W W W W World Wide Web Witness Inc. Home Page Contents Page for Volume What is New
on the Middle East
Considerations in Couplets!
is no travesty, but truth to say
that the Middle East is a Middle Yeast, filled with workings,
startings, endings, and in general,
facing the Way of life disastrously
and the Middle East are like an egg and its shell.
The shell is broken and the egg is being whipped.
in Four Revealing Voices
Let's start on a bright note, if one of mixed tones.
PART I - THE FIRST TWO CHOIRS
FIRST CHOIR: CONTRALTO
(because it has some clamorous contexts)
a) Middle Laughter and
b) Middle Slaughter
a) There is the laughter of the Lord as in Psalm 2, where He despises, scorns and reprobates the angry tumult of those who reject the Messiah, His Son, and seek to despatch Him and His authority from the earth. The resurrection enables, as in Psalm 16, the restoration of the ruin that was Christ's body, according to judicial plan (Isaiah 53), for the deliverance of those seeking pardon for their sins, in which all participate. (See Joyful Jottings 22 and 25.)
There is the slaughter of Christ's body, of the Jews by the Romans
(as by the Babylonians, Assyrians, Syrians), but especially that around
A.D. 70 in the era of Titus and Vespasian, when the Empire of Rome smashed
men in crucifixions aplenty, as well as the city and the State of Israel.
It did not like anyone to differ too far from it, and Israel had forfeited the protection of the divine name by defacing the face of the Divine Messiah. As both Daniel and Christ predicted, desolations were determined, and the city received them, its Temple becoming like the temple which was Christ's own body, a ruin (cf. Isaiah 52:14, 3-5).
a) Middle Yeast and
b) Middle Least
Christ's 'leaven' or teaching moves like leaven to alter and expand perspectives,
creating edibility and delight (Matthew 13:33). Where did He deliver it
? In the Middle East.
b) Many who are least will be first, and he who is least who teaches and does the commands of the Lord will be called great (Matthew 19:30, 5:17-20).
a) Middle Cradle of Kingdoms
b) Middle Cradle for Mankind
a) In the Middle East came the vast kingdoms or Empires of Mesopotamia, Egypt, Assyria, that of Solomon, Babylon, the Medes and Persians and Rome. Their flurry into history has irrevocably written numerous chapters of greatness and folly, rise and ruin, learning and wilful ignorance.
b) Genesis 1:13-14 makes it clear, that whatever changes may have been wrought in the flood, the site of Eden is in the Middle East. For detail see Scoop of the Universe 54 and A Spiritual Potpourri Ch. 9. You may also want for background, The Biblical Workman Ch. 7.
Here in the Middle East came man. Here, informed with the most incredible magnificence of organised creation, filled with intelligence of means, brilliance of method, economy of size, as far past the best man has ever produced as heaven above the earth, with ONE language in his cells, ONE architecture in his voluminous code compilations in EACH of the billions of his heavily organised cells, ONE type of mind inserted to use this equipment, ONE type of spirit available for the overview of it all: here was man.
He was not; then he was.
He was not made; then he was made.
of thought to enquire and seek perspectives was not in flesh; then it was.
Far further than the atomic bomb above a 100 lb. TNT explosive was this,
and in construction, not destruction.
For that is a mere 2000 or so times more, in the lowly atomic bombs; but this was dimensionally separate, functionally apart far more than a Boeing 727 compared with a safety pin. Rational, constructive, imaginative thought, perspective propagation and all that depended on it, personality assessment and capacity to understand the thoughts which the Creator should propound for him, all were suddenly there.
The cradle, however, in the Middle East was ever so soon rocked, not by the tenderness of peace in the domesticity from the Creator, but in the hideous ingratitude of ostentatious, grasping, inane and vain ambition, so that man could become as if God (Genesis 3:5). That has not ceased since, and its price continues to be absolute (John 3:16 is in the same chapter as 3:33-36).
The cradle has long since been overturned, and man is now busily, in his secular, humanist endeavours, seeking to make plastic people for a plastic cradle, with tubes of chemicals for drugs and atomic power to use for rocking. The amplitude of swing, however, is very upsetting to the earth, and the air is very polluted. Plastic people tend to be unusable, and to use others for the purposes akin to plastic; and to become violent because they are not really plastic, and the overlay is not good enough to warrant even the delusion which is so popular.
A plastic society has likewise been fashioned, and the prayer now famous, of Kansas' opening Senate session, while not to the iota necessarily endorsed, is of great depth and penetration, well worthy of reflection:
know that Your Word says
'Woe to those who call evil good,' but that is exactly what we have done.
"We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values.
"We confess that:
have ridiculed the absolute truth of Your Word and called it "pluralism".
We have worshiped other gods and called it "multiculturalism".
We have endorsed perversion and called it "alternative lifestyle".
We have exploited the poor and called it "the lottery".
We have rewarded laziness and called it "welfare".
We have killed our unborn and called it "choice".
We have shot abortionists and called it "justifiable".
have neglected to discipline our children and called it "building self-esteem".
We have abused power and called it "politics".
We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it "ambition".
have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom
We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it "enlightenment".
us, Oh, God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and set
Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent to direct us to the center of Your will,
to open our hearts and ask it in the name of Your Son, the living Savior, Jesus Christ.
a) Middle Feast and
b) Middle Beast
a) The Lord's own Last Supper is the famous feast of contrition and alliance in the Lord, by which He represents what He was about to do, and has now done: creating in the performance of His mission, a New Covenant in His blood, as He called it (Matthew 26:28), and signifying (as in John 6) that the words which He spoke were SPIRIT and that they were LIFE. This provides a recollection, institutes a remembrance, revives thought in the devoted spirit of Calvary, Gethsemane, humility and holiness, and focusses the cost of redemption, in the practical realm of life as actually lived here, and thus by ourselves (Matthew 20:27-28). For while NONE of us can BY ANY MEANS redeem his own brother, GOD is the Redeemer (Psalm 49, Zechariah 12:10) and it is HE who paid AS man (Philippians 2), nevertheless Christ has shown the manner of it and the beauty of it, so that man now may in the same spirit of beauty and truth, sacrifice freely his own personal desires and ambitions, for those of the Lord God who created Him, who best knows how we may love the brethren (I John 5:1ff.).
b) How different is the other way, culminating in the Beast (Revelation 13 cf. The Other News 5), or social-political-economic folly of man led by an arch-manipulator, with its mannerisms of self, survival and spiritual sedition amidst innovations as callow and unjust as the devil is devious.
This too reaches the low point of darkness in this sphere of the world.
is here that the man of sin (as in II Thessalonians 2), the pimple and
pustule of evil's culmination, is to declare, in the Temple, that he is
God. So far have humanism and mysticism and irrationality wedded themselves
in an inveterate triad, that it is not even NOW particularly surprising
that this should be so.
Some have, it is true, sought to make the 'temple' where this parading and prating act of deluded man is to occur, the human heart; and of course, the heart is involved, as is the heart of an oak when you saw off boughs. It lightens its load and reduces its glory. However to invest this action in a situation where the mystery of iniquity is developing over time, and so culminates in a deed which brings down such a response from heaven that the exponent of this delusion, the 'man of sin' is finished at once, makes it clear that a long enduring process is not to the point, but an actual instant action.
Further, the Armageddon action, into which poor deluded mankind, in much of its multitudes, is to be deviously led, is in the Middle East, in fact in Israel (Revelation 16:16).
The other feast, incidentally, is that of the birds of prey (literal ones) which are to devour the corpses of the misled who pay a prime price for their deviation from reality at Armageddon. This is Biblically depicted with great precision (Revelation 17:19ff.). Revelation 16:14 shows the backdrop to the delusion. If you do not fill your heart with good, be sure it is not going to be filled with neutrality. Ignoring God is quite un-neutral, and the result may be impressive in fire and foolishness; but is not pure, nor does its power, accordingly, endure.
a) Middle Womb and
b) Middle Tomb
a) The emplacement of the engendering facilities for the only-begotten Son of God in the womb of a woman, by name Mary, is attested in Luke 1:35. All history, past, present and future, for this earth, depends on that. It is because of this intention on the part of the Lord, that the heavens could be planted, the earth made (as shown in Isaiah 51:16, cf. Spiritual Refreshings for the Digital Millenium Ch. 15, pp. 209ff., - and see Joyful Jottings on the Psalms of prediction).
The Messiah (cf. SMR Ch. 9) so ably and amply predicted in Isaiah 2,4, 7, 9, 11, 22, 32, 35, 40, 42, 49, 51-55, 61 for example, as in Psalm 2, 16, 22, 40, 41, 69, 72, 110, in Jeremiah 23, Ezekiel 43ff., Zechariah 2, 3, 6, 11-14, is here seen in His emplacement from heaven (as in Micah 5:1-3). This is to leave the repentance of many in Israel (as in Zechariah 12:10), a protactedly delayed but blessed and needful resultant, in perceiving that it is their GOD in human form, whom they crucified. Without this, without the placing of the words of command in His mouth (Isaiah 55:3-4), as duly presented (John 12:48-50), there would be, and could be, no earth, no universe and no man.
Only in the light of what was to be done for the Fall of man, by the love of the Creator, was the opening allowed that he should elect to fall. Only with remedy for misuse, was creation permitted at all for this universe. And that! it is hardly surprising, for God is love (I John 4:8). The obstinacy of refusing the only life boat, when the ship of this world and its ways of ruin, is sinking, is not to be confused with lack of mercy on the part of God.
It is time for people to have pity on their own souls, if not for their own sakes, then out of gratitude for its creation, so that the wonders of its consummation in Christ and eternity in heaven might be the final answer to the pathology of ruin. Redemption is the way; the womb was the physical means; and it occurred - in the Middle East.
1) The Tomb of antichrist is metaphorical. It is indeed not equipped with the solidity normal for a tomb, but is rather of the flaming quality of fire (II Thessalonians 1:8, 2:8, Rev. 19:20). It is however enduring.
2) On the other hand, the tomb of Christ was literal, but was not enduring, as His resurrection left the world without explanation then, as now, and for evermore. When you drag the river for a body which is not dead, it is only natural that you should not succeed! (Cf. Barbs, Arrows and Balms Appendix 3, The Magnificence of the Messiah,Endnote 1, Biblical Blessings Ch. 15, Extended Endnote 2, Acme, Alpha and Omega: Jesus Christ Ch. 11, SMR Ch. 6 and Index, The Kingdom of Heaven ... 9, Section 14, Joyful Jottings 25, A Spiritual Potpourri Chs. 15, 16, Stepping Out for Christ Ch. 5, Things Old and New Ch. 2, Excursion 2A; Spiritual Refreshings for the Digital Millenium Chs. 5, 6.)
What has succeeded is the power of the Lord who raised Him, in performing with precision all that was to come thereafter in the same way performed was all that was to occur in preliminary to this ingenious sacrifice, this ingenuous kindness, this testimony of the power of truth, not because of principles, but because it is the word of the Creator on whom all things hang, by whom all things move, Institutor and Judge of man, sole Redeemer and Saviour of the same. That, it is what one would expect. Empirically, it is always the same; nor could it be otherwise.
See also SMR pp. 931ff..
a) Middle Blasphemy
b) Middle Balcony
1) Blasphemy in this arena and area ?
There was that of Pompey who, on the Day of Atonement, broke into the Holy of Holies of the Temple, thus perfecting the blasphemy and consummating the sacrilege, the State in its martial arts, contriving bucolically as often since, to assert its meaningless power in order to lose it, as Rome did so basely when overcome in 410 A.D., though its remainders have long carried on their fateful task.
As Daniel predicted, it would be a partly strong and partly fragile Empire, iron and clay - Daniel 2:42. Proliferating in the (so-called, but far from rightly) Holy Roman Empire, the prodigalities of Popes in various combinations with various powers for only one material objective in that dimension as in Unam Sanctam q.v., Napoleon's essay on pan-European splendour driving the world, Bismark's efforts, Hitler's crusade in such nice relationship with Romanism (cf. SMR pp. 920, 968-969), the Common Market, and the European Union with its now expanding acceleration and force (cf. SMR pp. 905ff., 918ff..
But let us revert to Pompey.
In B.C. 63, he captured the kingdom, conveniently 'settling' a dispute between two imperious seeming brothers in the land, and making Hyrcanus high priest and ethnarch: this came after Syria had fallen to Rome, and Samaria had been added to it. In fact, Pompey took advantage of the quarrel of two contending brothers, so aiding the fall of Jerusalem to him! There is no small lesson in that.
On the DAY when the blood of the sacrifice with national significance was to be presented on the altar in the Holy of Holies, up strides the refuse of Rome, ready for the World Empire entrusted to it by God in the Bible, as in Daniel 2 and 7. The symbolism is most fitting, and the chastisement of Judah after its long rebelliousness, and despite the marvels of the Maccabean acquisitions for the Jews once again, continued amidst the grisly activities of the rulers.
Here was blasphemy with éclat, a burnishing of atrocity.
2) Further, before this, in B.C. 168-165, there had been somewhat similar intrusion by Antiochus Epiphanes as predicted in detail by Daniel in Ch. 8, and, he had the distinction of actually placing an idol in the Holy of Holies.
3) But one must ask, is this blasphemy greater than that of a people who before these excoriations from the Almighty, had already merited the rebuke covering many, of Isaiah 29:13ff.:
"Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths
And honour Me with their lips,
But have removed their hearts far from Me,
And their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men:
Therefore behold, I will again do a marvellous work
Among this people,
A marvellous work and a wonder,
For the wisdom of their wise men shall perish,
And the understanding of their prudent men shall be hidden."
We see in Isaiah 28:16 that this is nothing less than the foundation of the Messiah as the Rock and support for spiritual life for the people, to come in His time (as predicted by Daniel in Ch. 9:24-27). Nothing else suffices (cf. Isaiah 41:27ff.).
" "Will you," the Lord asks in Jeremiah 7:9ff., "steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, burn incense to Baal, and walk after other gods whom you do not know, and then come and stand before Me in this house, which is called by My name, and say, 'We are delivered to do all these abominations?' Has this house which is called by My name, become a den of thieves in your eyes ? Behold I, even I, have seen it, says the Lord."4) Further, there was the profoundest blasphemy in calling it blasphemy for Christ to state the ultimate truth that He was (as He is) the Son of God, and would come in the clouds of glory - to receive dominion over all (as in Daniel 7, cf. Matthew 26:64). His words, works and ways were such that impeachment was as possible as the righteous relay of the view that glorious Summer Sunset, free in its exuberance of colour and artistry of genius, was pitch-black. This blasphemy was not merely against Christ, but against what He was and is, the Truth.
" 'Behold, it is written before Me,' the Lord declares in Isaiah 65:6ff., 'I will not keep silence, but will repay -
Even repay into their bosom -
Your iniquities and the iniquities of your fathers together,'
Says the LORD,
'Who have burned incense on the mountains
And blasphemed Me on the hills;
Therefore I will measure their former work into their bosom.' "
5) There is to be the blasphemy of the 'man of sin', 'showing himself that he is God' in the Temple.
is FILLED with the fruits of blasphemy, which quickly turn into the harvest
of blood. Christ's being rejected, the blood of millions has followed,
as man, insatiable, contests with the Lord the way of life, to be lived
as prescribed by the Prince of Life, as in the Sermon on the Mount
While, in terms of integers, two into one won't go (as the Primary children are told), yet man into sin will go; what will not go is this, that he should go there and yet go on unmutilated.
It is in the profoundest degree poignant and tragic, that so much triumphalism of the nations has as its obverse, sterile slaughter, as its call, bucolic blasphemy, and as its end, blatant humiliation (as in Isaiah 23:9:
LORD of hosts has purposed it,
To bring to dishonour the pride of all glory,
To bring into contempt all the honourable of the earth."
b) The balcony on beauty is a noble transformation!
in the Middle East, and more especially in Jerusalem, after the hype and
its inglorious abasement in Armageddon (as above), is the Lord's return
as in Zechariah 14, to rule. WITH all His saints, He comes, having already
collected them (as in I Thessalonians 4, Matthew 24). Jude 14 also speaks
of this occurrence, whilst Isaiah 11 with Psalm 72 and Isaiah 2, Micah
4 show the procedure not a little, when the earth shall be covered with
the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk
2:14). The often defiled city, both in spirit and in architecture, indeed
once ploughed and salted, Jerusalem, now has Him who is exalted, without
whom its claims and clamours were worse than useless (as in Isaiah 1:12-16)!
a) Middle Dock
b) Middle Clock
Mt Ararat was the docking place for the Ark. This vast watery graveyard which constituted the ocean at the time, eventually relenting somewhat, allowed the Ark to rest. The flood evidences are massive, astonishing and in line with the catastrophic character of the earth's history, in many things, in its schedule of sinning against the sovereignty, embarking against the mercy and assailing with arrogance the humility of the Lord. See The Other News 1 , SMR Ch.2 , pp. 160-170, 234-248.
The insistent, consistent, persistent and intractable lust to remove this evidence of past judgment, despite the huge percentage of sedimentary rock laid down on the earth, and much at high altitudes, and the volumes of evidence, is itself a further attestation to the truth of the word of God, which projects just SUCH AN ATTITUDE as one of the many elements to be, and now at this time duly come into being: all in their various quarters and regards, concurrent, as the Age draws near to its close, its major projects being complete or nearly so in all dimensions (cf. SMR Ch. 8, and II Peter 3, with BEN 74, p. 103, AQ 5).
Numerous sightings of the Ark have been reported and while some are not supported, many have the utmost difficulty in being rejected, even in the full sway of prejudice, as attested in the case of the French explorer, Fernand Navarre, in his "The Noah's Ark Expedition" and in the reports of a Russian aviator and expedition.
The Ark is in fact no longer apt for our needs, fire not water being the designated instrument for the final destruction (II Peteer 3:10-13 cf. Isaiah 51:6); and moreover, the Lord is to return first.
It was in the Middle East that this Ark came to rest; and indeed from this site that it appears it was engaged in its mission, at the outset, in terms of the general character of the lands in view in the overall development.
b) As to time, as distinct from space, so critical when the water invaded the terrestrial part so voluminously, the Middle East is closely related to this also (cf SMR pp. 886ff.)... Daniel 9, written either in Babylon or in Israel, gives indication of the death date of the Messiah, duly fulfilled in the most extravagant exercise of communication precision of hundreds of years. No other Christ can fit in time, in power, in purity or in compassion with ACTION attached, correlative; let alone with redemption and predicted works to come, now past. (Cf. Repent or Perish Ch. 2, Biblical Blessings Appendix IV).
is the Middle Clock.
a) Middle Vortex and
b) Middle cortex
a) In the Middle East, and especially in Jerusalem, you see a veritable vortex of swirling religions, contesting things this way and that. None wins, since none is right. There are other waterways, one the Biblical, which continues quietly providing what is predicted. However the main three swirl interminably and immiscibly: Romanism with its papal pronouncements and the horror of Europe's past treatment of the Jews, the Moslem, with its fanciful reconstruction, in absentia, hundreds of years later, of some christ which it has in mind for no known reason, and devoid of logical constraint as of evidential support, indeed well presented with evidential contradiction, and Judaism, on the right track initially, but veering off when the predicted Messiah did the predicted things at the predicted time in the predicted way, so that it bears witness to what it has rejected.
As to the Moslem, see Ch. 6, News 133; as to the Roman, see SMR pp. 1032-1088H; as to the error of Judaism, see SMR Ch. 6 and Ch. 9. For all, see Barbs, Arrows and Balms 30.
b) Here in the Middle East is also the Jewish atomic establishment. This we think of as Middle Cortex.
a) Middle Error
b) Middle Terror
a) As just noted, all the main contestants at the religious level, which is quite crucial to the passions in view, are simply wrong. If three students were to fight for the right to life, in terms of three wrong solutions, the result would not be edifying! When one of them has the right sheet, but has altered the paper, the result is worse. When it is the teacher's solution which he has altered, the case is aggravated. When the teacher knows, the result is near to bedlam, and will end in enlightenment, discipline or both. So it is. Deuteronomy 32 is here instructive for it shows the Lord's intense faithfulness, compassion and determination.
It also shows how it will end in crucial respects!
As so often happens in life, the right solution is not unknown, is not liked and is eminently likeable, being full of grace and truth (cf. John 1, Barbs, Arrows and Balms Appendix IV and Repent or Perish Ch. 2). All its ways prosper, all its words work, and nothing else even begins to do so.
b) The Terror is in two parts. First the Crusades, closely allied to Rome, the interminable current contemporary clashes, and then moreover, the speciousness of so much, as Arabs arise against the Jewish nation with intense and immense provocation, only to complain when a VERY limited reply is made to this assault on civilians, buses, troops, settlers and other elements of Jewish society.
Secondly, however, there is not only the historical and the contemporary. There is also that to come. When Jesus spoke in Matthew 24:15, it was for the terminal proceedings, and its delineation if ghastly.
Meanwhile, the beginnings of sorrows are turning to their middle part (Matthew 24:8). The fateful horrors of religious fraud, however confused the proponents, will not be choice, as II Thessalonians 2 makes clear. When the "mystery of iniquity", long at work and divinely restrained, comes to culmination, you may not expect to find relief, if turning to it from a pit of vipers. Iniquity is what it is. Its climax is fitting. Hitler made a fair beginning; Mao a credible continuation; Stalin excelled. The mystery of iniquity is startlingly bold, can exterminate millions in mere cerebral confusion! Its purposes are sharpened as its mind is deadened. Its hypnotic flounces contrast with its bloody excuses. See The Other News 5 for more detail.
The Lord however is merely carrying things on, as the laboratory work of history comes to fruition. His will and word are being fulfilled even as the most monstrous mountebanks circulate in flood waters fo the Age (and floods, incidentally, are precisely one of its symptoms - Luke 21:25), just as the shaking of the powers of the heavens (Luke 21:26, cf. Joel 2:30ff., and SMR pp. 794 and 803ff.).
Thus the scene proceeds in terror to many (as in Luke 21:26's prediction for the Age of these events in their synthetic immensity), but in peace to some, who know the Lord (Isaiah 26). His written word and spiritual purpose in harmony, are dauntless, without dissuasion or deterrent, implacable and inexorable. Word and history accord with composite rigour:
the LORD of hosts has purposed, and who will annul it ?
His hand is stretched out,
And who will turn it back ?" - Isaiah 14:27.
I have spoken it!
I will also bring it to pass.
I have purposed it,
I also will do it" - Isaiah 46:11.
"Take counsel together, but it will come to nothing.
Speak the word, but it will not stand,
For God is with us" - Isaiah 8:10.
says the LORD, your Redeemer...
Who stretches out th heavens all alone...
Who frustrates the signs of the babblers,
And drives diviners mad;
Who turns wise men backward,
And makes their knowledge foolishness;
Who confirms the word of His Servant,
And performs the counsel of His messengers" - from Isaiah 44:24-26.
the last case, it was to this effect, amongst other things, involving deliverance
for His people:
"Saying to Jerusalem,
'You shall be built',
And to the temple,
'Your foundation shall be laid' ."
Parallel to this last case, fulfilled about 2 centuries later with the named King Cyrus (Isaiah 44:27), is the prediction, following the exposure and work of the Messiah on earth as in Isaiah 49 (cf. SMR Ch. 9), is this in Isaiah 49:22ff.:
"Behold I will left My hand in an oath to the nation,
And set up My standard for the peoples:
They shall bring your sons in their arms,
And your daughters shall be carried on their shoulders;
Kings shall be your foster fathers,
And their queens your nursing mothers...
And you will know that I am the LORD",
and this in like vein in Isaiah 66:8,
" 'Shall the earth be made to give birth in one day ?
Or shall a nation be born at once ?
For as soon as Zion was in labour,
She gave birth to her children.
Shall I bring to the time of birth, and not cause delivery ?' says the LORD.
Shall I who cause delivery shut up the womb ?' says your God'. "
This follows all the Messianic references, and is parallel again with this:
your waste and desolate places,
And the land of your destruction,
Will even now be too small for the inhabitants,
And those who swallowed you up will be far away.
children you will have,
After you have lost the others,
Will say again in your ears,
The place is too small for me;
Give me a place where I may dwell.
Then you shall say in your heart,
'Who has begotten these for me,
Since I have lost my children and am desolate,
A captive and wandering to and fro ?
And who has brought these up ?
There I was, left alone,
But these, where were they ?' " (Isaiah 49:19ff.).
In Isaiah 66 we see that these things are indeed accompanied by war and carnage (66:14-16, as predicted indeed in Deuteronomy 32:38ff.). So is the parallel in Micah 7:15ff..
Now the vast bulk of all this has happened dramatically, emphatically, drastically and decisively and much of it in our own generation. The imperturbable grandeur of the glory of God is not deleted by this or that pomp, craft or potentate, tribe or religion. God rules. History happens. They accord ... always. (On our generation’s events in this sphere, see SMR Ch. 9.)
It is grievous that so many do not listen until their ears can no more hear!
Inhumanity has been vastly practised, even in the vulnerability of the love of the Lord, when He was in human form; and it continues against His servants (as He also predicted - John 16:2, 15:20), and even against the nation which was called by His name, but which no more has the place of show-case of His life and love (Isaiah 62:1ff., 65:13-15). Now, rashly divorced, it is simply a recipient, an expression of His faithfulness, who does what He says, even when others fail. NOT FOR YOUR SAKES do I this, He repeats in the ears of the returning Jews as in Ezekiel 36-37; but FOR MY NAME'S SAKE! THERE is faithfulness... (cf. SMR Appendix A).
a) Middle Marvel
b) Middle Maul
The return of Israel to its moorings, geographically, is one of the most emphasised and despised things in the Bible. It is emphasised as has been shown repeatedly on this site, and in particular in SMR Ch. 9 and Appendix A, in Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, the Psalms, Micah, Amos, Zechariah.
It is despised in the many nations which desire to
Meanwhile those who ‘handle’ Jerusalem indeed find, eh Secretary of State and President of the US ? ah, Arab opponents ? doubltess, UN ? that it is indeed a "BURDENSOM STONE" as in Zechariah 12. The quiet assurance and perpetual effectuality of the word of God in every situation, even when clouds of dust would exclude aerial inspection, continues from its place thousands of years before, when this particular dust knew little of it! That too is just as it itself declares (Isaiah 40:6-8, Joel 2:11, I Peter 1:22-25, 11-12, II Peter 1:21, Isaiah 44:26-28, 48:6ff.).
Meanwhile, the marvel is yet here, that they are back, as was so often forecast (and in particular, in Isaiah 11:1-10 with 11:11-12, and Ezekiel 36-37, where on their return they are to come to the epoch of the reign of the Lord Himself on earth, and NO MORE return to idols, for HE is there). It is there that they are reproached for their double dealing with the covenant, for their profaning of the name of their Lord among the nations by their unbelief and rebellion (36:22), as for their defiling of that name when they were in their own land (36:17), so that in both categories astray, they have had long evil.
Despite this, as predicted and judged righteous and faithful in the heart of the Lord, they return in the two stage process of Ezekiel 37, first geographically, and then by a second command (37:12ff.), by which there is the return in SPIRIT to the LORD predicted by Paul in Romans 11:25. So it comes second, spiritually! (See Ezekiel 37:1-14.)
This marvel is focussed in SMR Ch. 9, and it is wonderful, precise, detailed in its manner of execution and fulfilment.
It is THE marvel of the twentieth century, along with the falling away of the Lutheran, Anglican, Uniting and other churches in ways once scarcely conceivable, as documented in preceding volumes at length and repeatedly, in the arrival of the slanderers of the Lord's name, among the Gentiles in vast measure (false prophets, paralleling precisely the case with Israel), as summarily noted in Matthew 24:24, while the Gospel goes on its way to broach the ears of the earth, until the Lord comes as He said (Matthew 24:14, 29ff.).
It is the marvel of twentieth and twenty first centuries, but of the latter part of the former more particularly, that the column of vapour spoken of by Joel and confirmed by Peter at Pentecost has become a symbol of the Age (as in SMR pp. 790ff.); and that the wars and rumours of wars have at times touched so on the ludicrous in their multiplicity and insistences, as if blood were of no account of mankind at all, and peace of no name, that this prophecy is also a pillar of precision (Matthew 24:6ff., Luke 21:26, 21:10-11). In its midst are the sea and waves roaring (Luke 21:25), something now rather modish for the news, for the inundation of Western Europe and Britain in particular, as Charles wonders why NOT an RC monarch, and fiddles officially with the concept of being for all of them, is awash.
It is not merely this, for in this past week in November, the German News has spoken of the meeting on the environment where the US remains rather reluctant seeming to adopt the Netherlands' suggestion of being one of the rich nations to shoulder the burden differentially of reducing the fateful gaseous emissions which heat the Greenhouse effect yet further, and contribute for so long to the process. Agreement on mode seems almost as difficult as removal of symptom, as the body meeting warned of the possible inundation of various Pacific Islands in the rising water level, and the increasing tempo of storms and watery disturbances with so much water and so much energy combined, combining and continuing to combine.
the word of God quietly but efficiently gave the nearly two millenia in
age, prediction as one of the criteria of the ending Age, the Age of mercy,
of the Gospel and of opportunity to be at peace with God, not on the word
of some evangelist who falls, but of God who never fails.
is indeed a Middle Marvel that Israel is back, and the scenario surrounding
is not only intact, but attacking!
b) Middle Maul
With this is the mauling of the times. Israel has been mauled without destruction, repeatedly as in Zechariah 12, and it has responded repeatedly, once taking its multitude of Moslem enemies, and its UN anti-protector, which on an earlier occasion had removed its troops so conveniently for Nasser (or in his time when their presence would be a problem...), to the very brink of destruction, crossing the Suez canal to encircle an Egyptian army, ALONE (1973)! So it duly occurred, for the Lord did it as He said, making one like a thousand (as predicted some 500 B.C.! for this scenario in Zechariah 12:6-8, interestingly, just before the mass conversion of many Jews, in repentance to Christ and for Him, in 12:10).
The mauling likewise has been on African nations at their own hands, in wars of division and oppression, in incredible seeming hatred and harrowing, spiced with disease, famine and confusion, so that the inadequacy of war to resolve the disputes is as clear as the inadequacy of any but Christ to resolve the horrendous dealings, one with the other.
Nor is it there confined. In China, people with individuality and reason against Communism have been mauled, and forcible deaths for tens of millions have been attributed to Mao in his 'leadership', as to Stalin, in his; while Cambodia has done wonders in bloodshed, as if the hatchet were thought, and violence were virtue. The wars and carnage constitute but one of the many items which bring the Age to its knees where it belongs, and makes the human fanfare of poverty in the midst of pride of thought and of life, to add its annunciation to the return of the Lord, in just such a condition predicted (Matthew 24).
the MAUL which is here relevant especially, is the Middle Maul in the Middle
East where to this day one of the chief agenda items is how to limit, to
reduce, to annoy, to festoon with evil, to rubbish, to ridicule, to restrict,
to harrow into humiliation the tiniest of States, that of Israel. This
occupies the world stage like a curtain fall, which comes down on the actors
before the scene is ended, so lustful is the desire for it, for Israel,
to ... end. But it does not, and it will not end, for the Lord has decreed
otherwise (Zechariah 12-14).
(because it has some deep matters)
a) The Middle City and
b) The Middle Pity
a) Jerusalem the cauldron, the Middle East the fire shows that this city of splendour in history, and of utter degradation and humiliation, of ruin and reconstruction again and again, of sin and of deliverance, of covenant and covenant breaking, even to the killing of the King (as in Isaiah 49:7, 52-53, Zechariah 11:10-13), in a new light. For two millenia it has crawled about on the earth, the captive of nations, the ruin of Rome, the thing of Caliphs, the clashing point of Crusades, the captive of Turks, but now it has become restored TO THE JEWS as predicted by Christ in Luke 21:24, for it COULD NOT be surrounded by OTHERS, if it had not been returned following its initial desolation (as in Matthew 24:1ff., Luke 19:43ff.); and its treading under foot by the nations could not continue, if its time for conclusion was set as in Luke at this point.
That had to end for this scenario; and equally the return and restoration had to begin.
Jerusalem is back with the Jews as variously and continually predicted, with just that same certainty as its long subduing, and the massive return to the Lord of much of the Jewish nation, still to come.
THIS is a feature and focus of the last century, indeed, the last 52 years, and it remains a feature, focussed on TV in the many wars, peaces, contracts, broken contracts, arrivals, survivals, deaths and ruins; as it continues, to the utter rage and desperation of many, under Jewish control. How dare it, this thing of the past, this place and site of the magnificence of the Kingdom of Solomon, this place of the little Jewish people, humbled for ever, how can it nevertheless be theirs again! Like wolves circling the world is dissatisfied. Like crows over a corpse, it picks.
But the corpse is not dead, and the Lord who in pure GRACE brought them back as in Ezekiel 36-37 and Isaiah 42,49, has now continued what the world cannot endure, to DO what He SAID He would do, right down to the turmoil on the one hand, the penalties for the oppressors, and the difficulties for the Jews themselves, right down to the wires of writhing for all. The time is not yet; but it is near. Wait for it, it will surely come, for the Lord will not wait for ever, though He wait long as He said (II Peter 3:9, Habakkuk Chs. 2:3-4, and 3). This same Jesus will return again as He left (Acts 1:7-11), and this time in glory.
The city is a continual witness loathed by the world, and feared, for if the LORD is indeed at work as normal, in history, then history is not a plum for picking but a place for repentance and seeking the Lord. This, however, is not in the world's book. It is only in the book of the Lord. As so often, and with such deplorable hardship, the world finds what is in its book mere verbiage, but what is in the book of the Lord, laboratory instructions to history, which it duly performs.
the Middle City continues its role of testimony to the blind, words to
b) The Middle Pity continues likewise, that such deafness and blindness (not unshared by Israel the nation as in Isaiah 42:8ff., with respect to its own heart toward the Lord) should continue to be the harbinger of ruin to so many lives: twisted without truth, before by it, and hurt by ignorance before filled with knowledge undesired.
Thus is the way of the world: it does not and it cannot learn, for its heart is other; but there are and there will be those who learn, and in peace find peace profound and unsullied for ever, augmented and consummated on the return of the Prince of Peace, born a Jew but rejected by the nation. There will duly be manifested on this earth that peace which it has despised in the turmoils of wars innumerable, philosophies multitudinous and plans disastrous for thousands of misled years (Habakkuk 2:14, Isaiah 65).
The answer was there all along, staring it in the blind face. THERE is the pity.
world ? it has done violence to itself, as well as - through Pilate and
Caiaphas, to the Lord. It is ONLY in repentance that anyone IN IT can sever
FROM IT and belong to the kingdom of heaven, where the peace is passing
all knowledge (Philippians 4:4ff.), and whose peace keeper is preparing
a) The Middle Lowest and
b) The Middle Height
The Middle lowest ? The Dead Sea. Maximally below sea level, it is the repository of huge masses of salts in solution, estimated in value at billions. At this lowest, is the tourist industry delighted with the appeal of the environment, the buoyant water and sun. So it reminds, Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth; and of this, He who is down need fear no fall. It recalls also Micah 7,
not rejoice over me, my enemy;
When I fall, I will arise;
When I sit in darkness,
The LORD will be a light to me.
I will bear the indignation of the LORD,
Because I have sinned against Him,
Until He pleads my case
And executes justice for me."
b) The Middle Height is most intimately related to this.
THE ONLY justice that Israel can stand, is that meted to Christ when He died, "the just for the unjust, to bring us to God" (II Peter 3:18).
You see Him in this place in Isaiah 50:8 and Chs. 52-53, with 44:4-5 and 32:16-17, 9:6-7, with 27:5,
let him take hold of My strength,
That he may make peace with Me,
And he shall make peace with Me" -
and that Strength of course is the foundation laid, such that he who believes shall not make haste (Isaiah 28:16).
Then the depths become the heights and the heights celestial:
sun shall no longer be your light by day,
Nor for brightness shall the moon give light to you;
But the LORD will be to you an everlasting light,
And your God yoru glory.
Your sun shall no longer go down,
Nor shall your moon withdraw itself,
For the LORD will be your everlasting light,
And the days of your mourning shall be ended.
Also your people shall all be righteous,
They shall inherit the land for ever" - Isaiah 60:19-21.
This as noted in its place, is that glory which, shared by all who are believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, is nonetheless not dimmed for believing Jews, even those who according to Romans 11, return in massive proportions to the Lord, and as in Zechariah 12:10, repent of the ruin which they made of His body. Alas for what became of their national body; but the Lord is merciful as in Micah 7:18-20, and the New Heavens and New Earth come which will make this scarcely a matter of memory (Isaiah 65:17).
a) The Middle Miracle and
b) The Middle Oracle
a) This is not chiefly the return of the Jews to their long desolated, infested and contested land, a place of ruin and now a place of flowers (as in Isaiah 35's prediction). That is a profound miracle. Yet there is one FAR more profound.
THIS ? It is the life of Christ on this earth. That God should deign to come to such a place as we have made it, such depreciation as judgment has claimed for it, such torment and unholiness as sin has presented for it, such glory in inanity, profanity, blasphemy, blindness as is its lot (cf. SMR Chs. 3, 9, 10), and do this as a man, is staggering. That He should be prepared to suffer the indignities, uncursed, of what is cursed is stupendous. But that He should come without power play and drama strengths, fitting for the infinite, apt for the height of purity, appropriate for the flash of majesty, without the trappings of monarchy or the presence of power that protects from all the humilities of a fallen world, and in fact come as one in (comparative) poverty, in a humble station of life, without advantages of money, possessions and authorities born of this world: this is the mark of the superlative, the testimony of truth.
works without aid. It is right. It does right. It is not deflected. It
is what it is and it is HE (John 14:6). The concept that the truth is impersonal
is perhaps born not least of the intractable seeming rationalisations and
unrepentant protections which mankind so frequently puts about himself,
lest he should humble himself, make friends with reality, find his God
and serve Him.
In fact, of course, since personal power is minimal for the creation of what is man, as has been demonstrated in SMR, and truth is the unique preserve and is solitary in scope as the possession of the Creator in His knowledge unimpeded in time or space, absolute and independent, as well as profound in having made what is to be true, in being as well as in knowledge in this world, the truth is personal. Abstractions which ignore this are denuded and accordingly the never-ending seeming philosophies which press such reductionisms, as in SMR Ch. 3, are such because they NEVER stand because they are ALWAYS exposed, sooner or later, and fall like Autumn leaves, in their season, by necessity on the one hand, and by their nature on the other.
Hence when the Truth came as Jesus Christ, it was the most astonishing, glorious, delightful, caressing and uplifting, splendid and pure event one could ever hope; and its culmination for man the creation in the image of God, is the highest delight and wonder, except for one thing. It is this. That this Truth in His wonder - and His name IS wonderful - as in Isaiah 9 - should submit to crucifixion for liars, who do not, or did not acknowledge the simply obvious reality of God at all, or who wounded the concept, slew the idea, and when He came, slew His body. Why did He do this as the culmination of expression, or of manifestation of that Being who is God ? It was because of love (John 3:16), and kindness and mercy (Titus Chs. 2, 3).
That is what the world rejects. It has its shove and move, pretence and appearance, form and procedure, height for me and depth for you approach, and where this is shaded, it is graded not rejected. Even the most sacrificial of those who reject the only true and living God, have put their own thoughts and hence selves into the saddle, themselves or their mere nominees, and mislead many.
however this manifestation of the magnificence came, duly announced, predicted,
detailed, described, preceded by symbolic representations in multiplicity,
by the faithfulness of the word of God without any competition at all:
it was in the Middle East.
Middle Miracle, which we have been regarding, is allied to the MIDDLE
for the God who showed definitively in Person, His eternal word, has also written His words, from His own mouth, so that what He had to think and say and declare and do, should be duly attested in high and certain differentiation from all other words and thoughts and deeds, and that the works should be interpreted expressly, the needful ways declared and the only salvation for such a race as this, made manifest.
That ? It is the Bible as shown in SMR Ch.1 in particular, but throughout.
It alone gives the verification, and it alone meets the criteria. Its verifications fill books, and in much of the 29 volumes on this site, this is shown. This however is what it is called, verification; the demonstration is in SMR where cited. (Cf. Romans 9:1ff., Isaiah 34:16, 8:20, Matthew 5:17-19, I Peter 1:24-25, 1:8-12, II Peter 1:16-21, I Corinthians 2:9-13.)
This Oracle, like this Miracle, they are those which occurred where ? Why, in the Middle East.
a) The Middle Baptism of Fire
b) The Middle Baptism of ire.
The first, as predicted by John the Baptist, is notably found in Pentecost,
when the fire was made VISUAL, and its application INDIVIDUAL, its dividing
of itself into tongues being the coverage in scope of the work of the ONE
GOD, on MANY PEOPLE (Acts 2:1ff.). The baptism of water, signifying repentance
for sin and washing in the name of the Lord, was great; for it signified
what circumcision had signified: a cleansing in covenantal assurance and
the signalling of this for the young in imprint, and a unity with the Lord
in peace through that covenant. This likewise, the work of water baptism,
replacing circumcision as in Colossians 2:11-12, is itself consummated
by the baptism of fire, a work in which the presiding, purifying, presence
of the Lord in indicated.
In the birthday of the New Testament Church in its format as AFTER THE LORD HAD GONE, this was all shown. It happened in … Jerusalem!
afterwards, this demonstration being inaugurated, the results are available
for ALL Christians (as in Romans 8:9, John 6:50ff.), in whom without exception
the Lord dwells. These things are covered in some detail in such places
as Questions and Answers Chs. 9, 10, 11 and News 51.
The power of the Lord is again illustrated at times in this respect, as in Acts 4:27-31. The resurrection power is its measure, and its seal (Ephesians 1:17-19), and it is interior in working, spiritual in kind, dynamic in capacity, enlightening, illuminating, strengthening (Ephesians 3:16), providing guidance as needed and help in all cases in the name of Jesus the Christ, whose is the glory and for whom are all things (Colossians 1:18, 27, 3:17, 3:11, Philippians 3:20-21).
We are all, as Paul declares, baptised by ONE Spirit into ONE body. That is the Biblical position, formally and dynamically. WHEN you become a Christian you are not your own, but Christ’s, and His life is your personal habitat, His body your corporate address, just as He dwells in you, and you dwell in Him. By this baptism, once like the other, you are made close to Christ, and He to you; and many may be the blessings and refreshings consequent upon this new estate, as foundational as your conversion, as singular (Acts 3:19ff., I Cor. 12:13).
The baptism of ire or wrath, is very different. This is that destruction
of the Lord's enemies, given free leash to a large extent for generations
and millenia, and wholly unrepentant, remorseless, implacable, irreversible
in irreverence, irrational to the end in their culmination of corruption
(II Thessalonians 1:5ff., Revelation 19), whose 'neutrality' as best, is
mere deterrence to the Lordship of Christ, the rule of God, and a 'land'
invented by and for themselves, without the benefit of objective existence.
What IS objective, however, is mercy and judgment, and these are found
in their places, the baptism of ire being the attestation of pollution
for those who do not pity, even themselves. (See also Revelation 14:10,19,
16:5-7,19, 6:16, Isaiah 2:20-22, Matthew 22:7-14.) The Lord’s return as
specified in Zech. 14, is to Jerusalem, though the whole earth is His and
He will rule over it (as in Psalms 2, 72, 67-68, 110, Isaiah 11, 32).
a) Middle Concentration
b) Middle Consternation
a) Here in the Middle East is the Regal Concentration of the power of Christ, whose body was resurrected, whose power flowed to multitudes in healings, stilled the wind, raised the dead, who was not only the King, but raised by His Father as such, from the dead (see above). This power was made manifest through the apostles, in the church, in the word of God ever since, to which history bows with no exceptions.
b) When every eye beholds this same Jesus, who is to return as He left (Acts 1), all the tribes of the earth will mourn (Revelation 1:7). It is hard to face an examination at any time, when you are not prepared for it.
One recalls having to address a class of wool-classers, on their own subject matter, without being one! without experience! Without warning!
One was enabled to use basic economic principles on the one side, and to elicit their various opinions of aspects of the trade (having heard on the radio some interesting developments not long before), and with their input to make them, as it appears from comments, most satisfied! That however is what we all may do on occasion, rise to it. It is partly that this or that helped us, that we had background, or enjoy improvisation.
But NO improvisation removes an atomic blast, NO improvisation grants purity when it is not yours; NO imagination removes the truth, and NO ability divests your sins of their due judgment, should they not be covered. The mountains, they cry, please cover us (Revelation 6, Isaiah 2). But nothing will cover sin when it is guilty in its own secretions, unwashed, unlovely, undesired.
This consternation will be in immediate focus where He returns, divesting the rebellion of Middle East Armageddon of its vaunting ambition and vanity, and implanting reality disastrously in the midst of those who are unprepared (Revelation 16:14, 19:15ff., 19:19ff., II Thess. 1, Jude 14-15).
a) Middle Summary
b) Middle Luminary
a) Here in the Middle Eas t was the START, the COMMENCEMENT EXERCISE, which became the FALL, of man; and to this region came the ONLY REDEEMER (for since God only redeems, Psalm 49, Hosea 13:14, and since there is but one God, there is but one redemption, requiring the work of the Almighty to accomplish it as in Acts 4:11-12, Colossians 1:19ff.).
this same region came the Resurrection on which the entire history of man
for the future depends (not on the folly of empty and barren space, preserved
for purposes other than human life). The ONE GOD made man, and the madness
of man ignores the source, and so forfeits the future apt for him. Thousands,
and perhaps millions do not do this; but the race for all that, is bent
on non-realisation, non-release, non-redemption, cutting each other's throats,
and the throat of truth as surely now as in the Crucifixion (see That
Magnificent Rock, Chs. 1,
8 e.g., and also
Here too comes the Redeemer to rule as King, as in Zechariah 14, Psalm 72.
b) In all this is one luminary, Christ, the morning star (Revelation 22:16, II Peter 1:19, Numbers 24:17, John 9:5, 1:4 ), who even in heaven,has this said of Him: "the Lamb is its light". From the Father, He casts light everywhere, and in Him is eternal life (I John 1:1-4), the personal expression of the Almighty, His definitive manifestation (Hebrews 1:1-3), properly addressed as "GOD" when so to do is the very height of blasphemy, for any but God (Isaiah 42;10).
The Middle East is where this light shone, and it is here it returns... Here man sought to extinguish it, here it rose in blazing triumph, here it comes in incendiary wrath where the cover is wilfully omitted (as in Matthew 22). The simple fact is, as Christ who has the authority, power and prophecy of truth, has declared of Himself: "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life" (John 8:12).
This is because HE IS the light of life. Life is His, and He made it (Colossians 1:15ff.). NOTHING was made, NOTHING is in the category of the made, UNLESS HE MADE IT (John 1:3). HE created the category of the made, even He who is eternal.
To disregard His light, is to deny His life, and so omit it.
Stars in the evening sky can be wonderful, as we found near Ceduna in South Australia, where the clarity of the air, and the lack of light (some 50 miles or so away from the city) allowed the wonders of the heavens to declare themselves. There is, as the Psalmist so clearly states, no speech nor language, their voice is not heard; nevertheless, the heavens declare the glory of God.
In this as in some other things, the AV and some other translations are apt to err: for the word, as rightly acknowledged, the word "where" is NOT in the text in this Psalm 19, and its addition as in so many additions to the word of God, suppresses the marvel of it. God can speak to the intellect, to the aroused mind, to the awakened life, and He can use works as well as words (see Repent or Perish Ch. 7). These here 'speak', as it is written.
In the Middle East, not the starry heavens, but the Star of all stars, the commencement and creator of stars appeared in human, humble and sacrificial form, the ultimate of the Isaac whom God spared, since he could pay for no sin, being a sinner . This Messiah in the Middle East, He came, He rose, He was felled; He rose again; He is coming again. His purity is unfathomable, like His understanding. There is no uprising against Him which is not necessitated to fall (Psalm 2, 110). His compassion is not confusion, and His kindness is not laxity. When the earth has quite finished its lampooning and laxities and bright parodies of truth, truth will judge it. HE is the truth. ALL judgment is committed to Him (John 5:19ff.). In Psalm 2, He warns the 'judges' of the earth, of their Judge!
also comes in the Middle East on the beast and the false prophet and on
the adverse armies, maddened and deluded, who seek to prize open the door
of doom and replace it with the door of destiny, with their luxury
of recalcitrance, and their puniness of pride.
a) Middle Lesson
b) Middle Rest on
c) Middle Lesion
a) Christ only is Lord, Christ is all and in all. Hence said He, Why do you call Me, Lord, Lord and not do the things I say ? (Luke 6:46), and Colossians 3:11 supplies the rest. THAT is the lesson. "O LORD our God, OTHER Lords besides You have had dominion over us," said Isaiah the prophet in 26:13. , "but by You only will we make mention of Your name." There is, in terms of God, NO ONE ELSE, and HENCE there is NO OTHER LORD, for there is no one else who KNOWS, who GOES and makes it GO, who RESTRAINS and makes it STOP. It was in the Middle East that the Lord made Himself man and so showed and manifested WHOSE was the Lordship, not that of cruelty, of oppression, of injustice, of power grabbing, of survival at all costs, of scurrilous deeds with devious hands and white collar and pious countenance, not that of convenience, minimal comfort as a sturdy prerequisite, but that of LOVE, DEVOTION, SACRIFICE, PEACE, PURITY and NOBILITY, clarity of heart, beauty of holiness.
LED us in these things, by coming to be one of us and DOING IT (Hebrews
b) Correlative with that, when on Him one rests, one has rest, for His power is such that to rest on Him is to rest on the infinitude of power, the certainty of purity, the quintessence of loyalty, the expression of thought, the speech of heart, the love of the Creator verbalised, propositionalised, practised and perfected. Thus in Matthew 11:27ff., He invites to rest, who says, "No one knows the Father except the Son and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him."
In case some one does not like the flow of lesson and rest on, we have an alternative in this case, for our couplet. The Middle East also is the Middle Lesion. The wound will NOT heal, the Moslem CANNOT accept the role of Judaism, and vice versa, nor can Rome really accept either, except on its own subtle terms which keep the Pope master in violation of Christ's express prohibition (Matthew 23:8-10). Hence there is a lesion in the area, a pomposity, a religiosity, a jihad consciousness, a combination that splits asunder, will not heal*1.
When Christ returns, He will smite and heal, as it is written of Egypt (Isaiah 19:22), and He will by His own Rock, Himself, rule in unity and banish the elaborate and at times pitiful or even pitiless contortions of the beauty of truth, which make sick the body of so much of mankind, writhing in great part with its own misdirected endeavours.
Rome has form but not fact, fiction but not truth; Mecca has unity in one God, but chooses what is not there, like so many others, adding jihad to embarrass and harass what is not open to indoctrination; Judaism tears out the Messiah whom the word they have so well attests, and is left like a man with a heart operation, a transplant, the old torn out, the new not installed. Lesion is the lesson, and the Lord is the answer, the one Lord, authenticated, verified and victorious.
a) Middle Parade
b) Middle Paragon
a) Here, in this turbulent arena, as we saw before, is the pageantry of passing kingdoms, like a series of floats exhibiting wares down a main street in some city, with a gala atmosphere. Here comes the first, the next, with the whole pretension, power and imperial impetuosities of it all. When Babylon was overthrown in the midst of the others (Egypt, Assyria and co. lying as it were in wreckage and oblivion as kingdoms), we read this in Isaiah 14:
have you fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning.
How you are cut down to the ground,
You who weakened the nations!
For you have said in your heart,
'I will ascend into heaven
I will exalt my throne above the stars of God...
I will be like the Most High' -
Yet you shall be brought down to Hell...",
and in 14:9:
from beneath is excited about you,
To meet you at your coming.
It stirs up the dead for you...
Your pomp is brought down to Hell...
The maggot is spread under you,
And worms cover you."
But this is not all in the Middle East parade. It is also a parade of the Lord's deliverances of Israel when it was faithful, as when Hezekiah spread out Assyria's challenge in the temple before the Lord, and He destroyed the Assyrian army investing Jerusalem, spared the city, and left the Emperor to return home in order to be killed as he worshipped some idol in some temple of his preference. One does not readily forget the sheer, apparent inanity of the Professor who in the very grandeur of his professorial ignorance and nescience of truth in this matter, imagined that the Hebrews had forgotten second causes.
On the contrary, there is such an array of them, lions, plagues, precautions against plagues such as leprosy, such an allowance for non-intervention by the Lord at His plan, as with Job for a season, such miraculous healing as with Hezekiah, and such prediction so sicknesses as with Asa, such a mixture and proliferation of causes supernatural, natural, retributive, by inheritance, not by inheritance when the mercy of the Lord is sought (as in Exodus 20), such a presentation of causes multitudinous as in Proverbs, that the book is the very epitome of balance. What IS not forgotten, however, is that the author and source of the scenario, is well able to change the script as the case may require (as in Amos 7), as can any influential author, without fouling the presentation, and that the Lord who has known the last from the first (indeed such is one of His names, the first and the last as in Isaiah 44:6) so being able to predict as He will, that all His plans are already composed and the very number of the elect known (Revelation 5).
The path of fear can be used to confuse, of quarrelsomeness to defeat, or zeal for war treasure, or unconscious desire or even sense of fitness (as in II Kings 3:22ff., or II Kings 7:3ff., Ezekiel 21:21-24, II Chronicles 20:20ff.), and whole episodes can turn on the skilful use of this or that component or consideration, God however not being concerned to vacate the premises, as if the author of the scene were not allowed to take part, since in fact, in THIS WORK, called history, the author is ONE of those who act. He acts with restraint, He acts with wisdom, He often acts by NOT intervening (as in Psalm 1:6), and allows them to inhabit secondary causes to the full (as when they eat the 'fruit of their own doings' as exemplified in Proverbs 1).
In this pageant of nations, therefore, in their rises and falls, there is a breadth and scope of means, and ends, purposes and decisions, methods and combinations or even syntheses of plans, to fulfil the purposes of the Lord (cf. Isaiah 14:24-27).
These purposes not least are of such kinds as these, for example:
God is very deep. His creation is far less so, and the words of presumption excel in Job, and are rebuked by the Lord, whose real reason in the case is spelled out so plainly in the beginning of the book. The place of wisdom, as Job rightly reminds us, is GOD, and without Him, one has not even begun as Solomon attests. From the Lord however wisdom pours out like a waterfall, though many never attend in order to behold it, like those near Niagara, too busy to take the drive.
So the parade, the instructive parade, the manifestation parade, continues, but of empires, it is a very thicket in the Middle East. There where the chosen nation for instruction (both positive and negative!) Israel, was to be, there were the lessons in droves! How sad is the folly that exalts unreason and fails to realise, with Isaiah, that the people who do not exalt the Lord may indeed browse up the pleasant grasses, but die with them in the end. Does not Isaiah put it boldly, and beautifully as well (Isaiah 22:10-14):
"You numbered the houses of Jerusalem,
And the houses you broke down
To fortify the wall.
You also made a reservoir betwen the two walls
For the water of the old pool.
But you did not look to its Maker,
Nor did you have respect for Him who fashioned it long ago.
"And in that day the Lord GOD of hosts
Called for weeping and girding with sackcloth,
But instead, joy and gladness,
Slayig oxen and killing sheep,
Eating meat and drinking wine.
'Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!'
"Then it was revealed in my hearing by the LORD of hosts,
"Surely for this iniqutiy there will be no atonement for you,
Even to your death, " says the Lord GOD of hosts."
Yes, Israel herself was not immune, for when you plagued her own immunity, and expected immunity from the absence of her Protector, or His exposure of her folly, she knew the difference. When God helps, the difference is infinite for the purpose in hand; and His help may be in any dimension, by any facet, or direct as when Sennacherib's army was virtually obliterated by divine action, by whatever secondary cause it may have been instituted, astronomical or other. What does it matter, empirically, whether it is by locusts that you are rebuked, or by hunger, when the abnswer to both and the conditions scheduled for either are the ready work of the perfect dramatist. Why however, be cast in a ludicrous role, when God is the good; indeed, if there were one thing that must be said without cease, in heart and spirit, it is this fact, that the Lord is good; though as with rebellious children being adjusted by a Headmaster, wickedness might not seem the best avenue to finding this out!
But let us return to the parade of nations in the Middle East.
It is the parade of nations like Egypt, when faithfully confronted, though imperial and imperious in majesty, wholly unable to retain the fleeing Jews, after their long ordeal and oppression, in the Exodus.
the Egyptians are men, and not God,
And their horses are flesh, and not spirit..." said the Lord, and acted accordingly, who brought to ruin Egypt also at the hand of the appointed agent, in that case Assyria at Carchemish, while Assyria got her predicted due likewise, at the hand of Babylon, and this at the hand of the Medes and Persians, all as pre-announced (cf. Jeremiah 25:19, Isaiah 44:24-28).
the Lord stretches out His hand,
Both he who helps will fall,
And he who is helped will fall down,
They all will perish together."
But the Middle East is more even than this. Here is the parade of the humiliations of Judah, as well as of her deliverances. Thus the coming of Babylon was long predicted by Jeremiah, who was put in prison for it, indeed, to sink in a stinking pit, from which however, before he sank, he was also delivered. Thus Lamentations reveals the poignancy and pity of Jeremiah who sees in the flesh, the horrors of the humbling of the stumbling Israel, long warned, given almost countless opportunities (even near the end, as in Jeremiah 17). The whole array of enemy crushings of Israel till her recent return was all presented in Leviticus 26, in the form of a prognosis, which duly transpired. It even made it clear what results would come SUCCESSIVELY, when Israel, like the current Gentile nations, simply refused to listen (cf. Isaiah 30).
the Bible records, predicts and appoints what was to be, is to be, and
the land reveals it. Such it the Middle East on parade.
b) Middle Paragon
Christ is the paragon for the Kingdom of Heaven: its King, it is He who is victim, mutilated, oppressed, shamelessly sundered with the sword in his bowel, slowly expatriated from His body by nails in hands and feet, face tortured and tormented by beard hunked out by violence and the very acme of atrocity. So He rules. He rules that He will suffer and be executed for those, His subjects, the unruly (one and all, for all have sinned - Romans 6:23); He rules the sea, the air, the sickness, the very realm of death and evacuates it. HERE is the King of the Jews, HERE is the LIGHT of the Gentiles, HERE is the DESIRE of the nations (Haggai 2:7), the Prince of Life (Acts 3) and the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6-7). He does it, simply, Himself; and it is not merely 'none better'; but He alone has the capacity and the power to do it, the quality and the purity to perform it, the heart and the holiness to accomplish it, the plan and the purpose to make it work.
The paragon is the parade of one. No other parade is worth comparison.
ALL the parades were in the
Middle East, the long list of sequential nations and the long list of rebellions
and ruins, restorations and deliverances, were in concentrate form in this
area, interpreted, given in prognosis, reviewed in retrodiction. But this
parade, that of the paragon (as in Isaiah 41:27ff.), it is one which makes
the pathologies and puninesses of man appear as dross in the presence of
burnished brass, as darkness in the presence of light, as aridity in the
presence of a vast watercourse, as a single petalled flower before the
profusion of massed camelias, weighing down their branches in exquisite
daintiness, durability and artistic wonder, or as a trickle before torrential
falls, or reality in the presence of artifice or a palace before a hovel.
a) The Middle Mount and
b) The Middle Mount.
You are right if you check and find the spelling identical. It is the sense, not the partial sentence which is different.
a) The Middle Mount is the ass's colt which Christ in humility and having salvation (as in Zechariah 9:9's prediction) was to ride, and did ride (Matthew 21:1ff.)..
b) The Middle Mount in another sense, was the Mount for the Sermon on the Mount, where the mounting marvels of pure spiritual living were exposed, the serviceability and godliness of Christian living, and the kingdom of heaven itself. See Matthew 5-7, to find what arrested Gandhi and astonished millions.
When you read this, you see that survival of the fittest is just silly - just childish. It is not just that it does not happen, this imaginary ASCENT by the simple device of surviving; it is rather that a dead wonder is better than a living rat, for rats, you see, are so rattish. A million more is scarcely a subject for devotion. ONE person living by the sermon on the mount is worth billions more living in the sewers of survival.
a) Middle Power
b) Middle Lour
a) The power of the oracles of God, sentences of significance, the mind of God expressed with careful precision ot man was one exhibition.
The power of deliverance as from Pharaoh, from Syria, Assyria and the power of exhortation to return to the Lord and the power of pardon (as in Micah 7:18-20), with the power of parables and the power of personal confrontation with man, evil and sin on the part of Christ, and the power of the Spirit of God who, as Christ put it, (Luke 12:12, 21:14-15), concerning the answers to false judges, the Lord hate-goods of Bunyan, which would be given to persecuted disciples, these were expressions of that inimitable wonder who is God.
The author has personally found the practicality of what follows, in the last point named above (Luke 12:11cf. Luke 21:15):
The power to heal (as in Acts 3) was exhibited in correlative fashion, when, in Acts 4:20ff. we see the record, the word was followed by the unity in the Spirit, the cohesion and the attestation by the Lord Himself.
the power which shook them at Pentecost, which arrived at the occasion
of the successive persecutions of the apostles (as in Acts 4:32ff.), by
which Peter and John raised the lame in Acts 3, and Paul healed in vast
numbers, Peter could raise the dead (Acts 9:36ff.), and the power by which
countless martyrs have contrived to live, to answer and to endure, even
in grace and goodness, no less than in evil conditions and vile accusations:
all this is like a diamond. You can think you have exhausted its facets,
but then, hidden by brilliance, you find more and more.
b) But with this empowering, Christ acting directly, or through others in His name, there is the louring. (NOT lower-ing as in reducing height, but loring as in making expressions or attitudes fit for glowering!)
The GOODNESS which requires the most enormous power to maintain, sustain and have as a natural feature, being contrary to all winds and currents of this earth, is not met with praise and delight by many millions and by the powers of this Age. Rather, they louer, they paw with the foot, they snort with the spirit, they threaten, they calumniate, they ignore, they attest themselves and invent themselves and invent christs and saviours of vapour, of international thought, as if thought could reach to infinity and pull the levers on God!
Ambon is merely one current example. Hitler was another. Every sort of wild folly is practised against the faith, from slander to slaughter. In the Middle East, it was long focussed on the prophets, resistance and death; and then on Christ Himself; and then on the Christians as Rome intervened with her brand of poison. It continues in the concurrence of currents of religions there, as noted above. It will continue till the antichrist conceives of himself as God, in the temple, and as he seeks to exterminate what resists, the divine with the human power of the creature, the creation (cf. Rev. 13).
and empowering are both crucial testimony from the Middle East.
it begins, the New Heavens and the New Earth (II Peter 3:5-13, Isaiah 65:17,
51:6) where there is no more room for lust for flesh, for bodies dead and
twisted, for blood, for war, for battle, for self-improvement of people
and nations at others' expense, for nature given divine powers, for divinity
distorted into Nature: here is the ending and from here is the Lord whose
it all is.
The horrendous confusion and failure of many organisations, Christian by name, to realise and apply the realities of the case in Israel, is a testimony to the falling away of our times, in situ as predicted in I Timothy 3 and II Peter 2, II Thesalonians 2. Mercifully not all have fallen in this convenient substitute for Biblical fidelity. For the detail of what happened when pressure was applied for Judaistic 'autonomy' if you will, see Barbs, Arrows and Balms 13!
Making 'peace' is like making cakes. You can make it in any way you like, so long as the character of the cake is of no importance. What rejects Christ as King and only Saviour, God manifest in the flesh (cf. SMR Ch. 7, pp. 532-560, see also 520, and Things Old and New ... Chs. 2, 5 and Appendix) is not merely another religion, but one requiring another Saviour, when there is only ONE as there is ONE God (Acts 4:11-12, Isaiah 43:10-11).
FOR PART TWO WITH THE OTHER TWO VOICES, CLICK PART TWO