaldeans were all around the city. And they went by way of the Arabah (Jordan Valley-the False Messiah will try to get away from Jerusalem in this direction when Yeshua comes to the city).

v 8…But the army of the Chaldeans pursued the king and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho, and all his army was scattered from him (Jer 39.1-7-this will be the fate of the False Messiah).

v 9…Then they captured the king (Rev 19.20) and brought him up to the king of Babylon at Riblah (where Nebuchadzezzar had his headquarters, believed to be on the Syrian side of the border with Lebanon, on a main trade route from Egypt to Mesopotamia through Israel) in the land of Hamath (Num 34.1-12); and he passed sentence on him (legal terms-the False Messiah will be taken on Yom Kippur, a yom ha din or day of judgment, and he will be sentenced).

v 10…The king of Babylon (a type of Yehovah and Yeshua here) slaughtered the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes, and he also slaughtered all the princes of Judah in Riblah (because they agreed to and supported Zedekiah’s rebellion; this will also happen to those who support the False Messiah-Rev 19.21).

v 11…Then he blinded the eyes of Zedekiah (the killing of his sons was the last thing he ever saw, very humiliating); and the king of Babylon (Yehovah/Yeshua) bound him (False Messiah and Satan will be bound (Rev 20.2; 1 Enoch 2) with bronze (metal of judgment) fetters and brought him to Babylon, and put him in prison until the day of his death (a type of the lake of fire).

v 12…Now on the tenth day of the fifth month (Av) which was the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, Nebuzaradan (Nebu has given seed) the captain of the guard, who was in the service of the king of Babylon, came to Jerusalem.

v 13…And he burned the house of the Lord, the king’s house, and all the houses of Jerusalem; even every large house he burned (he came on the seventh day of Av-2 Kings 25.8-and they defiled the Temple, and on the ninth day they set fire to the Temple and it burned all day).

v 14…So all the army of the Chaldeans who were with the captain of the guard broke down all the walls around Jerusalem (to ground level).

v 15…Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away into exile some of the poorest of the people, the rest of the people who were left in the city, the deserters who had deserted to the king of Babylon (in obedience to the word of Jeremiah), and the rest of the artisans.

v 16…But Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left some of the poorest of the land to be vinedressers and plowmen (to keep the land from being overgrown).

v 17…Now the bronze pillars (1 Kings 7.21-Jachin and Boaz) which belonged to the house of the Lord and the stands and the bronze sea (1 Kings 7.23) which were in the house of the Lord, the Chaldeans broke in pieces (so they could transport them) and carried all their bronze to Babylon (to fulfill the prophecy of Jeremiah in Jer 27.19-22).

v 18…And they also took away the pots, the shovels (used to remove the ashes from the altar), the snuffers, the basins, the fire-pans, and all the bronze vessels which were used in the Temple service.

v 19…The captain of the guard also took away the bowls, the fire-pans, the basins, the pots, the lampstands, the pans and the libations bowls what was fine gold and what was fine silver.

v 20…The two pillars, the one sea, and the twelve bronze bulls that were under the sea, the stands, which King Solomon had made for the house of the Lord-the bronze of all these vessels was beyond weight (to be calculated).

v 21…As for the pillars, the height of each pillar was eighteen cubits (royal cubit was 20.2 inches) and it was twelve cubits in circumference and four fingers in thickness, and hollow.

v 22…Now a capital of bronze was on it and the height of each capital was five cubits with network and pomegranates upon the capital all around, all bronze. And the second pillar was like these, including pomegranates.

v 23…And there were ninety-six exposed pomegranates; all the pomegranates a hundred on the network all around (all of this was listed to vindicate Jeremiah’s word in 28.3).

v 24…Then the captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest (not the one in 51.59) and Zephaniah the second priest (the deputy high priest called the “sagan”), with the three officers of the Temple (keepers of the threshhold).

v 25…He also took from the city one official who was the overseer of the men of war, and seven of the king’s advisers who were found in the city, and the scribe of the commander of the army who mustered the people of the land, and sixty men of the people of the land who were found in the midst of the city.

v 26…And Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard took them and brought them to the king of Babylon at Riblah (now there were three times that Babylon came and deported people. Nebuchadnezzar was captain of the army and his father died, he returns home. This was when Daniel was taken. Then he comes again and takes Jehoiachin, some of the vessels of the Temple were taken. The third time is here with the destruction of the city, the Temple and the people (exiled).

v 27…Then the king of Babylon struck them down and put them to death at Riblah in the land of Hamath (for their part in the rebellion). So Judah was led away into exile from its land.

v 28…These are the people whom Nebuchadnezzar carried into exile: in the seventh year (the first deportation) 3,023 Jews;

v 29…in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar 832 persons from Jerusalem (of Judah only, those from other tribes not listed);

v 30…in the twenty-third year Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried into exile 745 Jewish people, there were 4600 persons in all (this was in response to the murder of Gedaliah).

v 31…Now it came about in the thirty-seventh year of the exile of Yehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month (Adar), on the twenty-fifth of the month, that Evil (“awil” or man)-merodach (of Marduk) king of Babylon, in the first year of his reign, showed favor to Jehoiachin king of Judah and brought him out of prison,

v 32…Then he spoke kindly to him and set his throne above the thrones of the kings who were with him in Babylon.

v 33…So Yehoiachin changed his prison clothes, and had his meals in the king’s presence regularly all the days of his life.

v 34…And for his allowance, a regular allowance was given him by the king of Babylon, a daily portion all the days of his life until the day of his death (Yehovah humbles and he can exult those who repent. This was seen as an encouragement to the people. Yehovah brought judgment, but restoration was coming).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Jeremiah-Chapter 51

Jer 51.1-64 continues with the prophecy against Babylon, who we believe is the USA eschatologically.

v 1…Thus says the Lord: “Behold (take note of), I am going to arouse against Babylon and against the inhabitants of Leb-kamai (“the heart rises against me”) the spirit of a destroyer (spirit of destruction).

v 2…And I will dispatch foreigners to Babylon that they may winnow (fan) her and may devastate her land (and the chaff carried away, the cities emptied of people); for on every side they will be opposed to her in the day of her calamity.

v 3…Let not him who bends the bow bend it, nor let him rise up in his armor, so do not spare her young men; devote all her army to destruction.

v 4…And they will fall down slain in the land of the Chaldeans, and pierced the land through in her streets (by the arrows).

v 5…For neither Israel or Judah has been forsaken (widowed) by his God (He isn’t dead), the Lord (Yehovah) of hosts (tzavaot), although their land is full of guilt before the Holy One (he has a kedusha) of Israel (which is why they were in Babylon); eschatologically Israel has sinned and that is why the Jewish people are in the USA, but God has not foresaken them).

v 6…Flee from the midst of Babylon (Psa 126; Isa 48.20; Mic 4.9-10; Jer 50.4-8, 16.28, 51.45, 50; Isa 52.11; Rev 18.4) and each of you save his life (not only physically but spiritually as well; between Rosh Ha Shannah and Yom Kippur there is a sabbath called “Shabbat Shuvah” or the “sabbath of return.” This may be when they leave the USA after the Natzal and before the destruction of the USA)! Do not be destroyed in her punishment, for this is the the Lord’s time of vengeance; he is going to render recompense to her (by Yom Kippur, ten days after the Natzal on Rosh Ha Shannah).

v 7…Babylon (USA) has been a golden cup (refers to the head of gold in Dan 2.38) in the hand of the Lord, intoxicating all the earth (by idolatry and spiritual adultery-Rev 17.2). The nations have drunk her wine (leading to error)l therefore the nations are going mad (eschatologically the USA did this through the economy, greed, spreading false religions, war and the United Nations, etc.).

v 8…Suddenly Babylon has fallen and been broken (anciently it fell in one night-Dan 5.30; eschatologically it will be “one day” as in Isa 47.9, and “one hour” in Rev 18.8-a certain megaton explosion can knock out the electrical grid and computers, opening the USA up for a nuclear attack); wail over her! Bring balm for her pain; perhaps she may be healed (it was attempted at one time).

v 9…We applied healing to Babylon, but she was not healed (refused to change); forsake her and let us each go to his own country (50.16), for her torment has reached to heaven, and lifted up to the very skies (no healing because Yehovah has judged her).

v 10…The lord has brought about vindication (“righteousness as defined by the Torah”-Jer 50.8, 16, 51.45, 50; Isa 49.20, 52.11, Zech 2.6-13; Mic 4.9-10, 5.3-they must leave before Babylon/USA is destroyed); come let us recount (declare of 50.2) in Zion (50.5) the work of the Lord our God (eschatologically this alludes to the 144,000 who are saved as they see the natzal and believe; they will return to Israel before the USA is destroyed, sometime between Tishri 1 and the natzal, and about Tishri 8 of the first week of the Day of the Lord).

v 11…Sharpen the arrows (missiles), fill the quivers! The Lord has aroused the spirit of the kings of the Medes (the Medes are mentioned rather than the Persians here because Darius was above Cyrus in power and greatness at that time; the Medes and the Persians covered what is now Iran and Iraq, who are eschatological allies with Russia-Ezek 38.5) because his purpose is against Babylon to destroy it, for it is the vengeance of the Lord, vengeance for his temple (the people-50.28; 1 Cor 6.19).

v 12…Lift up a signal (“nes” or banner and a term for the Messiah and associated also with the Natzal or resurrection-50.2) against the walls of Babylon; post a strong guard (to keep a good look out, but they didn’t), station sentries, place men in ambush (to those who are trying to scale the walls)! For the Lord has both purposed and performed what he spoke concerning the inhabitants of Babylon (even if they were ready for their own defense and had every tool available, nothing was going to stop their destruction; it will be the same with the USA; readiness and the best defenses will not stop what Yehovah has determined).

v 13…O you who dwell by many waters (Babylon was by the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers and many lakes; the USA is a nation of many waters, lakes and rivers), abundant in treasures (agriculture; gold, silver, natural resources just like the USA), your end has come, and the measure of your covetousness (commerce, wealth were determined by God but they coveted more than what God had allotted to them, just like the USA does with the IRS and world market deals, often determined by lustful politics and bribery).

v 14…The Lord of hosts has sworn by himself: “Surely I will fill you with a population (men) like locusts (vast numbers that will consume everything in sight, so will a nuclear attack in USA), and they will cry out with shouts of victory over you.”

v 15…He (God) who made the earth by his power, who established the world by his wisdom, and by his understanding he stretched out the heavens.

v 16…When he utters his voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, and he causes the vapors (mists, clouds) to ascend from the end of the earth; he makes lightning for the rain, and brings forth the wind from his storehouses (treasuries).

v 17…All mankind (adam) is stupid (compared to God), devoid of knowledge (because he disregards the Torah-Hos 4.6; Matt 22.29; Judges 21.25); every goldsmith is put to shame by the idols, for his molten images are deceitful (untrue), and there is no breath in them).

v 18…They are worthless, a work of mockery; in the time of their punishment they will perish (Babylon and the USA are guilty of all of these).

v 19…The portion of Jacob is not like these (Yehovah is not like the useless, lifeless idols); for he is the former (maker) of all, and of the tribe of his inheritance (Israel); the Lord of hosts is his name.

v 20…”You (Medes and Persians and eschatologically Iran and Iraq who is an ally of Russia-Ezek 38.5) are my war club (battle axe), (my) weapon of war; and with you I shatter nations, and with you I destroy kingdoms (Judea, Egypt, Edom, Moab, Ammon and others).

v 21…And with you I shatter the horse and the rider,

v 22…and with you I shatter the chariot and its rider, and with you I shatter man and woman, and with you I shatter old man and youth, and with you I shatter young man and virgin,

v 23…and with you I shatter the shepherd and his flock, and with you I shatter the farmer and his team, and with you I shatter governments and prefects.

v 24…But I will repay Babylon and all the inhabitants of Chaldea for all their evil that they have done in Zion before your eyes (Judeans saw what they did to Jerusalem, the Temple, the cities, the people and the land),” declares the Lord.

v 25…”Behold (take note), I am against you, O destroying mountain (a great kingdom or potentate), who destroy the whole earth,” declares the Lord (the same character is given to the USA). “And I will stretch out my hand against you, and roll you down from the crags (rocks, fortresses, towers) and I will make you a burned out mountain (like a great volcano that destroys, but is now brought low and burned out, like a burnt kingdom or city-Rev 18.8; this may allude to a nuclear attack by Russia between Tishri 1 and Rosh Ha Shannah, and a week later on Tishri 8, right after the natzal on Tishri 1 and right before the birth-pains begin on Yom Kippur, Tishri 10. This week will give to those who will flee Babylon and go back to Israel).

v 26…And they will not take from you a stone for a corner nor a stone for foundations (it will never be restored; ancient Babylon was inhabited till about 600 years ago and the rise of Bagdad; Bagdad was built with stones from ancient Babylon so it disqualifies ancient Babylon), but you will be desolate forever,” declares the Lord.

v 27…Lift up a signal (nes) in the land (any land where Cyrus ruled to gather soldiers for service), blow a trumpet (shofar among the nations (these are Rosh Ha Shannah terms-Isa 11.10, 13.2, 18.3)! Consecrate (set aside) the nations against her, summon against her the kingdoms of Ararat (reverse the curse; seat of Togarmah in southern Russia) Minni and Ashkenaz (Scythians who migrated to southern Russia and Ukraine in the eighth and seventh century BC; basically the same alliance in Ezek 38.5 to destroy Babylon, except Ethiopia and Libya); appoint a marshal (captain) against her, bring up horses like bristly locusts.

v 28…Consecrate (set aside for the service of God) the nations against her, the kings of the Medes (Persia or Iran today-Ezek 38.5- this refers to those under Darius), their governors and all their prefects, and every land of their dominion (Ezek 38.1-10; Jer 40.41).

v 29…So the land quakes and writhes (Chaldea trembles and will be in pain as a woman in childbirth), for the purposes of the Lord against Babylon stand, to make the land of Babylon a desolation without inhabitants (prophetically Russia will take the USA out so that they can go into the Middle East.

v 30…The mighty men of Babylon have ceased fighting, they stay in the strongholds (at first they fought, but were overrun so they retreated to the city and the fortresses of Babylon); their strength is exhausted (fails), they are (like) women; their dwelling places are set on fire, the bars of her gates are broken (her defenses have failed, and so will the defenses of the USA when it is attacked).

v 31…One courier runs to meet another, and one messenger to meet another (there are attacks everywhere and information is flowing and changing), to tell the king of Babylon (Belshazzar historically and the President of the USA prophetically) that his city has been captured from end to end (Babylon or any “city” represents the nation; it was so big some areas had not heard it had fallen-Rev 16.19, 17.18, 18.10, 21).

v 32…The fords also have been seized (leading from the river to the city), and they have burned the marshes (fortresses were there) with fire, and the men of war are terrified (the plan was to lower or block the Euphrates River and dry up the river bed under the walls, then march through the entrances where the water came in, burning the other defenses and frighten those in the city).

v 33…For thus says the Lord of hosts (Yehovah Tzavaot meaning “Lord of the armies” and when this term is used the Lord is coming from a military position of power), the God of Israel: “The daughter of Babylon (inhabitants) is like a threshing floor (where the king, princes and people are gathered and crushed) at the time it is stamped firm (threshed sheaves), yet in a little while the time of the harvest will come for her (eschatologically this will happen to the USA in the fall harvest season, within the first eight days after the Natzal on Tishri 1).

v 34…Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon has devoured me (Israel and Judah-this is what brought Babylon down), he has set me down like an empty vessel (used up); he has swallowed me like a monster (Hebrew “tannin” or dragon, sea monster-Psa 74.13-14; Psa 51.9-11). He has filled his stomach with my delicacies (of the king, the Temple, the people, etc); he has washed me away (he spoiled and plundered Israel and Judah, and the USA does the same thing by trying to work deals with Israel’s enemies and “washing” the Jewish people from the land God gave them).

v 35…May the violence (“Hamas” and this is the name of a terrorist organization) done to me (Israel) and to my flesh (the people, families, cities, etc) be upon Babylon (as they did to Israel, it will be done to Babylon/USA),” the inhabitant of Zion will say’ and, “May my blood be upon the inhabitants of Chaldea,” Jerusalem will say.

v 36…Therefore thus says the Lord, “Behold (take note), I am going to plead your case (avenge Israel by deeds not just words) and exact full vengeance for you; I shall dry up her sea (water coming into the city of Babylon) and make her springs dry (cut off all good things).

v 37…And Babylon will become a heap (of ruins), a haunt of jackals, an object of horror and hissing , without inhabitants.

v 38…They (Chaldeans) will roar together like young lions, they will growl like lion’s cubs (when the Medes and the Persians come at first).

v 39…When they become heated up, I shall serve their banquet (revelries like in Dan 5) and make them drunk, that they may become jubilant and may sleep a perpetual sleep and not wake up,” declares the Lord (he will prepare them a banquet where they will become drunk and unaware they will soon die. He will give them a meal they deserve, a cup of wrath).

v 40…I shall bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams together with male goats (all classes of people will be caught up in the destruction).

v 41…How Sheshak (this is a code word for Babylon using a technique called “At-bash” where the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet stands for the last letter, the second letter for the second to last letter and on down. So, Sheshak is made up of a shin, meaning beit, another shin meaning beit, and a kof meaning a lamed, for “Babel”) has been captured, and the praise of the whole earth has been seized (the USA certainly fits this description)! How Babylon has become an object of horror among the nations (Rev 18.9-16).

v 42…The sea has come up over Babylon (overwhelmed by the army of the Medes and Persians); she has been engulfed with its tumultuous waves (instead of the Euphrates River coming into the city through the walls, it was replaced by and army).

v 43…Her cities have become an object of horror, a parched land and a desert, a land in which no man lives, and through which no son of man passes (no inhabitants or travelers).

v 44…And I shall punish Bel (the false god of Babylon who had a temple there, also known as Babel), and I shall make what he has swallowed come out of his mouth (the offerings and treasures given to Bel, in particular, the Temple treasures that were restored by Cyrus back to Israel-2 Chr 36.7; Ezra 1.7); and the nations will no longer stream to him (to worship, to appease or gain favor from; other nations would send offerings to the god of the nation they were subject to; eschatologically, this alludes to the nations who stream into the USA to gain favor, money and prosperity through legal and illegal immigration). Even the wall of Babylon has fallen down (Bel could even defend Babylon).

v 45…Come from her midst my people (the first chance they get, and go back to Israel; prophetically, this may allude to the 144,000 who mainly are in the USA. When the natzal, or rapture, happens on Tishri 1, year 6001 from creation, they will see it happen and believe in Yeshua as the first fruits of those who will be saved in the Day of the Lord), and each of you save yourselves from the fierce anger of the Lord (that was coming on Babylon).

v 46…Now lest your heart grow faint (at the rumor that war was coming) and you be afraid of the report that will be heard in the land- for the report (rumor) will come one year (that the Medes/Persians were preparing to invade Chaldea), and after that another report in another year (to invade, and they did come into Assyria but were stopped by the Gyndes River because he has no boats. He drained the river during that summer, and the next spring came to Babylon), and violence will be in the land (of Chaldea) with ruler against ruler (Belshazzar came out to meet Cyrus and lost the battle, and he retreated to Babylon. Israel was not to be afraid of what they will hear in the land of Babylon, and prophetically this would apply today in the USA. There will be violence in the land and political rulers will be against one another and dismay many. We believe Yehovah will give a warning in one year, and then in another year that the USA is going to fall soon).

v 47…Therefore behold, days are coming when I will punish the idols of Babylon (not just Bel); and her whole land will be put to shame (when they see their images and idols couldn’t save them) and all her slain will fall in her midst.

v 48…Then heaven and earth and all that is in them will shout for joy over Babylon at her destruction through God’s justice-Rev 18.20), for destroyers will come to her out of the north (Medes/Persians, and later the Russians will attack the USA from the north),” declares the Lord.

v 49…Indeed Babylon is to fall for the slain of Israel, as also for Babylon the slain of all the earth have fallen (people from many nations were in Babylon and they fled to the city where they were slain by the Medes/Persians. Likewise, those from many nations have come to the USA but will fall when Russia attacks).

v 50…You who have escaped the sword (the Jewish people who escaped the sword of the Chaldeans when Judah was taken and the Medes/Persians as they invaded), depart! Do not stay (are told to flee and go back to the land, do not stay in Babylon)! Remember the Lord from afar (the true worship) and let Jerusalem come to your mind (as the place to go-eschatologically this is telling the Jews to leave the USA before destruction comes. This will happen between Rosh Ha Shannah and Yom Kippur of the first week of the Day of the Lord-Zech 2.6-13; Isa 48.20, 52.11; Jer 50.5, 9, 51.10, 50; Mic 5.3)!

v 51…We are ashamed because we have heard reproach; disgrace has covered our faces, for aliens have entered the holy places of the Lord’s house (they have lived to see the shame caused by the destruction of the Temple, and it was the same in 70 AD; so what good does it do to let “Jerusalem come to mind).

v 52…”Therefore behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I shall punish her idols and the mortally wounded will groan throughout her land.

v 53…Though Babylon should ascend to the heavens (a wall of defense and this may be an allusion to the Tower of Babel; but this may also allude to the defenses of the USA that are in space like the Iron Dome, the Space Force and any “star wars technology and satellites.”), and though she should fortify her lofty stronghold (in the heights), from me destroyers will come to her,” declares the Lord

v 54…The sound of an outcry from Babylon, and of great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans!

v 55…For the Lord (Yehovah) is going to destroy Babylon (in judgment), and he will make her loud noise vanish from her; and their waves (of the horde coming against her) will roar like many waters; the tumult of their voices sound forth.

v 56…For the destroyer (Medo/Persia; the Russians later) is coming against her, against Babylon and her mighty men (heroes, rulers, wise men, etc) will be captured, their bows are shattered (broken into pieces and of no use); for the Lord is a God of recompense, he will fully repay.

v 57…And I shall make her princes and her wise men drunk (alludes to Dan 5), her governors, her prefects, and her mighty men, that they may sleep a perpetual sleep and not wake up (alludes to the second death),” declares the King, whose name is the Lord (Yehovah) of hosts (the armies).

v 58…Thus says the Lord of hosts, “The broad wall (Hebrew “rahab” meaning a harlot-Rev 17.1-18) of Babylon (it had numerous walls and was said to be 40 feet thick and 200 feet high-Pliny) will be completely razed, and her high gates will be set on fire; so the peoples will toil for nothing, and the nations become exhausted for fire (they will labor in vain trying to put out the fires).”

v 59…The message which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the grandson of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah to Babylon in the fourth year of his reign . (Now Seraiah was quartermaster.

v 60…So Jeremiah wrote up in a single scroll the calamity which would come upon Babylon, all these words which have been written concerning Babylon (in these two chapters).

v 61…Then Jeremiah said to Seraiah, “As soon as you come to Babylon, then see that you read all these words aloud,

v 62…and say, ‘Thou, O Lord, hast promised concerning this place to cut it off, so that there will be nothing dwelling in it, whether man or beast, but it will be a perpetual desolation.’

v 63…And it will come about as soon as you finish reading this scroll, you will tie a stone to it (Rev 18.21-24 says the same thing) and throw it into the middle of the Euphrates,

v 64…and say, ‘Just so shall Babylon sink down and not rise again, because of the calamity that I am going to bring on her; and they will become exhausted.'” Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.

So, what do we have that would lead us to believe that these two chapters and some other verses elsewhere is talking about the USA, not just ancient Babylon alone? Here is a small example:

  1. It is a rich, economic giant (51.13)
  2. Last of the great Gentile nations (50.22)
  3. Most powerful with defenses that reach into the heavens (51.33)
  4. A large Jewish population (50.8, 51.6)
  5. Anti-semitism in the land (50.7,12)
  6. Called the land of liberty (Shoa), and the richest (Koa) and the land of plenty (Shinar) in the names used in Ezek 23.23 for Babylon)
  7. A land of mingled people, or a melting pot (50.16)
  8. It sits on many waters (51.13)
  9. Sensual and given to pleasure (Isa 47.8)
  10. A treacherous dealer (Isa 21.2)
  11. Filled with pride
  12. Covetous (51.13)
  13. A land of idols (50.2)
  14. Hammer or policeman of the whole earth (50.23)
  15. Nations stream into it (51.44)
  16. Land of forts (51.32)
  17. Described as a harlot (51.58)
  18. Has enemies from the area known as Russia today (51.27)
Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Jeremiah-Chapter 50

Jer 50.1-46 is a prophecy about the conquest of Babylon by the Medo-Persians around 539 BC, but not all aspects of this happened at that time or apply to Babylon. For example, Babylon was not the “last of the nations” (50.12). This chapter will have a future fulfillment in the day of the Lord. This prophecy has elements of a violent overthrow, but this was not evident when Darius and Cyrus conquered Babylon. This is the first of two chapters (50-51) that Jeremiah devotes to this destruction. We believe this prophecy alludes to the destruction of the United States about seven days after the Natzal (rapture) on Tishri 1, year 6001 from creation. We will try and point out the historical and the eschatological meanings as we move through these two chapters. In prophecy, when it talks about the “land of Babylon” we believe it refers to the USA is many cases. When it talks about the “armies of Babylon” it may refer to the “kings of the east.” Some Bible teachers have said that “Babylon” is Iraq, but there are several reasons why these prophecies do not apply to Iraq. First, there are no Jews in Iraq; it is not an economic giant, not a military giant, not a land of “mingled peoples” and the nations do not “stream into it.” It does not sit on many waters nor does it have massive defenses. Babylon went on to be populated for hundreds of years after it fell, and it is mentioned in the New Testament. We believe the description being presented alludes to the USA. If you desire more information on this concept, we refer you to our teaching called, “Is America Babylon” on this site.

v 1…The word which the Lord (Yehovah) spoke concerning Babylon (confusion, mixed from “bab el” meaning “gate of God), the land of the Chaldeans, through Jeremiah the prophet:

v 2…”Declare and proclaim among the nations (this is the commission). Proclaim it and lift up a standard (for all to see-Isa 21.8-10, 48.20-22). Do not conceal it but say, ‘Babylon has been captured, Bel has been put to shame, Marduk has been shattered (a god of war; they were a warlike people like the USA); her images have been put to shame, her idols have been shattered (the defeat of Babylon also meant the defeat of her gods as well; Babylon did not defeat Judah because their gods were more powerful than Yehovah. Jeremiah did not side with the Babylonians, and God’s judgment has now gotten around to them. Yehovah used them to accomplish his will and now he is going to use another nation to judge Babylon, and Jeremiah agreed with this).’

v 3…For a nation has come up against her out of the north (Medo-Persia, but eschatologically Russia will come from the north to hit the USA), it will make her land an object of horror (desolate), and there will be no inhabitant in it (eventually this would be true of Babylon historically, but not at that time). Both man and beast have wandered off, they have gone away (it became a wilderness).

v 4…In those days (“B’yamim” and it is an eschatological term for when the Messiah comes, so this is giving us a time reference for when this prophecy will have a future fulfillment-Jer 23.5-6, 33.15-16; Joel 3.1; Hos 5.15 to 6.3, 3.4-5) and at that time, declares the Lord, the sons of Israel will come, they and the sons of Judah as well (to their own land again); they will go away weeping as they go (Psa 126; Psa 137), and it will be the Lord their God they will seek (Jews will leave “Babylon” before the destruction and return back to the land).

v 5…They will ask for the way to Zion (no place in Babylon, or the USA eschatologically), turning their faces in its direction; they will come that they may join themselves to the Lord in an everlasting covenant that will not be forgotten (the second redemption).

v 6…My people have become lost sheep; their shepherds have led them astray (this not only applied to the Jews in Babylon, but it also applies over the last two thousand years). They have made them turn aside on the mountains (where idols were worshiped); they have gone along from mountain to hill (one idol or religion to another; this is the state of the Jewish people in the USA today) and they have forgotten their resting place (Israel, Messiah, and Yehovah himself).

v 7…All (nations) who have come upon them have devoured them (through Jewish hatred); and their adversaries have said, ‘We are not guilty because they have sinned against the Lord who is the habitation of righteousness (this is what Babylon thought when Judah was defeated, but this is also the basis for Jewish persecution because the people said “they rejected Jesus and the gospel” and they deserve it. This resulted in various persecutions like the Spanish Inquisition, the Crusades, pogroms and such. Martin Luther wanted to kill Jews and burn their synagogues. Hitler said he was finishing what Luther started. This is also the basis for Replacement Theology), even the Lord, the hope of their fathers.

v 8…Wander away (leave) from the midst of Babylon (when Cyrus lets them go, but also the USA), and go forth from the land of the Chaldeans (prophetically the Americans); be also like male goats at the head of a flock (like rams who lead a flock; this may allude to the first fruits saved at the beginning of the Day of the Lord, or the 144,000-Rev 7.3, 14.4, Isa 18.3, 66.8; Micah 4.10, 5.3).

v 9…For behold (take note of), I am going to arouse (cause) and bring up against Babylon a horde or great nations from the land of the north (Medo-Persia/Russia) and they shall draw up their battle lines against her (all the equipment they will need for a war); from there they shall be taken captive, their arrows (or missiles) will be like an expert warrior (they will hit their targets) who does not return empty handed (no return fire; none shall return in vain).

v 10…And Chaldea (“Kasdim”) will become a plunder; all who plunder her will have enough” declares the Lord (Rev 18.17).

v 11…”Because (now comes the reason Babylon/USA is destroyed) you were glad, because you were jubilant, O you who pillage my heritage (Babylon did this when they took Judah, but this also applies to the USA; there is a book called “While Six Million Died” that tells us the story of how America could have stopped the Holocaust but didn’t. But this also alludes to the Scriptures and how Americans pervert and misinterpret the Scriptures to show that the “church” has replaced Israel to their advantage), because you skip about like a threshing heifer and neigh like bulls (they grew fat and wealthy when destroying Judah, and America exploits Israel today).

v 12…Your mother (the country of Chaldea) will be greatly ashamed, she who gave you birth will be humiliated. Behold, the last (acharit) of the nations (non-Jewish nations; Jewish interpreters said this verse reads, “the last of the great nations in the latter days.” So, literally, Babylon was the first nation in Genesis, and Babylon/America will be the last among the nations), a wilderness, a parched land and a desert (or habitation of demons, which the wilderness was seen as-Matt 12.43; Luke 11.24; Jer 50.3, 50.39, 51.37, 51.62).

v 13…Because of the indignation of the Lord she (Babylon/USA/religious Babylon) will not be inhabited, but she will be completely desolate; everyone who passes by Babylon will be horrified and hiss because of all her wounds (plagues-astonished at the destruction; “wounds” is symbolic of devastation-Isa 1.5-9).

v 14…Draw up your battle lines against Babylon (or the USA) on every side. All you who bend the bow (to shoot arrows or missiles); shoot at her, do not be sparing with your arrows (missiles in an all-out attack), for she has sinned against the Lord (which brought his wrath).

v 15…Raise your battle cry against her on every side! She has given herself up, her pillars (foundations) have fallen (this is happening in the USA when political parties and different groups try to destroy the nation’s founding fathers, documents and history), her walls (defenses) have been torn down (alludes to what happened at Jericho; she is helpless before the enemy; eschatologically you can take any issue and it is out of control in the USA. Crime, false elections, violence, abortion, death, gangs and immigration are just a few of the issues). For this is the vengeance of the Lord: take vengeance on her; as she has done to others, so do to her (retaliation shall be permitted).

v 16…Cut off the sower from Babylon and the one who wields the sickle at the time of harvest (no harvesting in the country due to the destruction); from before the oppressor they will each turn back to his own people, and they will each flee to his own land (prophetically, the sower of the word will leave the USA before total destruction comes; this may also happen right after the natzal, or rapture, and return to Israel).

v 17…Israel is a scattered flock, the lions have driven them away (judgment is coming because Babylon oppressed and scattered the people). The first one who devoured him was the king of Assyria (eschatologically Russia), and the last one who has broken his bones is Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon (took the life out of Israel).”

v 18…Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Behold I am going to punish the king of Babylon (by the Medes and Persians) and his land, just as I punished the king of Assyria (the last Assyrian king was Chynilidarius who was killed in Ninevah; and the last Russian Czar NIcholas was assassinated in Russia, and he hated the Jewish people and was very anti-Semitic).

v 19…And I shall bring Israel back to his pasture, and he will graze on Carmel and Bashan (two fruitful heights), and his desire will be satisfied in the hill country of Ephraim and Gilead.

v 20…In those days (gives us a time reference for when the Messiah comes) and at that time,” declares the Lord, “search will be made for the iniquity of Israel, but there will be none; and for the sins of Judah, but they will not be found, for (the reason why) I will pardon those whom I leave as a remnant (saved and believe in Yeshua (Jer 51.10).

v 21…Against the land of Merathaim (“double rebellion”-against the Lord and his Torah and a name for Babylon or the USA), go up against it and against the inhabitants of Pekod (“visit”-with punishment and another name for Babylon or the USA). Slay and utterly destroy them (put them under the ban or have nothing to do with them-1 Cor 5.11; 2 Thes 3.14), ” declares the Lord, “and do according to all I have commanded you (referring to Cyrus and Persians, but Russia will be given the same instruction by God to destroy the USA).

v 22…The noise of battle is in the land (Chaldea/USA) and great destruction (following the command just given in v 21).

v 23…How the hammer of the whole earth (a club was the symbol of the god of confusion in paganism, and Babylon/USA were used to smash other nations and kingdoms; the USA is called the “policeman of the world”) has been cut off and broken! How Babylon has become an object of horror among the nations (Jer 51.41; Rev 18.15).

v 24…I set a snare for you and you were caught, O Babylon (unexpectedly, they did not perceive), while you yourself were not aware (eschatologically Russia will trick the USA somehow; the USA is falling asleep through their corrupt leaders and trusted in Russia that they were no longer a threat and the “cold war” was over; the snare is being set today); you have been found and also seized because you have engaged in conflict with the Lord (Babylon refused to let the Jewish people go back as seen in v 33, and the USA has been caught up in pride and many policies are anti-Israel).

v 25…The Lord has opened his armory and has brought forth the weapons of his indignation (wrath), for it is a work of the Lord of hosts (of the armies under his command) in the land of the Chaldeans.

v 26…Come to her from the farthest border (“from the end”- in a Russian attack with land based missiles they would come over the polar ice cap); open up her barns (granaries), pile her up like heaps and utterly destroy her, let nothing be left to her (put her under the ban because it is devoted to destruction).

v 27…Put all her young bulls (the symbol of Babylon and denotes the general population) to the sword; let them go down to the slaughter. Woe upon them for their day has come (the day of judgment), the time of their punishment.

v 28…There is a sound of fugitives and refugees from the land of Babylon (escaping to Zion-Jer 50.8, 51.6, 51.10; Mic 4.10, 5.3) to declare in Zion the vengeance of the Lord our God, vengeance for his temple (to proclaim that Babylon fell- this may be an allusion to the 144,000 and other Jews who flee the USA for Israel before Russia attacks; the “temple” is physical and spiritual, the Jewish people-51.11; 1 Cor 6.19).

v 29…Summon the archers against Babylon, all those who bend the bow: encamp against her on every side (surrounded), let there be no escape. Repay her according to her work; according to all that she has done, so do to her; for she has become arrogant against the Lord, against the Holy One of Israel (this charge fits because they burned the Temple and took Judah captive; this attitude deserved punishment; the USA has this attitude in their dealings with Israel today).

v 30…Therefore her young men will fall in the streets, and all her men of war will be silenced (cut off) in that day (the day of the Lord and a time reference),” declares the Lord (repeats 49.26).

v 31…”Behold (take note), I am against you, O arrogant (proud) one,” declares the Lord (Adonai) God (Yehovah) of hosts (armies); for your day has come, the time when I will punish you (with justice and wrath).

v 32…And the arrogant one will stumble and fall with no one to raise him up; and I shall set fire to his cities, and it will devour all his environs (suburbs, government, their jurisdiction, etc).”

v 33…Thus says the Lord of hosts (Yehovah Tzavaot or the armies), “The sons of Israel are oppressed, and the sons of Judah as well (the whole body of Israel); and all who took them captive have held them fast (like Pharaoh), they have refused to let them go (things will be getting worse and worse in the USA, with less freedom and anti-Semitism in politics will worsen-Jer 50.7, 11, 17 ,21, 51.49; Isa 47.1; Rev 17.6).

v 34…Their redeemer (Israel’s) is strong, the Lord of hosts is his name (Yehovah Tzavaot); he will vigorously plead their case, so that he may bring rest to the earth (Babylon and the USA have kept the earth in fear and unrest), but turmoil to the inhabitants of Babylon.

v 35…A sword (used five times in v 34-37, meaning it is certain) against the Chaldeans,” declares the Lord, “and against the inhabitants of Babylon, and against her officials (rulers) and her wise men!

v 36…A sword against the oracle (babbler) priests (false prophets, etc) and they will become fools (not knowing what is happening and cannot give direction)! A sword against her mighty men (warriors), and they will be shattered (broken).

v 37…A sword against their horses and against their chariots (their main military strength), and against all the foreigners (mixed multitude) who are in the midst of her; and they will become women (faint, timid, can’t defend themselves); a sword against her treasuries (finances) and they will be plundered.

v 38…A drought on her waters, and they will be dried up (her fertility depended on this-God is destroying the land)! for it is a land of idols (and the people were fooled by them and deprived of Biblical truth, just like the USA today), and they are mad over fearsome idols (not only in Babylon, but the USA is full of idols, crucifixes, madonnas, saints, icons, nativity scenes and statues are everywhere).

v 39…Therefore, the desert creatures will live there along with the jackals; the ostriches also will live in it, and it will never again be inhabited or dwelt in from generation to generation (a wilderness, a waste and unclean animals are a picture of the habitation of demons-Lev 11 list of unclean animals gives us a picture of the domain of Satan; Isa 13.6, 23.13, 24.10; Jer 50.3, 12; Matt 12.43; Luke 11.24; this cannot be talking about the Iraq area because the borders of Israel will extend to the Euphrates in the Messianic Kingdom).

v 40… As when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah with its neighbors (Admah and Zeboim),’ declares the Lord, “no man (ish) will live there, nor will any son of man (ben adam) reside there (Isa 13.19; Jer 49.18).

v 41…Behold, a people is coming from the north (the Medo-Persians; the “north” is also an idiom for judgment; eschatologically this alludes to Russia who will come from the furthest border-Jer 50.9, 50.26, 51.27)), and a great nation and many kings will be aroused from the remotest parts of the earth.

v 42…They seize their bow and javelin (may allude to missiles); they are cruel and have no mercy (the character of the Medo-Persians and the Russians), their voice roars like the sea (by reason of their numbers), and they ride on horses (a mobile army), marshalled like a man for battle against you, O daughter of Babylon (the inhabitants).

v 43…The king of Babylon (Belshazzar/President of the USA) has heard the report about them (their approach) and his hands hang limp (feeble-Dan 5.6); distress has gripped him, agony like a woman in child-birth (this is an idiom which also gives us a time context of the birth-pains and the day of the Lord).

v 44…Behold, one will come up like a lion from the thicket of the Jordan (an idiom for a great army-Jer 12.5) to the pasture of the strong (Babylon/USA), for in an instant I shall make them run away from it, and whoever is chosen I shall appoint over it (the army; Cyrus or the Russian ruler). For who is like me and who will summon me into court (to litigate in court or contend in war with me)? And who then is the shepherd (king or president) who can stand before me (to hinder what Yehovah wants to do)?”

v 45…”Therefore hear the plan of the Lord which he has planned against Babylon, and his purposes which he has purposed against the land of the Chaldeans: surely they will drag them off, the little ones of the flock (the weakest of them); surely he will make their pasture desolate because of them.

v 46…At the shout (voice), “Babylon has been seized!” the earth is shaken (moved), and an outcry is heard among the nations (the results of the fall of Babylon and the USA will be heard around the world-Rev 18.1-24; the leaders of Europe will meet and out of this meeting the False Messiah will arise-Rev 17.12-13. So, what do we have so far? Eschatologically there is a country named “Babylon” which is the last of the great Gentile nations, with many Jews living there because they are told to flee before the destructions comes. This alludes to the 144,000. Judgment does come at the beginning of the day of the Lord-Jer 50.9, 50.43, and the 144,000 are called the first fruits in Rev 14.4. They will go back to Israel, along with non-Jews who see the danger coming, too. They will say they are redeemed to declare that judgment is coming on “the temple.” They are commissioned to go to Israel for the first three and a half years of the birth-pains. They will return with singing, leading a remnant out of Babylon. Obviously, believers are commissioned to declare what is coming. We believe the 144,000, or most of them, will be living in the USA and will see the Natzal, or rapture, happen on Tishri 1 Rosh Ha Shannah, the first day of the day of the Lord. They will be like Elisha who saw Elijah depart, or Paul who saw Yeshua and believed. They will have the seal of God on their forehead, and they will also lead a mixed people out-Jer 50.16, 51.9. After the mid-point of the birth-pains in Nisan 10, year 6004, they will declare to the whole earth that the Messiah is coming and to resist the False Messiah-Mic 5.7-9).”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Jeremiah-Chapter 49

Jer 49.1-39 continues with prophecies about the nations, and this one is about Ammon, Edom, Syria, the Arabians and the Elamites, or Persians. Nebuchadnezzar attacked Ammon first, then Moab. This area is northern Jordan, and other prophecies about Ammon can be seen in Ezek 25.1-7 and Amos 1.13-15. Eschatologically this alludes to the judgment on Islam and their false god in the birth-pains.

v 1…Concerning the sons of Ammon (“peoples””), thus says the Lord: “Does Israel have no sons (to inherit the land)? Or has he no heirs (but he does)? Why then has Malcom (“their king”) taken possession of Gad (Ammorites took over their territory) and his people settled in its cities (Malcom is related to “Milcom” or “Molech” their god).

v 2…Therefore behold (take note of), the days are coming (yamim ba’im),” declares the Lord, “that I shall cause a trumpet (Hebrew “teruah” or shout/noise) blast of war to be heard against Rabbah (‘great”) of the sons of Ammon (the capital and royal city-1 Kings 11.1); and it will become a desolate heap (by Babylon), and her towns will be set on fire.

v 3…Wail, O Heshbon (on the east bank of the Dead Sea), for Ai (not the one in Canaan) has been destroyed (Babylon attacked this city first)! Cry out, O daughters (suburbs) of Rabbah, gird yourselves with sackcloth and lament (in mourning), and rush back and forth inside the walls; for Malcom will go into captivity (exile) together with his priests and princes (their idol will be taken away with the people).

v 4…How boastful you are about the valleys (they were well watered and fruitful)! Your valley (Jordan Valley) is flowing, O backsliding (careless) daughter (they descended from Lot) who trusts in her treasures (saying), “Who will come against me (confident that their wealth could buy men and weapons to defend themselves)?”

v 5…Behold (take note), I am going to bring terror on you, (Babylon),” declares the Lord of hosts (the armies), “from all around you (directions); and each of you (the neighboring nations, but later the Saudis, Iraq, Syria and Amalek during the birth-pains) will be driven out headlong (each one before him), with no one to gather the fugitives together (to take them under their care-no leader).

v 6…But afterward I will restore the fortunes (captives) of the sons of Ammon (some would return under Cyrus).”

v 7…Concerning Edom (descended from Esau and were south of the Dead Sea. They competed with Israel, and today this area is Muslim. Other references to Edom are Isa 21.11-17; Ezek 25. 12-14; Amos 1.11; Oba 1-21; Psa 83.1-8; Psa 137.7), thus says the Lord of hosts (Yehovah of the armies, all armies in heaven and earth; when this is said Yehovah is coming from a military position of power), “Is there no longer any wisdom in Teman (geographically this is Saudi Arabia, but in the hidden level this may allude to Rome and eventually the religion of Rome, Christianity, because it was seen as the kingdom of the False Messiah in the Jewish midrashim. The book of Job occurs in Edom. Gen 22.21 refers to Uz, a son of Nahor, Abraham’s brother. Gen 36.11,40-42 tells us it was founded after Esau. In Gen 46.13 we have a “Iyov” (Job) with Jacob and was the grandson of Jacob, a son of Isaachar. Lam 4.21 tells us Edom and Uz are the same. Gen 47.6 may allude to the fact that Job left Egypt prior to the Exodus and was an administrator for Pharaoh)? Has good counsel been lost to the prudent (when Yehovah plans for such a people to be destroyed, he takes away common sense and foresight to properly manage affairs)? Has their wisdom decayed (or departed-Esau sold his birthright for a bowl of soup, and his descendants were unfaithful to Yehovah, but not as hostile as the Ammonites).

v 8…Flee away, turn back and dwell in the depths (low country-they would try to find safety in caves or in the wilderness), O inhabitansts of Dedan. For I will be bring the disaster of Esau upon them at the time I punish him (cursed for not holding God’s ways as important).

v 9…If grape gatherers came to you (to gather) would they not leave their gleanings (yes)? If thieves come by night, they would destroy until they had enough(leaving some things behind).

v 10…But I have stripped Esau bare, I have uncovered his hiding places (to the invaders) so that he will not be able to conceal himself (they will be politically extinct by the time of the Romans. In God’s judgment of them, their old hiding places will be revealed by Yehovah to the Babylonians, who will leave nothing); his seed has been destroyed along with his relatives and his neighbors, and he is no more.

v 11…Leave your orphans behind, I will keep them alive (because the adult males will not be there to care for them); and let your widows trust in me (Yehovah will take care of the widows and the orphans if they leave the cities because they will be destroyed).”

v 12…For thus says the Lord, “Behold (take note), those who were not sentenced to drink the cup (like Israel was) will certainly drink it (since Israel is to be judged and drink the cup, so will Edom), and are you the one who will be completely acquitted? You will not be acquitted, but you (Edom) will certainly drink it.

v 13…For I have sworn (an oath) by myself (there is no one greater),” declares the Lord, “that Bozrah (“sheepfold”) will become an object of horror, a reproach, a ruin and a curse; and all its cities will become perpetual ruins (Isa 63.1-6-this alludes to the coming of Yeshua in the latter days).”

v 14…I have heard a message from Yehovah (concerning the destruction of Edom), and an envoy (an ambassador) sent among the nations (to stir things up with Edom), saying, “Gather yourselves together (in this case Babylon and the other nations) and come against her (Edom), and rise up for battle (in a military manner)!

v 15…For behold, I have made you small among the nations (Babylon will reduce their population), despised among men (for their small number and desolate land).

v 16…As for the terror of you (that they put on their neighbors), the arrogance of your heart has deceived you (making them think they were in no danger-Oba 6), O you who live in the cleft of the rock (impregnable places; Hebrew “Cela” and may include Petra-Oba 3; Isa 16.1-5, 42.10), who occupy the heights of the hill. Though you make your nest as high as an eagles (there is a natural rock formation of an eagle in Petra) I will bring you down from there,” declares the Lord (no height or depth will save them; eschatologically, the Beduins and tribes will go out and battle Russia and be defeated. When they see Israel call on Yehovah and Yeshua and win, a remnant of them will believe in Yeshua and be in Petra, fleeing the False Messiah-Rev 12.13-17).

v 17…And Edom will become an object of horror; every one who passes by it will be horrified and will hiss at all its wounds (once great, they are now weak).

v 18…Like the overthrow of Sodom (burning) and Gomorrah (submerged) with its neighbors (the two cities of Admah and Zeboim-Deut 29.23; Jude 7; Gen 18.24),” says the Lord, “no one (ish) will live there, nor will a son of man (ben adam) reside in it (belonging to Edom, no Idumean will live there just like no Sodomite lives in Sodom anymore).

v 19…Behold, one will come up like a lion (Babylon) from the thickets of the Jordan against the pasture of the strong (Edom will be like a flock worried by an enemy as strong as a lion); for an instant I shall make him run away from it (the flock will leave the pasture), and whoever is chosen I shall appoint over it (Nebuchadnezzar). For who is like me, and who will summon me into court? Who then is the shepherd who can stand against me (Yehovah is identifying himself with Nebuchadnezzar, and who would dare take him to court to question his right to do what he says he is going to do).”

v 20…Therefore hear the plan of the Lord which he has planned against Edom, and his purposes which he has purposed against the inhabitants of Teman. Surely they (Babylon like wolves and dogs) will drag them off, even the little ones of the flock (least of the flock, the feeble and the helpless), surely he will make their pasture desolate because of them.

v 21…The earth has quaked at the noise of their downfall. There is an outcry! The noise of it has been heard at the Red Sea (the fall was great and heard in distant places).

v 22…Behold, he (Nebuchadnezzar) will swoop like an eagle and spread out his wings against Bozrah (to seize it); and the hearts of the mighty men of Edom in that day will be like the heart of a woman in labor (weak and in pain; this sudden destruction also alludes to the coming of Messiah to Jerusalem as he comes through Edom from Sinai).

v 23…Concerning Damascus (or Aram, Syria, destroyed by Assyria but rebuilt again; Jeremiah speaks to them and God will use Babylon to further destroy its army and strongholds. This alludes to the birth-pains when Gog and Magog, or Russia) will destroy Damascus, and the kings of the east will complete its destruction as they move into Jerusalem to fight the False Messiah), Hamath and Arpad are put to shame for they have heard the bad news (of the Babylonian advance); they are disheartened (uneasy). There is anxiety by the sea, it cannot be calmed.

v 24…Damascus has become helpless (other references to Damascus being destroyed are Isa 17.1-13; Amos 1.3-5). She has turned away to flee (no match for Babylon), and panic has gripped her; distress and pangs have taken hold of her like a woman in childbirth (great sorrow, but this is also a time reference for later in the birth-pains).

v 25…How the city of praise has been deserted, the town of my joy (said by an observer who saw the city).

v 26…Therefore (since they are doomed), her young men will fall in the streets, and all the men of war will be silenced (cut off) in that day (eschatologically the time when Messiah comes, or the birth-pains), declares the Lord of hosts.

v 27…And I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it will consume the palaces of Ben-hadad (where many evils were planned against Israel, Hadad being an idol).”

v 28…Concerning Kedar (a son of Ishmael-Gen 25.13; lived in Arabia and nomads in black tents-Isa 21.17, 42.10; these Beduins were nobility, warriors and respected and are all over the Arab world. They had a system of honor and are comprised of two houses today called the house of Saud or Saudi Arabia and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan), and the kingdoms of Hazor (represents the settled Arabs north of the Sea of Galilee) which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon defeated (God’s judgment extended to these Arabian tribes-Isa 60.7). Thus says the Lord, “Arise, go to Kedar and devastate the men of the east (Babylon will take away their life and possessions).

v 29…They (Babylon) will take away their tents and their flocks; they will carry off for themselves their tent curtains, all their goods, and their camels, and they will call out to one another, ‘Terror on every side.’

v 30…Run away, flee! Dwell in the depths, O inhabitants of Hazor (in caves),” declares the Lord, “for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon has formed a plan against you (again Babylon is a picture of the kings of the east) and devised a scheme against you.

v 31…Arise, go up against as nation which is at ease (wealthy), which lives securely,” declares the Lord, “it has no gates or bars; they dwell alone (these Arab Beduins had no army or walled cities. They were wealthy because they were at peace because they lived out of the way of the warring factions from Asia and Africa).

v 32…And their camels will become plunder and the multitude of their cattle for booty, and I will scatter to all the winds those who are in the utmost corners (of their land to feed their flocks); and I shall bring their disaster from every side (Babylon will surround them with no escape),” declares the Lord.

v 33…And Hazor will be a haunt for jackals, a desolation forever; no one will live there, nor will a son of man reside in it (utterly destroyed).”

v 34…That which came as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet concerning Elam (geographically 200 miles east of Babylon and west of the Tigris River) at the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah (Babylon defeated them around 396 BC, and later Cyrus of Persia conquered and absorbed Elam into the Persian forces that defeated Babylon. The capital was Susa or Shushan and the center of the Persian empire-Neh 1.1; Dan 8.2), saying,

v 35…”Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Behold, I am going to break the bow of Elam (they were known as great archers in Isa 22.6), the finest of their might (but this will not save them when Yehovah turns them over to Babylon).

v 36…And I shall bring upon Elam the four winds (soldiers from the four corners of the earth were in the Babylonian army), from the four ends of heaven and shall scatter them to all the winds (all over the place); and there will be no nation to which the outcasts (refugees) of Elam will not go (dispersed among the nations).

v 37…So I shall scatter them before their enemies and before those who seek their lives; and I will bring calamity upon them, even my fierce anger,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I shall send out the sword after them until I have consumed them (we don’t know why God judged Elam, but this is for a reason).

v 38…Then I will set my throne in Elam (beginning with Nebuchadnezzar and his successors as seen in Dan 8.2; God gave these kings their throne so it can be called “my throne”), and I shall destroy from there the king and the princes (of Elam-they will reign no more),’ declares the Lord.

v 39…’But it will come about in the last days (“acharit yamim” and an eschatological term for when Messiah comes) that I shall restore the fortunes (captives) of Elam,” declares the Lord (this started in the first century-Acts 2.9).'”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Jeremiah-Chapter 48

Jer 48.1-47 is a prophecy concerning Moab, meaning “seed of the father.” Other prophecies can be found in Isa 15.1-9, 16.1-14; Ezek 25.8-11; Amos 2.1; Zeph 2.8-11. Eschatologically speaking, this is a picture of the battle for Jordan in the seventh year of the birth-pains as the kings of the east move against the False Messiah in the Middle East.

v 1…Concerning Moab, thus says the Lord of hosts (armies), the God of Israel (this is said to show that Yehovah is the one true God), “Woe to Nebo (meaning “prophet or his prophecy”), for it has been destroyed (by Babylon, also known as the king of the east), Kiriathim (“double city” and alludes to the double standards of the people, especially in the birth-pains) has been put to shame, it has been captured (this city was in Reuben but came into the hands of the Moabites-Josh 13.19); the lofty stronghold (Hebrew “Misgab”) has been put to shame and shattered (by Babylon).

v 2…There is praise for Moab no longer; in Heshbon they have devised calamity against her (the Babylonians devised a plan to destroy it), “Come and let us cut her off from being a nation!” You too, madmen, will be silenced; the sword will follow after you (this may allude to a conspiracy to destroy Israel by the nations in Psa 8.34; Ezek 38.10 and Isa 8.2 in the second year of the birth-pains. This failed but Yehovah now judging Moab for their involvement against Israel).

v 3…The sound of an outcry from Horonaim (“double cave or tomb”) alluding to the second death of an unbeliever), ‘Devastation and great destruction!’

v 4…Moab is broken, her little ones have sounded out a cry to be heard (of distress).

v 5…For the ascent of Lulith (“pertaining to the table”) they will ascend with continual weeping; for at the descent of Horonaim they (Babylon) have heard the languished cry of destruction.

v 6…Flee, save your lives, that you may be like a juniper in the wilderness (forsaken, lost everything).

v 7..For because of your trust in your own achievements and treasures (her amassed wealth), even you yourself will be captures; and Chemosh ( the false god of Moab) will go off into exile together with his priests and princes (rulers and spiritual leaders are judged by Yehovah).

v 8…And a destroyer will come to every city (Nebuchadnezzar), so that no city will escape (his destruction); the valley (not just the plains) also will be ruined, and the plateau (the plain) will be destroyed, as the Lord has said (foretold).

v 9…Give wings (Hebrew “tzeetz” as in tziztzit because there is no other escape) to Moab, for she will flee (Hebrew “natza” of “fly” and is related to the word “natzal” the biblical term for the “rapture”) away; and her cities will become a desolation, without inhabitants in them.

v 10…Cursed be the one who does the Lord’s work negligently (to destroy Moab), and cursed be the one who restrains his sword from blood (no mercy to Moab).

v 11…Moab has been at ease since his youth (they lived in peace and prosperity and had few disturbances from war); he has also been undisturbed on his lees (a metaphor from wine-the longer wine is “upon their lees” the better, meaning Moab has remained in their country, making it strong). Neither has he been emptied from vessel to vessel (separating lees from the wine), nor has he gone into exile (this explains the metaphor). Therefore he retained his flavor (his wealth), and his aroma has not changed (besides his wealth, their sin, vices, idolatry and pride never changed, resulting in their ruin).”

v 12…”Therefore behold (take note of), the days are coming” declares the Lord, “when I shall send to him (Moab) those who tip vessels (to pour) and they (Babylon) will tip him over, and they will empty his vessels and shatter his jars.

v 13…And Moab will be ashamed of Chemosh (their idol) as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel (where the golden calf was that Jeroboam set up-it didn’t save Ephraim) their confidence.

v 14…How can you say, ‘We are mighty warriors and valiant men for battle (because their destruction is coming)?’

v 15…Moab has been destroyed, and men (Babylon) have come up to his cities; his (Moab’s) choicest men have also gone down to the slaughter,” declares the king, whose name is the Lord of hosts (Yehovah Tzavaot because he rules all the armies in heaven and on earth and is the supreme commander).

v 16…”The disaster of Moab will soon come (to Moab), and his calamity has swiftly hastened (not delayed, with great speed).

v 17…Mourn for him, all you who live around him, even all of you who know his name (live at a distance but have heard of him); say ‘How has the mighty sceptor (their kingdom) been broken, a staff of splendor (the honer ascribed to that kingdom)!’

v 18…Come down from your glory and sit (helpless) on the parched ground (thirsty for what they had), O inhabitant of Dibron (“wasting”; near the Arnon, 10 miles south of Nebo and 14 miles east of the Dead Sea), for the destroyer of Moab has come up against you (Babylon), he has ruined your strongholds (fortresses).

v 19…Stand by the road and keep watch, O inhabitant of Aroer (“ruins” near the Arnon River), ask him who flees and her who escapes (from the Babylonians), and say, ‘What has happened?’

v 20…Moab has been put to shame, for it has been shattered. Wail and cry out (because of the overall ruin), declare by the Arnon that Moab has been destroyed (the Arnon will be one of the places Israel will flee to in the birth-pains-Isa 16.2; Rev 12.14).

v 21…Judgment has also come upon the plain (of Moab), upon Holon (“sandy”-Josh 15.31), Jahzah (“trodden down”-Josh 13.18), and against Mephaath (“splendor”-Josh 13.18),

v 22…Against Dibon (“wasting”), Nebo (“prophet”), and Beth-diblathaim (“house of the two fig cakes”),

v 23…against Kiriathaim (“two cities”), Beth-gamul (“house of recompense”), and Beth-meon (“house of the dwelling place”),

v 24…against Kerioth (“cities”), Bozrah (“sheepfold”) and all the cities of the land of Moab, far and near.

v 25…The horn (power) of Moab has been cut off, and his arm broken,” declares the Lord.

v 26…”Make him drunk (with the wrath of God), for he has become arrogant toward the Lord; so Moab will wallow in his vomit (as a drunk does), and he also will become a laughingstock (by others).

v 27…Now was not Israel a laughingstock to you (when Assyria came, and later the Babylonians)? Or was he caught among the thieves (when they were taken into exile)? For each time you talk about him you shake (with laughter).

v 28…Leave the cities and dwell in the crags (Hebrew “Cela” or rock, may be alluding to Petra. Israel may flee there in the birth-pains and live in a supernatural environment-Isa 16.1; 21.13-15; Rev 12.13-17; Dan 11.41; Isa 63.1-6; Micah 2.12-13), O inhabitants of Moab, and be like a dove that nests beyond the mouth of the chasm (on the side of a hole or cleft to be safe).

v 29…We have heard of the pride of Moab-he is very proud- (Israel and the other nations say) of his haughtiness, his pride, his arrogance and his self-exaltation (examples of his pride were many).

v 30…I know his fury (insolence),” declares the Lord, “but it is futile (vain); his idle boasts have accomplished nothing.

v 31…Therefore I (Yehovah took no pleasure for having to judge Moab-Ezek 33.11) will wail for Moab, even for all Moab shall I cry out; I will moan for the men of Kir-heres (“wall of the potsherds”).

v 32…More than the weeping for Jazer (“helped”) I (Yehovah) shall weep for you, or vine of Sibmah (“fragrance”)! Your tendrils (plants or people) stretched across the sea (into captivity), they reached to the sea of Jazer (another name for the Dead Sea); upon your summer fruits and your grape harvest (supposed to be a time of joy) the destroyer has fallen (a time of terror- this would be Tishri and by Sukkot these were harvested and gathered. This scenario will play out again in the birth-pains, but Israel will be protected by God there-Rev 12.14)

v 33…So gladness and joy are taken away from the fruitful field, even from the land of Moab. And I (Yehovah) have made the wine to cease from the wine presses (no grapes to put in them, or men to work); no one will tread them shouting, the shouting will not be shouts of joy.

v 34…From the outcry of Heshbon (“device, reason”) even to Elealeh (“God is ascending”), even to Jahaz (“trodden”) they have raised their voice, from Zoar (“small”) even to Horonaim (“two caves”) and to Eglath-shelishah (“three year old heifer”); for even the waters of Nimrim (“pure”) will become desolate (fouled by the Chaldean army and horses treading it with their feet).

v 35…And I will make an end of Moab,” declares the Lord, “the one who offers sacrifice on the high places and the one who burns incense to his gods (he will end their idolatry).

v 36…Therefore my heart wails for Moab like flutes (mournful music); my heart also wails like flutes for the men of Kir-heres (a principal city and represents the nation in general). Therefore they have lost the abundance it produced (it went into the hands of the Babylonians).

v 37…For every head is bald and every beard is cut short; there are gashes on all the hands and sackcloth on the loins (in mourning and humiliation).

v 38…On all the housetops of Moab and in the streets there is lamentation everywhere (in general); for I have broken Moab like an undesirable vessel,” declares the Lord.

v 39…”How shattered it is! How they have wailed! How Moab has turned his back-he is ashamed (they can’t face the enemy, so he runs)! So Moab will become a laughingstock and an object of horror to all around him (to their enemies, just like they did to Israel).”

v 40…For thus says the Lord, “Behold (take note of), one will fly swiftly like an eagle (Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon), and spread out his wings against Moab (like an eagle over a little prey).

v 41…Kerioth has been captured and the strongholds have been seized (their fortified places), so the hearts of the mighty men (“givorim”) of Moab in that day (this is an idiom for the day of the Lord when Messiah comes and the men of the False Messiah) will be like the heart of a woman in labor (alluding to the birth-pains also).

v 42…And Moab will be destroyed from being a people (for some time, but later they will return-Jer 48.47) because he has become arrogant toward the Lord.

v 43…Terror, pit and snare are coming upon you, O inhabitant of Moab,” declares the Lord (they will be like an animal that has fallen into a trap or pit).

v 44…The one who flees from the terror will fall into a pit (or some misfortune), and the one who climbs out of the pit will be caught in a snare (escape is impossible in other words); for I shall bring on her, even on Moab, the year of their punishment (or judgment, the fixed time for it has come).

v 45…In the shadow of Heshbon the fugitives stand without strength (fleeing Babylon and will have no power); for a fire has gone forth from Heshbon, and a flame from the midst of Sihon (it’s on fire), and it has devoured the forehead of Moab (the whole land) and the scalps (crown of the head) of the riotous revelers (just as Sihon came from Heshbon to devour Moab in Num 21.21-30, now the Babylonians will start at Heshbon to devour Moab).

v 46…Woe to you, Moab! The people of Chemosh (their false god) have perished (he couldn’t save them because he was not real); for your sons have been taken away captive, and your daughters into captivity (dragged into exile).

v 47…Yet I will restore the fortunes (return the captives) of Moab in the latter days (or the “acharit yamim” or end of days. This is an eschatological term referring to when Messiah comes),” declares the Lord. Thus for the judgment on Moab (this concludes the prophecy about Moab).

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations- Concepts in Jeremiah-Chapter 47

Jer 47.1-7 is a prophecy against the Philistines and their neighbors. Eschatologically this alludes to the Palestinians in the day of the Lord. Palestinians is Latin for “Philistines” so there will be a Gaza in the Birth-pains or “tribulation.”

v 1…That which came as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the Philistines (Palestinians), before Pharaoh (probably Necho) conquered Gaza (around 609 BC in the time of Josiah).

v 2…Thus says the Lord, “Behold (see and take note), waters (armies) are going to rise from the north (Babylon) and become an overflowing torrent, and overflow the land and all its fullness (men, cattle, wealth, crops, etc), the city and those who dwell in it (several cities); and the men will cry out (in distress), and every inhabitant of the land will wail (not being able to do anything to stop Babylon).

v 3…Because of the noise of the galloping hoofs of his stallions (Nebuchadnezzar’s cavalry), at the tumult of his chariots, and the rumbling of his wheels, the fathers have not turned back for their children (they were so afraid they did not even see what happened to them), because of the limpness of their hands (couldn’t protect them),

v 4…on account of the day that is coming (the appointed day) to destroy all the Philistines (Palestinians in the day of the Lord), to cut off from Tyre and Sidon every ally that is left (all were defeated); for the Lord is going to destroy the Philistines (Palestinians prophetically), the remnant of the coastland of Caphtor (a division of Egypt).

v 5…Baldness (a pagan rite of mourning-Lev 19.27; Deut 14.1-2) has come upon Gaza; Ashkelon (north of Gaza) has been ruined. O remnant of their valley (the Shephelah Valley along the coastal plain), how long will you gash yourself (in mourning)?

v 6…Ah, sword of the Lord (Babylon was Yehovah’s instrument), how long will you not be quiet (from destroying)? Withdraw into your sheath; be at rest and stay still (make no more war-Jeremiah did not take pleasure in this slaughter).

v 7…How can it be quiet (no reason to think this should stop), when the Lord has given it (Babylon) an order? Against Ashkelon and against the seacoast- there he has assigned it (his decree was to destroy the Philistines and it was a righteous decree because of their sin).”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Jeremiah-Chapter 46

Jer 46.1-28 gives us a change in themes. It goes from prophecies about Egypt and the overthrow of Pharaoh Necho to the devastation of the land. Other prophecies about Egypt can be found in Isa 19, Isa 30-31, Ezek 29 and 32 for example. Eschatologically Egypt alludes to Europe during the Birth-pains (Tribulation) and Pharaoh is a picture of the False Messiah. The Babylonians are a picture of the oriental kings of the east who will defeat the False Messiah and he will retreat back to defend Jerusalem-Zech 12-14; Isa 19.1-25, 20.1-6, 30.1-26 with Isa 14.29-32; Ezek 29.1-6; 32.1-32.

v 1…That which came as the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet concerning the nations.

v 2…To Egypt (eschatologically Europe) concerning the army of Pharoah Necho king of Egypt (a picture of the False Messiah), which was by the Euphrates River at Charchemish which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon (a picture of the oriental kings of the east eschatologically) defeated in the fourth year of Yehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah,

v 3…”Line up the shield (magen) and buckler (a larger shield called the zinah), and draw near for the battle (Egypt went to help the Assyrians at Charchemish against the rising power of Babylon, and was expecting to win).

v 4…Harness the horses (to chariots) and mount the steeds (cavalry), and take your stand with helmets on! Polish the spears, put on the scale armor (for protection)!

v 5…Why have I seen it (the Egyptians)? They are terrified, they are turning back (when it came time to fight, they broke ranks), and their mighty men are defeated and have taken refuge in flight, without looking back (Egypt was routed by the Babylonians at Charchemish); terror is on every side (Yehovah put fear into them)!” declares the Lord.

v 6…Let not the swift man flee, nor the mighty men escape (don’t think that just because you are fast or mighty you will escape); in the north beside the river Euphrates they have stumbled and fallen.

v 7…Who is this that rises like the Nile (Egypt marching north looked like a river and expected to sweep across the earth like the Nile when it floods), like the rivers whose waters surge about (armies were likened to rivers-Isa 8.7-8; Rev 12.15

v 8…Egypt rises like the Nile (their army), even like the rivers whose waters surge about (repeated for emphasis); and he has said (Pharaoh Necho), “I will rise and cover the land; I will surely destroy the city and its inhabitants (of Charchemish).

v 9…Go up, you horses, and drive madly, your chariots, that the mighty men may march forward (to battle); Ethiopia and Put (Libya) that handle the shield (mercenaries allied with Egypt), and the Lydians (Ludim), that handle and bend the bow (but it will be to no avail).

v 10…For that day (this alludes to a future battle in the day of the Lord) belongs to the Lord of hosts (he is commander of all the armies). A day of vengeance (alludes to the birth-pains in particular) so as to avenge himself on his foes (there was much that made Egypt an adversary to God); and the sword will devour and be satiated and drink its fill of their blood; for there will be a slaughter for the Lord God of hosts (the armies), in the land of the north by the river Euphrates (this is a double reference prophecy because it will happen again in the day of the Lord; Charchemish is one of the battles in the birth-pains, others will include Megiddo, in Jordan, Gaza and lastly Jerusalem).

v 11…Go up to Gilead (a place famous for a healing balm-Jer 8.22) and obtain balm, O virgin daughter of Egypt (in the sense they had never been under a foreign yoke)! In vain have you multiplied remedies (the medicine won’t help you) there is no healing for you (they will never attain their former glory).

v 12…The nations have heard of your shame (past tense because it is a certainty) and the earth is full of your cry (of distress); for one warrior has stumbled over another, and both of them have fallen down together (notice again this is past tense, it is a sure thing).”

v 13…This is the message which the Lord spoke to Jeremiah the prophet about the coming of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to smite the land of Egypt (Yehovah warned the Judeans about this for coming to the aid of the Assyrian stronghold at Charchemish).

v 14…”Declare in Egypt and proclaim in Migdol (eastern part). Proclaim also in Memphis (or “Noph” in the south) and Tahpanhes (in the north-there will be no safe place-west is not mentioned because Babylon did not advance there. The Jews will not be safe in these other places); say, “Take your stand and get yourself ready (to Egypt and the cities and areas mentioned), for the sword (Babylon) has devoured those around you (Israel, Judah, Syria and others).’

v 15…Why have your mighty ones become prostrate (couldn’t stand up to the Babylonians)? They do not stand because the Lord has thrust them down (given them over to destruction and they couldn’t stand up against Yehovah).

v 16…They have repeatedly stumbled (in battle), indeed they have fallen one against another (Egypt and her allies fell). Then they said, ‘Get up! And let us go back to our own people and our native land (Ethiopia, Libya, Lydia, etc) way from the sound of the oppressor (Babylon).’

v 17…They cried there, ‘Pharaoh king of Egypt is but a big noise (a boaster, which is one of the characteristics of the False Messiah also); he has let the appointed time pass by (to stop Babylon)!’

v 18…”As I live,” declares the King whose name is the Lord of hosts, “Surely one shall come (Nebuchadnezzar) like Tabor among the mountains (Babylon looking down on all the lowly kingdoms) or like carmel by the sea (standing out among the others).

v 19…Make your baggage ready for exile (with food, clothes), O daughter dwelling in Egypt (Egyptians thought they were safe). For Memphis will become a desolation; it will even be burned down and bereft of inhabitants (their fate according to the judgment of Yehovah).

v 20…Egypt is a pretty heifer (worshiped bulls and heifers) but a horsefly is coming from the north (the direction of Babylon)-it is coming!

v 21…Also her mercenaries in her midst (in Egypt) are like fattened calves (provided with everything to keep them fat and happy), for even they too have turned back and fled away together (in fear because they lost their courage); they did not stand their ground (past tense because the outcome is certain). For the day of their calamity has come upon them, the time of their punishment (when Yehovah’s wrath descends on them. This alludes to the birth-pains when Europe and the False Messiah will not stand before the kings of the east as they move into Israel to get to the False Messiah according to Yehovah’s wrath).

v 22…Its sound moves along like a serpent (hissing as it moves out of the thicket when someone approaches as it runs away); for they (Babylon) move on like an army and come to her (Egypt) as woodcutters with axes (to cut down the people).

v 23…For they (Babylon) have cut down her forest (the cities, towns, in habitants),” declares the Lord; “Surely it will no more be found (destruction is total), even though they (Egypt and her allies) are more numerous than locusts and are without number.

v 24…The daughter of Egypt has been put to shame (brought low before all the nations), given over to the power of the people of the north (Babylon).”

v 25…The Lord of hosts (Yehovah Tzavaot), the God of Israel, says, “Behold (see and take note), I am going to punish Amon of Thebes (a sun deity), and Pharaoh, and Egypt along with her gods and her kings (governors), even Pharaoh and those who trust in him (this also alludes to the False Messiah and those who follow him).

v 26…And I shall give them over to the power of those who are seeking their lives, even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and into the hands of his officers (who commands his army under him). Afterwards, however, it will be inhabited (again) as in the days of old (after 40 years-Ezek 29.11),” declares the Lord.

v 27…”But as for you, O Jacob my servant, do not fear, nor be dismayed, O Israel! For, see, I am going to save you from afar, and your descendants from the land of their captivity (in Babylon); and Jacob shall return and be undisturbed (by Babylon) and secure with no one making them tremble (eschatologically when Messiah comes).

v 28…O Jacob my servant, do not fear, ” declares the Lord, “for I am with you. For I shall make a full end of all the nations where I have driven you (Babylon and others), yet I shall not make a full end of you (the Jewish people remain a distinct people from all others and their captors are no more); but I shall correct you properly and by no means leave you unpunished (Yehovah will deal justly with Israel-Hos 5.15).”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament