IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
How Close is the Second Coming? - Britt Gillette - http://www.end-times-bible-prophecy.com/how-close-is-the-second-coming.html
The past year has been a wake-up call for many people. A global pandemic... Riots and social unrest in countless nations... Fractures in the global economy... And now Israel and Hamas at war. Everywhere you look, it seems as though the end is near. Is it? What does the Bible say? Are these signs of the Second Coming? Are these events pointing to the soon return of Jesus Christ?
Fortunately, we don't have to guess. Jesus Himself told us how to recognize the general timeframe of His return. When the disciples said, "Tell us the signs of your coming and the end of the age" (Matthew 24:3), Jesus told them a number of things to look for. He then said, "When you see all these things, you can know my return is near. I'm right at the door" (Matthew 24:33). He also said, "When all these things begin to happen, look up for your salvation is near!" (Luke 21:28).
This means the #1 indication Jesus will return soon is all the signs appearing together. Both Jesus and the prophets told us what signs to look for, and the appearance of just one is reason enough to take notice. But the arrival of one sign after another demands your attention. It's the sign Jesus said to look for. This convergence of signs is confirmation our generation will witness the Second Coming - not according to me, but according to Jesus.
The Convergence of Signs
So what are these signs? Jesus and the prophets pointed to dozens and dozens of signs. This article will only cite a few, but the reality of each one of these signs is undeniable. And their convergence should convince you the return of the Lord is close at hand. These signs include:
Israel Back in the Land - God promised to bring the Jewish people back into the land of Israel before He returned (Jeremiah 23:7-8). He said He would call them from "among the nations" (Ezekiel 39:28), from "the farthest corners of the earth" (Isaiah 11:12), and from "north, south, east, and west" (Psalm 107:3). He promised to welcome them home from the lands where they were scattered (Ezekiel 20:34). When they did, He promised to return and establish His everlasting kingdom (Isaiah 11:11-12).
The Jewish People in Control of Jerusalem - Jesus said armies would surround Jerusalem, destroy the city, and enslaves its citizens. The Roman legions fulfilled this prophecy in A.D. 70. Jesus then said people other than the Jewish people will control Jerusalem for a time, until the Jewish people once again control Jerusalem. When they did, Jesus promised to return (Luke 21:24-28). Since 1967, the Jewish people have controlled Jerusalem.
The Gospel Preached Throughout the World - When asked about the end of the age and the signs of His coming, Jesus said to look for a very specific sign. He said the Gospel will be preached throughout the entire world. Every nation will hear it. And then? And then, the end will come (Matthew 24:14). For centuries after the crucifixion, the Gospel was confined to a small area surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. In the past two centuries, Christians have brought the Gospel to every nation in the world. Today, missionaries are in every nation. The Bible is translated in hundreds of languages, and the message of Jesus is sent around the world by radio, TV, satellite, and the Internet. This generation is on the verge of spreading the Gospel to every last person on earth.
An Increase in Travel and Knowledge - Six hundred years before Jesus, an angel gave Daniel a special message. He said "travel and knowledge" will increase in the end times (Daniel 12:4). For centuries of human history, dramatic gains in travel and knowledge did NOT take place. Yet the last two hundred years have seen explosions in the speed and frequency of travel as well as the amount and availability of knowledge.
Arrival of the Exponential Curve - Jesus said a variety of global signs will come before His return and the end of the age. These signs will be spiritual, natural, societal, and political in nature. He said they will appear in a distinct way - "like birth pains" (Matthew 24:3‐8). This means the frequency and intensity of these signs will increase as we near His return. Our generation has seen the exponential increase in war and famine Jesus said to look for. In the 20th Century alone, more people died from war and famine than lived on the earth when Jesus spoke these words.
Israel Surrounded by Enemies - The Bible says enemies will surround Israel in the end times. Those enemies will say "Come, let us wipe away the nation of Israel. Let's destroy the memory of its existence" (Psalm 83:4) and "Let us take for ourselves these pasturelands of God" (Psalm 83:12). Ezekiel said Israel's neighbors will say "God has given their land to us" (Ezekiel 11:14‐17), and "Israel and Judah are ours. We will take possession of them. What do we care if their God is there?" (Ezekiel 35:10). Ever since the rebirth of Israel in 1948, the daily headlines have included these Bible verses. Israel's Muslim neighbors claim the land of Israel for themselves, and they have no regard for the God of Israel.
Israel's Exceedingly Great Army - Ezekiel said, in the end times, Israel will field "an exceedingly great army" (Ezekiel 37:10). Zechariah said Israel will be like a fire among sheaves of grain, burning up the neighboring nations (Zechariah 12:6) and even the weakest Israeli soldier will be like David (Zechariah 12:8). Since 1948, Israel has fought no less than four conventional wars against its neighbors. Despite being outnumbered more than 50 to 1, Israel has achieved overwhelming victory every time.
Rise of the Gog of Magog Alliance - The Bible says a military alliance that includes Russia, Iran, Turkey, and a number of Muslim nations will attack Israel "in the latter days" (Ezekiel 38:8) when God brings His people home from among the enemy nations (Ezekiel 39:27). Today, we see those very nations coming together for the first time - an alliance that has never existed in world history.
Rise of a United Europe - The Bible says a revived Roman Empire will come to power in the end times (Daniel 2, Daniel 7, Revelation 17). According to Daniel, it will be a ten nation alliance of weak and strong nations. Some parts will be as strong as iron, while other parts will be as weak as clay (Daniel 2:42). We see the beginning of this alliance in the European Union - a coalition of weak and strong nations struggling to stay together.
The Rise of Global Government - The Bible says a single government will rule the world politically (Revelation 13:7), religiously (Revelation 13:8), and economically (Revelation 13:16‐17) in the last days. It will rule over "all people, tribes, and languages" on the face of the earth (Revelation 13:7). Its authority will be so complete no one will be able to buy or sell anything without its permission (Revelation 13:16‐17). For centuries, a true global government was impossible. Today, world leaders openly discuss it.
Denial of the Signs - Almost two thousand years ago, Peter issued a warning. He said in the last days people will mock the idea of Jesus returning. They will make fun of those who believe in the Second Coming and say exactly what we hear today - things like, "I thought Jesus was coming back? What happened to His promise? Generation after generation has said He's coming. Yet, since the beginning of the world, everything has remained the same!" (2 Peter 3:3‐4).
The Hour is Late
Keep in mind, these signs haven't always been present. Generations of Christians lived and died without witnessing any of these signs. For centuries of Christian history, none of these signs were present. Today, they all are. Jesus said when you see these signs, you can know His return is near. He's right at the door (Matthew 24:33). In fact, Jesus said the generation witnessing these signs will not pass away before He returns (Matthew 24:34). So despite the skeptics and naysayers, Jesus is coming, and ours is the generation that will witness His return. The convergence of all these signs confirm it.
How many generations of Christians longed to see what we see? Yet, there's a strange silence in the church. Why? The appearance of all these signs after centuries of waiting should motivate every Christian on earth to make the most of what time we have left.
Jesus commanded us to watch for these signs (Matthew 24:42). He scolded the Pharisees and religious leaders when they failed to recognize the signs of His first coming (Matthew 16:3). Will He do any different for those who fail to recognize the signs of His second coming? Jesus warned us not to be caught sleeping when He returns (Mark 13:36).
If you're a Christian, God expects you to point out these signs to others and warn them the end is near. If the world ignores you, so be it. But if you recognize the signs of the times and don't tell others about them, you're no different than a watchman who sees an invading army and doesn't sound the alarm. If you fail in your role as watchman, God will hold you accountable for all those who perish (Ezekiel 33:1-6).
Have no doubt. The signs of His return are all around us. Jesus is coming. If you've been waiting to share the Gospel with someone, don't wait one minute more. You may not have another opportunity. The hour is late. The signs are present. Now is the season of His return, and if the Second Coming is near, the Rapture is imminent!
As Israel Relentlessly Pounds Terrorists In Gaza, The War Threatens To Expand Elsewhere - by Michael Snyder - http://endoftheamericandream.com/as-israel-relentlessly-pounds-terrorists-in-gaza-the-war-threatens-to-expand-elsewhere/
Residents of Gaza spent the night cowering in fear as a series of dramatic airstrikes destroyed buildings used by Hamas terrorists. We have never seen anything quite like this, and the Israelis haven’t shown any signs that they plan to let up any time soon. In fact, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is saying that the IDF “will continue to operate as long as needed to restore quiet and security to all Israelis”. That could take a while, because Hamas just keeps firing even more rockets into Israel. On Monday, Hamas rockets forced Israeli citizens into bomb shelters in the cities of Ashdod, Ashkelon and Beer Sheva…
On Monday, a fresh barrage of rockets from Gaza once again set off sirens and sent Israelis fleeing into bomb shelters in Ashdod, Ashkelon and Beer Sheva. At least one residential building in Ashdod was hit, the IDF said.
If Hamas really wants the fighting to end, they should stop firing rockets at Israeli cities.
But instead, they just keep doing the exact thing that they know will cause the Israelis to attack them. Hamas fired 200 more rockets into Israel on Monday, and the grand total for the conflict is now above 3,300…
The Israeli military said late on Monday that Hamas and other Palestinian groups had fired about 3,350 rockets from Gaza – 200 of them on Monday alone – and that Israeli air and artillery strikes had killed at least 130 militants.
Of course Hamas insists that they were just responding to attacks by the IDF earlier on Monday. According to USA Today, those attacks destroyed the personal homes of nine Hamas commanders…
The Israeli military unleashed another heavy wave of airstrikes Monday on the Gaza Strip, saying it destroyed militant tunnels and the homes of nine Hamas commanders. International diplomacy to end the weeklong war that has killed hundreds appeared to be making little headway.
And the IDF also announced that the strikes on Monday had destroyed 15 kilometers of underground tunnels that Hamas had constructed…
The latest attacks destroyed the five-story building housing the Hamas-run Religious Affairs Ministry, a building Israel said housed the main operations center of Hamas’ internal security forces. Israel also killed a top Gaza leader of Islamic Jihad, another militant group whom the Israeli military blamed for some of the thousands of rocket attacks launched at Israel in recent days. Israel said its strikes destroyed 15 kilometers (9 miles) of tunnels used by militants.
Originally, I had thought that the fighting would subside during the early part of this week as Israel celebrated Shavuot.
I was wrong about that.
Instead, the fighting has only intensified, and it threatens to spill over into other arenas.
For example, global media outlets were deeply alarmed when six shells were fired from Lebanon toward Israel…
Around midnight, six shells were fired from Lebanon towards northern Israel, but fell short of crossing the border, the Israeli military said, adding that it fired artillery at “the sources of the launches” in Lebanon.
If Hezbollah were to join this war, that could completely change the nature of this conflict.
Hezbollah is far better organized and far better armed than Hamas is, and it has been reported that Hezbollah currently has at least 150,000 missiles pointed at Israel.
So we need to watch developments in Lebanon very carefully, because if Israel and Lebanon start lobbing missiles at one another, things will start to get “apocalyptic” very quickly.
Elsewhere, Turkey is making a lot of noise about the conflict between Israel and Hamas. In fact, the president of Turkey just publicly declared that “84 million Turks will continue to defend Jerusalem”.
That is not the sort of statement that you would make if you are hoping to calm things down.
Of course Iranian officials continue to hurl hateful words at Israel, and those two nations have been on the brink of war for quite some time.
Eventually, war between Israel and Iran is coming, but hopefully that day can be put off for as long as possible.
Because when it does finally arrive, it will be a truly horrific conflict.
The fighting that we are already witnessing between Israel and Hamas is certainly horrible enough, and officials all over the globe are crying out for peace.
In recent days, Israel has been endlessly criticized by corporate media outlets for the death and destruction that has happened in Gaza, but the truth is that the IDF has been far more kind and far more gentle than I would have been.
Most of the time, before the IDF destroys a building that terrorists have been using, it sends a warning first so that everyone can safely evacuate. The following is just one example…
The Israeli military has struck a six-story building in Gaza with a “roof-knock” bomb, indicating that Israeli forces intend to demolish the structure.
It is not immediately clear why the structure, al-Muhannad Tower, has been targeted by the Israel Defense Forces. Israel says it targets buildings used by Hamas or other Gaza terror groups.
Who else in the world does such a thing?
If I was conducting a war, I certainly wouldn’t give my enemies advance warning before I hit a target.
The IDF has gone to extreme lengths to minimize civilian casualties, and yet we have seen an explosion of anti-Semitism all over the globe in recent days. In London, some of the language being used by anti-Semitic protesters is beyond sickening…
People have been filmed driving through London in a convoy of cars shouting anti-Semitic obscenities.
One of the passengers yelled ‘**** the Jews, rape their daughters’ through a loudspeaker as they drove through residential areas.
Video was filmed in Finchley Road, St John’s Wood, near a Jewish Community center, with the man claiming ‘We have to send a message’.
Sadly, we saw crazed pro-Palestinian protesters gather in major cities all over the western world this weekend, and that included major U.S. cities such as Chicago and New York.
I have never seen as much anti-Semitism around the globe as I am seeing right now, and that is truly, truly frightening.
Even a CNN contributor was caught making a very hateful statement that should have been unthinkable for someone in his position to ever utter.
Our world is so full of hate, and now a war in the Middle East has erupted.
These are very dark times, and a lot more death and destruction is on the horizon.
Nearing Midnight: Quartet Flirting with Rupture – Terry James - https://www.raptureready.com/category/nearing-midnight/
Our title for this commentary could have just as easily been something like “Quartet Sips on Poison.” Either title would be appropriate. This is because the powers that be in world geopolitics are involved in tampering with things that are guaranteed to injure them and the entire world of nation-states.
This we know from the very Word of God, who does not slumber or sleep when it comes to His chosen nation, Israel:
The burden of the word of the Lord for Israel, saith the Lord, which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundation of the earth, and formeth the spirit of man within him. Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem. And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. (Zechariah 12:1–3)
This should be no surprise to Bible prophecy students. Israel is the key to understanding the lateness of the hour, as has been pointed out many times.
Many who study from the pre-Trib perspective of prophecy believe that the rebirth of Israel (often represented as the fig tree) on May 14, 1948, unleashed the prophecy Jesus gave as recorded in the book of Matthew.
Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. (Matthew 24: 32–34)
If this prophecy is indeed about the reforming of Israel in 1948 for the wind-up of this Age of Grace (Church Age), then we are very late into that prophecy. There should be some proof when observing our times and season, if there is any validity to this proposition by those who hold to this scriptural passage as relating to this generation.
I believe we might just be witness to that prophecy proving just how late we are into the final stage of human history immediately preceding Christ’s call to His Church in the Rapture, based upon the world beginning in earnest to “burden” itself with God’s chosen nation.
In this regard, I refer to the large power bloc that represents the nation-state epicenter of global influence—the so-called Quartet. This group has designated themselves as the nucleus of geopolitical power. They’re making known that they intend to assert that power by doing some heavy lifting in making God’s chosen nation-state comply with their version of how things ought to be. The following illustrates this assertion of this group’s powerful influence in the matter of Israel and its blood-vowed enemies.
Canada and the Middle East Quartet (the United Nations, United States, European Union and Russia) condemned on Sunday the violence that took place on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, and called on Israel to halt eviction plans for Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood as violence rises in the country’s capital.
The EU and the US also issued a statement against the violence and the pending Sheikh Jarrah evictions, as did Jordan, Turkey, Qatar, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. Individual European countries, as well as South African, have spoken out as well…
Tensions were heightened as thousands of Muslim worshippers flocked to the Temple Mount – al-Haram al Sharif in Arabic – to pray there on Islam’s holy night of Laylat al-Qadr (Night of Power).
Further violence is expected on Sunday night as Israelis celebrate Jerusalem Day, which marks the day that the IDF captured the eastern part of the city from Jordan during the Six Day War…The Quartet also issued a joint statement. While it has [been] largely dormant during the final years of the Trump administration, it has since been revived now that US President Joe Biden is in office.
“The Envoys express deep concern over the daily clashes and violence in east Jerusalem, in particular last night’s confrontations between Palestinians and Israeli security forces at Haram Al-Sharif/Temple Mount,” the Quartet stated…
“We call upon [the] Israeli authorities to exercise restraint and to avoid measures that would further escalate the situation during this period of Muslim Holy Days,” the Quartet stated.
“We call on all sides to uphold and respect the status quo at the holy sites. All leaders have a responsibility to act against extremists and to speak out against all acts of violence and incitement.” (“Canada, Quartet Slam Jerusalem Violence, Int’l Pressure Grows on Israel,” by Tovah Lazaroff, Jerusalem Post, May 9, 2021)
If God’s Word is true—and it is—then we should witness the ramping up of this global power against this nation, chosen by God as a prototype nation in His dealing with all of his creation called man. Satan fuels the hatred that is scheduled to develop—already is developing—to energize the human powers and principalities as they sip from that “trembling cup” and try to lift that “burdensome stone” the prophet Zechariah was directed to foretell.
It all means that our redemption is drawing very near indeed! (Luke 21: 28)
The Story of the Redeemed – Jonathan Brentner - https://www.jonathanbrentner.com/https/jonathan-brentner-g8fgsquarespacecom/config/2021/5/10/the-story-of-the-redeemed
When I wrote my chapter in Lawless about those who falsely claim the existence of a climate emergency, I included a section about the story of creation. One of the fundamental mistakes of the climate alarmists is their failure to grasp, or believe, the story of God’s created order that begins in Genesis 1 and concludes in Revelation 22.
Just as the denial of creation’s entire story spawns a variety of false beliefs regarding our environment, so the denial of our entire story, as redeemed believers, misleads multitudes in today’s church. Just as with creation, our story has a glorious culmination that many pastors either neglect or deny. Even for us who are aware of the time in which we live, the spectacular ending of our story far too often slips from our consciousness as we watch lawlessness and wickedness grow exponentially around us.
In Romans 8:18-25, Paul compares the story of creation with that of New Testament saints. I believe there are several key parallels between our story and that of creation that can encourage our hearts and calm our fears as we eagerly await Jesus’ appearing.
A PERFECT CREATION
Our story begins in the Garden of Eden. We were the crowning achievement of a perfect and beautiful creation. In Genesis 1:26-27 we read:
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” / So God created man in his own image, / in the image of God he created him; / male and female he created them.
Genesis 1 concludes with these words, “And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day” (v. 31).
In God’s spectacular and marvelous creation, everything was perfect. Death and corruption did not exist. Adam and Eve lived in sinless perfection in a perfect environment that we can only imagine.
SIN BRINGS A CURSE
Sadly, death soon entered God’s magnificent creation through the disobedience of Adam and Eve. In my chapter in Lawless, I describe it in this way:
The Book of Genesis reveals another climatic event that enables us to understand the current state of planet earth. It’s what we refer to as the “Fall,” when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and sin entered the human race. As a result, the Lord extended His punishment of their behavior to nature (Genesis 3:17–18). As beautiful and spectacular as nature can be today, it does not possess its original glory.
Even though this happened long, long ago, it’s a critical aspect of our story. Here are Paul’s words to this effect in Romans 5:19, “For as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience the many will be made righteous.” That one act brought a curse on nature and brought death to the entire human race.
There is both bad and good news here that we must not separate. Because we are a part of Adam’s race, we are all born in sin and in dire need of redemption. The good news is that Jesus died for Adam’s helpless race.
Because of Jesus’ payment for our sins on the cross, as redeemed saints we inherit His righteousness and eternal life (2 Cor. 5:21; John 3:16). Christ took God’s wrath for our sins upon Himself that we might escape the eternal punishment we deserve if we put our trust in Him alone for our salvation.
SIN BRINGS GOD’S WRATH
I remember as a small child standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon and trying to imagine how a river, which seemed so small from my vantage point, could cause such a spectacle. I had a difficult time understanding it then and today I know that the Colorado River did not create the Grand Canyon. Rather, it formed as the direct result of the Noahic flood recorded in Genesis 6-8.
Those that tell us we must act immediately to save our planet have something in common with those who ridicule our hope in Jesus’ imminent appearing: they both “deliberately overlook” the worldwide impact of the Genesis flood (see 2 Peter 3:1-7). The former refuse to believe it while the latter group fails to understand its implications for the day in which we live (Matt. 24:36-39).
Notice the parallel in 2 Peter 3:7 between the fate of the ungodly and the created order, “But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.” Those who scoff at our hope, even those who do so within the church, also deny biblical teaching of the many judgments that will occur during the day of the Lord, which is rapidly approaching our world.
God’s Word reveals that the Lord’s wrath during the tribulation period (Rev. 6-18) will greatly impact nature leaving it tattered, for the most part destroyed, and in great need of restoration by the time Jesus returns to earth.
RESTORATION AT THE RETURN OF KING JESUS
The return of Jesus will bring a glorious restoration to both nature and to all those in Christ, both living and dead saints. Notice the words of Romans 8:19-22 in this regard:
For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.
Notice how the apostle Paul portrays the created order as in “bondage to corruption,” which refers to the curse of Genesis 3. The good news is that despite the current “groaning” of nature, the Lord is going to set it free from its current “futility.” I believe this will happen at the beginning of Jesus’ millennial reign on the earth.
Just as creation “waits with eager longing” for Jesus’ return, we also “wait eagerly” for Jesus’ appearing before the tribulation. Just like nature, we groan in anticipation of the Rapture when the Lord will set us completely free from the terms of the Genesis 3 curse. Notice how the words of Romans 8:23-25 tie the longing and groaning of nature with our hope of Jesus’ imminent appearing:
And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
The appearing of Jesus before the tribulation will bring total restoration for those of us in Christ. At that time we will fully experience our adoption into God’s family and experience the “redemption of our bodies.” The New Testament contains many other references to our receipt of glorious and immortal bodies (1 Cor. 15:50-57; 2 Cor. 5:1-8; Phil. 3:20-21). This is the “blessed hope” of Titus 3:13. The New Testament portrays Jesus’ appearing to take us home (John 14:1-3), the Rapture, as the imminent anticipation of the saints.
Just as creation longs for restoration at the time we return to earth with Christ, so the redeemed of the Lord long for Jesus’ appearing when His promise of eternal life will become our forever experience. In the meantime, a little sanctified groaning is in order.
OUR MILLENNIAL REIGN WITH JESUS
Just as Jesus is Heir to a kingdom, so are we (Rom. 8:17-18). We will reign with Jesus on the earth for one thousand years (Rev. 5:9-10; 20:1-10).
The millennium will be glorious for us as well as for creation (see Isa. 11:1-10). Jesus will reign on the throne of David over a fully restored kingdom of Israel as He completes the task of regathering the Israelites from all the nations. He will raise all the Old Testament saints along with those we refer to as the tribulation saints. It will be a glorious time for all of creation as well as for us and for Israel, of course.
Our experiences in this life take on new meaning knowing we will someday reign with Jesus. What if like Joseph in the book of Genesis, the Lord is using our hardships to prepare us for our future positions in His glorious kingdom? I believe that our experiences here below have a God-given purpose for this life as well as for the millennium when we will reign with Jesus.
THE ETERNAL STATE
The story of creation includes a complete makeover as described in Revelation 21:1-4. We will already have our incorruptible and immortal bodies and as such we will forever enjoy God’s new creation of the earth and heavens along with the magnificent New Jerusalem.
Take a moment to feast on the words of Revelation 21:1-4:
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
As the redeemed of the Lord, we will forever enjoy a beautiful and physical New Jerusalem and a gloriously refurbished earth, and we will do so with physical imperishable bodies. Do not let anyone deceive you with the lie that the New Jerusalem is symbolical of another reality; it’s real; and it will be our physical home for all eternity.
The climate alarmists of our day make many critical errors about the environment because they deny the story of God’s creation from its start in Genesis 1 to the eternal state as the Lord reveals for us in Revelation 21-22. Because the climate alarmists deny the truth of God’s Word regarding creation, they believe the lie that they themselves must save the planet.
The amillennialists similarly lead others astray because they deny the whole story of our redemption as New Testament saints. As a result, they do not recognize the urgency of the day in which we live as the seven-year tribulation approaches the world like an out-of-control freight train.
No novel is complete without the ending of the story. No symphony is whole apart from its climatic final notes. We do not end baseball games after the first inning (under normal conditions). And most importantly, this life is just the exceedingly brief beginning of our story that does not reach its climax until the eternal state when we will forever enjoy the beauty and wonders of the New Jerusalem and God’s glorious new creation.
As we plod through the storms, sorrows, and trials of life, we must keep the glorious prize before our eyes. It’s one that begins with Jesus’ imminent appearing to take us home and culminates in the exceedingly glorious eternal state. I need this constant reminder of these things and I suspect that you do as well.
Daily Jot: How the media aids the terrorist strategy – Bill Wilson – www.dailyjot.com
It is amazing the hateful, bigoted comments directed at Jews these days. It seems as though they are coming from the very people who promote slogans like, “Hate doesn’t live here.” The rhetoric has escalated in recent days as Israel has defended itself from terrorist attacks originating in Gaza. These comments reflect the terrorists’ strategy of interweaving their operations among civilian organizations and the news media so that when retaliation for their attacks commences, innocents are harmed or killed. Then, instead of blaming terrorists, there is international outrage about how the poor “Palestinians” are being murdered by evil Israelis. The evil actions of the terrorists are then essentially justified.
The terrorists hit the jackpot of their strategy when Israel flattened the building that housed Associated Press, al Jazeera and other news reporting organizations. On cue, the media is shaping the narrative that the terrible Israelis bombed the building and journalists were running for their lives because of it. Al Jazeera called the action a “war crime” and called on the “international community to condemn such barbaric actions and targeting of journalists” and demanded that Israel be held accountable for deliberately targeting journalists and media institutions. AP’s story claimed total innocence of any knowledge that the building was used as a headquarters for terrorist organizations like Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt said in a statement: “For 15 years, the AP’s top-floor office and roof terrace were a prime location for covering Israel’s conflicts with Gaza’s Hamas rulers, including wars in 2009, 2012 and 2014. The news agency’s camera offered 24-hour live shots as militants’ rockets arched toward Israel and Israeli airstrikes hammered the city and its surrounding area this week. We have had no indication Hamas was in the building or active in the building. This is something we actively check to the best of our ability. We would never knowingly put our journalists at risk.” Pruitt said AP was “shocked and horrified that the Israeli military would target and destroy the building housing AP’s bureau and other news organizations in Gaza.” The stories ignore Israel’s exhaustive efforts warning occupants prior to bombing the building.
AP’s and Al Jazeera’s responses condemning Israel for the bombing rather than Hamas for using media as a shield doesn’t meet the straight face test. Journalists covering these terrorists cannot reasonably claim they didn’t know terrorists were headquartered in the same building. That the media are sharing quarters with Hamas explains the anti-Israel news bias emanating from these news outlets. These terrorists are evil. They use children, women, journalists, whoever, to hide behind while they do their evil deeds. And when someone gets hurt, there is an international outcry while the terrorists get little criticism from the media. Isaiah 5:20 says, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil.” That includes the media.
Daily Devotion: The Big Question - by Greg Laurie – www.harvest.org
But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? —Romans 10:14
https://harvest.org/resources/devotion/the-big-question/ - Listen
My wife, Cathe, tells me that I never properly proposed to her. She says we were sitting in a restaurant one day when I looked at her said, “Well, I guess we’re going to get married, huh?”
I didn’t do a very good job of proposing, but I’ve heard about a lot of imaginative proposals. For instance, a friend of mine went snorkeling with his girlfriend, and while they were in the water, he wrote the words “Will you marry me?” on an underwater tablet.
That was very imaginative.
Some questions are awkward for us to ask, but we do it anyway. One such question is this: Would you like to accept Jesus Christ right now?
Awhile ago I was in a restaurant with some friends. When the waitress walked up to take our order, she said, “You guys are all pastors, aren’t you?”
Then she wanted to know when our church services were. After we gave her the service times, I felt prompted by the Holy Spirit to ask her a question.
I said, “You know, I’m glad you want to know when our church services are, and I’m glad you want to come to our church. But you don’t have to wait until Sunday to get right with God. Would you like to accept Jesus Christ right now?”
She said, “Yes, I would.”
I knew she wouldn’t get in trouble with her boss, because the owner of the restaurant is a Christian who attends our church. So we prayed together right there, and she asked Christ into her life.
You never know when the Lord will prompt you to ask that important question. And if someone says yes, get ready for one of the greatest blessings that you’ve ever experienced in life.
Jesus said there’s joy in Heaven over one sinner that comes to repentance. There’s great joy in sharing your faith.
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"Folks, it's all beginning to unravel. America is in more danger of falling than at any time in its history. But I believe Bible prophecy predicts this very decline. From this point on, we believers have to get serious. We are going to face discouragement, disillusionment and, most certainly, persecution in the time between now and the Rapture. But don't be discouraged or disillusioned. The coming turmoil will provide us unrivaled opportunities to share the good news of the Gospel. So be ready to share your faith and your hope with those who need Christ. We still have time to reap a great harvest of souls for God's kingdom!" - Hal Lindsey
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