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Prophecy Update Newsletter
September 7, 2016
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
Wilderness Experiences - By Matt Ward - http://raptureready.com/soap2/ward67.html
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways obey him, and he will make your paths straight." (Proverbs 3: 5-6)
The first reference to "love" in the Scriptures is "aha vah" and it occurs as a description of the love that Abraham had for his only son, Isaac. Abraham truly and deeply loved Isaac. Isaac was the fulfillment of all Abraham's hopes and dreams and a tangible demonstration of the faithfulness of God in his life. All of Abraham's life and future hopes were bound up in his son; the two things were irrevocably linked together.
Yet despite this love, Abraham was still wholly determined to offer his son's life in obedience to God. Abraham was going to kill him. After receiving the frankly terrifying direction from God that he was to offer Isaac as a sacrifice, Abraham moved with singular intent.
There is not one word of protest from Abraham recorded in Scripture. To anybody who is a parent, it is almost unimaginable. There is not a single plea, not a single argument, not a word. Unlike Abraham's earlier intercession for Sodom and Gomorrah, in the case of his son, he remained utterly silent.
Jewish tradition even suggests that the biggest test, once the sacrifice of Isaac had begun, was not whether Abraham would offer his son to God, as commanded, but whether he would actually listen to and obey the voice of the angel instructing him to stop the execution, such was his unwavering determination to carry out the LORD's will.
It is even possible to sense the urgency in the voice of the angel at the place of sacrifice,
"And he said, 'Do not lay a hand on the boy,' he said. 'Do not do anything to him.' Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son." (Genesis 22:12)
God stopped Abraham and provided the necessary sacrifice himself. It is an almost perfect foreshadowing of what God would do many thousands of years later in exactly that same spot with his very own, beloved son, Jesus.
Yet the next time there was to be a sacrifice, in 33 AD, God did hold back as he did with Abraham. This next time, God allowed His own son to be slaughtered on behalf of all who would come to believe (John 3:16-18). There was no ram caught in the thickets on this occasion. There was no other way out for the Son of God but deep humiliation, bloodshed, pain, immense suffering and ultimately death.
So significant a weight and burden was the knowledge of what was to come for Jesus, so massive was the physical, emotional and intellectual strain of what was going to happen to him, that Jesus actually sweat great drops of blood,
"And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground" (Luke 22:44).
This documented phenomenon is found only very rarely in people who are under the most extreme forms of anguish, duress or stress. In every possible sense, Jesus literally had the weight of the world on his shoulders, and the anguish of this stress in the Garden of Gethsemane was physically breaking him. So great was the burden and so huge was the debt he was about to pay that Jesus' body started to actually physiologically break down under the strain.
The sacrifice of Isaac on top of Mount Moriah is a perfect prophetic picture of what was to come when Messiah Jesus later took away the sins of the world as the "Lamb of God" (John 1:29). Isaac and Jesus were both miraculously born and conceived, Jesus of a virgin and Isaac of a mother long since barren through extreme old age. Both Jesus and Isaac were "only begotten sons," both were intended to be sacrificed by their own fathers on Mount Moriah, both Jesus and Isaac willingly went to their places of execution.
Both were real demonstrations that one life can be exchanged for another, the ram for Isaac and Jesus for mankind.
Isaac, just like Jesus, also suffered intensely from his own unique "passion" experience. The passion that Isaac went through is rarely considered, nor is the sheer agony it must have meant for him, but it was nonetheless real.
In modern times we have grown up with the concept of Isaac being a child when he was to be sacrificed at the hands of his father. However, that is not how Judaism has always interpreted this scene. In Jewish tradition Isaac is about 37 years old when Abraham, an old man by this point, ties him down in order to sacrifice him to God.
Yet even though Isaac is potentially 37 years old, there is no voice of complaint from him, no physical protest recorded in scripture. Isaac knows full well what is going to happen to him and he willingly allows himself to be offered, even though it would have been easy for him to escape from the hands of an old, old man if he had wanted to.
Isaac willingly goes to his place of execution, as did Jesus Christ all those years later.
It was a three day journey for Isaac to make with His father Abraham, before they got to Mount Moriah. On this three day journey to the sacrifice the Bible is completely silent about any conversations that might have taken place between the two. Isaac doubtless knew what the plan was and he must have been horrified by it.
Yet Isaac did not say a word. He was a foreshadowing of the sacrifice that would later come, when Jesus Christ would also go to his death quietly and willingly,
"...he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth" (Isaiah 53:7)
The attempt at sacrifice is then made, the Angel stops Abraham's hand and the ram is offered in Isaac's place. Abraham is lauded for his obedience and commitment to God,
"I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me" (Genesis 22:18).
An immense triumph of faith, yet the repercussions of this one act of unceasing loyalty for Abraham's family are absolutely huge. Devastating even. This one act of obedience had the most profound effect upon each member of Abraham's family.
The text shows Abraham returning alone from the mountain. Where is Isaac? Jewish tradition holds that Isaac was so traumatized by the experience that he actually fled from his father off Moriah and sought refuge with Noah's son Shem, a man widely regarded in Jewish tradition to be the man known as "Malki-Tzedek" or Malchizidek.
This event profoundly affected the relationship between father and son, but that is not the end of the matter. What of Sarah, Abraham's beloved and aged wife? Sarah gave birth to Isaac when she was 91 years old, (Gen 17:17) and she died when she was 127 (Gen. 23:1). Sarah died when Isaac was about 36-37 years old, and although Scripture does not explicitly state it, the silent implication-Abraham's later actions and Jewish tradition strongly suggest that the sacrifice of Isaac and the death of his mother are linked.
In Scripture the death of Sarah is placed directly after the attempted sacrifice of her son, Isaac. Within Judaism it is believed that Sarah died from shock after learning of Isaac's ordeal on Mount Moriah. Just like Mary, the mother of Jesus who would later have a, "sword that will pierce your own heart" (Luke 2:35); so Sarah when discovering what had happened between her lifelong husband and her only child could not bear what had happened, and her own heart gave way because of it.
It was in returning directly from Moriah that Abraham learned of Sarah's death and it left him bereft and devastated, "And Abraham came to mourn for Sarah and to cry out for her," (Genesis 23;2).
This was no doubt a second and third major test for Abraham. Straight from the biggest challenge of faith in his entire life, Abraham now immediately faces two more. His son is gone and now his beloved wife is dead. Perhaps this final test of faith was an even greater one than sacrificing his son was.
Would he now doubt that he had done the right thing in obeying the LORD? Would he wish that he had not obeyed and instead interceded for mercy before the sacrifice took place? Would he curse God for his family now laying in ruins? Would he question the goodness of his God?
In Scripture the words used to describe Abraham's grieving for Sarah indicate his grieving was somewhat tempered, like a silent inward groaning of deep private pain and suffering. Abraham controlled himself. Even in the midst of his greatest grief, he did not allow himself to utter words of condemnation or contempt for God's command, nor did he question God. He still believed unquestioningly in the character of his God, even if he did not understand and was forced to endure terrible, terrible pain.
In this respect, Abraham is successful where another of his contemporaries would fail. Job, who would eventually come to question God and curse the day he was born for the tragedy brought upon his own life and family, in a very similar fashion failed, where Abraham succeeded.
Yet after Abraham's greatest triumph comes soul destroying anguish and crushing pain. Isaac is gone and not mentioned again in scripture for some time and his beloved wife is also gone, taken by death. He is alone. Completely and utterly alone. Bereft, in pain and almost completely broken. What now of the promises made to him by God, with his son gone and his wife now dead? How would they be fulfilled?
All Abraham has left is his faith and it was his faith alone that got this man of God through. This is why Abraham is rightly known as, "...the father of faith." (Romans 4:15)
How often in our spiritual lives do our own experiences mirror Abraham's? After a great triumph, we come crashing down in some kind of sin or snare of the evil one, or our whole world seems to fall apart around us and we are left feeling wretched, abandoned and sometimes also very much alone?
God is refining you and me, just as he refined Abraham. The pain Christians feel today is no different or less real than the pain and suffering Abraham endured all those millennia ago.
At some point He will pass each of us through our own fire, one every bit as real as the fiery furnace Daniel's friends were later to be thrown into in Babylon, (Daniel 3). These are our own wilderness experiences, times of profound loneliness and sometimes desperation.
They can be times of indescribable pain and suffering, times of overwhelming loss and grief. Times when we have no answers to give and no words to speak. They can be times of such profound pain and suffering that words will not suffice because other people simply will not understand what we are going through. Only time and the hand of God bring us out of such times, fueled by our own precious faith,
"These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith--of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire--may result in praise, glory and honour when Jesus Christ is revealed." (1 Peter 1:7)
This world is fallen. Utterly, irretrievably fallen and is hurtling towards a time known in the bible, for good reason, as "Jacob's trouble." Believers in Jesus Christ will escape this time but many who will later come to faith will feel its full weight and force. Many today who claim Christianity, but do not really know the Lord, will also experience the full horror of the Tribulation period.
Yet before that a time, a testing is coming. As the hand of restraint is increasingly removed, evil is seeping into the vacuum that is left. Persecution will likely be a consequence of it. If the Lord continues to tarry, and he loves humanity deeply wanting all to come to faith before it is too late, he may well tarry and real persecution will come to us in the West.
Its ominous shadows are already on our collective horizons. Soon persecution will become an increasing reality in all our lives and that may mean hardships and suffering the likes of which we have not ever seriously before considered.
The example given to us by Abraham shows us exactly how we must act in such times. With unquestioning loyalty and unswerving hope in the God of all creation. Only through our faith in our God will we overcome. Faith that all things work out for the good for those who love him (Romans 8:28).
So what eventually did happen to Isaac? Where did he go and what did he actually do after Moriah?
Although Jewish tradition provides suggestions, Scripture never explicitly tells us. But the next time we do see Isaac in Scripture, Isaac, this foreshadowing of the Messiah, is seen returning for and with his gentile Bride.
The next time this world experiences Jesus Christ, and it will be soon, he will be returning for His own gentile Bride. Jesus will be returning for you and me if you have repented and placed your faith in him. That day fast approaches.
"Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man" (Luke 21:36).
Hezbollah units regroup on Israel's Golan border - http://www.debka.com/article/25654/Hizballah-units-regroup-on-Israel's-Golan-border
A large Hezbollah force, backed by the Syrian army and pro-Iranian Shiite militias, is building up outside Quneitra, just 2km from Israel's Golan border. The Lebanese Shiite fighters, under the command of Iranian Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) officers, are streaming into southern Syria, armed with tanks and artillery.
Monday night, Sept. 5, Iranian state-controlled media shed light on this movement, reporting that the combined force had "completed preparations necessary for an extensive operation in southern Syria," adding, "Hezbollah aims to put an end to the presence of armed men in the area close to the border."
The nature of the "armed men" was not specified, but the goal of the new operation was clear: after evicting the assorted anti-Assad groups, including the Islamic State, holding territory "close to the border," Hezbollah and its backers planned to regroup on the Syrian-Israeli boundary.
This would position Iran and its Hezbollah surrogate ready to realize their six-year old design, which is to open a second warfront against Israel.
Western and Mid East sources have toldl debkafile that the triple army is in high spirits after last week's successful operation in Aleppo. By snatching back parts of the city they lost in mid-August, the Syrian army and its allies managed to cut off the rebels' supply lines from Turkey.
It was then that some Hezbollah units were detached from the Aleppo arena and redirected to the Quneitra front in southern Syria to face the Israeli border.
Those sources report that the incoming troops were sighted this week when they arrived at Madinat al-Baath and Khan Amabeh, the main Syrian army bases on the Syrian Golan. They came with tanks and heavy artillery. Seen for the first time in the Quentra sector were heavy, self-propelled KS-19 artillery batteries, which are Russian anti-air guns adapted to ground warfare. They have a range of 21km and a firing capacity of 15 shells per minute.
The newly-arrived Hezbollah force appears to have set the capture of Syrian rebel-held al-Hamdiniyah 2km from the Israeli border, as its first objective.
debkafile's military sources note that the Iranian media attached photos of Israel's security force opposite Quneitra to their reporting on the new move, thereby framing the target of the Syrian-Iranian-Backed Hezbollah build-up.
This fast-approaching development poses two tough questions:
1. Will Israel lie down for the avowedly hostile Hezbollah and Iran to occupy territory along its eastern border? Israel officials have repeatedly emphasized that these forces would not be allowed to take up positions on the Golan border, a message Russia most certainly passed on to Damascus.
If Hezbollah and its allies go through with their planned offensive, Israel will have to consider serious military action to prevent them from reaching the border fence, i.e., an operation on a scale quite different from the small-shot IDF reprisals for rockets or shells straying across into the Golan from fighting on the other side.
2. Will the advancing Iranian-led force have Syrian air cover? If it does, the Israeli Air Force will also be involved in aerial combat over the Golan.
Russia Prepares for Next War - http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=622
In a series of provocative moves that seem designed to threaten war, Russia continues to modernize its military, increase military production capacity, build new atomic bunkers and conduct large-scale military drills.
Russia's recent invasion of Crimea, which went largely unanswered from the United States and the rest of Europe, must be seen as a stark warning of what is to come.
For neighboring countries such as Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, a resurgent Russia building and flexing its military muscle is a grave threat as Putin gradually works to expand Russia's sphere of power.
Though defensive weapons such as fortifications or missile shields are normally non-provocative, in the context of the strategic doctrine of mutually assured destruction (MAD) they imply that the country possessing them intends to safeguard itself while retaining the ability to wipe out its enemies, thus destroying the delicate balance of MAD.
It is in this context that Western experts now view Russia's construction over the past several years of numerous atomic bunkers near Moscow and elsewhere around the country.
US intelligence officials refer to dozens of construction projects with one of the largest facilities a vast nuclear command and control bunker still under construction in the Ural Mountains.
The bunker, which spans some 400 square miles, would be capable of coordinating war efforts far from population centers under Mount Yamantau in the remote wastelands of the Ural Mountains.
Also of note is the new command and control center a mile and a half from the Kremlin, Russia's answer to the Pentagon, that was recently completed and which was shown directing the air campaign in Syria.
In addition to hardening dozens of vast bunkers against nuclear and conventional attacks, Russia is also expanding and modernizing its offensive nuclear arsenal and implementing changes to its nuclear use doctrine.
Army General Curtis Scaparrotti, in charge of US European Command, has called Russia's new doctrine on tactical nuclear use "alarming". He went on to say in a recent press conference, "It is clear that Russia is modernizing its strategic forces".
In addition to modernizing an aging nuclear arsenal, the doctrine calls for the use of tactical nuclear weapons, that is to say short range and low yield nuclear warheads, in response to conventional conflict.
According to US State Department figures released in March, 2016, Russia added 150 new warheads to its arsenal in the past year while the US shrank its stockpile by 57. Russia is not merely building from past designs either.
Recently leaked plans show submarine drones capable of launching nuclear missiles. Also, a reported new stealth nuclear missile and warhead, called Satan-2, is designed to evade radar detection systems.
Both hint at Russia's intent to bolster its strategic nuclear power. The combination of tactical and strategic nuclear assets is a strong deterrent for NATO that might seek to intervene in the next invasion, perhaps of Estonia or Lithuania, as Russia continues its expansion under the now wildly popular Vladimir Putin.
Numerous extremely large scale military drills that simulate invasions of Eastern Europe have become routine. The creation of a NATO Rapid Response Force of several thousand mechanized soldiers to defend Lithuania and Estonia was met with the Russian deployment of several divisions, more than 35,000 troops, in addition to those already taking part in large combined arms drills.
Now Russia has begun conducting "snap" drills without prior warning. NATO Deputy Secretary-General Alexander Vershbow stated that these large drills without notification number about a dozen over the past two years.
The numerous Russian military actions point to a desire not only to strengthen its position in the event of war but also to drill for potential invasion as a way of threatening and warning off opposition to Russian aims. According to experts, this needs to be viewed from both an international and a domestic standpoint.
Internationally, Russia is poised to continue seizing territory whenever it can, as it has done in Georgia and Ukraine, and influencing political outcomes when military force is less appropriate.
Domestically, the show of force has given the Russian people a country of strength again. Putin's approval rating is said to top 80% now, even after the recent financial crisis.
In a wave of national fervor, even in times of economic hardship, Russia has fallen back on its Cold War image of strength to consolidate the government's position at home as well as abroad.
The open question is how far Putin will decide to beat the drums of war and test the limits of Western patience before a major conflict breaks out? In this dangerous game of politics, the next invasion may come sooner rather than later.
Island Reappearing in Rapidly Depleting Sea of Galilee Could Signal Beginning of Messianic Prophecy - By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz - http://www.breakingisraelnews.com
He turned the sea into dry land; they went through the river on foot; there let us rejoice in Him!" Psalms 66:6 (The Israel Bible™)
An island that has recently appeared in the middle of the Sea of Galilee (Kinneret) is a cause of ecologic alarm, but, more importantly, it is also a sign mentioned explicitly in the Talmud as presaging the coming of the Messiah from the House of David.
The sudden appearance of the island is not entirely unusual or unexpected. It frequently appears in particularly dry seasons when the level of the Sea of Galilee drops significantly, and to be sure, this year is exceptionally arid.
Since summer's beginning, the water level in the Kinneret has gone down by 40 inches, a worrying 14.76 inches below the lowest red line, the Jewish Press reported.
The drying up of the Kinneret has clear Messianic implications. The Talmud (Sanhedrin 97a) discusses the signs that will appear just prior to the coming of "the Son of David" (the Messiah from the House of King David).
Rabbi Yehuda, a Talmudic sage, states that one of the signs presaging the Messiah will be that the Sea of Galilee and Gablan, the upper Jordan River in the Golan, will become desolate and destroyed ("khorban" in Hebrew).
This Talmudic prophecy is consistent with the verse in Isaiah, which uses the same word, khorban, to describe rivers drying up in the days of the Messiah.
And the waters shall fail from the sea, and the river shall be drained dry. Isaiah 19:5
The year began with the sea at the lowest level since 1926. As it stands today, 38 feet shy of being full, the Sea of Galilee has never before been so close to fulfilling this prophecy.
The Zohar, the foundational work of Jewish mysticism, cites the Galilee as the place in which the beginnings of the Messiah can first be seen.
The Messiah... will arise in the land of Galilee... the Messiah shall reveal himself in the land of Galilee because in this part of the Holy Land the desolation (Babylonian exile) first began, therefore he will manifest himself there first. [Zohar III, Shemoth 7b, 8b, 220a; Otzar Midrashim, 466]
When considered alongside a prophecy in Zechariah which states that in the times of the Messiah water will flow from Jerusalem, it is clear that great changes are coming.
And it shall come to pass in that day that living waters shall go out from Yerushalayim: half of them toward the eastern sea and half of them toward the western sea; in summer and in winter shall it be. Zechariah 14:8
The big picture created by these different prophecies demonstrate how drastically the Messianic process will alter the land. Jerusalem, a dry mountaintop city, will become a source of flowing water while the Galilee and Jordan, perennial sources of Israel's water, will become desolate and dry. In yet another turnaround, the Dead Sea will fill up with life in the days of the Messiah.
Rabbi Yosef Berger, the rabbi of David's Tomb in Jerusalem, explained that we should understand the destruction of the Galilee as the drought that is occurring right now.
"That section of the Talmud is full of signs that indicate the coming of the Messiah, and every single one of them is undeniably coming true," Rabbi Berger explained.
"The simple reading of the prophecy in the Talmud is that the cities in the Galilee will be destroyed, but in trying to understand this particular sign pertaining to the Galilee, it is important to note what the Zohar says about learning such things."
He referred to a core Jewish tenant: the idea that man can alter decreed Heavenly events with prayer and understanding. "By virtue of interpreting a prophecy a certain way, people can influence the way in which Heaven chooses to bring it into the world," Rabbi Berger told Breaking Israel News.
The rabbi explained how this applied to the present situation. "By learning that our present drought condition in the Galilee is what the prophecy called 'destruction' (khorban), our interpretation of the destruction of the Galilee can influence, even change, what was originally intended," he said.
"Just like in prayer, which is a dialogue with God, our thoughts are taken into account in Heaven, and can bring the desired prophecy into existence... By people believing that the Galilee drying up is part of the prophecy, it will help the Messiah come."
DISCLAIMER: We love Michael Snyder and appreciate his well-written and insightful articles, but we have to agree to disagree when it comes to his viewpoints concerning the Rapture and the Tribulation. We want to make it clear that we in no way endorse or approve of his Post Tribulation viewpoint nor his new book, "The Rapture Verdict." We believe that the Bible clearly teaches that the Church will not go through the Great Tribulation, but will be Raptured prior to the beginning of this time of Jacob's Trouble. Furthermore, we believe the Bible teaches that the Tribulation period can't even begin until we are taken out of the way! Some pre-tribulation ministries have completely banned Michael Snyder. For the time being, we will continue to post his very popular articles, but only with this disclaimer included.
The One Trillion Dollar Consumer Auto Loan Bubble Is Beginning to Burst - By Michael Snyder - http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/the-one-trillion-dollar-consumer-auto-loan-bubble-is-beginning-to-burst
Do you remember the subprime mortgage meltdown from the last financial crisis? Well, this time around we are facing a subprime auto loan meltdown. In recent years, auto lenders have become more and more aggressive, and they have been increasingly willing to lend money to people that should not be borrowing money to buy a new vehicle under any circumstances. Just like with subprime mortgages, this strategy seemed to pay off at first, but now economic reality is beginning to be felt in a major way. Delinquency rates are up by double digit percentages, and major auto lenders are bracing for hundreds of millions of dollars of losses. We are a nation that is absolutely drowning in debt, and we are most definitely going to reap what we have sown.
The size of this market is larger than you may imagine. Earlier this year, the auto loan bubble surpassed the one trillion-dollar mark for the first time ever...
Americans are borrowing more than ever for new and used vehicles, and 30- and 60-day delinquency rates rose in the second quarter, according to the automotive arm of one of the nation's largest credit bureaus.
The total balance of all outstanding auto loans reached $1.027 trillion between April 1 and June 30, the second consecutive quarter that it surpassed the $1-trillion mark, reports Experian Automotive.
The average size of an auto loan is also at a record high. At $29,880, it is now just a shade under $30,000.
In order to try to help people afford the payments, auto lenders are now stretching loans out for six or even seven years. At this point it is almost like getting a mortgage.
But even with those stretched out loans, the average monthly auto loan payment is now up to a record 499 dollars.
That is the average loan size. To me, this is absolutely infuriating, because only a very small percentage of wealthy Americans are able to afford a $499 monthly payment on a single vehicle.
Many middle class American families are only bringing in three or four thousand dollars a month (before taxes). How in the world do they think that they can afford a five-hundred-dollar monthly auto loan payment on just one vehicle?
Just like with subprime mortgages, people are being taken advantage of severely, and the end result is going to be catastrophic for the U.S. financial system.
Already, auto loan delinquencies are rising to very frightening levels. In July, 60 day subprime loan delinquencies were up 13 percent on a month-over-month basis and were up 17 percent compared to the same month last year.
Prime delinquencies were up 12 percent on a month-over-month basis and were up 21 percent compared to the same month last year.
We have a huge crisis on our hands, and major auto lenders are setting aside massive amounts of cash in order to try to cover these losses. The following comes from USA Today...
In a quarterly filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Ford reported in the first half of this year it allowed $449 million for credit losses, a 34% increase from the first half of 2015.
General Motors reported in a similar filing that it set aside $864 million for credit losses in that same period of 2016, up 14% from a year earlier.
Meanwhile, other big corporations are also alarmed about the economic health of average U.S. consumers. Just check out what Dollar General CEO Todd Vasos had to say about this just the other day...
I know that when we look at globally the overall U.S. population, it seems like things are getting better. But when you really start breaking it down and you look at that core consumer that we serve on the lower economic scale that's out there, that demographic, things have not gotten any better for her, and arguably, they're worse. And they're worse, because rents are accelerating, healthcare is accelerating on her at a very, very rapid clip.
The stock market may seem to be saying that everything is fine (for the moment), but the hard economic numbers are telling a completely different story. What we are experiencing right now looks so similar to 2008, and this includes big institutions just dropping dead seemingly out of the blue. On Tuesday, we learned that ITT Technical Institute is immediately shutting down and permanently closing all locations. This is from a Los Angeles Times report...
The company that operates the for-profit chain, one of the country's largest, announced that it was permanently closing all its campuses nationwide. It blamed the shutdown on the recent move by the U.S. Education Department to ban ITT from enrolling new students who use federal financial aid.
"Two quarters ago there were rumors about the school having problems, but they told us that anyone who was already a student would be allowed to finish," said Wiggins, who works as the assistant manager for a family-run auto parts business and went to ITT to open new opportunities.
"Am I angry?" he said. "I'm like angry times 10 million."
As a result of this shutdown, 35,000 students are suddenly left out in the cold and approximately 8,000 employees have lost their jobs.
This is what happens during a major economic downturn. Large institutions that may have been struggling under the surface for quite a while suddenly give up and drop a bomb on those that were depending on them. In the months ahead, there will be a lot more examples of this.
Already, some of the biggest corporate names in America have been laying off thousands of workers in 2016. Mass layoffs are usually an early warning sign that big trouble is ahead, so keep a close eye on those companies.
The pace of the economic decline has been a bit slower than many (including myself) originally anticipated, but without a doubt it has continued.
And it is undeniable that the stage is set for a crisis that will absolutely dwarf 2008. Our national debt has nearly doubled since the beginning of the last crisis, corporate debt has doubled, student loan debt has crossed the trillion dollar mark, auto loan debt has crossed the trillion dollar mark, and total household debt has crossed the 12 trillion dollar mark.
We are living in the greatest debt bubble in world history, and there are signs that this giant bubble is now starting to burst. And when it does, the pain is going to be greater than most people would dare to imagine.
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
Nearing Midnight: Pope Francis and the One-World Religion - Todd Strandberg - http://raptureready.com/rap16.html
The Roman Catholic Church has led the global Ecumenical Movement since soon after its inception. By heading the largest religious organization on the planet (which consists of 1.27 billion people), the Pope has a huge advantage in winning a contest for the leader of all religions.
Protestant denominations have more than 900 million adherents, but they are fractured into thousands of organizations. The Southern Baptist Convention is the world's largest Baptist denomination and the largest Protestant body in the United States. But it only has 15 million members.
Pope John Paul II did much to bring unity to world religions. But his efforts were limited because he believed that Catholicism is superior to other faiths. John Paul II's successor, Pope Benedict XVI was a set back the Ecumenical Movement. He started off by correctly condemning Islam for its evil traits. Benedict said in one speech:
"Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." Pope Benedict later apologized for any offense he had caused and made a point of visiting Turkey and praying in its Blue Mosque.
The surprise resignation of Pope Benedict resulted in the rise of Pope Francis. With this new pope, the ecumenical bandwagon was back on track. Pope Francis has reached out to the heads of nearly every major religion.
Just this year alone, he has met with the Patriarch Kirill of Russia for the first time since the 1054 East-West schism. He met with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the Archbishop of Constantinople. Also in May, Francis met with Sheikh Ahmad el-Tayeb, the grand imam of Cairo's Al-Azhar Mosque, who is considered the head of Sunni Islam.
Pope Francis has been able to become chummy with all these other religions because he has capitulated to the spirit of the age. He is the one who said "Who am I to judge?" when asked about his view on homosexuality.
Pope Francis has also said "Even the atheists" can go to heaven. It is a total compromise for a Christian leader to go into a mosque and offer prayers to the god of Islam.
The pontiff has been so active in fitting the role of the False Prophet, rumors have been making the rounds in the conspiracy theory blogosphere. One source claims Pope Francis will soon make a UFO and alien disclosure that will end with a call for a global religion. Another site says that next month, "POPE FRANCIS to PROCLAIM LUCIFER as God of One World Religion" at an ecumenical gathering of the world's three monotheist faiths that will take place September 4-23, 2016, in Jerusalem.
I think the strongest indication that we are in the home stretch of the creation of the one-world religion is the Pope's reaction to all the terror acts in Europe. When the 86-year-old Father Jacques Hamel had his throat slit at a church altar by Muslim attackers, Pope Francis said this on a trip to Poland: "When I speak of war I speak of wars over interests, money, resources, not religion. All religions want peace, it's the others who want war.
In any other time period, all these atrocities carried out in the name of Allah would cause people to hit the pause button. Pope Francis sees dialogue as the solution to Islamic terror. It seems the more blood that is shed, the more eager he is to embrace the enemy.
I recently watched a documentary about Madame Helena Petrova Blavatsky. She was a Russian occultist who is widely seen as the grandmother of the New Age movement. Blavatsky taught that most faiths of mankind are derived from a universal religion.
She said that Islam, Catholicism, and the Eastern religions had redeemable values, but she thought that Protestant Christian faiths were too corrupted to be of any good. This is no surprise coming from someone who received much of her doctrinal views from a demon guide. We can consider this quite a compliment when we consider the source.
It is possible that Pope Francis could be the False Prophet who will cause the world to worship the Antichrist. If the Tribulation is near, he will likely get the job. Since Putin has decided to be the perpetual leader of Russia, death is the only thing that would prevent him from being the head of the Ezekiel 38 and 39 invasion.
It is well enough to see warning signs in nature as an indication of the Rapture's close proximity. When you see actors who will be part of the Tribulation starting to assemble just off stage, you really know time is short.
"And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh" (Luke 21:28).
Daily Jot: Clinton's voice problems and deadly poison - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
James 3:7-8 says, "For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and has been tamed of mankind: But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison." James says the tongue is a fire and no man can tame it. I find it quite ironic that Hillary Clinton is having trouble talking. Questions about her health have been plaguing her campaign with talking head doctors paid to tell everyone that she is healthy enough to execute the office of the president. Notwithstanding, she needs help getting up and down stairs, in and out of cars, standing at a podium, and doctors say her veracious laugh is a sign of dementia. Moreover, she can't talk.
CNN, which should be more aptly named Clinton News Network for its constant positive coverage of Hillary, even used the example of Clinton's cough in a story to explain why people cough: "Apparently, it takes a village to explain a cough. Hillary Clinton's coughing spells along the campaign trail have drawn attention from supporters and opponents alike. Though Democrats insist Clinton merely has seasonal allergies, Republicans argue her cough suggests a more problematic health issue. Meanwhile, everyone is left to sigh and wonder: When is a cough "just" a cough -- and when do you need a doctor?" Of course, CNN didn't go into Clinton's health problems-nothing to see here, this is not the droid you are looking for.
Let us recall another Clinton who couldn't talk during a presidential campaign. On October 15, 1992, the LA Times reported: "Democratic presidential nominee Bill Clinton struggled with continuing voice problems Wednesday as his campaign released medical reports indicating he is otherwise in good health. The letters issued by four of Clinton's doctors, however, were less extensive than materials provided by other presidential campaigns in recent years, preventing outsiders from making a complete evaluation of Clinton's physical condition... Clinton's chief medical concern is his voice--hoarse, raspy and weak from the combination of months on the campaign trail, a throat infection and chronic allergies."
History repeating itself? Maybe. Same issue, another Clinton. This phenomena may have a greater import. For many, the things that the Clintons speak about and their beliefs associated with them-homosexuality, bigotry, hate, changing religious beliefs to support abortion-are far beyond the traditional values of Americans, and are offensive to many. While they accuse anyone who opposes them as being a racist, bigot, or hate monger, they appear to be projecting those accusations from the content of their own hearts and personal character. I often ponder these things and wonder if the Clintons' voice problems are a warning from the Lord about the deadly poison of their tongues.
Daily Devotion: When the Time Is Right - Greg Laurie - www.harvest.org
Now all Judah, with their little ones, their wives, and their children, stood before the LORD. -2 Chronicles 20:13
Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah, was in trouble. There was a force coming after him that was far larger than his armies were. In 2 Chronicles 20 we find his powerful story as he stood with his family and children, praying, "O our God, will You not judge them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You" (verse 12).
I love that scene. Humanly speaking, it is a picture of weakness. King Jehoshaphat was saying, in effect, "Lord, here we are. We have the kids. We have an army coming toward us. What am I going to do here? Our eyes are on You." That is a good thing to pray. God answered Jehoshaphat's prayer, intervened, and rescued them.
In the New Testament we read of a time when there was a storm at sea, and the disciples were calling out to God for help. Jesus finally showed up, walking toward them on the water. He had arrived during the fourth watch of the night, which is the last part of the night right before the sun begins to rise. Technically, it's the morning, but it still feels like it's night.
This means the disciples had been toiling at sea for hours, trying to get through that storm, and Jesus came along at the last possible moment. The point is that He did come to them. And He will do the same for you and me. He always will-when the time is right. We need to just trust Him.
Remember this: He loves us with an everlasting love. That love is not fickle. That love doesn't change. That love is persistent. That love is consistent. We are loved by God.
FROM THE HEART
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