We are going to begin an overview of the seven year Birth-pains, with many concepts. Looking at the last ten kings of Judah, we begin with King Jotham, which is a picture of the first year of the Birthpains. And remember, America has been destroyed by the Russians and they will be fighting and winning a conventional war in Europe. The Two Witnesses and the 144,000 are working in Israel, and will be for three and a half years. The Temple services are being conducted in Jerusalem. The second king is King Ahaz, and what happens in his reign will be a picture of year two of the Birth-pains. The Russians are still fighting with Europe and the false messiah. Arab countries like Syria, Saudi Arabia and the Palestinians attack the second Jewish state in Israel (2 Chr 28.16-21) and defeats them. Israel is about to fall (Judea and Samaria) and Russia comes to their aid (2 Kings 16.7-9). Damascus falls by the Russians (Isa 7). This war occurs in the second year of the Birth-pains. The war of the second year sets up a conspiracy in the third year, which sets up the Russian invasion of Israel. But, here is the problem we face in this teaching. It would take about 8 hours to develop this war, and the conspiracy alone would take several hours, and the invasion of Gog and Magog (Russia) would take 12 hours at least. So, we will hit the high points of what happens.
Syria occupies the mountains of Ephraim (Judea and Samaria). Elat is the only deep water port in the south. The Palestinians will overthrow the second Jewish state on the West Bank, then take Elat. Then the Palestinians swing up and attack the Shephelah Valley and then swing south into the Negev. The Shephelah Valley is essential to the defense of Israel. Saudi Arabia (Edom) will take Elat from the Palestinians then push up to the Negev. This is a very crucial time, worse than the 1973 Yom Kippur War. Israel is about to fall. Now, go to Isa 7.1-25 and you will see four references to the Day of the Lord (“in that day” in v 18, 20, 21, 23). We have a familiar prophecy in Isa 7.14 that has three fulfillments. In the literal (peshat) level it is referring to Ahaz and his son Maher Shalal Hashbaz. In the mystical or hidden (sowd) level it is referring to Yeshua being born 2000 years ago, but it also is a prophecy about Yeshua the Messiah being born into the hearts of the people on Yom Kippur of the third year of the Birthpains. Remember, prophecies can have numerous fulfillments. In the literal (peshat) level, God was going to raise up Tiglat-Pilaser III to help Israel and destroy the two kings of the north and south. Isa 8.1-4 says the same thing, and these kings would be defeated before the child (Maher Shalal Hasbaz of Isa 7.14) can even cry out for his mother and father.
In Isa 7.22 we have the expression “land of milk and honey” and it does not mean prosperous as some teach. It is a Hebrew idiom for “uncultivated, unfarmed or a land devastated by war” meaning good for grazing. As a side note, in the Golan during the 1973 war, Syria had land mines hidden all over the place and Israel didn’t know where. So they grazed cattle there and every once in awhile one would go off. Anyway, in 2 Kings 16.7-9 Tigalt-Pilaser gets what he wants from Ahaz to help. The war is won but Judah becomes a vassal state, meaning they have no independence and they must pay tribute. In the north it is worse. Damascus is destroyed and the north is captured. They become a province of Assyria which means they now have Assyrian rulers, gods and so on. Later, King Hezekiah, the third king of the last ten kings of Judah, tries to break away from being a vassal state in Judah. Now, here are the major players during this time. Edom (Saudi Arabia in prophecy), the Ishmaelites (the Beduins), Moab (Jordan), Hagarites (Jordan), Gebal (Jordan), Ammon (Jordan), Amalek (enemies of Israel), Philistia (Palestinians), Tyre (Lebanon) and Assyria (Russia).
Now, remember, to understand prophecy you must look at it from four levels. There is a “peshat, remez, drash and sowd level.” The peshat (literal) level and the “sowd” (mystical hidden) level is what we are dealing with most of the time with what happens during the Birth-pains. We have already established that Assyria is a picture of Russia. So, we have a war in the second year of the Birth-pains (because it happens during the reign of King Ahaz, the second king of the last ten kings of Judah) and Israel nearly falls, but they call on Assyria (Russia) for help. Why wouldn’t America come? Why wouldn’t Europe help, who they had a treaty with? Europe is already fighting the Russians and losing. The hands of the false messiah are “tied” and he can’t help. America is Babylon in prophecy. Here are some indicators from Jeremiah 50 and 51 unless otherwise indicated. (we have a whole teaching on this called “Is America Babylon” on this site): it is a rich economic giant (51.13), the last of the great Gentile nations (50.12), defenses rise to the heavens (51.53), a large Jewish population (Isa 48), established on the Word of God but departed (50.21..look up Merathaim and Pekod), anti-Semitism in the land (50.7), the land of plenty and liberty (Ezek 23.23), a mingled people (50.16, 37), sits on many waters (51.13), a land divided by waters (Isa 18), a treacherous dealer (Isa 21.2), filled with pride (Isa 47.10), covetous (51.13), land of idols (50.3), hammer of the earth (50.23), nations stream into it (51.44), land of forts (51.32…”marshes” were used as defensive forts), described as a whore (51.58…”broad wall” in Hebrew is “Rahab” meaning “prostitute”), Russia is her enemy (51.27.. “Minni” is the Scythians/Russia). More is written in the Scriptures on her destruction than any other nation (Jer 50, 51; Zeph 3; Zech 2; Micah 4; Isa 13, 14, 18, 21, 24, 26, 47, 48 to name a few).
When is America destroyed? When the Natzal occurs on Tishri 1, year 6001 from creation, there will be several things happening. But by Tishri 8 America’s time will come, and she is judged and destroyed in one hour/day by Russia. Europe will be in a panic and will hold a meeting. The false messiah is in that meeting, and he has a plan. The nations gathered there agree, and give him authority to defend Europe from Russia because they are afraid that they are next. In the prophecies, Egypt is a picture of the Europe, and neither can come to Israel’s aid. In Rev 13.1 we see a seven-headed beast rising from out of the sea. He is known as “Leviathan.” This is a well developed concept. In Mesopotamia he is known as “Lotan.” Leviathan and Lotan have the same semitic root. Leviathan is seen in Job 41.1, 4,,6, 34; Isa 27.1 and Psa 74.13-14 where in this verse, the Lord looks back to when Israel came out of Egypt and Pharaoh (the false messiah) is killed. This portion is a reading for Yom Kippur, when we know that the false messiah will be killed. Leviathan is also synonymous with Azazel (Lev 16), the goat that is sent into the wilderness, and in later years, is killed on Yom Kippur. Leviathan is associated with Pharaoh, who died in the sea chasing Israel (Psa 136.15). Pharaoh “owned” the Israelites, but once he is killed, they were free. The “serpent” on Pharaoh’s crown is also symbolic of this “twisted serpent” (what Leviathan means).
In Deut 4.20, Egypt is called an “iron furnace” and this is what it was like under Pharaoh. But Egypt is a picture of Europe in eschatology, and Israel was literally put in “iron furnaces” during the Holocaust, which means “burnt offering” or “Olah” in Hebrew. In Ezek 29.3, we have the sea monster (“tannin”) mentioned, talking about Pharaoh. In Greek this word is translated as “dracon” (dragon), which is Satan in Rev 12. It also means “beast.” In Ezek 32.2 we have the same thing. In Isa 19.4, we have a prophecy about Egypt (Europe) being delivered into the hands of a “cruel master” (the false messiah). What the Lord did was take the nations from the ancient world and use them for double references and types for a future eschatological understanding of the Birth-pains. In Isa 30.6-7 we have the term “Rahab” and this is a term for Egypt, prostitute, broad wall (fortress) and pride. Egypt was called this because it was seen in the ancient world as a fortress, and prostitutes made their homes in the “broad walls.” There is a lot of Scripture dealing with Pharaoh and Egypt which will give us a lot of details about Europe and the false messiah. So, in review, in a war in the second year of the Birth-pains Israel is nearly destroyed. They call on Russia for aid. Why doesn’t Russia attack Israel at this point when Ezekiel says they will? Because Israel has nuclear weapons too, and there is such a thing as the “Masada Complex” which means Israel is willing to self-destruct and take everyone else with them if attacked. Russia wants Israel intact, so they will conspire with others through intrigue and deception to get what they want. Oil and a warm water port in Israel is the goal. They don’t want a nuclear wasteland. Experts figure there is more oil in Israel than there is in Saudi Arabia. And last, but not least, God’s timing always plays a role in eschatological fulfillments. In Part 6, we are going to begin discussing why the Birth-pains begin and then move into more concepts related to the second coming of the Messiah.