Sitrap Sojourn

In the world but not of it.

Licence to act out, to rebel, the very seeds of disobedience, were sown by President Trump’s predecessor. Following that unlawful precedent, President Trump, in bringing back law and order, is now portrayed as the problem.

The Book of Revelation confirms:

And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.

Revelation 2:27

A rod of iron. Mashiach will rule with a rod of iron.

Not a rod of gold, or a rainbow-coloured, fruity-flavoured rod of sherbet candy.

Recall the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30). Jesus is the hard taskmaster. Occupy till I come (Luke 19:13).

End of an Age: Civilisation Collapse

Thus, my main thesis is that there must have been a ‘perfect storm’ of calamitous events at that turning point in order to cause the Late Bronze Age civilizations to collapse shortly after 1200 BCE. There is both direct and circumstantial evidence that there was climate change, drought and famine, earthquakes, invasions and internal rebellions, all at that approximate time. Of these, I would rank them in that specific order of importance: climate change; drought and famine; earthquakes; invaders; and internal rebellions. Although human beings have survived such catastrophes time and again when they come individually, such as rebuilding after an earthquake or living through a drought, what if they all occurred at once, or in quick succession?¹

It would be difficult to survive if all, or most, of the above calamities came at the same time or nearly so, as they seem to have done especially between about 1225 BCE and 1175 BCE. And that, I think, is why the Late Bronze Age civilizations came crashing down — they were not able to weather the ‘perfect storm’ of nearly simultaneous catastrophes, with each amplifying and multiplying the effects of the previous ones, piling on misfortune after misfortune until the entire system broke down. And then what we see is a systems’ collapse, as empires and kingdoms that had flourished for centuries all came to an end, followed by the world’s first Dark Age stretching from the Mediterranean to Mesopotamia.¹

Sites destroyed in the Bronze Age collapse around 1200 B.C.E. [Bible History Daily]
To put this into an End-Times perspective, for our present age, such a perfect storm might reflect the successive, cumulative effect of conquest, war, famine, and pestilence, as symbolised by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (Revelation 6:1-7).

Then I saw the Lamb open one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures call out, as with a voice of thunder, “Come!” I looked, and there was a white horse! Its rider had a bow; a crown was given to him, and he came out conquering and to conquer.

When he opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature call out, “Come!” And out came another horse, bright red; its rider was permitted to take peace from the earth, so that people would slaughter one another; and he was given a great sword.

When he opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature call out, “Come!” I looked, and there was a black horse! Its rider held a pair of scales in his hand, and I heard what seemed to be a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a day’s pay, and three quarts of barley for a day’s pay, but do not damage the olive oil and the wine!”

When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature call out, “Come!” I looked and there was a pale green horse! Its rider’s name was Death, and Hades followed with him; they were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword, famine, and pestilence, and by the wild animals of the earth.²

Scripture repeats this cataclysmic concatenation—the Lord’s so-called “four deadly acts” of sword, famine, wild beasts, and pestilence—wherever the Lord threatens to completely wipe out evil communities, as in Ezekiel 14:21, among others.

Was the Bronze Age collapse then (and likewise might an End-days collapse today be) a question of the last man standing?

In the aftermath of the Bronze-Age collapse rose the Philistines of the Bible, a subset of the infamous Sea peoples known to the Egyptians as the Peleset and who settled in Canaan just before the rise of Israel. Beyond the Philistines, the Aramaeans, Phoenicians, and the Israelites benefited most from the Bronze-Age collapse.

As I see it, all of these groups were able to really ‘set up shop,’ as it were, in the regions of Canaan from which the Egyptians and Hittites had both just withdrawn — especially in what is now modern Israel, Lebanon, and Syria. To put it in modern terms, I think that the Israelites, Phoenicians, Aramaeans, and Philistines benefited from the ‘power vacuum’ that was created in this area when the Great Powers were laid low. There was no way that any of them could have established a foothold in this area if the Egyptians, Hittites, and Canaanites had still been as powerful as they were even in the 13th century BCE. The calamitous events at the beginning of the 12th century BCE made all the difference.¹

Is it too much of a stretch, from there, to see Israel emerge from any coming civilisation collapse (consider the parlous state of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, even Sinai Egypt) as the predominant centre of civilisation and from where will emanate a thousand-year rule of righteousness?

Works cited
  1. Wiener, James B. “Interview: The Mysterious Bronze Age Collapse with Eric Cline.” Ancient History Encyclopedia. Last modified September 19, 2019. https://www.ancient.eu/article/1446/. Accessed 24 July 2020. (An interview based on Professor Eric H. Cline’s analysis of the Bronze Age collapse in his 2014 book,  1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed. See YouTube video: Eric Cline | 1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed by The Oriental Institute).
  2. Revelation 6:1-7 (NRSV)
Reading

Muhly, James D. Sources of Tin and the Beginnings of Bronze Metallurgy. American Journal of Archaeology Vol. 89, No. 2 (Apr., 1985), pp. 275-291. DOI: 10.2307/504330. https://www.jstor.org/stable/504330.

Ling, Johan et al. Moving metals IV: Swords, metal sources and trade networks in Bronze Age Europe. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports Volume 26, August 2019, 101837.

Wiener, Noah. Bronze Age Collapse: Pollen Study Highlights Late Bronze Age Drought. Bible History Daily. Available at https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/news/bronze-age-collapse-pollen-study-highlights-late-bronze-age-drought/. Accessed 24 July 2020.

Death by Default

Here is an excerpt from an article published by New York’s Manhattan Institute, entitled “Death By Policy.”

Many years ago, one of my duties as a young surgical intern was to fill out death certificates for recently deceased patients. Under “cause of death,” Part I asked for the immediate cause, other conditions leading to it, and the underlying cause. Part II asked for “other significant conditions contributing to death but not resulting in the underlying cause given in Part I.” If you think this is confusing, you’re right. Did the post-operative patient found dead in bed really die of a heart attack, a pulmonary embolism, or some operative complication, like bleeding? Where do you list their colon cancer or hypertension?

The task has not gotten any easier during the Covid-19 pandemic. People are still dying of heart disease, stroke, cancer, and accidents. But now there is a new respiratory illness to account for.

Read the short article, by associate clinical professor of surgery at the Mount Sinai Icahn School of Medicine in New York, Joel Zinberg, at City Journal.

https://www.city-journal.org/deadly-cost-of-lockdown-policies

Psalm 83 War

83 Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God. For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head. They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones. They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance. For they have consulted together with one consent: they are confederate against thee: The tabernacles of Edom, and the Ishmaelites; of Moab, and the Hagarenes; Gebal, and Ammon, and Amalek; the Philistines with the inhabitants of Tyre; Assur also is joined with them: they have holpen the children of Lot. Selah. Do unto them as unto the Midianites; as to Sisera, as to Jabin, at the brook of Kison: 10 Which perished at Endor: they became as dung for the earth. 11 Make their nobles like Oreb, and like Zeeb: yea, all their princes as Zebah, and as Zalmunna: 12 Who said, Let us take to ourselves the houses of God in possession. 13 O my God, make them like a wheel; as the stubble before the wind. 14 As the fire burneth a wood, and as the flame setteth the mountains on fire; 15 So persecute them with thy tempest, and make them afraid with thy storm. 16 Fill their faces with shame; that they may seek thy name, O Lord. 17 Let them be confounded and troubled for ever; yea, let them be put to shame, and perish: 18 That men may know that thou, whose name alone is Jehovah, art the most high over all the earth. [King James Version (KJV)]

Mis-institutions: Totalitarian is the system that justifies and caters to the spectacle of modern-day histrionics

On the surface of it, we live at a time of unprecedented opportunity and living standards for many. But under the surface shine, the machinations of a totalitarian system are in full swing.

Don’t be fooled by the apparent open spaces of access and avenues for free speech. While they certainly do exist, they exist essentially for a minor few and, even still, the gears of a system intent on occupying your personal space, and intruding into your life, grind on.

Take the extended reach of closed-circuit television cameras, now on every street corner and often in multiple sets. Attached to relatively draconian punishments which include fines of varying degrees and severity, these technological attachments to our lives are one way we daily surrender individual and collective liberties.

For instance, take traffic speeding cameras. While no doubt they can be a public good, yet the ability for social governance to extract pecuniary interest from a hapless motorist for contravening a speeding limit by some 10% margin, atop with the cumulative points system which threatens to strip the same motorist of his livelihood, is tyrannical and austere.

Consider, further, that a street-smart hooligan, knowing the whereabouts of the speeding cameras, who ducks and weaves and yet, ultimately, speeds more than the generally convivial motorist yet escapes punishment.

And the system of fines and punishments is extensive, permeating all aspects of our lives — from driving, to refuse, to taxation, to utility bills, to public amenities, etc. etc.

Ultimately, the people in governance have been placed in that position to look after the interests of those of the population they represent but somehow, somewhere along the line, these governmental bureaus have taken on a life of their own and their apparatchiks paradoxically march to the beat of their own drum (having lost site of the public good) rather than work for the people who elected them. Because there is no one who is good. None.

We live in a self-aggrandising, obnoxious, self-loving, society of selfish people — both in circles of power and without. We live, moreover, in a society where people want only to tickle ears and to have their ears tickled. We live, whats-more, in a society where trust is eroded, a society where you are guilty until proven innocent, one that shoots first and asks questions later.

Besides, administrations preference those with size and weight and disregard the little people and mums and dads of this world. The system is geared to kowtow to the heavies while the least slip through the wide cracks in the system or get forgotten or, worse still, are like they never existed at all.

There needs to be a grassroots, organically-inspired condemnation of largess and public administrations of all persuasions which cater to the biggest and loudest in society at the expense of the silent majority.

The fabric of society is built upon the little people and the countless families and makeshift families, not big business, franchises, oligopolies, and puritan wheelers-and-dealers.

Megalithic shopping centres, leviathan complexes, shiny tidbits come and go but its people, simple and sure, that keep the wheels in motion turning and hand-on the baton to generations more. It’s time the system was redesigned through organic conceptions (devoid of hierarchies of power and stripped of transhumanist agendas) and not the top-down misconceptions of what we might call the mis-institutions.

But that would require people to stop swallowing the cultural junk that they are daily fed and blindly consume with insatiable lust.

New Heaven and New Earth

By all accounts, both secular and sacred, mankind is moving into a new age of consciousness — a new way of understanding and relating to the world around him.

The nature of an enchanted globe, the inherent symbolism in natural signs and their pointing to preternatural events, is being renewed in our sentient existence.

We are returning to an Edenic-like relationship between man — seemingly ostracised for 6000 years — and the natural world. We are becoming as if gods of sorts, pluripotent and reaching that potential.

Two thousand years ago, one came bearing the likeness of God, as a forerunner and role-model. Now, by his example and through the nexus that he forged between heaven and earth, God and man, the primordial sanctuary afforded Adam before the fall is destined once more to come to man.

Man is at the threshold of catapulting into a new age of spiritual awareness; indeed, has crossed the threshold and the rapid changes that it promises have already begun.

New insights, new paradigms, greater efficiencies, improved relating, mean that man and his dominion will ultimately settle into a new harmonious experience and existence of greater potential and greater transparency.

Standards of living will improve as people, paradoxically, become more in tune, and more congenial, toward natural living.

We will live more like animals, in the natural sense, yet more civilised, in the way we relate to each other. There will be far less tolerance for hostile, violent, aggressions against man and beast in all parts of the globe as man recalls his primordial animal roots and recalibrates his mode of action.

There will reign a thousand years of peace on earth, free from all malice and blood spilling.

This will mark the current or forthcoming Age of Aquarius, coincidental with the Millennial Reign. Heaven, earth, man, and beast, will live in a new-found harmony for one thousand years.

Rosh Chodesh Sameach

Or, “Happy New Month”.

According to A Rood Awakening:

The renewed moon WAS seen in Israel yesterday, confirming the start to the 4th biblical month (Tammuz) at sunset Thursday, July 4.

The Astronomical (lunisolar) Calendar for the month of Tammuz can be found at A Rood Awakening.

Eyes to See; Ears to Hear

Isaiah 6:10 King James Version (KJV)

10 Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed.

Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version (KJV)

21 Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:

Ezekiel 12:2 King James Version (KJV)

Son of man, thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house, which have eyes to see, and see not; they have ears to hear, and hear not: for they are a rebellious house.

Matthew 13:15 King James Version (KJV)

15 For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

Acts 28:27 King James Version (KJV)

27 For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

Romans 11:8 King James Version (KJV)

(According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.