WE WERE READING FROM A LITTLE JEWISH HISTORY BOOK WHEN WE CLOSED OUT THE JULY ISSUE; SO WE WILL JUST BACK UP A LITTLE AND PICK UP THE LAST PARAGRAPH WE READ: AND THEN CONTINUE ON. AS WE DEAL WITH THE SEVENTY WEEKS OF DANIEL, IT IS NECESSARY THAT WE COME TO A FIXED POINT IN TIME AND AGREE, THIS IS WHERE JESUS WAS CUT OFF (CRUCIFIED). THEREFORE I FEEL THAT THIS LITTLE HISTORY ACCOUNT OF THE CRUCIFIXION HELPS ESTABLISH WHAT I ALREADY BELIEVE; SO LET US CONTINUE READING.
READING FROM HISTORY
“Two British scientists say they have concluded with reasonable certainty that Christ died on Friday April 3rd in the year 33. Colin J. Humphries and W.G. Waddington, both of Oxford University said in an article published today in the British magazine, Nature. They based their conclusions on astronomical calculations and Biblical and historical references. Humphries works at Oxford department of metallurgy and science of materials and Waddington works at the department of astrophysics. The scientists said they were able to reconstruct the Jewish calendar at the time and to the date a lunar eclipse that the Bible and other historical sources suggests followed the crucifixion. (When He died, it tells in the scripture how it was dark for a certain period of the day.) If accepted, the scientists wrote, these calculations allow the day, month, and year of the crucifixion to be determined precisely. The only certainty in the past about the date of Christ crucifixion, they wrote, was that it occurred between the years 26 and 36.” That lets us see how various writers and historians were using this period: not really knowing where to fix the time of His birth; so naturally they would always have what they call, floating years. You cannot accurately calculate anything time wise as long as you have two to six years floating around. Like I said earlier, 33 A.D. fits the seventy weeks perfectly: giving you exactly 69 weeks of years from 445 B.C. to the time Jesus was crucified. If you make Jesus born in 4 B.C., you shorten this line (pointing to chart) and the 69 weeks have not been completely fulfilled yet. Therefore you have to keep it at 33 A.D., if you expect time to come out right. I will read a little more of this, then we will go to something else. “Nearly every year this period has its advocates. While the day of execution is also uncertain, since there appears to be a difference of one day between the date given by the gospel of john and that indicated by Matthew, Mark, and Luke. They said all four gospels in the Bible agree that Jesus died a few hours before the start of the Jewish Sabbath nightfall on Friday, and that within a day it was the time of the Passover, the annual Jewish feast held at the full moon. They said Passover time was precisely specified in the official festival calendar of Judaea used by the priests of the temple. Lambs were slaughtered between 3 P.M. and 5 P.M. on the 14th day of the Jewish month Nisan, which corresponds to March and April in the modern calendar.” I do not think it is necessary that I read any more. It just goes ahead and explains how the different critics have tried to fix the date of His crucifixion all the way from 26 to 36 A.D. If you have no particular interest in exactness, you can just let it go at that; but when you begin to deal with something that this factor affects you have to be more precise than that. Therefore knowing that God’s calendar has not been juggled around, and that He is precise, we can take Daniel 9:26 and the fact that the count down started in 445 B.C., on the 14th day of their month Nisan; and come to the exact year Jesus was crucified. Those who hold to other dates for the crucifixion can easily come to the conclusion that Jesus was cut off in the middle of the seventieth week. That is, if they ignore Daniel 9:26 that says He was cut off after the 62 week period ended. If God had meant 3 ½ years after the 62 week period ended He would have said so in Daniel’s prophecy: for the very purpose of that prophecy was to give spiritual people something they could calculate time by. Time is what it deals with. The thing you have to calculate, is that Daniel’s prophecy was based on prophetic years, and history was recorded according to the solar calendar.
EFFECTS OF CHRIST BEING CUT OFF
I want to say something now in respect to Christ being cut off (crucified). We have already talked about what the ark of the covenant in the old temple typed, and the fact that it was never brought back to rest in the temple rebuilt by the first group of Jews that went back in 536 under Cyrus’ command to rebuild the temple; so there is no need to go through all of that again. When that rebuilt temple was dedicated there was nothing said about the ark being brought back. When you come to the New Testament, in the gospel of Luke, chapter 27, it plainly tells you that when Christ hung on the cross and cried out with a loud voice and gave up the ghost, (His Spirit departed from Him) that the veil in the temple was rent. How many of you truly realize the significance of that? Watch what Paul taught about that when you read his writings to the Hebrews. As he preached, he showed how the rending of the veil signified that the way into the Holy of Holies, according to that old order, had been done away with; and that Jesus (the mediator of a better covenant, with better assurances) has now entered into the Holy presence of the eternal God (which is Spirit) Himself: offering His own precious holy blood as God’s true atonement for the sins of the whole world. When you take Matthew’s account and Paul’s as he relates it in Hebrews, Paul speaks nothing about the ark, except to refer back to its period: what it was significant of. We know the ark, in Solomon’s temple, was inside the Holy of Holies. Where did it go? Why was it not recovered? That is why I said earlier, I have my doubts: that anyone can truly come forth and say for sure where it is. There are three legends about its whereabouts: which we have already related to you: so my conclusion is, I do not think God is that much interested in that little box anymore. He knew when the second temple was built, the temple that was modified by Herod, leading up to the advent of Christ, that this man called Jesus the Christ, was the living ark. He was actually what the Holy of Holies and the box all typed in prior times. Now it is God incarnate in the person of His Son. The ark and everything it typed has already fulfilled its purpose. Therefore Christ Jesus is the new ark. He is really the ark of the covenant, and we need to look to Him in that way. I think that is why we can see also in Jeremiah how he prophesied in that day they will no longer seek after the ark or anything like that, because the temple will be where Christ the living ark is. In other words, when the real thing appears on the scene, there is no further need for the type. The type only serves to point to what is coming later; and Jesus the Christ is what that ark of the covenant pointed to; so there is no further need for the box.
In Daniel’s writings it says that in this period of 62 weeks, the street and the wall shall be built again in troublous times. Is that not what it says? Well in the book of Nehemiah, it tells how long it took them to finish the walls and so forth; and even gives the names of the Arab men that were their agitators, those that showed hostility against them and tried to bring about discouragement on the part of the workers. Nevertheless in spite of all the trouble they encountered they still completed the work; and from then on, once the walls were rebuilt and the gates set up, the Jewish people could begin to look toward coming back and taking up livelihood inside the city. The city had to first become a habitable city, thriving with life of Jewish people: before the Messiah would show up. That is what set the stage for the appearing of their Messiah. I have some more history I want to read to you at this time: so you can better see what those Jews had to face. We want to see what took place in this period, that would be referred to as troublous times. The street and wall shall be built in troublous times. There were problems arising constantly. I am reading from ancient history. It is an old book not even in print anymore; but it does give me a very graphic picture of what that period was like. It leads us up to the time of Antiochus Epiphanes, the Syrian prince who was king. I am reading from page 293 in this book, starting with the 10th paragraph. “Epiphanes ascended the throne left vacant by the death of his brother in B.C. 176. He engaged in a war with his nephew Ptolemy, and conquered all Egypt, except Alexandria. He took the young king prisoner, affected to act as his guardian and to treat him with greatest attention. The Egyptians however applied to the Romans, who as arbitrators compelled Epiphanes to set the young king at liberty and restore the cities he had taken from him. The Jews having revolted, the Syrian monarch marched into Judaea. He besieged Jerusalem and took it by storm. During the three days the city was abandoned to the fury of the soldiers, eighty thousand Jews were put to death. (You can see a type of the antichrist in this. When you compare that with the writings of Daniel about the horn, you can see why a lot of Bible scholars today, want to say the antichrist is going to be a Syrian. They will say, the Bible proves it. No it doesn’t. We just look to this Syrian prince as a type. It is how the devil worked in him to show such a hatred toward the Jewish people, and toward their holy place, what he did that marked the type of the first foreshadowing of the abomination that maketh desolate.) To his other crimes he added sacrilege worship. He forced his way into the temple and ventured to enter the Holy of Holies. He carried away the altar of perfumes, the table for shewbread, the seven branched golden candlestick and other precious things of the sanctuary. (Not a thing is said about the ark of the covenant. This is just 176 years before the advent of Christ.) Some time after, Antiochus published a decree requiring all the nations of his domains to lay aside their ancient forms and ceremonies and worship the gods he worshiped, after the same manner he adopted. The Jews refused to comply with this demand and such a hard persecution arose as no pen can portray. (The walls and street shall be built again in troublous times. That is what the Bible says. Here is history telling you about the troublous period of time.) At this time happened the martyrdom of Eleazar and the seventh Maccabean brother. Tidings out of the east and north now troubled Antiochus. He divided his forces into two bodies and committed one part to the command of Lisius with orders to exterminate the Jews, (In other words, it plainly says in the writings of Josephus he intended to make Jerusalem a cemetery.) While he led the other detachment against the Armenians. The army of Lisius met the little band of Jews commanded by Judas Maccabeas upon the plains of Misbah. The Syrians were defeated with dreadful slaughter. Two more battles gave the Jews such decided superiority that they marched to Jerusalem, recovered the sanctuary, rededicated it to the service of the true God and devoted the week to thanksgiving and praise. Antiochus, hearing of the defeat of Lisius, set out himself for Judaea. On his way, fresh expresses (meaning messengers) met him, saying that the Jews had thrown down his idols, overturned his altars, and reestablished their ancient worship. At this intelligence (or information) he ordered his couchmen to drive with the utmost speed that he might satisfy his vengeance by marking Jerusalem the burying place of the whole Jewish nation. (Can you now begin to see what abomination means? It is hatred: and in this case, to deprive of habitation.) Scarcely had he uttered these words when he was seized with the utmost excruciating pain. As the horses were running with their greatest speed, he fell from his chariot. The agony of his bruises added to the torment of his disease, drove him frantic. He imagined that spectators hovered round, reproaching him with his crimes, recognizing the hand of divine justice in the anguish he suffered. He exclaimed, it is meet to be subject unto God, and man who is mortal should not think of himself as if he were a god.” He died of course; but I just thought it might be interesting to read that, to let you have a little background; knowing that people overseas do not have access to everything we in this country do. You can tell it and they hear it on tape; but that is still not like hearing the actual words read from history books. If you read it just the way it is written in the history books, they cannot question it.
JESUS CRUCIFIED AT A FIXED POINT IN TIME
When I decided by the grace of God to try to reach a point where we can fix the birth of Christ and His death, I realized there is no need of trying to change anything that is already recorded in history, no matter how mixed up their calendars may have been. We do know and your historians agree, that the decree came in March, 445 B.C.. Your historians have it fixed at the 14th of March. It always seems like the Jews get a commandment right in the introduction of that Passover season. That makes the 14th of March the point to measure from. That is fixed. Knowing that much, if we can fix the point where Christ was crucified, 33 A.D., then you have the total span of time that this decree is going to run its course in. We know that covers 69 prophetic weeks, which is 483 prophetic years; and please remember that a prophetic year is only 360 days: not 365 1/4 like the calendar we use, and like history was recorded by. When you multiply it and work it all down, it is actually 173,880 days. You who can see the chart, watch the dotted line at the top. When you take 360 days to the year, and multiply that by seven years to the week, you get 2520 days to the week, and then you multiply that by 69 to get the total number of days involved in the 69 prophetic weeks; and you get a total of 173,880 days. From this point, the 14th of March 445 B.C. to the crucifixion of Christ is actually that many days using a prophetic calendar. Now you must determine when Jesus was born, in relationship to the death of King Herod. I realize from reading my Bible, Jesus, at the time of His crucifixion had to be approximately 33 ½ years of age. That is commonly agreed upon by most everyone; and if that be so, then His birth would have had to be in the fall of the year. Not in the spring at Passover season. Of course I realize when I say that, some are going to say, Oh, bu the prophet said lambs are born in the spring season, around the month of April. That may be true north of the equator; but it is not true south of the equator. It is not true near the equator. Why do I say that? First I will say, I know by personal experience about sheep. Beyond that any person can read a Bible, if you will go to the book of Exodus, you will see that the children of Israel left Egypt at the beginning of a new year; and the month was called by them Abib, back then. (Exodus 13:4) “This day came ye out in the month of Abib.” Is that not right? It was called Abib back then, but later called Nisan. They left out of there on the next day after they had slain the Passover lamb. Is that right? Turn to your writings in Exodus, follow me, I want to show you something. They had already been gathered together in a place called Goshen. They knew departure time was near. Let me say this, I am a farmer. This bunch of educated people in this 20th century who sit back and take a statement someone makes, never investigating it to see if it lines up with the written word of God will always miss the true revelation. (I do not say these things to make Bro. Branham’s statement wrong, but to show you God willed him to say a few things just to throw a bunch of carnal minds completely out of continuity with the Bible.) God knew that spirit would be right here in the end time. That Passover lamb, when you read of it in the Bible, had to be a male lamb, the first lamb that mother ewe bare. Not the second, but the first one. That was to type the virgin birth of Christ. That lamb had to be large enough to proved the meat for that household. Is that right? Another reading says, thou shalt not seeth, (To seeth, means to boil or cook) a lamb while he is yet nursing his mother’s milk. I happen to know when I put these scriptures together, that Passover lamb was already a weaned lamb. They killed that Passover lamb in April. That tells me that lamb had to be at least six months old, which would make it back in the fall of the year. Do you follow me? I want to show you something else. Do not ever start out with a flock of sheep that are heavy, all the ewes pregnant, ready to give birth, if you are trying to reach a certain point at a certain time. You are going to have a headache. Any sheep herder knows you do not move sheep when they are ready to start having lambs at any time. If you do, you will loose them. Imagine God not being wise enough to know when to tell the children of Israel to bring their flocks of sheep and goats out of Egypt. I tell you, it is almost abominable to think that we have a bunch of educated preachers in the following of this message today, that do not even exercise enough common sense to search their Bible for a few basic things that God has never changed, to clear their mind of a lot of other rubbish. If any of them read this, just watch what they say about old Jackson. That is alright: because God knows my heart, why I say what I say. I am absolutely convinced that I could not care less what that kind of people say about me; because it is a fact, something is coming down the road knocking them off one by one. They are winding up in a mess. They are bringing reproach upon the name of the very man that God used to bring the message they claim to be following. Nevertheless with what I have related to you about lambs, along with what you can read from the scriptures, you should be able to see for yourselves where the true revelation lies. Therefore when I take another writing from history to set in order a fact about the crucifixion of Christ, you should be able to confirm for yourselves that He was baptized in the fall of the year, in the 15th year of the reign of the Roman emperor Tiberius. You read that in Luke 3. It plainly tells you there, Jesus, being about 30 years of age, came to John to be baptized by him. Right? I know this, Jesus was not 30 years of age at Passover time. It was not Passover when He was baptized. He was baptized months prior to that. So I am saying this, by the scriptures, by the chronology of Matthew and Luke, we will find out, if Jesus was about 33 ½ years of age when He was crucified, we count the 33 ½ solar years of His total life span backwards, and it amounts to 12,236 days. That is how old He was when He was crucified. That placed His birth in the third year before the death of King Herod; and as we have already pointed out, the death of King Herod marks zero point for B.C. and A.D. time division. Therefore it figures out that from the 14th of March, 445 B.C. to the birth of Jesus was 442 years and 203 days; and from the 14th of March, 445 B.C. to the death of King Herod was 444 years and 292 days, making the birth of Jesus 2 years and 89 days before the death fo King Herod. You lose 73 days of the year 445, before the decree took effect on the 14th day of Nisan (March). When you get through figuring, you find that Jesus was born 2 years and 89 days in the B.C. period (before the death of King Herod). In other words, He was born in the year 3 B.C. What you have to do next, is fit this into the Gospel records. It has to fit, if it is calculated correctly. When we go to the gospel of Matthew, what do we find? “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the King.” Let us look at Matthew, chapter 2. We know for sure where He was born; and we know He was not born in December. No, He was not God’s Christmas gift in the sense of the world and the commercial way they celebrate what they say is His birth. He was God’s gift of life. He was born somewhere in the fall of the year. That is why He was baptized in the fall of the year, being about 30 years of age. Whatever time He was baptized, which was in the fall of the year, begin about 30, then you have to go backwards 30 years. It is going to bring you right back to the fall of the year. You don’t start out in the fall and wind up in spring somewhere. You better not file your birthday like that, if you’re seeking for a birth certificate. Let’s see if these 2 years and 89 days, I will say this, it can be a fraction of a day either way. I am not trying to correct the record of calendar. I am only trying to give you this picture; this profile of time involved in the 69 weeks. “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is He that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the east, and are come to worship Him. When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born. And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet, And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel. Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, (notice what he is doing) inquired (or asked) of them diligently what time the star appeared. (What is he doing that for? I want to know how old that child is by now. He is no longer a baby laying in a manger. He is a young child.) And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; (Notice, he said the young child. The Catholic Church always pictures Him as a little baby Jesus in a manger, that the wise men came to see; but the king was smarter than that: for he referred to Him as a young child.) And when ye have found Him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship Him also. (What a hypocrite. This was his way of programming the wise men, he wanted to get all the information.) When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.” Let me say something at this time. I remember reading a few years back, certain scientists have always tried to connect this star with being a certain line up of planetary bodies that formed this phenomena in the sky. They say, That is what the wise men were following. Well let us just look at this for a minute. They were wise men of the east. They did not have binoculars, but they were used to the cycles of the moon, when to go out and get away from all the buildings and artificial light and sit down on a high hill and study the stars, their positions, their arrangement and so forth. I have said this before, There is no planetary body lineup that is going to occur and stay that way for that long a period, just to bring those men to where that particular child was. We all know this, whether it is 3, 5, or 9 planetary bodies in a line up, in a matter of 2 or 3 days they are past their lineup and begin to break up that profile. It does not last that long. I would have to take that stand: even if I had not read an article a few years ago, written by Christian scientists that said, There is no way that phenomena could have been just a line up of planetary bodies; because they too had studied the eclipse of the moon and certain planetary bodies that went back in that period of time and said, No way could there have been a planetary lineup that would fit the Bible account of what took place with the wise men. Those Christian scientists said there had to be a supernatural manifestation of God, to produce that effect. You and I know we can step outside in the middle of the night here in Jeffersonville, and the same star that looks like it is hanging right directly over your head, if you go 25 miles out into the country in any direction it still looks like it is hanging directly over your head there too. That is why I say, There is no way you can leave this point, go 20 some miles away and know a certain star is hanging over someone’s head. I have just said that to show you, people like to play scientist, and they like to try to prove Biblical things by scientific means; but there is a limit as to how far God will let a thing like that go. I have no doubt there are certain things that can occur and God has allowed it; but when there is a phenomena that takes place in the sky and scientists do not know it is going to happen, what then? What are they going to say then? “When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when they were come into the house, (not the inn, they came into the house where the child was) they saw the young child with Mary His mother and fell down, and worshiped Him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto Him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.” Now I want you to pay attention. We are saying Jesus was born somewhere back here, (pointing to the chart) 2 years and 89 days, which was roughly 3 months, back from this line that marks the death of King Herod. How old was the child at the time those wise men came to worship Him? We do not know exactly: we just know He was not still a little baby, in a manger. He could have been 6 months, He could have been 10 months, and He could have been more than 14 months of age. We do not know for sure. Just notice these verses as we read some more. (Matthew 2:13) “And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.” As I see it, Joseph and Mary pack their suitcases, and with Mary and the child Jesus sitting on a donkey, they head down the Sinai toward Egypt. How long did it take them to get there? Not a year, it is not that long a journey. It did not take them a month. We will just say a matter of 10 or 12 days and they were inside Egypt. Now listen to this, (Matthew 2:14-20) “When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt: (Joseph obeyed the instructions given him by the angel.) And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son. (Here is what we should take note of: the two years.) Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, (He had them kill every child they could find: that was born in the time frame he fixed according to the wise men’s report: which means Jesus could have been as much as two years old at that time; but HE was probably not that old. Herod was just playing it safe.) according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men. But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead which sought the young child’s life.” Joseph, Mary and Jesus were in Egypt when Herod died. I hope all of you get the point. They were in Egypt when Herod died. They were not on their way out of there, they were in Egypt. The point is, Here is B.C., from there back ; and Jesus has already been born and by the time the word gets there, HE is a little over 2 years of age. I think that should settle anyone’s problem. If He was 2 years and 89 or 90 days old, it is 2 years and 3 months that makes Him born precisely in the year 3 B.C. Can you see that? That is what they call the overlapping, or floating time. If they are using history to try to prove this, they will miss it until they can absolutely realize the 69 weeks is God’s yardstick. That’s what I am looking at as I preach this, God’s yardstick. If the Jews of the first advent of Christ had been reading in their synagogues this chapter of Daniel, they should have realized, This is God’s yardstick: that He measures time by. They had already been keeping the chronology record of the ones, even their names, that came back and started this process under Nehemiah. Then in the revival we read about in Ezra, you get the rest of the picture; and you should realize, This is how we have to determine this whole thing: if we are going to deal with time. We cannot just use someone’s calendar; because their calendars are all mixed up. We are using these scriptures to show you approximately, how old Jesus was when the wise men came to worship Him. We are doing our best to give to the reader, the viewer, or the ones that will play the cassette tapes, an opportunity to analyze scripture and historical time; and see for themselves how God looks at these things. I have the Seventh Day Adventist history, and their teaching is that Jesus was cut off in the middle of the 70th week. The Catholic Church teaches it that way too. However they do not use the decree of Nehemiah, that we read of, which most Biblical scholars do definitely use. They use a decree in Ezra. AS for placing the time of Jesus’ birth a little more than two years before the death of King Herod, the scripture we referred to earlier in Matthew 2, is all anyone should need to come to that conclusion. The wise men came to Jerusalem asking, Where is He that is born King of the Jews. Herod did not know: so he asked the scribes where Christ was supposed to be born; and they told him, in Bethlehem of Judaea. He then approached the wise men, Tell me about how long have you been watching and following this star. It is not recorded how they actually answered his question; but it is obvious they gave him a time factor: because of what Herod did when the wise men failed to return to him. Herod told them, God and seek the young child. When you find Him, come and tell me that I may go worship Him also. When the wise men left, they followed the star. I will not repeat everything I have already said; but I will say, That was not a planetary phenomena. That was an absolute supernatural display of God’s power. If God can manifest His spirit as a pillar of fire, by night, and a pillar of smoke by day, surely He can manifest it as a star just as well, if He wants to lead a few men to a certain point on the earth. They follow this phenomena, this supernatural manifestation of His presence, to the place where the young child was. They came into the house, not the inn, and worshiped the young child, then left. The next thing we notice is that God warned them by means of a dream, that they should not return to Herod, so they departed into their own country another way. When King Herod realized he had been tricked, he became very angry and made a decree. Notice this 16th verse. “Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts (meaning the regions or borders) thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men.” Two years old and under, does that mean he was actually two years old? No. It means that according to what they had told him it would be approximately 8 months old to 14 months old; so that was his way of making sure he would get the right one. You just have to realize, he was not going to send troops into Bethlehem looking at the birth certificate of every little child. Therefore they were to pick out every little child that appeared to be at least two years old and under, to make sure he would get them all. I believe that is clear enough for anyone to see the point we are making.
TEARING DOWN TRADITION
To tear down all this Catholic tradition that the wise men came to a stable, guided by a star, we look in the writings of Luke and see that a little more than a month after the birth of Jesus Mary and Joseph brought Him to the temple to present Him to the Lord, according to the law of Moses which they were still living under. That means they had already left Bethlehem, 9 miles down the road, and came back tot he old walled city of Jerusalem to the temple. That is where and when the child’s birth and name were going to be recorded in the Jewish genealogy. There, they were to bring turtle doves or pigeons as a sacrifice for the dedication of this child to the Lord. Let us read a few verses for clarification. We will first read Luke 2:15, 16, 21 and 22, to get the first of the picture. “And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. (16) And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. (21) And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was so named of the angel before He was conceived in the womb. (22) And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought Him to Jerusalem, to present Him to the Lord.” Now we will read a few verses from Leviticus, to familiarize ourselves with this law of purification. For that, we will read Leviticus 12:2-4 and 6. “Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If a woman have conceived seed, and born a man child: then she shall be unclean seven days; according to the days of the separation for her infirmity shall she be unclean. (3) And in the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. (4) And she shall then continue in the blood of her purifying three and thirty days; (33 days) she shall touch no hallowed thing, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying be fulfilled. (6) And when the days of her purifying are fulfilled, for a son, or for a daughter, she shall bring a lamb of the first year for a burnt offering, and a young pigeon, or a turtle dove, for a sin offering, unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, unto the priest.” This is actually when they brought Jesus to the temple to dedicate Him to the Lord; and Simeon and Anna both recognized by the Spirit who He was. Now let me ask you a question. Did they leave the temple and go to Egypt? No. They have left the temple and went back to Bethlehem. Why do you say that, Bro. Jackson? He definitely was not a young child when He was brought to the temple: He was a baby. It says Simeon and Anna came, picked up the baby, prophesied over it and told the parents what this child was destined for certain things and so forth. Of course we might ask ourselves the question, Why did Joseph and Mary go back to Bethlehem? It is not even written why. This is where you read between the lines, and I might add, There is nothing wrong with doing that in this case. They were human beings like you and I. Up until the time they came to Bethlehem to pay taxes and such, they had been living up in Nazareth. That is where Joseph’s business was. He was a carpenter. But as the angel has spoke to Mary concerning this child she was to give birth to, and everything had worked out the way it did: that they went to Bethlehem and there the days of her deliverance came. Mary has been told by the angel of the Lord, something about the child’s birth and His destiny. Joseph likewise, was visited by an angel of the Lord concerning His birth; and now that they have gone to the temple. He was a little over a month old at the time. They heard the prophecies of Simeon and Anna concerning the child; so let us just put some pieces together. This man Joseph and the mother of the child, Mary, were by that time no doubt beginning to say, It is prophesied that out of Bethlehem of Judaea, though it be least among the thousands, yet out of thee shall come a governor that shall rule Israel. In all probability they just felt sentimentally drawn to the city of Bethlehem as being a place where they should dwell and bring up this child. Especially since the prophecy declared that out of Bethlehem of Judaea shall He come forth. They return to Bethlehem; and that is where they were living as the child grew from infancy into a few months of age. You have to realize, something motivated them to go back to Bethlehem; so what else could it have been? It was not just a shot in the dark. They were human: just like you and me. Therefore it was to Bethlehem, that the wise men came; but it was not to see a little baby lying in a manger: it was to visit a child that was a few months of age by then. As King Herod makes this decree, Joseph was warned in a dream, Take the young child and his mother and flee to Egypt. The child was a few months of age by then. How long they stayed in Egypt we do not know. It is not recorded. They stayed there until King Herod died. That is what this brown line on our chart represents: his death. When, Joseph was told by the Lord in Egypt, He that seeketh the young child’s life is dead, now you can return is not even recorded. Did he pick up things immediately? No. But he did set about preparing to return to the land of Israel. When he did begin his journey for the return home he no doubt had every intention of returning to Bethlehem; but on their journey he heard that Archelaus, Herod’s son was reigning in his father’s place, so he was not one bit better than his father, Joseph was afraid to go back to Bethlehem; and as the scripture says, He was warned of God in a dream, and turned aside into parts of Galilee; and ended up right back in Nazareth, where they originally came from. With the information about Herod’s son reigning in his place, they knew there was no way they could return to Bethlehem or even anywhere in the vicinity of Jerusalem, so that is how God guided them by circumstances, to fulfill other scriptures. That was the first thought they had about returning to Nazareth. Keep in mind, it was prophesied He would be a Nazarene; so if they had not been forced by circumstances to return to Nazareth where they had come from in the first place, they could never have called Jesus a Nazarene; because He would not have been raised up in Nazareth. While I am saying all this, I realize I am putting in words you will not find the scriptures; but I am sure all of you realize, you have to have natural conditions and circumstances to bring about these various stages that are told in detail. What I am saying does not change what is written: it just helps fill in what was not necessary to be included in the scriptural chronology.
EXPLANATION OF B.C. AND A.D. TIME DIVISION
I want to try to make it a little easier for you to understand how we have to look at the prophecy of Daniel in relation to the birth of Christ, and in relation to His crucifixion, the time He was cut off. I am pointing to this line on my chart. That marks the point of the birth of Christ. If you could put a big zero there, that would mark for the sake of prophecy where B.C. time ends and where A.D. time begins; because the 70 weeks, as we pointed out, are measured by a 360 days to the year calendar. You just have to forget how it is written in history, if you are going to get your revelation in line with the scriptures. Like I read from that article about the floating years, How are you going to prove the first 69 weeks of Daniel’s prophecy when so few historians are able to agree on when Jesus was born? You cannot depend upon the accuracy of the calendar; because it is a product of natural man; but you can depend upon the accuracy of the word of God in prophecy; because God Himself keeps the time according to His calendar that no man can tamper with. Like I read to you fro that article, various historians in the past have fixed the time of Christ’s crucifixion in 26 A.D.; and some even as late as 36 A.D.; but if we are going to look at the seventy weeks of Daniel accurately, we have to let this prophecy itself interpret the scriptures and interpret the time of their fulfillment. That is why I chose the Jewish history, a history printed back before the 20th century, used in schools in England, they fixed the date Jesus was crucified 33 A.D. calling it the Christian Era; and that date works out with the prophecy. They do not refer to it as the Christian advent: they call it the Christian Era. Let me remind you of something, when Christianity was first born in the upper room in Jerusalem, there was no such thing as a calendar constructed that had an A.D. or B.C. division. It was the early Christians beginning with the resurrection of Christ, people that knew approximately when Christ was born, that first began to use certain references. It is not recorded in the Bible what date, what month or year He was born; but when we take the scriptures that say in Luke that when He was baptized, being about 30 years of age, and we know He ministered 3 ½ years beyond that point, it gives you something to start from. If you take 3 ½ years from April in 33 A.D. and back it up, it means He was baptized ½ year off the equal settings, April here, April here, April here, (pointing to the chart) it puts you in the fall of the year. When you go 3 ½ years back from April, you are in the fall of the year. Please do not think that sounds too confusing. If I should ask you how long you have been living in the place where you live you would likely say something like, I know it was about six months before my birthday and so forth; but chances are you could figure it all that way and tell me how long you have been living where you live. Right? Well that is the same language we are using; because that is the way the scriptures are recorded. Just getting it out of that into our natural way of looking at things today is what we have to work on. If He was about 30 years of age in the fall of the year when He is baptized, then you go 30 years back of that, He was born in the fall of the year. Not December the 25th, nor April. Keep in mind, if God put the 70 weeks of Daniel in here for the Jews to have a yardstick, then please, for goodness sake, do not think God is sitting up in heaven playing around with time, trying to confuse His earthly children. He did not give the prophecy to fool Israel: He gave it to them for a help. If those Jews coming back from Babylon under Nehemiah’s leadership, would have recognized that decree they came back with, to rebuild the walls, the gates and so forth, every rabbi that would have risen in the decades following, should have been able to take that and reach somewhere within a 2 or 3 year range, when to expect their Messiah. That is what it was written there for. It is not there for people just to play with. It was put in there fore the Jewish people. Did it help them? Only a small remnant. Look at those like Simeon: God had told him he would not see death until you have seen the Lord’s Christ. Even Anna, at the age she was, had spent her last years in the temple praying, worshiping and seeking God. She was guided by the same spirit that had led Simeon; and they both knew Jesus was the promised One Israel had waited for. This lets us know, that of the common people in Israel there was a small remnant that began to feel, The coming of our Messiah must be close at hand. Did the hierarchy, the priesthood know that? No. Did the political leaders feel that way? No. Did the overall body of Pharisees, the most devout, religious group of that hour believe like that? No. Only a small remnant was really being guided by the Spirit of God concerning who Jesus was when He was born; and also when He entered into His ministry. They could have known: if they had been truly spiritual minded; but most of those in a position to know were all taken up with traditional rituals. Follow me: as I once again go over this. The first 69 weeks, which is equivalent to 483 prophetic years, or if you break it down into days, it was exactly 173,880 days, from the 445 B.C. decree in the month of Nisan, right straight through to the crucifixion of Christ. No history anywhere can break it down; because it takes you straight through to 33 A.D. when Jesus was crucified, showing that He was cut off, not in the middle of the 70th week, which would put you 3 ½ years on over here; but at the end of the 69th week. If it had been 3 ½ year on over here, then you multiply 3 ½ times 365 1/4 days and see how many more days you would have to add on to what we have already. It is not even written in history like that. That is why verse 27 of the 9th chapter does not say, And in the middle of the week He will make another covenant. No. It plainly tells you, And he (the antichrist) shall confirm the covenant with many for one week. The covenant there, has nothing at all to do with salvation. It is a political, economic and social thing that the antichrist, right in your day, is getting ready to offer to the world. Therefore do not think because it says in verse 26, and after three score and two weeks the Messiah shall be cut off: that it means He will be cut off 3 ½ years later. It means after the 62 weeks, which is 434 prophetic years added to the 49 prophetic years of the first 7 weeks: that time had to come to its terminating point. The Messiah was cut off. Not one month in advance or 3 ½ months later. He was crucified precisely at the end of 483 prophetic years counting from the 445 B.C. decree. That 7 weeks and 62 weeks added together had been God’s yardstick. From 445 B.C., in the month Nisan, beginning on the 14th day, which was 73 days short of the whole year, to the crucifixion of Christ, you get 173,880 days of God’s recorded time. If we can look at it properly that 483 prophetic years, which is the 173,880 days, as well as the 69 prophetic weeks, is the absolute total length of prophetic time from the decree to the crucifixion of Christ. It started here and ended there; (pointing to chart) and Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior was taken to glory. That set the Grace Age in motion; and I want you to know, He has been there ever since. It is a fact: there is one week, or seven year period left to the Jews; and just ahead from where we are in time, it is going to start and Gentile time, as far as any Gentile believing unto salvation will be over with. Believe me saints: Gentile time is short. The bride Church will soon enter into her final stage of perfection; and that is when you will see the true five fold ministry shine. They will shine; but it will not be because they are putting on a show for the unbelieving world: it will be because they are busy getting the bride of Christ dressed to meet the Bride Groom.
FULFILLMENT OF PROPHECY OF JESUS
I want to read something else to you. What I read earlier from the Newspaper clipping, that said the man called Jesus was executed in 33 A.D., I think the year might have been about 1981, when the two British scientists had calculated with all their modern, electronic instruments; and traced the time back so they could say without a doubt, Jesus was crucified in 33 A.D. Keep in mind, the calendar you and I go by today, was not designed by the early Christians. It is true that the early Christians, starting with the Jews, began to look at this thing as they saw the beginning of a new creation; and began to use a division of time. They began to relate things to, or before, or after the birth and advent of Christ. They were the first ones that began to use the terminology, In the year of our Lord so and so. Early Christians were keeping a record of time using the advent of Christ; but we have to be aware that the Egyptians had their own calendar, the Babylonians had their own, and the Syrians had their own. The Greeks had their own, the Romans likewise had their own calendar they went by. The Jews had theirs also; but the Christians began to relate events to the advent of Christ because they realized God was starting a new dispensation. It is from this influence that certain things began to be affected: even though the Roman world continued right on writing history straight on after the birth of Christ just as they had always written it. You have to go to the libraries and find out when the Catholic Church began to come into power; and there is where you find that they, the Catholic Church, are the ones that first began to amend the Roman calendar. There is no way a bishop of Rome could have gone contrary to Rome’s calendar records as long as the Caesar’s were in power in Rome. He was the man people were looking to; but when the pope of Rome found himself sitting in a position where it appeared that he had more power than the emperors, you find quite a different story. That is why our calendar today is still of the framework of the old Roman calendar period. It has been updated through time. At least three different things have happened to it; and every one of them were because of the process the Catholic Church went through in trying to reconstruct it. More accuracy came later as astronomers began to correct certain errors of the past, or we will say, correct their misgivings and such things as that; but there is no way that I can stand here and prove to anyone where B.C. ends and A.D. starts: as far as written history is concerned. You will get confused every time; because I myself would get confused. Just remember though, you do not prove the 70 weeks of Daniel by any man’s recorded history; unless that man has hit upon something that causes him to have Bible prophecy in his scope. Well I said all of that to get to a place where I could bring in something written in an ancient history written by a man named Bloss. Christ was cut off; but while He was here on earth He had spoken of two different things that I want to call your attention to. On the Mt. of Olives He looked over Jerusalem and wept. Then He said these words, The time will come when they will hem thee in on every side and cast up a moat (which means a large wall or bank of dirt) about thee. They will not leave in thee one stone upon another that shall not be cast down. You every one remember reading His exact words I a sure; but I want to make a point. When I take Roman history which I will refer to in a minute, it will tell you just how that all came about. I am reading this from Bloss’ Ancient History, a history that kept a record of this event. I realize a lot of people think history is boring and they might rather I would not read it in a message like this; but for the sake of what we are dealing with in this message, I have to put it in. We are carrying this message straight through to the year 70 A.D. As I started earlier though, different historians make a discrepancy in the record of when the city of Jerusalem actually fell at the hands of the Roman Army. Some say it happened in 69 A.D. while others will say 70 A.D. I have been guilty of using both terms myself. That is why I am going to read what it says in this ancient history written by a man named Bloss. “This beautiful but guilty city was occupied by three factions. (Meaning Jews inside the city. Eleazar, another man by the name of John, and another man by the name of Simeon. That is what brought Vespasian there with his army in the first place. Each one of these political factions, or I suppose we could say religious factions, were busy formulating plans, dividing the society, trying to put their own man in as high priest. It was this confusion, or disagreement, and the fact that they began warring against one another, and actually killing one another, that brought the Roman Army into the picture. When word reached Rome of what the Jews were doing inside the city, the order was given for Vespasian to mark to Jerusalem and put down this revolt. As he began to enter the land of Israel, city after city began to look upon the Romans coming with hatred. As they began to show this hatred, they absolutely began to fight the Romans. They actually thought God had brought the Romans to give them an opportunity to take advantage of the Romans and fight them and run them out; and in doing so they would be free forever. That is the way they looked at it. When I read the chapters preceding this particular part of the history, it tell show Vespasian and the army rolled over these towns and villages like a bulldozer, bringing every one of them to ruins. The people that could escape fled to Jerusalem to take sanctuary in the great city where they felt God would protect them. Inside the city, behind all these great walls, they felt secure. The Romans were outside the walls; and the prophecy of Jesus was getting ready to be fulfilled.) Such was the city, such was its fortifications and such its defenders when Titus (Listen to this.) In the spring of 70 A.D. at the time of the general assembly of the Jews to celebrate the feast of the Passover, approached the devoted place and pitched his camp east of the vale Kidron upon the Mt. of Olives. The efforts of the Jews to compel the Romans to raise the siege, (In other words the Jews began to taunt the Romans, Come on and fight us. That is actually what it means: We want to get it over with.) were almost incredible. They turned the engines (meaning these battery rams) of the Roman army and attacked the legions with such fury that Titus became disappointed (gave up the idea of taking the city by storm) and employed his soldiers in constructing a wall which would prevent all means of escape. No sooner were the operations of the Romans set in motion than the factions in the city raged with ten fold fury. (Listen to this. This is a historical writer; but he had to get his information from a Jewish background, of the phenomena that took place.) Battles were fought within the walls. A company of assassins entered the temple and cut off Eleazar and his party in one general massacre. Conflagrations destroyed great quantities of corn so that when the day had come to Jerusalem that her enemies have cast a trench about her and kept her in on every side (just as Jesus said) her own sons were lying like murdered victims upon her altars, and her little ones were perishing in the streets with famine. Portions and prodigies (This means individuals began to cast forth their prophecies, and their ideas about what was ahead.) announced the coming doom. Swords glittered in the air, embattled armies seen hurrying to combat in the sky. The portal of the temple flew open and a voice from the excellent glory (from the Holy of Holies place) pronounced in no mortal tones, Let us depart. A terrific sound as of a multitude rushing forth was heard and then an appalling silence reigned throughout the holy courts. The Jews converted these fearful admonitions into omens of speedy deliverance, (That is what they thought.) and disregarding the dreadful ravages of famine and pestilence, they refused the offers of accommodations which Titus repeatedly made by the mouth of Josephus. The Romans, wrought to fury by the dispersion of the Jews, made consistent attacks upon the walls and finally gained possession of the tower of Atonia. At length the day approached in the revelation of ages on the tenth of August in the year 70 A.D.” Jerusalem fell of course; and that fixed the date. It was 70 A.D. There is one more thing I want to read. As I read this, I want you to turn to Deuteronomy, chapter 28, and verse 53. You remember what Jesus said, as He was making His way up Calvary to be crucified. There was seen young Jewish women running along side weeping, lamenting over the state of His circumstances: so Jesus turned and looked at them and said, Weep not for me, but weep for yourselves. He told His disciples in Matthew 24 and in Luke 21, when He spoke to them of the signs of the last days, and of the signs of abomination that maketh desolate, Woe unto them that be with child. That had its first application back then, in 70 A.D., when the Roman Army besieged the city. They should have realized what he meant. When this siege reached certain points and the famine, they ate up everything and were in the final weeks before the total collapse, and conditions got the point where this all took place. Just notice what it says here, and then we will read the scripture in Deuteronomy. I am reading from Josephus, the Jewish historian. Many of those Jews had been injured, gangrene had set in, they were amputating member of their own body to keep the gangrene from killing them. That was bad enough; but there was something much worse took place before the final episode of the raging battle. The strong were going through the streets, into the homes, breaking in, seeing if anyone had anything to eat. If they found anyone with anything and they felt they could knock off that persona and take what they had, that is what they were doing. Life in the city became just as fearful for those that were trying to exist the best way they could, because the strong were out to get every morsel they could get to eat. Just listen to what this Josephus, the Jewish historian that was there when this took place, wrote. “There was a certain woman that dwelt beyond Jordan. Her name was Mary. Her father was Eleazar of the village of Bethzael. She was imminent for her family and wealth, and had fled away to Jerusalem with the rest of the multitude and was with them besieged therein at the time. The other efforts of this woman had been already seized upon such as she had brought with her out of Petra and removed to the city. What she had treasured up besides, as also what food she had contrived to save, had been also carried off by the robbers who came every day running into her house for that purpose. This put the poor woman into a very great passion and by the frequent reproaches she cast at these robbers and villains. She had provoked them to anger against her but none of them either out of the indignation she had raised against herself or out of the commiseration of her case would take away her life. If she found any food she perceived her labors were for others and not for herself and it now become impossible for her anyway to find any more food. While the famine pierced through her very bowels and marrow, when also her passion was fired to a degree beyond the famine itself, nor did she consult with anything, but with her passion and the necessity she was in, she then attempted a most unnatural thing. Snatching up her son who was a child suckling at her breast, she said, ‘Oh thou miserable infant. For whom shall I preserve thee in this war, this famine and this sedition? As to the war with the Romans, if they preserve our lives we must be slaves. This famine also will destroy us, even before slavery comes upon us. Yet are these seditious rogues more terrible than both the other. Come on, be thou my food and be thou a fury to these seditious varlets and a by word to the world which is all now wanting to complete the calamities of the Jews’. As soon as she had said this, she slew her son and then roasted him and eat one half of him and kept the other half by her concealed.” I can read what was said when the robbers did come in and when she brought this half of a roasted child out. They turned their heads. They had no stomach for that: at least not yet. Remember back in Kings, there was a time when the king of Syria had the ten tribes shut in and there was a drought in the land? They had been shut in the city and there was two women that each had a son. Do you remember reading it in history? Well this incident here took place in 70 A.D. when the Roman Army had the city of Jerusalem shut in and all their food supplies were depleted. This is what fulfilled that prophecy in Deuteronomy: because there in Deuteronomy as the Lord gave them that prophecy, even before they came into the land of promise, He told them, warned them emphatically, When you turn your back on me and you will no longer walk in my laws and observe and keep my word and such, the day will come when there will be an enemy come and fence thee in on every side and you will eat the seed, the fruit of your own loins. Let us go to Deuteronomy 28 at this time and read that prophecy. Let me read verses 47 and 48, that tell what this other is a result of. “Because thou servedst not the Lord thy God with joyfulness, and with gladness of heart, for the abundance of all things; Therefore shalt thou serve thine enemies which the Lord shall send against thee, in hunger, and in thirst, and in nakedness, and in want of all things: and he shall put a yoke of iron upon thy neck, until he have destroyed thee.” That lets us see why the Lord would allow such a condition to overtake the people He calls His chosen people. When they turn their backs upon Him and refuse to walk and live according to His laws He just gives them over to their enemies and allows them to be abused and destroyed. As I said, These words were spoken even before the Israelis went into the promised land; and their literal fulfillment came more than 1400 years later. Let us read the rest of it. (Verses 52-59) “And he (their enemy) shall besiege thee in all thy gates, until thy high and fenced walls come down, wherein thou trustedst, throughout all thy land, which the Lord thy God hath given thee. (53) And thou shalt eat the fruit if thine own body, the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters, which the Lord thy God hath given thee, in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee: (54) So that the man that is tender among you, and very delicate, his eye shall be evil toward his brother, and toward the wife of his bosom, and toward the children which he shall leave: (55) So that he will not give to any of them of the flesh of his children whom he shall eat: because he hath nothing left him in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee in all thy gates. (56) The tender and delicate woman among you, which would not adventure to set the sole of her foot upon the ground for delicateness and tenderness, her eye shall be evil toward the husband of her bosom, and toward her son, and toward her daughter, (57) And toward her young one that cometh out from between her feet, and toward her children which she shall bear: for she shall eat them for want of all things secretly in the siege and straitness, wherewith thine enemy shall distress thee in thy gates. (58) If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, The Lord Thy God; (59) Then the Lord will make thy plagues wonderful, (We would say terrible) and the plagues of thy seed, even great plagues, and of long continuance, and sore sicknesses, and of long continuance.” How anyone could read that, and then read history where it was literally fulfilled, and still doubt the authenticity of the Bible is beyond me. The point is, It was fulfilled. Therefore I think that should let us realize that what Jesus said about the abomination that maketh desolate standing in the holy place is going to be just as accurate. You just have to remember that what Jesus spoke about that, has a two fold application. The first was 70 A.D., and the other will be in the middle of the 70th week of Daniel when the antichrist breaks the covenant with Israel, kills the two prophets of Revelation 11, and sets himself up in the Jews’ rebuilt temple where he will sit for 3 ½ years while there is great tribulation brought about by his evil forces. Here is what Jesus said. (Matthew 24:15) “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand.)” You will notice He said, Whoever reads this, let him understand it. Well we do understand it. In 70 A.D. when the Roman army came they fulfilled His exact words, both concerning the city and concerning the Jewish mother to be, as He said “And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!” We understand that 1900 and some years later this same prophecy will have its second application. It is just ahead. (24:20) “but pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day.” He was talking about that element of Jewish society that would be living in Jerusalem when the Romans were coming; but this next verse reaches all the way to the end of the age: when great tribulation shall be upon them, tribulation such as they have never known before. (24:21) “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” When we read from the various histories how Satan used the Roman army and worked up such a hatred between them and the Jews, you can better understand why the siege of Titus turned out like it did. When the Romans first came, it plainly stated they did not want to destroy the city. It is what the Jews did inside the city and how they acted and conducted themselves and thought they could take opportunity to overthrow the Roman yoke that literally forced the Roman soldiers, through the constant harassment, as they would come out fighting, then rush back inside the gates, to literally destroy the whole thing. That is what made Titus set about the siege the way he did. In another reading it tells us they cut down every tree, tore down every building, I believe it was close to five miles out in the countryside. Rocks, trees, everything. The words of Jesus was, and they shall cast up a moat about thee. It literally means a parapet, a wall of dirt. They did it in such short order of time that no Jew could escape to go out and look for anything to eat. The words of Jesus were fulfilled. Titus just sat back and waited for the Jews to starve to death. I can quote from this, When Jerusalem finally fell on that day, it became recorded that a million Jews perished in the siege and one hundred thousand were led away into captivity to be sold on the slave markets in the Roman world. Every word of Jesus was fulfilled precisely to the letter. Now that should convince people that every prophecy of the Bible is to be fulfilled to the last detail; and the reason I am talking like this is to let those understand when they read in the scriptures, and when you see the abomination that maketh desolate) it is not talking about some little old dirty thing lying there, it is talking about how Satan raises up through a system and an element of people with such fury and hatred and solely executes this against the Jewish people. That is why it is called the abomination, excessive hatred. The objective of Satan in it is then to deprive the city of Jerusalem and the land of Israel of its rightful inhabitants. Then when you take that to Daniel 12th chapter where Daniel sees the man clothed in linen standing on the river, and the angel that was communicating with him, and how Daniel kept asking the angel, What meaneth all this? He wanted to know. He had been hearing those words, this conversation going back and forth, and he keeps asking this angel, What meaneth all this? The angel told Daniel, Shut it up, it is sealed until the time of the end. However Daniel insistently asked, What meaneth all this? Then the angel asked the one on the river, (you can read it in Daniel 12) as he raised his hand toward heaven, just like it is seen in Revelation 10, It shall be for time, times, and the dividing of time. When it is accomplished that he, meaning the antichrist has scattered the power of the holy people, (that is up in front of us) then shall it all be over.
LOOKING AT FACTS
I am not going to deal with the 70th week itself in this message. I want to deal with it in an issue by itself. My main objective in dealing with the seventy weeks is this, To prove there is no way any critic can take the Bible nor history books and prove that Jesus was cut off in the middle of the 70th week. If He was, you would have to come up with enough time to make 486 ½ years of prophetic time from the 445 B.C. decree to the crucifixion and you just simply do not have it. The most you can get is 483 years. That is why this has been a controversial subject ever since Bro. Branham said what he did about Jesus being cut off. Do not forget, in 1962 he preached that there is one week yet to be fulfilled of the seventy weeks. Then when he preached the seals he only referred to it as 3 ½ years left to the Jews; but was that lone statement supposed to override that which had already been established by the Bible in the other message? No! Absolutely not! God had a reason for allowing His prophet messenger to say a lot of the things he said: that were not according to things already proven by the word of God. The true people of God will either learn to respect the revealed word of God or they will be tossed and thrown about by statements of man just like so many of those who sat under the ministry of Bro. Branham, are today. Just look how that one statement has thrown preachers and people so far off into oblivion they do not know what to believe. That is why I am not saying these things to be critical, but just simply to be factual and firm. I stand on my own two feet. We are putting this little diagram in the paper to give every interested person something to look at and to help them do their own calculation of time, if they so choose. It will also be sent out with the cassette tapes and the videos to show the people how we have arrived at the conclusion we stated. I have every necessary history to establish all of this. In fact I have read from different sources of history; and because of the floating years between B.C. and A.D. time it is confusing, if you try to interpret the Bible by any of them. A good example was what I read from the newspaper item earlier. They have Jesus cut off from 26 A.D. to 36 A.D. The point is, you cannot believe the 70 weeks of Daniel and try to interpret it by that type of calculation. It just simply will not work. However when you take the 69 weeks and break it down and see that it has to be there, He was actually cut off at the end of the 69th week, at the end of 483 years which amounted to a total of 173,880 days. That is what it all adds up to. I will say once again, the 33 ½ years of Jesus’ life span were solar years of 365 1/4 days each: so that gives you 12,236 days of His total life span. When you get it all worked out, Jesus was born 2 years and 89 days before the death of King Herod: making Him to be born 2 years and 89 days in the B.C. period. In other words, He was born in 3 B.C., not 4 or 6 B.C., nor even 1: it was in the year 3 B.C. Regardless of what some of you may have been taught, all of this has to fit perfectly into the scriptures. I hope I have not confused anyone with all of these figures; but that is how I had to go about all of this in order to be accurate. That is why I can say for sure, Sixty nine weeks have expired, and there are yet seven full years, one week to be fulfilled. We are waiting for that seventieth week to begin. Some people will say, I don’t believe that, Bro. Jackson. Well I just have to say, Stick around. Time will tell the story. I had one man say that to me one time: so I just invited him to go build a platform for himself and from that platform, tell the world how crazy Raymond Jackson is. Then if something comes about that proves I am right, (He interrupted me and said, Do you mean I would have to get off of my platform then?) You ought to be willing to come down. That is the way I look at it. Remember when Jesus said in Matthew 24, when you see the abomination that maketh desolate standing in the Holy place, he did not say whosoever prayeth let him understand. No. He said, Whosoever readeth, let him understand. What are you going to read? You are going to have to read something. There is a right way to read and a wrong way to read. We have to read the right things and read them the right way, if we are ever going to get a revelation. I praise and thank God that His Bible is a book you can use and put dependence in. That is why He put those things in the Bible: to help the Jews. It is like in Hosea, there in that chapter where he said, and after two days, speaking of the Jews, how they would be lifted up and be revived. Two days is two thousand years. Those two thousand years are the Grace Age to the Gentile Church. Here we are at the ending of it. That should let us realize the revival and lifting up of Israel is just in front of us. I for one am very thankful. Praise His great name!
HOW THE SEVENTY WEEKS OF DANIEL HAS SERVED AS
A FAN IN THE HAND OF JESUS CHRIST
John the Baptist made a statement when he was baptizing repentant sinners in the river of Jordan: that a lot of folks put very little importance in; but I want to show you how this seventy weeks of Daniel teaching has served to fulfill part of what was contained in John’s statement. Let me read two verses from Matthew, chapter 3, verses 11 and 12. John was standing there in the river baptizing, and people were coming from far and near to be baptized of him; and of course there was the question in the mind’s of a lot of them: Who is he? Why is he doing this? You can picture it. John just observed the one’s coming and even rebuked some of them because he knew they were not sincere; but listen to the words he uttered during that time. “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but He that cometh after me (talking about Jesus) is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: Whose fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor, and gather His wheat into the garner; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” I am sure everyone of you know that Jesus is not here on earth in fleshly form using that fan. His fan is in His word. Whenever you hear a statement made by someone that just simply pitches you up into the air so to speak, you either come down on the revealed word of God or you are blown away. Therefore I ask you, What subject in the Bible has been more controversial among the following of Bro. Branham than the seventy weeks of Daniel? There are many others of course; but for obvious reasons, Satan has fought hard in his endeavors to keep this vital prophecy from being understood properly. Brother Branham taught on the subject laying it right out with the Bible; and showed that the Jews still have one whole week left of the seventy. Then later on, in an unrelated message, he just simply threw out a remark that they only have 3 ½ years left. Naturally that threw a lot of people up in the air spiritually speaking. Some landed on the word of God and others were fanned away with the lone statement. There have been many such instances in this following; because from time to time God would allow His servant to make what we refer to as dual statements. He would teach a subject according to a revelation of the scriptures; and then later make a statement contrary to something he had taught from the word. Carnal mankind, that has no revelation but tries to make it in on what someone they have confidence in says, will always grab hold of the wrong statement without fail. As for what I have said about this from time to time, I have never accused Bro. Branham of making a mistake: for I truly believe our heavenly Father allowed him to do that on certain occasions to keep the fan in operation. With real wheat a pitch fork could throw out all the stalks and large objects; but when it got down to the husks and little bits of trash still sticking close to the grain it took a strong wind to separate all of that from the pure seed grain. Well these dual statements serve as that wind. People who are just along for the ride are blown completely away by them: yet at the same time they think we who stick with the word of God are the ones that are missing it. You will hear them say, Oh don’t you know every word the prophet utters is Thus saith the Lord? That kind have never allowed Bro. Branham to be human. They hold him to have been infallible. Well I just have to say this, That anointing he ministered under was and is infallible; but Bro. Branham as a man was as subject to human mistakes as anyone else. Therefore I say to every brother and sister, Any time you put more confidence in human flesh than you put in the word of God, you are in for trouble. You are in for a whipping. God will not allow His true children to go on like that. Somewhere you have to learn to put everything you hear to the word test. As far as the make believers are concerned, God could not care less how far away these winds blow them. Tares are good for nothing but to be burned anyhow. Just think, those poor souls who contend that there are only three and one half years left to the Jews, have to have the two witnesses of Revelation 11 preaching and prophesying to an element of people that are already fleeing the wrath of the antichrist. How can they minister to the spiritual element of Jews for three and a half years, then be killed, and those who heard their message and their instructions flee the wrath of the antichrist and hide out for three and a half years, if there are only three and a half years left to the Jews. It will be because of what they will learn from those two witnesses in the first half of the week, that the woman element of Jews as seen in Revelation 12, know where to flee to: when it is time to get away from those antichrist forces. While the woman is fleeing and hiding for 1260 days, the 144,000 servants of God that will be sealed in the first half of that week will be going into the nations preaching the everlasting gospel, warning their brethren in dispersion to beware of the beast and so forth, and to fear God and worship Him. Saints it all fits together so perfectly, if you just allow the Spirit of God to put it together for you.
AN HONEST LOOK AT WHERE WE ARE TODAY
Knowing that we are right at the threshold of the seventieth week of Daniel going into effect, let us read Matt. 24:34, and consider some of what Jesus was speaking of when He said, “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.” This generation shall not pass, means they will not all be gone in death. There is a scripture in the Old Testament, (Ecclesiastes 1:4) which says, “One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.” That is the cycle of life on this earth, for as long as God has ordained time to last for mankind. However when we look at time in relationship to prophecy, we also have to accept the fact that there is going to come an ending of time, as far as mortal man is concerned. When God’s purpose is completed, concerning redemption and restoration, then the whole order of life on earth will change; but everything must come in its predetermined order. Many times young people become frustrated because they see the world as it is today; and it is hard for them to grasp what older people mean when they say, It wasn’t like this 50 years ago. You know, if you have nothing in your mind of the past, to compare present conditions with, it is hard for you to grasp the reality of such a statement. I am sure we all could say, Yes I have read in the Bible, where it says, As it was in the days of Noah so shall it be in the days of the coming of the Son of Man; but we realize there is no one alive to tell us how it was in Noah’s day. Neither is there a Library Book we can go read, to find out how it was. However once you and I come to the hour, that whatever it was like back then, is going on right in front of us, then we have to take that as one of the signs that we are getting close to the coming of Jesus. When we say that, we are not telling you He is coming tonight, next week, or next year. I have no intention of telling you when He is coming; but rather to help you understand how to look at the coming of the Lord in connection with this present generation. It is the Spirit of God, that vindicates to us that the spirit of the age is as it was in the days of Noah and Lot; when violence and perversion were the order of the day. The Bible tells us enough about what brought God’s judgment upon those ancient societies, that we certainly have no trouble recognizing those same conditions all around us today. They have just not yet come to their fullness in an overall scope; but at the present rate of increase it will not take much longer. As for Matthew 24, when we look at it in its full scope, it is an entire prophecy Jesus spoke to His disciples shortly before His crucifixion. They had been at the temple; and as they were leaving, His disciples had remarked to Him about the beauty of the temple. That is when Jesus said to them, “See ye not all these things? Verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.” That is what we were speaking of a little earlier. Of course that puzzled the disciples; so they came to Him a little later and said, “Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” That is what led up to the prophetic discourse He entered into, whereby He spoke of the conditions that would prevail upon earth just before the time of His return. He spoke concerning what would happen to Jerusalem when she was compassed with armies, and so forth; and of persecution, famines, pestilences, earthquakes, wars and rumors of wars, and came on down to the statement about this generation. Naturally every word He spoke concerning these things, was something that would be revelatory for the disciples and Christians who lived in the generation that would be affected by them. He started with immediate and near future things those disciples must prepare to see and experience. That is why the first things we begin to read in Matthew 24, are not speaking necessarily of things that will transpire in our day; but rather of the day and time of those disciples who followed Him then. Jesus gave many things in Matthew 24, that were to be signs; yet He did not put everything in chronological order. Some things were just thrown out there; and as you read them you can actually get two different pictures; simply because you do not know where to fit it all in. Without the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the reader will be thinking, Where does this go? Where does that go? However it was no mistake on His part; He knew why He was saying things like that. In fact, if you could put yourself in the disciples’ place, (They were Jews) all they had ever heard was the Law and the prophets read and commented on. When Jesus began to relate these things, the signs of His coming and of the end of the world, those disciples heard things they had never before heard any mention of. I assure you though, they never forgot them. Some of the things that were mentioned, actually came to pass in their lifetime. What He said about Jerusalem being compassed with armies, which Luke recorded, and Matthew did not, was one thing He spoke that was for their day. (Luke 21:20) “And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. (21) Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereunto.” That was His way of saying, When you see that coming about, do not think you are going to take the whole world with you. Just get out of there; and save yourselves. Verse 22, “For these by the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.” Vengeance here, refers to God’s anger against a nation that has been visited by the Messiah they have read about and longed to see; yet when He came, they did not see Him. Because of the way He came, they could not recognize Him. No wonder Jesus stood there a few hours prior to that, and looked at Jerusalem saying, (Luke 13:34) “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!” Why? Because they knew not the hour of their visitation. In Matthew 24, Jesus is speaking these things in such a simple way, those disciples would never forget them; because they were hearing things no man up until their hour, had ever heard before. The things He said in the first verses of Matthew 24, were for the Christians of that particular living generation at that time; but then He began to approach the end time by jumping the centuries; because He knew there would be a parallel of those conditions at the end time. IN other words, similar condition would begin to develop in the world at large. Yes these end time signs will be witnessed throughout the whole world; even though much of what is prophesied to hit the earth will hit primarily in the old world nations. You can paint yourself into a corner; if you try to apply every prophesied event to the entire planet Earth; because as you consider the whole scope of prophecy pertaining to the end of the age, you have to realize that some people are going to be spared much of what others will have to endure.
CONDITIONS JUST BEFORE THE END
I hope all of you will listen carefully to how I am saying certain things. The spirit of the world today is a universal picture: even though customs are different from one country to another. There is not a nation on earth that really has a social, moral image of what decency is. They are all about the same. Immorality of every sort is running this old globe today; and people are being deceived by the thousands. Nearly everyone you meet is a professed Christian; yet you find very few that really do have a scriptural revelation of true Christianity. That is why great numbers of them are so easily deceived; and find themselves captured by some demon possessed person that truly preys upon them for material gain. Even great numbers of people who have sat under the teaching of a true revelation, have been deceived and turned into a cult. That spirit of deception coming on the scene captures those who witnessed God using His prophet messenger to this age in such a way they started believing he is the Messiah that is to come. In fact, those people will not be literally looking for the same Messiah the first generation of disciples saw go away. This generation will, by some strange revelation Satan has injected into them, be believing that this Messiah has suddenly become a different man. That is why for twenty some years we have had people constantly insinuating such things about Bro. Branham. Shortly after some of them moved here from Tucson, certain one’s of them used to say, You have to come to Jeffersonville, to the Branham Tabernacle to hear the word of God because that is where it is stored up; but you have to go to Tucson Arizona to get ready for the rapture. Well what I have asked is, Suppose you were caught half way between Jeffersonville and Tucson when the rapture takes place? What then? Those who believe and teach such things have dumped the roadway full of junk; (carnal human ideas) and someone has to deal with it, to clean up some of it. God has not commissioned the angels to do that; He is anointing human vessels to serve in that capacity. I did not ask for the job; but it seems to have fallen my lot to deal with some of the error being projected into this age. There has to be a road made so clear of all of that, clear enough that truth can be seen for what it really is. That is our only purpose for dealing with some of these things. Therefore I remind you once again, that Jesus said, Do not run to the desert to see the Lord. Why? Because He knows where every one of us are; and when He is ready for us, that is where He will look for us. As Jesus continued with His discourse He gave the end time people a little something to think about saying, (Matt. 24:27) “For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be;” but many people fail to look at that properly. This is not talking about the mystical coming of Jesus for His Church. The world will not see Him when He comes for His Church. This appearance is when He comes in the heavens, and is seen coming riding white horses, and His Bride is with Him. There is one thing I am sure of, God will let that great panoramic scene transpire; and it will truly be as Jesus said; but His comparison to lightning does not mean that His coming at that time will be like a flash of lightning; and be over with. No that description pertains to the scope of it. God will let that scene come into focus, and its projection hang in the heavens while this entire planet makes a complete revolution; to fulfill the part that says every mortal creature that breaths on the face of this earth, at that time, will have to look toward the heavens and see there, something no man has ever seen before. This is just my way of saying it; but every eye shall behold that heavenly scene.
ALERTING THE BRIDE
When Jesus said, “So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things,” He said it to put in the thoughts and minds of people, that at the end time the real Bride of Christ is definitely going to be awakened; and these many things He has mentioned, are going to stand out before her. She is going to be looking at them every day she lives, measuring conditions, listening to what is going on in the world, and seeing those things in the light of the Bible. These things, when you see all these things coming about, you know it is even at the doors. First, it is summer. That pertains to the fig tree of course; but these other things (which we are not reading all of at this time) are relative; and you and I have to watch them; because they are forerunners of that which we are waiting for. All of these things Jesus mentioned, are controlled by spiritual forces; and they effect people in various ways. This is what we have to be wise enough to study; in order to recognize the hour we are living in. The generation that recognizes the season Jesus was talking about, is the generation verse 34 applies to. “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.” Many of the things Jesus mentioned, have been taking place right on down through the centuries; wars, earth quakes, famines, pestilences, spiritual and political deception, and all such like; so what makes the difference? The season. He gave the parable of the fig tree, to mark the season (the generation) in which all of these conditions would exist; and would be a sign of the end that spiritual people could gauge time by. The generation that witnessed the Fig Tree putting forth her buds, will not completely pass off the scene before Jesus, with His bride ushers in the Millennium. Many who have professed to be Christian’s will fall by the wayside before the end comes though: simply because they never received a revelation of what they professed to believe; and because the spirit of the world catches up to them, overtakes them and captures them. Let us read a verse that speaks of that. In verse 12, Jesus said, “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” We can certainly recognize that, as a condition of our day. Now notice 24:24. “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.” Multitudes are being deceived by characters like this; but not the true bride. She is just registering it all, as one of the signs she is to look for in this generation of the budding of the Fig Tree (ISRAEL). As we look to this next verse one might wonder, Why did He say that? Think of the many times we have heard people say this very thing. (24:35) “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” I have heard television preachers say, “Jesus said heaven and earth will pass away.” Well yes, He did say that; and what a statement it is, if you do not know how to read it. He meant something by that; and what He meant is not to be interpreted in a literal sense, when we read it. Many people say it literally will pass away; but I say, Then who is Jesus coming back to, when He returns to earth to rule and reign? Did you know He is coming back to earth to rule and reign? Yes He is. In the 19th chapter of Revelation, HE is seen coming back to earth with His bride; and in chapter 20, it speaks of immortal saints ruling and reigning with Him for one thousand years. Yes I know Peter wrote of a new heaven, and a new earth; but ask yourself, what makes it new? In 2nd Peter 3:13, we read, “Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” But what makes it a new heaven and a new earth, is the fact that redemption and restoration has cleansed and eradicated from the spirit world every trace of sin. Therefore it is redemption that made it new; instead of a new creation. Well the, you may say, What passed away? We have to realize first of all; that the planet is not going to pass away. Neither is the universe going to pass away. However according to the word of God, this earth is going to be renovated by fire; and so are the heavens. When it says the heavens though, that does not mean it is going to be burning out there on Jupiter; because there is nothing out there that has sinned against God. The fires that are pictured in 2nd Peter chapter 3, have got to be relative to this planet where sin and the devil has polluted things for six thousand years. I believe the statement meant something like this: It would be easier for heaven and earth to pass out of existence than for His word to fail. He (Peter) is speaking of the sure fulfilling of every word of God spoken by all of the prophets of all ages; therefore I am completely convinced that he is not setting forth something that would be contrary to the rest of what God has spoken. In verse 6, he said this, “Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, PERISHED;” but we all know without a doubt, that the planet itself did not perish in the flood of Noah’s day. What perished, was everything upon the earth that was not in the ARK with Noah. In other words, I believe what Peter meant was, Whatever I am telling you now, you watch for it; because it will come to pass without fail. You can stake your life on it. You can build your hope on it; because it is coming just as sure as the world turns. That is how sure Peter was; that you could depend upon the word of God; and I am just as sure as he was. Therefore realizing that Jesus has said, As we observe these conditions, and these signs that are in the world today, this generation shall not pass away till all be fulfilled. That is why I am living, by the grace of God, as a child of God, and looking for the coming of my Savior; in this generation. I do not know exactly when; but as long as He gives me breath to breathe, I will be living with the hope in my heart, that one day I am going to see Him appear. However if for some reason He sees fit to put me in the ground, there are still some of you of that generation He spoke of, that is going to be alive to see it. Naturally I do not personally believe that blessed event is very far in the future at this time; but that is all in the hands of God Himself, when He will draw the curtain upon this age. All that is required for this prophecy to be true, is for some of this generation that were conscious of what was taking place in May 1948, concerning the restoration of those Jews to their homeland, to still be alive at the end time. Therefore whether I am still alive to see it or not, there is going to be an element of people in this earth that is going to be alive when this does all transpire, and they are going to be testimonies of the fact, that they can look back through life and say, I can see now, when it all started; even though I did not see clearly back then, what was taking place.
WHAT DAY AND HOUR WILL JESUS COME?
Let us notice verse 36; as Jesus continued speaking things for the benefit of His bride. “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.” What benefit would it have been, if Jesus had told those 1st age Christians the exact year, day and hour of His return? Can we even begin to imagine, what the devil and his carnal minded religious bunch would have done, if Jesus had revealed the exact time of the consummation of this age? They have perverted and degraded enough as it is; with so many people believing it could take place just any day, right on through the centuries. In other words, watching for His return. Believe me saints, Jesus had a reason for saying, “But of that day and hour knoweth no man;” for He knew that carnal minded people would begin to play around with that of His coming, in the end time. Therefore He just gave some more signs for true children of God to watch for, saying, (24:37) “but as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the son of man be.” What were the days of Noah like? The earth was full of perversion and violence. In the last twenty eight years, from just shortly before Bro. Branham was taken off the scene, there has been an upsurge of perversion. Twenty eight years ago, in most of our localities, we did not hear much about dope; but we did begin to hear a little about homosexuality; and all this type of perverted lifestyles. Even Bro. Branham stated, as he observed it, The Bible said it would be this way. “As it was in the days of Noah so shall it be;” because it is a sign of the end time. Saints do you really realize what the picture in the world is today? Out of all the nations in this world today, the United States has slid further down the scales of morality, into immorality, than any other nation on the face of this earth. We were a nation established out of the effects of the Reformation which went on in the old world, closing out the period known to the world as The Dark Ages. That is why we carried the identity as a Christian, Bible believing nation until the last 40 or 50 years. It was based upon our overall laws and moral judgments concerning how the Bible looks at certain social and moral conditions of mankind. We lived for many years; having very few serious problems; but that is not the case today. Our nation is reeling like a drunk man, sick to the core, with no promise of being healed. Brother when I say sick, I mean it is SICK! Some time ago, we watched a little of a program on television when they were interviewing some of these people who were willing to describe Satanism, the cultist sacrifice of human lives, and so forth. Forty years ago, such a thing was not heard of in this country. At least you could not find anyone who was willing to admit that they were mixed up in it. It is just hard to describe today, how people of this nation would have reacted to news that some of their neighbors were Satan worshipers; fifty years ago. Nevertheless my point is, All of this Satanism, perversion and widespread criminal activity is a sign of the end time; and our nation is one of the sickest one’s on the face of this earth today. The reason for our dilemma, is the fact that we allowed Satanically inspired human individuals to get the Bible, and prayer taken out of our schools. That was the same as saying, God, we do not need you either. When this generation said that, or did that, then God turned this nation over to a reprobate mind; and they have believed every damnable lie the devil has told them ever since. Furthermore in the last twenty eight years, our nation has literally become drug sick. I heard them interview a man on the News; in Chicago; a man from the American Bar Association. It was stated, that after several months of investigating court cases, the processing system of dealing with drug addiction, and drug kingpins, the jails are full of them; our court dockets are loaded to capacity; and dope addiction is still on the increase. Teenage pregnancy is also on the increase; as well as homosexuality, and perversion of every sort. Why is all of this still on the increase, after all of the efforts that have been put forth, and all of the millions of dollars that have been spent trying to get it under control? It is simply because we as a nation that carried the gospel light to other nations of the world in this twentieth century; have allowed Satan to move in, corrupt the mind’s of our young people, rob us of our God-given rights as parents, to the extent that we are no longer able to discipline our children without running the risk of being pulled into court and charged with child abuse. Do you not agree, that we are a sick nation, without any hope of recovery? I am not limiting this end time sign just to America; I am only calling attention to where we have fallen from, and why? Think of it! Our jails are loaded to capacity. When they bring one in the front door, they have to let one out the back door, in order to make room for the latest. WHEN WILL JESUS COME FOR HIS BRIDE? According to the signs He gave us to watch for, it will surely be very, very soon. Whether you realize it or not, we have Sodom and Gomorrah conditions already present with us today. They have just not reached the overall population to the extent Jesus was referring to as yet; but it will not take much longer. Not only have we the dope addiction, it has become a disease, an acute epidemic. On top of that, we have teenage gangs that have nothing else to do but roam the streets at night, just looking for someone to rob or kill; or something to literally destroy, just for the perverted pleasure of doing it. I am talking about 12, 13, 14, 15, and on up to 19 year old young people, that are no different than that society of people in Sodom and Gomorrah that God literally destroyed from the face of the earth because of their moral depravity. When those two angels came into Sodom that night, they did not need to go through the city sorting out the good from the bad. They already had a commandment from their Creator, Destroy everything but Lot and his family members that are willing to go out with him; and that is exactly what they did. It is very strange, when the sun sets, the devil goes on the prowl. When the sun set in the evening, the gangs come out. They are ready for war. They are ready to mutilate. Who can they pick on? They have no respect for young or old people. They are out to kill for a thrill. It is sad to say, but some go so far as to join some kind of cult gang, get caught up in a spirit, just to kill. Do you know, some of those Canaanites that lived in the land of Israel, before the children of Israel got there from Egyptian bondage, sacrificed their children to the gods. They called him the god of Molech. Near the city of Jerusalem, which was the city of the Jebusites, is a valley on the southwest side, called the valley of Hinnom. There in that valley, is where they offered their children to the god of Molech. You can read in your history books, and in the Bible, what took place 3000 years ago; but when you see the same things taking place in your very community, in this twentieth century, you surely must know that the end is near. You can rest assured this nation will take a slap one of these day, like no other nation has ever taken; for even though God is long suffering, there has to be a limit to what He will allow a society of people to stoop to; before He declares to them that He is still in control. We hear of Bangladesh, with their many million population, a low lying country at the foothills of the Himalayas, that runs toward the sea. When those typhoons come, they just flood the land and people having nowhere to go, drown by the scores. A cyclone hit, and it was so devastating they were at a loss fixing the death toll, and the other damage estimates. IT was a terrible disaster, with all those human lives being snuffed out; so do you think God is going to let this nation go on this course forever, without paying for some of this ungodliness? One of these days it is going to start. When it does, this people in America is going to cry and scream, God, where are you? They will look for Him then; but for many, it will be too late. We need to keep ourselves ready to face our Creator at any time He sees fit to call us home: we all understand that; but what we also need to be very aware of is the lateness of the hour we are all living in. When the seventieth week of Daniel goes into effect, Gentile time, as far as anyone believing the gospel and being saved, will be a thing of the past. He that is a lost sinner will remain a lost sinner. Hell will be waiting. Be assured though saints, God will not lose any predestinated seed of His, no matter how bad things in the world may get. May God bless and keep you. Amen.