The Truth About the Harbinger: Addressing the controversy and discovering the facts about this prophetic message by Jose Bernal
I recently read The Harbinger by Jonathan Cahn in preparation for the review of this book. You can read my review here.
For me, the key to understanding all the related books such as the Harbinger Companion book, the DVD ‘The Harbinger Decoded’ and this book, is in the appearance of well-documented historical events that repeat over a period of time. Such circumstances have happened enough to formulate a template–a pattern. Some call this the circle of life. But since time is linear, I prefer to think of it as waves of events which form predictable consequences. Patterns infer a presence of intelligence and purpose. For me, this translates into information about God and His will for mankind…His purpose and intentions.
Jonathan Cahn succinctly summarizes The Harbinger this way, “The Harbinger concerns an ancient pattern of judgment that manifested in the last days of ancient Israel and which is now manifesting in America.” The crux of his message is simple. God’s nature, revealed to us in the Scriptures, is justice tempered with mercy, like two sides of a coin. When God saw that His chosen people were drifting away from Him, He would issue a warning of judgment to come, but would always provide a means to escape this judgment through His loving mercy. This pattern is consistent all throughout the Old Testament. And again, if you study historical events around the world after Jesus’ death and resurrection from a biblical point of view, the pattern holds. This is not a new or original concept. With this thought in mind, it was no surprise to me when the author of The Harbinger found yet another manifestation of this pattern in the present.
Whenever a God-centered message is pronounced publicly that may have an influence over a large number of people, as is the case with the book The Harbinger, especially where the message includes a call to forsake our rejection of God and draw closer to Him, there will be criticism. Some of the criticism comes from within the “faith” community and some from outside of it. As I see it, the stronger the appeal to turn away from sin, the stronger the criticism offered.
Answering such criticisms is the focal point of Jose Bernal’s “The Truth About the Harbinger”. To quote the back cover, ‘Jose Bernal is a teacher of biblical doctrine, hermaneutics, history, and theology, and he hosts a blog called, “The Pepster’s Post: a Voice in Cyber Space” on which he writes on faith, history, religion and current political sociological trends.’ In my own opinion, he is particularly talented at sorting through the trees in order to reveal the forest.
Mr. Bernal’s book is divided into two parts. The first part is an overview of The Harbinger with added comments from others who have read the book. In addition, the author adds more historical context to deepen our understanding of the prevailing patterns. He addresses many issues in this part of the book and points out the criticisms of each harbinger. Where does America fit in prophecy? Who are God’s people? Who is to heed His warnings? Are the nine harbingers relevant for today? Why wasn’t Pearl Harbor considered a harbinger? Can politicians say something prophetic? Can God use natural means as part of His warning? What constitutes the nature of an “effect” (as in the Isaiah 9:10 Effect)? Is a financial collapse part of the prophetic warning? How does God speak to His children today?
The second part of the book goes deeper into the explanations of the truth of the harbingers. Mr. Bernal identifies thirteen criticisms used against the book and the book’s author. He methodically addresses each objection using his expertise in history, biblical doctrine and hermaneutics to make each answer clear and understandable to the reader.
In the final chapters of this book, the author employs two illustrations or parables to summarize his analysis in the latter half of his book. The first analogy is called, “The Fall of Sam.” It’s written in the form of a story to drive home his points. This story is so simple and clear that you could tell it to middle grade young people and they would get it. The second illustration is my favorite. A fireman is trying to rescue a family whose house is on fire. The neighbors come out of their homes and start arguing with the fireman, nit-picking his methods while he is desperately trying to get to the family sleeping upstairs. They even question there is a fire at all. The ridiculousness of the situation is a poignant clarion call for those who are trying to tear down what Jonathan Cahn is building up through his book.
In my opinion this book is a valuable companion to The Harbinger and should be a great help to anyone who wants to delve deeper into the history and background of the basis for the story of the harbingers. I found it easy to read and understand. Its format is logically laid out to appeal to readers whether they have Biblical knowledge or not.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this commentary from Charisma House Book Group through their Booketeria reader program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”