PRITA (Part 3)
Here is our next video in the series Pattern Recognition In The Apocalypse (PRITA).
Although the last 2,000 years is referred to as the “Times of the Gentiles” that does not mean that the Apocalypse is a continuous account of Christianity or Gentile history. The Kingdom of God could have been established in the first or second centuries if the nation had repented. Instead the Jews were cast off until the times of the Gentiles were fulfilled. The Apocalypse does not tell us about the intervening period. After all, the Gentiles are a branch that has been grafted into the Jewish tree of covenant hope. The focus of the Apocalypse is on events immediately proceeding the second advent and those events were interrupted by stubborn disobedience. As we approach the end we have a repeat of the patterns that occurred in the first and second centuries.
What can we then say about the long intervening period? The intermission or parenthesis was an opportunity for the gospel to be preached to the Gentiles but it also provoked the Jews to jealousy (Rom 11:11). If God had abandoned them then they would achieve their own deliverance and greatness. Remember that Satan promised Jesus the kingdoms of the world if only Jesus would bow down and worship him? Of, course we know that Jesus refused to worship his own fleshly desires. Jesus refused to snatch at power and glory but the Jews feel like God has betrayed them because they were the chosen race. It is their world and the Gentiles (especially white Christians) are usurpers. So, the Apocalypse tells us nothing about the intermission because the Apocalypse is not a history book.
However, it is important to understand the parenthesis from the Jewish perspective. They came to the conclusion that they needed to repossess their homeland. The Jewish nation had collectivized the messianic attributes as they had (in their view) been offered up (holocaust) for the sins of the Gentiles (Isaiah 53). Of course, they expected a messianic leader to emerge once they possessed the land at which point they would rule the world and heal it (Tikkun Olam). So far their obsession has brought nothing but bloodshed and ideologies like communism on the one side and mercantilism and super charged capitalism on the other.
Even though the times of the Gentiles is an interlude that does not feature per se in the symbolism of the Apocalypse it is nevertheless important to understand the period from a historical perspective because the times of the Gentiles was the period where the Jews came to the conclusion that they had to take matters into their own hands. Ironically the times of the Gentiles was shaped by the Jews. The prophetic clock could only start ticking again once the Jews took possession of their homeland. The following video relates to this interim period….
PRITA (Part 3) The Times of the Gentiles (40 min)
See here for part 1 and 2:
19th century timeline:
Babylon the Great
Babylon was the place where the nation was exiled and the place where their law schools were established.
The Babylonian Talmud (7 min)
The mother of Harlots
It should come as no shock that the Rabbis prefer Islam because it is an offshoot of Rabbinical Judaism. [i] Jewish Law (halakha) means “the way of walking” and Islamic Law (sharia) in Arabic means “the way.” The Islamic obsession with “Law” comes from the Jewish obsession with Law as Parthia (Babylonia or Shinar) was the centre of Jewish Law Schools and the place (Zech 5.11) where the Babylonian Talmud was written for centuries before Muḥammad appeared. Moreover many Jewish tribes lived in the Arabian Peninsula where Muḥammad (an illiterate but well travelled merchant) received his visions. Muslims believe that the Quran was orally revealed by God to the final Prophet, Muḥammad, through the archangel Gabriel (Jibril), incrementally over a period of some 23 years concluding in 632, the year of his death.
According to tradition, several of Muḥammad’s companions served as scribes and recorded the revelations. In 1896 Rabbi Abraham Geiger highlighted the similarities between Rabbinic Judaism and Islam. [ii] Jews are allowed to pray in a mosque and Muslims in a synagogue but neither will pray in a church. Christians are considered “idolaters” [iii] by Jews and Muslims but as we have seen even when Christians reject the Trinity and vicarious atonement it makes little difference to the rabbis as Islam is preferred above the monotheistic “version” of Christianity. There is therefore no version of Christianity that is palatable to the Rabbis. So Jews and Muslims eat the same clean food, practice male circumcision (which is also widespread in Islam and accepted as established practice by all Islamic schools of jurisprudence) and we must not forget ostentatious prayers etc and the giving of alms and the pilgrimage to Mecca (based on the historical pilgrimage to the Jewish temple cf. the Wailing Wall). In 1976 the historians Patricia Crone and Michael Cook wrote the book Hagarism: The Making of the Islamic World is a 1977 book about the early history of Islam. According to the authors, 7th century Syriac, Armenian and Hebrew sources depict the formation of Islam as a Jewish messianic movement known as Hagarism,[iv] which migrated into the Fertile Crescent. It drew considerable influences from the Samaritans and Babylonian Judaism. Around 690 AD the movement shed its Judaic identity to develop into what would later become Arab Islam.[v] Although the theory was subsequently universally rejected for its methodology [vi] it did open up new avenues of research. Hagarism built on the work of Joseph Schacht (d. 1969), a towering figure in the history and study of Islamic law; and before Schacht, to Ignaz Goldziher (d. 1921), a man who in many way stands as the godfather of modern Islamic studies in the West. Both Goldziher and Schacht showed that many of the oral traditions which had been attributed to Muḥammad and regarded with canonical authority by Muslims were actually late fabrications which reflected the cultural and political situation in the Middle East long after the Prophet had died. [vii] Apart from casual allusions in the Qur’an, most of what is reported about Muḥammad’s life is based on oral traditions of his followers later collected and written down in biographical works of the A.D. 8th and 9th centuries. Suffice to say that the truth lays somewhere in-between full blown Hagarism and a conservative Islamic view as it is quite obvious that Islam owes much to Rabbinic Judaism but probably not to the extent that Hagarism suggests. One might say that Judaism is the mother religion (rather t
[i] See David Steinberg, Islam and Judiasm Influences Contrasts and Parallels
[iii] For Maimonides, Christianity and Islam are related to Judaism. Maimonides’s practical view of Christianity was usually assumed to be negative, and he regarded Christianity as a form of proscribed polytheism, even for gentiles. In his code of Jewish law, Mishneh Torah, Maimonides basically restated his judgment about the idolatrous status of Christianity without repeating the reasons he gave in his earlier works. As a theologian, he took regularly strong exemption to Christian Trinitarianism. Maimonides ranked Islam superior than Christianity on theological grounds. For him, Christianity is the prime example of the error of such anthropomorphism in its original doctrine of the Incarnation and in its associated doctrine of the Trinity. See,Oxford Scholarship
[iv] Named Hagarism after Hagar, the Egyptian wife of Abraham
[vi] Stephen Humphreys observes, “Unsurprisingly, the Crone-Cook interpretation has failed to win general acceptance among Western Orientalists, let alone Muslim scholars … The rhetoric of these authors may be an obstacle for many readers, for their argument is conveyed through a dizzying and unrelenting array of allusions, metaphors, and analogies. More substantively, their use (or abuse) of the Greek and Syriac sources has been sharply criticised. In the end, perhaps we ought to use Hagarism more as a ‘what-if’ exercise than as a research monograph.” Stephen Humphreys, Islamic History, (Princeton, 1991) pp. 84–85.
[vii] Donner, Fred M, Muhammad and the Believers: At the Origins of Islam (2010), Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. p. 126.