The time of Jacob’s trouble

Here is an article on a topic about which many have only the vaguest notions. We are commanded to ‘search the Scriptures’, especially where they deal with the ‘last days’, in order that we might ‘discern‭ the signs‭ of the times‭’, Matthew 16:3.‬‬‬

Events in Israel are very much as a clock which indicates to us that that tells us that we are drawing nearer to the end of this age and the return of the Saviour in glory.

I trust that this study is a help to all in understanding what lies ahead for the ancient people of God in their homeland.

Sincerely in Christ’s name,

Ivan Foster

‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭THE TIME OF JACOB’S TROUBLE‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“‭Alas‭! for that day‭ ‭is‭ great‭, so that‭ none ‭is‭ like it: it ‭is‭ even the time‭ of Jacob’s‭ trouble‭; but he shall be saved‭‭ out of it,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Jeremiah 30:7.

The student of the Bible cannot hear and see reports of the recent horrific scenes in Israel, wrought by those who are the ‘spiritual’ descendants of the Philistines of old, if not the actual progeny of that race of haters of the ancient people of God, without thinking of our text.

Hamas terrorists on parade in Gaza!

Ezekiel the prophet of old refers to the Philistines, the former occupants of that area today known as ‘the Gaza strip’, in this manner. “‭Thus saith‭‭ the Lord‭ GOD‭; Because the Philistines‭ have dealt‭‭ by revenge‭, and have taken‭‭ vengeance‭ with a despiteful‭ heart‭, to destroy‭ ‭it‭ for the old‭ hatred‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Ezekiel 25:15.

Note the term, ‘the old hatred’! That is what lies behind the terror attacks of late and the many like acts of savagery of which the present-day Palestinians have been guilty.

That ‘old hatred’ will continue, irrespective of what Israel does in order to hinder and curb the terrorism of the Muslim Palestinians. As it was with the rage of the Babylonians against Judah in the days of Jeremiah, so in the end of this age, the Lord will use the bitter animosity of Israel’s neighbours to bring about His eternal purpose for His ancient covenant people.

Hear what Jeremiah said regarding Babylon and how it was His instrument of chastening to humble rebellious Judah and a means of cutting off one of the chief trouble-makers amongst His people, ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭Pashur‭,‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ the false prophet.

“‭For thus saith‭‭ the LORD‭, Behold, I will make‭‭ thee a terror‭ to thyself, and to all thy friends‭‭: and they shall fall‭‭ by the sword‭ of their enemies‭‭, and thine eyes‭ shall behold‭‭ ‭it‭: and I will give‭‭ all Judah‭ into the hand‭ of the king‭ of Babylon‭, and he shall carry them captive‭‭ into Babylon‭, and shall slay‭‭ them with the sword‭.‭ ‭Moreover I will deliver‭‭ all the strength‭ of this city‭, and all the labours‭ thereof, and all the precious things‭ thereof, and all the treasures‭ of the kings‭ of Judah‭ will I give‭‭ into the hand‭ of their enemies‭‭, which shall spoil‭‭ them, and take‭‭ them, and carry‭‭ them to Babylon‭.‭ ‭And thou, Pashur‭, and all that dwell‭‭ in thine house‭ shall go‭‭ into captivity‭: and thou shalt come‭‭ to Babylon‭, and there thou shalt die‭‭, and shalt be buried‭‭ there, thou, and all thy friends‭‭, to whom thou hast prophesied‭‭ lies‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Jeremiah 20:4-6.

This same truth is repeated many times in Isaiah and Jeremiah and others of the Minor Prophets. The Lord used the enmity of Israel’s haters to humble His people and bring them to repentance.

That is what the ‘Day of Jacob’s Trouble’ will be all about!

In considering this wonderful prophetic verse, I wish to consider the chief words within it.


Jeremiah had many sad proclamations to declare to the people of His day. This word ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‘alas’, is chiefly translated ‘woe’ in the Old Testament, and introduces a reference to the most sad period of the experience of the Jewish people. It is the time of suffering under the future Antichrist, just prior to the Saviour’s return. ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

It was revealed to Daniel just what the ‘Antichrist’, the ‘Man of Sin’, would do in the closing days of this age.

“And at the time‭ of the end‭ shall the king‭ of the south‭ push‭‭ at him: and the king‭ of the north‭ shall come against him like a whirlwind‭‭, with chariots‭, and with horsemen‭, and with many‭ ships‭; and he shall enter‭‭ into the countries‭, and shall overflow‭‭ and pass over‭‭.‭ ‭He shall enter‭‭ also into the glorious‭ land‭ . . . ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭Daniel 11:40-41.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

Regarding the scenes of the last days revealed to him, Daniel was deeply grieved and vexed at what he saw for he could not fully understand it. “I‭ Daniel‭ was grieved‭‭ in my spirit‭ in the midst‭ of ‭my‭ body‭, and the visions‭ of my head‭ troubled‭‭ me,‭”‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭ Daniel 7:15. He was informed by an angel what the meaning was of what he had just had revealed to him. “‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬I came near‭‭ unto‭ one‭ of‭ them that stood by‭‭, and asked‭‭ him‭ the truth‭ of‭ all‭ this‭. So he told‭‭ me, and made me know‭‭ the interpretation‭ of the things‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭verse 16.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

But he was shown further revelations related to the time of the latter-day attack upon Jerusalem by the Antichrist.

“‭And out of one‭ of them came forth‭‭ a‭ little‭ horn‭, which waxed exceeding‭ great‭‭, toward the south‭, and toward the east‭, and toward the pleasant‭ ‭land‭.‭ ‭And it waxed great‭‭, ‭even‭ to the host‭ of heaven‭; and it cast down‭‭ ‭some‭ of the host‭ and of the stars‭ to the ground‭, and stamped‭‭ upon them.‭ ‭Yea, he magnified‭‭ ‭himself‭ even to the prince‭ of the host‭, and by him the daily‭ ‭sacrifice‭ was taken away‭‭‭‭‭, and the place‭ of his sanctuary‭ was cast down‭‭.‭ ‭And an host‭ was given‭‭ ‭him‭ against the daily‭ ‭sacrifice‭ by reason of transgression‭, and it cast down‭‭ the truth‭ to the ground‭; and it practised‭‭, and prospered‭‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Daniel 8:9-12.

“‭And‭‭‭‭‭‭‭ the people‭ of the prince‭ that shall come‭‭ shall destroy‭‭ the city‭ and the sanctuary‭; and the end‭ thereof ‭shall be‭ with a flood‭, and unto the end‭ of the war‭ desolations‭‭ are determined‭‭.‭ ‭And he shall confirm‭‭ the covenant‭ with many‭ for one‭ week‭: and in the midst‭ of the week‭ he shall cause the sacrifice‭ and the oblation‭ to cease‭‭, and for the overspreading‭ of abominations‭ he shall make ‭it‭ desolate‭‭, even until the consummation‭, and that determined‭‭ shall be poured‭‭ upon the desolate‭‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Daniel 9:26-27.

The things thus revealed to Daniel in these visions greatly perplexed and grieved him for it was clear that the revelations dealt with some terrible times of suffering for the Jewish people at the end of this age. He sought for an answer but was not given any further clarification. “‭Then I Daniel‭ looked‭‭, and, behold, there stood‭‭ other‭ two‭, the one‭ on this side‭ of the bank‭ of the river‭, and the other‭ on that side of the bank‭ of the river‭.‭ ‭And ‭one‭ said‭‭ to the man‭ clothed‭‭ in linen‭, which ‭was‭ upon‭ the waters‭ of the river‭, How long ‭shall it be to‭ the end‭ of these wonders‭?‭ ‭And I heard‭‭ the man‭ clothed‭‭ in linen‭, which ‭was‭ upon‭ the waters‭ of the river‭, when he held up‭‭ his right hand‭ and his left hand‭ unto heaven‭, and sware‭‭ by him that liveth‭ for ever‭ that ‭it shall be‭ for a time‭, times‭, and an half‭; and when he shall have accomplished‭‭ to scatter‭‭ the power‭ of the holy‭ people‭, all these ‭things‭ shall be finished‭‭.‭ ‭And I heard‭‭, but I understood‭‭ not: then said‭‭ I, O my Lord‭, what ‭shall be‭ the end‭ of these ‭things‭?‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ And he said‭‭, Go thy way‭‭, Daniel‭: for the words‭ ‭are‭ closed up‭‭ and sealed‭‭ till the time‭ of the end‭,‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Daniel 12:5-9.

I believe that final phrase indicates that many of the prophecies, “‭hard to be understood‬” (2 Peter 3:16) will be opened up to God’s people in the latter days.

Undoubtedly, there is an application of the words I have quoted from the book of Daniel, to Antiochus and his persecutions of the Jews, some two centuries before Christ. But ever remember that the enemies of God throughout the ages, small or great, were all moved by the same spirit of enmity in their defiance of God and their hatred of His people and therefore bore a likeness to each other. But we can be sure that these words particularly apply to the final manifestation of ‘antichristianity, the Antichrist of the last days, for the Saviour so applied them.

“‭And‭ many‭ false prophets‭ shall rise‭‭, and‭ shall deceive‭‭ many‭.‭ ‭And‭ because‭ iniquity‭ shall abound‭‭, the love‭ of many‭ shall wax cold‭‭.‭ ‭But‭ he that shall endure‭‭ unto‭ the end‭, the same‭ shall be saved‭‭.‭ ‭And‭ this‭ gospel‭ of the kingdom‭ shall be preached‭‭ in‭ all‭ the world‭ for‭ a witness‭ unto all‭ nations‭; and‭ then‭ shall the end‭ come‭‭.‭ ‭When‭ ye therefore‭ shall see‭‭ the abomination‭ of desolation‭, spoken of‭‭ by‭ Daniel‭ the prophet‭, stand‭‭‭‭‭ in‭ the holy‭ place‭, (whoso readeth‭‭, let him understand‭‭:)‭ ‭then‭ let them which be in‭ Judaea‭ flee‭‭ into‭ the mountains‭:‭ ‭Let him which is on‭ the housetop‭ not‭ come down‭‭ to take‭‭ any thing‭ out of‭ his‭ house‭:‭ ‭ Neither‭ let him which is in‭ the field‭ return‭‭ back‭ to take‭‭ his‭ clothes‭.‭ ‭And‭ woe‭ unto them that are‭‭ with‭ child‭, and‭ to them that give suck‭‭ in‭ those‭ days‭!‭ ‭But‭ pray ye‭‭ that‭‭ your‭ flight‭ be‭‭ not‭ in the winter‭, neither‭ on‭ the sabbath day‭:‭ ‭For‭ then‭ shall be‭‭ great‭ tribulation‭, such as‭ was‭‭ not‭ since‭ the beginning‭ of the world‭ to this‭ time‭, no‭, nor ever‭ shall be‭‭.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ . . . . ‭Immediately‭‭ after‭ the tribulation‭ of those‭ days‭ shall the sun‭ be darkened‭‭, and‭ the moon‭ shall‭‭ not‭ give‭‭ her‭ light‭, and‭ the stars‭ shall fall‭‭ from‭ heaven‭, and‭ the powers‭ of the heavens‭ shall be shaken‭‭:‭ ‭and‭ then‭ shall appear‭‭ the sign‭ of the Son‭ of man‭ in‭ heaven‭: and‭ then‭ shall‭‭ all‭ the tribes‭ of the earth‭ mourn‭‭, and‭ they shall see‭‭ the Son‭ of man‭ coming‭‭ in‭ the clouds‭ of heaven‭ with‭ power‭ and‭ great‭ glory‭.‭ ‭And‭ he shall send‭‭ his‭ angels‭ with‭ a great‭ sound‭ of a trumpet‭, and‭ they shall gather together‭‭ his‭ elect‭ from‭ the four‭ winds‭, from‭ one end‭ of heaven‭ to‭ the other‭‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Matthew 24:11-21, 29-31.

The days just before the return of the Saviour will be days when the Lord takes a final reckoning with His wayward Jewish people. As a result of that final chastening, great blessings will be their’s. “‭And I will cause the captivity‭ of Judah‭ and the captivity‭ of Israel‭ to return‭‭, and will build‭‭ them, as at the first‭.‭ ‭And I will cleanse‭‭ them from all their iniquity‭, whereby they have sinned‭‭ against me; and I will pardon‭‭ all their iniquities‭, whereby they have sinned‭‭, and whereby they have transgressed‭‭ against me.‭ ‭And it shall be to me a name‭ of joy‭, a praise‭ and an honour‭ before all the nations‭ of the earth‭, which shall hear‭‭ all the good‭ that I do‭‭ unto them: and they shall fear‭‭ and tremble‭‭ for all the goodness‭ and for all the prosperity‭ that I procure‭‭ unto it.‭ ‭Thus saith‭‭ the LORD‭; Again there shall be heard‭‭ in this place‭, which ye say‭‭ ‭shall be‭ desolate‭ without man‭ and without beast‭, ‭even‭ in the cities‭ of Judah‭, and in the streets‭ of Jerusalem‭, that are desolate‭‭, without man‭, and without inhabitant‭‭, and without beast‭,‭ ‭the voice‭ of joy‭, and the voice‭ of gladness‭, the voice‭ of the bridegroom‭, and the voice‭ of the bride‭, the voice‭ of them that shall say‭‭, Praise‭‭ the LORD‭ of hosts‭: for the LORD‭ ‭is‭ good‭; for his mercy‭ ‭endureth‭ for ever‭: ‭and‭ of them that shall bring‭‭ the sacrifice of praise‭ into the house‭ of the LORD‭. For I will cause to return‭‭ the captivity‭ of the land‭, as at the first‭, saith‭‭ the LORD‭,” ‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Jeremiah 33:7-11.


I have already touched upon the unparalleled trouble that lies ahead of Israel. The Lord’s use of the word ‘great’ emphasises this dreadful fact.

The first appearance of this word ‘great’ in the Bible helps us to understand just how significant are the days of trouble that lie ahead for Israel. “‭And God‭ made‭‭ two‭ great‭ lights‭; the greater‭ light‭ to rule‭ the day‭, and the lesser‭ light‭ to rule‭ the night‭: ‭he made‭ the stars‭ also,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Genesis 1:16.

There are countless millions of ‘lights’ in the sky. I can recall as a boy gazing upward at the splendours of the night sky when I lived in Keenaghy, Lisnaskea. There was no ‘light pollution’ from street lights etc there. Indeed, there was no electricity anywhere near us and the glow of a ‘Tilley Lamp’ did not create much by way of a hindrance to fully seeing the stars in the heavens!

Now, the sun and moon far outshone any of the stars that I could see. They were by far, ‘great lights’ in comparison. In like manner, the days of tribulation and trouble that will yet come upon Israel will thus compare to the past and present troubles Israel has experienced, in their greatness and distress, as do the sun and moon compare in their greatness to the other heavenly lights in the sky.

Oh let us learn what a dreadful thing is sin and the judgment that will follow it. Little did the people of Israel know what would be the outcome for their offspring when they defiantly responded to the declaration of Pilate, as recorded in Matthew’s account of the rejection of Christ.

“‭When‭ Pilate‭ saw‭‭ that‭ he could prevail‭‭ nothing‭, but‭ ‭that‭ rather‭ a tumult‭ was made‭‭, he took‭‭ water‭, and washed‭‭ ‭his‭ hands‭ before‭ the multitude‭, saying‭‭, I am‭‭ innocent‭ of‭ the blood‭ of this‭ just person‭: see‭‭ ye‭ ‭to it‭.‭ ‭Then‭ answered‭‭ all‭ the people‭, and said‭‭, His‭ blood‭ ‭be‭ on‭ us‭, and‭ on‭ our‭ children‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Matthew 27:24-25.

If you are not saved today, your continued rejection of God and His Word will bring great and eternal wrath upon you. “‭He that believeth‭‭ on‭ the Son‭ hath‭‭ everlasting‭ life‭: and‭ he that believeth not‭‭ the Son‭ shall‭‭ not‭ see‭‭ life‭; but‭ the wrath‭ of God‭ abideth‭‭ on‭ him‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ John 3:36.

Hear and heed the call of gospel mercy today. “‭Come‭‭ unto‭ me‭, all‭ ‭ye‭ that labour‭‭ and‭ are heavy laden‭‭, and I‭ will give‭‭ you‭ rest‭‭.‭ ‭Take‭‭ my‭ yoke‭ upon‭ you‭, and‭ learn‭‭ of‭ me‭; for‭ I am‭‭ meek‭ and‭ lowly‭ in heart‭: and‭ ye shall find‭‭ rest‭ unto your‭ souls‭.‭ ‭For‭ my‭ yoke‭ ‭is‭ easy‭, and‭ my‭ burden‭ is‭‭ light‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Matthew 11:28-30.


When we read the Bible, let us ever remember that “‭All‭ scripture‭ ‭is‭ given by inspiration of God‭, and‭ ‭is‭ profitable‭ for‭ doctrine‭, for‭ reproof‭, for‭ correction‭, for‭ instruction‭ in‭ righteousness‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ 2 Timothy 3:16. “‭Every word‭ of God‭ ‭is‭ pure‭‭,‭‭‭‭‭‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Proverbs 30:5. It is ‘unalloyed’! It is without defect. We must therefore take note of every word that “‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭proceedeth‭‭ out of‭ the mouth‭ of God‭‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ (Matthew 4:4).

The people of God are referred to as ‘Jacob’. You will know that the name of Jacob was changed to that of ‘Israel’ following his sanctifying experience in prayer at Peniel when He ‘wrestled’ with the Lord. From that day he had “‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭power‭‭ with God‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬”, Genesis 32:28. The name ‘Jacob’ means ‘supplanter’ and is his birth name and is a reference to his old nature and character. The name ‘Israel’ means ‘Prevailer with God’ and signifies a ‘prince with God’ and highlights his new and fuller relationship with God.

But in the day of trouble here referred to, the favoured nation is not in such a relationship with God as to be referred to as ‘Israel’ but rather they are called ‘Jacob’, a name that signifies one who was self-seeking and grasping after self interests.

That is basically the state of the Jews today. They have no time for the God of the Bible or His glory. The spirit that prevailed at Calvary is abiding upon the nation still.

It must be noted that the tribulation is especially referred to as being ‘Jacob’s’. Doubtless, any who show sympathy or support toward the Jews in the days of Antichrist’s rage against them will feel something of that rage as well BUT, this trouble is particularly directed at the Jew and it is not specifically directed against Christians.

Today, in the wake of the murderous attack by Hamas terrorists against the Jews, any who show sympathy toward the Jewish people have come under abuse and even assault from Muslim mobs in various parts of the world for daring to organise pro-Israel protests against what Hamas has done.

It is but a foretaste of what lies ahead for any who seek to stand with God’s covenant people.


I have already referred to the prophecies of Daniel and the words of the Saviour related to the ‘troubles’ the Jewish nation will encounter just before the end of this age. The Hebrew word translated ‘trouble’ in our text, is translated by other words, all denoting the awfulness of that time.

“‭And let us arise‭‭, and go up‭‭ to Bethel‭; and I will make‭‭ there an altar‭ unto God‭, who answered‭‭ me in the day‭ of my distress‭, and was with me in the way‭ which I went‭‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Genesis 35:3. That was a day when Jacob was fleeing from the threat of the revenge of Esau. (Genesis 27: 41-45).

“‭And they said‭‭ one‭ to another‭, We ‭are‭ verily‭ guilty‭ concerning our brother‭, in that‭ we saw‭‭ the anguish‭ of his soul‭, when he besought‭‭ us, and we would not hear‭‭; therefore is this distress‭ come‭‭ upon us,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Genesis 42:21. This was the distress felt by Joseph’s brothers when they thought upon what it was they had done when they sold him into slavery!

“‭Go‭‭ and cry‭‭ unto the gods‭ which ye have chosen‭‭; let them‭ deliver‭‭ you in the time‭ of your tribulation‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Judges 10:14. This is the same word but translated by the English word ‘tribulation’ and it is used by the Lord of the days that had come upon Israel as a result of their departure from God to follow false gods.

“‭And David‭ answered‭‭ Rechab‭ and Baanah‭ his brother‭, the sons‭ of Rimmon‭ the Beerothite‭, and said‭‭ unto them, ‭As‭ the LORD‭ liveth‭, who hath redeemed‭‭ my soul‭ out of all adversity‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ 2 Samuel 4:9. These are the words of David and he is referring to the many difficulties and life-threatening circumstances out of which the Lord had delivered him.

This variety of translations of the Hebrew word tsarah, indicates the combination of distresses and perplexities that will come upon the Jewish nation as God works out His purpose amongst them.


That little word introduces a very different revelation. God always has a word of ‘contrast’ to those He loves. He here turns from wrath and judgment to ‘salvation’ for that troubled people. “‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭But he shall be saved‭‭ out of it.”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ A study of God’s Word will reveal that when the Lord sets forth the judgments that will befall the Jewish nation in the last days, there is always a stating of the blessings that will follow the chastening of His people. There are many prophecies of ‘good days’ for the Jews. The nation will not always be guilty of rejecting Christ. Please consider these verses.

“For the children‭ of Israel‭ shall abide‭‭ many‭ days‭ without a king‭, and without a prince‭, and without a sacrifice‭, and without an image‭, and without an ephod‭, and ‭without‭ teraphim‭:‭ ‭Afterward‭ shall the children‭ of Israel‭ return‭‭, and seek‭‭ the LORD‭ their God‭, and David‭ their king‭; and shall fear‭‭ the LORD‭ and his goodness‭ in the latter‭ days‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Hosea 3:4-5.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“When the enemy‭ shall come in‭‭ like a flood‭, the Spirit‭ of the LORD‭ shall lift up a standard‭‭ against him.‭ ‭And the Redeemer‭‭ shall come‭‭ to Zion‭, and unto them that turn‭‭ from transgression‭ in Jacob‭, saith‭ the LORD‭.‭ ‭As for me, this ‭is‭ my covenant‭ with them, saith‭‭ the LORD‭; My spirit‭ that ‭is‭ upon thee, and my words‭ which I have put‭‭ in thy mouth‭, shall not depart‭‭ out of thy mouth‭, nor out of the mouth‭ of thy seed‭, nor out of the mouth‭ of thy seed’s‭ seed‭, saith‭‭ the LORD‭, from henceforth and for‭ ever‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Isaiah 59:19-21.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“In that day‭ shall the LORD‭ defend‭‭ the inhabitants‭‭ of Jerusalem‭; and he that is feeble‭‭ among them at that day‭ shall be as David‭; and the house‭ of David‭ ‭shall be‭ as God‭, as the angel‭ of the LORD‭ before‭ them.‭ ‭And it shall come to pass in that day‭, ‭that‭ I will seek‭‭ to destroy‭‭ all the nations‭ that come‭‭ against Jerusalem‭.‭ ‭And I will pour‭‭ upon the house‭ of David‭, and upon the inhabitants‭‭ of Jerusalem‭, the spirit‭ of grace‭ and of supplications‭: and they shall look‭‭ upon me whom they have pierced‭‭, and they shall mourn‭ for him, as one mourneth‭‭ for ‭his‭ only‭ ‭son‭, and shall be in bitterness‭‭ for him, as one that is in bitterness‭‭ for ‭his‭ firstborn‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Zechariah 12:8-10.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“Behold, the day‭ of the LORD‭ cometh‭‭, and thy spoil‭ shall be divided‭‭ in the midst‭ of thee.‭ ‭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.‭ ‭Then shall the LORD‭ go forth‭‭, and fight‭‭ against those nations‭, as when‭ he fought‭‭ in the day‭ of battle‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Zechariah 14:1-3.‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“‭Behold, I will gather them out‭‭ of all countries‭, whither I have driven‭‭ them in mine anger‭, and in my fury‭, and in great‭ wrath‭; and I will bring them again‭‭ unto this place‭, and I will cause them to dwell‭‭ safely‭:‭ ‭And they shall be my people‭, and I will be their God‭:‭ ‭And I will give‭‭ them one‭ heart‭, and one‭ way‭, that they may fear‭‭ me for ever‭, for the good‭ of them, and of their children‭ after‭ them:‭ ‭And I will make‭‭ an everlasting‭ covenant‭ with them, that I will not turn away‭‭ from them‭, to do them good‭‭; but I will put‭‭ my fear‭ in their hearts‭, that they shall not depart‭‭ from me.‭ ‭Yea, I will rejoice‭‭ over them to do them good‭‭, and I will plant‭‭ them in this land‭ assuredly‭ with my whole heart‭ and with my whole soul‭.‭ ‭For thus saith‭‭ the LORD‭; Like as I have brought‭‭ all this great‭ evil‭ upon this people‭, so will I bring‭‭ upon them all the good‭ that I have promised‭‭ them.‭ ‭And fields‭ shall be bought‭‭ in this land‭, whereof ye say‭‭, ‭It is‭ desolate‭ without man‭ or beast‭; it is given‭‭ into the hand‭ of the Chaldeans‭.‭ ‭Men shall buy‭‭ fields‭ for money‭, and subscribe‭‭ evidences‭, and seal‭‭ ‭them‭, and take‭‭ witnesses‭ in the land‭ of Benjamin‭, and in the places about‭ Jerusalem‭, and in the cities‭ of Judah‭, and in the cities‭ of the mountains‭, and in the cities‭ of the valley‭, and in the cities‭ of the south‭: for I will cause their captivity‭ to return‭‭, saith‭ the LORD‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Jeremiah 32:37-44.

“‭As a shepherd‭‭ seeketh out‭ his flock‭ in the day‭ that he is among‭ his sheep‭ ‭that are‭ scattered‭‭; so will I seek out‭‭ my sheep‭, and will deliver‭‭ them out of all places‭ where they have been scattered‭‭ in the cloudy‭ and dark‭ day‭.‭ ‭And I will bring them out‭‭ from the people‭, and gather‭‭ them from the countries‭, and will bring‭‭ them to their own land‭, and feed‭‭ them upon the mountains‭ of Israel‭ by the rivers‭, and in all the inhabited places‭ of the country‭.‭ ‭I will feed‭‭ them in a good‭ pasture‭, and upon the high‭ mountains‭ of Israel‭ shall their fold‭ be: there shall they lie‭‭ in a good‭ fold‭, and ‭in‭ a fat‭ pasture‭ shall they feed‭‭ upon the mountains‭ of Israel‭.‭ ‭I will feed‭‭ my flock‭, and I will cause them to lie down‭‭, saith‭ the Lord‭ GOD‭.‭ ‭I will seek‭‭ that which was lost‭‭, and bring again‭‭ that which was driven away‭‭, and will bind up‭‭ ‭that which was‭ broken‭‭, and will strengthen‭‭ that which was sick‭‭: but I will destroy‭‭ the fat‭ and the strong‭; I will feed‭‭ them with judgment‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Ezekiel 34:12-16.

Please see how our text is immediately followed by wonderful words of mercy?

“‭For it shall come to pass in that day‭, saith‭ the LORD‭ of hosts‭, ‭that‭ I will break‭‭ his yoke‭ from off thy neck‭, and will burst‭‭ thy bonds‭, and strangers‭‭ shall no more serve‭‭ themselves of him:‭ ‭but they shall serve‭‭ the LORD‭ their God‭, and David‭ their king‭, whom I will raise up‭‭ unto them.‭ ‭Therefore fear‭‭ thou not, O my servant‭ Jacob‭, saith‭ the LORD‭; neither be dismayed‭‭, O Israel‭: for, lo, I will save‭‭ thee from afar‭, and thy seed‭ from the land‭ of their captivity‭; and Jacob‭ shall return‭‭, and shall be in rest‭‭, and be quiet‭‭, and none shall make ‭him‭ afraid‭‭.‭ ‭For I ‭am‭ with thee, saith‭ the LORD‭, to save‭‭ thee: though I make‭‭ a full end‭ of all nations‭ whither I have scattered‭‭ thee, yet will I not make‭‭ a full end‭ of thee: but I will correct‭‭ thee in measure‭, and will not leave thee altogether‭‭ unpunished‭‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Jeremiah 30:8-11.

Yes, a wonderful day of blessing and salvation is promised for the Jewish people. It will be a day of innumerable displays of grace and mercy. In the light of the ongoing campaign to oust Israel from her land at present in Israel, here is a particularly wonderful prophecy.

“‭And it shall come to pass in that day‭, ‭that‭ the Lord‭ shall set‭‭ his hand‭ again‭‭ the second time‭ to recover‭‭ the remnant‭ of his people‭, which shall be left‭‭, from Assyria‭, and from Egypt‭, and from Pathros‭, and from Cush‭, and from Elam‭, and from Shinar‭, and from Hamath‭, and from the islands‭ of the sea‭.‭ ‭And he shall set up‭‭ an ensign‭ for the nations‭, and shall assemble‭‭ the outcasts‭‭ of Israel‭, and gather together‭‭ the dispersed‭‭ of Judah‭ from the four‭ corners‭ of the earth‭.‭ ‭The envy‭ also of Ephraim‭ shall depart‭‭, and the adversaries‭‭ of Judah‭ shall be cut off‭‭: Ephraim‭ shall not envy‭‭ Judah‭, and Judah‭ shall not vex‭‭ Ephraim‭.‭ ‭But they shall fly‭‭ upon the shoulders‭ of the Philistines‭ toward the west‭; they shall spoil‭‭ them‭ of the east‭ together‭: they shall lay‭ their hand‭ upon Edom‭ and Moab‭; and the children‭ of Ammon‭ shall obey‭ them,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Isaiah 11:11-14.

Did you note the phrase: “‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭They shall fly‭‭ upon the shoulders‭ of the Philistines‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬.” God is going to employ those presently cruelly opposing and warring against His covenant people to carry them back from the four corners of the world to which they have been scattered because of their rejection of Christ and rebellion against the Lord.

Here is another verse which states the same truth.

“‭For I ‭know‭ their works‭ and their thoughts‭: it shall come‭‭, that I will gather‭‭ all nations‭ and tongues‭; and they shall come‭‭, and see‭‭ my glory‭.‭ ‭And I will set‭‭ a sign‭ among them, and I will send‭‭ those that escape‭ of them unto the nations‭, ‭to‭ Tarshish‭, Pul‭, and Lud‭, that draw‭‭ the bow‭, ‭to‭ Tubal‭, and Javan‭, ‭to‭ the isles‭ afar off‭, that have not heard‭‭ my fame‭, neither have seen‭‭ my glory‭; and they shall declare‭‭ my glory‭ among the Gentiles‭.‭ ‭And they shall bring‭‭ all your brethren‭ ‭for‭ an offering‭ unto the LORD‭ out of all nations‭ upon horses‭, and in chariots‭, and in litters‭, and upon mules‭, and upon swift beasts‭, to my holy‭ mountain‭ Jerusalem‭, saith‭‭ the LORD‭, as the children‭ of Israel‭ bring‭‭ an offering‭ in a clean‭ vessel‭ into the house‭ of the LORD‭.‭ ‭And I will also take‭‭ of them for priests‭ ‭and‭ for Levites‭, saith‭‭ the LORD‭.‭ ‭For as the new‭ heavens‭ and the new‭ earth‭, which I will make‭‭, shall remain‭‭ before‭ me, saith‭ the LORD‭, so shall your seed‭ and your name‭ remain‭‭.‭ ‭And it shall come to pass, ‭that‭ from‭ one new moon‭ to another‭, and from‭ one sabbath‭ to another‭, shall all flesh‭ come‭‭ to worship‭‭ before‭ me, saith‭‭ the LORD‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Isaiah 66:18-23.

I have heard it repeated ad infinitum by Muslims that the Jews have no rightful claim upon the Holy Land! ‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭Even foolish Christians have been heard to endorse this false claim!‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ In truth, the Jews have a title deed to the Holy Land signed by the Lord many years ago.

Here is the first copy of the title deed given to Abraham and his seed as a perpetual possession. “‭And the LORD‭ appeared‭‭ unto Abram‭, and said‭‭, Unto thy seed‭ will I give‭‭ this‭ land‭,‭‭‭‭‭‭‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Genesis 12:7. It was reiterated many times. Here it is enlarged upon. “‭And the LORD‭ said‭‭ unto Abram‭, after‭ that Lot‭ was separated‭‭ from him, Lift up‭‭ now thine eyes‭, and look‭‭ from the place‭ where thou art northward‭, and southward‭, and eastward‭, and westward‭:‭ ‭For all the land‭ which thou seest‭‭, to thee will I give it‭‭, and to thy seed‭ for‭ ever‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Genesis 13:14-15.

It is robbery of the highest order to try and take away the land from those to whom God gave it. It was His to give to whom He wished. “‭Then will the LORD‭ be jealous‭‭ for his land‭, and pity‭‭ his people‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Joel 2:18. Proper care therefore was to be taken of it by those to whom it was given. “‭And they shall not sell‭‭ of it, neither exchange‭‭, nor alienate‭‭‭‭‭ the firstfruits‭ of the land‭: for ‭it is‭ holy‭ unto the LORD‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Ezekiel 48:14.

In these islands of ours, the Normans replacing the Anglo-Saxons is but one example of the shifting ethnic tides within the populations of nations. Such overthrowing and resettling seems to have been acceptable to God. But that is not the case with Israel. The Holy Land is theirs and theirs alone. The attempts by the Muslim nations to cast out the Jews is the most blatant attempt to accomplish what would be the greatest act of robbery in history.

However, Israel’s security is the strong arm of the Lord and as David overthrew the wouldbe ‘robber’, Goliath, so ‘great David’s Greater Son’, will overthrow any and all who seek to rob Israel of their possession.

Let all take note: “‭For the LORD‭ will have mercy‭‭ on Jacob‭, and will yet choose‭‭ Israel‭, and set‭‭ them in their own land‭,‭‭‭‭‭‭‭‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Isaiah 14:1. The Jewish people will yet sing: “‭But I will sing‭‭ of thy power‭; yea, I will sing aloud‭‭ of thy mercy‭ in the morning‭: for thou hast been my defence‭ and refuge‭ in the day‭ of my trouble‭.‭ ‭Unto thee, O my strength‭, will I sing‭‭: for God‭ ‭is‭ my defence‭, ‭and‭ the God‭ of my mercy‭,‭”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ Psalm 59:16-17.

Rev Ivan Foster (Rtd)

Wednesday, 18th October 2023