September 11, 2001 – A Scriptural Perspective


Topic Introduction

Eleven years ago, a shift occurred in the perspectives of many US citizens. For the first time, since our founding, the United States was attacked on its own land by a foreign enemy. We have been attacked before, and we have seen several terrorist attacks, but never on our own land by a foreign people. While you might think about the attack on Pearl Harbor, we must remember that Hawaii was not a state at that time. (This does not reduce the impact of Pearl Harbor and the lives lost there.) This attack on our own soil left the majority of people searching for someone to blame and it has been the cause of many controversies and at least two wars.

This paper is not about who is to blame or what happened, it is about our reaction and what we should be seeing from all that is happening around us. If we do not stop what we are doing and pay attention, we will see more destruction, very soon.

This is not a political paper. For this topic is in no way influenced by the political parties of men.

What is a Watchman?

Ezekiel 33
1 Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2 Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman:

There have been throughout history, men placed in strategic places that have seen things coming. They were placed there to be watchmen. I don’t think that I am one of those people, I am only a relaying agent for the watchmen. We all have a part in this duty though. The watchmen alert us to the impending dangers, while the relay agents verify and distribute the alert, and as you are reading this, it is your duty to hear the cry of watchmen. What you do with this information is up to you. You too could become a relay agent or you could simply go back to sleep, perhaps this article will help you with that.

Isaiah 62
6 I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, [which] shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of the LORD, keep not silence,
7 And give him no rest, till he establish, and till he make Jerusalem a praise in the earth.

The duty of the watchmen is to never stop crying out and continue to give the warning that he has been charged with. In ancient times, a watchman was placed on the walls of the city and it was the duty and responsibility of the watchman to alert the city of an enemy approaching. In Israel, this was done by the sound of the shofar. Let us now look at the whole duty of a watchman.

Ezekiel 33
1 Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2 Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman:
3 If when he seeth the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people;
4 Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head.
5 He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul.
6 But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take [any] person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand.
7 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.
8 When I say unto the wicked, O wicked [man], thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked [man] shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
9 Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.

As I have previously stated, our first job is to be a servant. As a servant of YHWH, we will begin to know what He desires and if we are good servants, we will do that which He desires. We must all start here, not that YHWH can’t use us if we aren’t good servants or know His will, but for us to submit to our Creator and Master, this is where we must start. Once we are reacquainted with His will, we will be able to know what is good and what is evil based upon His definition and not our own. This is where the duty of a watchman comes in. It is with this understanding that we proceed.

Knowing the Signs

Isaiah 9
10 The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: the sycomores are cut down, but we will change [them into] cedars.

When most people read this verse by itself, it brings forth the feelings that although things are bad, we can rebuild them, both stronger and bigger. And this is exactly what the verse is supposed to imply. The bricks are replaced with quarried stones which are bigger and stronger than bricks. Sycamores are replaced with larger and thicker trees like the cedar.

But in all things, we must take this passage in context.

Isaiah 9
8 The Lord sent a word into Jacob, and it hath lighted upon Israel.
9 And all the people shall know, [even] Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria, that say in the pride and stoutness of heart,
10 The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: the sycomores are cut down, but we will change [them into] cedars.
11 Therefore the LORD shall set up the adversaries of Rezin against him, and join his enemies together;
12 The Syrians before, and the Philistines behind; and they shall devour Israel with open mouth. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand [is] stretched out still.
13 For the people turneth not unto him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the LORD of hosts.

Does this passage still sound good? It is with pride and stubbornness that Isaiah 9:10 is spoken, and this still the case today. This verse then identifies several signs of pending judgment, as we see in verses 11 and 12. We are even given the reason for this judgment in verse 13.

The pending signs of judgment identified in this passage are bricks and sycamore trees falling down. These two signs are somewhat specific, but when you add their replacements, hewn stones and cedar trees, then you have four factors that show pending judgment. These are not the only signs, but these are the first signs that we will focus on.

Recognizing the Signs

The Bricks Have Fallen

The specific subject of bricks having fallen is really very simple. The “twin towers” in New York were 110 stories high, resulting in towering structures that rose over 1,300 feet into the air. These structures were built primarily with steel, brick and concrete, and when they fell, so did the steel, bricks and concrete.

The news, even in the aftermath and cleanup was full of reports such as the following:

“For three months, the 16-acre site had the look of post-World War II Berlin with its buildings skeletonized and reduced to piles of bricks by Allied bombing raids.”

The Replacement of the Bricks

Three years after the events of September 11, 2001, the cornerstone for the “Freedom Tower” was brought to the site.

“Rather than breaking already broken ground at the World Trade Center site on July 4, Gov. George E. Pataki will instead preside as a cornerstone is laid for Freedom Tower — more than 20 tons of garnet-flecked granite from the Adirondacks.”

The foundation of the building will be made from hewn stone from the Adirondacks in New York.

The Sycamores Have Fallen

What does a sycamore tree have to do with the events of September 11th, 2001? You might be surprised by the answer…

In the events of September 11, 2001, unbeknownst to most of the country, a smaller story unfolded. Once the smoke cleared, it was discovered that a large steel beam from the towers had fallen and impaled a sycamore tree. While this doesn’t sound like much, it should be noted that the sycamore tree kept one building from being hit by the falling beam.

This was such a significant event to the local community, that an artist was commissioned to make a bronze casting of the roots of this sycamore tree.

“The Trinity Root 9/11 Memorial has been quietly embraced by the approximately 1.5 million visitors from both the city and around the world that visit the site. The sculpture came about as an inspiration by Quakertown, Pennsylvania sculptor Steve Tobin after seeing the uplifting story of the 70-year-old sycamore tree that was felled by the intense impact of the collapsing towers across the street from the World Trade Center. The tree absorbed the shockwaves, which a physicist has compared to those of a small nuclear bomb, and was laying in such a way as to shield historic St. Paul’s Chapel at Trinity Church and its ancient tombstones from falling debris. The tree, which even took a hit from an I-beam, seemed the only positive story that came out of the tragic events that day.”

The Replacement of the Sycamore

In 2003, the stump of the sycamore tree was removed from the ground and several months later, a new tree was lowered by crane into its place. They did not choose to replace the sycamore tree, which had done so well in protecting the building, with another sycamore. They chose to replace the sycamore tree with a conifer tree, an evergreen – just like the cedar trees found in Lebanon.

“In 2003, the stump of the sycamore was removed and placed on display in the churchyard … to be replaced by a 21-foot Norway spruce – dubbed the Tree of Hope. A crane on Church Street was used to lift the new tree over the fence and into the northwest corner of St. Paul’s churchyard.”

Evidence Found in the History Left Behind

We have covered the four major items found in Isaiah 9:10. The bricks that were fallen have been replaced with hewn stones from the Adirondack Mountains. The sycamore tree that fell was replaced with a cedar of Lebanon, an evergreen tree. There is more to the signs that we have been given than just these four items.

When the sycamore tree stopped the steel beam from hitting the building, it was protecting a historical site that many people don’t know the slightest thing about.

“The Nation’s first chief executive took his oath of office in April in New York City on the balcony of the Senate Chamber at Federal Hall on Wall Street. General Washington had been unanimously elected President by the first electoral college, and John Adams was elected Vice President because he received the second greatest number of votes.”

As many of the founding fathers of this country did, George Washington’s inaugural address included a warning to the people.

“I dwell on this prospect with every satisfaction which an ardent love for my country can inspire, since there is no truth more thoroughly established than that there exists in the economy and course of nature an indissoluble union between virtue and happiness; between duty and advantage; between the genuine maxims of an honest and magnanimous policy and the solid rewards of public prosperity and felicity; since we ought to be no less persuaded that the propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained; and since the preservation of the sacred fire of liberty and the destiny of the republican model of government are justly considered, perhaps, as deeply, as finally, staked on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American people.”

He said, “the smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.” This should be a warning to all that hear it, if we turn from the ways of YHWH, then He will no longer smile upon us and bless us as He has previously done.

After making his inaugural address, President Washington, all of Congress and the Supreme Court went into a church and prayed for several hours – dedicating the nation to YHWH. It was in Trinity Church that this happened. While the building that exists today is not the original building of the church, Washington’s address and the original “Great Seal” of the United States still remain in the new building built upon the same location. Because a sycamore tree protected this building, these symbols live on – on the spot where our nation was dedicated to being “Under God”.
(Trinity Church Historical Timeline:

In fact, of all the buildings near the World Trade Center Complex, the only building to not sustain ANY damage was Trinity Church.

“St. Paul’s Chapel is an 18th-century Episcopal church in the parish of Trinity Church in Lower Manhattan. It stands less than one hundred yards from the World Trade Center site. This book is a picture essay telling of the relief work carried on at St. Paul’s for almost nine months. Many people who saw that the church still stood despite the destruction all around its walls talked about “the miracle of St. Paul’s.”

Evidence in Leadership

When Congress reconvened on September 12, 2001, then Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle had the following opening remarks:
“It is with pain, sorrow, anger, and resolve that I stand before this Senate – a symbol for 212 years of the strength of our Democracy and say that America will emerge from this tragedy as we have emerged from all adversity united and strong.
Nothing can replace the losses that have been suffered. I know that there is only the smallest measure of inspiration that can be taken from this devastation. But there is a passage in the Bible, from Isaiah, that I think speaks to all of us at times like this. “The bricks have fallen down, but we will rebuild with dressed stone; the fig trees have been felled, but we will replace them with cedars.”
That is what we will do. We will rebuild and we will recover. The people of America will stand together because the people of America have always stood together, and those of us who are privileged to serve this great nation will stand with you. God bless the people of America.”
Floor Statement by Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle On a Joint Resolution of Condemnation for Yesterday’s Attacks And Support for the Victims – Wednesday, September 12, 2001

When Senator John Edwards was running for Vice President, he attended a Congressional Black Caucus Prayer Breakfast on September 11, 2004. The following is taken from his speech:

“Good morning. Today, on this day of remembrance and mourning, we have the Lord’s word to get us through. “The bricks have fallen, but we will build with dressed stones; the sycamores have been cut down, but we will put cedars in their place.”
And let me show you how we are building and putting cedars in those three hallowed places-the footprints of the Towers, the Pentagon, and the field in Pennsylvania. Walk with me through this day and you will see that this is a season of hope.
For at this moment, just outside of New York, a mother laces up her daughter’s shoes. And they are ready to start their long walk through this day. The daughter is two and a half. She can say his name, “Dad.” She can point to his picture, but she does not know him.”
Congressional Black Caucus Prayer Breakfast, Washington DC – September 11, 2004

Both of these men are leaders of the country, whether we like it or not. They are the people chosen to represent not only their own constituents, but also all of the United States.

In both of these speeches they inappropriately (or rather appropriately) use Isaiah 9:10 as a call to rebuild rather than following the call that the passage is really calling for – repentance and humility.

Evidence in Greek

For those not familiar with the Septuagint, it is a Greek translation of the Tanakh or “Old Testament” that was commissioned by Alexander the Great. 70 (hence “Septu”) Hebrew scholars were gathered to translate the Hebrew Scriptures into the Greek language.

When the translators came to the passage in Isaiah 9:10, they translated it as follows (retranslated to English):

Isaiah 9
8 The Lord has sent death upon Jacob, and it has come upon Israel.
9 And all the people of Ephraim, and they that dwelt in Samaria shall know, who say in their pride and lofty heart,
10 The bricks are fallen down, but come, let us hew stones, and cut down sycamores and cedars, and let us build for ourselves a tower.
11 And God shall dash down them that rise up against him on mount Sion, and shall scatter his enemies;
12 [even] Syria from the rising of the sun, and the Greeks from the setting of the sun, who devour Israel with open mouth. For all this [his] anger is not turned away, but still [his] hand is exalted.

The Greek explicitly denotes the word “tower” in verse 10.

G4444 πργος purgos (poor’-gos) n.

1. a tower or castle

[apparently a primary word (“burgh”)]

The Pride of Man

In all of the above instances and many others, we can see the pride that is referenced in Isaiah 9:9. “The Freedom Tower” – now called “One World Trade Center” – has been called to be built bigger and stronger by every American leader and even others around the world.

No matter what it is called, the central building within the complex is going to be 426 feet taller than the previous towers. It will be the new icon of the United States and will be our ultimate undoing.

The Inevitable Conclusion

Did you recognize these events as they occurred? What conclusion have you come to? Do you think these are all coincidences?

If you believe YHWH, the Elohim (God) of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, is in control of His creation, then there is no possibility of a single coincidence, let alone eight of them as exampled above. He has consistently used, throughout history, people and nations to bring about judgment for sins, and as a nation and people, we have certainly sinned. Whether the attack was of a foreign enemy or devised within our own government, the signs remain the same:

  • The bricks have fallen
  • The bricks have been replaced by hewn stones
  • The sycamore has fallen
  • The sycamore has been replaced by (many) cedars
  • The signs are all located at the site of the birth of our nation under the current Constitution
  • The rebuilding of a tower is what we are doing and what was understood in the time of Alexander the Great
  • In our arrogance we say: “We can do better”
  • Our pride causes us not to see YHWH’s judgment or His call to return to Him

Have you now seen the correlation of events and all that is happening around you? Is it time to sound the shofar? Bring the message that Yahushua haMashiach and all the prophets before Him brought:

Isaiah 8
16 Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.
17 And I will wait upon the LORD, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him.
18 Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me [are] for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.
19 And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead?
20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, [it is] because [there is] no light in them.

Matthew 4
17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

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