By Walid Shoebat
Israeli archaeologists may be one step closer to solving a riddle that has vexed explorers for more than a century: the location of the tomb of the biblical Maccabees which they recognized by finding the signature of the Cross.
On Monday, Sept. 21, 2015, Amit Reem, an Israeli archaeologist for the Israel Antiquities Authority, said “the cross is a clue” as it appears on the floor of the only Byzantine-era site burial niche where a cross decorates the floor of a burial vault. Reem said that this indicates it may have marked the spot of an important Maccabean figure.
The Crusader cross was a rediscovery of French scholar Charles Clermont-Ganneau who first excavated it in the late 1800s and found a mosaic floor featuring a Byzantine Christian cross where he was drawn to a nearby tomb, where he announced that he found the remains of Mattathias. The site was then abandoned. This month, Israeli archaeologists and volunteers cleared away rubble and exposed the simple mosaic cross for the first time in more than 100 years.
Reem said the cross is a clue. It appears on the floor of a burial niche at the site. It is the only Byzantine-era site where a cross decorates the floor of a burial vault, he said, indicating that it may have marked the spot of an important figure. He thinks it is likely that the Byzantines — early Christians — identified this site as the Maccabees’ tomb. The Christians would have placed the Cross on the tomb since the Maccabees were important figures for Christendom, being the patron saints of the Christian warrior battling evil and paganism. The Maccabees were also the patron saints for the Crusaders of Medieval times.
Oren Tal, an archaeologist at Tel Aviv University agreed with Reem about other characteristics that correspond to the biblical account and to an account by ancient historian Josephus Flavius. Both describe the Tomb of the Maccabees as a tall structure that could be seen from the Mediterranean Sea, featuring columns and seven pyramids.
The connect adds up since Biblical history tells us that is was in Modiin that the Maccabee family was buried, and the tomb near the West Bank village of Midya resembles the name Modiin.
As they went on their quest, villagers pointed one European explorer toward a hilltop dotted with rock-hewn graves known by locals as “the graves of the Jews” where today even Israeli road signs still label them as Maccabean and Hanukkah ceremonies are held there to honor the ancient rebels.
WHY THE MACCABEES ARE IMPORTANT FOR CHRISTIAN SALVATION
When it comes to the Maccabees, Mattathias, a symbol of Christ defeating Antichrist, is the center of their story. Yet their books and history were deemed non-canonical by both Jews and Protestants and are still upheld by denominations with apostolic succession. For the Jews, while their book (Maccabees) is a central theme to their history, to Protestants, the book is removed because it simply speaks of souls being purged in preparation for heaven.
But to the Cross the stones are crying out and now Israel’s government Antiquities Authority said Monday that an ancient structure it began excavating this month on the side of a highway appears to match ancient descriptions of the tomb of Jewish rebels who wrested control of Judea from Seleucid rule and established a Jewish kingdom in the 2nd century B.C.
Scholars in Israel’s quarrelsome archaeological community tend to agree that the site is a significant burial site but reserve judgment about its connection to the Maccabees. “We still don’t have the smoking gun,” said Amit Reem, a government archaeologist who helped lead the dig.
The story of the Maccabees is the story of Messiah’s conquering Antichrist. Mattathias the father commissioned the son, Judas Maccabees and his other brothers to revolt against Hellenic rulers who banned holy practices, and rededicated the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. This resembles the message of Christ defeating Antichrist who came and another will come again from Asia Minor.
The Books of the Maccabees include Crusader type militant martyrs dying for their faith and was always part of Holy Scripture and became the source of inspiration to fighting tyranny. To early Christians who fought tyranny and believed that Christianity was The Church Militant, Maccabees was the book while to Protestants they viewed militancy to be over with.
The other reason Protestants rejected Maccabees was that 2 Maccabees 12:46 had this to say which upset Luther:
“Thus he made atonement for the dead that they might be freed from sin.”
And since this was closely related to the Catholic doctrine of the “communion of saints,” Luther acted as if he was God and struck it from being Canon while the Puritans even completely removed them altogether.
Maccabees remind us of the condition of the Church prior to the coming Messiah to defeat Antichrist. Mattathias was no appeasing Pope Francis and neither was he America’s pastor Rick Warren, the Maccabees resemble the simple believer who went against the institutions and the appeasements with the tyranny of Antichrist of their day: Antiochus Epiphanies.
Maccabees sets the record straight, correcting the fallen churches of today, by having the earth cry out pointing to Mattathias and Judas Maccabees. Never in history were these books deemed “Apocrypha” until Luther who attacked the Jews and the integrity of the Bible, which the Catholic Church infallibly reaffirmed the divine inspiration of the deuterocanonical books at the Council of Trent in 1546. In doing this, it reaffirmed what had been believed since the time of Christ. Revelation 21:27 affirmed Maccabees 12:46, that prior to heaven every soul is to be cleansed: “…nothing unclean will enter it …”
The place that is to be entered which this passage refers to is heaven.
But despite Luther’s evil attempts, the New Testament left a clue that cries out “Maccabees”:
“Women received their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, that they might rise again to a better life” (Heb. 11:35).
No where do we find in the Protestant Bible someone being “tortured” and “refusing to accept release” for the sake of a “better resurrection” except in the story found in 2 Maccabees 7, where we read that during the Maccabean persecution:
“It happened also that seven brothers and their mother were arrested and were being compelled by the king, under torture with whips and cords, to partake of unlawful swine’s flesh. . . . But the brothers and their mother encouraged one another to die nobly, saying, ‘The Lord God is watching over us and in truth has compassion on us . . . ‘ After the first brother had died . . . they brought forward the second for their sport. . . . he in turn underwent tortures as the first brother had done. And when he was at his last breath, he said, ‘You accursed wretch, you dismiss us from this present life, but the King of the universe will raise us up to an everlasting renewal of life‘” (2 Macc. 7:1, 5-9).
Again, the main issue was 2 Maccabees 12:46 had this to say which upset Luther: “Thus he made atonement for the dead that they might be freed from sin.”
THE COMMUNION OF SAINTS
The Communion of Saints was the crux of the matter, where all of the sudden to “be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord” (2 Cor 5:8) was ignored and the saints just became “dead”. So when Christians had prayer requests to the saints, the followers of Luther accused apostolic succession Christians of “praying for the dead”.
But such claims were shattered from Scripture itself, as it is in that home, heavenly Jerusalem’s Mount Zion, that millions refuse to approach heaven:
“But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God [the Father] the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect [saints], and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.” (Hebrews 12:22-24)
We approach the Heavenly Jerusalem through “innumerable angels,” “assembly of the first born,” who are saints already “enrolled in heaven,” who are “spirits of the righteous made perfect”.
Here we have saints whom were sinners “made perfect”. How are these “made perfect”?
There is a process of perfection and purging since “nothing unclean shall enter it [heaven]” (Rev. 21:27).
Hebrew 12 is clear, we approach a heavenly host (Jesus, Saints, Angels). There is no where in Scripture that says regarding Revelation 8, where the angel “was given much incense to offer with the prayers of all the saints” alluding that these saints being only on earth.
Angels are part of the life of the saints on earth: “he has given his angels orders about you to guard you wherever you go. They will carry you in their arms in case you trip over a stone.” (Pslam 91:11-12)
Missing Maccabees is how the devil deceives to block the way to God and is why so many do not understand how Scripture is discerned as it was in the early church. With Theosis, the saints become one with God and can act as ambassadors of Christ and is how the apostles were commissioned to “forgive sin”. With John 20:21-23, it is impossible to ignore how the Holy Spirit Who hovered and breathed onto the waters to bring forth life (Genesis 2:7), now in a unique occasion, Jesus breathes on men and through Theosis (being one with God) they can “forgive sins”:
“‘As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.’ And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained’” (John 20:21–23).
And this will remain to “the closing of the age” (Matt. 28:19–20). This can never be unless this apostolic ministry remains in succession and continues and is succeeded by others who also connect to God “to the close of the age”.
IGNORING SINGLE VERSES CAN SEND SOMEONE TO HELL
Without certain verses, nothing fits. Isolating “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men” is where many trip.
When it comes to differences between the ancient Church and the modern none-apostolic, the problem can be summed up simply by this example I received:
“If this [Mount Zion] is a crucial way to come to Jesus, why didn’t the Lord Jesus, Peter, Paul, John, etc. mention anything else like this in all of the rest of the NT?”
This is the same case when it comes to all the differences between the modern non-apostolic and apostolic way of interpreting Scripture. The Apostolic sees an ocean of wisdom in one line of Scripture, the non-Apostolic takes an idea that is an inch deep and a mile wide, and uses entire pages of the Bible to prove it.
This is the crux of all the problems from Luther to all the cults that sprouted afterwards.
And the answer to such questions is another question, Jesus style. For example, when it comes to denying the Trinity by the Hebrew Roots Movement or the Oneness Pentecostals they argue in the same fashion:
Why can’t we baptize in “the name of Jesus” only. Why do we need “in the name of the Father and of The Son and of The Holy Spirit?” After all in the whole New Testament, and on every occasion Baptism was done in the name of Jesus only in Acts 8:16, Acts 10:48 and Acts 19:5 which reveals that early Christians baptized in “the name of Jesus” only.
The other volume of verses seem to contradict this one verse, therefore, these others verses win. That verse is:
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19)
And this is how satan enters by simply ignoring this verse and emphasize how many other verses that support the heretic. It was obvious that during the early church era since “the name of Jesus” was simply to mean “in the authority of Jesus” and such authority entails that when that one verse was more detailed, it took precedence over all other verses and in fact, interprets them all.
The rule is always that the more detailed verse interprets summary verses so that approaching Mount Zion (heaven) is detailed where it explains what coming to Jesus entails a wealth of heavenly angels, saints martyrs … who plead with Christ the King.
These verses are the thread by which everything comes together and without them Scripture becomes useless.
But when you present the case, it matters little since the argument will always sound like the same broken record:
”I am entering more into the reality of Mt. Zion, the Holy of Holies, etc. through my direct relationship with the Lord Jesus.”
They recognize that “entering” is through “Mt. Zion” yet they still insist because of their traditional teaching on twisting the verses to fit their belief by saying “through my direct relationship with the Lord Jesus”.
This is the same argument cults use when they say “we baptize in the name of Jesus only”.
In other words, these recognize the meaning, but by isolating all the other verses they delude themselves. It is this act of rebellion, when these recognize that Mt. Zion is “entering”, yet as Cain did, they set up their own prescription.
From heaven, union with Christ, to even sin, Luther ignored clear Scriptural evidence where today’s modern non-apsotolic Christian says that “sin is sin” where the sodomite is viewed on par with a child caught with his hand in a cookie jar. All this happens because they are taught to re-interpret these single crucial verses. 1 John 5:16-17, with specific verses before and after to give context:
And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who has not the Son of God has not life. I write this to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life… If any one sees his brother committing what is not a mortal sin, he will ask, and God will give him life for those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin which is mortal; I do not say that one is to pray for that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin which is not mortal…And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, to know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.
So the modern reads “all wrong doing is sin” and he stops. Or he read the word “mortal” and he thinks it is earthly death as if God will punish one with cancer to stop him from sinning and He therefore takes their life away. It is here where even single verses make all the difference. God is saying “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”
This is discussing how to reach eternal destiny. And when it comes to sin, in verses 16 and 17 it speaks clearly about there being a difference between mortal and venial sins. Mortal sins are those sins that lead to eternal death.
Again, in the prior verses, 11-13, he was speaking about how one gets eternal life and not how one physically lives or dies, but how one gets eternal life and eternal death. He who has the Son will have eternal life and is not what Luther taught that we are saved even if we “sin boldly” (v. 13, provided the Christian keeps the commandments, 2:2-5, 3:24, 5:2-3).
It is here we discover our Christian roots, what is clearly missing from the dynamo of the modern non-apostolic: The Church Militant (Ecclesia Militans). Christianity is not what Hitler described when he saw Germany’s Protestant christianity, “a flabby religion”. The Church Militant makes everything fits. It is comprised of the Christians on earth who are living; who struggle against sin, the devil and “..the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12); the Church Triumphant (Ecclesia Triumphans), comprising those who are in Heaven; and the Church Penitent (Ecclesia Penitens), a.k.a. Church Suffering or Church Padecent or Church Expectant (Ecclesia Expectans), which comprises those Christians presently being purged of sin.
These terms are often used in the context of the doctrine of the Communion of Saints; although Christians may be physically separated from each other by the barrier of death, they nonetheless remain united to each other in one Church, and support each other in prayer.
Everything fits like a tight glove refuting the modern reprobates who will always object with fits of rage and anger. These do not save their anger where it matters when the enemy strikes. Such are known by their fruit: thrones and thistles.
Archeology at times sings and this year it sings the voices of the Maccabees and the heart of the crusading militant that are calling to prepare for Christ’s coming battle with Antichrist. Their sounds remind us of what the first Christian, not the modern, envisioned the church: