Throughout history, these 4 judgements (war, famine, plague, and dangerous animals) have always been associated with wrath:
The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, if a land sins against Me by acting faithlessly, and I stretch out My hand against it to cut off its supply of bread, to send famine through it, and to wipe out both man and animal from it, even if these three men—Noah, Daniel, and Job—were in it, they would deliver only themselves by their righteousness.” This is the declaration of the Lord God.
“If I allow dangerous animals to pass through the land and depopulate it so that it becomes desolate, with no one passing through it for fear of the animals, even if these three men were in it, as I live”—the declaration of the Lord God—“they could not deliver their sons or daughters. They alone would be delivered, but the land would be desolate.
“Or if I bring a sword against that land and say: Let a sword pass through it, so that I wipe out both man and animal from it, even if these three men were in it, as I live”—the declaration of the Lord God—“they could not deliver their sons or daughters, but they alone would be delivered.
“Or if I send a plague into that land and pour out My wrath on it with bloodshed to wipe out both man and animal from it, even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live”—the declaration of the Lord God—“they could not deliver their son or daughter. They would deliver only themselves by their righteousness.
“For this is what the Lord God says: How much worse will it be when I send My four devastating judgments against Jerusalem—sword, famine, dangerous animals, and plague—in order to wipe out both man and animal from it! (Ezekiel 14:12-21)
National sins bring national judgments. Though sinners escape one judgment, another is waiting for them. When God’s professing people rebel against him, they may justly expect all his judgments. The faith, obedience, and prayers of Noah prevailed to the saving of his house, but not of the old world. Job’s sacrifice and prayer in behalf of his friends were accepted, and Daniel had prevailed for the saving his companions and the wise men of Babylon. But a people that had filled the measure of their sins, was not to expect to escape for the sake of any righteous men living among them; not even of the most eminent saints, who could be accepted in their own case only through the sufferings and righteousness of Christ. Yet even when God makes the greatest desolations by his judgments, he saves some to be monuments of his mercy.
God used Babylon as His agent of judgment against Israel for their sins of idolatry and rebellion against Him. There were actually several different times during this period (607-586 B.C.) when the Jews were taken captive by Babylon. With each successive rebellion against Babylonian rule, Nebuchadnezzar would lead his armies against Judah until they laid siege to Jerusalem for over a year, killing many people and destroying the Jewish temple, taking captive many thousands of Jews, and leaving Jerusalem in ruins.
Was the destruction of Israel a real historical event?.
Archaeologists Find Evidence of the Iron Age Siege of Jerusalem / Inside Science, September 20, 2019
In the 6th century B.C., the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II, fearful that the Egyptians would cut off the Babylonian trade routes to the eastern Mediterranean region known as the Levant, invaded and laid siege to Jerusalem to block them. His army destroyed the temple the Hebrew king Solomon built there, and forced the city’s elite to exile in Babylonia.
So began the Babylonian Exile or Captivity, an event that shaped modern Judaism. A new archaeological discovery puts a rare physical stamp of authenticity on an event described in the Hebrew Bible.
Israeli and American archaeologists have found evidence just outside Jerusalem’s old city that apparently supports the Biblical description. In an area called Mt. Zion, which is also known as Western Hill, they found the remains of a home of someone the Bible calls a “Big Man,” one of those probably sent to exile. He would have had a beautiful view of Solomon’s Temple, the holiest place for the Hebrews, and he may have left in a rush.
The dig that uncovered the home is directed by Shimon Gibson, an archaeologist at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and Rafi Lewis, a senior lecturer at the Ashkelon Academic College and Haifa University in Israel. The excavation has been in process for more than a decade.
“Training staff is quite exhaustive,” Gibson said. “It is difficult because it is so complicated.”
Unlike usual digs where depth equals time — the deeper you go the farther back in time you are — in Jerusalem the ground has been worked by inhabitants so that older material could be found above newer material.
In and around the ruins of the house, the archaeologists found an ash layer mixed with half a million shards or pieces of pottery, arrowheads typical of the Babylonian arsenal and a piece of gold and silver jewelry — all typical of that time. Pottery shards and ash are usually found in the trash, but Gibson pointed out no one keeps arrowheads and jewelry in a trash bin. Someone probably left in a hurry.
Similar four-finned arrowheads have been found in other places in the Middle East, dated to around the time of the Babylonian attack. There is no record of a comparable event in Jerusalem that would have produced similar detritus. Lamps found in the ash layer are also from that time.
The story of the siege is supported by Babylonian scribes, who wrote what archaeologists call the Babylonian Chronicles on cuneiform tablets hardened in ovens, according to Laurie Pearce, a lecturer in Mideast studies at the University of California, Berkeley.
Why would Noah, Daniel, and Job be delivered from the coming wrath? What made them righteous?
They were faithful
Noah (Genesis 6:5-9)
Daniel (Daniel 1:8-21) – taken into captivity
Job (Job 1:1-8)
They were obedient
Noah (Genesis 6:22) – 100 years of building the ark
Daniel (Daniel 6:10-11) – even having to defy the King’s decree
Job (Job 1:20-22) – lost animals, servants, and his children
They were in the minority – Matthew 7:13-14, 20:16, 22:14
Noah (1 Peter 3:20-22) – eight out of millions
Daniel (Daniel 6:11-15) – the only one recorded who defied the decree
Job (Job 19:13-22) – even close friends turned on him
They endured for the Lord
Noah (Genesis 5:32, 7:11, 8:13-14, 2 Peter 2:5)
Daniel (Daniel 1:1-6, 6:16-17, 7:15, 28, 8:27, 10:1-3)
Job (James 5:10-11)
They humbled themselves to God’s will
Noah (Hebrews 11:7)
Daniel (Daniel 9:1-19)
Job (Job 42:1-6)
They were loved by God
Noah (Genesis 6:8-9)
Daniel [Daniel 9:23, 10:11, 19 (greatly loved ESV)]
Job (Job 2:3, 42:7-17)
These three men are selected as they came from different “worlds”; Noah witnessed the world destroyed and rebuilt, Daniel witnessed the temple destroyed and rebuilt, and Job witnessed the prosperity destroyed and rebuilt. But, these three righteous spiritual heroes “could not have prevailed with God in prayer to save the people” from the coming disasters.
These same 4 judgements (war, famine, plague, and dangerous animals) are coming again:
When He opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” Then another horse went out, a fiery red one, and its horseman was empowered to take peace from the earth, so that people would slaughter one another. And a large sword was given to him.
When He opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” And I looked, and there was a black horse. The horseman on it had a set of scales in his hand. Then I heard something like a voice among the four living creatures say, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius—but do not harm the olive oil and the wine.”
When He opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” And I looked, and there was a pale green horse. The horseman on it was named Death, and Hades was following after him.
Authority was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill by the sword, by famine, by plague, and by the wild animals of the earth. (Revelation 6:1-8)
With a world population of about 8 billion, “a fourth of the earth” killed by these judgements will be about 2 billion people. And this will only be the beginning of all of the Tribulation judgements to come.
Are we there yet? What happens before these 4 judgements on an unbelieving and depraved world?
After this I looked, and there in heaven was an open door. The first voice that I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.”
Immediately I was in the Spirit, and a throne was set there in heaven. One was seated on the throne, and the One seated looked like jasper and carnelian stone. A rainbow that looked like an emerald surrounded the throne. Around that throne were 24 thrones, and on the thrones sat 24 elders dressed in white clothes, with gold crowns on their heads. Flashes of lightning and rumblings of thunder came from the throne. Seven fiery torches were burning before the throne, which are the seven spirits of God. Something like a sea of glass, similar to crystal, was also before the throne. (Revelation 4:1-6)
In Revelation chapter 4, John’s visit starts with an open door and a voice like a trumpet, and then immediately he is before the Throne Room of Heaven. This is a preview of our blessed Rapture – our rescue!
Notice the 24 elders are:
* Wearing crowns
* Seated on thrones (having authority)
* Dressed in white
The promises to “the victor” in the 2 chapters previous to this one, apply to all of us who are true believers, who have been baptized, covered by His blood, and sealed by His Spirit:
Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life. (Revelation 2:10)
But hold on to what you have until I come. The one who is victorious and keeps My works to the end: I will give him authority over the nations — and he will shepherd them with an iron scepter; he will shatter them like pottery—just as I have received this from My Father. (Revelation 2:25-27)
In the same way, the victor will be dressed in white clothes, and I will never erase his name from the book of life but will acknowledge his name before My Father and before His angels. (Revelation 3:5)
I know your works. Because you have limited strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name, look, I have placed before you an open door that no one is able to close. (Revelation 3:8)
Because you have kept My command to endure, I will also keep you from the hour of testing that is going to come over the whole world to test those who live on the earth. I am coming quickly. Hold on to what you have, so that no one takes your crown. (Revelation 3:10-11)
Listen! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and have dinner with him, and he with Me. The victor: I will give him the right to sit with Me on My throne, just as I also won the victory and sat down with My Father on His throne. (Revelation 3:20-21)
The 24 elders represent all of us, the entire Body of Christ – every Old and New Testament believer:
When He took the scroll, the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and gold bowls filled with incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song:
“You are worthy to take the scroll,
And to open its seals;
For You were slain,
And have redeemed us to God by Your blood
Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
And have made us kings and priests to our God;
And we shall reign on the earth.” (Revelation 5:8-10)
The rescue of the righteous and wrath to the wicked is coming soon! Are you ready?
God now commands all to believe His Son, be willing to confess His name before men, repent of our sins, be baptized to wash away those sins, and then live righteously for Him. Obedience in baptism is how one becomes a Christian. A Christian is one who has faithfully and obediently humbled themselves to God and Jesus Christ. Because of this they become righteous and holy in God’s sight (2 Peter 3:14, Revelation 7:14).
If you are not a Christian, wouldn’t it be nice to be cleansed of your sins and then have a life of righteousness to live for Jesus Christ?
If you are not sure that you are a member of the family of God, you can accept Christ into your life right now, by praying:
“Lord Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. Please forgive my sins and give me the gift of eternal life. I ask you in to my life and heart to be my Lord and Savior.”
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