Archive for January, 2017

Trend Update: Stroke Rumors Swirl Around Syria’s al-Assad, January 2017

Posted in Burden of Damascus, Isaiah, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags , , , , on January 30, 2017 by paulthepoke

January 30, 2017: Rumors are swirling around the Middle East and Syria regarding the health of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The president is 51 years old.

Last week the Saudi publication al-Sharq al-Awsat quoted sources in Russia and said Assad was “exhausted” due to “psychological pressures”. He was reported to have a “nervous tic in his left eye.”

Rumors are running wild on social media and mainstream news sources. Some say al-Assad has had a massive stroke. Some claim he has a brain tumor. Allegedly, he is being treated by Russian and Syrian doctors. Some claim he has been shot. Some claim he is dead.

But according to officials with the Syrian government, “The presidency denies all these reports. President Assad is in excellent health.”

The Syrian government took to Facebook and explained Assad is in “excellent health and carrying out his functions quite naturally.”

Something is not right. The Syrian president has not been seen in public since Thursday, January 26, 2017.

All of this is happening as the government of Syria has regained control of water sources for the city of Damascus. Rebels have surrendered the territory northwest of Damascus.

The country of Syria has been in civil war for six years. One would think this only complicates the matter on the ground.

Keep an eye on this one, this is a developing story with potential significant considerations.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4171722/Syria-denies-rumours-President-Assad-stroke.html

http://www.ibtimes.com/bashar-assad-dying-syrian-government-denies-president-suffered-stroke-critical-2483616

http://www.dailysabah.com/syrian-crisis/2017/01/30/assads-health-in-critical-condition-reports-claim

http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/syria-forced-deny-bashar-al-assad-sick-after-stroke-rumours-1086672400

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-38782935

Revelation: Pergamum, Satan’s Throne

Posted in Prophecy, Revelation with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 29, 2017 by paulthepoke

Revelation 2:13  “I know where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is; and you hold fast My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days of Antipas, My witness, My faithful one, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells.

I know where you dwell…where Satan dwells.

The church at Pergamum and Satan have one thing in common, their home town. They κατοικεο/katoikeo or live or dwell in Pergamum. The verb tense in the Greek is present which indicates continuous action. Translation, Satan dwells in Pergamum and continues to dwell in this location moving forward. A permanent residence is the idea.

…where Satan’s throne is…

Pergamum was the home of the Altar of Zeus. It was built from 197-156 BC. And that is where the altar remained until the Germans came. A German engineer discovered the ruins in 1864. His name was Carl Humann. The Germans moved the Altar of Zeus piece by piece to Germany. The Pergamon Museum was opened in 1930. To this day, the altar is housed in the Pergamon Museum in Berlin.

The altar was used as a pattern by Hitler’s architect Albert Speer. This was used as a backdrop for one of Hitler’s speeches to the Nazi’s in Nuremburg. It was known as the Zeppelintribüne.

Curiously, many have made the following observation. In 2008, Barack Obama was nominated by the Democratic Party as their nominee for president. The setting was Denver, Colorado. Critics of the former president think the stage was a dead ringer for the Altar of Zeus. I will leave that to the individual to make their own assessment.

Pergamum is Satan’s capital. The grammar of the verse suggests this is still Satan’s capital. This is not to say the people of Pergamum or modern day Bergama are Satanic. Jesus’ church was located in the same city and those people were not Satanic.

…and you hold fast My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days of Antipas, My witness, My faithful one, who was killed among you…

Living in Satan’s backyard should not keep one from believing and worshiping Jesus Christ. The church in Pergamum “held fast” and “did not deny” belief of the Head. The church came under intense pressure during those days. The example given by Jesus Himself was Antipas.

The term Holocaust was Hitler’s “Final Solution”. In the Greek Holocaust means: a wholly burnt animal sacrifice.

Tradition has Antipas as the Bishop of Pergamum. In 92 AD, Antipas was martyred “a wholly burnt” sacrifice on the Altar of Zeus. From this same altar in Nuremberg, Hitler produced his “Final Solution”. The result was six million sacrificed Jews.

http://www.joelstrumpet.com/?p=6429

http://www1.cbn.com/700club/seat-satan-nazi-germany

Trend Update: Wine & Oil Ready for Temple, January 2017

Posted in Prophecy, Sanhedrin, Temple, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 26, 2017 by paulthepoke

Exodus 29:38, 40 “Now this is what you shall offer on the altar: two one year old lambs each day, continuously… and there shall be one-tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with one-fourth of a hin of beaten oil, and one-fourth of a hin of wine for a drink offering with one lamb.”

January 2017: Thirty bottles of wine have been delivered to the Sanhedrin. This is another example that shows the Sanhedrin is gearing up for Temple service. They believe the readiness and availability of Temple wine is a forerunner to the arrival of the Messiah.

The procedures for kosher wine are the most strident of any food or beverage. The entire process from the grapes being grown on the ground, to the harvest, to the crushing of grapes, to bottling wine must be completed by Sabbath observant Jews. This is a very strict process.

A wine libation and oil are required for the daily sacrifice. Scripture says “a quarter hin” is needed. This amounts to about one quart. One hin is essentially equal to one gallon. The wine is poured on the altar.

Wine libations and sacrifices were part of other celebrations such as the Sabbath and the Passover. If one has participated in a Passover Seder, recall four cups of wine are utilized in the service.

Wine plays a role in Jewish cultural events and celebrations such as circumcisions and weddings. Jesus turned water into wine at the wedding in Cana. Christ knew how to throw a party with over 120 gallons of wine.

John 2:9-10 When the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom and said to him, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now.”

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/82239/rare-temple-quality-wine-anticipates-messiah-prophecy-paves-way-third-temple/#l3iBZTXtrMdGiLxr.99

 

Oil for the Temple Menorah is now available. Harvesting and processing standards of olives are now in place thanks to the Sanhedrin.

Exodus 27:20 “You shall charge the sons of Israel, that they bring you clear oil of beaten olives for the light, to make a lamp burn continually.”

The key word in the verse above is “beaten”. The process is done completely by hand. Machines and metal implements are not allowed. The olives are pounded with rubber and wooden mallets. Crushing the olive is not allowed.

“Since pressing the olives is not permitted for this special olive oil, the yield is very low. Once the menorah oil was produced, the remaining olives were made into 700 tins of this unique oil which are now available to the public,” stated Rabbi Shmuel Veffer, owner of Galilee Green which produced the oil.

Leviticus 2:4 “Now when you bring an offering of a grain offering baked in an oven, it shall be unleavened cakes of fine flour mixed with oil, or unleavened wafers spread with oil.”

“This oil was specially harvested through hand-picking of the olives that were used to make the menorah oil for the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, which we all pray will be rebuilt very soon,” Rabbi Veffer.

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/82172/prepare-third-temple-ritual-olive-oil-produced-holy-offerings/#DwYSPgJtMlQwEKh5.99

Trend Update: Israeli Delegation to Trump Inauguration, Embassy Plans, January 2017

Posted in Peace Plan, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , , on January 24, 2017 by paulthepoke

Genesis 12:3 And I will bless those who bless you…

Yehuda Glick headed an Israeli delegation to Washington, D.C. for the inauguration of President Donald Trump. This is the same Yehuda Glick who is a member of the Israeli Knesset. This is the same Yehuda Glick who took multiple gunshots from an intended assassin and survived. He is the same rabbi who was the head of the Temple Institute in Jerusalem. He believes Jews should be able to pray on the Temple Mount. Previously, Glick has stated a vision of three faiths (Islam, Christianity and Judaism) sharing the Temple Mount.

Glick is one of two Jewish lawmakers who attended the inauguration along with West Bank settler leaders.

“I hope to deliver to those people my message, which is that Jerusalem is the city of peace. It is an international city for all people, Jews and non-Jews, and it’s the city of global peace that knows how to bring people together. I come carrying the name of Jerusalem for this cause and I will reiterate it in all of my meetings,” said Glick.

http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Politics-And-Diplomacy/Likud-MK-Glick-I-am-going-to-the-Trump-inauguration-carrying-the-name-of-Jerusalem-Lawmaker-478780

January 24, 2017: Publically the Trump Administration states the US Embassy move from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem is in the early stages.

“We’re at the very early stages of that decision-making process,” stated Sean Spicer, White House Press Secretary.

Actions are speaking louder than words. It appears the Trump Administration is moving forward with plans to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem.

According to Jerusalem City Councilman and Deputy Mayor Meir Turjemon, “The architect who designs American embassies around the world has already arrived in Israel to examine the conditions in the field.”

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/82465/second-day-office-trump-begins-discussion-moving-u-s-embassy/#2g44L5T8dvLaEuas.99

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/82540/white-house-says-no-decision-yet-moving-u-s-embassy/#8EKUZHOwWTRxlCPG.99

The United States Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, is planning on living and working in Jerusalem. Traditionally, the US Ambassador lives in Herzliya which is north of Tel Aviv on the Mediterranean coast. Friedman’s plans are to arrive in Jerusalem in late February and begin working. He does not care if the US Embassy is moved or not. He is going to work in the capital city of Israel.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/223633
It is a good idea to be kind to God’s chosen nation. Be gracious, hospitable, and friendly to Israel. And God will make America great again.

Revelation: Pergamum, A Two-Edged Sword

Posted in Prophecy, Revelation with tags , , , , , on January 22, 2017 by paulthepoke

Revelation 2:12b The One who has the sharp two-edged sword says this:

Jesus is the owner of the two-edged sword. He is the one talking to the churches. This is another example of Jesus defining who He is. The two edged sword is previously noted to be in Christ’s possession in Revelation 1:16b …and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword…

Here are some other references to Jesus as a sword in Scripture. The sword penetrates more than flesh and blood. It cuts to the essence of who we are as humanity, soul and spirit. And Jesus Himself is sharper than the sword He possesses.

Isaiah 49:2 He has made My mouth like a sharp sword, in the shadow of His hand He has concealed Me; and He has also made Me a select arrow, He has hidden Me in His quiver.

The “word of God” is another name for Christ (See John 1:1-2, Revelation 19:13).

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it pierces even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

The Greek word for “sword” is ρηομπηαια/rhomphaia. Besides sword, it can also be translated as a long Thracian javelin, also a kind of long sword to be worn on the right shoulder. This definition is of note in light of Habakkuk 3:11.

Habakkuk 3:11 Sun and moon stood in their places; they went away at the light of Your arrows, at the radiance of Your gleaming spear.

The first sword as a weapon is dated to around 3,300 B.C. It was made of bronze. The earliest sword was found in what is central, modern day Turkey.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sword

This sword is a weapon of war. The sword is described as sharp, swift, or quick. A two-edged sword is sharp on both sides of the blade. It can cut both ways. The user of the sword can attack from either the left or the right or assault head on. The sword belongs to Jesus and He is going to use it when He returns to establish His kingdom.

 

Trend Update: Iraqi Forces Control East Mosul, January 2017

Posted in Mosul/Nineveh, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , on January 18, 2017 by paulthepoke

January 18, 2017: The Iraqi Counter Terrorism Commander claims the Iraqi government is in control of Mosul east of the Tigris River. It has been three months since the beginning of the Mosul Offensive to free ancient Nineveh from ISIS. The Iraqi army has claimed liberation for the eastern side of the city.

The United Nations estimates 125,000 people have left the area due to the war. However, the number of casualties has not been stated.

There are five bridges that join the two sides of Mosul. Iraqi government forces claim to be in control of all of the bridges. ISIS remains in complete control of the west side of the city. The next step in the conflict will be to eradicate ISIS from all of ancient Nineveh/Mosul. The west side of Mosul has long been considered the more difficult challenge.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/key-dates-battle-mosul-143203614.html

Nahum 3:1 Woe to the bloody city, completely full of lies and pillage; her prey never departs.

Nahum 3:3 Horsemen charging, swords flashing, spears gleaming, many slain, a mass of corpses, and countless dead bodies. They stumble over the dead bodies!

Chapter 3 of Nahum describes a war torn Nineveh. The war is taking its toll on the city. Read the description from a citizen of the city. A health care worker was interviewed and the following excerpts are noted.

“The bodies of ISIS fighters are still lying in the streets and no-one has moved them. The rotting bodies could start an outbreak of disease.

“There is no power. No water. People are drinking from the wells here. This water is unsafe. The well water is contaminated with metals and acids.

“There are infectious diseases, skin diseases caused by dirty water. Children are not washing. A child should be clean so they can be healthy. We want them to be healthy. Families are doing what they can.

“But they’re getting skin diseases from polluted water, the environment and food. People have well water reaching their houses and children play near the water.

“They saw killings and beheadings on what ISIS call their ‘broadcasts’…It drained children emotionally.”

Caution, this link has very graphic pictures.

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/2646413/iraqi-army-finally-retakes-eastern-mosul-from-isis-but-the-rotting-corpses-of-terror-fanatics-littering-the-streets-threaten-local-kids-with-grisly-diseases-and-infections/

Nahum 2:9 Plunder the silver! Plunder the gold! For there is no limit to the treasure, wealth from every kind of desirable object.

This is exactly what ISIS has done to the ancient city of Nineveh from the time they took possession in 2014.

ISIS completely obliterated the shrine of the prophet Jonah in 2014.  News agencies are now able to report on the destruction created by ISIS.

“They have stolen every artifact they could transport out of Iraq to make some (money) and have destroyed whatever they couldn’t take,” stated Zuhair al-Jbouri of the National Mobilization Forces.

http://www.voanews.com/a/iraqi-forces-say-is-destroyed-historic-tomb-of-jonah-in-mosul/3681118.html

For pictures and video, click on the link from Kurdistan 24 News.

http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/9dd9acc1-7200-4c61-b7d5-c43bdbb2e25c/VIDEO–The-ruined-shrine-of-Prophet-Jonah-in-Mosul

And don’t forget, a failing Mosul Dam sits 30-40 miles north of ancient Nineveh.

Nahum 2:6 The gates of the rivers are opened and the palace is dissolved.

 

https://paulthepoke.com/category/mosulnineveh/

Trend Update: Damascus Water Crisis Deepens, January 2017

Posted in Burden of Damascus, Isaiah, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 16, 2017 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 17:6 Gleanings will be left in it, as when an olive tree is beaten— two or three berries in the top of the highest bough, four or five on the branches of a fruit tree, declares the LORD God of Israel.

January 16, 2017: The water crisis in the Damascus area continues to worsen. The Ein al-Fijeh spring provides Damascus with approximately 70 percent of the water supply. Nine million people in and around Damascus have significantly impaired access to clean water. This is up from four million people just a couple of weeks ago. To make matters worse, the chief negotiator respected by both sides was assassinated.

Water prices on the black market are soaring. The cost of water ranges from $500 to $750 a month. The water is for daily needs such as drinking and sanitation. The economic backdrop is a good paying job results in about $150 a month.

Of particular concern is the area of Wadi Barada. There are an estimated 100,000 people in the surrounded area. This is the Sunni controlled area (Al Qaeda of Syria, Al Nusra, or rebels supported by Obama Administration) enclosed by Shia lead forces of the Syrian government and Hezbollah of Lebanon. This area has been surrounded since mid-December 2016.

Inside the area, conditions are deteriorating rapidly. Utilities such as water, electricity, and internet are out. Communication is nonexistent.

Food is becoming scarce and people are cutting back on meals. Staples such as flour and baby formula are gone. People are eating limited olives and pickled eggplant. Locals are starting to live off the land by eating apples from local orchards and eating grass.

Medical care is declining as well. It is estimated there are only 10 doctors and 25 nurses. Medicine is in short supply and people are dying from a lack of supplies. Emergency care is becoming more and more limited. Amputations are increasing as a way to save critically injured patients. Disease is spreading among the weakest children and elderly. A lack of clean water is only making the situation worse with each day.

 

Northeast of Damascus, ISIS has cut off water to Aleppo. Electrical water pumps have been shut down since this past Saturday, January 14, 2017.

ISIS has warned the Kurdish military to stay away from the Tabqa or Euphrates Dam. They have threatened to blow the dam and flood the Euphrates River valley.

http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=80867

http://syriadirect.org/news/a-ground-level-perspective-of-the-damascus-water-battle-%E2%80%98this-is-the-crucible-of-war-and-it%E2%80%99s-an-inferno%E2%80%99/

http://syriadirect.org/news/assassination-of-lead-negotiator-derails-damascus-water-talks-battles-resume/

https://paulthepoke.com/category/burden-of-damascus/

Trend Update: Paris Middle East Peace Conference, January 2017

Posted in Peace Plan, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 15, 2017 by paulthepoke

Zechariah 12:3 It will come about in that day that I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples; all who lift it will be severely injured. And all the nations of the earth will be gathered against it.

January 15, 2017: Dateline Paris, France. Today the French hosted a Middle East Peace Conference with the expressed goal of a two state solution. Leaked information indicated the conference is looking to divide the land of Israel for a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital. The city of Jerusalem would be divided. The division of Jerusalem includes the real estate of the Temple Mount. The region of the Golan Heights would be handed over to Syria as part of the deal. The result of the conference was tough talk for incoming President Trump. For now, the land and Jerusalem were not divided.

Seventy nations gathered in Paris for the event. Representatives from Israel and a future Palestine are not participating in the discussions and process. French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault stated the French have “no intention other than promoting peace”.

The backdrop of the event is the pending inauguration of Donald Trump as President of the United States on Friday, January 20, 2017. The conference is intended to send a strong message to President Trump. World leaders are very uncomfortable with the proposed move of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Many have stated a potential move would only complicate matters and increase the risk for further violence. A potential embassy move would interrupt and discourage an opportunity for peace in the Middle East per critics of Trump. This topic appears to be the focus of today’s meeting. The drum beat coming out of today’s conference is a potential US Embassy move to Jerusalem is a threat to peace.

Current Secretary of State John Kerry, “an explosion, an absolute explosion in the region, not just in the West Bank, and perhaps even in Israel itself, but throughout the region.”

The Palestinian Authority’s supreme Sharia judge Mahmoud Al-Habbash stated an embassy move to Jerusalem would be a “declaration of war.”

The Palestinians are asking the Russians and Vladimir Putin to help stop a potential US Embassy move.

The French are threatening President elect Trump with “serious consequences” with a move to Jerusalem. These actions would be deemed a “provocation”.

http://www.breitbart.com/jerusalem/2017/01/15/france-trumps-embassy-move-provocation-serious-consequences/

For those interested, see the link below for the official closing statement of the conference.

http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.765207

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called the meeting “useless” and “futile” and “rigged”. “Tomorrow’s world will be different, and it is very near.”

Scripture says the land will ultimately be divided. Frankly this process has already begun when the Gaza Strip was given to the Palestinians in 2006. We were told peace will come in exchange for land…

Joel 3:2b Israeland they have divided up My land.

A little food for speculative thought…was the antichrist in the shadows in Paris??? Are we that close??? Geopolitical events could get very Biblically real in a hurry. Get concerned when humanity is talking peace and security.

1 Thessalonians 5:3 While they are saying, “Peace and safety!” then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape.

Have you looked into the biography of Jesus? You may want to read it. If you are not familiar with Him, I would recommend the Book of John or 1 John. They are straight forward and easy to read, no tricks.

 

 

Trend Update: Official Closing Remarks from Paris Peace Conference, January 15, 2017

Posted in Peace Plan, Prophecy, Trend Update with tags on January 15, 2017 by paulthepoke

http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.765207

I) Following the Ministerial meeting held in Paris on 3 June 2016, the Participants met in Paris on 15 January 2017 to reaffirm their support for a just, lasting and comprehensive resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

France Mideast Peace

They reaffirmed that a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security, is the only way to achieve enduring peace.

They emphasized the importance for the parties to restate their commitment to this solution, to take urgent steps in order to reverse the current negative trends on the ground, including continued acts of violence and ongoing settlement activity, and to start meaningful direct negotiations.

They reiterated that a negotiated two-state solution should meet the legitimate aspirations of both sides, including the Palestinians’ right to statehood and sovereignty, fully end the occupation that began in 1967, satisfy Israel’s security needs and resolve all permanent status issues on the basis of United Nations Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973), and also recalled relevant Security Council resolutions.
They underscored the importance of the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 as a comprehensive framework for the resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, thus contributing to regional peace and security.
They welcomed international efforts to advance Middle East peace, including the adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 on 23 December 2016 which clearly condemned settlement activity, incitement and all acts of violence and terror, and called on both sides to take steps to advance the two-state solution on the ground ; the recommendations of the Quartet on 1 July 2016 ; and the United States Secretary of State’s principles on the two-state solution on 28 December 2016.
They noted the importance of addressing the dire humanitarian and security situation in the Gaza Strip and called for swift steps to improve the situation.

They emphasized the importance for Israelis and Palestinians to comply with international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law.
II) The Participants highlighted the potential for security, stability and prosperity for both parties that could result from a peace agreement.

They expressed their readiness to exert necessary efforts toward the achievement of the two-state solution and to contribute substantially to arrangements for ensuring the sustainability of a negotiated peace agreement, in particular in the areas of political and economic incentives, the consolidation of Palestinian state capacities, and civil society dialogue.

Those could include, inter alia:

– a European special privileged partnership; other political and economic incentives and increased private sector involvement; support to further efforts by the parties to improve economic cooperation; continued financial support to the Palestinian authority in building the infrastructure for a viable Palestinian economy ;

– supporting and strengthening Palestinian steps to exercise their responsibilities of statehood through consolidating their institutions and institutional capacities, including for service delivery ; convening Israeli and Palestinian civil society fora, in order to enhance dialogue between the parties, rekindle the public debate and strengthen the role of civil society on both sides.

III) Looking ahead, the Participants:

-call upon both sides to officially restate their commitment to the two-state solution, thus disassociating themselves from voices that reject this solution;

– call on each side to independently demonstrate, through policies and actions, a genuine commitment to the two-state solution and refrain from unilateral steps that prejudge the outcome of negotiations on final status issues, including, inter alia, on Jerusalem, borders, security, refugees and which they will not recognize; welcome the prospect of closer cooperation between the Quartet and Arab League members and other relevant actors to further the objectives of this Declaration.
As follow-up to the Conference, interested Participants, expressing their readiness to review progress, resolved to meet again before the end of the year in order to support both sides in advancing the two-state solution through negotiations.
France will inform the parties about the international community’s collective support and concrete contribution to the two-State solution contained in this joint declaration.
http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.765207

Revelation: Historical Pergamum

Posted in Prophecy, Revelation with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 14, 2017 by paulthepoke

Revelation 2:12a And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write:

Ancient Pergamum today is essentially Bergama, Turkey. Today, not much is left of the ancient city but ruins. The city was located about 60 miles north of Smyrna. It is the northern most church in the Book of Revelation. The name means “citadel, height or elevation” per Strong’s Concordance. Pergamum was located in the ancient Roman province of Mysia.

This is the same region of Mysia the Apostle Paul was instructed to stay put.

Acts 16:7 and after they came to Mysia, they were trying to go into Bithynia, and the Spirit of Jesus did not permit them…

The Spirit of Jesus intervened and kept the crew in Mysia. Bithynia and Mysia are in Turkey. Jesus wanted them in Mysia. The region of Mysia is home to Satan and his capital, Pergamum (Revelation 2:13). Paul was forbidden by the Spirit of Christ from going into the region of Bithynia, home to modern day Istanbul, Constantinople, or Byzantium (synonymous names). The Holy Spirit and Jesus clearly had a plan for the gospel in Satan’s back yard.

Art and literature were very important to Pergamum. The city had a library of 200,000 volumes. Antony would later give this library to Cleopatra. The books were written on parchment. Pergamum was the city where parchment was developed. The word “parchment” or “pergamena” comes from the name of the town Pergamum. Because of this economic development, the city was very wealthy.

The Altar of Zeus is located in Pergamum. The statue was 40 feet tall. It was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

Pergamum was a medical center of the ancient world. The worship of the medicine god Aesculpius took place here. The name Aesculpius is where we get the term “scalpel”. Surgery is a reminder of Aesculpius.  The symbol for medicine, the coiled snake on a pole comes from Pergamum. The irony, this medical symbol is a counterfeit to the bronze serpent of Numbers 21:8-9.

Numbers 21:8-9 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a standard; and it shall come about, that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, he will live.” And Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on the standard; and it came about, that if a serpent bit any man, when he looked to the bronze serpent, he lived.

Jesus would later refer to Himself as the serpent who would be lifted.

John 3:14-15 As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life.

The ancient world and history to this day have a choice when it comes to healing, Jesus or Aesculpius. Aesculpius is a link to a scalpel that cuts and causes bleeding to the individual. Jesus bled for us and the result is eternal life for the individual. We can worship the god of medicine. Modern medicine is temporary at best. Or we can worship the Son of God. What He offers is forever.

http://bibleatlas.org/pergamum.htm

The Revelation Record, Henry M. Morris, p. 57.

Paul the Poke

Habakkuk 1:5 Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told. -LORD God

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