But, I'm thinking the bulk of it will happen after the Christians leave the planet. There is none to very little that can be recognized as the Christian west in any of the OT prophecies about the latter days. It's all about the middle east and the country of Israel.
Spot on Molly. Every Bible topic of a prophetic nature deals only with how other nations interact with Israel. There are no specific prophecies concerning how the United States deals with Russia, or how England deals with China, only chains of events concerning how those countries are engaged with Israel in years leading up to the 70th week of Daniel's prophecy & on into the 7 years of the 70th week.
Presently as I look at the Middle East, I do not see enough chains of events that indicate we are right on the cusp of the start of the 70th week. Maybe if Syria falls soon, then the pace of things may pick up if the Jews in Israel take out Iran's nuclear production facilities. If Iran comes under attack by Israel, you can be sure that will be the end of Assad & that regime because they are just basically Iranian surrogates. I think that once certain fundamentalist Islamic forces in Syria & Iran are neutralized, then the way could be paved for construction of the Jewish Temple & the 7 synagogues in Turkey, but first the threats of Islamic fundamentalism must be removed, & those threats are mostly stemming from Shiite fundamentalism out of Iran.
The 70 weeks of Daniel 9 were about the duration of the desolation of the city of Jerusalem, and the mountain of the Lord's house. But Isaiah said, the mountain of the Lord's house would be established in the top of the mountains
. [Isa. 2:2] When Jesus ascended to his Father's throne, after his resurrection, this was fulfilled. What mountain is higher
than God's throne? He was "exulted above the hills." He was "the only begotten Son" of the Father. [John 1:14, 18; 3:16, 18; Heb. 11:17; 1 John 4:9]
Peter said, on the Day of Pentecost when the Spirit was given,
This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.
Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.
For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,
Until I make thy foes thy footstool.
Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Being "made Christ" meant he had inherited the throne of his ancestor David
, and was ruling over all Israel in Jerusalem. This is how Jerusalem was exulted above the hills
, and established in the top of the mountains
. But those Jews who rejected the gospel, were cut off from Israel
. They were no longer Israel, in a spiritual sense, but were branches broken off from their tree
. This was how Paul explained it in Romans 11. And the apostle Peter said,
For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.
And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.
Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.
By these teachings, the earthly Jerusalem and the Jews of that generation who did not believe the gospel received a deadly wound
. The "sword" in scripture is scripture itself, as we read in Hebrews:
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
The ministry of the apostles continued to spread this word, and so the unbelieving part of the Jewish nation was cut off
from the promises of God. In the events of 70 A.D. there was no divine protection for them. There were armies surrounding Jerusalem, a condition which to them probably seemed very much what was foretold in Zechariah 14:1-2, but the promise in verse 3, "Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle" did not come to pass; neither did the mount of Olives cleave in the midst, and half of it move north and half move south; and neither did any plague smite the attackers, or their horses, or mules, or camels, or asses, in those days, as far as we know. The Jews were bitterly disappointed. To this day, those Jews who deny that Jesus is the Christ have been cut off
from the promises, and from Israel
. Thus, they received a "deadly wound" from the sword
of God's word. But John said, in Rev. 13, that one of the heads of the beast, in which there were the names of blasphemy
, that had received a deadly wound, would be healed. Is this what happened in 1948?
Let's remember, the "beast" with 7 heads and 10 horns in ch. 13 has the characteristics of the four beasts in Daniel 7, and the same number of heads and horns. The kingdom of Herod was a Roman province. It was incorporated in the fourth beast of Dan. 7. Jesus acknowledged this, when the Jews questioned him about paying tribute.
And they asked him, saying, Master, we know that thou sayest and teachest rightly, neither acceptest thou the person of any, but teachest the way of God truly:
Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Caesar, or no?
But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, Why tempt ye me?
Shew me a penny. Whose image and superscription hath it? They answered and said, Caesar's.
And he said unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's.
And they could not take hold of his words before the people: and they marvelled at his answer, and held their peace.
So, even though a Jewish state has emerged, which calls itself "Israel," let's not be deceived. Paul wrote:
Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:
Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.
That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.
The "children of the promise" are the true Israel, not the children of the flesh. The saints are the Israel of God by faith
, not by the flesh, or because of physical circumcision, but by the circumcision made without hands.
And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands
, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.