Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
The Rapture is Real - by Pastor Mike Taylor -
8 "We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
9 Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him.
10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.
11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences." (2nd Corinthians 5:8-11)
Wondering about the end times and the rapture can cause confusion, worry and fear for a lot of people, even Christians! For ages people have tried to figure out the exact time that the prophecy of Jesus's return will happen. The best place to turn for answers about the rapture is Scripture! God tells us everything we need to know in the Bible. There are some things that God has left a mystery for us, but has given us enough information in His Word that we should have complete confidence and hope in the Hope of our Salvation.
11 "For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.(Titus 2:11-14)
The opening verses speak of a time when those who are found in Jesus Christ will stand before Him and receive what has been done in our body, either for Him, or for ourselves.
WORK TO SHOW THYSELF APPROVED
As a Christian believer in Christ our Lord, our service is to be about our Father's business. Jesus gave us commands to follow and rewards will be coming for a job well done and contributing to the building of the Kingdom of God. I don't know about you, but I long to hear the words come from my Lord Jesus "well done thou good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of thy Lord" This from what I can gather from scripture happens to each of us who are found with the robe of righteousness that only comes from accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. That robe is not our righteousness, but we are clothed with His righteousness, and our ABBA Father only sees the glory of His Son found in us when we finally stand before Him.
Some question the timing of the return of our Lord Jesus and have all kinds of theories, being Pre-Trib, Pre-wrath, Post-Trib, (or in the extreme) no rapture at all, as Jesus will come to us and we, by our own endeavors create a utopia and we deliver the Church to Jesus when He returns. But what does the Bible say? Which belief is the truth? As I said, all the answers to this question are found in the pages of your Bible.
What I find among many believers, or even unbelievers, is a misunderstanding of what scripture is saying. The Bible has the concept of the removal of the Church BEFORE the coming tribulation all over its pages and a wise person in these last days, mines them out like precious jewels, or as a discovery of a vein of gold in the earth.. Let us take a journey down the verses that speak of this time of the "Harpazo" or the snatching away of the Church of the Living God in what is popularly called "the Rapture" .
LET'S START IN THE OLD TESTAMENT WITH ISAIAH
17" Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in thy sight, O Lord.
18 We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth; neither have the inhabitants of the world fallen.
19 Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.
20 Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.
21 For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain." (Isaiah 26:17-21)
For the believer in the pre-tribulation removal of the Church, this is where I like to start, as the prophet Isaiah saw the removal of God's people, both the living and the resurrected departed from their graves. Isaiah speaks of the dead rising to new life, even as dew on the herbs and the earth, its graves, casting out her dead in resurrection. The prophet sees judgment coming upon the earth and tells God's people to enter into their chambers and shut their doors to hide them from the wrath of Almighty God. God will punish the "earth dwellers" for their unrighteous acts and evil they have done in rebellion to His authority over all creation. And Jesus will stain His robes with their blood, as we see in Revelation chp. 19 when our Lord returns with the armies of heaven. It is not His blood, but the blood of those He has trodden down in His righteous wrath. One wonders what chambers is God telling Isaiah that the people of God will enter into. Then I remember what Jesus said to His disciples, even saying it to us.
14:1 "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know." (John 14:1-4)
For nearly 2000 years, our Lord God has been preparing a glorious mansion for each of His brethren, and God the Father's children. Jesus calls them mansions, and I can't imagine, even trying to envision the splendor of what God has prepared for us.
9 "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God." (1st Corinthians 2:9-10)
But note in one passage, God tells us to shut our doors, and Jesus tells that we will come to Him, to be where He is, not coming to where we are. Question. Where is Jesus right now? Of course, the answer is at the right hand of God the Father. Jesus said He would come again, to RECEIVE YOU UNTO MYSELF. Note that He will do the receiving. We will not receive Him, but He will receive us.
THE TWO COMINGS OF OUR LORD FOR AND WITH THE CHURCH
The Bible speaks of two comings, that many people cannot see, even written right in front their eyes, or they have not read the Bible at all, but take the word of others who convince them of this error.
As spoken of, many people have tried to pinpoint the time of the return of Jesus for 2000 years, and on a Christian forum that I host, I have had people proclaim that no one knows the hour of the Lord's return and use it as a reason to scoff that Jesus is not coming anytime soon. And though that is true that we don't know the exact timing of His return, we have been given many clues that point to the season of His return, not for judgment, but for removal of His chosen people, the Bride of Christ. So what are those verses that speak of the return of Jesus, most likely sooner than anyone of this world even thinks?
One of the most quoted passage of verses that points to the coming of our Lord is found in 1st Corinthians:
50 "Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?"(1st Corinthians 15-50-55)
This is Jesus coming for His church, and then later in Revelation chp. 19, He proclaims that He will come to rule and reign and the saints are with Him, clothed in linen, white and clean, a sign of the saints.
Note verse 52 in 1st Corinthians? In the twinkling of an eye at the last trump. Many people make an error, because they have a pre-conceived notion of a post Tribulation return of Jesus Christ to rule and reign for 1000 years and the 7th angel blowing his trumpet, and don't take the historical aspect that many Jewish people understand, but those who misunderstand are ignorant of Jewish terminology, because they don't believe that the Feasts of the Lord are still in effect for us today. What is the term that points to a Feast of the Lord quoted above? And note that the 7th angel of Revelation is not the same trumpet blown in this passage. Why? One produces joy, the other indescribable horror of the 7th angel's trumpet. They are NOT the same trumpet Paul and John describe.
THE COMING FEAST OF TRUMPETS
In Jewish life, since the giving of God's Law to the Hebrew people at Mt. Sinai, God also gave them appointed times in their calendar that would proclaim markers, or Holy Convocations that they were to observe. Even they did not understand, as it was for us, not for them but they observed in the letter, but we look at it in the spiritual sense of "God's Plan for Mankind" or the salvation of humanity based on God's appointed times. If you follow, or have in the past, any of my messages, you know that there are four Feast unto the Lord in the Spring, and three in the fall. We have established in the past sermons that Jesus fulfilled each of the Spring Feast days, called Holy Days on the exact day of their observance. Let me recap what those days were completed by Jesus and then we'll look at what He will complete in the near future.
The four Holy Days, or Feast days that were fulfilled by Christ in the Spring were:
Passover- Jesus became our Passover Lamb and was slain on the exact day of its observance.
Feast of Unleavened Bread-Christ was slain outside the camp and was buried along with our sins that He took upon Himself.
Feast of First Fruits-on the Sunday after Passover, the priest would wave a barley sheaf before the Lord in the Temple, as being the first fruits of their harvest. At the exact same time, Jesus was before God our Father, and became the first fruits of them born of the dead and completed payment in His own blood for the remission of the sins of the world and those who believe on His Name.
Feast of Pentecost-on the exact day, the Holy Spirit came to those in the upper room and the church was born.
And what of the coming fall feast of the Lord, what is God's plan that continues?
the Feast of Trumpets, or return of the King, called "no man knoweth the day or the hour," because they keep two days, as it is the only day that starts when a small sliver of the moon is visible.
After this, the Jewish people call the next 10 days, the Days of Awe, proclaiming to one another "may your name be found in the book"...This COULD correspond to the coming Tribulation that leads up to the next Feast in God's plan.
Day of Atonement (At-One-ment) with God...could coincided with the return of Jesus second coming and putting down all rebellion on this earth and setting up His Millennial Kingdom for a 1000 years.
Feast of Tabernacles, or God dwelling with us in reigning with justice and with a rod of iron.
And last is the Great White Throne Judgment, called the Last Great Day, or the judgment of all mankind who have failed to accept Jesus as Savior...this is the second resurrection and they are cast into the Lake of Fire where the Anti-Christ and False Prophet are.
For 2000 years or this Church Age (or the Age of Grace), people have been looking for the return of Jesus, even the apostles thought He would return in their lifetime. But here we are, and each generation has thought Jesus was coming for them in their lifetime, and they have been wrong. Why? They lacked ONE ingredient to start the countdown of the final week of Daniel's 70 week prophecy. That ingredient that started the countdown for the return of Jesus was the founding of Israel again, as a nation.
"Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Shall the earth be made to give birth in one day? Or shall a nation be born at once? For as soon as Zion was in labor, She gave birth to her children. " (Isaiah 66:8)
But that is exactly what happened. In May, 1948, the one thing lacking in the return of Jesus Christ in prior generations was put into place. Israel became a nation again, after nearly 2000 years of desolation of the land, and the scattering of the people of Israel to the four winds. Israel was REBORN. Why do I say Israel is a sign that was lacking in past generations? Let us quote what Jesus said concerning the budding of the fig tree.
32 "Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:
33 So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.
34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
35 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.
36 But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only." (Matthew 24:32-36)
Some say, how can we know that Jesus is close at hand for the coming for His Church? Note that Jesus said that this generation. MY GENERATION, of those born during or right after the forming of Israel as a nation will not pass away till all things be fulfilled. Let us review what a generation is, that Jesus spoke of.
"The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away. " (Psalms 90:10)
God has been shortening the lifespan of mankind down from nearly a 1000 years in Adam and Eve's time, to just 70-80 years in our modern time. Knowing that no man knows the exact day or hour, but we can know the season, as Jesus said, this generation will not pass till all things be fulfilled...what will be fulfilled? Jesus will be on this earth reigning and ruling for a 1000 years. All rebellion will be destroyed and the earth will be returned to the time of the Garden of Eden...
But let us observe one thing, if this generation born right after 1948 lives the outside of 80 years, that is 2028, which is 8 years from now. BUT..there is that word, but if we believe that we will not be on earth for that last 7 years of tribulation, then the number is 2021 approximately, not trying to pinpoint a date, but knowing the season is close, very close at hand. That is just a year from this day you are reading this message.
The next Feast day that Jesus, I believe will fulfill, on the exact days of its observance by Israel, and the Christian who understands their significance, is the Feast of Trumpets...some call the "Return of the King" and what Israel calls "No man knoweth the day or the hour"...coincidence? God is not about coincidences. Could Jesus come in the near future on a Feast of Trumpets? We watch and pray, and believe you me, I will have a trained ear listening for the sound of a trumpet this coming fall, and every fall there after till this Feast is fulfilled.
THE COMING TRIBULATION IS UPON US
But as I read rapture verses in your Bible, I am confident, and I am full of the Hope of Jesus Christ, that I'll not see one day of that coming Tribulation...oh, we will see tribulation in this life, but when I say the coming Tribulation, I'm talking about GOD"S WRATH. Many say they don't know when God's wrath will begin, but reading Revelation chp. 6, the 1st seal that Jesus opens unleashes the four horsemen of the apocalypse. The first rider on a white horse is none other than the Anti-Christ who is revealed holding a bow but no arrows, meaning he conquers by deceit and lies. As you read this chapter, the nations know who is bringing this calamity upon them, and they know they will not escape.
15. "And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;
16, And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:
17, For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? " (Revelation 6:15-17)
Jesus is using men to enact His judgment, much as He used men to bring judgment to Israel by Babylon, and Assyria. Jesus is causing events to come to pass, as each seal is broken. He is in control of making the earth ready for its redemption, that He has already bought with His own blood on the cross of Calvary. And after chp. 6 of this apocalyptic book, Divine judgment is enacted that no man can misunderstand.
And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth." Revelation 16:1)
Read the whole of the 16th Chapter of Revelation that shows mankind who are in rebellion will not repent and give God glory to their own destruction:
10 "And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain,
11 And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds."(Revelation 16:10-11)
We Are Children of Light
So why am I full of Hope, and confidence that I will not see one day of this awful time? Because Jesus my Lord told Paul the Apostle, and John the Beloved a promise to each of them and to us:
4 "But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
6 Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
7 For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.
8 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.
9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him."(1st Thessalonians 5:4-10)
And the glorified Jesus, the Son of God told John the Beloved Apostle when He appeared to him: and spoke of what we can hold onto with both hands and know that Jesus will NOT send His bride through the horrors of the wrath of God that will cover the whole earth.
10 "Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
11 Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.
12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
13 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches." (Revelation 3:10-13)
I repeat here, as I often have done...in verse 10 of the above passage, the words "I also will keep thee from" is the Greek word, "EK"...or by definition, "being removed from the time and place of the event." What event is Jesus speaking of to the Apostle John? The coming Tribulation is what the Son of God is referring to.
Note we are NOT appointed to God's wrath, and Jesus will keep us from the hour of temptation that shall try this whole earth. That is a promise from my Savior, and I pray your Savior.
So let's recap the nuggets that I am sharing with you. We are in the time of the end of days, the season of the return of Jesus Christ, in our generation since Israel was made a nation again.
We are bumping up to the end of a generation since Israel was made a nation 72 years ago..
The Tribulation starts when the saints of God are taken out "by force" and snatched away from this earth. When? At some future Feast of Trumpets, as No man Knoweth the day or the Hour. A term for this day. But He could come at any time, this would just be another Feast fulfilled, that I believe God is a God of order and He changes not.
We are not appointed to wrath, but receive salvation from our Lord, but the earth will be purged of all rebellion and destruction will cover the earth and the dwellers who inhabit its land.
Note as I have mentioned in past messages, that the Tribulation is designed by God for two things, and that is the redemption of Israel through much Tribulation, that is why it is called "Jacob's Trouble" and the nations who have rebelled against God will be destroyed who do not accept Jesus as Savior during this time, from witnessing from the 144,000 Jewish Evangelist, the Two Witnesses at the Temple, and the angel who flies overhead proclaiming the Gospel.
WILL YOU BE READY?
If Jesus would actually come this fall, would you be ready to receive the glorified body that He has planned for those who have accepted His free gift of grace and mercy through God our Father? Or would you be in darkness and not imagine that your world just got more dangerous than at any other time in history? Note I am not making any predictions of the day, but stating clearly and unequivocally, that Jesus return is close, right at the door. We don't know the exact day or hour, so its pointless to try and nail it down. BUT we know the season, and by all signs in the heavens, on the earth, and events of evil men and the forming right now of a One World Government just waiting for the green light to have a spokesman usher in the New World Order and the revealing of the Anti-Christ, that God said I will not see, that the Holy Spirit will be taken out along with those He indwells, and then the wicked One will be revealed...not before we are gone.
"For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.(the Holy Spirit, my explanation)
And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:" 2nd Thessalonians 2:7-8)
Will you still be here, and in total resignation of your fate of enduring the tribulation. Or will you be those who have no clue, and have pleasure in their unrighteousness? Don't be counted among these have little hope of being in heaven. Many will be saved during this time, yes, but also, many will die for the truth of God's salvation found in Jesus Christ. Many will be deluded with lies and false doctrines of devils, or many will just not care, as they think it's party time. Party is not what it will be, but hell on earth for all who inhabit the nations.
As for me, and those like me, who have found redemption through Jesus Christ our Lord, I will be at a feast in heaven, called the "marriage supper of the Lamb" and at the Bema Judgment Seat of Christ do receive rewards for salvation and works done in His Name...I will live for eternity in the glorious light of my God and do His will, whatever He has in store for those who love Him...
What about you?
Will you be with me, or will you be cast away into outer darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth, and the worm dieth not or is consumed? I pray you will not let that happen but embrace these next verses and confess Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior..
8 " But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." (Romans 10:8-13, my emphasis)
And the three verses that brought a 10 year old boy, to the realization that he needed a Savior..ME...
16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."(John 3:16-18)
Make Jesus the Lord of your life today, while the time is there for you to make that decision in freedom of conscience and not in Tribulation, if at all. Because friend and brother, we are close, as the pre-tribulation RAPTURE IS REAL.
This is pastor Mike Taylor, praying you will receive Jesus right now, and have confidence in the coming rapture...if you need prayer, counseling, or just a listening ear, contact me at email@example.com, God bless you all,
TILL WE MEET AT JESUS FEET
Lunar Eclipse on 4th of July: A Warning to Nations, Israel according to 100-Year-Old Prophecy - By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz - www.breakingisraelnews.com
Before the great and terrible day of Hashem comes,* I will set portents in the sky and on earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke; The sun shall turn into darkness And the moon into blood. Joel 3:3 (The Israel Bible™)
As fireworks fill the night sky on the Fourth of July, people will surely notice the changes taking place to the full moon, the first of the summer season, as it slowly changes color. Though the lunar change will be subtle, a one-hundred-year-old prophecy warns that this eclipse is in omen that should the nations force Israel to give up land in Israel, a foreign leader will pay with his life.
A lunar eclipse takes place when the earth is between the sun and the moon, and the moon passes through the earth's shadow. The Fourth of July will present a partial penumbral lunar eclipse in which the moon misses the inner, darkest part of Earth's shadow, and instead, it glances the outer, less dark part of the shadow. This will subtly darken a part of the lunar surface. About 35% of all eclipses are of the penumbral type, which can be difficult to detect even with a telescope. Another 30% are partial eclipses, which are easy to see with the unaided eye. The final 35% or so are total eclipses.
This eclipse will be entirely visible on July 4-5 through much of the Americas, though some northwestern areas of the United States and Canada will only be able to see the eclipse at moonrise. Those in much of Africa and parts of Western Europe can see a bit of the eclipse at moonset.
The eclipse will not be visible in Asia, Eastern Europe, northeastern Africa or the northernmost parts of North America.
The face of the moon will appear to turn a darker silver color starting at 11:07 p.m EDT according to Space.com. The eclipse "maximum" will occur almost 30 minutes after midnight at 12:29 a.m. EDT on Sunday. The time of the eclipse will occur earlier in areas west of the Atlantic. On the west coast, the eclipse will likely only be visible at moonrise, which is 9:45 p.m. PDT. The entire event will last nearly three hours.
The penumbral lunar eclipse will be the final of three consecutive astronomical events constituting a complete "eclipse season." On June 5, a penumbral eclipse was visible in Asia, Australia, Europe, and Africa. On June 21, an annular "Ring of Fire" solar eclipse was visible in Africa and Asia, including the Central African Republic, Congo, Ethiopia, southern Pakistan, northern India, and China.
Rabbi Yosef Berger, the rabbi of King Davids Tomb on Mount Zion, emphasized that a lunar eclipse can clearly contain a message from God. He cited Genesis as the source.
Hashem said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate day from night; they shall serve as signs for the set times-the days and the years; Genesis 1:14
The rabbi noted that the interpretation of these "signs" will be essential in the days preceding the Final Redemption as God's intent will be expressed in nature.
After that, I will pour out My spirit on all flesh; Your sons and daughters shall prophesy; Your old men shall dream dreams, And your young men shall see visions. I will even pour out My spirit Upon male and female slaves in those days. Before the great and terrible day of Hashem comes,* I will set portents in the sky and on earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke; The sun shall turn into darkness And the moon into blood. Joel 3:1-4
"The sun and the moon are how God will announce the Final Redemption, so everyone can see and everyone will have the ruach hakodesh (holy spirit, prophetic ability) to understand," Rabbi Berger explained. "This was also true before the Exodus in Egypt, when all the Jews were given the prophetic ability to understand that it was time. Unfortunately, even then, some chose not to leave Egypt."
"A modern man does not understand how God appears in nature, how God speaks to us through nature," Rabbi Berger said. "To the prophets, this was very clear."
The rabbi referred to a discussion of eclipses in the Talmud (Sukkot 29a) which specifies that lunar eclipses are a bad omen for Israel since Israel is spiritually represented by the moon. If the lunar eclipse takes place in the east side of the heavens, then it is a bad omen for all the nations in the east, and similarly, if it occurs in the western hemisphere of the sky, it is a bad sign for all the nations in the west.
The rabbi cited Yalkut Moshe, a book of kabbalistic insights written in 1894 by Rabbi Moshe ben Yisrael Benyamin in Munkacs, Poland.
"If the moon is eclipsed in the month of Tammuz, a 'sultan' will die suddenly and great troubles will follow," Rabbi Berger quoting yet another esoteric source. The eclipse will occur on the 12th day of the month of Tammuz. "When the moon is eclipsed in Tammuz, a king of 'luazi' will die suddenly and a great confusion will follow, leading to great problems."
"Luazi" is generally translated as foreign, as seen in the Book of Psalms.
When Yisrael went forth from Egypt, the house of Yaakov from a people of strange (foreign) speech. Psalms 114:1
"This clearly refers to troubles for the non-Jews," Rabbi Berger said, citing the Talmud. "The word 'sultan' is not generally used. It is only used in reference to Arab leaders. And since the Muslims mark their months only by the moon, this seems to be a sign for them, those who built the gold dome that sits atop the Holy of Holies."
At the end of this section describing the omens contained within eclipses, the Talmud states a disclaimer: "When Israel does the will of the place (God), they have nothing to fear from all of this," citing the Prophet Jeremiah as a source.
Thus said Hashem: Do not learn to go the way of the nations, And do not be dismayed by portents in the sky; Let the nations be dismayed by them! Jeremiah 10:2
Rabbi Berger noted that the lunar eclipse comes just a few days after the Knesset is going to vote on annexing parts of Judea and Samaria. The vote comes as a result of a coalition deal between Netanyahu, head of the Likud Party, and his political opponent, Benny Gantz, head of the Blue and White Party. As per the agreement, the government can pursue annexation of 132 Jewish cities and towns and the Jordan Valley. This represents 30 % of the West Bank allocated to Israel under the Trump administration's peace plan. The plan also conditionally provides for a Palestinian state on the remaining 70% of the territory.
"The Land of Israel does not belong to any man to give away," Rabbi Berger said. "The eclipse is a warning to both Israel and the nations to remain true to the covenant and the land."
"Star Spangled Banner" Banners - By Terry James -
Now they are determined to do away with the "Star Spangled Banner." The suggestion, among other maddening ones, is that we replace it with John Lennon's "Imagine."
It is the latest wickedness from the same minions-the human ones-who follow the dictates of the minions-the demonic ones-who reside in the "high places" of Ephesians 6: 12.
We see the modern incarnation of ancient rebellion each and every day as the anarchy takes on greater intensity by the hour. The following news excerpt reflects that rebellion.
The woke libs are on a roll. They've progressed from tearing down Confederate statues in the name of racial justice to targeting statues of the president who waged war against the Confederacy to free the slaves, all in the name of some indecipherable cause that is presumably noble and beyond the comprehension of the unwoke masses.
But even when all the Abraham Lincoln statues are torn down and Mount Rushmore is firebombed into oblivion, the woke scolds still won't be satisfied. A recent poll found that more than 40 percent of Americans who identify as "very liberal" want to change the name of our country and the design of its flag in the name of "pro-diversity cultural deconstruction."
Some 80 percent of "very liberal" respondents also want to change the national anthem, so it was only a matter of time before the cancel mob came for slave owner Francis Scott Key and "The Star-Spangled Banner." In fact, they've already begun. A statue of Key was toppled in San Francisco over the weekend, and a high school student in New York recently refused to sing the anthem at her (virtual) graduation ceremony to avoid "being complicit to a system that has oppressed people of color." (Andrew Stiles, "John Lennon's 'Imagine' Tops List of Woke National Anthem Alternatives," Washington Free Beacon, June 25, 2020)
Those who would now ban the "Star Spangled Banner" as America's national anthem would prefer that the world anthem written and performed by the former Beatle should take its place. Like Lucifer, who convinced one-third of Heaven's angelic body to rebel, then humanity to try to usurp God's authority by creating a one world order with the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11), the America-as-founded-haters want the United States under control of the globalists-elite.
Those desecrating the flag and demolishing statuary of the nation's past actually haven't any idea in most cases of why they do what they do. But the nucleus of their ilk serves their masters, those globalists-elite aforementioned. They serve their master-the same one the fallen angels followed into perdition and an ultimate fate in the ake of fire.
It is a worldwide insanity that has taken hold. We are witnessing the wind-up of history this side of the Tribulation.
Lennon, according to his lyrics, wanted us to imagine that God is a liar. Actually, the inference to be drawn from his lyrics is that there is no God. There is no Heaven and no Hell. We can just live in peace and harmony once we throw off the shackles of any pretense of there being a deity to rule over us.
As we can look around us at the present hour and see the increasing violence and tumult, we can agree that Lennon was right-to this point, anyway. It is the difference in believing in there being a God who rules and those who want to be their own gods that remains the reason there is no peace on planet earth.
There are those of us who still believe there is a God and Heaven, and there remains a Hell to shun. Therefore, there is constant conflict between these two realities. There are those who follow the ways of Heaven and there are those who foment the wickedness of the Hell-bound.
Of course, sadly and tragically, there are many in between, who are headed down that broad road-those who the powers and principalities in high places of Ephesians 6:12 are determined to keep herding toward the eternal abyss. There is no peace to be found within the wickedness that prevails in today's world.
That wickedness is prophetically scheduled to get worse-much, much worse.
But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. (2 Timothy 2: 13)
While the presidential election of 2020 approaches, the battle for the spiritual hearts and minds of this nation in particular will be fierce. Satan is desperate to bring America into his globalist mold for launching his hellish world dictator-Antichrist. America's autonomy and sovereignty must be destroyed.
The devil's mantra has been fully adopted and the heathen are indeed raging. But be assured, all of this madness hasn't taken the Lord of all Creation by surprise. Here, once again, is what God Himself has said in recognition of exactly what will be going on when He next intervenes into the attempt to establish a one-world order like in the time of the Tower of Babel.
Why do the heathen rage and the people imagine a vain thing?
The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.
He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure.
Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.
I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.
Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.
Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.
Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little.
Blessed are all they that put their trust in him. (Psalm 2:1-12)
Let us put our trust in the Lord Jesus. He is on the very brink of taking charge. He will begin doing so by removing His Bride, the Church, from this evil earth-system and placing her into the heavenly dwelling places He has prepared.
Be Careful Where You Seek Advice - Nathele Graham -
Most Christians have at least one favorite Psalm. When we face hardships or challenges it's usually Psalm 23 which we turn to. Psalm 42 speaks to our desire and longing for God and Psalm 51 is a cry out to God for His forgiveness. It's easy to skip around through the Psalms, but they will all strengthen us. Let's take a look at Psalm 1 and see if we can find some wisdom there. "Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful." Psalm 1:1. Instead of listing things a man (or woman) can do to be happy, the psalmist tells us what not to do. We all need to walk in the ways of the Lord, and secular people can't help us to walk according to Scripture. I learned at a young age who to go to in order to get the advice I wanted. If I didn't want to walk the straight and narrow path, I would go to secular friends. On the other hand, I also knew who would give me advice that was based on Scripture. I'm sure you're much the same. As I've aged and have drawn closer to my Lord, Scripture is my guide. I do have a dear friend I turn to if I need advice, and I'm confident she will give me honest help based on Scripture. It's important to choose friends, spouses, and partnerships wisely. We will be much happier if we don't follow in the footsteps of nonbelievers. "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness?" 2 Corinthians 6:14. If your friends don't know Jesus, there's a good chance they will mock Him and make you embarrassed to follow Him. Does that make you happy? It shouldn't. You'll be much happier fellowshipping with Christians.
We all need advice once in a while, but if we go to someone who doesn't base decisions upon God's ways, we'll get ungodly answers. The Apostle Paul wrote many letters, including one to a pastor in Crete named Titus. Crete was a rather wild place, and the letter advised Titus on how to be a better pastor. Paul's advises Titus to encourage the congregation to walk closer to the Lord. "But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: that the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience." Titus 2:1-2. This is the kind of advice Christian men need to take to heart. What about Christian women? "The aged women likewise, that they be in behavior as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; that they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." Titus 2:3-5. This isn't advice you'll get from secular friends, but this is solid Christian teaching. Next, Paul tells how to advise the young men. Should they sow their wild oats, or honor God? "Young men, likewise exhort to be sober minded. In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you." Titus 2:6-8. People who don't know God cannot give Godly advice, so to be happy one must "...walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly". How many of you gather around the water cooler at work and grumble about your boss? Is that where you'll find godly advice? "Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things: not answering again; not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things." Titus 2:9-10. If you need advice, you'll be much happier if you talk with a friend who follows Jesus rather than the world.
A person who fears and honors God isn't happy if he, or she, makes choices that aren't Scriptural. "But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night." Psalm 1:2. Although the word "meditate" is used, this isn't talking about eastern religions that encourage you to empty your mind and allow whatever demon happens to be passing to fill the void. This means to study God's word and think about it day and night in order to understand it, apply it, and take delight in it. If you're following worldly ways, you'll never be truly happy. When you please God you find His peace. Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." John 14:27. It may look as if worldly people are happy and think they have things pretty well figured out, but do they have God's peace? Many celebrities have fame and fortune, but the reality is they're not happy. Most take many drugs or drink to excess, always searching but never finding the happiness they think money can buy. They are walking in the counsel of the ungodly. It would be so much better to "delight in the law of the LORD".
"And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper." Psalm 1:3. Trees grow strong and tall and need water to thrive. A tree that's near a river has an abundant supply of water and nutrients and will thrive. People can take shelter under its limbs and be cooled by the shade of its leaves. Christians have a source of Living Water that will never fail. "Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water." John 4:10. The more we drink from the Living Water, the more fruit we will bear for Him. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is not law." Galatians 5:22-23. If we stand in the way of sinners or sit on the seat of the scornful, we'll never be like the tree planted by the rivers of water. We won't bear the fruit of the Spirit.
"The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away." Psalm 1:4. Chaff is the part of the wheat that's useless. Before wheat is able to be used for flour the chaff has to be removed. John the Baptist used chaff as an example when he was asked if he was the Christ. "John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable." Luke 3:16-17. The day is fast approaching when Jesus will call His followers Home. Those who do not know Him as Lord and Saviour will be left behind and eternally burned in the fires of damnation. It will be their own choice. Jesus doesn't force anyone to choose to follow Him, but the consequences of rejecting His free gift of salvation is eternal damnation. Today is the day to make a decision to accept Christ's gift. The offer is there for everyone, but each individual has to make his or her own choice. If you were baptized as a baby, that only shows your parents had good intentions to raise you in the admonition of the Lord. Baptism doesn't impart salvation, so you must make your own confession of faith. "That if thou shat confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." Romans 10:9. If you have made the confession of faith and believe in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, follow Him. Don't follow ungodly people down the path that leads to destruction.
"Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous." Psalm 1:5. Sinners cannot stand before God Almighty and enter Heaven based upon their own good works. We are all sinners. Judgment will come all too soon and saint and sinner alike will bow before Jesus Christ. "For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God." Romans 14:11. As Christians we know that our righteousness is only through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour. Everyone has a choice whether to accept Him or reject Him. The sad truth is that many will choose to reject Christ's death, burial, and resurrection and will be as the chaff thrown into the unquenchable fire. Christians must stand strong on our faith and allow our example to influence those who haven't found salvation. The lost people of this world need to come to us for answers rather than us going to them. We need to take our advice and guidance from God's word.
"For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish." Psalm 1:6. Jesus Christ is our example. He made it very clear that He is the only Way. "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." John 14:6. That means that a guru cannot lead you to Heaven, nor Mohammed, Joseph Smith, or any New Age lie. There is only one Way. Jesus is the Way. Do you know Him? If you're concerned about where you'll spend eternity, don't walk in the counsel of the ungodly. Their counsel will only lead to you to choose to spend eternity in the Lake of Fire. Turn to God for guidance; seek the counsel of a Christ centered Christian. Our righteousness only comes from Jesus and our joy is sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Be careful where you seek advice. If it's not godly advice then it's useless.
God bless you all,
Ron and Nathele Graham's previous commentaries archived at http://www.raptureready.com/featured/graham/graham.html
All original scripture is "theopneustos" God breathed.
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Daily Jot: The Compound Blessing - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
As America begins to celebrate Independence Day with cook outs and family meals, please take some time to read this report from the other side of the world by Pastor William Agbeti. He writes: "The need for nutritious meals by underserved children and parents in Ghana, worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic, is becoming increasingly overwhelming. Even as we were finalizing the listings to serve some 260 needy children, our volunteers kept bombarding me on the phone with more appeals from several other children and parents asking for help. While the appeals are deeply touching, our volunteers must remain focused on the current distribution program. They can't give any promises, as we are on a tight budget.
"The distributions took place at six different locations by several highly motivated and dedicated volunteers. They bought raw food, cooked, packed and distributed meals to needy children in various compound houses in deprived communities. Compound houses usually have only single sleeping rooms and, in many cases, are without toilet facilities. I know, because I grew up in one. We were five in a small space, no toilet. I shared the same bed with Dad and Mum. My sister and a cousin slept on the floor by the bed. Our shower was a shared one near a major highway, open to the point that one had to bend low to avoid being seen naked by those driving by. It took the Grace of God, and assistance from many good saints to bring me out of that misery when I grew up. And I'm very grateful to God and all who helped me along the way.
"For many, it is even worse than my experience. Children shower near open drains in front of the houses by the road, and attend to nature's call in the roadside gutters or around the bushes. As disgraceful and disturbing this is, there is an urgent need for the truth to be told and for help to be directed towards these suffering people. These are some of the littlest in society that we served with fried rice, fried chicken, boiled eggs, coleslaw, a local health drink called SOBOLO, made out of the hibiscus flower and several spices, Vitamin C tablets and bottled water. Many could not hold back the gratitude they felt for the love shown them. They sang and danced! Our volunteers also were deeply moved and very thankful for being chosen as conduits of blessing the needy, even though many of them are also needy.
"As I served these needy children, I recall my days in a compound house, too. Nobody brought me help like this! It was only my senior brother who visited us at Christmas and brought us live chicken and Fanta. Upon receiving these items, we would jump and sing. They were our only treat, once a year! I saw this same experience playing out when serving these children. This compels me to faithfully do more for the needy children out there and commit to serving them wholeheartedly. Matthew 19:14 says: "But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven." Our service to needy children is to show them the love of God, introducing the Grace of God, the love of Christ and the manifest presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Thank you for helping make this service possible."
Daily Devotion: Hope for Every Stage of Life - by Greg Laurie - www.harvest.org
God heard their groaning, and he remembered his covenant promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He looked down on the people of Israel and knew it was time to act. -Exodus 2:24-25
Talk about a guy who messed up his life. Moses blew it big time. Pharaoh's daughter adopted him as an infant, and they were training him, presumably, to be the next pharaoh of Egypt.
But Moses, an Israelite, knew this wasn't the life that he wanted to live. He wanted to help his fellow Israelites get free from the bondage of Egypt, and he sensed his destiny early on. He had the right idea, but he went about it in the wrong way.
One day Moses saw an especially cruel Egyptian taskmaster beating an Israelite, and he stepped in. He killed the taskmaster and hid his body in the sand.
But sand shifts, and before long Pharaoh found out what happened. He effectively put out a contract on Moses's life. Moses suddenly went from being the Prince of Egypt to a fugitive from Egypt. And as Exodus 3 begins we find Moses, now 80 years old, living in Midian and tending sheep.
One day deep in the wilderness, God spoke to Moses from a burning bush. He told Moses that He had seen the suffering of His people and was appointing him to return and demand their release.
Moses was stunned. He hadn't heard from God for 40 years. But in reality, God was preparing him. Those 40 years may have seemed like a waste of time to Moses. But God was getting him ready.
Pastor Chuck Smith once told me that everything is preparation for something else. So, think about your own life for a moment. You might be going through something that makes no sense to you right now.
Maybe you're asking, "Why am I going through this trial at this stage of my life?" or "Why am I facing this crisis?"
Here's why: God is molding you into the man or woman that He wants you to be.
FROM THE HEART
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