PART ONE

 

 But know this, that in the last days grievous times will be upon us.
 For men will be lovers of themselves, money-lovers, braggarts, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
 without natural feeling, unyielding, slanderers, without self-control, savage, haters of good,
 betrayers, reckless, puffed up, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of Yahweh,
 having a form of righteousness, but denying the power of it; even turn away from these.
 For of these are those creeping into houses and leading silly women captive, the ones having been heaped with sins, being led away by various lusts,
 always learning, but never being able to come to a full knowledge of the truth.
 But in the way Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses,
so also these withstand the truth, men having been corrupted in mind, found worthless concerning the faith.
 But they will not go further, for their foolishness will be plain to all, as also that of those became. 2 Timothy 3:1-9

 

 Yes, and all that would live righteously in Messiah Yahshua shall suffer persecution.
 But evil men and impostors shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. 2 Timothy 3:12-13


 

Prior to deliverance, evil is observably accelerated.  Evil increases when course changing events are about to transpire.  The first coming of Yahshua the Messiah is a prime example. Another historical example is found in the Exodus story.  Prior to Moses appearance as the deliverer, evil increased against the Israelites!  Today the increase in evil behavior is; in all places obvious.  The preceding passages indicate a time stamp, the latter or final days.

 

Among some Jewish people there are teachings regarding the footsteps of Messiah.  They believed that prior to Moshiach's return, evil had to take place.  Some even pushed for the evil to happen so this event could take place. Consider this article by Robert Wolfe:


 

Zionism As Judaism

In short, defining Judaism based on the doctrines of the Judaists is a hopeless task. I would propose a different method, which is to define Judaism based on the religion of the Jews.

Anyone who has studied this religion in any depth can have no doubt as to what it was all about. It was about the expectation that if the Jews performed the mitzvot correctly, the Messiah would come and restore the Jews to the land of their birth. This was the faith which sustained the Jewish people during the long centuries of exile, segregation and persecution. If there was a difference among Jews, it was between those who passively awaited the coming of the Messiah and those who sought to "force the end" by actions intended to bring about the ingathering of the exiles even without divine intervention.

From the 13th century onwards, those who sought to "force the end" were identified with the teachings of Kabbalah. And central to Kabbalah was a text known as the "Zohar", which taught that only in the land of Israel could the religion of the Jews reach its full stature. Starting in the late 15th century in connection with the expulsion from Spain and Portugal and the rise of the Ottoman empire, literally tens of thousands of Kabbalists, most of them Sephardim, did in fact settle in the land of Israel in the "four holy cities" of Jerusalem, Safed, Tiberias and Hebron. These Kabbalists were Zionists in all but name, and their Zionism was a direct expression of the religion of the Jews as they understood it.


 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and men of violence take it by force.  Matthew 11:12


Another incident trying to force the advent of Messiah happened this way.


Jerusalem

(Public Domain Article)

In 1984, a Jewish underground, extremist group was arrested in Israel for planning to destroy the Dome of the Rock. The Muslim holy site, at which Mohammed supposedly ascended to Heaven, is located in the exact location of the First Temple built by Solomon and destroyed in 586 BCE, and the Second Temple which was consequently destroyed in 70 CE. This group thought that by destroying the Dome of the Rock, they would provoke a jihad, Islamic holy war. The holy war was then supposed to force G-d to send the Messiah down to Earth to redeem His believers. (Telushkin, 1991, p. 547)

This extremist group had good intentions, but they were a bit off the target. The coming of the Jewish Messiah will come in a natural way, not one forced upon Yahweh by mere mortals. The Messiah will descend from Paradise to enter Jerusalem only after three crucial actions have occurred:

1. Jews return to Jerusalem from the four corners of the earth.

2. The city of Jerusalem is rebuilt to its original form.

3. The Third Temple is built on the Temple Mount.

 


What is peculiar to this list is point number three.  Is this temple, the true temple of Moshiach Yahshua?  No, this temple will be the temple of Anti-Messiah. 

 

 "And not (as we are wrongly accused, and as some report us to say), Let us do bad things so that good things may come, the judgment of whom is just."  Romans 3:8

 

Many believed that by forcing the return of the Jewish people to the land of Israel, rebuilding the temple, the Messiah would have to return.  However, back to the good and evil concept. 

What makes people evil?  Are they created to be evil? 

 

 "And Cain talked with his brother Abel. And it happened as they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel, and killed him."  Genesis 4:8

 

What caused this terrible event to take place?  Why would Cain kill his brother Abel?  Was he created to be evil?  Or?  Did the evil come from another source?

 

Prior to Yahshua's first coming there was a group of people living somewhat alone in a community apart from mainstream.  This was called the Qumran Community.

Qumran is located nine to ten miles south of Jericho, thirteen miles east of Jerusalem, and approximately twenty miles northeast of Engedi. It is situated about one mile west of the road that runs along the western side of the Dead Sea.  John the Baptist was purportedly to have had contact with the inhabitants of Qumran.   In this tight knit community the life was austere.  Only certain people were ever allowed into the community.  They all lived by a code of conduct that was outlined in the scrolls. These scrolls were found in caves by the Dead Sea.  The scrolls were protected by earthen jars in a dry dessert climate.

  One such cave is depicted below:

 

The writings found within these caves give us very valuable information.  I would like to list an outline of contents albeit limited.

 


 

Beliefs of the Qumran Community


• Leader for the community – Teacher of Righteousness, a Zadokite priest
• Wicked Priest = either Jonathan or Simon (first Hasmonean HP’s)
• Entire community observed priestly purity
• Believed they were living in the last days.
• Messiah’s coming imminent
• Only they are the true Israel, the sons of light vs. the sons of darkness
• Read 1QM column 1

• 586 BC – 390 = 196 BC
• 196 BC is the year of the Isthmian decree (when Rome became protector of all Greek cities of Asia)
• Also the time of Seleucid takeover of CS
• After another 20 years of “groping in the dark” we are at the time of Jason’s request to transform Jerusalem into a polis.
• The community formed in the desert in response to Hellenization (1QS 7.12)

• Leader for the community – Teacher of Righteousness, a Zadokite priest
• Wicked Priest = either Jonathan or Simon (first Hasmonean HP’s)
• Entire community observed priestly purity
• Believed they were living in the last days.
• Messiah’s coming imminent
• Only they are the true Israel, the sons of light vs. the sons of darkness
• Read 1QM column 1

• Belief in the two spirits (1 QS 3:13-4:25)
– Yetser ha'ra (The evil desire)
– Yetser ha'tov (The good desire)
• They are the New Covenant community that alone interprets Bible correctly (1 QS 8:14-16).
• Teacher of Righteousness = inspired interpreter w/o whom it is impossible to correctly understand prophecy (1 QHP 7:1-17 cf. 1 Pet 1:10-12)
• Adherence to the lunar rather than solar calendar (4 QpHos 2:1-19)

• Final battle with sons of darkness, expulsion of Kittim (Romans) and seizure of Jerusalem
• Corresponding angelic battle in heaven led by Michael (Melchizedek) 1 QM 18:1-3
• Expectation of two messiahs
• “They should not part from any counsel of the law in order to walk in complete stubbornness of their heart, but instead shall be ruled by the first directives which the men of the Community began to be taught until the prophet comes, and the Messiahs of Aaron and Israel” (1 QS 9:10-11)

• Apparently believed in bodily resurrection and immortality.
• “Hoist a banner, O you who lie in the dust! O bodies gnawed by worms, raise up an ensign . . . !” (1 QH 6:14, 34-35
• “. . . eternal joy in life without end, a crown of glory and a garment of majesty in unending light” (1 QS 4:7-8)
• Also believed in eternal punishment
• “. . . eternal torment and endless disgrace together with shameful extinction in the fire of the dark regions” (1 QS 4:12-13)


One of the recognized concepts of the Qumran Community, concerned the Sons of Light and the Sons of Darkness.   They believed in good and evil.  They believed the sons of darkness/evil were the Romans.  They believed they were living in the last days.


(The following concerns the war scroll.)

The War of the Sons of Light Against the Sons of Darkness


Hebrew Megillat Milhamat B'ne, or Beb'ne Hoshekh, also called War Rule, or War Scroll, a Dead Sea Scroll, and one of the most important documents of the Essene sect of Jews that established a community at Qumran in the Judaean desert during the first half of the 2nd century BC.
The Essenes thought themselves to be the holy elect of Israel, the Sons of Light, who would at the end of time engage in a catastrophic war with the enemies of Israel, the Sons of Darkness.

The War Rule, discovered in Cave I of Qumran in 1947, is a manual for military organization and strategy, including detailed specifications for battle gear and signals.
It is also a theological discourse that develops the doctrine of the spirits of truth and perversity mentioned in the sect's Manual of Discipline. The scroll's apocalyptic portrayal of a 40-year “holy war” between the forces of good and evil involves heavenly as well as earthly soldiers. The elect of Israel are joined by an angelic host, while the devil and the evil angels fight alongside other nations of the Earth. The victory of the forces of light was to signal the final destruction of evil, after which the G-d of Israel would rule eternally in justice.

Most scholars identify the enemy “Kittim” of the scroll as Romans, who invaded and occupied Judaea in 63 BC. If this is so, the major sections of the scroll (probably a composite work) were written after that date but before AD 68, when the Qumran community was disbanded because of the Jewish revolt of AD 66–70. See also Dead Sea Scrolls.

"War of the Sons of Light Against the Sons of Darkness, The" Encyclopædia Britannica from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service.


Notice the following excerpts from the article "The War of the Sons of Light Against the Sons of Darkness."

 

The Essenes thought themselves to be the holy elect of Israel, the Sons of Light,

It is also a theological discourse that develops the doctrine of the spirits of truth and perversity mentioned in the sect's Manual of Discipline.

We have but to think on the movie series "Star Wars" for a parallel.  The creator of Star Wars is George Lucas, a practicing Jew.  Where did Mr. Lucas obtain such knowledge?  Does he have understanding of the Sons of Light (Jedi Knights) and the Sons of Darkness (The evil Emperor, along with Darth Vader)?  Could this depict Anti-Messiah?

 

Notice also the belief of "spirits of truth and spirits of perversity."  The times of Qumran pointed to the end of days and Moshiach!

More to come!

 


Yours in Yahshua, Hawke

 

 

 

 

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