IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
There’s a Great Day Coming - By Daymond Duck - https://www.raptureready.com/2022/02/06/theres-a-great-day-coming-by-daymond-duck/
I didn’t see a lot of prophetic news that I wanted to write about early this week, so here is my understanding of a famous Pre-Trib Rapture passage (I Thess. 4:13-5:9).
I have omitted the Chapter divisions because they were not in the original texts.
I have capitalized some of the pronouns because the verses are a contrast between believers and unbelievers; the saved and the lost.
“But I would not have YOU to be ignorant, BRETHREN, concerning them which are asleep, that YE sorrow not, even as others which have no hope” (I Thess. 4:13).
“For if WE [the believers] believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him” (I Thess. 4:14).
“For this we say unto YOU [believers] by the word of the Lord, that WE [believers] which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep” (I Thess. 4:15).
“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first” (I Thess. 4:16):
“Then WE which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (I Thess. 4:17).
“Wherefore comfort one another with these words” (I Thess. 4:18).
“But of the times and the seasons, BRETHREN, YE have no need that I write unto YOU” (I Thess. 5:1).
“For YOURSELVES know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night” (I Thess. 5:2).
“For when THEY [the unbelievers] shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon THEM [the unbelievers], as travail upon a woman with child; and THEY [the unbelievers] shall not escape” (I Thess. 5:3).
“But YE, BRETHREN, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake YOU as a thief” (I Thess. 5:4).
“YE are all the children of light, and the children of the day: WE are not of the night, nor of darkness” (I Thess. 5:5; Matt. 5:14; Jn. 8:12; Col. 1:12-13).
“Therefore let US not sleep, as do others; but let US watch and be sober” (I Thess. 5:6).
“For THEY [the unbelievers] that sleep sleep in the night; and THEY [the unbelievers] that be drunken are drunken in the night” (I Thess. 5:7).
“But let US, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation” (I Thess. 5:8).
“For God hath not appointed US [the believers] to wrath [the Tribulation Period is a day of wrath; Zeph. 1:15; Rev. 6:16], but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” (I Thess. 5:9).
Here are some indications that a great day is coming soon.
One, on Jan. 27, 2022, it was reported that New Hampshire State Representative Leah Cushman, a registered nurse, has proposed a bill to permit pharmacists to dispense Ivermectin as an over-the-counter treatment for Covid-19.
Two, concerning deceit: it is not unusual to hear someone say they do not think Pres. Biden is running things in the U.S.
On Jan. 21, 2022, Biden’s Press Sec., Jen Psaki, was on “The View,” and Joy Behar said, “A little bird told me that you said you might be retiring, resigning the job this year. Say it isn’t so.”
Psaki replied, “I don’t know when I’m leaving. This is an honor and a privilege, and I love working for Pres. Obama—Biden.”
There is now so much deceit in Washington, it is difficult to know what to believe.
(More: On Jan. 30, 2022, a group called “True the Vote” released video of people allegedly putting thousands of illegal ballots in ballot boxes after midnight in Georgia. According to a spokesperson, this is the first video they have released, but the group has compiled evidence of organized voter fraud in 6 states.)
(More: On Feb. 1, 2022, it was reported that political commentator and filmmaker, Dinesh D’Souza, has joined “True the Vote” to produce a movie that proves widespread voter fraud. The movie will be released this spring. According to D’Souza, they tracked about 2,000 people that stuffed ballot boxes, and they have filmed one person that made 53 trips to 20 different ballot boxes.)
Three, concerning deceit and the Mark of the Beast: even though the Center for Disease Control (CDC) is on record as saying it will not change the definition of “fully vaccinated,” on Jan. 26, 2022, it was reported that the CDC will replace the words “fully vaccinated” with the words “up to date.”
A patient that has had two vaccinations and a booster shot and been deemed “fully vaccinated” in the past will not be considered to be “up to date” if the CDC orders more vaccinations or booster shots.
This is why some prophecy teachers believe the government will keep adding to or changing the requirements until their requirements turn into the Mark of the Beast.
Four, concerning world government, deceit, corruption, and betrayal of the U.S.: on Jan. 26, 2022, Tucker Carlson aired a video (on the Tucker Carlson Tonight TV program) that was caught on a police bodycam of a Biden administration contractor saying, “If this gets out… the government is betraying the American people.”
The man that made this statement was supervising a program to fly planeloads of illegal aliens into various parts of the U.S.
The contractor explained to the police officer on video that it is his job to keep the American people from knowing what the Biden administration is doing (probably because they are traitors for betraying the U.S. by breaking federal law).
Five, concerning the return of rain to Israel at the end of the age: on Jan. 27, 2022, residents of Jerusalem woke up with about 7 inches of snow on the ground that was expected to be melted by rain that would start later in the day.
Six, concerning the Battle of Gog and Magog: on Jan. 26, 2022, it was reported that Russia has recently taken 2 steps that are pro-Iran and anti-Israel.
The co-operation between Russia and Iran is growing stronger.
The danger is that Israel must be careful not to shoot down a Russian jet over the Golan and not to kill Russian troops while trying to destroy Iranian weapons that are being unloaded at Latakia.
The death of Russians by the hands of Israelis could be used as an excuse for war.
(Update 1: On Jan. 26, 2022, it was reported that Russia has taken a third pro-Iranian and anti-Israel step by permitting Iranian planes to land at Russia’s airbase at Latakia.)
(Update 2: Joint air patrols by Russia and Syria over the Golan Heights have not stopped Israel from attacking targets in Syria. On Jan. 31, 2022, Israeli jets fired missiles from Lebanese airspace at targets near Damascus, the capital of Syria.)
Seven, concerning reprobate minds: Iran is financing the Houthis that are attacking Saudi Arabia, Hezbollah that is attacking Israel, Hamas that is launching rockets into Israel from Palestine, and terrorists inside Israel that are attacking Jews, but Iran is not paying her dues to the UN and is so far behind, the nation has lost its right to vote.
On Jan. 23, 2022, it was reported that the Biden administration just got $18 million of blocked Iranian funds released so Iran can pay its dues to the UN and start voting again (and the Iranians will continue to shout death to America).
Eight, concerning hyper-inflation and an economic collapse: on Feb. 2, 2022, it was reported that U.S. Treasury Dept. data shows that the U.S. national debt was $21.6 trillion when Biden took office, and it has now surpassed $30 trillion.
Biden’s spending binge is partly why the price of gasoline, food, lumber, utilities, vehicles, and everything else is soaring.
Biden has increased America’s national debt by about 8.4 trillion in slightly more than one year, and he has a $2 trillion Build Back Better Act stalled in the U.S. Senate because two Democrats won’t vote for it.
Finally, are you Rapture Ready?
If you want to be rapture ready and go to heaven, you must be born again (John 3:3). God loves you, and if you have not done so, sincerely admit that you are a sinner; believe that Jesus is the virgin-born, sinless Son of God who died for the sins of the world, was buried, and raised from the dead; ask Him to forgive your sins, cleanse you, come into your heart and be your Saviour; then tell someone that you have done this.
Refuting the Scoffers – Jonathan Brentner - https://www.jonathanbrentner.com/https/jonathan-brentner-g8fgsquarespacecom/config/2022/1/31/refuting-the-scoffers
Once you say that you believe in the Rapture, the scoffers will invariably counter with this question, “How can you believe something that no one believed until the late 1800’s?”
As we have already established in this series, the Rapture is a biblical event. Scripture clearly describes this yet future and sudden chain of actions and furthermore, these details differ significantly with Bible passages that describe Jesus’ Second Coming. The Rapture and Second Coming two cannot be the same event.
In this third post, I will provide evidence from church history showing that a belief in the Rapture existed long before the nineteenth century. Please know that the basis for what we believe must absolutely come from the words of Scripture and not church history.
However, in order to prepare you for the scorn of those who ridicule our hope and give you confidence in replying, I will demonstrate that people believed in what we today call the “Rapture” during the early centuries of the church.
THE ORIGIN OF THE WORD “RAPTURE”
The scoffers often tell us that the word “Rapture” cannot be found in the Bible and therefore what we believe about it cannot possibly be true.
To this we can accurately reply, “It depends on what translation you use.”
Our word “Rapture” comes from a Latin translation of the Bible, the Vulgate, written in about AD 400. The Vulgate used the Latin word rapturo to translate the Greek word harpazo in 1 Thessalonians 4:17.
The words “caught up” in our English translations capture the essence of the Greek harpazo just as the Latin rapturo did when Jerome and others translated the Bible into Latin.
Starting sometime in the late 1800s, Bible students began using the word “Rapture,” adapted from the Latin rapturo, to describe the rapid sequence of events that Paul wrote about in 1 Thessalonians 4:13–18 as well as in 1 Corinthians 15:50–56, Philippians 3:20–21, and other passages.
In addition, evidence exists from the early centuries of the church demonstrating that theologians regarded Jesus’ appearing for His church as a separate event from the Second Coming. In the sections that follow, I provide some key references to this belief.
IRENAEUS (AD 130–202)
In AD 180, Irenaeus wrote Against Heresies to refute the errors of Gnosticism, which posed a great threat to the church at the time. In Against Heresies, Book 5, Chapter 29, he wrote:
And therefore, when in the end the Church shall be suddenly caught up from this, it is said, “There shall be Tribulation such as has not been since the beginning, neither shall be.”[i]
In the above quote, Irenaeus used the same Greek word for “caught up,” harpazo, that Paul used in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 for the catching up of living believers to meet the Lord in the air. Irenaeus, in this quote places the harpazo before the time of the “tribulation” that Jesus referred to in Matthew 24:21. He quotes the words of Jesus from this text referring to this future time.
Irenaeus, a highly regarded church theologian of the second century AD, envisioned a fulfillment of the event portrayed in 1 Thessalonians 4:17, the harpazo, followed by a time of great Tribulation on the earth.
Irenaeus regarded the Rapture and Second Coming as distinct and separate occurrences with a time of tribulation occurring between them.
CYPRIAN (AD 200–258)
Cyprian, a bishop in the city of Carthage during the third century AD, guided his church through a time of intense persecution and suffering.
In his book, Treatises of Cyprian, he wrote:
We who see that terrible things have begun, and know that still more terrible things are imminent, may regard it as the greatest advantage to depart from it as quickly as possible. Do you not give God thanks, do you not congratulate yourself, that by an early departure you are taken away, and delivered from the shipwrecks and disasters that are imminent? Let us greet the day which assigns each of us to his own home, which snatches us hence, and sets us free from the snares of the world and restores us to paradise and the kingdom.[ii]
With these words, Cyprian expresses his belief in “an early departure” of the Church before further disasters occur on the earth. He believed the time of additional trouble was “imminent” and that a “departure” would take believers away so they wouldn’t experience the troubling times ahead. His reference to “snatches us hence” sounds much like the catching up of the Church in 1 Thessalonians 4:17.
According to Cyprian, we don’t stay on earth when this “departure” occurs; the Lord takes us to “paradise.” His words remarkably similar to what many refer to today as pretribulation Rapture.
EPHRAIM THE SYRIAN (AD 306–373)
An unmistakable reference to the Rapture comes from Saint Ephraim of Edessa, who was a monk, a poet, a writer of hymns, and a preacher during the fourth century AD.
The quote below comes from Ephraem’s sermon entitled “On the Last Times, the Antichrist, and the End of the World.” Some historians believe someone else wrote it in AD 622 and ascribed it to Ephraem in order to lend it credibility.
Dr. Grant Jeffrey, who did extensive research on this sermon and obtained a translation of it on his own from a Greek scholar, believes it’s more likely that Ephraem himself preached the sermon sometime around AD 323.[iii]
Believe you me, dearest brother, because the coming (advent) of the Lord is nigh, believe you me, because the end of the world is at hand, believe me, because it is the very last time. Or do you not believe unless you see with your eyes? See to it that this sentence be not fulfilled among you of the prophet who declares: “Woe to those who desire to see the day of the Lord!” For all the saints and elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins.[iv]
Notice the similarity between Ephraem’s wording and that of 1 Thessalonians 5:9, which Paul wrote to confirm that believers will not see the wrath of the Day of the Lord. Ephraem warned against those who desired to “see the day of the Lord.” He believed the promise that the Lord would deliver believers from this future time of furor.
Ephraim preached that the Lord would gather to Himself His church before a time of wrath would descend upon the world. This is the clearest reference to a pretribulation rapture that we have from the early centuries of the church.
MORGAN EDWARDS (1722–1795)
We have another clear reference to this well before the time of John Darby. In this case, it comes from a Welsh Baptist named Morgan Edwards.[v] He wrote the following about Jesus’ appearing for His Church:
I say, somewhat more—, because the dead saints will be raised, and the living changed at Christ’s “appearing in the air” (I Thess. iv. 17); and this will be about three years and a half before the millennium, as we shall see hereafter: but will he and they abide in the air all that time? No: they will ascend to paradise, or to some one of those many “mansions in the father’s house” (John xiv. 2) and disappear during the foresaid period of time. The design of this retreat and disappearing will be to judge the risen and changed saints; for “now the time is come that judgment must begin,” and that will be “at the house of God” (I Pet. iv. 17).[vi]
Other quotes from Edwards confirm that he believed in a three-and half-year Tribulation just as did John Darby at first, before he later came to the conviction that it would last seven years. This fact, however, doesn’t diminish the presence of a belief that the Rapture would occur before a time of Tribulation a century before the time of John Darby.
The belief in Jesus’ return for His church before a time of catastrophic events on the earth has existed since the earliest centuries of the church. The use of the word “Rapture” to describe this event originated in the late 1800’s, but that does not diminish the fact that people in the early church saw it as something totally distinct from Jesus’ return to earth at the end of the Tribulation.
History doesn’t prove or disprove any doctrine; Scripture alone must be our sole source of belief and practice. The evidence, however, refutes those who tell us that a belief in the Rapture did not exist before the nineteenth century.
Furthermore, John Darby alone cannot account for the fact that belief in a pretribulation Rapture grew to the point that it dominated the evangelical church in America as well as in much of the free world for most of the twentieth century.
This widespread appeal of belief in the pretribulation Rapture happened because pastors, writers, and teachers correctly expounded the many texts that teach the appearing of Jesus for His church before the start of the Tribulation.
The scoffers will continue to laugh. Our hope, however, rests on the words of Scripture regardless of the mocking that might come our way.
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My new book, The Triumph of the Redeemed-An eternal Perspective that Calms Our Fears in Perilous Times, is now available on Amazon.
Jonathan C. Brentner Website: Our Journey Home
[i] Irenaeus, “Against Heresies,” The Ante-Nicene Fathers, 10 vols., Vol. 1 (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1979), p. 558.
[ii] Cyprian, Treatises of Cyprian, “On the Mortality,” section 25.
[iii] Jeffrey, Triumphant Return, p. 174.
[iv]Ibid., pp. 175–76.
[v] Thomas Ice, “A History of Pre-Darby Rapture Advocates,” Dec. 2011, article on the Pre-Trib Research Center, p. 7. https://www.pre-trib.org/articles/all-articles/message/a-history-of-pre-darby-rapture-advocates
[vi] Morgan Edwards, Two Academical Exercises on Subjects Bearing the Following Titles; Millennium, Last-Novelties (Philadelphia: Dobson and Lang, 1788), p. 7.
The Truth Behind The Economic Lies - by Michael Snyder - http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/the-truth-behind-the-economic-lies/
The lack of critical thinking that we see in the world of journalism today is absolutely frightening. Way too often, the mainstream media simply takes the information that it is being fed and packages it as “truth” for an unsuspecting public. And since the general public does so little critical thinking at this point, most of the time the misinformation that is being foisted upon us goes virtually unchallenged. That is one of the reasons why my articles have become so popular over the years. I am not afraid to challenge the official narratives, and I encourage my readers to think for themselves and to come to their own conclusions.
There is so much misinformation that I could discuss, but in this article I am going to focus on some of the recent economic lies that we have been told.
On Friday, NPR was thrilled to report that the U.S. economy “added 467,000 jobs last month”…
The U.S. job market came through January in much better shape than expected despite a winter wave of coronavirus infections.
Employers added 467,000 jobs last month, according to a new tally from the Labor Department, far outpacing even the most optimistic forecasts. The gains came despite a surge in COVID-19 cases tied to the omicron variant.
But the U.S. economy did not add 467,000 jobs last month.
It actually lost 2.8 million jobs.
So how does a loss of 2.8 million jobs become a gain of 467,000 jobs?
That is where “seasonal adjustments” come in, and as one expert quoted by Zero Hedge noted, “there has never been a January Seasonal Adjustment of this magnitude”…
At this point the answer what is behind the massive January beat should be becoming clear: how did a -2.8 million actual drop in jobs translate into an adjusted 467K? If you said seasonal, covid and population control adjustments, you are right. And to be sure, this is something both we and others flagged, when we lamented that month after month, the BLS appeared to be using stale seasonal adjustments.
But digging deeper shows that this was not just an ordinary seasonal adjustment.
As SouthBay Research notes in his NFP postmortem, “there has never been a January Seasonal Adjustment of this magnitude”
In other words, what we just witnessed was “the mother of all seasonal adjustments”, and the end result was definitely welcomed by the Biden administration.
But anyone that actually believes that the U.S. economy magically added 467,000 jobs last month is not dealing with reality.
Meanwhile, we are getting a cold, hard reality check when it comes to our ongoing supply chain crisis.
The Biden administration assured us that 2022 would be different. We were told that they were on top of this crisis and that they were taking emergency measures to make things better. Theoretically, once we got past the challenging period of the holiday season economic demand would drop and congestion throughout our supply chains would ease.
But that hasn’t happened.
Instead, we continue to get indications that things are getting even worse.
On Friday, Ford announced that it would “temporarily halt or scale back” production at eight facilities in North America because of a lack of computer chips…
Difficulties in obtaining semiconductor chips will prompt Ford Motor to temporarily halt or scale back auto production at eight plants in North America, the company said Friday, according to reports.
The announcement by the major U.S. automaker – set to take effect next week — continued a series of supply-chain setbacks that have affected the nation’s economy in recent months.
That is really bad news.
Does this mean that we are facing yet another year of insanely high vehicle prices?
During a call with reporters on Friday, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo actually admitted that there isn’t going to be any quick fix for the chip shortage…
U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo warned during a call with reporters on Friday that there will be no quick fix to resolve the semiconductor shortage contributing to supply chain disruptions causing a ripple effect across the economy.
“We didn’t get in this mess overnight, and we’re not going to get out overnight. This has been a problem decades in the making,” she explained. “There has been a slow deterioration of our manufacturing base in America over decades, and we need to start now to rebuild.”
For once, someone in the Biden administration has made a good point.
We never should have allowed ourselves to become so dependent on chip production from Asia.
Today, the majority of the chips that we use are made in Taiwan.
So, what happens to our economy if China invades Taiwan?
You might want to think about that.
Other shortages continue to intensify as well. For example, the following comes from an article about our nationwide baby formula shortage…
Claire Salter, an Operation Give Back volunteer in Blue Ash, says she’s very worried because there’s not much baby formula left on the nonprofit organization’s pantry shelves.
“It terrifies me,” said Salter.
“These six or seven, eight cans we have — that’s all we have right now,” she added.
If I discussed all of the major shortages that we are facing right now, it would take me weeks to finish this article.
In fact, the CEO of a chain of convenience stores in Texas recently admitted that his company is “probably averaging 6,500 to 8,000 outs a week from manufacturers”…
Kevin Smartt, CEO of Texas-based convenience store chain TXB (which stands for Texas Born) has been closely monitoring weekly product availability reports from his distributors.
The company operates 50 stores across Texas and Oklahoma. Each location is an average of 4,500 square feet, serving a mix of freshly-prepared foods like tacos, salads and sandwiches plus a variety of grab-and-go packaged goods. Some locations also sell fruits and vegetables.
“Here’s the magnitude of the problem right now,” Smartt said. “As a chain, we’re probably averaging 6,500 to 8,000 outs a week from manufacturers,” he said. ‘Outs’ refers to a specific branded product that is out of stock and can’t be delivered that week.
In other words, his chain is having to navigate an environment in which thousands upon thousands of products that they regularly order are in short supply.
This is really happening.
So many of the trends that you have been warned about for years are coming to a crescendo in 2022.
Of course the Biden administration would like you to believe that a wonderful new era of peace and prosperity is just around the corner.
You can believe them if you want.
But I would recommend examining all of the evidence and coming to your own conclusions. Things just keep getting worse, and at this point it is hard to imagine how anyone can be optimistic about the months ahead.
Created Equal - By Hal Lindsey - https://www.hallindsey.com/ww-2-6-2022/
The American republic was built on the “self-evident” truth “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.” Take the words “created” and “Creator” from that sentence, and it becomes nonsense.
It is nonsense to say, “all men are equal.” We are not born with equal levels of intelligence, athletic ability, or good looks. We are born to different kinds of parents and into different circumstances including various levels of wealth or poverty. But add the word “created” and it makes sense. We are created with equal value before God—each one made with His image stamped into our very being (Genesis 1:26).
Our nation’s founders were steeped in these beliefs. That’s why they wrote a constitution which protects even the vilest criminal from “cruel and unusual punishment.” In our system, searches and seizures are to be sanctioned by a court of law after careful assessment of “probable cause.” The Constitution insists that the accused receive a public trial before an impartial jury. All human beings are due this kind of respect because each carries innate value before God.
It’s all built on the words “created” and “Creator.” Our country was founded on a theological idea. We have a Creator. We have standing in the universe. Remove God from our country, and you remove the intellectual and spiritual underpinnings of democracy itself.
The new atheism sweeping our land is intent on removing God’s name and His standards from our institutions, philosophies, and entertainments. Those who propagate such notions do so in the name of freedom. But real freedom requires a foundation. To remove freedom’s foundation means the eventual destruction of freedom itself.
And that’s what’s happening. The super-elites have lost trust in the common folk, and therefore in democracy itself. They have always tried to put their thumb on democracy’s scale. But in the past, they focused their power and influence on promoting their own ideas. Today they increasingly use their power to crush dissent and end debate.
“We the people” still have our ballots, but ballots mean little without the free flow of information. In our system of government, free speech is not a luxury but an absolute necessity. Democracy only works when people are trusted to sort through the noise and find the truth.
It’s a messy form of government. No doubt about that. In a perfect world, the people would be governed by a perfect Person — perfect in love, perfect in wisdom, perfect in justice, and perfect in every other way. That Person, Jesus, is coming! The Bible says, “The government will be upon His shoulder.”
But until that glad day, we should be thankful for what Lincoln called “government of the people, by the people, for the people.” And we should work and pray that it “not perish from the earth.”
Daily Jot: The prophetic case for freedom of religion and speech - Bill Wilson – www.dailyjot.com
In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God (John 1:1). And God said let there be light (Genesis 1:3) The word spoken. A gift given freely that we may have life and have it more abundantly (John 10:10). The Word. Spoken. Free gift of life abundantly. The Liberty by which the Word of God has set us free. The truth that sets us free. It translates. Freedom is in the Word. Liberty as it is spoken. The Spoken Word is intertwined in freedom from the bondage of sin. And sin is bondage, oppression, The tyranny of evil. You see, freedom of speech is God given. The oppressor, in whatever form he takes, hates the spoken word of truth and spares no effort to quench this freedom.
The Bible is full of examples of those standing for religious freedom and freedom of speech as well as examples of “church” leaders suppressing such freedoms. Ezekiel was told by the Lord to “hear the word at my mouth, and give them [Israel] warning from me.” The Lord told Ezekiel that he needed to tell the people of Israel what the Lord said otherwise the consequences would be on Ezekiel’s hand. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to worship a false god, and were cast into a furnace for it, but God delivered them. Against an order of the King, Daniel prayed to God and was thrown in the lion’s den. Forbidden to speak of Christ by the Sadducees, Peter and the Apostles were thrown in prison. When they were released, they began preaching Christ again, saying, “We ought to obey God rather than men (Acts 5:29).”
This oppression continued in other forms. For example, the Roman Catholic Church legislated that the Bible could not be translated into English. In 1401, the Council of Constance declared John Wycliffe a heretic for translating the Bible and ordered his works and body burned. Bible translator William Tyndale was burned at the stake by Catholic Church leaders for heresy. The Catholic Church website defends and excuses these acts saying that the church was protecting the sacred Scripture. Pope Pius VIII reasoned that translations other than the official Catholic version were “contrary to the Church’s laws” and referenced the Council of Trent in banning translations “contrary to that of the Church or the popes.” As with both examples of the Sadducees and Catholic Church, there was no separation of church and state during those times.
Church law was also government law. The founding fathers of America recognized there could be no guarantee of individual freedom without freedom of speech and religion. The book “Religious Denominations,” written in 1854 by Joseph Belcher recounts a trial of three Baptist preachers indicted by the King’s attorney “For preaching the gospel of the Son of God.” Patrick Henry arose on their behalf: “In a day like this, when truth is about to burst her fetters— when mankind are about to be raised to claim their natural and inalienable rights—when the yoke of oppression which has reached the wilderness of America, and the unnatural alliance of ecclesiastical and civil power, is about to be dissevered—at such a period,—when liberty— liberty of conscience, is about to awake from her slumbering and inquire into the reason of such charges as I find exhibited here to-day in this indictment!” He demanded their release.
It is this God-breathed unalienable right from Creation forward that there be freedom of spoken word and truth. And it is in this premise that bondage, whether it be sin or the oppression by men, “churches,” or governments, is broken by truth spoken. As is written in Galatians 5:1, “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” And Ephesians 6:20, “that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.” Tyranny depends on quenching the Word of God and the freedom to speak because truth spoken is the clapper on the bell of Liberty. Ring it across the land!
Daily Devotion: An Unexpected Invitation - by Greg Laurie – www.harvest.org
As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at his tax collector’s booth. ‘Follow me and be my disciple,’ Jesus said to him. So Levi got up and followed him. —Mark 2:14
https://harvest.org/resources/devotion/an-unexpected-invitation/ - Listen
Levi, who also was known as Matthew, collected taxes for Rome. Rome was the occupying force in Israel at the time, so people would have thought of Matthew as a traitor. We don’t know whether it was money that motivated Matthew to work for Rome. But whatever the reason, he seemed to have gone out of his way to offend his fellow Jews.
Matthew also would have been familiar with Jesus, because Jesus was ministering in the region where Matthew was. And being a tax collector, Matthew would have been aware of what was going on around him. We also know that he was a great student of the Scriptures because Old Testament prophecies fill the gospel that bears his name.
Ninety-nine Old Testament references in Matthew show how Jesus was the Messiah. So this was a man who knew the Word of God but chose to rebel against it. Yet there was something that Jesus said and did that softened Matthew’s hardened heart.
Why do people turn away from God in the first place? Why do people turn from the church?
These are interesting questions. I’ve heard people say they lost their faith because a tragedy happened, or they suffered the loss of a loved one, or they saw hypocrisy. But a faith that can’t be tested is a faith that can’t be trusted. That isn’t a real faith.
However, when Jesus said to Matthew, “Follow me and be my disciple” (Mark 2:14 NLT), Matthew stood up and followed Him. And in the next verse, the Bible tells us that Matthew “invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners” (verse 15 NLT).
Notice that Jesus never said, “Follow My people.” Rather, He said, “Follow Me.” So put your eyes on Jesus Christ.
FROM THE HEART
Let Us Make the Short Time We have Left,
Count for ALL of Eternity!
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One of the most reliable ways to determine if a ministry is worthy of your financial support is to examine its fruits. If Prophecy Update is keeping you informed, and if that information inspires you, and causes you to draw closer to the Lord, if Prophecy Update equips you with valuable information and knowledge to share with and encourage other believers, and open the eyes of non-believers, and if Prophecy Update keeps you connected to current events relating to Bible Prophecy, then you are partaking of the fruit produced through this ministry. None of this would be possible without the Lords blessings and your support. I believe where the Lord guides, the Lord provides, and most of the time He provides through the willing and generous hearts of believers just like you and me.
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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
1) We need your prayers!- We proclaim the Truth of the Word of God and we are under constant spiritual and sometimes even physical attack.
2) We need your encouragement!- We need to hear from you, let us know how the Lord is blessing you through this ministry so that we can share it with others.
3) We need your input! - If you have a prophetic article or story or if there is a news related item we missed, let us know.
4) We need your financial support!- To put it quite simply, without your support, there would be no Prophecy Update.
I ask that you would prayerfully consider partnering with us to get the Word out and keep the world informed. Remember, your gift, no matter how small, does make a difference! You will be helping to touch lives, around the world, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, thanks to the internet your generosity carries a global impact! - Thanks!
Our Prayer for You- "Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God's people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else." 2 Corinthians 9:10-13
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"AS YOU SEE THE DAY APPROACHING"
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Maranatha! (Lord Come Quickly)
"On Christ the Solid Rock I Stand, All other ground is sinking sand."
"Let Us make the short time we have left count for all eternity!"