The recent Blood Moon, which rose on the first night of Sukkot, when considered alongside several events here in Israel and around the globe, has encouraged many to speculate that there has been a shift toward the Magog invasion of Israel (Ezekiel 38 war) or at the very least a third intifada — and quite possibly a new world order.
“What possibly awaits us here is something like a new intifada,” said Martin Schaefer, Germany’s foreign ministry spokesman, about the disturbing uptick in Palestinian violence over the holidays.
On Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel is “waging a fight to the death against Palestinian terror.” On Monday, he met with the security cabinet to crack down on Palestinian terror.
Last week, several families in Israel found themselves in a season of mourning despite the holiday of Sukkot, the Time of Our Rejoicing (Zman Simchateinu).
On Saturday in the Old City of Jerusalem, Rabbi Nehemia Lavi, 41, and Aharon Banita-Bennett, 21, were murdered in a terrorist attack. Bennett’s wife, Adelle, 22, and their two-year-old son were also injured.
As Adelle Banita-Bennett tried to escape death, Palestinians who witnessed the stabbings, mocked, clapped, kicked, laughed, and spat at her.
“I ran for dozens of meters with a knife in my shoulder, bleeding. Arabs in the area who saw this horrible scene clapped and laughed, and told me that they hoped for my quick death. I felt I was about to faint,” she said when she came out of a medically induced coma on Sunday.
“I tried to hold onto someone who passed by, and they just shook me off and kicked me, and said ‘die.’” (Arutz Sheva)
The couple and their baby were on their way to the Western Wall to pray.
Lavi died trying to help the couple under attack.
Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi David Lau delivered a eulogy on Sunday at the funeral, expressing the Jewish hope for the coming of the Messiah:
“A young man with his wife — whom we pray for — were attached to God, happy in fulfilling His commandments, and their holiday was turned to pain and anguish,” he said. “Instead of celebrating, we accompany a young rabbi at his funeral.
“We pray to God, to Whom we are attached, that He provide us with good tidings, with the comfort of Zion and Jerusalem, and for the end of death in the coming of the Messiah,” he added.
Meanwhile, Sephardic Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef called on Jews to come to pray at the Western (Wailing) Wall.
“The situation in which the blood of Jews is spilled like water in the land of Israel, day after day, when their only sin is their being Jews, is unbearable,” Rabbi Yosef wrote in his call for attendance.
“I call on all those who can to come tonight — the night of Hoshanah Rabbah — and tomorrow, on the Simchat Torah holiday, to the Western Wall, to perform the commandment of the holiday and to pray for the peace of the wounded.”
“We can’t allow a situation in which Jews are afraid to go to the Western Wall,” he said.
Jerusalem, however, was considered so dangerous that some members of the Messianic Prophecy Bible team who had originally planned to go for prayer at the Wall thought better.
Sadly, it was not the only terrorist attack during Sukkot, which began this year with the fourth and final Blood Moon of the Blood Moon Tetrad that coincided with Passover and Sukkot in 2014 and 2015.
The recent uptick in terror, which includes rocket fire from Gaza, also took the lives of a mother and father of four children in Samaria.
Residents of the community of Neria, Rabbi Eitam Henkin, who was an American citizen, and his wife Naama Henkin were murdered Thursday, October 2. Terrorists opened fire on their vehicle as they were driving between Itamar and Elon Moreh.
The children likely survived the attack because the Palestinian gunmen fled the scene after one was accidentally shot by a member of the terrorist cell as they killed the Israeli couple.
“It was a very difficult scene,” said MDA paramedic Boaz Malka, one of the first to arrive on the scene. “We saw a vehicle in the middle of the road, and a man in his thirties lying next to it with wounds in his upper torso. Inside the car sat a woman in her thirties, also with severe wounds to her upper torso. They were without any signs of life, and unfortunately we were forced to pronounce them dead at the scene.” (Times of Israel)
Both the Hamas terror group and the Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party welcomed the murders. Hamas called the attack “heroic,” calling for “more high-quality attacks.”
“The Zionists will pay the price for Netanyahu’s criminal policy in every place,” Hamas said in a statement.
The attack came one day after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas delivered his speech at the United Nations.
“There is a clear link between the terror attacks and the speech of the terrorist Abu Mazen [Abbas],” Likud Minister Yariv Levin told a crowd gathered outside Netanyahu’s residence as they protested the growth of Palestinian violence.
“The time has come to say clearly what we believe, that the PA is the problem. Those who teach their children to engage in terror and who pay terrorists who sit in jail, are not a partner to anything. Abu Mazen wants many things, but peace is not one of them,” he emphasized.
A Shift of Time and Seasons
Of course, those who have been following the news since the first Blood Moon realize that these current events seem to be part of a trend that began escalating last year with the first lunar eclipse.
When we think of these lunar eclipses, we remember that God often uses heavenly and earthly signs as milestone events that signal a shift from one season in God’s grand plan to another — the next move of God we might say.
For instance, the blood placed on the doorposts on the first Passover in Egypt signaled the end of bondage under the hands of the Egyptians and the beginning of freedom as the nation of God.
The Star of Bethlehem signaled the coming of the Messiah and the beginning of His reign.
In each of these shifts of time, God spoke very specifically as to what these signs signify, and He told us that before the end of days, He would “show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood.” (Joel 2:30–31)
We haven’t yet seen divine wonders of fire and columns of smoke but, in this past year, many nations certainly have seen moons turned to blood (lunar eclipses) and a darkened sun (solar eclipse).
Perhaps God is showing us through these blood moons a glimpse of the awesome wonders in the heavens that are to come so that we will not be terrified by them, as those who do not know Adonai will be.
“Do not learn the ways of the nations or be terrified by signs in the heavens, though the nations are terrified by them.” (Jeremiah 10:2)
The events that coincided with these celestial episodes indicate a significant shift of time and season that must occur before that great and terrible day of the Lord comes.
Here are some of these events that have occurred since the first blood moon:
- April 23, 2014: Fatah and Hamas formed a unity government.
- June 12, 2014: Three Jewish teens were abducted and murdered, precipitating another war with Hamas.
- July 8, 2014: War broke out between Israel and the Gaza Strip.
- As war raged, condemnations against Israel heightened, with accusations of war crimes and worldwide movements to boycott Israeli products.
- ISIS moved into Israel’s backyard at the Sinai, as well as in Syria.
- June 26, 2015: Pope Francis recognized Palestine as a state, bypassing the need for peaceful negotiations between Israel and the PA.
- September 30, 2015: PA President Mahmoud Abbas spoke at the United Nations stating that the Oslo Peace Accords that required negotiations with Israel on a two-state solution no longer apply. The same day, the PA flag was raised at the UN headquarters.
Even though these are significant events, an shift of time and season seemed to take place on September 25 — two days before the last blood moon.
- Pope Francis addressed the United Nations and endorsed a major step toward a new world order:
“The adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the World Summit, which opens today, is an important sign of hope,” he told the UN General Assembly.
What Is Expected to Happen by 2030?
“[The beast] causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark; that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name.” (Revelation 13:16–17)
The UN Sustainable Development website says, “We are resolved to free the human race from the tyranny of poverty and want and to heal and secure our planet. We are determined to take the bold and transformative steps which are urgently needed to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path. As we embark on this collective journey, we pledge that no one will be left behind.”
This new universal Agenda contains 17 goals and 169 targets, such as
- Universal peace (Goal 16)
- Universal education with standardized objectives through university level (section 25)
- Universal wealth distribution (Section 27)
These goals and objectives are on a 15-year fast track, whose implementation are hereby moved into the sovereign hands of the United Nations and not our nations’ representative bodies.
Prophecy watchmen say that these noble ambitions for humanity will logically lead to the need for one world government and one world currency, perhaps a cashless society where all commerce is tracked through a chip on a card or even in our body.
And the striving for universal peace may be the catalyst for adopting a Middle East peace plan that begins the seven-year time of Jacob’s trouble or tribulation. We know, though, that after three and a half years, the peace treaty will be broken (Daniel 9:27; Revelation 11:2–3, 13:5).
Of course, these projections are merely speculations. Yet, to consider such speculations helps us stay alert to how God’s plan is unfolding.
Iran, Russia, and China Move into Syria
Other significant events that directly impact the security of Israel and perhaps the entire world also happened just days before and after the last blood moon:
- September 17, 2015: The US Congress failed to stop the nuclear agreement with Iran. October 18 is “adoption day” and many fear it will likely lead to building up Iran’s capabilities to invade Israel.
- September, 2015: Russia, who is currently selling an anti-missile defense system to Iran, set up bases in Syria and at its port of Tartus. Although Russia said that it is there to fight ISIS, its air strikes in Syria on September 30 reportedly hit non-ISIS rebel groups in areas where Assad’s forces are under pressure from insurgents.
- September 25, 2015: The Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning-CV-16 docked at Tartus to support the Russian-Iranian military buildup. This joint Russia-China development may include troops and military aircraft later in the month. (Debka)
- September 27, 2015: Israel returned rocket fire from war-torn Syria after rockets “strayed” into the Golan Heights. According to Debka, the Syrian rocket fire was ordered by Iranian Brig. Azadi to demonstrate that it was free to mount a campaign in Syria against Israel even though Israel warned Putin it would not allow it.
- September 29, 2015: Putin warned Israel that Russia would not tolerate Israel striking Iranian targets in Syria.
- October 1, 2015: In yet another sign that the war in Syria is turning both regional and global in scope, Lebanese sources told Reuters on Thursday that hundreds of Iranian troops have arrived in Syria to join a major ground offensive in support of President Bashar al-Assad’s government.
- October 1, 2015: United States President Barack Obama pulled US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power and US Secretary of State John Kerry into a video conference as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the General Assembly on Thursday. During the Prime Minister’s speech, he rebuked the international body for remaining silent while Iran threatened Israel’s existence.
While Russia is partnering with Iran in Syria, Iran remains committed to Israel’s destruction. Russia’s lack of concern for Israel’s security is very troubling indeed. Imagine, an enemy mounting a military force on your border. How would your government respond to the world’s silence?
These moves are creating a stir in the prophetic newsrooms with much speculation that the war of Gog and Magog described by the Prophet Ezekiel is on the horizon.
Why Is Russia Important?
“You will say, … ‘I will plunder and loot and turn my hand against the resettled ruins and the people gathered from the nations.’ … You will come from your place in the far north, you and many nations with you.” (Ezekiel 38:13–14)
While not all scholars agree that Russia is referred to in Ezekiel 38, there is plenty of reason to be concerned that this military power to the “far north” is now right in Israel’s backyard.
Russia is a major ally with Israel’s biggest nemesis — Iran, who is mentioned in both the Ezekiel 38 and Psalm 83 invasions. Russia sold to Iran in 2013 an S-300 surface-to-air missile system and this year an advanced anti-missile defense system.
As well, Russia has become a staunch supporter of the Lebanese army where the terrorist group Hezbollah is based:
“We give unconditional support to the people of Lebanon in opposing the terrorist and extremist groupings like the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra,” said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to the UN General Assembly last week. “We confirm the readiness to continue upgrading the potential and combat readiness of the Lebanese forces as they stand up to terrorism.” (Times of Israel)
The Russian Orthodox Church, which President Vladimir Putin reportedly attends regularly, publicly supports this “holy battle”: “The fight with terrorism is a holy battle and today our country is perhaps the most active force in the world fighting it,” said the head of the Church’s public affairs department, Vsevolod Chaplin.
While Russia is building up Assad’s Syrian army and the Lebanese army against terrorists in this holy war, it may ultimately consider any group against Assad, including Israel, to be terrorists.
When asked to define a terrorist on October 1 at the UN, Lavrov said, “If it looks like a terrorist, if it acts like a terrorist, if it walks like a terrorist, if it fights like a terrorist, it’s a terrorist, right?” (CNN)
In fact, Britain’s defense minister said Saturday that only 1 in 20 strikes are targeting ISIS; the rest are hitting civilians and rebel groups who oppose Assad, including those backed by western nations. (Haaretz)
Over 24 Russian attack fighter planes have landed in Syria, including SU-27 jets with SA-22 air-to-air missiles; this is clearly overkill to fight ISIS who has no air power. But it is adequate to invade a neighboring country.
With Russia’s military might and presence in the region, Iran can supercharge its military coalition with Israel’s staunchest enemies.
With this coalition in place, Iran will try to fulfill its promise to erase Israel from the map within 25 years — or at least fulfill a prophetic invasion. Iran has already said that it is just waiting for Israel to strike first so it can proceed.
As well, other nations from afar are joining forces with Russia:
On September 25th, the Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning-CV-16 and a guide missile cruiser docked in the port of Tartus. According to a DebkaFile exclusive report, on their way are “a squadron of J-15 Flying Shark fighters, some for takeoff positions on the carrier’s decks, the rest to be stationed at the Russian airbase near Latakia.
“The Chinese will also deploy Z-18F anti-submarine helicopters and Z-18J airborne early warning helicopters. In addition, Beijing will consign at least 1,000 marines to fight alongside their counterparts from Russia and Iran against terrorist groups, including ISIS.”
The report adds that China’s stated mission is the same as Russia’s — to stop the spread of ISIS and to prevent ISIS-trained nationals from returning home. Therefore, they will fire at any rebel group that has Chinese nationals in it.
A joint Russian-Iranian-Syrian-Iraqi war room operates in Baghdad and has free use of the Al Taqaddum Air Base at Habbaniyah as a stopping ground for airlifts to Syria.
As well, Russia intends to fight ISIS in northern Iraq and prevent about 2,500 Chechen Muslims who are fighting with ISIS from returning home. The US has about 5,000 troops deployed at this same base. (Debka)
The Next Time We Meet — 2033 Super Blood Moon
Three years after the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda is slated to be in force, another super blood moon will culminate a new blood moon tetrad, albeit not on festival days.
By this time, a universal oneness will likely be in place on 17 primary issues such as peace, poverty, education, and health, among others.
Once that foundation is laid, what will the world’s next move be — perhaps a peace agreement in the Middle East?
Perhaps the nations from the far north and east will remain in the Middle East and successfully push Israel’s friends completely out of the region. This will further isolate Israel and create the ideal climate for an Ezekiel 38 or a Psalm 83 invasion — or maybe both.
But this is the way it has to be, for in these prophetic wars no one can take the glory for defeating the invaders — not Israel, not the USA — only God.
“‘I will strike your bow from your left hand and make your arrows drop from your right hand. On the mountains of Israel you will fall, you and all your troops and the nations with you. …’ for I have spoken, declares the Sovereign LORD. ‘I will send fire on Magog and on those who live in safety in the coastlands, and they will know that I am the LORD.’” (Ezekiel 39:3–6)
Mark Biltz, author of Blood Moons, put these speculations into perspective:
“God is telling people to be prepared in so many ways. We need to be prepared mentally, spiritually, as well as practically. We need to get our houses in order financially as much as possible. We need to always have some cash on hand for emergency situations as well as to be prepared to help our neighbors.” (wnd)
And we need to fulfill our kingdom mandate as ambassadors to all who don’t yet know their Messiah, and especially to those who are praying to discover His identity in the pages of the Scriptures.