A lot of nations are mentioned by name in the end time schedule of events. Egypt (Mizraim), Russia (Magog, Rosh), Turkey (Gomer, beth-Togarmah), Iran (Persia, Elam), Ethiopia & Libya (Cush & Phut), Lebanon (Canaan which included No. Israel) and of course, Israel. Here is a look at ancient and modern names in the bible, or here in list form. The map below enlarges if you click on it.
But what of Jordan (Moab, Amman, Edom)? Is Jordan, with which Israel shares a border and a brother, mentioned?(Gen 25:23) Yes. Obadiah is all about Jordan and its doom. But first, the news. There are two things happening this week which fit into prophecy. Overlaying both pieces of news is this fact to be kept in mind: Only Egypt and Jordan currently have a peace treaty with Israel. And with the Muslim Brotherhood’s ascendancy lately, winning the elections, they have said in December that they will not honor the peace treaty currently in force:
“Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood will not recognize Israel under any circumstances and might put the peace treaty with the Jewish state up to a referendum, the movement’s second in command told the Al-Hayat newspaper in an interview that was published Sunday. The announcement comes days before the final round in the first parliamentary elections in post-uprising Egypt. The Islamist movement has emerged as the biggest winner in polls, capturing nearly half of the seats so far.”
So that is not good news for Israel. Worse, is this. Here is some important news. As Syria devolves, Hamas leadership (Hamas terrorist organization sworn to destroy Israel) in Syria has been making frequent visits to Jordan. Jordan’s King Abdullah has always liked to characterize Jordan as being reasonable and stable. They hold a peace treaty with Israel. They have sworn not to ally with terrorists and booted Hamas out 12 years ago. And yet…there’s this from three days ago:
“Jordanian government spokesman Rakan al-Majali confirmed Friday that Jordan is expecting a visit from Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal and Qatari Heir Apparent Sheikh Tamim bin Hamas al-Thani, the London-based al-Quds al-Arabi newspaper reported.”
Is this visit in advance of a decision to make an entire shift in Hamas’ seat of leadership from Damascus to Jordan? The article goes on to say
“Al-Majali added that Jordan welcomes its guests as fellow brothers from Qatar and Hamas. He noted that the visit will be followed by a discussion on Jordan’s ties with Hamas and the interests of the Jordanian and Palestinian people. The spokesman also addressed Israeli reports suggesting that Qatar was pressuring Amman to take in Hamas in exchange for financial incentives…” but the official denied it, of course. Several Hamas senior officials recently left Damascus in the wake of the Assad regime’s violent crackdown. Some conjectured that the movement will seek refuge in Jordan which expelled it 12 years ago.”
It seems that Jordan is friendly with Hamas again. On Dec 6 the WSJ reported “Hamas ordered the departure of nearly all its staff at its Damascus headquarters by next week following pressure from Turkey and Qatar, two regional allies trying to isolate Syrian President Bashar al-Assad amid an eight-month crackdown on antiregime protests, according to a Hamas official. … Hamas will establish new headquarters in Cairo and Qatar to replace its operations in Syria, the official added. At the same time, Hamas leader Khaled Meshal is scheduled to meet with King Abdullah II of Jordan to discuss upgrading its presence in the kingdom.”
Since Dec 6 and with the confirmation of the highest Hamas official meeting with highest Jordanian officials three days ago, it seemed to lend credence to the reports that Hamas is changing venues back to its old home of Jordan.
Here is the second item I’d wanted to share:
Israel building a wall against Jordan
“Israel is carrying out a policy of “good fences make good neighbors” and will build a security fence along the Jordanian border, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu announced on Sunday. “When the security barrier along the Egyptian border is finished, one will be built along the border with Jordan,” the Prime Minister said at the weekly Cabinet meeting. The border on the south will stretch 240 kilometers (nearly 150 miles) and is scheduled to be completed before the end of 2012, at a cost of $360 million.”
You see the geo-physical problem with Egypt’s effective abandonment of the peace treaty with Israel, and the border of Jordan, where Egyptian extremists are said to be smuggling arms to Jordan…and the recent softening of relations between King Adullah and Hamas…
In his Gog Magog FAQ Joel Rosenberg asked “Bernard Lewis—the renowned Middle East scholar and author of numerous important books about the region including The Crisis of Islam—to assess the potential impact of Hamas coming to power in the post-Arafat environment. “The Hamas-Palestinian government may pose more of a danger to Jordan than to Israel,” he said.14 Lewis is right. Some 70 percent of Jordanian citizens are Palestinians, and Hamas would love to radicalize them and use them to help overthrow the king and unify Jordan, the West Bank, and Gaza into one jihadist state poised at Israel’s throat.”
Hamas and Jordan are definitely not a good mix. Whether it is the radicalization of Jordanian Palestinians by Hamas’s influence or some other measure, we know that at some point Jordan becomes rabid with hate, or at least weak enough to be unable to withstand hatred of Israel, and pitches in to the Psalm 83 confederacy that attacks Israel in the last days.
Now, the prophecy about Jordan says something startling. Jordan’s life as a nation will be completely wiped out. Obadiah is the shortest book in the OT and it’s entirely about “The Coming Judgment on Edom”. That judgment has not occurred yet, so it is still future. Remember, Jacob and Esau were twin brothers of Rebekah and Isaac and the older was prophesied to serve the younger. Esau sold his birthright for a bowl of red stew, and further, was tricked out of his blessing by Jacob at Rebekah’s insistence. For this, Esau has always hated Jacob. And Jordan (Idumea, Ammon, Moab, Edom) has always treated Israel harshly. They will be judged for it, and more, the LORD will use Jordan mightily in the process for His plan and glory.
First, Ob 1:18 says “The house of Jacob shall be a fire, And the house of Joseph a flame; But the house of Esau shall be stubble;They shall kindle them and devour them, And no survivor shall remain of the house of Esau,”
That is pretty startling. None will survive? What does that mean? I should tell you that a thorough and clear interpretation of Obadiah’s prophesies has eluded the most diligent and brilliant difficult scholars, therefore I will not even come close.
In my studies I take the plain meaning when it is clear that no other meaning should be taken (the writer is not using a metaphor or it’s not a parable).
Gill’s Exposition seems to say this too: ‘and the house of Esau for stubble, and they shall kindle in them, and devour them; that is, the Israelites shall fall upon the Edomites, who will be no more able to withstand them than stubble can stand before devouring flames of fire, and shall utterly waste and destroy them: and there shall not be any remaining of the house or Esau; … the Edomites shall be all consumed, and the Israelites shall inherit their land:’
But Clarke’s Commentary differs: “There shall not be any remaining – As a people and a nation they shall be totally destroyed. This is the meaning; it does not signify that every individual shall be destroyed.”
In any case, the land of Jordan will be destroyed as a nation, and the land will become Israel’s. It is in Jordan, in the area of Bozrah and likely the city of Petra, the remnant shall be protected. They are protected because Jordan is the one nation the antichrist is not able to conquer!
“He will also enter the Beautiful Land, and many countries will fall; but these will be rescued out of his hand: Edom, Moab and the foremost of the sons of Ammon.” (Daniel 11:41).
Amazing isn’t it?!
So in Matthew 24:16 when Jesus warns the people to flee when they see the antichrist coming, He tells them to flee to the the mountains. The only way to do that is east to Jericho (15 miles, 6.5 hours’ walk) and then south down the King’s Highway to the mountainous area at the south end of the Dead Sea to Petra, approximately 125 miles.
In Psalm 83 Jordan is mentioned as an enemy of Israel conspiring toward her obliteration. The list below is from an article last Feb 2011 by Bill Salus, titled “Jordan soon to sever ties with Israel.” It is a good article.
Here is the Psalm 83 verse, “For they have consulted together with one consent; They form a confederacy against You: The tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites; Moab and the Hagrites; Gebal, Ammon, and Amalek; Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre; Assyria also has joined with them;They have helped the children of Lot. Selah” (Ps 83:5-8).
You notice that all of Jordan from north to south, Ammon, Moab and Edom are mentioned. Perhaps it is this battle, yet to occur, that destroys Jordan as Obadiah prophesied.
Time till tell. Meanwhile, whenever Jordan is in the news in a way that casts it as an enemy or potential enemy of Israel, perk up, our Redemption draws nigh!