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Prophecy is usually multi-layered. Many have said that there is only one true fulfillment of prophecy. The truth is that they have only seen one fulfillment, and if another shows up, they delete it to maintain their traditional belief.
In the case of Israel's first captivity to the king of Mesopotamia (i.e., Babylon), there is both a short-term and a long-term fulfillment. In the short term, it was an eight year captivity to Babylon. In the long term, it began a very long time cycle of 8 cycles of 414 years.
The 414-year cycle is what we call "Cursed Time." This cycle is explained and illustrated in detail in my book, Secrets of Time. For newer readers, it is actually a Grace Period from the time that God pronounces sentence (curse of the law) until the time that the sentence is executed. The purpose of Cursed Time is to give the cursed nation time to repent.
If repentance and real change occurs during that Grace Period, the Cursed Time cycle ends without consequence, and the nation then begins a 76-year "cleansing" period. At the end of 76 years, the nation under the curse of the law has reached the 490-year point, which begins its "Blessed Time." (414 + 76 = 490)
I have found in my own life that this same principle works in the short term, but when applied to individuals, it is in 414-DAY cycles, followed by a 76-DAY period.
By the way, not every sin calls for Cursed Time. It appears to be applicable more to callings and leadership issues. For instance, I entered Cursed Time on Dec. 4/5, 1981 for being in a calling that was not mine (i.e., I was a pastor). That time ended on January 22/23, 1983 precisely 414 days later, and then I had a 76-day time of cleansing ("reconciliation") until April 8/9, 1983.
I learned from this that I was not a pastor but a teacher, and I resolved never to make that mistake again.
In applying this to Israel's captivity to the king of Mesopotamia, we find that Israel was not living up to its calling to bring forth the fruits of the Kingdom (the Fruitfulness Mandate). So God brought them into captivity for eight years. By "the Law of First Mention," this first captivity was a pattern-setter that has remained with us until now, the year 2010. My reason for discussing this issue now is because we appear to be ending this long cycle on Feb. 14, 2010. You need this background material, then, in order to be watchful with some degree of knowledge.
In studying the chronology of that first captivity, the Bible is silent on its timing, but the book of Jasher gives us the necessary details. Jasher is a book mentioned twice in Scripture as a historical reference book, and it covers the time from Adam to the death of Joshua and the rule of the elders. Jasher essentially ends with this first captivity.
Though Jasher is not a book of the Bible (nor should it be), I have found it to be helpful on occasion to clarify the biblical account. A very old and faded copy was found in a rabbi's office in Venice, Italy in 1613 and was translated into English in 1840. I have copies for $15 if anyone wants a copy.
Anyway, this first captivity occurred just 42 years after Israel crossed the Jordan into the Promised Land. They repented and God sent Othniel, the first "Judge," to set them free in the 50th year. It was their first Jubilee in Canaan.
Here is a summary of the chronology from Israel's Jordan crossing:
42 years to the first captivity
8 years of captivity
40 years of peace
18 years captivity to Moabites
80 years of peace
20 years captivity to Canaanites
40 years peace
7 years captivity to Midianites
40 years peace
18 years captivity to Ammonites
40 years captivity to Philistines (these last two were back to back)
354 years TOTAL
By working backward, we discover that Saul was crowned king of Israel just 3 years after the end of the Philistine captivity. We know this because the foundation of Solomon's temple was laid 480 years after the Exodus (1 Kings 6:1), or 440 years after the Jordan crossing.
The foundation was laid in the fourth year of Solomon. When we add to this the 40 years of King David and the 40 years of King Saul, we conclude that the foundation was laid 83-84 years after the coronation of King Saul. So 440 minus 84 years brings us to 355-356.
So God's deliverance from the Philistines occurred 354 years after the Jordan crossing, and Saul was crowned king in the third year (355-356) after that deliverance took place. The people demanded an earthly king, because they were tired of God's righteous standard. Every time they became idolatrous, God would bring them into captivity. They had spent a third of their time in Canaan in captivity.
Their solution was NOT to get rid of their idols or purge their hearts of idolatrous tendencies. Their solution was to reject God as King (1 Sam. 8:7) and to put a man in his place who would be more understanding and more lenient with them. They desired the freedom to sin without consequences. Sound familiar? That was their idea of freedom, and it is still with us today.
In further study of chronology, which I proved in Secrets of Time, the Babylonian Empire fell in 537 B.C., which was precisely 2 x 414 years after the king of Mesopotamia first took Israel captive. Babylon fell to the Medes and Persians in the latter days of the prophet Daniel, and this brought Judah's 70-year captivity to an end.
In the short term, Israel had an eight-year captivity at the beginning and a 70-year captivity at the end, but on a deeper level, there was also an 828-year Cursed Time cycle imposed upon Babylon. Babylon was given 2 cycles of Cursed Time in which to fulfill the responsibility of being "chosen." By the law of authority, Babylon was made responsible to bring forth the fruits of the Kingdom, which they were unable to do. Hence, they fell on Cursed Time when the time came to execute judgment.
I don't want to confuse you further, but if you do the math, Babylon fell in the year 3358 (from Adam). The first captivity occurred in 2530. If you subtract the two numbers, you come to 828, which is 2 x 414 years.
When we see events occurring on such specific time cycles, it shows cause and effect. This is one of at least six examples of Cursed Time that we see in Scripture, and by studying them closely, we are able to understand the mind of God and how He judges nations. It is all part of the laws of Time.It was by studying this that I came to understand the laws affecting the Birthright, which I explained in the past two days.
The Birthright includes Authority and Responsibility in equal measures. It is the Dominion Mandate and the Fruitfulness Mandate. To be "chosen" (or "elected") means that God gives Authority and with it comes the responsibility to bring forth the fruits of the Kingdom. This was the main subject of Jesus' parable in Matt. 21:33-43. God planted a vineyard in Canaan and then expected Israel to render to Him the fruit of the Kingdom.
The story is complex, because it also involves transfer of authority to other nations at various times, putting Israel into captivity. Thus, the rise and fall of nations are explained in terms of God's desire for "fruit," which is the "fruit of the womb," or the manifestation of the sons of God. This has always been the divine purpose for the earth, and God will not be satisfied until this purpose is accomplished in his Chosen ones.
This is deep stuff, I know. You may have to read this a few times to understand it. It would be better to read the whole book, Secrets of Time. It is posted online, and is also available in print for $20.