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Fleeing Through a Valley to Safety




July 30, 2003

Fleeing Through a Valley to Safety

Zechariah 14:5 – And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah:

Zechariah 14:6 – And the Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with thee. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark:

In Prophecy Update Number 130 I gave my reasons for placing the last phrase in Zechariah 14:5 as the beginning of Zechariah 14:6, and noted that the events of the “day” in verse 6 pictured the Second Advent and the atmospheric conditions at the close of the battle of Armageddon.  The atmospheric conditions associated with the Second Advent, and a full exposition of Verse 6, may be found in Birth Pang Archive numbers 9, 10, and 11.  It would be most helpful to review Prophecy Update Number 130 and the three Birth Pangs in our archives before continuing.

The splitting of the Mount of Olives in verse 5 occurs some 1260 days before verse 6, and is what God does when he begins to fight for Israel at the fall of Jerusalem to the antichrist.  It is the beginning of a protective action by God, which will continue until he delivers Israel by his power some 3 and ½ years later at Armageddon.

Zechariah 14:2-4 – For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. [3] Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle. [4] And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.

God begins his fight for Israel by providing the Jerusalem inhabitants a way of escape to the east through a wide valley he creates in the midst of the Mount of Olives.  Jerusalem’s inhabitants flee through it, and then move southward through the north to south flowing valleys of the Judean Wilderness into the Negev Wilderness south of Beersheba. God continues to fight for Israel by protecting them in the Negev for the last 3 and ½ years of what is called the tribulation period.

Revelation 12:6 – And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.

I do not believe the word translated as “Azal” in Zechariah 14:5 is the name of a proper place.  In all the archeological and Biblical searches for such a place in Hebrew literature, it has never been found.  So why is it capitalized and, as such, commonly accepted to be an ancient city that once existed in Israel?  The Catholic Vulgate, prepared by Saint Jerome in the fourth century, and which serves as the authorized version of the Bible by the Catholic Church, first started to identify the Hebrew word translated as “azal” as an appellative, a common noun, that is, as a place name, rather than what it really is, a descriptive term used to depict the wideness characteristic of the valley God will create for his people to flee through on their way to his place of safety.

Zechariah 14:5 – And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah:

The word translated as “Azal” in Hebrew simply means “side or sides.” So, simply stated, Zechariah 14:5 is meant to picture to the reader that this a very wide valley, not just a narrow slit, and the word translated as “reach” is meant to emphasize that point.  It lets the reader know it will be wide enough for a large group of people to freely flow through, and that they will not have to squeeze through a narrow crack.  It pictures a very wide, level valley floor that reaches to its north and south “sides,” which are steep bluffs.

Once the Jerusalemites have cleared the eastern side of the valley, it is quite likely that the diverted Jordan River will fill in behind them by the transformation process presented in Archive Birth Pangs 22 to 30, and thereby prevent the armies of antichrist from pursing them through the valley.  In fact, this presents a scenario like God’s deliverance of Israel from the Egyptian Pharaoh, when they fled through two walls of water on a valley floor created between the two “sides.”  Lord willing, I will lay this out in greater detain in Prophecy Update Number 131.