The Ships of Chittim

Hi, dear Reggie. I want to share with you some very interesting thing. It is about ships of Chittim. Look at this:

KJV-And ships shall come from the coast of Chittim, and shall afflict Asshur, and shall afflict Eber, and he also shall perish for ever.
(Nu.24:24)
NASB-But ships {shall come} from the coast of Kittim, And they shall afflict Asshur and will afflict Eber; So they also {will come} to destruction. (Nu.24:24)
In Russian translation of Bible ,Tora and Tanah the word “THEY” (“So THEY also {will come} to destruction”) have to do with ships of Chittim.

I think there is a parallel with Dan 11:30 and have to do with your words:

….“In support of this view, notice that only a short while before the Antichrist launches his successful assault on Jerusalem (Dn 11:31 with Rev 13:14), he is successfully intercepted and turned back by the “ships of Chittim” (Dn 11:30; Chittim or Kittim is a term commonly associated with the maritime powers of the Mediterranean coastlands). We should note that something has happened between verses 30 and 31 THAT HAS COMPLETELY SHIFTED THE BALANCE OF POWER. (Maybe because of destruction of Chittim’s ships?)… or am I in error?

So I think all Balaam’s prophecy is very interesting…
Thanks God for His words through you!
A.

In my opinion your suggestion is not in error. Not only the ships of Chittim, but the western power (or powers) that is represented by the ships of Chittim might also come under sudden attack at the same time that the Antichrist invades Israel.

I suggested that an alliance between Israel and the nation or nations represented by this naval presence in the Mediterranean helps to explain why Israel puts its trust in a man that can stand between the Arab world and the western advocates of land for peace. We may be sure that the Islamic Arab world would never concede any part of the temple mount to Israel’s orthodox community under the present conditions that exists today. Something big has got to give!

I see more clearly something that always perplexed me. How would Israel come to put its trust in a single man who will rise from the eastern half of the Roman world, out of one of the four divisions of Alexander’s kingdom, according to Dan 8:9? There would be the danger of divided loyalties to say the least. Seeing the relationship that the ships of Chittim apparently has to the guardianship of the peace has put it all in perspective for me. I see now that it is not so much the Antichrist (the vile person of Dan 11:21) that Israel trusts; it is the US. or some such powerful alliance of nations who will stand as guarantor and protectorate of the peace. In that way, Israel can dare to negotiate her otherwise “indefensible borders” in exchange for peace and international guarantees of protection.

We may be sure that the Islamic Arab nations will not be happy to recognize Israel’s right to statehood. There must be some great change to bring them to the table. Any Arab and Islamic recognition of Israel will come reluctantly if at all. The Antichrist only pretends to support the covenant. He hates it; as does the many with whom he secretly conspires for its destruction (Dan 11:27-30). So it is reasonable to infer that something big has got to happen in the region that will radically change the face of Middle East politics, as shown by the recent speeches by Mahmoud Abbas and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the UN general assembly. They were quite loud in their sworn promise to never recognize Israel’s right to exist. For the covenant to be confirmed, we may be sure that there must be a massive shift in the politics of the region, since under the current conditions, the Arab world will never tolerate Jewish reclamation of any part of the forbidden temple mount. I have always supposed it will require nothing short of war for the present political state of affairs to change THAT dramatically.

If the current balance of world power continues to the end, the ships of Chittim would be the US, and possibly a league of nations (the covenant is confirmed “with many”). These will be the “guarantors” of the peace that permits Israel to proceed with its plans to build the temple and start the daily sacrifice that the Antichrist will stop in the middle of the week (Dan 8:11; 9:27; 11:31; 12:11). Notice also that this sudden invasion of Jerusalem is against what Daniel calls, “the holy covenant” (Dan 11:28, 30). This is the covenant that I believe was “confirmed” (not made or created, but the word means to strengthen or cause to prevail) in Dan 9:27. I believe the covenant of Dan 9:27 is not merely a peace arrangement, but it is the same “holy covenant” referred to in Dan 11:28, 30. It is therefore a covenant that already exists. It is not “made;” it is “confirmed.” Dan 9:27 is not properly translated, “and he shall make a firm covenant with many,” but rather, “he shall make firm THE covenant (i.e., the “holy covenant”) with many.

Confirmation of this holy covenant necessarily includes a dangerous “league” (alliance or agreement) with the Antichrist (Dan 11:23). This will be the false peace (Dan 8:25; 11:23-24; Eze 38:8, 11, 14), the “agreement with death and hell” (Isa 28:15, 18) that will permit Israel and the unbelieving world to so presumptuously declare “peace and safety!” (1Thes 5:3). We may imagine that if Israel was saying “peace and safety” at the beginning of the peace treaty, they will be saying it now even more confidently than ever after the ships of Chittim have so successfully intervened. This mighty demonstration of force will greatly reassure Israel and her friends just how invincible this peace really is that permits Israel’s return to the institutions of the holy covenant. No doubt, many that hold an optimistic view of Israel’s future will feel very vindicated in their rejection of the prophetic warnings of imminent calamity (see Isa 28). But the proverbial rug is about to pulled out to the shock and astonishment of all who have put their trust in man.

[Note: It is not the secular world that will recognize the covenant as holy. That is God’s view of Israel’s right to the Land and to the temple mount. Some nations (certainly the ten) will “hate the covenant and conspire against it” (Dan 11:27-28, 30-31). On one side, the covenant is holy, because it recognizes Israel’s right to the Land and city, particularly the controversial temple mount. But on the other hand, it is also a covenant with death and hell, because of Israel’s trust in man as its security and guarantor.]

I pointed out that in the space of just one verse (Dan 11:30-31), the ships of Chittim that were able to successfully repulse the southward advance of the Antichrist (a man that in the very next verse will hold the entire world ransom by his military and economic dominance). In the very short time contemplated between those two verses, something has happened that has nullified the mighty power of the west. What is it? In Dan 11:30 the ships of Chittim turns back the Antichrist. In the next verse he goes with irresistible force to the temple to stop the sacrifice and place the abomination that starts the tribulation (Dan 11:31; 12:11 with Mt 24:15-16, 21; 2Thes 2:4; Rev 11:2; 13:5). What has happened in such a short space of time? That is the question I have not heard any commentator ask, even among those few who reject the common view that all of this was fulfilled in antiquity.

In Dan 11:30 the Antichrist is either unable or unwilling to challenge the might of the ships of Chittim. This leads us to ask, what has happened between verses 30 and 31 that can explain such a sudden and massive shift in the balance of world power? Well, for one thing, this man has just risen from the dead by reason of the healing of the mortal wound (Rev 13:3, 12). After his ascent into the abyss, he ascends as “the “beast that was, and is not, and yet is” (Rev 17:8, 17). The resurrection of the beast (‘man of sin’) fulfills the mystery of iniquity that is necessary before Jesus can return (2Thes 2:3, 7-8). Also, this now risen ruler has secured the backing and support of that host of gentile nations mentioned in Eze 38:2, 5-6 and also Ps 83.

So what happened to the western power that had so lately flexed its military muscle and turned back the very man who in such a short while is to become the dominant military power who will control the economy of the world? I believe something more serious is implied than merely a strategic move that takes the west by surprise and cuts off their ability to interfere with his plans against Israel.

I believe the US and its allies may be among those whom Ezekiel describes as “those who dwell carelessly in the isles” (Eze 39:6). Although the fire is sent from God, it is no contradiction if that fire should come through the agency of the ten kings allied with the Antichrist, who “hate the whore and burn her flesh with fire” (Rev 17:6). This will certainly be fulfilled when the Antichrist attacks Jerusalem, but when pondering these passages, the thought occurred that this fiery judgment could also extend to the supporters of Israel, the ships of Chittim. Who is to say that at the same time the Land of Israel is being flooded with the deadly foe, the complacent west is not receiving a fiery judgment by a sudden and unexpected nuclear strike on its principal cities? It is chilling thought, but I think true.

So at the very same time that Jerusalem is being suddenly and unexpectedly attacked, so also is the complacent, and equally unsuspecting west who have supported and even promised protection for the deadly peace arrangement with an Antichrist, by the presumptuous pressure that the west has put on Israel to exchange land for peace, land that God said is not Israel’s to negotiate, because it is His (Ex 34:12; Lev 25:23).

So much appreciate you dear brothers and the knowledge that you have covenanted to remember us in your prayers. Reggie

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