Bible Believers' Newsletter 733
"We focus on the present Truth — what Jesus is doing now. . ."
Christian greetings in the precious Name of our Lord Jesus Christ; we are so pleased to have your company in fellowship around God's unchanging Word.
Our main article is a study on Ezekiel 33 and 34 to demonstrate these prophecies relate to the imminent future and God's dealings with the an election of the natural seed of Abraham, Isaac and Israel who are also the Spiritual seed of his Seed of Promise, Jesus Messiah. "And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people". This Newsletter serves those of like precious faith. Whoever will receive the truth is welcome to feed their soul from the waters of the River of Life. Everything here presented should be confirmed personally in your own Bible.
NATO rehearses for War in the Arctic
April 23, 2012 — To the world’s military leaders, the debate over climate change is long over. They are preparing for a new kind of Cold War in the Arctic, anticipating that rising temperatures there will open up a treasure trove of resources and long-dreamed-of sea-lanes . . . Cold Response 2012 was conducted from March 12-21 primarily in Norway but also in Sweden with the participation of 16,300 troops from fifteen nations as part of full spectrum—air, sea, infantry and Special Forces—maneuvers against the backdrop of the past three years’ new scramble for the Arctic. . . Four of the five Arctic claimants—the United States, Canada, Norway and Denmark—are members of NATO. The other, Russia, is not. "The importance of why we need forces capable of operating in the Arctic is very basic power projection—to make a show to other players in the international community that we are an Arctic nation, and we are going to protect our interests in the Arctic Circle" . . . "Russia has all grounds for concern given that ships equipped with the . . . Aegis Combat System can be deployed in the Arctic" . . . The Western campaign for global dominance has reached the top of the world.
Full story: voltairenet.org
Comment: Western insanity and belligerent hypocrisy. Together with Russia they established the UN criminal organization to decide such matters "peaceably".
Mossad/CIA murdered US Troops in Iraq
January 21, 2011 — Back in 2006 a story made its rounds through the internet and the world's media that Israeli snipers were killing US Troops in Iraq and pinning the blame on "insurgents" in order to enrage American troops so that the slaughter continued. After a thorough investigation into this older story there is more than enough evidence to point to the fact that Mossad (with the CIA) is operating inside Iraq and has been for years. . .
The CIA/Mossad are masters at false flag operations, e.g., The Oklahoma City bombing, the attack on the USS Cole in Yemen, the bombing of the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires, the July 7, the 9/11 attacks in New York & Washington DC, the assassination of the Prime Minister in Beirut, the bombing of the Hassan al-Askari Mosque in Samarra, Iraq, etc.
Mossad & CIA Agents freely move among US and UK troops in Iraq, and have access to top-level US intelligence. . . Because of this access, the "insurgents" (i.e., CIA/Mossad agents) know exactly where US vehicles will be and who will be inside them. This allows them to target for maximum false flag effect. . .
Whenever the CIA/Mossad carry out these false-flag operations they produce a videotape or a recording from an "unnamed source" that is "close to al-Qaeda." Sometimes they say "the claim was posted on an Internet website, but its authenticity could not be verified." These videos have been widely proven to be false and the CIA has even admitted that they faked Bin-Laden and Saddam Hussein videos. Full story: federaljack.com
Comment: Our contributing author John Kaminski wrote about this seven years ago globalresearch.ca. Iraq was practice for Afghanistan, Pakistan, Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Syria, and Iran . . .
SYRIA: UN working with NATO to provide Pretext for Intervention
UN 'Aid' Program to be used in establishing NATO 'Humanitarian Corridors'
April 21, 2012 — Recently reported in Reuters', "UN seeks Syria nod for major aid operation," the UN is seeking to bring in "aid workers" and open offices all across Syria in order to carry out what they call a "major humanitarian operation."
Syria has criticized certain nations of what is clearly the "politicizing of humanitarian aid." Fortune 500-funded US policy think-tank, the Brookings Institution has openly stated that US foreign policy would best be served by taking advantage of "gaining humanitarian access" allowing the West to "add further coercive action to its efforts" to topple the Syrian government. Specifically, Brookings foresees gaining such access may lead to establishing "safe-havens and humanitarian corridors" protected by NATO military forces, in yet another example of the "mission creep" that led to regime change in Libya. Such "creep" would give proxy militant forces unassailable positions to continue their campaign of violence against the Syrian people.
Brookings Institution's Middle East Memo #21 "Assessing Options for Regime Change (.pdf)," makes no secret that the humanitarian "responsibility to protect" is but a pretext for long-planned regime change.
Despite the UN's "peace plan" being fully rejected by both the Syrian rebels and their Western and Arab League backers who have openly pledged cash, weapons, and support for them to continue fighting, in full violation of the proposed ceasefire, the Western media has instead accused the Syrian government of failing to meet its obligations. As the West continues to fuel the violence, and if "humanitarian access" is approved, military intervention will be proposed to combat what will be claimed to be Syrian government "belligerence" . . . Full story: landdestroyer.blogspot.com.au
Iran says it is copying US Spy Plane, claiming it has uncovered Drone's Secrets
April 23, 2012 — AN Iranian military commander says the Islamic republic is building a copy of a US spy drone captured in December 2011 and revealed what he said were "codes" gleaned from the unmanned aircraft. . . Iran has "started producing a copy of the RQ-170 drone," stressing it used the same US technology in stealth fighters and bombers . . . Full story: theaustralian.com.au
Big Brother is watching: Surveillance Box to track Drivers
March 31, 2009 — The government is backing a project to install a "communication box" in new cars to track the whereabouts of drivers anywhere in Europe. . . Under the proposals, vehicles will emit a constant "heartbeat" revealing their location, speed and direction of travel. The EU officials behind the plan believe it will significantly reduce road accidents, congestion and carbon emissions. A consortium of manufacturers has indicated that the router device could be installed in all new cars as early as 2013. . . The messages will be picked up by other cars in the vicinity, allowing vehicles to warn each other if they are forced to break hard or swerve to avoid a hazard. The data is also picked up by detectors at the roadside and mobile phone towers. That enables the road to communicate with cars, allowing for "intelligent" traffic lights to turn green when cars are approaching or gantries announce changes to speed limits. . . Full story: guardian.co.uk
USA, April 19, 2012 —Legislation—already passed by the Senate and likely to be passed by the House—will impose a legal requirement that all new cars made beginning with the 2015 models be fitted with so-called Event Data Recorders... These EDRs are not new. GM and other automakers have been installing them in new cars for years—in GM’s case, since the late 1990s. What’s new is the proposed federal mandate, which would make it illegal to not have one—or (in all likelihood) to remove or disable one in a car required to have the device. . .
And naturally, they—the government, insurance companies—will be able to track your every move, noting (and recording) where you've been and when. This will create a surveillance net beyond anything that ever existed previously.
Voila. "Your" car is suddenly under the control of others. Just as "your" other (cough, hack) property—"your" home, for example—is under the control of others. It does not matter that you paid for it. Or even that you have the legal fiction of ownership. You do not control "your" property—hence it is really the property of others. You are merely allowed to use said property—under certain conditions, by the leave of the true owners—the government and its cronies in the corporatocracy . . . Full story: ericpetersautos.com
The fourth of seven continuous visions the Lord showed Brother Branham showed a plastic bubble-topped car that was running down beautiful highways under remote control so that people appeared seated in this car without a steering wheel and they were playing some sort of a game to amuse themselves (An Exposition of the Seven Church Ages, p. 321.5). See Google's fleet of self-driving cars.
International Forecaster April 2012 (#6) – Gold, Silver, Economy + More
April 22, 2012 — For a company whose corporate motto is "Don't Be Evil," Google Inc. certainly has found itself at the receiving end of its share of lawsuits, claims and controversies. Still, even by Google's standards this past week has been a difficult one. . . For those unfamiliar with the Street View brouhaha . . . sniffing Wi-Fi networks and, supposedly by accident, private information, including emails, passwords, and any other data flowing through unencrypted networks whenever the cars were rolling by. . . Also in 2006 an ex-CIA agent went public claiming that CIA seed money had helped to get Google off the ground and that the two had maintained a "small but significant relationship" . . . Alarm bells were raised in 2010, however, when it was announced that Google was collaborating with the NSA on cybersecurity operations. . . Full story: goldseek.com
If I wanted America to Fail
April 23, 2012 — Barack Obama appeared on the American political scene in 1994 like a phony magician's trick. His victory in 2008 was an illusion designed to make voters believe he actually won the votes that supposedly elected him in 2008. It was an electoral smoke screen to conceal the fact that the "new voters" who cast their ballots for him were an illusion, too. He promised change. The voters forgot to ask him what type of change he had in mind. Obama is a Manchurian Candidate who was funded by Watermelons (green on the outside, communist red on the inside] to destroy this nation. Obama's "political manager," George Soros, amassed his wealth by destroying the monetary system of the countries he targets. His target? The United States. Obama sees the destruction of the United States as a win-win scenario since not only does Soros get what he paid for—the collapse of the US dollar and the destruction of the free enterprise system, but enough chaos in America that Obama can declare martial law and become an Abraham Lincoln-type dictator. . . Full story: jonchristianryter.com
Comment: The video clearly demonstrates how YOUR 'democratic' government has legislated YOUR inescapable return to serfdom by placing you under the curse of law with respect to energy. In Australia the federal parliament passed the Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) Act 2011 under which all laws now passed by the parliament must be compatible with seven United Nations treaties to which Australia is a party. MPs who propose a bill must complete a statement of compatibility for human rights (Epoch Times, January 11, 2012). As none of these treaties were ever subscribed to by the Australian people the act is another nail in the coffin of the nation's sovereignty.
Also Ex-CIA: 'Forged document' released as birth certificate.
Derivatives: the Unregulated Global Casino for Banks
A derivative buys you the option (but not obligation) to buy oil in 6 months for today's price/any agreed price, hoping that oil will cost more in future. (I'll bet you it'll cost more in 6 months). Derivative can also be used as insurance, betting that a loan will or won't default before a given date. So it's a big betting system, like a Casino, but instead of betting on cards and roulette, you bet on future values and performance of practically anything that holds value. The system is not regulated what-so-ever, and you can buy a derivative on an existing derivative.
Most large banks try to prevent smaller investors from gaining access to the derivative market on the basis of there being too much risk. The derivative market has blown a galactic bubble, just like the real estate bubble or stock market bubble (that's going on right now). Since there is literally no economist in the world that knows exactly how the derivative money flows or how the system works, while derivatives are traded in microseconds by computers, we really don't know what will trigger the crash, or when it will happen, but considering the global financial crisis this system is in for tough times, that will be catastrophic for the world financial system since the 9 largest banks shown below hold a total of $228.72 trillion in Derivatives—Approximately 3 times the entire world economy. No government in the world has money for this bailout. Let's take a look at what banks have the biggest Derivative Exposures and what scandals they've been lately involved in . . . Full story: Derivatives: The Unregulated Global Casino for Banks Global Financial Crisis: A World In Debt
Ezekiel 33 – 34
Like Daniel and the Revelation, Ezekiel is a book of prophecy whose mysteries are veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols. Our study begins at chapter 33 which commences the second and principal part of this Book and concerns faith in Jesus Messiah, the means through which God's mercies toward an election of the blood descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and the glory of the nation of Israel is to be restored.
Ezekiel was called to prophesy in the fifth year from the date of his being carried away with king Jehoiachin (Jeconiah) by Nebuchadnezzar in 599BC (II Kings 24:11-15). The upper echelon and godliest of the people were among the first carried away (Jeremiah 24:1-10; Ezekiel 11:16). The ungodly were willing to do anything to remain in their native land; whereas the faithful believed God's prophets and obeyed the first summons to surrender as the only path of safety. The Chaldeans believed that with them out of the way the nation would fall to pieces of itself, and they were despised by their brethren in Judah as having no share in the temple sacrifices. Thus Ezekiel's sphere of labor was happier and less impeded by his countrymen than that of Jeremiah in the homeland. The first scene of his prophecies was by the river Chebar, which flows into the Euphrates near Circesium in south-eastern Syria (Ezekiel 1:1). His residence whither the elders came to inquire as to God's Messages through him was at Tel-Abib (now Thallaba, Ezekiel 3:15). They were eager to return to Jerusalem, but he taught them that they must first return to their God.
In the twelfth year of the captivity, when fugitives from Jerusalem (Ezekiel 33:21) arrived in Chaldea, he foretells better times, the re-establishment of Israel and the triumph of God's kingdom on earth over its enemies, Seir (the Edomites), the heathen, and Gog (Ezekiel 33:1 – 39:29). After an interval of thirteen years, Ezekiel received the closing vision of the order and beauty of the kingdom restored to Israel in the millennium (Ezekiel 40:1 – 48:35; Acts 1:6). As we shall see, in chapters 33 to 39 Ezekiel's commission is renewed in the prophecy of God's mercies toward His servant nation and point toward Daniel's Seventieth Week.
The prophet's Divine mission outlined in 595BC in the vision of chapters 1-3 was remarkably similar to the vision of John. We commented on some of the parallels to Revelation and Isaiah 6 in Newsletter 732. As a silver sword representing God's Word materialized in Brother Branham's hand as He was praying in Sabino Canyon early in 1963 prior to receiving the revelation of the Seven Seals, Ezekiel received his new commission when a hand materialized and opened a scroll written within and on the backside, full of warnings and woe. Like Christ's end-time Bride (Revelation 10:8-11), Ezekiel was told to eat or become one with the Word and tell the captives, "Say what the visions say." As a watchman to the House of Israel Ezekiel was commanded to convey God's warnings as they were revealed to him. The Lord told him that after relating his experience his fellow Israelites would place him under house arrest. "And I will make your tongue cleave to the roof of your mouth so you will be dumb: you shall not be a reprover to them, for they are a rebellious house. But when I speak with you, I will open your mouth, and you shall declare, THUS SAITH THE LORD GOD; He who hears, let him hear; and he who forbears, let him forbear: for they are a rebellious house".
How like the postscript to the Message of the angel to each Church Age. "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches," followed by the blessing promised to the saints of each Age. The preceding Message already contained correction for failing God's Word and encouragement in the new Message. Each Message was directed to both the true vine or elect Church and the false vine or reprobate churches like God's Messages of warning and repentance delivered by Ezekiel, further reproof was unnecessary.
The following chapters contain prophecies of judgment upon Judah, Israel and Jerusalem: we rejoin Ezekiel in chapter 24 which sets the scene for today's study. In 590BC on the tenth day of the tenth month of the ninth year [of king Jehoiachin's captivity] the Word of the Lord came to Ezekiel commanding him to pantomime boiling water in a copper pitted with rust and wickedness and fill it with the choicest mutton, the meat with the bones. The caldron and its contents represent Jerusalem, City of Murderers, and he was to boil it till the meat separates from the bones; then empty the copper, burn the bones, and set the empty pot on the coals so that its copper may burn and its poisonous scum may melt and its rust be consumed. As Ezekiel increases the fire beneath the cauldron, so God will pile fuel beneath Jerusalem.
"In vain I have wearied myself; its thick rust, Jerusalem's filthy lewdness, does not go out of it by fire. I would have cleansed you and because you would not be cleansed of your filthiness, you shall not be purified until I have spent My indignation upon you. I the Lord have spoken, and I will do it, I will not relent nor show mercy. Moreover, I am about to take away your wife. Suddenly she will die. You must show no sorrow or shed tears. Let there be no wailing at her grave, do not bare your head or feet, or accept food brought by consoling friends. Ezekiel proclaimed these things in the morning and at evening his wife died. The next morning he did as the Lord had charged."
When asked the meaning of the pantomime and his strange behaviour, Ezekiel replied: "The Lord told me to say to the house of Israel, I will profane My Sanctuary, the pride of your strength, the delight of your eyes, and the desire of your soul; your sons and your daughters in Judea will be slaughtered by the sword. And you shall do as I have done: you may not mourn in public or weep; but you shall pine away in your iniquities, and mourn privately for the evil you have done. Thus Ezekiel is a sign to you. You will do as he has, and when that time comes you will know that I am the Lord."
"On the day I finish taking from them in Jerusalem the joy of their hearts and their glory, the delight of their eyes, and the desire of their soul, their wives and sons and their daughters, on that day a refugee from Jerusalem will commence his journey to Babylon to report the news. And on the day of his arrival your mouth shall be opened to him; you will speak, and no longer be dumb. Thus you shall be a sign for the people and they shall know that I am the Lord".
Our unchanging God vindicated Ezekiel's calling and raised faith in the exiles by the same technique He employed to raise Abraham and Sarah's faith to bear their promised son Isaac when He "discerned the thoughts and intents of their hearts" in the days of Lot. And when those abominable conditions of Sodom repeated in our day He vindicated Brother Branham's ministry by "discerning the thoughts and intents of the heart, revealing Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever" to raise faith in Christ's end-time Bride (Luke 17:28-30; Genesis 18; Hebrews 4:12; 13:8). Up to this point Ezekiel had been prophesying Jerusalem's guilt and punishment; the evil got to its worst in the overthrow of Jerusalem with the razing of God's Temple as a consequence of the sin of Zedekiah and the Jerusalemites.
Chapters 25 to 32 represent a transition from the prophecy of judgment, and the consolatory element preponderates with the prophecy of compassion and the judgment of her adversaries. In 587BC Ezekiel's Divine mission to perform the part of a watchman (Ezekiel 33:2-9) and warn the captives is renewed and in chapters 33 to 37 he is admonished of his duty to reveal to Israel his sin and hypocrisy, reprove the ministry, prophesy the destruction of Edom, and exhort Israel regarding his future hope in the unity of faith and brotherhood.
Reading from Ezekiel 33:1, "Once again a Message came to me from the Lord: Son of man, tell your people [whom he had been forbidden to address from chapter 24:26-27 when he was struck dumb until Jerusalem had been overthrown and a refugee arrived with tidings of judgment, so that from chapter 25 to 31 Ezekiel addressed Ammon, Moab, Edom, Philistia, Tyre, Sidon, and Egypt with pronouncements of judgment]: When I bring an army against a country, the people of that land choose one of their own to be a watchman. When the watchman sees the enemy coming, he sounds the alarm to warn the people. Then if those who hear the Trumpet refuse to take action, their blood will be upon their own heads [as it has been upon the Israelites since Calvary (Matthew 27:25; Psalm 69)]. Had they heeded the warning, they could have saved their lives. But if the watchman sees the enemy coming and doesn't sound the alarm to warn the people, he is responsible for their deaths. They will die in their sins, but I will charge the watchman for their deaths."
Isaiah 55:11, "The Word that goes forth from My mouth will not return to Me void but shall do what I purpose and accomplish what I commissioned." So we see God's charge to the watchmen applies to the seven Trumpet judgments that befall Israel from Pentecost to the consummation of life, and to the seven Vials that befall the foolish virgin and false church in the same eras. Hence Paul declares, "Woe to me if I preach not the Gospel" (I Corinthians 9:16).
"So, son of man, I have appointed you a watchman for the people of Israel. Therefore, listen to what I say and warn them for Me. When I announce that some wicked people are sure to die and you fail to tell them to change their ways, then they will die in their sins, and I will hold you responsible for their deaths. But if you warn them to repent and they don't repent, they will die in their sins, but you will not be responsible."
The watchman's Message to the Israelites in verses ten to twenty is the Message of justification by grace through faith. He foretells better times, of Israel's restoration, of the triumph of God's Kingdom over the natural Serpent's seed of Edom, Sidon and the spiritual Serpent's seed of the Judaeo-Roman world empire, and at last, the millennium: "O people of Israel, You are saying, Our sins are heavy upon us; we pine away with guilt! How can we live? As surely as I live, says the Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked should turn from his way and live: turn, turn from your wickedness, for why will you die, O Israel? For the good works of a righteous man will not save him if he turns to sin, nor will the wicked behavior of wicked people destroy them if they repent and turn from their sins. And when I tell the wicked that he will die, but if he turns from his sins and does what is just and right, as for instance, he reimburses the borrower's security and returns what he has stolen, and walks the paths of righteousness, not doing evil—he will surely live and not die. None of his past sins will be brought against him, for he has turned to the good, and he will surely live."
[This puts the lie to the Jewish cult of Two Souls or replacement of souls based upon Talmudic fables and Ezekiel 18:4 while ignoring Ezekiel 18:5-9].
"Your people are saying, The Lord isn't fair, but it is they who are not fair. For again I say, when a good man turns to evil, he will die. But if the wicked turns from his wickedness and does what is just and right, he will live. Yet you are saying the Lord isn't fair. But I judge each of you in accordance with your deeds."
"In the twelfth year of our captivity, on the fifth day in the tenth month, [a year and a half after the capture of the city (Jeremiah 39:2; 52:5-6), in the eleventh year and fourth month (of Zedekiah's reign], a fugitive from Jerusalem came to me and said, The city has fallen! The previous evening the Lord took hold of me and restored my voice so I was able to speak when this man arrived the next morning."
"Then this Message came to me: Son of man, the scattered remnants of Judah living among the ruined cities keep saying, Abraham was only one man, yet he gained possession of the entire land. We are many, the land has surely been given us to possess. But the Lord God says: You eat meat with the blood, you worship idols, and murder. Murderers! Idolaters! Adulterers! Should the land belong to you"?
"As I live, those living in the ruins shall die by the sword. And I will send wild animals to eat those living in the open fields. Those hiding in the forts and caves will die of disease. I will completely destroy the land and demolish her pride. Her arrogant power will come to an end. The mountains of Israel will be so desolate no one will even travel through them. When I have completely destroyed the land because of their detestable sins, then they will know that I am the Lord."
"Son of man, your people are whispering behind your back saying: Come on, let us hear the prophet tell us what the Lord is saying! So they come pretending to be sincere and sit before you as [those who should be] My people. They listen to your words, but have no intention of doing what I tell them to; they talk sweetly about loving the Lord, but in their hearts they are loving their money (Matthew 15:8-9). You are very entertaining to them, like someone who sings love songs with a beautiful voice or plays well on an instrument. They hear what you say, but don't act on it! But when all these terrible things happen to them—as they will—then they will know a prophet has been among them".
How like our apostate so-called Christians, who, having ignored the prophet's Message will "hide themselves in the dens, [the underground cities that have been built], and in the rocks of the mountains; saying to the mountains and rocks, fall on us, and hide us from the face of He who sits on the throne, and from the anger of the Lamb: for the great day of His anger is come; and who will be able to stand [under the Sixth Seal and Seventh Vial]"? And what of the Israelites and their impersonators who have rejected the warning of the Sixth Trumpet from World War II to the present and "repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk: neither repented of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, or their thefts" (Revelation 9:20-21). Hence Jesus Messiah regards present day Jerusalem "spiritually as Sodom and Egypt . . . and the great city will be divided into three" (Revelation 9:20-21; 16:19; 11:8, 19; Zechariah 13:8-9; 14:4-5). Keep your eye on the types, remembering the dreadful judgments prophesied for the beast of Rome and the United States of America, her (once) Protestant image, and their followers (Revelation 19:20, 20:10).
The fact is now accomplished—Jerusalem is taken and Ezekiel's divine mission vindicated, having announced the day of the beginning of the investment of the city by Nebuchadnezzar "this same day" (Ezekiel 24:27), and confirmed by the opening of Ezekiel's mouth as prophesied when he was among the captives at the river Chebar three hundred miles away from Jerusalem and the arrival of the refugee. Despite the woeful news, the vindication of the prophet should engender faith and confidence among the Israelites. He cannot speak comfort after the example of Abraham (Genesis 12:7), and the comfort sought by the exiles in Canaan who regarded themselves as the continuation of Abraham's being to whom the inheritance was given, overlooked the fact as Jesus said, "If you were Abraham's children, you would do the works of Abraham [who served not sin but the living God]" (verse 24; John 8:39); but Ezekiel can reveal Israel's sin and hypocrisy, reprove the ministry, prophesy their Messianic expectations and exhort Israel regarding their future hope. Yet the former prophets such as Moses, David and Isaiah had declared Israel's impenitence would keep them from salvation, and that when Messiah came they would reject and murder Him. Jesus Himself said, "Had I not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty; but now they have no excuse for their sin" (John 15:22).
Our Christian duty is to speak the truth in love, spelling out the requirement of God's unchanging Word, "whoever looks into the perfect law of liberty, and continues therein, not being a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work will be blessed in his deed" (James 1:25; I Corinthians 9:16).
In chapter 33 Ezekiel laid down the necessity of repentance as preliminary to happier times for the people, in chapter 34 he reproves and promises the removal of the false shepherds or rulers as preparatory to the raising up of the Good Shepherd. This ministry of repentance was fulfilled by Jesus Messiah's forerunner John the Baptist. The prophecy of this chapter is very general, and not closely connected with specific occasions and circumstances of the past two thousand five hundred years, however believers in the Brother Branham's Message will appreciate its relevance to us today and to an election of Israelites soon to be restored to the land of their Covenant.
The "shepherds" were the entire body of officials responsible for the leadership of the people. Like the political, religious, business, banking, military and 'intellectual' leaders in this end-time they sought their own selfish ends and not the good of the people. The Shepherd King David, a type of Christ, was taken from the sheepcote to lead and guide and protect his people as Jesus called fishermen for apostles in token of their spiritual office of catching men. As today's leaders have no Absolute, because there was "no shepherd" in Judea worthy of the name Jesus said, "My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and upon every high hill [the scene of idolatries sanctioned by the rulers]: yes, My flock were scattered upon the face of all the earth, and none sought after them" so the flock became prey to the nations thereabout, Babylon, Egypt, Syria, Ammon, Moab, and Assyria.
Jeremiah 23:1-8 and a hundred years later Zechariah 11 prophesied the three offices of "shepherds" by which Israel was ruled—the civil authorities, the priests, and the prophets (or scribes who were teachers of the Law) who five hundred years thence would buy Messiah from Judas Iscariot for thirty pieces of silver, the price of a gored bond-servant, for His "visage was marred more than any man, and His form more than the sons of men" (Exodus 21:32; Matthew 26:15; Isaiah 52:14; 53:5). After the crucifixion and resurrection all were subsumed in Jesus Messiah as confirmed in Zechariah 13:7: "Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, and against the Man that is My fellow, says the Lord of hosts: smite the Shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered." The destruction of the temple by Titus transformed this prophecy into historical fact.
In chapter 34:10-20 the Lord prophesies the abrogation of the relationship of the foolish shepherds to His flock by the all-expressive personal declaration, "I am against the shepherds . . . I will deliver My flock from the mouth of the shepherds, that they may be food for them no longer. I, even I, will manifest Myself." So in John 1 and Matthew 10:6 we read, "He was in the world . . . [and] He came to His own . . . to [seek an election among] the lost sheep of the house of Israel . . . and His own received Him not." And when the Shepherd was smitten the sheep were scattered.
Verse 12 speaks of Christ's second or 'parousia' Coming to Israel after the close of the Gentile dispensation. "As a shepherd seeks out his flock in the day that He is in the midst of His sheep that are scattered; so will I seek out My sheep, and will deliver them out of all places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day." That cloudy and dark day is the "Day of the Lord" (Ezekiel 30:3; Isaiah 60:1-2; Jeremiah 13:16; Joel 2:2; Zephaniah 1:15; Zechariah 14:6-7; Matthew 24:29; Revelation 6:12). "And I will bring them out from the people and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land, and feed them upon the mountains of Israel by the rivers, and in all the inhabited places of the country".
The ministry of Christ's second or 'parousia' Coming to us Gentiles before the close of our dispensation was introduced by Brother Branham with the midnight cry, "Behold, the Bridegroom! Come out of Babylon to meet Him and be filled with the Spirit" (Matthew 25:6; I Thessalonians 4:16; Revelation 10:1-7; 18:4). He is in the midst of His sheep that are scattered among the denominations "gathering them together in one . . . in the unity of the faith for the manifestation of the Sons of God and the translation" (Ephesians 1:10; 4:13; Romans 8:19). The Reformation of the Judaeo-Roman system of false worship has passed, the apostolic faith has been restored and "the mystery of God is finished," there is no hope for the world (Malachi 4:5-6; Matthew 17:11; Revelation 10:7). There is no point praying for revival as the Lord is about to smite the earth with a curse: Christ has been crucified afresh by the rejection of His revelation in the Seven Seals. The only revival is in the heart of His Bride and the day of vengeance is imminent. Our "shepherds" are the warmongering politicians whose concern is for votes, money and prestige, apostate preachers careful for popularity with the world which is their meal ticket, and of offending Satan and their colleagues who rule this wicked and adulterous generation, the duplicitous diplomats, the corrupt captains of industry, and those effete pusillanimous prigs who pose as 'intellectual' opinion-makers.
Verse 13 confirms what we have been teaching all along, which is that although a counterfeit state of modern Israel has been established, "for fear of the Jews" it is not yet the homeland of the Covenant people descended from Abraham, Isaac and Israel who will NOT return until the first half of Daniel's Seventieth Week when Christ is "in the midst of His sheep." God's prophets do not make mistakes (Psalm 17:7; Isaiah 6:10-13; 11:11-16; 13:14; 27:13; 49:17; 65:9-10; Jeremiah 3:12, 18; 16:15; 23:3, 8; 31:8; Ezekiel 28:24-31; 36:24; 37:14, 21-22; 39:27-28; Micah 5:3; Zechariah 10:9-12; Matthew 24:29-31). Contrary to popular misconception, subterfuge and deception, the people of the Old Covenant have NOT returned to Palestine since 1948.
Speaking of His 'parousia' Coming to Israel, this will be signified by the mystic Cloud above the Mount of Olives (Zechariah 14:4-5) after the end of the Gentile dispensation when Christ will gather genuine Israelite tribesmen from the Muslim lands of the ancient Assyrian Empire, the Lord says: "I will feed them in a good pasture, and their fold shall be upon [Zion], the mountain height of Israel (Isaiah 46:13; Ezekiel 17:23; 20:40; Joel 2:32): there they shall lie down in a good fold, and feed in rich pasture upon the mountains of Israel. I Myself will feed My flock, and I will cause them to lie down, says the Lord God. I will seek the lost and bring back the strays, and I will bind the wounded, I will strengthen the sick: but destroy the fat and the strong (Deuteronomy 32:15; Jeremiah 5:28), I will feed them with judgment. As for you, O My flock, THUS SAITH THE LORD GOD, I judge between sheep and sheep, between the rams and the he-goats".
The offending "shepherds" of verse 10 are gone; here the Lord is going to judge between one class of citizens of equal rank according to their individual character. The "the rams and great he-goats," answer to "the fat and strong," as opposed to the "sick." These are the rich and ungodly who imitate the bad shepherds in oppressing their poorer brethren, as if it enhanced their own joys to trample on others' rights (Ezekiel 34:18; Zechariah 10:3; Matthew 25:32-33).
"Not as though the Word of God has taken no effect. For not all of the descendants of Israel belong to Israel" (Romans 9:6). After the removal of the offices of the Shepherds and the separation of the sheep from the goats chapter 34:23-24 brings Israel to the Millennium. "And I appoint or raise up one [incomparable] Shepherd over them (Song of Solomon 5:10-16; John 10:16). The allusion is to God's declaration to David, "I will raise up your seed after you" (II Samuel 7:12; Psalm 2:6; Acts 2:30; 13:23), "and He will feed them, even My servant [under My pre-eminence—not one following a course of his own choosing (Isaiah 49:3, 6; John 5:19; 8:26, 29)]; David will feed them, and will be their Shepherd. And I the Lord will be their God, and My servant David a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken it" (Ezekiel 37:22; Zechariah 14:9).
Millennial blessings follow Israel as God promised Moses on condition the nation walk in His statutes and obey His commandments "I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid: and I will rid evil beasts out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land" (Leviticus 26:3-6; Jeremiah 23:6; Hosea 6:3; Joel 2:23; Zechariah 8:13).
Verse 29-31, "And I will raise up for them a plant of renown [the righteous Branch], so that the people will never again hunger, or suffer the reproach of heathen conquest (Isaiah 11; Jeremiah 23:5-8; Hosea 2:18). Thus they will know that I the Lord their God am with them, and that they, the house of Israel, are My people, says the Lord God. As for you, My sheep, the sheep of My pasture, you are men, and I am your God, says the Lord God".
As God had promised many things which mere "men" could not expect to realize, He shows it is not from mans' might that their realization is to be looked for, but from GOD, who would perform them for His Covenant-people, "His flock." As He promised in Zechariah 4:7, "Not by mans' might, nor by human power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of hosts." When we realize our weakness and God's power and faithfulness to His Covenant, we are in the fittest state for receiving His blessings.
Jesus told Paul, "My grace is sufficient for you: for My strength is made perfect in weakness. [To which Paul said within himself], Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. . . for when I am weak then am I strong" (II Corinthians 12:9-10). Thus, "The meek shall inherit the earth" (Matthew 5:5). nl733.htm
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Brother Grigor-Scott is a non-denominational minister who has ministered full-time since 1981, primarily to other ministers and their congregations overseas. He pastors Bible Believers' tiny congregation, and is available to teach in your church.