Earlier in the week, I ran into someone I worked with many years ago and after the brief greeting, he seemed anxious to compare the world as he saw it today with what it was like when we knew one another; hard to believe that was only 50 years ago, “It’s sure a scary world these days”, he began and I had to agree. For although it certainly wasn’t perfect back then, there at least seemed to be greater trust in our church leaders, our political representatives; even the corporate world seemed to be better corporate citizens than today. Nevertheless, I suppose the sorriest change has been the attitude toward our Blessed Saviour, whom, even if we shied away from the path of righteousness to a great extent, in our minds we still wanted to walk with Him. That started to change as the make-up of our population demanded a retreat of our Faith to accommodate the gods of other peoples through multi-culturalism and political correctness. The result! We’ve almost reached that point that Christ prophesied, “When I return, shall I find the Faith”. And as our Christian faith became more watered down, our Christian nations and our people began the quick decline into apostasy.
It reminded me of an article I once read that is somewhat along the following lines. A young man goes to the doctor with a complaint that his body just seems to be giving out on him, despite his youth. The doctor gives him a thorough examination and tells the young man that there is really nothing wrong with him but the adverse effects of his lifestyle. Upon enquiring, the doctor said that if he follows a few lifestyle tips, he would probably enjoy a healthy and long life. The doctor counselled about laws on diet, habits, exercise, thinking, faith, happiness, handling stress, purpose in life and others, but then the doctor said that if the young man strayed from these laws of life, his condition would only worsen and worsen. The young man took the doctor’s advice to heart and for years after, he felt great and so many good things flowed into his life. Yet, sadly, eventually, he fell into a group of friends and he began to succumb to the opposite side of those good things and as his new undisciplined life reflected a falling away, the effects of ignoring the simple advice from his doctor took hold. And as he reached what should have been the prime of his life, he felt helpless to withstand the ravages of a life he brought upon himself.
When I heard this story, it reminded me very much of our early Israelite nation, later the split off House of Israel, and what we have done to ourselves through ignoring precious laws. The young man mentioned above gave up the good things of life just as we of the House of Israel gave up our good things in life because of disobedience. Our doctor, so to speak, is the Almighty God, Jesus Christ, and whether we admit it or not, He gave us the choice of either greatness or catastrophe. We exercised our choice with all the Israel nations choosing catastrophe, with the United Kingdom and America leading the pack. Like the young man, we strayed and strayed badly.
Greatness was offered through the first verse of Chapter 28 of the Book of Deuteronomy. The Lord said, “If you will listen diligently to the voice of the Lord your God, being watchful to do all His commandments which I command you this day, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth”. In the next thirteen verses, God outlines magnificent blessings for following His Commandments. I like the way the Wycliffe Commentary describes them, “If Israel would obey the Lord, she would come out on top in every military and commercial encounter with other nations. Within the Kingdom [Israel Nations] there would be an abundance of the earth’s goodness … But God allowed the Israelites to enjoy the blessings only as long as we and our leaders exhibited an appropriate measure of righteousness”.
So, it is easy see what led us to our present sorry state. We started out okay, even our re-start at the beginning of the Reformation was positive. We were never perfect, we couldn’t be, but Jesus Christ was always the center of our focus and so, as time went by, God permitted us to enjoy a measure of great blessings in line with the nations, peoples and leaders’ righteousness. But as True Israel fell off the rails, so to speak, we gradually brought on growing punishment. And in looking around the Israel nations today, one can only conclude that the growing punishment has been and continues to be, severe. We were warned! God said, “But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord your God, being watchful to do all His commandments and His statutes which I command you this day, then all these curses shalt come upon you and overtake you”.
Then, following His warning, He outlines the curses for disobedience. Whereas the blessings were covered in 13 verses, the curses take up a whopping 53 verses. Read them and you will realize just how low we have been brought down; particularly since the onset of the Esau Dominion, around, I believe, 1820AD.
Looking at the two fulfillments of Deuteronomy (then and now) it can be seen that banishment from the tribal lands beginning in 721BC was the major result of the Israelites’ disobedience. In this second fulfillment, we are not being banished but more or less subdued through loss of freedoms, controls and financial bondage, just as Deuteronomy 28 predicts. Interesting that the Israelites in Britain said enough is enough and through Brexit said we want out of this European Union straightjacket, but there is no assurance there will not be delays and perhaps even a do-over vote. By the same token, in America, the people rose up as well and voted for an Israelite president but ever since, he has been under attack, notwithstanding the achievements he has so far attained. Still, only our Lord knows whether he will be successful or overthrown in some manner.
In looking at these two nations, please keep in mind this curse, “The stranger that is within thee shall get up above thee very high; and thou shall come down very low”. Have our Israel nations been brought down?
Siege and exile were curses Israelites experienced in the first fulfillment, i.e. Midians and Philistines, and while we often hear, “No weapon that is forced against thee shall prosper”, it really hasn’t been so. Throughout the 53 verses of curses, we can see predictions of a nation facing destruction and when you think of the prophecy of Ezekiel, you can understand the Words of the Lord in Deuteronomy 28:40-50, “The Lord shall bring a nation against thee from far …… But a nation of fierce countenance …”
I recall having a blood test a couple of years ago and the technician remarked about all the new diseases she has seen in the last three decades, primarily imported from other nations without the same safeguards, Deuteronomy warns about pestilence in several verses. Verses 60-61 paint a sorry picture of this.
I have only touched on the curses, but it is so sad what we have done to ourselves. You know, we should be nations of privilege, as we once were; privileged as no other nations in all the world. Remember, God intended that the Israel nations should be the leading nations of the world and while we are still formidable, the strangers in control, the loss of freedoms and particularly the huge debt we can never repay, are rapidly propelling us to be the tail of the nations. This is what disobedience to His Word has done to us. So, has the purpose that He had in mind for Israel been de-railed for good?
No, thank God. He chose us at Sinai and when the going gets bad enough, the nations’ Israelites will realize only He can save us, then we will fervently go to our knees and as 2 Chronicles 7:14 tells us, we shall pray and seek His Face. Then, and only then, will He return to heal our lands. Ezekiel 39 and other parts of the Bible tell us so.
In the meantime, we can only hope those friends, family and friends who are yet to come under the precious Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ will begin to recognize the path they are treading and faithfully begin to accept Jesus’ Words, “If you love me, obey my Commandments”.