Let’s take a quick look at today’s prophecy-related headlines which point towards the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and the end of the world as we know it.
First, today, under the Sign category of WARS & RUMORS OF WARS — According to Reuters, U.S. troops have started training Iraqi military forces at two bases in Iraq as they work to build a force that can take the offensive against Islamic State militants who overran part of the country last year. About 320 U.S. Marines are training members of the Iraqi 7th Division at an air base in western Anbar province, which is taking regular harassing mortar fire from Islamic State militants. Another 170 U.S. troops, soldiers of the Army’s 1st Infantry Division, began a six-week training course for four battalions of Iraqi security forces in Taji, a predominantly Sunni rural area north of Baghdad. U.S. forces also are planning to train Iraqi military personnel at bases in Arbil in the Kurdish region as well as at a combat training center south of Baghdad.
Second, today, under the Sign category of WARS & RUMORS OF WARS — According to the Associated Press, International concern has been mounting over Libya, which is mired in its worst fighting since Western and Gulf-backed rebels overthrew dictator Moammar Gadhafi and killed him in 2011. Today two rival governments are each backed by an array of militias fighting it out across the country, and extremists in the east have pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group. French President Francois Hollande urged the United Nations to take action to stem the growing violence and the transit of arms from Libya to militant groups. To strike at militants crossing the border, France is setting up a military base in northern Niger, 60 miles from the lawless Libyan border region. About 200 troops are deployed in the desert outpost and French and U.S. drones are already operating out of Niger’s capital. African leaders urged Western countries to intervene in Libya at a security summit in Dakar last month. However, Libyan leaders called on the Arab League for help but rejected armed Western intervention.
Third, today, under the Sign category of DISEASES & EPIDEMICS — According to the Los Angeles Times, influenza viruses have infiltrated most parts of the United States, with 43 states experiencing “widespread” flu activity and six others reporting “regional” flu activity. At least 601 people in the U.S. died of influenza or pneumonia during the 52nd week of 2014, bringing the total death toll to 8,893 during the current flu season.
Fourth, today, under the Sign category of THE TURMOIL IN ISRAEL & THE MIDDLE EAST — According to Israel National News, the International Criminal Court says that the Palestinian Authority has formally recognized the court’s jurisdiction to investigate crimes allegedly committed during last summer’s Gaza war. The legal declaration would allow the ICC to scrutinize offenses allegedly committed since June 13, 2014, the start of Israel’s military operation, but does not mean the court would automatically launch an investigation. Acceptance of the ICC’s jurisdiction differs from accession to the Rome Statute, the Court’s founding treaty. The UN is still reviewing documents submitted by the Palestinian Authority to join the Court.
Fifth, today, under the Sign category of WARS & RUMORS OF WARS — According to the Associated Press, days of fighting between Burundi troops and rebels who entered the Central African country killed 97 people, mostly rebels, this week. An army spokesman said that 95 of those killed were members of a rebel group that entered Burundi from bordering Congo. Two government soldiers had also been killed in the fighting that started a week ago some 60 kilometers northwest of the capital. Between 180 to 200 rebels were thought to have crossed from Eastern Congo into Burundi where they launched the attack. Eastern Congo is home to a myriad of armed groups and militias.
You can read these stories in more detail and get more prophecy-related news at SecondComingHerald.com.
The prophetic passage of Scripture we are looking at today is the entire chapter of Leviticus 16. Verse 16 of this passage reads: “And [Aaron] shall make an atonement for the holy place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions in all their sins: and so shall he do for the tabernacle of the congregation, that remaineth among them in the midst of their uncleanness.”
Allow me to share with you some commentary on this passage from the Popular Bible Prophecy Commentary, edited by Tim LaHaye and Ed Hindson.
Leviticus 16:1-34, which provides a description of the high priest’s activities on the Day of Atonement, coupled with the broad congregational duties for the holy day outlined in Leviticus 23:26-32, imparts a complex portrait of the most sacred day on Israel’s liturgical calendar. This holy day falls on Tishri 10, ten days after the Feast of Trumpets. The purpose of this day is to make atonement for the sanctuary, the tabernacle, the congregation, the altar, the priests, and the people of Israel. It is a time for a national confession for sins not confessed and forgiven throughout the year, a reminder that the normal everyday sacrifices were insufficient to atone for sin.
As to congregational responsibilities, on this day absolutely no labor of any kind is to be performed. In fact, the performance of any work is an infraction of capital consequence. This day is to function like a Sabbath of Sabbaths, a super-Sabbath. The Israelites are to humble their souls, or practice self-denial, primarily through a fast, a complete avoidance of food and water for a 25-hour period (an additional hour is added to the day at the front end according to Leviticus 23:32).
The Day of Atonement (in Hebrew, Yom Kippurim), commonly called Yom Kippur, is more accurately translated as the “Day of Coverings.” The term “kippurim” conveys a slightly different nuance than what is normally understood as the meaning of the theological term atonement. “Kippurim” does not denote the removal of sins as much as the covering over of them. Yom Kippurim refers to the great “holy carpet” under which God swept Israel’s sins during His annual fall cleaning. However, regardless of how meticulously dirt is swept under a rug, the dirt is still there, merely having been covered over.
This is an illustration of how the Day of Atonement worked. The covering for the sin of God’s people was blood, the symbol of life, for “it is the blood…that makes atonement.” A basic yet vital concept of Scripture is that without blood there can be no atonement. Blood is the only means of covering, or atonement, that the Bible recognizes.
If the Lord tarries His coming and we live, we will continue looking at the prophetic passages of the Bible in our next broadcast / podcast.
Our second coming quote for today is from J.C. Ryle. He said, “There shall be no time for parting words or a change of mind when the Lord appears.”
If you are not ready for the return of Jesus Christ, may I encourage you to get ready today by receiving Him as your Savior. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Keep looking up for your redemption draweth nigh. Let us join in the prayer of John the Revelator — “Even so, come, Lord Jesus.” God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry which publishes a monthly magazine called The Torch Leader. He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica for over twenty-seven years. God has blessed their union with seven children. Find out more at www.danielwhyte3.com. Follow Daniel Whyte III on Twitter @prophetdaniel3 or on Facebook.