The Iranian Threat That Causes Fear in the Land of the Living
Never before has the Iranian menace been so real for the region and the world thanks to the lifting of the Iranian sanctions, in accordance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) of Obama, Europe, Russia and China. Had the sanctions been in place for a little longer, Iran would not have had the money to finance its presence in the Iraq and Syria, the proxy war against Yemen and Israel. The Iranian threat, therefore, would not have existed in the first place.
The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the work of President Obama, gave the ability of Iran to operate undisturbed across Iraq to Syria and Lebanon and the borders with the Golan Heights. JCPOA also gave the ability of Teheran to station missiles along this route, directed at Israel – an arrangement intended to provide Iran with the capability to strike first. As a result, never before have Islamic Iran and Israel been so closed to a direct war. The Iranian threat has become real not only for the region but for the world, as well. JCPOA, or the infamous Iran deal as it is known, sold fear in the Middle East, thus having fulfilled what had been written in the prophecy: “because they caused fear in the land of the living”.
There is a prophecy in Jeremiah concerning the land of Elam upon which the wrath of the Highest will be poured in the latter days. According to the word of Elohim, the military might of Elam will be broken and its people will be scattered. And there will be no nation where the outcasts of Elam do not go. And what is even more intriguing, the Elohim of Israel said that He will set His throne in Elam. So, who is ‘Elam’ in the prophecy and how the Big Four set the stage for the Iranian threat to wipe out Israel from the map of the world?
Who is Elam in the end-time prophecy?
The word of YHVH came to Yirmeyahu (Jeremiah) concerning Elam, in the beginning of the reign of Tsidkiyahu (Zedekiah), the king of Judah, saying,
See, I am breaking the bow of Elam, the chief of their might. And I shall bring upon Elam the four winds from the four quarters of the heavens and scatter them toward all those winds. And there shall be no nation where the outcasts of Elam do not go. And I shall break Elam before their enemies and before those who seek their life. And I shall bring evil upon them, my burning displeasure, declares Yehovah. And I shall send the sword after them until I have consumed them. And I shall set My throne in Elam, and destroy from there the king and the heads, declares Yehovah. And it shall be in the latter days that I turn back the captivity of Elam, declares Yehovah. (Jer 49:34-39)
In Gen 10:22, we find that Elam is the first son of Shem, son of Noach. For our study, most unfortunately, the Table of Nations in Genesis 10:1-32 stops short to tell us the genealogy of Elam. We are told the genealogies of only two sons of Shem: Arpakshad and Aram, but not of the other three: Elam, Asshur, and Lud. The name “Elam” is used very sparingly throughout the Scripture: one of the occurrences is the name of the obscured nation of Elam in the prophecy. So, who is Elam?
Elam עֵילָם, eylam, in Hebrew means “hidden”, that is, “distant”. It comes from the Hebrew verb alam, to veil from sight, that is, to conceal. We know that according to the Table of Nations in Genesis 10, Elam is a Semitic people. Then, Elam however veil its face from history in order to appear later in Isa 22:6 as people serving in the Assyrian army, and in Isa 21:2 as Madai (the Medes) coming against Babylon: “Go up, O Elam! besiege, O Madai!” (Also, Jer 25:25)
In history, the Elamites were known to be excellent archers. It was their strength and the power of their bowmen that brought them many victories on the battlefields. Therefore, when the prophecy in Jer 49:34 says “I am breaking the bow of Elam” is thus referring to rendering Elam defenseless. Why should the Lord say that, since the prophecy in Jer 49:34-39 does not contain any indication of hostility on the part of the Elamites towards Judah? Nor is it any clear as to why the chastisement is not said to proceed from a particular enemy, but directly from Elohim. If we compare this prophecy with the remaining prophecies of Jeremiah concerning the heathen nations, we shall find that it contains no reference to any threat by the king of Babylon towards the Elamites, either. What is even more obscure is that the prophecy in Jeremiah 49 announces the fall of Elam and its dispersion by enemies in a very general way.
However, the prophecy does set, what looks like, a catastrophe brought on Elam by the Highest, yet this sudden execution of the punishment raises the question as to the time and the circumstances of this punishment. We are not told in Jeremiah 49 either as to why Elam will be punished, nor are we given any reason for it in its historical relation to Israel, because there is no such a relation between both nations that could deserve a destruction, as described in the prophecy.
Then the prophecy continues to say that the Elamites will be dispersed to all the four winds, i.e., to all parts of the earth. This seems to mean that Elam is to be attacked on all sides by enemies and be scattered in every direction. This is evident from Jer 49:37. However, as already discussed, it is not evident who those enemies will be, since it is not evident from the Scripture that Elam had any. Yet, the text does say that there will be enemies of Elam. We should notice that YHVH says thus concerning Elam’s enemies, “I shall break Elam before their enemies”. This can only be understood that although they (the enemies) will gather against Elam, He will break Elam before their eyes. This is emphasized by the repetitive use of the phrase “I shall”. The message concerning Elam ends with the prophetic end-of-days formula that is not unique only to Elam, but to all nations: “it shall be in the latter days that I turn back the captivity of” … in which “the return of the captive” most apparently refers to the Messianic future.
Ezekiel also recorded a prophecy concerning Elam in which we are given, what the present author believes, the possible reason for the unexpected destruction of Elam and the dispersion of its inhabitants. We read thus in Ezekiel 32,
There is Elam and all her multitudes, around her graves, all of them slain, fallen by the sword, who have gone down uncircumcised to the lower parts of the earth, because they caused fear in the land of the living. And they bear their shame with those going down to the pit. They have set her bed in the midst of the slain, with all her crowd, with her graves all around it, all of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword, for the fear they caused in the land of the living. So, they bear their shame with those going down to the pit. In the midst of the slain they have been placed. There are Meshech and Tuval and all her crowd, with all their graves around it, all of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword, because they caused fear in the land of the living. (Eze 32:24-26)
The prophecy concerning Elam is preceded by the prophecy concerning Ashshur (Assyria) in Ezekiel 32:22-23, which is followed immediately by those of Elam and Edom. Elohim says just the same of Elam as He says of Ashshur and Edom, and almost in the same wording. The only difference is that the prophecy concerning Elam is more descriptive, as to the way Elam will be punished.
We should notice without failure another repetitive phrase Elohim uses in the prophecy in Ezekiel 32, namely “because they caused fear in the land of the living”. Here the phrase “the land of the living” seems to be contrasted with “the lower parts of the earth” or the nether land where the souls of the dead rest (Heb. sheol in verse 27). This comes to tell us that “the land of the living” refers to the whole of the earth, as opposed to the world of the dead. But it could also refer to the land of Israel, as the land set-apart for the living, the holy land.
In this prophecy Meshech and Tubal are briefly mentioned. We see them again in Ezekiel 38 to share the same fate with Persia, as a northern power, in the last war of Gog of Magog. The idea here is indeed to bridge both prophecies, but also to link Elam in Jeremiah 49 and Ezekiel 32 to Persia in Ezekiel 38-39. The message that deserves our attention is that Elam will be punished for having caused fear upon the earth. For more prophetic insight on the prophecy concerning Meshech and Tubal, it will be beneficial for the reader to read what we have written in Chapter “Two Scenarios for the War of Gog of Magog“ of the book The Reckoning of Time.
How Elam tried to conceal its identity
In the Western world, Persia was the common name for Iran until 1935, when Reza Shah Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran from 1925 until 1941, asked foreign officials to use the term “Iran”. According to Encyclopedia Britannica, Iran literally means “Land of Aryans” in Farsi (Persian) language, which is derived from Middle Farsi “Eran”. It is also accepted that there is a close relation between the Iranian and Indo-Aryan ethnic groups that share linguistic features to such a degree that Indo-Iranian group is generally described as a distinct subgroup of Indo-European languages spoken in most of Europe and in much of Southwest and South Asia. This makes the Indo-Iranian languages spoken by nearly one billion people.
The ancient Greeks (who had previously tended to use names related to “Madai”) began to use adjectives such as Perses, Persike, or Persís in the fifth century BC to refer to the Persian empire. These words were most likely taken from the Old Persian “Parsa” (“Paras” in Hebrew). In Latin, the name for the whole empire, that encompassed the territory from India on the east to Egypt and Thrace on the west, and included, besides portions of Europe and Africa, the whole of western Asia between the Black Sea, the Caucasus, the Caspian and the Jaxartes on the north, the Arabian desert, the Persian Gulf and the Indian Ocean on the south, was “Persia”.
The name “Persia” appears first in the prophecy in Ezekiel 38 and 39 (the prophecy concerning Gog of Magog) with no evidence as to where this nation has come from, but to tell us only that it is part of the coalition of armies of Gog summoned against the land of Israel. Daniel provides little more information by saying that Media and Persia were in union that would destroy Babylon, “The ram which you saw, having two horns, are the kings of Media and Persia” (Dan 8:20). From this we conclude that Media and Persia are one kingdom that will be known in the prophecy with its only name: Persia, whose first king was Darius the Mede (Dan 5:31) and all consecutive rulers will be called “Persians”. This is the same Persia that destroyed Babylon and whose second king, Koresh (Cyrus) the Great, the Persian, let the Jews return to the homeland and build the Temple to YHVH, as we read in 2Ch 36:22-23.
And in the first year of Koresh king of Persia, in order to accomplish the word of Yehovah by the mouth of Yirmeyahu, Yehovah stirred up the spirit of Koresh king of Persia, so that he called out in all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying, “Thus said Koresh king of Persia, ‘Yehovah Elohim of the heavens has given me all the kingdoms of the earth. And He has commanded me to build Him a house in Yerushalayim, which is in Yehudah. Whoever is among you of all His people, Yehovah his Elohim be with him, and let him go up!’” (2Ch 36:22-23)
But who are the Persians and where did they come from, because we know nothing of them until that moment? According to Josephus Flavius, Elam is the Persian people. We read from his Antiquities of the Jews, Book 1, Chapter 6:4, as follows:
Shem, the third son of Noach, had five sons, who inhabited the land that began at Euphrates, and reached to the Indian Ocean. For Elam left behind him the Elamites, the ancestors of the Persians.
From this we learn that Elam, the son of Shem, was the progenitor of the Persians. However, in verse 1 of Antiquities of the Jews, Book 1, Chapter 6, we learn that the Medes were the descendants of Madai, son of Yaphet, son of Noach (Gen 10:2).
For Gomer founded those whom the Greeks now call Galatians, [Galls,] but were then called Gomerites. Magog founded those that from him were named Magogites, but who are by the Greeks called Scythians. Now as to Javan and Madai, the sons of Japhet; from Madai came the Madeans, who are called Medes, by the Greeks; but from Javan, Ionia, and all the Grecians, are derived. Thobel founded the Thobelites, who are now called Iberes; …
In other words, Persia is a mixed people of the Medes, the sons of Yaphet (Japhet) the father of the European nations and the Elamites, the sons of Shem the father of all Semitic people (Hebrews, Elamites, Arabs, Arameans, and others). So, it looks like Elam had disappeared from history as a Semitic people only to appear later when it had no longer a Semitic but an Aryan language, for they had mingled with the sons of Yaphet. And because the modern Persian language (Farsi) belongs to the Indo-Iranian languages, a sub-group of the Indo-European languages, it appears that sometime in history Elam had changed its identity, culture, and language, from being a Semitic people to being Yaphetic people.
It is the present author’s opinion that on the matter of Elam’s “metamorphosis” sometime before Babylon’s destruction, the Medes (Yaphetic people) and the Elamites (Semitic people) merged to become one nation. In this merge the dominant ethnic group, Elam, lost or gave up its Semitic culture and language and became a Yaphetic nation. In the modern history, Persia thus became what is today known as “Iran”.
This identity change is not without precedent in the world history. The French nation, for instance. Once, the French belonged to the Celtic (Gaelic) stock. But the Celts split and some of them settled in what is now Ireland and Britain and others remained on the continent. Those who remained on the continental Europe, lost their identity and culture to the Romans, as they were Romanized, to become now France, a completely different nation with no evident roots to the Celtic people.
Why and how Elam did this “metamorphosis” from being a Semitic people to Yaphetic, we do not know. The Iranians call themselves the fathers of the white race, the Aryans. But what we do know is that in the Hebrew Scripture, as we argued above, their identity remains well preserved for the end-time events in Ezekiel 38 and 39, the war of Gog of Magog. And indeed, the prophecies of Jer 49:34-39 and Eze 32:24-26 are very specific in revealing the identity of Elam, now Iran. That the identity of Elam is not lost in history but well preserved for the end-times is evident from the concluding statement: “it shall be in the latter days that I turn back the captivity of Elam”.
The Iranian threat that causes fear
President Donald Trump accused the administration of the former president Barack Obama of lifting sanctions on Iran as part of the 2015 “nuclear accord” just before the sanctions could cripple the Iranian regime and bring it to collapse. The Obama administration sold the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) aka “the Iran nuclear deal” to the American public and the world as quote: “truly one of our most important accomplishments of 2015”.
According to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between Iran and the P5+1 (the United States, France, Britain, Russia, Germany and China), but truly it was a military treaty, “the nuclear accord” lifted the economic sanctions on Iran in return for a curtailing of Iran’s nuclear activities. We should notice that the so-called P5+1 (the United States, France, Britain, Germany, Russia, and China) is actually the Big Four in the prophecy in Esras: The United States, the European Union, Russia, and China. But for more prophetic insight on the prophecy of the Big Four, the reader is encouraged to read the articles from the series The Beast wounded to Death but Resurrected: “The Beast Wounded to Death But Resurrected“, “The Beast Wounded to Death but Resurrected. Two Shall be Kept to the End.” and “The Beast Wounded to Death But Resurrected. The Old Europe is Dying.”
However, according to the “nuclear deal”, the restrictions on Iran will last only ten years (effective 16 January 2016), after which the Iranian threat against Israel will become very real, and Iran will have the freedom and the capabilities to build nuclear weapons, as the Mullahs wish. Thus, the Iran treaty has curtailed only Iran’s nuclear activities, and only temporarily, but not Iran’s nuclear ambitions and the Iranian threat, which are always permanent. And when the Iran deal will come to end in 2025, there will be nothing that can curtail Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
These nuclear ambitions, which Iran never hides them, are to wipe out Israel from the map of the world. Yet, the world has turned a blind eye and pretends Iranian threat does not exist. The public opinion has been blinded to see that the appeasement of evil never brings peace, only more of the Iranian threat. The world thinks that if Iran is appeased, the world will be safe for now. The Big Four, however, are very well aware of the Iranian threat to wipe out Israel from the map of the world, but they did anyway.
The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), that was supposed to curb nuclear Iran, says nothing concerning Iran’s missile tests. And most likely that was a very well-designed intent in “the Iran nuclear deal”. While the temporary and partial “restrictions” are working out their goal to bring the public opinion in a dormant and quiescent state, Iran has been left undisturbed to work on its ballistic missile program. For we see that Iran continues to develop its ballistic missile program in co-operation with North Korea and possibly China despite “the restrictions.” And when Iran’s ballistic missiles are ready for use, the Mullahs will have the means of transportation of the Wicked Fire Prophesied in Zechariah 5. Because according to the real accords of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) read between the lines, Iran’s nuclear program has never been annulled, and the Iranian threat has never been eliminated, but slowed down temporarily. This we find in one of the requirements of “the Iran nuclear deal” according to which Iran has the right to possess “no more” than 300 kilograms of low-enriched uranium by “Implementation Day”. “The Implementation Day” is the stage in which Iran will fulfill its obligations, and the economic sanctions against the regime will be lifted. Iran “fulfilled” the expected obligation within a few weeks of the accord.
That was the “truly one of our most important accomplishments of 2015” of Barak Hussein Obama, one year before he had to leave White House. Obama was very concerned to expedite his big “accomplishment” of his political career: “the deal of the century” as he called it. Whether JCPOA is the wicked fire prophesied in Zechariah 5 brought in the land of Shinar (that is Iran) by the P5+1, we do not know with certainty. But what we know is that Iranian nuclear threat is something the Land of the Living One is very concerned of.
In return of the nuclear deal, Iran preserved the right to work on a low-profile nuclear program until the right time for the Mullahs comes. The Europeans, Russians, and Chinese received what they wanted from the deal, namely “economic co-operation”. Europe sold its Airbuses, and the Chinese got more petrol so needed for their economy. The Russians sold their S-400s to protect Iran’s nuclear installations and got more Iranian boots on the ground in Syria, so that Russia did not have to risk its own. The United States of Obama sold more weapons to Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, and Israel. In actuality, what the Big Four accomplished with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was that they sold more fear in the troublesome Middle East, the last thing Israel needed. That was all by design. Thus, the Big Four fulfilled what had been written in the prophecy: “… because they caused fear in the land of the living”. Because they caused more Iranian threat.
Therefore, what President Trump meant when he accused Barack Obama of lifting the Iranian sanctions, in accordance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), was that had the sanctions been in place for little longer, the Iranium threat would have been solved quickly and easily, and now we would not have to write this article in the first place. But the sanctions were lifted up, the Iranian threat against the land of the living intensified, not without Obama’s help.
On the same day Iran had access to its frozen assets in billions of dollars the Mullahs quickly put into use: namely to fund the wars in Syria and Yemen, the threats against Saudi Arabia, and the ultimate goal to bring Iran’s proxies: Hezbollah, Hamas, and various Shiite militias from Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, closer to the borders of the land of the living: Israel. Elam (Iran) and its multitudes invaded Syria along with Russia under the pretext of fighting terrorism, and the Iranian threat became more real than ever. Thus, “they caused fear in the land of the living”. The intrusion of the Iranian drone in the Israeli airspace and Israel’s massive attack in response on Iran’s military installations in Syria in February 2018 could fulfill the prophecy in Jer 49:34-39, which we can read thus:
See, I am breaking the bow of Iran, the chief of their might. And I shall bring upon Iran the four winds from the four quarters of the heavens and scatter them toward all those winds. And there shall be no nation where the outcasts of Iran do not go. And I shall break Iran before their enemies and before those who seek their life. And I shall bring evil upon them, my burning displeasure, declares Yehovah. And I shall send the sword after them until I have consumed them. And I shall set My throne in Iran, and destroy from there the king and the heads, declares Yehovah. And it shall be in the latter days that I turn back the captivity of Iran, declares Yehovah.
Historically, the relations between Persia and Judah had been positive. It was King Koresh, King Darius, and King Artaxerxes, the kings of Persian, who let the Jews return to the Land and build the Temple to YHVH, with which they initiated the countdown of Daniel’s Seventy Weeks. (See Chapter “The Countdown Begins” in present author’s book The Reckoning of Time). But it was only under the Mullahs’ regime that traditionally friendly relations between Iran and Israel were brought to the brink of [nuclear] war.
In conclusion, let us read the prophecy in Eze 32:24-26 concerning the Iranian threat anew:
Because there is Iran and all its multitudes of Hezbollah, Hamas, and Shiite militias, around its grave, all of them fallen in war, because they caused fear in the Land of the living. They have set the graves for Iran, with all its multitudes, for the fear they caused in the Land of the living. So, they bear their shame with those going down to the pit. There are Turkey and Europe and all their multitudes, with all their graves around them fallen in war, because they caused fear in the Land of the living.
May we merit seeing the coming of our Mashiach speedily in our days.