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(Please note: A Prophecy follows this article, found at the bottom of this page)
Deuteronomy 4:25 says,“When you become the father of children and children’s children and have remained long in the land, and act corruptly, and make an idol in the form of anything, and do that which is evil in the sight of the LORD your God so as to provoke Him to anger, verse 26, I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that you will surely perish quickly from the land where you are going over the Jordan to possess it. You shall not live long on it, but will be utterly destroyed. Verse 27, “The LORD will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the LORD drives you. Verse 28, “There you will serve gods, the work of man’s hands, wood and stone, which neither see nor hear nor eat nor smell. Verse 29, “But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul.
Verse 30. “When you are in distress and all these things have come upon you, in the latter days you will return to the LORD your God and listen to His voice.
Verse 31. “For the LORD your God is a compassionate God; He will not fail you nor destroy you nor forget the covenant with your fathers which He swore to them.”
These words were spoken by Moses to all of Israel while they were still in the wilderness, across the Jordan River, preparing to enter the Promised Land:
“From the wilderness and this Lebanon, even as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and as far as the Great Sea toward the setting of the sun will be your territory. (Joshua 1:4)”.
These were words of instruction and a reminder for Israel to remember the all the words the Lord had commanded them.
THESE WORDS ARE ALSO PROPHETIC
Please bear with me, as I try to simplify the complexity of, first, explaining or defining biblical prophecy, and secondly, showing you, the Christian reader, why these verses from Deuteronomy are prophetic by comparing and tying them to other prophetic verses in the New and Old testaments. THIS IS URGENT!
First, what is Biblical Prophecy?: Prophecy, (from the Greek language is, propheteia, pronounced, prof-ay-ti’-ah): Is a discourse emanating from divine inspiration and declaring the purposes of God, whether by reproving and admonishing the wicked, or comforting the afflicted, or revealing things hidden; especially by foretelling future events;
Prophecy begins with a declaration or an utterance. Then it is always manifest in this natural world. A prophecy will usually continue to repeat throughout time and will culminate only when the Perfect (Jesus) comes. Jesus said, “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished.” (Matthew 5:18)
We must know this because Prophecy is accomplished and continues through God’s people and His creation. We must be obedient to His Word.
First, let’s take notice of two key words, ‘distress, and ‘latter’ found, in Deuteronomy 4, Verse 30, “When you are in distress and all these things have come upon you, in the latter days you will return to the LORD your God and listen to His voice”, the words “distress” and “in the latter days”.
The word ‘distress’ (tsar), is an adjective which can mean, “narrow, tight adversary, affliction, anguish, close, distress, enemy, flint, sorrow, strait, tribulation, trouble.”
This word is also used prophetically when referring to the ‘End Times’ or the ‘Last Days’, in Daniel 12: 1 “Now at that time Michael, the great prince who stands guard over the sons of your people, will arise. And there will be a time of distress such as never occurred since there was a nation until that time; and at that time your people, everyone who is found written in the book, will be rescued.”
This word ‘distress’, when used in reference to the ‘Last Days’, is also found in the New Testament in Romans 2:8 “but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation. Verse 9, There will be tribulation and distress for every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek,10 but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.”
It is found again, in Luke 21:20 “But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then recognize that her desolation is near. Verse 21, Then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains, and those who are in the midst of the city must leave, and those who are in the country must not enter the city; verse 22, because these are days of vengeance, so that all things which are written will be fulfilled. Verse 23, Woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days; for there will be great distress upon the land and wrath to this people; verse 24, and they will fall by the edge of the sword, and will be led captive into all the nations; and Jerusalem will be trampled under foot by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled. Verse 25. “There will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves, verse 26, men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Verse 27, Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Verse 28, But when these things begin to take place, straighten up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
And the language and meaning in Luke 21, verse 28, is the same type and meaning as found in Deuteronomy 4, verse 31. “For the LORD your God is a compassionate God; He will not fail you nor destroy you nor forget the covenant with your fathers which He swore to them.”
Secondly, in Deuteronomy 4, the word ‘latter’, (acharith), is a noun which can mean, “the after-part, end, the after-part, last, latter end time, which comes from ‘achar; the last or end, hence, the future.
Once again, we find wording in Daniel 12:4 “But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase”, and again, in verse13, “But as for you, go your way to the end; then you will enter into rest and rise again for your allotted portion at the end of the age.”
Although different Hebrew words are used in Deuteronomy 4 than in Daniel 12, for “distress” and “the end”, they are related through root words and carry the same meanings. The same is true for the New Testament Greek words. They all refer to the End Times or the Last Days of prophecy – which are upon us now!
SO, WHAT DO WE LEARN, AND WHAT CAN WE KNOW?
First, a prophecy can be considered complete and fulfilled at the consummation of the age, that is, with Jesus’ victorious return.
Secondly, this prophecy is true and applicable regardless of nationalities or geographies: Romans 2:5-12 says, “But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, verse 6, who will render to each person according to his deeds: verse 7. to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; verse 8, but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation. verse 9, There will be tribulation and distress for every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek, verse 10, but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. Verse 11, For there is no partiality with God. verse 12, For all who have sinned without the Law will also perish without the Law, and all who have sinned under the Law will be judged by the Law;”
Pray and prepare!
Your Brother and Friend,
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PROPHECY is never a “one and done” deal. A prophecy will reverberate (repeat) throughout history, or, another way of saying it, prophecy will “unfold” or come to pass, throughout history until Jesus fulfills all the prophecies with His appearing.