RED HEIFER OR RED HERRING?
We first began hearing about it around 1997 or so. Chuck Missler discussed the birth of a red heifer, suggesting that the time of the end was near. Unfortunately for all the end time speculators, as usual, that heifer was discovered to be disqualified.
In October of 2002, newspapers around the world reported the excitement created in March of that year by the birth of a red heifer. Born on a farm near Haifa, Israel, that heifer, inspected and “approved” by 25 Rabbinic experts, became the focus of intense interest and controversy. Of course, that heifer was declared to be a “false hope” upon closer inspection.
In 2010, it was reported, once again, that the anticipated bovine had (finally) arrived.
I probably don’t have to tell you that each and every one of the claims cited above– and others- that the promised red heifer had been born, were all false.
But now, it has happened again. The Dispensational– and some Jews– world is all a “twitter,” pun intended, over the news that a long anticipated red heifer has been born in Arkansas. In April of this year (2014) Zionists were proclaiming (again!!) that the end is near since according to that view, before the end times Temple can be rebuilt and dedicated, the ashes of the Red Heifer must be on hand for the consecration. And of course, they claim that now, in spite of the previous cases being disqualified, at last, the anticipated bovine has been born!
On WorldNet Daily, a website given to exaggeration and wild prophetic speculation, they recently (May 22, 2-14) claimed that the latest red heifer is now ready to be sacrificed. In the video it is admitted that without a qualified red heifer sacrifice, any rebuilt temple would be just another building without any divine approval. (It should be noted here that there is no way to genealogically confirm the Levitical lineage of any “priest” in Israel today. Thus, any sacrifice of this latest candidate for the red heifer sacrifice would automatically be called into question, since no one knows– or can know– if the priest doing the sacrifice was truly qualified or not!)
Another Internet Journal, “The Right Side News” declared that a major obstacle for the rebuilding of the last days temple has been removed due to the birth of the (latest) red heifer. In the words of this journal: “This is a very big deal, because without a red heifer the Temple would never be rebuilt. So needless to say, the video footage that you are about to see is creating quite a stir in Jewish communities throughout the world.”
The social media of YouTube was alive with videos, proclaiming the imminence of the end and the incredible importance of the birth of this red heifer. The thing is, this is but the latest in a string of false “red heifer” births.
The importance of the red heifer for the eschatological claims of both Jews and Dispensationalists cannot be over-emphasized. As the article just referenced says (citing the Temple Insitute in Jerusalem): “For G-d has ordained that its ashes alone are the single missing ingredient for the reinstatement of Biblical purity – and thereafter, the rebuilding of the Holy Temple. ” So, simply stated: no ashes of a red heifer means no “last days temple.”
According to Jewish sources no flawless red heifer has been born in Israel since the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70. One Jewish activist said, “We have been waiting 2,000 years for a sign from God, and now He has provided us with a red heifer.” In Judaism, the red heifer is thus viewed as a sign of the imminent coming of the Messiah and reestablishment of the Temple with its sacrificial system. But of course, all of that excitement was in vain, in 1997, 2002, 2011– and it will be in vain with this latest candidate.
Dispensational groups look to the birth of a red heifer calf as a sign of the Second Coming of Jesus to establish the kingdom and millennial reign.
Secular Jews have gone on record as wishing the young cow would just disappear; some have even suggested that it be destroyed to avoid a potential war.
Every time another red heifer is born– or claimed– Arabs, who control the Temple Mount, become understandably nervous because they believe Jews will use the heifer as an excuse to destroy the Islamic Dome of the Rock. And in fact, Jewish extremists have made several attempts to destroy the Mosque since the early 1980s–when there was no red heifer. Thus, the Arabs believe that the appearance of a red heifer could be a spark for violence against the Arab sanctuary. And the threat is real.
Whether Jew or Christian, any modern anticipation of the reestablishment of the red heifer ceremony is ill grounded. In upcoming articles, I will demonstrate how ill informed and false the current claims about the red heifer truly are. This is an important topic, so stay tuned!