Prophecy Update Newsletter
December 8, 2016
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The Saints Shall Overcome - By Pastor Mike Taylor - http://pastormiketaylor.blogspot.com/2016/12/the-saints-shall-overcome.html
"Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world." (1 John 4:4)
"Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee." (Hebrews 13:5)
When you consider the Bible's prophecies and take a position, based on scripture, that the Church will not experience the horror that is coming to this world, you wonder why others cannot see the same thing you see?
There are many denominations that do not embrace the coming end of this age, known as the Age of Grace before the tribulation spoken of in Revelation even begins. Many, even in my own family, do not appear to grasp what the Bible has hidden from view in plain site, but there are select group of believers that have that blessed hope:
13 "Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,
14, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works." (Titus 2:13-14)
According to the Book of the Revelation the antichrist will declare war on the followers of Jesus and will also have the power to "overcome" them. That seems a glaring contradiction with other Scriptures that promise that the enemy cannot "overcome" them under any circumstances.
Although the doctrine of the Pre-tribulation rapture of the church is NOT a salvation issue, some may wonder why I teach it. I am a firm believer in this doctrine, based on solid scripture support for it's existence. And we must teach the whole counsel of the Word of God, not just part of God's truth. I teach it to warn those who think they have plenty of time to get their life straight before God, that they could suddenly find themselves thrown headlong into the most horrible period of time that is beyond imagination of that time coming. I wouldn't want any man or woman to endure if at all possible and I can persuade even one to change their mind about the destination of their "immortal soul". It is a hidden point in time, that no "man knoweth the day or the hour". It will come suddenly and without warning. It will give signs and clues, but it will only let you know the season, not the actual event.
WHERE IS THE DOCTRINE OF THE RAPTURE IN THE BIBLE?
Concerning the doctrine of the rapture/the harpazo of the Church, it is not found in one place that states unequivoably that the church is removed from this earth prior to the beginning of God's wrath. You won't find a passage that confirms it with undeniable proof and spoken in clear language that is undeniable. What you will find are passages that are scattered around the Old Testament and the New Testament that gives the evidence that God is coming to remove His church before His wrath falls on mankind in a period known as the "Tribulation".
But let us take a few moments to discover the contradictions that those who don't embrace a pre-tribulation removal of the church, must overlook to make their position truth in their own eyes. First the Bible does not contradict itself. The only contradiction is the blindness of those who are not discerning of what the Bible actually says in its entirety, not just picking and choosing those scriptures taken out of context, to support their pre-conceived notions.
Let us go to the Old Testament first, where the doctrine began to be revealed in a piece by piece construction, much like a puzzle that you must put together to understand what the picture actually is or gold that must be mined out of solid rock. As the prophet Isaiah wrote:
13But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; ....(Isaiah 28:13a)
Beginning with the man called Job, in the book that bears his name, was written:
25 "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
26And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:
27Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me." (Job 19:25-27)
This was the beginning of scripture passages of what we call the resurrection of those who have died in faith, but this doesn't given us enough evidence of when this resurrection will take place. We must read further...I go to Isaiah where the prophet gives us the reason to begin to believe that Jesus will hide those who are found in Him, when He comes to destroy the rebellion that is rampant on this earth during the coming Tribulation.
19" Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise.
Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.
20Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.
21For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain." (Isaiah 26:19-21)
The prophet speaks of hiding and entering into our chambers, and shut the doors until the indignation be past. God, the Lord Jesus Christ, will come out of His habitation called the "third Heaven" and slay those who are in rebellion and their blood will stain His vesture with their blood as written in Revelation chapter 19, but we'll go there in a bit.
But where are these chambers, the prophet, (by Holy Spirit inspiration) speaks of? The answer is what Jesus told His own disciples and I call the companion verses related to what Isaiah wrote:
2 ," In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3, And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. (John 14:2-3)
Note that Jesus said He would come to receive us unto Himself, that where He is, there we will be also. He is preparing a place for us right now, and when it is time, He will come to bring us into His Father's house. Jesus is with the Father in glory, and He will bring us to where He is, not coming to us, but bringing us to Himself, not the other way around.
18 "For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
19Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whoseglory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.
20For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:
21Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself." (Philippians 3:18-21)
Jesus made us many promises that we will receive "VICTORY" over this world, throught belief in Him and covered with the atonement of His own shed blood for our salvation.
10" Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
11Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown." (Revelation 3:10-11)
51 "Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
52In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
53For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal mustput on immortality." 1st Corinthians 15:51-53)
As the above verses proclaim, our Lord and Savior will keep us from the hour of temptation and change us into what His glorious body is..Immortal and glorified. How will He keep us from this time period? See Isaiah 26:19-21, and John 14:2-3 quoted above. But I want to get back for moment and answer the question about be "overcomers" just as Jesus overcame the world. Our Lord makes a statement here, just as He overcame the world, so shall we.
THE APOSTLE JOHN PROCLAIMED OVERCOMING
In the Apostle's First Letter, written as a general sermon to be circulated through the churches of Asia Minor, John takes pains to explain the believer's position as a vessel of the Holy Spirit as it relates to the spirit of antichrist.
"Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world." (1 John 4:4)
The apostle John was given special insight into the the dispensation known as the Tribulation to come by Divine Revelation of Jesus Christ. John had written four New Testament works that three bear His name, and then Revelation that was dictated to him, by the Son of God glorified.
The Apostle John was writing to the Church at the beginning of the Dispensation of Grace in his epistles. Later, the Apostle John is given a revelation from Jesus Christ with more specifics about the antichrist during the Tribulation Period.
"And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations." (Revelation 13:7)
The word translated as "overcome" in both these texts is the Greek word, "nikao" which means, 'to conquer, prevail, get the victory over".
John speaks of the same word in 1st John and it is in Revelation 13.
Except in one case, the saints have overcome the spirits of antichrist (past tense) and in the next, the antichrist overcomes (prevails, gets the victory over,) the saints!
So which is it? The Bible can't contradict itself, and here it still holds true. The only thing that is in contradiction is our understanding.
Jesus spoke to His disciples, and by extention those would become His church through their efforts by the Holy Spirit's power. Our Lord told them:
19 "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20, Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." (Matthew 28:19-20)
16"And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever. (my emphasis)
17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.
18, I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you." (John 14:16-18)
And as Paul quoted Joshua 1:5 in his letter to the Hebrews " I will never leave you or forsake you."
You see there really is no contradiction, as John is writing to the saints of the beginning of the Church Age who are indwelt with God's Holy Spirit and "greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world".
As John wrote in Revelation 13:7 quoted above, the Anti-Christ will overcome the saints:
"And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations." (Revelation 13:7)
Do you see the difference in the two groups of "saints" spoken here in relation to God's Holy Spirit?
The Saints in the Age of Grace are indwelt by God's Holy Spirit and Jesus has proclaimed that He would never leave us or forsake us. But as is revealed in 2nd Thessalonians:
3 "Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
4Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
5Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
6And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
7For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
8And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
9Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
10And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved." (2nd Thessalonians 2:3-10)
The saints during the Age of Grace have a deposit of God's Holy Spirit, as the saints in the Tribulation, must guard their salvation everyday of their existence on earth, so that no one takes it from them, or they succumb to the Anti-Christ and take the Mark of the Beast. That is the difference between groups.
WE ARE TO ASK FOR DISCERNMENT OF TRUTH
As God Word says, we must rightly divide the word of Truth.
"Study to show thyself approved of God, a workman that needeth not be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth." (2 Timothy 2:15)
What does that mean to the believer? The Word divides itself if one will simply allow it to -- without going all symbolic and metaphorical on it. By following a simple rule, "when the literal sense makes literal sense, take it literally" the Word divides itself according to Dispensation of Divine Revelation.
Currently, we are in the dispensation of Grace which is followed by the "dispensation of the fullness of time", for which we of the Dispensation of Grace:
"have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will: That we should be to the praise of His glory, who first trusted in Christ. In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise." (Ephesians 1:13)
So if we have been sealed with God's Holy Spirit, and God cannot lie, then as Paul spoke of in 2nd Corinthians 2:3-10, when the Holy Spirit is removed, all who have the Holy Spirit as a deposit (an earnest of our future inheritance) will be removed from this planet as well.
Note the underline portion of Ephesians 1? . Trusted in Christ, heard the Word of Truth, after that you believed, and were sealed with the Holy Spirit of Promise! Then, ilogically if you follow the words, if the indwelling Comforter is gone and the saints are overcome, conquered, defeated, by the antichrist -- who is given power to gain the victory over them. We see a conflict...BUT is there one?
And what is that Promise, again?
"And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever . . . I will not leave you Comfortless: I will come to you. (John 14:16,18)
If it be any other way, then the verse would have to be amended that "God's Holy Spirit will be with you, until the Tribulation and when you need Him the most, He won't be available as He was before"???...Now that would make God a liar, would it not? And we know that God cannot lie, so the contradiction is our understanding of God's Truth and not putting the puzzle pieces together to get a clear picture of what God is literally trying to tell us.
Right now, we are in that Dispensation of Grace and when that age is finished, we see the coming period of the last 7 years of Daniel's 70 week years of prophecy that is still to be completed concerning God's chosen people, the nation of Israel, called the time of Jacob's trouble. Note that is about Israel when he speaks of Jacob's trouble, as the Tribulation is about the Jewish people accepting their Messiah through much persecution that they call out "Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord"...Otherwise, God is taking Divine judgment on a rebellious world, called the nations, headed by the Anti-Christ.
Were the judgment of the Tribulation imposed upon the Church, that would be a contradiction. . .
"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit."(Romans 8:1)
So if the Church is in the Tribulation, it also means that it is under judgment, a believer can be overcome by the antichrist and believers will face the choice of a horrible death for refusing the mark or eternal damnation for accepting it. That in itself is a glaring contradiction, when there really is no contradiction, just loss of discernment on our part. We have already been judged as righteous by the blood of Jesus Christ, and are not subject to God's wrath, which will cover the whole earth...(see Revelation 3:10 again) which would negate the work of the cross, as there is no purpose for us being refined, as Jesus paid it all once for all time. To be a post-tribulation believer would smack of the concept of a "Catholic purgatory" that the blood of Jesus was just not quite good enough for us to enter the presence of a Holy God. You can see the problem here.
Here is the sequence of events that I believe fits the puzzle pieces together in a literal interpretation of the whole of the counsel of the Word of God:
Near the end of the book of Revelation, we see the culmination of what is the revealing of the Church once again. God's Word speaks of those who are called to the marriage Supper of the Lamb.
7 "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.
8And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.
9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God."
Note that the Bride of Christ, the Church is arrayed/clothed with linen, clean and white, which is a sign of the righteousness of the saints imparted to her by Jesus Christ and His saving grace. And then comes a clincher for me that in the same chapter, we see the "armies of Heaven" coming with King Jesus riding in the lead.
11 "And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
12His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
13And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.
14And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean." (Revelation 19:11-14)
As was spoken in the chapter about the sign of the saints being linen, white and clean, the armies of heaven come back riding on white horses, clothed with line, white and clean...again, a sign of the saints. Note the the vesture or the cloak of King of kings is dipped in blood? It is NOT His blood, but those who have been slain in righteous indignation of the wrath of Almighty God.
But wrapping this message up, I want to point out a passage that speaks to those who have missed this blessed event and have been cast head long into the time of great sorrow and temptation, the Tribulation. The Lord God, our Savior Jesus Christ stands with His bride and beckons to all who will listen:
16 "I, Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.
17And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." (Revelation 22:16-17)
Remember what John wrote prior to this that I underlined in v. 9 of Revelation chapter 19?
"And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb."
The Bride is already there. The Bride and the Groom, Jesus Christ, beckons to all who will listen, to join them "And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely."
It is a glorious and final invitation to those who enter into the Tribulation to endure till the end. It is a call to the Tribulation saints, the Jewish nation and Gentiles who have believed through much pain and persecution. It won't be easy, and it won't be without much sorrow and suffering. Many will die a martyrs death because of their faith. They are being called as "guest" to the marriage of the Bride and the Bridegroom. They will not be the Bride, as that Age of Grace ended with the removal of the Bride of Christ at the rapture of the believers in His atonement on Calvary's cross. But remember what I spoke of when I mentioned "VICTORY" in Jesus ? How does one get this victory and enter into the time of the joining of the Bride of Christ with the Bridegroom, our God, our Savior, our Lord Jesus Christ?
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.
17For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18He 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." (John 3:16-18)
What you have to do is decide. Do I want to be part of the Bride, or a guest? One is glorious filled with joy...the other is pain and suffering, persecution, and probably martyrdom, but does end with joy, if you endure to the end. To be neither the Bride or a called guest, is to enter into what my last message was about "HELL HATH OPENED HER MOUTH WIDE". But as a saint of the Age of Grace, or a saint of the Tribulation period, we shall overcome, just as our Lord overcame.
"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."
12 "That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
13In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
14Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory." (Ephesians 1:12-14)
Let us praise His Holy Name!!...Won't you join us?
This is pastor Mike Taylor, praying for your redemption and as a saint overcoming to His everlasting praise. If you need counseling, prayer, or just a listening ear, send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org ,. God bless you all
TILL WE MEET AT JESUS FEET
Syria Is Training Ground for Hezbollah's Next War with Israel - http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=869
Arab language media is reporting that fighter planes from the Israeli Defense Forces have attacked a Syrian military airport in Damascus as well as Hezbollah targets near the capital which killed and injured a number of fighters in the Shiite militia.
The moves come after Prime Minister Netanyahu previously had announced in April that Israel had struck Hezbollah targets in dozens of strikes to prevent the terrorist group from obtaining "game changing" chemical and advanced anti-aircraft weapons.
For those following the looming terrorist threat that now faces Israel, the strikes sound like foreshadowing of the next war on Israel from an increasingly well-armed and funded terrorist army.
Hezbollah, originally Lebanese and supported by the Shia regime in Iran, has been instrumental in turning the tide of the Syrian civil war in Assad's favor over the past year as its now battle-hardened fighters help government forces retake rebel-controlled cities and push back against the Islamic State.
Hezbollah's involvement in the Syrian government's offensive began in 2013 as the conflict entered a far more bloody phase of near total war.
It is estimated that Hezbollah has suffered casualties of 1,500 fighters, including some of its top military commanders and veterans from the 2006 war on Israel. At the same time, however, it has both swelled its ranks and gained invaluable combat experience, emerging as a far more capable fighting force.
Redoubled recruiting efforts and a call to arms against the Sunni Muslim Islamic State have resulted in a militant force of just under 50,000 with roughly half in full-time service to the cause.
Of those, a full 10,000 are believed to be currently deployed in Syria. Apart from ramping up its Lebanese membership, Hezbollah has created Syrian affiliate groups that it now directs, such as the National Ideological Resistance and the Al-Ridha Forces. At the same time that it has experienced an influx of green recruits,
Hezbollah has continued to train and cultivate elite units skilled in urban warfare, sharpshooting, improvised explosives and battlefield tactics. What is emerging is the largest and now most well-equipped stateless military force in the world.
When Hezbollah launched its rocket attacks on the civilian population of Israel in 2006, it had several thousand rockets equipped with rather crude guidance systems along with a few hundred anti-tank and anti-ship missiles.
Now, thanks to funding and access provided by the Tehran and Damascus, Hezbollah possesses between 70,000 and 90,000 rockets, to include long-range variants and a far greater store of anti-tank missiles, advanced Yakhont anti-ship missiles and the dreaded SA-8 and likely the SA-17 and SA-22 surface-to-air missiles.
In the next war, Hezbollah won't be blindly launching dozens of rockets per day into Israeli neighborhoods. No, it will be able to coordinate thousands of precision strikes calculated to cause mass-casualties and suffering within Israel.
Hezbollah, the so-called "Party of God" now even fields its own armored unit comprised of several dozen main battle tanks and armored vehicles. As for funding, Hezbollah has been receiving a reported $200 million per year from Iran, a number than is sure to rise with the lifting of sanctions under the nuclear deal.
Saudi Arabia provides $3 billion in aid to Lebanon, money that is also being siphoned off by Hezbollah which has become for Lebanon a "state within a state". Indeed, the past decade has seen the terrorist guerrilla force transform into a true army.
Though the Israeli Defense Force remains far stronger and Hezbollah's newly acquired tanks wouldn't last long against IDF air power, the rise of an increasingly well-equipped, well-funded and battle-hardened extremist fighting force that has pledged itself to the destruction of Israel cannot be ignored for long.
As a Hezbollah special-forces commander recently revealed to VOA News, "in some ways, Syria is a dress rehearsal for our next war with Israel." Just as Hezbollah will enter the next war as a proper fighting force, Israel has also learned from its mistakes in the previous conflict.
One of those mistakes according to military analysts was holding back it's firepower on Lebannon for fear of civilian casualties. Hezbollah has purposely embedded itself ever deeper in the civilian population near the border to make sure civilian casualties make Israel look bad in the worldwide media.
To make sure Hezbollah knows their will be a price to be paid should they try anything, the Israeli military on Tuesday posted a map of southern Lebanon to Twitter, on which it marked Hezbollah positions, infrastructure and armaments along a section of the Israeli border.
The map details over 200 towns and villages which the organization has turned into its operations bases, and shows over 10,000 potential targets for Israeli strikes in the event of a new war with the terror group.
With Syrian government forces edging closer to victory against the rebels, it looks like Hezbollah may soon be ready to turn its violent ambitions on its long-time enemy, Israel.
With this latest Israeli attack on targets in Syria, both Hezbollah and Syria are itching for revenge and may not wait until their conflict with ISIS and the Syrian rebel groups are over.
Israel trying to keep chemical arms from Hezbollah, Liberman says - By Judah Ari Gross - http://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-trying-to-keep-chemical-arms-from-hezbollah-liberman-says/
Comments follow defense minister's previous statement that terror group was seeking WMDs, after Syria accused Israel of Damascus bombing
Israel is working to keep chemical weapons out of Hezbollah's hands, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said Thursday, clarifying comments a day earlier that hinted the terror group was attempting to obtain mass-casualty arms.
In a conversation with the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Liberman again seemed to confirm that Israeli forces had been behind two recent strikes inside Syria that had been blamed on the Jewish State.
The defense minister again insisted that Israel has "absolutely no interest" in getting involved in the Syrian civil war, but will work to defend itself.
"Our policies and our positions are very clear and are based on three red lines: We won't allow any harm to the citizens of the State of Israel, we won't allow any harm to the sovereignty of the State of Israel and we will not allow the smuggling of high-quality advanced weapons and chemical weapons from Syria to Lebanon for Hezbollah," Liberman said.
The comments echoed a statement he made a day earlier to ambassadors from the European Union addressing recent airstrikes in Syria.
"We are working, first and foremost, to defend the safety of our citizens and to protect our sovereignty, and we are trying to prevent the smuggling of advanced weapons, military equipment and weapons of mass destruction from Syria to Hezbollah," Liberman told the European ambassadors.
Asked to clarify what weapons of mass destruction were being moved late Wednesday, a defense ministry spokesman said there would be no comment.
In his remarks to the Knesset committee Thursday, Liberman also stressed the Jewish state's freedom to act, saying the country "makes its decisions absolutely freely, in accordance with the policies I listed" - his "red lines" - "and without considerations for any other circumstances or limitations."
The comments were apparently an attempt to deny the idea that the presence of the Russian military is preventing or deterring Israel from carrying out strikes in Syria.
On Wednesday morning, a bombing near a Damascus military airport was blamed on Israel.
"At 3:00 a.m., the Israeli enemy fired several surface-to-surface missiles from inside occupied territory," the Syrian state news agency SANA said, citing a military source. The report said the Israeli missiles caused a large fire but no injuries or deaths.
Last week, Israeli planes also reportedly struck both a weapons site near the Syrian capital and a Hezbollah convoy, causing some large explosions but also no casualties.
Israel generally does not officially admit to carrying out attacks deep inside Syria, though it has publicly maintained it will not allow advanced weapons to be transferred to Hezbollah.
These once regular airstrikes on Hezbollah convoys and Syrian weapons depots have slowed in recent months, with many claiming that Russia's deployment of the long-range, advanced S-400 missile defense system in western Syria has deterred Israel from carrying out airstrikes in Syria and curbed Israel's once unquestioned air superiority in the region.
Israeli security officials, including former defense minister Moshe Ya'alon, have dismissed such claims, but few believe that the S-400 has had no effect on Israel's operations.
A senior air force official, speaking to reporters last month, noted that the Russians' deployment in Syria represented a "challenge" to the Israeli military, but said the country still operated as needed in the region.
Altering "One Nation Under God" - By Greg May - http://raptureready.com/soap2/may25.html
The other day I was feeling a little down after reading how some people think the Rapture has been postponed due to the surprising turn of events regarding the presidential election. Our new president is certainly not a globalist and has promised to defend the Christian faith as well as Israel.
I recently gave an elderly neighbor a ride; now you always receive a blessing when you help someone-but in this case I received a special blessing. As we were passing beneath the overpass of the interstate we could hear the monotonous noise of a pile driver as it was pounding a huge I-beam into the ground. It reminded me of how Jesus compared the time of His return with the days of Noah and Lot:
"They ate. They drank. They built. They planted."
Suddenly, my passenger said, "You can't go anywhere in this town without seeing those huge beams being planted into the ground!" He used the word "planted." I never considered that the word "planted' could be used that way, and that describes exactly the building and construction that is going on all over the United States -- and the world, for that matter. Just because economists tell us we are in a "recession" doesn't stop the building and planting in our society.
Several months ago a gunman walked into a gay bar in Orlando opening fire which killed fifty patrons. Now, the city of Orlando is making a shrine out of the building to commemorate the tragic event. This past summer, President Obama declared the Stonewall Inn in New York City to be a national monument to commemorate when the patrons of that gay bar fought back when it was raided by the police in 1969.
It would now be enshrined in America's national memory to be something Americans were to celebrate. Making this a national monument is to alter America's national memory. It converts the history of the gay agenda into the hallowed history and sacred memory of the nation as a whole, which also alters a nation's identity and future.
In the words of Jonathan Cahn, it is no accident that in the same day that America enshrined immorality as a national monument, it is striking down the monuments of morality and righteousness: monuments to the Ten Commandments, to Jesus, to God, to the cross are being removed, struck down and torn down all across the land.
Since a monument is a memory, to remove Christian or godly monuments is to seek to eradicate the memory of God and Christianity from the nation's consciousness. When you alter that memory, and you alter the nation's identity-no longer Christian-you alter its future and that future becomes godless.
When Jeroboam sought to change Israel's identity from a godly nation to a pagan one that worshipped idols, he built two golden calves and told the nation:
"Behold your gods O Israel, that brought you up from the land of Egypt."
Jeroboam had rewritten history. He altered Israel's memory and did it through the monument of a golden calf. If one can alter a nation's memory, one will alter that nation's identity and future.
In these times it is crucial that we, as God's people, all the more obey the command to remember to remember His Word, His ways, His commands, His order, His Truth and His power and love. We should be in His Word all the more, letting it change our identity and our future as we are "One nation under God."
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
Control Your Anger - Nathele Graham - email@example.com
We all get angry on occasion. It's part of our human emotions but it's one that can hurt others deeply and also hurt ourselves. Anger is a selfish emotion that centers around pride. It might flare up when someone doesn't give us the respect we think we deserve or disagrees with our opinion. Unfortunately, anger can lead to violence and even murder. Spousal abuse, child abuse, and road rage are all too common in society today. The Apostle Paul addressed anger and gave good advice. "Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: neither give place to the devil." Ephesians 4:26-27. Anger is an ugly emotion that needs to be controlled or else it will control you. The Bible has a lot to say about anger and as always we need to learn from God's word and apply it to our everyday life.
Jude is a very short letter and is often overlooked in Bible study, but the wisdom and information found in those 25 verses is astonishing. "Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core." Jude 1:11. These are three Old Testament examples of people who strayed far from God. They each were guilty of a different sin and these sins resulted in angry outbursts. They did not control their sin and anger, and the results were disastrous. These men aren't any different than you and me, but we can learn from their errors if we will study and pray.
The story of Cain and Abel is well known. Adam had sinned and Paradise was lost. After the Fall, Adam and Eve had children, the first two being Cain and Abel. As Cain and Abel grew older, each worked in a different profession. "And Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground." Genesis 4:1-2. Both professions were noble, but it's how you use what God provides that matters. The brothers both understood about giving sacrifice to God, but Cain didn't care if he gave a proper sacrifice. "And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: but unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell." Genesis 4:3-5 Abel understood that the blood sacrifice of his sheep was a sin offering, but Cain did what was easiest for him and brought fruit of the ground. The model of the blood sacrifice had been shown when God clothed Adam and Eve with the skins of animals in order to cover their sin and shame. Then He called Adam, Eve, and the Serpent together and told the specific result of the sin to each of them. Because Adam had listened to Eve rather than to God, he was told "... cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life:" Genesis 3:17b. The ground was cursed, but Cain chose to give the fruit of the earth as a sacrifice to God. When his sacrifice was rejected he didn't look at himself and see what needed to change. Instead he became angry with Abel. The outcome of that anger was tragic. "And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him." Genesis 4:8. If anger is unchecked the results can be tragic. It's no different today. People are very angry and many times that anger results in murder. Cain should not be our example, but Abel should be. He followed God's directions even though it resulted in his death.
Balaam is another example and his story is a strange one. God had given the Israelites victory in battles as they wandered in the wilderness, and Balak, the king of the Moabites, noticed. He was concerned that they would do battle with Moab and be victorious, so he called a meeting with the Midianites. It was decided that they would approach Balaam, a prophet, and ask him to curse the Israelites. "And the elders of Moab and the elders of Midian departed with the rewards of divination in their hand; and they came unto Balaam, and spake unto him the words of Balak." Numbers 22:7. Money talks and Balaam was willing to prophesy against the Israelites for money. He was confident that God would allow him to curse the Israelites, but that was not to be. "And God said unto Balaam, Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people for they are blessed." Numbers 22:12. These words should be heeded by anyone who turns against Israel; God will not allow His people to be cursed. Balak was disappointed, but then offered Balaam prestige if he would curse the Israelites. Balaam served his own self interest so how could he refuse money and prestige. Greed can cause a person to do many underhanded things, and Balaam was greedy. Eventually he went with the Moabites. "And Balaam rose up in the morning, and saddled his ass, and went with the princes of Moab." Numbers 22:21. So off he went, smug in his own negotiations with the Moabites for money and prestige. Self importance will cause a person to be blind to God, and so it was with Balaam. "And God's anger was kindled because he went: and the angel of the LORD stood in the way for an adversary against him. Now he was riding upon his ass, and his two servants were with him." Numbers 22:22. Balaam had his heart set upon his own lust for fame and money, but God was not going to allow him to curse Israel. Many Bible teachers say the "angel of the LORD" referred to here is an Old Testament appearance of Jesus. Balaam let his lust blind him to the LORD. "And the ass saw the angel of the LORD standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand: and the ass turned aside out of the way, and went into the field: and Balaam smote the ass, to turn her into the way." Numbers 22:23. Balaam's eyes were blind to what was seen clearly by the ass. He was angry and lashed out. The ass was innocent and only trying avoid a problem. Balaam beat the poor animal but she kept turning aside because she wouldn't pass the angel of the LORD. Finally she just laid down and Balaam became even angrier and hit her with his staff. What happened next is a miracle. "And the LORD opened the mouth of the ass, and she said unto Balaam, What have I done unto thee that thou has smitten me these three times? And Balaam said unto the ass, Because thou hast mocked me: I would there were a sword in mine hand, for now would I kill thee. And the ass said unto Balaam, Am not I thine ass, upon which thou has ridden ever since I was thine unto this day? was I ever wont to do so unto thee? And he said, Nay. " Numbers 22:28-30. Anger blinds a person to God and befuddles our mind so we don't think straight. Balaam's anger caused him to miss seeing Jesus and he wasn't surprised at having a conversation with his ass as if it was a normal thing. The LORD did open Balaam's eyes and he saw the LORD and fell down before Him. If Balaam had not been blinded by greed and rage he would have opened his eyes to Jesus before abusing his animal. Jesus will give you peace if you allow it.
The next man on Jude's list is Core, which is the Greek translation of Korah. This, man along with Dathan and Abiram, was jealous of Moses and Aaron. Jealousy has its roots in pride and can easily lead to anger. Moses spoke with God and led the Israelites according to God's directions and Aaron was the high priest who was appointed by God. Korah must have done a lot of bellyaching, because he convinced Dathan, Abiram, and 250 other men to turn against Moses and Aaron. "And they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron, and said unto them, Ye take too much upon you, seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the LORD is among them: wherefore then lift ye up yourselves above the congregation of the LORD?" Numbers16:3. Korah was jealous that God had seemingly elevated Moses and Aaron above all of Israel. God was able to use Moses because Moses, a humble man, had the characteristics that qualified him for the task of leading the Israelites by listening to God. Korah proved his unworthiness by his jealousy and anger against God. These men accused Moses of leading them from the wonderful life in Egypt and into the wilderness that did not meet their expectations. They had forgotten the cruelty of slavery in Egypt and also forgot that they were wandering in the wilderness because they were too afraid to enter the land God had promised them. The wilderness may not have been flowing with milk and honey, but God had provided them with manna daily. Anger against leaders chosen by God is never justified and only brings destruction. God was swift to quell this uprising. Moses warned everyone to get away "...from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing of theirs, lest ye be consumed in all their sins." Numbers 16:26b. Moses was a man who listened to God and obeyed, but Korah and his friends worked themselves into a fury against God's chosen leader, and they were about to pay the price for their anger and rebellion. "If these men die the common death of all men, or if they be visited after the visitation of all men; then the LORD hath not sent me. But if the LORD make a new thing and the earth open her mouth, and swallow them up, with all that appertain unto them, and they go down quick into the pit; then ye shall understand that these men have provoked the LORD." Numbers 16:29-30. Korah and his friends did not die a common death, but were indeed swallowed by the earth. Korah brought about his own destruction by his jealous anger. Today we may not be swallowed by the earth, but anger against God will certainly destroy you because of your own choices.
The Bible teaches that we need to control our human nature and allow God to move us away from angry thoughts, words, and actions. Nobody likes to have someone angry with them, and Jesus says we should treat others as we want to be treated. "And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise." Luke 6:31. When we accept Christ into our life we should put off the old ways and learn to become more like Him. Jesus did get angry, but only against those religious leaders who were filled with pride and mocked God...those who misused authority and misused the Temple. Instead of getting angery turn to God and ask Him to help you to love others. "Beloved let us love one another: for love is of God: and everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love." 1 John 4:7-8.
Control your anger and allow God's love to flow through you to touch others.
God bless you all,
Ron Graham's previous commentaries archived at http://www.raptureready.com/featured/graham/graham.html
All original scripture is "theopneustos" God breathed.
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Daily Jot: Electoral College attack - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
The Jill Stein-Hillary Clinton attack on the Electoral College is a long-term strategically planned effort to undermine the American Republic and topple the US government. While there are many people on both sides of the Electoral College issue, a well-informed person who believes in the rule of law and representation of the people must take notice that the Electoral College stands in the breech against a long and tenacious struggle for totalitarianism. Stein and Clinton are representatives of communism. Clinton's attorney is financed by communist reformist George Soros and the attacks on the Electoral College is part of their plan to chip away at the government and the will of a free people.
Their approach is to call for recounts in states they traditionally win while, at the same time, work behind the scenes to sway votes in the Electoral College. The Marxism dialectic is saying they do not believe there was anything corrupt, but they want to make sure. This antithesis attempts to establish a new thesis that changes the way Americans feel about their election process. They believe it is only fair to have the majority win-that's democracy. And there might just be something wrong if the majority doesn't win. This not only raises more suspicion of voting security (which the Democratic Party has been exploiting for decades), but also casts doubt about the "fairness" of the Electoral College.
Consider that there are 3,141 counties and county equivalents in the 50 States and the District of Columbia. An analysis by Inquisitr.com and the Atlantic indicate that Donald Trump won 84% to Clinton's 15%--that's roughly 2,638 counties for Trump and 502 for Clinton. Inquisitr.com reports, "This highlights the reasoning behind the Electoral College to ensure that non-urban dwelling citizens have their voices heard in the election. If there was no Electoral College, the 100 most populous counties (just 3 percent of the total county count) would determine every election unless something significant happened within the U.S. geography makeup. Therefore, rural voters' concerns would be placed on the back burner of all presidential elections and platforms." It could be taken a step further where the concerns of common sense people would be forgotten.
Herein is why the communists want to end the Electoral College or set precedent for electors to change their vote: If they run up the vote in places where voters are most dependent on government, they can take over the government. We have seen the effects of this over the past eight years where the rule of law has given way to whims of political correctness. Hence, we can reveal the truth behind the effort to repopulate conservative areas with Islamists and illegals with the hopes of giving them a vote in the future. 2 Timothy 3:13 says, "But evil men and seducers will wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived." Don't be deceived by the attack on the Electoral College. Your freedom hangs in the balance.
Daily Devotion: You Have a Savior - Greg Laurie - www.harvest.org
Then the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people." -Luke 2:10
When the angel delivered his heavenly announcement to the shepherds, he started with, "Do not be afraid." But the shepherds, along with all of Israel, lived in frightening times. They were under the reign of King Herod, who was a tyrant. Their land was under Roman occupation. There was fear about the future. Would Rome ever leave? Would they ever be free? Would the Messiah ever come?
Then suddenly there were angels announcing to the shepherds that the Messiah had come: "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people" (Luke 2:10). Having angels appear was frightening in itself. Angels are awe-inspiring beings. That is why, when we read of angelic appearances in the Bible, we often see them starting with, "Fear not."
The message of Christmas is fear not. Have joy. As commentator Ray Stedman said, "The chief mark of the Christian ought to be the absence of fear and the presence of joy."
Yet it can be difficult for us to have joy because we are surrounded by sadness. With all the tragedies in the world, all the acts of terrorism, and all the problems we have, how can we have good tidings of great joy? The answer is this: "For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord" (Luke 2:11).
No matter what happens in life, remember this: You have a Savior. As a Christian, you have been saved from death. You have been saved from eternal punishment and hell. You have the hope that when you die, you will go straight to heaven. That is the most important thing about the Christian life. There is a heaven waiting for you. You have a Savior.
FROM THE HEART
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