Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
Featured Article: Daniel's 70 Weeks Part 2
As war clouds gather, northern storm looks more foreboding
News from Hal Lindsey Media Ministries
God Does Not Change
Daily Jot: Shutdown by thieves in the darkness Daily Devotion: Our Solemn Responsibility
Daniel's 70 Weeks Part 2 - By Alice Childs -
Daniel's 70 Weeks - Part 2
Bible Reference - Chapter 9
In Part 1 of this study, we learned why there are no 10 "lost" tribes of Israel. We saw from scripture that these tribes are not now, nor have they ever been "lost." Every descendant of each of the 12 tribes of Israel has certainly never been lost to God. He knows the name and whereabouts of each and every one of them. This is very important since the descendants of each of the 12 tribes of Israel will play a vitally important role in the coming time of The Tribulation.
In Part 1, I only used Old Testament scripture references to demonstrate the truth that the so- called 10 "lost" tribes of Israel are not and never have been lost at all. One of the readers following this series, Karole Fedrick, being a good Berean as all ought to be, has correctly pointed out that there are references to all of the 12 tribes in the New Testament as well.
The New Testament passages of Acts 26:7 and James 1:1 demonstrate that all of the 12 tribes of what had been the United Kingdom of Israel were still in existence long after the Jews had returned to Israel, after the Babylonian captivity, when Israel as a nation was under the domination and protectorate of the Roman Empire. Most importantly, 144,000 young male virgins, who are direct descendants of each of these 12 tribes, will play a pivotal role during the coming Tribulation.
If you missed Part 1 of this study, go back and read it so that you will have some historical background and a frame of reference as we move on into Part 2 - The 70 "weeks" (or more accurately the 70 "sevens") of the prophecy given to Daniel.
I. The Prophecy of the 70 Weeks of Years
This prophecy was given to Daniel by God in order to show Daniel three things God was going to do in relation to his (Daniel's) people, the JEWS, during the final 7 years that will be The Time of Jacob's Trouble, or as we call it, The Tribulation:
(1) The time God has ordained for the Jews
(2) The time God has ordained for God's holy city Jerusalem
(3) The time ordained by God to:
(a) finish the transgressions (of Israel)
(b) make an end of their sins
(c) bring in everlasting righteousness (Daniel 9:24)
**Note: In chapter 2 of Daniel (and later on again in chapter 11), God had already given Daniel a detailed future history spanning the great Gentile world empires which were to, in one way or another, directly impact the nation of Israel from Daniel's time right up to the time of the "revived" form of the Roman Empire that would be resurrected during the last days. This "revived Roman Empire" is what we are currently watching take shape today. This regrouping and re-forming entity is a whole other topic that will need to be addressed separately at a future time.
The formation of this new reviving form of what was once the old Roman Empire is rapidly nearing completion right now in real time, and all that is lacking is for a strong, decisive leader to arise and take the helm of leadership of it. The man who will rise to prominence and power after the rapture of the Church will come from somewhere within the confines of what was once the old Roman Empire. This man will be the one who will be THE ANTICHRIST.
His identity and his rise to power is for the moment being restrained (held in check) by The Restrainer, who is none other than the Holy Spirit acting in His FUNCTION as the supernatural Restrainer of Evil. It is He, the Holy Spirit, functioning through the corporate body of the Remnant Church whom He indwells, who is holding back the complete flood-tide of evil. His restraining function in the Church Age is keeping evil from completely overwhelming and destroying the Church during this Dispensation of Grace.
Jesus told Peter when He first mentioned this "called out body" that would (after Calvary) become the Church, Jesus said that HE would build (future tense) HIS Church against which the very gates of Hell would not prevail. At the time Jesus made this statement, the Church had not yet been born and Jesus' reference to it was as yet future, hence His statement,
"I WILL BUILD my Church..." In addition, He promised that "the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it" (2 Thessalonians 2:1-2, in particular verse 7, also Matthew 16:18).
After Jesus' death, burial, bodily resurrection, and His ascension back to Heaven, Jesus did indeed begin to "build His Church" (Acts chapter 2). The Church was birthed on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit - the promised Comforter - was actually sealed within (Ephesians 4:30) the newly birthed Church, thus enabling her to withstand the horrendous persecution that would relentlessly pursue the Church from her birth right up until her removal in the rapture.
The indwelling Holy Spirit, who is "sealed within" every believer, functions as the restraining power "letting" or preventing the full onslaught of evil from engulfing the world (as it will in the Tribulation) and preventing the Antichrist from being able to rise to power, until the restraint that holds him back is removed from the earth at "the day of redemption," which is the rapture of the Church from this earth (Ephesians 4:30).
Again, it is the Holy Spirit (working through the Remnant Church whom He indwells), whose purpose and function as the Restrainer of Evil that will be removed from earth - at "the day of redemption," which is the pre-tribulation rapture of the Church, and not the PERSON of the Holy Spirit who will be removed from the earth.
The Holy Spirit, being deity as the third Person of the Triune Godhead, is omnipresent, meaning that He in His PERSON is always present everywhere. It is only His FUNCTION as the Restrainer of Evil indwelling the Church during the Dispensation of Grace that will be removed from the earth with the Church in the rapture. The Person of Holy Spirit, after the rapture of the Church, will function on earth just as He did during Old Testament times in the other dispensations.
Once the living Remnant Church is taken out of the world in the rapture and the restraining INFLUENCE of the Holy Spirit is removed with the Church in which He is sealed, only then can the Antichrist be identified and rise to power in his appointed time.
This is why it is both pointless and foolish for anyone during the Church Age in which we are currently living to attempt to identify the Antichrist. His identity cannot be known, nor can he come to power and prominence on the world stage before God's appointed time for him to be revealed (2 Thessalonians 2:7-12).
Although it is without a doubt a virtual certainty that this "Man of Lawlessness" is already here working, biding his time behind the scenes; nevertheless, he cannot arise to power until after the rapture of the Church. We are told about this "coming prince" and his origins in Daniel chapter 9.
In Daniel chapters 9-11, God gives detailed prophecies concerning the Jews and the end times. The entire book of Daniel, including these verses in Daniel 9:20-27, are among the most astounding and most important verses in all scripture with regards to the revelation of future events. The book of Daniel is one of the most authenticated books of the entire Old Testament, both historically and archaeologically. It is vitally important for us to remember that the book of Daniel existed in documented form almost three centuries BEFORE Christ's birth.
In Daniel chapter 9, the angel Gabriel interrupted Daniel's prayer to give him a 4-verse prophecy which included the following:
(1) (Daniel 9:24) the scope of the entire prophecy
(2) (Daniel 9:25) the 69 "weeks" (or heptads) which is literally interpreted as groupings of 7's, so that it really means 69 "weeks" (sevens) of years
(3) (Daniel 9:26) an unspecified interval of time between the 69th and 70th "week" of years
(4) (Daniel 9:27) the 70th "week" appointed to Israel
The analogy of a "week" of years was common in Israel as there was, according to the Law of God, supposed to be a "Sabbath for the land" during which time the land (of Israel) was to lie fallow every 7th year for the recovery of the earth.
It was in part the failure of the Jews to comply with these laws that led God to punish them by sending them into captivity into Babylon for 70 years, thus giving the land (of Israel) the times of rest that it was due because of the failure of the Israelite people to do as God had commanded.
Remember, the focus of this passage is upon Israel and Jerusalem, and not upon the Church. The Church had not yet come into existence. It was at that time still a "mystery hidden in God," and the creation of such an entity (the Church) was never revealed to ANY of the Old Testament prophets.
The scope of this prophecy in Daniel includes a sweeping recounting of events that have yet to be completed, but that will be completed during that, as yet to be fulfilled, last 70th "week," or last 7 years. It will be these last 7 years that will be the completion of the Dispensation of Israel under the Law.
The word "dispensation" simply means an "economy" or an "administration." Much like we have differing administrations in our government, so too God has divided the timeline of human history into different administrations, also called dispensations.
The Dispensation of Israel Under the Law lasted from the giving of the Law to Moses on Mt. Sinai up to the time of Jesus' death on the cross at Calvary. However, the Dispensation of Law was cut short, or postponed if you will, 7 years short of its completion because Israel rejected Jesus as her Messiah (the Messiah who was "cut off but not for Himself," as it states in Daniel 9:26). Israel rejected her Messiah and crucified the Lord of Glory instead. Because of this, Israel's 70 "weeks" was stopped after 69 of those prophesied "weeks" were finished, but BEFORE the 70th week was to commence.
Israel still has 7 years left to complete her 70 weeks of years that was appointed to her by God. The unfinished dispensation of Israel Under Law that preceded the Dispensation of Grace (also called the Church Age), in which we live, never really ended but was POSTPONED by God 7 years short of completion.
During the time between the ending of Israel's already fulfilled 69 "weeks" of years of Israel under Law, there has been a great gap of time. During this gap, a new dispensation - the Church Age - has been in effect for over 2,000 years now. Once the rapture of the Church takes place, that event will close out the Church Age, and will end the Dispensation of Grace.
After the Church Age ends, Israel will once again take center stage in God's Plan for the Ages in order to complete the last 7 years of the 70 "weeks" of years that God appointed to Israel. That is the focus of God's prophecy given to Daniel in chapter 9.
In Part 3, we will look in depth into the first 69 weeks that have already been fulfilled, so that we can end this series with the last 7 years yet to be fulfilled, which will be the "Time of Jacob's Trouble "(Jeremiah 30:7), best known as The Tribulation. So until next time, stay tuned.
As war clouds gather, northern storm looks more foreboding - By Avi Issacharoff -
Hamas disinterest in conflict despite humanitarian deterioration makes Israeli war with Hezbollah over Iran's missile manufacturing the more likely course
Reading the headlines, there is a clear sense that Israel will soon enter a two-front war against Hamas in Gaza and against Hezbollah in Lebanon. Statements made by senior officials, lawmakers, ministers and military personnel, one after the other, seem to be prepping their respective constituencies for such a scenario.
While tensions are rising on both fronts, it is the northern border that presents the more combustible situation and higher likelihood of actual conflict breaking out.
The IDF's large parachute drill and Beirut's leaks to various media outlets about its Iranian-financed underground rocket factories both create a feeling that there is serious potential for escalation along the Blue Line.
Israel has made it clear on more than one occasion that it does not intend to agree to the establishment of precision rocket factories in Lebanon.
A similar facility in Syria no longer exists, as a result of an Israeli airstrike, according to Arab media outlets.
But Iranian-backed efforts to build missiles continue in Lebanon and Yemen, where the regime is backing the Houti rebels, though it officially denies this. While the Yemen challenge is Saudi Arabia's problem, efforts in Lebanon are of utmost concern to Jerusalem, and Israeli military action seems only a matter of time.
This is where Hezbollah's response comes into play. The Shiite organization has made it clear in the past that while it may let Israeli actions in Syria pass with no more than angry denunciations, when it comes to Lebanese soil, there is no such grace. Rather, there is a distinct possibility that an Israeli attack would invite a Hezbollah military response.
Both sides have made it clear that they are capable of causing serious damage to the other, and both are right.
The question now is whether either side will choose to blink - Israel by ignoring Hezbollah's missile factories or Hezbollah by ignoring an Israeli attack.
No interest from Hamas
Things are a bit less explosive in Gaza, where, though there is a growing humanitarian crisis, war is apparently not necessarily on the horizon.
The distress there is indeed severe - apparently unprecedented, even for the coastal enclave. On Monday, three more medical clinics were closed due to electricity shortages, and more than 15 others are only functioning partially.
With the unemployment rate at roughly 46% and more than half of the population - 1 million people - requiring food aid from human rights organizations to survive the month, Gaza's economic collapse, as Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot stated Sunday, is only a matter of time.
It is true that the more severe the humanitarian crisis in the Strip, the greater the danger of a violent outbreak, since Hamas has less to lose. And yet, Hamas still has no interest in war.
The terror group does not want a violent confrontation, and that has been made clear from its actions in recent months. Hamas has reportedly been cracking down on Salafi groups in the enclave, in an effort to prevent additional rocket fire at Israel.
The endless Israeli jabbering on this issue has created a feeling in Hamas that Jerusalem might be the one to make the first military move as it has in past wars.
For this reason, Hamas headquarters have been evacuated and the terror group announced a "state of emergency" in an attempt to create as few targets as possible for the Israeli side to hit.
And again, in almost every conversation, sources in the Gaza Strip say that despite the severe economic situation, Hamas is not interested in an escalation in violence.
News from Hal Lindsey Media Ministries - Hal Lindsey -
Revelation 13 describes the rise of a future dictatorship that puts Hitler and Stalin to shame. It speaks of two men it describes as "beasts."
We usually refer to one as "Antichrist" and the other as the "False Prophet." They get their power from an entity called "the dragon" that Revelation twice refers to as "the devil and Satan." (Revelation 12:9 & 20:2)
Theirs is a government of which Lenin could only dream. It rules the whole world and all people. It despises faith, kills the followers of Christ, and declares war against God Himself.
Revelation describes how the False Prophet forces people to worship and obey the Antichrist. One way in which he does this is to require every person on earth to receive an identifying mark either in his or her right hand or on their forehead.
This mark is actually an authorization for the bearer to participate in financial transactions -- buying, selling, receiving compensation, even paying taxes.
You either take the mark or you starve. Even if you grow your own food, you can't pay your taxes and the government confiscates everything you have.
In truth, it is probably impossible for those of us who live in the freedom of the western world to even contemplate how frightening and agonizing it will be to live under such draconian circumstances.
Over the last couple of centuries, the world has made great progress towards democracy and universal human rights. The freedom available to most of the world's citizens is unprecedented in all of history. But by cutting ourselves off from Judeo-Christian influences, democracy is turning into chaos all over the world. We are witnessing the shocking return -- and acceptance -- of authoritarian regimes and governments. Even here in the United States, we got yet another taste of the potential for governmental tyranny last week.
To be sure, that doesn't mean that Antichrist is walking the halls of Congress or the Department of Justice. In a sense, we are still a long way from actual tyranny, but we are undeniably on the road that leads there. And the practical length of any road depends solely on the speed with which you travel it.
We know that after the Rapture, elements of the Antichrist's government will fall into place quickly. It is surprising, though, how fast it is already happening.
Unless you get your information solely from the mainstream media, you are no doubt aware that last week the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence released its much-anticipated "memorandum." The memo is a four-page synopsis of the Committee's findings from its recent investigation into "abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act" or FISA.
Though I will discuss the memo on the show this week, I encourage you to go online, find it, and read it for yourself. You can locate it many places. Just search for "FISA memo full text." Make certain you read the unvarnished, official memo.
The reason I urge you to read it for yourself is because the airwaves and the internet are crammed with interpretations, explanations, rebuttals, and obfuscations. Every American needs to see for himself or herself exactly what this Congressional committee has discovered.
You will be shocked and dismayed to see how the past administration weaponized our most trusted government agencies to pursue its political agenda. And you should be alarmed because if rogue elements of our government will do it to a sitting President, they most certainly will do it to you and me.
And prepare yourself for the coming weeks. Still to come are the findings of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the House Judiciary Committee, and the Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector-General. Also, in the final stages of preparing their own reports and criminal referrals are the Senate Homeland Security Committee and the House Oversight Committee.
And the DOJ has recently announced it is reopening investigations into the Clinton email scandal, the IRS targeting efforts, Operation Fast and Furious, Uranium One, Benghazi, Hillary Clinton's "pay to play" scheme while she was Secretary of State, and the Democrats' involvement with the Awan brothers.
Folks, we are on the cusp of opening a Pandora's Box of scandal that will make Watergate, Iran-Contra, even Monicagate, and all the others seem like jaywalking infractions.
While I am grateful that, at last, truth may finally see the light of day, I am also aware that what is to come may throw our nation into a turmoil it has not experienced since the Vietnam era. And that may actually pale in comparison, too.
That's why all believers should be in fervent prayer daily that God will continue to shed His mercy and grace on our nation. We have long prayed that God will stop our country's accelerating slide into post-Christian paganism. Now that evil and wrongdoing at the highest levels of our government are finally being exposed, I believe only God's protection will keep us from imploding into civil conflict.
But God is a great God. He alone has given America the blessings that have made our nation the most prosperous, the freest, the safest, and the strongest history. He alone has helped America be the greatest force for good in the world that this world has ever known.
And I trust Him to keep America now.
In view of these breathtaking developments, I want to share with you a special teaching this week. I call it, "Character Coach."
As our second President John Adams warned, "We have no government... capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge and licentiousness would break the strongest cords of our Constitution, as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution is designed for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other."
What we are seeing unfolding today is a situation perfectly described by President Adams: "Avarice, ambition, revenge, licentiousness [that] would break the strongest cords of our Constitution."
He warned: "Our Constitution is designed for a moral and religious people." He refers to our personal as well as our corporate character. And it's logical that we will have a strong national morality only if we have citizens with strong personal morality.
This week I want to tell you about the New England Patriots. Though they narrowly lost the Super Bowl to the Philadelphia Eagles this week, it is remarkable to realize that this team was playing in its tenth Super Bowl. Ten! Whether they win or lose the championship is not as important as the consistency the team has displayed year in and year out.
Most people credit head coach Bill Belichick, quarterback Tom Brady, and team owner Robert Kraft for this success. And there's no argument with that. But USA Today notes that the Patriots also have a "secret weapon."
The Patriots are the only team in the National Football League with an official "Character Coach." His name is Jack Easterby.
Easterby helps evaluate the character of players before they are drafted and helps develop better character in players already on the team. He leads Bible studies and writes notes and sends texts to the players. He has an "unbending open door" policy so that players and coaches can seek his advice or spiritual help at any time, night or day.
Not only is he there to help them through spiritual or family crises, but he reminds them of their "big-picture" goals in life.
Wouldn't it be great if everyone had their own personal "character coach?" Many of us do. For some, it may be parents or other family members. For others, it may be older mentors who have taken an interest in their lives and careers. Then, there are godly friends.
But friends and family are limited in their ability to see us through our personal challenges because they have many of the same character flaws that we have. What we need is a character coach with perfect character.
And we have one. God.
This week, I want to help you realize the incredible resource to which each believer has unlimited access: the world's best, most understanding and helpful "character coach."
Don't miss this week's Report on TBN, Daystar, CPM Network, various local stations, www.hallindsey.com or www.hischannel.com . Check your local listings.
God Does Not Change - By Bud Hancock -
I find it almost amusing that, seemingly, so many nations feel they have the right to determine who rightfully owns the ancient City of Jerusalem. In fact, the very idea that any person or nation 'assumes' the authority to do so is laughable. Yet, it seems every day, more and more 'world leaders' do presume to speak about the status and fate of the city where God said many times, "I place My Name there," always speaking of Jerusalem.
See 1 Kings 11:36; 2 Kings 21:4; 2 Kings 21:7; 2 Kings 23:7; 2 Chronicles 33:4; 2 Chronicles 33:7. God is very jealous for His name and is keeping a record of those who attempt to speak for Him as though He were a man. His Word speaks for Him, and fortunately we have been given that Word.
Without a doubt, Jerusalem is the most contested city in the history of the world. It has been sought after and fought over by multitudes of people through the centuries, by people who so easily become drunk with the thought of control over the Holy City. Hordes of Muslims sought control, as did hordes of so-called 'Christians'. These all sought to place their names there and rule over Jerusalem, even though God has plainly stated that He 'places His name there'.
The city that President Trump recently recognized as the capital of Israel became prominent when King David designated Jerusalem as the capital of Israel around 1003 BCE.
According to the prophet Samuel, Jerusalem was already a city; but it was called "The City of David" and was the capital of the Jewish nation after King David captured 'the Fortress of Zion' from the Jebusites (2 Samuel 5:7). It remained so until the Babylonian captivity some 400 years later, but it was never designated the capital of any other national entity. It became even more prominent as the capital of Israel when the first Jewish Temple was built there by King Solomon, son of David, after God refused to allow King David to build His House, the Temple.
As far as the ownership of the land that was promised to Abraham as an 'eternal inheritance', many peoples had lived in the area for hundreds of years since the Flood of Noah, but they were not there through any directive from God. Only God has the absolute authority to designate who may live on and control certain geographical areas.
After all, God has stated though the psalmist, "The earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof; the world and they that dwell therein" (Psalm 24:1).
As recorded in Genesis 12, God directed Abram to leave the only home he had known and go to a land that He would show him. At that time God made several promises to Abram:
1) I will make thee a great nation; 2) I will bless you and make your name great; 3) You shall be a blessing; 4) I will bless them that bless you, and curse him that curses you; and 5) in you shall all the families of the earth be blessed (Genesis 12:1-3).
Abram was obedient and took his wife, Sarai, and his nephew, Lot, and all their substance and headed for the Land of Canaan, the land that God had promised to give him, which is known to this day as The Promised Land.
After reaching the land of Canaan, the Promised Land, Abram and Lot experienced a 'family problem' between Abram's herdsmen and those of Lot due to the size and overlapping of their herds. As a result they separated, with Abram allowing his nephew Lot to choose which part of the land he would live in. Typical of a man with no honor, Lot chose what seemed to be the best land when he should have deferred to Abram.
As it was, Lot nearly lost his life in the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah; he did lose his wife. Soon afterward, both of his daughters became pregnant by him and produced two men, Ammon and Moab, who would later become enemies of the Jews, and of God. God was looking out for Abram and provided the very best for the man whom He would later call His "friend."
Around this time, God defined the land boundaries that would determine the extent of the land promised to Abram.
In Genesis 13:14-15 we read, "And the Lord said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed forever."
Sometime later, God made a covenant with Abram: "In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates: The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites, And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims, And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites" (Genesis 15:18-21).
This passage of scripture attempts to further define the boundaries, using the names of tribes that were once inhabitants of the land of Canaan before Abram's arrival. These ancient tribes disappeared or were decimated through war many hundreds, or several thousands of years ago; so it can be difficult to nail down the actual boundaries that God designated as Abram's inheritance using these names. However, based on God's own description of the boundaries of Israel's inheritance:
The southern boundary seems to start at the northern tip of the Red Sea, then westward approximately along the River of Egypt, or the 'wadi of Egypt' (not the Nile River), to the shore of the Mediterranean, called "The Great Sea" south of Gaza, then northward along the "Great Sea" shoreline through Lebanon and Syria to the River Euphrates, eastward along the Euphrates for some distance, thence south through Syria past Damascus, including much of what is now called Jordan, east of the Sea of Kinnereth (or the Sea of Galilee) and the Jordan River, then continuing south to the Red Sea.
A description of these boundaries, with details, can be found at the Differentspirit.org website: https://www.differentspirit.org/articles/boundaries.php. Some references for these boundaries found at the website are: Exodus 23:31; Ezekiel 47:19; Genesis 15:18; Numbers 34:6; Ezekiel 47:20; Genesis 15:18; Deuteronomy 11:24; Ezekiel 47:17; Joshua 1:4; Numbers 34:6; Ezekiel 47:20.
These boundaries are nowhere near what Israel has received since becoming a nation again in 1948.
Ever since her founding, when God intervened to "bring the Jews back" to their ancestral homeland, the Jewish nation has been attacked by the Arab nations surrounding her in numerous attempts to destroy the Jews and "wipe Israel off the map." Attacked by overwhelming numbers of enemy soldiers and air forces, Israel defeated them all and now has one of the most powerful militaries in the entire Middle East. In fact, most of the wars against the nation of Israel resulted in some land gains for the Jews, but still a far cry from the total land area promised to them by God.
It is certainly not surprising that the Arab nations immediately surrounding Israel believe they have a right to contest the existence of the Jewish state, and the status and future of Jerusalem. However, just their proximity to Israel does not make that stance legitimate.
What is so alarming, though, is that almost every nation in the 190-member UN seems to believe they have the right, possibly even an 'obligation', to weigh in on the land belonging to Israel as well as the 'status of Jerusalem' issue. Hardly a day passes without a declaration of exactly what they believe should happen with Jerusalem, being issued from some president, prime minister, ambassador or other representative from at least one UN nation.
This situation clearly shows that any respect or reverence for the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob-the God that all Christians worldwide claim to worship-has declined since the Middle East and especially the Israel/Palestinian conflict became the political hotspot of the world. In fact, there are entire so-called Christian denominations that now believe Israel is the main cause of the conflict. This idiotic position is in direct contradiction to what God has stated numerous times in His word.
It amazes me that any group of people calling themselves Christians would take a position in direct opposition to what is clearly written in the Word of the God they claim to worship.
These deluded Christians seem to favor the Palestinian claims that they are entitled to a state within the territory that God declared was Israel's eternal inheritance; they are especially adamant about claiming the eastern part of Jerusalem for their capital city, the land where the holiest site in Judaism is: the location of the Jewish Temple built by King Solomon.
By now, after all these years, it should be abundantly clear to anyone - with any wisdom and understanding - what the Palestinians want. They do not want a separate state. By their rejection of multiple offers from Israel, mostly with land concessions (The West Bank, Gaza), that would have resulted in the establishment of a Palestinian state, they clearly show what they truly want and will not be satisfied without: the annihilation of Israel and control of all the land they call 'Palestine', especially Jerusalem.
On numerous occasions, through His prophets, God reiterated His promises to Abraham concerning the land which he and his descendants would inherit. God had already determined the boundaries of that land inheritance long before He directed Abram to go to the Land of Canaan. God promised the land to Abram and his descendants for "an everlasting inheritance."
The last time I checked, the definition of 'everlasting' still means "eternal," and "that which lasts forever."
I learned a long time ago that when you read something God directed His prophets to say, and then repeat on numerous occasions, it might be wise to pay attention and endeavor to be on the right side, which is always the side that God is on.
To place one's self, and more importantly, one's entire nation in contradiction to the Living God is a very unwise decision. Of course, if the decision-maker has no respect or reverence for God, it may seem the right thing to do. But, regardless of why such declarations or decisions are made, it has absolutely no impact on God and His declarations. GOD DOES NOT CHANGE!
God speaks very clearly concerning the land which He promised to Abraham and his descendants: "For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land" (Joel 3:1-2).
Anyone who claims to be a follower of the God of Abraham, or Jesus Christ, whether an individual, a nation, or an entire religious denomination, should carefully read these words and determine whether they are placing themselves in opposition to Almighty God.
If anyone claiming to be a devout Jew or a devout Christian believes that God is a being who changes His mind on a whim or at the "command of men," that person needs to reexamine his premises and determine whether he might be basing his beliefs on an incorrect premise. God has told us many times in His Word that he does not change, nor is He a man that He should lie.
His Word is forever settled, and God Does Not Change!
Daily Jot: Shutdown by thieves in the darkness - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
It's really a disgrace what is going on in Washington, DC. Congress shut the government down after midnight while they tried to get their act together on a budget. The five-hour 29-minute shutdown from 12:01 to 5:30 am resulted in an agreement to keep things going for another six weeks and add who knows how much to the budget-we don't know without digging because the lame-stream media is more interested in covering the shutdown rather than the details of the budget. Buried in the 12th paragraph of a Reuters story, we find that these elected highwaymen added about $300 billion to the taxpayer burden. They are literally bleeding the American public dry in the cover of darkness while we sleep.
There are a handful of responsible people in Congress. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) was the ringleader of this shutdown because he and a small group of Republicans, who supported last year's tax reform, opposed the domestic spending increases in the budget bill. To get Democrats to support keeping the government open, the budget bill included increases in subsidized child care and helping dairy farmers in Vermont. The result is Republicans and Democrats pointing the finger at each other about being irresponsible with taxpayer money, the government stays open until they pass another budget bill, and you get to pay for every congressman's pet project that bought his vote.
Some (like me) say this is corruption. Others say, "don't be so naÃ¯ve, it's politics." Either way, this is just a small part of the problem. Couple this with the organized crime that took place with the immediate past "president" and the Clintons, the obstruction of the current administration by members of its own party, the horrible visceral that governs any disagreement, and we have a real mess on our hands. Republicans are really bad; Democrats are far worse; and the system keeps perpetuating itself with candidates who are groomed to think the same way, towing the party line. Things need to be shaken up. As a witness to our Lord and Savior, those who feel the Lord has put it on their heart, should engage in this arena.
Not everyone is called to politics. Those who are can serve in many ways. They can be candidates, committee members, fundraisers, donors, volunteers and advisors. The need for the light of Christ in this area of darkness is tremendous. Common sense, ethics, morals, responsibility and accountability-all found in God's word-need to be re-established in our representative government. Currently, in both parties, there are those akin to what Christ describes in John 10:10, "The thief comes not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy." They are wolves in sheep's clothing. We need good shepherds who would lay down their lives for the citizens and the nation to be a witness about what is just and right.
Daily Devotion: Our Solemn Responsibility - By Greg Laurie - www.harvest.org
"Son of man, I have appointed you as a watchman for Israel. Whenever you receive a message from me, warn people immediately." -Ezekiel 3:17
Though the Christian life is a joyful journey, it is also a serious one. It is not for us to hoard all that God has given to us as believers. We have a solemn responsibility to share the gospel message with others.
In Ezekiel 3 God said, "Son of man, I have appointed you as a watchman for Israel. Whenever you receive a message from me, warn people immediately. If I warn the wicked, saying, 'You are under the penalty of death,' but you fail to deliver the warning, they will die in their sins. And I will hold you responsible for their deaths" (verses 17-18).
In Ezekiel's day, a watchman was someone who stood in a tower or on the walls of a city and looked for potential danger. What a serious call it was to be watchman. You had to stay alert and awake, ready to sound the alarm.
In the same way, if we see someone in spiritual danger, we are responsible before God to warn them, to tell them the truth. Do you see this happening to someone you know right now? Maybe one of your friends is headed for trouble. They're involved in a relationship that will destroy them, or they're getting into drugs or drinking. Maybe you're thinking, "I don't want to offend them."
Do you care about them? Then tell them. The Bible says, "An open rebuke is better than hidden love! Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy" (Proverbs 27:5-6).
Sure, it's a little uncomfortable. Sure, it's a little awkward. But we have to get out there and do our part. Are there people you know whom you haven't warned? Are there people you know whom you need to tell about Jesus?
FROM THE HEART
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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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