Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
A Two-Minute Warning? - By Steve Meehan -
In football parlance, to those of us who enjoy watching the NFL, a two-minute warning is given to both sides of the contest to inform the combatants that the battle is reaching its conclusion, and to take this one last respite from the heat of the game to catch a breather, to re-hydrate one last time, and to plan your last minutes' strategy against your opponent before retaking the field for the final push to secure the victory.
Of course, the first two-minute warning is given nearing the halftime intermission, but it is the final one, after 58 minutes of play have transpired, that lets you know, okay this it; the end is drawing near and the teams have to muster the strength and will to prepare for the final onslaught before things wrap up and the final whistle is blown.
It is in these closing minutes that the team with the ball, if they are trailing in the game by a touchdown or less, will go into a hurry-up mode or a two-minute offense, to drive down the length of the field and put themselves into a position to either kick a 3-point field goal to snatch a victory over their enemy in the closing seconds of a tight, hard-fought battle, or be faced with having to go all the way into the end zone, past their opponent, to steal a victory from the jaws of defeat.
For those of us who are Christians, who belong to Christ's church, who have been commissioned to take the gospel to the ends of the earth and are informed about Bible Prophecy and Last Days events, one has to wonder if we are indeed in a two-minute warning period when we consider the condition of the world and the way things are lining up prophetically.
Are we seeing the summation of the Church Age and only have a brief time remaining before Jesus comes back for us and snatches us out and off to Heaven? Nobody knows the day or the hour when the Lord will return for His body of believers, but warning flags and whistles are dotting the landscape and sounding an alarm that the end may indeed be close.
What are these indicators that things may be wrapping up?
The Rapture of the Church is a sign-less event; but the subsequent seven-year Tribulation period that occurs after the removal of the saints from Earth has many visible indicators that lets one know that the time is upon them or about to get under way. If we are seeing preludes of the signs of this final "week" of years enveloping us, then we know that the Rapture is even closer.
It is hard to look around and see what is befalling the world presently and not come to the conclusion that the onset of the Tribulation hour is soon upon us.
We know that an antichrist and his globalist rule must arise at the very kickoff of the final seven-year period. A globalist push has been well underway for a number of years now. Secularists, and even the Vatican, have long been pushing for the establishment of such a worldwide government rule. Their goal to achieve this seemed to be going along methodically and gaining momentum until Brexit occurred and the election of Donald Trump in the USA stalled the movement in its tracks.
The former occupant of the White House, anti-president Obama, did all he could do weaken the United States and to foment worldwide instability to create the conditions necessary for the establishment of a worldwide rule and dictator - and it probably will take something of such enormity or cataclysmic severity to usher in the man who has a plan for global peace.
Obama didn't waste an opportunity in the US mainland to stoke the fires of civil unrest in his and his attorney general's meddling in perceived white on black racial injustice. His involvement in the "Arab Spring" in North Africa and the Middle East did anything but bring about peace and stability in those countries that were adversely affected by his prodding and manipulative schemes. He did all he could to thwart the re-election of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, but God had other plans - including seeing to it that his groomed for president protÃ©gÃ©, corrupt Hillary, would not step foot in the White House (How do you like Trump now, Obama?!).
Perhaps the most blatant and most despicable thing that Obama got away with was his so-called nuclear deal with Iran. How and why would the US Congress go along with the anti-president's traitorous actions in nullifying sanctions that were working just fine, and then giving them millions to continue their pursuit of not only nuclear ambitions, but to further their reach in state-sponsored terrorism?
We know that Iran hates Israel and will do all they can in their effort to destroy the Jewish State, so it only seems fitting that Obama would support any regime that has that goal foremost on their agenda. Obama's loathing of Israel was only all too apparent. What a stain he left on the American presidency. If nothing else, I enjoy watching Trump repeal all that the former clown-in-chief sought to accomplish in the Republic that he hated.
Anyway, venting over. We know that in the end an antichrist figure and his global rule will arise, in spite of apparent momentary setbacks like Brexit and the Trump presidency. The Bible warns us of it, so it will happen. There are more than likely a few candidates waiting in the wings.
A few personalities have gotten some exposure lately in Europe; so when the time comes - after the Rapture of the Church - Satan will pick his man, and this "beast" figure will confirm a seven-year covenant with Israel, only to break it halfway through the Tribulation Period.
It is looking more and more like the Rapture could be the single event that propels this man forward. The desire to entrap Israel into a so-called "land for peace" deal with the occupying "Palestinian" Arabs has long been underway, and it is only a matter of time until the aforementioned man steps forward to ink his "covenant with Death and Hell" with the Jewish State.
We also know that a global religion will encompass the earth, and it will be used by the antichrist to further secure and establish his rule.
I don't have any doubt that the Vatican will be the nucleus of this false worldwide religious system, and they are the only entity on the face of the planet that is trying to usher in all other faiths into their fold, under the leadership of the Roman pontiff. Their "Come Home to Rome" campaign is a clarion call for all former Catholics to reunite with her, and their ecumenical tentacles reach far and wide to grab in any and all who will bend the knee to their "Holy Father."
Their alluring siren call has already tempted and deceived many a victim onto the rocks of her false religious system, and those numbers will only increase exponentially after the catching away of the true church. Her cheap perfume and garish mascara will only be too enticing not to lure in unsuspecting victims, after the Rapture has taken place. They will be instrumental in the promotion and advancement of the one who will rule the world.
Rumors of nuclear war are all about us in these end times.
North Korea is hell-bent on acquiring nukes, and their bellicose rhetoric by their "Dear Leader" directed at the United States is almost a daily news item. The people of South Korea, Japan, Guam and Hawaii are concerned about his threats to launch a nuclear-tipped missile in their direction.
We all know now about the false warning issued in Honolulu last month, so folks are alarmed that this sad example of a country's leader will follow through on his threats. He has tempered his tone recently, due to the ongoing Olympics, but it is only a matter of time until a misstep occurs, either by his actions or in a preventative measure taken by the USA.
Is God holding this back only until after the Rapture happens? It sort of seems that way, which means the Rapture of the Church could be oh so close.
Perhaps the biggest indicator to me that we are in a final two-minute warning period of the Church Age is what is going on in the Middle East and, in particular, events that are encompassing Israel, which is Ground Zero for Bible Prophecy and End-Time events. Israel finds itself buoyed in the middle of a tempestuous sea of those surrounding her that long to bring about her demise.
Hamas to the West never ceases in their quest to infiltrate Israel via their clandestine tunnel operations, in order to carry out terrorist activities. We occasionally hear of the Jewish State finding these tunnels and destroying them; but in this ongoing effort by these terrorists, Israel has to be ever vigilant and not allow those bent on terror from accomplishing their goals. They also continue to lob rockets into Israel, which brings about a swift retaliatory IDF air attack on the areas that launch those weapons.
To the South, for the time being, it seems that Israel and Egypt are cooperating, to a degree, to stop the rise of terrorism in the Sinai. ISIS or any other groups of radicalized Islamic subversives are more of a threat to Egypt's existence than the State of Israel could ever be to them, and they realize that. Both countries have a shared desire in stopping the spread of Islamic terrorism on the peninsula, so the combined effort to quell the violence in that region benefits both countries. The Isaiah 17 prophecy will eventually put an end to that cooperation.
Jordan, on the East, occasionally mouths words of contempt directed towards Israel, especially when they feel slighted or wronged by some of the actions taken by the Netanyahu government. Donald Trump's recent acknowledgment of Jerusalem being the eternal capital city of Israel was one such declaration made that gave Amman heartburn, and the usual tongue lashing followed from the country's leader.
Militarily, they have never been a serious threat to Israel. They like to play it both ways: in a desire to curry favor with their Muslim brothers, King Hussein will utter the usual vindictive rhetoric at Israel when a perceived affront to the Islamic cause has taken place; but then, in order to appease the West, and the US especially - since they desire our military aid and protection, to an extent - they will usually cool their heels after a short period of venting their rage.
They still have a peace agreement in effect with Israel; but again, with the sudden occurrence of the Isaiah 17 prophecy unfolding sometime soon in the future, they will side with those lined up against the Jewish State.
Up to the North, Israel faces a variety of threats - more insidious and extremely more lethal.
Hezbollah, to the northwest, has been allowed to flourish along the southern tier of the nation of Lebanon. Through the support of the rogue state of Iran, they have amassed quite an arsenal of rockets, numbering in the tens of thousands. Israel does all they can to stop the shipment of those weapons from Syria into Lebanon, with forays into Syrian airspace to launch missile strikes at the convoys transporting those weapons of war.
Hezbollah has also been operating in the confusion taking place in Syria, along with other enemy combatants in that ongoing quagmire. It is only a matter of time until those rockets north of Israel get launched into the Jewish homeland. Something or someone must be holding that event back, for the time being.
The greatest threat, by far, to Israel has to be what is taking place in Syria. It is totally out of control - at least from a human perspective.
God is always in control, so prophesied events to occur will only happen at their appointed time. Who could have foreseen the circumstances that transpired to allow for the ingathering of all the forces that are now occupying what is left of the country of Syria? Assad may still be in charge in name only, but certainly the country has become a multi-front shooting gallery, and disaster looms on the horizon for its capital city.
Russia has been entrenched in the country of Syria now for a couple of years, for the supposed intention of propping up Assad and his regime. Putin doesn't care a whit for Assad; he just wants his warm water port on the Med and to further along his expansionist goals. Assad is a willing dupe, and under the protection of the Ruskies, he gets to maintain control of the country [har har].
Obama tried to exert his will in Syria [another har har moment] by supporting the rebels that wanted to overthrow the Assad regime, and by his placement of disappearing red lines for Syria not to cross when it came to their use of chemical weapons against the rebels and civilians. It was all pretty much downhill from there.
Russian forces are fighting; Assad's forces are fighting; the US-backed rebels are fighting; Hezbollah moved in to fight; and now, the most troubling aspect of the war, as far as Israel is concerned, is that Iran has troops directly involved in the country that are in position to launch attacks against the Jewish State.
Netanyahu met with Putin to warn the Russians, and to the others involved by extension, that Israel will not allow Iranian forces to operate within 40km or 25 miles of the Israeli border, and that serious repercussions would ensue if Israel was not heeded in this regard.
There can be no mistaking of what Iran's desires are for the Jewish State. They have said repeatedly, for quite a while now, that they intend to destroy the Jewish State or drive them into the sea, as their bluster goes. Israel has been warning the world for years of the Iranian threat, and it has, to a large extent, fallen on deaf ears. Iran and the world should take seriously what Israel intends to do with Iran in order to safeguard their own country's existence.
Will the world heed? No. Not until disaster strikes.
Now with Iran on the doorstep of Israel, things have ratcheted up rather quickly in the shadow of Bible prophecy. An Israeli fighter jet, conducting operations to take out Iranian drone-launching sites after one of the drones had infiltrated Israeli airspace over the Golan Heights area, was shot down by a Syrian missile defense system. The IDF responded by taking out a battery of the Russian-built missile defense systems that were positioned near the Israeli border.
So, there are now ongoing operations directly involving Iran and Israel, and not through proxies like Iran had been doing in the past. This can only escalate; and where it ends, students of Bible prophecy have an idea.
There are two prophecies of significance that have yet to occur and could be extremely close to their fulfillment. Some subscribe to the notion of a third prophecy happening - a Psalm 83 war - but I don't believe that Psalm speaks of an actual war, but instead is a plea for help.
Isaiah 17 foretells of a future destruction of the city of Damascus. It seems to indicate that the city will be standing in the evening; but, by morning time, it has been obliterated. Only a nuclear device or a series of nuclear attacks could level a city that quickly.
Another prominent end-time prophecy is the so-called Gog/Magog invasion of Israel by a horde of nations that seem to point to Russia, Turkey, Iran and others confederated with them, into the land of Israel.
This is an ill-conceived attack against the Jewish people, and the Ezekiel 38 and 39 description of this account says that God Himself will intervene and wipe out 5/6ths of the invading forces. It is interesting that not all the forces will be decimated, but that 1/6th of them will survive. Nevertheless, it will be a huge invasion into the mountains of Israel, and it will cover the land like a cloud, according to the verbiage used by Ezekiel in this prophecy.
How close are we to that? Those three nations - Russia, Iran and Turkey - are confederated now and operating within the next-door neighboring country of Syria, just on the doorstep, so to speak, of Israel. Ezekiel talks of "hooks" being placed into Gog's jaws by the Lord and turning him around and drawing him into Israel to begin the annihilation of these forces that wish to destroy the Jewish State.
I personally believe that Gog is a spiritual entity and is a chief prince, or a demonic fallen being, that has influence over that region of the Middle East. Much like in the book of Daniel, where it speaks of a chief prince over Persia and another one influencing the nation of Greece, I think this demonic entity could be an upper- echelon general of Satan's forces. And quite possibly, like Satan entered Judas Iscariot to betray the Lord and Satan will eventually enter into the coming antichrist, this chief prince could enter into a guy like Putin and drag all those forces down into Israel.
Putin, being a human, will eventually succumb to death; but, in the Book of Revelation, we see this character Gog fighting again, after the 1,000-year reign of Christ on Earth. I don't think that Vladimir Putin will be around or resurrected to fight again, after a time period of over 1,000 years has elapsed. Human beings will perish during this invasion of Israel, but spiritual entities will live on to fight another day.
And who knows? Maybe even the prince of Persia, along with the prince of Turkey - if they have one, and maybe all countries do! - will be fighting alongside Gog in this huge push to destroy God's Chosen People. I'd be willing to bet also that Michael, the chief prince of Israel, will be in position on the other side of this battle as it rages on. Satan's forces and his generals doing battle against Michael and the God of Israel - and the outcome was foretold centuries ago.
Maybe the hook is required to be inserted into Gog's jaw by God, because the satanic forces know they can't possibly win this battle and want to opt out of it at the last minute; but God has other plans and wants to prove that, at this time, He is fighting on behalf of the Jewish people and He wants all to know that there is a God in Heaven watching out for His Chosen People. Just a thought...
From a human perspective, what could be the hook to draw in Putin and Russia, and the other forces allied with him?
Russia needs funds to continue their expansionist endeavors, and to acquire those recently discovered natural gas fields off the coast of Israel would go a long way in furthering his conquests. There is also the possibility of crude oil being found in Israel, so that would be alluring as well. Russia could also lay claim to the natural land bridge that Israel forms between Europe, Asia and Africa. Israel is also situated along the Med, is close to the strategic Suez Canal, and the Gulf of Aqaba to the south. That would be very desirous for Putin to have access to those waterways for his navy to operate.
For Iran and Turkey, who have ambitions of recreating an Islamic caliphate, the destruction of the Jewish State might be a big enough carrot to entice them into this invasion, to do away with the Zionist regime once and for all.
Then the question comes up: when will these two events - the Isaiah 17 and the Ezekiel 38/39 prophecies happen? Which will come first? Will they happen before the Rapture of the Church, or later? Will one immediately precede the other, or are they two separate events that are not interrelated?
Students of Bible prophecy have mixed ideas about when these two events might take place. Obviously, we can't be dogmatic on their timing. We don't know for sure. All we can do is stay immersed in the Word and to keep an eye on daily events.
We have the benefit, though, of knowing that there is more behind the scenes going on and what it will lead up to in regard to Bible prophecy, more so than does the casual observer who sees or hears of an Israeli jet being shot down in Syria due to operations against Iranian forces. We know that there are epic events going to take place along that front - in Syria and the land of Israel - that will have enormous implications to the combatants on both sides. They will be earth-shattering events, both in the physical human realm, as well as the spiritual.
As far as timing, the final seven-year period known as the Tribulation Period, or Daniel's Last Week of Years, is also referred to as the Time of Jacob's Trouble. And indeed, the final seven years will be a time when the Lord deals directly with and through the Jewish people again, since the Church has already been raptured out and off the planet.
Since this will be the Time of Jacob's Trouble, my belief is that the Isaiah 17 and Ezekiel 38/39 campaign will happen after the Rapture. With the True Church gone, the whole world will hate Israel, and they will be the prime target of Satan and his demonic cohorts. He will sway all the human governments to do his bidding against the Land and people of Israel.
There are a couple of reasons why I believe this. First, the restraining influence of the Holy Spirit will be lifted at the removal of the Church, and any evil thoughts or motives will be more easily realized and affected without this restraining influence holding them back. North Korea could more easily launch a nuke, an evil dictator will be allowed to arise, Iran will be able to seek to destroy Israel, etc. Evil will abound.
Secondly, in the Ezekiel 38/39 verbiage, it seems to indicate that the US will be nothing more than a protesting nation sitting on the sidelines of this invasion, if they are indeed included as one of the "young lions of Tarshish," and most likely they are a part of this group. Others could include nations like Canada and Australia, nations who had their origins and roots in Great Britain. The Lion is the symbol for Great Britain, and so the "young" could refer to her offspring countries like the US, Canada and Australia who have only been nations for a couple of hundred years.
Why would the US, with all its military might, not come to the aid of our ally Israel during this invasion, especially now with Trump in office who seems to be very pro-Israel? And why would the UK, or Canada, or Australia and/or others just lodge a mild protest, probably in the halls of the UN, at the invasion of this large armed force into the country of our present ally Israel?
Even Saudi Arabia, as most believe that she is the Sheba and Dedan that Ezekiel references, is sitting out of this invasion and is voicing displeasure or concern. They certainly don't want to see Iran get any stronger and grow in their hegemony over the Middle East. For the time being, there is a quasi-cooperation going on between Jerusalem and Riyadh to limit the influence of Iran in the region.
Of course, the invasion could happen after Trump is out of office and is replaced with another anti-Israel, left- leaning stooge president.
Or, is it possible that - after the Rapture takes place - there will be a lot of chaos going on worldwide after such a momentous event has happened, where millions of people have vanished, and those particular countries' forces may have been drastically reduced by this event - so a protest is all they can muster?
It would seem that this would be a very good time for the enemy to seize the opportunity of worldwide panic and confusion to launch a somewhat sneak attack into Israel, while everybody else is befuddled and consumed by what has taken place. What better time would there be to attempt to try to wipe out the people of Israel?
The devil is aware of some of the events to unfold during the Tribulation Period, and that he only has about seven years to accomplish what he hopes to get done. Having been around for eons, he is more than likely well versed in Bible Prophecy; he did quote scripture to Jesus in the wilderness in his tempting of Our Lord, after all - and he knows how most of the Tribulation period will play out - but he doesn't know ALL of the details. In his thinking, maybe, why not seize the moment? Try to catch everybody off guard.
So, again, what will trigger these two events, causing them to take place?
To my way of thinking, I could see where the Isaiah 17 prophecy of the destruction of the city of Damascus could be the catalyst that sets off the chain of events leading up to the Gog/Magog massive invasion into Israel. The world will be extremely incensed at the action taken, apparently by Israel, in the leveling of this city. I mean, what other event could possibly bring about such a large invading force into Israel while the rest of the world seemingly looks on indifferently?
We've discussed the hook inserted by God, but still it seems that something so out of the ordinary has had to have taken place to mobilize such a huge response against the tiny nation of Israel. Obviously, lobbing a nuke or two at a city like Damascus will have the region and the world inflamed with rage.
It could also be that Isaiah 17 happens concurrently at the very onset of a large invading force getting ready to sweep into the land, and an opening salvo of the war could be a nuclear strike at maybe the heart of the area where this invading force is plotting and getting ready to make a move.
Some of the language used by Isaiah in this chapter 17 prophecy could provide some of the answers to the instigation of this massive response against a neighboring capital city by Israel.
Verse 4 reads: "And in that day it shall come to pass, that the glory of Jacob shall be made thin, and the fatness of his flesh shall wax lean."
This almost sounds like those conditions that occur after a chemical weapon attack and the accompanying photos of people whose flesh looks gaunt.
Verses 5 and 6 talk about how that time will be compared to a reaped corn field and empty olive trees, how empty and barren they are in this prophecy. Does this foretell of a massive assault on Israel where large numbers of casualties have taken place, and then such a massive response by Israel would then be warranted? It is cryptic language, no doubt, but something huge must first have occurred in the Jewish State in order for the Israeli government to launch a nuke at Damascus, if that is indeed what Isaiah 17 would seem to indicate.
If they did level Damascus, then again, that would certainly infuriate the world enough, and especially the combatants listed in Ezekiel 38/39 to launch an all-out offensive against Israel. But then again, why wouldn't Russia just respond in kind against Israel by launching a few nukes of their own towards the Jewish State, but instead opt for a land invasion?
After all, since Russia is involved in Syria, it only stands to reason that they would lose some countrymen in an attack by Israel on Damascus. Does the Lord render Russia's nuclear capability useless? Are they then forced to retaliate by air and ground forces? They would want the land intact and radioactive free, it would seem, if they are coming in to take the country, the gas fields and maybe oil to be found there. That could be a reason.
And then again, Israel still has more nukes. Why aren't they being used against the invading forces' home countries? Or, will they be? Might an EMP be deployed by either side to prevent the additional nuclear devices from being implemented in the theater of operations?
I tend to think that these two prophecies may be co-related. It might be a wrong assessment, but I think one triggers the other or happens in conjunction with the other. Another interesting verse, at least to me, is found in Isaiah 17 that sort of gets me thinking that Is.17 happens at the onset of Eze. 38/39.
In Isaiah 17, verses 12 and 13, it says: "Woe to the multitude of many people, which make a noise like the noise of the seas; and to the rushing of nations, that make a rushing like the rushing of mighty waters! The nations shall rush like the rushing of many waters: but God shall rebuke them, and they shall flee far off, and shall be chased as the chaff of the mountains before the wind, and like a rolling thing before the whirlwind."
Doesn't that sound like the beginning of the Ezekiel 38/39 campaign, when Russia, Turkey, Iran, Libya, Sudan (maybe) and many peoples with them, coming rushing into the country and cover the land like a cloud? It certainly does to me!
The very next verse, the last one of the Is.17 prophecy warns: "And behold at evening time trouble; and before the morning he is not. This is the portion of them that spoil us, and the lot of them that rob us."
Those nations, according to Ezekiel, are coming for a spoil, to plunder the land. Isaiah also refers to those that come to spoil. Then the ominous words: they are coming in the evening, and by the morning he is not - still a reference to the destruction of Damascus and the closing of the prophecy of the burden of that city.
Will Israel launch a nuclear attack at Damascus, at the very beginning of the Ezekiel 38/39 Gog/Magog invasion by a huge horde of peoples, coming to take a spoil, and only after Israel has already suffered massive casualties to make it easier for this invading force to enter the Glorious Land? Hmmm...interesting. I think, thought provoking.
Obviously, we don't know for sure. But I think they are more than likely linked and could happen in rapid succession, or are taking place at the same time. Isaiah 17 could trigger a massive response like Ezekiel 38 and 39, or the Gog and Magog war begins, and Israel retaliates by launching a series of nukes at maybe the headquarter city of where the plans are drawn up to invade the Jewish State. Time will tell.
So, are we in the closing minutes, hours, days, months of the Church Age and only have a brief time left before the shout and trumpet blast and the Church's mission on Earth is over?
With Iran now in Syria and the Israeli's launching attacks into the country to stop the advancement of the encroaching Iranian forces, it would seem that we could be on the brink of a major escalation of hostilities between Israel and Iran.
Any attack on Israeli soil or forces by the Iranian troops in Syria will be met by a measured counterattack by the IDF on the mullah's henchmen now carrying out operations in Syria. One escalation could lead to another. Things could quickly spiral out of control. It would seem that the burden of Damascus as foretold by Isaiah could be coming into clearer focus, or that the Ezekiel 38/39 prophecy could soon be realized.
This indeed could be a two-minute warning, that we only have so much time left to accomplish all that the Lord commissioned us to do: take the gospel to the far corners of the globe and make disciples of all men. In these closing minutes, we don't need to ask the coach to send us in; the moment we said yes to Jesus, we have been in. The world has no idea what is about to befall them.
As in the analogy of the football game, we can see that the clock is winding down. There is only so much time left before it is over. Opposing forces are lined up against us, trying to render us ineffective. Sitting on the sidelines is not an option. Many souls hang in the balance, and soon they will be thrust into a time never experienced before in human history - and beyond that, an eternity spent in a lake of fire.
Many of us sense that the end is near. Knowing what we know of end-time events and watching just those two future prophecies develop before our very eyes, it is inescapable that we are reaching the very end. Could this be an aberration and we are not approaching the time that we think we are in, and that those events may happen later in another timeframe? That is possible but seems highly unlikely.
We see the headlong rush to establish a one-world rule and a one-world religion. Those things have been on a fast track for quite a while now. The threat of a nuclear war and a huge loss of life are ever present with us now, and more rogue countries are in the process of acquiring these mass means of destruction.
Evil in this world has reached epidemic proportions with school shootings; the wholesale slaughter of unborn babies worldwide; radical Islamic extremists and their terrorist activities; all the transgender and homosexual abominations; the garbage taking place in America to destroy the current president; and again, all of the prophesied countries lined up in Syria just awaiting the hook to draw them into Israel to do battle with the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. They'll never know what hit them...well, not until that first moment in the afterlife.
How much longer can things devolve in the world before the Lord exercises His wrath? Not too much longer, I would conclude.
Hurry, line up and advance the cause. Keep your eyes on the goal. The clock is running! Our time is just about out.
New US Embassy in Jerusalem Will Open in May 2018 to Celebrate Israel's 70th Anniversary - Benjamin Gill -
The new US Embassy in Jerusalem will open much earlier than some had predicted.
The Trump administration is working to make the move by May 2018 in celebration of Israel's 70th anniversary.
Speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Friday, President Trump said, "We officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel."
"Every president campaigned on, 'We're gonna move the embassy,' then they never pulled it off," he continued. "It's the right thing to do."
The State Department notified Congress on Friday that the Jerusalem embassy will open in May. It will open in a temporary location while the US government works on a long-term facility.
Congress was informed of the move after Secretary of State Rex Tillerson signed off on a security plan for the new embassy.
A ribbon-cutting is being planned for mid-May to mark Israel's reestablishment as a country 70 years ago on May 14, 1948.
Initially, the new US embassy will consist of just a few offices inside an existing US consular facility in the Arnona neighborhood of Jerusalem. That facility will be expanded somewhat from its current state.
The project to build a full embassy in Jerusalem will take several years and could potentially cost $500 million dollars.
The Trump administration is considering the legality of an offer from Republican mega-donor Sheldon Adelson to pay for at least part of the new US Embassy.
Under one scenario, the administration could also solicit contributions from individual donors in the evangelical and American Jewish communities. But it's unclear if government lawyers will allow that.
President Trump announced in December he would be moving the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in recognition that Jerusalem is the true capital of Israel.
He has stuck by his promise despite facing a backlash from the Palestinian Authority and its supporters.
"I promised to look at the world's challenges with fresh eyes," Trump said last year.
"We cannot solve our problems by making the same failed assumptions and repeating the same failed strategies of the past," he explained.
'Isaiah' Seal Discovery Solidifies Bible's Historical Accuracy - Tzippe Barrow -
Archaeologists believe they may have found another piece of evidence that confirms the Bible narrative. Hebrew University of Jerusalem archaeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar presented her team's findings on a clay seal, called a bulla, which may have belonged to the biblical prophet Isaiah.
Mazar said the find is especially significant because the Isaiah seal was found in very close proximity to a bulla belonging to King Hezekiah.
Mazar, a third generation Israeli archaeologist, published a second volume summarizing the ancient artifacts uncovered in the Ophel excavations - the area adjacent to the southern wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem's Old City - between 2009 and 2013.
In 2009, her team unearthed a bulla inscribed by King Hezekiah, one of Israel's most important kings. Mazar told CBN News at the time she was "amazed" on a personal level at the find. (It was one of 22 seals uncovered in close proximity to one another.)
"We discovered the seal impression imprinted by King Hezekiah himself saying very clearly in ancient Hebrew 'belongs to Hezekiah, son of Ahaz, King of Judea,'" she told CBN News Jerusalem Bureau Chief Chris Mitchell.
"We never found in archaeological excavations, scientific, stratigraphy such an item that is so close, private [and] tangible to any of the Israelite or Judean kings ever," she explained. "I believe it's as close as we can get to any biblical figure, not to mention such a figure as King Hezekiah."
For Mazar, the seal was one more piece of the puzzle verifying the biblical narrative of the Judean king and the Jewish connection to ancient Israel.
The Isaiah bulla is equally exciting because of the close relationship between King Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah, recorded in 2 Kings 19-20 and Isaiah 37-39.
While Mazar was careful to point out why the bulla may have belonged to a different Isaiah (based on a missing letter in the Hebrew word for prophet), the two seals were unearthed in the same area at the same time.
"[The] chances of it belonging to any other but the known prophet Isaiah are extremely slim," Mazar wrote in an article published by Biblical Archaeology Review. "No other figure was closer to King Hezekiah than the prophet Isaiah."
When Israel's first Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion testified in 1937 before the Peel Commission - the first to recommend dividing the land according to Britain's partition plan - he famously said, "The Mandate is not our Bible. The Bible is our mandate."
Ongoing archaeological discoveries, such as these two seals, continue to drive that point home.
People Will Scoff About the End Times the Bible Warns - By Howard Green -
Many churches today don't preach about Jesus' return.
On March 27th of 1980, there was a small eruption of Mt. St. Helens in Washington state. The volcano rumbled awake after a one-hundred-year sleep. In the weeks to follow, a series of small earthquakes warned of the danger building below the surface of the beautiful mountain.
Federal and local government officials alerted the public to the growing threat and said a large-scale eruption was imminent. Many tourists, backpackers, campers and local residents heeded the warnings and complied with evacuation orders. There were dozens of others who decided to ignore and even scoff at the warnings about the growing danger and chose to stay in harm's way.
On May 18th, 1980 at 8:32 am. Mt. St. Helens erupted ferociously, sending a pyroclastic blast and a wall of super-heated gas and ash racing down the sides of the mountain at over 300 mph.
In the wake of the volcano's fury, 57 people lost their lives because they either ignored or scoffed at the warnings of impending danger. The Bible tells us about a time when scoffers will mock people who warn others about coming of the Lord.
Take note that the Bible zeroes in on a particular time in history. Peter tells us these people will be around in the last days. Another key aspect of these people is the fact that they are following their own sinful desires. The Bible tells us that these people will mockingly ask, "Where is the promise of his coming?"
I've observed many non-Christians mock the notion of God's coming judgment and Jesus' soon return. People on television, radio and social media scoff at the idea that Jesus is coming again. My heart goes out to these people because they are not the enemy, satan is and he wants to keep them blinded.
Knowing the stakes are eternal, we must tell them about God's holiness, coming judgment and redemption through Jesus. The fact that the secular world scoffs at the notion of Jesus' soon return shouldn't be a surprise. What is shocking is the number of supposed Christians who are scoffing about it.
End Time Bible prophecy is like an elephant in the evangelical living room because so many of today's well-known leaders either choose to ignore it altogether or in some cases, they have become the very scoffers the apostle Peter warns us about.
Ask yourself the following questions: When was the last time you heard a sermon on Bible prophecy? When was the last time your small group discussed the end times? Can you remember the last time your church invited a guest speaker to teach on an End Time subject?
I'm guessing many of you feel the same as I do. I have noticed a steady departure from teaching end time Bible prophecy in most evangelical churches today. This is sad and unbelievable in light of the fact that the four gospels, the epistles and the Old Testament are brimming with chapters that are heavily eschatological.
In the wake of the volcano's fury, 57 people lost their lives because they either ignored or scoffed at the warnings of impending danger. The Bible tells us about a time when scoffers will mock people who warn others about coming of the Lord.
If a pastor or a Bible teacher you listen to is ignoring this subject, chances are high they are doctrinally flawed in other areas. Ignoring or scoffing at Bible prophecy should be a red flag and I would advise you go elsewhere for biblical instruction and find a godly shepherd who teaches the whole Bible.
When I became a Christian in the mid-1980's, there was a great deal of interest in Bible prophecy. Books about the End Times were everywhere and many preachers spoke about it with regularity. Here we are decades later but interest and teaching on end time Bible prophecy are at an all-time low.
Today's Christian bookstores are chock full of life enhancement books that focus on self-esteem instead of God esteem. The most popular Christian teachers focus on the emotions and felt needs of people instead of challenging them to Christ-likeness in light of His soon return.
The gospels are replete with Jesus' warnings and encouragement as He tells us to be alert, to endure to the end and tells us to make disciples. End Time Bible prophecy is paramount in evangelism because people in the world want to know what the future holds. Bible prophecy is critical in discipleship because it exhorts us to good works, personal holiness and finishing well.
As we think about Peter's warning of scoffers coming in the last days, we must understand personal holiness at the center of the issue. Where Bible prophecy is ignored, holiness is diminished. This is important to understand because Peter ties the understanding of end time Bible prophecy closely together with godly living in the last days.
The fact that so many well-known leaders choose to ignore or scoff at End Time teaching is indicative of the last days' spiritual deception and blindness Peter's warned us about. The National Hurricane Center warns people of an approaching storm, in the same way, the US. Geological Survey alerts people of increasing seismic activity and probable volcanic eruptions.
The end result is that many people will heed the warnings and prepare accordingly. If you could go back in time to the day before Mt. St. Helens erupted violently or the day before Hurricane Katrina struck, wouldn't you lovingly warn people with every bit of strength you have despite what the scoffers say? Christians should be warning the world of the approaching storm of God's judgment and tell them about the hope that Jesus offers.
Daily Jot: Let's weigh in with wisdom - Bill Wilson -
We have reports of CNN scripting a "town hall" meeting to reflect the socialist message on gun control. We have leftist politicians and celebrities encouraging students to demonstrate for gun control, comparing such to civil rights protests in the 1960s-only problem is that the folks marching for civil rights were marching for their right to be treated equal under the law and as equals in society. These kids will be manipulated into marching for taking their rights away. But that's what the leftists want. Then there are all sorts of placating ban proposals on bump stocks and auto-fire kits. It's not the guns, folks, it's the people using them. We need to stop those with criminal or mentally deranged motivations.
Common sense-it seems like something that has been lost in every crisis debate. Arming teachers is a common sense approach that nobody wants to admit may work. Obviously, disarming teachers with gun free zones isn't working too well. A responsible, well-armed citizenry is a benefit to society, except to those who would intend to do violence against society. Another common sense approach is to curb the senseless violence in video games and on TV. While we are at it, let's also tame down the references to and blatant portrayal of sex in these mediums as well. The very actors calling for gun control and an end to sexual harassment are the same people who glorify these things on TV and in movies.
Christians need to weigh into this national debate. We are equipped with the Holy Spirit, Godly wisdom, and the common sense to speak boldly. Peter and the Apostles made the point of man's unjust and imperfect law giving when they told the Sadducees (who ruled over the Jews in submission to the Roman government) in Acts 4:19-20, "Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard." Indeed, this was repeated in Acts 5:29 when the Sadducees again tried to prevent them from preaching Jesus: "We ought to obey God rather than men." This would seem to be counter to what Paul wrote in Romans 13:1, "Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that are ordained of God."
It is not contradictory. It is telling us to submit to the governments and do good beneath them. Peter, John and the Apostles are saying that we must follow God not man. Here in America we have a unique system of government where by Constitutional law, which was derived from God's law, the government governs at the consent of the governed under the law. We the people essentially are the boss of the government. We are to hold the government accountable to the laws of the Constitution. If we are to take what Paul wrote in Romans 13 and apply it to Americans, it would mean that Americans should submit to Americans under God's derived law (The Constitution). Good stewardship is to preserve this unique system for it is a tremendous blessing to have freedom of speech, of worship, of evangelizing, and yes, defending life.
Daily Devotion: Know Your Adversary - By Greg Laurie -
I have forgiven that one for your sakes in the presence of Christ, lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices. -2 Corinthians 2:10-11
C.S. Lewis said, "There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They are themselves equally pleased by both errors."
During the Civil War, Union forces had developed a paranoia about General Robert E. Lee as though he were almost superhuman, able to do anything in spite of his small numbers. Exasperated, General Ulysses S. Grant told some of his staff, "I'm tired of hearing about Bobby Lee. You'd think he was going to do a double somersault and land in our rear. Quit thinking about what he's going to do to you and think about what you're going to do to him."
We need to stop worrying about what the devil is doing and let him worry about what we will do next under the power and control of Jesus Christ.
We have a marked advantage in this spiritual battle we're engaged in. We know that our adversary moves in relatively predictable patterns. He has been using the same tricks, the same gimmicks, and the same ploys for generation after generation.
If I engage in a competitive sport like racquetball or tennis, I try to size up my opponent. If I see he is weak in the back court, then guess where I will try to lob every one of my serves? The back court.
In the same way, we can look at our adversary and see that he has certain tactics he uses again and again. In most cases he tempts us in the realm of our minds, because he knows that a thought ultimately will lead to action. That is where we need to draw the line.
FROM THE HEART
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