What is Petra? Petra, Jordan is a location that tourists often gravitate to. It was established sometime in the 6th Century BC by the Nabataeans, and was carved out of rock around 1200 BC, and is located on the slope of Mount Hor, which, coincidentally, is supposedly where Moses' brother Aaron was buried. (Photo credit to: Jigsaw Earth, World Historical Sites)
Petra was re-discovered by Swiss explorer Johann Ludwig Burckhardt in 1812. BBC describes Petra as one of the "top 40 places to see before you die." What an amazing archaeological feat it is, indeed. The city is in essence, a fortress - surrounded by hard-to-navigate narrow passageways with towering, winding rock walls.
Known for being a "rose-red city," the water conduits system is stunning. The area at the time of the Nabataeans was known for flash-floods, and by making use of dams, cisterns, and water conduits, the flow of water throughout Petra was controlled. Petra has been in popular media - films. You may have seen it as the location of the Holy Grail in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, or perhaps in the more recent Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. It has been used in a plethora of films.
What Biblical relevance does Petra have? It has a very important role in the future - but let's take a look at what the Bible tells us about the past. The area where Petra is located was assigned to the Horites, who were the predecessors of the Edomites. Petra was commonly mistake as Sela, the capital of Edom. However, Sela (meaning, the rock) is located nearby at Mount Hor.
Petra was later carved out, as stated, by the Nabataeans. The custom of burying the dead and offering worship carried out by the Nabataeans may have been derived from the Horites. Petra, after a few centuries, fell under Roman rule, where it declined. Egyptians visited Petra in the 13th Century, and it was known, but went largely unnoticed until the re-discovery, as stated, in 1812.
But Petra, aside from being merely an attraction, has a greater value. I've mentioned its capability as a fortress. As we have gone over time and time again, The End Times are near. The Rapture, The Seven Year Tribulation, the Millennium, Eternity. What role does Petra play in the End Times? Well, when I wrote the three-part series, "The End Times," I neglected to put in several things. Not one purpose, but I had not yet known about them.
Does that negate the truth of those three entries? Certainly not. What I neglected to put it in, due to my lack of knowledge on this particular event, was the Remnant of Israel. Revelation 12:14 mentions a "woman," who flees towards the mountains but is chased by the dragon. In other words, The Remnant of Israel is chased to the mountains by the Antichrist - after he has become indwelled by Satan.
Three and a half years into the Seven-Year Tribulation, The Antichrist will be assassinated. Some think by a sword, others think by gun. It could be numerous things, but Revelation 13:3 says, "One of the heads of the beast seemed to have a fatal wound, but the fatal wound had been healed. The whole world was filled with wonder and followed the [Antichrist]." Bear in mind that yes, Revelation 12 comes before 13. However, the chronology of the book of Revelation is not concurrent all the way through, as is pointed out to us, and we are left to make the connection.
What is the connection? After the Antichrist is resurrection and indwelled (possessed) by Lucifer, he will go to the rebuilt Temple in Jerusalem, and desecrate it, proclaiming himself as God. After this, he will begin a genocide of the Jews, much like Hitler did during World War II, only we are told it will be worse.
So what happens? The Remnant of the Jews are given a Moses-like figure to lead them to the mountains - to Petra. Because of the fortified walls of the city, Petra will be safe from attack, and we are told that the Jewish Remnant will be supernaturally protected. (From Christian writer Jack Kelley:)
"There are several references that when combined lead scholars to conclude that at the beginning of the Great Tribulation, believing Jews will flee to Petra in southern Jordan, where they’ll be supernaturally protected by the Lord. In Matt. 24:16 the Lord warned those in Judea (Israel) to flee to the mountains when they see the Abomination of Desolation. The closest mountains are to the east in southern Jordan where Petra is located. Rev. 12:14 tells of Satan pursuing them across the desert as they flee to a place prepared for them.
This desert lies between Israel and the mountains of southern Jordan around the northern and eastern shores of the Dead Sea. And in Isaiah 63: 1-6 there’s a description of the Lord coming from Bozrah in Edom after single handedly defeating His enemies there. Bozrah is the region of Edom where Petra is located. This indicates that when the time comes the Lord will declare Jordan off limits to the anti-Christ and give His people refuge there."
Many things point to Petra as the place of refuge for the Remnant. Led by the Moses-like figure, they will re-locate to their place of refuge where they will have plenty of water (studies show that Petra's water conduit system is very effective), and will be fed manna, just as Moses and the Israelites were more than 3,000 years ago. (1446-1370's BC)
Revelation 12:14 tells us that the Remnant is "given the two wings of a great eagle, so that [they] may fly to the place prepared for [them] where [they] would be taken care of for [1,260 Days.]" Revelation 12:6 tells us 1,260 Days - 3 and a half years, confirming that this Exodus will occur at the start of the Second Half of the Tribulation, also known as "The Great Tribulation." They will remain there until the Second Coming of Jesus Christ at the end of the 7 Years.
While Petra may have declined under Roman rule, the Jewish occupation to come will certainly prove that the Red City is still ready for whatever the Antichrist can throw at it. Many Biblical Scholars support this, and it is the most logical place of exodus. I pray that this information has been insightful and filled with understanding. May God Bless You, Take Care, Dear Reader. Troy Hillman (email@example.com, facebook)