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August 16, 2016
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
Are You Full of Guilt? - by Pastor Mike Taylor - http://www.churchofgod-usa.org/1/post/2016/08/are-you-full-of-guilt.html
"Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:" (1st Peter 1:6-7)
I was listening to a minister talk about an interview that Peggy Noonan had with Patti Davis, the daughter of President Reagan and it struck me odd about what she said. She was talking about when she was a little girl, that she saw the plight of the black people of this country, which is a sad story of in itself, and she wished that her family and herself could somehow be changed to being black. She said that she felt so guilty about the plight of the black man. She also went on to being full of guilt for the suffering of people in other countries, and the poor who have not got it as good as the poorest among us and being American, while expressing the emotional feelings of "guilt".
First off, I would like to ask Ms. Davis, if she were around, what would you change about being white, privileged, or being born in America if you could? First off, you cannot change the fact that you were born of the white race (anymore than you can change the color of any person's skin). It's out of your control. You can do nothing about being born in the USA and have had the privileges that most Americans take for granted. Even the poorest in the USA have it FAR better than some of the people in third world countries. I would say a better emotional response would be to be "thankful". When I heard this I wondered why anyone would be feeling guilty about being a white American, let alone being blessed with material wealth? I believe it is a mindset of secular society about how they handle the world around them. Let me see if I can put this into a perspective, by the end of this sermon so maybe you will understand.
FEELINGS OF GUILT BECAUSE OF SIN
I've had numerous emails from people who express feelings of guilt and shame for their inability to stop sinning in their life. It ranges from sins of the flesh, to sins of the mind and thought processes that disturbs these folks deeply. So deeply that they seek counseling for reasons that they are unable to purge every aspect of a sinful nature. I am reminded of Paul and his lamenting about the same problem. I tell these folks, "welcome to the human race." Paul speaks in Romans chapter 7,
15 "For that which I do I allow not: for what I would , that do I not; but what I hate , that do I .
16, If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
17, Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
18 For I know that in me (that is , in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do .
20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.
22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:
23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
25, I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. "
Paul was explaining that those who continue to commit sin in their life, do so because they are mortal. Even though they are called by God, saved and baptized, they cannot rid themselves of a sin nature. Can any of us? Of course, the answer is no, not in this life at least. Folks, none of us will be able to fully extinguish a sinful nature, but through our overcoming these natures of our flesh, we build something that can be used by God. How can we understand why we are being tested and what is God's purpose behind these tests? I'm reminded of the passage in Acts chapter 16, when Paul got himself into trouble with a girl who had the spirit of divination.
16 "And it came to pass , as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying :
17 The same followed Paul and us, and cried , saying , These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation.
18 And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved , turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour.
19 And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone , they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers,
20 And brought them to the magistrates, saying , These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city,
21 And teach customs, which are not lawful for us to receive , neither to observe , being Romans.
22 And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them."
GUILTY OR GRATEFUL?
Of course, the charges were a lie, but Paul and Silas were beaten for causing trouble to these men. Paul only infraction was becoming frustrated with being followed around by a demon possessed girl. And what became of this situation?
23, "And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely:
24, Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.
25, And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed , and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.
26, And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken : and immediately all the doors were opened , and every one's bands were loosed . 27 And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open , he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled."
Because of this persecution and wrongful treatment, Paul and Silas were cast into prison and the jailer would have killed himself, if Paul had not stopped him. As the passage progresses, the jailer comes to him trembling and ask "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" Paul spoke to him the gospel and the man believed and his house and were baptized. Do you see in the above verses, what was the result of this affliction brought onto these men of God? They didn't feel guilty, they felt grateful. They sang praises to God, as they were tried, and were joyful because of their trial. You say, how can they be joyful when you realize the pain they must have been in, the position that they were forced to endure with their hands and feet in stocks and no ability to even sleep? Answer is because they understood that their trial would be used for good because they were afflicted because of their belief in Jesus Christ, even in their pain. Being persecuted, or tried brought about the salvation of a whole house of unbelievers to become saved that night.
PETER BEFORE THE JEWISH COUNCIL
Another passage speaks of another apostle who had a similar experience. It's found in Acts chapter 5.
17 "Then the high priest rose up , and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation,
18 And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison.
19 But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth , and said ,
20 Go , stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.
21 And when they heard that, they entered into the temple early in the morning , and taught ."
So you ask, how does this apply to me? Although you have not been tried as these men were, not yet anyway, you are still being tested. If you have thoughts that are impure that plague you, or you succumbed to a sin that left you shaken in your faith and wondering about your condition before God. How will you look at it? Will you be guilty or grateful? Grateful? How so? Because we have an advocate that is before the Father who forgives us when we repent. Why would He forgive? Because He was tempted in all points as we are, but without sin. He knows our struggles and can relate to them. That is why He is our High Priest. If we respond as we should, we are remorseful and saddened by our fragile condition of being flesh. But we need not fear. When we have overcome a sin through faith and repentance because of being mortal, we become stronger not to continue in that sin. But the better part of that trial, is when you meet someone who is struggling with the same problem. You can empathize with them, as you have struggled with the same sin and won over it, by the power of God's Holy Spirit. That person may be struggling with a sinful nature, lost in that sin, and feel's powerless and hopeless. You can give that person a lifeline, as you have been in their shoes and experienced their feelings of being remorseful. All of us have been there and experienced sin in our lives. No one is immune, "for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23)
Now I'm not advocating that we should go out and sin like the heathen, but when we do fail as a Christian follower of Jesus Christ, (and it's a given, because sin is sin and doesn't have degrees in God's eyes) we come to our God and Father through His Son and He forgives that sin, immediately. From that lesson, (and my brothers and sisters, we are all in spiritual school) we learn not to repeat that same error. Or if we do, the discipline and lesson will become more severe until we do learn (and that is a given)! James said it most clear in chapter 1 of 1st James beginning in verse 12,
"Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried , he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.
13 Let no man say when he is tempted , I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
14 But every man is tempted , when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed .
15 Then when lust hath conceived , it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished , bringeth forth death.
16 Do not err , my beloved brethren.
17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear , slow to speak , slow to wrath:
20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
21, Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls."
Each of us suffer being in this world, and the demon inspired conditions that surround the children of God. Some suffer more than others for reasons we do not understand. But we endure and seek a better life, as pilgrims and pioneers on this earth, we know that this is not our home. But we are tested daily to refine those who are called by the Holy Spirit to repentance and putting their trust and faith in the captain of our salvation, Jesus Christ, the Messiah. In beginning that process of sanctification of our spiritual lives, we are continually tempted by Satan the devil and his evil hordes of demons. We have a big bull's eye on our backs and Satan would love to see anyone of us fail. God planted the seed of His Holy Spirit meshed with our spirit that can never be undone. He has put His mark on us. Now it is within our spirit to follow Him, being grateful, or succumb to feelings of guilt for still being human. We struggle to become more Christ-like in our everyday lives.
Romans 8: 13 "For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die : but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live .
14 , For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
15, For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry , Abba, Father.
16, The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
17 , And if children, then heirs; heirs of God , and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together .
18, For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us."
FEELINGS OF GUILT OVER BEING BORN IN THE USA
Let us return and examine again why secular Americans may feel guilty about being something they cannot help but be. Whether you are white, black, or some other nationality, you were born that way. You are in a country by history has been the most privileged of any nation on earth. Why would Patti Davis make a statement such as this about feeling guilty about her station in life? Because I believe they have a guilt of who they are, what they are, and what they have achieved by human methods, because they have no one in their life to be grateful to. Liberals or progressives in this country have a deep seeded feelings of guilt, because as Ann Coulter rightly put it in one of her books, "they are 'Godless." They don't recognize God, so they feel guilty when they see a poor person in the gutter. These people who see the problems of this country, or for that matter the squalor that is in other countries and the only emotion they have is "guilt". They don't feel grateful, as they don't have God, and they don't recognize sin. They see the conditions around this world, and they seek ways to solve those problems without God's intervention or help, and they wonder why things are progressing worse and worse.
Every human person feels bad for the conditions of the downtrodden, the afflicted, and the poor person as it's in our DNA, but the liberal without God, has no place to go with his feelings that are inbred into each of us, so they internalize it. Problem is, they project it onto the rest of us and drag us along for something they can't do much about. Instead of feeling grateful about being who they are, they feel guilt. I believe that is what Patti Davis was expressing to Peggy Noonan. I don't know her spiritual condition, but it would stand to reason, if she doesn't have a walk with the Lord of Lights, who came down to this world to save men from their sins, then she may be feeling guilty about the world and it's conditions. She may not recognize that sin produces the afflictions of mankind since Adam and Eve introduced sin into our world.
Every Christian person, a real born again individual who has been buried with Jesus Christ in baptism and changed their focus in this life, looks to the next life and is grateful, (no, thankful) that God called them out of this world, guaranteeing them eternal life by depositing an earnest of His Holy Spirit residing with their own.
HE WHO OVERCOMES.......
Though we struggle daily with a sin nature, God has promised each of us a glorious future. We need not fear, but persevere building character, and building patience for our blessed hope. Romans chapter 5,
1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
2, By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand , and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
3, And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
4, And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
5, And hope maketh not ashamed ; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
6, For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly."
We must overcome this world, as He overcame this world as Jesus told us in John chapter 16
33, "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer ; I have overcome the world."
So why are any of us having feelings of guilt? We should be thankful and grateful for His sacrifice on Calvary.
NOTHING CAN SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF GOD!!
Paul confirms in this chapter in Romans 8 that is so glorious, that it should make any believer shout with a glad heart.
28 "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
29, For whom he did foreknow , he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30, Moreover whom he did predestinate , them he also called : and whom he called , them he also justified : and whom he justified , them he also glorified ."
ARE YOU GUILTY OR GRATEFUL?
I don't mean to disparage your political affiliation, as this sermon has nothing to do with political beliefs. There is enough anxiety around us in this coming election to make anyone fearful. What it does do is focus on what is your motivation. Are you guilt ridden because of the lack of God in your life? Don't laugh, my friend if you be reading this and thinking "oh, brother." or something along that line. Do you see the hopeful message that I've quoted in the above verses? Can you honestly say that you have peace in your life? Does this world satisfy your needs with it's political, secular and godless agenda? Not if you're honest with yourself you will admit, "only for a limited time." Then many will feel lost, hopeless and some, even suicidal. That last description of suicide is growing by leaps and bounds in this "modern" world of a cesspool of sin we all live in. Does life seem too hard to endure? Are you experiencing pain that you find no relief from? By pain, it may be physical, emotional, or even spiritual. Do you awake every morning being grateful for another day, or dread another minute of this "hell" you live in? If you can say you're grateful, who are you grateful to? Yourself? Your family? Spouse, etc. etc...adfinito. Unless you fill the vacuum that we all have, that void inside of you that knows it must be filled with what made us, then you have those feelings of guilt that just won't go away.
I know what I speak of, as I see it every day in the young, old, and all in-between ages on the ropes of despair. Many drowning themselves with alcohol, drugs, or ending it all with suicide because they just can't take it any longer. They have no hope, no value, and they are in pain of this life. They struggle to make sense of their existence, but they find none in this world. You know what? There is none found in this world. There is only death and destruction from a sin filled life, devoid of what that empty space inside of you yearns for. That void is the lack of God. We were made by Him and He desires our company, but problem is, God is Holy. How can we come to Him when we are without any self-righteousness? "Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away .
But there is hope and there is salvation for all who call upon Jesus Christ in repentance and dedicating their life unto Him, as Lord and Savior. It is so simple, even a child can do it. But it takes faith like that of a little child. Letting your heart be tender as one so innocent. He wants to take you in His arms and take away all your reproach and cleanse you from your sins. Isaiah 53,
5 "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed .
6, All we like sheep have gone astray ; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all."
Matthew 18:2 "And Jesus called a little child unto him , and set him in the midst of them,
3, And said , Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted , and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
4, Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
8 "But what saith it ? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is , the word of faith, which we preach ;
9, That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved .
10, For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
11, For the scripture saith , Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed ."
And the most loved of all passages that saved a tender hearted 10 year old boy at Vacation Bible School. Saved, because I believed what He said, and He gave me a glad heart, a grateful heart. John chapter 3:
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish , but have everlasting life.
17, For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved .
18, He that believeth on him is not condemned : but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."
Again, are you full of guilt? Do you live with despair and find no joy in this life? Is one day just like another one before it, as hope dwindles in this world full of darkness? How awful that must feel. I never had those feelings, as I accepted my Lord and Savior at an early age, but I have experienced the knocks of this life and sin that every living mortal experiences from veering to the right or to the left of a straight and narrow pathway. But praise God, He brings His own back to center with just a loving hand. Have you experienced that touch in your life? Have you wondered is there a better way? My friend, there is. His name is Jesus. Won't you accept His free offer of grace. What is grace? It is the undeserved favor of one in need. WE don't deserve His love, we don't deserve His favor, and we don't deserve His sacrifice in blood, His own blood on Calvary's cross for the sins of you, and for me.
What do you do to go from being guilty, to being thankful? Repent of your sins that all of us have committed with tears and remorse. Look upon Him who died for you and accept His payment in full, for all of your sins (past, present, and future), invite Him into your life as Lord. Believe that He died, and rose again to live eternally, so that we may live eternally as well. Believe that He will come again, and it just might be sooner than any of us think. You can achieve through His mercy something that will make your heart sing and a load of bricks will fall from your shoulders, called sin.
Do it today, while the invitation is open. Go from guilty to thankful in the twinkling of any eye.
This is pastor Mike Taylor, praying God's salvation through Jesus Christ our Lord, comes into your life today. If you need counseling, prayer, or just a listening ear, send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org . Or visit me online at www.churchofgod-usa.org , God bless you,
TILL WE MEET AT JESUS FEET
Abbas scheme for rival Jerusalem municipality - http://www.debka.com/article/25609/Abbas-scheme-for-rival-Jerusalem-municipality
The US, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Israel too have warned the octogenarian Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas against holding the Oct. 8 municipal elections he has called for the Palestinian-ruled West Bank towns and locales and the Gaza Strip.
Abbas had hoped to catch the Islamist Hamas off guard at a time when it was in hot water in the Arab arena (although Abbas is in plenty of trouble himself) and the Gaza Strip under its rule was in desperate financial straits and domestic pressure.
Instead, Hamas turned the tables on him and announced that this time, unlike in 2012, when the fundamentalist Palestinian group opted out of the vote, it was more than ready to put up candidates to challenge local Fatah politicians for local office.
More than a million people have already registered to vote.
Abbas was warned that by going through with the election, he will be exposing his Fatah party to the same defeat as it experienced in the last parliamentary elections the Palestinians held 10 years ago, when Hamas swept to a majority in the legislature.
Hamas does not need to scoop up all 400 Palestinian local authorities on the West Bank and Gaza Strip this time. The campaign alone will give the Islamist party the chance to restore its wrecked political infrastructure in Judea and Samaria. Dismantling its networks took three years of hard work by US, Israeli and Palestinian intelligence and security agencies. This the election would turn to scrap. The day after the vote, no one doubts that Hamas will ride in on its campaign apparatus and voter support to re-establish its terror networks.
Israel and Americans officials involved in the Palestinian question see Hamas election gains as leading directly to an upsurge of the Palestinian West-Bank-based terror launched last September and now abating.
Those officials, when trying to intercede with Palestinian figures, to warn them they were opening up a Pandora's Box, find Ramallah in a state of frenetic chaos.
The confusion is such that it is impossible to sort out who supports whom in the tangled loyalties among the factions, activists and various families and clans. Some Fatah activists appear to be planning to break away from their leader Abbas and run on independent lists. Among them are prominent figures like the Mayor of Nablus Ghassan Shak'a. To oppose him, Abbas' followers have tagged Mohammad Ayish, a local businessman who headed the town's Hamas list four years ago.
In Al-Bireh, Ramallah's neighbor, Fatah adherents have set up five separate lists.
So, before even getting of the ground, Fatah's election campaign is already rife with deep divisions.
Hamas is in not much better shape.
This group had held out for Muhammad Dahlan, former strongman of Gaza, hated enemy of Mahmoud Abbas and a tycoon who moves around between Abu Dhabi, Cairo and his villa in Montenegro, to sponsor its candidates with cash in order to spoil Abbas' chances. But Dahlan has showed little interest in the Palestinian municipal elections and even less in funding Hamas politicians.
This may be partly because Abbas is so unpredictable. Even the Palestinians are not sure that he won't take it into his head to call the elections off - even at the last moment.
To convince the Palestinians that he means business and that campaigning should be serious, Abbas has embarked on what he calls his "Jerusalem gambit."
Knowing that Israeli will not let the Palestinian Authority place West Bank voting booths in East Jerusalem, which is home to 130,000 Palestinians, his plan is to declare elections for a Palestinian municipality for the eastern part of Israel's capital in competition to the Israeli municipality. He has chosen the village of Abu Dis as its seat and already installed there a "Palestinian governor of Jerusalem," who is recognized by no one and known to very few.
For Abbas, this maneuver presents another hazard. If he fails to get the vote out for the "Palestinian Jerusalem municipality", he loses face. On the other hand, if Israel scotches this attempt to re-divide its capital, the Palestinian leader will have a convenient pretext for calling off the West Bank municipal vote and pinning the blame on Israel.
Russia uses Iran as base to bomb Syrian militants for first time - Andrew Osborn - http://news360.com/digestarticle/9DKop3mbJki4LcEJpn-OyQ#
Russia used Iran as a base from which to launch air strikes against Syrian militants for the first time on Tuesday, widening its air campaign in Syria and deepening its involvement in the Middle East.
In a move underscoring Moscow's increasingly close ties with Tehran, long-range Russian Tupolev-22M3 bombers and Sukhoi-34 fighter bombers used Iran's Hamadan air base to strike a range of targets in Syria.
It was the first time Russia has used the territory of another nation, apart from Syria itself, to launch such strikes since the Kremlin launched a bombing campaign to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in September last year.
It was also thought to be the first time that Iran has allowed a foreign power to use its territory for military operations since the 1979 Islamic revolution.
The Iranian deployment will boost Russia's image as a central player in the Middle East and allow the Russian air force to cut flight times and increase bombing payloads.
The head of Iran's National Security Council was quoted by state news agency IRNA as saying Tehran and Moscow were now sharing facilities to fight against terrorism, calling their cooperation strategic.
Both countries back Assad, and Russia, after a delay, has supplied Iran with its S-300 missile air defense system, evidence of a growing partnership between the pair that has helped turn the tide in Syria's civil war and is testing U.S. influence in the Middle East.
Relations between Tehran and Moscow have grown warmer since Iran reached agreement last year with global powers to curb its nuclear program in return for the lifting of U.N., EU and U.S. financial sanctions.
President Vladimir Putin visited in November and the two countries regularly discuss military planning for Syria, where Iran has provided ground forces that work with local allies while Russia provides air power.
The Russian Defense Ministry said its bombers had taken off on Tuesday from the Hamadan air base in north-west Iran. To reach Syria, they would have had to use the air space of another neighboring country, probably Iraq.
The ministry said Tuesday's strikes had targeted Islamic State as well as militants previously known as the Nusra Front in the Aleppo, Idlib and Deir al Zour provinces. It said its Iranian-based bombers had been escorted by fighter jets based at Russia's Hmeymim air base in Syria's Latakia Province.
"As a result of the strikes five large arms depots were destroyed ... a militant training camp ... three command and control points ... and a significant number of militants," the ministry said in a statement.
The destroyed facilities had all been used to support militants in the Aleppo area, it said, where battle for control of the divided city, which had some 2 million people before the war, has intensified in recent weeks.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a U.K.-based war monitor, said heavy air strikes on Tuesday had hit many targets in and around Aleppo and elsewhere in Syria, killing dozens.
Strikes in the Tariq al-Bab and al-Sakhour districts of northeast Aleppo had killed around 20 people, while air raids in a corridor rebels opened this month into opposition-held eastern parts of the city had killed another nine, the observatory said.
The Russian Defense Ministry says it takes great care to avoid civilian casualties in its air strikes.
Zakaria Malahifi, political officer of an Aleppo-based rebel group, Fastaqim, said he could not confirm if the newly deployed Russian bombers were in use, but said air strikes on Aleppo had intensified in recent days.
"It is much heavier," he told Reuters. "There is no weapon they have not dropped on Aleppo - cluster bombs, phosphorus bombs, and so on."
Aleppo, Syria's largest city before the war, is divided into rebel and government-held zones. The government aims to capture full control of it, which would be its biggest victory of the five-year conflict.
Hundreds of thousands of civilians are believed to be trapped in rebel areas, facing potential siege if the government closes off the corridor linking it with the outside.
Russian media reported on Tuesday that Russia had also requested and received permission to use Iran and Iraq as a route to fire cruise missiles from its Caspian Sea fleet into Syria, as it has done in the past.
Russia has built up its naval presence in the eastern Mediterranean and the Caspian as part of what it says are planned military exercises.
Russia's state-backed Rossiya 24 channel earlier on Tuesday broadcast uncaptioned images of at least three Russian Tupolev-22M3 bombers and a Russian military transport plane inside Iran.
The channel said the Iranian deployment would allow the Russian air force to cut flight times by 60 percent. The Tupolev-22M3 bombers, which before Tuesday had conducted strikes on Syria from their home bases in southern Russia, were too large to be accommodated at Russia's own air base inside Syria, Russian media reported.
Ancient Genealogical Records Prove King David's Descendants Are Alive Today - By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz - http://www.breakingisraelnews.com/74034/king-davids-descendants-ready-rebuild-davidic-kingdom-jerusalem/#56p2WOrTO5ltec0g.97
"Then I will establish the throne of thy kingdom over Yisrael for ever; according as I promised to David thy father, saying: There shall not fail thee a man upon the throne of Yisrael." I Kings 9:5 (The Israel Bible™)
It might come as a shock to many to learn that hundreds of descendants of King David are alive today, with verifiable family trees dating back 90 generations, and that the royal Davidic dynasty could potentially be established today in Israel.
Though some may be skeptical of the genealogical proof, many secular researchers of genealogy have studied the line of David. The research is facilitated by the fact that a number of European monarchs throughout history have gone to great lengths to prove family ties to the Davidic Dynasty, and a solid ancestry has been established.
Within the Jewish community, genealogical studies have shown several families that can claim descent ben akhar ben (father to son) in a direct line, most notably the Dayan, Shealtiel and Charlap/Don Yechia families. Most of these families come from Aleppo, Syria.
Susan Roth founded the Davidic Dynasty organization in 2000 to gather and reunite Davidic descendants in the Holy City of Jerusalem. Roth has a personal interest as well, tracing her lineage back to King David through Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki, the preeminent 11th century French Torah scholar known by the acronym Rashi.
Her registry currently lists approximately 150 descendants who have verifiable descent to King David. However, efforts to introduce this reality into mainstream Judaism have met with surprising resistance.
When she first compiled her list, Roth contacted Israel's Chief Rabbinate to inform them of her registry but, surprisingly, they expressed no interest.
"They were shocked, but they never followed up. My interest was simply to do God's will, but they understood it as a political agenda. They don't want King David's dynasty and they don't want Moshiach (Messiah)," Roth told Breaking Israel News.
"Even though it is clear Moshiach is here. He is just hiding," she added.
One of her discoveries was Mitchell Dayan. In 1983, Dayan was mourning for his brother. Amazed at the number of visitors who claimed to be from his family, he began to research his genealogy. Dayan's research led him to a book called Yashir Moshe, a commentary on Song of Songs written in 1864 by Rabbi Moshe Dayan. In the prologue to the book, the rabbi lists his genealogy, leading back to King David. In this list, Mitchell found the name of his great grandfather from Aleppo.
Another genealogic list was found in the Cairo geniza, a storehouse of over 300,000 Jewish documents discovered in the late 1800's. The two lists were almost identical, despite the Cairo list being compiled hundreds of years earlier. Through these sources, Mitchell Dayan was able to verify his lineage back 87 generations to King David.
"The actual descendants may not know it but there are descendants of King David alive today," Dayan told Breaking Israel News. "This was prophesied in the Bible but it is also fact. Politics are irrelevant. It is going to happen, one day or another."
For thus saith Hashem: There shall not be cut off unto David a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Yisrael. Jeremiah 33:17
In 2005, another Dayan, Rabbi Yosef Dayan, was recognized by the nascent Sanhedrin as a direct descendant of King David and, as such, a candidate to re-establish the Davidic Dynasty. Similar to Mitchell Dayan, his discovery came as a result of a death in the family.
Soon after he immigrated to Israel in 1968, Rabbi Dayan buried his grandfather in Jerusalem. He was surprised to see inscribed on the headstone the words "M'Bet David" (from the house of David). Rabbi Dayan discovered that this inscription was a family custom dating back to their origins in Aleppo.
Several years later, Rabbi Dayan received an antique document from a cousin which lists his genealogy, showing him to be the 89th generation from King David. This document was verified by Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu, the former Chief Sephardi Rabbi of Israel.
"This concept of family tradition is not surprising," Rabbi Dayan told Breaking Israel News. "The Kohanim (priests) have a family tradition that they are descended from Aaron the Priest, well before King David, and this tradition is totally accepted by the rabbis. This tradition has been proven accurate by DNA testing."
Rabbi Dayan is disappointed by the lack of acceptance by rabbinic authorities and mainstream Judaism.
"Just as the Kohanic tradition is accepted, the same should be true for the descendants of King David, but even more so," Rabbi Dayan said. "We have written family trees, and our tradition is engraved on gravestones for the offspring to take note of their ancestry."
Breaking Israel News asked Rabbi Dayan why he thought there exists so much resistance to acknowledging the Davidic Dynasty.
On why there exists so much resistance to acknowledging the Davidic dynasty, Rabbi Dayan explained, "There is a basic error in understanding the Kingdom of David.
"The Moshiach is already here. Moshiach in Hebrew means 'anointed'. It is not a miracle. The family of David exists and is waiting for Israel to choose one and anoint him.
"By claiming incorrectly that there are no living descendants of King David, the Moshiach becomes dependent upon a miracle from heaven, thereby absolving the rabbis from any responsibility for taking action to bringing the Messiah."
Nearing Midnight: This Race We Face - Terry James - http://raptureready.com/rap16.html
Do you sense that time is moving faster than ever before? I must tell you that I sense that the rush of everything going on becomes more intensive by the hour.
We all have had the conversation that when we were younger, time for us seemed to move much more slowly. The older we get, the minutes, hours, days, etc., fly by at a much faster rate.
Maybe it's just that as our age increases, everything slows down within our own physiology--within our capability to match the speed with things whizzing past us. The race of life in which we must participate, possibly, might simply overwhelm us, and we can no longer keep up...
The perception, therefore, might be that time itself is moving ever faster, while that's not really the case.
Some of you physicists could likely make the case that time is actually speeding up or slowing down, or whatsoever theory science postulates these days. But, the clock still moves one second at a time. We live our own given increments of life one tick at a time like every other of our fellow travelers on the planet. So, it is outside the realm of reality to suppose that the movement of time itself is appreciably changed from the time we were youngsters.
It has to be that the increased activities and events crowding in on our given ticks of the clock have colluded to alter our perception--to make it seem that time is moving more swiftly.
There is not much room for argument that in America today, for many of us, life's pressures have seemingly compressed our given twenty-four hours. We are indeed racing toward our destinations--our destiny--at ever-increasing speed, it seems.
This column, of course, is called "Nearing Midnight." The commentaries Todd and I write are focused as much as possible on Bible prophecy. We place Bible prophecy as a template over the issues and events of this, what we believe to be the end-times, generation. We hope thereby to gauge how near human history is to the Second Coming of Christ.
Progression in stage-setting for fulfillment of prophecy is all-important in this gauging effort. How quickly things look to be taking place that line up with what Jesus and the Old and New Testament prophets foretold give some sense of when the Rapture of the Church might occur--i.e., we know that the Rapture of the Church will happen at least seven years prior to Christ's Second Advent (Revelation 19:11). Therefore, if we consider that things are swiftly moving toward what the prophets say will happen during the post-Rapture era and Daniel's seventieth week (the Tribulation), we can say with a degree of certitude that Jesus is on the very brink of calling the Church to Himself (Revelation 4:1).
For example, we have witnessed and analyzed the formation of the Gog-Magog coalition of Ezekiel 38 and 39 taking shape at a phenomenal pace. Russia, Iran (Persia), and a number of other entities that hate Israel are gathering.
There is a building world financial crisis that threatens to collapse the global economy. And, in that regard, the internationalist, new-world-order architects are going full steam ahead in their efforts to do away with national sovereignties and to instead bring the world back to Babel.
We see the absolutely blatant all-out assault on the U.S. presidential candidate who opposes globalism and calls America back to the founders' vision for this country.
Mainstream media now admits, through an article by a New York Times former journalist who is now a news media-analyst for the Times that the mainstream news conglomerate is all in for defeating Donald Trump. The writer admits their objective is to see that Trump, whom they claim--as does Barack Obama--is unfit for the land's highest office never gets into the White House. There's no longer any pretense of fair and balanced coverage of the candidates.
Prophetically, this fits what Daniel the prophet and John the Revelator foretold. There is to be a revived Roman Empire--a final world empire over which a beast called Antichrist will rule. We are, at this present time in history, caught up in a race politically, prophetically, and personally, as believers.
Politically, we witness the fomenting of chaos in our nation by those who want America brought into conformation with the global blueprint. It is a luciferian plan being carried out by Satan's human minions. The current presidential administration has taken an active part in creating this chaos, through the Department of Justice (attorney general) actions and in other ways through international diplomacy.
The presidential race is bringing into focus just how determined the fallen one is to bring all mankind into its prophesied final form.
Prophetically, we are racing toward the time when the Lord will catastrophically intervene into the affairs of rebellious mankind. The Church--all born-again believers in Jesus Christ--will be removed and the most terrible time of all human history will begin.
Personally, we who name the name of Christ should all be engaged fully in the race to complete the Lord's Great Commission while there is yet time to do His work here on earth. There are those in Heaven watching God's children. They are cheering for believers who are running the race set before us. If you've read my book, Rapture Ready...Or Not, you know that I'm convinced with all that is within me that I met some of these heavenly observers on Good Friday, April 22, 2011.
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1-2)
My Review of "Rapture Ready...Or Not?"
Over the last 35 years, I have literally read hundreds of books on Bible Prophecy and End Time signs. I especially enjoy books on the Rapture, and I have read almost every Rapture-related book published. In all those years, devouring thousands of pages, and millions of words, I have not read a better book on the Rapture than, Rapture Ready...Or Not?
Terry James might be physically blind, but he is spiritually sharp and well discerning beyond most authors. In "Rapture Ready...Or Not?" Terry has nailed the pre-trib Rapture, and removed any doubt what so ever about the Church going through the Tribulation. With great insight and Godly discernment, Terry explains with simple, yet profound words, why and how that he has come to believe the ways he does about the Rapture, the Tribulation, and the End Times scenario. I think after reading "Rapture Ready...Or Not?" you too will believe as Terry does, and be Ready for the Rapture like never before! - Randy Thomas - Publisher / Editor - Prophecy Update
For more information and or to get your copy of "Rapture Ready...Or Not?" use this link: http://www.raptureready.com/terry/book35.html
This Has Been the Worst 12 Months for Floods in U.S. History - By Michael Snyder - http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/this-has-been-the-worst-12-months-for-floods-in-u-s-history
Since last October, the United States has been hit by "historic flood" after "historic flood", and this latest flooding down in Louisiana that is making headlines all over the world has been caused by a "500 year storm". Even before some areas of the state received more than 30 inches of rain, this was already the worst 12 months for floods in U.S. history, but without a doubt this has put an exclamation mark on this exceedingly unusual stretch of flooding. There are some rivers down in Louisiana that have crested three to four feet higher than their previous all-time records, and Governor Edwards is using the words "unprecedented" and "historic" to describe these floods. So far, 20,000 people have been rescued by authorities, and Governor Edwards even had to evacuate the Governor's Mansion due to chest-high water in the basement.
So why is this happening?
Why are we being hammered by historic flood after historic flood?
One of the most amazing images from the flooding down in Louisiana was of caskets that had been washed up from a graveyard that were literally floating down the street. Meteorologists are telling us that the storm that brought all of this rain was essentially equivalent to a tropical storm...
As meteorologist Tim Destri with the NWS New Orleans/Baton Rouge office explains it, a low pressure system forms near the surface bringing deep tropical moisture from the warmer water in the Caribbean - almost like a hurricane but without the wind and the name.
"Everything came together just right like it would with a tropical weather system," Destri said.
Destri went on to compare the damage caused by this storm to Hurricane Katrina...
"This probably ranked up there with some of the top rainfall-producing systems in history," Destri said. "Damage is really significant, I mean extreme, because it's been so devastating with some houses just completely inundated, just scenes like Katrina almost."
In fact, in some areas the damage was even worse than we saw during Hurricane Katrina. According to the Washington Post, one resident said that this flooding was "the worst situation I've ever been through".
And unfortunately, it isn't over yet. More rain was forecast for today, and that is going to make the flooding even worse.
They will be talking about this current flood down in Louisiana for many years to come, and we will add this flood to the other historic floods on my ongoing list from previous articles...
October: Hurricane Joaquin never makes landfall, but it tracks up the east coast of the United States causing nightmarish rainfall and flooding all over the eastern seaboard. Things were particularly bad in South Carolina, where the governor declared that it was the worst rainfall that many areas of her state had seen in 1,000 years.
October: Violent storms in southern California caused flash flooding that buried some highways in "rivers of mud" that were up to six feet deep. Hundreds of vehicles got buried in the fast moving mud, and the lifeless body of one man that had his vehicle completely encased by several feet of mud was recovered only after a few days had passed because that is how long it took emergency workers to dig him out.
October: Hurricane Patricia was the second most intense tropical cyclone ever recorded in the entire world, and remnants from that storm caused absolutely horrible flooding in some parts of Texas. The flood waters were moving so fast at one point that a freight train was actually knocked entirely off the tracks.
November-December: A "conveyor belt" of violent storms barreled into coastal areas of Oregon and Washington causing nightmarish flooding in many areas. The resulting landslides and floods made headlines all over the country, and it is going to be a long time before the region fully recovers. In early December we witnessed the wettest day in the history of Portland, Oregon, and things were also extremely bad at that time up in the Seattle area.
January: The middle part of the country experienced record-breaking flooding as the calendar rolled over from 2015 to 2016. The only thing that people could really compare it to was the great flood of 1993, and Missouri Governor Jay Nixon said that some communities saw floodwaters get to "places they've never been before". Normally, if the middle of the country is going to see flooding like this it is going to take place when the snow begins to thaw in the spring. For something like this to happen in the middle of the winter was absolutely unprecedented.
January: On January 22nd, one of the worst east coast blizzards in history slammed into Washington D.C., New York City and other major metropolitan areas. More than three feet of snow was dumped on some areas, hundreds of thousands of people were left without power, and coastal cities all long the eastern seaboard experienced flooding that was described as "worse than Hurricane Sandy". It is also interesting to note that this storm was known as "Jonas", which is actually a Greek transliteration of the Hebrew name "Jonah". Jonah, of course, was a Hebrew prophet that was sent to the capital city of Assyria (Ninevah) to warn that the judgment of God was coming. Well, it turns out that this storm called Jonas also hit our capital city (Washington D.C.) on the exact anniversary of Roe v. Wade and in the exact location where Roe v. Wade was decided.
March: Almost two feet of rain triggered historic flooding in parts of Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi. Flooding along one area of the Sabine River broke the previous record by more than five feet, and some sections of Interstate 10 were closed for four days.
April: City officials in Houston declared that the flooding that struck that city was "a life-threatening emergency", and substantial sections of Interstate 10 and Interstate 45 near downtown were fully underwater. Authorities admitted that water was getting to areas that it had never been before, and Fire Department spokesman Jay Evans said that the water was 10 to 15 feet deep in some areas.
May: Long stretches of Interstate 95 were shut down in South Carolina after Tropical Storm Bonnie dumped massive amounts of rain on the state. At the time, Lance Cpl. Matt Southern of the South Carolina Highway Patrol told reporters that "we are at the mercy of mother nature".
June: Extremely heavy rain caused the Brazos River in Texas to hit its highest level "in more than a century", and many parts of Houston found themselves under water yet once again. According to CNN, this was "the second year in a row that Texas has been hit by 500-year floods"...
"It could just be really bad luck," said CNN Senior Meteorologist Brandon Miller. "A 500-year flood doesn't mean you will go 500 years between them. It just means it is such an extreme event that the odds of it happening are very low, therefore it only happens on average every 500 years.
"It just so happens that parts of Texas have seen them now in back-to-back years, and maybe even twice this year. The odds of that happening are infinitesimally small."
June: West Virginia was hit by the deadliest flash flood in the United States in six years, and 23 people died as a result. The following comes from Wikipedia...
On June 23, 2016, a flood hit areas of the U.S. state of West Virginia and nearby parts of Virginia, resulting in 23 deaths. The flooding was the result of 8 to 10 inches (200 to 250 mm) of rain falling over a period of 12 hours, resulting in a flood tied for seventh among Deadliest floods in West Virginia history. It is also the deadliest flash flood event in the United States since the 2010 Tennessee floods.
Meanwhile, horrible wildfires continue to rip through the state of California. The latest major wildfire to make headlines all across the nation has literally reduced homes, offices and businesses to "smoldering rubble" in the little town of Lower Lake...
Entire streets have been reduced to smoldering rubble, and more than 175 buildings and other structures have been destroyed, as a Northern California wildfire continues to spread.
The fire about 100 miles north of San Francisco has so far spread to 3,000 acres and is 5 percent contained, officials said.
The blaze on Sunday swept into Lower Lake, a town of about 1,200 people, according to The Associated Press, where it burned buildings including a post office, a Habitat for Humanity office and a winery.
If you have read my latest book, you already know that 2015 was the worst year for wildfires in all of U.S. history.
So that seems like a very odd "coincidence" - we are being hit by the worst flooding in U.S. history at a time when we have also experienced the worst wildfires in U.S. history.
Is there some kind of a connection?
Why are all of these disasters happening to us one right after another?
Could it be possible that there is an explanation other than bad luck?
As you can probably guess, I have come to the conclusion that we are experiencing something that goes far beyond bad luck. Just like many others out there, I believe that someone is trying to tell us something, but unfortunately most Americans are simply not paying attention.
Daily Jot: Do not be deceived: What the polls say - Bill Wilson - http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/this-has-been-the-worst-12-months-for-floods-in-u-s-history
One of my favorite Bible verses is a warning from Jesus Christ concerning the latter days. It's found in Matthew 24:4 and says, "Take heed that no man deceive you." Saying that in the last days, perilous times shall come, the Apostle Paul echoes such a warning in 2 Timothy 3:13, "But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived." Deception is key to taking well-intended people off the track of what is right and good. To combat deception, we need discernment, which is found in the Holy Scriptures and under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We need a lot of wisdom to discern these days. Those wishing to deceive often do it by trying to co-op your support through peer pressure.
Have you noticed the way the media tries to ply your opinion? For example, from now to election day, various media will be conducting their own polls to show you what America is thinking. Take heed that they do not deceive you. ABC, MSNBC, CBS, Washington Post, LA Times, Chicago Tribune, New York Times-all of these and more will be conducting their "polls" to show you how America will vote on election day. Take them with a grain of salt because just as these outlets' stories are biased and passed off as unbiased news, so too, are their polls. Their sampling practices are weighted toward their bias. I know this from my days in politics.
When running a large political campaign, polling data is imperative. Accurate polling data can mean the difference between winning and losing in a tight race. It can give you trends, messaging guidance, issues, demographics and a whole lot more. But it has to be accurate or your entire campaign will be off. So politicians do not use media polls. They hire a polling company to conduct an accurate poll based on a scientifically drawn, unbiased sampling of the voters. The media, admittedly weighs their samplings toward a Democratic bias because they draw more voters from the Democratic voting base. Also, online polls are suspect because it is difficult to verify who is actually giving the information and how many times they are giving it.
Constitution.com reports: "Media polls are driven by the desire to achieve a certain outcome. That is why you think Hillary is leading Trump by 10 points. If you were paying attention, one of these polls had Hillary up by 15 points before the GOP convention. After the convention, Trump was up 15 points, a 30% jump! Statistically impossible. After the democrat convention, Hillary was up 10 points, a 25% swing. Again, can't happen. The media is jerking our chain. DO NOT believe them. The only polls that can be believed are internal polls that are rarely made public." A truly statistically balanced poll taken by Constitution.com paints a totally different picture-Trump 67%; Clinton 19%; Undecided 13%. Interesting, right?
Daily Devotion: Go and Tell Jesus - Greg Laurie - www.harvest.org
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. -Psalm 46:1
When crisis hits, when we are facing hardship, when we are sick or in need, we should call on the Lord.
When the Israelites criticized and turned against Moses, we read that he "cried out to the LORD" (Exodus 15:25). When King Hezekiah received a threatening letter, he "went up to the house of the LORD, and spread it before the LORD" (Isaiah 37:14). When John the Baptist was beheaded, we read that his disciples "came and took away the body and buried it, and went and told Jesus" (Matthew 14:12).
That is exactly what we ought to do when hardship comes our way. We should go and tell Jesus, because "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1).
Paul had his "thorn in the flesh." We don't know what it was, but he asked the Lord three times to take it away. God didn't answer those prayers as Paul wanted Him to. Rather, He gave him the grace to get through that time of difficulty. There are times when God has a purpose in suffering, a plan through the pain. We always want to leave that option open. And, it is okay to pray about it. In fact, James 4:2 says, "You do not have because you do not ask."
Paul prayed about his difficulty more than once, and we can pray about our problems more than once. Jesus said, "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you" (Luke 11:9). This could be translated from the Greek, "Keep asking, keep seeking, and keep knocking." The Bible encourages persistence.
We don't necessarily need to tell God what He should do, but we should call on Him. Bring your troubles to Jesus.
FROM THE HEART
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