Control of Jerusalem is the focus of all of the Bible’s prophecies regarding world empires. Indeed, if one keeps that single focus in mind, he can easily decipher what is the last empire to rule Jerusalem before the world (as we know it) will end and enter into another age. Since the time of their captivity to Nebuchadnezzar in Babylon (B.C. 586), the Jewish people have not ruled Jerusalem, not autonomously that is. According to Wikipedia,
The United Nations proposed, in its 1947 plan for the partition of Palestine, for Jerusalem to be a city under international administration. The city was to be completely surrounded by the Arab state, with only a highway to connect international Jerusalem to the Jewish state.
Following the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, Jerusalem was divided. The Western half of the New City became part of the newly formed state of Israel, while the eastern half, along with the Old City, was annexed by Jordan…
East Jerusalem was captured by the Israel Defense Forces during the 1967 Six Day War…. Most Jews celebrated the event as a liberation of the city; a new Israeli holiday was created, Jerusalem Day (Yom Yerushalayim)… Many large state gatherings of the State of Israel take place at the Western Wall today, including… huge celebrations on Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israel Independence Day)
Even now, Jerusalem is not completely controlled by Jews/Israelis, just as the Holy City is not completely controlled by Palestinian Arabs who desire Jerusalem as their state, despite their possessing Jordan. Thus, the continual warfare. On the surface, it appears there is no one empire completely controlling Jerusalem… a thing unprecedented in history, and therefore, worthy of our utmost attentions; because something new is about to happen–the rise of a new empire, never seen before in the world but foretold by Bible prophecy.
Prophecy as History
The above graph, shows the control of Jerusalem since B.C. 2000. Yellow indicates the Canaanite, Egyptian, Babylonian, Medo-Persian, Grecian and Roman empires. Blue represents autonomous Jewish/Hebrew rule. All of these periods of Jerusalem occupation were foretold by Daniel the Hebrew prophet, and they can be read in the Bible’s book of Daniel, chapters 2, and 7-8.
[As an aside: it might be tempting to say Daniel was wrong, because there is a time period known as the Hasmonean Dynasty (which could hardly be called an empire), when Jews ruled the land of Israel and Jerusalem. However, that was not a fully autonomous reign. It was semi-autonomous Hellenistic rule under the Seleucid Empire — a Greek occupation, something like the later rule of the Herods under Rome. For that reason, I do not consider the Hasmonean era a Jewish rule, though it was certainly hard-fought and won.]
Red (in the chart) indicates Byzantine Empire (Romish in heritage) and/or Western European rule (also Romish in heritage until the Tudors and Reformation/Enlightenment). [But, that Romishness has been recently restored in the British Kingdom, which never ousted its monarchs. This may provide further anecdotal evidence for Pope Francis’ desire to revive and re-unite all of old Rome, including the Eastern Orthodox church with (Western/Roman) Catholicism]
Green notates Islamic rule–the historical Caliphate.
From the split of the Roman empire into east and west, control of Jerusalem remained a constant alternation between Red and Green, Romish (Christian) rule and Arab (Islamic Caliphate) rule.
–Continued in Part 2—