I’ve been mulling this one for awhile… researching and thinking and praying. I’m still not sure it is fully baked — or if it ever will be. I figured I’d offer a theory though, simply because this one comes to us in scripture wrapped up with the direst of warnings. I’d rather err on the side of a possible false alarm than sitting pat and watching more and more folks march merrily along thinking this man is only a politician.
There are many angles to this I wish I had time to explore… but I don’t. I’m increasingly convinced that it’s a rich vein though so I’m hopeful other bloggers (e.g., JRed?) and the well-read and prayed-up commenters here will pick it up and research it further while I’m away on vacation.
Fair warning to the latter: don’t get yer knickers all in a knot over the whole Catholic/Protestant thing. We here are followers of Christ. Full stop. Or to quote the Beatles: “there’s no time for fussing and fighting, my friends.”
In Daniel we read the following:
“For ships of Kittim shall come against him, and he shall be afraid and withdraw, and shall turn back and be enraged and take action against the holy covenant. He shall turn back and pay attention to those who forsake the holy covenant. Forces from him shall appear and profane the temple and fortress, and shall take away the regular burnt offering. And they shall set up the abomination that makes desolate. He shall seduce with flattery those who violate the covenant, but the people who know their God shall stand firm and take action.”
Many shall purify themselves and make themselves white and be refined, but the wicked shall act wickedly. And none of the wicked shall understand, but those who are wise shall understand. And from the time that the regular burnt offering is taken away and the abomination that makes desolate is set up, there shall be 1,290 days. Blessed is he who waits and arrives at the 1,335 days.”
The word used for ABOMINATION here is Strong’s H8251, שקוץ, pronounced shik•küts’, a masculine noun meaning “detestable thing or idol, abominable thing, abomination, idol, detested thing”, including “of [the] flesh of victims” (e.g., in Zechariah 9:7). First use (key for establishing context) comes in 1st Kings 11:5-7 in which the ‘abominations’ are all idolatrous ‘gods’, e.g., Milcom/Molech of the Ammonites and Chemosh of Moab.
The links above are worth perusing but what these gods have in common is the sacrifice of children. The story in 2nd Kings 23:13, 24 adds Ashtoreth of the Sidonians to the pile and with it, the ‘sacrifice’ of a woman’s chastity… and then, of course, the children that result from such a union.
In Leviticus 18:21 (for example) the Israelite is forbidden to sacrifice any of his children to Molech. Similarly, in Leviticus 20:2-5, it is enacted that a man who sacrifices his seed (i.e., his kid) to Molech shall “surely be put to death”. It is also provided that he shall be cut off from the congregation, (in effect, the second, permanent death of the soul).
I kinda knew this already but, going deep on the particulars of those ‘gods’, one is struck by the degree to which child sacrifice is central to OT idolatry and how much God singles it out as uniquely detestable… beyond the pale, as it were.
(A search on the word ‘abomination’ in most versions of the Bible will also turn up Strong’s H8441 with earlier usage (e.g, in Genesis 43). It has a slightly different shade to it: still wicked and idolotrous but more centered on food and ritual. It’s not as specifically about worshipping ‘gods’ that make it a virtue to kill your kid.)
The Hebrew word for DESOLATE in the Daniel passages is translated from Strong’s H8074, or שמם, pronounced shä•mām’.
It’s a verb meaning “to be (or cause to be) desolate, to be made or lay desolate or to make or be desolated, to be appalled, to stun or be stunned, to stupefy, to be desolated, be deflowered, be deserted, to be awestruck, causing horror or horror-causer, to show horror, to devastate, to ravage, to be astounded, to cause oneself desolation, cause oneself ruin”
It gets fifty-five uses in the OT alone. It’s closely related to G2048, G2049 and G2050 as well as H8077, שממה, pronounced, shem•ä•mä’, meaning: “devastation, waste, desolation”. The first use of H8074 comes in Leviticus:
Leviticus 26:22, 31, 32-35, 43 – “And I will let loose the wild beasts against you, which shall bereave you of your children and destroy your livestock and make you few in number, so that your roads shall be deserted… And I will lay your cities waste and will make your sanctuaries desolate, and I will not smell your pleasing aromas. And I myself will devastate the land, so that your enemies who settle in it shall be appalled at it. And I will scatter you among the nations, and I will unsheathe the sword after you, and your land shall be a desolation, and your cities shall be a waste. Then the land shall enjoy its Sabbaths as long as it lies desolate, while you are in your enemies’ land; then the land shall rest, and enjoy its Sabbaths. As long as it lies desolate it shall have rest, the rest that it did not have on your Sabbaths when you were dwelling in it… But the land shall be abandoned by them and enjoy its Sabbaths while it lies desolate without them, and they shall make amends for their iniquity, because they spurned my rules and their soul abhorred my statutes.”
You getting the picture? The punishment for spurning God’s rules and abhorring His statues is the exact opposite of “be fruitful and multiply” blessing. Fewer people.
It’s the gaia mother-earth dead/fake goddess of dirt (confused with ‘her’ creator) finally getting a chance to ‘relax’ after being stressed from too much C02 from all those pesky humans made in God’s image for the purpose of worshiping Him.
So where is this going? Why the big wind-up?
I’m new to this whole prophetic end-times, sign-interpretation, watch-and-get-ready stuff. From what I can tell though, it’s received wisdom among most of those who’ve been doing this much much longer than I have, that the passages in Daniel 11 and 12 refer to a very specific thing with a very specific precedent. That is, the cessation of the Jewish old-temple sacrifices as a result of the antichrist desecrating the temple — the only Jewish OT temple — i.e., the one in Jerusalem.
What temple am I talking about? Precisely. There isn’t one. Not since 70AD.
Thus all the end-times prophetic timelines and scenarios I’ve seen don’t really kick into gear until something temple-like goes up on a specific piece of land in Jerusalem and that can’t happen until certain things unlock politically. I’m still open to that possibility. I’m not saying that it’s incorrect. It may happen too. But something has already happened that fits the bill rather closely IMHO.
All I am suggesting is that when Christ came the first time, pretty much everyone, including his disciples got confused (and in some cases enraged) when he claimed he would “destroy this temple” and “raise it up in three days”. To Christians that’s a fun passage because we can smile smugly and know he was referring to his body as temple (He being God-in-the-flesh, i.e., Emmanuel God-with-us) and that the one made of stone was, by that point, superfluous, at least during the Christian dispensation before the Jews’ eyes are opened by God and they see and appreciate the Messiah in his full glory (i.e., at his second coming).
Could we be confused again?
Another classic prophetic passage packed with meaning is Matthew 24. Verses 15-21 read (Jesus speaking):
“So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let the one who is on the housetop not go down to take what is in his house, and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak. And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a Sabbath. For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be.”
Here are two things I’ve noticed afresh with this:
1) I’d always heard the pregnant/nursing women bit interpreted as tying in with the part about flight and winter. As in: wouldn’t it just s*ck to be carrying around a live bowling ball in yer belly or a crying infant on your arm when you had to get outta town? It would and so it has always made sense to me on that level.
Yet now I look at it and think: Wait a minute. What if those two admonitions are only loosely coupled? Sure there’s general mayhem and folks packin’ the station wagon to head for the hills, but what if the ‘alas’ for pregnant women stands alone? As in: alas, for there will be an assault on motherhood itself.
2) I’d always heard the ‘standing in the holy place’ bit as referring to the temple in Jerusalem. The ‘holy place’ (and ‘most holy place’) both have very specific meanings in OT scripture, e.g., in Exodus. Yet as I noted above, the OT temple isn’t there. And why the aside from Jesus, (or perhaps Matthew himself), “let the reader understand”. Why is that necessary if it’s the old, simple interpretation of holy place?
What if (and I remind everyone about the anti-Belfast-1980 rule around here)…
Just what if maybe, perhaps… the outer chambers of the Vatican and/or the Pope himself represent the holy place? And furthermore, what if the Pope and the Catholic church fill that role because of their uniquely strong and persistent mission and history within the body of Christ in venerating and standing up for the most holy place we can find in a New Testament context, the very ‘room’ in which Christ manifested as man, namely the womb of Mary and (by extension, all women)?
I’m just sayin’… maybe.
[CONTENT SELF-REDACTED IN LIGHT OF DAWNING UNDERSTANDING]
The day before his 77th “first hundred days” were over… the day before he blasphemously said he would ‘rest’, we witnessed the representative of our nation, Obama, standing there shaking the Pontiff’s hand.
TheBible, i.e., the word of God, is just filled with puns and word-play. One need only look at the intricacy of Psalm 119 or other Psalmic acrostics, or at a few of the puns in the original Greek and Hebrew throughout the Bible to see that. Some of them are simply amazing in their subtlety, power, irony and even humor. So I don’t think it’s necessarily an accident that we’ve got our very own Obama-nation abomination. Just because it was used on bumper stickers doesn’t mean God didn’t set it up that way.
It always bothered me, the hand-shaking picture. I’ve blotted out BHO’s eyes based on a fascinating prophecy conveyed precisely six years to the hour before this picture was taken(!!) [CONTENT SELF-REDACTED]. A devout Catholic woman Jennifer, in Minnesota began to receive audible messages from “Jesus” a few months before 9-11. [SUCH AUDIBLE REVELATIONS HAVE A DIFFICULT HISTORY, E.G. WITH 'A COURSE IN MIRACLES'] She writes (pdf) about what she says “Jesus” told her at 8:15AM CDT on July 10th, 2003:
“My people, your time is now to prepare because the coming of the antichrist is near. My people, you are not to even look at the eyes of the antichrist for his eyes have such power that you may fall for his evil plans. Only I can help you continue your journey to heaven for without Me you have nothing.”
[HER 'REVELATION'] speaks about, 1) how much God abhors abortion (still!), 2) how badly the U.S. has stumbled on this point (even before BHO), 3) how America (and the world) are coming in for judgment, and 4) how short the time is to prepare. [ALL GOOD POINTS; NONE OF WHICH VALIDATE HER REVELATION]
It’s important to add that she is operating in close concert with her priest and her diocese, even though some of the harshest words she has to relay are for people in those priestly roles. She ‘came out’ only reluctantly. The book is free if you send them an e-mail.
Back to the picture (above). How broadly both of them are smiling. PBXVI’s eyes are trained on BHO’s face and BHO’s eyes are on the cameras. Something big was going on there. [WHICH ONE IS THE ANTICHRIST IS A VERY GOOD QUESTION]
Something else I just figured out is that the meeting took place exactly 168 days after BHO, in one of the very first, high priority moves of his administration, struck down the Mexico City Policy, re-opening the floodgates of abortion worldwide.
And there’s that pesky number again… 168.
It’s the year (168 BC) in which Antiochus Ephihanes IV desecrated the temple the first time (the same number as were killed in the Iranian airline crash two days before the Pope’s break). It’s the English gematria of BHO’s boyhood name, Barry Soetoro. It’s the number of hours in a week. (The tribulation is often referred to as the “last week” of Daniel). Ya with me? (There are a bunch of other BHO/Antiochus date parallels with the Daniel prophecies, BHO’s birthday, Tish B’av and the 2012 Olympics that I don’t even have time to go into. Suffice it to say, they are rich and deep.)
Five days later, the same arm the Pontiff extended to shake BHO’s hand was broken. (One commenter noted other parallels with ‘coincidental’ ‘accidents’ and deaths among those the president has come in contact with.)
This all went down during a series of days when a lot of folks were looking for a giant rapture of millions of Christians, pining for a vacation respite in heaven… or maybe a big nuclear explosion or a magnitude ten earthquake. I suspect we were all looking at the wrong things, in the wrong ways, in the wrong places. I suspect we saw Matthew 24:15 fulfilled before our very eyes.
“He is learning to live with a blocked wrist. This is not very easy. The pope cannot write, do handwriting as he desired in these days. But for the other aspects, the day is normal,” said the Vatican…
“Unfortunately my own guardian angel did not prevent my injury, certainly following superior orders. Perhaps the Lord wanted to teach me more patience and humility, give me more time for prayer and meditation,” said Pope Benedict XVI regarding his fall which resulted in a broken wrist.” [said the Pope]…
“Some suffering is not a bad thing,” said Pope Benedict XVI who had two metal pins inserted into his wrist bone after a nighttime fall in his bedroom while on vacation in the Alps.
“What pains him the most is to be no longer able to bless with his right hand [though he appears to be fighting that] and to be no longer able to clasp his hands together. He is learning to live with a right wrist in plaster. The most difficult thing for him is having to give up writing,” said the Vatican. Pope Benedict XVI had planned to write a book entitled, Jesus of Nazareth. “The pope already had the text’s structure outlined in his head,” continued the Vatican’s spokesperson.
The net effect of a mysterious break is to prevent blessing and to prevent writing about Jesus… all after a meeting in which the most likely candidate for antichrist lies directly to the face of Vicar of Christ about wanting to reduce the number of abortions then turns right around and pushes death-care legislation that will do precisely the opposite?
If that combination of events doesn’t add up to an abomination that makes desolate, standing in a symbolically very holy place, if not the holy place, then I don’t know what does.
UPDATE: It just occurred to me that, in light of this increasingly clear identification of the man in the Oval Office, the title of this 2005 book (‘A Table in the Presence’), by Iraq war veteran and former Citadel football All American Lt. and Reverend Carey Cash (the grand-nephew of ‘Ring-of-Fire’ Johnny Cash, and now pastor to the president) is tremendously meaningful.
Cash (the younger) could definitely use our prayers!