Friday, December 5, 2008

God's Timetable

I was listening to a talk by Pastor Mark McClellan of The Harvest Fellowship in Thornton, Colorado the other day on my trusty ol' ipod, and he mentioned some very interesting things concerning 9/11 and the recent (September) drastic fall in the stock market.

See, YHWH is a God of order, structure, and pattern, or, better stated, He works within order, structure, pattern, etc. If you are even remotely familiar with the bible, you are aware of the repeated pattern of biblically significant numbers throughout the scriptures, such as 3, 7, 12, 40, et al. For example, 7 signifies completion, perfection, wholeness, etc. So...

9/11 happened, obviously, on September 11, which happened to be exactly 7 days before Rosh Hashanna (or, more accurately Yom Teruah - the Feast of Trumpets) in 2001. The Feast of Trumpets is also known as "the day of the awakening blast" because the shofar (rams-horn "trumpets") are blown throughout the day (up to 100 times traditionally) as a wake-up call to everyone that judgment is coming (exactly 10 days later at Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement). So, we start with the attack on Sept. 11, then 1 week later we have the Feast of Trumpets. Now fast forward 7 years to September 29, 2008. This just happened to be the eve of, you guessed it, the Feast of Trumpets, when it was announced that the stock market had dropped 777 points!

What makes this extremely fascinating is that, there is an interesting story from 9/11. There is a Church in N.Y. called St. Paul's Chapel, located across the street from the (former) Twin Towers, and it happens to be one of, if not the oldest churches in America. George Washington attended this Church for a time, just to give you the historical significance of this place.

There was an old Sycamore tree in the yard of St. Paul's, and when the towers fell, massive debris went flying everywhere. It is believed that this Sycamore tree took the brunt of the debris that would have severely damaged, if not destroyed St. Paul's, thus, saving the historic church building. Afterwards, a local artist heard about this tree, and came up with the idea to memorialize it by making a mold of the roots of the tree (which had been removed with the remaining trunk, and replaced with a Spruce tree - more on this in a moment), and creating a sculpture from the molds. He made more than 300 bronze castings of the roots, and created a 20 ft. long sculpture of it. The sculpture now sits at Trinity Church Wall Street.

Immediately after the 9/11 attacks, various leaders gave the American public the typical speeches of how we are going to overcome this; we are going to build again; we will come together and overcome this evil, etc. In fact, for a season there was a tremendous rise in what seemed to be a return to the Lord. Our Government leaders were even singing hymns and patriotic songs together! But this did not last very long, and soon enough, it was business as usual. The problem was/is, when they were telling us about how our great country was going to "build again", rather than call the people to repent (they invoked the name of God all right, but they simply said over and over "God bless America." No repentance, no calling on the people to change their ways. They should have done like the King of Nineveh when Jonah came to them, and repented in sackcloth and ashes, and called for the people to do the same in the hope that God would relent, and that He would have mercy towards us!)

So, as was pointed to by Pastor Mark, Isaiah 9:8-13 says the following: "The Lord sent a word into Jacob, and it hath lighted upon Israel. And all the people shall know, [even] Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria, that say in the pride and stoutness of heart, The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: the sycamores are cut down, but we will change [them into] cedars. Therefore the LORD shall set up the adversaries of Rezin against him, and join his enemies together; The Syrians before, and the Philistines behind; and they shall devour Israel with open mouth. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand [is] stretched out still. For the people turneth not unto him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the LORD of hosts."

It is interesting that it was a sycamore that was knocked down! No, they did not plant a Cedar in it's stead, but they did plant a Spruce, both of which are of the Pine family. But notice what Isaiah tells us - rather than the people repenting, they stand up in their pride and say WE will build again.

So back to the "Trinity root sculpture." It is noteworthy that this relic of a terrible attack upon us was memorialized, and is being used as a symbol of how we will unite and rebuild. It was placed on Wall Street, the seat of Finance for America. Pastor Mark pointed out (at this point I should mention that much of what he was sharing he derived from Norm Franz of Ascension Ministries) that by casting the roots in bronze (which biblically is the metal of judgment) and placing the sculpture on Wall Street, we either wittingly or unwittingly invited God's further judgment upon us. Now some might not see things like 9/11, the drastic drop in the stock market, the fires, earthquakes, etc. as judgments from God. I mean, if He were going to judge us, wouldn't it be comprehensive, and throughout the entire United States? Well, biblically we can see a precedent for judgments coming in little blips, and then steadily growing in frequency, size, and intensity. He does this because He is trying to get our attention, that we might repent, so that He may relent concerning the judgment He has intended -

"The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make [it]. Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay [is] in the potter's hand, so [are] ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. [At what] instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy [it]; If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them. And [at what] instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant [it]; If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them."
Jeremiah 18:1-10

I believe God's hand is upon these things that are coming to pass on America. I believe His fingerprint is all over the drastic drop of the stock market back in Sept. when it dropped 777 points on the eve of the Feast of Trumpets, exactly 7 years to the month after 9/11, which I believe was a wake up call, though very few have heeded it. America woke up for a couple of days, and then hit the snooze button. Theses judgments will grow if we do not listen, and turn back to Him, and it will eventually lead to a comprehensive judgment that will bring us to our knees. We need to pray for our leaders, family, and neighbors, as well as ourselves to repent, and put away the evil from among us.


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