Sunday, November 19, 2006

What time is it?

Entry for Monday, 10 July, 2006

We are coming up on the fast of Tammuz 17th on Thursday. We are entering a period of time when many bad things have happened in Jewish history. In Western society, people tend to think of time as running in a straight line, but that's not the scriptural view of time. Time is like a spiral.

God wants us to observe the moedim - appointed times of scripture - because they are signposts on the road for us. Of course, this requires using God's calendar, not the regular Western Calendar, because God works on His schedule, not ours. The festivals that we are commanded to observe are not just commemorations of past events. They are also prophetic in nature. By knowing when you are, you know where you are in God's plan for the present age. This coming Thursday, Tammuz 17th, has been a bad day. It is symbolically the time that we could call "the modern age," between the betrothal of God to His people, [the spring festivals of Pesach, Firstfruits, and the giving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai on Shavout (Pentecost)], and the inauguration of the Messianic Age [represented by the fall festivals of Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot (Tabernacles)] when the Messiah will rule and God actually takes up residence in the future Temple at Jerusalem. The prophets wax eloquent about this era, you can read all about it. In the meantime, here we are.

The events that take place between the spring and fall festivals are not good ones, they are bad ones. Expulsions, conquests, and the destruction of the first two temples are the types of things that occur during this time. That these things keep happening on the same dates over and over is not a coincidence. It is because each "date" on the spiral can be connected to a straight line to that same "date" in all the years above and below it.

It's like taking a coil and welding a straight rod to it. The point at which the rod touches each spiral arm of the coil is one "date." And when you tap the rod, the vibration travels along it and is transferred to every tangent on the spiral it touches - bad vibes, in the case of Tammuz 17th. Good vibes on other days.

God also commands that many of the appointed times be observed as Sabbaths. The Yom Kippur war is an excellent illustration of why God decided everyone needed to be home and have all their shopping done before hand on these days - if the Arabs had attacked at any other time, Israel would not have been ready. But since Yom Kippur is a Shabbat, everyone was home or on base, not wandering about shopping or running about the town or beach, or vacationing - so when the attack came, everyone could respond immediately.

More recently, it is fascinating to notice that the first Gulf war stopped abruptly and surprisingly on the festival of Purim in 1992, and then started back up again just as abruptly on - guess when, class! - Purim of 2002. It's like God stopped His prophetic stopwatch for exactly ten years (Hebrew time - you had to know the Jewish calendar to be aware of this oddity). And then, for whatever reason, He started it up again, right where it left off.

King Hezekiah was given a 15 year reprieve from his judgement, so we know that this has happened before, probably more than once. The only way to tell what's going on is to be aware of God's calendar. So I strongly recommend you make yourself familiar with God's appointed times. He's trying to tell you something, class. But you have to be willing to listen.

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