In Rev 17.5 it says that Babylon the Great is the “Mother of Harlots.” The historian Herodotus says that in Babylon, a woman one time in her life was either offer herself to the “Asherah” in a sexual fashion to male priests, or shave her head. In some places it was on a certain day (Jewish Encyclopedia article “Ashtoret”). In Byblos (Tunisia) Asherah worship was included as a prominent feature in “weeping for Tammuz” (where the Catholic “Lent” came from) and women sacrificed their hair or their chastity.
In 2 Kings 11 we have a picture of the coronation of Yeshua after six years (6000 years) of being hidden. Athaliah, who usurped the throne, is deposed and she cries “Treason, Treason” as they killed the priests of Ba’al and got rid of her also. People today react exactly the same way if others don’t go along with Christmas, Easter and Valentines Day. Christianity has replaced truth with paganism. What is more Christian than Christmas. People who aren’t into it are told they don’t have the “Christmas spirit.” It is the same way with Easter, but not quite as bad. Valentine’s Day comes from some of the religious practices in Babylon that we just discussed. When are all the churches full or have a large attendance? Not on the Sabbath, or biblical festivals. What are they learning? Here is the heart of the matter.
Proverbs Chapters 1 through 7 presents the “adulteress, evil woman” (2.16-22, 5.3-23, 6.24-35, 7.1-27). She is contrasted with the virtuous woman of Prov 31.10-31. There are three applications for this contrast. It is literal, we are not to go to prostitutes, harlots and evil women. It is also a contrast between the righteous and the unrighteous. But it also is a contrast between true religion and false religion. That is what Rev 17.5 is referring to. We live with the harlot all around us. True knowledge, insight, understanding and wisdom come into play because the harlot is presenting herself as the virtuous woman, and perceived by those without true knowledge, insight, understanding and wisdom as the virtuous woman. It’s a seduction and you must be able to discern what is of the harlot and what is of the virtuous woman. Pagan worship was always attractive and fun and considered the “right thing to do.” People say “we don’t see any harm in a tree, or Easter eggs. We don’t do fertility rites.” But that is not the point. The point is “How long will you hesitate between two opinions? How long are you going to call worship of the Asherim and Ba’alim the worship of God?”
When you go to Israel, there many things to see. These sites are ranked as an “A” site which means they are sure the event happened there, a “B” site which means they are pretty sure, and a “C” site which means it is tradition and there isn’t much truth to it. For example, Yeshua was crucified at Golgotha, or Calvary, and there are three sites which include the Mount of Olives, Mount Moriah and Mount Zion. The traditional site is a “C” site because he was crucified north of the altar to fit the biblical pattern. The so-called “Garden Tomb” is not genuine and a “C” site because it is 800 years older than Yeshua was and it is not a first century tomb.. The “Upper Room” is a “C” site. The Church of the Nativity is a “C” site because it is not in the right place. Yeshua was born in Migdal Eder (Micah 4.8) just outside Bethlehem, meaning “tower of the flock.” This was where the priestly shepherds watched over the sheep that were destined to be sacrificed in the Temple. He was not born in a cave, but a “sukkah” because it was during Sukkot that he was born. The Church of the Nativity is one of the most pagan sites in Israel. People know all of this and they still go there and want to see them, and will even pay to do it.. It’s the same thing with the Christian festivals and holy days, a “delusion.” It is “tradition” based on Gentile, pagan customs. So, what do you do? John 8.31-32 says “If you abide (live) in my word then you are truly a disciple of mine and you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.”
After all this, now we can begin to understand what the Lord meant in Micah 1.13 where it says that “Lachish…She was the beginning of sin.” It was her fault and the beginning of a “strong delusion.” It is our opinion that the Abomination of Desolation would be categorized biblically as a “Asherim.” Isa 40 through 46 talks about an idol being made and contrasted it with the greatness of God. We believe a crucifix could fit very nicely into what is being described there. Here are some reasons why: this idol is in the image of a man (44.13); fastened to a tree with nails (40.20, 41.7); in houses (44.13); worn around the neck (40.19 like in Est 3.2); it is carried on the shoulder (45.20, 46.7); with nails (41.7); called an abomination (44.19); compared to God (40.18, 25); called God (44.17, 45.20). These verses fit the category of an Asherim. We believe that a crucifix fits this description, and the Abomination of Desolation will be a crucifix.
Isa 45.20 was part of a prayer called the Oleynu. In the Hertz Authorized Prayer Book, page 551-552, it says that the Oleynu is one of the oldest prayers still prayed and predated the destruction of the Temple. However, Christianity wanted Isa 45.20 to be taken out of this prayer because they saw it as an attack on the crucifix, even though the prayer pre-dated Christianity. It is also possible that an Asherah will be placed alongside of the Asherim/Crucifix based on what Manasseh did in 2 Chr 33.7 and 2 Kings 21.1-7. What would this “Asherah” be? In Jer 44.17-25 we learn about the “Queen of Heaven.” That is a title for “Mary” in Christianity, and we believe that when the Abomination of Desolation (crucifix) goes up in the Temple, a statue of Mary will be alongside. The Catholic Church has already said that where there is a crucifix, a statue of Mary should be near because she is considered a “co-redemptrix” of mankind. We know that the false messiah will stop the services in the Temple, and what better illustration that the “Law has been done away with” and there is no need for animal sacrifices anymore than to put up a crucifix and a statue of Mary in the Temple. Apostate Christianity won’t even blink an eye if that happened.
Micah 1.16…”make yourself bald” is a pagan practice for the dead and for mourning. It shows that you have given yourself over to paganism, but the practice is forbidden in the Torah. It also refers to the practice mentioned above about Babylonian women who would shave their head rather than to give themselves over to be a temple prostitute one time in her life. It is like saying “go into idolatry” and the fullness of it. In Egypt they shaved their heads for religious reasons and wore wigs. It was also done because of lice. What these verses have been telling us is that the Shephelah Valley is immersed in idolatry, which was the real enemy, not the Assyrians. Zeph 1.12 says that the Lord would rather have us totally for him or against him, not mixing Godly practices with pagan practices. This practice is rampant in the faith today, and we are not just talking about Christianity. Even in the so-called “Messianic Movement” or “Messianic Judaism” there are practices that relate right back to paganism. For example, the “kippah” or “yarmulke” is a curious practice. It is one of Judaism’s most sacred items. You cannot worship without wearing one in some places (Western Wall for example). But what it symbolizes is the sun and the sun god. The roundness alludes to the sun and the “nimbus” circle over the heads of saints and “holy ones” in Catholic imagery. Sun worship was rampant in Rome and the round shaped hats was a physical representation of the sun disk. Ever notice that Catholic clergy from the bishops to the pope wear one? Anciently, sun worshippers would “round the head” into a sun disk and the “hat” was a way to further identify with the sun god and this pagan practice. The practice in the church of shaving the head in the form of a circle is called a “tonsure.” As far as the round head covering called a “kippah”, the Jews just borrowed the practice from the Catholics, who had it before the Jews did. There are other practices and myths such as this that relate back to paganism, but you get the idea. IN other words, we need to be careful about what we are doing, not just doing it because everyone else does or “if the Jews do it, it must be ok.” The “harlot” is everywhere calling herself the “virtuous woman.”
In Part 8 we will pick up here and begin in Micah 2 with more charges against the government and religious leaders.