In an era when the majority of people don’t know much about the Bible, it’s refreshing to find teachers dedicated to alleviating the problem.
Bill Cloud is such a teacher.
An evangelical Christian, Cloud visited Israel shortly after coming to faith in 1988. He was immediately interested in the Hebraic roots of Christianity and founded Shoreshim Ministries. He now travels around the country with a full schedule teaching the connections between Judaism and Christianity.
It’s a controversial topic, but there’s no question American evangelicals (and of course the mainline and Catholics) need to know more about the roots of their own faith. In fact, overall knowledge is abysmal, as many don’t even realize Jesus (Messiah) is a Jew.
In a new book, though, Cloud turns his talents to an obscure but profoundly important prophecy found in the book of Genesis. Esau, the son of Isaac, was a hunter. His brother, Jacob, stayed more at home with their mother.
When it came time, however, for Isaac to pass on the patriarchal blessing to his son, Esau in turn passed it to Jacob in exchange for a single meal! This set up a chain of events that impacts the international community to this day. For it was Jacob (Israel), you see, who was the “child of the promise” and through him, the great promises of God to the Jewish people were fulfilled.
Esau, and the spirit he represented, cared only about himself. Today, we are watching the war between his descendants, the Arabs, play out with their cousins, the Jews.
In all this, Bill Cloud has put together an explosive book, “Esau Rising: Ancient Adversaries and the War for America’s Soul.” This dark spirit of Esau has always been with us: “It has been manifested through countless other individuals over the centuries and sometimes through entire groups and nations.”
And because, as Cloud points out, Esau was the father of the ancient nation that opposed and oppressed Israel – Edom – his descendants continue to harass the Chosen People.
Suffice it to say that throughout Israel’s history, Esau and his descendants have proven to be the primary adversary of God’s people. As you read at the opening of this book, Esau despised Jacob and vowed to kill him; Haman tried to destroy the Jews of Persia; and another descendant of Esau tried desperately to kill the King of Israel, the Messiah Y’shua. Given this track record, not to mention the numerous Bible verses that speak of this ongoing hostility toward God’s people, we shouldn’t be surprised to find that in the end of days, it will again be the descendants of Esau and those who replicate his wayward mindset and actions who rise up and attempt to destroy God’s people.
And this “spirit of Esau” has smothered the planet in myriad other ways, including the political realm. The evil machinations of the political regimes that control cultures. As Cloud writes:
The issue is not political, cultural, or urban as opposed to rural – it is spiritual. The fortifications we face are not composed of stone and rock or guard towers and impenetrable gates; they are not even high-rises and congested streets. The strongholds we face are found within the hearts and minds of those men and women who endorse wickedness and perversity while vigorously resisting any attempt at moral and spiritual reform. Within our cities are concentrated pockets of rebellion, licentiousness, and violence, and as opportunities arise, these cancerous attitudes and behaviors are disseminated throughout other cities, towns, and the surrounding regions, eventually permeating the society at large.
Cloud believes that too many in our country today have embraced the “ideology possessed by Esau,” which is hate what your father revered, satisfy carnal desires, and break away from the restraints that have kept your evil desires in check.
Cloud’s masterful research into the ancient cultures around Israel, in contrast to the modern manifestations, is one of the things that make “Esau Rising” a real page-turner.
Almost as a bonus, “Esau Rising” also involves an analysis of America’s role in end-times events. Cloud’s keen observations seem on-target, as he discusses how the spirit of Esau affects both Israel and America.
In the realm of Bible prophecy literature, “Esau Rising” is sure to be a hot topic of conversation for the foreseeable future; it’s that compelling.