IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
Iran’s Fait Accompli - By Matt Ward - https://www.raptureready.com/2021/04/01/irans-fait-accompli-by-matt-ward/
While the world has been distracted by Coronavirus, Iran has been busy making its moves. What a mere twelve months ago would have been big front-page news all across the world now barely even registers in the mainstream news media at all. Yet, despite the lack of coverage, Iran seems to be rapidly approaching the point of acquiring a viable nuclear weapon. Shockingly, nobody in the mainstream media even seems to care.
At this writing, it is widely assumed that Iran is now mere weeks away from nuclear breakout status. If true, this is a crisis that is very soon going to come to a head.
Jake Sullivan, White House national security advisor, referred to Iran’s forthcoming nuclear breakout status as a “critical early priority” for the Biden administration. Sullivan went on to state that this issue could well become an “escalating nuclear crisis as they move closer to having enough fissile material for a nuclear weapon.”
As a show of force and possibly intention, US B-52 nuclear bombers have been flying sorties over the Gulf and right up to the border of the Islamic Republic, clearly signposting Western intent should the revived nuclear deal negotiations fail.
French President Emmanuel Macron has described how the international community has but a “very short time” to prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.
But there is a problem with all this hard talk. Iran, it would seem, is not buying this show of strength, and they are not afraid. The uncomfortable reality is that they simply do not seem to fear President Joe Biden, as they once feared President Donald Trump. The inauguration of a new president, rather than put them on notice and high alert, seems to have emboldened them.
In the face of all the tacit threats from America and Europe, Iran remains belligerent. The Islamic Republic has thus far refused point-blank to come back to the negotiation table for talks, something Joe Biden put so much faith in during Obama’s final term.
Tehran has flatly ruled out any amendments to the nuclear accord, describing the document the Biden administration believes can bring Iran back in line as “non-negotiable.” Before they have even begun, the negotiations are dead in the water.
So entrenched and emboldened is Iran that even before any conversation is had, before they even sit down at the table, Tehran wants the harsh sanctions the United States has imposed on them previously for violating the original terms of the nuclear deal, completely removed.
To do so would essentially reward the Iranians for breaking the terms of the original nuclear accord and is something the West is understandably very reluctant to do. But time is against the West, just as time is against little Israel. On this present course, if nobody does something soon, the issue will become a fait accompli – Iran will have a viable nuclear weapon.
Even the United Nations nuclear watchdog has conceded that the Iranian nuclear weapons program is back in full swing, revealing that a second cascade of advanced IR-2m centrifuges for enriching uranium has once again begun working at Iran’s underground Natanz facility. They also believe there is a third cluster just waiting to go.
The Iranians have openly admitted that they have enriched Uranium to the critical 20% level at their Fordow plant, still a large level below the 90% enrichment required for a nuclear weapon, but a significant step in that direction nonetheless. The reason for this is that the time and processes involved in enriching uranium to 20% are much longer and more difficult than that of taking it from 20% enrichment up to 90%. This can be achieved in a relatively short period of time.
Most surprisingly, Iran has been really quite frank and open about these violations. Perhaps this is because Iran no longer fears the reaction of the United States under its current presidential leadership, as it clearly did under its previous incumbent.
At this point, Israel is grappling with a huge number of uncertainties regarding Iran and its nuclear program and the wider geopolitical environment. It is at best unclear to even the most informed Iran pundit just how advanced Iran’s nuclear program now is, or exactly how close they may be to a feasible weapon. It’s all about best estimates, and all the best estimates seem to conclude that Iran is getting very, very close.
Iran is clearly making rapid progress towards nuclear breakout status. It is also widely agreed that Iran would not go for nuclear breakout status unless they had enough material to produce 3-5 viable weapons. They just won’t take the risk for one weapon, as the US or Israel would simply destroy it, and all their efforts would be in vain.
Israel or the United States would think twice before attacking Iran if they knew there were five weapons, not just one. So, this rush to breakout status is likely not for just one weapon but multiple warheads.
As we speak, the IDF is actively preparing to take on Iran’s nuclear weapons program – even if it has to do it alone. The United States, however, would be mistaken to think that this was an issue critical to Israel only. The world is watching new United States President Joe Biden, and just like Iran has done, rulers like Vladimir Putin of Russia, Xi Jinping of China, and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un are weighing Joe Biden and measuring him.
Whether Biden will be found wanting will be directly determined by the outcome of this issue, not by his response to Coronavirus, and may well determine the Biden administration’s international standing during the rest of his term.
Time is not on Israel’s side. Israeli Defense Force chief of staff Lt. General Aviv Kochavi issued his own blunt assessment of the state of play: “I have instructed the Israeli Defense Forces to prepare a number of operational plans, in addition to those already in place.”
So significant is Lt Gen. Kochavi’s concerns over Iran’s imminent nuclear breakout status that these comments were entirely unsanctioned and from his own initiative, something he himself was sanctioned for.
Israel’s hand is being forced, and it is increasingly likely that if they are forced to act, they will do so alone. Iran knows this. Last week Iranian Defense Minister Amir Hatami issued an ominous threat to raze Tel Aviv and Haifa “to the ground” should Israel launch any pre-emptive action against Iran or its nuclear program.
It seems evident from President Biden’s first few months in power that he would likely not be willing to overtly engage the Iranians in direct military intervention, especially if side by side with Israel. To do so would be to enrage a great portion of his base at home, to whom he is so beholden.
On February 2nd, Senior Israeli Minister Tzachi Hanegdi commented that in his opinion, he cannot see the Americans agreeing to take on such a military initiative, leaving Israel to face this growing threat alone.
Time is clearly running out. Whether Israel’s hand will be forced or not remains to be seen. If Israel and the West are not careful, though, we will all wake up one morning and an Iranian nuclear weapon will have become a fait accompli.
The drumbeats of war are getting louder and louder.
Ukrainian Troops Are Being Fired Upon By Grenade Launchers And Machine Guns As More Russian Forces Race Toward The Border - by Michael Snyder - http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/ukrainian-troops-are-being-fired-upon-by-grenade-launchers-and-machine-guns-as-more-russian-forces-race-toward-the-border/
Could this be the spark that causes World War 3 to erupt? At this hour, Russian and Ukrainian military forces continue to rush toward the conflict zone, and to say that things are “tense” in the region would be a tremendous understatement. As I discussed yesterday, when Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky signed Decree No. 117/2021 on March 24th, it was essentially a declaration of war against Russia. Since that time, Russian forces have been massing along the borders in numbers that we have never seen before. Video after video of Russian tanks, military vehicles and troops being moved toward the conflict zone have been posted on social media, and the Ukrainians have responded by making similar moves. But if the Russians launch a full-blown invasion, the Ukrainians will be totally outmatched, and they will ask the United States and NATO to intervene.
Since March 24th, there have been hundreds of ceasefire violations, but the ceasefire cannot be violated any longer because it officially expired on April 1st.
On Thursday, there were multiple reports of Ukrainian forces taking direct fire. This was not reported by anyone in the corporate media in the United States, and so I had to go to a Ukrainian source to find out exactly what is going on. The following is an English translation of a report that was posted on the official website of the Ukrainian military…
In the area of responsibility of the operational and tactical group “East”, near the settlements of SAND and WATER, in the Azov Sea, the occupiers opened fire with grenade launchers of various systems, large-caliber machine guns and small arms.
In the area of responsibility of the operational and tactical group “North”, near the settlements of SVITLODARSKE, LUHANSKE and ZOLOTE-4, the invaders fired at our positions with automatic machine-gun and hand-held anti-tank grenade launchers, large-caliber machine guns and machine guns.
From this point forward, there will probably be regular reports of both sides firing on one another.
But will the conflict soon become much larger than that?
I think that it is a really bad sign that the separatists in eastern Ukraine just announced that those born from 1994 to 2003 will start to be conscripted for military service.
In addition, the EU is accusing Russia of initiating “a conscription campaign in the Crimea peninsula”…
The European Union said Russia had launched a conscription campaign in the Crimea peninsula in a move that broke international law.
The EU said in a statement: “Today, the Russian Federation has launched yet another conscription campaign in the illegally-annexed Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol to draft residents of the peninsula in the Russian Federation Armed Forces.”
These are very alarming developments, because they indicate that the Russians and the separatists in eastern Ukraine believe that an extended military conflict is approaching.
Of course the Russians wouldn’t actually need any new conscripts in order to defeat Ukraine. The Russian military is vastly superior to the Ukrainian military, and Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief Ruslan Khomchak believes that there are more than 32,000 Russian troops currently in Crimea in addition to the 28,000 separatist troops in eastern Ukraine…
Khomchak had also said that Russia has around 32,700 military personnel in Crimea, at present. Since annexing the territory in 2014, the Kremlin has significantly expanded its military presence there to include air, naval, and ground-based assets, including anti-ship cruise missile and surface-to-air missile batteries.
Russia also oversees some 28,000 personnel in “separatist” units in areas of eastern Ukraine known collectively as the Donbass who have been fighting the government in Kyiv since 2015. Though the Kremlin denies it, the evidence is clear that a substantial portion of these forces is simply regular Russian military units deployed on Ukrainian soil. There are also strong links between Russia’s intelligence services and ostensibly “local” forces.
When asked why so many troops are being moved toward Ukraine, a Kremlin spokesman said that this “should not bother anyone”…
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov offered a trio of seemingly contradictory dismissals regarding the sudden movement of Russian forces and equipment along its border with Ukraine and in Crimea, as well as a mortar attack last week by Russian-backed troops that killed four Ukrainian soldiers for which Kiev blames Russia.
“The Russian Federation moves its armed forces within its territory at its own discretion. This should not bother anyone, it poses no threat to anyone,” Peskov told reporters on Thursday morning, according to a translation of his remarks. He also said that Russia feels threatened by what it considers “increased activity of the armed forces of NATO countries” and others that “obliges us to be on the alert.”
Ultimately, these troop movements almost certainly never would have happened if Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had not signed Decree No. 117/2021.
And of course Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky never would have signed Decree No. 117/2021 if he had not been given the green light to do so by the White House.
In the end, this is a game of chess between the Biden administration and the Kremlin, and one false move could plunge us into World War 3.
Unfortunately, the rhetoric on both sides just continues to escalate. On Thursday, the U.S. State Department once again accused the Russians of being “aggressive”…
Following Lavrov and Peskov’s statements, U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price warned Moscow against “intimidating” Ukraine.
“We’re absolutely concerned by recent escalations of Russian aggressive and provocative actions in eastern Ukraine,” Ned Price told reporters.
“What we would object to are aggressive actions that have an intent of intimidating, of threatening, our partner Ukraine.”
And new Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is the latest official to publicly pledge U.S. support for Ukraine…
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin spoke to Ukraine’s minister of defense on the phone Thursday to express “unwavering U.S. support for Ukraine’s sovereignty” and to condemn Russian aggression in the country.
But if the Russians actually launched a full scale ground invasion of Ukraine, there would be nothing the U.S. could do to stop it.
Of course the U.S. could decide to strike back militarily in other ways, and that could set off a chain reaction which could result in global war.
The corporate media in the United States loved to bash the Trump administration, but while Trump was in the White House there was never a threat that World War 3 was about to start.
Unfortunately, the warmongers in the Biden administration are now running the show. They seem to think that they can push the Russians around, but if they miscalculate even just a little bit it could have disastrous consequences for all of us.
Solving the Three Day Three Night Mystery – Jack Kelley - https://gracethrufaith.com/topical-studies/holidays-and-holy-days/solving-the-three-day-three-night-mystery/
Note: Jack originally published this article in 2003. It remains one of the most popular on this site, and for good reason. It’s a great example of what we love about his studies: taking God at His Word and not relying on human logic or tradition. This study has been an eye opener for so many, but some have had a hard time reconciling the differences between the Jewish calendar and their own, in particular, that the Jewish day begins at sundown. I created the new image you’ll find at the bottom of the article, hoping that a visual representation would make this all a bit clearer. I hope this helps! -Samantha
In Matthew 12:38 Jesus was asked for a sign to show that He was the promised Messiah. The religious officials had just accused Him of using the power of Satan to perform His miracles, and so He described the only sign they would see. “Just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish,” He said, “So will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth (Matt. 12:40).” By this He meant that because of their hardened hearts they would only know for sure that He was their Messiah after He rose from the dead, an unmistakably miraculous sign. History shows they didn’t accept even as incredible a sign as this, but His response has resulted in a 2,000 year controversy surrounding the time of His death.
What’s A Sabbath?
People who were unfamiliar with the sequence of the spring Feasts of Israel determined that the phrase in John 19:31 identifying the day after the crucifixion as a special Sabbath meant that Jesus was crucified on a Friday, because everyone knows that the Jewish Sabbath is Saturday. And almost everyone agrees that He rose again on Sunday. But there isn’t any way you can put three days and three nights between Friday afternoon and Sunday morning. Hence the controversy.
So let’s set the record straight. Sabbath is a Hebrew word that means means “rest” and refers to holy days when no work is allowed. There is one every Saturday in Israel, but there are also several during the year that are date specific. That means they are always observed on a specific calendar date, regardless of the day. They’re like our Christmas. Every year it comes on the 25th of December no matter what day of the week that happens to be.
The special Sabbath John referred to is the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and it’s a date specific holy day; always observed on the 15th of the month they call Nisan, which corresponds to March/April on our calendar. So the first thing we learn is that the special Sabbath mentioned in John 19:31 didn’t have to be a Saturday.
Originally there were four special days in the month of Nisan. The first was Passover on the 14th. Then the Feast of Unleavened Bread which began on the 15th and ended on the 22nd, both of which were special Sabbaths. And finally, there was the Feast of First Fruits which fell on the Sunday morning following Passover (Leviticus 23:4-14).
Of the four, only the two that opened and closed the Feast of Unleavened Bread prohibited work like the weekly Sabbath, but all have both a historical and prophetic purpose and like all days in the Jewish calendar they begin at sundown, following the pattern of Genesis 1 where God repeated the phrase, “and there was evening and there was morning” six times, once for each day of creation.
The Passover Lamb
The next issue we have to consider is the sequence of events in the week we call Holy Week. In Exodus 12:1-13, where the Passover was ordained, we learn what that sequence was. God told the Israelites to select a lamb on the 10th day of the month and inspect it for defects until the 14th. This means through the end of the 13th. Then at twilight they were to slaughter and roast it, eating it that same evening, as the 14th was beginning. Using some of its blood they were to paint their door posts red to protect them from the plague coming upon Egypt at midnight.
Jesus came to fulfill the prophecy of the Passover Lamb, to save from death everyone who spiritually applies His shed blood to their lives. The only day He ever allowed the people to hail Him as King was on the day we call Palm Sunday, and as we’ll see it was the 10th day of the month. He did this to fulfill the selection process for the Passover Lamb. When the officials told Him to rebuke His disciples, He said that if they became quiet, the very stones would cry out (Luke 19:40). For this was a day ordained in history. It was the day He officially presented Himself as Israel’s Messiah, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (John 1:29). It was 483 years to the day from the issuing of the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem, spoken of by Daniel the Prophet (Daniel 9:25). A little while after the officials cautioned Him, He condemned Jerusalem to utter destruction because they did not recognize the day of His visitation (Luke 19:41-44).
The next three days were filled with the most aggressive debate and confrontation with the officials in His entire ministry. He was being inspected for any doctrinal spot or blemish that would disqualify Him as the Lamb of God. They found none, and finally no one dared ask Him any more questions. (Matt. 22:46)
Some years before the birth of Jesus, the Passover celebration had been changed and in the Lord’s time called for a brief ritual meal of lamb, unleavened bread, and bitter herbs (horseradish) to begin the 14th followed by a great and leisurely festival meal on the 15th, when the Feast of Unleavened Bread begins. This meal is called the Passover Seder.
The 14th became known among the people as Preparation Day , because during the day they made ready for the great feast day beginning at sundown, after which no work was permitted. Mark 15:42, Luke 23:54, John 19:31 all identify Preparation Day as the day of the Lord’ s death, while Matt. 27:62 says the day after the crucifixion was the day after Preparation Day. So all four Gospels agree; Jesus died on Preparation day, the 14th of their month Nisan, which is Passover. As evening began the day, He ate the ritual meal with His disciples in the Upper Room, and then was arrested, tried, convicted, and put to death; all on Passover. So just like the Lord had commanded in Exodus 12, our Passover Lamb was selected on the 10th, inspected on the 11th, 12th, and 13th, and executed on the 14th of Nisan.
How Do We Know This?
A little over 100 years ago a believer named Robert Anderson was head of Scotland Yard’s investigative division. He became intrigued by the three days and three nights issue and enlisted the help of the London Royal Observatory to investigate the problem since astronomers can locate the exact position of the planets and stars on any date in history. Since Passover always falls on the 14th, and since the Jewish calendar is lunar (moon) rather than solar (sun) oriented, there is always a full moon on Passover. This fulfills Genesis 1:14.
Plotting the course of the Sun and Moon they documented the day and date of every full moon. The Royal Observatory discovered that the first Palm Sunday was the 10th of Nisan, the day when Exodus 12 says to select the lamb. Therefore Passover, the 14th, was a Thursday. The Feast of Unleavened bread began on Friday the 15th, Saturday the 16th was the weekly Sabbath, and Resurrection Morning was also a Sunday, the 17th, when the Feast of First Fruits was celebrated. From Thursday to Sunday there are three days and three nights. It’s a little confusing to our way of thinking because the Hebrew day changes at sunset, which means that night precedes day. But read carefully and you’ll see that it makes sense.
As I’ve said, Jesus had to die on Passover to fulfill the prophecy. Early that Thursday morning the Jewish leadership had gotten permission to crucify Him. (Matt. 27:1-26) His fate was sealed and He was hanging on the cross by 9 AM, as good as dead. His actual time of death was about 3 PM and His body was laid in the tomb sometime later, since the officials wanted it off the cross before sundown brought the Feast of Unleavened Bread, after which no work was permitted. By then Jesus had been in Sheol for several hours. Thursday was day one.
Because in Jewish reckoning the night precedes the day, at sundown it became Friday the 15th, night one, and the special Sabbath John mentioned began (John 19:31). At sunrise it was Friday morning, and day two began. The next sundown brought Saturday night the 16th, night two, and the regular Sabbath began. As of sunrise it was Saturday day, the beginning of day three. At sundown on Saturday it became Sunday night the 17th, night three, and sometime before sunrise Jesus rose from the tomb. Three days and three nights. When the women arrived at sunrise to anoint His body early in the morning, He was already gone.
So in the week Jesus died two Sabbaths that permitted no work were observed back to back: The Feast of Unleavened Bread on Friday the 15th, and the regular weekly Sabbath on Saturday the 16th. In Matthew 28:1 we read that at dawn on the first day of the week (Sunday the 17th) the women who were close to Jesus went to the tomb. Luke 24:1 tells us they were going to anoint His body for burial. The two consecutive Sabbaths had prevented them from doing so earlier (Luke 23:55-56). But He wasn’t there. He had risen. Being the Sunday after Passover, at the Jewish Temple it was Feast of First Fruits. At the Empty Tomb it was Resurrection Morning.
How Can We Confirm This?
Some people try to equate his time of death with the burial of His body and say you can’t count Thursday as day one, because His body wasn’t laid in the tomb until sunset was upon them. But that doesn’t make sense. A person’s death always precedes his or her burial, sometimes by several days. In the Lord’s case it was several hours between the time He died and the time His body was laid in the tomb.
The two disciples who met the Lord on the road to Emmaus that Sunday (the day the Lord’s resurrection was discovered) help us to confirm this (Luke 24:13-35). At first they thought the Lord must have been a very recent visitor to the area when He asked them to explain why they were so sad. In the course of the discussion they indicated it was the third day since the crucifixion. “Since” is roughly equivalent to “after”. It being a Sunday, the previous day (Saturday) would have been the 2nd day since it happened , and Friday would have been the first day since it happened, making Thursday the day it happened.
Others argue that this view doesn’t permit three full days and three full nights in the tomb but that’s not what the Scripture says. It simply says three days and three nights. If you move his death up to Wednesday to get three full days you violate the Passover Lamb prophecies, the women wouldn’t have waited until Sunday morning to prepare the Lord’s body because they could have done it on Friday, and the disciples on the Emmaus road would have said Sunday was the fourth day since the crucifixion. So the Thursday date is the only one that will accommodate both the Passover Lamb and the three day three night prophecies. Mystery solved.
Jewish Month of Nisan
Most of us see our “day” beginning when we get out out of bed in the morning, but the reality is that it began hours before, at midnight. If you keep that subtle difference in mind, it shouldn’t be too difficult to back up a few more hours to sundown of the previous day. That’s when the Jewish calendar day began. In this calendar, each column represents one day of the week, just like your daily calendar. The top row represents the daytime hours while the bottom row represents the nighttime hours, just as you’re used to. The difference in this calendar is in the dating. Since the Jewish day begins at sundown, the first half of each day is shown on the bottom half of the calendar. To follow that day to it’s completion, you jump to the top of the next column to the right.
Hallelujah! What A Savior! - By Dennis Huebshman - https://www.raptureready.com/2021/04/01/hallelujah-what-a-savior-by-dennis-huebshman/
Isaiah 53:2-12 puts the reason for our Savior’s coming to this earth in perspective. Normally, you would think a Lord of Lords and King of Kings would arrive with all pomp and circumstance that would be fit for such a title. (any emphasis mine)
(Verses ESV) (2) “For He grew up before Him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; He had no form or majesty that we should look at Him, and no beauty that we should desire Him. (3) He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces. He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.”
Would you not agree that so far, this isn’t what we would expect of the Savior of the World? It gets worse as the verses continue. Also, this was written between 600 – 700 years before Jesus arrived here.
(4) “Surely, He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken; smitten by God, and afflicted.”
His own Father allowed wrath to be placed on His Son because of all of our sins. Think this thought with me – “Because of My Sins!”
(5) “But He was pierced for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with His wounds we are healed. (6) All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, everyone, to his own way, and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”
Can you see now the relevance and significance of Romans 3:23 and Romans 6:23? Every last one of us has sinned, and without the sacrifice Jesus gave willingly for us (John 10:18), we would be hopelessly lost.
(7) “He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; like a lamb that is led to slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so He opened not His mouth [Luke 23:9]. (8) By oppression and judgment, He was taken away; and as for His generation, who considered that He was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgressions of My People?”
The religious leaders of His day did not accept Him as Messiah, even though He was the only person ever to fulfill all the prophecies written about Him. They expected that the arrival of the Christ would happen with all splendor and glory, and they would be “rewarded” for their so-called “faithful service.” Instead, this Man continuously accused and berated them for all the wrong they were doing.
(9) “And they made His grave with the wicked, and with a rich man in His death; although He had done no violence, and there was no deceit in His mouth.”
In spite of their efforts, Jesus loved them all for their eternal souls, even though He didn’t “like” them for all the wrong they were doing. As for Joseph of Arimathea’s tomb, He only needed it for a weekend.
(10) “Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush Him; He has put Him to grief; when His soul makes an offering for guilt, He shall see His offspring; He shall prolong His days; the will of the Lord shall prosper in His hand. (11) Out of the anguish of His soul, He shall see and be satisfied; by His knowledge shall the Righteous One, My servant, make many to be accounted righteous, and He shall bear their iniquities.”
Psalm 22:1 and Matthew 27:46; “My God! My God! Why have You forsaken Me?” It is believed that at this point, every sin of this world, past, present and future, was laid on Jesus. At that instant, the Father would have had to look away briefly and be separated from His Son for the first time ever. After this, our Savior said, “It Is Finished,” which signified He had completed, in full, the task of being the perfect sacrifice for us all. His death reached back to the righteous from the creation to the Cross, and from the Cross forward to the end of His Millennial Reign (John 19:30).
(12) “Therefore, I will divide Him a portion with the many, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong; because He poured out His soul to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet, He bore the sin of many, and makes intercession for the transgressors.”
Phillip P. Bliss wrote a song that was released around 1895 called “Hallelujah! What A Savior!”
(1) “Man of Sorrows!” what a name, for the Son of God who came; ruined sinners to reclaim. Hallelujah! What a Savior!
(2) Bearing shame and scoffing rude; in my place condemned He stood; sealed my pardon with His blood; Hallelujah! What a Savior!
(3) Guilty, vile and helpless we; spotless Lamb of God was He; “Full Atonement,” can it be? Hallelujah! What a Savior!
(4) Lifted up was He to die; “It Is Finished” was His cry; now in Heaven exalted high. Hallelujah! What a Savior!
(5) When He comes, our Glorious King; all His ransomed, Home to bring; then anew His song we’ll sing! Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Jesus’ blood was shed by the only “human” that lived a sinless life. Yet, for a moment, He bore all the sins of this world. Can you possibly imagine having every evil deed of this world go through your mind in full detail all at once? You may say that is impossible, but remember He is God, and His abilities are far superior to any human that ever lived. That would have to be the part that Jesus dreaded the most, not the crucifixion itself. Once completed, His human side died, and His God side again took full control.
Imagine the cheering from all the Heavenly Host when the Father raised His Son from a mortal’s grave to take His rightful place on His throne at the Right Hand of God. This was the absolute proof that sin and death had been conquered once and for all. John 14:6 became a solid covenant; “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father except through Me.”
No other sacrifice could ever do. All has been done by Jesus, and to even think we could do something to earn or buy our Salvation insults the whole Trinity.
God will accept all who will receive and accept His Son. After what Jesus had to endure, God really has no other righteous choice. At the same time, is it any wonder that anyone who does not receive Jesus before they die will have committed an unforgivable sin?
After the antichrist, false prophet and Satan receive their sentences in hell, all the “unforgiven” of all ages will go through the Great White Throne Judgment of Revelation 20:11-15. There will be no forgiveness there; no pardons; and grace and mercy will be absent.
For all who have not received and accepted Jesus as their Savior yet, this does not have to be your fate. Today, right now, before it’s too late, call on Jesus to forgive your sins and to come into your heart and be your Savior forever. He will send the Holy Spirit to dwell in you until you are removed from earth, either by death or by the Rapture. Just have faith and believe His death was for your sins, and there is no other way you can be saved.
It’s totally your choice as God will force no one, and no one can make it for you. It will be the most important decision you will ever make in your lifetime.
Come, Lord Jesus!
Daily Jot: The Farm Chronicles: Easter on the farm – Bill Wilson – www.dailyjot.com
My room at the farm was on the East side of the house. It overlooked the horse corral, the old maple tree by the well, and our large field that was used to grow corn, wheat or for cattle and horse grazing, depending on the year. Some of my fondest memories were waking up to the sunrays popping through the window by my bed. The seal of the state of Ohio depicts the sun rising over a harvested wheat field. I got to see that in the mornings. It was a joyous occasion because where we lived there was 90% cloud cover 90% of the time—not kidding. It’s why they built one of only 23 Army ammunition plants there during World War II. So when the morning sunshine was seen, it was a glorious day.
This particular morning, the sun was shining through my window. Dad had not yet woken me to help with the morning chores. I laid there awake in my bed thinking about –what I knew then of—the first Easter. On the third day, the sun shining bright as Christ arose from the grave, and how his followers were so shocked that he was not in his grave. I was always amused by how they knew what Christ said was going to happen, but they really had to suspend their disbelief when it did happen. Nonetheless, even at a very young age, I loved Jesus. John 3:16. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” I didn’t learn it from reading the signs in endzones of football games on TV, I learned it in Sunday School. This was a special day.
Almost lost in my thoughts on what it must have been like that first Easter, I snapped out of my daydream and remembered what was most likely awaiting my attention downstairs. I hopped out of my warm bed and winced as my feet hit the linoleum floor—we had only one heating register upstairs far down the hall, and in early April the Ohio weather was still pretty nippy. So as to not wake anyone, and to keep my feet from freezing, I tip-toed through the hallway and down the then-120-year-old steps. With my head peeking below the living room ceiling, I saw it—one of the largest Easter baskets ever! The Easter Bunny was good to me this year. Wrapped in green-tinted cellophane, the fake purple grass, a big chocolate bunny, lots of jelly beans, yellow and pink marshmallow chicks, so much!
Soon, Mom would make breakfast and Dad and I would brave the still-cold spring morning to feed the horses and cattle. I liked popping the ice-covered mud puddles in my barn boots on the way to the old barn. After breakfast, we got dressed in our finest clothes for Easter service at Wayland Community Church. Earnie Rose would be ringing the church bell before he settled in to snore through the service. The rest of us would hear the resurrection story once again. Afterwards, it was lunch at my Aunt Dory and Uncle Bob’s, where the entire family would gather. My cousin Steve and I would listen to Uncle Bob tell war stories, and Dad and Grandpa, having heard them all before, would fall asleep in a food coma. Easter on the farm. Where memories of a simpler time linger a lifetime. Where the promise of life everlasting was etched in our hearts.
Daily Devotion: The Blackest, Darkest Friday of All - by Greg Laurie – www.harvest.org
But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. —Isaiah 53:5
The term Black Friday originated in the financial markets of the United States when two speculators were trying to manipulate the market for their own benefit. It worked. They were artificially inflating the price of a respected commodity until the government came in and stabilized the situation.
That started a tumble that took no prisoners, and people lost millions of dollars. The date was September 24, 1869, and the commodity was gold. History remembers that day of infamy as Black Friday.
But the blackest Friday wasn’t September 24, 1869. The blackest, darkest Friday of all took place in the first century. It was the day that Jesus Christ died on the cross for the sins of all humanity.
We call this day Good Friday, and it is good because of the potential changes that can come as a result of it—if we put our faith in the One who died there for us.
The Bible tells us, “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5 NKJV).
All of our sins were transferred to Jesus, so we wouldn’t have to bear them. And why did He do that? Because He loves us.
Hebrews 12 gives us insight into what kept Jesus going as He faced the horrors of the cross: “Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne” (verse 2 NLT).
What was the joy awaiting him? You were that joy. I was that joy. We were the reason that He went to the cross of Calvary. Jesus paid a debt He did not owe because we owed a debt we could not pay.
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