Weekly World Watch Andy Walton’s January 1 – December 31, 2009 “If the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes the life of one of them, that man will be taken away because of his sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for his blood.” (Ezekiel 33:6, New International Version) To skip the introductory slides and go straight to this weeks developments click here.
What is a Weekly World Watch? The idea is simple. It is to look at current events and compare them to events spoken of in the Bible. . I hope to build up a picture of God’s hand working in the affairs of this world. God is bringing about a day when all nations will be gathered to Jerusalem to battle. At that time God will send His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, back to this earth. Jesus will then establish God’s kingdom on earth. This kingdom will last for ever. This is our hope and the reason we watch. The following six themes will appear repeatedly in WWW: • Israel: The continuing conflict in the Middle East and focus on Jerusalem. • Europe: Its developing union, both political and religious. • Russia: Its return to anti-Western ways as Bible prophecy’s “king of the north.” • The UK and the US: Bible prophecy’s “king of the south.” • Moral standards in decline and violence on the increase. • Increasing natural disasters: including earthquake, famine etc WWW presentations in PowerPoint can be ordered as audio/visual CDs by clicking here. Move your mouse to place the cursor on the blue link and click.
BIBLE QUOTE What is in a Weekly World Watch? Each WWW looks at a few key developments that have happened during the past week. It is in no way meant to be exhaustive – just a look at those events I saw as significant from a Biblical point of view. Every WWW event slide has the following format. To reveal each block of text just left click your mouse or press the space bar. You control when it appears. News Photo This is straight from a news report that caught my eye because it looked significant from a Biblical perspective, usually that of prophecy. HEADLINE The source of the headline and the date are included. This is the reporter’s description of the event. It is always a direct quotation from the news report and reflects the understanding of the reporter and editors. EVENT This is my comment on why the event is interesting to a Bible student. The intention of the WWW is to offer brief Biblical perspectives without going into detail. If more detail is desired, please e-mail me: (firstname.lastname@example.org). COMMENT This is normally one verse which backs up why the event that has occurred is interesting from a Biblical perspective. Please read in its context. Unless stated otherwise, all quotes are from the King James Version.(Book, chapter, and verse)
This YEAR’s Developments January 1 – December 31, 2009 • Significant quantities of oil discovered in Israel • Ehud Olmert - first Israeli PM to appear in court • Pope makes history in visit to Dome of the Rock • Pope calls for Palestinian state • European Union celebrates first day of Lisbon Treaty • Europe: Jerusalem should be joint capital To print any of the event slides that follow, click the picture on the upper right
Comment on 2009 By Andy Walton The year began with the discovery of a huge gas field off the Israeli coast. It ended with significant amounts oil being found in the land! This could be the “spoil” Russia wants… 2009 has been about the increasing isolation of Israel. America’s new president has pushed ever harder for Israel to surrender land and establish a Palestinian State. It has lead to a total deadlock in the peace process. Israel went through new elections and at the same time that America moved to the political left, Israel moved (under Netanyahu) to the political right. These elections were forced on Israel because of the corruption scandals involving the prime minister. Into this mix we add the Pope and his visit to Israel in May. This man is the little horn of Daniel 7. He had the audacity to stand (for the first time in history) on the Holy Place where currently the Dome of the Rock is now situated. This man is worshipped as a god exactly as the previous abomination that caused desolation was ie Antiochus Epiphanes. For this reason we could see the latter day sign of the abomination that causes desolation standing in the Holy Place as being fulfilled by this visit. (Matt 24:15) This final sign precedes the final time of trouble such as never was no nor ever shall be. Remember – there can only ever be ONE time of trouble such as never was no nor ever shall be! This time is still to happen – therefore the sign must be latter day as well. So the harlot woman makes a move into the Middle East and strengthens the Palestinian’s hand and we have also seen developments with the European beast. On the 1st December Europe became a legal entity for the first time. Effectively it became a power, a state in its own right. The kings have given their power to the beast. Europe’s first pronouncements were about Jerusalem and how it should be divided. We are seeing the final picture portrayed in Revelation 17 appear before us. Finally, Iran continues to defy the West. No one wants to tackle this country. Israel however may be forced to in the near future. The time of trouble may be very close. Let us pray that 2010 is the final year – that we see our Lord Jesus coming in the clouds with power and great glory. (See the next seven 2009 summary slides.) COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE
And thou [Gog] 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, To take a spoil Significant quantities of oil discovered in Israel Israel National News, December 24, 2009 An everlasting hope of finding significant amounts of oil in Israel may have been realized with the announcement Thursday that “significant quantities” of oil were found in a well in the area of Rosh HaAyin, a city located east of Tel Aviv on the western edge of Samaria. The Givat Olam (Hebrew for “Hill of the World”) Exploration Limited Partnership informed the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange of the discovery. The company’s stock more than doubled on the stock market, according to Globes. The firm said the oil was found late Wednesday night and that “more than 60 percent gas was measured in the drill mud.” The commercial potential of the oil field will not be known until tests and calculations on production and processing can be completed. Earlier this year, a huge gas field was discovered off the Mediterranean Coast. The gas is expected to be on line in three years and is anticipated to help Israel become self-sufficient in gas. It also is providing hundreds of high-paying jobs. If the Meged well proves commercially viable, it will further Israel’s longtime hope of being energy independent and is likely to strengthen the shekel against world currencies. EVENT It cannot be coincidence that in the very same year Israel discovers a huge gas field it now discovers significant quantities of oil. In Ezekiel 38 we read of Gog wanting to take a spoil from Israel. The question has been - what does Israel have that Gog (Russia) might want? For a long time Christadelphians have said that oil might be the reason for Russia deciding to take a “spoil” from Israel. And now in these very last days (after 60 years of Israel’s reestablishment) oil and gas have been discovered!! This will surely make the greedy intentions of Gog awake and look lusting at Israel. COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE (Ezekiel 38:11,12)
The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth. Ehud Olmert - first Israeli PM to appear in court Daily Telegraph, September 24, 2009 Ehud Olmert will become the first former prime minister of Israel to stand trial when he arrives at a Jerusalem court on Friday to answer corruption charges. A year after mounting scandal forced his resignation, Mr Olmert is expected to deny defrauding a charity for the mentally handicapped and Israel's national Holocaust memorial. He has also rejected an array of other accusations, including breach of trust and tax evasion. The prosecution is expected to call up to 280 witnesses in a trial that activists hope will shed light on what they believe to be systemic corruption at the top level of Israeli politics. So far this month, two former cabinet ministers have begun prison sentences for corruption, while Moshe Katsav, Israel's president until 2007, is standing trial for rape. EVENT It is rare in any country to see a former prime minister stand trial. It is all the more saddening to see it in God’s land – Israel. Israel is beset by corruption – and worse. Israel’s ex president is standing trial on rape charges. As the report says two other cabinet ministers have been jailed for corruption as well. We are told by Jesus to look at the world and compare it to Noah’s day. When we see it like this we know that the coming of Christ will be soon. There are two main aspects of the world of Noah as accounted in Genesis. Violence and corruption. Corruption is mentioned three times! God’s judgement was finally “poured” out in the days of Noah. God’s judgement will be poured out on Israel because of the same reasons. COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE (Genesis 6:11,12)
But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not [Matthew 24:15 says stand in the holy place] Pope makes history in visit to Dome of the Rock The Holy Place – The Temple – now where the Dome of the Rock exists. Associated Press, May 12, 2009 Pope Benedict XVI on Tuesday called for the faithful to overcome conflicts of the past and engage in sincere dialogue as he became the first pontiff to visit Islam's sacred Dome of the Rock shrine. The pope then prayed at Jerusalem's Western Wall, also known as the Wailing Wall, a remnant of Solomon's Temple and a top pilgrimage destination for the world's Jews. Benedict was the first pope to enter the Dome of the Rock on Al-Haram Al-Sharif (the Noble Sanctuary), also known as the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, which is Islam's third holiest spot. The site, which the Jews call Temple Mount, is also the holiest in Judaism and has been a major flashpoint in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, where the latest Palestinian uprising erupted in 2000. Pope John Paul II had visited the compound during his landmark 2000 pilgrimage to the Holy Land, but did not enter the Dome of the Rock, whose huge golden cupola is seen as Jerusalem's main landmark. EVENT This is quite possibly the most significant sign of the nearness of Christ’s return that we have witnessed. The Pope is the head of the false religion of Rome. This religion is described as “THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” Rome is the mother of ALL false “Christian” religions. God sees this religion as an abomination because they have twisted the truth of His Word with lies. Note that the word “abomination” is associated with Rome. Now look at where the Pope went. He stood in the Dome of the Rock. The Dome of the Rock is EXACTLY where the sanctuary – the Holy Place – the Temple shown above was situated. Matthew 24 tells us “when you see the abomination of desolation STAND in the Holy Place” – the time of trouble such as never was is at hand. To see how this is a SIGN FOR OUR TIMES click here to download an article… COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE (Mark 13:14)
I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land. Pope calls for Palestinian state BBConline, May 13, 2009 Pope Benedict XVI has offered his support for the Palestinians' right to a homeland as he continues his Middle East tour in the West Bank. Speaking in a Bethlehem refugee camp, he said he understood frustrations that their "legitimate aspirations" for a Palestinian state were unfulfilled. Standing beside him, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas called on Israel to embrace peace. Earlier, the pontiff said he prayed for a lifting of Israel's embargo on Gaza. The BBC's Tim Franks said that the Pope used the stark backdrop of a Palestinian refugee camp to deliver one of his strongest expressions of support for the Palestinians. Standing in the shadow of Israel's separation wall in the Aida refugee camp, which houses refugees from Israel's creation in 1948, the Pope called the barrier a symbol of "stalemate" between Israel and the Palestinians. EVENT The Pope has declared his support for a "sovereign Palestinian homeland" and calling for the end of the blockade on the Gaza Strip. This speech was greeted with deep satisfaction by the Palestinians. The previous Pope, John Paul II, back in the year 2000 signed a covenant with the Palestinians which gave them the Vatican’s full support. Now 9 years later the next Pope has returned and confirmed this covenant giving the Palestinians Rome’s full backing. It was the previous Pope who so “encouraged” the Palestinians that they decided to launch an intifada against Israel just months later. Incredible pressure is building up on Israel to accept a two state solution. Divide the land and divide Jerusalem. The time is near for all nations to get involved. COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE (Joel 3:2)
I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land. Palestinians 'to ask' UN to endorse independence Daily Telegraph, November 15, 2009 Palestinian officials said yesterday that they were preparing to ask the United Nations to endorse an independent state without Israel's consent because they were losing faith in the peace talks. The Palestinians are upset over continued Israeli expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem and are disappointed with the US failure to put pressure on Israel to halt the construction. The lack of progress has led Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to threaten to quit politics. The US, Israel's closest ally, would likely veto any initiative at the United Nations, and Israel controls the areas where the Palestinians want to establish their homeland. Nonetheless, the move reflected growing Palestinian frustration with the deadlock in peace efforts. EVENT As reported in the last WWW, the peace process is really hitting the buffers. President Obama has over promised, not delivered and has succeeded in seriously upsetting the Palestinians and the Israelis. Mr Abbas the Palestinian president has said he is stepping down and now has declared he will go to the United Nations to ask them to back an independent Palestinian State. Nimr Hamad, an adviser to Mr Abbas said “We are going to have to prepare for this well and to hold political and diplomatic talks. There is no point in rushing just so that we collide with an American veto.” They hope that the USA might abstain in the vote. Mr Erekat said that he did not think the US would exercise its veto. In Joel 3 we read of God’s land being parted by the nations of the world. It is because of this that God gathers them for judgement to his land. We may not have long to wait! COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE (Joel 3:2)
ten kings [10 kings = Europe covering same territory as the original 10 Barbarian kingdoms that arose after the Roman Empire collapsed] ….These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. European Union celebrates first day of Lisbon Treaty Daily Telegraph, December 1, 2009 The European Union celebrated on Tuesday the entering into force of the Lisbon Treaty after nine years of "battle" including referendum rejections in France, the Netherlands and Ireland. The Lisbon Treaty, signed by EU leaders in Portugal's capital in December 2007, resurrected most elements of the controversial European Constitution thrown out by French and Dutch voters four years ago. EVENT At midnight on Monday night everything changed in relation to Europe. The Lisbon Treaty came into force. When it did, it effectively created a state. A state as defined by article 1 of the 1933 “Convention on the Rights and Duties of States” should possess the following 4 qualifications ... (a) a permanent population; (b) a defined territory; (c) government; and (d) capacity to enter into relations with the other states. Until yesterday, the EU qualified on grounds (a), (b) and (c). Now it has ticked the final box. Under the Lisbon Treaty, which came into force Monday, Europe acquires “legal personality”, which gives it the right to sign accords and treaties with other states. Nor is this right simply theoretical: the EU now has a foreign minister, a diplomatic corps (the European External Action Service) and 160 overseas embassies. From a Biblical perspective this is fulfilment of prophecy. In Revelation 17 a beast ascends out of a bottomless pit. When you compare the beast to the 4th beast in Daniel 7 you will see that they are the same beast. The 4th beast was that of the Roman Empire. This final beast is the Roman Empire resurrected. Kings have given their power and strength to the beast. There are still individual nations and governments but they (through this treaty) have created a beast. Precisely the picture in Revelation 17!! COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE (Revelation 17:12,13)
For this is what the LORD Almighty says: "After he has honoured me and has sent me against the nations that have plundered you [Jerusalem]for whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye Europe: Jerusalem should be joint capital Associated Press, December 8, 2009 European Union foreign ministers urged Israel and the Palestinians on Tuesday to make Jerusalem their shared capital, prompting a swift, angry reaction from Israel. For their part Tuesday, the Palestinians announced a boycott of products made in Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Palestinian Economics Minister Hassan Abu Libdeh said the government has already confiscated $1 million worth of products, including foods, cosmetics and hardware, and that he hoped to remove all such goods from Palestinian store shelves next year. In Brussels, EU foreign ministers reiterated that the 27-member bloc would not recognize Israel's annexation of the eastern part of Jerusalem after it occupied it in the 1967 war. The ministers called for Israel to share Jerusalem as a capital with a future Palestinian state. EVENT COMMENT Within a week of Europe becoming a legal entity (the resurrected Roman Empire beast of Revelation 17) it makes an announcement that Jerusalem should be shared with the Palestinians as a capital of both states. Israel captured the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan in the Six-Day War of 1967. It was exactly at this point in time that Jerusalem was restored to the Jews. They have total sovereign control over the entire city. Jesus said that the Jews would lose control of Jerusalem but would one day get it back again when the “time of the gentiles” was fulfilled. Therefore we see that in fact it is God that has given Jerusalem to the Jewish people. The nations of the world want it divided and half given to another race of people. It is exactly this issue that will bring all nations against Jerusalem to battle. BIBLE QUOTE (Zechariah 2:8)
Weekly World Watch The end of this week’s WWW will be e-mailed to you each week. Please forward the e-mail addresses of others who may be interested. I will include them in the list of recipients. Comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome. E-MAIL ANDY Click here (Move the mouse until the cursor appears.) To watch again, click here.