‘For, lo! the days are hastening on, by
prophet bards foretold,
When through the ever-circling years
comes round the Age of Gold,
When peace shall over all the earth his
ancient splendour fling,
And the whole world give back the
song which now the angels sing.’
I wonder what those around H. Grattan Guinness thought when he confidently interpreted prophecy, demonstrating the fulfillment of events that had been prophesied, and forecast what God’s prophets had written about the future. Among other things, he stated inequitably that Jerusalem would be liberated from the Turks in the year 1917. Now, probably it was so far away from the 1870’s when Guinness made his statement that few would have taken much notice. Still, Guinness’ work was highly acclaimed by influential sources. Here is what Lord Shaftesbury had to say of Guinness’ work, “I cannot resist the desire I feel to bring it under the immediate and serious attention of the public. The writer is evidently a man of intense piety, unsurpassed diligence, and great ability. His whole argument rests on Scripture, but he throws a wonderful amount of light on prophetical chronology through the aid of mathematical and astronomical calculations.” Indeed, Guinness’ “The Approaching End Of The Age” and “Light For The Last Days” were considered the greatest investigative work into the systems of times and seasons of any work presented thereto.
Still, over the centuries there were men and women of great intellect and one might ask, why did it take until the nineteenth century for such revelation. I suppose the answer is simple, Guinness was one of the “wise.”
Some twenty-six centuries ago, the prophet Daniel was the recipient of marvelous revelations from God Almighty, which he dutifully recorded. He didn’t understand all he was given but when he asked God for clarification his request was turned aside and he was told that the words were for some far away generation, who would be living at what God called “the time of the end.” That in that far away time there would be the “wise” who would understand and the “wicked” or “ungodly” who would not. Of course, it is God Himself who directs the unveiling of the mysteries of which He had the prophets record, and like Daniel, God’s other prophets likely didn’t have any idea of the complexity of the words they were recording for some distant generation. When Ezekiel, for instance, told of the overturning of the Davidic Throne, or Hosea of the scattering of Israel, or Jeremiah of the New Covenant, do you think they had any idea of how these would come about? Even Christ’s disciples had to ask Him for signs of His Second Coming.
You see, what was revealed to them was not for their own time. As Peter stated in 1 Peter 1:12, “that not unto themselves but unto us they did minister.” So the great storehouse of Biblical prophecy entrusted with the prophets was for the benefit of later generations, and particularly for the “wise” at the “time of the end.”
If Grattan Guinness was one of the “wise,” then the “time of the end” must have been upon us in the 1870’s. Scholars suggest that the end of 6,000 lunar years and the beginning of the Church of the Laodiceans occurred around the 1820’s and if you look at the false doctrine that began to rear its head at that time (for example the Mormon Church) then you might also agree that the 1820’s was also the beginning of the falling away prophesied by the Apostle Paul.
Each year we look to the liberation of Jerusalem on December 9th, 1917 by General Allenby of British Ephraim as the fulfillment of a milestone prophecy. Not many in Christendom even give that event a thought but it is a critical component in the countdown to the glorious return of Jesus Christ. We have to remember, as Ed Vallowe wrote in his book “Biblical Mathematics” that “numbers are the secret code of God’s work.” This is why the prophet Esdras wrote, “By measure has he measured the times, and by number has he numbered the times……” or why Isaiah wrote,” Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and meted out heaven with the span …” God is the great measurer and as Vallowe wrote, “The precision with which the Bible numbers all fall into their places cannot be accounted for except by the supernatural power and wisdom of a God Who is infinite.”
What Guinness did is to determine that the “Seven Times” (or 2,520 years) punishment upon the Tribes of Judah and Benjamin, as imposed by Leviticus 26:18, and which began with the captivity of the Nation of Judah in 604 BC, was to expire in 1917, at which time Jerusalem would be liberated. It’s interesting that when liberation came, right on cue, Isaiah prophesy Chapter 31:5) made sense, “As birds flying, so will the Lord of hosts defend Jerusalem; defending also he will deliver it; and passing over he will preserve it.” British planes had dropped leaflets on the city which had an unsettling effect on the Turks. So, when Allenby walked quietly on foot through the Jaffa Gate on December 11th, he had taken Jerusalem without a shot from the Turks, who had surrendered and run. T.E. Lawrence, better known as Lawrence of Arabia, thought the entry into Jerusalem was the supreme moment of the war. Perhaps it was, but it most certainly was a supreme moment on the road to the Kingdom of God.
Bearing in mind that “numbers are the secret code of God’s work,” an interesting one God employs is “400.” Bullinger refers to it as a “divinely perfect period” and as an example he demonstrates that from the fulfillment of the promise to Abraham in the birth of Isaac to the Exodus was a period of 400 years. It’s interesting that the main work on the King James Version of the Bible began in earnest in 1607 and 400 years will expire in conjunction with the expiration of the “Seventy Weeks” applied to the House of Israel, that is, 2007. But, what is really interesting is that 400 years separates 1917 from 1517, when the Turks conquered Jerusalem and incorporated it into their empire. It all seems rather revealing.
Still, has God employed other numbers to enlighten those whom He has selected for service? Obviously, if the Scriptures are to be fulfilled concerning those who would not have Christ reign over them, British Ephraim was not to be permitted to remain in control of the Holy Land. Frank Dowsett, the learned Australian scholar, compared the 1260 days of Daniel 12:7 with the 1290 days of Daniel 12:11 and suggested that the difference of 30 days (converted to years as per Ezekiel 4:6) represented the period between 1917 and 1947, when the British threw up their hands in despair and the United Nations voted to create the modern Israeli State. Now “30” denotes, in a higher degree, the perfection of Divine Order, as marking the right moment (Bullinger). So, 1947 must have been the right moment for God to set the stage for the rooting of the fruitless fig tree.
Nevertheless, despite the successful outcome of the immediate invasion in 1948 by the modern Israeli State’s neighbours, the new occupants were not able to gain total control of Jerusalem and it became divided under Israeli and Jordanian rule. But the hope of total control never left the minds of the Jewish leaders.
Twenty years separates 1947 and 1967, when, in the Six day War, the modern Israeli State gained control of Jerusalem. Bullinger states that “20” denotes “expectancy” and among other Bible illustrations, employs Gen. 21:38,41, where Jacob waited twenty years to get possession of his wives and property and Judges 15:20 and 16:31, where Israel waited twenty years for deliverance through Samson. So, the twenty years of waiting seemed to again mark the right moment on God’s timetable.
You have probably already noticed and wondered, as I do, about the fifty years between 1917 and 1967, a jubilee period. I do like Bullinger’s definition of “50.” In part, he says it points to “deliverance” following on as the result of the perfect consummation of time. It seems this would certainly coincide with the meaning of the other numbers employed by God relating to His Plan for the modern Israeli State. Vallowe’s definition might help us understand a confusing situation a little better. He says that “50” is the number connected with the Holy Spirit and His work. Let’s consider this, are these enemies of Christ the rightful occupants of the Holy Land and when they started pouring into the nation after the Balfour Declaration, could it be that the total assimilation of the land, including Jerusalem, and the jubilee, so to speak, were legal. Now just before you decide I’ve lost it (if you ever thought I had it) we’ve got to look at a couple of Bible passages. I’m sure some of you are saying to yourselves, “look, Brooks, even if they were all from Judah, they still would only be entitled to a little potion of the land, and that may or may not include Jerusalem, which was in Benjamin’s inheritance.
I don’t think that argument matters. For one thing, very few in the Holy Land are likely from Judah. But, if we review Genesis 27:40, Isaac’s secondary blessing to Esau stated that Esau’s descendants would some day have dominion over Jacob’s descendants and then they would break the Israelite yoke from off their necks. All we have to do is look around our Israel nations to know who is calling the shots, in almost every facet of our lives. We didn’t lose our dominion, we gave it back sometime after 1917 and with it, probably the blessings. And likely as a result of the trickery Jacob employed to get it in the first place. Still, most certainly we have lost control of money, of our communications, of who comes to our lands, and so on, even much of our freedom. Only a blind man could miss the fact that the great wealth of the Israel nations has been looted. Take America, for instance. You just don’t go from the greatest creditor nation in the world to the greatest debtor nation in a handful of years unless the looters have run amuck. And you can’t go from the wealthiest country in the world to where your standard of living is toppling and 10/20% of your population is poverty stricken, with the majority of the rest so encumbered with debt that they cannot see daylight. And where government takes half a person’s income to feed the monster they have created. Quite a difference from every man sitting comfortably under his own fig tree! Some group has been behind this greatest robbery of all time.
So, perhaps Esau’s descendants inherited the right to those lands as well and the 1967 deliverance was their jubilee. The yoke they broke they in turn put around our necks, but it isn’t going to last. Look what the prophet Ezekiel writes, “they [True Israel] shall be safe in their land, and shall know that I am the Lord, when I have broken the bands of their yoke, and delivered them out of the hands of those that served themselves of them.
So, good news seems to be on the horizon. And it comes in the form of another number that is mentioned 146 times in the Bible. Of course, this number is 40 and there is a uniformity of its association with a period of “Trials, Probation, and Testing.” Certainly, since 1967, the modern Israeli State has undergone tremendous upheaval with its neighbours and their latest confrontation with Lebanon has brought much world condemnation. So, they have had their trials. Still, there is another issue, did God grant a probationary period to a people “who would not have him reign over them” so they would have a final chance to accept Him. I suppose He knew they wouldn’t but one thing is certain, time is running out for them because the forty years probation expires in 2007, ironically, a year when so many other prophesies seem to also have their ending.
We don’t have long to wait to see if there is any validity to this and if so, what God intends.
(Opening poem courtesy The National Message)