On Sunday, Jan. 3, Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., recited the opening prayer for the 117th session of Congress. This event may have seemed normal, as representative Cleaver is a Christian pastor of the United Methodist Church. However, he prayed to the Hindu god, Brahma, as the creator, and insinuated that this god is the same as the Judeo-Christian God.
His specific words were, "We ask in the name of the monotheistic god, Brahma and god known by many names by many different faiths."
To start, Hindu gods are not gods at all. There is one God of one name, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He is the Great I AM, YHWH. Conversely, Hindu is a pagan religion whose gods display characteristics resembling demons.
Second, Brahma is not a monotheistic god. He is one of 33 million Hindu gods. Though Brahma is considered the creator in Hindu, by lore he was created, born from an egg.
Significantly, this pastor is not just an invited minister but a representative of Congress. So in this prayer, as a representative of Congress, Cleaver blended Christianity with pagan beliefs. This was a blasphemous statement made over the House of Representatives by one of its own.
A Quick Response to the Prayer
When I first read about this prayer, I was reminded of the "abomination of desolation" (Matt. 24:15, Mark 13:14). In general terms, this is a desecration of a sacred place that brings about destruction.
Though the U.S. Capitol building is not a religious temple, its purpose of lawmaking is sacred to the United States. I realize this is a very broad interpretation, but there is a principle here. The United States was consecrated to God at its inception. To desecrate its chambers with such a proclamation is a violation, a desecration, an abomination.
I wondered what would be the consequences of such an action.
Just three days after the blasphemous prayer, protestors broke into the Capitol building. They took over the building, even standing at the head of the Senate.
Could these events be connected?
Connecting the Prayer to the Capitol Breach
You've probably seen the picture of a man draped with a fur hat with buffalo horns. He was tattooed with pagan symbols such as Thor's hammer and a Yggdrasil, the world tree in Norse cosmology. This man, Jake Angeli, refers to himself as a "shamanic practitioner and energetic healer." Yet, based on his Facebook posts, he holds to some Christian beliefs and uses the phrases "God Wins" and "Jesus Amen" frequently in his posts.
Do you see the connection? A U.S. representative desecrates Congress' chambers with a statement equating a pagan god to the God of the universe. Three days later, protestors breached the walls of Congress, and a protestor of mixed pagan and Christian beliefs stood at the Senate's presiding desk.
The Message Encoded in the Names
Also of significance are the names of these two men. Emanuel comes from the Hebrew word Immanuel, meaning "God is with us." It is the name the prophet Isaiah spoke concerning the birth of Jesus. Cleaver's first name seems to remind us that God is present in our governmental affairs.
His last name is Cleaver, meaning "one who cleaves." So the man's full name means "the one who cleaves God with us." It would seem that his name shows that we have cleaved our involvement with God over our governmental affairs.
Just as interesting is the intruder's name. His first name, Jake, is from Jacob. Jacob means supplanter, one who takes the place of another, as through force, scheming or strategy. This name's meaning is illustrated in the Bible, as Jacob schemed to take the birthright from Esau and supplanted Esau to receive his father's blessing.
Jake's last name is Angeli, which is Italian for "little angel." The Hebrew word for "angel" is commonly meant to mean "a messenger from God" or "one sent with a message." It is as if God is telling us that our country has supplanted God for false gods/demons.
If so, this is an amazing message from God that we cannot ignore.
A Message in the Timing
The timing between the prayer and the Capitol breach is also significant. It took three days for the response to the desecration to come. In the Bible, three represents completeness, such as in the Trinity. Three is a holy number, signifying importance, which relays the importance of this message.
I am particularly reminded of the story of Jonah, whom God sent to notify Nineveh of His coming judgment for their sins. When Jonah tried to escape giving this message, God sent a whale to swallow and hold him for three days. After three days, he emerged from the whale and delivered the message.
What God's Response Means to Us
These events do not appear to be a coincidence, but rather a quick response to Cleaver's desecration and an ominous sign of judgment coming upon the U.S.
Will we be like the inhabitants of Nineveh, who repented and were spared by God? Or will we be like the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah?
It is up to us.
Kevin Connelly is the author of "West Clouds Rising," a blog which posts signs of the end of this age and explanations of biblical prophecy.
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