Mel’chizedek – King or Righteousness
In the last post, we saw Uzziah lift himself up beyond what Yahweh had given him, as he took upon himself the name and role of Azariah–the hight priest at the time. In the opening verse of Isaiah 6 the spirit contrasts this self appointed Azariah (help of Yah) with the true Mel’chizedek, the true king priest, ordained by the father and sitting on his throne – “Jesus” (Yashua in the Hebrew). We are told this in John 12.
John 12:40 He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them. 41 These things said Isaiah, when he saw his glory, and spake of him (Christ).
Now why would visions given to Isaiah about the impending Assyrio-Babylonian invasion be applied to Christ and his time? The spirit though John and Isaiah is clearly using the prophecy to refer to both times.
Understanding this vision fully requires us to see that, contrary to expectation, many prophecies have several repeat applications. We have to take care here as this is often misused; many non existent types and applications are sought and loosely found! Because of this, some people over react and deny any secondary applications… this can be just as dangerous (removing from scripture).
The spirit providentially repeats events throughout scripture after the same pattern, not always in there entirety–but always in the details that a prophecy describes. By this our Father helps us to understand future events by the events of the past. Often in such cases all prophecies that relate to that event are also repeated or have multiple aspects to them. Joel’s prophetic locust invasions are an example of these principles: they relate to the same events (Assyrian-Babylonian invasion), they also have multiple applications.
This is an important point to make if we are to correctly understand the application of the vision of the seraphim in our day, so we will spend a bit of time looking at the locust invasions in Joel.
First the historical context points to the invasions of the Assyrian: notice who is being spoken to (always important when interpreting prophecy).
Joel 1:2 Hear this, ye old men, and give ear, all ye inhabitants of the land. Hath this been in your days, or even in the days of your fathers?
3 Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation.
4 That which the palmerworm hath left hath the locust eaten; and that which the locust hath left hath the cankerworm eaten; and that which the cankerworm hath left hath the caterpiller eaten.
Yahweh through Joel is addressing four generations, the one of Joel’s day and there children to 3 generations–so it is to those times that we look for the fulfilment of this prophecy. And we find these Assyrian invasions in the reigns of:
- Menachem – 2 Kings 15:9
- Pekah – 2 Kings 15:29
- Hoseah – 2 Kings 17:3
- Hezekiah – 2 Kings 18:9
Secondarily–yet just as importantly–we find that the Hebrew words for the palmerworm, the locust, the cankerworm, and the caterpiller are all phases in the life of the locust. What’s more, the numerical values of these locust names correspond to the durations of the Babylonian, Persian, Greek and Roman occupations of Jerusalem.
- “Palmerworm” – Gazam גָּזָם – value 3+7+40 = 50 years – Babylonians (589 BC – 539 BC) – Nebuchadnezzar II invaded Israel in 589 BC destroying the temple (Ezk 33) and continued with his paw on the land till the Cyrus the Great defeated Nabonidus at the Battle of Opis in 539 BC.
- “Locust” – ‘Ar’beh אַרְבֶּה – value 1+200+2+5 = 208 years – Persians (538 BC – 332 BC) – Cyrus inherited the rule of Jerusalem and the Persians retained it till the Greeks took control.
- “Cankerworm” – Yeleq יֶּלֶק – value 10+30+100 = 140 years – Greeks (332 BC – 189 BC) – the Greeks retain control till the Maccabean revolt.
- “Caterpiller” – Chaseel חָסִֽיל – value 8+60+10+30 = 108 years – Romans (38 BC – AD 70) – Starting in the appointment of Herod the Great as “king of the Jews” and ending in Titus destroying the Temple in AD 70.
Locusts shed there skin 5-6 times on there way to full adulthood–these are called instars. To start with small and densely populated bands, moving slowly; later as the get older (more instars) they move faster and spread out. This describes perfectly the movements of the successive skin shedding of the Babylonish Kingdom of Men occupying the land. (for more information about locusts see here)
Ultimately there are three invasions that this prophecy of the Seraphim explains: for the context of Isaiah, the Babylonian invasion; from John 12, the Roman invasion of AD 70; from the type in 1 Chr 21 (which we will look at later), the Gogian invasion. In all of which the city was destroyed and the people taken captive.
So then, in Isaiah’s time the father was enthroned and Isaiah, his lips purged, was is sent to warn the apostate leaders and the people that follow them. In the time leading up to the Roman invasion, the throne was still occupied by the Father and “Jesus”, Yashua (Isaiah backwards), was sent in the same manor, for the same reason and got the same response from the apostasy as Isaiah.
John 12:42 Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue:
43 For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.
However by the time of the invasion of the Romans, Yashua had indeed taken his place on the throne of his Father (Heb 1:2). And the tribes of the earth mourned when the saw “Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Mat 24:30).
Right now the apostasy in Israel and indeed around the world is just as bad as it was in the time of Isaiah and Yashua. The world is drunk with the wine of Babylon the great–so too are the Jews with their Babylonish Kabalism and the traditions of men. Are Christadelphians any better? Some believe in the present possession of the holy spirit gifts; some do not believe in the judgement; some do not believe the literal temple of Ezekiel will be built in Jerusalem; some even doubt the inspiration of the bible. Just as when Christ came with the Roman armies, “…shall he find THE FAITH in the earth” in our day ether? (Luke 18:8). The truth of scripture is crumbling beneath our feet and as a body, we are no better than Israel! Let our hearts not be lifted up against Israel!
Rom 11:22 Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.
23 And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graff them in again.
24 For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?
25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. (Notice the word fulness, we will see it later!)
26 And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:
Yashua is now on his fathers throne, and soon to be “in his glory”, joined unto his bride. Us if we share his character. Very soon a messenger, a Malachi, will be sent forth, perhaps some of us reading this… and Israel will look on him whom they have pierced and morn. Are we prepared for such a role?
In the next post we look at the throne in more detail.