Michael Parenti - one of the most astute observers of today's "world condition" - writes in the magazine Covert Action Quarterly:
"The goal of conservative rulers around the world, LED BY THOSE WHO OCCUPY THE SEATS OF POWER IN WASHINGTON, is the systematic rollback of democratic gains, public services, and common living standards ..."
Wow! - quite a statement. But it's true, nonetheless! Parenti calls those who are a part of this "ruling class" (i.e., the "conservative rulers" in Washington D.C. - and most specifically, the Bush Administration and their lapdogs in the Christian Right) a "RABIDLY ... (anti-leftist) PLUTOCRACY." [NOTE: a plutocracy is an oligarchy that measures its worth by the money it possesses (and isn't this what today's corporate culture is all about? - the corporate culture of Bernie Ebbers, Ken Lay, etc.] Parenti goes on to say that the only thing this plutocracy wants is "EVERYTHING:"
"All the choice lands, forests, game, herds, harvests, mineral deposits and precious metals of the earth; all the wealth, riches, and profitable returns; all the productive facilities, gainful inventiveness, and technologies; all the surplus value produced by human labor; all the control positions of the state and other major institutions; all public supports and subsides, privileges and immunities; all the protections of the law with none of the constraints; all the services, comforts, luxuries, and advantages of civil society with none of the taxes and costs. Every 'ruling class' has wanted only this: all the rewards and none of the burdens."
It is PRECISELY this kind of rapacity - the kind that Parenti describes above - that is motivating the Bush Administration's preparation for an attack on Iraq. What this "elite of greed and avarice" wants is to secure the oil wealth of Iraq for itself. That's what this elite is really after; that's what the war in Afghanistan is really all about - i.e., grabbing the oil wealth of Central Asia for the American oil companies; and that's what the coming war in Iraq is all about too - grabbing the oil riches of the Middle East. [Please see our article on this subject, "The War in Afghanistan: It's Not What You Think."]
The truth of the matter is, Iraq poses no real threat to the United States per se. According to most objective outside sources, Iraq no longer has any weapons of mass destruction. This is the considered opinion of most observers (other than those in the current Bush Administration and their mouthpieces on Fox News, and in the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times). This is certainly what former Defense Secretary William Cohen thinks. Indeed, Cohen advised the incoming administration that "Saddam Hussein's forces are in a state where he cannot possibly pose a threat to his neighbors." This is also what Scott Ritter, the outspoken former US Marine and U.N. weapons inspector, thinks.
Nonetheless, the Bush Administration is intent on making war with Iraq as evidenced by Bush's assertion in his January 2002 "Axis of Evil" speech that Iraq has been plotting to "develop anthrax and nerve gas and nuclear weapons" - a speech in which he fulminated against "... a regime that agreed to international inspections then kicked out the inspectors ... a regime that has something to hide ..." [Of course, what Bush doesn't say is that the Americans did everything they could to get themselves kicked out of Iraq in order to facilitate (and "explain away") their upcoming attack.]
The very real truth of the matter is, all this talk about nerve gas, anthrax, nuclear weapons, Iraq's supposed connection to al-Qaeda, etc. is just that - TALK. It's a smoke-screen to hide what's really driving the Bush Administration - which is to block a developing attempt by the Europeans, the Chinese and to a lesser degree, the Russians to "get in on" the burgeoning "oil action" in Iraq which has been, according to Stephanie Reich of the Alliance for Global Justice in Washington D.C., an "unintended consequence" of the U.N.'s "Oil for Food" program for that benighted nation that the Americans were "talked into accepting" several years ago.
Reich says that under the Oil for Food program, European countries (and the oil companies "indigenous" to them) have benefited the most. These countries have purposefully pursued policies less hostile to Baghdad in "showy" and "pretentious" contradiction to the austere policies pursued by the United States - and they have earned Iraq's gratitude for doing so. As a result, they are now poised to benefit most from exploration and investment in Iraqi oil once the sanctions are lifted. However, THIS WILL NEVER DO insofar as the Americans are concerned. The U.S. has no desire to share control of these riches with anyone - not even with its slavish and servile allies in Europe.
Of course, the fact that - at least at first blush - the Europeans appear to be taking a more "principled" position toward the people of Iraq than do the Americans doesn't make the Europeans any better: the truth is, they are as much set on pillaging the Iraqis of their oil wealth as the Americans are. No! - what we really have here is not some battle over "high principles" and "humanitarian considerations" - as the Europeans would like the world to believe - but a fight that resembles more a struggle between two New York Mafia crime syndicates over "turf" than it does anything else.
The Europeans (along with the Russians and the Chinese) have now been relegated to "secondary status" insofar as the oil riches of Central Asia are concerned. Now what the Americans are attempting to do is block the Europeans from playing any kind of "primary role" in the rape of Iraq's oil wealth. [Please see our article. "The War in Afghanistan: It's Not What You Think;" please also see our earlier article, "The Caucasus Mountains, Gog, Magog, And Chevron Oil," for a thorough discussion of how the United States blocked the Russians from access to the oil riches of Central Asia and the Caspian Sea.]
In all of this, of course, the people of Iraq and the Middle East don't even enter into the calculations of either the elites in the United States or in Europe - not any more than the people of the Bronx in New York City would count for anything in a "turf war" between the Gambino crime family and the Bonanos. They don't count. They don't count insofar as the Americans are concerned, and - despite European protestations to the contrary - they don't count insofar as the European elites are concerned either. The prize for both "crime syndicates" is the oil fields (which are far-removed from Iraq's main population centers and could - thus - be held with a minimum of force. What happens to the people in Baghdad and elsewhere in Iraq is of little concern to either the American or European elites. It's the oil that counts - the people just get in the way.
Once one comes to an appreciation of these facts, what's happening in Iraq becomes plain enough: it explains why the Europeans have been so "reluctant" to join America's crusade against Saddam Hussein. As we just indicated, there's no real consideration here by the Europeans for the Iraqi people! - NONE! No! - what they're aiming at is to thwart America's conquest of Iraq which would relegate them permanently to "junior partner status" in the Middle East insofar as America's "New World Order System" is concerned - a position which, though they have benefited greatly from it over the years - drives them nuts! Pretty hard for the proud Europeans (who once ruled the world) to "knuckle under" now to the Americans. Kind of like a once proud and autocratic parent who at one time ruled his family with an iron hand, but who now - as a result of the infirmities of old age -has been forced to move in with his son and kowtow to him. This kind of "role-reversal" is hard for any parent - so also now for the once mighty (and haughty) Europeans.
What the Europeans see in Iraq is an unexpected opportunity to play a leading role there, and perhaps (if they "play their cards right") more of a leading role in the Middle East, which in the end might result in their sharing more equally with the Americans in divvying up the treasure there.
In this game, the Europeans know they cannot match America's military muscle - which isn't to say that the Europeans would ever consider actually going up against the Americans militarily; it's just that they are so weak from a military standpoint that even if the Americans were to step aside and let the Europeans "have a go" at Iraq, it's doubtful that they could accomplish much. No! - like any aging person, what the Europeans hope to do is gain "by cunning and slight of hand" what they can't get through strength. They hope to do this by (1) dissuading the Americans from their planned assault on Iraq, (2) by getting the sanctions lifted, and (3) by ingratiating themselves with Hussein. In other words, while they can't out-muscle the Americans, they hope to out-smart them - and they hope to do this by appealing to America's "better nature" and "sense of fair play," and by bringing the weight of world-opinion to bear against them.
Unfortunately for the Europeans, the Americans aren't playing along. The Americans are by now so strong, they really don't care about "world opinion." They didn't care about it insofar as Kyoto was concerned, they didn't care about it insofar as the new "World Court" was concerned, and they don't care about it now. Maybe the Clinton Administration could have been "suckered" into "caring," but not the Bush Administration. The fact is, the Bushites and their allies in the Christian Right rather delight in "sticking" it to the U.N. and world opinion.
No! - the Americans are going into Iraq with or without the Europeans - and, in the end, the Europeans will probably go along; after all, if they persist in their inane game of trying to "shame" the Americans into compliance with "world opinion," they may be left totally on the outside with NOTHING to show for their efforts. The truth is, the Europeans tried playing this "game" in Central Asia - at least initially. But, in the end, they caved. Why? - because Bush toured the European capitals and - in closed-door meetings with his European counterparts - told them that they had better get on board in his "War on Terrorism" in Central Asia or lose out COMPLETELY in the "oil rush" that's going on there - i.e., that America would "lock them out" of the area if they didn't acquiesce to its wishes. Shortly after that, as we indicated in earlier articles, France dispatched fighter aircraft to America's huge base at Manas in Kyrgystan, and the Dutch and the Germans pledged more troops to garrison Kabul with.
And make no mistake about it, the stakes in Iraq are enormous from a monetary standpoint. There are more than SEVENTY known oilfields in Iraq, only fifteen of which have been developed. In this regard, Stephanie Reich reports that Noam Chomsky is more than just a little frightened about what's happening in the Middle East now: that AMERICA IS MANEUVERING FOR AN "END GAME" THERE, and they are being driven by the MAGNITUDE of the prize that Gulf and Central Asian energy reserves and markets represent. According to Chomsky, this has resulted in a "BOTTOMLESS DEPTH OF U.S. DETERMINATION TO GAIN CONTROL OVER THEM (i.e., the oil fields) REGARDLESS OF THE COST."
To this end, Chomsky believes, the real target of U.S. hostility in the Middle East is the populations that inhabit that area. Reich reports:
"CHOMSKY NOW BELIEVES THAT THE U.S. WOULD PREFER TO REDUCE IRAQ (AND THE REST OF THE MIDDLE EAST) TO A SPARSELY POPULATED, POLITICALLY COMPLIANT, OIL-PUMPING ... (AREA)."
If that's the case, all the talk by opponents of a U.S. attack on Iraq that such an attack would destabilize the Middle East, and lead to the further radicalization (and, ipso facto, the Izlamization) of the populations there, falls on deaf ears. Why? - because that's what the U.S. elites are aiming at: it would give them an excuse to permanently DEPOPULATE the area, especially if American policies in the Middle East radicalize the people there to such an extent that they are "revved up" to the point that they brashly attack Israel. Such an attack would undoubtedly lead to a MASSIVE retaliatory response from Israel which - if it is a nuclear response - would serve "nicely" to depopulate the area, exactly what the U.S. elites want.
And isn't that PRECISELY the kind of outcome the Bible says will occur as a result of the Gog/Magog War? Of course it is! Read the Scriptures for yourself. The Bible says:
"And they that dwell in the cities of Israel shall go forth (after the war), and shall set on fire and burn the weapons, both the shields and the bucklers, the bows and the arrows, and the handstaves, and the spears, and THEY SHALL BURN THEM WITH FIRE SEVEN YEARS: [Now think about that, SEVEN YEARS: it gives you an idea of the extent of the victory - i.e., that it will take seven years to clean up the mess, which, interestingly, is the length of the Tribulation period - please see Chapter V of the Antipas Papers, "Understanding the Book of Revelation;" please also see Chapter VI of the Antipas Papers, "The Gog / Magog War."]
"And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will give unto Gog a place there of graves in Israel, the valley of the passengers on the east of the sea: and it shall stop the noses of the passengers: and there shall they bury Gog and all his multitude: and they shall call it The valley of Hamongog.
"And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the land.
"Yea, all the people of the land shall bury them; and it shall be to them a renown the day that I shall be glorified, saith the Lord GOD.
"And they shall sever out men of continual employment, passing through the land to bury with the passengers those that remain upon the face of the earth, to cleanse it: after the end of seven months shall they search." (Ezek. 39:2, 3-5, 7-9, 11-14)
But that all of this (i.e., all this carnage and destruction) isn't just "happen-chance" and the result of "irresistible historic forces" between the sons of Ishmael and the sons of Isaac, but rather the result of the evil machinations and maneuvering of a small cabal of greedy, self-centered, avaricious American oil elites is BREATHTAKING in its CRIMINALITY!
You say no? No one could be that cold-blooded! Well, you had better think again! Think! - if the U.S. attacks Iraq, and topples the government there, it will ENFLAME the area. The populations of the Middle East will go ballistic! - and governments will begin to topple like so many pins in a bowling alley. The fact of the matter is, Egypt, Jordan, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Pakistan, and even Turkey are teetering on the brink of Islamic revolution. Iran is already there. And it wouldn't take much for Syria and Libya to join in the general tumult.
But surely, you say, this is not what the United States wants. Oh, really? Chomsky believes so. Again, in his view, what the United States really wants in the Middle East is so CRIMINAL that most people could not help but reject it as simply too iniquitous an undertaking for anyone to take seriously. [We urge you here - with all of our hearts - to read, re-read, and read again our article, "Israel And The Renewed Struggle For The Holy Land;" we know that it is an long article, but it is so fundamental to what's happening today in the Middle East.]
But one must pause here and remember what the Gog / Magog War is all about: it results out of a treaty that the Scriptures call YOUR (i.e., Israel's) COVENANT WITH DEATH, AND YOUR AGREEMENT WITH HELL (Isaiah 28:15), and if that's the case, can there be any real good produced for Israel as a result of it? No! - of course not. As Jesus said,
"Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit." (Matt. 12:33)
The coming war between Israel and her Arab neighbors - the one the Bible calls the "Gog/Magog War," the war that Bush's incursion into Iraq will undoubtedly help to catalyze - will, sadly, be largely a CONTRIVED war. Israel and her opponents have allowed themselves to be maneuvered into it - and its the U.S. [and to a lesser extent, England (at least initially)] that has done most of the maneuvering. The very real fact of the matter is, the idea (story) of Jerusalem as an "Islamic Holy City" is a very recent invention that originated out of a scheme generated by the British to enlist Arab support to stop Jewish migration into the Holy Land prior to Israel's establishment as a nation in 1948. Now, of course, it has become "fact" to most Arabs - and so much so that Jerusalem has been transformed into -
"... a cup of trembling unto all the people round about ... And ... a burdensome stone for all people ..." (Zech. 12:2-3)
And even more than that, the so-called "Islamic Revolution" - which now has become the main instrumentality through which the Arab people hope to destroy Israel - is nothing more than another American invention that the U.S. helped to create and nurture as a movement to counter what it considered fifty years ago to be the main threat against U.S. interests in the Middle East: RADICAL SOCIALISM. That's what Nasser in Egypt, Quadafi in Libya, and the Baathist parties in Iraq and Syria were all about.
To the U.S., Islam was seen as a religious "counter-weight" to the influence of socialism and the Soviet Union. The fact is, all of today's radical Islamic groups that are presently "bombing the hell" out of Israel are creations of the United States, from the Islamic Brotherhood in Egypt, to the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan and Iran, to Hamas and Herzbollah in Lebanon and Palestine. Every single one of these groups were originally funded with U.S. money and CIA backing. It is precisely this kind of maneuvering that has made war between Israel and her Arab neighbors all but inevitable - and so much so that the Bible says that it has - sadly - become a "PERPETUAL HATRED." (Ezekiel 35:5)
Seen from this perspective, the relationship between Israel and the United States is kind of like the relationship that would exist between a person who surreptitiously "bonged" someone over the head, blamed it on one of his friends, and then offers to hold his friend's coat when the fight breaks out - which pretty much describes the relationship that the Bible says will exist between "prophetic Babylon" and Israel at the "end of the age." [Please see Chapter VI of the Antipas Papers, "The Gog/Magog War;" for the identification of the United States as "prophetic Babylon," please see our article, "In Search of Babylon: What Do The Scriptures Say?"]
Specifically, the Bible says:
"And he [i.e., the "King of Babylon" - again, please see our article, "In Search of Babylon; What do the Scriptures Say?"] shall confirm the covenant with many (Israel) for one week (seven years): and in the midst of the week (after three and a half years) he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate." (Dan. 9:27a) [Please see Chapter V of the Antipas Papers, "Understanding the Book of Revelation" for a "time line" for the Tribulation Period."]
The living Bible translates this passage thus:
"This king [Antichrist - please see Chapter XIII of the Antipas Papers, "Anti-Christ, King of Babylon."] will make a seven year TREATY with the people [Israel], but after half that time, he will break his pledge and stop the Jews from all their sacrifices and their offerings; then as a climax to all his terrible deeds, the enemy [Antichrist] shall utterly defile the sanctuary of God [which is to say, he shall commit the Abomination of Desolation]." (Daniel 9:27a LB)
J. Dwight Pentecost writes:
"According to Daniel 9:26-27 the prince of the Roman empire (i.e., the West, called Babylon) will make a covenant with Israel for a seven year period. This covenant evidently ... guarantees Israels integrity [is a defense pact] ... [and] also is a Satanic imitation of the fulfillment of the Abrahamic covenant [see Chapter III of the Antipas Papers, "The Distinction Between Israel and the Church" - specifically that section that deals with the promises of God to Israel.] which ... [guaranteed] Israel title deed to the land. This action is pictured by John [in the Apocalypse] (Rev. 16:2) as a rider going forth to conquer [as the first horseman in the Apocalypse] ... This condition exists for three and one-half years, after which the covenant is broken by the ... [Antichrist]."
The treaty will be in the form of a defense pact between Israel and Prophetic Babylon (i.e., the United States) and will be directed against Israels enemies - again, no doubt a coalition of Islamic fundamentalist states in the Middle East. One of the most eminent scholars on "Last Things," Sir Robert Anderson, says that the signing of this treaty will signify the beginning of the Seventieth Week - i.e., the "Tribulation Period!" Anderson writes:
"... the Seventieth Week [the seven year period of the Tribulation] will be a definite period of time, of which the beginning, the middle, and the end are definitely marked [by certain well defined events (please see chart #2, in Chapter V of the Antipas Papers, "Understanding the Book of Revelation")]. [Just as the beginning of the first sixty-nine weeks were signified] ... not by the return of the Jews from Babylon, nor yet by the rebuilding of their Temple, but by the SIGNING OF THE PERSIAN DECREE [TREATY] which restored ... [them], so also the beginning of the Seventieth Week will date not from their restoration to Judea [May 14, 1948], nor yet from the future rebuilding of their shrine, but from the SIGNING OF THE [DEFENSE] TREATY BY THE COMING PRINCE [ANTICHRIST]."
THE UNITED STATES IS NOT ISRAEL'S FRIEND
BUT THE UNITED STATES IS NOT ISRAEL'S FRIEND! The fact is, the Bible calls the country with whom Israel has covenanted with here (i.e., the United States) an "OVERFLOWING SCOURGE." Pretty heavy! - and it warns Israel that this "overflowing scourge" will eventually BETRAY it:
"... your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the OVERFLOWING SCOURGE shall pass through, THEN YE SHALL BE TRODDEN DOWN BY IT." (Is. 28:18) ["Overflowing scourge?" - this is certainly a pretty good description of the United States: just ask the peoples and nations of the world that the U.S. had reduced to "client-state" status - for example, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Guatemala, Zaire - the list is endless.]
SO, ISRAEL IS WARNED: "You have covenanted with death, and you have made an agreement with hell - AND YOU WILL "PAY THE PIPER" FOR YOUR ILL-ADVISED ALLIANCE WITH THE UNITED STATES. And how is it exactly that Israel will "pay the piper?" - look! the result is that Anti-Christ is now ensconced in the Holy Land. The Bible says:
"He [i.e., the Antichrist] will also enter the Beautiful Land [i.e., Israel] ..." (Daniel 11:41)
And why is he there? - because of his "agreement" with Israel. [Please see Daniel and the Latter Days (Moody Press) by Robert Duncan Culver for an excellent treatment of these and other passages]. Specifically, the Bible says that -
"... at the time of the end (he - i.e., anti-Christ) shall come ... LIKE A WHIRLWIND, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall OVERFLOW and PASS OVER." (Dan. 11:40)
The Bible continues:
"... and many countries will fall; [i.e., many nations in the Middle East shall fall prey to him]
"Then he [i.e., Antichrist] will stretch out his hand against other countries, and the land of Egypt [which was formerly anti-Christ's ally] will not escape.
"And he [i.e., Antichrist] will GAIN CONTROL OVER THE HIDDEN TREASURES ... [no doubt, the oil reserves of the region]
"But rumors from the East and from the North will disturb him [i.e., Antichrist], and he [Antichrist] will go forth WITH GREAT WRATH to DESTROY and ANNIHILATE many. [i.e., shall go north in the direction of Europe, and east in the direction of Pakistan, Indonesia, etc.] (Dan. 11:41-44)
What's happened here? The Gog/Magog war is done, and Anti-Christ, claiming that the victory is his, has entered the Holy Land, and from there he has "OVERFLOWED" (Dan. 11:40) into the Middle East in general with an ENORMOUSLY POWERFUL army. And why has he come (the defense pact notwithstanding)? - to "GAIN CONTROL OVER THE HIDDEN TREASURES" of the area: the OIL. But as he seizes the oil, a protest against what he is doing is raised from a group of nations to the "north" and "east" of the Middle East, and he sends forth his army in great wrath to "DESTROY" and "ANNIHILATE" those who oppose him. Then the Bible says that -
"... he [Antichrist] will pitch the tents of his royal pavilion between the seas and the beautiful Holy Mountain ..." (Daniel 11:45)
And with the antichrist will come all those silly, inane Christians who see in the antichrist their new "Messiah" - the person whom they believe will "convert the Jews," "conquer the world for Christ," and "bring judgment to the wicked." Isn't this what they suppose will happen? Isn't this what all those Christians who so blindly and just plain stupidly embrace the idea of America as God's REDEEMER NATION believe? Of course it is! - people (and leaders) like Charles Stanley, D. James Kennedy, Tim LaHaye, the late John Wimber, Juan Carlos Ortiz, C. Peter Wagner, Beverley LaHaye, Ern Baxter, Kenneth Copeland, Kenneth Hagin, Oral Roberts, Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, Chuck Colson, Jack Hayford, David Yonggi Cho (yes, even Cho who isn't an American, but a Korean), Robert Stearns, Mike Bickle, Reuven Doron, Che Ahn, Frank Hammond, Cindy Jacobs, Bill Hamon, John Eckhardt, Bobbie Byerly, Dutch Sheets, Jim Goll, John Paul Jackson, James Ryle, Frank Damazio, Ed Silvoso, Carlos Annacondia, Claudio Freidzon, Roger Mitchell, Ted Haggart, Paul Cain, Chuck Pierce, Rick Joyner, Kingsley Fletcher, Jim Laffoon, Barbara Wentroble, ad infinitum.
Given this mindset, it doesn't take much to visualize what will happen next as thousands and thousands of evangelical Christians pour into the Holy Land expecting to participate in the conversion of the Jewish people, and the "rebuilding of the Jewish Temple." And make no mistake about it - that's what all these people expect to see - THE CONVERSION OF ISRAEL! Christ can't come back until the Jews are converted. That's what Rick Joyner says. He says that the conversion of Israel is the church's "acid test" as to whether or not the church is ready for Christ to return. Joyner explains:
"The Jews have historically represented the greatest test for the gospel ... In a sense, Jews are the ACID TEST of our message. UNTIL THE CHURCH COMES TO THE SPIRITUAL STATURE (MATURITY) WHERE SHE PROVOKES THE JEW TO JEALOUSY, WE HAVE NOT YET ATTAINED TO WHAT WE HAVE BEEN CALLED."
That's pretty heavy! - and it indicates the importance that the dominionists attach to the Jews' conversion. Joyner continues:
"The Jews were hardened TO MAKE THEM THE HARDEST TO REACH. In this way, they have become the barometer of humanity, reflecting the overall condition of the state of man. When the gospel is preached that grafts the natural branches back into the tree, the church and Israel will then be able to reach the whole world. This is why Paul said that the gospel should be preached to the Jew first. This was not just out of favoritism, but because the Jew represents the greatest challenge of the gospel, and one which we must have ... Even so, our relationship to the Jews is not meant to be a stumbling block, but a stepping stone ... The final joining together of both into one new man ... resulting in the healing of all spiritual and cultural wounds. WHEN THE CHURCH AND ISRAEL HAVE BEEN GRAFTED TOGETHER ... THE TIME OF "THE RESTORATION OF ALL THINGS" (i.e., THE LORD'S SECOND COMING) MAY BEGIN.
In other words, "the time of the restoration of all things" can't begin until Israel is saved. But once again, I must remind you that the prophet Zechariah says that won't occur until Christ returns, not before. (Zech. 12:10 - 13:1) Now listen! - this is important: the dominionists say that the Jews must convert BEFORE Christ can return; but the Scriptures say that they will not embrace Christ until He actually does return, at which time they will look up as He descends out of heaven, and then - and ONLY then will God -
"... pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced ..." (Zech. 12:10)
And in that moment they will be saved - and saved not just as individuals (which, of course, has been happening all along, just as it has been occurring in all the other nations of the world), BUT AS A WHOLE NATION!
But the evangelicals - who, no doubt, will be flooding into Israel shortly after the end of the Gog/Magog War - will be expecting the Jews to convert then. What will happen when these hopes are dashed, as they most certainly will be. (cf Zech. 12:10 - 13:1) WOW! - THE WRATH THAT WILL FALL ON ISRAEL AS A RESULT WILL BE HORRIBLE! THERE IS, AFTER ALL, NOTHING SO HATEFUL AND MEAN-SPIRITED AS A JILTED LOVER.
And more than that, what will Christian dominionists think when Israel refuses not only to convert, but rebuilds the temple, excludes any Christian participation in its rebuilding and in the subsequent revived Temple service, and then - as if to add insult to injury - CLAIMS THAT SHE (i.e., ISRAEL) - AND NOT THE CHURCH - IS GOD'S REPRESENTATIVE ON EARTH? What will happen then? Think of the wrath that this will provoke among Christian dominionists! What to do then?
The answer is simple enough! - picture those Jews in the Holy Land who refuse to convert as agents of the Devil (after all, the church has been doing that for centuries and centuries). There certainly exists a large enough body of literature in the countless CONSPIRACY THEORIES about the Jews that abound in Christian circles to accommodate such thinking. THE DEVIL IS ANIMATING THE JEWS! - that must be the answer! The Jewish people's reluctance to surrender their Old Testament promises to the church is of the devil. That's it! And their refusal to accord the anti-Christ (who is by now ensconced in the Holy Land passing himself off as their "savior") the deference and respect he thinks is due him for supposedly rescuing them from the "Islamic Horror," gives evidence to the fact of their hard-hearted and insensitive nature.
A monster has been created! - "... dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly ... (with) great iron teeth ... that ... devoures and brake in pieces, and stamps the ... (people of the earth) with its feet ..." and one that does so claiming that it has the imprimatur of Christ! But this beast is not of Christ - it is anti-Christ.
The question then is, WHO AMONG CHRIST'S SERVANTS WILL STAND UP AND SAY THAT THIS COMPOSITE MONSTER THAT IS MADE UP OF THE RELIGIOUS AND ECONOMIC ELITES OF THE UNITED STATES IS NOT OF CHRIST, BUT OF ANTI-CHRIST? Who will say that? - and do it BOLDLY, without any equivocation, without any regard to his or her safety, and without regard to financial loss (i.e., the loss of one's job, etc.)? Who will do this? Who will stand up and say NO to all this? Who will say that NONE of this has anything to do with Christ?
And now the test will come for your Christianity. What will you do then? Christians who refuse to "go along" with this "New World Order" system of Christianity - the kind of Christianity that the D. James Kennedys and the C. Peter Wagners of this world are preaching - WILL BE BRANDED TRAITORS TO THEIR FAITH. These people will have to be dealt with - and so - in the name or "right religion" they will -
"... deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues (i.e., church meeting halls);
"And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles." (Matt. 10:17-18)
However, the Bible goes on to say:
"But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak." (Matt. 10:19)
Listen dear brothers and sisters in the Lord: God is calling you - in this troubled time, He is asking:
"Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" (Isaiah 6:8a)
And we must answer:
"... Here am I: send me." (Isaiah 6:8b)
But - as Oswald Chambers has said - whether or not we hear Gods call depends upon whether or not we are daily IN THE PRESENCE OF GOD. Many are called but few are chosen, that is, few prove themselves the chosen ones. The chosen ones are those who have come into the PRESENCE of God and, as a result, hear the still small voice calling all the time, "Who will go for us?" It is not a question of God singling out a strong man or woman and saying, Now, you go. Isaiah was in the PRESENCE of God and because of that he overheard the call, and realized that there was nothing else for him but to say, in conscious freedom, "Here am I, send me."
How we answer this call will determine whether we feel ASHAMED at His appearing or not. Paul says,
"My eager desire and hope is that I may never feel ashamed, but that now as ever I may do honor to Christ in my own person by fearless courage - whether that means life or death, no matter! (Phil. i, 20-21 (Moffatt)
Again, while we admit that standing up against what is happening in the church is easy to suggest, but difficult to do - still, it's not, as we suggested in the Antipas Papers, an impossible task, at least not yet. What it probably will mean, however, is ostracism from your circle of friends, and maybe even your families. But the fact is, if you can't face that, then you have no right to call yourself a "Christian." Jesus said,
"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it." (Matt. 10:34-39)
You say that standing up for Christ in this day and age will mean a life of loneliness. But that is not necessarily so at all. The fact is, there are many others just like you. You say, How will I ever find them? Well, I'll tell you how - by opening your mouth and speaking forth the truth that God is showing you. BEGIN BY ORDERING OUR CD. IT'S FREE! There are now 62 articles on the CD, including the ANTIPAS PAPERS. They are in PDF format and have been arranged in book form. THE CD IS YOURS FREE OF ANY CHARGE. You don't even have to send money for postage (even if you live in a foreign country). It's yours FREE. [Please Note: The CD has been discontinued due to lack of money (i.e. support). In replace of this, the site is undergoing a face lift which will make all articles, including "The Antipas Papers," available in HTML, PDF and a print version - Webmaster]
Once you get the CD, make copies of it, and pass it out to your friends. Or, if you wish, print the articles out (then make additional copies at a Kinkos) and distribute them in your church. THAT'S WHEN THINGS WILL START HAPPENING! From that point on, your journey out of today's apostate church to your (our) "Holy Land" - i.e., to "that city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God" (Heb. 11:10) - will really begin. Yes, there will be persecutions! But persecutions are the lot of any real Christian in this life. If you are not persecuted for your faith, you should stand in fear as to its reality. Jesus said:
"Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you ..." (John 15:20)
But be of "good cheer" - there will be people in your churches watching what you do. They will take note of your courage and read the material, and, eventually - IF you are PERSISTENT enough - they will come to you and ask questions; some will even "rally to your cause."
As we said in our last article, take these people, and begin meeting with them. There doesn't have to be many. Meet in your homes - in your living rooms. This is what the churches in China do! In the early church, meetings rarely numbered more than twelve people or so. Remember what Jesus said:
"For where TWO or THREE are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." (Matt. 18:20)
AND IT IS HERE - IN THESE SMALL MEETINGS THAT WILL EVENTUALLY DEVELOP AROUND YOU AS YOU PERSIST IN DISTRIBUTING THIS MATERIAL - THAT YOU WILL FIND THAT - READY OR NOT - GOD HAS MADE YOU A SHEPHERD IN HIS FLOCK. YOU HAVE THE WORD (i.e., the BIBLE); AND YOU HAVE HIS SPIRIT IN YOU - and if such is the case, you can say with Paul -
"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." (Phil. 4:13)
God bless you all!
PS Have the courage of your convictions! Contribute to the ministry by making out a check to "Antipas Ministries" and sending it to -