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The Parable of the Fig Tree - By Mark A. Becker - https://www.raptureready.com/2021/10/01/the-parable-of-the-fig-tree-by-mark-a-becker/
I’ve been receiving emails from concerned brothers and sisters in Christ who are trending towards anxiousness regarding Christ’s Parable of the Fig Tree. The reason for this apprehension is because the most prevalent and popular interpretation is that the Fig Tree represents Israel’s rebirth as a nation and that that generation is not to pass away until all be fulfilled. This uneasiness is because Israel was founded on May 14, 1948, and that a generation, according to Psalm 90:10, is 70 to 80 years. Being as the Tribulation is seven years in duration, it would appear that we are running out of time.
In other words, 80 years from 1948 is 2028, minus the seven-year Tribulation, gives us 2021 (or early 2022) as the latest possible year for the rapture of the church. This time frame is obviously quickly fading away and would give us essentially zero time for any gap that many believe should take place between the rapture and the beginning of the Tribulation, which commences with the signing of the covenant between Antichrist, Israel, and the many (Daniel 9:27).
Since some of my beloved brothers and sisters in Christ are beginning to become distressed over this issue, I thought it an appropriate time to offer an alternative interpretation that I hold to, in an effort to help still their hearts and quell any spiritual angst concerning this issue.
Let’s first take a look at the passage in its entirety.
“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). (The Parable of the Fig Tree is also found in Mark 13:28-30 & Luke 21:29-31.)
It is The Parable of The Fig Tree that uniformly wraps up Christ’s exposé on the last days – that led up to His Second Coming in the previous verses – with His emphasis on the nation and people of Israel. Many of the earliest verses in the Olivet Discourse preceding this passage are beneficial to the church as well, as she will be living side by side with the nation of Israel until the rapture of the church. Yet Christ’s monologue, up until the rapture passages at the conclusion of the Olivet Discourse, is explicitly answering the disciple’s questions concerning Israel, His Second Coming, and the end, “… when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” (Matthew 24:3).
It isn’t until Christ wraps up answering their explicit questions that He reveals to them the mystery of the rapture. (Please see Jesus Was the First to Teach the Rapture! for more on this subject.)
Israel is the Fig Tree
“Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh” (Matthew 24:32). (emphasis mine)
The obvious point that we initially need to make in this study is that the Fig Tree is a metaphor for Israel. We see this in Christ’s cursing of the fig tree in Mark 11:12-14, 20-21. There is a symbolic association with the cursed fig tree with that of Israel’s rejection of their Messiah, and that they, as a people and a nation, would be cursed – but not forever. They would be dispersed from their land – but not forgotten. Finally, they would be regathered as a reborn nation in the last days until the Abomination of Desolation will disburse them one last time during the middle of the Tribulation. Therefore, the message of the Lord in The Parable of the Fig Tree seems to be alluding to Israel’s future in the end times. The question is: “Exactly when in the end times?”
Most commentators would say that this verse is speaking of Israel’s rebirth as a nation, and this where I believe we tend to get tripped up. Allow me to explain.
If the passage was saying something to the effect of “… when his branch sprouts forth,” then we could definitely see an allusion to the rebirth of the nation. But note that the Fig Tree’s branch is “yet tender, and putteth forth leaves.” What does Christ mean by “tender, and putteth forth leaves”? I propose that it’s not Israel’s rebirth in 1948, but Israel’s youth as a sovereign nation that Christ is referring to. I believe He is indicating that Israel is to be “young” in His parable, and this, I surmise, can mean any time after the rebirth of Israel as a nation until she retook Jerusalem on June 7, 1967.
In the Lucian account, we see an interesting addition:
“And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand” (Luke 21:29-30). (emphasis mine)
Note that there are other trees, or other nations, in Luke’s gospel. These would be Israel’s neighboring countries, virtually all of whom are enemies of the people of God.
What’s so interesting about Luke’s account, in relation to Israel’s youth, is that these other nations (trees) also “shoot forth,” denoting their youth as well. We see this truth in history when European empires began withdrawing from the Middle East after World War II, giving countries such as Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, and Iraq their own autonomy. At the same time, of course, Israel became a nation again! This seems to have been what Christ had in mind when considering a young “Fig Tree” (Israel) and “all the trees” (Israel’s newly autonomous, surrounding enemy nations).
So, in relation to time, we may have a little more of it than most people think when considering the popular interpretation of this parable. But, for me personally, I don’t think we have much time left – especially when one considers current events, national alliances foreseen by the prophets, and unmistakable signs of the impending Tribulation we see on the horizon.
I reason that the Lord’s statement – concerning Israel’s youth in this parable – as being rather vague is because He doesn’t want the church to be in the business of setting dates that are strictly in the hands of the Father (Mark 13:32). There are no admonitions in Scripture from either Christ or His apostles that the church is to try and guess the timing of the rapture; only that we are to be aware of when the season approaches, and that that day should not overtake us as a thief (1 Thessalonians 5:4).
Because the Fig Tree is Israel, we should expect the rest of the parable to be exclusively for God’s chosen people and their nation concerning the last days. And this is exactly what I believe we are looking at as we move along.
A Very Interesting Statement!
“So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors“ (Matthew 24:33). (emphasis mine)
The preceding three verses before The Parable of the Fig Tree are what Christ most assuredly had in mind when He says, “… when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.”
“Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (Matthew 24:29-31).
When the Tribulation saints – Jew and Gentile believers in Christ – “see all these things” mentioned by Christ up to this point in the Olivet Discourse, then they should “know that it is near, even at the doors.”
Christ, here, uses similar language that He does for the rapture, yet very different because of the qualifier, “when ye shall see all these things,” which the Lord never says to His church. Why?
Obviously, when the Jews – and the whole world – see Christ coming back to earth, they will know that all is fulfilled and the Millennial Kingdom is at hand. So, what exactly is Christ referring to when He says, “when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors”? It has to be to His Second Coming. But if they know when He will come back – by counting down seven years from the signing of the covenant between Antichrist, Israel, and the many (Daniel 9:27), or three and one-half years from the time of the Abomination of Desolation – why is He implying that they won’t know exactly when He is near until they see all these things mentioned right up until His Second Coming?
We see this same idea in the preceding verse of The Parable of Fig Tree in Luke’s account. The verse that I’m going to focus the reader on is often taught as being a command to the church, but the context favors the target audience of the Jews and Tribulation saints just before the Second Coming of Christ. (I do think that it is fine for the church to use this popular colloquial that we’ll be looking at below, even though it was meant for the Jews; after all, the church uses countless Old Testament passages for her comfort, edification, and encouragement that were originally written by, and for, the people of Israel).
Let’s look at this passage in its entirety. Remember, this passage comes just prior to The Parable of the Fig Tree.
“And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21:25-28). (emphasis mine)
[Note: We shouldn’t get caught up in the “when you see these things begin” versus “when you shall see all these things” because they are essentially synonymous. The last seven vial judgments that come upon the earth at the end of the Tribulation are going to be in rapid succession, and the destructive power of each judgment will be over just as soon as they begin.]
Just as in the Matthew account, Luke 21:25-27 is speaking exclusively to the conditions of the world just as Christ is preparing to come back at His Second Coming. The last thing He says is, “And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory,” signifying His Second Coming.
In the very next verse (Luke 21:28) – a verse commonly employed by those in the church – Christ says, “And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” What things? The condition of the world, just mentioned in Luke 21:25-27, when Christ comes back to earth at His Second Coming: “And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.”
This is very complimentary to Matthew 24:29-31 and Mark 13:24-26, both of which come immediately before The Parable of the Fig Tree.
[Note: Interestingly, in all three accounts of the Olivet Discourse recorded in the synoptic gospels, the cut-off verse between the teaching of Jesus on the disciples’ questions – concluding with the Second Coming – and leading into Christ’s teaching on the rapture is: “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my Words will not pass away” (Matthew 24:35, Mark 13:31, and Luke 21:33). And, in all three cases, it is The Parable of the Fig Tree that leads into this concluding statement of our Savior as He introduces the doctrine of the rapture.]
What’s going on here? We know that Christ’s enemies will be waiting for Him at His Second Coming in the Valley of Jehoshaphat and surrounding areas – as they know He is arriving soon because they have been called together by the frog-like spirits that come from out of the mouths of Satan, the Antichrist, and the False Prophet (Revelation 16:13-14, 16) – but it seems they don’t know the exact timing for His return. And when you hear these words from our Lord, it appears the Jews won’t know exactly when He’ll arrive either. Why does it seem that the world won’t know exactly when Christ is coming back at His Second Coming, even though they ostensibly should know? Answer: There seems to be a loss of time at the end of the Tribulation!
Time Stands Still and Lost in Time?
With all of the destruction of the Tribulation period, shouldn’t we expect at least some phenomena that the world has never experienced before at the end of the Tribulation? I believe we should, and it has to do with time.
Let’s begin by looking at the universal conditions in the heavens just before Christ comes back to earth.
“Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner” (Isaiah 51:6a).
“And all the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens shall be rolled together as a scroll: and all their host shall fall down, as the leaf falleth off from the vine, and as a falling fig from the fig tree” (Isaiah 34:4).
“The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining” (Joel 2:10).
“The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining” (Joel 3:15).
“But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, And the stars of heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory” (Mark 13:24-26).
These will be the heavenly conditions that Christ said will be “after that tribulation,” but there had to be some specific events that got them to that place to begin with! And, here, I believe, is our first hint to the issue of time.
Notice that “the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars of heaven shall fall…” The sun, moon, and stars are a major means in how we calculate the passing of time on earth. If the sun is dark, the moon doesn’t give her light, and the stars “shall fall,” then how are the inhabitants of the earth to calculate the passage of time? One may suggest by the rotation of the earth – which they would be correct in that assertion. But without the light of the sun, how do they know that the earth is even rotating on its axis?
Which leads us to a few other interesting facts about the end of the Tribulation, beginning with three of the last four vials judgments in Revelation.
The Fourth Vial: Electronic & Technological Destruction
From my article The Mark of the Beasts I discuss the fourth vial in Revelation:
“And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire. And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory” (Revelation 16:8-9).
The fourth vial will be the most destructive EMP attack the earth will have ever experienced and is carried out by the wrath of God on a Christ-rejecting world.
“Power was given unto him [the angel when he poured his vial upon the sun] to scorch men with fire.” We can be sure that this fire and subsequent heat will fry the satellites in the earth’s orbit – as well as every electrical circuit on earth… The world’s electrical grid – whatever will be left after seven-plus years of devastation and destruction – will be no more.
We see this solar EMP event in Isaiah:
“Moreover the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold, as the light of seven days, in the day that the Lord bindeth up the breach of his people, and healeth the stroke of their wound” (Isaiah 30:26).
Not only will all electrical circuitry on earth be destroyed, but within this particular judgment of a massive electromagnetic pulse, batteries of every kind will be disabled as well. I think we can confidently say that there won’t be a working clock left on earth!
The Fifth Vial: Antichrist’s Kingdom Goes Dark
Also from The Mark of the Beasts concerning the fifth vial of Revelation:
“And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain, And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds” (Revelation 16:10-11).
This darkness will no doubt have supernatural characteristics, but one can’t help in wondering if the earth will have stopped its rotation… thus reminding us of Christ’s visually charged statement:
“For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Matthew 24:27).
It’s at this point that I can almost hear the Lord Jesus Christ’s prophecy that “… except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened” (Matthew 24:22).
With the blast of the sun in the fourth vial judgment, and the darkness that follows in the fifth, I believe we can safely deduce that the sun thereafter will be rendered lifeless and dark. We just saw this prevalent theme of darkness pervading the heavens at the end of the Tribulation throughout the Tanakh (Old Testament) and the Words of Jesus Himself. Here are a couple more.
“The great day of the Lord is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the Lord: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness” (Zephaniah 1:14-15).
“Shall not the day of the Lord be darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?” (Amos 5:20).
In addition to the utter darkness prevailing at the end of the Tribulation, it seems the earth may have lost the ability to rotate on its axis. Do we see this possibility in any other passages of Scripture?
More Scripture Confirming Earth Rotational Problems
The seventh vial of Revelation:
“And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done. And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great… And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great” (Revelation 16:17-18, 20-21).
The combinations of the fourth, fifth, and seventh vials have resulted in absolute devastation for the earth, leaving her essentially dead. This seems to be exactly what Isaiah saw when he wrote:
“Behold, the Lord maketh the earth empty, and maketh it waste, and turneth it upside down, and scattereth abroad the inhabitants thereof… The land shall be utterly emptied, and utterly spoiled: for the Lord hath spoken this word. The earth mourneth and fadeth away, the world languisheth and fadeth away, the haughty people of the earth do languish. The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left” (Isaiah 24:1, 3-6).
“… for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth do shake. The earth is utterly broken down, the earth is clean dissolved, the earth is moved exceedingly. The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage” (Isaiah 24:18b-20a).
When taken all together – electrical circuitry and batteries utterly destroyed with no working clocks to measure the passage of time; the sun darkened; no light from the moon; and stars falling from the sky, rendering men unable to tell the passage of days, weeks, months, or seasons; the earth turned upside-down, shaking, swaying, and reeling to and fro (and possibly even coming to a complete halt), with the inhabitants of the earth unable to calculate a 24-hour day – it seems that what we have here is a terminating of the ability to accurately observe the passing of time! No wonder the Lord said:
“So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors“ (Matthew 24:33). (emphasis mine)
The only unanswered question in all of this is, “How long will this last? How long will the inhabitants of the earth be unable to accurately tell the passing of time?” The answer can’t be told because we just don’t know. The world will know that the time of Christ’s coming is near but won’t know when the exact time will be. But God, who created time, will know exactly when the last day of Daniel’s 70th 7 (or 70th week) will end, and then the King of kings and Lord of lords will come back at that very moment to destroy His awaiting enemies and set up His glorious Millennial Kingdom.
The Generation That Sees a Young Israel Will Not Pass Away
Let’s bring to mind the opening statement to Christ’s Parable of the Fig Tree:
“Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh” (Matthew 24:32). (emphasis mine)
Christ wraps up The Parable of the Fig Tree with the promise that the generation that sees the Fig Tree (Israel) young with her “branch yet tender, and putteth forth leaves” will not pass away “till all these things be fulfilled.”
“Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled” (Matthew 24:34).
Here’s a quick review of what we’ve ascertained in this study.
In light of this study, I believe that the body of Christ can rest assured that we are not running out of time in regard to The Parable of the Fig Tree and that Christ – as He always should be regarded because He is trustworthy – is always faithful to His Word.
We have a little more time left because the Lord is patient in wanting all to come to repentance. He is longsuffering to all because He loves all and desires that every person put their faith and trust in His only begotten Holy Son for their salvation.
But the sands of time are most certainly running low, and the Lord’s church must be about their Master’s business of reaching the lost with His saving gospel while there is still time left. When we get to heaven, there will be one thing for certain – we won’t have anyone to witness to until the glorious Millennial Kingdom of Christ.
So, please, Saint, take advantage of what precious little time we have left and get busy bringing Jesus to people and people to Jesus before it is too late.
Love, grace, mercy, and shalom in Messiah Yeshua, and Maranatha!
➢ Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
What is the ‘two-state solution’ about? – Caroline Glick - https://www.jns.org/opinion/what-is-the-two-state-solution-about/
After the House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved the supplemental spending bill for the Iron Dome program, everyone from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the Biden White House to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, quickly proclaimed bipartisan support in Washington for the U.S.-Israel alliance to be as strong as ever. Unfortunately, even before the bill passed, it was clear that the opposite was the case.
Eight House members from the leftist edge of the political spectrum voted against the Iron Dome funding, and two of their comrades voted “present.”
The only reason the measure was brought to a vote last week was because days earlier, the same House members blocked supplemental funding for the Iron Dome program from being included in an omnibus spending resolution. By first scuttling and then opposing the funding of a joint Israeli-U.S. system that is entirely defensive and works only to prevent the wanton murder of Israeli civilians by indiscriminate missile attacks, the lawmakers were saying that they supported the Palestinians in their terror war against Israel.
Reps. Marie Newman, Andre Carson, Hank Johnson, Cori Bush, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Jesus Garcia, Raul Grijalva, Ayanna Presley and their Republican comrade Thomas Massey opposed the Iron Dome funding package because they support the terror war that Hamas, Fatah, Islamic Jihad and their brethren in Hezbollah wage against the people of Israel. They don’t want to fund Iron Dome because they want Israel to lose to the terrorists.
A few hours before the House voted on the supplemental Iron Dome funding, Rep. Andy Levin, a progressive Jewish lawmaker from Michigan who voted in favor of the supplemental Iron Dome funding, submitted his own bill relating to the Palestinians and Israel. And Levin’s bill is far more dangerous to Israel and to U.S.-Israel relations than his fellow progressive lawmakers’ “nay” vote on the Iron Dome.
The main purpose of Levin’s bill, which is co-sponsored by 24 other members (seven of whom are also Jewish), is to support the Palestinian terror war against Israel, while adopting a laundry list of anti-Israel policies along the way.
Levin’s bill includes an amendment to the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1987, that defines the PLO as a terrorist organization and bars it from opening offices in or receiving assistance from the United States so long as it and its member organizations remain engaged in terrorism. Levin’s bill would amend the law to provide the administration with the authority to permit the opening of a PLO office in Washington and to transfer funds to the PLO/Palestinian Authority even while the PLO and its member groups remain engaged in terrorism. Levin’s bill enables the administration to sidestep the law simply by proclaiming that opening a PLO office in Washington and funding the PLO/PA is necessary to advance “diplomacy.”
Whereas the 2018 Taylor Force Act bars the United States from funding the P.A. so long as it pays salaries to terrorists and their families, Levin’s bill would enable the administration to transfer funds directly to the P.A. even if it continues to pay salaries to terrorists and their families. Levin’s bill empowers the secretary of state to authorize such funding simply by proclaiming that the P.A. is “reforming” its payment apparatus. As Palestinian Media Watch reported last week, the P.A. already believes that U.S. funding will be restored despite the fact that nearly 10 percent of the P.A. budget goes towards paying salaries to terrorists and their families. A senior P.A. official said that reinstating U.S. funding “is merely a problem of semantics.” Levin’s bill provides the semantic trick needed to restore funding.
Alongside its direct support for Palestinian terrorism, Levin’s bill also includes multiple provisions whose purpose is to undermine and weaken Israel while subverting the U.S.-Israel alliance. The Levin bill bars Israel from using weapons it receives from the United States to defend itself in Judea, Samaria, Gaza and unified Jerusalem. It also discriminates against Israel in a manner that legitimizes the anti-Semitic Boycott, Sanctions and Divestment (BDS) campaign against the Jewish state. The Levin bill bars Israel from marking goods from Judea, Samaria and Gaza, “Made in Israel.” Instead, Israel would be required to mark all such goods as made in the “West Bank/Gaza.” Israel’s scientific, agricultural and other cooperative agreements with the United States would only apply to areas that Israel controlled in 1949. Israeli institutions and citizens beyond those areas would be boycotted.
Levin’s bill requires the administration to cancel former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s 2019 determination that Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria are not illegal and delineate all Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria as illegal. Israeli neighborhoods built in Jerusalem since 1967 would also be deemed illegal, as would Israeli actions to enforce building laws regarding illegal Palestinian construction in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem.
Arguably, the most significant aspect of Levin’s pro-Palestinian terror bill is the name he gave it. Levin named his would-be federal law “The Two-State Solution Act.”
Levin’s decision to use that expression to market his Palestinian terror-supporting, Israel-subverting bill tells us two important things. First, it shows us what progressives are really talking about when they declare their support for a “two-state solution.”
Levin’s bill doesn’t mention the “peace process.” The Levin bill only mentions Israeli-Palestinian peace twice, in passing references to “peaceful relations” between Israel and the Palestinian state that Levin insists must be established.
The bill doesn’t determine that the Palestinians and Israel must resolve their conflict through negotiations. Whether peace talks are reinstated or not is completely irrelevant to Levin and his co-sponsors. Instead, Levin’s bill sets out the means the United States must use to coerce Israel into surrendering to the Palestinian terror war.
Since the whole purpose of the bill is to enable the United States to empower the PLO and the P.A. while they support, fund, carry out and glorify terror attacks against Israel, it goes without saying that Levin and his co-sponsors are fine with, and indeed seek to reward, the Palestinian terror war against Israel.
So when progressive Democrat lawmakers like Levin and his 24 co-sponsors express support for “the two-state solution,” they aren’t saying they want a peaceful resolution of the Palestinian conflict with Israel. For them, “the two-state solution” is a code for supporting the Palestinian terror war against Israel.
This brings us to Levin’s “Two-State Solution Act’s” second lesson. When Israelis and Israel supporters proclaim their support for “the two-state solution,” they have a certain theoretical picture in mind. As they see things, a “two-state solution” is a way to peacefully resolve the Palestinian conflict with Israel. Under the “two-state solution,” Israel will withdraw from large swaths of Judea and Samaria—but usually not from the entire area, since significant portions of Judea and Samaria are either vital for the physical survival of Israel, or contain large Israeli population centers that most two-state supporters consider integral parts of the State of Israel.
As for Jerusalem, supporters of the theoretical two-state solution believe that in a final peace settlement, Israel would provide symbolic concessions in Jerusalem, like the transfer of sovereignty over Abu Dis, a Palestinian village within the municipal boundaries of Jerusalem but outside the security perimeter of the city. But beyond that, Israel’s capital for the past 3,000 years would remain its capital.
This theoretical concept of a two-state solution is founded on the notion that when the Palestinian state is established in the areas Israel withdraws from, that state will be at peace with Israel. It will have signed a formal peace treaty with the Jewish state in which it formally recognizes the Jewish state’s right to exist.
The problem with this theoretical concept is that the Palestinians oppose it. For the past hundred years, the Palestinians have rejected any concept of a two-state solution that isn’t simply a means to advance their unchanging goal of eliminating the Jewish state. And they still oppose it.
Two weeks ago, the veteran Palestinian pollster Khalil Shikaki released a new survey of Palestinian public opinion which showed that 62 percent of Palestinians oppose “the two-state solution,” even though by failing to define the term, Shikaki let his respondents define “two-state solution” in any way they wanted.
On the other hand, 54 percent support “armed resistance”—that is, terrorism—against Israel.
Since the 1920s, the Palestinians have stated and demonstrated through their actions that for them, the point of establishing a Palestinian state in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria (along with Gaza), is both to ethnically cleanse these areas of all Jewish presence and, as they have done in Gaza for the past 16 years, use them as forward bases for continued war against the rest of Israel.
The operational collaboration between Arab Israeli rioters and pogromists and the P.A. and Hamas in the last round of fighting in May was no coincidence. From the perspective of Hamas and the PLO/P.A., Israeli Arabs are full partners in a war that will only end when Israel ceases to exist.
For the Palestinians, in short, “the two-state solution” is not a means to achieve either peace or Palestinian statehood. It is a means to advance to the next phase of the war to annihilate Israel. Shikaki’s poll showed that today the Palestinians’ view of the situation is no different than it was in 1920 or 1947 or 1967 or 1993.
The time has come to recognize and act on the significance of these facts. The vast majority of Democrats who voted to fund Iron Dome didn’t prove that bipartisan support for Israel is as strong as ever. They proved that most Democrats are unwilling to publicly support Palestinian terrorism against Israel. And that is where Levin’s bill comes in. Its purpose isn’t to advance the Israeli vision of a two-state solution. It is to give Levin and his colleagues a fig leaf to hide behind as they advance the Palestinian version of the two-state solution. That is why the bill legalizes U.S. support for Palestinian terrorists and undermines Israel’s security and its ties to the United States.
It is Israel’s responsibility, and the responsibility of its supporters in the United States, to expose the truth. For the Palestinians and a growing number of their progressive supporters, “the two-state solution” is not a means to achieve peace. Rather, it is simply a euphemism for supporting the Palestinian terror war. Israelis and pro-Israel Americans need to understand that in today’s political climate, when Palestinians and their progressive supporters embrace the “two-state solution,” they are not seeking to advance prospects for peaceful coexistence between Israel and the Palestinians. They are supporting Palestinian terrorism and advocating Israel’s demise.
Will The Holiday Season Be RUINED By the Global Supply Chain Crisis? - by Michael Snyder - http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/will-the-holiday-season-be-ruined-by-the-global-supply-chain-crisis/
Is this going to be the worst holiday season in modern American history? Some mainstream news outlets are insisting that the upcoming holidays are going to be “ruined” because of the widespread shortages that are being caused by the global supply chain crisis. Of course we should have never allowed any of our holidays to be defined by material goods in the first place. I think that the fact that a “holiday season” can be “ruined” by a lack of goods on the shelves says an enormous amount about where we are as a society. And if we can’t handle some limited shortages during the waning months of 2021, how in the world are we going to handle the severe economic pain that is coming in the future?
No holiday should ever be defined by material possessions, but the vast majority of the population sees things very differently than I do, and so the coming months are going to be a very difficult time for a lot of people. The following comes from a CNN article entitled “How America Ruined Christmas”…
The supply chain nightmare that’s been plaguing the global economy for over a year is about to snarl the holiday shopping season. Think barren shelves, massive shipping delays, and no small amount of sticker shock. Merry Christmas, everyone!
Needless to say, these conditions are likely to cause millions of Americans to throw wild temper tantrums.
And many young kids will be getting very upset as well.
There simply is not going to be enough stuff to go around, and we are being told that supplies of toys will be particularly tight…
I know that a lot of you are probably quite horrified by this news, but we can survive just fine without enough toys.
Personally, I am far more concerned about the food shortages that we are starting to see around the nation. One of my readers noticed that inventory levels are getting extremely low at the local Albertson’s…
Wanted to let you know that we went to the store today (Albertson’s) and we are now noticing thin and empty shelf spaces. Pretty much every aisle. Didn’t notice anyone one item being very low except chicken. Otherwise the low or out inventory was pretty uniform aisle to aisle. Don’t know if part of it is because locals are starting to take the shortages issue serious and stocking up or shortages are starting to hit our area or both. The store was packed with people. Interesting how quickly it changed around here in a week or two.
And another one of my readers that lives in the middle of the country says that he is starting to see things happen that he has never seen before…
The lack of workers here is getting worse. Sonic in my small town has resorted to blocking off 40% of their car spots because they simply do not have the Car Hops to service them. They have also resorted to hiring a male Car Hop. I ate their yesterday and they had run out of Onion Rings!!! Never, ever had that happen before!!! Also see more and more Help Wanted Signs around town and everywhere I go.
As I have discussed previously, one of the biggest reasons for the shortages is a lack of qualified workers.
There are millions and millions of jobs open right now, and we just don’t have enough people to fill them. Companies are starting to get desperate, and in some cases that could be potentially dangerous.
For example, in California they are now training teenagers to be truck drivers…
Inside Edition spoke to a California 17-year-old, named Isabella, as she trained behind the wheel.
She’s one of several teens at Patterson High School who are participating in one of the first truck-driving programs for high schoolers in the U.S.
“There is a huge need. We’re short about 63,000 drivers today,” instructor Dave Dein said.
Isn’t that strange?
Over in the UK, there is such a shortage of drivers that the UK has called out the military to help deliver fuel…
The army started supplying service stations in the United Kingdom on Monday in an effort to end more than a week of shortages that have forced pumps to close and left motorists without fuel.
Tanker drivers from the military underwent training over the weekend to deliver fuel across the country starting on Monday. The UK government said in a statement on Friday that almost 100 tanker drivers will be deployed from this week to “further relieve pressure on petrol stations and address the shortage of HGV [Heavy Goods Vehicle] drivers.”
Where did all the drivers go?
In my entire lifetime, I have never seen anything like this.
Elsewhere in Europe, an energy shortage has suddenly erupted, and this threatens to send power bills into the stratosphere. Just check out what is happening right now in Italy…
Household electricity bills will rise by 29.8% for the typical family and gas bills will go up by 14.4%, Italy’s energy regulatory authority Arera confirmed in a press release last week. The new national tariffs came into effect on Friday, the start of the fourth quarter of 2021. The increase comes amid surging energy costs across Europe, and beyond.
The price rise passed on to Italian consumers could’ve reached 45 percent, Arera said, if the government had not stepped in to cap the new rise in rates.
On the other side of the globe, China is experiencing an unprecedented energy crisis as well.
Now we are heading into the cold part of the year in the northern hemisphere, and this will put even more strain on tightening global energy supplies.
Even in a best case scenario, things could get really crazy this winter. So let us hope that a major war doesn’t erupt between Israel and Iran, because that would push energy prices much, much higher.
The global economy is teetering on the brink of a complete and total breakdown, and it wouldn’t take very much at all to push us over the edge.
So let us hope for the best, but let us also prepare for the worst.
Nearing Midnight: This Is the “Blessed Hope”? – Terry James - https://www.raptureready.com/category/nearing-midnight/
Most people who profess Christianity as their faith base claim to cling to Bible truth. However, it is my observation that the overwhelming majority within these numbers shows little or no understanding of or interest in the signals of the lateness of the times in terms of Bible prophecy.
This dearth of understanding and even of interest stems, no doubt, from churches and their pastors and teachers having little understanding or even interest. People in the pews, in listening to weekly sermons or Sunday school lessons, it is sad to say, are for the most part satisfied with messages that give them comfort—that make them rest easy from the week’s life problems.
While this wanting to forget one’s problems is understandable, it is not altogether what the Lord wants for His children. As a matter of fact, God’s Word warns about these very days and the dangers posed through the following words of the Apostle Paul:
I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (2 Timothy 4:1–4)
We have witnessed over the years many such “turning to fables” because of “strange winds of doctrine” taught by “teachers” to many with “itching ears.” This includes those “teachers” who have predicted the exact date of the Rapture of the Church.
Paul warned Timothy—and all future preachers, teachers, and people in the seats of learning in the church—to be faithful to teaching and heeding biblical truth, to avoid “vain-jangling” (speaking or listening to nonsense). Paul said further, regarding his own faithfulness by example, as recorded just a couple of verses later:
Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. (2 Timothy 4:8)
And the last words recorded here are key to this commentary. The great apostle addresses this to all who “love his appearing.” The “his” here is the Lord Jesus Christ, of course. Paul addresses God’s blessings of a crown of righteousness for all “who love his appearing”—the prophesied Second Coming of Christ.
Those who listen and heed Bible prophecy, and who “love his appearing” (are looking for the Rapture—or for His Second Advent if a Tribulation saint) will receive this special crown. Crowns are above and beyond heavenly rewards, as I understand the terms. This “crown” will be one that those who receive it will cast at the Lord’s feet, as praise to the King of all kings. Jesus will be wearing these crowns of praise when He rides the heavenly steed of glistening white during His return as given in Revelation 19:11.
We go deeper into this and what it means in the following brief, but marvelous, Scripture. It is one we often quote.
Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:13)
We who claim the holy name of Jesus Christ are to be “looking for the blessed hope.” If we earnestly do so, we will avoid the “vain-jangling” and the false teachings of false doctrine.
While false doctrinal teachings are important to avoid—and this is the main kind of falseness Christians are to avoid—there is another sort that the believer must discern and counter.
I read and listen to so many pundits and writers these days who foretell the direst circumstances imaginable for the nation and world. The troubling thing is that these fear-forecasters are at least partially right in their prognostication of evil and destruction among us now and of things to come.
One such blogcaster tells us that a large portion of the world’s populations will be killed soon through the manipulations of the globalists. The would-be world rulers, he is convinced, are using the vaccine-mandate madness to inject “killer shots” in order to bring down populations to the 500 million-people population as written on the Georgia Guidestones monument.
The communist Chinese, we are told, are about to invade the US, after major cyber and even possible nuclear attacks upon military bases within America.
COVID death camps are scattered across the country and will be used to take all who aren’t vaccinated there to be killed as were Jews and other “undesirables” in the death camps of Hitler’s time.
This blogcaster—who is a very intelligent fellow—believes this with all that is within him, I can tell.
He gives the impression that he believes in God and that God is on our side and we will win (as the human race) against the evil about to assault us.
I must say that if he is a true believer, he is one who is listening to false teachers, both in his time under church leaders and in his time putting together his so-called “intelligence” from wherever he gets his information.
The “intelligence” he and others like him are receiving tells only the half-truth of what is to come. The real truth is found in God’s Word, the Bible.
Paul the apostle said all believers are to look for “the blessed hope”—not for a total world dictatorship–Antichrist.
These evil things are about to happen, to be sure, but not for the Christian.
Where is “the blessed hope” in any of the dire predictions?
We are promised “the blessed hope.” We are told by Jesus Himself, as reported by John the Revelator, to be kept out of even the hour of “temptation”—the Tribulation (Revelation 3:10).
Our Blessed Hope is about to break through the clouds of glory and call God’s children to be with Him forever.
Amen! Even so come, Lord Jesus!
Daily Jot: New government data exposes alarming deficiencies in fight against COVID - Bill Wilson – www.dailyjot.com
A Daily Jot investigation of the federal government’s official COVID 19 data clearly demonstrates that COVID 19 vaccine efficacy rapidly declines, vaccination breakthroughs are causing a majority of COVID 19 cases and hospitalizations, and there are significant numbers of deaths among the vaccinated aged 65+. Data from three government agencies clearly contradicts claims that the pandemic continues solely because of the unvaccinated. These alarming findings should signal to the government, politicians and the medical community that a new approach must be taken to fight this disease as the current paradigm has diminishing results. The media’s failure to report the reality of these official statistics is irresponsible.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reports that 84.5% of all Medicare/Medicaid Certified Long Term Care Facilities residents are vaccinated. The week ending September 19, CMS details 136,513 COVID 19 resident deaths out of 697,020 cases. Doing the math: 84.5% vaccinated residents of 136,513 resident deaths equates to 115,353 COVID 19 deaths of vaccinated residents, and 21,160 unvaccinated resident deaths. CMS notes there are some data reporting and data entry errors, but states that these “are nominal and do not significantly impact the overall observed trend of COVID 19 cases and deaths.” While it is possible that all the deaths are of the unvaccinated, CMS neither implies nor states this. Given the percentages posed in this data set, the vaccinated in nursing homes could be dying from COVID 19 at more than FIVE times the rate of the unvaccinated. This is not far-fetched when Project Salus data is considered.
Project Salus, a predictive analytics initiative of the Department of Defense Joint Artificial Intelligence Center in conjunction with Humetrix, concludes: Breakthrough infection rates 5-6 months post vaccination are twice as high as 3-4 months post vaccination; From June-August 7th, 60% of COVID 19 hospitalizations occurred in fully vaccinated individuals in the 80% vaccinated 65+ population; As the Delta variant became predominant, COVID 19 cases increased five-fold in the 65 and over population; In the 80% vaccinated 65+ population, an estimated 71% of COVID 19 cases occurred in fully vaccinated individuals; Vaccine efficacy against breakthrough hospitalization is significantly lower 5-6 months post vaccination; Age has a minor contribution to the reduced vaccine protection. This appears to corroborate CMS data.
The CDC states that breakthroughs in vaccinated people “may” reduce the public confidence in vaccines, concluding “Vaccines prevent greater than 90% of severe disease, but may be less effective at preventing infection or transmission. Therefore, more breakthrough and more community spread despite vaccination.” These three agencies are reporting similar findings—that the vaccinated are the majority of COVID 19 cases, that vaccines lose their efficacy, and the vaccinated are not only spreading the disease but are also dying from it. Proverbs 12:17 says, “He that speaks truth shows forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit.” The government’s own scientific data shows the need for a different course, but the challenge is getting past the political science where the narrative doesn’t align with the truth.
Daily Devotion: Great and Precious Promises - by Greg Laurie – www.harvest.org
And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires —2 Peter 1:4
https://harvest.org/resources/devotion/great-and-precious-promises/ - Listen
Every year $5.8 billion in gift cards goes unclaimed. That’s a pretty good deal for the sellers, by the way. It reminds me a little of the promises of God. All too often, we neglect to claim them.
Yet God has made a lot of promises to us in the Bible. In fact, 2 Peter 1:4 describes them as “great and precious promises” (NLT).
For example, God has promised that we will never be alone in life. Sometimes you may feel as though you’re all alone, but you’re not alone if Jesus Christ is in your heart. Hebrews 13:5 tells us, “For God has said, ‘I will never fail you. I will never abandon you’” (NLT).
In Isaiah 41:10 the Lord says, “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand” (NLT).
God also promises to get us through whatever we’re facing. Maybe you’re going through a hard time right now, and you’re wondering whether you’ll ever get through it. God will get you through. He will be with you every step of the way.
He has said, “When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you” (Isaiah 43:2 NLT).
And in Psalm 23, which many of us have memorized, David wrote, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me” (verse 4 NKJV).
We all know what it’s like to have someone make a promise to us and then break it. But when God makes a promise, we can take it to the bank. It’s good to go. He keeps His promises.
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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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