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Ipswich Christadelphians

"Prove all things, hold fast what is good" 1Th 5:21

Welcome back Mr Putin


Welcome back Mr Putin!082248-vladimir-putin reelected

Until recently the Russian Constitution limited Presidents to two terms in office. Mr Putin, with aspirations, perhaps, to become another Czar, circumvented this rule by installing Mr Medvedev as President while he altered the constitution. And now he is back! On 24 September last, it was announced that Mr Medvedev would swap jobs so that Mr Putin could again be President for the next 6-12 years at least. However, it does not seem that ‘The Russian People are all that impressed. One Newspaper reported “They (the Russian people) fear he could win another term in six years and rule until 2024 – almost as long as Soviet dictator Josef Stalin.” One Russian is reported as saying, “Emperor Putin has decided everything.”

Keep up the good work!

The prophet Daniel tells us that all such appointments as these are ordained by God, Who (Dan 2:21) changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings.

 

One hundred and fifty eight years ago a Bible student, John Thomas, wrote a bold letter to the Emperor Nicholas, Autocrat and Czar of Russia that to fulfil Bible prophecy and bring about the return of Christ, Russia had to become an extremely powerful nation and he wished it every success. He wrote* ‘The ground upon which I wish success, yea, speedy success, to Russia, is, the full assurance that Christ will not “appear to them that look for him” until Russia leads the nations of the Babylonian world against Jerusalem to battle. Before Russia can do this, she must become a mishmar, or imperial protector, to the iron and brass powers. The success of Russia in establishing this Protectorate is devoutly to be desired, as an event eminently proximate to the end. We rejoice in Russia’s success as we are gratified with the amputation of a friend’s limb for the saving of his life.’

 

The iron and brass powers refer to the image which the Babylonian King Nebuchadenezzar dreamed of in Daniel ch 2:31-45, which was made up of different metals and which had a head of gold. He interprets that, just as Nebuchadnezzar was the supremely powerful head, ruling over a huge Empire, so the Emperor of Russia will be that head in the last days when Christ returns to topple the great image and set up his own Kingdom. He continues by suggesting that before this Russia will exert its influence upon the nations of Europe to bring them down upon Israel...’The binding of Europe by Russia to its imperial rule is the preparation for this event. Success, then, to Russia; for the sooner her work is accomplished, the sooner will she fall; and the nations be delivered from the wretched governments which blaspheme God and destroy the people.’

It may seem tragic to the world that Putin has exerted such undemocratic influence to return to power, yet the Bible student sees in it God’s way of giving power to an Autocrat who will carry out His will. That Russia will be in the driving seat is in keeping with the purpose of God. John Thomas makes reference to the word ‘Mishmar’ (guard) which comes from Ezekiel 38:7:

Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them.

Ezekiel describes this character as the prince of Rosh (Ezekiel 38:2 NKJV). And Russia fits this princely role precisely for Putin has plans to control nations other than his own.

In early October he announced his grand vision to create a new superpower out of the remnants of the former Soviet Union. He referred to it as a "Eurasian Union," which would stretch from the Atlantic to the Pacific and proposed a powerful supranational association capable of becoming one of the poles of the modern world and, within that, to play an effective linking role between Europe and the dynamic Asia-Pacific region."

Bible students of Ezekiel 38 will recognise Mr Putin's phrase "a powerful supranational association" as a perfect description of the confederacy with Europe which invades the Middle East and occupies Israel at the time of the end. 

Soon Russia, a.k.a Rosh, a.k.a the King of the North ( Dan 11:40 ) as “prince” and “guard” of the nations of Europe and its allies will invade Israel and who will there be to stop them?

the empire needs men v2

Art Thou come to take a spoil?

The above quotation comes from Ezekiel 38:13 where we read of an ineffectual challenge made by Israel’s allies named as.....

13 Sheba, and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions thereof, shall say unto thee, Art thou come to take a spoil? hast thou gathered thy company to take a prey? to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take a great spoil?

Tarshish has long been considered to be the name for Britain and the ‘Young Lions’ the Nations which have sprung from and been reared by her.**.

Although this prophecy was written more than 2,500 years ago, the principal players can be easily recognised today. For we see Russia, becoming more aggressive and influential in the world scene and gathering together a host of anti-Semitic nations and against them, a group of Nations which will ultimately oppose Gog and her armies, saying ‘art thou come to take a spoil?’ These nations will be Britain with her young lions, (members of the Commonwealth), Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States and also undoubtedly the USA. This is a quite reasonable scenario as the USA, Canada, the UK, Australia and New Zealand are among the small number of nations speaking out in support of Israel. Also a wiki-leak in 2011 revealed a secret al­liance between Israel, the USA, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States to contain the Iranian threat to security in the region.

Special Relationship

The USA whilst not being a member of the Commonwealth, is undoubtedly a ‘Young Lion’ having been reared until Independence by Britain and even now having a ‘Special Relationship’ with Britain. That relationship was first coined by Winston Churchill and is now much mooted in the Press both in the UK and USA as UK Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Obama meet to bolster relations between the two countries and to discuss Syria and other issues. When discussing Cameron’s visit, which the Washington Post described ‘ a love fest’, White House deputy spokesman Josh Earnest said “We maintain a special and an essential friendship and partnership with the government and people of the United Kingdom,”. “The United Kingdom is our NATO ally and our closest partner in the world.” President Obama, who treated David Cameron to the great honour of a ride in Airforce One, made a similar comment when presenting him to his troops.

Also, the US also has  a long history of aiding Israel with weapons, technology and support. US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Neuland said recently; “With regard to U.S.-Israeli relations, the Secretary reconfirmed our unshakable commitment to the relationship, not only to Israel’s security, but to Israel’s democracy, based on our shared values and the ties between our people.”

The Time of the End

So the Time of the End will see Israel with a multitude of enemies and a few friends; friends who will be powerless to stop the invasion of her land. The scenario for the attack by Russia and her allies is described in Ezekiel 38

10  Thus saith the Lord GOD; It shall also come to pass, that at the same time shall things come into thy mind, and thou shalt think an evil thought:

11  And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates,

12  To take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thine hand upon the desolate places that are now inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, which have gotten cattle and goods, that dwell in the midst of the land.

At which juncture there comes a challenge from Israel’s friends .....

13 Sheba, and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions thereof, shall say unto thee, Art thou come to take a spoil? hast thou gathered thy company to take a prey? to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take a great spoil?.

However, this rebuke by the few nations prepared to stand by Israel will be ineffectual. Russia will sweep down in a fearsome Bliztkrieg resembling the German advances in World War 2 (Joel 2:1-10), will conquer Egypt (Isa 19:4-16) and then turn back upon Israel, finally to meet the Lord Jesus Christ and their end (Dan 11:42-45).

The fate awaiting Gog is plain, after taking Jerusalem, he and his armies will be destroyed. Dan 11:45 ‘ And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.’

The end of the Prince of Russia’s rule will see the Prince of Israel, ruling from Jerusalem ,“the sun of righteousness arising with healing in his wings” (Malachi 4:2). God through the Psalmist speaks of Jesus future reign “I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.” (Psalm 2:6–9).

What could be more wonderful than an earth at last free from wars, with the Lord Jesus reigning over the whole world from Jerusalem. May Mr Putin continue to do excellent work for God, though he knows it not (Isaiah 10:5-7), that the time will soon come when his day is over and “the God of heaven shall set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.” (Dan 2:44).


Recruiting poster from the First World War showing Britain as the old lion and the dominions as young lions. www.ww1propaganda.com

 

*See this letter to the Czar in full at www.bibleinthenews.com

** see this article for a fuller explanation www.testimony-magazine.org/back/jan2005/bernard.pdf

 

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