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Sunday, June 21 2015
Isaiah 3: Decadence In History And Prophecy
"In the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves"
The English-language word "decadence" originated from a compound Latin word, decadentia, which was formed from de, meaning down or decline, and cado, meaning to fall. Decadence means to fall into decline, or to fall down.
How does decadence cause something to decline or fall? The answer is provided by another word that originated from "decadence" - decay. "Decay" is defined as "To pass gradually from a sound, prosperous, or perfect state, to a less perfect state, or toward weakness, or dissolution; to become decomposed or corrupted" (The Consolidated Webster Encyclopedic Dictionary). Decadence happens when what is good and righteously-strong is no longer responsibly conserved i.e. when people descend from "conservative" to "liberal" (see Which Way Is Right And Left?).
Humans have known decadence from the very beginning. The "fall of man" in and from the Garden of Eden was humanity's first plunge into the vanity and lawlessness of decadence (see Grace In The Garden).
"3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons." (Genesis 3:6-7 KJV)
By the time of Noah, humanity's decadence had corrupted itself beyond repair (see Why Did The Flood Happen?). Only Noah and his family remained righteous (see The LORD's Seed Covenants With The Two Men Of Iraq).
"6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually." (Genesis 6:5 KJV)
The great empires of Biblical history each took their turn as the "superpower" of their day. Without exception, they all fell because of an internal decadence that weakened them in relative terms to adversaries who had not yet made themselves weak through victory i.e. "fat and arrogant" vanity is no match for "lean and mean" competitiveness.
Assyria fell to Babylon (see The Prophet Daniel: Nebuchadnezzar's Image). Babylon fell to Persia (see The Prophet Daniel: The Hand Writing On The Wall). Persia fell to Greece (see The Prophet Daniel: The Ram and The He Goat). Greece fell to Rome (see A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars). Rome fell to the "Holy Roman Empire" of Germany (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation). All fell from decadence.
The Israelites repeatedly did the same thing. With the LORD defending them, while they were obedient to Him, the Israelites were an unbeatable superpower in the time of Joshua (see Joshua's Commission), before they became decadent in the era of the Judges (see The Rise Of The Judges), and then a superpower again in the time of King David (see King David's Empire), before the united kingdom was made decadent by King Solomon (see Solomon's Ballad To Losers).
The LORD (see The LORD God Our Saviour) then divided Israel into the independent kingdoms of "Israel" and "Judah," but both fell and were taken away into exile because of their decadence. None ever learned the lessons of history.
First, the Kingdom of Israel, by 721 BC (see Israel In History and Prophecy: The Lost Ten Tribes).
"5:25 And they transgressed against the God of their fathers, and went a whoring after the gods of the people of the land, whom God destroyed before them. 5:26 And the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria, and the spirit of Tilgathpilneser king of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Manasseh, and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river Gozan, unto this day." (1 Chronicles 5:25-26 KJV)
Then, the Kingdom of Judah, by 586 BC (see Why Did Judah Fall To Babylon?).
"36:15 And the LORD God of their fathers sent to them by his messengers, rising up betimes, and sending; because he had compassion on his people, and on his dwelling place: 36:16 But they mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against his people, till there was no remedy. 36:17 Therefore he brought upon them the king of the Chaldees, who slew their young men with the sword in the house of their sanctuary, and had no compassion upon young man or maiden, old man, or him that stooped for age: he gave them all into his hand. 36:18 And all the vessels of the house of God [see also The Temple Vessel Prophecies Today], great and small, and the treasures of the house of the LORD, and the treasures of the king, and of his princes; all these he brought to Babylon. 36:19 And they burnt the house of God, and brake down the wall of Jerusalem, and burnt all the palaces thereof with fire, and destroyed all the goodly vessels thereof.
In the age just before the return of Jesus Christ (see What Gospel Did Jesus Preach?), humanity, as a whole, will become as decadent through iniquity (see Iniquity In History And Prophecy) as they were in the time of Noah just before the Flood.
"3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. 3:2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3:3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 3:4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." (2 Timothy 3:1-5 KJV)
Isaiah (see also What Did Isaiah Know About Jesus Christ?) was sent by the LORD to warn Judah what would surely happen if decadence was allowed to turn the kingdom into a liberal death trap. In Isaiah's time, Judah heeded the warning. Later, by the time of the prophet Jeremiah (see Jeremiah: The Prophet's Conception), they ignored the same warning - and fell exactly as the LORD said would happen.
"3:1 For, behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, doth take away from Jerusalem and from Judah the stay and the staff, the whole stay of bread, and the whole stay of water, 3:2 The mighty man, and the man of war, the judge, and the prophet, and the prudent, and the ancient, 3:3 The captain of fifty, and the honourable man, and the counsellor, and the cunning artificer, and the eloquent orator.
Fact Finder: How did their not effectively separating themselves from the decadence of others affect the morality of Lot and his family?
This Day In History, June 21
217 BC: Carthaginian forces led by Hannibal (a Punic Carthaginian military commander, considered by many historians to be one of the greatest military commanders in history) destroyed a Roman army (see also Legions Of Men And Angels) under consul Gaius Flaminicy in a battle at Lake Trasimenus in central Italy (see The Politics Of Rome and A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars).
524: The Battle of Vezeronce. The Burgundians under King Godomar defeated the Franks.
533: A Byzantine fleet under Belisarius sailed from Constantinople to battle the Vandals (an east Germanic tribe; see also The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation) in Africa.
1307: Kulug Khan was crowned as Khagan of the Mongols and Wuzong of the Yuan (see also Gog and Magog).
1314: The Scots of Robert the Bruce defeated Edward II's army at Bannockburn.
1377: King Edward III of England died. King from 1327, he attempted to invade France in 1339 and 1340, thereby starting the Hundred Years War. He was succeeded by his grandson, Richard II.
1529: During the War of the League of Cognac, French military forces were routed out of northern Italy by Spanish forces at the Battle of Landriano.
1633: Galileo Galilei was forced by the Roman Catholic Church to "abjure, curse, and detest" his (entirely correct) theory that the earth orbits the sun (see also What Can You See In The Firmament Of The Heavens?).
1667: The Peace of Breda ended the Second Anglo-Dutch War (1664-67), with the Dutch ceding New Amsterdam, known today as New York, to the English.
1749: Halifax was founded when Col. Edward Cornwallis brought more than 2,500 English immigrants to Nova Scotia ("New Scotland").
1791: King Louis XVI of France and his family fled to Varennes during the French Revolution.
1824: During the Greek War of Independence, Egyptian forces captured Psara in the Aegean Sea.
1887: Queen Victoria celebrated her golden jubilee marking 50 years on the British throne.
1900: The Boxer Rebellion began in China to oppose foreign interference in Chinese affairs. An international force of Japanese, Russian, German, U.S., British, Italian and Austro-Hungarian troops put down the uprising by August 14 (which obviously proved that there was foreign interference in Chinese affairs).
1977: Menachem Begin became Israel's 6th Prime Minister (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel Of Judah).
1982: John Hinckley was found not guilty by reason of insanity of the attempted murder of U.S. President Reagan in 1981.
1990: An earthquake in northern Iran killed over 50,000 and injured more than 200,000.
1990: Hungary officially re-launched its stock exchange, 42 years after its closure by the Communist Party. The Budapest stock exchange was the first Western-style securities exchange in any Warsaw Pact country.
2006: The newly-discovered moons of the planet Pluto were officially named Nix and Hydra (although most scientists reject religion, they nevertheless very often name scientific discoveries and programs after pagan gods and idols).