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Crisis in the Mid-east

Source: Art Sadlier, Wednesday February 1st 2012

As Iran rushes toward nuclear weapons the pressure is on Israel to attack Iran and neutralize its nuclear program. The US administration has repeatedly stated that they will not allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons. The problem is that they continue to push a failed program of sanctions against Iran in effort to persuade Iran to abandon its nuclear program.

The oil embargo obviously will not work. China, Russia and India are the major purchasers of Iranian oil and they will not take part in the embargo. The EU is also a major purchaser of Iranian oil, they have agreed to an embargo but they are delaying it until July which may be too late. Iran will probably find other buyers by that time.

There are many conflicting reports circulating. Some are claiming that neither Israel, nor America will attack Iran this year. Former IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi warned, Thursday, January 26, that Israel should prepare itself for war.  Other reports from reliable sources indicate that an attack from Israel is imminent. 

Debkafile has reported that the Americans are engaged in the largest military build up in the Mideast since the Iraq war, and that a strike will come this spring.  Sources estimate from the current pace of arrivals on two island bases in the Persian Gulf; that 50,000 US troops will have accumulated on Socotra and Masirah islands by mid-February. They will top up the 50,000 military already present in the Persian Gulf region, so that in less than a month, Washington will have some 100,000 military personnel on the spot and available for any contingency.

The US military presence in the region has further expanded with three US aircraft carriers and their strike groups plus a French carrier in the Persian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea. A fourth US carrier will be standing by in the Indian Ocean, a few days' sailing time from the water off Iran's coast. That represents incredible military might.

It is clear from the end time scriptural scenario that Iran will not obtain nuclear weapons, or at the least not use them. How this will all work out we cannot be certain. It could be that Iran will be neutralized by an attack or that the war of Psalm 83 will interrupt Iran’s plans.

It is much easier to see the broad outline of coming events than it is to understand the time frame, and the details.

The clearly declared goal of Iran is two-fold.  

First - Wipe Israel off the map.

This will not happen. Their serious attempt at this objective will come during the war of Ezekiel 38-39 which will happen early in the tribulation period, and will fail.

Second - Create a cataclysmic war which will bring on the return of the Mahdi, the Islamic saviour.

As we understand the scriptural end time scenario, the war of Psalm 83 is next major war for Israel (read about it also in Isaiah 17 and Ezekiel 35-36). The stage is now set for that war to unfold. Iran will not be involved in that war. That war will be fought by Hamas, Hezbollah, Lebanon, Jordan and Syria.

This war would bring about the total demise of these antagonists of Israel. “Who said, Let us take to ourselves the houses of God in possession. O my God, make them like a wheel; as the stubble before the wind. As the fire burneth a wood, and as the flame setteth the mountains on fire; So persecute them with thy tempest, and make them afraid with thy storm” (Psalm 83:12-15). That will cause the Arabs to be open toward a peace treaty.

We believe that will be the peace treaty of Antichrist. It will be facilitated by the fact that Antichrist will deceive Israel into believing that he is Israel’s Messiah. He will also deceive Islam into believing that he is Islam’s saviour, their Mahdi. At the same time all of Christendom will actually believe that Antichrist is the true Christ.

It seems from Revelation 6:2 that this peace treaty will involve universal disarmament. 

The question is what would persuade the nations of the world to disarm and to believe the deception of Antichrist? 

I believe the answer is to be found in the situation prior to the peace treaty. From Matthew 24 and other scriptures we see a world which has descended into total chaos prior to the peace treaty. That is why that after the peace treaty the world will cry “peace and safety” as Paul says in Thessalonians.

We have the potential for such chaos to unfold in our world now. We have four potential scenarios now waiting in the wings to happen.

1.           THE WAR OF PSALM 83: the scenario is now set for this war to take place. There is the potential for the use of chemical and biological weapons and even the potential for the use nuclear weapons. If Israel’s survival is in jeopardy through the use of chemical and biological weapons, Israel could use nuclear weapons; in fact they have already threatened Syria about this matter. 

2.           POTENTIAL WAR BETWEEN CHINA AND INDIA:  this would be a repeat of the war of 1962. Some are forecasting such a war to be on the near horizon. Some are forecasting this war will take place as early as this summer. News reports are detailing a simmering border dispute between these two major powers. 

3.           POTENTIAL FOR WORLD-WIDE MONETARY AND ECONOMIC COLLAPSE: the signs of this coming event are everywhere. Such an event would throw the world into the flames of civil strife, with rioting and rebellion and chaos in the streets of the world.

4.           POTENTIAL FOR ALL OUT WAR IN THE MUSLIM WORLD BETWEEN THE SUNNI AND SHIITE CAMPS: the Saudis and the Iranians would be the leading factions. The Saudis have already ordered aircraft that will excel the numbers and quality of the Israeli air force. They are also making plans, with China’s help, to obtain nuclear weapons. 

The Saudis are threatened by Iran as Iran seeks to gain the leadership of the Muslim world through military means. It is now reported by debkafile that the Saudi’s are moving troops to the Gulf coast to protect against an attack from Iran. Iran is angry with the Saudis because they have promised to produce more oil to compensate for the embargo of Iranian oil.

It is also reported that there are new deployments of the armies of Gulf Cooperation Council states. They are moving into position in expectation of a military confrontation with Iran. 

It was reported on January 26, that the expectation is that Iran will attempt sporadic closures of the Straits of Hormuz. The reaction of Washington is unknown at this point, but it seems the prospect of war is growing by the day.

It seems to me that men and nations are now no longer in control, higher powers are moving these men and nations like pieces on a chess board. Logic no longer enables us to figure out what is about to happen.

Many are saying that if Iran is attacked it will trigger a major war in the Mideast which may bring about the war of Psalm 83.

The world seems to stand on the brink of a cataclysm.  Such a situation would be the ideal time for a super leader to appear on the scene and bring about a miraculous peace and an economic recovery. Throw in a few signs and wonders and you have the world falling at his feet.

In 2 Thessalonians 2:9 we read that Satan is active in this great last days deception. “Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders.” In verse 11 we discover that God is also active in causing this deception. “And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.”

We have modern day examples of massive deception,  examples  of the deception that will soon fall over the entire world. An example of how the world can be deceived is found in the recent claim of the Obama administration and others that the climate is becoming warmer and warmer because of increasing CO 2 in the atmosphere. The London telegraph in an article on December 12, 2011, stated in bold headlines: “Climate Change, the Worst Scientific Scandal of Our Generation”.

An editorial in the Washington Times on the November 20, 2011, edition was headed, “A Climate of Fraud.” It indicated that the climate change fraud was the biggest lie ever perpetuated upon the human race. 

The situation is set for the deception of the coming Antichrist. Deception is the mark of the whole end time scenario; we see it growing all around us. Tragically we see the evangelical church caught up in deception, deception that is plunging many into apostasy.

It is at this point, after the rapture of the body of Christ, that the world church comes on the scene to assist in the peace plan, being deceived and deceiving. We see the portrayal of this scenario in Revelation 17; it is the union of this false church and the revived Roman Empire.

“So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns” (Revelation 17:3).

The Day of the Lord is at hand, now is the day of salvation, come to Christ before that awful day begins.