Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
Promises from God Our Abba Father
- by Pastor Mike Taylor
1 "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:
4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit."(Romans 8:1-4)
Of all the chapters in the Bible that provides a description of what promises are afforded to the redeemed child of God, (and there are many) Romans chapter 8 is my personal favorite and I want us to jump right in and discover these rich, wonderful promises that God has given us, through Jesus Christ , our Lord.
This has got to be one of the most beloved chapters for myself that Paul ever wrote. So much promise and hope for following after our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Because of His love for us, we do not fear the condemnation of a Holy God. We walk after the Spirit, demonstrated by the life of our Savior as our perfect example. Because we could not keep the Law of God perfectly, as God knew from the beginning that we could not, God became man and took on our likeness in the flesh, so that all who believe in Him, are not condemned through the breaking of His Law, but are saved by grace, as a willful, glorious act of divine love and mercy. We are clothed in His righteousness when we will stand before the Father in heaven, as God the Father will see nothing but the righteousness of His Son in us. We must die to this life in the flesh as demonstrated by the act of baptism, and become new creatures following after the Spirit of God.
5 "For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.
6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness."(Romans 8:5-10)
THE LAW CONDEMNS, JESUS SAVES
Man by himself, cannot follow the ways of God as expressed in His Laws and written down on tables of stone, called the Ten Commandments. God being the author of those laws that were written by His own finger, God became man and stood on the Mount of Olives, called the Sermon on the Mount, and in this sermon gave His instructions on what was prior the letter of the law or a legalistic approach to His law. By giving us the spiritual intent of what it meant to keep the law of God by our actions, our focus, and spiritually dying to this world through belief on Him, the only Begotten Son of God, Jesus proclaimed what those laws meant to each of us.
People who call themselves Christians fail to understand that there MUST be a change in nature, in habits, and in the way you conduct your daily life. It doesn't come "prest-chango" as some would have you believe, but is a life- long process of character building found in our Lord, Jesus Christ called sanctification.
We see so called "Christians" today that you can't tell any difference in them and the rest of the world. Does a truly converted, saved individual return to the pig trough of this world and continue in the same behavior that God was willing to save you out of? I had a conversation with some other ministers and we all were in agreement that the direction of the "modern day church's" by and large is anathema to what God ordained for His church to be an example of. The church is not a building, not a denomination, not your favorite speaker on the Prosperity Gospel, but each and every one of us that have Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirit residing within our hearts and dwelling within each of us, as a deposit of future glory and total redemption. Many fail to understand that it is not about any so-called religiosity in any denomination, but about relationship with the King of the Universe. We follow the Bible only, not some new feel good gospel that emphasizes personal growth in this world, but of the world that is coming or some traditions of your "religion" that profess a "secret knowledge" not found in your Bible....A world that is coming sooner than you may even think. We store up treasures in heaven, not here on earth.
I had a gentleman who called expressing sorrow for not being able to quit sinning concerning a particular distressing manifestation of the flesh that kept occurring in his life. Any sin is against God our Father, but we have an advocate in Jesus Christ, who hears our prayers of repentance when we sin, and God the Father separates us from that sin, as the east is from the west and remembers it no more..In the above brother who feared his sin would be his ruination, I had to remind him, "welcome to the human race." Since each of us who have believed on the Lord Jesus Christ struggles to be like Him, we are still mortal living in a sinful flesh that is prone to failure at times. Paul, the apostle of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, complained the very same thing when he wrote: Romans chapter 7,
18 "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
23 "But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin."(Romans 7:18-20, 23-25)
God knows that we are still in mortal bodies, subject to sins of the flesh, but that doesn't mean He doesn't want us to try through faith and trust in His power, His strength, and that not of our own. When we fail, we come to Him in repentance and confess our sins :
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness". (1st John 1:9).
A RECIPE FOR VICTORY IN THIS LIFE
We are to arm ourselves with the whole armor of God, which is the only way we can stand up to the wiles of the devil. Paul detailed what it takes to be a Christian in the spirit in the times we live in. Ephesians chapter 6,12 "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand
14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;"(Ephesians 6:12-18)
There is a difference in being weak in the flesh and seeking God to deliver you from temptations and sinning unintentionally because of being mortal, but a truly regenerated Christian does not continue in willful sin. He doesn't lie, doesn't steal, doesn't commit sexual immorality, and doesn't continue to live like the rest of the world. The Christian comes out of this world, even though they are in the world, they are not of it any longer. A TRUE follower of Jesus Christ, picks up the sword as a warrior by learning to put on the whole armor of God, as found in the pages of your bible, and stamped on your soul in times of prayer. Paul explains this very clear principal in the follow verses, as we return to Romans chapter 8.11 "But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.
12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.
13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:"(Romans 8:11-16)
Think for a moment here about your life. Have you ever done something that instantly pricked your spiritual heart, and unsettled your mind? You knew immediately that you had done wrong, and that God was in plain view and seeing your sin. You can't hide it from Him and it brought an instant sadness, or at least when you had a chance to think about what you had done. You couldn't rest until you confessed that sin and ask forgiveness and when He forgives, (and He always does) instantaneously we are back in fellowship with Him and a weight is suddenly lifted from our shoulders and off of our mind. That doesn't mean we can keep doing that same sin, as we ask for strength and the God given faith to escape from that sin.
The bible is not a smorgasbord that we can pick and choose what we like and discard what is too hard, is not popular, or doesn't fit our "lifestyle". I am distressed when I hear that we can do whatever we like, after believing on Jesus Christ and God will keep us in His family, even if we live like the devil. "Now it's party time, all is good" they say. How serious were you when you made that commitment to follow after Jesus Christ? Christian means follower of Jesus Christ, as a disciple, a believer in what He said, and by taking on His likeness. Know one thing, my friend, even the demons believe in Jesus Christ, but they are not followers of His way of life, and they are not saints. James chapter 2,19 "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?"(James 2:19-20)
That's not to say that works save you. No, not at all, but it does say that works is a product of being saved...otherwise, you are putting the cart before the horse. Works does not provide salvation, but salvation does produce works. They are inseparable if you be truly found in Jesus Christ. Point is, you change and you are not the same as you were before. You belong to Jesus Christ. He purchased you and you are no longer your own, but are waiting to be born into the Kingdom of God. We have that promise, we have that deposit of His Holy Spirit. It's time that we live like it.
We all are in "bible school" and being taught and learning the ways of Almighty God, the Father and His Son. As we grow in spiritual maturity by reading, memorizing and hiding His Word in our hearts, the acts of sinning that we once committed will become less and less. Oh, the temptation will still be there, as the devil never gives up, but the desire will be buffeted with the knowledge of God's way, by reading His Word. We rely on His strength, His power, and His Holy Spirit to lead us away from the temptation and hold firm to the thought, "no, I'm not ever going to allow myself to grieve my Lord, again." We learn, we overcome, and in the end, we will win and be welcomed into His presence.
WHAT A GLORIOUS PROMISE
17 " And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
19 For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God."(Romans 8:17-19)
Can you fathom what verse 17 is saying? "Heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ" is what it says. What does it mean? It means that what Jesus is right now, what belongs to Him as inheritance and what Family He belongs to, we will share in the same. As the Bride of our Lord and Savior, what belongs to the husband (Jesus Christ) belongs to His bride as well (just as it is here on earth). They are joined together and share in that inheritance given by God our ABBA Father. We will belong to the family of Jehovah, (Yahweh), the Almighty. We will be of the same essence, the same spiritual body, the same power of the mind, and endued with unspeakable power and glory, all to the glory of the Father because He imparted it to us when we are changed into spirit beings with a new body( just as His Son has a new body when He was resurrected), at His coming for His church. It will be a glorious body full of potential. We will begin by reigning with Jesus for 1000 years as Kings and Priests during the Kingdom of God on earth, and further into the vast expanses of eternity. We will have a life of power and glory without end. Right now we can only imagine...we cannot fully comprehend it till it comes to pass. Our minds could not handle the realization and the scope of what awaits us. 1st Corinthians,2:9" 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)
God has promised all things. Nothing will be withheld from us. He will lead us to a glorified life that we cannot even begin to imagine. I reminded of a song "I Can Only Imagine."
"Surrounded by Your glory, what will my heart feel
Will I dance for You Jesus or in awe of you be still
Will I stand in Your presence or to my knees will I fall
Will I sing hallelujah, will I be able to speak at all ? I can only imagine. Yeah, I can only imagine"
Yes, we can only imagine, but we cannot fully comprehend the glory that will be found in us, because of His love, mercy, and His grace.Continuing in Romans,
20 "For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,
21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
22 For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?
25 But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it."(Romans 8:20-25)OUR BLESSED HOPE
Notice how he lays the foundation by turning our attention to our hope. He reminds us that God purposefully made life subject to futility. Futility is a frustrating quality that wears away at one's confidence. It can produce a sense of hopelessness that leads us to think that nothing will work out. Sometimes our pilgrimage seems so long and arduous that we take our eyes from our Savior, and hopelessness builds. However, Paul reminds us that God does everything in love and wisdom and for our good. Futility is an obstacle that we must overcome through faith in God. Yet, He has willed that futility be present, intending that we use it as a prod to use our faith in cooperation with Him despite its presence.
26 "Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."(Romans 8:26-28)
These are powerful, positive statements concerning our struggles . Why should we be fearful that God cannot take care of us? Does God ever fail to succeed in whatever He does? Did you say never? Correct, NEVER. These verses flatly and dogmatically state that if we want to cooperate in faith to bring God's purpose for us to its intended conclusion, we must, I repeat, must, believe that His watchfulness over us involves every circumstance of our lives.
Now this does not mean that God gives us everything we want, but gives us what is in His perfect will. God will always give what is best for us. That's why the Prosperity Gospel is so offensive, as it goes against the will of God. It holds God hostage and says that we know what is best for ourselves, and God just needs to give us whatever we desire. They make God out some kind of "Santa Claus" in the sky, and He must give us whatever we ask..It's a serious breach of Biblical principles of God's sovereignty and His perfect wisdom. With God in our corner, what has a true child of God to fear? The answer is nothing. God our Father will give us everything to succeed in this life, if we trust in Him.
29 " For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?"(Romans 8:29-31)
God's purpose is to transform you into what His only Begotten Son is, as humanly possible in this life, waiting for perfection and the inability to ever sin again, when Jesus comes for us in the coming Rapture.
God knew before the foundation of the world, who would respond to His call, and who would not. It comes down to an individual's will. God will not force His will on anyone to save them. He will give them a choice, either life or death, light or darkness. We can choose to be with Him for all eternity, or choose to be separated from all forms of joy, love, happiness, or hope by being banished from His presence because of unforgiven sin not covered by the sacrifice of His only Begotten Son, Christ Jesus. To me, that truly is hell. That is independent of any punishment if you believe there is a hell fire, or not. To be separated from the Giver of life and loose all hope for all eternity, now that is the definition of 'Hell". We are commanded to keep the charge of what Jesus Christ told us to do with our lives. John chapter 14,15 " If ye love me, keep my commandments.
16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you."(John 14:15-17)
The Holy Spirit given on the Day of Pentecost was the start of God's focus on His church. That same Spirit is with us today, giving us strength, hope and resolve to finish this race and become sons of God.
Notice the last verses quoted above of Romans 8, but see verse 31, as it puts a cap on why we should never be fearful of missing out on the provision of our God. "If God be for us, who can be against us?" God has the power and the will, and He does not make mistakes or empty promises. Paul then lists what God has already done for all concerned and what He wants to do for each of us in the life we live for Him. Our responsibility is to choose to put these facts to work in our specific circumstances.
32 "He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth.
34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us."(Romans 8:32-34)
Satan is already defeated when we say "yes, Lord" and believe in our hearts and our minds, that Jesus is God, that He was raised from the dead, and that He lives forevermore. Satan makes charges against His saints every waking moment. He hates the children of God and accuses them mercilessly before a loving God, but Jesus stands at God's own right hand and is our Kinsman Redeemer, who bought that which was lost by shedding His own blood in a perfect sacrifice for what we could not do, save ourselves. Jesus saved us and brought us into His family as sons and daughters to God the Father, and brothers and sisters to Himself, God's only begotten Son, that through one supreme act of love, dying in our stead and receiving of what we deserved....death. He was our substitute, our sacrifice to satisfy a Holy God.35 "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."(Romans 8:35-39)
Focus in on that biblical phrase " nothing can separate us from God"...nothing, my friend. Nothing in this material life, in the spiritual life to come, any creature, or any calamity can take us out of God's hand, or separate us from His love.
WHAT ABOUT YOU?
You who have been reading these powerful words of promise, of hope, and eternal security found in Jesus Christ and Him alone, you ask yourself, am I also included in these promises? There is only one way that you can claim the promises that Paul wrote in this most glorious description of our future, eternal existence and being found in His presence, in His love, and close fellowship with the One who made you. How, you say, do I claim it?
It's so easy, a child can do it. Jesus said,Matthew 18:3-4 "Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
And as believing little children that by faith believe God, what is it we must believe?
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)
Believe in Jesus as the Son of God, in what He did, and what He is going to do, then confess that belief to the world....
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)
Like I said, a child can do it. I did it when I was 10 years old and was still soft and tender in heart to the calling of the Holy Spirit. Does that mean, as an adult you can't do the same? No, it just takes a spirit that humbles itself and become child-like, and says:
"I can't do this alone. I am a sinner, born into sin. I want to live for eternity in your presence. Cleanse me from all unrighteousness, and I accept Jesus Christ, as my Redeemer and believe that Jesus is God, come in the flesh, and chose to die in my place. I believe now that you are alive and are coming again to gather unto yourself, the sons of God."
You say those words and believe John 3:16-18 and Romans 10:8-13 with a believing heart and do not doubt that Jesus can save you from your sins, He WILL become your best friend, your Lord and Savior, and your Kinsman Redeemer from your lost condition of being condemned in the flesh. But returning to the opening verse of this passage of Scripture, it emphasizes what we who have given our life and loyalty, by faith in Jesus Christ, can expect . 8:1 "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit." Those who believe have passed from death unto eternal life.
Humble yourself, my reader and accept the free gift given by God, and embodied in His only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved. He calls you now.
This is pastor Mike Taylor, praying God's salvation comes into your life today. If there be any need for counseling, prayer, or just a listening ear to what troubles you, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org , or visit me online for more biblical messages that will give you strength and resolve to live for the One who died for you, at www.pastormiketaylor.blogspot.com , ,God bless you richly, till we meet at Jesus feet.
Israel Watch: Bible Confirmed Again - Jim Fletcher -
Some years ago, I was walking around east Jerusalem and found myself at the gates of the Albright Institute of Archaeological Research. The famous name of course belongs to William F. Albright, whose "Bible in one hand, spade in the other" research style strengthened people's faith in the veracity of the Bible in the last century.
Interestingly, the Institute now is just outside the boundary of the Israeli-Palestinian areas, and is somewhat obscure in every way, since the view that the Bible proves Jewish history is not in favor.
However, the old professor would no doubt be pleased by recent finds in Israel. He always knew that there is plenty of evidence to authenticate biblical narratives. Today it is a political question, since no one wants to "offend" the easily offended Arabs.
But one does wonder what they make of still more discoveries that prove the Bible. Another has come to light.
The Philistine city of Ziklag, where a young David found refuge from the insane Saul, is being unearthed.
According to a report in the Jerusalem Post:
"About 1,000 sq.m. were excavated; the find revealed evidence of Philistine settlement dating to the 11th-12th century BCE. Large stone structures were uncovered, including finds characteristic of Philistine culture. Stone vessels and metal vessels found on site are similar to other finds from this period that were discovered at past excavations in Ashdod, Ashkelon, Ekron and Gat - all ancient Philistine cities.
"Ziklag is mentioned several times in the Bible, most famously in the Book of Samuel, when the young David was granted refuge from King Saul by the Philistine King Achish of Gat. David was awarded Ziklag as a vassal state, under the protection of Achish, and he used it as a base for raids against the Geshurites, the Girzites and the Amalekites. According to the Book of Samuel, the city was destroyed by the Amalekites and the population was enslaved. After King Saul was killed in battle with the Philistines, David left Ziklag and traveled to Hebron to be anointed king of Israel.
"After a 12-year archaeological study of the entire region, Garfinkel said he believes the finds he discovered at Ziklag and Khirbet Qeiyafa are consistent with scriptural references to the geography of the area."
The whole country of course is literally littered with such sites, but herein lies a very interesting and/or dismaying element.
The more one "proves" the Bible, or Jewish history therein, the more hatred bubbles to the surface from every area of the globe. In other words, people either don't care about it or they are hostile to such news. It's always been this way, but I'd argue the situation has gotten worse.
Even great apologists like Josh McDowell talk about the sea-change in attitudes today. In the past, one could appeal to people based on reason, but now, as McDowell tells us, efforts to witness to people based on evidence is met with rage. Now, the "heathens rage" by saying something like, "Why is your truth better than my truth?"
Objective truth is out the window.
Which is why, I think, archaeological discoveries will continue to decline in popularity in terms of reaching a pagan culture. Sure, some will listen, but be prepared that if you share such news-even in Sunday school!-you'll be met with derision and scorn.
Still, those of us who are believers are strengthened by such stories as the discovery of Ziklag. There, the pages of the Bible come alive and in color for us to flesh-out our faith.
And, even the hostility to such announcements is a fulfillment of New Testament prophecy, which tells us that hearts will grow cold in the last days.
Libra, Facebook's New Digital Currency & Bible Prophecy - Joel - https://www.christianevidence.net
On 18th June, 2019, Facebook and 27 other partner companies - including Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and eBay - officially announced the plan to launch a digital currency called "Libra" in the first half of 2020.
Facebook's David Marcus, who spearheaded the development of Libra, said the mission of the new cryptocurrency is to create "a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that will empower billions of people".
It is claimed that Libra will be able to solve the issues of traditional currencies, such as banking the 1.7 billion who are unbanked (31% of the world population) and allowing for easy transfers and cross-border payments.
Perhaps even more significant, though, is the claim that Libra will overcome the obstacles that have prevented Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies (which we have speculated could be precursors to the money eventually used in the end times) from achieving mass adoption!
Unlike cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Libra will be backed by a reserve of real assets, it can't be mined, there's no cap on the number of Libra that can be produced, and it won't be decentralized at launch. Mastercard's executive vice president of digital solutions, Jorn Lambert, noted that Libra's status as a stablecoin, and its central regulatory body, potentially make it the first real cryptocurrency solution that can be used for payments worldwide.
In fact, Facebook's unprecedented user base is the only global population that's big enough to organize around a single currency, according to vox.com, and many believe Libra will leverage Facebook's more than 2.7 billion monthly users to finally bring cryptocurrencies into the mainstream. See: Facebook may have too many users for its cryptocurrency to fail - even if you don't trust it
However, others have questioned the motives behind the initiative. Facebook has already shown that it has complete disregard for users' privacy and freedom of speech (e.g. silencing voices and selling private data to advertisers). Phil Chen, a cryptocurrency expert who pioneered HTC's first blockchain smartphone, says, "If you're concerned with Facebook knowing too much or having too much access to your private data, well this global coin is the most invasive and dangerous form of surveillance they have designed thus far."
George McDonaugh, the co-founder of blockchain investment firm KR1, says that the new currency is all about collecting more valuable information from people. "Let's cut to the chase, Facebook - and Libra's supporting corporations - are doing this for one reason and that's data... this is all about Facebook enriching their reservoirs of data, knowing who you are, what you're buying, who you're paying and how much you have."
The Coming Global Economic System
Those skeptical of Facebook's creation of their own cryptocurrency have every right to be. The Bible says a time will come when a global dictator will control all buy and sell transactions:
"He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name." (Revelation 13:16-17)
It is too early to tell whether Libra will become the global electronic payment system the Antichrist uses to control the world in the last days, but make no mistake, when you see financial heavyweights Visa, Mastercard, PayPal, Stripe, eBay, Uber and many others coming together and investing nearly up to a billion dollars in the currency, know that you will soon be able to use cryptocurrency anywhere and everywhere you shop - just as the Bible predicted, 2,000 years ago!
On a side note, it's interesting that Facebook chose to name its new cryptocurrency Libra. Is it a coincidence that Facebook is naming it after an astrological zodiac sign, a system that revolves around the occult? I don't know, but I do know that the symbol for Libra represents judgment; it also invokes the Greek letter Omega, which represents "the end," so take heed!
The bottom line is that prophecy is aligning right in front of us, and this announcement brings us ever closer to Christ's return. Are you ready? Or will you be left behind?
UPDATE (28/06/19): Steve Forbes, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Media, urges Mark Zuckerberg (CEO of Facebook) to consider changing Libra's name to the "Mark," referencing the bad luck history of the "Libra" term. Does that name remind you of anything? Read more: https://cointelegraph.com/news/steve-forbes-tells-zuckerberg-use-gold-to-back-libra-call-it-the-mark
Is God A Senile Tyrant? - By Grant Phillips -
Please notice that I am taking the road less traveled; the road that automatically declares "God is very real and does exist." Only a fool would say, or even imply, that there is no God, but there are many fools who walk the earth.
"The fool says in his heart, "There is no God." They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good." (Psalms 14:1)
So with the understanding that God does exist, what is He like? It seems to me there are four classes of people concerning ones perception of God.
THOSE WHO BELIEVE THERE IS NO GOD
I don't know the statistics, that's God's territory, but I'm sure most people in the world do not believe in God. Oh sure, there are many who believe in gods, but not the one and only true God of Israel and the Church. Even many who say they believe in God don't act the part.
If mankind truly believed in God most of us would act like it, but most do not. I realize that none of us are without sin. None of us are perfect. If we were, we would not need a Savior, but thank God, One has been provided. Acknowledging that we are all sinners, I still must ask, "Why do so many profess with their lips, but live as if He does not exist?"
Many folks today live in blatant, open sin without as much as a twinge of conscience. Obviously, many of those do not believe in God and do not feel they should answer to a higher being of any kind because there is no higher being (in their mind). Perhaps those remaining of this group feel that God has gone soft and actually smiles down from Heaven His approval upon their lifestyle.
In my opinion, none of the previous generations, all the way back to Adam, have anything on us today when it comes to unadulterated conceit and outright stupidity. Surely we will be held more accountable since we have been provided the entirety of God's Word (the Bible) and can look back and see how God has moved throughout the ages past. We can see the evidence of God's hand at work. We can see His prophecies fulfilled before our very eyes, but yet our hearts are cold.
These people want nothing to do with Him, so they refuse to acknowledge Him. Their sins are more important, so they conclude that if there is no God, there is no sin. They are wrong.
THOSE WHO SEE HIM AS A TYRANT
A host of ill-advised people today can see God only as a tyrant who sits in Heaven waiting for us to fail. Whatever the reason, maybe they had bad parents, they just don't believe God enough to relax and trust Him.
Several of us who write Biblical articles speak of God's judgment and our need to be aware of His warnings. However, we have also written of God's unending love, His sacrifice for us all, and His patience that we might be saved. God is not a tyrant. He is not watching our every move as we would watch a fly we are ready to swat and kill. The truth is God sits in Heaven yearning for us to come to Him. He truly wants us to succeed, but the only way to succeed is to come to Him by faith in His Son Jesus.
"The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9)
These folks want all to believe that He is always angry at us. He walks across Heaven with a club ready to beat us into submission. He has a short temper and enjoys making us miserable. None of that is true of course.
Manasseh was the fourteenth king of Judah. He reigned 55 years from 687 B.C. to 642 B.C. He may have been the most evil king Judah had. Please read 2 Chronicles 33:1-9. You will see that he was no choir boy. God said of him in the ninth verse:
"But Manasseh led Judah and the people of Jerusalem astray, so that they did more evil than the nations the LORD had destroyed before the Israelites."
Now that's bad. He was worse than the heathen nations around them that God had to judge.
Manasseh was so rotten God allowed Assyria to take him captive. After he was carted off in chains to Babylon with a hook in his nose, he turned to God in true repentance (see verses 12-13).
Now get this, He had every right to turn a deaf ear. Think about it. Manasseh sacrificed his own children upon a red-hot altar. He was extremely cruel. He deserved no mercy. However, what did God do?
"And when he prayed to him, the LORD was moved by his entreaty and listened to his plea; so he brought him back to Jerusalem and to his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD is God." (2 Chronicles 33:13)
If He is a tyrant, wouldn't this have been a great opportunity to have been one? Instead, He showed mercy on a truly repentant heart.
THOSE WHO SEE HIM AS A DODDERING OLD FOOL
The popular thinking today seems to be that God winks at our sins. We are permitted, by God no less; to live anyway we choose as long as we seek politically correct avenues and never ever call anything "sin." This false gospel is a false misunderstanding of Matthew 7:1, which says, "Judge not, that ye be not judged."
This false interpretation has paved the way for followers of Satan to promote that which is sin as a lifestyle acceptable by God. Sins that have destroyed other generations and wiped out civilizations are now acceptable by those who refuse to see any error to their ways. The atrocities of Satan are being forced upon us all because of the sinful minds of a few. Unfortunately, the "few" is expanding to become the "many," just as the proverbial rotten apple in the barrel infects the other apples in the barrel.
This crowd wants us to believe that God is a milquetoast, powderpuff, senile doddering old white haired man in the sky who goes along with anything we say or desire. Again, this is not true of God.
Uzziah (or Azariah) was Judah's tenth king and reigned 52 years from 767 B.C. to 740 B.C. He was a good king.
"He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, just as his father Amaziah had done. He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the LORD, God gave him success." (2 Chronicles 26:4-5)
God really blessed Uzziah, but eventually he allowed pride to enter his heart and got too big for his britches.
"But after Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the LORD his God, and entered the temple of the LORD to burn incense on the altar of incense." (2 Chronicles 26:16)
He knew the Law. He knew he was not permitted to enter the temple of the Lord and usurp the role of the priest, but he did it anyway. Now see what happened.
"Uzziah, who had a censer in his hand ready to burn incense, became angry. While he was raging at the priests in their presence before the incense altar in the LORD's temple, leprosy broke out on his forehead.
When Azariah the chief priest and all the other priests looked at him, they saw that he had leprosy on his forehead, so they hurried him out. Indeed, he himself was eager to leave, because the LORD had afflicted him.
King Uzziah had leprosy until the day he died. He lived in a separate house-leprous, and banned from the temple of the LORD. Jotham his son had charge of the palace and governed the people of the land." (2 Chronicles 26:19-21)
When He says "Don't," that is exactly what He means.
THOSE WHO SEE HIM AS A LOVING FATHER, SAVIOR AND LORD, FULL OF GRACE AND MERCY
The Bible is replete with warnings of God's judgment and just as abounding in His message of love and grace. It speaks of sin as sin. It cuts no corners. It makes no exceptions. It plays no favorites. It tells the Truth, and in that Truth is the Gospel that calls all men to Jesus Christ to be saved. In Him we may be born again, new creations in God.
1. Freiedrich Nietzche was wrong. God is not dead. He is very much alive, and is the one and only true God. This is His world. He created everything and His Word is Law, regardless of what the naysayers may say.
We can legislate all the laws we want legalizing the murder of babies, homosexually and homosexual marriage, transgenderism, and any other law that is an affront to Almighty God, but there is only one Law that matters; God's Law. There is only one opinion that counts, and that belongs to the one and only true God of Heaven and earth.
We can legislate God out of our midst until we are blue in the face, but He remains in charge. If we do not return to Him, and quickly, we will find out soon enough if Freiedrich Nietzche was correct. Mr. Nietzche already has.
2. He is not a tyrant. His judgment is just, and His mercy is undeserved. However, by His grace any who are willing may experience His love through His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.
God would not be God if He did not punish sin and enforce His Laws. Is He a tyrant? A tyrant would never go to the lengths God has to provide salvation to all who will come to Him through His Son Jesus. A tyrant would not die for all so that all who come to Him through Christ can live.
3. He is not a white-haired grandpa kowtowing to our sinful lusts. He is rich in grace and mercy, and He is also holy and righteous. He is truth and unchanging, meaning He does not change to accommodate our foolish opinions. Even now He temporarily holds back His judgment because of His love. He desires that none should perish.
4. None of us are worthy to be saved. We are all sinful creatures with no redeeming qualities. We all deserve to be judged along with Satan and the fallen angels in hell. Nevertheless, Jesus has paid our sin debt. Any who come to God the Father through Him will be born again and receive everlasting life. All those who refuse will suffer in hell for eternity. He is God.
God says of Himself in Malachi 3:6, "I the LORD do not change..." He says also in Hebrews 13:8, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."
He is not a living being, document or anything else that changes with the wind. He is always the same. We are the ones who change, and we are headed in the wrong direction. Going against God is suicidal. We would have a greater chance of holding back Niagara Falls with one hand than causing God to change.
"God again set a certain day, calling it "Today." This he did when a long time later he spoke through David, as in the passage already quoted: "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts." (Hebrews 4:7)
Pre-Rapture Commentary: http://grant-phillips.blogspot.com
Rapture Ready: https://www.raptureready.com/featured/phillips/phillips.html
Daily Jot: Racism vs Socialism - Bill Wilson -
This is the account of Associated Press summing up the past few days of political demagoguery: "In the process, they have created a fraught political frame: "racists" vs. "socialists." Trump's aggressive condemnation of women of color in Congress has allowed House Democrats to mend, for now, their own political divisions as they put the president on record with a resolution condemning his words as racist. But by pushing the House majority into the arms of the squad of liberal freshman women, Trump also adds to his narrative that Democrats have a "socialist" agenda, a story line he started to bring into focus during his State of the Union address." Trouble is, this narrative is seeded in a tremendously flawed assumption.
That assumption is that if you disagree with a person of color, you are a racist. This is totally false. According to AP, and quite frankly the mainstream media, President Trump aggressively condemned women of color in Congress. This is not true because it is a blanket statement. Trump did not condemn women of color in Congress. To say so is to prove positive the socialist agenda which, in part, is to label anyone who disagrees with their nonsense as a racist, bigot, homophobe, bully, Islamophobe, misogynist, white supremism or whatever other derogatory label they can conjure. This way, they take every issue and provide a label for those who disagree with it. Although he could have articulated it better, Trump's attack was against four communists in Congress who happened to be women of color.
Which brings us to the other assumption the press is making about socialism being a campaign issue. The fact is that the Democratic Party platform is socialist. That these four women in Congress are even slightly embraced by the Democratic leadership is a testimony to the socialist nature of the Democratic Party leadership. Anti-Semitic remarks, crazy allegations about illegal immigrants having to drink toilet water, support of Islamic extremism, bigotry against white males, and the list goes on and on from these four women in Congress. Lies, propaganda, hypocrisy, are their currency as they trade in political intolerance and ideological bigotry. The news media and social media tech giants, which generally support a socialist agenda, are their mouthpieces.
The Democrats are going to make racism or any other "ism" the center of their upcoming campaign. They will use the resolution condemning Trump as a racist to extend the notion that anyone who supports Trump is also a racist. This is a false narrative. The threat of communism/socialism, however, is very real. The Democrat leadership tries to downplay it, but their actions and words confirm it. The trouble is Americans of voting age have been dumbed down about the threat of communism so much that they may not take the threat seriously, while no one wants to be labeled a racist. So you can see that deception is the foundation of the political agenda ahead. Let us be mindful of Ephesians 5:6, "Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things comes the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience."
Daily Devotion: In the Secret Place - by Greg Laurie -
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. - Psalm 91:1
When you were a kid, did you ever have a hiding place, a place you would run to when you were afraid or wanted to be alone? God wants to be your hiding place. The good news is that you can retreat to this hiding place wherever you are.
Psalm 91:1 tells us, "He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty."
It is worth noting that the blessings promised in this psalm are not for just anyone. They are specifically given to believers-and not just believers in general but believers who specifically meet the requirements in it. Psalm 91 is full of conditional promises. God promises to do certain things for us, hinging on our doing certain things that are required of us in this psalm.
We have a relationship with God because we have put our faith in Jesus Christ and have turned from our sin. But are we living in constant communion and fellowship with God? That is so important. Many people are not. They are not dwelling consistently with God. But the Lord wants you to dwell in the secret place of the Most High.
He wants you to be like Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet when He came to visit her home in Bethany. There is a time for busyness. There is a time for work. And there is also a time to worship. Unfortunately we sometimes substitute perspiration for inspiration and work for worship.
If you do that, it only will be a matter of time until you spiritually burn out. You can't give out more than you take in. You need to live in communion with Him. You need to dwell in the secret place of the Most High.
FROM THE HEART
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