Sunday, August 7, 2016

What About Us? (U.S.)

“And it will come to pass at the same time, when Gog comes against the land of Israel,” says the Lord GOD, “that My fury will show in My face. “For in My jealousy and in the fire of My wrath I have spoken: ‘Surely in that day there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel, ‘so that the fish of the sea, the birds of the heavens, the beasts of the field, all creeping things that creep on the earth, and all men who are on the face of the earth shall shake at My presence. The mountains shall be thrown down, the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground.’ “I will call for a sword against Gog throughout all My mountains,” says the Lord GOD. “Every man’s sword will be against his brother. “And I will bring him to judgment with pestilence and bloodshed; I will rain down on him, on his troops, and on the many peoples who are with him, flooding rain, great hailstones, fire, and brimstone. “Thus I will magnify Myself and sanctify Myself, and I will be known in the eyes of many nations. Then they shall know that I am the LORD.” ’  Ezekiel 38:18-23  NKJV

Is the United States mentioned in Bible prophecy?  If you ask anyone who teaches Biblical prophecy they will almost certainly tell you that this is the one question most often asked by those to whom they are speaking.  Personally, I understand completely why people would be interested in the answer to that question because of the prominent role the United States has played in world affairs for so many years.  It seems inconceivable that in any scenario regarding a conflict occurring at the end of this age that the Bible describes would not somehow involve the United States of America.

Except it doesn’t.

Now I, like many of you, have read opinions from some who believe that it is possible we are mentioned but in a rather obscure way.  Now although I would be willing to admit the possibility, when I look at some of the opinions put forward by these individuals it appears to me that it is necessary to adopt what I could best describe as “interpretive gymnastics” to hold to their views.  Since I believe that, over the years I have come to the personal conclusion that we are not mentioned simply because we are not involved.  If this is in fact, what occurs, then we are faced with the question as to why?  What I want to share with you today are some of the possible reasons why I believe that might be the case.

It’s not about us (U.S.)

The passage above from the book of Ezekiel describes the attempted invasion by Gog of Israel which many believe immediately precedes the Tribulation, and is in fact the conflict which allows the antichrist to present himself as the peacemaker of the world. If you read closely, it becomes clear that God desires to make the point that the nation of Israel is His personal possession.  The land, the people, and everything else is His and His alone.  It is all about God and His chosen people standing alone against the rest of the world.  For the U.S. to involve itself would simply “muddy the waters” so to speak, and not only take away from God the opportunity to show His power and might, it would also take the focus off of Israel and God’s personal relationship with it.

 God doesn’t need us (U.S.)

Have you ever really asked yourself this question?  I tend to get a little nervous laughter when I mention this simply because many never really consider it.  One obvious reason we don’t get involved is simply because God doesn’t need our help to defend the nation of Israel.  If you take the time to count, God uses the words My, Myself, and I, fifteen times in six verses.  I don’t know about you, but that makes me believe this event is rather personal to God, and He desires to use it to make clear to the entire world exactly who He is, and who they are truly fighting against.  Not to mention the fact that a close reading of this passage and particularly what God chooses to do to show His power in this case makes any support we might want to send rather unnecessary don’t you think?

Many of us (U.S.) are gone.

This of course, is my personal favorite.  As a believer holding to the position of a pre-tribulation rapture of the Church, an obvious contributing factor to the non-involvement of the U.S. would be the fact that many of us have already gone home.  This leads me to conclude that since the U.S. is not mentioned; those left behind are not all that interested in getting involved in helping Israel defend itself against the rest of the world.  In fact, I personally have no problem believing that those left behind are rather more than willing to join with the rest of those left behind who wish to persecute Israel and seek its destruction.  Consider if you will, a world after the rapture of the Church in which there is no one left willing to defend God’s chosen people and you can understand why the last seven years are called the time of Jacob’s trouble.

“And I will send fire on Magog and on those who live in security in the coastlands. Then they shall know that I am the LORD.”  Ezekiel 39:6  NKJV

If you are at all familiar with the subject we have discussed today, I am sure you are familiar with this verse from Ezekiel as well.  It has been cited often as possibly the biggest reason the United States is not mentioned, and a clue as to the future of this country.  Those conclusions, however, are contingent upon the translation of two words found in this verse, those being “fire” and “coastlands”.  Considering the state of our country at this particular time in history, and the decisions being made at the highest levels of our government, many believe what is described here can accurately be called a well-deserved judgment from God.  My thoughts on that next week.

Keep watching.