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Mark 13:1-8 - Spiritual famines brought on by rulers setting snares for souls

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As Jesus came out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher, what large stones and what large buildings!” Then Jesus asked him, “Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone will be left here upon another; all will be thrown down.”

When he was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter, James, John, and Andrew asked him privately, “Tell us, when will this be, and what will be the sign that all these things are about to be accomplished?” Then Jesus began to say to them, “Beware that no one leads you astray. Many will come in my name and say, ‘I am he!’ and they will lead many astray. When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed; this must take place, but the end is still to come. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. This is but the beginning of the birthpangs.”


This is the Gospel reading to be read aloud by a priest on the twenty-fifth Sunday after Pentecost [Proper 28], Year B, according to the lectionary for the Episcopal Church. This will follow one of two sets of Old Testament and Psalms (or song) that is either Track 1 or Track 2, depending on the course predetermined by an individual church. The Track 1 path will present First Samuel’s story of Hannah, which includes this: “[Hannah’s] rival used to provoke her severely, to irritate her, because Yahweh had closed her womb. So it went on year by year; as often as she went up to the house of Yahweh, [Peninnah] used to provoke her.” That will be accompanied by the Song of Hannah (from 1 Samuel 2), which sings, “The barren has borne seven, but she who has many children is forlorn. Yahweh kills and brings to life; he brings down to Sheol and raises up.” The Track 2 option will present from Daniel 12 this vision of the things to come: “There shall be a time of anguish, such as has never occurred since nations first came into existence.” That will be followed by Psalm 16, which sings, “But those who run after others [gods] shall have their troubles multiplied.” One of these two sets will precede a reading from Hebrews, where Paul wrote, “Let us hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who has promised is faithful.”

I wrote about this reading the last time it came up in the lectionary cycle (2018) and I posted my views on my website then. That commentary includes pictures of the Temple of Jerusalem and the proximity of the Mount of Olives, from which Jesus explained the end times to his disciples. I made clear observations that are still valid at this time; and, I invite all readers to read that publication now. It can be accessed by clicking on this link. I will not change any of my views to present here now, as I will only add new light to this topic of the end foreseen by Jesus. It must be understood that what Jesus said has not only already happened, but it reflects an ongoing prophecy that speaks to all who claim to be Christians … past, present and future.

I made observations about the Temple of Jerusalem [Herod’s Temple] in my past commentary and the literal prophecy of Jesus was the destruction of that building, which was roughly forty years in the future. It needs to be understood that everything written in the Holy Bible is applicable at all times, no matter what history came and went and leaves people questioning if the Scriptures got some thing wrong, because the words don’t match the facts known. Everything is prophetic through metaphor; and, the metaphor of the beautiful building that was a reflection of Judaic self-worship would be destroyed. Not one brick of their belief system would be left standing as it was then. When Christianity is said to be the reason for a New Covenant, then Jesus speaks of that ‘shining building on a hill’ that also cannot stand without the plan being Yahweh’s elohim, with their cornerstone being the soul of Jesus resurrected within their individual souls. Souls in bodies of flesh are therefore the “stones” of true tabernacles unto Yahweh.

It also must be realized that when Jesus said, “Many will come in my name and say, ‘I am he!’ this is the truth of the advent of Christianity. It is Christianity that would destroy the Temple system of Judaism, so “not one stone will be left upon another.” The Romans who physically destroyed Herod’s Temple were not Christians. The “many who did come in the name of Jesus destroyed everything of value in a failed religion, failed race.

When Jesus then followed that statement of truth by saying, “they will lead many astray,” that is a mistranslation. Following a separate segment of words in Greek that say, “Egō eimi,” which is a statement of Yahweh that says, “I am,” which is the truth of possession by the Spirit of Yahweh, with Yahweh speaking through the lips of true Christians, Anointed by divine marriage and reborn as Yahweh’s Son, is a separate and subsequent statement that says, “kai pollous planēsousin.” That literally translates to say, “importantly many will be misled.” This has nothing to do with the truth of Christians being filled with the Spirit of Yahweh and saying truthfully, “I am.”

The spelling of “planēsousin” is the future active indicative, 3rd person plural, form of “planaó,” which means “to cause to wander, to wander,” (Strong’s Definition) and “I lead astray, deceive, cause to wander.” (Strong’s Usage) This is then a future state in the plural, as “they will cause to wander” or “they will be misled.” This becomes the future beyond the advent of true Christianity, when the Roman Church ceased the ministry of true Saints and turned Christianity into a business model, as an exact reproduction of the Judaic system that had been totally ruined. This needs to be seen as the ongoing warning that Jesus gave, stating first, “Beware that no one leads you astray.”

That warning was stated to all the disciples who sat on the hillside of Mount Olivet, as they looked down on the Temple below. One can assume that Judas Iscariot was sitting there listening to Jesus prophesy, so the message was as valid that evening as it is now. That warning is Jesus telling twelve men (therefore all who read his words forevermore), “Do not follow a leader to ruin. A leader will not take your soul to heaven. Only you can take your soul to heaven; but to do that, your soul has to marry Yahweh and submit totally to His Will. That includes having no say in anything, so Yahweh will speak truthfully through your lips, just like He does through mine now. Yahweh will say, “I am,” and it will be the truth. However, if you let someone tell you, “I am Jesus,” and you start walking behind that person, then you will be lead to ruin by a liar. So, beware that no one leads you astray.”

This is where I wrote in 2018 about the “ego” of “I” and human being worshiping self as a god. Christianity has fallen into idol worship by elevating popes to some false level of piety. Simply by putting on fancy robes and wearing a high hat and walking with some overblown shepherd’s hook, all of that regalia has made the statement, “Look at me! I am special!” There are mega-church ministers and televangelists who beg for money to do “God’s work,” when it is all about making themselves rich off ignorant people who are too lazy to not be led astray. It is the wolves knowing which of the flock is the weakest, thus the easiest to catch and feed off of. True Christianity is each soul given the expectation to submit fully to Yahweh AND ONLY TO YAHWEH and then minister to the seekers, showing them the truth, so they too can do the same and save their souls. It takes Yahweh elohim to do this; but the presence of true Yahweh elohim will lead to fakers. The fakers know to say the words that allow the lazy to be lazy, all losing their souls in the end.

In the verse that is translated to say, “For nation will rise against nation,” the Greek word “ethnos” is repeated. That word can equally translate as “a race, people,” with the word used to denote Gentiles often. When the following segment places focus on “kingdoms” [from “basileia”], to read “ethnos” as “nations” becomes repetitious and misleading. When “race” is seen as a sign” of the future times when everyone is being led astray, look at how the world began to divide along racial lines (including the religions that denote other religions much like Gentiles), where the Jewish “race” and the Arab “race” came after Jesus left [enter Mohammed] and then they discovered the darkest parts of Africa [not Nubia or Ethiopia], where the tribal system killed people nearby or captured them and sold them into slavery. The times when the world became more migratory and mixed have led to such pitting or races against other races; and, the Black Lives Matter pretense of modern America is just another “sign” of “race” being used in hostile ways.

In the part when Jesus said, “there will be famines,” it is important to see the recent reading options from First Samuel, relative to Elimelech and Naomi, and First Kings, relative to Elijah and the widow woman, both stories placed focus on “famine.” This has to be seen as not the repetition of drought, earthquakes, and wars on an earth, brought about because human beings exist and are like wild animals, but spiritual famine. The earthquakes and wars are both physical, but the aspect of religious upheavals and wars due to religions must be seen as being relative to the true form of Christianity being led astray, due to false shepherds and hired hands.

The last verse in this reading is translated to say, “This is but the beginning of the birthpangs.” In reality, only three words of Greek are written, after a period mark that followed “famines.” Those words are: “archē ōdinōn tauta.” Those words literally state, “beginning of birth pains these.” Certainly, this forces one to understand the meaning of “ōdinōn” and how “beginning of birth pains” are relative to all the conflict Jesus mentioned prior.

The Greek word “ōdinōn” is the genitive plural form of “ódin,” which means “the pain of childbirth, acute pain, severe agony, a snare.” This makes the Greek word “archē” important to be understood as also meaning “rulers, magistrates,” with “beginning” being in the temporal sense, as a starting point. This should be seen as a word referencing the laws of races and kingdoms, where it all begins with “rules” installed by “rulers,” which have nothing to do with birthing babies and everything to do with the pain a trapped animal feels, when in a “snare.” Thus, Jesus said all the things prior would be due to the “rulers” of the world bringing about all those “pains.”

To see this Gospel reading paired with the reading from First Samuel, when Hannah was ridiculed by Eli, this needs to be seen as a reflection of how little the leaders of Christianity will have become. Eli is a reflection of a priest who offers personal opinions about those whom he oversees, having little connection to Yahweh. When he saw how distraught his words made Hannah feel, as she was talking to Yahweh, not knowing she was being judged, Eli becomes a middle mad of useless abilities. Hannah talked directly to Yahweh and her prayer was answered. Eli felt he could get into trouble somehow, by insulting a woman, saying she was drunk. Had it not been for Hannah’s need for Yahweh in her life, she might have been led astray by Eli. That says to Christians today, “Speak directly to Yahweh. Beware letting others be your go-between to Yahweh.

In the Daniel reading, it begins by stating, “At that time Michael, the great prince, the protector of your people, shall arise.” While I explain the fault of that translation, which keeps the truth from being seen, look at the name Michael, knowing that is the name of an archangel. The name asks the question, “Who Is Like God,” with an adjustment to meaning being, “Who Is An elohim of Yahweh?” When Michael “arises” within a soul, it becomes a question that asks, “Can you say “I am” as Yahweh’s elohim? Or, do you say, “I am Jesus” when you have never known Yahweh in relationship?” That question becomes key to comparing the prophecy of Daniel to that of Jesus.

In the Hebrews reading, Paul again says the “priest stands day after day at his service, offering again and again the same sacrifices that can never take away sins.” This is saying there will always be Elis holding down positions in churches. They are only there following some organization handbook of procedures and rituals, where talking directly to Yahweh for the cleaning of sins, with no new sins ever being a worry in the future, is not allowed. Such talk as that is ridiculed. The inability for a priest to explain the truth of the Hebrews reading – being Jesus resurrected within one’s soul – is why Christianity has reached spiritual famine times, when the rules are being changed to suit the needs of Gentiles, not promote true Christianity.

This reading from Mark will be read aloud on the twenty-fifth Sunday after Pentecost, when one’s own personal ministry for Yahweh should already be well underway. The lesson to be gained is to see the dangers of being led astray. Being led by anyone other than Yahweh means wandering away from the only source of truth. One must find Yahweh and talk to Him about yo0ur needs. Anything less than saying, “I need my soul saved” will be ignored. Hannah promised her soul to Yahweh, along with her son, if her prayer was answered. That is what one’s soul must say to begin a relationship of love with the God one will marry for eternity. That means one will submit and Yahweh will speak through your body of flesh saying, “I am.” Jesus will then be moving your lips and feet, so you enter ministry seeking those souls in need of salvation.

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