Monday, December 14, 2015

Why is Jerusalem the Most Sought After Piece of Real Estate on Earth?

The city of Jerusalem belongs to God. It does not belong to the Palestinians, the U.N., the E.U or the United States and technically it doesn't even belong to Israel! God says that it is His city, He has set His name upon that city. When you listen to Rabbi's speak about how God spoke creation into existence, not only did the land form beneath His feet but also the Temple Mount. He takes the city of Jerusalem seriously and here in Revelation, we hear God comparing them to Sodom and Egypt. When God has issues with you, He brings them to your attention. Doesn't mean He doesn't love you any less, but He does have to address what is displeasing to Him that you are doing. Remember that God has already done this in the letters to the seven churches earlier in our studies. It is a way of bringing these things to focus and help us to get right with God again.

If you have ever visited the city of Jerusalem, as you are walking around the city, you can get a sense that this is not how God intended it to be. It's like that in almost any city you walk around in, yet the one big difference in Jerusalem compared to anywhere else is that God is not done with Jerusalem yet. He has eternal plans for Jerusalem! Like those amazing renovations shows, Jesus when He returns will be doing the ultimate restoration on this city and what a city it will be!

Revelation 11:8 ~ "Their bodies will lie in the street of the great city, which is figuratively called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified."

The great city is referring to Jerusalem because it was the city in which our Lord was crucified. But why is God calling it Sodom and Egypt? How does God use these two cities to compare His own city and people with those who have deep spiritual issues? We know that the city of Jerusalem belongs to God and it makes you wonder why so many people fight over this small little pieces of land and why it is so widely contested. The most sacred piece of real estate in the world today and most sought after is the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. It is what all the wars have been about going back as far historically as we can. It's a spiritual battle and a spiritual situation.

God refers to any city when it is not walking with Him, being obedient to Him, worshiping Him as it should be, God calls it as it is. So what does God do to a city that isn't doing what it should be doing? He brings judgment to the city. That is how God disciplines even though we don't want to hear about it. Even to the own Christian, when we walk in disobedience, God brings about chastisement. This does not mean your salvation is being called into question. Your salvation is fine, just like you don't disown one of your children when they make a mistake, the same is true for God. Discipline is necessary to get you back where you need to be. The Bible says, "Whom the Lord loves, He chastens!" The Bible also says that if you are not a child of God, He will not discipline you. As a parent, you don't discipline someone else's child when they are misbehaving, each parent takes care of their own child because they have a vested interest in their child's well being. So does God. Just because you think you're getting away with stuff doesn't mean God doesn't care. You might just want to be sure you are truly a child of God's.

From the beginning of time, God has chosen the land of Israel, the city of Jerusalem and the Jews to be His people. Nothing that the world does will change that. As Christians, God has placed His seal upon us as His chosen children as well. Just because discipline comes doesn't mean God has rejected you. So when we look at the first of the two cities that God compares Jerusalem to in looking at Sodom, we need to remember what they were known for. God judged the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah for their rebelliousness to God, and that they went after strange flesh. God has sanctioned special perimeters in regards to sexual activity. Only a male and a female in marriage! God only blesses the sexual activity between a married husband and wife ONLY! All other bets are not sanctioned or approved by God. In the Book of Hebrews, God says the marriage bed is undefiled. God is against fornication and adultery. Did you know from a scientific perspective that when a husband and wife come together as one in marriage that the exchange of bodily fluids help build each other's immunities up instead of tearing them down? God brings the biology of a husband and a wife together to strengthen them. 

If you step outside those perimeters and do things you aren't supposed to do, is it any wonder that you feel run down, get sick or fall victim to certain diseases? The Bible says if we sow to the flesh of the flesh and we will reap corruption. Have you seen how the pornographic industry is reeling from the impacts of aids and other sexually transmitted diseases? It's slowly killing them all off and then they wonder what is happening to them and why? God is saying that He is calling Jerusalem, spiritual Sodom, God is looking at spiritual diversity, paganism, or as God calls it harlotry. God calls it adultery in the spirit.

Jerusalem during this great time of Tribulation will be it a city of internationalism embracing all religions and all faiths, and most of the Jews you meet today in the city are atheistic Jews who do not believe in God while they walk in the Holy land. They refuse to believe in Scriptures, our God and simply chalk it up to being in our culture. The Bible says that God would bring Israel back into their own land in unbelief. If you go to Israel today, you will meet people who don't believe in God. We know that the Pope has even given credence that Jerusalem in the spiritual center of the world, that the top three leading religions or beliefs come together there. It will shift from Rome and Mecca and all combine in a homogenization of the religions in the city of Jerusalem, or a one world religion. Just type in one world religion and see what you come up with today. There is a great movement in the world today for us all to worship one God. They say that Christians, Jews and Muslims all believe in God and that they are all the same God. Yet let me ask these questions? If we worship the same God, then why aren't you Christians trying to build a temple to sacrifice animals for the removal of your sins? If we worship the same God, why aren't we going out and beheading our enemies? It's not that it isn't politically correct, it's that we do NOT worship the same God.

Jesus says, "You can't come to the Father, except through Him." The other thing is that the Bible says we know God's name. Adonai, is what God calls Himself. He introduces Himself as being our Father who art in Heaven. Yahweh or YHWH,  the LORD God, and He is approachable. We can pray to Him. The Bible says that there is one mediator between God and man and that is Jesus Christ. We can pray directly to the Father through Jesus Christ. You don't need to go through anyone to get prayer to God. We can pray for you, but so can you. You can pray to God yourself. We can't talk to God for you, God expects you to talk to Him yourself. That's gotta set you free no matter where you are in the world. How liberating is that!

You don't have to get a little lamb and sacrifice it to God while talking to Him while the blood runs out. You don't have to go out and perpetrate all kinds of evil against humanity to earn God's favor, and to enter some sort of paradise. The Bible says, you bow your knee or open your heart to pray to the Lord in Jesus Name. Anyone and everyone can do that. God says however that Jerusalem is a spiritual Sodom. It will become a place of paganism and spiritual adultery and fornication. God also says that Jerusalem is compared to a spiritual Egypt. We have to consider what is Egypt famous for regarding the children of Israel? Bondage, slavery. Did you know that when Israel was in the bondage and slavery of Egypt, they were completely ignorant? That is why the way Pharaoh dealt with Moses is so unique. He was saved by Pharaoh's daughter and raised up in his house, being schooled in their ways and would have been given the best the world had to offer.

In the Book of Hebrews, it says that when Moses saw his people, he put away everything he had access to at his fingertips for a moment, so he could be associated with the inflections of God's people. Moses left Egypt. Then the people of Israel through Moses also left Egypt. God led them out and they became a great nation. Egypt in Scripture, is also a reference to the world. When the Bible refers to Egypt you can also use it as a reference to the world and its system. Worldliness, flesh and the like.

Matthew 23:37-38 ~ "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets ad stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing. Look, your house is left to you desolate."

It was left desolate, referring to the house which represents the Temple, because of paganism and not recognizing Him.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ~ "Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."

God does want to be number one on a list of ten. He wants to be number one on a list of one. Idolaters are those that put anything before God. ANYTHING. Things can be idols and the things we most identify with. What we spend our money and time on. As you read this list, repent of them as you read them. Remember we don't have to do the actual act, but simply looking at another man or woman is guilty of adultery. Simply tell God you have sinned against Him and ask for His forgiveness. The Bible says if we confess our sins, God will forgive us from all unrighteousness. God doesn't make people idolaters, adulterers, fornicators, thieves or homosexuals. These are all sins of choice. The rest of the list continues with sins of choice as well. We are wanting things others want and we are willing to do whatever it takes to get there. Even paying taxes. While we may not like how our government spends our money, the Bible says we have to do what He has commanded. They will have to give an account to how they spent that money. We need to keep on doing it until God changed it now matter how much we might not like doing it.

Even though God knows all of this, He is not surprised. He is hurt and it pains Him to see how much His own creation rejects Him, those are human emotions and He wants us to know He understands it all. God announces in all the Book of the Prophets, Amos, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Zechariah, Isaiah and promises that He will gather together His people from all the corners of the world because they have been scattered, and He will bring them back to their own land in unbelief. They are very made at God because they want to know where He was through the Holocaust. How can you be angry at someone you don't believe exists? The Jews won't believe in God again until Ezekiel 38, where God rescues them from an impending war that is being lead by Israel's enemies from the furthest points north!

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